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a few of my family’s photos and some true life story updates

016-fam16Last year, I was doing pretty good blogging through my photo shoots up until October 31st, when I just went silent on the blog. Every single fall, I get a little overwhelmed by editing all the sessions for my clients, which I prioritize over blogging. It’s okay, it’s just what happens. :) So, I wanted to write a little about my life and what has been going on with me, since I usually try to work in some true life story tidbits when I blog photo shoots, and like I said, I had a couple months of radio silence over here.

Let’s jump right into it, and I’ll intersperse my monologue with some photos of my beautiful family – taken with the help of my nephew’s girlfriend, who was a trooper putting up with me and with the cold weather on the day we shot! Thanks, Maddy! <3

Okay, so about those life updates… Late last year, my Grams and I started throwing around the idea of moving in with my sister Amber and my niece Laila. There were various reasons for the plan to move, one of them being so I could start really saving up some money. My family and my boyfriend and I all went through Dave Ramsey‘s Financial Peace University in the fall, and for the first time in my life, I started applying the stuff I’ve been hearing for years about money {my parents are longtime Dave fans – they paid off all their debt years ago}. So, I had some momentum going and wanted to push it and start “living like no one else, so I can eventually live like no one else”… Don’t punch me for using the cheesy Dave Ramsey line.

052-fam16My boyfriend, Jonathan, was also part of the decision to move, since we know we want to get married at some point, and I wanted to start saving for that and also help transition Grams to living with someone else {Amber} for when that day comes. And now I’m going to dive {very shallowly} into some personal stuff that I was hesitant to share… The second week of December, Jonathan broke up with me. We were apart for about three weeks, and we are back together now, as of my birthday, New Year’s Eve. I am not going to into that too much, other than to say, we each had a part in the breakup, and I believe we both learned some stuff during those difficult three weeks. Most people tend to share the high points of their lives and gloss over or simply don’t mention the low points. I really desire to be very genuine and authentic here on this blog, so I didn’t want to pretend this breakup never happened and just go along like the month of December wasn’t a very painful time for me. On the other hand, I understand why people often gloss over the messy true life stories, because some things are and should be private and unnecessary to share full details with the world at large. All of that to say, December was a hard month for me. I had decided at the beginning of the month to move, then I was single for about three weeks, during which I was moving and the holidays were happening.038-fam16To counteract the gloom and doom tone happening here, I will say that December was also good for me. I leaned into my relationship with God like I haven’t in awhile, and He caught me and held me and filled me with the sweet peace that passes understanding. On the physical side of things, I was able to purge a ton of stuff while packing, and I do mean a ton. With the awesome help of my family, I dropped off enough thrift store donations to start an entirely new thrift store! You think I am kidding, but ohhhh I’m not! It was a much needed clean out of a lifetime accumulation of stufffff. And it feels so good to have less of it now!img_8761I think because I was in such turmoil over my love life, I was able to clearly see that all the clothes, shoes, magazines, hats, scarves, belts, knickknacks, odds and ends I had been stockpiling weren’t really enriching my life. Instead, they were smothering any new growth in me. Suddenly, it became very easy for me to let go. I am far, far from ever becoming a minimalist, but I do feel that something in me has fundamentally shifted, and I hope to stay on this path of never being buried under junk again. I do mean this all quite literally, and I hope I’m making sense. Even if you’ve never fought hoarder tendencies, you must know someone who has, and can probably grasp what I’m saying.

Gosh, I feel very vulnerable right now.img_8798Anyway, in addition to all of my purging, I also had Grams to help pack. And Grams loves her stuff. All of it. Clothes and jewelry and shoes and angels and butterfly decor and every piece of paper she has ever received ;) and weird little fun plastic bits and random everything you could imagine and then some, plus a million and one shelves to stack and pile it on. She has it and wants to keep it! So, huge shout out to my family for helping Grams and I purge, pack, and move our stuff. What a daunting task it was! And what a relief to be settling into my sister’s house, with less things but far more peace of mind. :)img_8800And now to go back and touch on the breakup and subsequent new start of my relationship with Jonathan… I can honestly say that I love him so much and I want nothing more than to build a lifetime together with him and only him, and I know he feels the same about me. Yes, we broke up for bit, and obviously something like that doesn’t happen after a year and a half together without some rough stuff leading up to it. But, by the grace of God, and in a huge, obvious answer to prayers, we are together again and working hard at making our relationship better in so many small and some big ways. I humbly welcome any prayer on our behalf, and I want to sincerely thank those who knew what what was going on and prayed for me and for Jonathan. I felt your prayers and am living God’s answer. Thank you. I love Jonathan and I’m so proud to be his girlfriend and happy to have a fresh start with him. That’s about all I have to say on all that, I guess. :)img_8873I hope I haven’t made it too awkward around here by giving you such an intimate peek into my life and what has been going on. I promise I will be back to blogging pretty photos this week. And I also have another true life story to share once I have a little more concrete facts to give you…and this one I’m pretty excited about! It’s not nearly as cringe worthy as talking about a breakup. ha! Thank you guys for reading and not judging me too harshly. :) <3

I will end this by saying: I cannot state enough how thankful I am for the strong support system I have in my family and friends. I love you all so much!




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Kelly BeaneJanuary 11, 2017 - 1:06 am

I am so proud of you! For being vulnerable and sharing. You never know how much this could help someone else. For staying faithful and rooted in the word of God. He has a plan for your life and I love seeing it unfold. For PURGING! Girl, I know how difficult that must have been and what a fresh start it will provide you with. I love you tremendously and pray for you consistently! So ready to see what 2017 holds for your life!

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