Monthly archives: March 2012

Elizabeth + Brad | Pittsboro, NC | Wedding

Elizabeth (friends call her B.B.) and Brad…where to begin. Probably the most kind-hearted, laid-back, genuine couple I know. From the moment I met them at over coffee at Parker and Otis (yum!) all the way up to their wedding exit, I had such a fun time with these two. They had a gorgeous December wedding at Fearrington Village – from the florals, to the food, to the weather, everything was perfect. I had the pleasure of having Sarah Der second shoot for me – I just love the farm shot she captured above of the “oreo cow” :)

Now how gorgeous is this dress?
These two had such a sweet (and funny!) first look – if you could have heard the dialogue between these two as Brad turned around you would know what I mean :)
It might be just me, but most every wedding I photograph the boys always want a jumping shot. Well, gentlemen, Here you have it looking mighty awesome.
Elizabeth and Brad had such a romantic ceremony that was truly all candle lit.

Sweet last slow dance of the evening. Taking it all in.  Here is to many more years of love and laughter! It was so great getting to know you both! Hugs all around :)


Because I am so excited for all my upcoming spring and summer weddings I wanted to find some great sandals for today’s Shoesday post. Not only do I really want (*cough* NEED *cough*) these shoes, I also think they would be so perfect for a bride with an outdoor ceremony or to change into as some dancing shoes….but if you’ve already got your wedding day shoes,  we surely cannot forget about the honeymoon :) 
Shoes by Kate Spade

Margo + Patrick | Durham, NC | Engaged

Margo and Patrick are two of the most laid-back, fun, loving couples I’ve photographed. This being the first time we’ve met they begin by telling me to give them lots of direction because they tend look uncomfortable in front of the camera – this could not be farther from the truth. THE CAMERA (and I) LOVED THEM…which I am sure you can tell from their photos below :)

Seriously, how sweet are these two?

Margo and Patrick have such a connection and love for one another that was easy to capture. They were all laughs and had no problem cozying up for more intimate moments during the session. I left their engagement shoot even more excited about their outdoor June Wedding! 


If you love fashion and keeping up with new trends prepare to be addicted to The Coveteur. While reading about Lauren Conrad in a Coveteur feature, I stumbled across these  FANTASTIC shoes she owns – which she found while vacationing in Italy. In her caption of these shoes, Lauren says, “I love how they dance as you walk”.

Sigh. I can only imagine :)

I can totally picture a bride wearing a little reception party dress dancing the night away in these amazing shoes. Love the shoes? Go on and check out what else is in Lauren Conrad’s closes in her Coveteur feature HERE. (Shoes by :: by Alexander McQueen)

Foodie Friday

Happy Friday!! The weather here has been GLORIOUS . Sunny and in the mid 70’s to low 80’s…and it’s only March. This weather gets me super excited all my upcoming spring shoots!

Due to the warm weather I decided to make a refreshing, healthy wrap…that I’ve been eating for dinner and lunch a couple times this week already! I don’t have a name for it, so I’ll just call it my Ultimate Veggie  Hummus Wrap.

I LOVE cucumbers so I load them up in my wrap. Ingredients you’ll need ::

Tortillas :: I like to use a green spinach tortilla or red chile tortilla (no it’s not spicy)
Hummus :: I love all Hummus but for this particular wrap I think garlic hummus or white bean hummus is best
Cucumbers :: skinned and chopped…lots of them ;)
Alfalfa sprouts
Baby spinach
Chopped tomatoes

That’s it! Easy Peasy and SUPER HEALTHY! Eat it with a side of your favorite fruit or blue chips! Let me know what ya think!


Eleanor + Drew | Wilmington, NC | Wedding

Gosh, I realized today that it is just about the middle of March (MARCH!) and I still had a couple sweet weddings from 2011 to blog….yikes am I behind or what?! Anywho, this wedding was so very sweet and special. It took place at the bride’s childhood home along the inter-coastal waterway in Wilmington, NC and while they had good number of guest it still felt very intimate. They chose not to have a bridal party to keep it simple and have the focus on their love for one another. Just from knowing that you probably could have guessed this, but Eleanor and Drew wrote their own vows. Love.
I was fortunate to have Brad from Brad Matthews Studios second shoot for me. It’s always fun to shoot along side someone who pushes me creatively. I love the below shot of Drew that Brad captured just before he was headed over for his first look with Eleanor.
One of my favorite parts of this wedding was that each Drew and Eleanor were walked down the aisle by both of their parents. 
The food at the wedding was delicious. They kicked off cocktail hour with this amazingly colorful looking spread below and followed it with a homestyle southern dinner.

