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Chicago Newborn Photographer: SIMON FAMILY

It’s pancakes on a Saturday morning.

It’s watching cartoons for the millions time.

It’s playing catch in the backyard.

It’s “one more story” at bedtime.

It’s silly faces and rhyming songs.

It’s squeals of laughter and snuggles on the couch.

It’s a million little moments that make up memories, that make up our days, that make up family.

Tony & Sarah expanded theres. Little Jack is and always will be so adored he won’t even begin to know how much! So happy for you guys!


You Were Always Meant To Be A Dad: Happy First Fathers Day!

You were always meant to be a dad…

I knew it from the moment you had your campers chanting nonsense rhymes outside your Crosby cabin at Camp Moyoca.

I knew it when my sister called to say her kids sing about you around the house.

I knew it when you continued to pour into youths lives even when they’ve gone off and even graduated college.

I knew it when you had a longing in your heart years before mine caught up.

I knew it when the roles were reversed, and you were having to selflessly care for your own dad.

I knew you were meant to not only be a dad but the one for Ryan the moment you first said: “It’s a boy!”

And I’ve known you were meant to be a dad in so many little and big  in Ryan’s life ever since.

There are people who will always have a challenge to know, and accept who Christ is as a Heavenly Father because of their experiences with their earthly. My heart is so grateful that will not be the case for Ryan. In fact, there’s going to be few ways greater for  Ryan to know who the Lord is in his gracious, everlasting, selfless love, than to see his own dad live that out each day.

Thank you for being an incredible dad! Ryan will never truly know how good he’s got it!


We Love you!



So…If you ever call my cell phone and you get my answering machine, call back. The dude from Yelp literally calls me twice a day to sell me on “boosting my page so more people see my work.” (Points for persistence Larry, but seriously, stop calling) (:

Don’t get me wrong, I typically wouldn’t want to turn down an opportunity to potentially get matched with engaged couples, but there’s something that Yelp, the Knot, or whomever wants my money to “buy me clients” doesn’t have. This is the number one reason I’m still in business and it’s the number one reason I LOVE my couples: relationships! I not only get the majority of my weddings from referrals but it’s how I absolutely fall for my couples! Just over a year ago I photographed a wedding in which I adored the bride & groom. Today’s bride was the Maid of Honor for that wedding, and now it was my previous bride’s turn to stand by her best friends side. It took all of two seconds into Courtney & Colin’s engagement session to see why these two are besties. They are seriously some of the most thoughtful, kind, and fun people you would ever hope to meet! I mean, who buys there photographer a present on their honeymoon!? All this to say, I could spend however much money and buy my clients (yes, that is a thing) or I could have some of the greatest people introduce me other incredible people.

The word “incredible” hardly does justice for Courtney & Colin. Seriously! If I were to list all the thoughtfulness in their gifts to their parents, the words in their speeches, or what a blast they are to be around, it’d be the longest blog post of all time. Was every detail of this day planned to perfection? Yep. But they’d be the first to say it, that it’s because of the incredible friends & family in their lives who were well enough to make it to the big day that made it perfection for them.

Court & Colin- I just adore you two! From the bottom of my heart, thank you for allowing me to capture this incredible time in your life. I know your journey wasn’t an easy one to get to where you are, but to be able to celebrate with everyone whom we didn’t know would make it to see it, is an honor that I don’t take lightly. So thank you! I cannot wait to see what the future hold for you guys! No doubt, it will be filled with a ton of laughter & fun!!

So much love for you!!

CEREMONY & RECEPTION: Blackstone Hotel:

PLANNER: Clementine Custom Events:

DRESS: Lazaro:

CAKE: Cake-Chicago:

FLORIST: Dahlia Blooms:

DJ: MDM Entertainment:

PHOTOBOOTH: Slomo Booth:



Out Of This World: Happy Birthday Barto!

You and I both know I love me a good birthday. Often times I couldn’t narrow down what to do to celebrate your day, so we’d end up essentially with a birthday week. Knowing this of me, you’d preemptively say: “don’t go crazy.”

Well, some dinners, parties, and many gifts later, I’d lay in bed at the end of it all and hope you’ve felt special.

Well, this year, we have a newborn. And as the saying goes: “it changes things.” I don’t have the additional time to bake a bazillion desserts. I didn’t wrap your gift. And lunch is coming via drive-thru. But what I do have is a heart so grateful for who you are to Ryan and I, it could burst.

As I one finger type this with our sleeping son on my lap, I can’t help but think of all the moments ahead for him that will create who he becomes. There is no one more influential (other than Christ) on Ryan’s life than you. For the past 36 years, (yikes! Old man!) moment by moment, year by year, you’ve become who you are today. An unconditionally loving husband, father, son, and friend. One who is behind the scenes so generous that it pushes me to check my priorities. A man that holds the things of this world so lightly that it makes me realize the best truly is within eternity.  One that’s so hardworking that there is never a doubt that you’d go to the ends of the earth to provide for us.

It’s for these and so many more reasons I’m thankful that out of the entire universe,  the Lord specifically created YOU! And not only that, out of every continent, country, or college we could have met at, our paths perfectly aligned. The God of the universe gifted you to us! Try writing that on a cake or fitting that in a box with a bow.  It’s not the fanciest of birthdays, but I hope you are able to have even for a day, a glimpse at how dearly loved you are.

Happy Birthday!




Chicago Newborn Photographer: Meet Riley!

If you want to really see who someone is look at two things: the photos on their phone & their bank statement. (:

Seriously! Would those two things not say a ton about you!? If you look at my phone you’ll see I’m obsessed with: My son, Ryan, coffee, and donuts. (:

I’m a new mom myself. My son is a little over 4 months old. People say it changes your life, and I can’t even begin to say how much more full mine is because of our little one. Everything he does is amazing to me. I attempt to capture it all on my phone, and inevitably moments happen that will never occur in the same way again, and I only have a memory to remember it by. It’s because of that….That experience I now have on the daily, that I’m more convinced than ever of the importance of capturing family as often as possible! We’re creating little time capsules of memories. Little smirks. Big yawns. First houses, pets, and outfits that eventually will define an era of our life. Its because of this, all of this, that we are absolutely honored to spend this day with our cameras in your life.

Niki & Payton,

There was never a doubt that you’d be incredible parents. It’s so neat to now know the little one you’ve been praying for, for so long now. She beautiful. (No surprise there with you two!) And through her little expressions I’m pretty sure she’s already got a sense of humor. (Also not surprising with you two!) (:

So excited for this new adventure for you guys! Congrats!!