Jessica and Kaleb recently had their engagement session for their upcoming wedding in October! This adorable couple has been together for 7 years and first met on the dating app: tinder. It’s so funny how more and more couples are meeting online these days! :) These two lovebirds definitely know how to have a good time and were full of laughter despite that fact that their session basically took place in a pig pen (see the image at the bottom of the page for reference). They kept their spirits high and their love was evident! I absolutely cannot wait for this October wedding! It’s going to be PERFECT!
In 2019 it is trendy to commit to this "less stuff, more experiences" motto. I like it... I like that we are freeing ourselves from this materialism that has held on to us for much to long. I think that value should be placed on experience. What you experience with your husband, your kids, your friends, and yourself matters. And being sure that you make enough time in your life to allow for those experiences to happen is important.
If you go to my website one of the first things you will see is "Wholistic Photography-- Heart, Mind, Soul." This is because I'm wanting to back away from last minute photo sessions that require no thought or planning. They don't require you to get to know one another and they don't manifest into anything beyond a Christmas card image or an obligatory yearly photo. I don't want to spend my life contributing toward this guilt that you must get your kids picture taken every 2 seconds or else you are a bad mom.
Thats not who I am. That's not what I believe. That's not something I want to dedicate my life to. I do, however, want to provide people with an experience that is worth their time & money. An experience that challenges them, makes them reflect, makes couples talk to each other, and makes people grow. An experience that forces people to pause and evaluate their past, present, and their future. An experience that reminds people who they are and how they want to live their life. An experience that keeps people invested in relationships worth having and living a life that they will be proud of when they look back at it in the future. An experience that gives joy, hope, encouragement and affirmation. An experience that WILL change them.
THIS... THIS is who I am... This is something I WANT to dedicate my life to doing. Being an artistic mediator for couples, families, and even with ourselves. An artist that provides her clients with an experience that gives them the ability to stop living their life on auto-pilot and start living a life of intention.
When did we become so busy that we found ourselves mindlessly going through the motions? So chronically busy that we find ourselves unable to be fully present in any given activity. So busy that we walk around completely deflated with barely enough energy to complete even the simplest of tasks. So busy that feeling a sense of anxiety or a general "overwhelmed" feeling is considered normal...
You guys... this is not okay! Busy-ness does not equal success. A full calendar does not mean you are in control of your life. Our urgency-addicted culture is part of the problem. We're convinced that with just a bit more speed, we can stay in control-- and so we grow unwilling to tolerate slowing down. In fact... pausing actually becomes uncomfortable.
Not sure this is a problem in your life? Do an experiment... do nothing at all for 10 minutes... don't look at your phone, don't read, don't write, don't mentally make lists of things you need to do, literally do nothing.... The harder that feels, the more you may need this.
I don't want to be part of the problem. I want to be part of the solution. That is what the photos by Ariel process has been reformed. It has been altered and refined so that this can happen for you as a couple, as a family, and as a parent. Not just during before or during the session but after the session too. So that each and every time you look at these pictures you are forced to pause and remember. You are reminded of what you need to do to live a life that you will be proud of when your 80 and 90 years old.
I cannot wait to get started with you! I cannot think of anyone more deserving of this experience than you!
Friday Truth Time
Kids are honest. We all know this. If you want to know how things REALLY are.... ask a toddler. 🤣 The other day I had a realization...
My 3 year old was at church and someone said... "Wow... you look so beautiful in that dress. And look at that pretty curly hair!" 💗 Her response: "I know [with the biggest grin on her face]."
I'll be honest, at first I totally laughed to myself. Clearly she just doesn't have manners. 😜 Doesn't she know that when somebody compliments us we are supposed to respond with a really awkward "thank you" and stutter around stating aloud some self-deprecating, humble comment.
Person: "Wow you've lost so much weight."
Us: "Thank you, I still have so far to go. Ugh..."
Person: "Your hair looks amazing today."
Us: "Really? Thanks. I hate it. I wish my hair was _________."
And then it hit me. Maybe she's not wrong. Maybe I am. We have gotten into this habit of not knowing how to admire ourselves. We are quick to say something negative about ourselves in response. I don't believe this is because we are seeking attention, I believe its because we are insecure. Compliments embarrass us. We don't know how to handle them.
But ya'll, we are all worthy of being admired. We live in a culture where we are not allowed to admire ourselves, especially not publicly or outloud. If we do, we are at a risk of being considered vain or prideful. Why? Shouldn't we learn to unconditionally accept, approve, appreciate, forgive, trust and love ourselves?
I mean... your not perfect... and neither am I. But I am good at some things. That's not selfish. It's honest. And yet, we are so reluctant to name and claim our own good qualities. But the more we practice speaking kindly to ourselves and about ourselves, the more powerful we become. When we speak out-loud the things we are good at, we give ourselves the freedom to live up to our full potential. We stop trying to imitate others and start living the life WE were meant to live.
It's time. It's time to love yourself. Respect yourself. Admire yourself. Forgive yourself. Accept yourself. Trust yourself. Love Yourself. Nurture Yourself. TODAY IS THAT DAY.
Let's start now... I want each of you to channel your inner 3 year old and name 3 things you admire about yourself.
Do you have a DSLR gathering dust in your closet? When you take it out to take images, does it just make you frustrated? It's time to learn how to use your equipment to its greatest potential. One-on-One private lessons with Me, you, and your camera. I promise that by the time you leave your FIRST SESSION you will be confident enough to walk out and shoot in manual mode (the one where you choose ALL the settings)! You don't need photoshop or any editing software to make your photos look amazing 👇 (See second photo below). You just have to learn how to use what you already have! You can do this... let me show you how! <3 Click here for more details or to purchase your spot in the class today!
One of the hardest things about having kids is knowing that they were never meant to stay in your arms.
While we will forever be changed by the days they explored the world safely within our reach, they were meant to walk, and run, and discover for themselves. They were created to touch, see and feel. Our arms will always be outstretched to hold them, but a mother also knows that motherhood, with each passing day, is a gradual process of letting go.
One day they will find it better to sleep in their own bed instead of mama's arms and they will sleep all night long! One day they will have more friends than just mommy & daddy. One day they will pick out their own clothes & take care of themselves. And while we are their voice right now, one day they will have their own voice.
Time may be a thief but it is also a joyous gift. And as momma's the greatest gift in our lives is the time spent with them. <3
Hold them a little longer today, mama's. As you already know... it goes WAY. TO. FAST.
Above is Murphy as a newborn. Enjoy some of the images from her 6 month session below!!!!