Some may have noticed that I have that things have been a bit quiet with my online presence and emailed newsletters.  I greatly reduced the amount of time devoted to my business due to a family tragedy.  Here is what I posted on my personal Facebook site a few months ago.



With the heaviest of heart, I must write my most painful Facebook post ever.

On April 1st, 2016 my mother was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, Glioblastoma Stage 4 in the Thalamus…the worst brain tumor in the worst location. Unfortunately, early this morning my mother lost her battle with this highly aggressive cancer.

My mom was the best mother a girl could have ever asked for. She has made me everything I am today. She gave me my optimism, my patience, my sense of empathy. I have lost more than just a mom. I lost a best friend, shopping buddy, adventure seeker, personal chef, handyman, firework chaser, and best grandmother ever. She was the most thoughtful and selfless person I have ever met. Always coming to my rescue, from a little girl struggling through school to a full grown adult struggling with parenting and life. She dropped everything to help me and did it with a smile. She was always doing and thinking of everyone else. From helping to plan my friend’s wedding to taking another friend to her proton therapy appointment and everything in between.

I can not imagine a world where I am not greeted by her giant smile, hugs, and kisses. I can not imagine a world without her amazing cooking. I will miss her chicken pot pie, salads, and oatmeal chocolate chip cookies the most. A world where I can not call her up with a quick cooking question when I’m in a pinch. It is just too painful to think about.

She has meant the world to so many people. She was loved so deeply by an amazing group of friends and family. I am forever grateful for all of the support that was shown to my family over these last 4 painful months. People have dropped everything to rush to be by her bedside. In every room she occupied, her bedside was lined with chairs so that a heavy rotation of friends and family could sit and hold her hand.

My house is filled with constant reminders of her. The wonderfully thoughtful gifts, the walls that she helped me paint, the pictures she helped me hang, and the furniture she helped put together. She made my family’s house a home. I am forever grateful for everything she ever taught me and the amazing way she loved me and my family.

RIP to the sweetest mother, grandmother, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, and friend anyone could have ever asked for. You will be kept alive in all of us.

I love you Mom! xoxoxoxoox

Your devoted daughter, Claire

It has been a few months since she passed but it is no easier.  I now feel like my title is now motherless daughter instead of mom, wife, daughter, photographer, etc.  Losing your mom in particular is life altering, esp when you lose her early.    Every day is a struggle.  I know this is something I will never recover from but just learn how to manage the pain.  I am still learning how to incorporate her into my daily life so I can keep her spirit alive.  She gave me the most amazing foundation for life and know I am better off then most with that foundation.

The day we found out about my mom’s brain tumor, we were on vacation in Florida.  (Slightly different from past trips to Anna Maria.)  She was leaving the next day to meet with the surgeons in Philly.  Here are a few shots of our last days together in Florida and her last birthday with us at home.

These are the hardest images for me to look at because it was after the diagnosis and we were terrified of her fate.  However, I am so happy that I have them and will treasure them always.  Until we meet again Mom!
Please feel free to share your story of lost in the comments below.   Learning how you dealt with the pain and how you are managing now would be wonderful to hear about.
Much love!
  • Bernadette - Claire,
    Thank you for sharing these very precious pictures of Maggi with us. I have no easy advise for you on how to recover from this tragic loss. I have found that being thankful for all of life – the hard and the happy helps. I recently wrote this:

    I am enchanted by October. I find everything about this month irresistible. The sound and feeling of the crunch of leaves as I walk in the morning, the light that blazes so clear that is reveals all the nuances of the landscape, the vistas filled with oranges and yellows against an impossibly blue sky. Then in the evening the gift of the orange of a blazing harvest moon, with Venus sitting like a diamond next to it accompanied by the smell of the first fires being lit in nearby homes. All of the beauties of this month I give thanks for.

    But most of all I give thanks that I am still able to be enchanted by October. For October brought to my family our greatest tragedy. A tragedy I wasn’t sure that I would be able to survive. But I did and we all did. And I give thanks that although my heart will fill with sadness this month, I am still able to be enchanted with October’s beauty.

