Nicholette Photography: Blog en-us (C) Nicholette Photography (Nicholette Photography) Mon, 17 Oct 2016 00:20:00 GMT Mon, 17 Oct 2016 00:20:00 GMT Nicholette Photography: Blog 80 120 Why Instagram is Killing Me I am not feeling myself lately. I am struggling right now. I am in the depths of my depression. So why would you care? You probably don't, unless you're my mom. But maybe there's something here you can learn. I can't blame it all on Instagram but it has played a major role in my slipping and now full on depression. And it's dumb. And I know it. And it's shallow. And that makes me feel all the worse. And I'm embarrassed to admit it. I know people will judge me. I know my mentor will say, I warned you. I told you so.

So here's the deal. I feel like I'm doing all I'm willing to do to grow my business through Instagram. The more followers, the more exposure, and hopefully the more clients. It also gives you what's called Social Proof if you have a strong following. Meaning you're a legitimate business and people know you and support you. It started being personal because I straight up asked my friends and family for support by emailing them asking for them to help me build my following. Some did and some didn't. Some of my best friends still don't have me take their pictures. I understand if it's someone you've always used or a close friend or family member, but that's not always the case. 

Then I started following people that I knew hoping they'd follow back. Some did and some didn't. Then I started to obsess over those that didn't. There are still some people who don't follow me that it just kills me. I have cried more than I would like to admit because of people who I know who don't follow me on Instagram. IT'S SO STUPID!!! I know better! I take it extremely personal. When my logical brain says, maybe they don't know or realize its you. There might be some confusion between my business name being my full name and not what I go by. But part of me thinks they know and just don't like me. I hate when I think someone doesn't like me. I know that's dumb. I so wish I didn't care. And then I think, who is feeling this way because of me? So at first I was trying to follow my mentor's advice and only follow people who inspire and uplift me, and mostly other businesses. Then I can follow whoever I want on my personal account. But I didn't want to be the reason someone else was feeling sad so I try to follow everyone. I'm sorry if I'm not following you. It's not intentional or personal. Unless I've followed you, noticed you won't follow back, so I unfollowed you.

The other thing is that I see other people on Instagram that get their pictures done with someone other than me. Stab me in the heart. Again, I wish it didn't bother me but it does. Or I see other photographers on Instagram post pictures they took of people I know that I really wanted to work with but was too stupid to ask. I really wanted to work with a certain person. I still have a draft email saved from January asking her. Then I see someone else I know beat me to the punch. I wanted to be her friend in real life more. I just didn't want to seem desperate or make her think I am using her for self promotion. Now I'm kicking myself. She doesn't even follow me (which hurts the most). SO I have these feelings, then I hate myself for feeling them which then doubles the bad feelings. 

Or I see people who started at the same time or after me and have SO many more followers. I know I shouldn't compare but again, I want to support others the way I want to be supported so I follow them and that means I see all their success too. And most days I am happy for them. But when I am down like this, I compare and feel jealous. 

So maybe Instagram is not for me? Maybe I'm not strong enough for it. Most of the time I am. Right now, I'm not. So I think I am going to take a much needed break. Even though it kills me because I think it's going to hurt my numbers more to take a break. My mental health is more important. I'm still doing my business. You can still book with me! If anyone wanted to. But I am just going to take a break from social media for a while until I can get feeling better. And I might find I can function better without it and still have business without it. I'll let you know how it goes.

If you want to reach me, you can email me at


]]> (Nicholette Photography) Mon, 17 Oct 2016 00:19:09 GMT
Man of My Dreams (like literally) Nicky and DannyNicky and Danny

This is my love story. I probably won't do it justice because I don't have the time or the skills to tell it right. But this is how it starts. When I was maybe 10 years old I had a dream that was so vivid and real that when I woke up it was as if I had lived it. It was unlike most dreams. It felt important. That's why I still remember it. The important part was that I'd seen my husband. He was tall, dark, and handsome and wearing a tuxedo and we were in a really fancy building. Remember that.

I started college at Utah State University. I loved being an Aggie and living in Logan was so much fun. After my second year there I just had this uneasy feeling that I wasn't where I was supposed to be. I couldn't make sense of it and it was hard to listen to it at first. But the Lord was telling me to leave. I tried out for the dance team at the University of Utah and made it. I moved back to Salt Lake City and started practices in the summer. 

Let me tell you that I almost always dated jocks. Like football players, baseball players, soccer players, you know. So I was not expecting what happened next. Sometimes when we practiced, we were with the marching band for half time performances. And there was this drummer...

He was tall. He was SUPER tan. He was handsome! His name was Danny. He had the brightest white smile (and that's always what I noticed first about a guy). And he was SOOOO happy and nice. Everybody knew him and everybody liked him. You could tell. I started to go out of my way to be around him at practice and on campus. Usually a guy could tell when I liked him because I was a big flirt but this guy never took a hint. He says it's because he just never thought a girl like me would like a guy like him. So I finally gave up. I was on and off in another relationship at the time anyway so it was complicated. 


(He's the tall one fourth from the right. He was center snare, or leader of the drumline.)

So finally one day he asked me out! And I had to say no because I was back 'on' with my boyfriend. So I went home and cried. That night I had a dream about Danny. I woke up and knew I needed to go out with him. So I broke up with my boyfriend. Then I had one of my friends on the dance team tell him that I was available now if the offer still stood. It was during a football game. At half time we always got pizza for the team. We had an extra box of pizza and so I took it to Danny. I had to walk by half the marching band to get to him. I think when I handed it to him, that's when he knew, "this girl is into me." The way to a man's heart is through his stomach right? CLlocker roomCLlocker room

(This is our locker room. I'm the third one from the left in the black tank.)

So we went on our first date. And he was such a gentleman. He was so interested in learning all about me. He asked me tons of good questions and really listened to my answers. It was weird for me but I loved it! We had so much fun. At the end of the date I cried!! I had this fluttering feeling in my heart and my emotions were overflowing. I was laughing and crying at the same time. The thought came into my head, "that's my husband." After the first date! Are you kidding me?! I must be crazy.

