Aimee, Rick ,Tess & Brooks Family Session ~ Wellesley Photographer

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We’ve always said we didn’t want to just be wedding photographers to our couples…just two more vendors there for one day and then gone from their lives once our job was done. No, we’ve always wanted more! For us, it’s always been about building lasting relationships. We want to get to know our couples in a deep and meaningful way, one that turns into a lasting friendship. And, that’s exactly what’s happened with Aimee & Rick.

Like so many of our wonderful Bello Family members, Aimee & Rick have been in our lives for several years. We first met them when they reached out to us about photographing their Ridge Club wedding here on Cape Cod. Flash forward ten years and we’ve been there with them to document not only their engagement and wedding, but also the arrival of their baby girl, Tess and then again a few years later, after baby brother, Brooks, joined the party. We’ve also photographed Aimee’s sister and her family and the sisters’ parents for a big group family session.

It has been so wonderful to see where life and love have taken Aimee and Rick, to watch their family grow and blossom. And blossom it has!

Here are a few of our favorite moments and photos from our recent trip to Wellesley to hang out with this lovely little tribe.

Just love the faces on these two beauties as Tess gives her baby brother a great big hug! It’s so obvious how totally smitten Brooks is with his big sister….look at his face as he chases her! Love these two!!!

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Our sweet, adorable, happy bello family….so much love!

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Such a good big sister, and such an adoring baby brother. Tess & Brooks, you have our hearts!

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Beautiful, bright, feisty, fabulous…Tess.

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Brooksie is such a trooper…he’s been through more surgeries than anyone of his young age should have to endure. He was born with a cleft pallet, which doctors have been working hard to correct. Still, he remains the happiest, sweetest wee one. Just love him.

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And big sister, Tess, is just as full of life, love and everything wonderful. Aimee & Rick, you sure are doing something right with these two sweet peas!

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I mean come on…

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They really do love each other…it’s the sweetest.

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Oh, the happiness that comes from watching children be fully joyful!! Nothing like it!

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We spend a lot of time on our family sessions…so everyone can feel comfortable enough to really let their guard down. We even build in time for some real play…in this case, a few rounds of Duck, Duck, Goose.

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It is in these moments where life’s sweetest pleasures lie.

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Run sweet, Tess, run!

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When the games are finished our love bugs collapse in a heap of laughter.

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…which provides the perfect setting for a silly family photo.

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Married nine years and still going strong…

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Aimee is such a good mom…having learned from one of the best! I don’t know how she’s endured what she has with Brooks and all his surgeries. I get to see so many amazing moms with their sweet babes, and when they look at each other, you can just feel the connection. There’s nothing quite like the momma & child relationship. Saying that, Tess & Brooks have quite a special relationship too. I just LOOOVE this adorable candid moment Andy caught of them as we were heading to our next photo spot. I just love everything about it…from Brooks’ adorable T-shirt and glasses, to the way he’s trying to impart some bit of wisdom on his confident big sister. Just love it!

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Happy family….

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Why hello little man….what big eyes you have. “The better to see straight into your heart with!” Swooon! This face!! Just yummy!

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Can we talk about these two for a second?

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I mean come on!!! I usually take the kiddos off on their own for a minute and we just chat…about school, upcoming events…how silly Andy is…whatever. And it is in these moments, that I am able to capture photos that I like to think truly reflect the personalities of my subjects. Makes my heart sing every time!

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As do moments like these….

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And these….Mmmmm good!

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And with that, we say goodbye to this wonderful, playful, super sweet family….for now!

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Aimee & Rick….THANK YOU!! For opening your hearts and lives to us once again and for sharing your sweetest boos with us! You guys are very blessed with a lot of love in your life and we’re so happy you continue to share that with us! Until next time….big love & hugs, Christine & Andy xoxo

Keri & Jim’s Branford House Wedding ~ Mystic Connecticut Photographers

Keri & Jim’s wedding was something Andy & I had been looking forward to for nearly two years! Even though we get to witness a lot of “I dos,” it’s not often that we’re also there for the, “Yes!” that inevitably leads a couple to the aisle. But, we were there for Keri’s, “Yes!” and that made also being there for her and Jim’s “I dos!” that much more special!!!

