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Happy Cinco de Mayo!

My favorite food group has a holiday! Jk, I know it’s about more important things but we Americans have made it into being all about tacos and tequila-I’ll admit it :P

I cannot express how excited I am to show last night’s hard work! Maggie (from my last post, the crazy talented artist) and I combined forces yesterday and styled a Cinco de Mayo themed picnic in my backyard! We used a blanket Dustin and I got on our honeymoon as the color inspiration, the new German beer garden table as a centerpiece, her hand-lettering skills, props from our personal collections and worked as a team creating the cutest outdoor party! Seriously so proud and happy with the turn out! It was planned for Sunday but thunderstorms got in the way so we both did anti-rain dances that it wouldn’t rain yesterday and low and behold we got a pretty night to shoot our visions!


Pumped to have used my DIY’d indigo napkins from this post and our new wedding porcelain dishware from Villeroy & Boch. As I knew she would, Maggie brought it strong with her prop additions, loved the gold flatware which was something we wanted for our wedding, got but then realized they weren’t dishwasher safe and that wouldn’t work for everyday use. These have re-inspired me to look into adding some to our collection!

The colors popped so much after we added the sheepskin “cushions.”



Maggie came up with two drinks (besides our crisp, cold, delicious Corona Lights- gotta have those!) that would definitely impress your attendees- a DIY cocktail bar and salted rim shooters!

Rosemary and Jalapeno Palomas—

I love herbs and spice in my warm weather drinks but I find it common at parties that some people lean toward spicy while others prefer fresh cooling flavors, so I love to set up a choose your own path cocktail bar!

Make ahead:
Grapefruit Juice- Juice from about 6 Large Sweet Grapefruits (on average you will get 1 cup of juice per fruit)
Infused Simple syrup- 1 cup of water to 1 cup of Sugar bring to a boil until sugar is dissolved, allow syrup to cool for 15 minutes and add the warm mixture to bottles containing fresh rosemary sprigs and jalapeno slices, refrigerate and use for up to 14 days.

Other ingredients:
Jarritos Grapefruit Soda/ or Seltzer Water
Gold Tequila

For each drink over ice, add 1/4 cup juice, 1/4 cup tequila, the juice of one lime wedge, a splash of the simple syrup(s) of your choice and top with Grapefruit soda or sparkling water, for a lower calorie version.

A traditional Paloma has a salted rim but I also like to give party goers the option to skip the salt by setting a salt shaker with flavored salts (rosemary salt is a great addition!) to the cocktail bar to add to drinks.


Tequila Shooters—

Chilled Gold Tequila
I cut a tiny slit in a lime slice and ran it around the rim of the mini coupe and then dipped the top of the glass into a saucer with homemade Sriracha salt. Spicy with a warm bite!

Sriracha Salt:
Mix one part Sriracha hot sauce with 5 parts salt, spread out on a baking sheet and allow it to dry for 48ish hours.


You probably thought we’d go with tacos for this picnic but since Dustin and I have made this chicken 3 times now after discovering it on Budget Bytes figured I’d give it the credit it’s due!  You should check out* her recipes, money-saving and tasting! We’ve tried lots and they are all pretty easy too.

*Since I followed her recipe exactly, please follow link if you wish to know how to make-it’s so easy!



My version of Mexican street corn—

Peel back husks and remove the silk strings, rub with butter and sprinkle on black pepper, re-put husks back over and bake at 400 for 30 minutes. Then coat with mayo, sprinkle crumbling cheese and top with avocado yogurt ‘dressing’ (Taken from this recipe.)

For the spicy slaw I cheated and got pre-cut raw organic veges, added Sriracha mayo, red onions, radishes and called it a day-very good! We were piling it on chips haha!

The beans were the canned organic spicy kind we buy all the time. Usually eat with yellow rice and green chilies. I prefer black beans over re-fried any day!



Maggie pulled colors from our blanket and NAILED IT! That peony opened up so much from the time she texted me a photo at 11:00am – it was wild!

The flowers were inspired by your blanket and Frida Kahlo. For the deep pink/red accents, I looked extensively for buganvilia sprigs but had to settle for clippings from my neighbor’s knockout rose bushes (with permission!).





Hope you enjoyed our collaboration! It was so fun brainstorming with her and then bringing it all to life! I give the table some credit because it was after I bought it at Scott’s I knew it would make for a great backdrop. That and the warming temperatures lit the fire under my rear to get together with Maggie, I can’t wait until we do another!

It’s officially after 5 o’clock here which means CINCO DE MAYO HAPPY HOUR! And since you’re just now seeing our awesome idea, feel free to do this for any Summer day, no holiday needed!

Enjoy the evening and be safe out there!



