Kauai: Photo Diary

      Travel photos! Oh-so many of them!

      Here are some more images from our two weeks of beach, sunshine and sand. We hope these photos warm you up a bit, on this chilly evening (at least here in SF!).

Ariel read a book that was narrated by a dog. Ya, it was a total beach book. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Ariel read a book that was narrated by a dog. Ya, it was a total beach book. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Sam "reading" Sun Magazine. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Sam "reading" Sun Magazine. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Gecko! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Gecko! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Too cute! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Too cute! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Reading on the beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Reading on the beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Our shade friends. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Our shade friends. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Chillin'. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Chillin'. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Sun lover. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Sun lover. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Spouting horn at sunset. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Spouting horn at sunset. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

The North Shore and Hanalei Bay. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

The North Shore and Hanalei Bay. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Kiddos jumping off the Hanalei Bay Pier. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Kiddos jumping off the Hanalei Bay Pier. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

On the Hanalei Bay Pier. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

On the Hanalei Bay Pier. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

North Shore. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
North Shore. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Monk seal sighting! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Monk seal sighting! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Secret beach along the south shore. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Secret beach along the south shore. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Surf dream. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Surf dream. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Sunset at the water. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Sunset at the water. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

At Salt Pond Beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

At Salt Pond Beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Turtle spotting at Poipu Beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Turtle spotting at Poipu Beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Photo by Snorkel Mom.

Photo by Snorkel Mom.

Sunset at Poipu Beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Sunset at Poipu Beach. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Mr. Olympics! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Mr. Olympics! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Aloha Hawaii. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Aloha Hawaii. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Wimea Canyon. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Wimea Canyon. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Hiking from the canyon to the Napali Coast. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Hiking from the canyon to the Napali Coast. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Big sun hat. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Big sun hat. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Ferns along the trail. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
Ferns along the trail. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.
The Napali Coast. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

The Napali Coast. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Pretty. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Pretty. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

xoxo,

Ariel + Sam

Confessions of a Fruit Bat

       Fruit bats. It's the name my dad gave to my mom and me, when I was a kid. He would go grocery shopping, buying several pounds of fruit, and within two days... it was gone. Did he eat any of it? No. The fruit bats did.

       Now that Sam + I are married, it's a similar situation. The day after we go to the farmers' market and buy five pounds worth of persimmons and pears, he'll ask, "What happened to all the fruit?" Does he even have to ask? The fruit bat ate them.

       Sam knew early in our relationship that I had a fruit addiction. Having dated for only a few weeks, we went on what we call our first "love voyage," a long weekend up to the San Juan Islands. He picked me up in a red Ford Explorer to start our journey North, and when I opened the car door, there was a whole crate of satsumas waiting on my seat. I knew I had found a keeper.

       So it was only fitting that when we visited Hawaii a few weeks ago, I went crazy wild for all the tropical fruits. We got fresh fruit at the markets, from people's "fruit stands" in their front yards, and also picked a wide variety of wonderful wild guavas along various hiking trails across the island.

       Since the only way I know how to keep fruit around is to preserve them in pictures, I thought you could enjoy them with us in our photographic tribute to the edible delights of Kauai. 

Fresh sunrise papaya. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Fresh sunrise papaya. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Wild guavas. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Wild guavas. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Farmers' market haul! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Farmers' market haul! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Longan fruit aka "dragon's eye" translated from Mandarin. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

Longan fruit aka "dragon's eye" translated from Mandarin. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Travel Photography Kauai, Hawaii.

       Hover over each image in the slideshow to read the caption :)

xoxo,

Ariel (+ Sam)

San Francisco Family Photography Session: Holiday Photos at the Beach

        In high school, Giuliana would always bring the best lunch. Her mom, Diane, stuffed her lunch satchel with fresh baked goods, like homemade Italian biscotti and cookies topped with M&M's. Giuliana, being the generous and sweet person that she is, would always share these tasty treats with me and our high school posse. Eventually her mom found out that someone was helping her eat her lunch and started packing double or triple helpings of desserts -- helping to feed the hungry masses (including her now-husband, then high-school sweetheart, Rick).

       That sharing and caring instinct runs through all of Giuliana's family. They are some of the most generous and loving people you'll ever meet. As an example, Giuliana's grandparents grew and nurtured countless orchids at their home, and their flowers decorated our wedding.  Diane supplemented the bounty with baskets of blossoms from her yard too. You couldn't buy fresher and better tended flowers. This family added so much color and beauty to our wedding, and we remain forever grateful to them.

       You can imagine how wonderful it must be to be part of this family, and especially how delicious their Thanksgiving spread must have been. Just before dessert was served, Gina's boyfriend, Michael, with the importance of family and love on his mind, asked for everyone's attention, and then surprised the table by asking for Gina's hand in marriage!  What a gift for this tight-knit family to be able to witness their engagement, and celebrate it over dessert too! Talk about great timing. We had already planned to take family photos, but now there was even more to celebrate with a ring on Gina's finger. We are so happy for Gina + Michael! Congratulations!

       We hope you enjoy this sneak peek from our family photo session, including a few photos from our pop engagement session of the beautiful couple.

