Ehrman Mansion Wedding

Ehrman Mansion Wedding | Rachel + Thomas | Sneak Peek

Ermahgerd.

That’s what I put in the subject line of my email to Rachel about her sneak peeks.

Ermahgerd.  I totally want to edit this wedding and only this wedding right now because I’m so in love with all of their photos from their vintage 20s inspired Ehrman Mansion Wedding at Sugar Pine Point State Park.

Ermahgerd.  Rachel was so flipping gorgeous and her laugh was so amazing.

Ermahgerd.  Can we be friends forever?

Ermahgerd.  There were Star Wars legos on their boutonnières and bouquets.

Ermahgerd.

Just look at this.

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Tahoe Wedding Photographer

Tahoe Wedding Photographer | Eddie + Lori

I’ve been keeping this one to myself because I knew it belonged on a wedding blog because this gorgeous marriage of two families at the Tahoe Beach Retreat and Lodge in South Lake Tahoe was completely and totally Pinterest worthy.  I’m so thrilled to finally share it with you and can happily announce that it will be published in not just one but TWO different blogs in the upcoming month!

I am so thankful Eddie and Lorena found me and even more honored that they chose me to be their Tahoe wedding photographer.  What an amazing family this is.  It was so clear to me from the get-go that they both are making their new family a priority.  Lorena is clearly a loving, patient, encouraging mother and it showed in various ways throughout the day, including the ceremony during which they took turns jointly combining multiple colors of sand into a shadowbox, signifying the unity of two families into one.

I always ask if brides have Pinterest boards, just so I can get an idea of their personality and aesthetic before I meet them.  All too often, I don’t meet the bride until the wedding day.  When I saw that Lori’s shabby chic board was full of fall colors, muted tones, bell jars and burlap, I was thrilled.  When I arrived on the wedding day to find their amazing wedding coordinator Amanda Mason setting up a CANDY BAR, I was nothing short of ecstatic.

From start to finish, I felt right at home with Lori and Eddie.  Lori warms your heart.  On her wedding day, she was positively glowing, as any bride should be, and her spirit has stuck with me since then.  Their friends were fun, full of laughter and raged the dance floor.  Her teenage sons stood up and made speeches, thanking Eddie not only for their relationship with them and welcoming him into the family.  Eddie and Lorena gave me full reign and no instructions, trusting me completely to capture their awesome day.  I hope they are as thrilled with their photos as I am.  Four months later, I am still awestruck at how wonderful they are, how special their day was, how grateful I am to be a part of it, and how beautiful it turned out.

If you were a guest of Eddie and Lorena, you may see the full gallery of photos and order prints via this link.

Venue, Reception Site and Catering: Tahoe Beach Retreat | Wedding Coordinator: Amanda Mason | Cake: Flour Girl Wedding Cakes | Florist: Enchanted Florist | Dress: David’s Bridal | DJ: Ascent DJ Productions

Tahoe Beach Wedding Sneak Peek | Lori + Eddie

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I have so many unbelievable images from Lori and Eddie’s gorgeous wedding celebration that it was seriously difficult to choose just one to share.  You know what’s even harder not to share?   All the stories from the day that involve how unbelievable awesome this family is, not to mention their friends.

Oh, and one more thing: they had a candy bar.  BOOM!

Destination Wedding in Temecula | Haley + Dave

My best mate Haley and I have been friends for over ten years now I think.  We’ve never lived in the same city.  If one of us suddenly gets the feeling that it’s been too long, then we make a point to meet up.  We call them our “rendezvous.”  In 2006 we travelled to Coachella together.  Sometimes we each go half way to San Franciscosometimes I fly to LA.  When Haley and Dave became engaged, I felt honored to be asked to take their engagement portraits.

Though we’re often far apart and sometimes go months without catching up, when we’re together, we’re just the same as always.  I love her to death and I’m so honored to have been able to travel to Temecula Wine Country to witness her marriage to the man she loves.  It should go without saying that I also approve of him.  He drinks great wine.

Haley rented a beautiful house on the top of a hill over looking the wine orchards of Temecula for her venue, which the groomsmen and bridesmaids also stayed in during the week.  It was very much so a family affair – we cooked together, decorated together, puffed up puffy lanterns together, drank wine, laughed and danced and joked together.  Haley’s family and friends all pitched in to arrange flowers and fill ice buckets.  It was a whirlwind of activity and a truly DYI wedding, right up until the point that her amazing wedding coordinator showed up and took over for us.  In the end, it all came together in the most beautiful of ways.

I was not the photographer for the wedding and I was more than happy to put away my camera and dance my butt off all. night. long.  I did photograph most of our week and getting ready photos before the photographer arrived, so that’s what you’ll see here.  Haley and Dave hired the uber-talented, super fun, really adorable Caroline Fontenot and eventually their photos will grace the pages of her blog.  You should go check out her work, it’s fantastic: energy and fun exudes from the very page when you look at her photos.

Haley’s wedding was nothing short of a spectacularly good time: beautiful but relaxed, stylish but informal.  We were paraded around by mariachis, ate street corn and tacos, drank wonderful wine and beer that went down all too easy from Stone Brewing Co, took silly photos in a photobooth, and danced long after the sun went down until we had blisters on our feet.

