Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Bridal Society

Just recently I received an email from an event planner here in Brevard County inviting me to join a group called "The Bridal Society". This is a group of the best wedding vendors in the county, and it is open by invite only. The event planner, Karry Castillo of Uniquely Yours Weddings, and I will be working together on a wedding this June, and as the Vice President she felt that I met the qualifications for membership. I was so honored by the invitation!
A few weeks ago I attended my first meeting, and I was blown away by the caliber of the professionals there. The members range from florists to dj's to venue representatives and everything in between. For all of you brides, The Bridal Society website is a fabulous resource! You can find information there for the best vendors in the area. So you can be assured that the people you are hiring are professionals who are qualified to make your wedding the incredible event that you are wanting it to be.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Congratulations Eddie and Rye!

Right before I left for WPPI, we got together with our friends Eddie and Rye to do a few maternity pictures. It has been so much fun to see Rye throughout her pregnancy, and we are so excited for them! Their little girl is due in April, and Rye wanted a few pictures to document this time.
You may notice a different look for some of these pictures. I've been trying out a couple of new things in Photoshop... I would LOVE some feedback on these! Let me know what you think about them!

The first two pictures are actually the same shot, only the second version has some extra processing on it. Which one do you like best?

Congratulations, you two! We can't wait to meet your baby!

Friday, February 20, 2009


I honestly don't even know where to start in writing this post! The past 5 days were absolutely amazing... words can't even begin to describe! I attended WPPI in Las Vegas, which is a HUGE convention for wedding and portrait photographers.
During the day I went to various workshops and walked around the tradeshow. But that description of the trip doesn't even come close to doing it justice! I was literally out of my hotel room from about 7:15 every morning until after midnight each night. I was absolutely terrified that I would miss something, so I was constantly running from one thing to the next! I went to as many workshops as I could possibly fit in. They were taught by various photographers, and I learned a ton. And in between those I was in one of the two convention halls talking to as many vendors as I could. I was really focused on trying to find the absolute BEST products for my clients! I spent a lot of time talking to album vendors, because when I first got there and saw one of the album companies that I had been thinking I would use, as I had heard some great things about them, I really wasn't as "wowed" as I had thought I would be.. so, I kept looking until I found one that I was happy with. I really want to give my couples a beautiful product that will last forever! And I believe that I have found that.
My biggest excitement, though, was the purchase of a new camera! I was able to order the new Canon 5D II, and I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am about it. If I had ordered it on my own, I would be on the waiting list and so would have to wait up to a few months to get it. But, since I ordered it through the convention I am now on the top of the waiting list, and will only have to wait about a week. I CAN'T WAIT!! Merry Christmas to me ;)
Anyways, here is a random shot of one of the convention hall. There were two HUGE halls with hundreds of vendors, so this doesn't come close to doing it justice!

And here is one of the workshops...
This picture makes me laugh - it is the morning line at Starbucks! There were two in our hotel, the MGM Grand. This was the shorter of the two!

I was at the convention with some AMAZING girls that I met at Love Affair last year. It was great to be there with friends who not only share the same passion, but are a lot of fun! We all kind of did our own thing during the day as far as workshops and the tradeshow, but we usually met up for lunch and at night.

At night, the various vendors threw parties that we went to. The first night, Nikon hosted a Blue's Traveler concert. This is my friends Tania and Kate and.... well, that's another story...

One night we got dressed up for a couple of parties. One of them was in the Bellagio hotel; this is my friends Sarah, Kate, Candi, and Tania.

I know, this is random... but this Florida girl doesn't see too many desserts!

One of the girls had brought her assistant, who had brought her wedding gown. So one night we dressed her up in her gown for some high-fashion night shots. So stay tuned for those pictures!
I am still trying to process everything I learned... my mind is still reeling. But be expecting some amazing things in the coming year!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Miscellaneous life - lots of pics!

It has been an interesting couple of weeks! Busy as usual... I'll try to fill you in without boring you :)

After leaving Chris for a couple of days when we went to Vegas, I decided to try to get in some "quality" time, and I let him help me bake some brownies. This was his first cooking experience, and I think we both had a good time! He liked dumping the ingredients in and helping to stir.

Of course, he loved licking the batter!

And the finished prodoct turned out pretty yummy ;)
Unfortunately, within a few days of coming home from our trip Mark started complaining of a headache, chills, achiness... yep, you guessed it - he'd caught the flu. He ever so graciously shared it with me, and then if that wasn't bad enough Chris picked up some kind of respiratory infection. I took him to the doctor, and he's now on a nebulizer for his cough as well as an antibiotic for an ear infection. Usually I try to avoid the antibiotics, but as I am going out of town and leaving him with Mark and his parents, I thought it would be best to go ahead and get rid of it. Fortunately, we're all doing much better now!

