the summer of 17…together

I don’t shoot a ton of extended family sessions; in fact, I rarely do. When Molly contacted me I was drawn to her adorable personality, even through emailing, and I knew that this extended family session would  be a little different than the “norm”and in the very best way. I was so so right. All three families live hundreds of miles apart but were together for their summer vacation in Coldwater, Michigan. Molly wanted me to come up for a lifestyle session, and it was the first request I’d ever had for a lifestyle session of an extended family before…I ran with it, admittedly a bit nervously at first, and it turned out to be the most fulfilling and refreshing experience of my career.

This family welcomed me immediately, and any nerves I may have had dissolved the second they let me in. I had an absolute BLAST. I laughed until I cried, took a boat ride, talked about my family with them, got a soaking wet hug from OM (they call grandpa this…’old man’), and I even reallllly wanted to accept their invite of staying for wine and pizza but had a long drive home, and our baby had his third surgery the next morning. I left realizing that *this* is how it is supposed to be and exactly what I am supposed to be doing.

I received the kindest emails back from them recently about their photos, which was just icing on the cake for me. I hope so so much our paths cross again. You guys set the bar so incredibly high, and I can’t thank you enough for helping remind me how important just being in the moment is during a hard time for me this summer. Family is everything, and I’m so lucky to have met yours.

all photos shot on film, developed by the find lab


These two told me the story about how their family began, and it still makes me smile. I don’t want to botch any of the details, but I do want to mention that they fell in love through writing each other letters. They were supposed to go on a blind date or two, but it never happened, so the letters began. He asked for her hand in marriage before they ever even knew what each other looked like…and here they are now. They adopted Molly and Emily, who now have these beautiful families of their own.

Now THAT is a love story.

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