Five on Friday: Five DIY Valentine’s Day Crafts I Love

February 7th, 2014

Okay, I admit it…I’m a huge fan of the do-it-yourself movement, and as a result, I probably spend way too much time on Pinterest. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I got busy pinning all sorts of fun pink and red, heart-shaped craft ideas, and I thought I’d share a few of my favorites with you today. Let’s get crafty this weekend! (For more Valentine’s Day DIY inspiration, you can check out my Pinterest board.)

1. Every good craft day needs a yummy snack, so how about this Valentine’s themed popcorn from Gimme Some Oven?

Valentine's Popcorn from Gimme Some Oven


2. I can’t wait to try making these suncatcher hearts using crayon shavings and wax paper with the kiddos! (Thanks to for the inspiration!)

Crayon Hearts from Martha Stewart


3.  LOVE this hearts in a frame idea from Cozy.Cottage.Cute!

Hearts in a Frame from Cozy Cottage Cute


4. I can just see this ampersand thumbtack art (find the instructions from Life in Velvet here) on a gallery wall with your favorite engagement, wedding, or family photos. Can’t you? 

Ampersand Thumbtack Art from Life in Velvet


5. And one last quick, fun and easy craft ideas to try with the kiddos. Love this idea for little love bugs from No Time for Flash Cards.

Cork Love Bugs from No Time for Flash Cards



St. Louis Wedding Photographer | STL MO Wedding Photography

Confessions of a Wedding Photographer: Changes!

February 6th, 2014

Oh my goodness…it’s February! We’re already into our second month of 2014, and to be perfectly honest with you, I couldn’t be happier to have said goodbye to 2013. You may have noticed that the CDP blog got awfully quiet last year after we announced that we were moving to St. Louis. After I made that announcement, one of life’s proverbial storms blew in, upsetting the balance I thought our family had finally found. 2013 was a year of changes (including getting divorced and moving to a new home in a new city…yes, we made the move to St. Louis anyway), and those changes have required lots of adjusting and re-adjusting — not only for me, but for my kiddos, my parents, my sisters, my friends. Change really is one of the only certainties in life, but knowing that doesn’t make it any easier. Like they say, sometimes life’s not easy…and you know what? I’m okay with that, because I know that in overcoming the challenges life’s thrown at me over the last several months, some really positive things are happening. I’m finding my own voice again…I’ve fallen more deeply in love with my beautiful children…I’ve found strength in and been uplifted by a friendship that has weathered many a storm since our college days…I’ve witnessed God’s grace countless times…and I’m learning to see the world in a whole new way. I think my 2014 buzzwords will be “Rediscover” and “Redefine,” both personally and professionally.

In 2014, I’m excited about:

  • – Continuing to photograph weddings…they really are my fave!
  • – Delving further into the world of HS Senior portrait photography (stay tuned for a big announcement at the end of February!)
  • – Road-tripping to Denver with my kiddos to see my bestie
  • – Sending my youngest off to Kindergarten (admittedly, bittersweet)
  • – Reading, reading, and more reading! (next on my list is A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki)
  • – Watching my kiddos grow as they continue to discover their world and become more independent

What are YOU looking forward to most in the coming year?

Christa Donald Photography - MJ

Christa Donald Photography - Juju



St. Louis Wedding Photographer | STL MO Wedding Photography

Five on Friday: Wisdom from Mark Twain

January 31st, 2014

As a collector of quotes, I just don’t think that anyone says it better than good ol’ Mark Twain. So today, I thought I’d let him do the talking. Have a great weekend!

1) On Courage: 

"Do the thing you fear most and the death of fear is certain." -Mark Twain

2) On Chasing Your Dreams:

"Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." -Mark Twain 
3) On Imagination:

"You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus." -Mark Twain

 4) On Anger:

"Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured." -Mark Twain

 5) On Happiness:

"Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience. This is the ideal life." -Mark Twain

St. Louis Wedding Photographer | STL MO Wedding Photography

Three Frames | Nathaniel & Lauren | Downtown St. Louis Engagement Photos

December 31st, 2013

I was so thrilled that Nathaniel and Lauren met up with me while they were in town for the holidays for a fun engagement session in Downtown St. Louis. Here are three of my favorites from our session. Nathaniel and Lauren, I had a blast with you guys, and I’m so excited for your wedding in May! Cheers!

Downtown St Louis Engagement Photography 01.jpg

Downtown St Louis Engagement Photography 02.jpg

Downtown St Louis Engagement Photography 03.jpg

St. Louis Wedding Photographer | STL MO Wedding Photography

Three Frames | Mike & Jen | Chandler Hill Vineyards, Defiance, MO

December 30th, 2013

Here are three of my favorite images from Mike & Jen’s amazing wedding over the weekend at Chandler Hill Vineyards in Defiance, MO. What a wonderful joy-filled day! Congrats, you two!

St Louis Wedding Photographer - Chandler Hill 01.jpg

St Louis Wedding Photographer - Chandler Hill 02.jpg

St Louis Wedding Photographer - Chandler Hill 03.jpg

St. Louis Wedding Photographer | STL MO Wedding Photography


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