Personal Post: This is Two

Kasey and Ben Photography Mayflower Greenhouse, Green BayThis week Juniper threw epic crying fits for the following reasons:
1. My hair was too crazy.
2. She needed to take home a middle grade chapter book at the library.
3. Daddy was being mean. (Daddy did literally nothing.)

This is two.

Two is also wispy hair that makes the teeniest ponytail, a new imaginary friend who she cares for and tortures, and cute catch phrases like, “Ju-per loooooves that; it’s Ju-per’s fave-it” which is said for nearly everything.

Between Babyhood and Toddlerhood

Two is funny because we are stuck somewhere between baby and toddler. When she gets tired, she still wants to curl up in my arms and when she loses her pacifier in the night she still calls for us to make it right. We wander in bleary-eyed in that same stupor that brought us into her room when she was just a few weeks old. But the next morning she is back to her regular self, independent and demanding. This girl starts the mornings at full volume with so much to say. I shake my head thinking that there was ever a time I worried about the number of words she would say.

Juniper has so many ideas of what we should do together, and when she really wants to do them, she mimics my encouraging tone with eyes wide and voice higher, getting as close to my face as she can. She wears socks on her hands every day (it’s a thing) and will only wear her black dress shoes no matter the weather. One week she loves oranges so I buy oranges, the next week “Ju-per don’t ike oranges”. It’s ever-changing, frustrating, hilarious, and heart-warming all at once.

Parenthood is Crazy Like That

I’m not sure what comes next (okay, three, obviously), but I’m in no hurry. For the number of times I am willing the clock to get to 12:30 pm so I can put her down for a nap, an equal number of times I will find myself watching old videos of her 10 minutes after she’s asleep. Parenthood is crazy like that. We crave our independence and when we have it, we miss our babies. It’s really the whole process of growing up and letting go on a miniature scale.

But I don’t have to worry about that right now. Any minute Juniper will wake up from her nap and come wandering out of her room, hair crazy, blanket dragging behind her. She will climb up onto my lap and I will enjoy the 15 seconds of blissful snuggles she gives me before she reaches out for my keyboard and makes an attempt at deleting this entire blog. This is two.

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Photos above from Juniper’s second birthday (cactus themed) at Mayflower Greenhouse in Hobart. Taco bar catered by Moes, amazing sugar cookies by Tina’s Cookie Corner, and tower of itty-bitty succulents by my talented mom.

Retro Arcade & Bowling Alley Senior Photos, Door County, Wisconsin

Green Bay Senior Photographer Door County Senior PhotographerDoor County Senior Photographer

When Liam and his mom arrived to discuss senior photos, before we even got chatting, Liam explained that he was not looking for traditional senior photos in a nature or urban setting. Liam is an artist, set to attend MIAD in fall, and he wanted his photos to be more than a documentation of his graduation. He wanted them to speak to who he is and function as half portrait, half art statement. As many of you know, my background is a bachelors in studio arts, so this spoke to my roots.

Retro 80s Arcade and Bowling Alley

When we got talking about Liam’s vision, he saw a retro bowling alley and abstract lighting. I knew the perfect location immediately: Cherry Lanes arcade and bowling alley in Sturgeon Bay. Liam and his family are not from Door County and weren’t familiar, but as I described the teal and orange seats, vintage arcade games, and our strategy for adding flash gels to create colored lighting, they knew we were on the right track.

Cherry Lanes, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin

At Cherry Lanes we started in the bowling alley with editorial posing and playful lighting. Once in the arcade we added more flash gels to mimic ambient game lighting and got fun with lifestyle shots. Liam was up for everything we wanted to try, even when Ben suggested Liam climb under a pinball machine to catch the green rope lighting. (It was worth it!)

Thanks for trusting us with your vision, Liam, we see lots of great things coming in your future. And special thanks to Cherry Lanes for hosting us!

Country and Beach Senior Photos, Fonferek Glen, Green Bay

Fields Nature Senior Photos Luxemburg, Wisconsin Senior PhotographerGreen Bay Senior Photographer

Having attended a small, country high school myself, I always have a soft spot for seniors from rural schools coming into Green Bay for their senior photos. I remember what it was like to graduate with 86 people and want to find a way to set myself apart.

Country Senior Photos in Green Bay, Wisconsin

When we began planning for Morgan’s senior session she knew one thing she for sure did not want, and one things she for sure did want. She didn’t want anything downtown or urban. Bucking the trends of brick and city scenes, Morgan is a country girl at heart with a love for hunting, sports, and working with her hands. The thing she knew she did want was variety. Because of that, we recommended two locations that would make it look like we made four separate stops — field, woods, granary at Fonferek Glen in Green Bay and limestone escarpment and sunset beach photos in New Franken.

