Posts tagged Kirsten Melligan
Extended Family | Sonoma County Family Photographer

I have been thoroughly enjoying extended family sessions more and more, especially when it’s a family like this! I love seeing the dynamics of families, their interactions with each other give me so much hope for humanity. Here in Sonoma County, Ca, where the cost of living is preposterous, I see so many bits of family moving elsewhere. It happened to my own family! I feel like we are the last ones left. Being able to document the whole family is something I don’t get to do often, but so grateful when people have all the trust in me.

I see cousins, siblings, in-laws, parents, grandparents, really everybody come through, looking their best, enjoying each other’s company. That’s what it’s all about, right? This family was full of happy, laughter, and comfort. It felt as if they were distracted from the camera and wrapped up in their crew, which is what I LOVE! One of my favorite part’s of cataloging these moments with young children are the bribes I get to hear. These guys, it was PIZZA! I mean, who doesn’t love pizza?

 
 
Friends | La Cuesta Encantada | Sonoma County Photographer

If you know me, you know I love being a mom. You know I basically revolve my entire life (or lack there of) around my kids. Well, not in the distant past, I finally was able to go exploring on my own. With a girlfriend in tow, well rather my chauffer, we headed down to the Central California Coast for a little R&R. We joked around as this is the vacation you always need after a vacation – the vacations she keeps taking (super jealous in a good way) and I don’t. My husband’s aunt lives in a quaint little beach town, Cayucos, Ca, that we frequent as much as we can, so I thought it would be the perfect little place to kick my feet up and dust the mom off of my shoulders for a few days. Waking up with zero plans, waiting until ten or eleven o’clock in the morning to do any kind of deciding, really, just going with the flow is just what the doctor ordered! We ate (a lot), we shopped, we laughed, we shared stories, we hiked, we played tourist, and we ate some more – no joke! On our last full day, we ventured up north a few minutes from where were staying to “La Cuesta Encantada” or The Enchanted Hill, otherwise known as Hearst Castle in San Simeon, Ca. What a glorious place! I remember very little about this place from when I last visited as a young child, but I do remember the pool! The views are breathtaking and the details are magnificent, you will even see zebras! Learning about William Randolph Hearst, a newspaper publisher, was quite a gentleman and actually advocated for women’s rights, even hiring many female reporters! His architect was the first certified female architect, Julia Morgan. Did you know she even designed the Greek Theatre at UC Berkeley and rebuilt the Fairmont Hotel after the 1906 earthquake? Needless to say, if you are ever on the Central Coast, take a tour, it supports our state parks. A bus ride up the hill and a few hours of your time will surely create some magic within. You will even see Hearst’s love for animals through the remains of polar bear cages and scattered wooden dwellings up and down the hill.

*Side note, that is my friend Jordan in the pictures - She’s so beautiful inside & out!

 
Couples | San Francisco Fun | Sonoma County Photographer

It was my first, but not last time, creating memories at Lands End and the Sutro Baths in lovely San Francisco, Ca, with a couple excited for life. If you don’t know about either, click those links and soak up the history and lovely views! Back to that couple… C & K were those young souls we all wish we could be again. Kidless, semi-long distance, and their whole lives ahead of them created giddy passion witnessed by everybody watching. We had the most gorgeous weather… in SAN FRANCISCO!!! If you don’t know the weather here, it’s generally covered with a lovely marine layer and salty wind whipping you wherever you may be exposed to the elements. I mean, even the definition of Marine Layer usually comes with a picture of San Francisco and that red masterpiece, The Golden Gate Bridge. Read up on that bridge, it comes with some fascinating history! So, we didn’t have any fog, zero wind, AND it was quite warm! This does not happen in the summer time, so it was an evening to remember. My absolute favorite part was when we ventured through some not-so-paved trails and made it down to the water. It’s rolling waves with container ships coming in and out of the bay was a view that just drew you into the moment. C & K jumped right into the water, mind you ocean temperatures in and around San Francisco Bay hover around 60 degrees Fahrenheit! Um, super cold! And when I say jumped in the water, C actually let a wave take her into the sea… think Moana, but a little less graceful!! Besides that, the atmosphere among people around was kind and humorous. Hey K, remember what that guy said about you getting into the water?! Hehe. While we were leaving the lights of the Cliff House came on and that big round white thing lit up the sky where magic ensued. What a phenomenal evening, one I truly won’t forget, and neither will they as the evening was captured throughout.