Baby Sunshine

I am not into posting weekly bump reports, but I have to say, I am too excited to keep these to myself.  After a long weekend of baby shower festivities, my Dad was still up for the task of taking some pictures to capture this beautiful time in our lives.  We headed down to the beach just as the fog was burning off leaving the sky filled with a mix of clouds and warm sunshine.

Only a few more weeks until we get to meet this little bundle! Thanks Dad for capturing these for us – we will treasure forever!


Beach Celebration

The weekend was spent celebrating another Bob’s championship – yes, these are a big deal around our house as there is nothing that Ry enjoys more. While the guys may get older and the trophies get larger, the players are still little boys at heart who get excited to sport their uniforms, put on their cleats, get dirty, and of course win the game!

The celebration pictures are not exactly my favorite blog material, as I prefer to feature images that do not remind me of college in Isla Vista, therefore, I will leave you with several beach pictures from the day.

Congrats Bob’s!

Two Little Lovelies

I am editing my way through these images and can’t wait for these proud parents to see the entire gallery because I just have way to many favorites. These little girls melted my heart the entire session.  Even though we had a tough time getting them to both sleep at the same time, by the end, they both gave me 3 minutes of sleepy bliss which allowed me to capture my favorite picture of the day — two sleeping little girls in tutu’s. Precious.


Friday | Picture of the Week | Week 33

It’s picture of the week time and I can’t decide which picture to feature!!! I know it’s just picture of the week and not the decision of a lifetime, but I am stumped on which to choose, so I thought it might be fun to see which you like better?!

I love these little girls playing in the water and thought the lighting on them was beautiful. This was a harder picture to take because I had to expose for the girls first but make sure that I didn’t lose the water’s reflection on the sand. I position myself so that the sun was behind me and the light was reflecting right onto the girls faces. Also, snapping the shutter when both girls were relatively still took a little patiences.

However, this picture was much easier to take with less technical knowledge required. Expose for the sky, then underexpose it by about 1 stop and ta-da! In fact, I grabbed this as I was getting back into the car in a rush because Ry was blocking the alley. I love the colors of this as it looks like a photo featured on a classic California postcard.

So which is your favorite and should win picture of the week??!



Recently, a few of us girls were talking about our first experiences once we moved to LA. A few recalled our first time on “the 405” freeway, or the lack of yard space at each house, or what one should wear on the first day of school in California. Jenna, from Oregon, however recalled her first time at the beach when she realized she did not know what to wear!

I thought this was funny, cute, and I kind of understood why she might be confused. The Manhattan Beach style is very interesting: boys wear one size too big board shorts which results in “crackage”, girls mix and match bikini’s like none other, surgically enhanced body parts are not all the rage (despite what Hollywood has us believe about LA), and having an appropriate “walk-to-the-beach-outfit” is just as important as the actual bikini itself.

Some people, ok maybe most, question why we put up with the traffic, the smog, the high cost of living, and it’s for days like this….just sitting around, laughing, chatting, playing in the water with a host of great friends that make it worth it!

Mix & match bikini example shown at its best! I am pretty sure Ashley is one of the queen’s of this trend and pulls it off everytime! I guess that is a result of living at the beach her whole life and needed to keep it fresh! 



Doesn’t every adult male softball league need a team photo day? When your team colors are mustard yellow and green and you have “home” and “away” jersey’s and your team name is “The Bobs” the answer is yes. And to top it off, someone even painted their house mustard yellow and green to use as a backdrop for the team pictures!!!!!! Just kidding! Someone did paint their house mustard yellow and green but the reasons for this peculiar color choice may never be known.

Guys, here is the link to the team pictures (but you must have the password to see them)


Friday | Picture of the Week | Week 23

The World, Nationally, California, South Bay, Manhattan Beach renowned Bob’s softball team is at it again with their almost undefeated season record. As we have discussed here and here, Wednesday nights are not complete without a little “casual” game of softball.

Last week happened to be “Friends & Family” night which also coincided with picture day. No, I am not kidding! The team actually declares BOTH of those days and are serious about them even though they may pretend to be joking. Since Gossip Girl is on summer hiatus and I was all caught up on the Real Housewives OC & NY, I decided if I wanted a good birthday present this year, I better keep the ol’ hubby happy and attend Friends & Family night!

Although they lost that night, the season is not over yet because these guys MADE IT TO THE PLAYOFFS!  Good luck in the playoff’s guys and I know you will make it past the first round unlike the Lakers this year!!


Friday | Picture of the Week | Week 15

Opps, Friday came and went without a picture of the week because I was too busy enjoying a much needed trip home!  This is a picture I took of one of the fabulous pink sunsets we had last week —  pink is always a welcome color especially when it comes in the way of nature.


