Keep Calm because…

I held my phone and smiled.

I posted the following photo on my Instagram and got busy with work. I checked back after a few minutes and received lovely messages by my past and current brides on both Instagram & Whatsapp. Oh I love my brides!     

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Since people have been sharing Keep Calm posters on social media, here are my version of Keep Calm messages:

Keep Calm & Count Your Blessings.
Keep Calm & Work Harder.
Keep Calm & learn from your mistakes.
Keep Calm and have karak chai.
Keep Calm & buy new shoes.
Keep Calm and watch movies.
Keep Calm & Google it.
Keep Calm but be prepared.
Keep Calm. Game on.
Keep Calm & keep Kaam se Kaam (mind your business)
Keep Calm and call your mom.
Keep Calm and read.
Keep Calm & do yoga.
Keep Calm & Love Life.
Keep Calm when saying I Do!
Keep Calm. Then dance on Gangnam Style!
Keep Calm & Dream on.
Keep Calm if people talk behind your back. They are behind you for a reason.
Keep Calm because You are Loved!!!

Keep Calm & Shine on!
~ Rima

Wedding in Sharjah Ladies Club – Shaikha & Farid

Although I couldn’t see her face through the phone, I was 100% certain that she was smiling. Smiling wide while speaking about her wedding. After a few days we met over coffee to discuss more details and I was just mesmerized by her gracefulness.  With gorgeous white teeth, beautiful skin, and deep-deep-deeeep-sparkly eyes, Shaikha can sure win a beauty pageant if she ever runs for it. This smart, independent, soft-spoken girl can steal any heart.   

After she wore her custom-made wedding gown, I told her – “Shaikha, I meet, see, and photograph brides almost every weekend. If I can’t take my eyes off of you, I don’t know what Farid will do.” She laughed! When the ever so charming Farid entered the room and saw Shaikha as a bride, he stood absolutely speechless for a good 1.5 minute. Then I proudly said “I tolddddddddd youuuuuu….” She laughed again!   

Following are just a few glimpses of Shaikha & Farid’s wedding which took place at Sharjah Ladies Club. From wedding stage (kosha) to jewelry, each detail speaks high of Shaikha’s elegant choice.

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Wedding Stage (Kosha)

Wedding Stage (Kosha)

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Party Favors

Party Favors

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Bouquet made by Shaikha's sister

Bouquet made by Shaikha’s sister

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I felt honored and great pleasure to photograph such a beautiful couple who is extremely close to my heart and brought life to the photos with their remarkable love & laughter. I pray that Shaikha keeps mesmerizing Farid and leave him more and more in love with her everyday, ameen.

Love,
~Rima

Dua – The Answer to our Prayers

Meet Dua! The Life of my Life!

Dua

Dua is my 6 (turned 7 today) years old niece with a mind of a 12 years old & is absolutely lovable. You know the type of personality that can light up the whole room? Yup! She’d be the one. Hands Down. No, Seriously! I’m not saying that because she’s my niece and I adoreeeeeeee her to pieces. Well, that too. But I’m saying that because she truly is a extremely smart for her age, is a character & has a personality with a spark.

Since the day she was born, I made it my mission to document her entire life. With cell-phone camera, to point&shoot, to my 5D Mark III, she never fails to pose with her endless expressions – spontaneous smile, broken teeth, questioning eyes, turning the computer with her toe, Lady Gaga style – she’s certainly my favorite model & it has always been a trip chasing her with my camera. I can never get enough of her photos & she knows it very well. It’s like I want to capture and save her smiles, evil smirks, bewitching laughter, sparkly eyes – her entire childhood. Part of it is also because I hardly have any of my own childhood photos.

So before you scroll down, let me WARN you. Do NOT be deceived by that innocent smile. She’s a little fire-cracker who adds flare, colors, festivity, and magic to our lives…

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Dua is answer to our prayers,
smiles to our blues,
spark to our eyes,
life of my life,
… & of my photos as well <3

Dua

~*~ Happy Birthday Dua ~*~

Love,
~Rima Khala

It’s a Big World out there

I twisted and turned sleepless in my bed because the room felt hot. My weather app showed 97 degrees Fahrenheit in Dubai. At 1 am. I closed my eyes and thought of the beautiful sunny days with cool breezes of Turkey from our three day stay at Turkey during our Dubai-USA trip.       

