springtime is happy time!

the past few weeks here have felt like such a gift.  the weather is warming, the baby is walking, the trees are flowering, the days are growing longer and hope feels thick in the air.  everything is new.  we arrived in washington at the very end of october just in time to see the last colored leaves fall from the trees, so to see everything now bursting into glory around us is just spectacular!  all my life i had dreamed of seeing cherry and apple blossoms in real life.  when i was tiny, i listened to my grandpa tell the story over and over of this one day he saw my grandma 70 years or so ago… he had just returned from war and it was spring, at the peak of cherry blossom season in washington d.c. and my grandma walked down a big flight of steps wearing a white sweater with curls in her hair and she smiled right at him.  he said he saw her walk towards him beneath those cherry trees dropping their petals and he knew that she would forever be his “sweater girl” – and she would always roll her eyes and give him a little wink every time he told the story.  and ever since, i had dreamed of seeing the blossoms.  my grandparents have already gone to heaven and my grandpa never got the chance to meet my babies, but this last week as we have been preparing the garden and my little ones have been running barefoot blowing dandelions and dancing beneath the blossoming trees, i have felt him there.  i think that’s the beauty of this country life.  slowing the busyness enough to find the beauty in the quiet.  hands deep in the earth, breathing in the beauty of change and allowing God to use nature to weave the stories of these days.

there are a LOT of photographs here.  some of these are my favorites i have ever taken of my children.  i hope you love them too.  i have written a bit of what we have been doing next to the photos as i go.  first, we have a few new additions to our homestead… sheep!  the sweetest sheep!  the mama is candy cane and her two babies are little ninja and clover.  the kids spend so much time with them and are excited to be able join 4-h soon and be a part of the farm kid community.

1 2 3 4 6 7 8our chickens started laying!!! oh, the excitement of finding the first egg!
10 11.5 11 it’s a dandelion dreamland!  12.5 12 we hung a porch swing beneath the walnut tree.13 14 15.5 16 17.6 17.7 17 18.5 18 19 outdoor school.  nature journaling the cherry blossoms!21 22 23 25 the greenhouse gardens are flourishing!  we have had some warmer days and it gets quite toasty in there.   26 28we started some seeds in the greenhouse for transplanting to the garden.  which is currently being created!  we are using the raised bed method with lots of compost and wood chips.  we will have about an acre all together for our full garden space (pumpkin patch included!).
29 30 31 3233.5 33 lilac in full bloom!  34 35 36 37.539 40.1 40.2 40 41.5 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53.5 53 55.5 55 56 57 58 dreams come to life!59 60 61 62 64

Posted in our family adventures, Personal Stuff | 45 Comments

Florida Workshop in December… registration open!

i’ve had lots of requests over the years to bring ‘a wildflowers workshop’ to florida and i am excited to announce that it is finally happening!  and this is no ordinary workshop… it will be our very first ALL INCLUSIVE workshop on a remote tropical island in southwest florida – a sleepover in tropical paradise!  we have secured a private gigantic beach house on the white sand beaches of North Captiva Island which will be our workshop venue and where we will all be lodging together.  the island itself is straight out of a dream… small, remote, 5 miles off the mainland and only accessible by ferry boat, known for the most beautiful beaches and the incredible ocean and animal life as it borders an undeveloped nature preserve on the Gulf of Mexico…there are not even paved roads on the island!  the workshop will be held december 9th-11th, 2014.  as for the specific timeframe… the workshop attendees will need to get to the marina before 3:00pm on tuesday, december 9th for the ferry that we have reserved to take everyone over to North Captiva Island to begin the workshop (the closest airport that we advise taking a taxi from to the marina is Fort Meyers International Airport which is about 90 minutes from the marina).  the workshop instruction will continue through the next two days and conclude thursday december 11th at 2:00pm.  we have made all arrangements necessary to cover all the lodging, water taxi to and from the mainland, meals, instruction and entertainment during the workshop days.  a peek at our location:

beachhouse2 beachhouse1 beachhouse3

my hope for the workshop: for each woman who attends be challenged as a photographer, a creator, a business person and most importantly, an artist! i want each attendee to remember the simple and passion-driven reason they fell in love with photography and to inspire their creative spirit in fresh ways as well as give practical tools to run their business from the heart.  so often in this profession, we start out loving the art of making pictures and then all the beauty of the journey gets lost in trying to make it work as a business. i want to share my journey, be an open book to you… i am a believer in raw honesty and that is exactly how i teach. it is a beautiful few days and i truly believe that every woman that attends leaves changed, encouraged, and equipped to grow their business and images into the wonderland they envision in their minds.  and in addition to all of that… our nights and downtime will be spent bonding and relaxing with our toes tucked into the white sand in paradise!

