Taberie and Eli's Wedding

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Taberie and Eli's Wedding

I’ve known Taberie for a lot of years now (through HOBY) and have always admired her inner spark, her quick smile, her intelligence, and heart for others. She’s one of those people that you want on your team. I knew whoever she married would have to be great. :) Taberie and Eli’s wedding was such a happy, fun day in her hometown of Caldwell, Kansas, which is basically on the Oklahoma border. I loved getting to document this day for such a sweet couple! Enjoy this sneak peek of their day!!

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Ellen and Jim's Wedding At Home

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Ellen and Jim's Wedding At Home

When Ellen first told me about their plans for the backyard wedding she and Jim were going to have, I was all in. There are few types of celebrations I love more than a gathering of a bunch of family and friends in a location that is meaningful to a couple — and what is more meaningful than their own home and backyard? Ellen and Jim had worked hard to make the yard so perfect (it is such a gorgeous setting to begin with!), open the pool, and create a space where those closest to them could come and celebrate their marriage in a fun and relaxed party. As the day got closer, the weather forecast got worse, and they decided to move the ceremony into the living room, which ended up being so lovely. Later on, the rain lifted and guests were able to move outside and still enjoy the beautiful setting on a mild spring evening.

Since we didn’t know if the rain would ruin all outdoor plans on the wedding day, I also went by their home the evening before the wedding to capture some of their family members having a little get-together, and I’m so glad I did! Enjoy this sneak peek at their wedding weekend — the evening before, and the day of the celebration! Congratulations, Ellen and Jim!

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Katie and Kolin's Rural Missouri Wedding

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Katie and Kolin's Rural Missouri Wedding

Kolin and Katie said their vows and became husband and wife in the field behind Katie’s grandparent’s farmhouse in rural Missouri. It was a perfect sunny day that reflected their joy and excitement so well. From the close-knit family bonds, to the sweet moments between Katie and Kolin and those close to them, to the Shatto Milk bar at the reception, and the ceremony performed by Katie’s uncle, this day was such a reflection of the couple and their sweetness. Enjoy this peek into their day.

Thanks to my second shooter Jenny Shipley for her work!

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Whitney and Taylor's Wedding Teaser Film

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Whitney and Taylor's Wedding Teaser Film

We just can’t say enough wonderful things about Whitney, Taylor, and their families and friends. Celebrating their wedding and getting to help tell their story was such a joy because everything about it was done with intentionality and thoughtfulness. Even in the 3 minutes of this teaser film (a preview to their longer story film), we love how you get a real sense for who they are, what they value, and the spirit of their wedding day. We can’t wait to tell a richer and more complete story in their long film as well. Whitney and Taylor, thank you for trusting us with your story. :)

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Alisha and Tyler's Wedding Highlight Film

The thing we love most about our jobs is being invited into personal, meaningful spaces with people. A wedding day is incredibly personal and meaningful. Being invited into that day — with cameras, no less — is not something we take lightly. Alisha and Tyler embraced us as their wedding filmmakers wholeheartedly. We loved this day with them at Alisha’s family’s home in New Hampshire, an area that is quickly becoming one of our favorites. These two love deeply and celebrate well. They personalized everything about their day, and their longer film shows so many impactful personal moments. This shorter highlight film gives you a glimpse into this day, their story, and the beauty of people and place that surrounded them.

Big thank you to the other vendors we were grateful to work with on this day!

Photography: Meredith Jane Photography - www.meredithjanephoto.com

Planning/Coordination & Floral Design: Amy McLaughlin Lifestyles - https://www.amymclaughlin.com

DJ: HIFI Entertainment - http://www.hi-fientertainment.com

Caterer: Timothy Hopkins Catering - https://www.tshcatering.com

Rentals: Sperry Tent Seacoast (https://www.sperrytentsseacoast.com) and PEAK Event Services (http://www.peakeventservices.com)

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Allie and Hank's Wedding

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Allie and Hank's Wedding

The day was blustery and cold, but as cheesy as it may sound, the hearts truly were warm on this wedding day for Allie and Hank. The overcast day added a sort of romance and reverence to the preparations and ceremony, held at Allie’s hometown church. I loved the personal touches that made what Allie and Hank value front and center. They had so many children involved in their wedding (Allie loves kids and is a teacher), Allie’s sister and brother-in-law sang during the ceremony, their parents and grandparents proudly watched them all throughout the day, and their wedding party was a great mix of funny and sentimental.