Two weeks later we told each other "I love you". Two months later, we proposed on top of the Joseph Smith Memorial building. Five months after our first date, we were married in the Salt Lake Temple. 


It made sense why I didn't feel right in Logan. I was supposed to go meet my husband. The literal man of my dreams. He's a musician and performs in a tuxedo and beautiful halls all over the world.  It made sense why I felt so strongly that we were supposed to go on a date. It made sense why I laughed and cried after our first date. The Lord was leading and guiding me to my sweetheart. I'd been praying about him for years. I'd written in my journal when I was 14 that I wondered where he was, what he was doing, what he was like, and that I couldn't wait to meet him. When I was young it felt so far away. I started seeing people get engaged as I got older. I'd hear stories of people who didn't know each other very long and then they'd get engaged. I thought they were just crazy Mormons in a hurry to get married so they could, you know. There was so much pressure in the culture to get married young. But then it was me in the story! I was the crazy Mormon this time! But the Spirit was so strong it might as well have been a sledge hammer hitting me over the head telling me this was the one. So why wait? I couldn't wait to be his wife and start our lives together.  13690885_10210246539699728_1145683122546019895_n13690885_10210246539699728_1145683122546019895_n

(He plays timpani for the Orchestra at Temple Square with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.) 314718_10100282477794399_387430633_n314718_10100282477794399_387430633_n

(This is at my cousin's wedding)

It was so fun performing together! We'd see each other at practice and games and other performances. Our romance blossomed in the middle of a lot of Utah Utes pride. Now we have season tickets to the games and we are super fans. We even got to coach together a couple of times. We both coached at the University and a couple of high schools together. 


  CL bbCL bb

(I'm the second from the right)


(I'm third from the left)


And now we're living our happily ever after.

237237   So in loveSo in love

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Salt Lake City University of Utah Sat, 10 Sep 2016 20:39:02 GMT
What it was like being a non LDS teen growing up in Utah - My Conversion Story My baptismMy baptism

I thought it was important to record my conversion story. So here it is:

My mom and dad taught me about God and Jesus, prayer, and the Bible. My mom took me to church when I was little but she quit going. I wanted to keep going so my mom made arrangements with a church that had a bus pick up kids who went to church without their parents. I loved going to church and learning and singing songs about Jesus. I just believed that he loved me. I loved the song "Jesus loves the little children". I went to a Baptist Bible Summer Camp. When I was about 8 years old, I was reading in the Bible that Jesus was baptized and we need to be baptized too. I asked my mom. I didn't know which church I wanted to be baptized into so I just said I wanted to be a Christian and that's all I knew. Why did we have to belong to one religion anyway? I didn't get it. God wasn't a Catholic or Baptist. I just knew I wanted to follow Christ. I wanted to be baptized just like Jesus. Immersed in the water and in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. So my mom abliged and arranged for a non denominational preacher to baptize me in my grandparent's hot tub. And guess what?! My Grandpa decided he wanted to be baptized too! So we did it together. 

When I was in elementary school we had to choose a state to do a report on. I randomly chose Utah. I had never been there and was amazed at how beautiful it looked in the pictures. Coincidence? I don't think so. Years later when my mom wanted to move from New Mexico, I suggested Utah. There happened to be a manager position opening in Utah she got so we moved to Utah. We didn't know anyone. Looking back I feel that was very inspired and we were led to Utah for a reason.

I was 14 when I moved to Utah. I had been living with my dad in Texas so it was a bit of a culture shock to say the least. In New Mexico I was the minority. In Texas, I didn't fit in with the private school rich kids. And now in Utah I was again in the minority. I started to notice everyone wearing the same ring with a CTR on a shield. I asked someone about it and that was when I first learned what a Mormon was. I also noticed a separate building out in the parking lot where a lot of students went for a class. I asked about that and learned about seminary. I started to realize that these kids were very different from any I'd ever met.

I remember I said a bad word at school once and a kid said he was so offended and could I please watch my language. He was so self-righteous about it and so rude and condescending. I felt so embarrassed and mad. I was a good person. I tried so hard to do what I thought the Lord wanted me to. I prayed every day. I read the Bible. This kid made me feel so unfairly judged. I have forever since been sensitive to judgemental people. My bitterness towards the Church began. I felt shunned. All the kids I had ever known up to this point said bad words. My family said them. To me, it wasn't bad. To me, it was normal. This kid thought he was better than me because I was doing what was normal to me for my whole life. And this is just one example. There were many other things I did that were normal to me and not the kids in Utah. I felt very left out and became very bitter and angry. I remember I actually hated the Church. I felt like I wasn't good enough for any of them. Like they thought they were better than me. I hated driving past all the church buildings. I hated all the slang that I didn't understand that everyone assumed I knew. Like the word "Stake"...not like the slab of meat steak. It's like a regional grouping of wards which are smaller geographical congregations. It's basically a big group of Mormons that live close to each other. Anyway!

I started to soften a bit when a boy I had a crush on gave me a Book of Mormon. He'd written his testimony in it. A seed was planted. I respected him. He was a good kid and nice to everyone. He invited me to Mutual, a youth program that has activities during the week. I had so much fun and learned about the three kingdoms of glory (maybe not the best place to start as an investigator). I continued to soften as I met more non-judgemental Mormons in high school that liked me for me. They accepted me. I quit saying bad words because they didn't say them, not because they were self-righteous about it and told me to stop. They led by example. They were modest. They didn't drink. They were such good people. I liked hanging out with them because it felt good and I didn't go home feeling guilty like I used to with other friends. We didn't need to drink to feel cool or have fun. I learned you could be cool and have fun AND not drink, smoke, or swear. We were hyper and crazy enough without it. 

I got a few more Books of Mormon. They started inviting me to Stake (church) dances. Then to Firesides (where someone gives an awesome talk). Then to sacrament meetings (church). Then my friends started going on missions and I'd go to their Farewells (sending off meeting). A lot of my peers started to assume I was already a member of the Church. But I didn't know enough. I didn't believe what I knew. But I was working on that.

