Form submitted successfully, thank you.

Error submitting form, please try again.

Love, Me Photography Blog bio picture

Hi there! I'm Crystal. Welcome to my blog!

My heart bursts into a million pieces of confetti every time I capture a Senior’s natural inner beauty, not only because they’re thrilled, but because I know as a mother myself, it will be something you will cherish forever.

90% of what I do are senior sessions … call me crazy, but I truly love teenagers! This kind of focus allows me to creatively explore new ways to capture who your child is during this special moment in their life, without rushing or using the same cookie cutter backgrounds and poses as every one else.  I spent much of my free time, in my younger years before motherhood, voluntarily building relationships and mentoring teenagers. This experience allows me to quickly build rapport with your senior during the session, which helps them feel comfortable and allows the unique spirit of your child to shine in the finished images.

By taking the time to customize each session to fit your Senior’s personality, you can rest assured you’ll end up with photos as unique as they are.

We are family

A huge perk to my job is that I get to photograph those I love most! My mother in law really needed updated photos of her littlest grandbaby, so we made it a family affair and got some cute images of the whole bunch. It was pretty chilly this evening, but it didn’t phase my nephews. I guess they are used to it, since they live in Breckenridge, Colorado! We are headed to visit them next week and take Mia Grace on a surprise ski trip. I cannot wait to see her and cousin Daniel hit the slopes together.

First up, Daniel “Boom Man” … the cutest little Korean that made me an Aunt for the first time!

IMG_8845_WEB.jpg

and his surprise little miracle brother, Karsten. I’m convinced that when families are told they can’t have children and they adopt, its a sure sign they will get pregnant soon. Dave and Tanya hit the jackpot and the DelaHoz name will carry on since we seem to only produce little girls around here. He’s totally worth losing the barganinig chip with Mike that we have to at least try for a boy or his family name would end.

IMG_8886_WEB.jpg

and here are many more favorites!

IMG_8860-bw_WEB.jpg

IMG_8896_bw_WEB.jpg

IMG_8930_WEB.jpg

IMG_9035_WEB.jpg

IMG_9241_WEB.jpg

IMG_9069_WEB.jpg

IMG_9066_bw_WEB.jpg

Daniel is SO busy and full of life! I really wanted to share the last image I took but decided maybe it would be inappropriate. I dont always have the best filter of what’s appropriate and not. Let’s put it this way: there was no bathroom and little boys have a major luxury when it comes to relieving themselves. It was hilarious!

Lindsay - These pictures are great!June 30, 2014 - 11:41 pm

Cheyenne | Grapevine Faith Senior

I’ve been so excited to share this session! I photographed Cheyenne for the first time when she was in middle school … its hard to believe she is graduating! The years keep passing by and the gap between my age and the kids I photograph keeps widening. I find myself saying things like “when I was in HS” and “oh, yea, when I played basketball” … I’m thinking I need an intervention. I’m totally turning into that lady.
The truth is that it does just feel like yesterday and I’m as excited for the seniors I photograph as they are for themselves, to embark on this new adventure after high school. I love to ask them what their plans are, what they hope to do or be … and then I love to keep up with them through social media and see how those plans change … because ohmystars, how our plans change! Can I get an amen? Anyone?? Just like organic chemistry changed my plans of being a pychiatrist in a hot second :)
Regardless, it brings me a lot of joy to witness their excitement and even more joy to watch closely as the Moms are all working so hard to complete their current role as Manager before transitioning to a new role in their child’s life … from manager to consultant. Someone gave me that analogy recently and its so fitting. Tiffany, Cheyenne’s mom, seems to be doing a wonderful job at being a trusted consultant already. I think its part of what makes their relationship so sweet – like she believe in Cheyenne’s decisions and is there as a sounding board to guide her to make her own choice. I hope I can get there as a mom one day.
I love the senior portrait experience and I love to facilitate a special moment between moms and their “babies“. Cheyenne’s session was just one of those special sessions for me. I hope that when my little ones are seventeen, they are half as sweet and polite as Miss Cheyenne. Here are several favorites from our time together. Doesn’t she just exude joy and life and a vibrancy and all things lovely?! I love love her smile – its as infectious as her laugh!

IMG_47_WEB.jpg
IMG_21_WEB.jpg
IMG_13bw_WEB.jpg
IMG_25_WEB.jpg
IMG_33_WEB.jpg
IMG_38_WEB.jpg
IMG_51_WEB.jpg

… and sometimes cute boyfriends come along for the adventure and we use them as a prop! I mean, tell me this isn’t a sweet as can be?

IMG_65_WEB.jpg

… at the very end, I really wanted to capture Tiffany and Cheyenne together. We laughed that we would make her hang it on her wall at her dorm next year. Ever since her session, I’ve been doing this with all my sessions and its becoming one of my very favorite things. I can’t even imagine what it will feel like when my oldest heads off to collage, but I know that no matter what I look like the day of her senior session, I will want an image of us together to remember that sweet time.
Now, if I looked liked Tiffany, it would be a total no-brainer!

