Thursday, July 2, 2015

Hello July!

Its July?!?! WOW! Here I am saying it yet again, time is flying. I honestly can't make a big list of goals for July, or even talk about the ones I failed at in June...I underestimated how busy we'd be with weddings and volunteering and time just got away from me!

I've got a lot on my plate this month, so I'm going to take it easy on the long list of goals and instead focus on smaller, more realistic weekly goals! Caleb and I started this in our household last summer. Every Monday, one of us would write a weekly goal on the fridge that we wanted to accomplish together in that week alone. It was always so fun challenging each other and keeping each other accountable, whether that be with a "no spend week" or a "no pop" week. It was a fun way to do something TOGETHER, and we loved that. So this week? My goal is for us to read more.

Caleb and I both love to much! It's sad that sometimes we're so busy we don't make as much time for it as we should. It's too easy to flop in front of the TV after dinner and binge-watch The Office (tell me we're not the only ones!), but instead, we want to start dedicating a couple nights of post-dinner time to diving into our new favorite novel. We were sitting in our guest bedroom on Tuesday night and realized just HOW many books we've bought together since we've been married. I saw dozens that I bought that are just sitting there, collecting dust (gasp! I know!), so we've decided to make this more of a priority, and that makes us happy!

I'm excited to implement weekly goals into our lives more. We have two weddings to shoot this weekend so while its not much of a free-weekend, we are lucky to have some really awesome clients to work with!! I hope everyone has an awesome holiday weekend planned!!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

2 loans down, 2 to go!

Yesterday I mentioned something very exciting happened on Saturday and that I'd fill you guys in today. A little back story first...

This is the year that Caleb and I got more serious about paying off debt. A few days into the new year we were able to pay off loan #1 (which rocked)! Then we had to pay a LOT in taxes from our first full year of (partial) self employment, and things got a little crazy. It was then time to move onto loan #2 - which was our used car we bought last Fall. We had been putting money away, and putting money away for months, and then paying bills, and paying more bills and finally, we had set aside enough on Saturday to.....
PAY OFF OUR CAR!!!!! Ceellleeebraaate goood timesss, come onnnn!
insert dance party photo!
I can't tell you how good it felt to walk out of that bank with a "paid off" receipt in my hand. It probably won't feel REAL until we see the legit title in our mailbox, but regardless...I'm a happy girl to have two loans finally paid off!

It really hit me this week how much extra income we will have once we're debt free. I know last year I spoke more about becoming debt free but its really hitting me now the kind of future we can set ourselves up for by having NO debt.

I'm also learning more and more that this is kind of a "weird" way to workers look at me like I have 3 heads when I tell them I cant go out to lunch w/ them again because I only have $10 in cash to spend for the week! & you know what? I kind of love that. It's also encouraging that we have SO many people in our lives who have such amazing success stories. Remember Sallie & Perkins?! Then our friends Josh + well as multiple couples from church. They are all living like NO ONE ELSE because they chose to live like NO ONE ELSE for a little while.

This year has been stressful, tiring, and insanely exhausting to say the least, and being in the midst of this pay-off kinda sucks sometimes, but now I'm treating it like a game. How fast can we pay off our bigger loan #3?! I want to impress myself! So now we're buckling down even more so that by next year? We'll be debt free and can have more freedom...& we can't freaking wait. Thanks for all your wisdom, Dave Ramsey!

NOW? On to loan #3!!!!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Our entirely free weekend!

Our weekend was the perfect form of recovery from our insanely busy last week! Sports Camp was a huge success...we got to hang out with hundreds of kids, be outside all week, and spread the love of Jesus! I was CRAZY tired all week so I think the little break I took from blogging was exactly what I needed, so thanks for sticking with me!

Friday after Sports Camp we went home and worked our little butts off editing a ton of gorgeous photos..two weeks ago, we ended up buying Caleb an older, used laptop from Craigslist and he's already edited an ENTIRE wedding. Not only has it been fun teaching him more about the details of the software, but it means the world that he's helping out!

Saturday was an amazing day for us. As much fun as we have photographing weddings, it was a much needed weekend off after 7 wedding weekends in a row. Something very exciting happened (more on that tomorrow!), and then the rest of the day was pretty ordinary. However, ordinary was PERFECT. We grabbed Skyline... went grocery shopping... took a long trip to the library... and went home to play video games and watch movies. It was everything I wanted our day off to be!

Sunday we enjoyed a morning full of worship and church, then I got to visit my bestie Lyndsie while she was in town! She brought me back some neat stuff from her recent trip to New Zealand and I freaking loved it. She's wonderful and I'm so thankful I got to see her for even just a quick hour!

After that, Caleb and I took a trip to the pool for a couple hours. It was glorious! We've made it to the pool a ton this year already and its been awesome to spend so much time outside. For some reason last year we stayed cooped up a lot in our living room and I'm glad we're changing our habits!

We finished our evening with breakfast for dinner (always a good idea) and a few episodes of The Office. We have an insanely busy week/weekend ahead of us so I'm just trying to take it one day at a time! I hope you guys had a fantastic weekend, too!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Sap happy.

