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The Ward Family \\ Gwinnett County Family Photographer

Sometimes it seems there just aren’t adequate words… words that are sweet enough, thoughtful enough, strong enough to tell a story. But I want to give it a go because these five people below- they deserve it!

You see, while the setting for these images may be in my new “backyard”- the subjects are not. In fact, they are treasured friends and clients from Florida- who while on their own Fall vacation, drove 6 hours round trip so we could capture their family photographs. Just typing that out brings tears to my eyes. 6 hours! On their vacation! For these images. Oh. My. Goodness.

When Mandy first messaged about this possibility several months back, I was a mix of all things giddy and just simply blown away. The thought that anyone would value your work and your relationship enough to make that type of sacrifice was so humbling.

I knew that capturing these moments for their family would be so incredibly special and our time together did not disappoint.

When I caught the first glimpse of them, my heart skipped a few beats. Not only was I going to get to hug the necks of these precious people- but, as always, Mandy had perfectly nailed their look! Being Florida girls at heart, we had talked about the hopes for some pretty Fall colors and light to drape the background and when she was building their wardrobe- she took all of those things in to account- choosing a fabulous palette, adding layers and mixing patterns just right!

But outfit choices are only part of a fabulous family session equation!

The other part -THE MOST IMPORTANT PART-  is all about interactions and relationships; and that’s what I love about this family the very most. They are tender with one another, yet they know how to have fun. They enjoy cuddles and kisses, just as much as tickling and running. They have smiles that light up when they look at one another and children who love holding hands. They do this family thing so well that often times, I can just sit back and capture the memories they are making. That’s a gift- a beautiful gift that I know Mandy and Joe would attribute to a gracious and loving God who has taught them how to parent and love with intentionality and purpose.

And today- I am so excited to share with you one of the sweetest and most thoughtful little families I have the honor of knowing.
My prayer is that these images will bring their family joy, smiles and tons of warm fuzzies and that the rest of you will leave inspired to plan a time to capture the love between your own family.

These seasons escape far too quickly; for our children really do grow up in the blink of an eye. May we never miss an opportunity to cherish and freeze these moments!

Thank you, thank you precious Ward Family! I really do love you all to pieces!

Can we talk about Mandy just slaying it right here? Holy moly model mom material!
I love when couples don’t shy away from what we would lovingly call “desk portraits!”
These individual images are super special because they give your spouse a perfect photograph to frame for their desk!

On Letters and Moving \\ Reflections

These three envelopes have fallen out of my Bible every morning since the beginning of July, hitting the couch just as quickly as the tears have hit my cheeks.
I won’t lie, the first month just seeing them was about all I could handle.
By the time August rolled around, my heart had started to wonder what might be inside; yet still I found myself unable to muster up enough courage to read the words penned by some of my dearest friends.
Month number 3 brought about no change and these cards followed their daily routine…falling out, finding themselves sitting by my side and being tucked back in somewhere between Psalms and Revelation.
And here we are, it’s nearly the end of October and these envelopes- they are still sealed.
I know they hold precious words inside, but my heart isn’t quite ready to see the familiar handwriting and to feel the sting of what once was. I know it will stir up a well of emotions and I’ll yearn for different days, when our front doors weren’t so far apart. I know my eyes will fill with tears and my heart will break again, as I think about the beauty of the relationships we left behind.
But with time, I know the words will wash over me, rejuvenating, refreshing and prompting thanksgiving for the blessing of friendship and sisterhood, no matter how many miles stretch between.
And during this same passing of time, I also know my own perspective is shifting. The dry places are beginning to feel a bit more abundant, for the Lord is softening and filling up my own heart. He’s teaching me in this period of change and transition that He is immovable, and He’s reminding me that it’s ok to grieve the close of one season to step into the new one He has prepared.
As I glance out the window this idea is made even clearer. For just as we are beginning to see the transformation of green leaves to warmer Autumn colors, we too are transforming and changing. Much like the ushering in of Fall, this new season is bringing about beauty in the landscape of our own hearts.
God has a way of doing that you know.
He can take what seemed impossible and make it possible.
He can take our fears and anxieties and what ifs and flip them upside down as we learn to step out in faith and trust Him.
He can take the darkest places in our hearts and give them new life.
That’s what He’s been doing in me.
He may have moved us from a place we loved dearly, but He called us here for a reason. And saying “yes” set us off on the grandest of adventures with our Savior, exploring and falling more in love with Him today than we were yesterday.
You see God really can do more with our “yes” than we can do with all of our fears, hesitations and attempts at control combined.
And as strange as it may seem, I think these three envelopes are a visual reminder to me of all of that… they tell a piece of our story, of the letting go in order to go with God, of the trusting when we didn’t really understand it all and embracing the wonder of the unknown. But they also tell the story of community, of digging down deep with others and living life connected through Him.
Three thoughtful expressions from friends, that when opened one day, will most likely find their way back to cozy little places in the middle of my Bible; so that upon their falling out, I can glance up to Heaven and whisper thank you- thank you for this new season and thank you for the blessings of the one before.
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– Luke 18:27-30
– Joshua 1:9
– Psalm 94:19
– Proverbs 18:24
– Isaiah 41:10
– Philippians 4:6-7
– 2 Corinthians 5:17

kristen + charlie’s wedding story \\ clearwater wedding photographer

A beautiful bride. Her handsome groom. Skies that cleared up to the perfect shade of blue. The sun shining down brightly, yet not nearly as radiant as their love for one another. That was Kristen and Charlie’s wedding. It was a day we had all been looking forward to and it was a day that did not disappoint. Friends and family surrounding them, both of them glowing from the inside out. A celebration of love and commitment, as these two became husband and wife.