IMG_57-crop_WEB.jpg

… and I really want to share what Tiffany wrote after our session. When I read this, I cried like a baby. It really validates why I do what I do and her words meant so much to me. Here’s a portion of what she had to say …

“The day of the senior session was so much fun for everyone. My favorite part of the entire process was sitting down together and watching the final photos that had been put together in the slideshow presentation! If you are looking to make a memory with your senior that will last a lifetime, then having Crystal take your Senior photos is a must. This is one of the most important moments in Cheyennes life and our family will always be so grateful to be able to look at her portrait hanging in our home. Words cannot describe how beautiful our memory is of the session day and how great it is to have those moments captured forever!
Crystal, Thank you for listening to what this mama was looking for when we spoke on the phone before Cheyenne’s session day. I knew that when our family looked at her senior portrait, we wanted to see the real, sweet spirited young lady that warms our home each and every day. You captured that for us and more!”

Do I not have the absolute best clients ever?! Big love to these two ladies.

xoxo

and then, she turned seven …

Seven. Yes, SEVEN. At this point I’m just shaking my head in disblief that I have a seven year old child. I just got around to going through these images I took of her … such fun memories. She actually enjoys for me to photograph her now and has her own ideas as to how the session should go. I dont care; I love it. (you’re welcome for getting that song stuck in your head)
We recently cut her hair (read: I got super tired of the dead ends and cut it dry on a whim in the bathroom ten minutes before we were supposed to be somewhere- sorry Aunt Sheri, you would have done a much better job) It’s already grown considerably since these were taken, as well as that top missing tooth. It’s about half way in now. She didn’t stay toothless for long at all, so I’m really grateful we took these when we did. Something about the whole losing teeth thing is really tripping me out. It’s a huge transition into big girl and every so often I catch these glimpses of the gorgeous teenager and young woman she’ll be … but then, she spins and twirls, and plays with her American girl dolls and asks me to make her chocolate milk and tuck her in and I realize that she’s still my baby too.
More than love this girl to pieces, she really inspires me all the time. She’s the best person I know. That’s the only way I know how to explain what my heart feels about her.
I had this huge ah-ha moment (thanks for tha material Oprah) a few weeks ago when this thought loudly entered my head … “SHE’S NOT YOU”. It’s not that I’ve thought she’s me or I’ve wanted her to be me or I’m living through her – its more like, as a mom, I think I try my best to offer her what she needs and wants, when in reality I’m offering what I would have needed and what I would have wanted as a child. Isn’t that how we give love; the same way we wish to recieve it? I think that’s how I’ve been approaching this whole parenting thing. I want to give, help, serve and love her the way I, as a child, would want those things. The same goes for guidance or advise or teaching or discipline. I’ve thought things like, gosh, she’s so much like me and I really wish I could have learned to be more organized as a child or I wish I would have learned to manage money and I’ve, out of love, tried to offer those things to her. While I still want to guide her and give her the freedom and space to become the best Mia Grace she can be, I’ve had to take note that she is simply NOT ME (ohmyheavensthankgoodness). She may be like me in many ways and like Mike in certain ways but she is her own person and what I would need or want as a child or an adult for that matter isn’t necessarily what she needs or wants. Her contentment and quiet confidence is something I really admire. While she’s a people pleaser like me, she isn’t nearly as obsessed with how people feel about her as I am … this realization is such a relief and something she teaches me all the time.
I thought we had avoided kindergarten and now first grade drama because of my choice in school or the awesome friends she has, but I’ve realized we’ve avoided it because Mia Grace avoids it. If I ask(pry), she will tell me how friends are sometimes not all that kind and give silly examples about not letting everyone touch a stuffed animal brought to school or always wanting to play the “mom” or whatever. Gosh, I rememeber those days all to well. The “fiery, there must be justice and fairness, and no one should get away with being mean and everyone needs me to defend them” side of me thinks, well, she should tell them its not nice to not share, or politely say, I get to choose my role next time … (who am I kidding … I’m really thinking, you just tell her that you didn’t want to touch her stinky stuffed animal anyway – how mature Crystal, get it together)
However, I guess its the sense of mom duty where I must bestow my playground wisdom, I can’t help myself and I offer up some lame advice, which really was more like permission for her to have her say if she wanted to. After my sorry attempt, she was quiet for a while and her response was so inspiring … she said, “Well mommy, then that wouldn’t be very nice of me I dont think … and she shrugged her shoulders in complete ambivalence”. This was far from the response of a person who feels like their voice isn’t heard or they dont ever get a say, or lack of courage to stand her ground. Instead, it came from a place a pure contentment and confidence- like it was a choice to stay quiet and allow her friends to work out their power struggles. That’s when I thought … “She’s SO not me.”

THANK YOU JESUS – She is SO much better than me.

Maybe one day I will learn to just shrug it off … knowing with such assured confidence who I am, and make quiet decisions to be as kind as my seven year old daughter. Um … maybe?

IMG_02_WEB.jpg

IMG_06_WEB.jpg

IMG_09bw_WEB.jpg

IMG_17_WEB.jpg

IMG_20_WEB.jpg

IMG_24_WEB.jpg

IMG_32_WEB.jpg

IMG_36_WEB.jpg

IMG_40bw_WEB.jpg

IMG_46bw_WEB.jpg

IMG_48bw_WEB.jpg

Jennifer Ellis - How beautiful!!!!!! I know you and Mike must be proud!!! She is precious!!!!!!March 3, 2014 - 8:16 pm