    Sending love to you,

  • Ann Marie - This is a wonderful tribute and the pictures are too beautiful for words. I love you so, so, so much. XoxoReplyCancel

  • Annie - Oh, Claire. I can’t imagine how hard these days have been. Thank you for sharing and for these beautiful pictures. What a gift to have them.ReplyCancel

There is an old adage, “new home, new baby”. This mom just moved into her new home and didn’t even have the nursery set up for our time together the baby was so new.  It actually turned into a wonderful opportunity to shoot with a clean slate.  The nursery had such beautiful lighting, paired with the simplicity of the room and the adorable mom/baby, it made for a great session together.  So please moms, don’t stress out over having a perfect home for your session.  I understand life is so busy and expectations on parents today are so high.  I really need very little when I come to your home.  An empty room can easily be transformed by me with no stress on your already crazy life.  (I get it, I am a mom in the same situation.)  Here I just brought a raised aerobed and some blankets, mom and baby did the rest.


This family was so laid back and easy to photograph. I loved just watching the parents bond with their brand new son.  This last image is my favorite.  It won’t be long before that tiny little baby is towering over mom.  Freezing this moment in time is what mom will treasure for a lifetime.


When your child comes into the world, every first is a big deal.  You suddenly understand why parents get so excited when their little one lifts their head, rolls over, or puts something to their mouth.  The littlest accomplishments are celebrated with massive jubilation.  So of course, in relation, the very first birthday is something that should be treated as though it is the second coming.

The biggest part of the first birthday that makes it such a huge deal, is that your newborn is now transitioning to a “big kid”.  That the tiny little hand that grabbed your finger in the hospital is now roaming around the house creating noise and mass destruction.  Their little personalities are finally here and they are so much fun.  I love that mom wanted to capture this milestone with me.  This family of four was full of so much love and were a blast to photograph.  They love the spending time together in the kitchen, the pool, or on long walks.  Fun fact, if dad looks familiar, he was in the Sopranos.  How fun!


This set of images with mom and son make my heart happy.  I love documenting the connection between two family members.  Capturing these moments are my main goal for a family.  These are the memories that you will yearn for when they are all grown up.  The hugs, the kisses, the squeals of delight as you throw them in the air.  This is what you want to remember.


Of corse, time with dad can’t be forgotten.  two handsome dudes.


Sometimes older siblings are my best assistants.


Even the toughest of guys turn to mush when they have a daughter.  I love the bond between these two.



When I first met this family, they were a family of three.  Their only child was very serious and shy when he first met me but eventually came around and showed me his wonderfully happy and silly side.  Along comes baby number two and a warm up session was not needed at all.  His happy go lucky personality was evident from the start.  He has a smile and laugh that will warm the worst cynic’s heart.  Editing this session alone had me in ear to ear smiles.  Pair that with absolutely lovely parents that are perfectly laid back and warm and you provide an amazing home for children.


My goodness…I just want to squeeze that face!!!


Am I the only one that is sucker for a baby in a crib?


The hardest part of having a second child is having your first born share your attention.  There are so many wonderful things that go along with having more than one child, however, there is something special about the child that makes you a mom.  It is hard to gently push them away to take care of a completely helpless baby because they used to be your biggest priority.  Big brother was happy to get some snuggle time with mom.  The little smile that came from his once serious face shows that wonderful bond.


One of the best parts of photographing families in their home, is documenting the beauty in every day life.  Peeking in on what life looked like when you are a child is a treat when you become an adult.  This family moved shortly after this session so they most certainly will never remember this apartment without looking back at photos. This image makes me happy because you can see  the evidence of children in the home with their chic style.  I love watching dad sitting on the floor, playing with the kids. Those are the memories you want your children to remember.


Incorporating grandparents into a session is a great way to ramp up the memory making.  There is something so special about watching a grandparent – grandchild bond.


When my son was younger, he was obsessed with Thomas the Train.  When big brother wanted to play with his train with his dad set, I was excited.  Laying out the tracks in different arrangements with a child is a lot of fun.


This was one of my favorite images from the session together.  It is very graphic and I love that it has his little hands in it…plus dad’s encouraging presence can be seen by his shoes in the lower right corner.


Thank you to this family for being such a wonderful family to photograph.  I hope these images help preserve memories of your first home together as a family.


It has been awhile since my last post. There have been a number of dramatic changes in my life that I will update you all in a separate post. However, I wanted to start my newest post continuing from where I left off…kind of like a soap opera. :O)

We last left off with a super stylish, movie star like couple expecting their first child. We were blessed with a beautiful day down the jersey shore. Of course their newborn session was just as amazing. Their daughter’s nursery is breath taking…in fact, I would love her room for myself. The bed and bedding alone make my heart skip a beat.  Thankfully it is also filled with lot of natural light. Watching a couple transition into parenting always warms the heart. These two seem to have transitioned effortlessly.



Fast forward a couple of months…