Our tenth year of photography as an actual real LIVE business! Ten years of sister trips, hot coffees, large french fries, and juggling memory cards like we were under the big tent. It’s been ten years of laughter with the groomsmen as they’re getting ready in the morning and oohing and ahhing with bridesmaids as the bride shows off her dress for the first time. It’s been ten years of me wiping away tears on the dance floor as the brides daddy takes her hand and waltzes her across the dance floor. It’s been ten years of us peeking into the most important parts of peoples lives and photographing those stories for generations to see for years to come. It’s been ten years of us believing we can do it, and you affirming that belief.
We officially kicked off the Christmas season in our household last weekend with tree trimming, a tree lighting downtown, eggnog and Christmas cookies, and a movie night with The Polar Express. This movie is definitely one of our favs for setting the Christmas mood, while also reminding us why this season is so special. It’s a season to be with family and friends, a season to appreciate everything you have, and everything you’ve been given. It’s a season to appreciate the life you live despite what it’s filled with. Most importantly it’s a season of deep, strong, belief. What you choose to believe in may be different then us but there’s no doubt that this month brings a sense of magic to everyone. We believe this is the time when God brought his only son onto this earth to save all of humanity. It is a love so strong that this story has echoed throughout December since the beginning of time. His heart is full of love for the people He made. We believe that Santa comes on Christmas Eve to share gifts with children all over the world because his heart was so much bigger than his mind. We believe that the first snowfall is pure magic because it covers all the dirt and filth that may have built up over the year and transforms the landscape into a clean, pure, glistening wonderland.
“Seeing is believing, but sometimes, the most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.”Tom Hanks in the Polar Express
Instead of boasting to the world, we tie them up with pretty little bows and hide them in our china cabinet to only bring them out for special occasions. Just like the china we received for our wedding, we don’t want anyone to scratch them or break them…or maybe, just maybe…we don’t want to hear someones opinions on them. Our color selections and style won’t mesh with everyone that sits down to use them so we have to carefully decide with whom to share them. I’ve felt this way about our business on and off throughout the years.
I’ve wondered if our business was pretty enough when I’ve scrolled through the massive amount of photographer websites Google has to offer.
I’ve wondered if we were fancy enough. Did we send enough gifts? Should we show up to the shoot with the most expensive champagne and chocolates? Is my outfit snazzy enough for this wedding?
I’ve compared our prices with photographers who have been in business for one year and photographers who have been doing this for 40 years. Are we priced too high? Are we too low? Are we charging what we are worth or are we undercutting our talents and skill?
I’ve struggled with blogging, and posting, and instastories, and reels because seriously we all know that is LEGIT a full time job in itself.
I’ve hoped and prayed that every time I get a review notification it will not be one that wrecks our name.
During all this time, I have never stopped believing. We didn’t know what this road would look like or how far it would take us. We didn’t know how many days it would leave my husband to adventure with the kiddos alone. We didn’t know how many catered salads Kay would be eating or how many cheesecakes I’d be sampling. We didn’t know how much closer it would bring us as sisters and how much more in love with our husbands it would make us. Kay definitely didn’t know how many photos she would get of me pregnant on the dance floor and I certainly didn’t know Kay was going to be a master photographer of flat lays. (That word was not even in my vocabulary ten years ago.) But, I did believe she could do it. I believed Kay would show up to every wedding day and capture THE MOST AMAZING portraits of our bride and grooms. I believed I could hand over any and all images I had taken and she would treat them as if they were her own wedding photos. I believed we would spend as much time as needed before, during, and after our shoots to deliver a product to our clients that surpassed our own ridiculously high standards. I believed in Kay and Kay believed in me and I know for a fact that is why we are where we are today. I don’t know if I would’ve believed you ten years ago if you told us how many lives we would’ve connected with in ten years…but now I know that is thanks to you…for believing in us. On cloudy dreary days you believed we’d find the light. When your toddler put on his sassy pants you believed we would find his smile. When your family was THE hardest to wrangle into one photo…you believed in us to get a photo with everyone looking. You believed we could…so we did.
Let’s head into the new year like we’re jumping aboard the Polar Express. “One thing about trains: It doesn’t matter where they’re going. What matters is deciding to get on.” –Polar Express.
Maybe we don’t exactly know where we are going or what we’ll be doing but we can certainly believe it will be magical and wonderful. Tis’ the season for believing, hoping, and praying for greatness.
December 7, 2022