The Best Moments of 2016 // Turtle & Hare Photography

As usual, I’m running behind on things. It’s 2017, and I’m embracing my lateness. So, la-dee-dah, I’m here writing my look back at 2016. It’s only January 6, people. At least I caught the fact that when I first wrote the previous sentence it said I was writing my look back at 2015. And thus, I take another sip of extra strong English breakfast tea to caffeinate my dizzy, sluggish mind.

Now, on to the topic at hand. What shall I say about 2016? It was a mixed bag of nuts. Okay, if you know me, you know I loathe nuts, particularly peanuts. However, I’m not sure 2016 deserves such a scathing review. She gets a bad rap, but even peanuts have redeeming qualities. After all, the Reese’s cup wouldn’t be here without the vile peanut. And so, I bring you the bright, beautiful moments of 2016 through the lens of Turtle & Hare Photography.

1. Creative Moments

My baby celebrated her first Halloween, and we had such a great time coming up with a creative costume for her. She went as JB Fletcher, the genius mystery novelist in Murder, She Wrote, played by the immortal Angela Lansbury.

2. Trying New Things Moments

We offered Autumn Mini Sessions for the first time this year, and it was awesome! I really enjoyed getting to know families I’d never met before. We used this rocking reindeer as a prop, and let me tell you, it was a huge hit! Every kid we passed in the park wanted to ride it haha. I was nervous about offering mini sessions; fear of the unknown. It taught me to trust my instincts more as we go into this new year. I’m thinking about offering Spring Mini Sessions now!

3. New Beginnings Moments

Engagement sessions are such a treat. It’s an opportunity to catch a glimpse of this really special thing these two other people have. Good portrait photos don’t happen without the magic of the people in them. They bring them to life. Looking back at 2016, we had some pretty good magic moments. Thanks for loving each other, people!

4. Sincere Moments

Some of the best moments of 2016 were moments I didn’t even know were “moments” until they were over. They were a hug from a friend I needed more than I thought I did, a kind word of encouragement, or a very long phone conversation with my mom. People lovingly being open and honest with each other is what we all need more of. That’s why wedding vows and toasts mean so much. They’re an opportunity to give this raw explanation of why you love who you love and why you appreciate them so much. And the exciting part is that the wedding day is just the beginning of a life where you get to show this person how much you love them in action and word; a chance to have countless sincere moments you didn’t know were moments.

5. Little Miracle Moments

Speaking of magic moments, there were some pretty adorable babies born in 2016. Each one was so precious and sweet. Personally, we were thrilled to welcome our first nephew into this world!

6. Fun Moments

We have a lot of these! What’s not fun about family self portraits with a baby who neither wants to have her photo taken nor wants to keep her shoes on? The three of us have fun together everyday. Even when situations don’t seem very fun, these two always manage to make me laugh (or at least smile).

7. Small Moments

Small moments are special for a photographer. We’re privy to catching a glimpse of a private moment between lovers, or parent and child, or even siblings. These are my favorite photos to take at weddings. Getting to witness two people committing their lives to each other is special, especially when they have these few minutes of quiet time together. We met some amazing couples this year, and attended some very beautiful weddings!

8. Family Moments

Whether it’s our family or yours, families are the best! These are the people you can hang out with, cuddle up with, eat with, talk with, and cry with. Looking back at 2016, we got lucky with the families we were able to photograph; babies, grandparents, and all of the ages in between, they were all really awesome.

9. Big Moments

I can’t leave out big moments! These heart stopping, adrenaline pumping moments that make the world stand still for a second are exhilerating. Big moments don’t come along as frequently, but when they do, you know it! We hope all of our couples and families know that their big moments were our big moments too. We loved getting to experience all of the joy and love that those big moments brought with you!

Thanks for choosing Turtle & Hare Photography to share in all of your moments, big and small, in 2016! It was a great year and we are more than excited for what 2017 will bring!

Want to see more captured moments? Visit our website!

A Sunny, Scenic Midlothian, VA Family Session // Turtle & Hare Photography

This was my first time meeting this family, but they are super sweet! It was a bit of a blustery day, but they were all champs about it. I love shooting families with kids because you get to see this sparkle of personality come out when they’re all just hanging out and interacting with each other. This sweet boy was so fun and cute to boot! Can’t beat that!

To see more from this session, check out the website gallery!

We Can All Be Successful!

Honestly, I’ve been feeling a bit discouraged with myself lately. In this world of perfectly curated Instagram feeds, it’s certainly easy to play the comparison game. I’m guilty of it. Lately, I’ve been looking at these photos of strong, successful women and believing the lie that they are better than me.

Someone else’s success does not equate to your failure.

I have to remind myself of this. My friend doing well at something does not inherently mean I am bad at that same thing. It’s especially easy to do this in a creative industry. Another photographer gets published, books a ton of clients or something, and it’s easy to latch onto this idea that I must be a bad photographer because that didn’t happen to me. That’s simply not true.

