Imagine a holiday lifestyle session. Then change your thinking to include more than one holiday. Yep, you heard it here. I was invited to photograph a Hanukkah + Christmas family gathering.

Marlee Tecks and I met when Rebecca from Realty Butler referred Marlee to me for a branding session. You can imagine I was thrilled when I received the invite to come to their home to photograph a family tradition.

Every year they get together and celebrate Hanukkah + Christmas. This year Marlee’s daughter, Amanda, would be off travelling, so they moved the celebration forward.

I joined them in Steveston. Marlee + Husband David hosted Amanda, their son Mathew + his wife Melissa and their two boys, and Melissa’s mom Carol.

Everyone dressed in fun sweaters and ensured a wonderful balance between Hanukkah + Christmas. Mason (3) and Lucas (9) spun the dreidel and picked a card. The Hanukkah cards were an interesting way to learn about Jewish traditions and practices.

I loved that one of the cards asked, “What does peace mean to you?”

Mason was such a ham. He didn’t want his photo taken – UNLESS I was taking photos of someone else. Then he’d squeal in the cutest little voice, “what about me?”

If I’m allowed to have a favourite photo it might just be the one with Mason, his brother Lucas, the dreidels and a gingerbread house.

The feast was wonderful too. Full of yummy treats including the traditional braided Challah bread that everyone enjoys year-round, and not just at Hanukkah. Mason was told no more chocolate coins, but with that sneaky little laugh and those chubby little fingers how anyone could stop him.