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VanRaalte Farm Family Lifestyle Photography Holland MI

Robertson Family Mother’s Day Session at Holland State Park and VanRaalte Farms

 

One of the things I love most about doing photography sessions is making new friends along the way. I think every family is unique, and that their sessions should reflect that. After all, shouldn’t their pictures speak to who they are in this season of life, reflect their personality, and make them smile every time they come in the door? Not using the cookie-cutter-posed-session approach means I get to connect with every family and/or individual before their session to find out what makes them uniquely… them! And as I listen to what they’re most excited about in this time of life, I end up getting to know their stories and some fun details along the way. And it’s even more fun when I can’t wait to connect with them again. That’s how it was with this family.

I got to meet the Robertson Family when Mr. R called requesting a gift session for his wife. (Mother’s Day present for the win!) Soon after scheduling, he handed me off to his wife to discuss details and so that I could learn more about their family. I loved hearing the story of how they met (Go GVSU Laker Navy!), got to hear about Little Miss O’s amazing dancing abilities, and was excited to help them capture some great memories as a family of three before a new little one arrived later this year!

I knew we had to include some reading time and swinging, as these were some of little O’s favorite things!

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Of course, when spending time on the beach, getting sand in your fingers and toes is always a must.

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Sand Collage

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…and so is getting some high-flyin’ fun on the boardwalk!

After getting sandy, the super-patient Robertson family threaded their way through Holland, MI’s construction and stand-still traffic to VanRaalte Farms. I can’t believe I didn’t know this place existed before now! We loved the old barn, the sunshine, and all that GRASS!

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grass collage

As soon as I heard that Little Miss O LOVES to dance to the “Hot Dog” song from Mickey Mouse Club, I knew we had to play it! I grabbed my phone on the way to the farm (thanks Google!) and found the YouTube version. O was a little confused at first with no screen to be seen, but she (and her parents!) soon got into the swing! Check out these great moves! 🙂

robertson hotdog dance time collage

Since mom and dad met at GVSU and rowed together all through college, we knew we had to get some GVSU love into the memory books. On went the T-shirts!

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And their custom inspirational 8×10 or 16×20 artwork design, which comes complementary with every O’Chung Photography Session.

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We were getting tired and ready to call it a day, but when they realized they’d forgotten Puppy in the car, we made sure to grab a few last shots with him before they went on their way!

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Thanks, fabulous Robertson Family, for giving me the honor of capturing your family of 3 in action! I can’t wait to meet the 4th member of your family when he/she arrives! 🙂

 

 

 

Love what you see? Contact Crystal Chung O'Chung Photographyand we’ll bring a customized session of your own family to life!

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Anticipating the Celebration – 4th of July with the Tillard Family at Holland’s Kollen Park

Some nights are made for staying up late. December 31 and July 4, near polar opposites on the calendar, are two of those nights. One marks new beginnings, a new year, and looking forward towards the future. The other, a celebration of those who have gone before us, fighting for freedoms we often take for granted.

My husband and I were lucky enough to spend time with good friends over the long 4th of July weekend, including our dear friends the Tillards. I’m so thankful for the ways that this girl put up with me through three loonnnnnggg years of college, and for the way her husband has become best friends with mine! I’m also so glad that after nearly 10 years away from Holland, we could pick right back up where we left off when I returned to this lovely place!

But their kids. Oh my, can I say cute? I officially brought my camera to the firework show Monday night to, well, capture the fireworks. But really, I just wanted to capture these adorable faces!

firework faces holland kollen park kid photography

Because sometimes, the anticipation of what’s to come is just too.stinking.much to hold inside. Can you believe this little mouse?

And then there was his brother… taking selfies with dad and jumping for joy of the coming fireworks in his own way.

firework faces holland mi family photographyThe lights continued to dim… the crowd grew restless… and watches all over the field lit up as parents checked the time. And then, with a boom, the brilliant night-flowers filled center stage.

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Happy (belated) 4th of July!!

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J’s Quinceañera Reception in Holland’s Baker Lofts and Kollen Park

 

“A daughter is a miracle that never ceases to be miraculous… full of beauty and forever beautiful… loving and caring and truly amazing.” – Deanna Beisser

 

It was J’s special day, and the backdrop for the quinceañera (or quince, for short) reception was nothing short of perfect. (If you missed part one of J’s quince blog, click here to check it out!)

