Actually, it started off with a sweater.
A sweater that I ordered, panicked, cancelled, ordered again got it, cried a bit because I am way too short, or way too something, to pull it off, returned it.

But then I found the jacket.
At the Red Dot Boutique no less.

To get all Tim Gunn on you it was my inspiration piece.
In October.
What guys don't realize is that girls think about things like photo shoots for months and months and months.  I have been dreaming/ planning/ wishing for a full year.

When you know that you have a date planned with 
you dream.  
Happy Dreams.

and I NEVER look like this.
Drew has some sort of magic in her camera that I want to bottle up and slather all over myself every morning.  Then market it and be a trizillionaire.

I had planned on making all of the girls dresses.
Until I came across Lulu's at a craft fair.
It is from Tidbit.
It was as if it had a neon flashing arrow above it screaming

So next came Halley's dress.
Why I continually think that I can conquer patterns is beyond me.
This one nearly sent me over the edge.
Tears and words were involved.
About halfway done I simply ignored the directions, folded it up and finished it the way that made sense to me.
Crazy, pattern hating, me.
My mom rescued me and made the button holes.  I am still to scared to attempt those.  They are on my list of goals for 2010 along with zippers.
I may never attempt the same pattern again, but I am pretty stinking happy.  Believe you me, that dress will get so much wear.  As soon as Halley grows out of it, it will be Lucy's.  Then Janey's.  Then I may just have to have another girl.  Or two.

Last was miss Janey's dress.
I made her a really cute one with this pattern.
But it was just that.  Simply cute. 
It needed to be cute plus a little bit more.
Lucky me spotted this cheetah number in my friend's garage.
I know.  Garage.  The horror.
Quickly I begged to borrow it.
What I didn't tell her is that I plan on borrowing it forever and a day.
Wouldn't you?
I want to eat it.  Or at least hang it on the wall.
I love me a good animal print.

Halley's hat is from Noodle Noggins.
I first saw it on Hissyfits blog and fell in love.
Cutest beanies out there.
I could buy a dozen.
Two dozen.

Lucy's headband is a true testimony to the lengths my husband goes to tolerate my ideas.
He asked where I got the peacock feathers and this is what I told him:

"We went to Irvine Park, chased a peacock and snatched feathers from it's tail."

He totally believed me.
It was completely plausible that I would load up the kids, drive thirty minutes, pay the $5 entrance fee and stalk wild peacocks.
Because when you live with a crazy person you believe that they would actually do something like that. Thankfully, Michael's sells peacock feathers.  If not I might really have taken a trip to the park.
Not kidding.

When Drew joked that she wanted a claw foot tub or a canopy bed my first thought was... claw foot tub.  We are in fact remodeling our master bath soon, so why not get a tub early, right?
Well, here in California claw foot tubs do not grow on trees.
Houses have no history.
Just almond colored fiberglass.

But in my mind, my crazy person mind, I totally thought it would be possible to not only find one, but trick some youth group kids into carrying a insanely heavy iron tub into the wilderness.

Told you.  Crazy person.

But fancy that!
There was not a single claw foot tub on Craigslist for
under $25.  Not a one.

So canopy bed it was.
Three cans of Rustoleum Key Lime later and I was in love.
The creepy white eyelet polyester canopy that it came with had to go.
Enter pom pom trim.
Or dingle balls.
Whatever you call them.
They are fabulous.

Speaking of having more girls, I think I might have to have one. 
Just for the simple fact that I want to use this bed in our house.
I am obsessed.

Also in love with my second quilt which finally came back to me after an extravagant extended vacay at the longarm quilters.  It arrived literally just in time for the shoot.

This precious pillow held by Miss Janey's edible hands is from Little Bit Funky.  Everything about it makes me smile.  Perfect, just perfect.

In fact, everything about the day was perfect.
Drew is so relaxed.
So fun.
My girls absolutely adore her.
Love her.

Even if she didn't reward them with gummy bears they would love her.

