This Christmas was one of the best holidays to date! For the first time both of my boys were totally into the whole baby Jesus and Santa Claus thing. They both could understand and logic why we celebrate Christmas. Their little enthusiastic spirits have made this Christmas season filled with so much joy, laughter, and excitement! I feel beyond happy for the many things I have been given in my life. My loving husband, my wonderful children, a talent that I find complete happiness in, wonderful clients, a roof over my head, a warm bed to sleep in, food in my tummy, and a firm faith that Jesus is the Christ. There is a deep gratitude I have for the sacrifice He made for each one of us. I don't mean to get all preachy, but for this time of year I feel it is only appropriate. Merry Christmas to all!

Here is Hudson making his Christmas scribble letter to Santa...too cute! Do you like his backwards "s"?!
Hudson & Sloan were so excited to see that Santa had eaten some of the cookies they left out for him.
Christmas + 14 family members = a TON of presents under the tree!
christmas_004.jpgchristmas_005.jpgSloan's favorite gift was a Little People farm...the kid LOVES animals!
christmas_006.jpgHudson's favorite gift was a t-rex mask! We bought it off of Etsy!

christmas_007.jpgI made it a point to bring our tripod so we could take a family photo on Christmas day, it was the first time all of us had been together for quite some time. It was quite funny setting the timer, RUNNING for my life, and then try to look normal for the shot, lol!
christmas_008.jpgI have a fun family!
christmas_009.jpgHere's my beautiful mother DeAnne and my wonderful step-father Mark. So glad to call these people my parents! I had my little sis Nicole DeAnne do my mom's hair and make-up specifically for this shot, it had been a long time since I took a good portrait of my mom and dad together.
Now that Christmas is over, we are looking forward to an amazing new year! There is so much to look forward to, so many more amazing people to work with, and many more blessings to be had! Here's the Lyon family wishing all of you Happy Holidays and a VERY Merry Christmas!

PS. Keep a look out for our next post on the 28th where we will announce the top three submissions for our big Wedding Photography giveaway! There is still some time to send in submissions, so if you know of any deserving couples please email

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MOM said:
I love you so much honey - you are amazing and so incredibly talented!!!! I love to hear people comment on yours and Justin's photography - Dad and I are so proud of you and your wonderful little boys - we too loved this Christmas - It was wonderful because we have you all to share it with!
(12.26.09 05:56 PM)
Corinna Hoffman said:
what a beautiful family :)
(12.26.09 07:28 PM)
kristen said:
How fun. What an incredible way to capture Christmas. Go Jesus!
(12.26.09 07:43 PM)
stacy benintendi said:
amelia, your mom looks so beautiful in that first picture of your parents...even better than that, she looks like she FEELS beautiful. i love that for her and i love that you were able to capture that for her. you are a good daughter! i'm so glad your christmas was great...we were all barfing. hahaha!
(12.26.09 08:15 PM)
kayleen t. said:
Merry Christmas to you and your family! Your mom has great style btw, check out her skinny jeans!
(12.26.09 09:06 PM)
ohana photographers said:
hope your christmas was full of love and blessings guys! bring on the new year!
(12.27.09 10:16 AM)
mandii said:
thank you for sharing your rich inner life with your rich life filled photographs!!! checking your blog is one of my favorite rituals! have a blessed and beautiful new year!!!!
(12.27.09 12:22 PM)
Feuza said:
these are so great! I have two boys as well and can so relate, love the fun family shots and that tree with tons of presents, so glad for that lucky couple too!
(12.27.09 05:46 PM)
Brenda Landrum said:
So adorable Amelia! I love the backward S because my 4yo daughter does the same thing!!!
(12.27.09 07:08 PM)
Tina said:
I came across your website from my photography magazine and now have stumbled upon your blog =) I just have to say that I am completely in awe and inspired by your photography! Makes me want to take my camera out right now and start shooting! Then on top of it to see you display your faith - that to me is such a blessing. Not too many people tend to do that these days so it's nice to see it. I hope you had a Merry Christmas and I'm bookmarking your blog here!
(12.27.09 10:12 PM)
nina renee designs said:
Gorgeous photos and family :-)
(12.28.09 04:18 PM)
Alexandra said:
These photos are beautiful!
(12.29.09 03:50 AM)
Kenna Marrelli said:
Matt and Kim are my choice for the wedding pkg. They have been through many challenges and are still going strong. I am a friend of Emily Searle.
(12.30.09 03:13 PM)
Rob L said:
I came across your site after searching for photos after getting my D90 for xmas and I love your photography! I am looking for software/plugins for post-processing my family photos. Do you have any suggestions? What kind of stuff are you using?
(01.02.10 02:26 PM)
Jane said:
I love those family shots. Any contests for a family session coming up? :)
(01.03.10 09:28 PM)
dressesshop said:
the family is so happy! i am longing for such a happy family, thanks for sharing ! :)
(07.01.11 07:30 PM)
Listed below are links to blogs that reference this entry: A Very Merry Christmas! . TrackBack URL for this entry:
Yippeee! You read that right! We're giving away one of our wedding photography collections for FREE! Many of you may recall last year when we ran an auction for my dad, well we had such an outpouring of love, support, and bidders that this Christmas we feel it is now our turn to give back! It's the least we can do!