Back in the fall of 2013, a very sweet Jim had reached out to us because he was planning a romantic weekend on the Cape with his girlfriend, Keri, and he was going to pop the question and ask her to marry him. It doesn’t get much more romantic than that!! He reached out to us because he thought it would be nice to have that moment captured in photographs. Having never photographed an actual proposal before, we were super excited for the opportunity to be in on such an intimate moment.

Jim & I spoke over the phone and in emails for several weeks, planning how it would all go down. And, as if the love Gods were shining down on us all, Jim got an unseasonably warm November day to sweep his girl off her feet. As expected, Keri said, “Yes!” and so began the wedding planning. You can read more about them and their proposal HERE and also check out their super sweet spring love session HERE.

Andy & I have grown quite fond of Keri & Jim over these many months. They are two of the sweetest, kindest, most sincerely loving, happy, wonderful, fun people and we just knew their wedding would be full of the kind of love & goodness that makes getting great photos a cinch….and even better….makes us LOVE what we do!

The wedding itself took place at the stunning University of Connecticut’s Branford House, located at the seaside Avery Point in Groton. Originally built in 1903 by wealthy railroad magnate Morton Freeman Plant, the 31-room Tudor style granite mansion was designed by his wife, Nellie, and named after the town where he was born. Eventually, the mansion was sold and ended up in the hands of the State of Connecticut. It became the property of the US Coast Guard for a time, and then was turned over to the University of Connecticut as a branch campus.

With a unique history, the Branford House is a truly stunning backdrop for a wedding, and it was super fun for us to be somewhere new!

We arrived in Groton the day before the wedding to check out the area and find our spots for pictures…..and there were LOTS of great spots!! We then popped in on their welcome party later that night, to meet their families. Everyone was super welcoming, which made us even more excited for the big day.

The morning of the wedding, I met Keri & the girls at the Red Door Spa, in the Mystic Marriott, where Keri, Jim, their wedding party and nearly all of their wedding guests were staying. Loved that!

In this first photo, Keri is getting her wedding day make up applied, while her super sweet and doting MOH, Kate, looks on.

After hair & make up were done, the girls all headed to the Branford House to get dressed. With all of its stunning woodwork & detailed architecture, the Branford House was a picture perfect back drop for getting ready! Such a treat! But, the best part was that Keri was smiling the entire time. Sometimes brides get so caught in the moment of getting dressed that they pull really funny/serious faces. I’m often having to say, “happy thoughts” or “happy faces” to remind them to relax. But, with Keri, it was all smiles….all day!  See what I mean as Keri gets tied into her dress by Kate & another bestie, Justine…

I love the look on Keri’s lovely momma’s face as she watches her baby girl get dressed. Momma Jeannine and Justine help put the finishing ties to the dress, and she’s soon ready to go.

Love her girlfriends’ reactions….Sweet Jolene got a bit emotional. Awwwwww!!

Our gorgeous gals: Tara, Justine, Jessica (Jim’s cousin), Keri, Kate, Jolene & Jessica (Keri’s cousin). Pretty ladies + pretty light + pretty room = pretty easy job for me.

The arched doorways and stunning fireplace mantle made for a perfect frame for our lovely bride. Isn’t she ga ga gorgeous?!!

Meanwhile, back at the hotel, Jim gets a little help with his cufflinks from his best man, Brian, as the rest of the guys get ready too.

Love the nautical inspired bowties from Vineyard Vines….almost as much as this candid moment Andy captured as Frank (who’s married to Jim’s cousin, Jess) takes a selfie with Jim’s lovely momma, Gail.

Our handsome groom. I love this photo Andy captured of Jim….he looks so seriously serene, and this may have been the only time all day he wasn’t smiling the biggest smile I’ve ever seen. Watching Jim make his way to the ceremony was particularly sweet. He was BEAMING….like a kid on Christmas morning who got everything on his wish list!

