Ever feel like you are wandering in life trying to figure out what you want to be when you grow up? My whole life the only thing that stayed constant in my visions were that I first and fore most wanted to be a mother, a close second to that was I wanted to help people-specifically families. It's always been a driving force in what I do. Familyhood. It is the stitching that holds our society together. Without it, where would we be? A destructive unloved society. Sadly, it feels like America is going in that direction doesn't it? That is wrong. There is still love in this world. It exists. The news doesn't think it's flashy enough to make headlines, but I do. It is so important to surround ourselves with positivity and love. Especially because so much of what is shoved in our faces isn't love based.
-Love still exists here-
My 'career' has been to change jobs. Nothing has felt quiet right. I started with a Bachelors in Social Work, but quickly shifted gears. After my internship was over I realized I was depressed the entire time. I internalized too much. I felt too much. That isn't a bad thing though, is it? I wasn't about to let a job steal that from me. That's just not how I want to live my life. So, I decided teaching would be a great fit. I could still work with families and make a difference that way. I loved teaching. I loved my kids. Every single child that I came in contact with was 'my' child to love. I made it my mission to teach with respect and kindness and teach my students to create a community of love and support. That's hard to do in third grade...they are already becoming little teenagers at that age now a days! Once we decided it was time to have our own kids it was time to switch gears again. Familyhood has to come first. Now it was time to put my family first. I missed my students so much, but I didn't miss being a 'teacher.' Now being a teacher means feeling constantly torn between what is best for each individual student, the curriculum you are supposed to teach vs. the curriculum they are ready for, and your district/state demands. Add in balancing parents, your team, and your administrative team and forget it. You are chained to the job. It swallows you. At least it swallowed me. It swallowed me in a sea of fear, anxiety, and love. Fear I wouldn't be good enough. Anxiety I wouldn't have a job next year. Love. Love for my sweet third graders. I never lost that. Even the 'worst' child in my classroom had a sweet side. No matter how much I loved teaching I couldn't be a teacher anymore. It was my child's turn. I put my 60-70 hour work week behind me.
At first, being a mother was not all I thought it would be. This label, this role, was something I dreamed of my whole life. Here I held this sweet baby...that wouldn't. stop. crying. He was a colicky guy and left me wishing he would grow up. Grow out of all of his pain and settle into his happy self we saw when he wasn't crying from pain. It was quite the journey discovering where the pain was coming from and problem solving to do my best to take it away from him. Thank God I wasn't trying to teach at the time! I could barely function at home in my pj's with this guy! But he did grow out of it. He grew into a joyful, rambunctious, curious little one. Right around this time I found myself missing helping families. I left the door wide open for God to take hold and show me the plans he had for me in this phase of my life. While I LOVED being a stay at home mom, I could sense there was more he was asking of me.
I yearned to show the world love and help center families. This is the seed ADP grew out of. I want families to be surrounded by artwork in their home that reminds them of the love they share. On those hard days when our littles have their own vision of how their day should go. On those days when we feel at war with our spouse. On those days we think we just can't give any more of our selves. Witnessing true joy and love brings a smile to your heart. Always. It is my hope that having candid images around a home will help remind a family they love each other deeply. It's an intense love that brings me so much joy to capture! I want the world, and more importantly families across the UK, to see candid images that show family and how contagious love doesn't need a translation. So I opened ADP. Welcome to an extension of my heart. I'm so happy to have you here. <3
Here, I'll show you love.
Love for family, love for moments big and small, and love for the beauty around us.
If you haven't met me yet, when you do, you'll quickly learn I am pretty random! Maybe it's my ADD, maybe it's my openness to share what's going on in this crazy mind of mine. So here's some random for you:
- There is nothing I love more than to sit on my couch with my hubby and enjoy a good movie or show.
- My favorite food is cookies. I can NEVER say no to a good cookie. This is why I avoid that aisle in the grocery store with all of my might!
- We moved from Gainesville, FL (home of University of Florida and the Gators!) to Virginia and now reside in Oxforshire, UK. I miss my family, but I LOVE the scenery here!
- I am a FSU alumni (yes, this is contradictory for those of you who are familiar with this huge rivalry in college football) and can't wait for college football season!
- There is something so incredibly rewarding about lists. I just love them. Being a mother of two littles, I don't use them enough now!
- It is my dream to one day travel more often. Anywhere and everywhere. I pray we have the ability to show our little ones the beauty that lies in other countries and other cultures. I'm so happy we get to start our world adventures here in the UK.