Sydney Eloise and her band are recording a new album that will drop this Summer on vinyl.  They are aiming to do as much of the process, including album art, in analog form.  I loved this idea and was glad to get involved and shoot some photos of Sydney in the Highlands last week.  Dustin knows the Canon AE-1 way better than I do so he came along to shoot film and I shot instant with the Instax Mini.  Here are some of the photos we snapped —




We had the 35mm film from this day developed at a local shop but went ahead and invested in a scanner to save money now and down the road.  The place in Decatur wanted to charge us a $1 per scan and something like $5 for each print, and we had 5 rolls!  Excited to see how this new equipment changes the way Dustin and I capture memories. Perhaps even more film is in the future!  Even though the art of film has faded there are still photographers putting in the effort to shoot analog, like our wedding photographers. I also really like that Dustin has made it a hobby as well!

From the archives:
Here are links to two film photography posts as well as a shoot Sydney and I did back in June.
Lomography film shot by Dustin 
35mm film shot by Dustin
Sydney at Arabia Mountain


So, so so so, so so soooo THRILLED to share our engagement shoot photos! We both love how they turned out! It was the perfect day to capture our love out at Arabia Mountain especially with all the Fall leaves. Ben and Colleen tag-teamed the evening and caught all the right moments, using both digital and film. Like I mention in the post about why we picked them, the coloring of their photos is dreamy!  I can’t tell you how hard it was to narrow down the selection to a blogable amount-because I wanted to post all 101! But, I don’t want to crash your computer or Iphone so, these are the ones that stood out to me the most-either because of the lighting, the emotions or because they simply RULE!

Of course we had to be silly-it’s us! Dustin had this idea to make it look like I was pulling him up on top of a mountain-turned out pretty good right?!
The first portion of the photos are in the rock quarry side of Arabia Mountain. After getting plenty in that location we moved to the base of the mountain and changed our wardrobe.  For both outfits I wanted to be comfortable and chic while keeping in mind we were in the woods and didn’t want to seem out of place with for example, heels or something way too dressy.  While I normally wouldn’t wear tights out hiking, Dustin assured me it would be fine and I’m happy I did for my dressier look.

Outfit #1 Dress: Free People, Boots: Nine West, Jacket: Target
Outfit #2 Shirt: Target, Jeans: Wildflag, Boots: Sam Edelman
We can never take ourselves too seriously, which I like about us!

Dustin had brought along his grandfather’s camera he inherited to snap a few black and white film photos. Ben suggested we use it as a “prop” since it’s special to Dustin, which was a great idea since we both enjoy photography (a lot!) 14-arabia-mountain-engagement-shoot213-arabia-mountain-engagement-shoot2Am I marrying a stud or what?!

Thanks Ben and Colleen for giving us EXACTLY what we envisioned (but even better!)


Jess in Grant Park and Oakland 234I’m real excited to share these photos from a shoot I did with Betsy a while back. To tell you the truth I’m not quite sure just how they slipped through the cracks of sharing here on the blog. That day we shot 3 outfits and I’ve already shared one and two HERE and HERE. I was thrilled with the outcome of these and was “saving for a special post” and then, whelp, life’s busy ways got the best of me.  So now I’m finally sharing our session at Oakland Cemetery, yay!

3 Jess'sJess in Grant Park and Oakland 295We may have turned on that facet, gotten the shots we wanted, got spotted and quickly turned off and booked it to a different area of the cemetery. maybe, maybe not. tehehe.

Jess in Grant Park and Oakland 301Jess in willowsJess in Grant Park and Oakland 278Jess in Grant Park and Oakland 281Jess in Grant Park and Oakland 260Jess in Grant Park and Oakland 257

Outfit details: Top and Sunglasses: UO, Skirt: Nordstrom Rack, Hat: Anthropologie

HAPPY FRIDAY and cheers to it almost being the weekend!  Hope you have some fun things planned or scheduled in some time to relax.

DJ Taradactyl

VERY VERY VERY excited to share some of my faves from my shoot with Tara aka DJ Taradactyl at the Plaza Theater!!!!!!!!!!!!! The owner of WildFlag boutique, Meghan, was kind enough to provide the clothing and Brittany from Shear Love salon worked her magic creating Tara’s Charlie’s Angel/70’s bombshell hair and makeup. I took sooooooo many shots and there were so many great ones as Tara is super gorg but for the sake of your browser’s loading capabilities I narrowed it down.
700 Cleburne Terrace ATL
*locally made jewelry, clothes, accessories + MINKPINK + lots of goodie brands!
The black and white photos were shot in b&w in camera, the above one I made no edits to, really liked how they turned out looking like film shots.
no edits to the above photo either!
hair & makeup: Brittany of Shear Love
styling: Meghan of WildFlag
photography: Me of Lady FlashbackThanks for looking! Check back in the next day or so and I’ll be posting photos from my trip to Savannah where I rented a 5D Mark ii and played around with a bomb 35MM lens!