Temecula was such a great place to visit and if you are in the southern CA area, it would make a great weekend get-away.  I wrote about our adventures wine tasting the other day.  Temecula also has an adorable main street called Old Town, filled with bars and restaurants, hotels and tiny shops.  I stayed in The Palomar Inn, an amazing European (read: shared baths) style hotel right on the main street of Old Town.  The 10 room historic inn is family run, was built in 1927 and is supposedly haunted, though their ghost didn’t show his face to me.  Right around the corner from my Inn every Saturday is an awesome farmer’s market where I sampled amazing hot sauce from Vera’s Tamales Express and then filled my belly before the wedding with a blue crab burrito from Street Foods Co.  I needed it because I’d woken up at 6 AM to run 10 miles with the Temecula Running Club!

Photographer: Caroline Fontenot | Violinists: La Libradolce | Mariachis: Los Salazar | Dress: JLM Couture | Flowers: The Empy Vase | Decor: West Elm | Caterer: M&L Taco Catering | Wedding Cake: Hotcakes Bakes | Popsicles: Front Porch Pops | Bartenders: Always a Happy Hour Bartending | Rentals: Temecula Party Rentals | Wedding Coordinator:  Vanessa Vargess | DJ/Lighting: Brett Elliott | Vacation Home Rental: Eva Woodsmall

Secret Beach Tahoe Wedding Photography

For a person who doesn’t want her own wedding, I sure am spending a significant portion of my days looking at wedding photos.

If you are looking to hire a Tahoe wedding photographer for an informal last minute wedding, please, hire me because I have decided that I LOVE them.  None of the pomp, none of the circumstance: just you, your significant other and the people that are most important to you.  It’s not about the style, or the cake, or the flowers, or the cutesy placards you put at people’s tables; it’s about your bond to one another.

Remember that awesome wedding photo I shared the other day of the family running into the lake?

This is their full Tahoe wedding story.

What I admire most about Hope and Kristian is that they recognized what was most important to them was the bonding of their two families and nothing else.

And in the end, they all ran in the lake.

And then they made their daughter repeat her polar plunge because she didn’t get her head wet (they didn’t want her to jinx them).

Laughter, silliness and just being with each other is what this family, their ceremony and their lives will be about and I respect them so much for it.

Dear Hope, Kristian and family, thank you for including me in your day.  I am certain that your lives will be filled with love and happiness.  This was so abundantly clear to me in the hour I spent with you.

Love, L

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A Magical Nevada City Wedding Moment

 As a photographer, I’m always looking to capture that magical moment.  It’s the moment when an emotion freezes in time and you’ve managed to paint a gorgeous picture with one click of the shutter.  All your feelings and memories are wrapped up in a nice tidy package that eloquently conveys everything you remember about what was happening right then.  It’s a perfect emotion.  It’s a job well done.  It’s a feeling of elation.

Sometimes, I set everything up and snap snap snap away and it takes awhile but I know when I press the shutter and look at the screen that I managed to get it.  Nailed it.  But sometimes, in the case of this gorgeous Nevada City wedding photo, I totally don’t realize it in the moment: I move on, not even recognizing that I captured something wonderful and it’s not until much later when I’m sorting through photos that I stop and smile and reflect and see something special and begin to love it.

I had no idea I took this photo when it happened.

This is a magical moment for me.  I like this one.

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Hope and Kristian Tahoe Wedding Preview

I was actually in the middle of photographing a wedding when Mary from Indiana called.

She “found me on the internet,” she said, and then added, “and I am NOT good at the internet.”

The wedding was to be a family affair, nine people in all, including the bride and groom and officiant, who happened to be the groom’s mother.

They only wanted photos of the ceremony and almost everyone she called wanted to charge her $1000 to photograph a 10 minute ceremony and a few family photos.  Total amount of time on site: less than an hour.

Preposterous!

I’m so thrilled they found me to photograph their small informal Tahoe wedding.  Mary didn’t share whom she had hired with the family, she simply told them that she had “found just the right photographer.”  When I met her, she wasted no time in giving me a hug.   It was the most wonderful compliment and the entire experience is one that I will never forget.  Wait until you see the rest of the photos!  I feel so privileged to have been witness to such a wonderful, family centric, and laughter filled ceremony.

What an awesome family Kristian and Hope have created.

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A Bleu Wave Tahoe Wedding

Michelle and Adam’s wedding was my kind of party: small, intimate, on a boat, slightly rowdy, and so fun.  Their friends were true Tahoe locals and just like mine: there is no time that is inappropriate for some whooping and hollering.  Whether I’m in Texas or in Tahoe, a good old fashioned yell makes me feel right at home.

It was held on The Bleu Wave out of Roundhill Pines Marina and followed up with a dinner and cake and one of my favorite local restaurants, Scusa.  Their cake was absolutely hysterical with a custom cake topper that featured replications of their actual ski apparel.

A true Tahoe cake topper: skis and pine trees necessary.

Michelle and Adam are such a wonderful and inspiring couple.  I still feel so lucky that they asked me to photograph their special day and I hope they are as enamored with the photos as I am.

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