About Me


Hi, I’m Marie!

This is my family!  My husband Tony, my son Brandon, and my daughter Alexandra (Ally)

PHOTO COURTESY OF TWIG & OLIVE PHOTOGRAPHY

PHOTO COURTESY OF TWIG & OLIVE PHOTOGRAPHY

 

Most days you can find me…at home with my kiddos, juggling my time between work, playing with the kids, making any and all excuses to avoid doing laundry and dishes, sipping cold coffee (or searching for it and finding it in the microwave because I forgot I re-heated it for the 100th time that morning) and snacking on goldfish crackers or chocolate.  (Some people would argue that Peppridge Farm goldfish crackers are only for kids, but I beg to differ…)

I am mostly known for…my addiction to coffee and chocolate, being a little OCD and being a perfectionist, and my passion for art and creativity! 

Some of my favorite things are...coffee, chocolate covered peanuts and peanut m&ms, white wine, The Sandlot (the greatest movie of all time), summer and warm sun, the beach, having dance parties with my kids, singing Disney songs in the car with my kids, our dog Nugget (she's a cockapoo and she's the best!), and going to Cubs games with my husband Tony (we are waaaay overdue for a baseball date)!

People often refer to me as…“The Riddler.”  Yes, it’s true.  Over the years I’ve acquired this nickname because I tend to ask a lot of questions.  I like to call it learning through curiousity (you know, like when you’re kid is in the “Why?” phase ;-) )…

I love serving the world by…taking real life, candid photos of children and families in order to help them remember the little things in life, like their child’s dimples, a toothy toddler’s grin, or siblings splashing around in puddles!  To me, this is why we take photos.  To preserve the little moments and phases in life that pass by so quickly.

The thing I am most passionate about in life is…raising my children to be well rounded, kind individuals who appreciate life and all it has to offer.  In my eyes, family always comes first and I will do whatever I can to help my children grow up to be happy, healthy, and respectful!  I am already so proud of them for so many things, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for them!

In all seriousness though, it all started when...

I married my husband Tony in 2007 and we now have two beautiful children, Brandon and Alexandra (who we call Ally).  I have a Master's Degree in Early Childhood Special Education and began my career as an Early Childhood Special Education Teacher and also a Regular Education Kindergarten Teacher in Evanston.  

During my pregnancy with Brandon in 2011, we had an unexpected turn of events when I went into preterm labor at 25 weeks and landed myself in the hospital on bedrest for 7 weeks.  After showing stability, I was allowed back home at 32 weeks to finish bedrest.  Brandon came at 36 weeks and we had a healthy baby boy.  I absolutely loved spending time at home with Brandon and decided to quit my teaching job to be a stay at home mom.  

During this time, I rediscovered my passion for art and began drawing again.  A friend suggested I start an Etsy shop to sell my art.  I opened up my shop in October of 2012 and began selling prints of my nursery art.  My shop did well and I began selling more and more.  I even began transferring my designs onto infant and toddler clothing.  I was loving having a creative outlet!  

In 2013 I found out I was pregnant with Ally.  Rather than continue to buy cute headbands for her, I decided to start making them and sell them in my Etsy shop.  This went really well and I was busy creating and selling.  

In the summer of 2015, we moved from Elmhurst to Naperville.  It was a busy time for our family and I had to take a step back from my Etsy shop.  During this time, Etsy itself took a turn and shop owners were seeing less and less shop traffic and sales.  In addition, I was finding it difficult to keep up with the fast pace of retail while continuing to be at home with my kids.

A few weeks before we moved to our new house, our lives took another turn when we found out my {then} 17 month-old nephew Owen was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL).  We were so heartbroken over the news and wanted to help Tony's sister and our brother-in-law any way we could.

My brother-in-law Brian said he would love it if I could take some family photos of them because he knew I had always loved photography and had a DSLR camera.  We chose Pioneer Park in Naperville and the photos came out beautifully!  Brian joked that I should start a photography business and the rest is history...

My dad, who had a career in the printing field and therefore is very knowledgeable about photography, film, and cameras, taught me the technical aspects of the DSLR camera and the main principles of photography.  I began building my photography portfolio and launched the business in January of 2016.  I absolutely love photography and I love capturing little details and life's moments in time that we will never get back.  I've learned first hand through multiple events that life can drastically change in a instant and we should cherish the precious moments we have.

I really look forward to working with you!

<3 Marie

photo courtesy of twig & olive photography

photo courtesy of twig & olive photography