Kawelo Bay Family Session

I had a blast meeting this awesome, soon to be family of 4.   Seriously, non-stop laughs with this couple.  I’m still convinced that the universe hand selects wonderful people to be my clients.   Right when we got started with this session at Kawelo Bay, it dumped rain on us for 10 minutes straight!  Hiding in the banyan trees couldn’t even keep us from getting soaked.  Despite the fact that this pregnant mama was soaking wet, she threw her hair up and we continued to get some awesome shots.  The rain kept threatening to return so we opted to finish the session at sunset on a west side beach.  We picked up right where we left off and luckily, they didn’t get soaked by a huge wave until the very end of the session.

Their gallery is neat because they got a variety of different photos.  Some creative ones with the banyan trees, natural light shots, and off camera flash sunset shots.  So happy to have met them and excited for their second blessing, a precious little girl that will be 13 months younger than her super sweet brother, Elliot.


Stephanie Hughes Photography Oahu, Hawaii

Stephanie Hughes Photography Oahu, Hawaii

Stephanie Hughes Photography Oahu, Hawaii

Stephanie Hughes Photography Oahu, Hawaii

Stephanie Hughes Photography Oahu, Hawaii




Cheers to the Chaos of Motherhood

The greatest love I’ve ever experienced is with my children.  I will forever cherish the many times my son has grabbed my face, stared into my eyes, smiled and said, “I love you, Mommy.”  My heart literally skipped a beat.  No love I’ve ever received from any other person, in my lifetime, could come close to the kind of love between my kids and myself.  Watching my daughter grow into the most often, wild four year old that she is, has been a blessing to me.  Even the days when she asks me 874 questions, demands something from me every 3 minutes, pisses off her brother continuously to get constant attention, screams as loud as she can, complains about everything, can’t sit still to save her life, spills every drink she receives…even those days (which are the most frequent currently) I cherish.

Today, I taught her how to mince garlic.  She did excellent with the knife but I can’t lie, I was super nervous.  She refused to cut the onion and made the biggest drama out of it.  Demanded that I wear sunglasses because she couldn’t stand to see me cry.  Asked why onions were so rude and wanted to hurt peoples eyes.  I had to stop, google the reason onions make you cry, and explain synpropanethial-S-oxide to a four year old. I will not divulge how long this conversation took.  After all was said and done, we ended up making one of the best dinners ever made in our house.  She was nodding her head in approval and beaming to her dad about the dinner SHE had made, and pride got me a little emotional.

My children changed my entire outlook on life.  In my 20’s, I was a bartender who drank heavily.  I had no fear of kayaking miles out into the ocean, jumping off the highest point of a waterfall, skydiving, surfing… you name it.  I had many friends to call up whenever I wanted to do something fun and party.  I had roommates.  I was free to come and go as I pleased.  Now, in my 30’s, I have a 2 and 4 year old.  I haven’t gone to the bathroom alone in 4 years.  I forgot what it’s like to spend hours in Target roaming.  Beach days consist of building sand castles on the shore.  I would now, fear of all of the things I used to do because I wouldn’t want my children to be left without a mother.  You could say, I have a new found issue referred to as anxiety.  I run a highly successful business along with two other small businesses.  I am a teacher, horsey, tickle monster, maid, servant, chef, baker, butt wiper, boo boo kisser, receptionist, scheduler, and entrepreneur.  I am a breastfeeding, co-sleeping, baby wearing mom.  I run off of 6 hours of sleep if I’m lucky.  I can’t wipe up a spill without someone jumping on my back.  I can make anything out of Playdoh.  I have three friends to call for play dates.  I haven’t been to a yoga class in months.  And I wouldn’t change a single thing!

Sometimes, I wish I could just walk into a grocery store to grab something really quickly; without unloading kids, getting begged for everything we pass by, hearing the whining for a free cookie at Safeway, stopping someone from trying to surf in the shopping cart, forgetting the reusable bags in the car because someone was talking my ear off on the way in, and the crying if someone can’t scan the items at self check out.  But I can’t, and I have learned to not only accept these facts but love them.  The stay at home mom years fly by and will be short and sweet memories in my near future.   I will cherish these years of chaos because I will have the next 30+ of freedom.  I actually dread the day when no one wants to cruise with mommy anymore.  The sensitive being that I am, will probably get super emotional when they clean up their own spills, do their own laundry and cook their own meals later on.

So the point of this Mother’s Day read is to cherish the chaos.  Even the days when you want to crawl back in bed and cry, and it’s only 8:00 am.  Or the days you have the stomach flu, your head is in the toilet and 2 people are standing over you asking when you’re taking them to the park.  Or the days that you have a very important appointment, you can’t be late to and someone craps up their back.  Know that some other mom, somewhere in the world is having the same shitty day.  Just give up and play.   Wishing you all a very Happy Mother’s Day!  You are doing your best, you are amazing, you are strong, you are killing it!

Warm aloha,



Luca’s Cake Smash

When cake smashes first began to gain popularity, I have to admit, I thought they were pretty ridiculous.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for messy babies so it wasn’t so much the mess.  It was mainly just the morality of it.  The thought of letting a one year old double fist cake was not ideal to me.  I’m more of the let them double fist fruits and veggies kind of mom.  I’ll admit that I gave both of my little babies homemade avocado chocolate pudding and yogurt on occasion, and let them do their messy thing but each of those hold some nutritional value.

I eventually realized that the reason I gave my kids messy foods wasn’t only to teach them to feed (paint) themselves but also for the memories.  Then cake smashes made perfect sense to me.  Some of these cakes come with a hefty price tag and the photo session itself isn’t easy on the wallet but the memories you are left with are priceless.  With that said, Luca’s cake smash had us all laughing so hard we were almost in tears.  In my experience, most babies were afraid of their cake.  Luca was not.  He was double fisting, laughing at it, rubbing it all over his face, sliding in it…he loved everything about his turtle cake.  I am so pleased that I was able to capture these memories for Luca and his family.


Cake SmashCake Smash Cake SmashCake Smash