The lovely guys: Joe, Jason, Frank, Jim, Brian, Jason (Keri’s big brother) and Scott. Such warm, fun, funny guys! Love them!

Jim is an only child and the apple of his momma’s eye. Watching her relish how happy her son was on this very special day was such a treat. Jim’s proud papa, Richard, was also a love! Truly, such an awesome group to not only work with, but get to know and welcome to our bello family!

Keri makes her way to her soon-to-be hubby, flanked by her mom & dad, Jeannine & Peter. Is she beaming or what???!!!

As was her main squeeze…..if this isn’t the look of love, I don’t know what is!

More happy…..

As perfect as their proposal day and engagement day were, their wedding day could not be topped….perfection in every way!

Father Shawn Smith infused a lot of humor into Keri & Jim’s ceremony, which seemed perfectly befitting this fun couple!

Happy friends & family look on, showing their love & support with more happy smiles…

Audrey (Jess’s & Frank’s baby girl) listens sleepily during the ceremony…..what a little cherub, eh?!!!

With this ring….

Gail & Jeannine fight the wind on the point to light the unity candle. It made for some giggling by everyone. Love that!!

And with that….our new mister & missus are married. Happy. Happy. Happy!! Now off for some photos….

After the family portraits on the lawn, we took the bridal party to the front of the House to take advantage of the shade and cool building facade. This next shot makes me laugh because it was taken right after Andy got pooped on by a very angry seagull. There were several birds circling above us as we were photographing the bridal party. They were squawking and seemed irritated we were there. One let us know exactly how he felt. Ironically, I heard the splash as a portion of the sizable deposit hit the floor, right next to me, and I thought to myself, “Phew….that was close.” I looked up and the bridal party had this reaction as they realized the bird got Andy, who took it like a trooper and laughed it off. We got a picture of him too, but will save that one for Jim & Keri. Love the reactions of everyone…this was such a fun group! Totally worth getting pooped on. (Easy for me to say.) Happily, Andy was able to clean up and no one was the wiser…plus, it makes for a great story for Keri, Jim and their friends.

And then there were two….two very happy people.

Love these two together so much!!!

A little stroll to the lighthouse at sunset…..ahhhhhh!

A couple who laughs together stays together….

Jim gives us the thumbs up….she said Yes! AND I do! Woooo hooo!!

Love, smiles and delicious kisses…..This is love!

Such joy…and a backdrop that rivals any of the Newport Mansions. Could be my new favorite place to photograph!

The gorgeous Sperry Tent and beautiful cake by Coastal Gourmet Caterers.

Love the besties’ selfie introduction (and obviously so do J&K)….you guys rock!!

The new Mr. & Mrs……let’s get this party started!

In your arms….it’s where I always want to be….

Warm embraces as the setting sun streams into the tent. Just beautiful!

Love this sweet gal….way to rock the toast Katie!!

Jim & Keri reacting to all the love directed their way…eat it up guys! Eat up all that glorious love!

Sunset…..Mmmmmmm good!

Gail gets all emotional dancing with her sweet boy, as a tear runs down her beautiful face. So lovely!!!

Meanwhile Keri & her crazy dad get down on it….you go you two!!! Me & my dad went nuts to Shout at my & Andy’s wedding. I’ll never forget Dad turning to me while we’re on our backs on the floor and saying, “You make me wild, Chrissy!” It is in these moments of connection that our strongest memories are formed. Blessed are we who let love rule!!

And, who also play with cake…..deeeeelicious!

Get it guys…get it!!

Life is to be lived large and celebrated with great passion….today and always.

Dance like no one is watching….and smile with your whole heart.

For when the night comes our dreams shall be made of this….