How amazing is this shot below of their amazing outdoor reception – Thank you Brad for being a lighting genius :)
This was such an amazing wedding to document – Thanks Eleanor and Drew for being so awesome…and here is to a lifetime of happiness!


Foodie Friday :: My current favorite [healthy] breakfast

Happy Friday! Today’s foodie Friday is super simple but so yummy! I LOVE breakfast, If it weren’t so terrible for my body I love to  eat an assortment of waffles, pastries, pancakes, bacon, biscuits…you name it…for breakfast everyday. But we all know that is not reality. So as of late I have added added a new, easy, and healthy snack to my usual morning green tea.

I take about 1/2 a cup of the 2%, low fat, small curd Breakstone Cottage Cheese + a little honey swirled on top + a LIGHT sprinkle of your favorite granola + fresh fruit. I typically use blueberries, blackberries or strawberries. Whatever is on sale/in season :)

Now I love to eat…and I can eat a lot – but I promise this will stick with you until lunch. It is such a yummy low calorie, high protein, low carb breakfast with just enough sweet for me. I’m getting excited because this spring is gearing up fast and I have so many gorgeous shoots to share with you in the upcoming weeks!

Enjoy the weekend, friends!


Remember meeting this sweet gal below a few weeks ago HERE and learning that she would be shaving her head bald for a charity called St. Baldrick’s? Well, she did it! If this is all new to you, check out my original post to find out more about both Ann Marie and the volunteer-driven organization. When I first posted about her she had raised $1,275.00 with 23 days left until the big event. Ann Marie managed to exceed her goal of $2,500.00 and raised $2,990.00. Her team (named the Bald Patriots) managed to raise an amazing $26,512.00!

Ann Marie’s hair was long enough that they sectioned it out into pigtails so her hair could be used to make a wig – pretty awesome, right? Here are some Q+A’s with Ann Marie so you can learn a bit more about why she felt compelled to join this cause.

Q:: How did you first get introduced to St. Baldrick’s?
A:: Last year, a student of mine was a shavee and shared the information about the cause and fundraising. The male members of my team of teachers showed their support by joining our student and becoming shavees, and this spread throughout the school and community. It was an awesome experience to see how the kindness and care of one young student inspired so many people!

Q:: What inspired you to join in the cause and shave your head bald?
A:: My husband was a shavee last year, and I remember him saying (with a grin and a sideways glance), “Everyone should shave their head at least once…” and that opened my mind up to it. I thought about the woman I saw get shaved last year and how inspiring that was. Ultimately, I am inspired by the reality that many children have to face in a life battling cancer. I want to show my support for their will to live and be a participant in eradicating cancer.

Q:: What kind of reactions did you have when you shared with family + friends? Was it what you expected or were you surprised?
A:: Overwhelmingly, I got incredible support from family, friends, and strangers! It has been such an uplifting experience, to feel the support and love from the people in my life. There were several interesting reactions, but it all achieves awareness. I am very surprised at how supportive the people I know and love are, and especially at the the support of strangers.  


Q:: How do you feel about the money you as an individual and your entire team has raised?
A:: I am really proud of my team! It is composed of adolescents, adults, family, friends, strangers, etc. and we have surpassed our goals. I am so pleased that I have raised almost $3,000. Each dollar represents where we place our values, and so many people have a shared value of healthy children and community support.  


Q:: Now that is just a couple days before you shave your head – how do you honestly feel about it? any nervousness? jitters? excitement?
A:: I am really excited! I really can’t wait. It is going to be wild. There is a part of me that feels the reality coming in, and that brings a pang in my stomach, but this is no match for the awesome feeling of knowing that  we have raised so much money and awareness to fight this disease, that someone will be able to use my hair as a wig, and having the support of friends, family, and strangers.

Now some thoughts below from Ann Marie the night after the main event. These are her initial, raw emotions.

Q:: In three words how would you describe the event?
A:: Uplifting, exhilarating, and powerful. The event was super charged, flowing with incredible energy from all of the people and emotions there. It was amazing!