We want to hear from you about couples that have an inspiring story or have overcome great odds and hurdles. So tell us why they should be the lucky ones to have us shoot their wedding for FREE! You have between now and December 28th to submit a couple that you feel deserves it, or you could even submit yourself if you feel that you meet the criteria!

On December 28th we will post the TOP THREE couples and then have you, our readers, vote by leaving a comment.  We will announce the official winners on New Year's Eve!

Here is what the winning couple will receive:
-up to 8 hours wedding day coverage
-online proofing
-Two photographers (including your's truly and Justin)
-engagement session
-one 11x14 15 spread flush mount album from RENAISSANCE ALBUMS
-high resolution digital negatives on disc provided at one year anniversary

Here are the rules:
-the story must be inspirational and/or about a couple that has overcome great odds
-the couple must have their wedding date and venue set in stone
-we must have the wedding date available (note: we don't accept Sunday weddings, even in this circumstance)
-the wedding must take place somewhere in Southern California (sorry, I'm a mom and travel can be quite difficult for me)
-the nominations must be submitted via email to
-the email must include a photo of the couple attached to the email submission (we like to put a face with the name)
-the couple must be willing to allow us to put their story on our blog as well as the resulting photos from their engagement session and wedding!

We want to thank Renaissance Albums for donating a beautiful album and Fotofafa for donating the post processing. We CAN'T WAIT to hear the stories of the couples that you submit! 
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Gedas said:
wooow great idea :)
(12.21.09 01:17 AM)
Ben said:
No Sunday weddings? Because you and your homo God-Worshipping husband can't WORK ON THE SABBATH?! Jesus...isn't real.
(12.21.09 07:35 AM)
amelialyon said:
Ben, yes, that is exactly why we don't shoot weddings on Sundays, we believe it is the Sabbath and we should dedicate one day to rest and worship God. Jesus is VERY real, too many things have happened in my life that I cannot deny that. I hope and pray that someday you can see his influence in your life too. Best of luck to you, and thank you for following our work.
(12.21.09 07:47 AM)
Augusta said:
It makes me so happy to hear that you guys are doing this! You guys rock.
(12.21.09 08:59 AM)
SarahB said:
You guys are amazing:)
(12.21.09 09:34 AM)
Emily said:
I love you guys! You're the best
(12.21.09 10:21 AM)
Megan Papworth said:
Is Ben for real? You guys are amazing and I love that you are willing to donate this. Merry Christmas :)
(12.21.09 10:37 AM)
Chris said:
Love this idea!
(12.21.09 10:39 AM)
Jen Johnson said:
Awesome idea...and awesome response to the Doubting Thomas.
(12.21.09 11:54 AM)
amy karp said:
you guys are rockstars and having the link to the post about your father brought tears to my eyes (again). way to go and giving hearing about photographers that offer generous hearts to folks that need it.
(12.21.09 12:29 PM)
jen berry said:
wow. really. "ben". come on now. why do you really care what other people are doing? How does it affect you? Don't you have other things to do with your time then say hurtful things to people that work hard and put a lot of passion in their work.
(12.21.09 02:10 PM)
Jen said:
What a wonderful gracious gift! I wish I knew a deserving couple! I'll forward this on & see if anyone else I know does!
(12.21.09 08:28 PM)
Paul said:
What a cool idea! I'll be on the lookout...
(12.21.09 11:09 PM)
alec vanderboom said:
you are both phenomenal folks. Grace and Peace be with you through this Christmas. And thank you for serving and honoring a loving God who is able to make himself known through this gift of yours.
(12.22.09 12:40 AM)
Dad said:
It has been my experience that those who feel a need to belittle others because of what they do... are only making up for feelings in inadequacy about themselves...
(12.22.09 12:26 PM)
lisamarie said:
Wow. Ben's comment was outrageous. Thank you for responding to it. Although you and I are of different faiths, your commitment to God and your family is always inspiring.
