This has been a really really great year. First, I got married. Went on a honeymoon. It was awesome. I’d love to do it again! 🙂

Then I got to go to the Bahamas with Mindy Denning from Mindy Leigh photography and help capture a gorgeous beach wedding and soak up a little sun….not much, but some. One of the best parts was being able to tour the island (Eleuthera Island) on our own. What a beautiful beautiful place. I never got around to blogging it (yet), but did manage to get a few photos in a gallery on facebook.

Just recently I got to go away AGAIN with another friend-tographer, this time with my sweet Amy Carroll (you’ll remember me talking about her – my own amazing wedding photographer!! This time the trip was to Mexico, the Riveria Maya, for Crystal & Patrick’s wedding. It was beautiful – and Amy just blogged it in all it’s loveliness! Check it out here.

Second shooting a wedding with another talented photographer is a treat in itself. It’s a different role, one of supporting, but also one of learning. I love it, and am blessed to be able to fill in our few empty dates with some great opportunities. Second shooting and getting a mini-vacation out of it – PRICELESS.

We all know I love to travel. In fact, I get pretty antsy if I don’t get on a plane occasionally. (Though right now, I’m ready for a little bit of a break from travel.) This last trip was so much fun, because we had a couple of extra days in the trip to explore ancient ruins and even to visit with my Aunt Janet and cousins Sherri & Kim who happened to be in Mexico at the same time!

So before I get back to blogging two more weddings, here are some lovely images from our “down time” to share!


invited to the party – michigan wedding photographer

Part of the fun of being wedding photographers is getting invitations from couples. A few of them we request so we can have them on hand to photograph the day of the wedding, and some are just sent to us as surprises. Regardless of how we receive them, it’s so fun to see the many different styles – and to see our clients’ personalities come out in their invitations & save the dates. (Plus it’s also neat to see Mr. and Mrs. Dan & Lynell Miller on them now – bonus!). If we don’t have yours yet, we’d love to see it. I have saved one very special one for later – Valerie & Donte’s – it’s very unique & beautiful, but they haven’t gone out yet, so I don’t want any guests to see it from me first!

As we kick off our official season this morning with Beth & Ernie’s wedding, here’s a peek at our lineup and some of the pretty invites we’ve received so far:

Beth & Ernie – May 18

Brittany & Alan – May 25

Kim & Alban – June 1

Kate & Ryan – June 2

Alexa & Mark – June 7

Kim & Eric – June 8

Lisa & David – June 22

Nancy & Robert – June 29

Amanda & Aron – July 6

Nicole & Riley – July 27

Marissa & Phil – August 2

Dana & Dave – August 3

Valerie & Donte – August 10

Gwen & Chris – August 17

Katherine & Zach – August 24

Deb & Kenneth – August 30

Lexi & Jeff – September 1 (Yay! My former assistant is getting married!!!)

Sim & Steve – September 9

Ashley & Brad – September 14

Brittany & Andrew – September 21

Shawntel & Rob – September 28

Katie & Joe – October 5

Harper & Philip – October 19

Paulita & Chris – October 26

Marlee & John – November 1

I’ll also be assisting the lovely Amy Carroll a few times this summer, which means a few more of my weekends will be busy, but filled with fun! Dan will get a little break and will make Zeus (our dog) feel like he’s not totally alone in this world!










craft photography-craft life

So, you may have noticed this phrase “craft photography. craft life.” popping up in either my instagram feed or on my watermark – or maybe you didn’t notice it at all (really, it’s ok if you didn’t). As Dan and I have merged our lives together, and have thought about/talked about/dreamed about what we want our lives to look like, obviously photography is a big part of it for both of us. What kind of life will we be crafting…together? What does together look like for us?

Being a little more selfish and taking a little longer to get used to this “sharing everything” part of marriage, this has been perhaps a bumpier road for me. I’m so grateful I have such a lovely, kind, understanding and supportive partner (who is right now cleaning out my messy car for our kickoff to the official wedding season) who is gracefully and graciously walking with me through the transition.

I struggled with how to maintain my “lizzie” identity, but also to incorporate this lovely person who has become such an integral part of it.

I want us to be a team, but I want to maintain our own uniqueness, and I really want Dan & his photography to flourish, not just be “the other part of lizzie photo.”

As he transitioned out of insurance sales and developed his own “thing,” The Beer Truck, his blog, his photography, and obviously something he is very passionate about, the tag line “craft beer, craft photography, craft life” came about. I loved it. It summed up so much for us, and I realized I could use it to incorporate my insatiable love for crafting. I’ve really explored that “side” of me in the last year, and my glue gun regularly begs for mercy, and I go through spray paint like it’s water some days. And lace. And burlap. I love creating props myself, developing a theme & styling a shoot for my clients. Love it!

Because my mark/logo is a part of my brand, I didn’t want to lose it, but screaming hot pink isn’t exactly HIS color. I don’t need to drag you into all the details, but this was a process – making/creating two distinct logos that had something that tied them together, yet kept them unique. And fun. And crafty.

So together we crafted new logos, his ideas, my design time, and incorporated his tagline into both of our brands.

As we move forward, together, hopefully you will see the crafting of a life that seeks to be loving, welcoming, encouraging, celebrating and inviting to all.

With the new brand came new cards, and new websites for both of us. Mine is going to take a while to update all my old blog posts/pictures, so hold tight please while that is all re-imported. Dan’s is up and running, and we both have lots of lovely images for you to check out!

To keep updated on what we’re doing, stay tuned to the blog here, visit Dan’s website & blog The Beer Truck, or follow us both on Facebook or here.

Here’s a little peek at our new cards (you have to see the websites to check out the logos, some fun parts of our office (including magazines we’re both featured in!!), and what it looks like, for us, when two become one.