This week marks one of the most insane weeks of our year.  For the last few summers, we've volunteered for our church's annual Sports Camp (think VBS but outdoors/sports)....and while we're extremely exhausted from it (we're talking midnight bed times all week), we wouldn't trade it for the world.

There's nothing I love more than watching my husband be around kids, he's SO great with them. It just comes so natural to him...and I honestly shed a little tear last night watching him dance along side these kids during worship, encouraging a sweet little kid who felt left out, and even trying to teach a lefty how to shoot. I wouldn't trade these little memories for anything. I'm so incredibly thankful for that man I call my husband.

I also had a few great conversations with people in my church I'd never really spoken to. People who told me my photography is making a difference in people's lives, and how much they appreciate seeing them plastered all over FB less than 12 hours later... and that makes all the humidity and sweat  (seriously, so much sweat) worth it. I love being surrounded by people who want to GIVE so much of their time... they have no idea how much they inspire me!

Anyway, I really stopped in today to say I may be taking a quick break this week from blogging. It's been crazy and it's just going to continue that way, so stick with me! & enjoy your hump day! ;)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The craziest weekend of all!

Our weekend was crazy busy, but guess what? We survived. Weeee surviiiveeed!! Two weddings, a trip to the zoo, and the start of Sports Camp for our church! To be honest, it was insanely exhausting, and I was pretty sick the whole time (lots of congestion, feverish, etc.) but I toughed through. I decided to use a day off yesterday to recoup and while I'm not entirely better, I think I needed it!

Since so much happened from Thursday night on... I'll sum it up in a few photos. I do want to say a huge THANK YOU to all of you who wished us well and who kept their fingers crossed for good weather during the weddings because we mostly had PERFECT WEATHER! No signs of "tropical storm Bill" whatsoever! There were sprinkles in the morning but they went away and we had beautiful overcast skies for both days. Is this bride not STUNNING?!

Saturdays wedding was a great one, but they got married in the oldest church Downtown...and there happened to be NO air conditioning in the building, so we about died.
super flattering angle, we know.
We spent Sunday afternoon with my Dad at the zoo, and it was awesome. We don't get to spend a ton of time together with both of our crazy schedules so it was great. Caleb and I had never been together and it was so much fun! I love my Dad, and all his funny quirks that make him him. Including his "who's your daddy" star wars shirt... ;)

...then my dreams came true and I got to feed a giraffe!!

Then our church's annual sports camp started... I photograph it every year and its always amazes me to see these kids hear about Jesus, some for the first time! While its insanely hot and I felt gross, it's so worth it.

I hope everyone has a great Tuesday!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Our first "double header" of the year!

In my world, a "double header" has nothing to do with baseball... but has everything to do with shooting TWO full weddings in the same weekend. Today, I took a vacation day from my day-job to shoot Dana and Brandon's wedding! I'm so excited to be able to photograph them again.

I feel like I don't show a lot of my work because I don't think Blogger does a great job with clarity (on high res. files) so I stopped posting them for the most part, but I hated that! Each one of our couples has unique stories, personalities, etc...and I want to showcase that! So here's a few shots from their engagement session I did earlier in the year. It's definitely a favorite to date, and they were just such a fun couple!

We just need all fingers crossed that this weekends weather cooperates. We're prepared for the risidual thunderstorms from "tropical storm Bill" that may come through OH/IN but, we're ready! Just praying for a little sunshine, or even overcast...that's my favorite to shoot in anyway! ;)

We also have some fun photobooth stuff planned for this wedding... wish us luck!

Have a GREAT weekend!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Invest in those you love.

Last night I had the chance to get together with two of my closest friends. It had been way too long since we'd been able to get together. It stinks when life just happens and we just continue to get older and our schedules get busier and sometimes - our friendships seem to get pushed to the back of the line. Sure technology is great, being able to call/text/Skype at a moments notice...but being able to sit across the table from some of your best friends over some yummy pizza and sweet tea? There's just something special about that. True connections. Yes, we've grown up and don't speak daily...but I know these girls would drop everything for me if I ever needed them to.

...and yes, that's precious little Norah in the bottom. She just turned 2 months (or as you mommas would call it, 8 weeks)!! She seriously is the best little baby. Didn't make a peep all evening, just sat there, slept and looked around. She pretty much stole my heart. I can't go another 6 weeks without seeing her!

Anyway, this fun little dinner date with my friends just got me thinking about growing up. Sometimes I wish life could be as easy as it used to be. Isn't it funny how things work out? We spent our entire childhood wishing we could be older...and now that I'm here, some days? I'd give anything to have little to no responsibilities. Of course, I wouldn't trade my life for the world...but you get my point. I'm very blessed to have quite a few amazing friends...and I want to be sure I appreciate them and let them know HOW much they mean to me. That goes for my family, too. I'm happy that I have some girls nights in the works where I can invest in each unique relationship I have with them.

The point of this post? Invest in those you love. Whether that's your husband, your best friend, your sister, your aunt, your mom, etc... just SHOW them what they mean to you. Send a card in the mail (am I the only one who has a dance party when I see a hand written note in my kitchen when I get home?!), send flowers for no reason, buy their lunch, spend an entire weekend together...whatever you do, just make the time to do it! :) happy Wednesday, friends.