Seriously, you guys, these two are Ah-mazzzingly fun! Austin contacted me for a fun shoot to get a few Christmas card images for this years Christmas cards. So we made it happen! We met at Historic Oak View park in Raleigh, N.C ( HERE ) to get some super cute and fun shots of these two. These two have so much personality, I LOVE it!:)I’m going to wait until after Christmas to share the sit down, posey, smiley images. For now, we’re just showing the fun shots and believe me, they are FUNNN!:)

 

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Raleigh wedding photographer, Historic oak view park shoot, Destination wedding photographer, Engagement Photographer, Florida Wedding photographer

 

Raleigh wedding photographer, Destination wedding photographer, Historic oak view park, engagement photographer

Some call these “outtakes ” or ” bloopers “, I call this EPICLY AWESOME!

2015-11-17_00012015-11-17_0008Raleigh wedding photographer, Destination wedding photographer, Chapel hill wedding photographer, Florida wedding photographer, Historic oak view park

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So, with the holidays in full swing and right around the corner it’s time to start thinking of amazing recipes to share and enjoy with loved ones. My super sweet and super talented friend, Lexi, is doing just that. She made these super adorable Pecan Shooters and I had the pleasure of photographing them! Her recipe and my images were featured on MSN!!:)As a Raleigh Wedding Photographer this isn’t usually my forte but I gotta tell ya, I had a blast! So grateful and proud! You can find the recipe and images on MSN Here and on Lexi’s site, Glitter,inc Here.

 

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Photography by : Brandi Leigh

Recipe by : Glitter,inc

Laser Cut Pie Topper by: Catherine Perry

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I am SO over the moon to announce that we have been published on Style Me Pretty! I’ve never before submitted work to SMP, as I know it’s incredibly difficult to get published. Yeah I know, totally not cool, Brandi, believeeee in yourself! Well, we’re published!! With the help of the absolutely fabulous and very talented Lexi from glitter,inc.com who styled the sweetest little bohemian style first birthday party for her beautiful babygirl, Scarlett. Cakes and sweetness from Sugar Euphoria and party décor from Partyology. It all came together so beautifully. I’m so grateful! This is what Lexi has to say about her styled party..

As a blogger, I’ll be the first to admit I get a little obsessed with the details, so when it came to our little girl, Scarlett’s first birthday party, I went all out. We had just recently moved into our new home in North Carolina, so it also happened to be the perfect excuse to get our house – well, at least the downstairs! – into tip-top shape and throw one big housewarming/birthday bash to get to know our neighbors and my husband’s co-workers (he’s a first-year resident.)

We collaborated with Partyology, an oh-so-helpful creative idea-packed party-planning app, to create this backyard bohemian bash – an idea I had been playing with in my head for months. Partyology helped us to hunt down all of the great party supplies and décor. Brandi Leigh, our photographer, came before the party to photograph the styled shots and stayed throughout the party like a trooper to catch all of the extra-adorable moments. She is an unbelievable talent and made our baby girl’s birthday party look like a million bucks.

As for the house, we had this awesome screened-in patio with no furniture to fill it (and a limited new homeowners’ budget), so we got creative. Cue the “bohemian lounge” complete with Scarlett’s favorite teepee, layers of souk rugs, blankets and throws, floor cushions and pillows.

The activities for the kids all sort of grew from the bohemian hang-out idea. We wanted the kids to have a great time, particularly because we had so many young kids in attendance (and my own mom has always been a rockstar at making amazing food for the grownups with plenty of memorable stuff for the kiddos.) I found bubble sticks at Walmart in the clearance section and covered them in gold polka dot stickers from Target to give as party favors. We also had temporary tattoos and lollipops on a tray in the kids “lounge,” butterfly wings decorating the chairs, and plastic mason jars with lids so the littles could run to their hearts content with juice in hand. Bubbles, tattoos, a teepee, and lollipops: obviously the boho lounge was a big hit.

