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    I'm a photographer located in the San Francisco Bay Area and I shoot weddings and relaxed lifestyle sessions of children and families. My husband Chris and I work together - and we're so glad you stopped by. This blog will feature our most recent professional work with current clients as well as plenty of personal updates.

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What’s in Your Viewfinder?

The other day I had the HONOR of photographing my cousin’s family. It was such a blessing to capture the spirit of their children. They are amazingly energetic – much like my Lucy Girl – and oh so full of life! I loved every minute of it.

Every time (and really, I mean EVERY time) I do a family session, there arises a fear that goes something like this: “There’s no way we’re going to get any good pictures because my kids aren’t cooperating!” Moms, you’re not alone when you say or think this! I think that Raquel could definitely identify with this feeling. She is an amazing mother. Her dedication to her children is deep and you can tell that she seeks to shepherd their hearts. She wanted all the sweetness and all the love that she sees everyday captured through the lens and was concerned that it that might not be happening. Sound familiar? I’m sure you’ve had the same experience with your kids at some point!!!

I learned though, through the sitting, that it doesn’t matter what is going on in the sidelines. All that matters is what’s in the viewfinder of the camera. That’s the photograph – that’s what matters. So – remember those fears and take a look. And keep in mind that much else was happening in the moment, but this is what we took away. Here is their slideshow and a few images I love:

It amazes me how much photography is like life! I get so distracted by what is happening on the sidelines and I lose sight of the fact that all that matters is what’s in the viewfinder. I define my life’s viewfinder by what God has directed me to do and focus in on. My responsibility is to stay true to that and unhindered by the distractions. Easy to say, harder to do. I encourage you to really evaluate how you define your viewfinder :-). Are you true to that?

Post a comment and let me know what you think!


October 26, 2007 - 11:32 am

Rebecca - Beautiful photos and beautiful thoughts. Thank you for sharing!

Personal Fire Stories

Chris and I had been finding it so difficult to really understand the intensity of the Southern California fires – even though we have so many connections to San Diego. The extent of the destruction and the impact it has on so many people is just surreal. I imagine you feel the same way.

It was when we started receiving e-mails from friends in San Diego that we began to feel connected to their experience. We want to share them with you – inpart to help you understand what it is like to live through this unbelievable fire and also because we’ve heard from so many that every e-mail and coorespondance, no matter how general, means SO MUCH. So here are their stories:

Hello Friends and Family,

I pray that this email finds each of you in good health and spirits. I wanted to say thank you for the phone calls, text messages and emails. I also wanted to send out a quick update on the wild fires that are sweeping thru San Diego County.

On Sunday 10/21 the fires started in Malibu (Los Angeles County) and Julian (San Diego County). The fire in Julian was named Witch Creek, because that were it started. The Santa Ana winds (wind blows from the East and brings the hot desert air over the mountains) coupled with the drought conditions (It never rains in Southern California – Tony, Tone, Toni) quickly spreaded the fires into 8 uncontrollable wild fires all over the county.

By the time we woke up on Monday morning the fires were so enormous that a mandatory evacuation for our neighborhood (Rancho Penasquitos), and surrounding neighborhoods (Rancho Bernardo and Poway to name a couple), had been put in place. We looked outside to see a bright orange sky, ashes falling like snow, and our neighbors throwing clothes, food and their kids in their cars and getting the hell out of dodge.

We quickly followed suit and evacuated to one of Erica’s sorority sister’s house in the City of Chula Vista (a smaller city in SD County, near the Mexican Border). We stayed there until 1:30 am on Tuesday 10/23, when we were told to evacuate because of the Harris fire that had grown and was threatening the eastern portion of Chula Vista. Once again we packed up and headed out.

We (including the sorority sister and her husband) then stayed with my partner at the law office and his family, until yesterday afternoon. It turned out that they had already had another family from the Poway area staying with them. At 2pm on Tuesday 10/23 the mandatory evacuation was lifted, but a voluntary evacuation and standby was put in place. We were able to return to our home late yesterday afternoon. We stayed the night, but kept our bags and cars packed. If the wind changes we will once again be in the direct line of the fire.

The fires are now threatening the communication system on Mount Miguel and the Mayor, County Supervisor, Fire Chief, Police Chief, etc. has requested that San Diegans limit the use of cell phones, stay home and stay off the roads. There are 1200 National Gaurdspersons assisting with the fire and the protection of the communities that have been destroyed by the fires.

The Mexican Government is has sent fire personnel and medical teams to assist with the fires and the evacuees. Our electrical power grid is at full capacity and rolling blackouts started on Monday. The Mexican Government has redirected power to our system to help avoid a total blackout. The city has requested that citizens not use AC, dish washers, washing machines, dryers, etc.