I was reading the Bible and the Book of Mormon. I was praying to know what I should do. I had changed so much already and I was proud of who I'd become. I felt good about myself but I also felt like I needed to know for sure whether or not the Church was true. What did God want me to do? I said I'd do whatever He wanted but I had to know. I would pray and then wait, over and over. And I didn't know what to look for. I remember one night being so frustrated I couldn't sleep. I got up in the middle of the night and went for a walk. I walked down the street to my high school stadium and I prayed in the bleachers. I prayed out loud. When I was done, I looked up into the sky and waited for an answer. I stared at the stars and expected them to spell out a yes or no....anything. I needed a sign!  It seems so silly looking back, knowing what I know now about how the Spirit works, I had my answer, I just didn't recognize it. I hadn't been taught how it feels, what to look for. God doesn't give you a sign like the one I was looking for. He answers by the still, small voice. It's a feeling. It's a thought. There were signs all around me. Feeling peaceful and happy with my friends at church activities. Feeling good when I read from the scriptures. But I didn't know and I needed more. So what did I do? I gave up. I set it on a shelf and took a break.

Time passed and guess what? Missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints knocked on my door! They had been given my name from a friend of mine that had left on his mission. I was skeptical but I let them in and heard them out. They taught me about the Spirit. In Galatians 5: 22-23 it says,

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace,longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Then we read Joseph Smith History. I couldn't help but relate. We both had been searching for the truth and praying to know what to do. I'm sorry this is a long excerpt but I can't paraphrase it. It's so powerful. He says,

8 "During this time of great excitement my mind was called up to serious reflection and great uneasiness; but though my feelings were deep and often poignant, still I kept myself aloof from all these parties, though I attended their several meetings as often as occasion would permit. In process of time my mind became somewhat partial to the Methodist sect, and I felt some desire to be united with them; but so great were the confusion and strife among the different denominations, that it was impossible for a person young as I was, and so unacquainted with men and things, to come to any certain conclusion who was right and who was wrong.

10 In the midst of this war of words and tumult of opinions, I often said to myself: What is to be done? Who of all these parties are right; or, are they all wrong together? If any one of them be right, which is it, and how shall I know it?

11 While I was laboring under the extreme difficulties caused by the contests of these parties of religionists, I was one day reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse, which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

12 Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine. It seemed to enter with great force into every feeling of my heart. I reflected on it again and again, knowing that if any person needed wisdom from God, I did; for how to act I did not know, and unless I could get more wisdom than I then had, I would never know; for the teachers of religion of the different sects understood the same passages of scripture so differently as to destroy all confidence in settling the question by an appeal to the Bible.

13 At length I came to the conclusion that I must either remain in darkness and confusion, or else I must do as James directs, that is, ask of God. I at length came to the determination to “ask of God,” concluding that if he gave wisdom to them that lacked wisdom, and would give liberally, and not upbraid, I might venture.

14 So, in accordance with this, my determination to ask of God, I retired to the woods to make the attempt. It was on the morning of a beautiful, clear day, early in the spring of eighteen hundred and twenty. It was the first time in my life that I had made such an attempt, for amidst all my anxieties I had never as yet made the attempt to pray vocally.

15 After I had retired to the place where I had previously designed to go, having looked around me, and finding myself alone, I kneeled down and began to offer up the desires of my heart to God. I had scarcely done so, when immediately I was seized upon by some power which entirely overcame me, and had such an astonishing influence over me as to bind my tongue so that I could not speak. Thick darkness gathered around me, and it seemed to me for a time as if I were doomed to sudden destruction.

16 But, exerting all my powers to call upon God to deliver me out of the power of this enemy which had seized upon me, and at the very moment when I was ready to sink into despair and abandon myself to destruction—not to an imaginary ruin, but to the power of some actual being from the unseen world, who had such marvelous power as I had never before felt in any being—just at this moment of great alarm, I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me.

17 It no sooner appeared than I found myself delivered from the enemy which held me bound. When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!"

He was searching for the truth, just like I was. He was young. He prayed aloud. I felt a kinship with Joseph. Like he better than anyone knew what I was going through. I wasn't alone. 

After we read that the missionaries asked me how I felt. I sat there and looked inward. I felt a tingling sensation all over my body. Like a bucket of glittery sprinkles was dumped over my head. I felt so emotional I couldn't contain it and I started to cry. It was like my heart was so full it was bursting. The missionaries just sat there and stared at my emotional breakdown. I was embarrassed and apologized. They said not to be and that I was feeling the Spirit. They helped me recognize it. It was honestly the most incredible thing I have ever felt or experienced in my life. There was no denying that it was from God. I had received the answer I'd been waiting for with perfect clarity. The Church was true! The Church is true! God is real. He heard my prayers and he answered me. This was what He wanted me to do. And there was no looking back. From that moment forward I was forever changed and on a new path. We set a baptism date of January 31st, 1998. Two weeks away! My baptism 2My baptism 2

Joseph was persecuted beyond belief and ultimately killed. About being persecuted for telling people about what he saw, he says,

24 "However, it was nevertheless a fact that I had beheld a vision. I have thought since, that I felt much like Paul, when he made his defense before King Agrippa, and related the account of the vision he had when he saw a light, and heard a voice; but still there were but few who believed him; some said he was dishonest, others said he was mad; and he was ridiculed and reviled. But all this did not destroy the reality of his vision. He had seen a vision, he knew he had, and all the persecution under heaven could not make it otherwise; and though they should persecute him unto death, yet he knew, and would know to his latest breath, that he had both seen a light and heard a voice speaking unto him, and all the world could not make him think or believe otherwise.

25 So it was with me. I had actually seen a light, and in the midst of that light I saw two Personages, and they did in reality speak to me; and though I was hated and persecuted for saying that I had seen a vision, yet it was true; and while they were persecuting me, reviling me, and speaking all manner of evil against me falsely for so saying, I was led to say in my heart: Why persecute me for telling the truth? I have actually seen a vision; and who am I that I can withstand God, or why does the world think to make me deny what I have actually seen? For I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it, neither dared I do it; at least I knew that by so doing I would offend God, and come under condemnation."

