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LY Anniversaries: Brittany + Dan

You might remember these two beautiful faces from their wedding I photographed last year. Brittany planned a GORGEOUS wedding day at Waynesboro Country Club. And we had plans for lots and lots of portraits on the golf course in the glowy sunlight of October.

Well..rain changed those plans. And not just rain. Wind…and downpours. The type of rain that doesn’t allow you to do outdoor portraits at all. So you can imagine my excitement when Brittany contacted me a few weeks ago about setting up an anniversary session for her and Dan! I wanted her to have the opportunity to get beautiful outdoor Fall pictures of the two of them. And we made plans to do just that.

I loved spending the morning with these two at one of their favorite spots – Hauser Estate Winery. Hauser is just a short drive from Gettysburg and [literally] sits atop a mountain,  overlooking farmland, a national battlefield and countless orchards. It boasts STUNNING views and a gorgeous tasting room, deck and patio. And let me tell you about the smell! I got out of my car and immediately caught the aroma of fresh fruit. It was incredible. If you haven’t been, GO. I imagine this place is a wonderful spot to spend summer evenings! (Hagerstown folks…it’s only a 45-minute drive!)

More importantly though…I loved getting to catch up with these two as they’re celebrating their first year of married life. What I loved most about our time was seeing how happy they are together. Looking forward to photographing their love for many anniversaries to come! Enjoy a handful of favorites from my time with Brittany + Dan!

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LY Seniors: Caleb

It’s kind of crazy to me how busy I am these days. Granted..this IS busy season. A photographer I follow posted a quote to her Instragram the other day: “October is to photographers what April is to accountants.” NAILED IT! Because I know in 3 months I’ll be bored and thinking to myself, Welp…my days of shooting are over! I have no business coming my way! Ridiculous, I know…but that’s exactly how the slow winter months feel.

What I’m loving most about this season is the diversity of work coming my way! Weddings, families, children, maternity and seniors. I’m sure as my business grows I’m going to narrow down the type of photography I offer, but for now…I’m so grateful for everything because I’m learning so so much.

A few weeks ago I got to hang out with this awesome senior named Caleb. We bounced (literally!) around town in his beloved Jeep, talked about his senior year and his upcoming college visits. It was an especially special evening because this cool guy is my “little” cousin. And it’s so fun to be friends with him in this season of life because I remember loving all over this kid when I was his age and he was just a toddler. (I don’t want to embarrass him or anything, so I won’t share any stories about him as a little guy…like that one time I was babysitting him and he pooped in the bathtub.) He’s a big-hearted, kind and cool guy that I’m certain is destined for great things. I love ya Caleb McD! Enjoy a few favorites….

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LY Weddings: Laura + Greg

As I continue to shoot weddings, my goal is to always approach every wedding day with excitement. I feel like this “job” could so quickly become just that: a job. Counting down the hours until I can leave, doing the same tasks over and over again until they become commonplace. While I certainly want the experience that comes from getting a lot of weddings under my belt, I’m a little hopeful that I’ll always have this “newbie” excitement and nerves I feel at the beginning of every wedding day!

It would be an understatement for me to tell you that I was “nervous” for Greg and Laura’s wedding. The forecast was ugly and the sky was ominous. We had a tight timeline for the day that was reliant on NO RAIN and I was seriously doubting how I would creatively handle a huge bridal party during a downpour. But I arrived at Laura’s fathers house where the Laura and her sister and best friends were getting ready to find Laura calm, joyful and excited for the day! I quickly began taking pictures of her dress and shoes, bouquet and rings. A few minutes later I glanced at the weather app on my phone, which showed just CLOUDY SKIES for the rest of the afternoon!

The rest of the day unfolded seamlessly…and beautifully. And I could sit here and write PAGES about how gorgeous everything was. Laura’s bouquet filled with hydrangeas and wheat or her STUNNING long-sleeved gown; the impeccably decorated barn – full of farm tables and wheat and baby’s breath and string lights and the cutest (and tastiest!) pies. But all I can think about when I think back to their day is the overwhelming LOVE and JOY that was felt all around. So instead, I’ll tell you how Laura LITERALLY smiled all day long; and Greg looked at her adoringly the whole time. I’ll tell you that these two are surrounded by HUGE, loving families that could not have been happier to see these two married. I expect to photograph a happy bride and groom on a wedding day, but I hope that my pictures also capture the love and happiness that emanated from parents, grandparents, friends, nieces and nephews. Because the overriding theme of Laura and Greg’s beautiful wedding day? JOY.

Enjoy a glimpse into this wonderful day! Congrats to the new Mr. and Mrs. White!

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LY Families: The Browns

The older I get, the more I appreciate my small-town upbringing. It’s funny because when you’re young, you kind of just assume that your life is pretty normal and average. When I was a junior in high school and started looking at prospective colleges and universities, I was BLOWN AWAY at some of the sizes of schools: THOUSANDS? TENS OF THOUSANDS? It blew my mind. It will come as no surprise, then, that I ended up at Bridgewater College in Virginia – with a student population of around 1600 at that time.

And at Bridgewater I met friends from all over..and I remember those first meetings and awkward conversations so well. I’d try to describe my hometown to my new northern Virginia friends: “Yeah it’s a little town…and I went to high school in that town…my graduating class was about 140…” I quickly learned that little Smithsburg was far from the norm; graduating class sizes of 140 were few and far between!

But the cool thing about our “little” town and “little” high school is that, for the most part, I spent nearly every year of school from kindergarten through twelfth grade with the same families and classmates. The Brown family was one of those families. I’ve known them forever! We’ve lived in the same town for as long as I can remember! Courtney and I were soccer teammates and gym class classmates. And when this business started to take shape, she was one of the first to trust me as a photographer. I photographed her and her husband Kevin a few weeks before their daughter, Parker, arrived, and then again when Parker was 6 months old.

It was such a pleasure to work with them for a THIRD time…and this time with the whole Brown crew! We had the best time laughing at Lincoln, Parker and Berkley, catching up and enjoying a perfectly warm fall evening. Enjoy my favorites of this beautiful family!2016-09-23_0001

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LY Seniors: Alyssa

I always joke with Seniors during their sessions that I’m so far removed from “cool” anymore. Like if a pop/rock station is on the radio when I get in the car, chances are I don’t know the singer of the song that’s playing. I also really stink at social media. Snapchat: don’t even have one. Twitter: what? Instagram: Takes me 42 minutes to write each caption because I never know what’s “cool” to say.

And high school seniors these days..they’re all so cool! Stylish, tech-savvy, witty.

My favorite things about shooting seniors is watching how they evolve through their session – especially girls! They start off a little bashful; second-guess their smiles and the annoying fake laugh I always ask of them. But as the session rolls on and I’m yelling “holy cow you NAILED THAT ONE!” or “MONEY SHOT!!” (kind of annoying, I know) and showing them quick back of camera previews…they loosen up, realize how awesome they really are (I also think I tell them 57 times “You’re AWESOME at this!!”)…and they start having fun! My hope is that they walk away from their session a little more confident in themselves than when they arrived.

My evening with Alyssa was perfection. The weather, the lighting…and this blonde beauty! Alyssa is sweet, easy to talk to, unabashed and fun. I was so thrilled that she chose ME to shoot her senior portraits..and even more thrilled with how they came out. Enjoy my favs!

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