Archive for Jun 2010

June 30, 2010 Jon and Jennifer

Jon and Jennifer asked me if I would be able to come out to Forest Cliff Camp… a bit of a trek but it had a lot of meaning for them. That statement is an understatement… every corner we turned had another story or significant meaning. I’m sentimental – so it was a perfect evening for me with two people completely smitten and stories around every corner. Let me share a few…

Jon and Jen met at this camp…. Jon was a special needs counselor and Jen was the camp nurse.

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They were both too shy to pursue things… until one day Jon came by the nurse’s station on the golf cart and Jen’s friend pushed her aboard. They talked and talked… and now they’re “Almost Married”!

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Found these fun hoses hanging behind the maintenance shed. Loved the colours!

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I asked Jon and Jen to sit on these oak leaves. I heard one of them mention “Oak leaves! Perfect!” And when I asked why and heard their story, I couldn’t agree more. Perfect setting.

Jon’s dad passed away a few years ago. While sick, he was telling Jon one day how proud he was of who Jon had become. Jon worried he wasn’t there yet… so much growth still to do in life. (Don’t we all feel the same?) Jon’s dad shared how an Oak tree takes years, and years, and years to reach it’s full potential. The same is true with Jon he reminded him. Love this message. So, to include Jon’s dad in the wedding they are using Oak leaves throughout their Fall celebration.

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We went over to the horses… so beautiful!

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I pointed out a rainbow peeking out from behind the tree… Again Jon and Jen had a perfect story to share. The night Jon’s dad passed away, he went outside and for the first time in his life saw the complete arc of a rainbow. It gave him some comfort as a rainbow is a symbol of God’s promise. This night, it was as if someone was smiling down on these two.

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Jon and Jen showed me these great chairs on the nurse’s cabin porch. They talked about sitting out on the porch and rocking (they’re the coolest rocking chairs!) for hours….

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Then Jon casually mentioned – his dad actually built this porch they were sitting on now. Did I not say there was meaning around every corner?

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These two – and this light – just make me happy.

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Off we headed to the beach. Lake Huron has the most amazing sunsets. This sky photo is straight out of the camera. It was an amazing night.

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If you look close… can you see some of Jen’s blowing hair forms a perfect heart shape?

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They climbed up the lifeguard stand for this cute photo….

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Jen had on these great antique earrings – I asked about them. They were her late Grandmother’s. Her Grandma left her these earrings as Jen was the only one in the family with green eyes and had to be the one to wear them. Jen will also be wearing her Grandma’s pearls on her wedding day. Beautiful!

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These two are just happiness personified.

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Jon and Jen – thank you so much for sharing so many of your memories with me! Can’t wait for October!

Celebrating life and love,


June 30, 2010 Joe and Alison

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to second shoot for my good friend Nataschia. She had shot with me the weekend before – a great way for photographers to learn and grow!

WIth it not being a wedding where I was the main photographer I didn’t know the couple or what to expect. What a pleasant surprise with a gorgeous couple who were lots of fun, great venue and a perfect day!

The first look at the dress is always exciting – tells a bit about the feel of the day and the personality of the bride. I loved the timeless elegance of this beauty.

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And her Alexander McQueen shoes shows she has spunk to her too!

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The flower girl, Katherine and Junior bridesmaid, Margaret were so sweet. They had come from Dubai and were so excited to be a part of Joe & Alison’s Big Day! And what girl – at any age – doesn’t like something in a little turquoise bag as a gift?

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Last minute makeup touches…

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Because the day was perfect… they of course started with a “first look”. Photographers love this as it gives the couple time to connect before the craziness of the day – and allows them time to be with their guests during the cocktail hour.

Joe was so serious while waiting – he did not want to sneak a peek until it was just the right moment!

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I think the wait was worth it!

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One thing I love is when couples have personal touches. Joe’s dad had won this golf trophy years before at the Hamilton Golf and Country CLub and so Joe and Alison used it to hold one of the beautiful centerpieces Anna McCusker designed. I love Joe’s parents reactions!

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One thing I loved was being able to be with the bride right before the ceremony. I am usually at the front of the church waiting with my assistant at the back… it was greta to witness the dad and daughter moment before “show time”. I always think this has to be the hardest walk for any dad!

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Another fun thing, was as a second shooter I didn’t have to stay at the front and could quickly sneak up to the board room overlooking the ceremony to get a different angle.

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During the cocktail hour the trio played for the people on the balcony. I loved how this one gentleman came and just stood and savoured the music. It was like his own private concert.

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Joe and Alison are from the area here in Ontario originally but now live in San Francisco. I loved how there was Canadian flags around the grounds at the Hamilton Golf and Country CLub.

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And then a few portraits of this beautiful couple. Such a timeless look…

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I love two things about Joe in particular.

1) How he looks at Alison.

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2) How he makes Alison laugh. A lot.

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When Anna McCusker is doing your wedding decor… you know it’s going to be stunning.

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The first dance is always such a sweet intimate time between the couple. Even though there is a crowd watching – they are in their own world together.

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This moment made me get choked up a bit. Dad and daughter dancing – she standing on his toes to keep up.