And so it is with me. No matter who has ever wanted to talk me out of my beliefs, change my mind, or convince me I was wrong, I like Joseph can not deny and will never deny what I felt that day. It came out of nowhere. It was so strong and unlike anything I'd ever felt before, I knew it was from God. I will never deny it. My testimony began by hearing the First Vision of Joseph Smith. I have read books about him and his wife Emma. I have never jumped into anything blindly in my life. I have always sought after truth and knowledge and been prayerful about decisions. 

The seed that I planted has been nurtured by continual prayer, obedience, and discipleship. It has grown roots and branches and fruit. I am blessed beyond belief. Not to say I haven't had struggles since I got baptized. I have. Trust me, it hasn't been easy. But I have had Christ to lean on.

I am far from perfect and in fact I feel like I'm pretty bad at this life thing. I'm forgetful and I lose things and am late. I lose track of time and miss appointments. I lose my patience and yell at my kids. I still haven't figured out how to stay on top of papers and junk. I look around and sometimes I just feel completely overwhelmed and want to quit. But I have faith that Christ can and does make up the difference. He helps me make it through each day. I struggle with depression and anxiety and I have Satan in one ear constantly telling me that I suck and I'm not good enough. But I read my scriptures, I say my prayers, I go to church, I attend the temple, I go to therapy, I take medicine...and on and on. I'm constantly battling my demons. But I wouldn't rather be anywhere but where I am. With an amazing, loving husband and our four beautiful, fun kids.

You know when you see a great movie or read a book you love and you want to tell your friends about it? That's how I feel about the Gospel but multiplied by 1000. It has made me so happy and given me so much strength that I want to share it with everyone. You can't find true happiness without letting God in. Once you let Him in, let Him lead you. Follow Him. And little by little you'll nourish the seed you plant and it will one day bear fruit. All it takes is a tiny seed. Here are two of my favorite scriptures: The first one is from the Bible in the book of Proverbs 3:5-6. 

5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

The second one is one of the first scriptures that I read from the Book of Mormon. It's Alma 32:27-28

27 But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words.

28 Now, we will compare the word unto a seed. Now, if ye give place, that a seed may be planted in your heart, behold, if it be a true seed, or a good seed, if ye do not cast it out by your unbelief, that ye will resist the Spirit of the Lord, behold, it will begin to swell within your breasts; and when you feel these swelling motions, ye will begin to say within yourselves—It must needs be that this is a good seed, or that the word is good, for it beginneth to enlarge my soul; yea, it beginneth to enlighten my understanding, yea, it beginneth to be delicious to me.

I know what's it's like to not have the Gospel in my life. I felt like I was wondering aimlessy about life. What was my purpose? Why was I here? The Gospel answered all my questions and then some I didn't even know I had. It makes perfect sense. It's set up just like when Christ was on the earth. We have a prophet and 12 apostles. How cool is that?! In a day and age like this, why would he leave us? Have miracles ceased? NO! Do angels still walk the earth? YES! Why not? Why would He change? He is unchanging. Why is it so hard to believe that we wouldn't have prophets in our day when we need them most? 

I have felt judged. I still do sometimes. I have felt ridiculed. I'm sorry if you have to. Nobody is perfect. There are LDS people who are mean and say hurtful things. And there are a lot of non LDS people who are some of the most Christlike people I know. What matters is your personal relationship with your Father in Heaven. Don't judge the Gospel or the Church by it's imperfect people. Ask the Lord. He is perfect. He hears your prayers. He answered mine. It took me 4 years from the time I moved to Utah to when I was baptized. But as I look back, He's been guiding me all along. All I want is to do what He wants me to do. Who cares if someone is mean or offends you? Do you stop obeying God? Do you destroy your life because of them? Nope.

You are not alone. Christ knows your trials and can comfort you better than anyone. Don't listen to Satan. He wants you to be miserable and hopeless and he wants you to be alone. Don't let him win. 

Good luck on your journey. God bless you.

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Baptism Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Conversion Joseph Smith LDS Mormon Non member teen Mon, 22 Aug 2016 05:44:43 GMT
Kearney Family Photos

First off, I have to tell you how grateful I am to Jennifer for being so patient. We had to reschedule because of the weather twice and she was so easy to work with. Spring this year was tough because it was always either too windy or raining. We had to push our appointment out to June but I think you will see that it was worth it. The weather was perfect and the pictures were worth the wait. 


The Kearney family was so chill, laid back, and easy going. They're just cool, you know? Sometimes it felt like we were just taking a walk and hanging out together. Which, we kind of were, I just brought my camera.

Kearney-10Kearney-10 S70A0897S70A0897

Jennifer warned me that one of her boys would not be excited about having his picture taken and would tire of the process quickly. But guess what? He did great and was quite photogenic! They both were! Such sweet, good looking boys.

Kearney-14Kearney-14 Kearney-11Kearney-11 Kearney-19Kearney-19   Kearney-27Kearney-27 Kearney-21Kearney-21 Kearney-24Kearney-24    Kearney-28Kearney-28 Kearney-30Kearney-30 Kearney-34Kearney-34 S70A1059S70A1059

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I couldn't believe it when they told me they don't have ANY pictures of them together. They didn't get engagement or wedding pictures done. I always plan on taking at least one picture of Mom & Dad together but we had to do more to make up for lost time. Kearney-57Kearney-57 Kearney-59Kearney-59 Kearney-60Kearney-60 Kearney-62Kearney-62

If I'm being honest, I am not comfortable shooting couples. It's just not my area of expertise. So I had to improvise and I put them in the most awkward pose ever. But looking on the bright side, it made them laugh so I got some great shots of them laughing together. 


All in all I was very pleased with how the pictures turned out. I must say, I love living in Daybreak and I think it makes for beautiful backdrops. Especially if you live here and want to have pictures of where you lived. I've done so many sessions here now I really know my way around the best spots.