Friday | Picture of the Week | Week 10 & [Tsunami Watch 2011 Plus in HD]

I headed down to the beach this morning to grab a Friday Picture of the Week. After about 15 minutes on the beach, I received a visit from the lifeguard who warned me that as a result of the earthquake in Japan the entire coast was being shut down due to tsunami warnings. Ah ha – that explained the closed parking lot in El Porto and the police office standing guard blocking access to the pier! Immediately I thought, wait, Ryan is running on the beach right now – will he know?! Turns out the surge wasn’t scheduled to hit for another 45 minutes, so all was good.

Although we didn’t see any surge, I decided one weird wave was definitely “the one” and videoed it!  After deciding that was “the wave”, I declared victory and we headed off start our work day.

* As for the title, you may only get that if you live in Southern California and have to watch “Storm Watch” on the doppler 7000 Plus in HD – thanks Channel 7!



The male gender has the ability to live life without ever outgrowing their childhood pastimes. My Mom always says, “Men are just big kids with more expensive toys” and I couldn’t agree more. I hear stories of Ryan’s childhood and how he knew the name of all the Hot Wheel cars and spent hours lining them up just perfectly until he was satisfied. That little twinkle of his obsessed still lives in him except now it’s displayed in the form of life sized automobiles and 4×4 trucks and at times consumes his every thought.

Well, on Saturday, a group of friends got together for a little rivalry game of flag football San Diego v. Manhattan Beach. I love that no matter how old boys get they still know how to dig into that childhood pocket of memories and discover the enjoyment of simple play.

Commentary from Ryan:

I’ll be turning 30 this week and maybe its  old age  setting in but getting out to the park and playing some football with friends at the park was a huge deal.  In order for the game to go off the following things had to happen:

  • months of back and forth emails with lots of shit talking
  • tons of follow up calls and texts
  • a challenging team driving all the way up from San Diego
  • bottle service and “tables” reserved at Bugaloo where the winners would be celebrated and the losers would be disgraced
  • cones and flags (along with promises that we wouldn’t be playing tackle)
  • not getting too hammered on Friday night at Fitz’s party (because of course we get hang overs now)

All of that happened, a miracle, particularly the last bullet.

Saturday morning came and a very familiar group of guys came together.  The guys who were playing were literally the exact same guys who I used to play with all the time, when we were about half our current age.  The pregame activities of lacing up the cleats, joking, running patterns and throwing the ball back and forth to warm up all came and went.

But where was our challenging team from San Diego?

Well, they were late.  Why were they late? Becasue Gib and Bob had to get coffee.

Once they finally arrived we were not surprised to see that they also took the the time to put on eye black that was in the shape of little pistols.  Flag football  was played and we of course smashed them, Manhattan Beach 45 – San Diego 26.  Hopefully this will be annual tradition.  Big ups to DJ who played even though he starts professional baseball soon.   The effort was definitely worth it and the celebration at Bugaloo was glorious.

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Engaged | Charlie & Vivian | El Porto

I was so thrilled when Ryan told me that Charlie & Vivian wanted us to shoot some engagement pictures for them! Immediately we started thinking about different places and ideas for these two and when Charlie & Viv recommended El Porto I was so excited, not only because it has such fun character and a lot of cool walls, but that is also were Charlie proposed to Vivian!

While we started out the day with hopes of sunshine, that quickly faded because the second I pulled the camera out the sunshine suddenly turned into a cold, wet, foggy rain that seemingly took over the South Bay for all of October. These two were so awesome to work with, so cheerful and full of love. Thanks so much for the fun time!

Vivian’s is a natural – she made my job so easy and always knew the right look to throw at the camera! Look at her owning it here!

I am so happy for these two and can’t wait for them to get married!!! Congratulations!!

To see more pictures, CLICK HERE FOR SLIDESHOW (click on HD at bottom)



manhattan beach beauty.

Pictures of the Manhattan Beach Pier or the light blue lifeguard towers have been captured thousands of times by photographers and tourist alike, so while these pictures are nothing new to Manhattan Beach locals, they were just pretty pictures that Ryan and I captured a few Saturdays ago.

Ryan took this picture using our Tokina 12-24mm, f/4 (one of his more favorite lens):

These next two pictures I took —  one of the lifeguard tower and the other of the pier.  This summer all of the lifeguard towers from Zuma Beach to Palos Verdes were painted in funky colors as part of Santa Monica-based nonprofit Portraits of Hope’s project titled, Summer of Color. Nearly, 6,000 children in schools, hospitals, and social service programs and thousands of adult volunteers were involved in the painting of the panels which were installed on the walls of the lifeguard towers.  The panels have now been removed and the lifeguard towers have been returned to their standard light blue, but here is a picture I took of one of the colorful towers before the panels were taken down.