Even Baby is doing well; here's a 27 1/2 week shot. I can't believe I am less than 3 months away from holding my baby girl! There is so much to do to get ready!

Ok, now for Valentine's Day.. We didn't do too much, as I am trying to get ready to leave for my trip tomorrow. But I did manage to make a pancake breakfast - yes, they are pink (it's only food coloring).

We got Chris a little toy dirtbike; it was a hit!

It has been such a crazy couple of months that I never got around to sending out Christmas cards. Part of the reason was that I didn't have a picture of the three of us to send out with them. Yesterday, though, one of my friends wanted me to take some maternity pictures, so I dragged my boys along so we could get a shot. And boy, is it hard to get a two year old to cooperate!! This was the best one we could manage... there was no way he was letting go of the bubble container, though.

Here's one of the outtakes... still kinda cute, though.

I love my little boy! He's getting so grown up.

Mark trying to keep Chris out of the water...

He was NOT excited about sitting still for the pictures. Whenever we tried to hold him he squirmed and fussed until we let him go run!

I tried so hard to get him to cooperate!

Ah, the joys of raising a toddler!
Stay tuned for lots more pictures.. I am leaving at 5 am tomorrow for WPPI in Las Vegas, and I know there will be some great shots coming! I can't wait to tell you all about it!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Vegas Vacation!

Last week Mark and I had the RARE opportunity to take a vacation! Several months ago, in the middle of one particularly exhausting day, I received a phone call from a timeshare company. They offered us a free 3 day 2 night stay at their Vegas resort... normally, "normal" Caroline would have turned it down - after all, we still had to pay for airfare and food. And Vegas really isn't on our list of ideal vacation spots. But, for whatever reason, I took it. And we decided to use it. So last Wednesday we flew out of Orlando on our way...

Upon arriving in Vegas at midnight (3 am our time!) we went to pick up the rental car. When we walked out into the lot, there sat a beautiful red Mustang convertible. That, of course, was not in the category that we had reserved... but I "jokingly" said to the lady "we'll take that one!" I just about fell over when she responded "Well, it's all we have left."!! I was so excited!
Mark got a kick out of my excitement ;)

Since we aren't really into gambling, we took the time to visit some sights outside of the city. The first day we went to the Hoover Dam, which I had been to once when I was 12 but Mark had never seen. And, as a former power plant employee, it was right up his alley!
However, I have to say that we were both just as impressed with a road that is being built across the canyon. It is amazing what modern engineering can accomplish! They are building the road from each side, and it will meet in the middle. It blows my mind that they can figure that out!

Here's the other side of the Dam; the lake was created when the Dam was built.

Even though we are way too cheap to gamble, of course we couldn't resist...

Unfortunately we didn't win anything!
The next day we went to Red Rock Canyon, which was right outside of the city. There was a 13 mile loop that you could drive around, with spots along the way where you could get out and hike.

The first spot that we got out at was really neat! I couldn't really tell where the trail was, because basically it was just a mountain of "red rock" that you could climb on. There was no signs or any indication of where you were or weren't supposed to go, so we just kind of wandered around. Of course, I was extra careful not to try to go too high - not that I could have even if I'd wanted to! Carrying around the extra 15 pounds makes me tired! Mark went all over, though, and we did our best to try to take picture that would scare his mom :) This one is one that he took looking down from one of the cliffs he climbed up to.

There's me... safely down low!

I did get a little brave, though, and managed to climb up fairly easily to one overlook. Getting down was another story, though!

This is so different from anything we have in Florida! While it was impressive, I have to say I prefer to have some trees.

There's Mark on his way up...

He really enjoyed the hiking.

Not the most flattering picture...

We laughed at this one - the sign said we were hiking to a SPRING!! I guess in the desert, spring = puddle!

Overall, it was a very fun, much-needed trip. Chris stayed home with Mark's mom, and they both did great - praise the Lord!! We are so grateful that she was willing and able to come. Throughout the trip, we kept making comments to the effect of "Can you imagine if Chris was here? We wouldn't be able to do this with him!" (Of course, we missed him very much, though!)
The funny part is, I am going back to Vegas in 2 weeks for a whole week- this time without Mark - for WPPI. It is going to be a FABULOUS trip, so stay tuned!!