She makes every minute you sit in front of her lens a good one.
I never felt like a dork.
I feel like a dork every single minute of every single day.
I hate, hate, hate to get my picture taken.
But she makes it easy.
She makes it seem totally normal to be sitting on a bed in a field while your friends walk by with their dogs.
True story.

She captures memories.
She makes memories.

She makes what should be the hardest day of the year for our family our favorite day.

We love her.
Don't you?

She's looking to travel a bit this summer for vacay and family sessions.  Leave her a little note begging her to come to your hood.  I am pulling for Alaska.  Mainly because I really want to go. I'll bring the bed!  Just saying.

Thank you Drew.
You are so wonderful and beautiful and you truly make our lives so much better.
We love that you are part of our story.



  1. Holla for the red dot boutique - that jacket is perfection! I've been on the hunt for a sweater like that in a cheaper, {and bigger} version but it doesn't exist. Boo.

    These pictures make me ridiculously happy, so I can only imagine how they make you feel! Please have another girl {or three} and use that amazing bed, and hand down those amazing clothes!! Looooove these pics and the cute family!! xoxo!

  2. While I agree that Drew has magic camera skills, you're pretty stinkin' gorgeous! This I know.

    Love it all!!!

  3. Beautiful photos! Wish I new about Drew back when we were in the OC...

    But seriously I want you to make me quilts and dresses. They are all so stinkin' adorable!!! That's it! I have GOT to learn how to sew!

  4. with ALL of it!! the photos, your awesome creativeness, the colors, your stinkin' cute family!! so amazing :) i'm just starting my way into photography & this is so inspiring. these pictures are a celebration of life...what photography means to me... a celebration of the amazing journey, family, & friends God has given you!! thanks for sharing Julie!! :)


  5. gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! i love all of it. off the hook, sic, i tell you! those dresses, that coat, THE BED, the detail overlooked. wow!

  6. Every bit of this post makes me smile.

  7. LOVE the pics! LOVE your blog!

  8. What a GREAT photo shoot! I got a sneak peek on twitter... Love EVERYTHING... The colors are WONDERFUL and HAPPY!

  9. you've got a BEAUTIFUL family! The pictures are amazing and the dresses are TOO cute!

    Where in CA do you live? I'm in Valley Springs but originally from Fremont. :) I LOVE living in CA!

  10. These pictures make me happy. I can't stop looking at them! Your family is beautiful & Drew is amazing! LOVED hearing how you pulled it all together. You are a creative genius!
    And, I can't believe you returned the anthro sweater?!?! But, love the jacket you picked out :) HOLLA for Target!

  11. i so love everything about this photo shoot!!! I can really tell that you payed attention to are so very talented...

    and you are that beautiful.. you just need to see yourself that way...

    God Bless !!

  12. I love the pictures! The bed idea is brilliant!! I love all of their outfits too! It is all so great! :) I was worth acting like a "crazy person" over! :)

  13. Oh your pictures are so beautiful! They make me want to cry! I think Im a little emotional today :) But they are georgous!!!! Wow! It was like eye candy.

  14. You have got to be kidding me!!! The colors are amazing, you are all them.

  15. Those make me want a house full of girls...which is no small statement! Drew did an amazing job, the lighting, the colors, the bed, the fabrics...yeah for your hubby supporting all that! Gorgeous.

  16. what a great story, great pillow, great everything.
    i love it all.

  17. Amazing and both ends! Drew is such a talent but my did you do a GREAT JOB on your end coordinating such lovely, LOVELY outfits.

  18. HOLY MOLY!!!!!!!
    This is AMAZING! I love love love everything about these photos!
    Thank you SOOO much for sharing these!!

  19. wow. those are gorgeous! i love reading your blog. you've got a gorgeous family. way to go on finding the jacket and the girls dresses. love them all!

  20. Okay, totally get out of my head with the sewing fears! And for the record, I would have NEVER guessed...I love all your pretties! Love, love, love the pics! Joy pillow = melt my heart!

