One Thing / 12.

I just agreed to shoot a wedding. Typing those words feels so surreal and yet so exhilarating at the same time. If you've known me for any substantial amount of time, you know that while I have a passion for photography, it's also one of the hardest things for me to commit to. I'm blessed to have a job that helps provide for my family so I've never felt the pressure to make it like you find in most creative's stories. Not that I need a traumatic life event, believe me, I don't. I've been feeling like my journey wasn't as worthy of notation as others well, because, I'm not even sure what my story is. But recently I uncovered I was saying no to my dreams, mostly out of fear. Fear that I wouldn't get published or that I wouldn't live up to what people thought I was. Well, I decided I'm not going to live a life afraid anymore and actually get my actions in line with my words. So I sent a text, to the beautiful couple below that let me capture their engagement, that said something along the line of I'm in, if you're in (it was a very Juno and Vanessa at the end of Juno, moment). I am so excited to step out on faith this year.

Is there something you've been wanting to pursue but you've been holding yourself back? You can let it go and conquer whatever mountain you decide to take down. I believe in you! 

You can see more of my work here.

One Thing / 11.

I have been a hot mess express as of late. A lot of things have changed at work, I recently started Burn Boot Camp so my body aches in ways that I didn't know possible, and I'm just a grouchy puddle of good for nothing. So I figured I'd try and commit to at least one day of blogging a week. No rules. The only expectation is that I stick to that. Writing makes me happy and my heart a little lighter so it's kinda free therapy. Even though, if you know me, you'd probably agree I should go to real therapy and sit on someone's couch, real soon. 

But back to the feelings. Every major life event, I feel, either feels super isolating or tremendously welcoming. In my experience, getting married was like admittance to a club where the booze is flowing and the dj plays your favorite songs all night long. Motherhood on the other hand has been this awkward grey area of in-betweens. You suddenly have open arms welcoming you in the form of faces you love but have never met in real life (hey Insta-mom friends!) but if you're like me, one of the first to have babies in my crew, there's also this weird space of what comes next. 

So to make months worth of anguish (okay that's a bit dramatic) a short story, a few weeks ago I found myself sobbing in my best friends car trying to explain how isolating it felt to be a mom. She had NO idea I was feeling this way because I hate feeling vulnerable and she has the kind of eyes you can't look into with feelings on your chest and not end up crying! But I talked and she listened. And then she talked and I listened. And it really is a tale as old as time (insert bad singing), but people really can't be there for you if you don't invite them in.

It took me waaay to long to learn that. Like, months of ugly crying to Mike long. And now I'm doing better to make sure that I create less space between myself and some of the other mamas in my life. The images below were from this past weekend when we got together with one of my best friends (my god son's mom) and spent a few hours at the park. I'm ashamed to say this is the first time we'd gotten together as a family BUT I'm committed to making it stick. 

So, hug a mama today. Share your feelings. Make plans. Give the love you want to receive. 

One Thing / 10.

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Our future is bright. As you lay here on my lap sound asleep I can't help but smile and think of when a little dude that looks just like you is laying there too. You help me more than you know. Your small words of assurance build me up stone by stone that I may be a stronger woman one day. You make me courageous. I want to see the world and push my limits in the pursuit of the most amazing life we'll share. You are strong. You wipe my tears and console me (for whatever ridiculous thing I'm crying about). But all the while you call out where I can improve not giving me the opportunity to feel bad about myself or swim in a sea of self pity. You are everything I have always needed. You make me better and bright.

One Thing / 9.

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"I’m from a generation undecided. I’m restless and I can’t help changing lanes. But in all the noise and the excitement, your love is all that will remain. I’ve said all of my goodbyes to ego. I gambled all I got, there’s no plan B..." - Where I Sleep, Emile Sande

Truer words have never been spoken. I have switched classes, college majors, colleges, professions, hobbies, I mean really... the list could go on. It's not necessarily running from anything, it's just the infinite possibilities of journeys that could be gone on. But this, Mike and I, is it. No plan B.

I always have an escape plan. A way out, under, though, or away. This time I have nothing. Not a single plan at all and it's comforting. It incredible how one man and my faith in him and God has brought me to a play of stay. 

One Thing / 8.

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Protection. I think this word takes form in so many ways in the life of women. From conception we're safe from harm protected by our mothers. As we experience first heartbreak our fathers are there to wrap their arms around us and welcome us back into their safety. We grow and mature and finally we find the one. I have never felt so protected in my life.

2013 was definitely a year of putting my faith in God and watching how His protection will cover me and those I love. Mike is definitely God sent. He's so protective of my feelings, my sensitivities, and my heart. He supports, leads, and guides this little unit of ours and I couldn't ask for anything more.

I also take protecting his heart very seriously as well. Truth be told that idea once freaked me out. I ran. Scared of facing God's truth for my life. That I deserved to be loved like I'd never been before. That I was not only capable but could succeed in providing someone with that same love. I don't think responsibility ever felt this good. Mike's heart fits perfectly within mine.

One Thing / 7.

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Mike and I are back in our respective states and let me say it's still not awesome. The upside is that with an upcoming move (Mike to Atlanta), wedding, and honeymoon there's a lot to be excited about. We are getting to the really exciting parts of planning our wedding. We've got our date, venue, and photographer locked down and everything has been falling into place. The event designer is one of my good friends and we've been dreaming up all the special ways to make our day amazing.

Speaking of amazing, I can't wait to be able to get some of both of our families together in one place. I have a feeling it's going to be pretty epic. We'll always be hopping from coast to coast, you know spending time with family and showing off future baby Ng's, but for once everyone will be together. I can't wait.

PS: No. There are no baby Ng's cooking at this moment. Oh, and aren't those sea lions the cutest?! We saw them on our trip whale watching.

One Thing / 6.

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If we get the date we have in our minds, I am less than seven months away from being this man’s wife. That’s a heavy sentence. The thought, well it’s a reality now, of Mike being my family is so overwhelmingly amazing I often get caught up in thankfulness. We went whale watching in San Diego yesterday and the whole time I must have whispered to him ‘we are so blessed’ at least thirty times. I pray that when challenges arise I’m reminded of times I’ve held his hand and he’s told me how beautiful I am. Or the times he’s let me cry on his shoulder and wrapped me in his arms so sweetly. Truth is I write these posts, not to romanticize our relationship (we don’t live a 24/7 fairytale), but to document the overwhelming joy he brings me as I’m falling in love with him more and more each day. I never want to forget what being in love with him feels like.

PS: We haven’t forgot about sharing our engagement story! And, this blog might even start giving you little peeks into our wedding planning process. SIX MONTHS!