Welcome and thanks for visiting the DOK Photo blog! I'm a natural light photographer serving Moab, Utah, and specializing in newborn and child photography. This is where I post sneak peeks of recent sessions, my attempts at memory-keeping, and sources of inspiration.
Please feel free to contact me via the link below with any questions you may have!

Friday, September 19, 2014

letters to our sons | september 2014

One of the reasons I created a blog was to capture this time when my sons are young. So I’m excited to join a group of friends as we share about the boys in our lives on the third Friday of each month. You can follow our blog circle to Jacqui’s letter to her adorable boy, and continue all the way through the blog circle.

All of these photos were taken on my iPhone, because that’s just how we roll these days…I love them not for the quality of light or composition, but for the bit of our story they capture.


Dear Aidan,

Can I just say, for the record, how in awe I am of how you have handled all the changes of the past few months? We all found it difficult to leave Moab, but you most of all. At first you were adamant that you weren’t going to move. I’m so grateful that, as upset as you were, you were able to articulate so well how you felt, what you thought, and share that with your dad and me. When we came back from our house-hunting trip, you said to me, “I feel like two people, because during the day I get excited about the move and a new house, and then at night I just get sad again.” I felt the same way, but you put it in words so well.

aidan at sandy beach california

At the same, you started the whole new world of middle school, ie: locker combinations, six different teachers, a schedule and lots more to master. You’re up every morning at 6 AM for your shower, followed by a hot cup of tea and bacon with toast. You’re getting the habit of using the daily planner to remember homework. You’re home a good hour before brothers---and I so enjoy that time to talk with you, to hear not so much about your day but usually about your next idea, a funny story you read, or big plans you have.

uncle kevin and stephaniePixar with MA and the boysaidan and godmama angie

I was trying to think what helped you make all these transitions so well. One big blessing, for all of us, has been having so much time with our favorite people during our first month in a new place. We’d had fun with my old friend Kris and her kids who live nearby, and your beloved Gramare came to stay with us. Your favorite uncle met us in San Francisco, and we actually got to share a house with the Rockows for a few days in Point Reyes. Your godmother Angie always lights up for you, and  Mary Alice, just days after we all celebrated her wedding, gave us a personal tour of what you now like to refer to as your “future place of employment,” Pixar.

I think it’s helped that Golden is such a beautiful place, that you’ve had our dog Duke along for the whole ride, that the library is just down the street from our rental, that you have your own room for the very first time, and that you’ve had your own goals to work toward (first: to save for your own iMac; second: to convince your parents to let you watch “Terminator”).

Mostly though, I think it comes down to you. You’ve chosen to have a positive attitude, and to focus on the good things. You’ve risen to new responsibilities and freedoms. You’ve been a big help to me personally, whether it be walking Duke or carrying a vacuum up three floors! You look out for your brothers, and they look out for you. The other day we brought cookies to our local fire station, continuing a tradition we had for years in Moab. We weren’t expecting to spend more than a minute saying thanks, but the volunteer fire fighter delighted in showing us their trucks and station. I know you felt you were too old for the tour, but you rose to the occasion. While your brothers were shy and silent, you listened intently and told him how cool you thought his work was. That generosity of spirit is what I appreciate most about you, Aidan.

As we were leaving, the fire fighter asked what you thought of Golden. “It’s awesome,” you replied. Then he asked, “Better than where you came from?” And you said, “I wouldn’t go that far.”

You’ve already come so far, and I’m grateful.

More than all the stars,




Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Easy Memory-Keeping via Facebook Screenshots


The above image is from my favorite photo app Collect, another tool for easy memory keeping.

Are you ready for the laziest blog post easiest memory-keeping ever?

To say this summer has been a whirlwind is an understatement.

During one of the busiest weeks, my friend Lara challenged me to share three gratitudes for five days on Facebook. I’m so grateful to her for the challenge, because it helped give me perspective each day and realize how much I had to be grateful for (it was often hard to just pick three!).

And now I have those posts as a bit of memory-keeping of a time that will soon be a blur. Even with its timeline, I find Facebook difficult to refer back to and just never do, whereas I love revisiting old post here. So I’m going to repost that challenge here---just so I’ll be able to find it again!

The challenge started the day after our See-You-Soon party, but more than anything we are grateful for good friends and the wonderful send off we felt.

banner party

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset

collage of see you soon photos_edited-1

nolie and his buddies Ethan and Pierson


day3 or 2





nolie big finish




day 5


Friday, July 18, 2014

letters to our sons | july 2014

One of the reasons I created a blog was to capture this time when my sons are young. So I’m excited to join a group of friends, moms, and fellow photographers as we share about the boys in our lives on the third Friday of each month. You can follow our blog circle to Lori Reed Asher of Dreamers Come In next, and continue all the way back here.

Almost all of these photos were taken on our iPad, because that’s just how we roll these days…I love them not for the quality of light or composition, but for the bit of our story they capture.

sean reading harry potter

Dear Sean,

These are not easy days. Good days, but not easy days. I know you tire of hearing me say, “We can do hard things.” I say it as much for myself as for you.

We are moving. Whenever I write these letters, I imagine you older, reading them perhaps after I’m gone. I wonder what your perspective on this big change will be in 30 years or so. Will all your memories of Moab be romanticized with nostalgia? Will you remember the layout of this house? Will you declare our move “the best thing that ever happened” or will you regret ever leaving?



You are a happy guy. Like your mama, you are a sucker for a sad story, even a tad melodramatic, but you also love to laugh and make others laugh. Aidan challenged you to keep a straight face for the photo below---but three seconds was your limit.


When we told you about your dad’s new job and the move, the first thing you asked was whether we would return once a month for your radio show. Obviously this was influenced by the fact that we had just returned home for your gig, but I still thought it endearing.


When I asked what worries you had about the move, you replied that you make friends easily. I couldn’t understand, although I agreed that you do make friends oh so easily (my friend Kris recently joked that when she took you and your brothers to their neighborhood pool, they had to wait when leaving for you to say goodbye to all your new friends). “Why does making friends easily worry you?” I asked.

“Because I’ll make them quickly and won’t know which ones are real friends,” you replied, with concern in your voice. Sean, the fact that you know at age 9 that there is a difference between real friends and quick friends means you’re already wiser than most.


Mother Teresa said, “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” (A line I first read at Momastery, and also my source for the mantra: We Can Do Hard Things).

Your dad and I have spent countless hours and conversations pondering whether this move is the right decision. Ultimately, I believe it will be up to each of us to make it the right decision. On our drive back from Flagstaff last week, after a much needed respite with your god-cousins, we were discussing the move and I was trying to explain this idea. I could barely hear you from the far back seat, your “bachelor pad” as we call it. You were quoting the little collage in our front entry way---the same frame I’ve been criticizing myself for not having updated in four years.

“Home is wherever we are together!” you proclaimed.

Right you are, my middlest. We’re moving, but we’re taking our home with us, so long as we never forget that we belong to each other.

More than all the stars,



You can follow our blog circle to Lori Reed Asher of Dreamers Come In for the next letter to our sons, and continue all the way through the blog circle.

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