Friday Randoms, Vol. 64

IMG_1057-pola Greetings friends! We have a whole lot of nothing to talk about today! First off, allow me to disclose that I’m typing this from one of my favorite places, Cafe Domenico in Utica! It feels like 100 degrees outside, but in here it’s a cool, breezy office space! My Coffice, if you will. Pro tip: next time you’re here, venture to the bathroom stall.


I finally upgraded my iPhone after 3 years of having the equivalent of a Palm Treo. Sooooo there’s a 2 percent chance my cell phone pics will be better.

Silly t-shirts found here for the shutter bug in your life.


Or, for the runner.

A look into the types of classy stores I frequent. (You want some munchies to wash down that test?)


 Starbucks has been hitting up the marketing hard with its “granita” drink. I finally tried one.


It’s reminiscent of buying a Slush Puppie as a kid, slurping away all of the sugary goodness in 13 seconds and ending up with a lump of colorless sludge at the bottom of your cup. Just me? I have to be more tactical in my drinking, don’t I?

I try to make an effort to see what the cool kids are doing, so checking out this blog weekly is the antidote to my clueless existence.

I was told about this new-to-me television show, Schitt’s Creek, and it is the funniest thing on tv right now. (Says the girl who doesn’t own a tv. Grain of salt, anyone?)

If you’re like me (this is surely the start of a bad infomercial) then you have a hard time with money/saving/spending. As in, you spend too much! When I’m on the road (read: constant) I am a spending machine. Anyway, on a serious note, I’ve been using “Mint” and love it. It’s a phone app which tracks spending, it allows you to set budgets for things and gives you a free credit report. If you wonder where all your money goes, this is a great free app. I’m making it a game to see if I can stay under budget.


Because I wear my country bumpkin status on my sleeve like a boss, I thought you might like to know how ingrained it really is. Nearly every time I visit my parents, my dad has trapped innocent wildlife in his cage in the yard. You mess with dad’s garden, you end up in a steel box with a day’s worth of peanut butter and a prayer. Relocation rides to the local park are free…for now.

Stay safe, friends. Let’s do this again in a week, yes?

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Love Story: Elissa & Chris

It was a day of wonderful ‘firsts.’ On an absolutely gorgeous sunrise, I met Elissa and Chris for the first time, in a place I had never even heard of. (These two need to pick all of my engagement session locations, it was perfect!) Great light, lots of great colors and textures, plus a tender couple who made my job an absolute joy. Elissa and Chris took me to Allaire State Park in New Jersey. I love shooting here, it was clean, bright and lots of nooks to choose from!

Most of all, these former college sweethearts are so in synch with each other, there was a myriad of tender touches that I loved to document. They needed no direction from me at all, so I was happy to just bask in their affectionate love…

Wall Township, NJ engagement photographyWall Township, NJ engagement photography

How adorable are they?

Wall Township, NJ engagement photography

I love this textured white wall. We have a side-by-side comparison of second shooter Peter’s shot and then mine. I love the two angles and how different they are…

Wall Township, NJ engagement photographyWall Township, NJ engagement photography

Then we stumbled upon this gorgeous spot…

Wall Township, NJ engagement photography

Elissa & Chris, you two are absolutely beautiful and I can not believe the day is almost here! Looking forward to the real thing! Thank you for finding me, it’s going to be an amazing wedding!


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Love Story: Cettina & Daniel

It was during a classically beautiful New England wedding a couple of years ago that I met Cettina and Daniel. Immediately, their warmth and laughter filled my heart. These two treat you like you’re in their inner circle within seconds of meeting. When I got the call to photograph their own wedding this fall? I was so touched, and to be honest, absurdly enthusiastic. Daniel was a fantastic best man, he kept everyone laughing and loose, which is beyond helpful during a wedding day! It doesn’t get better than these folks. Authentic, romantic, and hilarious…we wandered around Kent Falls State Park on a gorgeous sunrise in Connecticut.

A few favorites during our time together…

Kent Falls, CT engagement photography

The great thing about sunrise sessions? We always have the best spots all to ourselves!

Kent Falls, CT engagement photographyKent Falls, CT engagement photography

They are so playful and had me cackling throughout the entire session with their antics…

Kent Falls, CT engagement photographyKent Falls, CT engagement photographyKent Falls, CT engagement photography

Daniel lifted up Cettina as a total joke, just to make us all laugh. It ended up being one of my favorite moments!

