So, you know about me as a photographer a little bit. And you know maybe a little bit about my personal life/kiddos. But, I thought I'd take this opportunity to let you know some more about me. As a person, as a wife, as a mother. Just...insight into who I am. Here we go!
1. I was born in Anderson, Indiana. I'm 28 years old. I've lived in Indiana most of my life, and nearly all of my family is nearby, which I love.
2. I was born into a very religious family, which I consider to be an amazing blessing. My father's dad was a Baptist preacher. My mother's parents were missionaries in Niger, West Africa for 35 years. My mom moved there when she was two years old and lived there until she was ready to come back to the States for college. She's trilingual, still fluent...which I consider to be pretty cool! Even though, she never fully taught me Zarma...I can say "hello, how are you?" and can say my name in Zarma. That's about it!
3. I have an older sister, Nansie. She is my best friend. We are 3 1/2 years apart in age and were never really close until we were older. She was a huge huge support to me when I got pregnant unexpectedly with my first son, Ethan. Nansie has two awesome boys with another on the way. She's married to an awesome guy, Kevin. He's a firefighter...and my kids think that's pretty cool!
4. I got pregnant with Ethan when I was 21. Definitely not the plan, but he has been such a blessing to both me and my husband. We got married when Ethan was 18 months old and have added two more babies since then! BOTH of whom were also "oops" babies! We definitely have no problem reproducing, that's for sure! ;) Ethan is now nearly six, Harper (our daughter) is three, and our chubby nugget, Maddox, is 16 months old. They are the three cutest kids in the whole world! You can check out their recent pictures below. This year, my husband Dave and I celebrated our four year wedding anniversary, and we've been together over nine years. Yowza!
5. I have a younger brother, Ryan. He's awesome. He went into the US Army after high school and has been deployed twice to Iraq. He came home quite unscathed, still the same person he was when he left. An absolute answer to prayer. Check out his surprise return home from his first tour here! And beware...it's a tearjerker, for sure! He's a wonderful man, brother, and husband to his awesome and gorgeous wife, Chelsea. They live in Oklahoma. Which sucks...but I think we can convince them to move to Indiana soon! ;) By the way...Chelsea is also getting her name out there as an awesome blogger, check her out here! Ryan and Chelsea actually met through blogging. Who woulda thunk?
6. I've been a nurse for over six years. I love it. I knew I wanted to be a nurse when I was in first grade. What really cemented it was when my grandpa got diagnosed with leukemia when I was in elementary school. I was in such awe of the awesome nurses at Methodist who took care of him. He went to be with the Lord in summer of 1996. We miss him dearly. Nansie and I still talk about how sad we are that he didn't get the chance to meet our babies. He would've been an amazing great-grandpa!
7. I started dabbling in photography in April of this year. So, I'm very very new at this! I still have a LOT to learn, I'm not as good as I hope to be in a year or so. But I love it love it love it! I'm so blessed to have found this new hobby/profession. I've met some awesome people, and I think every single one of my clients has taught me something about myself and life. It's pretty darn cool.
8. I'm an emotional girl. I cry when I'm happy, sad, tired, hungry...and I especially cry when I'm really angry. Like, really angry. Then I get angry that I'm crying, because I don't want to look like a wimp. I'm not being a wimp, I'm just pissed off! I don't like appearing weak. Especially because I'm strong. Very strong. I've been through some things these last five years that have been very trying. Trying on my self-esteem, my marriage, my kids, my friends, my family, my jobs...things I wouldn't wish on anyone. But I've come out stronger in the end. I love who I am, I honestly do.
9. I have five best friends. Count em. FIVE. How awesome is that?!?! My sister, my friend Crystal, who (whom?) I've known since kindergarten; Ashley, friend since fourth grade; Rachel, fanTABulous photographer in the Indy area- only known her two years, but I must've done something good to have her walk into my life! And then there's Dana, whom I've only known a very short time, but we've grown to be very close. She and I have a lot in common and have formed quite a bond over the past few months. Most people aren't lucky enough to have one person to call a best friend, so I am a pretty lucky girl! :)
10. I consider my life to be split into pie pieces. Every aspect of my life, every role I have, is an equal slice of the pie. I'm a wife and mother--foremost. But I'm also a friend, a sister, a daughter, a nurse and a photographer. Most of the time, I'm enjoying my "mommy" slice of the pie. Other times, I prefer to enjoy my "friend" piece of the pie and get dressed to the nines, go to dinner and get some drinks with my friends, and for a night, forget the other pieces of the pie. And just be a girl, having a great night out with my girlfriends. Some people feel guilty doing that. But, I never ever ever ever will. And I don't feel guilty for not feeling guilty!
11. I don't like fights or confrontations of any kind. And I certainly won't START a fight. But, if you push...I'll push back. And probably push back a little harder. I don't back down until you start waving your little white flag. And...that is something I consider to be one of my character flaws.
12. I love coffee. Like...LOVE. coffee. A lot. Always craving coffee. My winter drink? Venti Americano with four Splenda and extra cream. My summer drink? Iced venti sugar-free caramel breve latte. Yeah...say that five times fast! ;) Feel free to surprise me with coffee any day of the week. It'll win you the key to my heart.
13. I'm initially very stand-offish. Not as a photographer, though. I come out all loud and crazy and very excited to spend the day with you. Personally though...I'm super quiet at first. Some people misconstrue this to mean that I'm...well, bitchy. That might be the right word. But, that's not be at all. I much prefer to be a quiet observer for a long time when placed in a new situation. I would much rather it take a while for you to get to know me than for me to put it all out there right off the bat. I used to trust people a little too easily sometimes, and I that's not a good idea! So, that has a lot to do with why I seem quiet and "stand-offish" at first. But I warm up quickly, so no worries! :)
14. I'm a total breastfeeding advocate. I breastfed all of my kids and think it's one of the smartest and most rewarding things I've done as a parent. I pat myself on the back for being a full-time working mother and being able to nurse my children until they self-weaned. Gooooo ME! ;) I couldn't have done it without my awesome sister and support. She was my own personal lactation consultant!
15. Anything else you want to know? Feel free to ask.
If I'm being brutally honest...this blog post was inspired by an altercation I got into today with someone. Not a physical one, but an altercation with words. For some reason, situations like that, although few and very far between, always inspire me to put words down. I have a hard time accepting something like being misjudged for the wrong reasons, and this is my way of sorting through it in my head. But...it's not in my head. It's on a public blog. But, I feel the need to share, to let my feelings out. And I feel like it was theraputic for me to get it out.
So, thank you. Thank you for reading, and quite possibly thanks for reading until I bored you to tears!
Here's a recent picture of my husband and I at a friend's wedding.
Dates are few and far between!