  21. WOW, amazing!! You are SO talented!! Great pictures, Great style! Just out of curiousity, where do you live in SoCal? You mentioned Irvine Park in your post. We're in Mission Viejo and go to Saddleback church. I first found your blog back when we were living in Germany. I bought a shirt from you in support of Cora's Playground!! I LOVE it, I'm so sad that my daughter is officially too big for it. Anyway, we got transferred here (we're originally from MI) at the end of August. I've been on a blog hiatus of sorts while we've been getting settled but have spent some time catching up this weekend. Just found it a small world moment. Again, Great pictures!! :) Michele

  22. Love it! Turned out awesome!

    And I should call this Drew because I, too, am a dork every single minute of every single day.

  23. Amazing photos! You have a beautiful family and super awesome taste in clothing! :)

    Claw foot tubs are a dime a dozen out here; just what you don't want to hear! Right now a neighbor has one on their front porch, no joke. Not sure if they are planning on using it come spring-time for flowers or a photo shoot, or just getting rid of it...

    We have a claw foot tub in our second story bathroom and I'm wondering if it will crash through the floor someday into our kitchen...but for the most part I do love claw foot tubs for their roominess and beauty, just not a fan of them being on the second story. ;)

    P.S. Love the bed, though, too. Awesome idea!

  24. What pretty photos! Congrats on getting such great family pictures!

  25. I think I just might have to plan a trip to see you! And a photo shoot with Drew B ... I think that would be even more fun than her heading to NC. Those pictures are amazing!!! LOVE THEM!!!!

    I have a quikt that I started in the fall with a friend and it is definately coming back out to finish up ... I love allof yours. This one is for me and the 2nd one will be for Maddie. Selfish I know, but am always making things for her so decided "ME FIRST" this time .. and as you see I am on the back burner. ha!

    Did you get your jacket or the sweater you have on at the Red Dot Boutique? Where is that located? Is there a web link for it?

    You do look amazing and if you can figure out how to bottle the "Drew B Look" let me know - I'll take several bottles as well.

    You hair looks fab .... were the pics taken after your new color? If so ... stick with .. love it!!! So natural!

    Thanks for taking the itme to share all the details! :)

  26. amazing!! Love every single one of them. (and I agree with what Beki said. I'm pretty sure there is no magic cream... it's just YOU!)

  27. those pictures are amazing...amazing. i love them....and the bed? wow....adorable.

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  29. Your photos turned out awesome!! I love everything about them...all the vibrant colors and your ADORABLE family! DrewB is amazing and you looked gorgeous!!!

    Thanks so much for linking my NoodleNoggins site. I am honored that you chose my hat!!

  30. Loves to you for your crazy ideas! What wonderful memories you have captured for your little girls. And lets me just say what a WONDERFUL husband you have to let you go through with your looney {I say that lovingly} ideas, mine would have LAUGHED and then in a serious face would have said "No."

    Oh I so excited now for our family photo shoot coming up in March! HEY!!!

  31. Okay, you didn't mention your shoes! (saw them in the pic of ou and hubby kissing) Where in the round world did you get your shoes?!?!

    Adorable photos - your family is beautiful!

  32. i relly didn't think that drew & your family could out-do last years pictures on joy's bday but you did!! amazing! i hope one of the girls gets to keep that bed in their room!

  33. I would never in a million years have put all that together, and I would have been scared to death how it would look, but I LOVE LOVE LOVE it.

    Beautiful pics, beautiful girls and beautiful you.

    Oh and I love the Joy pillow, perfect touch to remember a perfect baby girl.

  34. every stink'in bit of that post was sooo pretty...your eyes just sparkled. your family is just gorgeous!!

  35. Ok, So rad. Beyond rad. Freaking high fashion photo shoot rad. For next year I can totally tell you where the magical land of claw foot tubs are in downtown grossville. ( bring a bazillion high schoolers to carry it home) And come over anytime for a quick lesson on buttonholes. ( easiest thing EVER. But don't ask me about zippers. hate those. will never ever see one in my designs ever, never.) Seriously congrats on the photos. How will you ever top this year? So amazing.