Honeymoon – day 5&6 Coram Ranch

Day 5 of the honeymoon found us once again in the car, this time heading north about 3.5 hours to Lake Shasta, to Coram Ranch. This was pretty much a last-minute plan, brought on my the urging of my dear friend (and amazing hair stylist) Christi. Christi grew up at Coram Ranch, and her sister, Debbie, and her family still own & operate this AMAZING piece of property in northern California.

Coram Ranch is located at the head of the Sacramento River, where Mt Shasta towers over Shasta Lake, which gently allows water to “trickle” from the Shasta Dam, one of the larges AND widest dams in the United States. And yes, there were a LOT of dam jokes made this day (and the next). A lot.

Dan and I really had no idea what to expect. I had seen a few pictures on facebook, but I wasn’t fully prepared for what I saw. Our first glimpse of heaven happened as we started driving north….it was like the mountains just kept creeping closer and closer to us – as they grew – so did our excitement! Once we passed through Redding (after a side trip to InNOut burger and a really scary grocery store), we drove up to the Shasta Dam. Just before we got there, we saw this white peak as we rounded a corner….Mt. Shasta. As we made that last turn we KNEW we were in for a good trip.

To get to Coram Ranch you have to cross over the dam (through guards and barricades, and ONLY 25 mph and NO STOPPING). That was VERY hard to NOT stop and just view – but we knew we could walk across the dam the next day, and we were also eager to see the ranch.

After a few winding dirt roads and rustic wooden signs pointing our way, we drove up to this little haven on the river. Coram Ranch is built at the site of an old mining town, and has lovely cabins & grounds that welcome hundreds every year for retreats, family reunions, and group outings. There were bikes to ride….game rooms….a pool, and the most amazing views every direction.

We were met by Debbie, who is the sweetest spunkiest person I’ve met in a long time. She showed us all over the ranch, which was empty except for us (it’s the off-season), and then brought us up to our lovely cozy little home for the next two days. She even picked up a six-pack of beer for some guy named The Beer Truck. 🙂 Too sweet!!!

After such a long ride, it was great to be back on our feet and wandering around. For two photographers and one who loves nature photography, this was certainly a great place to visit! We wandered until the sun went down, then back to our cabin for a cozy dinner and movies (provided by the ranch).

I know most of my readers are Michiganders, but seriously, take the time to check this place out on facebook and give them a “like,” and consider how you might be able to enjoy this lovely place yourself (my runner/cyclist/hiker/adventurer friends will LOVE this place!).






















Honeymoon – Day 4 – visiting the family!

Dan is a true sport – he agreed to take our honeymoon in northern California, knowing it meant some family time….and I will be forever grateful to him for taking this special time in our lives and sharing it with some people I love so much….my aunties!

I wish this post had more pictures, but unfortunately, this day also brought me a nasty case of the stomach flu (or food poisoning, who knows what), so I was a little out of it for most of the day. That being said, I still enjoyed every moment – getting caught up (not just on facebook) with my cousins & their spouses, and to see how much their children have changed in the past few years, and to meet all the new little lovelies who have joined our big family.

My sweet aunts put together a fabulous spread, complete with mustache cookies by Aunt Trix! After all, no Shooks-Miller wedding is complete without mustaches! I did manage to eat one of those, and some of the tasty raisin bread with cheese….a family staple (thanks Aunt Lil for the suggestion), and the lovely coffee left by our doorstep by Aunt Chris, who was so gracious and opened her home & little cottage to us so we still had some “honey” time for the honeymoon. It really was deliciously perfect.

While not everyone was there, it was a treasure to be able to see so many people and to introduce them to my husband. I hope that over the years they all get to know him better. I also hope that I maintain my position as master of Phase10. 😉
















honeymoon day 3 – Napa

Day 3 was a little slower paced….a slow morning….a leisurely afternoon…and wine tasting. We hit just two of what seemed like two million vineyards, but what we tasted & experienced was very yummy.

Between the stunning views at Sterling Vineyards and the random Michigan run-in at Grgich Estate, it was a day of honeymooning bliss.

Although the drive out of there made us appreciate the non-congested roads of West Michigan, it did take us to Ripon, where day 4 was a lovely family reception/lunch/picnic for us. But that’s another day, and another blog….












Honeymoon.Day 2 – Highway 1 and Muir Woods

Day 2 brought us to Highway 1 and a long drive along the coast. Perhaps it wouldn’t have been so long if we hadn’t made so many stops along the way, to take in the view, to let other cars pass, and of course, to stop, wander & take pictures of this breathtaking scenery. And I don’t just mean the pictures of my husband. 😉 We visited Muir Woods, walked among the tall trees, and just explored the world together. That part alone was so fun!

There weren’t a lot of dining choices along this route, but somehow we managed to find two fabulous restaurants and enjoyed time just talking and eating together (as well as a break from the winding roads). Oysters on the half shell, dungeness crab, and lots of other tasty seafood-y treats. And that’s just my choices.

We then ended evening with some time at Russian River brewery…again. Obviously we love Founders, but it was a special treat to go to our favorite west coast brewery two days in a row.


Honeymoon. Day 1.






That’s what this day was….the start of a week of relaxation (even though the number of photos would make you think otherwise!), of celebration with just the two of us, and a whole mess of fun!

My love & partner in time, crime and grime, Dan, and I spent just one day in San Francisco before logging a few (1000!) miles on the car. There are so many days left to this journey….this was just day one.

I hope you enjoy some of the sights that we did, through my eyes. Dan’s will be coming soon. Sort of a his/hers version of the honeymoon pics!

For now, just enjoy!

– The Millers