Their reception was at Terradyne Country Club in Andover and kicked off just as a cold mist started falling (check out the nighttime portraits of Allie and Hank!) and was a fun party full of laughs and funny moments (I’ll save some of those moments for their full gallery!).

Congratulations, Allie and Hank! :) Enjoy this preview of your day!

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Sisters

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Sisters

I didn’t grow up with a sister. I was actually lucky enough to be the only daughter with a brother before and after me, which is a pretty great place to be. But sometimes, when I see sisters, I think that relationship must be a pretty special one to have. And in this family’s case, there are three of them, which is even better (and CUTER). I loved documenting this family at home with their three little girls, especially after obsessing over every photo their mom has posted on Instagram (it’s not creepy, I promise — I’ve known her for years!). ;) Anyway, check out this cuteness overload:

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On authenticity

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On authenticity

My friend Laura is one of the most insightful, genuine, and kind people I know. She approaches life with a wisdom and perspective that most don’t. When it came time for family photos, she told me that this year she wasn’t sure she was too excited about taking htem — because, in a way, it felt inauthentic. She meant that to present one’s family in a “perfect” light is to betray the realness of who we are as families (especially with young children). We are imperfect. We are flawed. Opinionated (have you met a toddler?). Tired (have you met a parent of a toddler?). We’re just human.

I’ve been thinking a lot about what she said since then. On one hand, as a photographer, I think it’s beautiful and wonderful to celebrate the goodness and joy in whatever life stage you’re in — even if your daily life doesn’t look like that one image might suggest. On the other hand, I think it’s raw and honest and vulnerable to present the parts of life that aren’t polished — that’s where real relationships form, and one of the reasons I love Laura as a friend.

So as I edited through her family’s photos, which were taken at the most picturesque time of year at one of the most picturesque locations in Kansas City, I was struck by how the beautiful and the imperfect intermingle in this space we call “family photos.” We’re presented with the lovely and the chaotic all in one space, which is such a picture of what family life is like. I love the image of Laura and her husband, Blake, laughing together under the perfect yellow trees. What you don’t hear in that image are the shouts of children running in the background (their children AND mine because they let me bring my OWN children to this photo shoot… see the next image after it, or the photo at the very end that shows my Luke covered in mud thanks to his big brother). ;) But in that image of Laura and Blake, their laughs are real. The story is real. It may just be a different one than you perceive.

So, I hope this year when you look at your family photos, you can appreciate the images of imperfection just as much as the holiday-card-worthy images. This time is fleeting. It’s happening right now. Document it well, and appreciate it for what it is.

(This is my little Luke, covered in mud by the end of the shoot…what kind of photographer takes her own kids to a photo shoot? Lol. The kind whose husband is out of town and it’s busy October and who has great friends who say “of course!” when you ask if your kids can come so you can fit it all in) :D

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Maile and Patrick's Mildale Farm Wedding

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Maile and Patrick's Mildale Farm Wedding

The sun was shining. The smiles were big. The love was palpable. No detail was left undone. Maile and Patrick’s love is one that is so obvious when you’re with them. They just make sense together. They both are SO HAPPY to be with one another, and this joy was even more magnified on their wedding day, which was a gorgeous fall day at Mildale Farm (one of my favorite places!). You’ll be able to see it in the photos — from their sweet first look where they read each other letters, to their ceremony where they couldn’t stop smiling, to their party bus ride and fun portrait time (check out the series of photos of their champagne popping… ha ha!), to their reception that was a perfect mix of heartfelt, personal, and a great party.

I also loved how involved their parents and family members were all day (and in general in their lives!) and I got teary-eyed several times watching them with their parents throughout the day. It was also fun to see other couples whose weddings we’ve done in the past!

Okay, I’ll stop talking and let the photos tell the story (and the video later when it’s ready!). A big thank you to my second shooter, Kassie Wolfinger.

Maile and Pat — congratulations! Enjoy this preview of your day!

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Laura and Mike's Nelson-Atkins Museum Wedding

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Laura and Mike's Nelson-Atkins Museum Wedding

In all my years of photographing weddings and visiting the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (it’s one of my favorite KC landmarks — both for photography and just to visit!), I have never actually had a wedding inside the museum. So when I met with Laura and Mike and heard about everything they had planned for their day, I was excited to be able to capture it! It was such an elegant day (Laura’s dress could not have been more perfect for this setting and style!!) and everyone had a great time. Their ceremony was inside the gorgeous Kirkwood Hall and they moved into Rozzelle Court for dinner. Rozzelle Court’s string lights, archways, center fountain, plants, and balcony makes it such a dreamy setting for a dinner like this. Then, everyone went back out into Kirkwood Hall which had been transformed into a (giant) dance floor, which was full all night. The fun energy and the guests enjoying themselves so much had me smiling all night until the most beautiful send-off with sparklers.

