Posted on May 19, 2013
I get asked all the time if I travel to Twentynine Palms for homecomings. The answer is always yes. It’s a nearly three-hour drive from Camp Pendleton where I live, but it’s worth it every time.
I love the peacefulness of the desert and I’m truly excited and inspired by the piercing blue Mojave sky and the tranquility of an expansive stretch of pitch black heavens.
When Chelsea contacted me to photograph her fiance’s homecoming, I didn’t hesitate to accept. And when she was worried that a late night arrival would scare me away, I didn’t flinch and assured her I’d be there no matter what time. She had flown in from Georgia and her sweet southern accent and demeanor were refreshing and comforting. Although the homecoming was delayed a couple of hours, it was Chelsea’s positive energy and electric anticipation that kept me awake and energized. And even when the bus carrying the Marines showed up to the parking lot before stopping at the armory and then had to turn around leaving a crowd of teary-eyed loved ones behind, it was Chelsea’s embracing of silver linings that showed me I was in the presence of a really special person.
The bus finally returned with Marines ready to off-load. What unfolded was a truly beautiful and emotional reunion between two young people so incredibly in love. Every time I look at these photos I am reminded that love is all-enduring and so very powerful.
I wish for an amazing future for this couple. Chelsea’s Marine has since completed his military career and the two are living a happy little life in the South, attending college, laughing and smiling thru each day they spend together. Here is their homecoming story, enjoy
Posted on April 5, 2013
You know how I know summer is on it’s way? My inbox is becoming flooded with inquiries for military homecomings. It seems summertime is the busiest season of all for these types of sessions. I love photographing them and I love knowing so many families are becoming whole again. For that reason, I figured I’d share some of the homecomings I have yet to share here on the blog. I want clients to get a good idea of what to expect from their own homecoming session and having examples to reference is the best way to do that
This is the K Family’s homecoming from a perfect night last December at MCAS Miramar. I had so much fun waiting with Bethann and her baby boy and I think you can see how having an energetic toddler can make the night more interesting That energy definitely peaked when the headlights from the buses appeared through the misty fog and illuminated an already buzzing crowd. Of course I was teary-eyed when Bethann reunited with her Marine, but my heart totally melted as I watched father and son immediately start to rebuild their bond. It was magic not even the darkness could hide
And without further ado, here is the K Family’s homecoming story…
Posted on January 26, 2013
When I finally decided to buckle down and update this blog, I knew I just HAD to share this homecoming from September 2012. Very recently Kayla and her husband moved to the east coast thanks to Marine Corps orders. It reminded me of all the other amazing clients who have moved on and settled in new homes elsewhere in the United States and even overseas. I am so thankful to have shared amazing moments with them and of course Kayla. It’s hard to say good-bye but it’s just a part of life when you’re bound to the military. It never gets easy but I suppose you get “used to” it. Kind of like deployments. There’s nothing you can do to stop them and they’re never fun, but as a military spouse, deployments are something you learn to deal with and handle with class. How many times and in how many ways can I express the magnitude of a military spouse’s courage and strength? There really is no limit, I guess. Photographing and blogging homecomings is my way of sharing with the world the sacrifices our men and women in uniform– and their families– are proud to make.
As Kayla and her Marine make a new life on the other side of the country, I want to remind them that even though our paths may never cross again, I’ll certainly never forget them or this incredible moment in time I got to witness. Like I always say: here is their homecoming story. I hope you enjoy
Posted on January 23, 2013
At this very moment, I’m sitting at my desk with a cell phone next to my keyboard and a snoring 3 year old in my bed. This seems to be the routine since my husband deployed. I struggle all day to keep my son from destroying the house too much, I find a few moments here and there to get some work done, I run errands, I cook and clean, and then I look at the clock and realize it’s nearing midnight. That’s when I settle in at my desk to tackle my inbox, edit and prepare for upcoming sessions. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed I don’t know how I’ll get through the next day. And then there are times like right now when I look at the images from a homecoming I’ve shot and I think to myself, “Wow. I have no room to complain.”
If taking care of one child and running a business is tough, I ought to try walking a day in the shoes of someone like Stephanie, who managed to maintain her home while taking care of two very young children while pregnant. Looking at these photos again is a reminder of the strength and will of military wives. Even though I am one myself, I’m still in awe of the ladies who handle deployments with courage and optimism and class. Stephanie is one of those women I admire. I wish I was as half put-together as she appeared to be as we waited for the buses to arrive.
Here is her family’s homecoming story as told through the images I captured that evening. Enjoy!
Posted on October 20, 2012
I guess you can never really get “used to” deployments. No matter how many times your husband leaves, it always hurts. But after time, you learn a thing or two. Jessica seemed to learn that you don’t have to arrive 2 hours before the buses or vans pull up. In fact, I was waiting for her at her husband’s homecoming for at least 90 minutes, lol. In all honesty, it was so peaceful! I didn’t mind one bit! I don’t get a whole lot of time alone and watching cars pass by was oddly therapeutic. When Jessica and her adorable kids did show up, I welcomed their smiles and energy. Just minutes later, their Marine arrived and put months of waiting to an end. I am always honored to be a part of these special moments and want to thank the L Family for being fun, loving and most of all genuinely nice people.
Here are a few shots from their homecoming story Enjoy!