Why it's important to book your holiday card mini session NOW

The holidays are quickly approaching us and before you know it, they will be here. It’s hard to believe this year has gone so fast. That’s why it’s so important to book your holiday card mini session NOW before it’s too late. There are many reasons to back that up.

1. To make sure your photographer’s available

I can’t stress enough how important this is. As a photographer, I can tell you that we book up fast. Plus, we need time to plan your session and get all contracts/payments squared away. This takes time. It’s a very busy time for photographers and making sure your session is on the calendar is important.

2. To make sure everyone involved in these photos are available

Anyone you need in these photos also needs to be available. With my family, this is the absolute hardest part. We all have very busy lives and trying to find a time when all of us can get together for anything is near impossible. Unless it’s months in advance. I always have more than one date prepared to give to my photographer just in case they are not available, so make a few with your family.

3. To have time to design/pick out your cards

The photos may take a minute coming back from the photographer, so be prepared for that. But once they do, you will want to design or pick out a card. I use three different services: Basic Invite, Minted, and Nations Photo. All three I like and they have different varieties.

4. Shipping from card company

Once you have designed and ordered your cards, the card company will need to make them and send them to you. They will do all the work and send you all the envelopes, so it will take time. Expect anywhere from 3-4 weeks.

5. Time to get all mailing addresses

While you wait for your cards to arrive, you can collect all the mailing addresses you need. There are some card company’s that may address them for you and if so you’ll want to do this way ahead of time. I keep mine every year and just update them if need be. I always check to see if I know anyone who may have moved or changed addresses in case I need to update them.

6. Time to get them to the post office and mail them out

If you decide to do the mailing labels yourself, this can take a minute to add them to all of your cards. I also stuff some and some have stickers on the envelopes. I also have to add all the stamps. This is all the prep work I need to do before I even get to the post office. But, once they are there, it’s now all out of your hands.

7. Mail carrier time

It does take a little bit for the mail carrier to actually deliver the cards. Also, things can get lost in the mail, cards can get returned. There was one time I had a card returned to me 3 weeks after the new year and I sent them two months before. Things happen. So plan for mishaps.

This seems like so much happening when it comes to just some simple card that someone gets in the mail during the holidays. Even though it may seem that way, just know you are telling someone that you love them or that you enjoy them when you send them a card. I even do it. I send them out to all my clients and to my family and friends. I know I feel special when I receive one every holiday season.

So, make sure you plan accordingly and get that session booked now! Especially since you are thinking about it now.

Cute Halloween style mini session ideas

For the little ones, Halloween is a special time of the year. Why not capture these special little moments with a mini session?

1. Lifestyle session of the trick-or-treating night

You can always do this days before, but get the little ones all dressed up in their costume and just get some action shots of them going to the houses and trick or treating. Some great shot ideas would be in the wagon (I always used to ride in a wagon), showing off the candy, excitedly going from house to house, and getting the biggest grin with each piece of candy that enters their bag. 

2. Pumpkin patch/apple tree place

For those non-Halloween goers, it doesn't mean you can't get some cute fall photos in. This is a great alternative. 

3. Or bring your costume there!

These are great places for backdrops to your little trick-or-treaters. Plus it gives some great props to work with while they are in costume. 

Just some simple ideas to be able to cherish the memories down the road. 

More than just a mini session is great when it comes to spring photos

Spring photos will be here before you know it. I cannot tell you why I am so excited for that time to come. It's not just for the photos either. I am listing some great reasons you can use a mini session this spring. 

1. To get some fresh air 

A mini session is 30 minutes and that can garuntee at least that amount of time outside in the fresh air. Time to get all of that winter, stuffy air out of the lungs and breath in some spring air. 

2. SUNSHINE!

Sunshine has plenty of vitamin D that can soak into your skin. Vitamin D intake helps your body absorb calcium, which helps in bone growth and to keep your bones strong. It also has some help in your moods as well as helps the immune system and neuromuscular system. 

3. New, fresh photos

Spring is a great time to get some new photos because it is the first time of the year that it is nice enough outside to get your photos updated. Plus, it helps you look forward to the summer time (when you may or may not have much time to take the new photos).

These are just some reasons to use when you are thinking about getting some new photos for the spring time. 

Mini Session at Art of Chocolate

Hey all!