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Daybreak, Utah South Jordan, Utah Photographer Utah Family Photographer Thu, 16 Jun 2016 19:09:04 GMT
Mackey Family I love Instagram for many reasons. One is this family right here. Their daughter found me on Instagram and told her mom about me. I seriously lucked out getting to meet and work with these people. Their kids were so well mannered the whole time (or maybe they were just frozen). It was pretty cold and overcast but they didn't complain or fight. They were such troopers. And as you can see, they are a happy, loving family. So thank you Instagram for bringing me such an ideal client! 

I wanted to get a good headshot of each kid against this wall so mom could hang them up at home next to each other. I send my clients a questionnaire before our session together to find out if you have any particular pictures you need.  It helps me gather as much information from you as I can so that I am prepared and provide what you want.

Beautiful family and seriously so full of love for one another.

Mom put together the cutest ensemble. I just love the colors and patterns. And they look stylish, comfortable, and warm. Perfect job picking outfits Mama! That can be such a stressful part of getting pictures done. That's why I offer plenty of tips and guidance to my clients who book with me now.

Big brother was so great at helping get the little ones to smile by tickling them.

I have to admit, it was a little unusual how well these kids got along and behaved. Kudos to the parents because they're doing something right! I could sure use some help in this department.

This little guy was adorable. I asked him if he could show me how high he could jump. 


  This is their oldest daughter Layla. She is the one that found me on Instagram. She is SO sweet! And guess what I found out after the session? She's an incredibly talented singer! She has a YouTube channel you need to watch, like, share, and subscribe to here!


Thanks for checking out my fun session with the Mackey Family!

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Fall Outfit Ideas for Family Pictures Family Photographer Family Photography Instagram brought me clients happy loving family Tue, 10 May 2016 22:09:24 GMT
Family Trip to Disney's Aulani in Hawaii Hawaii-539cRTHawaii-539cRT

Aloha! Our family flew to Oahu, Hawaii in March and stayed at Disney's Aulani Resort in Ko Olina. We had so much fun! First of all, the plane ride on Delta wasn't bad at all. It was about seven hours but they have TV's you can watch or play games on at every seat. It was crazy to go from snowy cold Utah to hot and humid Hawaii in one plane ride. Not to mention we literally traveled back in time so when we got there it was about 2:30 in the afternoon and it would've been 6:30 in the evening to us. Sadie got a little wired sometimes and had us all cracking up on multiple occasions. She played peek a boo a lot.

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When we pulled up to unload at the resort the Disney experience began. They met us with smiles and "Aloha!" and gave us Leis and the kids got a Menehune necklace. It's a mischievous little guy that reminds me of a Leprechaun but the Hawaiian version. You find him hiding playfully all over the resort. There's also a scavenger hunt you can go on that tell the story of the Menehune.


This is your view when you walk through the Lobby. Very beautiful and welcoming. The beach is just off in the distance but you can't tell because of the lighting. The large rock is a volcano that the two slides go through. It's a nice big point of reference to know where you are once you are walking around the garden and pools.


I liked looking at the map first thing to get my bearings and know where everything is.

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The room was really nice! We stayed in a one bedroom suite with a kitchen, living area, two bathrooms, a separate bedroom, and a balcony. There was a sofa bed that slept two in the living area. The kids loved that there was a hidden bed under the TV in the entertainment center. They took turns sleeping there. They had a portable crib for Sadie to sleep in the bedroom with my husband and I. We fit our family of 6 comfortably.


On the master bed there was a Minnie Mouse head made out of little towels with a flower clip you get to keep. Hawaii-39Hawaii-39

After checking out our room and dropping off our bags, we headed straight to the beach. There was a beautiful sunset.

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Aulani's private beach is nice and big. There are rocks that break the big waves from coming in. There are still little waves for the kids to play in though.  


The sand is soft and hardly any rocks or shells to hurt your feet (or your hands in Belle's case). We were fine without using our water shoes.  Hawaii-50Hawaii-50 Hawaii-52Hawaii-52

Our baby girl was curious about the sand and ocean. She liked it until the wave knocked her down.


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The resort always has activities you can go to. There was a Luau the first night. We were so tired though so we didn't make it through the whole show before we headed to the room. They taught us a hula dance.  Hawaii-89Hawaii-89 Hawaii-94Hawaii-94

There are opportunities to meet characters each day. We only met Mickey and Minnie. Sadie was excited and curious from far away but when we got close up, she wasn't so sure... until Mickey played peek a boo with her. That Mickey knows kids! Hawaii-95Hawaii-95

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"Wait, you know how to do that too?!"thought Sadie.

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There are like four or five pools, a lazy river, three hot tubs, two slides, a baby splash area, and a big kid - water playground area. The beach is right by all the pools so you can go back and forth easily.

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Someone got their ears cleaned.


A little down time at the hotel.


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Where'd she go?


There she is!


I enjoyed being creative with my camera on the beach. I got lots of fun sand pictures. Hawaii-153Hawaii-153 Hawaii-155Hawaii-155    Hawaii-157Hawaii-157 Hawaii-159Hawaii-159

I tried not to drive my family crazy with the picture taking so I'd say, "Ok, 5 minute photo session!" and then I'd put my camera away and play (sometimes it was really hard for me though).

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We rented a car and drove to Haleiwa and got their famous snow cones. I actually didn't like the snow cones. It wasn't worth the drive or the wait in the long line if you ask me, sorry. But we loved eating lunch at Pizza Bob's! Great food and service! 


Benjamin found some snails after dinner.  Such a boy.

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After lunch we went to the Polynesian Cultural Center. We ended up spreading our visit to the PCC over two days. They gave us a free bounce back pass for the second day. We loved all the different shows and activities.

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Watching the Canoe Pageant.

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 We liked the show in Samoa the best. 


We really enjoyed the package that included the Luau dinner. There's a show while you eat a buffet.