Thanks to my second shooter, Jenny Shipley, for capturing this day with me!

Big congratulations to Laura and Mike! Enjoy this peek into their wedding day. :)

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Kara + Dan's San Francisco Maternity Session

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Kara + Dan's San Francisco Maternity Session

It was such a joy to get to visit San Francisco again and capture photos of Kara and Dan as they prepare to welcome their baby in just a matter of weeks! We revisited the same location we photographed their "first look" and portraits on their wedding day several years ago, which was so special! I love how Kara is literally glowing in these, and Dan's excitement to be a dad is so evident! Congratulations!

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Kari + Joe's Wedding at The Everly

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Kari + Joe's Wedding at The Everly

The one with all the happy tears. You know how Friends (the TV show) had every episode titled with "The one where..." or "The one with..." Well, Kari and Joe's wedding was one with a LOT of wonderful things, but I keep thinking about all the happy tears that were shed on this day. The tears that made it so evident how seriously they took the commitment of marriage. The tears that were an overflowing of joy that the day had finally arrived. Tears that represented their journey, their excitement, and their love. So this is the one with all the happy tears.

It's also the one with tons of laughs, silliness, a fun take on wedding details, and a heart of hospitality woven throughout the whole day. Kari and Joe LOVE people. And they love them well. And their people love Kari and Joe, and it's easy to see why.

Here's a small sneak peek into their wedding day story. Their reception was at the brand new venue, The Everly (they were the first wedding!). Kari also got ready there. Their ceremony was at Christ Community Church - Brookside, which is just so stunning.

Big thank you to my second shooter, Jenny Shipley, who always does a fantastic job.

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Where the heart is

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Where the heart is

As the saying goes, home is where the heart is. It's where your people are. Where LEGOs are spread out across the living room floor. Where beautiful art sits side-by-side with kid-created masterpieces. Where laughter and silliness and the craziness of family happens on a daily basis. Yes, I'd agree -- that's surely where the heart is.

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Ashley and Bryce's Winery Wedding

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Ashley and Bryce's Winery Wedding

This was a wedding I left and replayed so many moments over in my mind: the time her dad cried when he saw her for the first time in her wedding dress, and the proud look on her mom's face all day. The way the bridesmaids were so excited for Ashley, and made the day all about celebrating their relationship. Bryce's sweet and oh-so-happy reaction to seeing his bride. The priest's message on marriage. The K-State themes sprinkled throughout the day. Bryce's brother and best man's rap toast that had everyone laughing, but wiping away tears by the end (a true toast success -- and I've seen a lot of toasts). The couple's first dance, where they looked so happy and Ashley's elegance really shone through. And the gorgeous Kansas sunset over the hills at the winery. Such a good day.

They started and ended the day at Liquid Art Winery in Manhattan, Kansas. Their ceremony was at St. Isidore's Catholic Church. Special thanks to Meghan Tuttle for second shooting with me!

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Baby Leah is so loved

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Baby Leah is so loved

There is nothing quite like the first weeks of new parenthood. Everything changes, yet somehow quickly feels as thought this is what life has always been like. How you can't remember a time before this perfect little (yet sleep-depriving) human being lived in your home and heart. I love getting to document first-time parents in their home with their new little love. This shoot with baby Leah was so sweet, and she is one blessed little girl to be born into a family with such wonderful parents. I think they'd say the same about her.

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Jamie and Calvin's Missouri Farm Wedding

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Jamie and Calvin's Missouri Farm Wedding

Jamie and Calvin said their vows in the field right next to the farmhouse they've been working on, making it their first home. They were surrounded by a huge group of family and friends, and the whole day was obviously such a labor of love. Personal touches were everywhere, with so many hands working to make the day happen. From wooden structures that were handmade by Jamie's dad, to succulents carefully planted and ribbons tied by groups of women, to bouquets arranged, cupcakes made, and food prepared by family members and close family friends -- in every detail, the love everyone has for Jamie and Calvin was so evident. I loved capturing this day for such sweet people in such a beautiful and personal location. :) Added bonus: Jeff and the boys got to come and enjoy the party as well.

Congratulations, Jamie and Calvin! Here is a preview into your day: