Susanna and Anthony's Maternity Session

Susanna and Anthony were once students at the University of North Georgia so deciding on Dahlonega as our location for the photo shoot was an easy one. However, these two do not live in Georgia anymore as Anthony serves our country. (Thank you to you both!) So, returning back to this special mountain town (with a little one on the way) was even sweeter for them.

I am SO happy that these two thought of me because their session was so much fun and I loved watching the two of them together. Their love for each other is obvious and it's easy to see how gentle and sweet they are with one another. Mary Alice will no doubt be loved by two special parents. 

I thought there was no better day than today to highlight these three on the blog as today is Mary Alice's birthday! (and mine!) She picked a good day ;) Welcome to the world, Mary Alice! May you see these pictures of your parents one day and see exactly what I saw and more :) 

Congratulations Susanna and Anthony! 
 

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Mary + Aldon | Married!

If you're anything like me, then you watch How I Met Your Mother on Netflix, a lot. So, you also know that Ted has a lot of great advice about love and life. And there a couple of things that they say you need when finding the one. Connection is important, but timing is everything. Mary and Aldon met when Mary first started college. They had a connection and became friends quickly. Although, throughout the next few years, the timing was never quite right. Until one day, it was and Mary told Aldon how she felt. Aldon explained that he felt the exact same way. So, when he decided to propose he took Mary straight to the jewelry store. He told her that he had to pick up a ring that his mom had resized. Aldon wasn't going to let time slip away again and after looking at a few engagement rings, he got down on one knee right then and there! He told Mary that he couldn't wait any longer to marry her. So, on October 7th, they joined their friends and family and celebrated their start to forever at Avalon Farm! Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Dietlin! 

Mary and Aldon were married 6 days before me :) So, my talented best friend, Natalie, of New Pixels Photography in England, was in town. She assisted on this wedding with me. There a  few behind the scene moments of us at the end :) Thanks for all of your hard work, Natalie!

Associate Photographer: Natalie Bayliss
Venue: Avalon Farm
Planner & Florist: Christopher Davidson of Christopher's Bridal
Caterer: Recess Southern Gastro-Pub
Baker: Trueloves Celebrations
Rental Company: Event Rentals Unlimited
Band: Southern Accent

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Hillary & Josh's Maternity Session

Hillary & Josh are welcoming their first child NEXT month! Baby Liam will be so loved! Their families are the sweetest. I photographed Hillary's brother's wedding earlier this year and enjoyed watching this sweet family interact together. Hillary and Josh have been working hard on Liam's nursery and preparing for his debut! He really does have two loving parents. Can't wait! Congratulations Ramos Family!

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Lizzy + Dardan

Lizzy and Dardan are the kind of couple that you know will have a long happy life together. There is so much love and respect between the two of them and it was obvious to me not only the entire session, but withitin minutes of meeting them. Lizzy and Dardan connected online and met up at Starbucks to see each other face to face. Lizzy brought her lab, Ally, with her. Well, Ally did not need to serve as a guard dog that day, but rather a friend for Lizzy. Ally jumped right into Dardan's lap and Lizzy knew that this guy must be something special! Dardan had Ally's approval! As their relationship progessed, Lizzy and Dardan added Rosie into their little family. And how special is it that they joined their engagement session! Afterall, Ally was on the first date!

Lizzy and Dardan quickly developed a love of travel and adventure together. They went on a three week long European adventure this past summer and visited Sweden, England, Kosovo, Albania and Montenegro. Dardan was born in Kosovo and his family immigrated to the United States as war refugees. Lizzy is so impressed and proud of his story and his family's resilience to start their lives over again. Dardan would often travel back to Montenegro and Ulcinji in the summer. During their travels together, Dardan took Lizzy to Ulcinji. One evening, they went to a restaurant on top of the old Ulcinji castle, right on the sea. Little did Lizzy know, Dardan had rented out a secluded part of the restaurant andhad it decorated in candles and flower petals. As the sun was setting over the water, Dardan asked Lizzy to marry him! It is a part of Dardan's tradition and culture to wear an engagement ring, so he too has a ring! 

I love their story, but meeting them in person just tops it all. Indvidually, they are both so sweet, but together, they are strong and amazing. During their session, they were completely lost in one another and I truly feel like their love shows so genuienly in these images. Seriously cannot wait until their wedding day. It's going be amazing! Enjoy your engagement Lizzy and Dardan and thank you for letting me be a party of your story! 

