A Spiritual San Bernardino Engagement Session with Lots of Love & LAUGHTER

“Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, just as I promised to Moses” – Joshua 1:3.

This passage is what inspired Debra and Daniel’s engagement session. They are youth leaders at their church and they wanted to incorporate their spirituality into their shoot. So they and photographer Johnny Jaquez Photography took to the hills and streets of San Bernardino to claim their land!

And all along the way their beautiful love for each other over flowed. I mean truly, these two really look like they know how to have fun. And their passion, connection and laughter made this session and the images that resulted absolutely fantastic!

Photographer: Johnny Jaquez Photography

Venue: San Bernardino

Submission via Two Bright Lights

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The Always Fashionable Sweater…Which Also Happens Be OH SO Comfy!

I LOVE sweaters, don’t you? Oh there’s nothing better than wrapping yourself in a cozy sweater on a cold winters day. My requirement for a sweater is that in addition to being pretty, it has to be soft. I’m ALL about soft materials. In fact, The Hubby laughs whenever we walk through a clothing shop because I always have to touch everything. It’s a feature I guess 😉

This camel toned cardigan is so lovely. I love it paired with these dark skinny jeans, maroon leather bag and gold and silver cuff.

Image source not found (Anyone?)

The outfit below definitely screams me! I love black and white and lace and pearls. It’s so classy. And of course, the sweater looks so soft!

Girl Sack

Ahhh…I love this tiger print angora sweater worn by Wendy of Wendy’s Lookbook. Again, soft, soft, soft…topped off with a super cute style!

Wendy’s Lookbook

I’ve mentioned before how much I love the sweater coat. I think it’s the perfect way to top off a t-shirt and jeans. But wearing one with a lovely dress and high socks or knee high boots like shown below is a super pretty option as well.


I don’t have a cowl neck sweater. That’s a crime, isn’t it? And seriously, the image below makes me want to run out and buy one right now. Super cute, huh? Mixed with the chunky gold bracelets, rings and watch…this is definitely one stylish number.

Image source not found (Anyone?)

This Southwestern print sweater is so fun! I love how it’s paired here with an old t-shirt and funky jewelry. I’d definitely wear this outfit too!


The September 2010 issue of Vogue that featured the image below of Lara Stone photographed by Mert & Marcus had a very retro 1940’s look. I love it…how about you?


Clearly I’m obsessed with cable knit sweaters. Now I need to find a flannel to complete the fun look below!

Haute Look 

I’m lovin’ the pattern and texture mix here. And the burnt orange sweater coat is another one of my faves.

The Day Book Blog

This pink sweater that Wendy is wearing has SOFT written all over it. I wouldn’t even need to touch this one for it to be in my hands for purchase.

 Wendy’s Lookbook

While the short sleeved sweater below may not fall under the cozy cold weather wear the rest of these lovely sweaters do, it is no less pretty. And I felt I had to add it to this collection because the whole outfit is an absolute must. Don’t you just love it?

Zanna Roberts Rassi 

J. Crew always has items I’m drawn to. This cable knit sweater is no exception.

J. Crew

I love Rachel from Pink Peonies style.  It’s so classic and chic. I think if we met we’d definitely be friends. And then we could swap clothes and accessories 😉

Pink Peonies

And last but not least, this comfy and sexy sweater with it’s one shoulder reveal is the perfect mix of style and comfort. I could so see this paired with a skinny jean or legging and some heels. Pretty!


And there you have it, a nice collection of stylish sweaters that’ll keep you warm and cozy…and of course stylish, through any cold weather day.

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A Chance Meeting Turns Into Long Distance From Vail To Seattle & Finally Their Chateau Ste Michelle Engagement Session

Christie had a work trip to Vail in the beginning of 2010. One of her friends gave her Craig’s number and said he lived in Veil but used to live in Seattle and he might be a good resource for dinner locations and activities. Gratefully accepting any suggestions, she began a text conversation with Craig right away. In Vail they met at The Sand Bar. It was “locals night” and Christie and her then boss wanted to let loose before her coworkers came into town the next day. Having a blast, Craig and his friend ended up hanging out with Christie and the whole group for the entire weekend taking them to the best ski spots on the mountain. A spark had begun but the long distance made them hesitant to begin a relationship.

Conversations daily and Skype made it possible to stay in contact until Craig’s visit to Seattle 6 weeks later. After a great week together they knew they were in it for good. 10 months later after endless flights, the question was finally raised, ” who’s moving where?” Craig made the decision to move to Seattle being that both of their families were there and his job situation had changed.