Ben is laughing hysterically at how wired Sadie is at our Luau dinner. She does a wild version of peek a boo.  Hawaii-236Hawaii-236 Hawaii-238Hawaii-238 Hawaii-239Hawaii-239 Hawaii-241Hawaii-241 Hawaii-247Hawaii-247   Hawaii-248Hawaii-248

We each got on stage at one point. Danny and I because we were celebrating our 14th anniversary. In the pictures above try to find Ben on top and Clara in the bottom one.


 Yummy smoothie in a pineapple....yes please!

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My little Island Princess.

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The kids like the games in Aotearoa (New Zealand) the best.

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On our way home from the Polynesian Cultural Center we stopped at Waikiki Beach.

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Sadie is more of a Daddy's girl than any of our other babies have been. They all have loved him but she actually prefers him over me and that's new. It's ok. I love getting to witness their bond. I know it will be a blessing to each of them forever.

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 Belle and I loved our new swimsuits from Albion Fit.

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Sadie and I got up early every morning. Nothing was open so we just walked around the resort. Sometimes in the dark. It took us a long time to adjust to the time change.

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Of course my little model asked for a photo shoot on the beach. What a pair we make. Photographer and willing model.  Hawaii-468Hawaii-468 Hawaii-479Hawaii-479 Hawaii-486Hawaii-486 Hawaii-503Hawaii-503 Hawaii-512Hawaii-512 Hawaii-532Hawaii-532 Hawaii-537eHawaii-537e Hawaii-539cRTHawaii-539cRT

Sadie had to pat pat pat all the sand. It was so cute. 


We were able to check out sand toys for free.

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I saw this picture of the water washing away "stress" on Pinterest and had to get one of my own. 

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They buried Ben in the sand and then Belle tickled him.


The first day and the last day we let them get the fun Disney desserts.


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The sun has set on our little trip to Paradise. Aloha! And Mahalo.

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Aulani Aulani Resort Beach pictures Disney Aulani Family Vacation Hawaii Tue, 05 Apr 2016 18:51:02 GMT
9 Steps to Capturing Your Child's Personality On Camera Belle's Room-158sBelle's Room-158s

One of the many reasons I love photography so much is it's ability to capture a moment in time that is fleeting. A moment you will not have forever but that you want to remember. Basically, my children's entire lives. I want to remember it, I want them to remember it. Unfortunately I have a terrible memory so I rely heavily on photographs to help me remember. This is a big reason I got into photography in the first place.

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I really want us to remember this fun age my daughter is in as well as her cute room. So I decided we should do a photo shoot of her in her bedroom. It's a great location for any of your kids to have a photo shoot because it's their space. They're comfortable in their bedroom and it represents who they are. Besides, it will hopefully make them get it nice and clean for the pictures. Obviously you could do it outside but here's how I went about capturing my tween daughter's personality on camera:

  1. Do a photo shoot in their bedroom or favorite room in your house. If not their bedroom, maybe a playroom.
  2. Get it nice and clean for pictures. No clutter. If you have to, just move it all out of the way and put it back when you're done.
  3. Plan your session. Make planning for your photo shoot a collaboration between the two of you. We talked ahead of time about her hair, make-up, clothing, music, etc. Make sure they feel like their input is being valued. I would suggest having them look as natural as possible but on their best day.
  4. Open the windows, let in as much natural light as possible. Turn off the overhead lights so you don't get ugly yellow hues. And don't use your flash.
  5. In as many pictures as possible, have the light from the window on their face instead of having their back to the window. If you have to have their back to the window, use a white poster board to reflect that light back into their face.
  6. Make sure you won't be interrupted by siblings or any other distractions.
  7. Turn on some happy music your child likes. We had on a new song by Sia called "Bang Your Head" most of the time. It's upbeat and new so it's exciting.
  8. Let me be themselves.
  9. Think of things you see them do in their room typically and then have them re-enact it for the picture. So of course I had her on her phone, taking a selfie, putting on make up, looking in the mirror, dancing, singing, and being silly.

Here are the pictures from our shoot. I hope they inspire you to get creative.

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When we moved back to Utah from Texas, I let Belle help me with decorating her room. I knew that moving was going to be a difficult adjustment and I wanted her to be happy in her new space. It turns out she and I make a good little interior decorating team. She insisted on painting the walls hot pink. I chose a shade that was as bright as I was willing to go. She gave me a few ideas, Pinterest gave me a lot of ideas. I think it came together nicely and it is so representative of my fun-loving, bright, colorful daughter.

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This bedroom and this photo shoot were a great collaboration between me and my tween daughter. I am so pleased with how all the pictures turned out. I love how they show who Belle is. She is fun, silly, cool, pretty, bright, and colorful in her personality. We had a blast together. 

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Wed, 02 Mar 2016 01:41:41 GMT
You Might Be Surprised to Learn That I Have... You might be surprised to learn that I have...

Anxiety & Depression.


It's not just a passing emotion. It's not just feeling down or stressed out. It's not just something you go through when times are hard. I've dealt with it my whole life and I deal with it every single day. 

I have to stay on top of all the things I know I really need to keep my mental illness in check. I still need therapy. I still take medicine.  I need 8 hours of sleep every night. I need to exercise. I need to go to church and read my scriptures and pray. I need to do service for others. I need to talk to friends and family. I need to do my mindfulness exercises. I need to have a clean, organized environment. I need to write in my journal. I need to get massages (no really, it helps). I need to feel like I'm learning and growing by reading books and trying new things. I need to express my creativity. I need music. I need sunlight. I need fresh air. I need to read books to learn more about my illness. It takes a lot of work and I am rarely able to do it all. So my depression and/or anxiety will rear it's ugly head random and inopportune times, like today. 

