Cedarville Vineyard is one of my favorite wineries of Fairplay. Cedarville, owned by the amazing husband and wife duo of Jonathan Lachs and Susan Marks, is sustainably and organically farmed. They have amazing underground caves they designed to store wine, feature owl boxes to assist with pest control, and use rotating grasses, weeds and other crops under the vines to help keep soil healthy and pests to a minimum. Jonathan and Susan were looking for a slew of marketing photos to have at their disposal for the vineyard. It didn’t take much convincing (or any at all) to get me and some of my favorite people to the vineyard for a tour, a wine tasting, a picnic spread and some wandering among the vines.
Cedarville Vineyard is located in Somerset, CA and welcomes visitors for tours, tasting, and sales by appointment only. You can either email or call 530-620-9463 to set up an appointment. You won’t regret it and tell them I sent you!
This could also be titled: the Sutro Baths Engagement Session that almost wasn’t.
Carolyn, Robert and I met for some delicious cocktails and apps at Outerlands which serves delicious food sustainably sourced from local resources. It was a beautiful afternoon, sunny and warm, and we got to know each other, and their adorable pup, Khaleesi. Things did not go quite as planned, however, when we left, because all the sudden we realized that no one had a car key. Cue some scrambling on the street corner, some back and forth back to the restaurant, and some uncertainty as to the fate of the afternoon. Turns out, the key was in the car door and thankfully both it, and the car, were still there!
The Sutro Baths are a really incredible space that I had been wanting to photograph at for quite some time. Adolph Sutro developed the baths in Baths in 1894 but they were unfortunately never commercially viable. At one point, his family turned them into an ice skating rink. Eventually, there were plans to tear them down and build condos, but thankfully those plans never came to fruition. They were destroyed by a fire in 1966 and in the next decade they were adopted into the recreational area they are now apart of. In the evening at sunset, the baths are filled with folks watching the sunset, hiking, and tons of photographers and their clients taking advantage of the awesome and unique area.
Caitlin met me when she was a bridesmaid in a Lake Tahoe Golf Course wedding that I photographed for two of my most favorite clients to date! Caitlin, Marcus, Christina and Jose all share a similar friend group and based on Christina and Jose’s wedding, I knew that their Lucie Stern Center wedding was guaranteed to be a raucous wild dance party. They did not disappoint!
Their wedding was filled with wonderful surprises: a farm-to-table caterer with fun small plate food stations, a crying flower girl (who doesn’t love that?), and instead of the standard religious or literary reading, a friend read the lyrics of a rap song during the ceremony, a nod to Caitlin and Marcus’ shared love of both rap and their sense of humor. They had lawn games in the community center plaza, a photo booth (of course!) on the prints of which I managed to spell both a name wrong and get the date wrong (if you don’t know, it’s 2016, not 2017) (they forgave me), and overall, a wild booze-filled party of the best kind. The dance floor was packed from the moment they kicked it off.
Venue: Lucie Stern Community Center | Invitations: Wood & Water Paper | Florist: White Oak Flower Shoppe | Catering: The Green Grocer | DJ: Terry Cole of The Spinheads | Bride’s Attire: Trudy’s Bridal | Hair and Makeup: The Blushing Bombshell | Bridesmaid Attire: Weddington Way | Groom’s Attire: Nordstrom | Rentals: The Green Grocer
Oh man. These two are like smiles and jumping for joy and adventure-time and sunshine and laughter and good vibes and dance moves and ski fast and live loud and excitement all wrapped up into one package. They are fun loving, laid back souls with a clear thirst for life. They laughed non-stop their entire wedding day and in fact, I’m not sure I could find a photo where Megan isn’t laughing if I tried!
Megan and Tuck were wed under a beautiful weeping willow that had THE COOLEST TREEHOUSE IN IT I’VE EVER SEEN on family property. There were sweeping views of walnut groves, abundant sunshine, and lush greenery everywhere. The wedding was DIY, with heavy help from all hands on deck. Megan is an interior designer and her style was ever present.
I feel really lucky that I was connected with these two super rad people through a mutual friend. Tuck grew up skiing at Squaw Valley and I was lucky enough to get to ski with Megan, Tuck and his family this past spring there. It was an absolute blast. They are fast, fun, playful skiers that clearly enjoy spending time together on the slopes and furthermore, time over wine afterwards. You know these are all clear paths to my heart. Also, I am jealous because they have corgis and deep down inside, I’ve always wanted one. There, I admit it.
Megan and Tuck are going to have many grand adventures together in their future. I only hope that at least one of them involves coming to visit me in Tahoe again in the near future!
Venue: Private Estate Wedding | Coordinating: Patty Bristow | Catering: Brentwood Fine Meats | Ceremony Music: Steve Luntz | DJ: Eastwood Entertainment | Bride’s Attire: Nicole Miller | Groom’s Attire: Men’s Warehouse | Rentals: C&M Party Rentals | Videographer: 7th Stone Media
I have this small disclaimer on my wedding services page that states, “I will always work with budgets if I feel you and your wedding are a right fit.” People either get it or they so clearly don’t. The ones that get it send me amazing emails filled with personal details about why they are a good fit. Kerri and David were some of those people. She wrote in her email, “I’m trying to surround myself with people on my wedding day that have good/fun energy.” Kerri talked about how important it was to her to include vendors who fit the bohemian intimate vibe they really wanted to recreate at their Rancho Cicada Retreat wedding. They couldn’t have picked a better venue for what they were going for either: Rancho Cicada Retreat is a special place. It’s a no-frills setting that you can rent for the entire week. It’s lush, overgrown, and green with a brambling brook, hammocks and lawn games. It’s a place where you can stay up late drinking whiskey by the campfire and no one comes to hush you. It’s the kind of place where you can dance the night away and there is nary a neighbor to hear you. It’s the kind of place where you can get married in an idyllic wonderland of green and golden hues, surrounded by as many of your friends and family as you want. Although it is smack in the middle of one of California’s best wine regions, it feels like you are the only people in the world while you are there.
It’s the kind of venue that breeds a DIY affair and Kerri and David’s was certainly that. Friends baked all the pies, officiated, and MC’d the night. The party went on all weekend and their friends and family were so lovely and including that once again at this venue, I stayed and partied the night away in their company. It seems to happen at this venue. It’s clearly where the cool couples wed and I certainly can’t wait to return! I’m feeling pretty grateful that Kerri found me and wrote to me so honestly and candidly and with such emotion. It was clear from the get-go that these two are full of love and care and it was even more apparent on their wedding day. Thanks Kerri and David for sharing your wedding retreat with me. It was an honor!
Venue: Rancho Cicada Retreat | Florist: Matthew Armbruster | Catering: Chuck Collison | Bride’s Attire: Holly Stalder | Groom’s Attire: Thailand | Groomsmen Suspenders: Suspender Superstore | Make-Up: Hawley Lopes | Hair: Amanda Lyn Jones | Rentals: Partysmart Rentals | Videographer: DGL Studio | Succulents : The Succulent Source | Decor: BHLDN | Bridal Bouquet: Eucca Floral Studio | Signage: Marrygrams | Cornhole Boards: Back 40 Life | Cornhole Bags: Sky Pixie Cornhole | Koozies: The Drinking Buddy