Craig moved in Dec 2010 and they found a beautiful home to buy in January. In April 2012 they went on a 10-day vacation to Palm Springs/Palm Desert for the Stagecoach Music Festival and a week of relaxation with two other couples. On day 3 of the festival, Craig took Christie on the giant Ferris wheel aptly called Le Grande Wheel. Unknowingly to Christie, Craig asked the operator to hold the wheel when their basket was at the very top. It stopped and with the amazing views and the sun setting behind them, Craig got on one knee and said everything Christie was overjoyed to hear. Engaged at last!

Photographer: Arlene Chambers Photography

Venue: Chateau Ste Michelle

Submission via Two Bright Lights

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Foodie Fridays Are Baaaack + A Mushroom Soup To LIVE For!

While I was on the phone with my sister the other day she asked,

“What happened to Foodie Fridays?”

Then within a two day period around the same time, a windfall of others, (not related to each other in any way except being readers of FYB), asked the same exact question via email, Facebook and Twitter!

Wow!!! I had NO idea you all liked Foodie Fridays so much. Point taken.

Honestly I did not mean to go this long without posting a recipe. Seriously! Time just sort of got away from me. But now that I know how much you like the cooking segments…

…Foodie Fridays are baaaaaaack!

So today I have an awesomely scrumptious creamy mushroom soup recipe for you. It is so good!


Serves 4

3 Tablspoons olive oil
1 small carrot, minced finely
1 celery stalk, minced finely
1 Tablspoon garlic, crushed and minced
1 pound white mushrooms, sliced thin
4 ounces, fluid Chablis White Wine
4 ounces, fluid Tomato Juice
4 ounces, fluid chicken broth
1 pint heavy whipping cream
1 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 cup water
1 pinch of salt and pepper to taste


Step 1: Heat oil over medium heat in a large deep pot.

Step 2: Mince the carrot and celery good and fine. Don’t let the pieces remain too big or the soup will end up chunky.

Step 3: Toss carrot and celery into pot and allow them to soften while you slice the pre-cleaned mushrooms.

Step 4: As the veggies start to cook down, add your garlic.

Step 5: Add the mushrooms to the pot and allow them to reduce and soften.

Step 6: Pour in the Chablis and let it cook with the mushrooms for several minutes.

Step 7: Combine the tomato juice and the chicken broth into the pot. Allow it to boil for about 5 minutes before adding the heavy whipping cream. Then bring to a soft boil.

Step 8: Grate your Parmesan and add it to the pot. Add the cornstarch to 1/4 cup water and pour it into the soup.

Step 9: Lower the heat and let the soup simmer for about 10 minutes or so, until thickened. Use salt and pepper to taste.

Finally…enjoy the creamy goodness!

PS…for those who prefer a lower fat soup, you can substitute a low fat sour cream instead of the heavy whipping cream.

Image via Gourmet Recipe

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A Graydon Hall Manor Luncheon Wedding + An After Shin-Dig at The Bowlerama

Photographers Kristina and Doug of Pear Studios Inc. met today’s bride and groom Michelle and Jimmy through their event planner Karina Lemke, one of the hosts of the reality show Rich Bride, Poor Bride.

Michelle and Jimmy very much wanted a low-key yet elegant and vibrant wedding with a small group of family and close friends. And that’s exactly what they got.

The wedding was held in the late morning in the chapel at Graydon Hall Manor with a fabulous lunch, including rack of lamb and fresh halibut, following the ceremony. And while the wedding was beautiful and sophistcated, the afternoon was a complete party as they all piled into a school bus that drove them to a local bowling alley to let loose and have fun on the lanes.

How awesome is that?

Photographer: Pear Studios Inc.

Event Planner: Karina Lemke Weddings

Reception Venue: Graydon Hall Manor

Submission via Two Bright Lights

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How To Make a Unique & Festive Autumn Wreath Out of Plastic Spoons

A few months ago, I came across this Chrysanthemum Mirror on Addicted To Decorating which blog owner Kristi made out of plastic spoons. Genius isn’t it?

But when I first stumbled upon it I was immediately jealous and thought,

“Gosh darn it…why didn’t I think of that?”

Seriously I’m kidding, but kind of not 😉

Anyhow…envy subsided into true appreciation as it often does when I encounter amazing ideas from other bloggers. Crafting is hard work! And then my wheels began to turn for ways in which I could turn her amazing idea into something of my own.

In this situation, I knew I wanted to make a holiday wreath using plastic spoons, but I also knew I wanted to use multiple colors and change the method by constructing a different base and applying the spoons in a unique way. So here’s what I did.

