Whew!  I still can’t believe it’s 2014 already!  I hope everyone had a safe and happy Christmas and New Year celebration.  I have been fully enjoying having my kids out of school, having no schedule, sleeping in, spending time with family and loved ones, and trying to pack in as much last minute fun as possible before life gets back to “normal” next week.

As many of you know and some of you may not, I spent about 5 months of 2013 spending as much time with my parents as possible while my Dad battled stage 4 lung cancer.   We found out about it in June, and unfortunately he passed away in October.   My parents live almost 500 miles away, but I was lucky enough to see him every month of those 5 months – sometimes by myself, sometimes with husband and kids.  It was the hardest thing I have ever been through, and  I am still getting used to our family’s new normal.    Christmas was obviously different this year, but I’m so grateful we were with my mom, sister, and brother-in-law.  My Dad received a military burial two days before Christmas – and let me just say – I have never been more proud to be a Navy brat as I was that morning.  It was a beautiful ceremony.  He served his country proudly in the Navy for 20 years, and for many years after that doing civilian work on base in my military home town of Pensacola, FL.  The military has always been such a huge part of our lives, it was the perfect way to end things.

I wasn’t necessarily planning to share all of this when I sat down tonight to blog about welcoming in the new year.  But I guess I wanted to be real about what’s been going on in my life these past 6 months.  And I wanted to give a big THANK YOU to all the clients that I worked with during that time that were so patient with me – as sometimes we had to reschedule sessions at the last minute so I could go out of town – or they had to wait longer than usual for their proofs or their orders to be fulfilled.   I even discovered dear clients along the way that had gone through the exact same situation with their dads as I had with mine – and they were the first to give me a hug, or words of encouragement and understanding, or checked in to see how things were going.   Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

So – a fresh start.  That’s what I’m most looking forward to in 2014.   I have never been more happy to see one year end and another begin.   As a way to kick things off here on the old blog, I’d like to spend each day (hopefully!) blogging and sharing on Facebook each and every session I had during the October-November months.  I didn’t blog or share a lot as they were happening because I didn’t want to ruin the surprise of any Christmas cards.  And who am I kidding, I barely had time to edit, place orders, and sleep during those months!   But I had some really amazing sessions with some really amazing families and can’t wait to show everybody off. 🙂  I also want to get back to sharing more of my personal images on here…including but not limited to the last little photo shoot I had with my Dad on Father’s Day, and some Christmas highlights of my family (using my brand new camera that I am in LOVE with!).

Happy New Year everyone.

With much love,

Beth