Charlie and Kristen chose the Clearwater Yacht Club for their ceremony and reception, but for their couple shots, we slipped away to the lovely Sand Key Beach. The bridesmaids looked stunning in long navy dresses, which brought the nautical feel of their wedding to life. Kristen slipped into her gorgeous gown with her mom by her side and her best girls surrounding her. Holding a piece of her baby blanket around her bouquet, now embroidered with her new last name, Kristen was breathtaking.  And it wasn’t long before her dad was brought to tears during their incredibly sweet first look.

Charlie got his first glimpse of his stunning bride as she turned the corner with her father. Then they exchanged vows overlooking the water, with a steady breeze in Kristen’s veil. It was a thoughtful and sweet ceremony, with Charlie’s brother in law as the officiant.

Our time together for couple shots felt like a dream. We simply couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day and I couldn’t have imagined a more perfect couple photograph. When they stepped in front of the camera, Kristen and Charlie literally beamed. We captured some of the sweetest and most powerful images ever during our time on the beach.

When Kristen and Charlie entered their reception, they began with a choreographed dance, which charmed their guests! The rest of the evening was full of laughter, dancing and celebrating. Oh and did I mention dancing? Seriously, their nephews and nieces had some of the best moves I’ve ever seen! They left under an arch of sparklers, with one last dip and kiss! It was the perfect ending to a perfect day!


It’s not often you see me slipping into a picture after hours of shooting in the Florida sun, but for these girls- you bet! What an incredible honor it has been to capture all three of their wedding days. So many precious memories and friendships have been made over the years and it literally makes my heart swell to think about both those moments, but also all that lies ahead for them and their husbands. This is one of the greatest rewards of capturing people’s stories- relationships that go beyond the images on your screen. Thank you Kelsey, Maggie and Kristen for being some of the best brides a photographer could ever ask for! 

Charlie and Kristen,  It has been a privilege to get to know you over the years and to be a part of so many celebrations with you and your friends. We are so honored that you invited us to capture your amazing day and we hope these pictures will bring countless smiles to your faces, but more so to your hearts. We pray God’s richest blessings over your marriage and we look forward to keeping in touch as you begin your new adventure as husband and wife. Congratulations!

We love you both,
Annie and Rahul

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The Creative Team 

Dress: Ti Adora by Alvina Valenta | Tuxes: Men’s Warehouse | Florals: Chib Anderson |  Make-Up and Hair: Lauren Edwards of Style Hair and Makeup |  Catering: Clearwater Yacht Club  | Cake: Cakes by Carolyn

 

 

May 5, 2017 - 10:02 pm

Patricia Wilson - Another amazing job Annie. Reminds me of the great job you did on Maggie and Mike’s wedding. You are a true talent.

amanda + adem’s wedding story \\ largo wedding photographer

If there is one thing that comes to mind when I think about Amanda and Adem’s beautiful wedding, it’s the word “others.”
You see, these two had such a precious perspective on their wedding day. They soaked in the moments, surrounded by those they love the most. There were tender moments and tears shed with family and friends from beginning to end. It was a day full of joy and beauty, but also a day where they spent a great deal of their time making sure others were loved on, taken care of, appreciated and honored. Just before they slipped away on their honeymoon, Amanda hugged her husband in a sea of bubbles, with tears streaming down her cheeks and then turned to her guests and offered one last thank you to those who had spent the day celebrating this new chapter in their life. But what happened next is something I’ve never seen- these two went back around and hugged every neck.
Sacrificial. Considerate. Genuine. Authentic.
That’s what I’ll always remember about these two and this day.
What a lovely way to begin a life together.

Amanda and Adem chose the lovely Bayou Club as their backdrop. With petal pink dresses on her bridesmaids and stunning pastel bouquets, the color tone was set. It was a perfect pair for the greens of the golf course during their charming outdoor ceremony. Amanda slipped into her gown with her mom and sister by her side and her great grandmother’s brooch fastened in her curls. She was simply breathtaking and left both her father and her new husband speechless.
Amanda and Adem wrote their own touching vows and brought many of their guests to tears with their promises of commitment and their words of adoration. It was such a sweet ceremony!
They celebrated with an amazing reception that incorporated both florals and goldfish! It was a surprising, but incredible combination that made the room uniquely their own. Before the newlyweds left, guests were invited to take fortune cookies that contained the same message Adem discovered inside of his own, on his first date with Amanda.

What a perfect day. What a perfect couple!

Amanda and Adem, We are so honored that you chose us to capture your incredibly special day!  It was marvelous from beginning to end and we pray the same for your marriage. May it be even more delightful than you could have ever imagined. Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Telci!

Blessings,
Annie and Rahul

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The Creative Team 

Dress: Galina Signature  | Tuxes: Ike Behar | Florals: Dana Dineen Floral Design |  Make-Up and Hair: Michelle Dalderas of Elegant Brides  |  Catering: The Bayou Club   | Cake: Chantilly Cakes 

erin + eric’s engagement story \\ tampa engagement photographer

It doesn’t seem like all that much time has passed since this lovely lady was in front of my lens for her senior portraits. But the years have brought new memories her way and new seasons to celebrate; and I’m so very honored that I get to capture them!

Erin and Eric have been together for six years (SIX YEARS!) and this Fall, they’ll become husband and wife. What an adventure they have already experienced, but as they step into the journey of marriage I know an even greater story is yet to be written.

Here’s to each new page and each new chapter, filled with incredible memories and an enduring love!




Congratulations Erin and Eric! We can’t wait to capture your beautiful wedding story!

February 14, 2017 - 1:03 am

Starr Shirley - Such a beautiful couple, love you both!