We kept the food simple: a homemade toasted pine nut caprese tortellini salad; homemade artichoke dip with chips, crackers and carrots for dipping; trays with petite sandwiches and chicken fingers; and a cheese and fruit board; plus tons of dessert. I had a lot of fun with the dessert table. I am a dessert fiend, so I knew I wanted to make that the focal point. I made s’mores bars and chocolate chip cookie bars (both foolproof and so good), put out plenty of fruit, dark chocolate salted almonds, brownie brittle, an amazing cake and cupcakes by Sugar Euphoria that I decorated with real flowers, and a vegan birthday smash cake from Whole Foods for Scarlett who has a milk protein allergy but loved her cake all the same (thank goodness!) We kept drinks simple: a big vat of iced tea, sodas, juice, wine and craft beer (my husband had a lot of fun picking local North Carolina beers to try.)

I’m still pinching myself over how well the party turned out. This was my first party on my own (without my family’s help back in Miami), so I worried how everything would turn out. Thankfully good food, good drinks, and good friends is all you really need for a great time! That and a very adorable one-year old. “

You can view our shoot here > Style Me Pretty | BrandileighPhotography.

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Photography: Brandi Leigh Photography | Flowers: Lexi of Glitter, Inc. | “Wild One” Cocktail Napkins: With Love + Ink | Arrow Throw Tapestry: Urban Outfitters | Baby Fringe Booties: Minnetonka | Burlap and Lace Paper Napkins: Wedding Bubbles ‘n More | Cake and Cupcakes: Sugar Euphoria | Confetti Tassel: Confetti Systems | DIY Glitter Polka Dot Bubble Sticks: Lexi of Glitter, Inc. | Dried Moss: Melrose Botanicals | Eco-Friendly Plates: Smarty Had a Party | Fabric Banner: Feather & Fray | Fabric Teepee Banner: Lexi of Glitter, Inc. | Fairy Butterfly Wings: Amazon | Floor Cushions: Urban Outfitters | Floral Straws: Twigs & Twirls | Flower String Lights: Oh My Goodies | Globe String Lights: Yard Envy | Gold Stripe Teepee: Land of Nod | Lexi’s Dress: Free People | Macramé Dessert Table Runner: Anthropologie | Mexican Blanket: Thrifty Mart USA | Paper Pinwheels: Michaels | Party Planning App: Partyology | Party Planning and Styling: Lexi Holzberg Kritzer of Glitter, Inc. | Pink Rug: Lulu & Georgia | Plastic Mason Jars with Lids: Home Style Divas | Rustic Three-Tier Tray: Amazon | Scarlett’s Birthday Outfit: RuffleButts | Silver Pouf: Lulu & Georgia | Souk Rug: West Elm | Vintage Floral Fabric Bunting: Amazon | White Milk Glass Cake Stands: One Kings Lane | Wood Barn Door Serving Tray: White Birch Studio | Wood Slice Cake Stands: World Market | Wooden Cutlery: Wrap and Reveal | XO Muslin Throw: Modern Burlap

 

 

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So, I don’t typically post personal stuff on social media involving my business, but why not?!

I think when I first started my business I felt like it was super important to just remain professional, and while that IS important, I feel like it’s equally JUST AS important to show myself and who I am as a person here as well, and not just to my clients AFTER they’ve hired me.

It’s okay to be yourself in your business, no, wait ..It’s okay to be yourself ANYWHERE. All. The. Time. In my case, I am a down-to-earth, weirdly fun, spontaneous perfectly imperfect person and I really believe in living and not just EXISTING!

Just two weeks ago I was playing ” Carpet Tic-tac-toe ” with one of my truly incredible brides on her wedding day. It was literally, awesome. For those of you that do not know what this is, it’s basically the equivalent of air guitar, which btw, I um am pretty kickass at too, just sayin. To play carpet tic-tac-toe, you simply draw out a tic-tac-toe game on the carpet, using your finger and play tic-tac-toe. Genius, right!? Folks, DO IT sometime!:)You’re welcome in advance.

So, I’m gonna leave you with ME because this is how I roll. Literally lol.

