anniversary trip to san francisco :: bay area photographer

 Coit Tower. Shot with Fuji X100.

Coit Tower. Shot with Fuji X100.

If you follow us on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, you may already know that last month, Josh and I headed to the West Coast to celebrate our five year anniversary. I don't know how it took us so long to take a real vacation - we haven't had more than a long weekend of non-working vacation since 2009 - and it was pure bliss.

Since we'd never been to California and just knew we'd love it, we started planning our trip to San Francisco. We filled our days with beautiful scenery, new adventures, and amazing food. After a 5 a.m. flight across the country, we kicked off our trip with a stroll through Chinatown and a Dim Sum lunch...

 San Francisco Chinatown. Shot with Fuji X100.

San Francisco Chinatown. Shot with Fuji X100.

 Shot with Fuji X100.

Shot with Fuji X100.

 Shot with Fuji X100.

Shot with Fuji X100.

On our second day in SF, we took the ferry to Alcatraz. We're not usually ones for tours and such, but this one was incredibly fascinating.

 Alcatraz. Shot with Fuji X100.

Alcatraz. Shot with Fuji X100.

 Alcatraz via  Instagram .

Alcatraz via Instagram.

 Alcatraz. Shot with Fuji X100.

Alcatraz. Shot with Fuji X100.

... and it had some of the most beautiful views of the city.

 View of San Francisco from Alcatraz. Shot with Fuji X100. Processed with VSCO.

View of San Francisco from Alcatraz. Shot with Fuji X100. Processed with VSCO.

 Pier 39. Shot with Fuji X100. Processed with VSCO.

Pier 39. Shot with Fuji X100. Processed with VSCO.

 Bourbon and Branch via  Instagram .

Bourbon and Branch via Instagram.

 Coit Tower and Haight-Ashbury. Shot with Fuji X100. Processed with VSCO.

Coit Tower and Haight-Ashbury. Shot with Fuji X100. Processed with VSCO.

Of course, one of my main goals was to see Rainbow Row from Alamo Park and pay homage to the beloved Tanner family... if this scene isn't forever and fondly engrained in your memory, we might not be friends anymore...

 Rainbow Row from the opening credits of Full House. Shot with Fuji X100.

Rainbow Row from the opening credits of Full House. Shot with Fuji X100.

 Mural. Shot with Fuji X100.

Mural. Shot with Fuji X100.

The Japanese Tea Gardens in Golden Gate Park were absolutely lovely. So serene and a nice break from the energetic pace of the city.

 Japanese Tea Gardens in Golden Gate Park. Shot with Fuji X100.

Japanese Tea Gardens in Golden Gate Park. Shot with Fuji X100.

After spending a couple of days getting acquainted with the city, we rented a car via Getaround and headed up the Pacific Coast Highway to Point Reyes. I've never seen such a stunning ocean view in my life. California - I love you.

 Pacific Coast Highway. Shot with Fuji X100.

Pacific Coast Highway. Shot with Fuji X100.

 Barbecued Tomales Bay oysters at the Marshall Store via  Instagram .

Barbecued Tomales Bay oysters at the Marshall Store via Instagram.

After a cheese tasting at Cowgirl Creamery and some oysters straight from Tomales Bay at the Marshall Store, we drove through cattle country to get this quaint little lighthouse.

 Point Reyes Lighthouse. Shot with Fuji X100.

Point Reyes Lighthouse. Shot with Fuji X100.

 Lighthouse at Point Reyes National Seashore. Shot with Fuji X100.

Lighthouse at Point Reyes National Seashore. Shot with Fuji X100.

 Shot with Fuji X100.

Shot with Fuji X100.

Thanks to the advice of one of our Uber drivers earlier in the week, we skipped Muir Woods, and instead hiked a bit of the less busy Steep Ravine Trial in Mount Tamalpais to see some of the giant redwoods...

 Steep Ravine Trail. Shot with Fuji X100.

Steep Ravine Trail. Shot with Fuji X100.

... and finished a full day with an amazing sushi dinner in Sausalito.

 Sausalito. Shot with Fuji X100.

Sausalito. Shot with Fuji X100.

 View from the top of Lombard Street. Shot with Fuji X100.

View from the top of Lombard Street. Shot with Fuji X100.

In case you haven't caught on, as with any of our vacations, food was a VERY important part of this trip, and Chile Pies & Ice Cream did not disappoint...

 Lemon Buttermilk Pie and Green Chile Apple Pie Milkshake at  Chile Pies & Ice Cream . Via  Instagram .

Lemon Buttermilk Pie and Green Chile Apple Pie Milkshake at Chile Pies & Ice Cream. Via Instagram.

 The Golden Gate Bridge. Shot with Fuji X100.

The Golden Gate Bridge. Shot with Fuji X100.

Needless to say, we LOVED our vacation and are already ready to plan our next trip. Follow all of our adventures on Instagram

 Ferry Building and Cable Car. Via  Instagram .

Ferry Building and Cable Car. Via Instagram.

All images ©2014 Glessner Photography. Please do not save, copy, edit, or use in any way without Glessner Photography's express written permission. Violators may be prosecuted.

new camera + new adventures :: chicago photographer

This past weekend, our friends got married in Chicago, and *gasp* we actually got to attend a wedding without working for the first time in over 3 years... what a treat! On Friday, we had the chance to do some quick sightseeing, and I was super excited to try out my new Fuji X100. Typically, we end up only using our iPhones for photos on trips because our wedding gear is just so darned heavy and bulky. I'm still learning all the ins and outs of it - each camera has its own quirks, but so far, I'm in love. Here are a few of the photos from our afternoon with friends at Millennium Park and the Willis Tower ...

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new york city :: nyc vacation photographer

A few weeks ago, my friend Kaley called me up telling me that she had to go to New York City to do some buying for Snap Kids, and of course, when I said I should fly up to meet her, she said that was her exact thought, too! 

Of all the places I've been in and out of the country, I'd never had the chance to go to NYC, so I was over the moon to see the city for the first time this past weekend. I've travelled alot and generally don't feel very out of place anywhere I go, but when I arrived in the Big Apple, my accent felt a little thicker, a bit like molasses each time I spoke :)

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We were only in the Big Apple for a little over 48 hours, so we decided to pack in as much sightseeing as possible between the times that Kaley had to go to Market. We saw Times Square...

 

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... Rockefeller Plaza, the September 11th Memorial... (Going to St. Paul's Chapel - seen below - adjacent to where the World Trade Center towers once stood, was especially moving, and I couldn't help but tear up being in that sacred, solemn place. This church was left standing with not so much as a broken window when the buildings collapsed and is the place where first responders came to rest and seek refuge in the days, weeks, and months following 9/11. Remembering the fear, uncertainty, and sense of loss that surrounded that horrifying morning when we learned that our country had been attacked - I was in my 9th grade Mississippi history class when my teacher turned on the radio and began crying - anyone who remembers that day couldn't help but be emotional.)

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NYC | ©2013 Glessner Photography_0004.jpg

We enjoyed pizza (twice!), killer Italian food, cheesecake, the best Compost cookie from Momofuku Milk Bar, and frozen hot chocolate from Serendipity. We strolled 5th avenue, rode the subway, explored Central Park, and we even managed to see Chicago on Broadway.  (And I probably shouldn't mention how excited we were when we spotted the Empire Hotel from Gossip Girl ... ).

Here are a few of my Instagram shots of our adventures...

We walked way more miles than a person's feet should be able to stand, but it was so worth it, and there's no one else I would have rather laughed, explored, and got lost with than one of my very best friends.

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