OBLANDER FAMILY || Santa Barbara, CA || There's something about living in a small town that never loses its appeal, and it's the connectedness of people. The understanding that anyone you happen to meet may only be a step or two removed from someone you already know. This is how I became connected with this family. A friend of mine -- and a new one at that -- forwarded me a post on a community blog from someone seeking a photographer to capture a special milestone. Come to find out, the request was for pictures of a grandmother with her three granddaughters in honor of her 70th birthday.

Well, anyone who knows me or who's followed my Instagram long enough would know how photos commemorating 70 years would strike a special chord. It was almost a year ago now that Corey and I hired a photographer to capture that day in the life of our dad. Right away I knew I wanted to work with this family. We met at my favorite spot the night before Easter under light that went from orange to pink to blue; introductions were easy, smiles abundant, and I felt a wash of familiarity: two sisters {who easily could have been me and Corey at that age}, their sweet baby cousin and of course, the birthday girl . . . whose love for her grandkids shone all over her face the same way my mom's shines for hers.

Many thanks to the Oblander family for trusting a total stranger to preserve such a significant time in your lives, to the inner-workings of our small town for bringing us together, and to the universe for the continued opportunity to do what I love.

"Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness:
kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile." - Mother Teresa