It is cold here in Maryland. Very cold. Frostbite, Siberian air kind of cold. The start to this year has been absolutely frigid. So even mentioning a morning engagement session comes with more than a little skepticism. But I like adventure and Carrie and Derek are people that like adventure too. We met early one morning down in Fells Point. I love early morning sessions because they have few people around in some of the most popular locations. At 20 degrees we were surrounded by seagulls and a few crazy runners. (Seriously, there is always at least one runner in a neon track suit at every morning shoot.) Obviously, it was easy for Carrie and Derek to snuggle up and get caught in the moment with the temperatures. After warming up with a cup of coffee, we headed just outside of the city to one of their favorite places. It was only slightly warmer, but Carrie and Derek were game for anything and their enthusiasm for life and each other made the day.

It is the eve of Christmas Eve and I hope this finds everyone happy,healthy and surrounded by family this holiday. Before I signed off for the holidays, I had to share Meghan, Brett and their sweet pups with you all. This session has something on everyone’s Christmas list; An engagement ring, a Christmas puppy, mistletoe, red cups and lots of love and quaint city streets. Those city streets happen to be Frederick, Maryland and for my first holiday in our new home, it holds an extra special place in my heart. I am so extremely thankful for the couples who have shared their hearts with me. I wish everyone a gorgeous holiday and that they get everything they desire on their Christmas list.

Samantha and Joe are they kind of people that make you feel like family from the moment you meet them. This soon-to-be nurse marrying a police officer was quite the wedding to witness. Sam knew she wanted her wedding to be personal, so from the gold dipped mason jars, to the burlap signs, she had a hand in every detail. While they had so many fun and personal details, they never lost sight of each other or their guests and it made for such a joy filled celebration. It was wonderful to see her vision for the day come together, but it was even more fun to see her and Joe join together as husband and wife. Sam and Joe, never lose that focus on what is really important. So much love to you both! xoxo

“Falling in love is very real, but I used to shake my head when people talked about soul mates, poor deluded individuals grasping at some supernatural ideal not intended for mortals but sounded pretty in a poetry book. Then, we met, and everything changed, the cynic has become the converted, the sceptic, an ardent zealot.” ― E.A. Bucchianeri, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly

I spent a summer evening with these two and their too cute frenchie, Blaise. Lori and Ben are fun and have such a fun sense of humor that makes it easy to be around them. And if you had told these two years ago that they would be getting married in just a few short days, you would have heard quite a few snickers and maybe a snide remark…or two.

Ben and Lori’s paths crossed many times before they ever fell in love. And their paths didn’t just cross…in fact…in many ways they were on the very same path. They grew up across the street from one another. They went to school together. They watched each other fall in love. They watched each other fall out of love. They were friends first, but what their former selves didn’t realize is that they were actually soul mates.

Lori and Ben, I am so glad you all have realized that you were meant for one another and I can’t wait to celebrate your love this weekend!

It happens…We plan a wedding a year in advance and we don’t have a crystal ball to know the forecast. We wish and hope and cross our fingers for good weather. We watch the forecast 10 days out; even more neurotically if we planned anything outdoors. Our parents call with their concerns, our bridesmaids watch the skies that morning. We dream and hope that it is a perfect day; sunshine and all. …And then it rains. Not for everyone, but for a lucky few.

Any bride will attest, there is no perfect day. No amount of sunshine or planning can make it perfect, so when it rains we go with it. And if it happens to be your wedding day, you embrace it…you only get one after all.

Natalie has stood by many of her friends on their big days. She has seen weddings filled with sunshine, and weddings filled with rain. She witnessed my own rain-soaked nuptials. Natalie is a giver, a do-gooder, the definition of a true friend and nobody wanted it to rain on her day.

There is a running joke about Natalie and a particular yellow dress that has made more than one appearance. It has seen multiple weddings and baby showers and birthday parties that it has a presence all on its own. So for her wedding day, Natalie selected that infamous sunshine yellow color for her bridesmaids. Considering it rained, it couldn’t have been more perfect.

Under umbrellas and eaves, with a lot of kisses and giant laughs, Natalie and Chris tied the knot with enough sunshine to surround them. The rain didn’t seem to bother anyone, but of course you couldn’t go more than five feet with out hearing “Well it is supposed to be good luck!”

Natalie and Chris…Congratulations…We were the lucky ones to be a part of your day and you have more than enough luck for a lifetime. I can’t wait to see what is ahead for the two of you! xoxo