Jim & Keri….I wish words could do justice to how much we appreciate you both, your families & friends and how warmly you all welcomed us into your lives and into this amazing day of love & celebration!! Your wedding was the stuff from which fairy tales are made. And, your love is both inspiring and contagious!! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!! For sharing your beautiful hearts and this beautiful day with us!! We feel so grateful to have been able to be there to document all of the love & goodness that sprang from a Yes that warm November day and led us all to this. You will forever hold a special place in our hearts as we hope these photos hold a special place in yours!! We adore you and feel so happy you found your way into our life!! More to come soon!! Big love & hugs, Chris & Andy xoxox

 

Aimee, Rick, Tess & Brooks Family Session ~ Mashpee Beach Photographers

It’s hard to believe it’s been seven years since we photographed Aimee & Rick’s Ridge Club wedding. Happily, we’ve kept in touch and have been able to get them back in front of our cameras a few times over the years. One of my favorite sessions was three years ago, when I photographed them as they welcomed their baby girl, Tess, into the world.

I love me some quality baby time, so getting to photograph Tess just a few weeks after she made her way into the world was a real treat! Click HERE for a look.

I remember after our session, Aimee looked forward to the time when they’d have another baby for us to photograph. Baby number two came a little over a year and a half later. Sadly, it was to be some time before we’d get to photograph baby Brooks. He had a rough start to life, having to endure several surgeries to repair a cleft palate.

As difficult as it no doubt was for sweet little Brooks, I’m sure it was absolutely torturous for Aimee, having to watch her sweet boy be wheeled into the operating room more times than any mother should have to.

Happily, Brooks is on the mend, and although he still has more surgeries ahead of him, he is a happy, healthy, sweet, playful, delightful little boy, who is very much adored by his big sister.

We got to finally meet Brooks two weeks ago, when we got together with the whole family while they were vacationing on the Cape. Our gathering took place at The Spit, the same spot where we first photographed Aimee & Rick for their engagement session. It was a lovely full circle moment for us. Here’s a peek at our time together.

All grown up at three, Tess strikes a pose that had us in stitches…which she and her little brother seemed to enjoy. Love these little munchkins.

Brooks plays with his Dada and is all smiles…..big, beautiful, delicious smiles!

Happy, curious little Brooksy.

Andy has a way with kids that has always been something I’ve loved about him. Seeing these photos he captured while playing with Tess just about made my heart explode. Look at how enchanted she is with him….

I don’t know what he said or did to get these reactions (and there were a couple more in the series that were equally as delicious!), but I LOVE it!! And, from the looks of things, so did Tess!

A little beachside stroll with Dad….that look….too much!!!

Playful, lovely, gorgeous Tess….the way children smile lights my heart on fire!

While the kids play, mom & dad take a minute for a little snuggle time. Yaaaay for enduring bello love!

Such a sweet family…..

Be still my heart…..

I often will use reverse psychology on kids….telling them NOT to look at me or my camera when I feel like I’m losing their attention. Well, Tess LOOVED this game, and kept shouting, “IIIIIII’mmmmmm lookin’ at you!!!!” which was cracking us both up and making her baby brother wonder what the heck she was shouting about. The results….adorable! I knew those college psych classes would come in handy eventually.

After all the formal stuff was done, it was time to play in the water…and Brooks was loving it!

While the boys played in the waves, I got the girls in front of the camera for a little one-on-one time. Moms & their daughters…..one of the most complicated, intensely loving and utterly important relationships that ever existed. These photos make me miss mine and envy my sister for the two sweet daughters she has!

And, no better way to finish the evening than with a little skinny dipping. Baby bums are my fave…that and a little peek-a-boo.

And, with that, we said goodnight to this lovely family! Aimee & Rick, thank you so much for letting us be a part of documenting this next happy chapter in your life. We LOOOOVED meeting Brooks and getting to see you and Tess again! Your kids are just delightful and we’re so thrilled that Brooks is doing well and seems completely unphased by everything he’s been through in his short life. We hope these photos help celebrate this milestone for Brooks and for your whole family! He’s a resilient little trooper and we cannot wait to see him continue to blossom in the years to come!! Love you all to pieces and feel so grateful to have you all in our lives! Big hugs, Christine & Andy xoxo