Sunset Beach Photos

Morgan is a do it all kind of girl. She rocked the dress and lipstick in a warm, glowy field, showed her badass side in her Shiocton High School letter jacket, then switched into camo and hiked into the woods with her bow. The bright yellow leaves remind us that it was the last week of October, but if you saw her wading into the waterfall or walking along the beach in shorts, you would have no idea that she was the least bit cold. We know Morgan will be able to take on anything!

 

Weborg Point Wedding, Peninsula State Park, Door County

Door County Wedding Photographers Peninsula Park Wedding Peninsula Park Wedding Door County Wedding Photographers Peninsula State ParkDoor County Wedding Photographers

I loved looking through the photos for Kathryn and Marty’s blog because their wedding day was so dreamy that putting the images together was like assembling a story.  The day began in Baileys Harbor where the couple got ready for their day at local Airbnbs. Talented family members assembled a floral arch and centerpieces with bright orange and blue flowers. Everyone packed up and headed across Door County to Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek where the ceremony would be held.

Peninsula State Park Wedding

Weborg Point Shelter was decorated, and the benches had been pulled onto the lawn for seating. The ceremony was led by Marty’s coworker and family gathered together as the heavy morning fog gave way to sunshine. The rest of the afternoon was filled with family grilling out, cousins swimming in the bay, and the joy of friends gathered together. It was the dream wedding for anyone imagining a small, intimate day with beautiful weather and so much love. Congratulations, Kathryn and Marty!

Green Bay Holiday Session with the {H} Family

Christmas Card Pictures Green Bay Family PhotographerWhen Sara and her family contacted us about our Limited Edition Sessions, the first thing she said was that they had never had a family photo with everyone looking at the camera and smiling. This was not for want of trying. Sara’s family had been photographed many times as a group, but since becoming a family of five three years ago they couldn’t seem to get one of them all looking and smiling.

Green Bay Family Photographers

Sara had read on our website that we are a husband and wife team and work together to capture real expressions in even the hardest situations. We met up, I learned about her kids, Natalee, Molly, and Alexander, and that Alex is on the spectrum. He’s a smiley kid, but he’s adventurous and wants to run, play, and explore. We chatted a little more, I learned about Alex’s interests and what gets his attention, and Ben and I prepared for their session (which mostly involved Googling “Hot Dog Dance” lol). When the family arrived, we felt like we knew them already.

Winter Family Photos, Green Bay, Wisconsin

Alex and the girls did great and we were excited to take on the challenge of creating the family photo that Sara and Andrew had been dreaming of. It makes our hearts so happy to get to share these images with their family!

Fall Extended Family Photos, Appleton Wisconsin

Appleton Family Photographer Fall Family PhotosThis year fall came and went faster than usual. Between wind, rain, and sudden cold, there were very few dates with leaves on the trees and sun-shining, but Katie’s family session was on one of those lucky days.

Appleton Family Photographer

The idea for this extended family session came about around this time last year. Katie’s mom, Holly, was putting together her annual holiday card and realized they didn’t have a single photo of the entire family together. As Holly pieced together separate photos for the card, Katie knew the perfect Christmas gift for her parents — a gift certificate for family photos. And in a perfect twist of fate, Katie’s niece, Charlotte, the first granddaughter in the family, arrived just in time to join the photos.

Extended Family Photos

When Katie and I met up in September to begin planning, we tossed around many ideas for locations. With family coming from central Wisconsin, Neenah, and Appleton, staying near the Fox Valley only made sense. And since Katie’s home backs up on a nature preserve, their backyard was the perfect option! The tots did great and baby Charlotte was so smiley.

Extended family sessions are a favorite of ours for a few reasons. Firstly because we know how important they are. Those photos of kids, grandkids, and grandparents are the ones we always wish we could get, but even though we think we’ll snag a few during holiday get-togethers, it rarely happens. Secondly, we love them because of how much value the session has…. all in one session we can take big group photos, grandparents with grandkids, individual family groups, grandkids together, siblings together, *stops to take a breath* and kids separately all at one time while everyone is dressed cute and ready for photos. And lastly, we enjoy these sessions because they are a challenge. Extended family photos means kids at a variety of ages, lots of hands-on posing, and plenty of help with outfit coordination. We have methods for all these things and love a good challenge!

Cheers to Katie and her family!

Woodwalk Gallery Wedding with Sunset Beach Photos, Door County

Door County Wedding Photographer Egg Harbor Wedding PhotographerSmall Wedding Door CountyWoodwalk Gallery, Egg HarborEgg Harbor, WisconsinWe don’t have a running list of our favorite weddings, but if we did, Alicia and Mike’s wedding would be on it. It was everything we love best — an intimate guest list, a small wedding party, the love of family and friends, and a beautiful early fall afternoon.