Items You’ll Need

MDF craft board ring
Poster board
Utility knife
Wire cutters
Plastic spoons
Various colors of spray paint
Sanding sponge or sand paper
Decorative ribbon to hang wreath

Step 1: Trace a circle on your poster board about an inch and a half larger to the outside and to the inside of the MDF ring. Use a utility knife to cut out your traced areas.

Step 2:  Use your wire cutters to cut the plastic spoons at the base. Spray paint the spoons whatever color you wish. Let them dry.

Step 3:  Spray paint your poster board circle the colors you’re going to paint your spoons. For example, I painted my spoons brown followed by copper, gold and silver. So I spray painted the circle in the same pattern.

Step 4:  After the paint on your poster board dries, turn the poster board over and tape your MDF craft board ring to the back of it making sure it’s secure. Leave an area on the top back of your wreath un-taped so you can pull your decorative ribbon through later. This way you can change your decorative ribbon to a different color or style later depending on what season of the year it is.

Step 5:  Now it’s time to start gluing your painted spoons onto the poster board. I started gluing from the outside of the poster board in and made one complete row of silver spray painted spoons, then another, followed by the gold, copper and finally the brown.

Step 6:  When you’re done gluing your spoons, stitch pleats into a ribbon long enough to fit around the inside row of your spoons, (the brown ones), like shown in the image below. Then glue the ribbon onto the top-inside area.

Step 7: Finally, you’ll want to slide your decorative ribbon that your going to hang your wreath with through the spot you left open on the back side. The easiest way I found to do this is to leave the wreath flat facing spoons up and pull it towards you so the un-taped area hanging off the table or work area the wreath is sitting on. Make sure you don’t pull the wreath too far as you want it to balance there so you have your hands free to insert and pull your decorative ribbon through the un-taped area on the back of the wreath.

And here it is…a fun and festive autumn wreath you could keep hanging well into winter. I might even keep this one inside!

Pretty isn’t it? I’m thinking a red one would look really cool too!

As always, if you have any questions…please leave me a comment or send me an email.

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“Wildly in Love”, A Super Fun & Creative Animal Styled Wedding Shoot at Jacksonville Zoo

“Wildly in Love”…isn’t that the cutest title for this animal theme styled wedding shoot? And the shoot itself is absolutely adorable as well.

Christy of Christy Whitehead Photography and event designer Tanya Hendricks of Southern Charm Weddings & Events thought it was crazy that no real couple had put together an animal themed wedding at the Jacksonville Zoo. So they put one together to show how awesome the idea could be. And boy did they run with it!

To get the look she wanted, Christy covered suspenders in animal print and made the bow ties for the men which were SUPER easy. She also made the table runners, which again were so easy to make! And she made the giraffe and zebra cake topper. Many of the other elements were purchased via Etsy and since the bride and groom models had previously worked together, their chemistry was already through the roof!

Again…what a brilliant idea to combine and animal themed shoot with a zoo venue. I think a real wedding like this would be spectacular!

Photographer: Christy Whitehead Photography

Hair Stylist: Renae Saf – Hair Stylist, Siera Bushor – email: Siera_bushor@yahoo.com, Ashleigh Dean- Hair stylist, Hairby Ashleigh

Event Designer: Southern Charm Weddings & Events

Favors and Gifts: Creative Custom Card Boxes

Floral Designer: A Fantasy in Flowers,Blossoms & Accents, Inc.

Reception Venue: Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens

Invitation Designer: Alli’s Studio

Cinema and Video: Visual Power Cinema

Dress Designer: Bonny Bridal

Other: Tailgate Sports,Ten23 Designs, Nita’s All Washed Up Dry Cleaning

Cake Designer: Metro Custom Cakes, Inc.

Linens and Coverings: Customized Wedding Creations

Equipment Rentals: Beachview Rentals

Makeup Artist: Lindsey Wirht Makeup Artist – email: ljwirht@gmail.com, Jill Stonier Professional Makeup Artist

Jewelry: Shirlee Grund Jewelry, Anita Edwards – giraffe pendant, Nostalgic Links, Blue Rose Beadery, Silver Lotus Designs

Tuxedo and Mens Attire: David’s Tuxedos – email: Jacksonville@DavidsTuxedos.com

Bridesmaid Dresses: Kohls

Veils and headpieces: Lenna Bea

DIY or Handmade Goods Designer: Black Bow Hangers, Etsy Shop – Amy Dwarika – custom painted art & wearables, email: Amy@Afantasyinflowers.com

Etsy Designer: Pink Pop Polka Dot, Christy Whitehead, Clineff’s Confections, Alli’s Studio, Pinch My Cheeks – confetti, Sofisticata, aubabi78, Rosey Dawn – buntings & banners

Paper Props: Put It On Canvas

Submission via Two Bright Lights

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