Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Happy birthday to my little lady

Oh sweet one,

You have ruined me.  Consider me mush forever - ever since you entered the world.   From the way you love to the stories you tell to the laughter that comes from you all the time - I am constantly in awe that I get to be your mommy.
I love you, lady.  Beyond measure. 
And I could not be more grateful for your entrance into this world. 
You have taught me so much about life in your 5 years. 
And I cannot wait for the years to come.
I love you times infinity.  And I always will. 
And yes, one day, somehow, we will have a mommy/daughter date in Paris. 

With all of my heart, I love you.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Conversations with My Daughter

Sometimes I stop.  I look.  And I'm amazed by how beautiful my little girl is. 
Today I stopped to tell her so.

Me:  How did you get to be so incredibly cute?
Little Lady: God made us cuter.
Me: How did God make you cuter?
LL: With God...anything is possible.

LOVE.  Times infinity.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Everything changes...

Some things in life are bittersweet.
And that's exactly where I find myself today.
You see - our family has these dreams - dreams for the future - crazy big, beautiful plans that excite us beyond measure - but as dreams often do, we find that are some changes ahead for us.
And one of those changes?  Our family has decided to relocate to Atlanta, GA.
It's not an easy choice...
We LOVE our friends and my client-friends beyond measure.
But...to truly follow these dreams, we find that we simply must relocate.
Why Atlanta?
Well...it is a cool place.  With incredibly cool people.  And we have some great family down there.
It's warmer.  Chicago - I love you and your summers, but your winters are difficult...
They have a nice airport.  More on this in a moment...
And it is home to two schools that my husband is considering for his PHD work.  (speaking of which - if you'd like to check out his blog, head over to www.theopaulson.com)

So, towards the end of the summer, our family will head down to start the southern part of our journey as a family.

What does this mean?
I'm glad you asked...
As of late this summer, amyp photography will still be blessed enough to be based out of Chicago AND Atlanta for wedding photography.  Both cities will serve as our home base.  (Double the cool points.)  And as always, we accept wedding commissions world-wide and cannot wait to serve brides and grooms in many different locations.  (That's why we're glad Atlanta has a great airport)

But this does mean we will have limited individual, couple and family lifestyle sessions left here in Chicago.  As I noted in previous posts, I will be starting maternity leave June 20 and that will mark the end of our time serving the Chicagoland area for lifestyle sessions.  (So...if you would like to set up a session, send me an email!!! [amy@amypphotos.com]  I would love to meet you and have the opportunity to tell your story.)

I cannot thank you enough for all of your support, your encouragement, your sweet emails, your kind comments and every other way you've encouraged me!  And we would definitely appreciate it if you'd let Atlanta friends know that we'd love to meet them and tell their stories when we move there soon!  In the meantime, rock on with your bad selves...

Sunday, March 20, 2011


Today we stood and we sang words with hope and joy at our church.  Guitars jammed, drums rocked and vocal-awesomeness reigned in abundance.
And then...
We sang this song. 
This song that left me in tears the first time I heard it.  Like - embarassing-I-hope-no-one's-looking-I-can't-get-it-together tears.  I was out of hope.  Completely.  Totally.  I felt like I had been carrying around a weight that sat on me daily and laughed in my face, "You can't do this life."  I walked around wondering if I would ever feel again.  If I could ever be me...
And this song came and got all up in my grill. 
Here are the lyrics.  And if you find yourself in a place like I was and am still coming out of - I pray it gives you courage or even the reminder that hope is possible...

Beautiful Things
by Gungor

All this pain
I wonder if I’ll ever find my way
I wonder if my life could really change at all
All this earth
Could all that is lost ever be found
Could a garden come up from this ground at all

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

All around
Hope is springing up from this old ground
Out of chaos life is being found in You

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

You make me new, You are making me new
You make me new, You are making me new

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

Thursday, March 17, 2011

No more hiding

This post may suck.
It's true.
But as the past year got more and more difficult, I stopped writing.  I was too scared to put down my thoughts at times.  In some moments, I just had nothing to say.  And most of the time I was convinced that distracting myself from my circumstances was a better option.
So...I'm writing again.
It makes me stop.
It makes me think.
And I have to face the fact that my words may not come together as beautifully as I would like - but if I never try, I'll never grow.

So there...

My hope is that today instead of checking out because it seems easier - that you drop in, you face this moment and you breathe deeply.

Even that - as painful as it can be - is a gift.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

It's your choice...

Tonight we watched The Karate Kid.
Because we're cool like that.
And there was a quote that has rocked my world.
"Life will knock us down, but we can choose whether or not to stand back up."
I'd say the last year has felt like a knock-down.  Over and over. 
But you know what?
I'm choosing to STAND up.

PS: Some words of thanks...  Thank you incredible friends who have walked through this.
And thanks to Making Things Happen and the incredible people who make that intensive happen.  If you'd like to be inspired, given the tools and given a swift kick in the butt when necessary - make reading their posts a part of your life.  (For a quadruple blessing - go to the intensive.  Oh my goodness.)
And I am so grateful that God has brought me to this place.  He has given me the space to cry, to doubt, to grieve, to hurt and He has loved me through it all.  And somehow, He's bringing healing and beauty into what I thought was hopeless.  Words cannot begin to express my gratitude...