Woodwalk Gallery Wedding, Door County

The wedding took place at the Woodwalk Gallery in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin. It is an art gallery and wedding venue and one of our favorite places to photograph because of the incredible scenery and wonderful owners. Their ceremony took place under a pergola in a field of wildflowers. Alicia walked down the aisle with her father, and Mike smiled seeing her arrive. After hors d’oeuvres and drinks on the lawn, we wandered into the sunflower fields for pictures.

Door County Wedding Photographers

The reception was held in the barn space at Woodwalk surrounded by local art with dinner served on a collection of vintage china. Friends and family were laughing happily, enjoying food and drinks, followed by some of the most thoughtful wedding speeches we’ve ever heard.

Sunset Beach Photos, Door County

After a little taste of cake, we drove Alicia and Mike out to the beach for sunset photos. All day long it was cloudy and our plan for sunset pictures looked impossible, but as we pulled in the clouds lifted just enough to give us that bright, golden light that all photographers dream of. We walked out on the pier while wild gusts of wind blew and waves crashed up over the sides. Alicia and Mike weren’t bothered by any of it; they were simply content in being there together.

As we drove back to the venue, we talked about life, love, travel, and all the wonderful future plans they have on the horizon. It sounds like the start of something wonderful. Congratulations, Alicia and Mike!

Personal Post: letters from my mom & letters to my daughter

Husband and Wife Team Downtown Green BayWhen I was pregnant with Juniper, I had a wonderful surprise from my mom. Letters. Stacks of yellowing sheets produced on an electric typewriter in the late 80s. From the moment I was  born and into my toddler years, my mom wrote letters to future me about what it was like to be my mom.

Becoming mothers brings us closer to our moms, and it was even more beautiful for me to have this strange opportunity to connect with her at my same level, in the same shoes… as a clueless new mom to a new baby girl. The letters include hopes and fears and milestones and real life struggles. They are such a gift. And I knew after reading the first one, that I wanted to do the same for Juniper.

Last month my baby turned two years old. We celebrated with a cactus themed party at Mayflower Greenhouse, had family photos taken downtown, and just last week I finished the last letter of Juniper’s second year. As I printed the pages and slipped them into a little folder for future Juniper, I got curious and flipped open to a few random sections…

And there was Juniper three weeks old finally back up to birth weight, five months old having her first dip in a pool, nine months old pulling herself up on furniture, 15 months old saying her first words. I. Was. Transported. It made me realize the letters aren’t just for Juniper, they are for both of us, keeping us on terms with who we were at all these stages.

The method of writing might be different in the 30 years that divides the two packs of letters, but the pages are filled with so much of the same things — pride in milestones, fears about our capabilities as parents, worries about the future, and so much love. Just a reminder that of all the things time has the power to change, the love of a mother is not one of them.

Fall Citydeck Senior Photos, Downtown Green Bay

Green Bay Senior Photographer Downtown Citydeck PhotosI cannot express how excited I am to share these images! Miranda’s session had all the things I love best: golden sunlight, fall color, and cute clothes. It was such a pleasure to get to know her, hear about her life, and enjoy the October weather.

Fall Senior Photos in Green Bay, Wisconsin

When Miranda called to start planning her senior session, we were immediately struck by how independent and decisive she is. This girl knows what she wants and chases after it; we have no doubt that she will achieve anything she puts her mind to. Planning a session in fall, she knew she wanted a place that was woodsy enough to have fall color but still had a meadow area with long grasses. We had the perfect location in mind! Following that up, she was hoping for a waterfront locale, and after a few different options, we chose the Citydeck which worked perfect with her outfit.

Senior Photos, Citydeck, Downtown Green Bay

We got to share Miranda’s images with she and her loved ones earlier this week and I can’t wait to see them when they arrive! (We’ll share on our Instagram so you can enjoy too!) Best wishes on all your future endeavors, Miranda! It was such a pleasure photographing your session!

Fall Senior Portrait Photos in Green Bay

Fall Photos, Green Bay Abby is so cool. If I were in high school; I’d want to be her friend. She’s into art and photography, has a great sense of style, and plans on going to school for criminology. Beyond all that, she worked in a tattoo parlor for most of high school and even did some designs herself…see? Cool.

Green Bay Fall Senior Photos

When we got together to plan for Abby’s session, I asked what they were thinking about for location or the mood of a location. At first they brought up a really common photography destination here in Green Bay and asked my opinion. I mentioned that it’s nice, but very popular, and they immediately asked what one of my favorite unpopular locations was. That’s how we ended up choosing our fall-centered location full of deep red sumac and drying mustard plants (you know, the things that make my photographer heart skip a beat!)

Green Bay Senior Photographer

Fall had certainly arrived in time for Abby’s session; the colors were just starting to turn and the wind was picking up (although those dang mosquitos had yet to die — they happily rest in peace now). Fall light gives such a warmth to images. I love that golden light at golden hour; it doesn’t get much better than that. Congratulations on your senior year, Abby, and best wishes on all the great things your future holds!

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