First Beach Trip of 2020 | Hampton, NH

First Beach Trip of 2020 | Hampton, NH

Summer has begun and we have been to the beach several times since these photos were taken, but I still wanted to share this blog post with you. If you follow me on social media (especially instagram) you get to see a little behind the scenes of my family so these guys should look familiar to you.

We LOVE the beach!! The sounds of the ocean, the salty air, the sand! We LOVE it! These first few times we went there this year the beaches were only open for active use only. You couldn’t set up your chairs or blankets but we did not mind. We just wanted to see the water and breathe some of that salty air since we have been in quarantine.

Now, its hot, but here at the end of May/Beginning of June it was still chilly by the water, so the kids were dressed in pants and sweatshirts. Well…. I should have known that there was no keeping them away from the water and they were living their best life in the freezing water with sweatpants on! It was exactly what we needed and I have to say, I am a pro at packing for a day trip like this! Extra clothes, towels and pajamas were in the car so when it was way too cold for them, we went up and changed then went back onto the beach.

To top it off, Hampton North Beach has an awesome ice cream place across the street and we have been spoiled with THE BEST ice cream around….every time we go…! Here are  a few photos of the first beach trip we have had so far…. now we are thrilled we can sit on the beach and just be, with distance between all of the other beach goers!

Faneuil Hall Engagement Session | Catherine & Ryan

Faneuil Hall Engagement Session | Catherine & Ryan

When it comes to winter weather, you really have no idea what you’re going to get. One day in New England its in the mid 60’s and then the next day it’s back to the low 30’s. It’s windy, it’s rainy… it’s sunny… whatever it is, you just don’t know exactly what it will be. When scheduling an engagement session, you really have no idea and you hope for the best weather.

Catherine and Ryan had set up their engagement session with me not long after meeting them. I’ve always loved it when my couples book either their wedding or their engagement session during the winter because I am always hoping for snow! Snow is just so magical to me and photographs so nicely! Well, we had some snow that had been on the ground for a little bit. Instead, we got a forecast that called for rain, however, it held off until after our session. We had some wind and some over cast skies and we all learned to embrace it! With the wind, we were pretty cold, but I FINALLY remembered to bring my hand warmers and those bad boys worked wonders!

Catherine and Ryan are so relaxed, up for anything and they trusted me. It’s hard enough to feel comfortable having your pictures taken in normal situations, but these two made it easy even with the wind and foggy areas! We started our session at Faneuil Hall in Boston and walked to Christopher Columbus Park and then to the Boston Harbor Hotel. I loved getting to shoot this area from the other side of the Sea Port!

I had the best time getting to know them and I am so excited for their wedding day! Here are a few favorites from our time together. xoxo

 

Best of 2019 Weddings and Engagements | Ali B Photography

Best of 2019 Weddings and Engagements | Ali B Photography

Many times I find myself second guessing my photography thinking that being home with my kids full time will not allow me to focus on my business like I would like to. You see, when you have two kids at the ages 5 and 2.5 it can be really hard to get any work done, let alone eat or sleep. Our lives are always so busy and on the go, that I always get worried that I am not giving my business all I have to give (insert Backstreet Boys lyrics here..)

It’s crazy to think about when I first started my business before I had kids, I still was working full time with my business on the side. After having Henry in April 2017, this became my full time job along with being a mom. As hectic as the days may seem, I have somehow figured out how to excel in my photography, business and being a mom of two! Many people will ask me how I did this… and I will just tell you, I don’t sleep much. But the good news is, that every year I think that I should not take on as many weddings as I would like to, I realize that that can not happen! I love this job so much. I love my couples so much. I love my families so much! I always end the years having a collection of favorite photos from Ali B Weddings and I am so thankful for that. Because with all this negative talk about cutting back, enters all those negative thoughts of the “I’m not good enough”. Seeing that I always have so many favorites from each wedding and session I do, makes me realize that I need to cut the negative talk and continue doing what I am so passionate about.

This year, my busiest wedding month was June! It all began in May but June was a popular month to get married. You all kept me busy the entire year and I can not thank you enough for it! As 2019 is coming to a close, I love getting to look back on my favorites from the year and relive each and every wedding and session I was blessed to be apart of. All of you 2019 couples mean the world to me and I hope I get to see you all soon!

Looking back, I feel so proud of the work I was able to create this year and I am excited to share my favorites with you from engagements and weddings! Enjoy! xo.

Andrea + Chris Engagement Session | Bird Park, Walpole

Andrea + Chris Engagement Session | Bird Park, Walpole

This was such a FUN shoot! This lovely couple contacted me a week after they got engaged to find out more info! We chatted for a while over Facetime and Andrea mentioned how she has been following me on Instagram for awhile now and she learned about me through following my friend, JorDecor! A few times a year I collaborate with Jordan over at JorDecor for session in her home, so I was so honored that Andrea found me and started following me this way! It’s fun to hear how big of a fan she is of the both of us, so getting to meet her in person was just the best!

Andrea and Chris chose Bird Park in Walpole for their engagement session! This park had so many amazing areas for photos, I was so excited and had them stopping every couple of steps because the light was perfect, the colors were perfect or the area was just too pretty to walk by! They were so great listening to my location suggestions in the Park and they were wonderful tour guides too since they know the area well! They pointed me in pretty locations and let me just tell you, each photo just makes my heart so happy!

