East Coast Wedding:

One of the most exciting things about your business is seeing the new couples God will bring into our lives each year.

As I’ve discussed before, the majority of our business comes from word of mouth. And I couldn’t be more thankful! To know that we have a crowd of people around us who support us is the best feeling in the world. But more importantly, that crowd sends amazing people into our lives. Case in point, Yuris and Elias! This sweet couple was referred to us by our friends who now reside in D.C. They booked us over email and we met each other for the very first time when we photographed their engagement session in Old Town Alexandria. Building relationships with our clients, no matter how far away they live, is paramount to us so we started things off with tea and conversation. We left grateful to have these two in our lives and were even more excited about photographing their East Coast wedding. I hope our camera brings us back that way again because it is beautiful country filled with beautiful people.

We were fond of Elias and Yuris from the start, but then we met their friends and family, and decided we wanted to be a part of the club. They too are surrounded by a sincere and committed group of people who know how to love. Every single person, whether friend or family, played a role in their wedding day. And they served Yuris and Elias with commitment and joy. We loved being a part of it all! So much so, that we joined the after party because we didn’t want the fun to end.

Yuris and Elias, you know how much we love you both! But if you need us to say it again, we will! We’re so happy to have met you, photographed your wedding, and now get to call you our friends. Your East Coast wedding was a highlight of our 2014! We cannot wait for you to make it out to San Francisco or perhaps we’ll be back in your hood one day too. Happy Belated Anniversary to you!

P.S. Yuris is a talented artist and has started her own online shop, Salt Stains, designing and creating custom prints and cards. Be sure to check her out if you’re looking for something unique and beautiful!


Ceremony & Reception: The Church of Philippi

Dress: Mori Lee

Shoes: Marc Fisher

Makeup: Grace Skincare

Hair: Linda Chae

Rentals: ABC Rentals

Catering: Rainbow Catering

Paper Goods: Salt Stains

Suit: Suit Supply

Photographers: Pictilio

Friends and Family!

Bride and groom see each other for the first time. East coast summer weddingBridesmaids helping the bride put on her dress. Maryland wedding photographer.Bride holding her bouquet of flowers. Simple and elegant.Outdoor bride and groom portraits in Maryland. East Coast wedding photography.Bride and groom with beautiful pastel florals.Wedding party walking in front of a barn. Maryland wedding photography.Bride, gown, veil and pink lipstick. Romantic wedding photography.Wedding details: gown, veil and shoes. Elegant wedding photographyBride and veilLovely color scheme with pastels and blues. Bride and groom laughing with bridal party in front of barn. Editorial wedding photography.Bride and groom against a pale blue sky. Maryland wedding portraits of bride and groom.East coast wedding photographerWedding party on top of a hill with beautiful clouds and blue sky. Maryland wedding photographer.

2014 Make Marriage Happen

Bride and groom with their Moms

Well, I am officially off maternity leave this week. Or perhaps it was last week, I’m unsure. The days turn into nights, and the weeks just seem to fly by.

I haven’t quite figured out a new routine yet for office hours, all in due time. But what coming back from my leave really means is that the wedding season is about to start. We have our first engagement session this week and a wedding next week. I’m so excited to get things started!

As we gear up for the 2015 wedding season, I couldn’t help but look back at last year’s season. As I did, I discovered that we shared only one of our weddings from 2014. It’s kind of crazy as I think back to how many goals I did not accomplish last year. I started the year out with a hustle mentality, but when morning sickness and pregnancy fatigue hit, my priorities soon had to be shifted. There is a time and a season for everything. Last year was all about growing little Rosie and I’m so thankful I had the flexibility of not over extending myself.

Now that we are parents, our priorities are continuing to shift and our roles are changing. We are being stretched, challenged, and remade. There are definitely growing pains involved, but there is also a lot of excitement and joy as we embark on a new chapter in our lives. We are finally going to get around to sharing some beautiful wedding stories with you. And I am going to continue writing about my passion – marriage. As I continue transitioning and trying to figure out what works and what doesn’t work, I’ve asked two women who I greatly admire to help me get things started with my 2015 Make Marriage Happen series. They are two people who are honest, willing to be vulnerable and have a passion for marriage like me. I can’t wait to have them share with you!

