Family, Forever! (Part Three)

(continued) … After some pictures, we headed over to Bellecourt Manor … to party! 😉

These amazing young people are Chick-fil-A employees, and they’ve made some special memories together there. I love that they gave their reception a personal touch by including these cute little guys!

Leaving the reception …

… and walking together into a new life.

Congratulations, A. and S.! ❤


Family, Forever! (Part One)

There is nothing sweeter than watching two wonderful people come together to create their own, brand-new family! In April, I was honored to photograph A. and S.’s wedding in Illinois. ❤

One of the things that struck me about this wedding is how much these two young people are loved by their families. Family members from all over the country came to take part in the celebration!


Dad and daughter ❤

(The story continues in Part Two …)

Engagement Session: A. and S.

I had such a good time with A. and S. during our engagement session! We started our photos in a place that I never would have thought to take engagement pictures: Chick fil A. I was so excited to start our photos off there! (On a Sunday, no less! 😉 )

I love that they wanted to do something unique and fun like this! ❤


A New Year, A New Life

January is a time to celebrate new beginnings. I was honored to share in R. and C.’s wedding!

These sweet friends started their lives together surrounded by friends and family, and I loved the feeling of happiness that was all around.




One of my favorite parts was when R. and C. said a prayer together, right before the ceremony. What better way to start a new life? ❤




It was chilly outside, but we braved the cold for a few shots in the park!






Congratulations again, R. and C.! Best wishes for your new life together! ❤

Engagement Session: R. and C.

I just love this couple!  I first met R. and C. through a college ministry that we are all a part of.  I was so excited when they asked if I would be their wedding photographer next January!


We had so much fun walking around the riverfront and downtown St. Charles!



Spring leaves were just starting to appear.  I love the feeling of “new beginnings” in springtime.





It was supposed to rain all afternoon, but the rain cooperated and held off until the very last picture!


Congratulations, you two … I can’t wait for your wedding!  ❤

Venue Ideas: Stone House of St. Charles

How in the world have I lived in the St. Charles area for most of my life without knowing about this place??

It wasn’t exactly the most traditionally photogenic type of day when I visited Stone House.  February.  Cold.  Rainy.  Everything outside was in that quiet waiting-for-Spring phase.  (The groundhog lied!  But I digress.)

Almost anyplace can look good on a day when the sun is sparkling and the flowers are out.  But I think it takes a special place to shine in February.

Enter Stone House.


The Bridal Suite was spacious and airy, with beautiful historical details all over the place!



One of the things I loved about Stone House was the Groom’s Quarters.  Sometimes it can be hard to track down the guys when they are getting ready off-site.  Stone House has a cozy Groom’s Quarters in a separate building right next door!


Lots of fun things to do, including a game room!


The real standout for me was the Hall.  Even on a gray day in February, it was warm and inviting, and that big open space was perfect for dancing and celebrating!


To find out more about Stone House, here is a link to their website.  Thanks for the tour, Mike and Ruth!  🙂



“Why Should I Hire A Wedding Photographer?”

20160819_13432“After all, isn’t EVERYBODY a photographer these days?  The cameras on phones have gotten so advanced … anybody can take pictures of a wedding.  And there will be tons of people there.  Why not just ask everyone to send us all the pictures and save the expense of hiring a wedding photographer?”

It is certainly true that nowadays almost everyone has the technology — right in their own pockets —  to take some pretty decent snapshots, to say the least!

But there is a vast world of difference between “taking a picture” and “making a picture.”    It’s easy to line everybody up, tell them to “Say cheese!” and take a snapshot.

Making a picture requires a lot more.  It requires using your heart to capture the emotion of a moment.  It means understanding your photography tools to the point where you can use them to match your artistic vision.  It means being intuitive enough to anticipate moments before they happen.  Not to mention choosing lighting and composition deliberately (and, in many cases, very quickly!).

Your wedding day will go by in a flash.  But it will be filled with emotions that you will want to hold onto and remember.  Don’t leave it up to a chance snapshot!

Color Scheme Generator


I’m just going to come right out and say it.  I LOVE COLORS!  I love the way they can set a mood.  They can interact with each other in different ways, changing the context depending on how they are used together.

So I wanted to share a fun (free) tool that I thought might be useful for those out there in Wedding Planning Land who are in the early stages of thinking about colors and themes for bridesmaid dresses, flowers, and table settings!

All you have to do is start the generator and press the space bar to get all kinds of wedding color scheme ideas!  (I may or may not have been sitting here watching the pretty colors for … well, much too long.  Haha)

Here’s the site:

Enjoy!  🙂