And lastly, my picture of the pier captured during low tide at sunset.

double-play, may-day.

The Bobs are back which means Wednesday nights will start with the same dialogue:

Ryan: Shan, Bobs are playin’ tonight, you going?
Shan: I don’t know. Is it cold?
Ryan: Come on babe, we’ll dress you warm, it will be fun.
Shan: I don’t know. Are any of the girls going?
Ryan: Yeah, they all are (lying).
This leads to me one of two responses of either, “I’m going to watch Gossip Girl” or “Sure, I’ll go!”

This past Wednesday I decided the second option and went. Apparently, the team “always play[s] well in front of a crowd” so in an effort to drum up attendance, last Wednesday’s game was deemed “Significant Others” night.  Being that it was Cinco de Mayo many of the girls were spending their night amongst margaritas and sombreros, but a few others made it out to the field with me.

The Bob’s ended up playing a terrific game; they made five double plays, hit one home run, and won the game!

Just in case you didn’t get enough softball pictures (or didn’t see yourself above, here is a slideshow of more pictures from the game, and a super killer picture of Morgan at the end, it’s worth it!

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a little bit vintage. a little bit country.

I have never been a “country kind of girl” and in fact I recall when I was young actually crying at the thought of moving to the country. Don’t get me wrong, I love to camp, fish, and shoot guns, but I don’t like the “getting dirty” part of those experiences.  The older I get and the longer I live in a city, the more I treasure those times that I get to be in among the weeds, checking out the wild flowers, watching turkeys and deer cruise by, and just the simple smell of fresh morning air. There is just something so calming about it all.

Here are a few shots from yesterday that just make me want to pack up a vintage Louis Vuitton suitcase, put on a big hat, and take a ride to the country in my 1960 black convertible Porsche — now that is how you travel to the country.

dreaming of flowers.

With my Dad getting back into the photography business (, and Ryan sending me flickr links every hour, photography seems to be surrounding my life. I love looking at pretty pictures, but I get frustrated when I can’t produce images that I am actually proud of, but I guess you have to start somewhere!  I am totally in love with the soft, creamy, dreamy pictures these days, maybe its a little mental state  leftover from the wedding.

Since, my knee is still hurt (from snowboarding), I was not able to join Ryan on a beach run last night, so I decide to walk the strand and gaze at the flowers that I hope to have in my yard one day! Well, actually I hope to have a yard of pretty pink peonies, a gazillion tulips, and beautiful hydrangeas, I will have to settle with these pictures for now!

Marco Polo Softball

Shan and I play co-ed softball once a week on a team with our closest friends, it’s something that I look forward to every week.  Between the mens league and the coed I am basically playing all year round.  This years team in a mix of newcomers and veterans and it’s a blast.  Each week we get better and better.  Last game we lost a tough one coming back from a nine deficit only to lose by two runs…and get this…we had the bases loaded and two out when the game ended.  (The pictures below are from last week’s loss.)

Coming off such a tough loss tonight we came out with great energy and had one of the best all-around games in Marco history.  We won handily and everybody contributed with all around strong defense and timely hitting.  Highlights of the game included strong outfield play by Andy, nice defense by Katie and 3 timely RBIs by our girl batters. As manager, I was proud. –Can’t wait for next week MARCO!

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Sushi Night!

As a newly married couple we do adult things like go out with other married folks and couples.  Last Friday was a good example, we started the night over at Chris & Kim’s where they hosted a ridiculous spread of hors d’oeuvres, wine and beer.

Friends, great food and the HBO Larry Bird and Magic Johnson special made it near impossible to make our 9pm sushi reservation (we were 30 minutes late).   Did you know that Magic and Larry played on the USA national team before they became NBA stars?  I also didn’t realize what Larry Bird dealt with in terms of back pain, what a warrior!

Unfortunately, it’s almost never that we get to hang with our besties from Santa Barbara, and enjoy a night out. We indulged on two sushi super boats, each with about 100 pieces of sushi.  The night ended where it started, with an adult sleepover.  We all like fun.

Christmas Fireworks!

One of our favorite festivities is the Manhattan Beach Christmas fireworks, in fact it was our first real dates way back in 2003!  This year, we started the night out at a Christmas party with my sister, Taylor and Alana at their strand house.  From their we walked a bit closer to the pier and had a great time watching with a bunch of friends.  It was a great show, Merry Christmas!

Manhattan Beach Pier

31/365 - Fireworks

Us ball

Check out our sideshow here, and if you want to download a particular shot, try here.