After our session they emailed me the SWEETEST email that just made my entire week! They said –

Hi Alex,

Chris and I just wanted to thank you so much for such a wonderful and fun engagement session today. We both felt so comfortable with you and know how much more fun our wedding day photos will be. We liked working with you and it was just a great day. Thanks for including our family in the pictures today too!
It was really wonderful to see how relaxed and comfortable Chris was with you. At first, he wanted no part of taking engagement pictures. He said he would do it because I wanted to, but I had no idea how he was really going to be today.  After our session today, he realized how important it was to take engagement pictures, so the three of us can really get to know each other. He was totally himself and relaxed with you. He’s already brainstorming photo ideas for our wedding day. What’s also wonderful is that he wants to keep you around for my maternity photos and family photos! 🙂
We can’t thank you enough. The time flew by and we had so much fun working with you! We can’t wait to see the gorgeous photos you took today!
Andrea & Chris
Any that my friends, is an email that I will always remember. One that just makes me so happy hearing how much fun was had (by all) and how they are looking forward to the wedding day! I always get sad at the end of my sessions knowing I wont get to see my brides and grooms for just a bout a year, a little over… but I know that it flies by! I am so honored to be your wedding photographer, Andrea and Chris! I hope you love your photos just as much as I do! xoxo.

How amazing is this!!?!?! They live so close to family, that during our session, I got to meet some of the fam, walking their pups! It was too sweet not to take a photo of them all! What a great moment!

3 Tips for Military Brides planning their wedding day | GUEST BLOG POST by Brittney Galeaz

3 Tips for Military Brides planning their wedding day | GUEST BLOG POST by Brittney Galeaz

I am so excited to start my guest blogging series! Here is a new post by an Ali B Bride! Brittney and Sean will be getting married this coming December on Cape Cod and I can not wait! We had so much fun during their Boston engagement session. You can check out their engagement session HERE.  Huge THANK YOU to Brittney for taking the time to blog this subject! I know there are so many other millitary brides out there who will love reading this! Feel free to comment if you have any questions, myself and Brittney can answer them the best we can! 🙂

I first met Sean in 2012 through a mission trip our church organized. On the first day of the trip we did an ice breaker exercise to all get to know one another. The first thing Sean told me about himself was that he wanted to join the Air Force and my first thought was wow, that is going to be so hard on his future wife. Well, here we are 7 years later and I am the future Mrs. Donovan! 

Sean and I have been together through all of college, through ROTC, and are now living in DC with Sean stationed at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland. Throughout this time, I had somehow convinced myself that Sean would never deploy. This was such an unrealistic mindset but it was the way I stayed positive through the uncertainly. Sean and I got engaged in September of 2018 and his first deployment was scheduled for shortly after. I had mixed emotions about the deployment and planning our wedding on my own. I was happy for Sean as this opportunity was what he had always wanted but of course I was hesitant.

Now, on the other side of our first deployment, I wanted to share some tips and tricks with my fellow military brides on planning a wedding with your person being on the opposite side of the world and still making the process what you always wanted it to be.

#1. Tip number one is include your family! I never would have gotten through wedding planning without my amazing mom, step-mom, future mother in law, my sisters, and all of my bridesmaids. Everyone stepped up in the most amazing way touring venues with me, stuffing save the dates, and planning. It was not only helpful but it was fun! My mom and I split too many bottles of wine to count talking about color schemes, wedding dresses, flowers, and more. I missed Sean during the planning but he was still able to be a part of it. We made every decision together and FaceTimed during venue tours. This way he still was able to plan his own wedding even from thousands of miles away.

#2. Tip number two is to talk to your vendors and your venue about military discounts. I am never one to ask for a military discount but I made an exception in this case! While not every vendor is able to offer for a number of reasons it NEVER hurts to ask. Additionally, ask about a military escape clause. As we all know, the military is unpredictable and if you have to move your wedding for one reason or another you do not want to deal with the cost of transferring the date for your vendors and venue. All my amazing vendors gladly offered this clause, and if someone isn’t willing to, they likely are not the vendor for you.

#3. Tip number three is to stay positive and enjoy the process. There were difficult days and moments throughout the planning process where I missed my fiancé and wanted him with me for cake tastings, venue tours, and everything else we had planned on doing together. I stayed positive mainly by keeping Sean in the loop always via our weekly FaceTime dates. I also leaned on the amazing people around me and took them up on the help they offered. I was beyond thankful that so many people stepped up, it is not something I will soon forget.

I’ll never forget my first reaction to hearing Sean wanted to be in the Air Force back in 2013. I laugh when I think about it now because my perspective is so different. Being a military spouse is an adventure, it takes you to places and cities you have never seen, it pushes you to be independent and self-reliant, and it strengthens your relationship making you stronger as a couple and individually. I feel lucky to become a part of it and become an Air Force Wife. 

I want to thank Alex for allowing me to write this piece to share our story! We feel so lucky to have her as a part of our day and our lives! Always proud to be an Ali B Bride!