Kent Falls, CT engagement photography

When a slug photo bombs your ring shot and your groom just happens to be a scientist? You run with it!

Kent Falls, CT engagement photography

Cettina and Daniel, thank you. Thank you for traveling so far, for getting up at dawn, for finding me and for laughing your way through the waterfalls. You are incredible and I can’t wait to document your love at the wedding!


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Love Story: Paige & Anthony

I first met this beautiful couple at an incredible wedding last year, the kind when every time you think of it, your head tilts back and you smile. What. A. Great. Day. Anthony was the best man at that wedding and I was moved at his kind words during the speech and how helpful/personable he was throughout. I am thrilled I get to document their wedding! (Pumping fist at computer screen? CHECK!)

Back to Paige and Anthony’s love story, which is adorable. What started as an innocent work crush, turned into dating, which turned in to… I-can’t-live-my-life-without-this-person. When you hang out with them in person, you’re struck by how wonderful they are individually, but also what a force they’ll be together, growing through this world hand in hand. So that’s how we all founds ourselves at the magnificent Green Lakes State Park for a sunrise session. The light was gorgeous, the scenery was beyond, and this couple floated around laughing and smiling, making for a pretty sweet engagement session!

A few favorites…

Fayetteville, NY engagement photography

Fayetteville, NY engagement photography

Fayetteville, NY engagement photography

Fayetteville, NY engagement photographyFayetteville, NY engagement photography

This running couple is after my own heart, how bad ass are they?

Fayetteville, NY engagement photography

Do not underestimate the intimacy of running, and the people with whom you share your miles.” — Kristin Armstrong

Paige and Anthony, it is an honor to photograph your love!


Pam Guido - Since I’m Paige’s mother I’m a little prejudice but I must say these pictures are very beautiful and your blog says it all. They are two wonderful people and will make a beautiful married couple

Diane Reina - We are so blessed to have Paige as our future daughter in law. Anthony and Paige are a beautiful couple and your photos show it. Thank you!

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Friday Randoms, Vol. 63


Welcome to a special edition of Friday Randoms, readers!

Boilermaker 2016 square-pola

Undoubtedly, you’ll be leaving this page when you find out the theme of this week’s randoms… RUNNING!

I know, I know…boring! You’ll get used to it. Read on!

The best road race of the year was last weekend so I thought I’d share some personal thoughts on running. I am by NO means a real runner, but I have run my entire life. The distinction? Real runners are fast, thin, self-motivated…I just run to eat. I’m ok with it. Anyway, I ran jogged/walked my 25th consecutive Boilermaker 15k last Sunday! It is truly my favorite time of the year to be in Utica. I’m proud of my hometown, we shine so bright in front of the international audience. The amount of people who come out to cheer, offer water, ice, popsicles..and those aren’t even the official volunteers! My town has got some big hearts.


Quick shout out to my amazing parents. What’s more impressive than running a race 25 years in a row? The two people who drive me there, stand out in the heat/rain/humidity every damn year, just to watch. They’ve never missed one, folks. Yes, I DO have the best support team in the world! It’s humbling. They are SAINTS.


 I’ve picked up some wisdom over my 25+ years of running jogging. Here’s the Top Ten…

10.) You get to eat that extra cookie/cake/slice of pizza and not feel guilty about it.


9.) Finding your rhythm makes running immensely easier. Count your breaths per steps. Find a pattern. Once you master this, you will get into, what I call, the zone (where you aren’t even thinking about how difficult the movement is anymore).


8.) It never gets easy, but it does get easier. The permanent strength you get WILL be worth the temporary discomfort you feel.


7.) Two words: Free Therapy. Try it and see. Running allows you to pound out the stress and negative thoughts. Can I get a HELL YES for “me” time?

6.) You really bond with people over the miles. There is nothing like it.


5.) A chance to REALLY take in nature.


4.) Running through the rain makes you feel like a kid again. Or, it makes you feel like a bad ass. Both = great.


3.) Improved overall health. Trust me when I say, your knee/hip/foot pain WILL eventually go away. Just keep running.


2.)  If you never quit, you never have to start up again.


1.) Have I mentioned the extra cake?

Happy running, friends!

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