Six or seven years ago (it’s all a blur), I remember talking about dream jobs with Jeff and Jamie and some other friends over lunch. It was a time in all of our lives when our aspirations and career dreams were just starting to formulate. We dreamed together about what it would be like to do what we love everyday and get paid to do it… back then those dreams still felt lofty and far off. Since that lunch, we’ve steadily put one foot in front of the other, looking around at one another every once in a while to give a quick “thumbs up” of encouragement before continuing on our paths.
This past weekend, after a thorough chapter of honing his craft and achieving international acclaim, Jeff opened Bear Coast Coffee‘s first permanent location in San Clemente, California. This must-see coffee enthusiast destination is the quintissential nod to California beach culture, located in the heart of San Clemente with a scenic view of the historic pier. Not only is the coffee top notch, but the design and feel of the space is gorgeous, crafted by the esteemed Puertas Design company. Seriously, it’s the best coffee between central Orange County and San Diego. I could not be more proud of Jeff and all his hard work. It’s so inspiring and encouraging to see someone willing to work hard to serve others with his dream of good coffee and good community.
So… If you have the time, steal away and pay them a visit. Grab your cup and sit outside to enjoy the ocean breeze, or walk across the street to the sand and take in the exquisite California coastal experience. It’ll be the best thing you did for yourself all week.
And special thanks to Rich for being a gracious coffee model while we had our business chat. I think this is my new favorite place for business coffee meetings!
Kory and Mikaela’s love story is one that draws deep meaning from their own separate stories of endurance and patience as they waited long and hard to find the love of their life. And like a resounding crescendo after a lifetime of build-up, their wedding day was a full-orchestral celebration. Heartache and waiting was now a memory, and the love they’d longed for has found them! Cheesy? Possibly. Utterly romantic? Definitely.
The unfettered joy I witnessed was electric and the intentionality woven into every detail of the day made photographing such an event more than an honor. What a cool experience to be invited into such an intimate experience. It’s with great excitement that I share my favorites from their wedding day in Dove Canyon…
Kory and Mikaela, I am SO HAPPY for you two and I feel so honored you asked me to photograph such a momentous occasion in your lives. I wish you a long long long life together full of adventure, deep friendship, and belly aching laughter. Three cheers for Mr. and Mrs. Kraning!!
Dress: Stella York, Custom Suits: Combatant Gentleman, Venue: Dove Canyon Courtyard, Coordinator: Gayle White, Hair Stylist: Tina Collman, Makeup Artist: Anna McAllister, Floral Design: Bellatula Floral, Assistant Photographer: Ning Wong, Videographer: Aaron Wagoner, Officiant: Kent Kraning, Caterer: Stonefire Grill, DJ: Jerry Pechac, Linens and Rentals: Signature Party Rentals
It was as ordinary a day as any. Joel’s morning commute to work was early and monotonous, there were meetings and deadlines to deal with, and he had the happy job of picking up everyone’s coffee orders as usual. He stood in line at Starbucks and quickly checked his work email on his phone. “Sigh… today’s gonna be a long one.” Stepping up to the register with his drink list ready to read from his phone he caught the eyes of a barista he hadn’t noticed before. Her name was Linda, and she was super cute. He took his coffee orders and walked out the door that morning, but his days were far from ordinary from that moment on.
While out in Joshua Tree National Park for their engagement shoot, we made light conversation as we drove through the painted desert. They filled me in on their hobbies and work life, their recent adventures with family in Colorado, and their upcoming wedding plans. To be quite honest, these two are the epitome of #relationshipgoals. They have great jobs, they ADORE one another, and they’re two VERY active adventurers. At one point during the shoot, Linda had taken off her jacket and shoes and was free climbing boulders right behind Joel. We had so much fun exploring around Joshua Tree together and I am thrilled to be able to share some of my favorites from their engagement shoot…
Joel and Linda, thanks for making me climb boulders, go off the beaten trail, stand in high places, and run through the park chasing the sunset. You two are exhilarating and I CAN’T WAIT to photograph your wedding this March. You guys rock! (pun intended)
Stay away camp in the mountains always holds a sense of anticipation and mystery. The first time we leave home and take our first steps off the bus onto the dusty camp parking lot, it’s a milestone that somehow leaves us feeling like our lives will never be the same again. The smell of pine trees and clean air, the sight of untouched lands as far as the eye can see, and the exhilaration of new friendships budding up like wildflowers…. this is the magic of camp. And it was in the midst of this magic that Mitchell and Hannah met at Hume Lake Christian Camp. Their days were filled with campers and activities, songs and skits, and nighttime staff bonding over the campfire and s’mores. In the in-between moments of camp, in stolen glances and silent pondering prayers, the seeds of romance were planted and grew and grew until a relationship blossomed.
Their love story is one that’s timeless and classy, one that highlights redemption and passion, one to tell the grandkids over and over while roasting s’mores over the campfire. She noticed him first, he took a little while to warm up to this feisty beauty of a girl. They were friends first, but quickly realized their relationship was deeper than most… it felt different somehow. After camp, they went their separate ways, but kept talking and trying to figure out why they missed one another so. Then it clicked, they didn’t want to be apart. Months of long drives from San Diego to Fresno and many late night talks led them to fall head over heels forever in love. He asked her to be his forever, she gave a resounding yes…. and all of camp cheered in celebration.
To document their engagement, they thought there would be no better setting than a place that holds deep meaning in the convergence of their stories. Here are the highlights from their shoot….