family photography

Rissell + Chris Allen | Love At First Sight

Raise your hand if you've ever been sitting there watching a sappy rom-com and been like okay, come on now y'all there is no way this kind of love story happens in real life? Yeah, we've all been there. Today, I'm bringing you one of those, too good to be true, happily ever after love stories. Rissell is from the Dominican Republic and came to Raleigh to visit her nephew. She didn't speak very much English but while she was here she met a handsome stranger at a restaurant who asked for her number. Yep, you guessed it. That handsome stranger is now her husband, Chris. 

Rissell said that they swapped text messaged and he asked her on a date. He took her to a holiday party and introduced her to lots of friends and family.

Meanwhile, keep in mind she still didn't know very much English. She says, "he was very patient and tried to teach me English and he learned a little Spanish to speak with me." (I promise I'm not crying.. you're crying!) How stinking sweet is that! 

In the short time I spent with Rissell and Chris I could tell how much they love each other and how much fun they have together. They have been married almost 7 years and still act like newlyweds, totally and completely in love. So of course, I had to ask them what their tips for newlyweds would be. Chris had some absolutely wonderful advice, "Remember the feeling of when you first met and how you were drawn together. Keep those feelings fresh everyday!" Rissell recommended, "Just have fun with your husband, learn the art of compromise, and never give up on each other." Friends and family also gave them wonderful advice. Never go to sleep mad at one another and always remember to put God first in your marriage. You can tell they do these things in their relationship.

Also, just for fun, I asked their favorite date restaurants. The Cheesecake Factory, Fujisan Japanese Steak House, and Los Tres Magueyes Mexican Restaurant topped their list (I will definetely be trying to two local places soon, they look absolutely delicious!) 

Rissell and Chris, I had a wonderful time with you both and I'm wishing you all the happiness in the world! 


To see the full album go to


Even though it was absolutely freezing, I had so much fun photographing Holly and her family at Lafayette Village in Raleigh this weekend. There were so many laughs and snuggles to keep warm!

Can we just take a second to appreciate how perfect and festive their outfits are!? I'm absolutely in love.

There were kisses to be had by all and a couple tickle fights as well..

I am so glad we braved the cold and got the chance to capture these moments. I'm pretty sure I couldn't have possibly found a more loving and fun family!

Andrew + Shelby

When my brother and his girlfriend asked me to do a couples shoot with them while I was back in my hometown, of course I had to! They were so much fun to work with and it was so obvious that their relationship is built on laughter and just being goofy together. We joked that after the session we would have a solid 7 good photos (without somebody making a goofy face or having their eyes closed), and I think we got way more than that!

There may or may not have been some licking involved here...

How perfect is Andrew's shirt though!? Our parents brought it back from Hungary and if I had to pick a shirt to represent him, this would be it. I love it!

I will forever be in love with shooting during the golden hour. How gorgeous is this light!

After their session, I decided to have a little fun and put them on the spot to see how well they know each other. I asked them a couple fun questions about each other so let's see how they did!

Well, at least they got a couple right.. But how funny is it to see how different their answers about their first date are! Sorry to put y'all on the spot, but I had fun with it at least.