The journey takes a new turn

Hey all, this is going to be a different kinda blog post. This will be the kind of blog post where the next line you read you’ll be thinking, “why, whats so special about this one?” Well, allow me to explain in the best way I can, with a story behind the post. So grab your drink and your comfy pillow, chair, “spot” and lets dive in.

As you all know, or don’t (pick a side) I have been a portrait photographer for well over (just say it) years. I have photographed families, big and small. Little ones, newborn and up, and events, from weddings to baptisms. I enjoyed every single one. I cant say that one was better then the other. That’s like asking a mother to pick her favorite child. Each session was like a child to me. I nurtured the event, helped the family to learn to love the camera, and swaddled the babies like they were mine. And in all those years, I had a longing for something else. Don’t get me wrong I LOVE photographing people. Its my thing. But as you will see in a few paragraphs, something happened along the way.

This has turned out to be a wonderful month! I can see all the blooms and the birds, the flowers are alive and my little garden is smelling so sweet. This year I didn’t do too much planting and I think it is because of all the rain we had. I didn’t know when to put away my winter clothes and when to unpack my summer ones. But I can see that the weather has changed and my flip flops are out. I love when the weather changes, truth be told, I am a true summer child in every sense of the word. I love walking around barefoot tee shirt and shorts with my shades on. Winter is not for me. I bundle up when its 68 degrees out. if its 79 I still wear a sweater, but let the mercury hit 85 and I am smiling from ear to ear.

These past months, have been a wonderful journey for me. First I came to terms with the death of my beloved father. I had a very hard time. There were times I felt so alone, I called him every day to see what he was up too and to get some much needed advise. for the first couple of months after he passed I would pick up the phone to call and realize, I couldn’t. I started calling my mom every day more then once. I wanted to hear her voice. I wanted to know I was still with him in a way. I have to admit, bereavement counseling was a life saver. It gave me a chance to talk about what I was feeling, the anger, the hurt and finally, the acceptance. My father wrote a beautiful letter to us stating that he didn’t want us to mourn him. He said we must take each day as he taught us and live our life as such. That was hard. Understanding what he meant was hard and I did not want to understand. To me, understanding was accepting he was gone and I was not ready for that. But slowly, as the 1 year anniversary of his passing came, I realized I was not crying every day, I was not missing him with heartache, but with love. It has been 1 year and four months since he left, and I would be lying if I said, I am ok. But what I can say, is I am better then I was a year ago.

Another huge change that has happened, or that I have decided, is my retirement from portrait photography. I have been doing this for 13 years. It has been a wonderful business and a great journey. But I feel a need to move to another creative avenue. Something that will give me a new “light” in me. Photography has been a joy. The families and events I have done have given me so much. I made new and dear friends, I have learned how to express myself through the eye of my lens. And I have loved every minute. I truly feel in my heart that my Heavenly Father is calling me on another journey. One that I will lift Him up and praise Him. You all know I am a devote Christian I don’t make a move without prayer. I have been praying for a year for God to give me guidance and direction in this. I finally feel I have His blessing and an answer.

What is the next chapter ? Well honestly, I don’t know. I do know I will still be doing photography that will never leave me. It is such an expressive way to view the world. And truth be told, if someone asked if I could do their wedding, or senior portraits, I probably will. I will also still second shoot for anyone that asks. I will say the portrait studio side, will be phased out. I have slowing started to change out my business page, and my website will be gone after May. It took me some time to realize that I wanted to do something else. Something creative. I love making things. Cards, crafts, things like that. For now, I will focus on that, my creative projects. And maybe, some day soon, I will be in a place that leads me to what my purpose is. But for now, I will just be still and listen.

