Nautical Laguna Beach Wedding

I am so excited to share my images from the Shoot This Not That workshop I participated in last month at the Surf And Sand Resort in Laguna Beach!  Hosted by super fab stylist Summer Watkins of Grey Likes Weddings, it was a day full of inspiration, education, and a gorgeous wedding shoot.  Summer pulled together an amazing group of talented vendors to create this lovely beachside wedding, and every last detail was simply perfect.  Love, love, love the navy, blush and gold color scheme!

Special thanks to mentor photographers Troy & Aimee Grover, and guest speaker Jeannie Savage of Details Details!

Venue:  Surf And Sand Resort // Flowers:  Bloom Box Designs // Stationery:  Papermade Design
Chiavari chairs:  Classic Party Rentals // Hair & Makeup:  Hair By Merr // Linens:  Wildflower Linens
Groom's bow tie:  Starboard Clothing // Bride's sandals:  Fibi & Clo // Gown:  Enzoani

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Monday Mixtape - Holiday Wishes

The holiday season is in full swing... and I'm finally getting started on my Christmas shopping.  Every year I plan to get a head start.  So I buy one or two gifts in the summer, and then make the mistake of actually believing I'm ahead of the game... and, um... don't think about it again until December rolls around.  And, of course, now I'm behind!  But it's okay, I have it under control; I have a list and it's all up in here (insert picture of me tapping my finger to my temple).

I may even find time to make my own Christmas wish list :)

"Last Christmas" - Wham!

"All I Want For Christmas Is You"

"Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" - U2

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Monday Mixtape - O Christmas Tree

The adventures of cutting down our own Christmas tree...

 Thanks to Jim & Mary's Tree Farm!  The kids had a blast exploring, finding sticks, petting the dog, and feeding the horse... and the fresh baked cookies were a perfect treat at the end of our visit!

"O Christmas Tree" - Glee Cast

"Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree" - Brenda Lee

"Sleigh Ride" - The Carpenters

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Monday Mixtape

My daughter left this morning for 6th grade camp at Sly Park.  I usually don't get too choked up about the little milestones my kids hit along their playful, and sometimes bumpy, journey through childhood.  I love seeing them grow and learn and experience. I'm excited to share in the discoveries, and the feelings that I remember having myself at that age.  But today, watching Claire head into the cafeteria, with her suitcase rolling behind her and sleeping bag tucked under her arm, I got a little teary.  Five days is a long time to be away from her and I miss her already.  And, even though she doesn't go for hugs in public anymore, today she let me pull her in for a warm squeeze.  She let me hold her sweet face between my hands as I told her I love her and to have the most fun ever.   I'll be holding onto that memory until I see her sweet face again on Friday, when I can pull her into my arms again.

I remember my own trip to Sly Park.  The gum tree on the way into the cafeteria, the pretty high school counselors advising us to moisturize our legs to make them look tanner, the boy coming to my cabin requesting a late night walk with me (which, of course, I didn't accept), my friend going home early because she was homesick, and the cool girls performing a skit to "No More Words" in the talent show.  It was supposed to be Outdoor Ed, but I have absolutely no recollection of plants or hikes.   I guess that shows where my mind was at the time, and makes me that much more sentimental about my own daughter's adventure this week.

So, popular songs from 1984 on the mix today :)

"No More Words" - Berlin

"The Reflex" - Duran Duran

"When Doves Cry" - Prince

"Like A Virgin" - Madonna

"Here Comes The Rain Again" - Eurythmics

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Monday Mixtape

My husband, Mario, gave me this lovely little necklace for my birthday a couple of weeks ago and it made my day!  What a fun, perfect gift for me!  Thank you, Baby!

Check out Running In Place on Etsy for all sorts of cute baubles!

I absolutely love love love Paramore's cover of "Use Somebody",  originally performed by Kings Of Leon, so I decided to feature great cover songs for today's mix!

