The best piece of marriage advice that I ever received was when I was in college. I wasn't married or even dating anybody. But a woman who was friends with my grandfather decided to write me a note filled with life advice. And the thing that I remembered the clearest is when she told me to never talk bad about my spouse to others. 💗 It's been my observation that you can tell a lot about a person when you ask them about the person that they love. And to be honest, I didn't always follow this advice until I met Mike. 💗 He is all the things to me that everyone says about their spouse. He is kind. He is patient. He is strong. He is handsome. He is my best friend. But more than that, he has seen me at my absolute worst. And instead of running away or avoiding or getting scared, he has embraced me literally with all of his love and all of his might. He has saved my life on more than one occasion. He has raised my children in a way that my father did not raise me. With compassion and mercy and grace and so much love. 💗 I don't share enough about this amazing man. So that is why today I am embracing that silly hashtag #ManCrushMonday. He is, and always will be, my number one. The person that I can be weird with. The person that I can be crazy with. The person that I can actually be ME with. And I will always have good things to say about him. 💗 So maybe you've heard some good and not so good marriage advice. But I hope this one helps. Because it sure helped me. I love you, babe. 📸: @kristenmarieparker
After such a heavy week, I took some time today to tell Alyssa and Corey’s story on my blog. Their wedding is the type of wedding that renews a photographer’s spirit. Let me tell you why: ✨ The love they have for their families. Between Corey’s mom putting a necklace on Alyssa while getting ready, Alyssa’s dad’s look before he walks her down the aisle, and this look Alyssa gave her sister as she toasted the new couple. This wedding truly felt like two families becoming one. ✨ Their love for each other. Their first look is my favorite first look we’ve ever shot. Tears, love letters, sweet embraces. They were so so happy to see each other in that moment. ✨ The love they have for their guests. Handwritten notes tied to favors, including those for Mel and I, made their reception so so special. It’s not often we’re remembered like this on a wedding day. A seat at the table, our names written next to sweet family and friends. It means so much to us to be invited in, and warms our hearts as we capture your story. We love you guys! ✨ I invite you to see their story and read Alyssa’s sweet testimonial on my blog tonight. Venue: @mightyoaklodge Florals: @shannonscustomfloral Dress: @miagracebridal Second shooter: @mellowyellowmel
I think I’m going to start a series called “Total Truth Tuesdays,” just so we can all appreciate how real life really is. Today’s truths? 🍑 I’ve gained 20lbs. in 3 months. It’s half the reason you don’t see my face much anymore. Body image has always been an incredibly touchy subject for me. I’ve been overweight my whole life, and last year Mike and I lost a combined total of 100lbs. This summer I find myself craving all the bad foods, unmotivated to exercise, and listening to the bad voices in my head telling me I’m ugly. 😣 With bad food choices comes lack of sleep and lots of stress and anger. I’ve felt like a bad parent and a bad wife this past month, believing I’m a burden on everyone and without much hope. 📸 I worry too much about what other people think. I worry about followers and the algorithm and the decline in inquiries and the dry months and getting older and my bad hips and my dirty house and pushing people away. ♥️ My total truth? I have no idea what I’m doing. Adulting, parenthood, marriage, owning your own business - all so hard, and and yet so good, and so full. ⬇️ I invite you to share something you’re struggling with below (or you can DM me if it’s hard). An invitation to be real. Your total truth. Much love, friends. #totaltruth #totaltruthtuesday
I realized today that I’ve been with Lauren and Tyler through so many seasons in their new lives together. From their engagement, to Lauren’s bridals, their unforgettable wedding, their pregnancy, and yesterday, meeting Arden for the first time. I am in LOVE with this sweet family. ♥️ Lauren and Tyler are still just as spunky and real as they were when we first met, and I absolutely love celebrating every new season with them. 🎉 And yes, even though my IG name says “weddings,” I totally love seeing your face again for anything from maternity to anniversary photos. I think it’s SO important to get in front of the camera every year or every new season to document your memories. 📸 I say this being a total hypocrite, because I need to do family photos, and anniversary photos, and Mommy and me photos myself. I know it’s so hard to get in front of the camera. “I need to lose a few pounds first,” or “I have no idea what to wear,” or “I can’t afford it right now.” I’ve literally said all these exact phrases. I get it, I understand, and I’m working on it myself. Let’s encourage others, and snap more photos of each other. If you need this, let me know! ⚡️ And double tap if you CAN’T EVEN with this cute sugar. Love her and her parents so much!
I think one of the most important things to remember in this life is to reach out. Even more important is to reach out to others when you’re in a good place. Check in with friends, invite someone out to coffee, just be there. 🌿 In our current world, with so many of us hiding behind screens, it’s hard to reach out. We don’t want to be a bother, or admit that we’re struggling. That things are harder than they seem. But we all have those moments where we just crave connection. 🌿 It’s been my goal this year to connect with others in real life. I’ve made so many friends just by messaging them and saying “let’s get coffee sometime. I’d love to meet you.” 🌿 I challenge you to reach out to someone this next week and go SEE them. Talk to them. Learn about them. Share with them. Commiserate with them. Because you never know when you’ll be in a bad place, and need someone to vent to or go on a walk with or help you out of a jam. 🌿 Because the honest truth is, it’s so hard to make friends as an adult. I know I could always use a new one. 🌿 Much love and happy Friday, friends.