Time Well Spent

Today is raining. Yesterday it was raining, and by the looks of things, tomorrow it will be raining. But we need it. I just wish it would stop and bring Spring already. I know, rain helps things grow and cleans things up. And I know that a nice rain helps cleanse the earth. I get all that, but sometimes, it helps to know when and where the rain will hit. I listen to the news and think “they said no rain, but why is my window covered with drops of water?” I can only imagine that it is because my house, out of all the houses around, is singled out to get wet. That has to be it. (or at least that’s what I tell myself to feel better about all this rain.) I read on one of the news talk sites that Sacramento was at 125% in rain average. That’s a lot of rain. Sometimes it comes as predicted. Other times it comes as a surprise. Like while your on a shoot. Outside. In the rain. lol. Thank goodness that did not happen last week. It was blue skies and warm sun last week. Which was a good thing because of where we were going to be shooting . We got in contact with the owners of The Abbey House Inn in Winters, California. A mutual friend told her friend and she told me about telling her friend who thought we needed to set up a meeting. That kind of thing, and the rest was a sweet meet and greet.

I met one of the owners , Pam Tavenier out at her Air bnb in Davis, California. I wanted to meet to see if we could photograph our mini sessions out there. after walking the grounds for a good hour and awing at the location, Pam happened to mention that she also was the owner of a local Inn in Winters, California. I asked her if we could go check it out and she said yes, and am I a happy happy girl that she did.

Abbey House is the pride and joy of Pam and Eric. it is situated in historic Winters California, and I could bet that Pam or Eric would love to chat and talk about the who, the what, and the where about this beautiful Inn.

Abbey House is charming, peaceful, and relaxing, all rolled into one. As soon as you make it through the front gate, you are greeted by the Inn manager Annette. She is wonderful. We were there to do the layout shots of the place, but she made us feel like guests and did all she could to make us feel welcomed. I would stay there for a month if I could. Situated on the corner of the property is a beautiful flower arrangement with the sign that invites you to come on in. Wrapped around the house is a porch that invites you to sit and visit, and the flowers in the garden give a nice aroma as you walk by and stroll through.

Once inside, the light from the sun shines in a peaceful way that all I could think of was what a beautiful place to have a small wedding party get ready in. Can you imagine the light from the window on the bide or the bride with her mom? love! that’s what it would look like.

The rest of the house, I will leave to your imagination, because I don’t want to give it all away. I will say this, take a drive out to Winters and take a good look at the Inn. Awe at the architecture, take a picture from the fence. Or better yet, book a stay at The Abbey House Inn, you know I will. After all this rain, and fighting with booking reschedules due to the rain, Steve and I truly need some R&R, and I think The Abbey House Inn is just the place to do it. Have a wonderful weekend. See you on the other side of the lens.

Mini Sessions

Mothers Day will be here quick.  What better way to celebrate each other then with a portrait session that captures the beautiful relationship between a mother and her children.  Celebrate each other with a Mommy & Me Mini Session An all inclusive portrait package.  Its hard enough living our lives and trying to schedule the family portraits to boot.  These easy relaxing mini sessions are quick and perfect for getting those memories of you and our littles (no matter what age they are.)  And the best part, you’ll have them to share and enjoy just in time for Mothers Day.    Each session includes 30 minute at The Woodland Edible Gardens,  Located on Court Street in Beautiful downtown Woodland. These are limited session for two days only.    Along with the session you will recieve prints, digitals, and a photographer print release. 
Click  Book NOW to secure your special time.

Cyber Monday

Hi All!  Happy Monday!  I hope you are getting some great deals.  Just wanted to do a quick blog post on what our Cyber Monday Special is.

It has been about 10 years since I did a special like this (or even close to this)  We have locked in a great venue in the beautiful Northern California town of Winters, California.  A cute B&B that will be hosting our holiday sessions for us!  I value our locations, and venue areas very much they have been and are so good to us.  We have had the opportunity to lock in private ranches, hotels and now B&B!  I’m excited!  So with out further ado, here are the digs:

The sessions are limited to 30 minutes but trust me, we will get some great memories!  It also includes

*Three poses

*(1) sheet of the pose of your choice (5×7 & set of wallets)

You also will get a private print viewing to purchase your prints.