So even though it's the ugly side of me I don't like to show people, I wanted to share in the hopes that maybe just one person will read this and feel like they aren't alone. Maybe someone will feel a little more understood. Maybe someone will read my list of the things I do to help myself and see one they haven't tried yet. Because I like to think that maybe sharing this will help someone out there. I know it would've helped me years and years ago when I knew something was wrong with me but I had no idea what it was. I felt lost. I felt alone. I thought no one liked me. I thought I was losing my mind. And the more I felt this way, the more I isolated myself and the worse it got. I was embarrassed and scared. I didn't want anyone to see. I didn't want anyone to know. But at the same time I was screaming for help on the inside. I had no coping skills and I was hurting myself to get the pain out of me. I took all the bad feelings and turned them into self hate and did anything to punish myself for not being better. For not just being the happy person I wanted to be. It got so bad I had panic attacks where I thought I was dying. It got so bad I was suicidal. I wanted to do the world a favor and just kill myself. I'm so glad I didn't. I never would've experienced the joy of true love. I never would've experienced the pure joy of being a mother. I never would've known how it felt to hold my baby in my arms with my heart so full I thought it might burst. I never would've felt the pride of seeing my children proudly proclaim, "look what I did Mommy!" But I did. And I got help. I got better. And now I have coping skills. I have an action plan for when those dark moments hit. I did it. And so anyone else can do it too.

If someone you love suffers from anxiety and/or depression, please learn as much about it as possible so you can help them. The worst thing you can say are little platitudes like, "cheer up", "don't worry", "this too shall pass", etc. It just makes them feel less understood and worse. Don't think they can get better if they just pray more or give service. Those things help but they aren't enough alone. That's like telling a diabetic they don't need their insulin, they just need to pray it away. Serious mental illness needs medicine and therapy. The best thing you can do is listen and validate. LISTEN & VALIDATE. It's not hard and you just might save their life.

Thanks for listening.

Here's a quick list of my coping skills:

  1. Breathe! Seriously. Deep breaths is the very first thing I do when I feel it coming on.
  2. Pray
  3. Be Mindful and present. 
  4. Get 8 hours of sleep every night
  5. Exercise
  6. Go to a therapist
  7. See if they think you need medicine
  8. Read more about mental health
  9. Read self help books
  10. Post uplifting quotes where you can see them
  11. Worship however you need to
  12. Read whatever scriptures you believe in
  13. Serve someone else
  14. Talk to your friends or family about your feelings
  15. Write in a journal
  16. Clean up your physical environment
  17. Go outside. 
  18. Lay in the sun.
  19. Learn a new skill.
  20. Get a massage
  21. Read a good book
  22. Listen to good music
  23. Be around positive people
  24. Do something creative

Please leave comments with any more ideas that you have or anything that helps you.


]]> (Nicholette Photography) Anxiety and Depression Coping Skills Listen and validate Tue, 23 Feb 2016 03:26:28 GMT
Lifestyle Newborn Shoot with Rose I used to think there was only one type of newborn photography. You know the kind where they wrap the baby up and put it in a cute basket. I think it's so cute but I never wanted to do that kind of photography because it looks like so much work. I also hate clutter in my house and I didn't want to have to collect all the props required.  Then I discovered lifestyle newborn photography. It's just more natural and it's totally more my style.  There's nothing wrong with the other kind of newborn photography, in fact I paid to get those pictures for my last baby and I love them. It's just not the style I wanted to do as a photographer. 

Take a look at my most recent lifestyle newborn session with precious baby Rose.

 Big sister Take my hand baby sister. I'll show you the way.

Through a mother's eyes.

So much love in their faces.

Look what love can make.

In Daddy's Arms.

I love the look on mom's face.

One of my favorites.

Look at those fingers! Precious baby profiles are the best.

Tiny pink toes. This was one of those perfect timing shots. I was so lucky to capture baby's smile. This is my favorite shot of the session.

Another favorite. Just makes you want a baby.

Comforted by Mom's hands.

Bringing a brand new baby home is such a special time and I was so grateful to get to capture a small part of it with this sweet family.

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Lifestyle Lifestyle Newborn Photography Newborn Nicholette Photography Photographer Photography Utah Wed, 17 Feb 2016 13:46:36 GMT
What would you save in a fire?

Have you ever thought about what you would want to save if your home was on fire and you had just a few minutes to get out (besides people & pets)?  I have.  My scrapbooks and picture boxes.  So my memories are the most precious possession I have.   Everything else is replaceable.  It’s just stuff.  But the pictures of my babies are irreplaceable. This is all hypothetical but my point is, I treasure my pictures.

Utah Lifestyle Newborn PhotographyUtah Lifestyle Newborn Photography

Now you might be thinking about digital images.  Those would be safe in your computer, right?  Maybe.  Maybe not. But how often do you sit and look at them with your children and reminisce about the past?  I have some albums of our family pictures that my kids love to sit and look at.  In 50 years when they want to show their grandchildren what they looked like and what life was like for them, do you think they will sit around a computer?  Who’s to say computers won’t be totally different by then and that jpg’s will still even be a thing you can use? But a beautiful album will be an heirloom they can pass down to generations.

Daybreak, Utah Children's PhotographerDaybreak, Utah Children's Photographer

As I think about what I want to offer my clients, I want to give them something that lasts.  Not just take pictures that will sit in their computer for months or years before they get around to maybe printing a couple 4x6’s or 8x10’s. I want them to have a portrait they can proudly hang on the wall and an album they can keep for generations.

Daybreak Utah Family PhotoDaybreak Utah Family PhotoUtah Family Photo Session in Daybreak

This is why I feel so passionately about printing your products with me.  I will no longer hand over a CD of images or allow downloading from an online gallery only. I want to give my clients something tangible that lasts. I am now offering a viewing session two weeks after each photo session where we will sit and look at your images together.  I will be there to offer expert guidance and advice about which images will work best and which package will best fit your needs.  Because I still see the purpose in digital versions, I will include digital files of all the images that are part of your print package.


]]> (Nicholette Photography) Photo Albums Print your pictures Save in a fire files heirlooms prints tangible Mon, 11 Jan 2016 17:12:38 GMT
Reflection Time Daybreak, Utah Children's PhotographerDaybreak, Utah Children's Photographer The end of each year is a time for reflection.  Looking back at the past year we can take an inventory of our lives.  Overall, was it good or bad?  I look at my goals to see how I did.  There are some goals maybe we completely forgot about and some we met and surpassed and others we're still working on.  Wherever you are, hopefully it's a bit further ahead than you were a year ago.  And if not... if it was a particularly hard year, did you learn? Did you grow?  We look back to assess where we are currently and then make adjustments to continue on the path to our ultimate goal.  I love this time of looking back so we can decide what we need going forward.  

