I am happy to announce that I’m going to be
starring in winning Dancing with the Tahoe Stars
on March 3rd! I’m the star!!
I look like a star, don’t I?
Dancing with the Tahoe Stars is the major fundraiser for our local non-profit The Tahoe Arts Project which pairs 10 local stars (that’s me! that’s me!) with 10 professional dancers (my partner, Spencer) who put on a show in order to raise money for the Tahoe Arts Project
The Tahoe Arts Project is a 501c3 non profit that was established in 1987 by a group of parents, professional musicians and teachers to bring performing arts and cultural enrichment to schools in the South Lake Tahoe region in both CA & NV. TAP reaches over 5,000 students, within 10 schools in El Dorado, Douglas, and Alpine counties of California and Nevada. The artists whom students meet through the TAP programs serve as role models that demonstrate the values of self-discipline and the pursuit of excellence.
The mission of TAP is to provide cultural enrichment and diversity for the community through the arts and education with particular focus on our youth.
As you all know, community involvement is important to me.
In addition, I’ve made it my mission as a business owner to dedicate part of my gross each year to giving back. In the past three years, I’ve personally donated over $11k to the three non-profits I chose as my beneficiaries: The Baltimore Dance Crews Project
, Mary’s House
, and Hope Shines
. I’m happy to announce that my 2018 beneficiary is the Boys and Girls Club of Lake Tahoe
Now I’m asking for YOUR HELP. Part of my commitment to Dancing with the Tahoe Stars is to fundraise for the Tahoe Arts Project. Please consider donating in my name today. Even $5 helps bring the arts to our local schools! I’ve created a very lofty goal of $10k in fundraising and if everyone I know donates $20 I’ll get there in no time! Because, after all, everyone knows Lauren Lindley, am I right?
As of today, I’ve already raised over $3k! I’m almost half way to my goal and I have just under two weeks left!
Thanks so much for your support!
Sarah and Tanner really wanted their engagement session to feel like a normal day and didn’t want anything too posed or formal. They had fallen in love with my work through their friend Kelley, whose engagement session to her now husband Neal, was a romp around San Francisco. Since Sarah and Tanner had already planned a trip with her family out to California, we decided to all meet for a Sunday funday together for their Napa engagement session. It was a blast! We played bocce and picnicked at their bungalow on a vineyard to start, took in an incredible vista, went wine tasting at the winery that Tanner’s brother works at, Ashes and Diamonds, and all finished up at an incredible dinner in town at one of their favorite spots. It was such a great way to get to know the two of them and I had such a blast exploring one of my favorite places. I’ve since been back to Ashes and Diamonds multiple times because I absolutely fell in love with their wine and I am super excited to photograph their wedding in Aspen, CO over Labor Day weekend this year!
This Holly’s Ocean Bluff wedding is too special not to blog right away. Simon and Vanessa came to me by way of a former wedding. Simon’s sister, Kendra and her now husband Tom, hired me to photograph their wedding last summer. It was one of my favorite weddings of the year because their friends and family were so vibrant, generous in spirit, and welcoming of Nicky and I. When Simon and Vanessa became engaged, they immediately reached out to me about photographing their wedding as well. It always makes me feel incredibly special to be part of a family for multiple events – whether it be watching families grow and share and capturing their portraits, or photographing multiple weddings for the same family.
When I showed up for Simon and Vanessa’s rehearsal dinner celebration (tacos and wine mind you – I think it was actually planned just for me), Uncle Glenn told me that I did such a good job on Kendra and Tom’s wedding that I could definately “take it easy this time and phone it in.” Needless to say, I did no such thing and a lot of fun, a beautiful ceremony overlooking an ocean bluff, family formals in the rain, some insanely delicious food, and an exceptionally raucous dance party filled their amazing day.
It was so fun to see so many of Simon and Kendra’s good friends and family members for the 2nd year in a row. Being hired repeatedly is an honor that I do not take lightly and I hope that Simon and Vanessa love their wedding photos as much as I loved taking them.
Venue: Holly’s Ocean Meadow | Coordinator: Sonya Houston from Mendocino Weddings | Florist: Rosa Wyglendowski of L&R Farms | Catering: Karina’s Catering | DJ: DJ DLT | Bride’s Attire: BHLDN | Hair and Makeup: Marianella from M Salon | Rentals: Matt Rowland Events | Second Photographer: Chris Arson
My friend Terin is one crafty lady, and I don’t mean like a fox. She’s so crafty that she and some of her best girlfriends host weekly craft nights. They make, build and design things I wouldn’t even start to dream of. Like quilts. I’m pretty sure that’s a thing they’ve done that I don’t do. I don’t even bother with a crafting club. I straight up just go to Girls’ Drinking Club. In fact, I’ve previously vowed to drink more wine just so that I have more corks to give to Jenna Palacio to craft me a wine cork wreath. Moral of this story: Terin is a master crafter and she killed it at the DIY wedding. Terin: 1. Lauren: 0.
When Terin started planning her wedding to another one of my good friends, Adam, she had the help of her family and friends to transform what is normally a bland looking cafeteria room at a local state park into the place of her dreams. I was blown away by how they managed to turn Turtle Rock Park into a lush, intimate oasis. It was nothing short of incredible.
Almost everything at Adam and Terin’s gorgeous Turtle Rock Park wedding was DIY: her sister made hundreds of tiny cheesecake cupcakes, she wore a reconstructed version of her mother’s wedding dress, they invented, built or designed all the table decor and screens for the ceiling, her mom made their bouquets, they created all the table runners and centerpieces themselves. Seriously.
