Wednesday, April 28, 2010

the perfect engagement ring {featuring paul & cassie}

In the few years of being a wedding photographer... I have seen A LOT of engagement rings. Some are big, some are petite, some are intricate and unique, some are beautifully simple... but one thing I always hear is... "It is perfect!"

I said it myself when Jonathan gave me my ring... it was simply perfect. We had never officially gone ring shopping together, but over the course of our dating relationship, I definitely dropped a lot of hints about what I personally did and did not like (what girl doesn't??). But when he got down on his knee and put the ring on my finger... all those thoughts and opinions flew out of my mind. I looked down at my hand and exclaimed, "It is perfect!" He had quietly taken in my opinions (and one of my best friends) to the store and picked out the perfect ring. What a guy!

For me, a perfect engagement ring isn't too big, but not too teeny that I could crush it. It has a princess cut diamond, with smaller princess cut diamonds along the white gold band. Oh, a picture? ok... :)

For my dear friend Alexa... her perfect engagement ring is completely different than mine! She doesn't want a diamond as the main gem! Her fiance, Nathan, took her opinion, mixed it with his geological knowledge of gems and picked out a ring that proudly boasts a yellow sapphire, surrounded by little diamonds with a petite band...

And for Cassie, her idea of the perfect engagement ring has a black pearl. Knowing that, Paul went to the store and found the right setting and the right black pearl. In Cassie's opinion, Paul designed the perfect ring for her! Paul popped the question this past Friday and I snagged a few pictures of this totally unique ring on Saturday. Congratulations, Cassie & Paul!

So future grooms... find out what your woman likes! You don't have to go ring shopping or have her pick it out if you want to do it on your own. By all means... pick out the ring on your own! But make sure you have an idea of what she likes and then take creative liberty. Not every girl wants a diamond, not every girl wants the standard... but then again, a lot of girls do. If you are confused, the best friend is ALWAYS a good assistant... as long as she can keep a secret. Happy shopping! ;)

Friday, April 23, 2010

meredith + bruce {engaged}

Have I ever mentioned that I love, love?  I've probably mentioned it a million times before, but that's ok - because I'm a believer in it! I think that's part of the reason that I'm so inspired by shooting weddings... when you boil it down, my job is to capture love! How great is that? Speaking of weddings... the season is coming upon us and I am unbelievably excited for this summer. I've got some fantastic clients and wedding celebrations on the schedule! Stayed tuned in the coming weeks for the reoccurrence of a wedding-filled blog!

In the meantime, I like to capture the little love stories - the family sessions, the baby sessions... and engagement sessions. Meredith and Bruce met me in downtown Grand Rapids this past Sunday for their engagement sess. They are just one of the fabulous couples that I get to hang out with this summer. Let me tell you - they are in L.O.V.E. These two have been dating for 7 years (yes, SEVEN) and are ready to tie the knot this summer right after Meredith completes her Bachelors Degree from GVSU. We had a great time chatting about the details and wedding day events... oh yea, and capturing some beautiful images of the two of them of course!

Meredith & Bruce - thank you so much for a great afternoon. We had a great time laughing (ok, even if it was at my creepy eye!) and hearing all about the upcoming celebration! Enjoy the preview - I can't wait for July!
After hanging out in Grand Rapids, we headed over to Allendale to the main campus of Grand Valley State (my alma mater! yeaaaa!)
This. is. one. of. my. favorites.... they are in love, k?
If you follow me on Twitter, you already saw a sneak peak of the next image... It's one of my faves from the session!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

the carlsons! {family session}

A few years ago... ok, 14 years to be exact, my husband, Jonathan was the ringbearer in his cousin Lars' wedding. Here they are:

As Jonathan and I celebrated our nuptials last November, Lars took the role of "MC" at our reception. The roles were a bit reversed (we thought Lars would be too old to be our ring bearer), but it was so cool that Jonathan was able to have Lars in his wedding just like he was in Lars' wedding 14 years ago!

This past week, we had the opportunity to spend the evening with Lars and his family. They hadn't had a family portrait done in over a year and a half (and if you know me, you know I think that is just not tolerable! :))... so it was about time! We met at Michigan State University (Jonathan's family bleeds green!) at the Horticulture & 4-H Children's Garden. It was so fun to hang out with them and get to know the four of them a little bit more. Lars is a third generation Director of Youth Haven Ranch (located in Rives Junction, MI and Tucson, AZ). If you haven't heard about what Youth Haven Ranch is all about, you should head on over to their website. They have been changing children's lives since 1968 and it's so exciting to see how God is continuing to work there!

Lars & Amy... thanks for spending the evening with us! We had a blast hanging out with your family and hope to see you again real soon! Enjoy the pictures :)

This is a REAL brothers' picture...
Still so much in love after 14 years...

Coming later this week... Bruce & Meredith's engagement session!

Friday, April 16, 2010

coming soon!

I had a totally fun family session last night and I HAD to post at least ONE picture!! More are coming so so soon because I couldn't stop going through them today :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

pardon the interruption...

If you have emailed me recently and haven't gotten a response, yet - I apologize! My internet was up and down for a few days (unfortunately more down), so the chance for replying to all the emails was very limited. But have no fear! Our internet provider stopped by today and fixed the problem - so I will be getting to that stack of emails very shortly! In the meantime, thanks for your patience and I hope you had a beautiful weekend!

And because a post isn't a post without some pictures... Check out some of my nieces and nephews on Easter... how ADORABLE are they?
Can you tell that they love their new little brother??