I'm always trying to get better.  "Trying" being the key word here.  For instance, there are some things I'm still really bad at after all this time.  I accept those things as weaknesses and realize that I might improve at a much slower rate than I'd hoped, if at all.  Maybe I just make adjustments instead of trying to improve.  For example, I really really hate anything and everything having to do with food.  It's strange!  I don't get it and it makes me feel really bad!  I hate meal planning, grocery shopping, meal preparation, and cleaning up.  It's not like, oh I don't like it.  It's like I have a giant negative end of a magnet inside me and the meal preparation has a giant positive end and I'm repulsed in every way.  I feel like it's gotten worse over time because I can't get over it so my disappointment in myself grows and makes it stronger.  Am I totally weird?  Does anyone else feel this way? Maybe you can sense this is my biggest disappointment looking back over my year.  I always set a goal to improve in this area.  I know how important nutrition is.  I know how important it is to sit down and eat dinner together as a family.  So I just feel incredibly guilty.  Any suggestions or support in this area would be greatly appreciated.

On a more positive note, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I've learned and grown in my photography business this year!  And what's better is that I feel like I've just scratched the surface.  It's like the more I learn, the more I realize I have SO much more to learn!  Does that make sense?  And it's so incredibly fun and exciting!  I'm looking forward to 2016 for this reason.  I've been working really hard on getting things set up for an incredible year. Stay tuned!

So how about you?  How was 2015 for you?  Have you progressed?  What was your surprise and your disappointment?  I'd love to hear about it.

]]> (Nicholette Photography) 2015 Reflection end of year goals going forward looking back Fri, 01 Jan 2016 04:42:54 GMT
Get to Know Me  

Hi Friends! Welcome to Nicholette Photography! I use my given name, Nicholette, for my photography business because it just sounded better and more sophisticated. But please call me Nicky.  I live in a beautiful neighborhood in South Jordan, Utah called Daybreak.  My husband and our 4 kids have moved around a bit so we have some Ohio (Go Cavs!) and Texas pride too.  I'm a native Texan, lived in New Mexico for a while, and then moved to Utah when I was 14.  What happened after that is a long story for another time. But ultimately there are 5 things you should know about me:

1. I'm a Mom!  I have been blessed with 4 beautiful, confident, independent, intelligent, outgoing children.  3 girls and 1 boy.  You will see a lot of pictures of my kids. Well, except maybe my son who won't hold still or look at the camera. My first priority is to my family.  I do my best to balance my photography business but if I'm ever not on top of it, it's because my family comes first.  If I have to choose to get those pictures edited or help my kids with their homework, I'll choose them every time.  That doesn't mean I don't offer excellent customer service though.  I make up for it by getting up early in the morning, working during nap time, and at night.  I get the work done because I love and value my clients and I want to give them an amazing experience.

2. I have the best husband in the world!  Not only is he super hot (stay back ladies) but he's also super helpful and SO good to me.  Marrying him was the best decision I ever made.  I could go on and on about this man but I'll save something for another post.  Maybe a post about how we met would be fun!


3. I LOVE photographing families and children. I have a degree in Human Development and Family Studies.  I read books about families and parenting for fun.  I love psychology and learning how people think and why.  I love people and making connections.  Photography allows me to do what I love while supporting something I believe in strongly, meet new people and hopefully forge relationships with them. I love photographing children because they are so genuine.  They don't worry about if their shirt makes them look fat.  They show pure emotion. I feel most comfortable around children because I don't worry about them judging me. And it's easy to get them to smile, just ask them how high they can jump!

Daybreak, Utah Children's PhotographerDaybreak, Utah Children's Photographer

4. I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  Religion is a hard arena to navigate in business but this is just too big of a piece of me to leave out.  It is the very essence of who I am.  I converted to the LDS faith when I was 18.  I felt like I finally found where I belonged and I was home.  Since I know how I felt being on the other side, I am sensitive to people who do not have the same beliefs as me.  But if you're ever curious like I was, I love telling people what a blessing it's been for me!  And I love everyone from every background. Love is always the answer.

5. I suffer from anxiety and depression.  It does not define who I am as a person but it is a real struggle in my life that I can't ignore.  I have to be proactive in keeping the symptoms at bay.  I'm conscious of it lurking just around the corner every single day. If I'm low on sleep, haven't eaten healthy, haven't exercised, haven't prayed or kept up on my spiritual nourishment, haven't been living mindfully and something stressful arises, I feel it!  I have gone through years of therapy and I feel like I control it now instead of the other way around.  But this is a topic I'm very passionate about and I'll talk to anyone who needs help or just wants to understand it better.  We all know someone who struggles with this so we all need to be more aware of exactly what it is and how we can help them.  I LOVE to counsel people who need help. Especially young girls because that's when my symptoms were the worst and it was really scary but that's for another blog post too.

I hope you enjoyed getting to know the basics of who I am. There's a lot more but this is my core.  Have you seen "Rise of the Gaurdians" where Santa talks about his core?  If mine were one word it would be 'connections'.  What's your core?  

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Anxiety & Depression Child and Family Photography LDS Nicholette Photography Nicky Photographer Fri, 11 Dec 2015 22:32:00 GMT
Boho Chic Baby Nursery Lifestyle Photography Shoot I haven't done much "lifestyle" photography but I'm loving how these turned out.  Candids have always been my favorite type of pictures. This mama had such a cute style.  It was all very boho chic.  I wish I was cool enough to think of something like that!  She and her mom made the feather headband baby Juniper is wearing.  Even her name is stylish!

Utah Lifestyle Newborn PhotosUtah Lifestyle Newborn Photos

]]> (Nicholette Photography) Newborn boho chic family nursery parents Fri, 16 Oct 2015 13:48:06 GMT