Sounds too good to be true?  Well it is.  And its only going to happen this year!  I’m sure I will have more great products and specials, but I don’t know if I will have one like this.  (remember, its been 10 years since my last big discount special)  So contact me today (you have less than 10 hours left) and book your time slot.  Have an awesome rest of your Monday… (psst, if your doing Cyber Monday at work, order your photography session with me and I wont tell a soul!  lol)


CyberMonday 2018mini session special 2018

All portraits are beautiful

This past weekend I was asked to photograph two baby dedications at my church.  I was glad to do it.  My little church is small and I love that.  I know them, not all by name but I find comfort being surrounded by people who open their hearts to Jesus.  The first baby dedication was cool.  It was for our worship leader and his is a beautiful story.  But its his story, so all I’m going to say is God planned this baby to be with them from the start.  It was meant to happen just not in their time but in Gods time.  The second service baby dedication was for my softball coach.  (funny story, and this one IS mine!)  Last year about this time Adam asked at service if anyone was interested in joining the softball team he coached.  Steve said, “you should do that.”  I thought sure, I mean it couldn’t hurt to at least, right?   So after service I asked and he told me yes, its very low key, our pastor is on the team and so is this person and that person.  I only heard the “low key” part.  Being “older” then my younger days of softball, I didn’t want to sign up for something I would have to quit and walk away from.  so a couple weeks before the first game Steve and I went out every morning to practice.  I hit, I ran and I did pretty good.  I even was able to throw the ball straight (after a few minor fly aways.  lol)

Game day!  I’m excited this is going to be fun.  the crowds were gathering, I walk up to the field we are at and I see several parishioners from our church.  No doubt they are here to cheers us on!  In the dug out I hear my name, “Sylvia!  your second base!”  Great!  I use to be a catcher not infield, but I thought this is “low key” Adam said so.  I start to walk out to the field to warm up.  I’m feeling good, the night air is blowing a cool breeze.  I start to look around and see our pastor on third, our worship leader walking to shortstop (I think, it was all a blur after that moment.)  Then with one step forward and a quick thrust of his arm our pastor, Mr calm cool and the man I ask for guidance, lunges forward thrusts his arm and blazes a ball to first base!  All I saw was what I thought was a white line of fast!  The next sound I hear is a loud whack!  First base person caught the ball without fail and quickly throws it to second base!  WAIT!  That’s me!!  (I missed the ball (someone I don’t remember out of embarrassment got it and kept the rally going)  At that moment I thought this is NOT your casual “low key” game!  These guys mean business!

The following week I practiced and practiced hard.  I wanted to do my part and play at the level my teammates played.  Second game came the following week.  Again, I am called but this time I hear “Your catcher!”  Great, I can do that!    I walk up to my position, my eyes are intense.  I look around and see a couple of friends with Steve.  I think to myself play hard Sylvia, play to win.  the batter came to the plate.  I crouch down in catchers position.  First swing he hits the ball but it slides off the bat and spins backwards I reached out and thought I caught the ball (I heard a crack, but that was NOT the ball!)  It hit my finger and broke it!  lol that was the end of that.  but I did finish the game (only because I couldn’t feel my finger!  lol)  To me, Adam will always be my coach.  and this story will always be the game I finished.  lol.

So back to the baby!  Adams baby is a cutie.  I wont say pie, because she was more then that.  She was adorable laying in mommas’ arms.  Dressed in her little tutu.  Adam had the look of a happy father.

I love babies.  They are by far my favorite to photograph.  They look so sweet sleeping.  I could photograph babies all day long.  I once did just that when I worked at Sutter Hospital before I stated my business as a portrait photographer.  I would stay after and look at the babies sleeping and think about how they have their whole lives ahead of them.


After Pastor Andy finished explaining what the baby dedications meant he held her in his arms and prayed.  Prayed for her, for her parents and for us her congregation.  Because we are part of her family too.  Her church family.  And I love that thought.  I love knowing that the community I photograph, babies, children, senior high school, and families are part of my family.  My church, my town and my intimate circle of friends.

So remember, when your out playing a friendly game of “low key” softball or walking into your church, the store you frequent, or the park your kids play in.  I’m there too, waiting to photograph you and your family.  With open arms and a broken finger.  lol Have a blessed day!