(12.22.09 02:04 PM)
Nick said:
What an amazing gift you are giving to someone in need. You truly are a wonderful example. I can see that God is in your life, by the love you have for your family, friends, and clients. What a perfect time to give a gift of service. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!
(12.22.09 06:16 PM)
Kimberly said:
wow. You are awesome Amelia! What a great idea and an even greater follow-up. Ben- that's an oxymoron- Moron.
(12.22.09 09:24 PM)
MM said:
youre amazing. thanks for responding to the comment.
(12.22.09 09:54 PM)
esther park said:
amelia.. you are so awesome! seriously one of the strongest women i know. i love that you are doing this for a wonderful cause. the couple that wins would be so blessed to have you (and your justin) as their photographers. btw, i love the picture you posted with this. that's my friend nancy that got married in june :D
(12.22.09 11:30 PM)
Paige + Blake said:
you two are awesome. my fave: "we don't accept Sunday weddings, even in this circumstance". You're such a fabulous example. THANK YOU!!!
(12.23.09 01:00 AM)
Julie Carson said:
What a beautiful gift you are giving. I couldn't think of something more meaningful and timeless. Your generosity is inspiring and the sweet spirit that shines through you, your work and your words is such an encouragement. Best to you!
(12.23.09 01:56 AM)
Tanya Perez said:
Anyone would be lucky to have you guys.
(12.26.09 01:08 PM)
Ron Anderson said:
We vote for Rachell and Patrick. My wife and have been married for 26 years and we still love each other, and we are still best friends we endourse this couple.
(12.28.09 07:13 PM)
Pamela Rosemeyer said:
I would like to vote for Patrick and Rachelle. What a great inspirational story. What a great couple.
(12.28.09 08:39 PM)
Katrina PArker said:
Matt and Wendy have made it through a lot I have watched their love grow, and they totally deserve it!
(12.29.09 09:14 AM)
David Parker said:
Matt and Wendy deserve it with all they have been though.
(12.29.09 09:16 AM)
sb said:
Matt and Wendy no doubt should win
(12.29.09 10:19 AM)
Tina Doherty said:
Rachelle & Patrick! FOR SURE! They rock and are so precious!
(12.29.09 10:52 AM)
joyce bergman said:
Rochelle and Patrick are so deserving and have been nominated. They are so deserving. Please select.
(12.29.09 12:32 PM)
Allison said:
I'm voting for pat and richelle. they're good people.
(12.29.09 03:26 PM)
Gianinna said:
Patrick and Richelle
(12.29.09 03:27 PM)
Frank Hernandez said:
yea for Patrick and Racelle. What an amazing story. It is so awesome to see a man and women of God serve as they do. Be blessed.
(12.29.09 05:04 PM)
Eileen Evans said:
I vote for couple #5. Their story touched me, and i would love to see them have this opportunity
(12.29.09 07:58 PM)
Eric Evans said:
I want couple number 5 to win. They are awesome people, and I am privelaged to know them.
(12.29.09 07:59 PM)
Amanda Bryan said:
I believe that Matt & Wendy (COUPLE NUMBER THREE) would be very deserving of the 7,ooo dollar picture package. After I read their story I think this is something that will help them a lot while preparing for the most important day of their lives.
(12.29.09 09:09 PM)
Amy Pemberton said:
I definately vote Patrick and Rachelle.... I have been friends with pat my whole life and I think that rachelle is his soul mate they are perfect for each other and deserve everything wonderful! A true shining example of Love.
(12.30.09 09:28 AM)
Shauna said:
Matt and Wendy have had an amazing journey. It is touching that you are so willing to give away such a great package. Matt and Wendy have my vote.
(12.30.09 02:37 PM)
Julia David said:
Matt and Wendy (couple number 3) really deserve to win this contest.
(12.30.09 03:39 PM)
sam said:
couple#5! she is an amazing teacher and person and deserves this!
(12.31.09 12:03 AM)
Drexelle Park said:
Amelia, I am inspired and SO proud of your response to Ben. My husband & I are such fans of your work and, after reading that response, are proud of you as a fellow sister & brother in the faith. May God bless you and your family for your faithfulness to Him. Seriously, you rock.
(01.08.10 05:43 PM)
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