I Married a Ghostbuster...

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Something you may not know about me... I'm married to a Ghostbuster! My husband Andrew is co-founder of the local Iowa group of avid Ghostbusters fans who go around in costume, to comic conventions, parades, screenings, special events, charities, and even kids' birthday parties, to have a blast and make people happy. There are certainly worse ways to spend your time! 

One of their favorite adventures started with a little boy named Braden. His mom Michelle contacted the Iowa Ghostbusters after seeing them at an event to let them know she was raising a super fan and wanted to surprise him for his birthday. Little did we know what would come of this. I went along to be paparazzi and capture the surprise. It was an amazing feeling for everyone involved to see the shock and awe on his face. This is what it's all about. Andrew and fellow buster, Matthew, agreed that it was one of their favorite moments in costume. Their love for the film goes back to their childhood and it was surreal to be playing the heroes they looked up to as kids, now, for another kid who felt just as they had. We hadn't known beforehand, but were soon filled in that Braden has a respiratory disease and has spent too much of his childhood sick and in a hospital bed. With mom's permission, we told his story along with the photos I shared from the party.

And it didn't stop there, the story soon went viral. We started seeing it retold by bloggers, news media, and magazines all over the internet! The family was contacted by the local paper where they also reported on Braden the junior Ghostbuster. And then the craziest thing happened... Braden was asked to fly out to California, star in his own little Ghostbuster trailer and get a movie poster made. A GoFundMe was created, funds were raised, and this little guy experienced what dreams are made of! 

There was a special screening of him film at Clinton's own Clinton 8 Theater, where he was also presented with his movie poster. It was a wonderful event and I was honored to be a part of it! 

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The For the Win Project is an incredible non profit organization that gives children in special circumstances the chance to be their favorite heroes. Visit their website to see more about what they do and some of the awesome posters they've made for other children - http://www.forthewinproject.org/

But first...check out Braden's video! 

Jared's Senior Portraits

I had an awesome time taking Jared's senior pictures. I love getting a variety of looks for a senior shoot. We went to riverfront, an alleyway and then over to Eagle Point park for a nice, natural setting. For each location, Jared had an outfit to change into and also didn't mind showing some skin. He even got a chance to show off his favorite sport for a few shots. It all made for a great finished gallery! Here are just a few of my favorites. 

Brunson Family Highlights

What a beautiful family! Seriously, these ladies are all gorgeous, dad is a lucky man! I had so much fun hanging out with the Brunson's and capturing some fond family memories along the way. We even spotted some deer on our adventure through Heritage Canyon. I loved seeing the relationship between the older girls and the instant bonds they developed and shared with their new baby sister. You could tell it had been just the two of them for awhile before baby sis came along, but they had open arms and hearts for the littlest lady in the Brunson clan. But no need to take my word for it, check out some of my favorite shots from their session!

Merry Christmas Simms

Dave and Brandie recently moved to Clinton, Iowa from sunny Florida! Though this time of the year is fun and festive and hopefully soon to be covered in a blanket of white, it has to be a little shockingly cold to those from the south. These two were thinking ahead getting portraits done (complete with a Santa hat) in October and in plenty of time to send loved ones in Christmas cards.

All that said, it's not too late to get portraits for the holidays...one more week left to guarantee turnaround before Christmas! 

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Tyler Family Highlights

It was a pleasure meeting up with the Tyler family at the beautiful Vander Veer Park in Davenport, Iowa. We chose that location because it would work rain or shine, since they have an indoor greenhouse right there at the park. Lucky for us, though, we had a gorgeous day and got to explore the outdoors! 

Joanna got my name from a friend and past client. I am so grateful for referrals! Small businesses count more than you know on word of mouth marketing. It's how we survive in the industry and I am so thankful to all of my amazing clients who have helped spread the word. I have a new referral program in the works for 2018! Stay tuned! 

But for now...check out this awesome family! 

Adventurous, Affectionate, Amusing, Adorable...

...and those are just the A words I'd use to describe my baby boy! He is such an amazing (there's another one) human being already and he's only almost 2. Lincoln Kristopher is the piece of our puzzle we didn't know we were missing. He loves animals, especially his Gussy pup. He gets into everything, all day every day. He's daring, climbs things he shouldn't, explores anything he can get his hands on, but can also cuddle up with a book and be as sweet as pie.

I know we all talk about how fast it goes, wonder where the time has gone and wish to halt our kids' whirlwind childhoods. Obviously I am no different. It makes me sad to recognize how little I can remember of the last 2 years already. So many hours, so many days, get forgotten, discarded by our brains as unimportant. This is why I am so incredibly grateful for pictures. Who would I even be without them?! 

My youngest son, my sweet little boy, here are some pictures that I get to hold dear of him at two years old. 

Tucker Family Highlights

You may recognize Amanda from your own session/wedding with me, she's one of my lovely assistants! I love working with her, and it's easy to remember "The Amandas." 

It was great getting to meet her whole family and spend some time capturing their portraits, letting miss Amanda be on the other side of the lens for a change! 

It's not very often I get to do the urban style for families. Seniors, yes. Families, not as common. It was seriously so much fun taking these in an old alley in downtown Clinton! The girls had a lot of fun with it and their mama did an amazing job putting together the outfits. Each sister got to express her own personality and style, while still coordinating the whole group. I was so impressed! 

Spears Wedding Highlights

Tori and Jacob gathered with friends and family to say their vows, tie the knot, and celebrate the beginning of their new marriage. The wedding was in Dixon, Illinois at the Loveland Community building, also where the ladies got ready. I searched the whole  building to find the perfect spot for a shot of the wedding dress and I definitely found it. Big gorgeous window, plus a stunning gown, equals perfection! After the ceremony we headed over to the post house for the reception. This was my first experience at both locations. I loved the ballroom, it was beautiful. There were enormous chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, lights creating a glamorous ambiance, of course all of the guests' excitement was contagious!