The pictures and images that you see on television are nothing compared to the real life drama that is gripping this region. People are losing everything but GOD is still with us and we will get thru. Please continue to keep me and my family (Erica, Ashley and Jacob), as well as those families that are still in shelters (there but for the Grace of God go I), in your prayers.

The sky is full of soot and gray in color. The air quality is extremely poor and smells like a fire place. I will send out another email in a couple of days. Take Care and God Bless,


PS – Please also pray for the men and women who are fighting the fires and keeping the rest of us safe.

PSS – Please pray for the Redskins to beat the Patriots on Sunday


Hello office crew! Stephanie wrote to ask how things were going, and I thought I’d write to tell you all what’s happening…

It’s unbelievably strange. Everything is gone. We grew up- our whole lives in that house that my dad built. We were there as children to watch it’s walls go up, to lay the stone pathways and plant the orchards that ran everywhere along its many acres. It’s the second time we’ve lost everything we own. All of the memories…the libraries of children’s books!!! And it’s been the most horribly trying last three years for our family. Regardless of these truths- I just feel so incredibly grateful. The central hub of our family has moved to my big brother’s little apartment in the city. But amazingly- it feels so similar in spirit to the huge, beautiful home on a mountain-top. I have such a blessed life with these incredible people. There is nowhere I’ve encountered in what I’ve seen of the world- that this level of love exists. THIS is what it’s about. This is what matters.
As everyone in our community calls with news of homes lost, we get twenty times more calls of people begging to help, to do or give anything they can.
We go tomorrow to sift through the ashes. I know that flattened-without the structure of the house- there will be a similarity to one of my first memories as a child-
The memory of “The Land”- the site where our old house burned down, the place where Dad was burned in the first fire and almost died- his body is still blanketed with those scars. I remember watching my mom cry- looking out over that property, as the walls of her new house were raised. I know it will look the same now, twenty-five years later. I know there will be tears again, but I know that we’ll still all be together, safe, loving, still the indomitable family- strong as ever.

I would do anything to protect them. But I know, all they need is for me to be here.
So thank you for allowing me to. It is so important, and so, so appreciated.

In the mean-time, I’m working here on my laptop, and including in the present…RECRUITING plans for the future!
So thank you again- from me and the whole fam!
See you very very soon-

We love you all in San Diego! We are praying for you!

Pray For San Diego

Hey everyone -

Many of you know that Chris and I spent 10 years of our life (and all of our early time as a couple) together in San Diego. This has been a crazy week living up in the Bay Area and just watching what’s going on in our old hometown on TV. We have so many loved ones – friends who are family to us – who are there, and our hearts break. The emotion around all of this is so vivid for us even though we are 500 miles away. Though we are happy to be in Northern California, Chris and I both said to each other today, “we wish we were down there close to our friends right now.”

Our friends the Ligtenbergs had a very close call. You can read about it on Rebecca’s blog: http://rebeccasmiscellanies.blogspot.com/. She’s been posting updates pretty consistently and it’s surreal to read.

Chris’s dear friend and colleague Marie’s family lost their home today. Today I was complaining about how messy our home is…how shallow a thought in light of this. We are praying for you, Marie.

And so many of our friends here have family or friends there. Nearly everyone in Chris’ office has a friend or family member in San Diego. It’s so close to home. We were there during the 2003 Cedar fire and remember waking up one morning to a yellow/orange sky, ash falling, and just a sense of mourning. Hundreds of homes burned and everyone was on edge. And to think that this fire is far far worse (or I should say, these fires) is just unthinkable.

We are thinking and praying for you, our San Diego Family! Oh how sad we feel just watching the news. We pray that you get a break in the days to come and that the firefighters get control – we ask for a miracle. Bless the volunteers who are serving and give strength to those who are experiencing loss or grief today.

Please join us in saying a prayer for San Diego today.


Busy Weekend!

Is it already 11:23pm on Sunday night? What a weekend! Sara and I joked with each other that we “switched roles” – I pretty much spent the weekend with the kids and Sara was working her tail off. Though we all know (well, you parents do) that when you have kids, you all work all the time. I will say…I am more tired than normal. Hats off to you moms out there – how do you do it? When do you get your lunch break?

Anyway – lots to post, but it’s too late to post it all right now. One of the most exciting events of the weekend, though, is that our dear friends Patty and Mike had their TWINS this weekend!! They went from 2 kids to 4 in about 4 minutes! A boy and a girl…names still being finalized…and my goodness, if you’ve never seen newborn twins less than a day old, you should grab some kleenex and watch this slideshow. Time just hits warp speed from here. You can’t get these moments back.

Congratulations, Anne and Bridget! You’ll be great big sisters for sure.

Ok – off to bed! Check-in tomorrow for more news from the weekend.


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