This beach is one of my favorite things about where I live! I loved taking pictures for this fun family while they were on vacation from Utah.
What a beautiful night with the Inmans at Ponto Beach in Carlsbad. I think this might have to be one of my new go-to spots.
Look at the Gundersons! We took these photos at their beautiful ranch in Poway. The light was so beautiful coming through the olive trees, and don’t even get me started on the HORSES! I’ve never posed horses before, but they were surprisingly obedient and it was SO fun. One of them even SMILED. Scroll down to see…
I’m so excited to share our kitchen remodel! It was a whirlwind month and half but now it’s done and we LOVE it! I’m a total novice at home renovations, but I had some great help and wonderful contractors and could not be more pleased with how it all came together. All details are shared below.
We were not planning on doing a kitchen remodel when we decided to buy this house, but during the home inspection, toxic mold was discovered under the dishwasher from a previous water leak that was not properly remediated. We loved the home and decided to move forward with the purchase anyway, knowing it would mean a lot of work and expense. Thankfully the sellers agreed to help pay for some of the cost of the mold remediation. As soon as we realized how much of the kitchen would need to be removed, we decided to just redo the entire thing! From there, it snowballed into basically a complete home remodel.
As a first-timer at home renovation, I was so intimidated by this, not even knowing where to start. But when half the kitchen was torn out on Day 1 of ownership, it was baptism by fire and we learned quick! Playing general contractor with 3 little kids in tow was no joke, but I was determined to get the job done by Thanksgiving.
We closed on the house on October 21st and moved in November 20th (just less than a MONTH) and the entire home was complete except the counter tops, kitchen sink and backsplash which was finished just a few days later. It felt a bit like Extreme Home Makeover when we had up to probably 8 guys working in the house at a time. I dragged the kids around the city to counter top stores, flooring stores, tile stores, cabinet stores etc. It felt like I was running a circus. In the evenings I Pinterested like crazy. Talk about decision fatigue! I reconnected with a childhood friend who has a GIFT for this stuff, and she coached me through every step of the way. I didn’t leave any store without messaging her on Marco Polo first! I seriously could not have done it without her.
From the day after we closed until the day before we moved in, we had at least one person working on the house every day except one. The mold remediation took about 5 days. By the end of Day 1, all the flooring, as well as the counter and cabinets from the peninsula to the oven were completely torn out to the studs. The kitchen was sealed off while the mold was removed. From there, we were able to move on to drywall, cabinets, flooring, counters, plumbing, backsplash, under-cabinet lighting, electrical, etc. We were exceptionally fortunate to find wonderful contractors and all supplies in stock (a rarity these days!).
As stressful and crazy as the whole process was, I kind of loved it. It took a lot of coordinating but that’s kind of where I thrive. It was exciting to see everything come together, and we were so pleased with how it all turned out. It went way smoother and faster than expected – a miracle!
Overall, I’m glad we did it and I’m glad it’s done! Take a look at some before and after photos below. For a total beginner who struggles with design/decorating, I think it’s not too shabby! I can’t wait to show more of the house as we finish decorating. With 3 little kids, I’m going to go enjoy the kitchen now because it will never be this clean again.
Cabinets: H Cabinet Inc, Installed by BeyondRemodelLLC
Flooring: Luxury Vinyl Plank – Coretec Pro Plus, color Springfield Oak, from Flooring Liquidators
Counters: Mara Blanca Quartz by MSI, Installed by Leader Granite
Kitchen Sink: Home Depot
Backsplash: Bedrosians Cloe White, Installed by BeyondRemodelLLC
Wall Paint: Benjamin Moore Classic Gray
Baseboard Paint: Benjamin Moore Simply White
Cabinet Pulls: Costco
Cabinet Knobs: Amazon
Counter stools: Target
Floating Shelves: Target
Faucet: Hand-me-down from my brother (Thanks, Kyle!)
Shelf decor: Ross, Homegoods, Walmart, etc.
Appliances: Samsung from BestBuy
Mold Remediation: EcoPure Restoration
Counter back panel: The Home Depot
Under-cabinet lighting, new recessed lights and new outlets: The Home Depot
Home Offer Letter that helped us purchase the house: LuckyYouPrintables
Such a beautiful and sweet family at La Jolla Shores Beach in San Diego. At one point, I was taking a shot of the whole group when suddenly everyone’s expression dramatically changed and a heard a commotion next to me. A seagull swooped in and pecked at the plastic baggie filled with treats for the kids – you know, the smile bribes. I don’t know who was more concerned – the kids or the parents! I heroically chased the bird away just in time to rescue the treats and, consequently, the rest of the photo shoot.
First San Diego photo shoot (and first shoot post-baby) in the books! Three kids (and MOVING) has made for quite the learning curve. I still feel like I’m barely resurfacing most of the time. Ha!
But look at the Bonds! We’ve known this wonderful family a long time, so imagine our surprise and delight when we discovered we would be moving to their very same street, just a few houses away. We knew so few people in San Diego when we got here exhausted and overwhelmed, but they embraced us from day one and made us feel like family when we needed it most. So so grateful they were placed in our path.
My baby! I’m finally starting to emerge from the newborn fog just enough to edit these pictures I took of my Natalie at just a few days old. Newborn photos are never easy, especially of my own babies! It’s hard to get everything set up and timed perfectly with naps and feeding and sunlight, especially when I’m still trying to recover, but these pictures are SO important to me. It took a few tries to get the pictures I wanted, but we did it! I just love this little peach.
Book your Fall Mini Photography session now!
Mini sessions are shorter and more affordable than standard sessions and are a great way to get wonderful family photos, Christmas cards pictures, senior pictures, engagements, and more. Mini sessions are perfect for families with young children who have shorter attentions spans. Each session will last about 20 minutes and will include a mix of candid and posed shots.
Cost: $150 for at least 20 high-resolution, fully-edited digital images for your to print and post as you please. That’s a $100 savings from a standard shoot.
September 12: Luther Burbank Park on Mercer Island
The perfect backdrop for your photos! This park boasts gorgeous views of Lake Washington, a rocky beach, tree-lined paths with a rustic fence, gorgeous greenery and brick buildings for lots of variety to suit any style.
October 10th: Larsen Lake Blueberry Farm in Bellevue
A beautiful fall setting! The large blueberry bushes become a stunning red color this time of year and make for vibrant holiday photos, perfect for holiday greeting cards.
Shoots are weather permitting. In case of inclement weather, sessions will be rescheduled.
Click here to book your session today!
See below for examples of photos at each locations:
Location 1: Luther Burbank Park
Location 2: Larsen Lake Blueberry Farm:
I love engagement shoots! The lighting was pretty, the location was gorgeous, but mostly it was just refreshing to interact with humans over 3 feet tall. Allie and Vince were so fun, and Luther Burbank Park on Mercer Island always makes for a beautiful backdrop.
This Woodinville Elopement at Cottage Lake Park was not the Florida destination wedding they originally planned, but what is these days? The small ceremony with just their parents (and me!) was so special regardless. I felt honored to capture this beautiful day.