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Kelly + Jay

Kelly and Jay love visiting BJ Reece Apple Orchard each fall. In fact, it's one of their favorite fall activities, but more importantly, it's the spot where Jay decided to ask Kelly to marry him. How sweet is it that we went back to the place that means so much to them?! Their dog, Alfonzo came along for the session too! Because, I mean, hello....they are family too, right? I did my usual intro for Kelly and Jay and explained how being in front the camera might feel strange for the first 15 minutes or so, but they hardly needed any direction! They were so playful with each other and so much fun. When I pulled Kelly aside for portraits, she looked so beautiful and elegant! When I sent the pictures to her planner, she said that Kelly looked like a beautiful Disney princess calling all the baby deer to the orchard. That made me laugh because it's so true in the best way! You are going to be a STUNNING bride, Kelly! Their big day is in two weeks and I'm so excited about it! Enjoy the rest of your engagement, Kelly and Jay!  

Hair by Brushworx

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Abigail Troutman | Senior!

This beautiful girl is a senior at Roswell High School this year! Abigail has her heart set on some colleges in Georgia and I can't wait to see her take the world by storm! From the wise words of Ellen Degeneres, "Follow your passion. Stay true to yourself. Never follow someone else's path. Unless you're in the woods and you're lost and you see a path. By all means, you should follow that." 
Congratulations, Abigail!!!

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Courtney + Matthew | Married!

Courtney grew up in Gainesville, living life on the lake and taking summer art classes at the Quinlan Visual Arts Center. So, when Courtney got ready at her childhood home on the lake and said, "I do" at a place where she spent a lot of time as a child, I knew how important those detail shots had to be. These were the spaces which once made up her whole world. Now, Courtney's world has grown as she and Mathew have made a life for themselves in New Jersey. But, their story all started in Atlanta 16  years ago when some mutual friends got together one weekend. Matthew came from Alabama for that hangout as he was attending the University of Alabama at the time. That weekend, most of Courtney and Matthew's time together was spent in a big group of friends, but they managed to sneak away and shared their first kiss under a gazebo. Courtney told me it's a memory she will never forget. But, Matthew had to return to Alabama and dating long distance after having just met was difficult. They stayed in touch and 5 years later, Courtney moved to New York to attend NYU. Matthew went on to Savannah to get his masters and landed his first job in Atlanta four years later. As life took them different places, things became busier and the miles continued to grow between them. However, they connected on facebook and began building a strong friendship from afar. It was clear to both of them that this friendship was more than that, it was love. In 2014, they became an official couple and worked towards living in the same state. After a long hard year of searching, Matthew landed a job in New York. They were finally together! Yet after all that time, they never forgot about each other and worked hard to make it work, when the timing was right. Their story spans 14 years. That is so amazing. 

Courtney's greek background came through in the details of her day and I had so much fun capturing some of that culture! The gold "coin" used in her photographs had two sides, Athena and The Owl. Athena is the Greek Goddess of wisdom, war, the arts, industry, justice and skill. Athena named her city, Athens. Her most famous attribute is the owl. Wrapped within Courtney's bouquet was the eye of Medusa. Wearing or keeping this beautiful blue pendant near you is said to protect you against harm or anyone's impure intentions. Courtney and Matthew's rings are from Etsy and they are rose gold (AH, love!) and her stone in her engagement ring is a beautiful pink. 

But, more than the items, there was so. much. love. surrounding these two on their wedding day from their family and friends. I photographed Courtney's brother's wedding a couple of years ago where Courtney was a bridesmaid and it was a joy to see their family again. My past bride, Sarah (Courtney's sister in law) was a bridesmaid in this wedding, so I loved spending time with Sarah again!  It's truly the highest compliment that they would invite me back into such a big day and trust me to capture it all. 

Wishing you so much love and happiness, Mr. and Mrs. Braddick!

Associate Photographer: Kesia Maglione
Thank you, Kesia!! You are a rockstar!

Thank you to their wonderful team of vendors:

Venue: Quinlan Visual Arts Center
Hair and Make Up: Make Me Up
Florist: Flower Design by Joan Rubenstein 
DJ: Fonix Entertainment 
Caterer: All Catered Events

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Will you be my Bridesmaid?

Wedding planning can be a mix of both fun and stress. Asking my best friends to stand beside me during one of the most important day of our lives was hands down one the best parts about wedding planning. Each time I met up with one of my best friends, I was feeling so excited and so nervous! I wanted my bridesmaid proposal with each of them to be special and thoughtful because each of them mean so much to me. 

Each friendship is so unique and special to me that I decided to work that into their proposals. I wanted the item and how I asked to feel significant to our relationship. Of course, my other best friend, Etsy helped me out with that! I'm really not sure what I would do without that site during my best friend's wedding planning and my own. 