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And I’ll leave you with this very cool alternative to a wedding cake – a Croque en bouche (french pastry). Mmmmm…. it was so good!

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Joe and Alison – wishing you all the best!

Celebrating life and love,


June 29, 2010 The Notebook

I remember years ago reading a little novel by Nicholas Sparks. It was called “The Notebook“…. yeah, you may have heard of it. icon smile The Notebook

This was before the movie though…. and I remember bawling through it. What touched me most was it was a love story that stood the test of time. Of a couple who had been together into their senior years. Most love stories end when the boy gets the girl… this one began there. I loved that. Fast forward a few years and it’s a movie. I remember going with a group of girlfriends and quietly crying so they wouldn’t see… and then I looked down the aisle. All 6 of us were doing the same.

There is beauty in a love that lasts through ups and downs. The good and the bad. And time.

Jon and Jennifer don’t have the years of this senior couple – but they have been through the bad and the good. the ups and the downs. And they are smitten.

I will have more of their engagement shoot up shortly…. but as I was finishing downloading their images, this one caught my eye. It reminded me of the Notebook (and this particular image). Of a love that stands that test of time.

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Celebrating life and love,


Since moving to the country last year, we’ve been happy to make some new friends. This weekend was no different – our girls made two brand new friends.

The first friend was on Friday after school. He just showed up while we were playing on the hammock and wanted to play.

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Saturday morning we made the girls let him go from the little cage they made for him.

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And then Sunday afternoon Eden came into my office literally jumping up and down adn so excited she coudln’t even speak.

We have had our boy guinea pig Wilbur for a couple years. then last year our friend gave us Grace (yes – Will & Grace – ha ha). She told us Grace was “beyond childbearing years” so we agreed. Every day the girls say “I can’t wait for Grace to have babies” And everyday we tell them it ain’t happening.

Apparently God wanted to play a little joke on us.

Enter our newest Jefferson family member.

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It’s name has changed numerous times – Jack, Speedy, Tiny, Nuzzles, and so on. We’ll make a decision soon. I looked up guinea pig babies online and found out they can have 1-8 babies at a time. Makes me thankful we only got one baby guinea pig!!

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Celebrating life and love,


June 23, 2010 Will and Gill

I blogged a bit about Will and Gill on Father’s Day.. if you didn’t get a chance to read that you can do so HERE.

When I met with Will and Gill (I love that their names rhyme…) back in the winter we clicked right away. We managed to talk a bit about wedding – but what I remember most is just laughing. A lot. And this continued all throughout the wedding. What I really love about these two is they feel everything deeply… when they laugh – they laugh loud and with their while self. When they get choked up, they cry openly. They hug and kiss everyone – fro parents to me and the other vendors. The receiving line they spent time talking to each person intentionally. They were laid back and enjoyed their day immensely. Everyone I spoke to – guests or staff could not help but comment on how amazing both Will and Gill are. To know them is to love them.

Will is from England and moved here a few years ago. Gill moved to Canada from Scotland as a young child. I love how fate has taken a girl from Scotland, a boy from England and beings them together across the ocean in Canada. The story goes… Gill was living in BC, and came home to Ontario for a week-long . Will and her met… and she extended her vacation another week. They were inseparable for those two weeks… and soon after inseparable forever after as Gill moved back to Ontario. This summer these two are moving to New York City – what an exciting new venture!

I have to share some of the images from this beautiful day. They were married at Greystone Golf Course hidden away in Milton’s escarpment – it was a magnificent setting for a wedding (and their staff were so friendly and helpful!)

Gill’s bouquet consisted of her two favourite flowers…. and that ring! Gorgeous!

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Speaking of gorgeous… Gill looked amazing!

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It was very cool to see they did a live video back home to England for family who couldn’t be at the wedding. Great idea!

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I love how James Bond… um… I mean Will… watches for his bride. Watch how his face changes from the first image where he’s waiting – and then when he sees her.

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I just love how these two look at each other and interact.

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The colour of the bridesmaids dresses looked lovely blowing in the wind

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One of my favourite moments is during the signing of the registry – often the first chance for stolen moments and whispers.

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They were piped out of the ceremony right to the reception!

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What a gorgeous day (it had called for rain all day!) and wedding party….

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These two are such classic beauties – had to share some black and white timeless portraits!

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Loved Greystone – so many beautiful spots!

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The entrance to the reception was so fun… Will and Gill had a great party!

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And without further ado… a look at their slideshow of their Big Day! I have to give a big shout out to my good friend and fellow photographer Nataschia who second shot with me this time… I got stuck behind an accident on the 403 where they had closed the highway. While I sat on the highway for over an hour not moving, and then got on the 407 and found my exit AND THE NEXT TWO were all closed…. Nataschia was able to go on ahead of me and start until I got there. Gill was so laid back that it didn’t even stress her out when I called ahead. This weekend I will be shooting with Nataschia – always fun to see how another photographer works!

Celebrating life and love,


June 21, 2010 Summer

Summer makes me happy. The simple things… watermelon…. picnics… longer days… sunshine…

On this first day of summer – enjoy the simple things in life!!

