Wildflowers Photography http://wildflowersphotos.com Wed, 25 May 2016 17:02:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.9 Five Marys Farm – Harvest Session http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/05/five-marys-farm-harvest-session/ http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/05/five-marys-farm-harvest-session/#comments Wed, 25 May 2016 03:22:18 +0000 http://wildflowersphotos.com/?p=12020 I recently spent a day in the breathtaking Siskiyou County in Northern California with the Heffernan family on their 1800 acre ranch, aptly named, Five Marys Farms (with Papa Brian, Mama Mary and their four little Marys in tow)....

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I recently spent a day in the breathtaking Siskiyou County in Northern California with the Heffernan family on their 1800 acre ranch, aptly named, Five Marys Farms (with Papa Brian, Mama Mary and their four little Marys in tow). I rose with the sun, roamed through their grassy prairies, ran through thick woods and admired the snow capped mountains surrounding the homestead that was first established in 1858.

The day was filled with caring for the animals as a family; Black Angus cattle, Navajo-Churro sheep, Glouchester Old Spot pigs, Red Bourbon turkeys and their 40+ varieties of laying hens as well as the heart filling laughter that poured through every wooden wall of that original grain barn-turned-tiny farmhouse.

 

 

This video. Well, the images too.

Can I humbly say that it is my favorite work I’ve done yet? I love it.

I hope you do too. And mamas, make the video full screen & call in the kiddos because I’m sure they would love to watch as well!

 


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Mary, the mama of Five Marys Farms, so kindly wrote the story of how they recently came to be a farming family and it is pieced throughout the photographs below. This is surely a long, rich post so give yourself time so you can make it all the way to the bottom…

 

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Mary:  “Two and a half years ago we were living a busy life in the Bay Area, Brian was a lawyer and I owned a few family based small businesses, and together we owned and operated two restaurants. Brian was raised on a farm in California where his dad farmed trees and row crops and I am a sixth generation Californian with farming roots – so we both always were drawn to the idea of buying a farm to split time between the bustle of Silicon Valley and the wide open California spaces. It was a “someday” dream since we met.

 

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We looked for rural property several times after we were married but nothing ever worked out at the time. The restaurants pushed us to look for really premium meat raised with idyllic small farm husbandry but we could never find the right volume, quality and consistency we needed year round – and so we decided to try and do it ourselves.

 

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We found our ranch by chance – looking primarily for land and water to raise cattle, not really for a place to live (at least at this point in our lives). It all happened quickly and soon we were the owners of a beautiful ranch that needed lots of work, cows and infrastructure. We naively thought we could do both – live a busy life in the city and be weekend warrior ranchers.

 

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We drove up and back to the ranch every weekend for 8 out of 9 weekends – a 6 hour trip each way with four carseated kids in tow. We had lots of “windshield time” together to consider and discuss what we really wanted for ourselves and for our kids. The 8th trip we decided we decided to pick up our life and plant our roots right here on our ranch for good.

 

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We fell in love with this land, with our small town here, with the incredible community of people willing to help us new folks learn the ropes, the local schools, and with everything about working hard together as a family raising animals everyday – with the lifestyle of ranching. We knew this was where we wanted to raise our children and grow old together.

 

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So we sold our businesses, sold our house and have never really looked back.Ranching is no joke – it’s work 24 hours a day 7 days a week with no time for vacations or days off. We are up with the sun and, since every animal gets fed before we do, usually eat dinner after dark.

 

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There are livestock in my living room and kitchen half the time, my girls are always covered in dirt and my wardrobe consists of blue jeans and torn flannel shirts and boots every day.

 

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The daily ranch to-do list is truly never-ending and there are obstacles and hardships at every turn – back breaking work, broken pipes, drought, flooding and animals that die no matter how hard you work to take care of them. It’s unpredictable and raw, with intense emotions in the highs and in the lows.

 

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But when you ask either of us where we’d go if we had the chance for a vacation both of us would honestly answer there is no place we’d rather be than right here experiencing this life together as a family.