  36. These photos are So beautiful! I LOVE the colours too :)
    Also, I'm glad you mentioned you can't do buttons or zippers- I can't sew those either so I avoid a lot of projects, but I think you sew wonderfully and now its nice to know that you don't need to know how to do those to still make great things :)

  37. These photos are amazing!!!!!
    You have a beautiful family, there's so much love there :-)

  38. Oh my word fabulous. Each and every picture is more then amazing. Really. And your ideas on clothes and the bed and everything...A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I want your crazy head, but it sure doesn't look crazy. You are seriously one of the best "artists" out there. The things you make are just fabulous. And if you didn't make them you know where to find the best stuff. This entire post just made me happy. And I needed a happy moment. Those pictures are treasures. Seriously.

  39. lovely recap of a lovely day.
    so so cute....every single detail!!!

  40. I am almost speechless. Almost.
    These photos are beyond amazing. It brought me to the verge of tears. They completely conveyed how beautiful your family is. And I don't just mean on the outside.
    You crazy, wonderful, brilliantly creative girl! I only wish DrewB lived remotely close to South Carolina!

  41. oh good gracious...every one of those pictures is deliciously scrumptious! Love everything about them! The girls' dresses are gorgeous and all the colors just blended together perfectly....fabulous! Know you'll enjoy them tremendously! Yea for Drew!

  42. Girl you have the prettiest eye lashes in the world. You pictures are awesome! Love the bright colors!! And the clothes & bed.

  43. every time i read your posts, i have tears in my eyes. i'm sure i'm not the only one. you have a beautiful family.

  44. I think you should become Drew's photo stylist!! I'd hire you in a heartbeat!

  45. Most fabulous pictures EVER!! Oh my goodness, the jacket...the dresses...the bed...the lighting...the beautiful faces...the pillow...the...the...

    I have no more words. Only awe.

  46. Your coordination skills are freaking awesome. seriously. really. I want all of your outfits for our family photos!

  47. I want that bed!!!! If you need a place to store it...i'm just saying. :)

  48. I'm a lurker coming out to tell you how wonderful your family pictures are. I LOVE your girls' fun!!!! Great job!

  49. these are gorgeous, Julie. love.

    and i got the red dot boutique jacket in black from the clearance rack but had no idea it came in teal. lucky!

  50. Umm...yeah. Amazing. One of my favorite posts. Perhaps because it is now February and this month doesn't seem to offer me know this. Yet somehow reading about the details and the patterns and the love and Drew's all made me happy. Happy. In February. How do you do it?

    P.S. Spent the afternoon on Saturday stalking some birdies and collecting fallen feathers at Irvine Park... almost peed my pants from laughing reading your post.

  51. Thank you SO much for that post! Your attention to detail is amazing and it showed in those FABULOUS pictures! WOW! Now, where did you get that great necklace that you are wearing? Did you make that? Tutorial? Thanks for the inspiration and THANKS for the link to the jacket...who would have thought?

    Your blog is so inspiring - Thanks for that!

  52. P.S. would you just die knowing that we have so many cast iron bathtubs that we actually use them to water our horses and cattle out in the pastures (my husband is a rancher) Wish we lived closer I would have dug one up for you! :)

  53. absolutely beautiful shots and even more beautiful family...loved hearing about all the details!!! left drew a comment...hoping new england works for her! ;) xoxo

  54. How adorable can one family be!!!

  55. I am the designer/owner of tidbit! It just just got around to me that you linked us and mentioned us! thanks! your blog makes me want to be you! love your photography. love your color. love love love!

  56. These are BEAUTIFUL!!!!

    And I found the paint name.. slap myself with the "mom" brain.

  57. These are stunningly beautiful! Would you mind telling me where you found the fabric for your daughter's dress? I would like to make a skirt for my daughter in those patterns! Beautiful!


  58. SOO, I stumbled across your blog and boy am I ever glad I did!! You are so sweet and talented and I love your uplifting spirit!! I noticed you have an etsy shop, but nothing for sale!!!! Will you ever be remaking and selling the dress your oldest daughter is wearing? I LOOOVE IT and need one for my daughter!!!!! I love ALL of your family pictures!!!!!