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Happy Thanksgiving

Posted on: 11.28.2013

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm not the biggest fan of Thanksgiving food, but I do love the spirit of today. The focus on family, friends, and loved ones, along with being thankful for everything that we have, is how I want to live every day.

Photo by Jessica Lorren Photography

My husband and I woke up early this morning and braved the 45 degree weather to run a 5K around our neighborhood. Then we watched the parade and snuggled on the couch.  Later we are going to his parents armed with red wine and my slow cooker mac and cheese. This is the recipe I am using. This is the third time I am making it and it has been a real crowd pleaser every time so far.

This year has been amazing with so many highs!  I have so much to be thankful for:
  1. First and foremost, I am thankful for my husband. He is such a great man and I am beyond blessed to call him my husband for the rest of our lives. Getting married to him was the best thing I have ever done.
  2. I am also so thankful for our family and friends for all of their love and support this year. Seeing so many of them in one place at our wedding was amazing!
  3. I am thankful for the beautiful weather on our wedding day as well as our wedding vendors! They were awesome and worked so hard to make our day magical. So great!
  4. I am so proud that my cousin Lauren is making huge improvements in her recovery as well as my sister in law Jennifer for the success of her surgery.
  5. My fantastic honeymoon that was romantic and the best vacation I have ever taken.  I will be forever in love with Italy.  Take me back any time.
  6. My new job has been one of the best things ever.  I feel very fulfilled.  I am busy and making a difference at the office as well as with our clients.  My coworkers are also so great to see every day.
  7. My house and neighborhood still fill me with such pride.
  8. There are so many other things I am grateful for that seem like "little" things, but are really the big things, such as my health, my country, and my life.  I'm trying to enjoy it all the time.
Have a great day, turn off your phone, and spend time with your loved ones.  They are what matter.  I love you!

Why I Decided to Close My Photography Business

Posted on: 11.14.2013

As you have probably noticed, things have been changing over here.  I have slowly been closing Loving Care Photography, but as of September 1, 2013 it is officially out of business.  This was a terribly hard decision that I had been thinking and talking about for over a year.  I wasn't working on it and didn't really have the time that I wanted to devote to it, even though I had some fun ideas.  I was sad about this for a long time. Recently I felt comfortable with the fact that at this time in my life I didn't want to find the time to be a business owner.  It is a lot of hard work and I just wanted to go out shooting.  I still love photography.  I have loved it since my first class in high school.

I originally started the business to do something creative. I was in a job I disliked and having a hard time getting out.  Since then I have been engaged, started a new job, and got married. My priorities have shifted. I want to come home, try new dinner recipes, and spend time with my new husband instead of going into my shell to edit photos, take photography classes, and research new ideas.  My new job is going really well and I want my time off to actually be relaxing.  I am still going to photograph things and people that I care about.  I am still going to shoot film because I am in LOVE with it.  I am still going to blog my photos.  And I am probably going to do even more of it without the pressure of doing things "the right way," whatever that means.  And now that Loving Care Photography is closed, I feel such relief and happiness.  I hope you guys will stick around for the new adventure this blog is going to take.

Happy Halloween

Posted on: 10.31.2013

Happy Halloween
Me circa 1988

Let's Go Red Sox!

Posted on: 10.24.2013

It was the middle of the 8th inning of the final day of the 2010 baseball season.  We were up 8-3 against the Yankees at Fenway Park.  We heard the announcer come on the loud speakers and tell us it was Fan Appreciation Day and to line up to walk the bases after the game. "Wait, what?!  We were really going to get to walk on the field?"  Jesse was freaking out.  One of his childhood dreams and bucket list items was about to come true.  After the Red Sox beat the Yankees, we ran around trying to find people lining up.  "Where do we go?  We can't miss this!"  And then there was a mass of people!  Then we were on the field, touching the Green Monster, running from first base to second to third and finally to home plate.  We took so many pictures to commemorate this amazing opportunity.  That day was one of Jesse's best days ever and we will never forget it.  Go Sox!

Paint. Pour. Play. At Vino's Picasso

Posted on: 10.17.2013

I am always up for doing something out of the ordinary and Vino's Picasso definitely fits into that category, but not only that, it is SUPER fun! It's a fun, casual painting "class" where you bring your own bottle of wine. They also have tasty wine you can purchase by the glass or bottle at the shop.  You can also browse and purchase great art by local artists in the starving artist gallery . In 2012 the owner of Vino's Picasso, Mercedes Price Harry, was honored as one of the top Forty Under 40 by the Gulf Coast Business Review.

A couple weeks ago I went to a painting class with my sister-in-law and mom-in-law and we all had a great time.  It was their first and my second time painting with acrylics and our paintings came out so much better than we expected!  The class is perfect for beginners since it is very relaxed and the paintings are open to interpretation.  My mother-in-law decided to paint a little baby fish in her painting, which came out so cute!  Everything is provided and ready for you when you arrive: apron, canvas, easel, paint, brushes, water, paper towels, etc.  They even have a corkscrew and plastic cups for you to enjoy your bottle of wine!  The instructors are really fun and stress that they are there to help us and will get you more paint any time.  And you can get up and get whatever else you want at any time.