 

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If we weren’t here everyday – we might miss the wonder of a new baby calf being born, or a newborn lamb learning to walk for the first time, or a squealing little litter of 9 piglets learning to nurse, climbing all over each other. We feel pretty lucky we get to call this life together our own and are very proud of the meat we get to put on other families’ tables.”

 

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I was so impressed while visiting Five Marys Farms at how the children were never viewed as an imposition. It was the most beautiful thing to watch as parent and child just worked and played alongside one another joyfully.

I was so intrigued and asked Mary to share a bit about how they’ve instilled such a thoughtful nature and work ethic into their children and she wrote her heart out in the most beautiful post on her Five Marys Farms blog… mamas, I promise her words will encourage your weary hearts and inspire you to reach your children right where they are at rather than fitting into another family’s mold.

Find her most recent blogpost as well as info on how to order their farm raised products (to ship nationwide!) on their website here.

 

 

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The Burke Family – Covered By Grace. http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/04/the-burke-family-covered-by-grace/ http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/04/the-burke-family-covered-by-grace/#comments Wed, 06 Apr 2016 15:25:56 +0000 http://wildflowersphotos.com/?p=11937   “Come thou fount of every blessing, Tune my heart to sing Thy grace; Streams of mercy, never ceasing, Call for songs of loudest praise.     Teach me some melodious sonnet Sung by flaming tongues...

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“Come thou fount of every blessing,

Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;

Streams of mercy, never ceasing,

Call for songs of loudest praise.

 

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Teach me some melodious sonnet

Sung by flaming tongues above,

Praise the mount – I’m fixed upon it

Mount of Thy redeeming love.

 

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O to grace how great a debtor

Daily I’m constrained to be,

Let Thy goodness, like a fetter

Bind my wand’ring heart to Thee.

 

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Prone to wander – Lord I feel it

Prone to leave the God I love,

Here’s my heart – O take and seal it

Seal it for Thy courts above.”

– Robert Robinson, hymn written is 1758

 

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Mae, the radiant mother in these images, offered these words about her heart just after the photo session…

 

“We are in a season of always needing Grace.

 

Grace that covers half-hearted measures of attention to my girls. Grace that covers overheated tempers with my husband. Grace that covers blood deep desires to see my name renowned above my Savior’s. Grace that covers receiving more from my friends than I am giving. Grace that pulls me closer to the cross despite my intense efforts of pushing away in laziness.

 

It’s hard to allow yourself to be fully laid open in front of someone else to photograph, to not be in complete control of the image that is being presented to the world. It brings me to a level of vulnerability that I demand from my family, clients, and friends, but may not be fully prepared to rise to myself. But Joy knows. Joy knows this Grace deep, it’s the same that covers her, and under that Grace she was present with us. Exactly where we are, our need and all. Thank you, Joy, for this literal image of the presence of this Glorious Grace in my life as a woman, wife, mother, Daughter of the Most High King and Servant Savior.”

 

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Mae, I saw you.

I saw you hold the faces of your babies and kiss the forehead of your husband and laugh through all the tears.

And it was so very beautiful.

 

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New Travel Schedule 2016 http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/03/new-travel-schedule-2016/ http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/03/new-travel-schedule-2016/#comments Mon, 28 Mar 2016 21:25:20 +0000 http://wildflowersphotos.com/?p=11899   Booking sessions in these cities:   June 1: Kansas City, KS June 4/5: Iowa City, IA August 8: Little Rock, AR August 10: Nashville, TN August 15/16: Middletown, NJ August 19/20: Hampton Bays, NY August...

