Wife . Mom . Christ Follower . Creative Type . Eclectic . Snoopy Fan . Artist . Outgoing Introvert . Essential Oil Lover .  

Waking up from a nap | Jacksonville Children's Photographer

July 20, 2017  •  2 Comments

I don't know about you, but my life dreams have changed a lot over time. Graduating high school, I really had no idea what I "wanted to be when I grew up..." nor what I wanted to study in college. The fact that I ended up as an Art/Photography major was both a surprise and a 'duh' moment! When I married, my dream changed again because it incorporated my husband's as well. While I remained an art major at a new school, I also took accounting courses thinking they would be an asset someday (and they were.) Many more things changed after we had our first child. I never finished my college degree - other things kept coming up and I wanted to be home with my baby - not trying to finish my portfolio class and 1-2 others (yes, I was that close!) I may go back and finish one day, but it's just not a priority right now.

It's funny but we never really know what love is until it is staring us in the face. Whether you fall in love at first sight or over time, that love is always changing and growing. The love you have for your partner/spouse in the early years varies greatly from the love you share 30 years later. The love you have for your child is sudden and overwhelming, but that too grows as they get older. As they leave the nest you feel as though your heart will both break into a million pieces and swell with such love and admiration for the wings they are spreading. Love and life are always changing.

Then something happens. You become a grandparent! Your child has a child of their own and there is nothing that prepares you for the love that overwhelms your entire being. You thought you loved your children...and then this tiny little human comes into your life and nothing will ever be the same. You are older...slower...tire more easily...and you realize very quickly why the younger generation, which you were once a member, has the babies! Once again you must child-proof your home...which now has 30+ years of stuff to de-clutter! Nothing is easy, but there is nothing you want more than to spend time with that grand baby!

So that's what I do. In case you didn't know, we currently have 4 generations living under one roof. Yes, it can be difficult...3 adult females (and 1 adult male who works alot...) all having a hand in raising one tiny human. The pecking order is set with a first place position followed by a tie for second and third and of course, we are all ruled by that one tiny human! I would not trade it for anything. I've even gotten used to my daughters' 3 cats - and that speaks volumes! The house is a mess and our lives are rather chaotic, but we seem to make it work. It's not where I pictured this time of my life would be, but I would rather be around to see him wake up from his nap and play on the floor with his toys than anything else.

Diane

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What a lovely day! | Jacksonville Wedding Photographer

June 10, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

I was given the blessing and honor of photographing Lauren and Tim's wedding and I'm sure glad I did! I've known Lauren for several years and I adore her spirit, her heart and her humor. She puts up with my "mom advice" and incessant questions at church where I help put the music together for choir and orchestra (as well as photograph things and people!) Lauren's earthy decor was truly beautiful and very "unfussy", just like her. I loved the bees and the flowers! She beamed all day with giddy excitement and was a joy to work with. I love the connection and relationship she has with her family and only cried once when photographing her with her dad. It was a little windy, but the sun was shining and the temperature was perfect for Florida in May! By the time we left for her "dress romp", the sky was filled with smoke and falling ash from burning wildfires north of town which made for a bizarre skyline. Thank you Lauren and Tim for a wonderful day. I can't wait to see what unfolds in your future together!

 

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Quoth the Raven | St. Augustine Weddings

February 08, 2017  •  1 Comment

Have you ever been to a Poe themed wedding? Me neither, until this year! I don't shoot many weddings anymore - life has offered up other things to fill that time! I'm used to the white wedding gown in a church ceremony with the typical, yet beautiful, flowers and candles and photos and things. When Ashlee and Dana told me their wedding theme and colors, it was perfect for them and they did a wonderful job with the cake and decorations! I also saw pictures of each of their outfits beforehand and knew they would fit their theme and each other. I decided that today would be a day for sharing just a couple photos...something I feel fits their theme and personalities. Enjoy and then check back for more sharing because there are a lot of photos to enjoy!

ps...congratulations Dana and Ashlee!

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Brain farts - I have them all the time!

January 25, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

I enjoy photographing homes. I know, kinda weird...but I like walking into homes - especially newly built homes - and finding the best angles and lighting to showcase the qualities and features everyone loves. Luckily for me, my husband builds homes and asks me to photograph them! I do get to photograph other homes too, but he's my favorite.

One area his company, New Leaf Construction, is currently building in is Providence Island in Queen's Harbor. It is literally an island, surrounded by marsh grass and other plant and animal life. Their first home is closing this Friday and I was able to squeeze in amidst the trade partners trying to finish up the details for the new homeowners. I love the amount of windows in this home and the beautiful light on this sunny, Florida day. The chandeliers twinkled and little beads of light washed over the walls when the light hit just right.

When I finished, I packed up, thanked everyone and headed out. Before I reached my car I realized I had locked my keys and phone inside the car in my other camera bag...the one I decided last minute I would not need! One of the busy trade partners stopped what he was doing and tried to unlock the door, but my Kia Soul was unforgiving. I borrowed a phone and called the hubs, who passed the buck to our daughter because he had a meeting. I decided to enjoy my wait time and went off to explore. An hour later, I'm driving my car to meet her for lunch at our favorite burger joint - Epic Burger! She made sure I had my keys before we went in...I'm sure it won't be the last time I'm reminded of this day.

The model for this neighborhood should be done in 4-6 weeks and I will get to photograph that one too! I had a hand in choosing the counter tops and other finishes so I'm looking forward to the finished product. I promise to keep my keys in a pocket...or take all the camera bags inside! 

If you would like more information on Providence Island, please contact Susan Dunham with Keller Williams Realty Atlantic Partners. She would love to walk you through the model home, which is for sale, and share information on how you can enjoy these views everyday!

 

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Who wouldn't want this view out their windows?


The Faces of Haiti

July 21, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

I am a people watcher. I look for the stories that faces, body language and relationships portray. I love using my camera to capture those stories. I recently went on a mission trip to Haiti with other members of my church - Deermeadows Baptist. It was one of those life events that changes you and because normal life hits at the speed of light when you return home, it has taken seemingly forever to process the events and emotions from the experience.

I have yet to adequately put words to my experience in Haiti. Everything was so different - from the traffic & our mode of transportation, to the food, our accommodations (which were quite pleasant compared to those we came to serve) and most especially, our surroundings. Not once did I ever feel in danger, but I could see and feel the turmoil that those around me were living with daily. And yet, there was joy, laughter and normalcy. Children walking to school in uniforms which depicted which school they attended and the girls had matching colored ribbons in their hair! Street vendors walking through neighborhoods calling out to those needing their services and wares. In the distance, the humming of traffic and honking horns as the busy day began.

It was one of the most difficult yet rewarding experiences of my life. The work was hard physically and even more so emotionally. So many children and adults, both young & old, coming for medical help and anything else we could provide. I did not understand the native language, but I recognized the smiles, the brightness in their eyes, and the way their faces lit up when they received whatever we could give. The love between family members and the laughter among friends filled the air. The hugs and smiles from the children still tug at my heart.

There is disease, extreme poverty and hunger in Haiti, but there is also hope, a desire to work for better and humble gratitude. There are so many stories to capture in Haiti and I have many, many photos. These represent just some of the Faces of Haiti...the ones that tug at my heart in ways I cannot describe. They have beautiful smiling eyes or worn lines telling of the hardness of life in their country. I will share more here at some point, and head over to @basicbtees for her |women supporting women| promotion helping women in Haiti learn skilled trades to support themselves and their families.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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