the investment: this workshop will be $1850 per attendee and is ALL INCLUSIVE!   this total cost will cover:  two nights/three days of lodging at our island beach house where we will all be staying together – all rooms will be double occupancy, meals during the workshop days, access to the beach club on the island for all kinds of amazing activities, all instruction and education over the course of our time together and my workshop book i have written specifically for attendees.  to register, we require a 50% retainer to reserve your spot – paid by paypal below (we will accept only 20 attendees), and the remaining 50% is due one month prior to the workshop.

what is covered in the workshop: two portrait sessions with instruction given start to finish (one family session and one couple session), the sharing of how i dive deeper into the stories and passions of my clients to create unique photo shoots that speak to the heart, how to set boundaries, effective policies and how to “balance it all” – business, workflow, time management, family, relationships and still keep your sanity. inspiration for staying fresh and setting yourself apart from other photographers. how to best utilize your existing space and tips on finding great hidden gems of locations. how to get creative with the way you shoot with capturing sun flare and finding dreamy light to produce sun-saturated imagery. raw workflow demonstration in lightroom and photoshop and my start to finish post production technique. strategies for setting rates for your business and how to stick firm to them. i cover strategic marketing techniques on how to attract and book your target clientele. how to pose children, families and couples in a comfortable “un-posey” way. how to develop lasting relationships with local business owners and how to get your work displayed in creative locations. we do lots of creative and inspirational challenges to help attendees discover their own personal photographic style. the client planning consultation, how to create storyboards, the complete client interaction process.  you leave with hundreds of images taken to add to your portfolio. the attendees develop life-long relationships with each other, it is so beautiful! all of my previous workshop attendees have kept in touch and call upon each other with personal and business struggles over the years. i love that i get to facilitate such a valuable experience… it is such a blessing!

are you asking “is this workshop for me?” well, let’s see… first, you must be a woman. second, you must be a photographer! you are not required to currently have a photography business, however the majority of our attendees do and i cover quite a bit of crucial business related information. you must be shooting in manual mode and have a good grasp on your equipment. our typical attendees are either in the beginning of their photography careers or have been shooting for quite a while are experiencing serious burn out. i like to teach my workshops in such a way that no matter what level of shooter you are, that the depths of the information can grow you from wherever you are at. lastly, you must be open for change. i am not a shy teacher. i will challenge you. my goal is to really yank on your heart strings. be ready.

also, here are just a few links to blog posts by recent workshop attendees that have been thoughtful enough to share their experiences to give you an idea of the workshops:  http://brittanychandlerphotography.com/wildflowers-workshop-pt-1/   http://kaylacolemanphotography.com/?p=268   http://taylorwhithamphotography.com/2013/12/wildflowers-workshop-moonshine-hill/

how to register: to register, we require a 50% non-refundable initial payment to hold your workshop space which can be paid by paypal – you will click the “pay now” button below. once you have paid, your spot is saved!  then you must email us directly at joy@wildflowersphotos.com so that we can have you complete the full personal registration form just so we can really get to know you, add you to your private workshop group and get the excitement rolling!  we do expect this workshop to fill quickly and once we have reached our capacity of 20 women for the workshop we will remove the paypal link below so that you know that registration is closed.  so if the link is still visible below, we still have room for you!

click the paypal button below to pay your retainer & register:

can’t wait to meet you!

Posted in Uncategorized, Workshops | 2 Comments

hello, i’m joy!  sunshine chaser, child of God, mama to four & wife to one good man.  we traveled all over looking for a place to call home and we found it.  we live a simple life out in the country with bare toes and happy hearts.


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