Adam and Terin were wed at an hilarity filled ceremony, peppered with tears and sentimentality, at a private estate at the edge of the Sierra Nevadas, overlooking the Nevada valley. On our way there, they wanted to highlight all the scenery our backyard offers us, so the wedding party stopped in Hope Valley for photos. The party got wild and went late into the night thanks to the boys at Liquid Craft mobile bartending and Dylan with Lake Tahoe DJ. Adam is apparently also creative: he wrote Terin a song. And then he sung it. In front of everyone. Meanwhile, everyone cried and laughed and then cried and laughed and then realized that Adam ruined weddings forever for all of their future because no one can top that. Adam: 1. Everyone else: 0.
Venue: Private Estate and Turtle Rock Park | Day of Coordinator: Shana Conway Schmidt | Mobile Bar: Liquid Craft | DJ: Lake Tahoe DJ | Bakery: Corie King (sister of the bride) | Catering: Stephen Moise | Bridesmaid Attire: Azazie | Groom’s Apparel: Amazon | Hair and Makeup: Katie White at Tahoe Salon Be | Rentals: Camelot Rentals | Second Photographer: Red, White and Brian Walker
Morgan and Vittawat met in high school. Yes. That still happens. Flash forward ten years and they are both in advanced academia, living apart and engaged. This summer, Morgan was working and studying in Sacramento while Vittawat was still in their hometown in Reno. When we started talking about possibilities for portrait locations, I was quick to suggest a Sutter Creek engagement session. I had been following them on instagram for awhile and knew that they both loved wine, the outdoors and exploring as much as I did. It was also equal distance between all of us, which made it convenient for Vittawat to get to as a weekend getaway with Morgan.
It was partially a selfish request – I LOVE Sutter Creek. I had been eyeing it as a portrait location forever. My best friend’s parents live in the nearby town of Plymouth and some of my favorite clients ever (ahem, Jack and Kyle, as well as, Kerri and David) were wed there. It’s my home away from home and one of the places in the world I feel most comfortable. Wine, country and golden light – what’s not to love?
There are more of my favorite images from Morgan and Vittawat’s Sutter Creek engagement session after the jump. Here are some travel suggestions if you would like to visit the area yourself.
STAY: While the area has no limit to the kitchy bed and breakfasts’ available for the traveler that loves doilies and gardens, there are quite a few adorable boutique hotels here now as well.
- The Hanford House Inn is my personal favorite for staying directly in
the downtown of Sutter Creek. Downtown is a relative term: there’s one adorably quaint and walkable mainstreet. Don’t let the tiny town fool you though – what it lacks in size, it makes up for in friendliness and charm and it has everything you would need within your reach: wine tasting rooms, a gourmet cheese shop, and a provisional general store. Hanford House delivers warm fresh scones to your front door every morning and offers free wine tasting in the lobby every evening.
- Is there anything more adorable than a boutique hotel named Rest? The answer is no. Obviously. Rest is only 20 minutes away from Sutter Creek in Plymouth, CA and it happens to be located within walking distance to my favorite restaurant, Taste, in the area.
- The Union Pub and Inn in nearby Volcano only offers four rooms over an exceptional restaurant, which happens to be owned by the same owners as Taste. It’s been a longtime dream of mine to get a crew of people together to rent out the entire lodge one weekend for a getaway.
EAT: it’s a sad state of affairs when you think the food in the foothills is better than the food at home, but it’s true. I would drive two hours to eat at any of these restaurants!
- Taste has been awarded up and down every list imaginable that involves food and wine and for good reason. I jump at any chance to eat there. I’ve never been disappointed with anything I’ve been served and more often than not the meals come with a surprise delightful twist. I’m a huge fan of their Monday Night Supper menu, which offers a first, main, and dessert course at a pre-fixe price along with wine pairings.
- You can’t suggest the Union Pub and Inn without including them on the eat recommendation list as well. Their inventive seasonal menu changes frequently and it’s incredibly charming to sit on the patio and wine and dine on a warm summer night.
- Element is housed in the lobby of the Hanford House Inn and it’s my go-to brunch spot in the area. Their daily egg specials always make your menu decisions incredibly difficult.
- Yorba offers small lot, premium bold wines from the Amador area. Their tasting room is directly next door to the Hanford House Inn and their Shake Ridge Red is not to be missed.
- Terre Rouge and Easton offers a wide selection of variety of everything Plymouth has to offer. Their tasting room is unpresumptuous and their selection outstanding. I love everything they offer (which is why I’m a wine club member) but their barbaras and zins really stand out for me.
- Helwig Winery is worth a stop for a picnic lunch just for the incredible view of their beautiful grounds, as well as a bottle of their bubbly rose.
- I love C.G. Di Arie for their inventiveness and spunk. I became enamored with them after meeting the owner, Chaim Gur-Arieh, a few years back. It helps that they are NPR under-writers also. Chaim was born in Istanbul, Turkey but immigrated to Israel as a teenager. He has a PHD in food science and spent a number of years working to engineer the flavors and consistency behind some of America’s most beloved products (Hidden Valley Ranch! Captain Crunch!). His energy, enthusiasm and quirkiness won me over and this bleeds into his wines. Their gallery collections offer something unique to the area: inventive heavy blends using grapes like the touriga.
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!