Here’s a recap of my Make Marriage Happen series from 2014. I look forward to continuing to write about this topic that is always on my heart and mind. Now so more than ever!

January 2014Be Intentional

Calendar Syncing vs. Calendar Sinking
Take Note Of The Good
Knowing When To Fight
I Just Don’t Love You Anymore

February 2014Be Affectionate

10 Ways To Show Affection
Delivering Kisses
Valentine’s Day Dinner Party

March 2014Be Intimate

The Deep Waters of Intimacy
Try New Things
Physically Present, Mentally Absent
Secret Rendezvous

April 2014Be Forgiving

Three lessons I’ve learned about forgiveness in marriage

May 2014 – Be Caring

Invest In What Matters Most

June 2014Love & Respect

I Do Not Know How To Be A Wife
What Your Wife Might Be Trying To Tell You

July 2014Be Playful

10 Ways To Infuse Fun Into Your Marriage

Photo: With Mother’s Day this Sunday, I thought this photo from our Lake Tahoe wedding last year was very apropos. Such a sweet moment between our clients Kim and Garrett and their moms.

Date Night:
Do The Hard Work

Mini date night in the hospital

As of Saturday, Rose is 7 weeks old. During those 7 weeks, Vitaliy and I have only had little mini dates here and there while Rose was asleep. They’ve been less than ideal and have often been interrupted when Rose has woken up hungry. Now that we have a little one, we feel there is an even stronger need for regular date nights for us to check in with each other and continue to invest in our relationship.

I am currently breastfeeding exclusively for Rose which has posed a real threat to date night. I’m unable to be away from Rose for more than 1 – 2 hours. While even a 10 minute window of opportunity for us to be alone would be good, it’s not ideal for me to be worrying during my time with Vitaliy about Rose. I need to learn to pump my milk so that I can give someone the gift of taking care of her for an evening. It will be good for her and for us.

So, last Thursday (Thursday has been and will continue to be our designated date night.) we spent trying to learn to pump. Yes, I said “we” because this is something that affects both of us and I needed some moral support. The truth is I would prefer not pumping. Rose and I have a good thing going on and I don’t want anything to mess that up. And if I’m being completely honest, I’m comfortable. It’s easier for me to do what has already worked and avoid having to learn something new. On top of that, I’m afraid. Fear of the unknown and fear of ruining the sweet bond Rose and I have developed through our feeding time together.

But my marriage is more important than all of this. Yes, even more important than Rose. So, I laid all my fears and concerns to the side and plunged forward with learning to pump, the key to my freedom. And let’s just say, date night ended in tears, silence, and about a tablespoon of pumped milk. I climbed into bed with dried up tears on my cheeks and Vitaliy leaned over and whispered, “We’ll figure this out. It’s going to be ok.” I tried to breathe in his hope as I fell asleep. Rose would need to be fed soon.

By God’s grace (I rely on it even more these days), I woke determined not to give up so easily. On the recommendation of a good friend, we made an appointment with a lactation consultant for that day. I don’t want to go another week without investing some quality time with my husband. No, it can’t wait. I need it, Vitaliy needs it, and Rose depends on it too.

I hope I’m not boring you with the talk of breast milk and pumping. I felt the urge to share this experience with you in hopes of encouraging someone out there and to hold myself accountable. Are you avoiding the hard work to make date night happen? I know I felt the temptation. If so, join me in doing the hard work and making an investment in your relationship.

Update: Since writing this post, Rose is now 9 weeks old and takes a bottle. Woohoo! We did it! We have since had two date nights and are so thankful for the time alone, just the two of us. Go, do the hard work! Do whatever is necessary to make your marriage happen.

Photo: Vitaliy and I having a mini-date in the hospital while Rose sleeps. We toasted to date night and never giving up on “us”.