50th birthday party | Palm Springs Family Photo Shoot

I was a little bit intimidated when my friend Pearl asked me to photograph her family during her husband Dave’s 50th birthday party in Palm Springs. Not only is she a serious scrapbook queen, taking and editing photos of her 4 kids every day, but she had her entire family and her husbands entire family there for the shoot. It was her husband Dave’s 50th birthday, and the celebration was nothing short of celebrity status. Literally, they rented an MTV cribs home in Palm Desert, previously rented by Leo DiCaprio and friends.  This was no Carmel valley party, this was big time.
And this was where she wanted the photoshoot, the day after the party.
The party went all day on Saturday. The kids never got out of the 4000 square foot pool, except to eat from the constantly rotating vendors they had hired to bring in street tacos, then ice cream slushies, then wood fired pizzas, or if that wasn’t enough, the candy bar covering the entire front of the house would satisfy any kid looking for a little something.
Kids were covered.
Adults had no qualms with the well stocked bar and the host who hated to see anyone with an empty hand.
The music, the sun, the drinks, the food, and 100 of Daves closest friends…..it was an unforgettable party.
But I never quite forgot that I had photos to take the following day! This slowed my alcohol consumption and heightened my awareness of how the sun fell on the yard, where there was room to fit 30 people together, and worst of all, trying to memorize names of siblings, children, parents, etc. (spoiler alert: I did a horrible job and by Sunday afternoon both of Dave’s brothers responded to the name Mark, since I never was able to guess Mark vs Mike. Thank you both for pretending I had the correct name, which I know I never did).
So Saturday comes to an end, much later than anticipated and Tom and I barely get our girls into the hotel beds because they were fully asleep and dead weight by the time we started the car.  And Sunday morning rolls around much too soon. But a quick stop at Starbucks and I’m on my way back to the palace.
The hot latte was a bad choice in retrospect, seeing as how it was 92 degrees by 9am. So we all gather outside, and sweat to death, while I coax way too hot kids into smiling as the sparkling crystal blue pool tempts them 2 feet away.  They were troopers though. With the promises of leftover candy from the night before never too far away.
I got photos of the entire clan, as well as the 2 sides of the family, as well as individual families. But there was nothing I was more excited about than the photos of Pearl and her kids.  She is in the same predicament as all of us mother/photographers….no matter how many sweet, perfect, amazing photos we have of our kids, since we are constantly carrying our cameras around, there are no similar pics of US with those precious kids. So I made sure we got plenty of Pearl + kids!
Now I’m inspired to get my own family photos!!
I hope I did you justice Pearl…..I have never been to a more fabulous party, let alone get rewarded with a photoshoot afterwards! I wish every job was this incredible.
Cheers to Dave on his 50th, and to Pearl throwing a party of a lifetime!

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  • pearlKIM! omg… this post brought tears to my eyes!! how do you remember all those details? i need to print out this blog post and just put it in dave’s 50th birthday scrapbook album. thank you for the beautiful pictures of my family. everyone loved them. i especially love that you captured me with each child. i LOVE you and thank you for doing this for me. xoxoxoxoxo, pearlReplyCancel

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