I’m here to tell you that people and success come in all shapes and sizes. My definition of success is not the same as yours. My story, my path is different. That’s what makes life interesting.

What a boring world it would be if we all lived it the exact same way.

I’m not trying to toot my own horn, but it’s okay to feel awesome about yourself and your own successes. I’m awesome! You’re awesome! When we give ourselves permission to feel good about our accomplishments, we also enable ourselves to be more encouraging to others.

So, today I’m stepping back from that cycle of self doubt and remembering that we can all be fiercely successful- all of us together! I encourage you to do the same.


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Time in a Bottle

Time. That is something I never seem to have enough of these days. Since having my daughter in November I’ve often vacillated between feeling overworked and lazy. Sometimes I even feel both at the same time. I think I am pretty proficient at time management, so why is it so hard to cut myself some slack with my own accomplishment expectations?

I really worked at taking it easy on myself during my maternity leave. After all, this was time specifically for spending every second with my baby. I’m happy to say that I soaked up every second of that time with my little dumpling. My offspring was held and snuggled to the maximum, and I’ve no regrets. Now that I’m back at work I’m still getting into a balanced groove of time spent on work, caring for the babe, play, and life chores. The biggest problem seems to be that there are too many things vying for a slice of the pie. The pie is gone.

This problem bothers me because it doesn’t really have a straight forward solution. Life is work, and work has to be done. But I can change my perspective. I cannot get everything done. I can’t do it all, but that doesn’t make me a failure. It doesn’t even make me lazy. It just makes me a human with limits. It makes me a woman, a wife, mother, employee, photographer, friend, daughter, sister who is trying her best and will eventually get most of the things on her to do list accomplished. Just maybe not today.

“But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do, once you find them
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go through time with”
– Jim Croce

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high school senior photo session Great Shiplock Park, Richmond, Virginia.

Anna’s Richmond Senior Photo Session

What can I say about this session? Anna is so lovely and poised. Summer sessions can be tricky things, what with the heat of a thousand suns bearing down upon us. Anna makes standing in said heat look effortless. We first met up at Great Shiplock Park. I just love all of the different scenery this park has to offer. Want some water, train tracks, greenery, pretty trees, or nice architectural elements? This park offers all of that. Enjoy these photos of this lovely lady and feel free to check out our website for more photos.

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Sick Dreaming

I’ve been sick the last couple of days and, therefore, have had plenty of time to rest and rest some more. Below is where I’ve been wishing I was instead of held up with my germs.

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Can’t see that smile on my face? Here’s a better view!

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Still not sure??

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I don’t mean to be obnoxious about it. I really just had such a good time on our trip, and want to relive those moments as much as possible. Thanks for being a good sport about it. 🙂

Adventure Abroad

Paul and I recently had the exciting opportunity to visit Iceland and England. It’s always good to step away from the routine of every day life to catch a breath of fresh air. It’s even better to enjoy that fresh air in two such beautiful countries!


This photo was taken from our rental car window on the drive between Keflavik and Reykjavik, Iceland. Can you say wow?! We were exhausted when we arrived in Iceland at 6:20 AM and had a whirlwind of a 36 hour visit before heading on to the UK.  I wouldn’t trade those crazy 36 hours though. Iceland was the first place I ever lived so I was really looking forward to seeing the apartment my parents brought my little newborn self home to. I did get to see that place and it was special indeed. My parents said when they brought me to the U.S. for the first time I was afraid to be barefoot in grass. I still don’t like to be barefoot. I’d like to think Iceland had something to do with that. I’m probably just reaching for a connection, but who wouldn’t want to be connected to such a truly awe-inspiring place?


Here is Geysir the geyser. We were rushing to get to the geysers before sunset. We had to decide whether to choose between seeing them, seeing Gullfoss, which you can see in an earlier post, or trying to see both before the sun went down. As you can see, we made it to both! What’s striking about Iceland is how unadulterated the land is. Everywhere you look is a breath taking landscape. The best way to describe it might be other worldly. It’s at least very different from my usual world, full of noise and distraction. That is why it is very hard to compare with the below photo.


England was amazing as well, just for different reasons! I’ve always had a love for British literature. Through the eyes of many fictional characters I had imagined England, and so was looking forward to having an actual experience to couple with those imaginings. When we first got married Paul and I decided the first big trip we would take would be to London. I love that we had this trip together! Of course we visited tourist attractions with my favorite being the Tower of London. So much history in one place is bound to make me happy! Other favorite things were tea time at The Wolseley and a trip to the theatre to see Angela Lansbury in Blithe Spirit.


We also very much enjoyed renting a car for a day (yes, yes it was scary to try driving on the other side of the road for the first time) for a trip to Oxford and the Cotswolds. Isn’t that older couple walking in Oxford the sweetest thing? We pretty much loved everything we saw and did, so it’s hard to list it all out here. Everyone we encountered was extremely polite and kind. This trip, all in all, was a much needed reminder to slow down and notice the people and sites around me. This world is crazy and fast and it’s up to us to find the beauty and peace in it.