OhMyGod!!! I opened my eyes wide.

I wrote three blogs from Missouri, USA but none for NYC and Istanbul, Turkey. May be because I have seen everything there. Those places were not new to me. When I went to Turkey for the first time, both my husband & I returned with almost 3,000 photos in 4 days. I couldn’t find many from this trip. So, the next morning I insisted that my hubby makes me a video of this trip that can make us relive the experience.

And so he did! (how cute, I know)

With our favorite Turkish instrumentals by Taksim Trio and shot with GoPro and our youngest baby, FujiFilm X-E1, this video will take you from the famous landmarks to streets of Istanbul to the VIP cultural show to Galata bridge and will show you much more.

Here it is.
Enjoy!!!

It’s a big world out there. Explore!
Make mistakes. Try different things.
But keep exploring!

Love,
~ Rima

P.S. This makes me want to make another trip. To a new place. Hmm….If money wasn’t an issue and you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would you go and why???

Wedding in Mina A’Salam, Madinat Jumeirah – Mostafa & Alia

As much as I love big weddings, smalls weddings with great deal of details are my favorite. They are so intimate and personalized. It is a delicious cherry on the icing if the wedding is decorated by Julie & Romeo wedding planner. I guess the photos will do more justice to how Julie gloriously decorated the wedding of Mostafa & Alia in Al Majlis Ballroom of Mina A’Salam, Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai.

Al-Majlis Ballroom

Al-Majlis Ballroom

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Gorgeous Centerpieces

Gorgeous Centerpieces

Dance Floor

Dance Floor

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Party Favors

Party Favors

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Lots of best wishes to Mostafa & Alia for future. May they keep lighting up each other’s life with their smiles and warmth of their love, ameen.

Shine on
~Rima

My Thankful List

It has been a year since I wrote my first blog entry.
Since today is a *special* day, I want to take a moment and jot down my thankful list.

I’m thankful for Almighty’s endless bounties & blessings upon me – even though I am less than deserving.
I’m thankful for those who believe in me & support me – even when I don’t believe in myself.
I’m thankful for my family – they taught me the true definition of selfless love.
I’m thankful for friends – my shoulders to cry on, best advisors, and my support system.
I’m thankful for my nieces & nephews – my source of entertainment & bundle of joys.
I’m thankful for university scholarships – they helped secure my future.
I’m thankful for my blog & its readers – they help me express myself.
I’m thankful for free-online-education – it helped me establish my business.
I’m thankful for amazing clients – brides who believed in me, became my cheer-squad & friends.
I’m thankful for my ex-boss – her actions taught me what not to do.
I’m thankful for my house, food in the fridge, clean sheets to sleep on, shower, and clothes.
I’m thankful for health – it makes me appreciate life more.
I’m thankful for awesome photographer friends – they have my back.
I’m thankful for mistakes – they teach lessons and help make me a better person.
I’m thankful for my camera – it changed my life & made me a firm believer of possibilities & opportunities.
I’m thankful for my husband – he lets me follow my dreams & makes it possible for me to live out loud.
I’m thankful for another year – full of health, travels, successes, failures, experiences, & lessons.
I’m thankful for things that make me, me.

Happy Birthday

P.S.  Does anyone actually know what you have to do when people are singing happy birthday to you???

Wedding in Ajman – Amal & Ali

There are some people you automatically click with in the first meeting. Amal & Ali are amongst them. From discussing the major & cute little details of their wedding to choosing Amal’s super unique bouquet, they kept me involved throughout the planning process of her wedding although I was initially their wedding photographer but now feel like we have been friends for years.

I thoroughly enjoyed Amal & Ali’s wedding because it was not only the union of two people in love but the union of two entire families who embraced and welcomed both bride & groom into each other’s families.

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I’ll end on this note because Amal & Ali’s night was filled with love, dancing, cheers, and selfies of epic proportion…

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Happy Tuesday!