2014 has been a big year for my family. We have celebrated two graduations, an engagement and wedding, new jobs, new homes, and travels all over the world. For my sister Tanner and her husband Mason, 2014 will always be remembered as the year they were able to get pregnant.
You would be hard-pressed to find a couple more suited for parenthood. These two are going to be amazing parents and I’m grateful to get the chance to learn from the example they will set. One of the challenges of being the firstborn is never having an older sibling to show you how things are done. As the oldest, I was always the one paving the way. Tanner gets to be the first to become a mama and I get to watch as she takes on her new role. She’s paving the way and I couldn’t be more happy for her.
Not long after we ring in the new year, the Petersons have the privilege of ringing in a new generation of our family. This baby may have mom’s red hair or dad’s dimples. It may have mom’s gift for making friends or dad’s gift for making jokes. One thing is for sure though… this baby will have an army of grandparents, aunts, and uncles who love him (or her!) We thank God for his answer to prayer and we look forward to all the joy this new year is sure to bring .
Slowly but surely the wedding plans are coming together. A church has been reserved, a dress has been purchased, and a cake has been ordered.
Leah and Mark wanted to send a save-the-date card to their guests, so we had a photo shoot. I had three subjects for these pictures – a girl, a boy, and a wooden sign.
The countdown to November 22 is on.
Each year, in the month of June, we get an opportunity to celebrate fathers. This year, my Father’s Day began with a morning shoot with this great father and his family.
For just over two years, I had the pleasure of working with Katie. Our office would not have been the same without her energy and her laughter. She is full of joy and life and creativity, and I’m awfully glad I get to be her friend. I think Jon is glad he gets to be her husband.
It wasn’t about the flowers. It wasn’t about the cake. It wasn’t about the rings.
This was a day about family.
Jennifer and Joe’s wedding day was planned with their family in mind. It was to be held in the nursing home so that Jennifer’s wheelchair bound mother could be in attendance. They hired a photographer so that the day could be shared with family on the west coast. Jennifer’s three youngest grandchildren were invited to be a part of the ceremony as bridesmaids and ring bearer. And Jennifer insisted on throwing her bouquet so that her eldest granddaughter could have the pleasure of catching it.
The bride’s first order of business was to tend to the needs of her youngest bridesmaid. She was so gentle with the hairbrush, making sure not to hurt her granddaughter’s head.
Joe is now the newest official member of this family. I would say that he fits right in.
Congratulations Jennifer and Joe!
When I left home to go to college, Leah was ten years old. Oftentimes, it’s hard to remember that she’s not the same child I lived under the same roof with all those years ago. These days, she is the sister with the best sense of style and the driest sense of humor. She’s the one whose red hair is often mistaken for blonde. She is an athlete and an artist. She has a strong competitive spirit and a brilliant mind. She is funny. She is beautiful. And she is in love.
Leah met Mark her first semester at Auburn. I remember being impressed the first time I met him. He looked me in the eye and asked me questions about my life in a way that is rare among college freshmen. He was respectful and friendly and pleasantly confident. In the years since, I have come to learn that he loves Jesus, he is musically talented, and he cares deeply about my baby sister.
Leah’s 22nd birthday was last week. It was a day full of surprises that ended with a diamond ring and a marriage proposal. I was let in on the secret ahead of time so that I could make arrangements to be in town for the big day. We had just enough time the next morning to sneak away and shoot some photos.
I’m pretty excited that these two are getting married. Congratulations Leah and Mark!
There are times that the Lord answers prayers quickly. And times when his answer is “no”. But then there are times when, after years of bringing him a request, God answers and reveals that fulfilling your heart’s desire has been part of his plan all along. His plan for Kristen and Bill is to grow their family, and in December they will finally welcome a baby girl into the world.
Kristen has made a career out of caring for children. She is going to be an absolutely amazing mama.
She grew up in the mountains of Tennessee and he’s a city boy from Mexico.
She wears her heart on her sleeve and he stands strong by her side.
She has big beautiful hair and he has a big beautiful smile.
These two are getting married in March. And this is a glimpse of what their love looks like.