This place makes a great date night or ladies night out idea.  Vino's Picasso has now begun offering off-site classes around Cape Coral and Fort Myers a few evenings a month.  And you can reserve the studio for a private event like a birthday or celebration.  It is worth visiting, so go check out the website and the calendar to see what paintings are coming up.  I know I will be going back, hopefully soon!


April 6, 2013

Posted on: 10.10.2013

As I was planning our wedding, everyone told me how fast my wedding day would go and that we needed to remember to take time to just enjoy ourselves in the moment. I heard it so many times that I was prepared for the day to fly by.  It certainly went quickly, but it definitely wasn't as fast as I expected. I was relaxed, excited, and SO happy the whole day.  There are of course parts of the day I barely remember, but on the other hand, so many great moments seem to last forever. I love that!

Our wedding day was amazing! A few things didn't go according to plan (like the officiant calling me Veronica) and even a few things I would change in retrospect.  But those quirks just made it even more memorable and perfect.  I could not have imagined a better day.  Being surrounded by our family and closest friends while we pledged our lives to one another was by far our best moment so far.  We are so grateful for all of the love, help, and support that was shown to us by so many people leading up to and during our wedding.  We will never forget it.

This past Sunday, Jesse and I celebrated six months of marriage. Today I just wanted to share a few of my favorite moments from the day along with some amazing images from Jessica Lorren Organic Photography. Having her capture my day was the perfect choice and I am thrilled with the results. I am so thankful! All of the photos below are by Jessica Lorren.

1. First look with my dad - I had seen this done online and I knew I wanted to do the same.  Besides my mom and sister, nobody had seen or even heard about my dress.  I wanted it to be a big surprise. After a fun day getting ready with my mom, sister, and sister-in-law, I was so excited to show my dad what I looked like.  I knew he wouldn't cry, but his expressions were still the best.

2. Walking down the aisle with my dad towards Jesse - We didn't do a first look because we had both been dreaming of that moment.  I walked down the aisle to "Canon in D" by Pachelbel and as soon as my dad and I started walking, I started crying.  I knew it would happen since I am a cry baby.  And I remember feeling a big crocodile tear roll down my cheek as we turned to walk on the grass down the aisle.  Later I also find out that as soon as Jesse saw me, he put his hand on his heart and said "Damn!"  Not a bad reaction. :) After the ceremony, everyone told me that I made them start crying too.

3. Our first kiss - The whole ceremony was amazing.  This part did seem to fly by but I think we were just so excited to be getting married! Finally! But the true icing on the cake was our first kiss. It was not planned and as we turned around to face each other, Jesse whispered, "I'm going to dip you" and he did.

4. Time alone - After the ceremony, and after the formal family pictures, Jessica took us away from the action and we just enjoyed our first few minutes as Mr. And Mrs. We were so happy and you can see it in our photos.  This truly was a highlight for me, which I didn't expect.  I hadn't even really planned on having this time.  Jessica is just such a pro.

5. Cutting the cake - Why hadn't anyone talked about practicing this before? We had no idea what we were doing, haha. Jesse picked up the knife and was about the start cutting the top layer (which we were freezing for our one year), but I directed him down to the bottom layer. It was silly and fun. Also I had no idea I had given Jesse such an enormous piece of cake until I saw the video and pictures. Oops!

6. Dancing with our loved ones - I love dancing on a normal day, so I really love dancing at weddings. I also love that we had a small wedding and we were able to see and talk to everyone and still have time for dancing.  Pretty much everybody got up and danced at some point in the evening.

There were so many other special moments from the day including the fantastic speeches that were given in our honor and all of the special dances!  Plus the photos from our bride and groom portrait session on the beach are stunning.  So, there is definitely more to come.

Chardonnay In Memoriam

Posted on: 9.19.2013

This is a post about my family dog.  He was a West Highland White Terrier named Chardonnay, or Chardy for short.  He lived to the ripe old age of 17 and has been gone for a year.  I love and miss him every day.

This was him after we first got him.  Look how tiny and scared he looks!
I love how cute he was.
See what I mean?
I love how he would let us do ridiculous things, like put him in a box with my sister...
...and on the counter with a turkey...
...and mixed in with my stuffed animals...
...and whatever is going on here.
He wanted us to be together and was sad when we would leave, especially with luggage.
I love how he would always find a comfy place to sleep, like on a pile of laundry...
...or on his favorite perch (sorry we bugged you)...
...or this comfy sun bed.
I love how he would be my companion (or in this case Toto) when I needed him,
but he would usually only give me one chance to snap a picture, so I tried to get it right the first time.
I love how he would pop up in the funniest places in our pictures. (Example 1)
(Example 2)
I love how he could always enjoy a nice warm breeze,
long walks, 
and sunbathing.
But most of all, I just loved how sweet he was!

We love you Chardy!

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