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The damas and chambelanes came in, followed by the princess of the day!

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quince entrance west michigan photographer baker lofts

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Then they all settled down at the head table… and grabbed their phones. These are teens, after all!

quinceanera quince party cell phones head tableNext came the traditional choreographed quince party dance – they did a gorgeous job, and had a blast while doing it!

quince dancing at Holland MI's Baker Lofts

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Some speeches recognizing the important people in J’s life…

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…and then the piñata – a staple at any Hispanic birthday, including, of course, a sweet 15 quince. 🙂

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Watch out!

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Every quince party needs some cake… and a cell phone close by… 😉

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And kids with candy ready to rock the dance floor!

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To finish off the formal reception, there was one last dance with her daddy, her abuelo, and all those uncles. 🙂

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Happy Happy Sweet 15 quince, J! Thanks for allowing me to capture your night!!

J’s Gorgeous Quinceañera Celebration in Holland’s Baker Lofts and Kollen Park

 

“Beauty is a radiance that originates from within and comes from inner security and a strong character.”
– Jane Seymour


There are moments in every girls life that make us grow up, with or without our knowledge, and I consider it a distinct privilege to be invited into these precious moments and help capture them for all time. J’s 15th birthday quinceañera celebration at Baker Lofts was one of these occasions for this young woman and her family as she took yet another gorgeous step into her future. It was a celebration of a faith that is fully her own, of an extended family that has stood beside and behind her, and of the amazing faithfulness of a God who has and will continue to make her more and more beautiful inside and out each day as she grows fully into the radiant and joyful woman she was made to be!

I met J and her family for pictures at sunny Kollen Park after a lovely service at our church. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the chance to photograph the ceremony at the church, but all the accessories (shoes, jewelry, tiara) she’s wearing in these pictures were given as symbolic gifts at the service beforehand. Each represented her moving forward into her own faith and not just relying on that of her parents. I love the strong spiritual symbolism!

 

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the event, a quinceañera is a Hispanic and Latin American coming-of-age celebration for girls that has a lot of similarities to a wedding… without the groom, of course! There’s the gorgeous 15 year old girl…

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…and her party of damas and chambelanes (girl- and boy- friends), including a “man of honor” who accompanies her throughout the big day.

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Of course, what young woman can come of age without a picture with all her uncles? Watch out guys! I’d say this gorgeous girl is in good hands! 🙂Jade's Quince - Low-Res (32)

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After a few more family and friend pictures, they fixed her dress so she could breathe in the heat, and we grabbed a few more precious pictures with her father before heading to Baker Lofts for the reception.

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That dress! And I thought I had a hard time getting into the car after my wedding. I love these shots of her father helping her in!

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In the interest of space, I will be sharing the rest of the fun in a follow-up post later this week. Get ready for more pictures of this incredible young woman (and that dress!), food, choreographed dancing, lots of cell phones (hey, they’re teenagers after all), and of course, a birthday piñata!

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A World of Fun at Tulip Time’s Kinderplaats!

 

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This year was my first real chance to experience Tulip Time. As a Hope student, we always seemed to leave before “the big event,” and last year we were too busy planning a wedding to stop and smell the tulips! But this year I was determined to enjoy the week to the fullest.

And boy, did I come to understand what the locals mean when they say the week is crazy! My husband and I were glad we lived within walking distance of everything, since we wouldn’t have been able to park any closer anyway.

I got the chance to volunteer as a photographer at Tulip Time’s Kinderplaats, which is a fun and games time for the littles at Kollen Park. The wind off Lake Macatawa brought shivers, but the smiles on kids faces shone brighter than the sun! It was a blast watching the kids get stickers on their “passports” as they raced from one Netherlands province to another and rode fun rides at the carnival.

Here are a few of the pictures from the day (posted with parental permission, of course!)

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Exploring a fire truck is FUN! And so is a rescue boat 🙂

Tulips Collage Holland MIGotta love those bright Tulip Time tulips –
they were almost as fun to photograph as the people!

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Did I mention it was a bit cold?