I am so excited to announce that I will be doing a mini session at the Art of Chocolate in Bloomington, Indiana as a part of Week of Chocolate. Why is this so exciting? Because the mini session fees will be donated to Life Designs, Inc., a non-profit located here in Bloomington. 

Let me answer some questions to start!

What is Life Designs, Inc.? 

LIFEDesigns is a comprehensive resource for people with disabilities and their families in south-central Indiana. They offer services for every stage of life. They aim to facilitate active citizenship, fulfilling relationships, and rewarding employment through inclusive communities that foster dignity and respect.

What is Week of Chocolate?

Bloomington has been celebrating the Week of Chocolate for over 20 years, each year and each event unique. Local businesses host chocolate-themed events that celebrate a love of chocolate that goes back to ancient times! Each year, there are over 10 events, each with a different theme. Not only does this festival taste amazing, but it also offers an opportunity to raise funds to support various causes in the community. 

What is Art of Chocolate?

This Mardi Gras themed event treats you to New Orleans themed hors d’oeuvres, dinner, and cocktails! Entertainment includes live music and features an artist painting live models in chocolate! Throughout the evening, a Mardi Gras theme will be featured in the art, food, music, and auction items, wearing masks is encouraged!   

Date: February 10th
Time: 5:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Location: IMU Alumni Hall & Solarium, 900 E. 7th St, Bloomington, IN 47405
Tickets: $75/ea. or $500/table of 8
Benefits: LIFEDesigns

How do I get in on this mini session?

First, you need a ticket to attend the Art of Chocolate. You can do that by clicking this link! Once you get to the event, find me and my mini session booth, and get your photo taken! I will have some Mardi Gras themed props for you!

What else is part of Week of Chocolate?

Glad you asked! The full list of events is located on their webpage, which you can easily access by clicking this link! I will also be at all of these events taking some photographs as well. 

I hope to see you there! Let me know if you got your tickets by commenting below!

New Year, New Photos Mini Session

This year I have decided to partner with some local charities around Bloomington in order to give back to the community. I have always wanted to do more, but was not sure how to do so. I am going to be offering 5 days of scheduled mini sessions this year which will have all the session fees ($100 each session) donated to the paired charity.

What does that mean for you? All you have to do is schedule a 30 minute session in an open timed slot for the day of the mini session. You would pay the $100 and that will be donated to the organization that is paired. The photos will then be available for purchase. Each scheduled mini session day will have a specific location.

This month's theme is New Year, New Photos! I am pairing with Stone Belt for this session! Start the new year off right by updating your photos. This is open to families, couples, and for individual portraits. This will be held in a photo studio. Since this studio is not mine, but I am borrowing it for the day, the address will be only given to people who book a session.

Stone Belt is a nonprofit organization that provides resources and supports for individuals with disabilities. Stone Belt was established in 1958 and is now the oldest and largest agency of its kind in south central Indiana, currently employing over 500 individuals and serving over 2,000 clients. They offer a full range of programs and services in Monroe county, empowering people to demonstrate self-determination, contribute to the building of community, and experience quality of life. Their services are accredited by CARF (formerly the Commission for the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities), and they are an affiliate of The Arc and United Way of Monroe County.

They provide residential, employment, manufacturing, life skills training, family support, child development and psychological services to help people actively participate in the community. Services are provided with a person-centered, customized approach that focuses on a person's capabilities and interests. Their beliefs are self-determination is essential; learning creates empowerment; all people have contributions to make; housing/home life must be self-directed; employment is a fundamental part of adult life; and social life and relationships help create quality of life. Stone Belt has earned a very positive reputation for assisting individuals with developmental disabilities, especially those with challenging behaviors, to be meaningfully included in community life.

They believe in the uniqueness, worth and right to self-determination of every individual. Therefore, it is their mission, in partnership with the community, to prepare, empower and support persons with developmental disabilities and their families to participate fully in the life of the community. Most of their services are paid for with third party reimbursement from Medicaid and other state and federal government sources. But, while vital, state and federal funding only provides for the health and safety of recipients. They rely on community partners to maintain a margin of excellence which allows us to provide appropriate training to staff and more enriching programs to their clients.

In order to book a session, you just click this link to fill out a form! You will then receive a follow up email from me confirming your time with the exact location of the session.

Message me with any questions or if you would like to know more!