Musings: A Yearly Tradition Continues...

2:41 PM

In the midst of chaos...
...our family photos were scheduled!

Generally, I would have wanted to share these amazing photos right away. The fact that I received them the day after we had them taken was ahhh-mazing. And by NO means does the way I am feeling about myself and my body, reflect how I feel UVVisions Photography did as our photographers. Nor does the fact that it's taken me a week to post them here (and on IG). Lluvia and Jorge, just three week newlyweds, did an amazing job with handling a rambunctious and sassy almost-eight-year-old and their photos speak volumes to attest to that.

Prior to the photos, to say J and I's lives were in a chaotic mess, is an understatement. We've been dealing with a lot on our plates within the last two weeks, but really most of the summer. Add on traveling for work and a lovely trip to Hawaii, our life has been a whirlwind. Not to say that most days aren't, but this year was something NEW, for even us. Through it all Lluvia and Jorge were amazing. As I could never lock down a date, due to unforeseen circumstances, through it all they held a tentative date and let me confirm less than a few days before. This is a true testament to their customer service and understanding for varying family dynamics!

From Chicago to a week home, then jetting off to Hawaii, my workout routine was minimal. The week that was nestled between the two trips I was lazy. I used 'stress' and 'emotions' as my excuses and I basically skipped all Midtown workouts. I went once or twice, but that was it. I also had a shoulder pain and milked that for all it was worth to skip workouts. Even as I missed the workouts I knew I was using excuses, not making my body a priority.

Thus, led to lots of negative self talk and thoughts about my body. I was not happy how I was feeling in my clothes and I knew I was getting out of shape -- my clothes and the minimal workouts I did were huge indicators. Couple that with not giving myself adequate time to plan (re:shop) our outfits to my liking, I was really down on how I felt about myself in these pics. The dress I wore didn't lay as nicely on my body as I would have preferred and it wrinkled when I put it on :( Again, I adore the pictures, but when I look at myself in them I am having a hard time being confident in them.

Lluvia and Jorge are an amazing duo, who love their job. Funny, we had a few things in common, one being they are a soccer couple too. I'm pretty sure Lluvia has played with or against J. It was fun to get to know them for the 1.5 hours we were together. They couldn't have been more patient and understanding with L who was getting tired and annoyed toward the end. I wish I could post some of the amazing photos they took of L, but in respect to J's wishes I leave her off here. L killed it with her twirls and her huge 8 balloon AND her overall cuteness!

They shoot and travel anywhere for their clients. We chose the Davis Arboretum, which is a beautiful (and free) location for lush and green scenery. We tossed the idea around of Gibson Ranch, but decided Davis would be better and I'm happy that was our final decision! Weirdly, the pond was covered in a fairly thick layer of algae, but it never affected our photos.

We didn't use any of the Pinterest board I update to keep our family photos fresh, but I thought I'd share it with you, in case you have some coming up! Lluvia is a pro at styling the humans, on top of taking the closer shots, so I didn't have to use it.

So, four days later, I have the courage to share these images, even though I am not the happiest with myself (not the photos -- I can't stress this enough)...
I posted one of these on IG yesterday and so many sweet words were sent my way, but one that stuck out most to me was "There's strength in vulnerability!" I let that stew for a bit and realized I really enjoy that sentence. I also think its a good word to describe how I feel about my social media. I'm open to showing my vulnerability in my own time, in my own way. I never saw strength in it nor did I think there was really. I always contemplate if people think I'm fishing for compliments or just being honest with this type of content. I know I shouldn't put so much emphasis on what people think, but I'm human...and I do. But as in life, I can only live my own truth and I can't change anyone elses truth. So, thank you Nellie for that little knowledge bomb you dropped on me yesterday.

I can't praise Lluvia and Jorge enough. Even though I'm not happy with how I actually look (really, feel), I still love that they captured our family so perfectly. From the styled close up shots from Lluvia to the 'creeper' shots from Jorge, we love them all! I love that all the photos we've taken to date are all in such different settings, this one adding another location to our list!

NO, these are not engagement pictures!

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