Q:: What emotions did you feel as you were being shaved?
A:: It is one of the best feelings ever, and I highly encourage everyone to find out for themselves. I felt extreme happiness, as well as calm and proud. I am proud of what I did, of my students, my friends, family, coworkers, volunteers, survivors, fighters, those who shaved, and of our supporters. It was awesome. I do want to tell every lady out there, the physical feeling of getting my head shaved was much like the best massage ever. I think I’ll have to do it again. :) 

Q:: Can you pin point your exact first though when you saw yourself bald for the first time?
A:: Ha! Sort of. It was fun seeing everyone react to me! After a little bit, I had to go to the ladies’ room to take a look for myself. I shared the mirror with a girl who was getting ready for work, fixing her hair (she had a lot), and I smiled on the inside and thought, “I am so glad I don’t have to do that anymore.” 

Q:: Did you and your team celebrate?
A:: We did. This event is so powerful, we had many circles of people on our team. We had mini-celebrations and congratulations as we hit our goals. We have such a large team, mostly comprised of middle school students, and we raised over $23,000!! I really look forward to going back to school and sharing in celebration with all of the students and staff. Go Bald Patriots! 

Now meet sweet Katelyn. A 6th grader at the school Ann Marie teaches for. I don’t know about you, but If you take me back to my 6th grade year I am not sure I would have been strong enough to do something so huge, so kind and not to mention INCREDIBLY Brave.
Here is Katelyn with an adorable head band on just after being shaved. The paired imaged to the right is another amazingly brave middle schooler supporting the cause.
Below is Chris Coby. A teacher at the same school as Ann Marie and a Cancer survivor. Ann Marie says, “Chris is a strong man with a gentle spirit. He is a veteran, teacher, father, husband, and survivor. He is a source of calmness, laughter and inspiration. He competes in Iron Man challenges! I am thankful for his vitality, and am proud to know him”
To learn more about Chris and his survival story visit HERE.  At the event, Chris shared that he keeps his head bald to keep from forgetting what he survived. In lieu of shaving his head, he grew out a beard to shave at the event. Yep, see that photo to the right? He agreed to shave his eyebrows to anyone willing to throw an extra $20.00 in the fundraising bucket. 

Lastly, meet Debbie (who also teaches with Ann Marie and Chris). Debbie is a THREE TIME CANCER SURVIVOR. Ann Marie shared, “Debbie has a constant smile on her face, and is a true survivor. She is very open about her battles with cancer, and graciously participates with St. Baldrick’s to increase awareness and funds. Talking with Debbie makes me appreciate her choice to educate our youth even more, and celebrate her as a person. She is a treasure in our school and community.”

Here is Ann Marie all smiles and laughs just second after they brushed the last bits of hair off her neck…and of course I had to get a shot of her with her supportive husband, Mark, who participated in St. Baldrick’s last year – such an amazing couple with giant hearts. Ann Marie, you look beautiful! I am so grateful I was able to be apart of this experience – So inspired by everyone who participated! 
Words directly from Ann Marie : “I really want to express my gratitude to every single person out there for the support. Every bit and every dollar is appreciated. If you were involved in ANY way, I thank you”.

Foodie Friday :: Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

This is one of my favorite bread recipes and such an easy way to sneak in veggies! Yes, I realize I do not have kids to trick, but I do have a husband, haha!
 3 C :: All-purpose flour
1/2 tsp :: Baking powder
1 tsp :: Cinnamon
1 tsp :: Nutmeg
1 tsp :: Baking soda
3 eggs
2 C :: Sugar
1 C :: Vegetable oil
2 tsp :: Vanilla extract
3 C :: Grated zucchini
1/4 C :: Mini chocolate chips
1 tbs :: Orange zest

* If you like nuts, I would add in chopped walnuts or pecans
** I typically use Splenda blended sugar
*** Use anywhere from 1/4 C – 1/2 C of chocolate chips – I usually keep it to 1/4 C to be a bit healthier
****To bump up the health factor, give whole wheat flour a go!
Preheat oven :: 350 degrees :: Bake 50 minutes (test with toothpick to be sure it comes out clean)
Grease 9 x 5 inch loaf pan

Sift together flower, baking powder spices and baking soda
In a large bowl beat eggs (until fluffy). Beat in sugar. Mix in oil, vanilla, zucchini, chocolate chips and orange zest
Stir in sifted ingredients
Pour into loaf pans
I hope you enjoy! Let me know what you think when you try this out :)