"Use Somebody" - Paramore

"Nothing Compares 2U" - Sinead O'Connor (originally performed by The Family)

"Hazy Shade Of Winter" - The Bangles (originally performed by Simon & Garfunkel)

"Killing Me Softly" - Fugees (originally performed by Lori Lieberman)

"Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon" - Urge Overkill (originally performed by Niel Diamond)

"Smooth Criminal" - Alien Ant Farm (originally performed by Michael Jackson)

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Monday Mixtape - Dreamy

A couple of weeks ago, I attended the Shoot This Not That workshop, hosted by the fabulous Summer Watkins of Grey Likes Weddings, in Laguna Beach.  It was a completely amazing fifteen hour day (yes, I said FIFTEEN!), full of Summer's insider tips and insight on photographing weddings beautifully and editorially, a gorgeously styled shoot, and fun new friends.  I left exhilarated and inspired, with hundreds of images and two books full of notes.  I can't wait to share more photos from the day!

I'm a huge fan of dreamy...
Bon Iver - "Holocene"

Bon Iver - "Beach Baby"

Bon Iver & St. Vincent - "Roslyn"

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Monday Mixtape - Blessed

Today I feel blessed.  Blessed to have spent the last several days catching up with one of my dearest cousins and her beautiful family.  Blessed that I was woken up every day by my precious goddaughter climbing into my bed and telling me all about her Barbies and her pink Bible in her sweet, soft voice.  Blessed that she loves me as much as I love her...

Taylor Swift  - "Never Grow Up"

Martina McBride - "Blessed"

Foster The People - "I Would Do Anything For You"

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Monday Mixtape - Boo!

I'm kind of a scaredy-cat.  After being completely terrorized by the movie "Poltergeist" when I was 9 years old, I swore off horror movies for a good long time.  It wasn't until a several years later, at a swim team sleepover, that I was able to enjoy a scary movie... "Nightmare On Elm Street", and that was probably because I was not only surrounded by 30 other kids, but I also didn't want to look like a baby in front of all my peers.  Even the horror movies that are supposed to be funny, like "Child's Play" and "Scream" freak me out.  Trick-or-treating?  Yes.  Carving pumpkins?  Sure.  Hot apple cider?  Yes, please.  "Paranormal Activity 3"?  Hell no!

Michael Jackson - "Thriller"... Yep, this one scared me, too.   Told ya... major scaredy cat!

Bobby Pickett - "Monster Mash"

Whodini - "The Freaks Come Out At Night"

Ray Parker Jr. - "Ghostbusters"

"Halloween" theme song

The Rocky Horror Picture Show - "Time Warp"

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Monday Mixtape - Farewell to Jersey

Well, it's time for me to bid farewell to Jersey.  Yes, I am an avid "Jersey Shore" and "Real Housewives of New Jersey" fan, and both of their seasons have come to an end.  No more T-Shirt time, GTL, and shameful displays of public drunkenness.  No more "ingredientses", gold bikinis, and animal-print everything.  It's okay... I'll be alright.  Luckily, I have "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" to ease me through this transition, and those ladies definitely have enough drama going on to make my Monday nights something to look forward to!

Surprisingly, New Jersey has given us a long list of noteable musicians throughout the years:  Frank Sinatra, Dionne Warwick, Connie Francis, The Misfits, Whitney Houston, and, of course, Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen.  Who knew?

And, most recently, Melissa Gorga!  Not necessarily amazing, but this song is totally stuck in my head!
Melissa Gorga - "On Display"

Bon Jovi - "You Give Love A Bad Name"

Bruce Springsteen - "Dancing In The Dark"

Misfits - "Dig Up Her Bones"

Whitney Houston - "I Wanna Dance With Somebody"

Connie Francis - "Who's Sorry Now" - This song reminds me so much of my mom; she had this album and every once in a while we'd pull it out and sing along... I thought my mom had the prettiest voice and should be a professional singer :)

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Sunkissed - Sacramento Family Portrait Photographer

Adorable family, beautiful light, and pure sweetness... I could shoot this family every day of the week!  Not only are they super cute, but you gotta love a girl who, as her session comes to a close, says to me, "C'm 'ere... I'm a hugger" and gives me a big squeeze.  Great news... me, too!

If you're interested in a fun family portrait session (and you're not opposed to a friendly squeeze!), click HERE for information about my upcoming holiday mini sessions!  

CONNECT with Janel         visit my WEBSITE         find me on FACEBOOK         EMAIL me