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Celebrating life and love,


June 20, 2010 Gill's Dad

Had an amazing wedding yesterday with Will and Gill and I can’t wait to blog all about it. Today though I wanted to look at one relationship from it… since it’s Father’s Day.

During Gill’s speech she talked about her amazing relationship with her mom… but then she went on to talk about dad. She said how if someone was going to describe the ideal Father – it was him. How he didn’t want to hear about boys or emotions… but was the first one to listen when she needed to talk about boys or emotions.

All day, the way dad looked at GIll… melt my heart. I tend to cry at weddings ( a lot) but the two moments that got me the most yesterday was first, when Dad walked Gill down the aisle. Gill leaned into her dad when she got to the start of the aisle. He kissed her forehead. As they walked down the aisle they switched between tears and smiles. As Dad committed to “give his daughter”, he took Gill’s hand and Will’s hand and placed them together. It reminded me of a poem my own Dad wrote me on my wedding day that talked about the change from little girl to wife.

The second part that got me all choked up was the Father-Daughter dance. Gill had chosen “I loved you first” for the song. Even though I’ve heard this song alot – I cry everytime. I think of my own Mark, and how he is loving my girls and showing them an example of how they should be treated. You could tell that Gill’s dad did an awesome job of this – giving her an incredible example of what it means to be loved and adored. So that when she met Will… she knew that he was the one as he treated her in a way she was accustomed to – thanks to Dad’s example.

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To all the dad’s out there – Happy Father’s Day!!

Here’s a few of the father-daughter pictures from yesterday… come back in a couple days to see more from this wonderful wedding!

A moment alone with dad before the ceremony….

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The emotional walk down the aisle. I can not imagine the emotions a parent must go through during this walk…

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And the father-daughter dance…

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Celebrating life, love and Dads….


I remember seeing Mark for the first time, sitting at the bus stop in Toronto. Looking all cute in his baseball cap and jeans heading to work.

Sometimes it astounds me that this same boy is now sitting in my kitchen 17 years later. Our kitchen. With our kids.

I’m the luckiest gal.

On a recent ordinary, nothing unusual evening I was taken aback by the extraordinary moments happening all around me.

I was outside snapping photos and came inside to find Eden quietly playing with her My Little Ponies happily in the corner. At the table something beautiful was happening.

Mark and Madison sat sipping hot chocolate. She was telling him about the flag of South Korea. And soccer. And other random things she had learned in school and experienced that day. When she gets excited her whole body talks. Her hands were waving and her eyes and toothless grin told the parts of the story that words couldn’t express.

And there he sat. The boy from the bus stop. Listening. Listening with his whole body. Leaning in. Smiling. Nodding. Completely engrossed.

For at this moment, there was only two people. When the spell was broken, and Madi noticed there were others in the room she declared “I love daddy. We’re like brothers!” ha ha.

I sometimes wonder what things form childhood my girls will remember. It always puzzles me the events our mind does recall. And those it forgets. I hope my girls remember ordinary, nothing unusual evenings full of extraordinary moments.

I’m so thankful 17 years ago, I had the courage to introduce myself to that boy at the bus stop. And I’m so thankful he loves our girls with such purpose.

Happy Father’s Day, Mark!

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Celebrating life and love and Mark,


June 18, 2010 Dave and Jen

Jenn emailed me a few months ago to see about getting together for coffee and asking me some questions about the business… I suggested she come on out to our monthly get together of photographers instead. She did – and has been coming ever since! Jenn is so eager to learn and just launched a new blog which looks great! I love when couples are able to shoot together – which Jenn does with her husband Dave. I had never met Dave before and was so glad when they showed up at last weekend’s photographer get together. Unfortunately they showed up as everyone was pretty much gone – but it just meant we had a better chance to really gab and get to know them. They are a great couple and I’m so excited to see where their business leads…

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Celebrating life and love,


June 18, 2010 Goodness and Light

I adore my job as a photographer for heaps of reasons… but one reason is the community. I am in awe of the great community of photographers who are there to support, encourage, cheer, help, and inspire each other. It is so refreshing.

Nataschia and I met about two years ago. We clicked right away. She’s soft spoken and gentle, one of those people that when she speaks people listen because they know it’s going to be good solid wisdom. But on the flip side – she’s got a great sense of humour and we’re often goofing off and having way too much fun. Nataschia and I joke around a lot and for the longest time our term of endearment wasn’t so sweet as we always referred to each other as “jerk”. So I decided I would start calling her “Goodness and Light”. Thus the title of this blog post.

I’ve also loved getting to know Nataschia’s husband Mike and her four great kids. Mike and my Mark are similar as they are both so patient with their wives scatterbrained ways and lack of domestic skills. Mike is such a great dad and supporter of Nataschia and her business.

At the photographer get together at my place last week, it took some convincing but I managed to convince Mike to let us get some photos of the two of them together. This makes me so happy. These two have been married almost 15 years – they need some great photos of them as a couple! To celebrate who they are today and how they’re still madly in love.

(loved Nataschia’s red shirt with the planter on my shed and also the red barn further on. Good choice!)

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Celebrating life and love,