The Grands. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

The Grands. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

All together now! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
All together now! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
Boys being boys! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Boys being boys! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Beautiful mama Diane and Giuliana. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Beautiful mama Diane and Giuliana. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Gina -- you are stunning! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Gina -- you are stunning! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

A kiss in the grass. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

A kiss in the grass. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Still so in love. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
Still so in love. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
High school sweethearts. The real deal! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
High school sweethearts. The real deal! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
The grands, looking sharp. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

The grands, looking sharp. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Loving hands. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Loving hands. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

And a new ring on Gina's hand! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

And a new ring on Gina's hand! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Pure romance. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

Pure romance. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.

       There's so much to be thankful for, and we are pleased to be able to share these images of a family that has so many reasons to celebrate and are so happy to spend time together.

xoxo,

Ariel (and Sam)

Monday: Finding Focus

       Considering the sweat-inducing heat that the orchids at the Singapore Botanical Gardens thrive on, and weighing the additional factor that I (a.k.a., Sam-mule) was loaded down with all our luggage, it was easy to decide that navigating the dizzying network of connected, subterranean malls under Orchard Road, and seeking the sanctuary of a theater to cool off in and enjoy a movie, would be time well-whiled, before catching our overnight flight to New Zealand.

       As we explained to friends during Thanksgiving, that's the last time we've gone out to the movies. Two years ago.  And as I heard myself tell the story, I got the OBVIOUS hand-bonking-head message: it's time to schedule a proper movie date with my wife!

       Thanksgiving was gooood as gravy.  Not only were we able to host a dear friend from out of town, we got time to reconnect with our other closest peeps in the Bay Area.  The day, while stuffed with awesomeness, also made me feel homesick for my family back in Seattle and across the Pacific.  Arriving back home, we got on Kayak, and bought two plane tickets traveling north in December.  Unfortunately, we don't have plans to visit Taiwan any time soon.  Nevertheless, we were able to get out Sunday evening, avoid the crowds of shoppers downtown, nerd up a pair of 3D glasses, and savor the Life of Pi, and thereby assuage by degrees my regret.  My cousin recently finished production of the movie, signaled by the absence of animals like a Bengal tiger and striped zebras popping up on her Facebook updates.  It was the perfect family movie.  We especially enjoyed sitting after the film for the credits, and spotting her name on the screen. "There she is!"  I felt so proud of her, I could have thrown a bouquet of flowers on stage.  

       Life of Pi is a smart parable about, among other things, the meaning we get from life.  One of my favorite quotes from the book by Yann Martel sums it up: "The world isn't just the way it is.  It is how we understand it, no?  And in understanding something we bring something to it, no?  Doesn't that make life a story?"  

       Holidays are not an absolute vacation, but are like field trips with required homework.  The assignment: contemplate that day's particular holiday meaning and… eat a lot.  Looking over the photos from Thanksgiving together, it's not hard to find things to be grateful for: family, friendship, opinionated cooks, stuffing (why do we eat it only one day out of the year?), love, and leftovers.  I'm also thankful for those aprons we gallantly wore, protecting us from runaway gravy trains.  We are big on wearing aprons, not only  because they allow us to give each other giant, uninhibited bear hugs without fear of messing up each other's fine clothes (and the consequential reprisals), but also, and most importantly, for the silly photos they make (see below).

       Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend.

With thanks,

Sam (and Ariel)

Two hams and a turkey! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Two hams and a turkey! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Mom's stuffing. So amazing and delicious. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Mom's stuffing. So amazing and delicious. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Mom, Auntie Yam and Dad -- aka The Yams. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Mom, Auntie Yam and Dad -- aka The Yams. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Too cute! Maya and Daniella, aprons on and ready to eat! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Too cute! Maya and Daniella, aprons on and ready to eat! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Liam and dad getting excited to chow down. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Liam and dad getting excited to chow down. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Nom nom nom! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

Nom nom nom! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

The feast begins. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

The feast begins. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Thanksgiving in San Francisco.

San Francisco Family Photography Session: Melissa + Hai

       The holidays are a wonderful time, and for us, it means being able to spend time with our families. Not only that, as photographers, we get to see our client's families again who we haven't seen for a whole year. Last Sunday, we got to hang out with Melissa + Hai, for a "Hai is growing up so fast" photo session :) Hai's spunky side has definitely bloomed since our previous meeting. Melissa says it probably has something to do with being in kindergarten.

       The last session we did with this adorable duo got featured on Off Beat Mama - check it out for one of our fav photos of Hai practicing his lion's roar. What a coincidence it was that we were able to find a lion statute for him to sit on in Golden Gate Park and reprise his role, from The Lion King, as Simba. Hai loves the story and, by the way, gives Julie Taymor's Broadway production rave reviews.

Big smooch! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.  

Big smooch! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.
 

Purrrr....purrr  © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Purrrr....purrr  © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

By the big palm trees. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

By the big palm trees. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Soooo adorable. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Soooo adorable. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Hai and the magnolia flower. Magnolias are one of the oldest flowering trees in existence. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Hai and the magnolia flower. Magnolias are one of the oldest flowering trees in existence. © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Pure happiness!! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Pure happiness!! © Bowerbird Photography 2012; Family Photography in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

       It's photo sessions like these that make us appreciate being photographers, and thankful for the chance to meet all the beautiful families - like this one - that enrich our lives.

       We hope you all have a happy Thanksgiving, and are able to spend some good time with the ones you love.

xoxo,

Ariel + Sam