Before I get started talking about this wedding, there are some things that I need to say in this final chapter. Maybe it should be in its own blog? Whatever. I’m goin’ with it. Now, as most of you know, John does the blog writing. This is for many reasons. For one, I’m horrible at spelling. I’ve definitely gotten better, but I’m still horrible. Second, he’s just so dang good at it. If you reread some of the ones he did when this was full time for him, he’ll bring you to tears. I’ll have him proof-read and grammar check before it’s presented to the world, so if there’s any mistakes, it’s his fault. Speaking of grammar, man I hate it. Not because I’m bad at it, which I’m sure does play a part, but because it’s just another reason to judge someone else or to make yourself feel inferior. I don’t judge you for not knowing how to take a good picture. I’m not saying grammar and spelling don’t have their place. Like in books, news, etc. If you’re a writer or a journalist, it’s important to get the story right for many different reasons. But the important thing to remember before judging the difference is to consider whether you got the point. If you know what the person means, then the point was made. It’s about communicating. I once had a 45 minute conversation with a man in Cambodia without understanding a single word he spoke. It didn’t matter. We connected and that’s the point. I’ll never forget the man. Ask me about Bong. I’ll tell ya some stories. Anyways, I’m getting completely off the point. If you’re a friend of ours, chances are you’ve heard we’re walking away from photography. It’s just time. It’s time to reclaim our time. Time to start really making a decision about kids. Time to take Reese to the ocean. It’s time to start having time for watching my god daughter and niece and to attend school plays… or concerts, soccer games or whatever they decide to do:) If you’re not from around these parts, which many of our followers aren’t, then you have no idea. You definitely can tell we’ve stopped posting so frequently and that things have slowed down. We stopped taking on clients (for the most part) a year or so ago. People forget I’ve been at this for over 12 years. The first couple of years were about figuring my skills out, but there have been a solid 8-9 years of hardcore “go time.” Remember, I started before smartphones. Facebook had just started. The Internet was used mostly for chat rooms. There was no easy way to create a website. The world of photography was much different. It was much harder to get your stuff out there and become a destination photographer. It was hard. It was long and it was hard. We didn’t have the money to start out with the best equipment. We worked, and saved, and upgraded. Photography workshops weren’t really a thing yet. My education came solely from spending hours reading books at Barnes and Noble stores, because we didn’t have money to buy the books, and memorizing the ones we could get. It really came down to trial and error. There were no YouTube tutorials. Everybody didn’t just give information away for free. Every once in a while, I would find something in a photography thread or a comment. I will be forever grateful to the families who kept hiring me and pushing me to keep going, even when I was printing my personal prints from my printer. Yeah that happened.
A shout-out goes to the Franklins and another to my husband. Without your love and support, this wonderful chapter of my life would have never happened. Not only do I have these incredible memories, I have these incredible experiences that shaped me into who I am today. I will be forever grateful. From the bottom of my heart. Thank you. I have been everywhere! Cambodia, Thailand, ITALY! Incredible. All because someone thought my talent was worth it. Crazy.
I’ve had a couple weddings this past year that I thought were the last. I guess it took me a couple to finally come to terms. This last wedding though, felt right. It felt final. Beautifully final. When Jenny contacted me about shooting her wedding, I immediately felt pulled. It almost didn’t happen but I’m so glad it did. I’m so glad everything worked out and we were brought to this amazing place and were able to experience this amazing love.
Now. I was a mess. I held it together, for the most part, on the wedding day, but all the other days were an emotional roller coaster. I cried at everything. Not because I was sad, but because the beauty of this final page was unbelievable. Mother Nature and I were on the same page. I’m not kidding. I stood 4 feet from a wild buck, in an enchanted forest and had a whiskey jack bird land on my hand next to a glacier-fed lake. Yeah it happened. It was surreal. The whole trip has been surreal. After the wedding, John and I rented a car and drove up through Washington on the 101, ending in Pemberton, British Columbia, to hike the Joffre Lakes trail. It is our anniversary today. 12 years married. I’m writing this at 3 in the morning, in our hotel room in Canada, on our last night because I had to get it down. The feelings are bursting out of me. Literally. Yeah I’m crying. Shut it, friends. Tomorrow we begin our journey home. Stopping in Vancouver, Seattle and Portland. I’m excited to get back, edit these pictures, see fall at its fullest, (nothing beats fall back home) and celebrate our god daughter turning one.
This trip has brought me to my knees. I’m so thankful. So very thankful.
Things to know about this wedding: I went to school with Jenny and her sister. I knew of them, but never really knew them. Jessie (her sister) and I were in show choir together (show choir-ers unite!), but that’s it. When Jessie got married, she hired us, thus started the friendship. The Lauvers are smart, incredibly kind and shy. (The shyness excludes Jenny, of course;)
Living in a small community, things can be impactful. In 2013, the Lauvers were hit hard by the sudden passing of Jim, Jenny and Jessie’s dad. I remember hearing of it and instantly feeling heartbroken for them. It was a jolt. A reminder that no matter how prepared you are for life, sometimes there’s just not enough bear pepper spray.
I met Rory for the first time, the day before the wedding. He was warm, handsome and instantly a friend. They are perfect together and for one another. Jenny is like having a piece of driftwood with you at all times. You know, that piece of wood you picked up on that trip to remember that perfect day, when your dog saw the beach for the first time. It’s beautiful and light. Every time you look at it, it just makes you smile. That’s Jenny. She’s a shiny penny.
They met at a bar and it was love at first budlight. They love movies, games and the 80’s. Which was themed through the whole weekend. 37 of their closest family and friends gathered at Cannon Beach, Oregon, (where scenes from The Goonies were shot) to help celebrate their love. They were asked to bring their favorite 80’s icon costume to wear to the evening dance party. The weekend included Olympic Games, a welcome bonfire, trivia, a My Little Pony bounce house and some polar bear plunges. There was laughter and love. I couldn’t have asked for a better way to end. Congratulations Jenny and Rory. I will treasure your wedding for so many reasons.