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The petting zoo was a big hit for the people AND animals 🙂
Score one for creative parents in the cold!

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I’ve never ridden on a camel before, but it looked like fun!
It was great watching from the sidelines, too 🙂

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This warrior found his own way to stay warm – and made it all the way to the top!

And then there were all the fun Tulip Time carnival rides…

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This guy was having a blast!

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And so were these girls… 😉

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…while these littles saw how they measured up against the height restrictions!

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This one didn’t quite make it…Tulip Time Kinderplaats Holland MI 2016 (45)

But this one did!

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What a great end to this fun day!

 

Want to see more pictures from Kinderplaats 2016? Click Here!

 

Love what you see? Excited to get capture your own family in-action? Contact Crystal Chung O'Chung Photographyand we’ll create a stress-free, fabulous and fun session just for you!
I can’t wait to help you get timeless artistic memories on your walls
that make you smile every time you walk in the door!

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Mama and Me Gerths Mission Wycliffe Fundraiser Mini-Sessions

Mama & Me Mini-Session Fundraiser for the Gerths in Holland, MI

Mother’s Day is just 2 weeks away! Dads and kids, if you want a great way to honor your wife/mom and give her memories to treasure and look back on (and brag about to all her friends)… then a Mama & Me Mini-Session is a great way to both bless her and support a great cause! Spaces are going fast, so you need to jump on it quick! Here’s how it works:

Your by-donation session fee goes directly to the incredible Ben and Jeannette Gerth Family heading back to Tanzania with Wycliffe to support literacy and translation work. This investment will get you:

  • 20-min super-fun photo session for your wife and kids,
  • Hand-designed FB Timeline Header including 2 images, and a 3rd social media image for your profile picture, to share with friends and family online,
  • 5-7 hand-edited fabulous images to view at an ordering session 2 weeks later.

Typical package investments during the ordering session average $150-$299 and include gorgeous canvases, custom “poster” prints for your child’s room or your home, and beautiful custom note cards for your wife/mom to use and show off your thoughtful gift to her friends. These packages are GREAT opportunities to invest in precious photographic artwork for your home at a much-reduced price!

This is an easy opportunity to bless your wife/mom AND support a great cause, but slots are going fast. So…

Contact Crystal Chung O'Chung Photographyto set up your session today!

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Sweet 7-Month Musician Photo Shoot in Holland, MI

 

I got to visit this little one and his mom while the rest of the family was away for the day. I  loved following this sweet little 7-month-old budding musician around! Mom was well-prepared with props, and he was a trooper till the very end with all his adorable outfits. Here’s a bit of our busy shoot. 🙂

With a request from mom, we started off our morning hanging out with a few of his favorite buds.

7 Month music man Buddies

7 month Music Man buddies

Then we moved on to some music. His is a family of musicians, and they’re eager for their littlest member to join the band! In the meantime, though, he seems a bit more interested in eating anything he can get his hands on… and dancing to whatever music mom puts on! 😉

7 month Music Man vintage suitcase guitar play time

7 month Music Man vintage suitcase play time

7 month Music Man play time

Every little one loves mirrors, and this guy is no exception. Say cheese!

7 month Music Man mirror play

7 month Music Man play time

7 month Music Man snuggles

7 month Music Man snuggles

After a snack and a quick change, we were ready to travel again… and get some cuddles from mom!

7 month Music Man travels

7 month Music Man snuggles

Play time included reading in French, a few tears (we all have our moments!), a phone call to daddy, and some fun matching musician band outfits!

7 month Music Man Reading French Book

7 month Music Man Basket Tears

7 month Music Man Basket

7 month Music Man snuggles

7 month Music Man snuggles

7 month Music Man snuggles

Finally, after all this play, this little trooper decided it was either time to start taking his own photos… or maybe just take a nap.

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Sleepy 7 month Music Man cuddles

Snuggles with mom are the BEST! 🙂

And, because every photo shoot with O’Chung Photography includes a personalized, hand-designed inspirational work of art available as an 8×10 or 16×20 print… here’s one for this little adventurer!

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Thanks for the honor of capturing your precious little man!

 

If you love what you’re seeing, take a moment to
Contact O'Chung Photographyand set up your own session! I can’t wait to hear from you!