The sweetest thing

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Continuing this week of showing off family photo shoots, I bring you the incredibly sweet toddler Dashiell & his lovely grandmother Mary.  His parents (Lauren & Josh) are the design team and proprietors of The Podolls – their eponymous design label and clothing store in Burlingame.  I grew up with Lauren, as our Moms are the best of friends, and it has made me so happy to see her doing so well as a designer (she was a seriously stylish child, so it’s not too surprising she’s a designer now – my sister and I just completely envied her ability to put looks together).  If you find yourself in Burlingame, I suggest stopping by their shop (and I do recommend making a special trip & I say that without any bias because their designs are truly wearable, current-but-not-trendy, and cut from the most gorgeous fabrics, that you will not regret going.  They also carry of-the-moment shoes, accessories & a darling kids line they started called The Podots (oh how I love a little word play).)  You can read more about them on 7×7, and SF Gate.  I was so honored to take Mary’s holiday card photos with Dash – he is just the sweetest little boy and it was a delight getting to capture a couple of moments in time with him.

Serendipity & 11 Stories

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I mentioned last week that I’d be speaking at the Makeshift Society, and as usual I met some amazing people there.  Last night I met Elisabeth Woody who has a cool business called 11 Stories that I think is really unique & awesome.  In short, she takes the idea of a wedding album to the next level by interviewing couples about their love story, which she writes up (in what I would think is likely an educated and beautiful way since she is Harvard/Cal educated with a PhD) and incorporates into an album infused with photographs along with the narrative.  In addition to wedding & anniversary related stories, she also does “life stories” to preserve family history.  I highly recommend checking out her work and site if you like this idea.  Her prices are reasonable, and she was absolutely lovely to talk to — I can so imagine sitting down with her and pouring out my life story over a cup of tea.  Just passing on the things I think y’all would like . . .

PS – I just discovered that Elisabeth was recently featured on Snippet & Ink’s sweet series called “Snapshot of a Marriage” – check it out!

I know what it means to miss New Orleans

It’s no secret among those who know me that I *love* New Orleans more than any place else on earth.  It is my most favorite city.  I was lucky enough to go to graduate school there and to spend three fabulous years in that seductive city.  I just went back for a weekend and showed Bill my version of the town.  Here’s just a few iphone snaps I took — bear with me as this blog is bound to be a bit NOLA-heavy over the next few days.  I thought I’d start off by sharing a few of my favorite places.  People always ask me where to go, what to do, so here’s the start of my little list.  Some of these you’ve probably heard of, but maybe not all . . .
*Layfayette No. 1 – this is my most favorite cemetery in New Orleans.  You might be thinking that’s an odd thing to start off with, but cemetery’s there are a big deal.  They are above ground, run down in the way that things can be there, yet still elegant.  I’m sure there’s famous people buried there, but I’m not really sure who.  They filmed an Ashley Judd movie there years ago.  I just like to walk around and look at the history.  Sometimes I eavesdrop on a walking tour there too.  It’s also in the heart of the Garden District, so a great spot to include if you walk around there.  Which you should.
* Speaking of the Garden District, we happened upon the most lovely surprise this trip — the ladies of the NOLA Opera Guild have opened up a home there for tours.  You might think this is no big deal, but it is.  It’s the only home that you can tour in the Garden District.  The houses there are just lovely from the street, but to really get a sense of the place, you need to go inside.  Now me, I have connections so I get to see inside homes all the time.  (Yeah, not such a humble brag there!) But even so, I do not get to see inside gorgeous mansions & this is one of them.  It’s also available for wedding receptions.  Y’all out there reading, if you want a former resident to come on down and shoot your wedding in NOLA, I am your girl!  We loved our tour of this place and fell in love.
* One of the things I just adore about New Orleans is that they have totally unique shops that sell things that are cool now, but they have always sold them regardless of the trends.  One of these places is the silver shop called As You Like It on Magazine Street (a fantastic street to find said kinds of shops).  This place sells antique silver of both the solid and hotel variety.  I love finding little treasures like the teaspoons pictured above in their baskets of mismatched items that you can procure for a few dollars.  They also have an online shop & lots of unique things that make excellent gifts.
*At some point in your travels to NOLA, you will likely find yourself in the French Quarter.  While you’re there, do yourself a favor and stop in at the Napoleon House for a drink (just order a Pimms Cup & trust me on that).  It is old and fabulous and caters to locals as well as tourists.  My favorite bar for a little refreshment.  (Second row, on the far left).
*I was thrilled to see that so much of the city is just thriving after Katrina & that little streets that were a bit on the shabby side when I lived there are vibrant places now.  One such street is Oak Street, home to the famous Jacque-Imo’s restaurant and Maple Leaf bar/music hall.  Now there is a fantastic thrift store, a ton of little restaurants, a great home design store, and one of my favorite coffee shops, Rue de la Course.  It’s in uptown, off Carrollton Ave. & well worth the streetcar ride or just drive over if you rent a car (which, I suggest you do).

That’s installment No. 1 of Laura’s NOLA’s picks.  More to come . . .

The Madeline & The Eleanor

So I was reading Matchbook Magazine recently & stumbled on the most awesome idea to name your business after your grandmothers.  Wouldn’t “Madeline & Eleanor” be so cute as a photo company name?! It’s a little late now to change that, so I decided to use the idea anyway and rename our wedding packages after them — the Madeline will be for our small weddings, since my grandmother Madeline was partial to that type of event, and the Eleanor will be for the larger parties, which she totally loved.  In the pic above, Madeline is on the left and Eleanor is on the right.

Happy Weekend!

I feel like I should be posting sunny skies and swimming pools since it’s allegedly summertime.  Instead, I decided on a dose of realism — very foggy mornings that are typical here in San Francisco.  Hope you all find some sun this weekend.  Without further stalling, here are the things I’ve found amusing this week:

*Anyone out there liking NBC’s Olympic coverage?  I am not digging the spoilers myself, but I am *loving* watching anyway.  I tear up all the time — I am a sucker for a good human interest story.

*Love this!  Using people as pixels to make large scale art.  You gotta click here to see this.

*I am so in love with old pictures of San Francisco and its near past — check out this awesome collection of photos of grand swimming pools in the city via the SF Gate.

*This is cool – check out the world’s oldest known photograph.

*Check out these pretty paintings — flowers just make me happy all the time, no matter what.