Back in January, I started with my Matron of Honor, Shelby.  Shelby, Brittany and Kat are my Starbucks girls. We have been going to the same Starbucks on Marketplace Blvd. ever since it opened in high school. We've shared coffee, laughter, tears, deep talks, small talk, and many hugs there throughout the years. After a day of wedding dress shopping, I took Shelby to Starbucks (the one on Marketplace Blvd of course!) Luckily, Shelby stepped away from the counter, so I discreetly asked the Barista to make Shelby's drink in the "Will you be my Matron of Honor" Starbucks cup I had ordered from Etsy. Shelby and I waited for our drinks at end of the counter and once it was ready, the Barista called her name and set the cup down with the question facing her. I wish I could have recorded it because her face lit her up with shock! She knew this moment was coming, but to surprise her in the way that I asked was so much fun! I returned a couple of weeks later and did same with Brittany! (Thank you, Starbucks!).  Kat lives in London now, so I had fully prepared to send her proposal overseas in a box. However, I received the opportunity to fly to England and ask her myself at a Starbucks in LONDON!

Natalie, my British bestie from study abroad, still lives in London of course. So, I was able to ask not one but TWO of my best friends in person. As you may know, the English love their cuppa teas. I've shared many cups with Natalie throughout the years. She always welcomed me in from a cold rainy day with a nice hot cup of tea and I always make sure I have her English Breakfast tea and milk when she comes to visit me. So, her proposal was a personalized mug from (you guessed it) Etsy! Ciara recently moved to California so I was not able to make it to her in person, but I sent her a mug as well because we've shared so many deep conversations about life and spirituality over a cup of tea at her old house in Georgia. 

When a long week is over, David and I love getting dinner and drinks with Melissa, Tyler, and Taylor. In fact, David and I were present for Tyler's proposal to Melissa, which was at winery. After Tyler popped the question, we had an amazing time together, celebrating and sampling wines. I had found this personalized wine label from Etsy and knew it was perfect for Melissa! 

I knew for a long time that I wanted my niece, Ella Grace, to have a special role in my future wedding day. So, asking her and my big sister, Emily (Ella's mom) was really exciting for me! I knew that the personalized makeup bags would be something that would feel special and timeless! David came with me on the day I asked Ella to be a junior bridesmaid because David asked my nephew, Aiden, to be a junior groomsman. David was very creative in coming up with his groomsman proposals on his own. It seemed to we had this beverage theme going, unintentionally :) David ordered personalized beer glasses for each of his guys, along with a "Will you be my Groomsman" Beer labels. (Yes, all from Etsy!) David got Aiden a glass bottle of Root Beer (his favorite!). 

If you haven't popped the question to your bridal party yet, check out the links below of all the items we found on Etsy. Start on Pinterest, make a secret board, and pin the things that speak to you. Once you've got a list going, decide what would be best for your favorite people and narrow it down. It's important to remember that is not about the "stuff" but rather, what the proposal represents.  Make it special and remember to take pictures when you pop the question! This is a once in a lifetime thing :) Have fun!

Hello Beautiful Lotion
Boxes and Ribbon
Flower Girl Hair Ties
Cosmetic Bag
Wine Label
Custom Card
Custom Mug
Starbucks Cup

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Amanda + Alex | Married!

When I think of Amanda and Alex I think, fun and romantic! These two started out as lab partners first and then grew a friendship. There are so many things that I love about them, but I especially love how obvious it is that they are each other's BEST friend. That friendship, so early on their relationship, is what started everything, but I admire it's still the center of their love. They are easily one of the sweetest couples I have ever met. They are not only sweet to each other, but to the world around them as well as their friends and family.

Their wedding day overflowed with love and joy. It was evident in the details and in the moments with the people that shared their special day with them. Amanda's details were amazing!  She had an ivory hand carved elephant bracelet which was given to her by her brother, who brought it back from Singapore when he was in the navy. That beautiful purple stone ring is her mother's. That ring was given to Amanda's mom by her dad. In fact, it was one of the very first gifts he had given her mom. Amanda's dad passed away when she was young, but Amanda honored him in more ways than one. As her brother walked her down the aisle towards Alex, Amanda paused at the empty chair at the front row and delicately placed a white rose on his seat.  During the reception, she also warmly welcomed all Fathers/Daughters to the dance floor for the traditional Father/Daughter dance. Amanda's brother, her father-in-law and her grandfather shared a dance with her as she cried and smiled on their shoulders. She had so much support surrounding her and it was a beautiful moment of love. 