Back story; Me and the kiddos went to hang out with my husband, Jared for a little bit while he was finishing up some work. My son, Devin (10) started rolling down this huge hill. I sat there watching him, shaking my head like “Crazy kid”. He sure did look silly but he was definitely having a BLAST. As I kept watching him, the leaves were falling from the trees and it looked so beautiful, the wind was blowing a little, sun was shining and I thought ” What the hell! ” and I ran to roll down the hill with him lol. Yeah, I have some bruises, yeah It wasn’t THE most comfortable thing I’ve ever experienced but.. It was probably the most fun I’ve had in a long time. Like really and truly 110% really laughed and felt like a kid again. ( I wonder why, right! ) LOL. Enjoy!

Also, CORN! We found a huge mountain of corn and well, you can see what happened!:)

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So! I recently blogged the engagement session of those two ah-mazingly awesome people! You can see Here! Jonita and Darrell found me on the web and reached out to me. We met up, hung out and got some awesome images of these two love birds at the stunning, Sarah P. Duke Gardens, in Durham, N.C. Such a gorgeous venue! I highly recommend it for your engagement or wedding.

Anyhow! As we walked around snapping images here and there I found out that these two love birds have the sweetest story. So, I asked Jonita to share it with me so I could share it with all of you. Her hope is that she can put a smile on someone’s face, her heart is so full of love. <3

” Darrell and I met in 7th Grade. We had two classes together. It was around May when we first got together. One day after school two of our friends came up to me and told me he wanted to go out with me. I said yes, and we finished out the school year “going out”. The next year he moved to another city and went to a different school and we just went our separate ways. While I was in 9th grade the phone rang one night and it was Darrell calling me from Birmingham, where he had moved to. We talked for a little while and caught up on old times (until my mom told me it was late and I needed to get of of the phone). We lost touch for a while, but got back in touch in 11th grade sometime after he moved back to California. We ended up talking again and getting back together, but it ended up not working out so again went our separate ways. After high school he left for the Army and I left for school in Birmingham. One day I was thinking about him so I called the last number that I knew he had (his dad’s phone number), and talked to his dad. I asked if I could get Darrell’s address at boot camp so I could write to him. He gave me the address and I sent him a letter. We kept in touch for a while until I left Birmingham to go back to California where I joined the Air Force. I let him know I joined the military them we lost contact. I got through my first phase of training and went to California to continue my second phase of training. I was staying at my mom’s house until training was completed. I was asleep one day and my mom’s phone rang. I answered it and it was Darrell. He was calling my mom to ask her if he could get my information so he could get in touch with me, but wasn’t expecting for me to be the one who answered the phone. We talked for a while and kept in touch. It ended up sparking a relationship between us again. When the holidays came around, he came to visit me. We spent Christmas with my family and New Year’s with his. While he was there, he proposed to me. Of course i said yes! A few days later he ended up leaving back to where he was stationed and we ended up not working out. After losing contact for a while, I was in a relationship, got married, and had a son. I ended up leaving the country and went to Germany for a few months. I was in the store one day and ran into Darrell, he happened to be stationed at a base out there the same time I was out there. We lost contact and a few years later while passing through a base in Afghanistan I was at the store and I ran into Darrell (for a second time outside of the United States). He happened to be just passing through the base as well. We hung out until it was time for me to leave. Stayed in touch for a while then lost touch on bad terms. A couple of years later I reached out to him. I apologized for the way things turned out and I just wanted to check on him. He didn’t seem too pleased to hear from me, but ultimately told me he still loves me, and that was all I needed to read. We ended up deciding to get back together to give it one last try…this time giving it our absolute all. I have never felt a love like I feel being with Darrell.  He proposed to me a year ago. We have been going very strong ever since we got back in contact. There is nothing that can even come close to describing the happiness that has overfilled my heart since he has been back in my life. He is my heart, my soul mate, my best friend, and other half. Fate always found a way to bring us back together, and the love we have for one another will keep us together…Everything happens for a reason, and if Darrell and I hadn’t gone through the struggle, we wouldn’t be as strong as we are today…It is definitely a blessing to be able to say that next year I will marry my very first love… ”

 

After learning their story I snuck over to Jonita’s Instagram page and found a letter she had shared from Darrell that read ” We’ll always be soulmates “, so of course, my heart melted and I just HAD to have this engraved on their custom packaging I had made up!:)

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