Alex had a special detail of his own, from his mom! She kept a special handkerchief on her that read, "No ugly crying" Well, try as he might, he absolutely cried as soon as he saw Amanda and it was SO sweet. Alex's mom quickly passed over the handkerchief to Alex during the ceremony! 

There's no denying that there were a ton of sweet and romantic moments throughout the day, but there was SO much fun too during their reception.  Alex's junior groomsman had a lot of great dance moves to share! Not to mention, Amanda's awesome bridesmaids who took the floor with their synchronized dance moves! Their wedding day could not have been more "Amanda and Alex" Fun, romantic and full of LOVE.

Amanda and Alex, thank you so much for inviting me into your story and trusting me to capture it all. It has been such a JOY documenting this special time in your life. Wishing you so much happiness! Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Kiser!

Special thanks to the vendors that helped make this day beautiful!

Associate Photographer: Kesia Maglione
Venue: Hazlehurst House 
Planner: Nikki Polston
Day of Coordinator: McKinley Smith
Florist: Wayne with Artistic Flowers (Bridal Bouquet and Boutonnieres)
Bridesmaids Bouquets and Florals at Reception: Nikki Polston
DJ: Eric Edwards with Atlanta Mobile Sounds
Cake: Celso
Hair and Makeup: Tiffany Harris with Jagged Edge Hair Studio
Chef: Jae Polston with Tasteful Events

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Kaitlyn + Jonathan | Married!

They say that becoming friends with your partner first leads to an even stronger relationship. This is true for Kaitlyn and Jonathan, who met at the University of North Georgia and became best friends. In the summer of 2015, they spent more and more time together. Their friendship grew, but little did they know that this was just the beginning of their journey. But then, Jonathan developed a crush for his new best friend. As summer came to a close, they had spent time carving pumpkins together, shared their testimonies, and enjoying a day at Gold Rush in Dahlonega. That night, Jonathan asked Kaitlyn on a date. That October 25th date led them a little bit closer to their journey to forever! They shared a pizza under a gazebo and stayed out late as they walked around that little mountain town, discussing life, their dreams, and enjoying each other's company. The night ended with a kiss on the forehead and butterflies in their stomachs! After 10 months of dating, Jonathan proposed at the gazebo, they very spot where two best friends fell in love! 

Their wedding day at the Walter's Barn in Lula, Georgia was nothing short of both friendship and love! Kaitlyn had a special acorn for Jonathan's boutonniere, that she held onto since the very beginning of their relationship. He had given her the acorn since she was in Alpha Gamma Delta whose visual representation is a squirrel! I thought it was so sweet that Kaitlyn kept that sentimental item for so long and included it in their wedding. Those little details are just so special! 

Kaitlyn and Jonathan did a foot washing ceremony in front of their closest family and friends, which was the first one I've ever photographed and it was SO incredibly sweet. Afterwards, they prayed on their knees together. My eyes and my camera were on them, but I let my eyes drift towards their family and there wasn't a dry eye around, including myself! 

I have so enjoyed getting to know these two and having a front row seat to their love story. Thank you for inviting me into your lives, Kaitlyn and Jonathan!

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Murphy!!

HUGE THANK YOU to their wonderful team of vendors who made their day so beautiful! 
Associate Photographer: Shelby Norris
Planning and Florist: Soirees Southern Events
Venue: The Walter's Barn
Catering: Johnny's Barbecue
Cake: Sugartopia
Hair and Makeup: Bombshell Salon
Videographer: Bentley Media
DJ: Backwoodz Boyz Entertaintment

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Abbie + Josh | Married!

Abbie and Josh have waited 8 years for this big day! They were young when they first met during their first week of college of the University of West Georgia. They didn't think they were looking for anything serious at the time, but fate had other plans because 8 years later, they're still committed, strong and more in love than ever. 

When Abbie and Josh thought about their perfect day, it would be amongst the mountains, tucked away in a vineyard, with just 40 of their closest friends and family. They wanted it to be relaxed and elegant...a place where everyone could have a good time.  So, when they visited Cartecay Vineyards in Ellijay, Georgia, they saw all of those things wrapped into one place. Their wedding day was nothing short of beautiful, intimate, and relaxed with some gorgeous rustic and elegant details. 

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Collie! We are so happy for you both!

Thank you to all of the wonderful vendors who made this beautiful day possible! 

Associate Photographer: Kesia Maglione
Coordinator: Emmie's Event Planning
Cake: Originals to Remember
Venue: Cartecay Vineyards
Flowers: Robin's Nest Flowers
Catering: Center Cut Catering
DJ: Spotlight Weddings and Events
Wedding Dress: BHLDN
Equipment Rental: Ga Party and Tool Rentals