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Booking sessions in these cities:

 

June 1: Kansas City, KS

June 4/5: Iowa City, IA

August 8: Little Rock, AR

August 10: Nashville, TN

August 15/16: Middletown, NJ

August 19/20: Hampton Bays, NY

August 23/24: Philadelphia, PA

August 25: Washington DC

August 28: Greensboro, NC

August 30/31: Asheville, NC

September 3: Shreveport, LA

October 16: Los Angeles, CA

October 18-20: Thousand Oaks, CA

October 22/23: Orange County, CA

October 24: Phoenix, AZ

October 26: Albuquerque, NM

October 28: Lubbock, TX

November: Austin, TX

 

* i am available to shoot harvest sessions (full day) or wildflower sessions (sunrise or sunset): read investment info & details about my sessions here. also, if you happen to be along this route and are interested in an in-home session rather than one of these exact cities listed above please let me know so i can see about fitting it into the schedule if possible!  to book: 50% retainer due to reserve the date and remaining due 2 weeks prior to session.

*don’t see your city on my list? well, i have an ongoing to-visit wish list and if i have three families interested in booking in a location i will travel to you… so don’t hesitate to ask. i book travel based on interest so don’t be shy to write!

 

WORKSHOPS:

April 15-17: Austin, TX (2 spots remaining)

June 14-16: Indianapolis, IN (4 spots remaining)

for info about our soul filling creative workshops click workshops. they are all inclusive (lodging, meals, education & goodies… everything provided once you arrive at the venue). workshop will begin at 6pm on day one and end at 10am on day three. cost: $1850. to register: please email joy@wildflowersphotos.com to complete registration.

 

TO BOOK:

to reserve one of the available dates, please email joy@wildflowersphotos.com to secure the session & begin planning the details! these dates are all open for either harvest sessions (full day sessions) or wildflower sessions (2 hours – sunrise or sunset sessions). sessions will be first come, first serve based on availability.

can’t wait to hug you this year, friends!

 

and, of course, a few favorites from past travel sessions…

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A Golden Day with The Robbins Family. http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/03/goldendayrobbins/ http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/03/goldendayrobbins/#comments Mon, 21 Mar 2016 17:01:05 +0000 http://wildflowersphotos.com/?p=11843   “Courage is fear that has said it’s prayers.”   – Dan Allender   This family is courageous. Not the kind of courageous that roars and makes itself known, but the kind that humbly shows up everyday...

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“Courage is fear that has said it’s prayers.”   – Dan Allender

 

This family is courageous.

Not the kind of courageous that roars and makes itself known, but the kind that humbly shows up everyday calling on holy strength to suffocate all the darkness.

 

 

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Everywhere they go they take along their nature journals. Documenting the small traces of grace in nature, recording the majesty in the oftentimes overlooked traces of miracles.

Hope documented. The maple leaf turning gold as the season shifts, the dandelion seeds in the breeze, the last ripe apple left on the tree as the chill of winter whispers through the bare branches. These traces of hope giving way to a deep and ever-present peace.

 

 

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They know that this life is a fragile one.

They know that not every day is a giddy leaf throwing October celebration, but that each day is worth mustering up courage to fight for the good.

 

 

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Katie & Parker – Engaged. http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/03/katie-parker-engaged/ http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/03/katie-parker-engaged/#comments Fri, 18 Mar 2016 05:26:38 +0000 http://wildflowersphotos.com/?p=11797   the words throughout this post were written by katie…   “God has shaped such a story within this heart, and to think He planned for my messy mixed all-over the place colors to create something...

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the words throughout this post were written by katie…

 

“God has shaped such a story within this heart,

and to think He planned for my messy mixed all-over the place colors

to create something unreal with Parker’s clean brushes.

It is such a privilege to love this boy.

An honor to be a part of his moments. Forever.

 

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He is my miracle and somehow he says I am his.

When it’s a gift from God, your entire life is somehow flung into His freedom.

I just can’t stop falling for the precious little traces of Heaven that run through his veins.

I pray I never understand the vastness of this gift.

Because miracles can’t be understood.

Just believed, day in and day out, as the world wonders what wires us.

 

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It sure is easy to be confident and safe in our skin,

when we know how beautifully broken we are.

Our cracks are only more vibrant, as He seals them with gold!

 

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Love is a gift.

A gift from God, who does cartwheels when He sees us love the way love should be loved.

The past three years have been the hardest – years of loss and losing – yet years of so much good.

That alive, rich beyond money, “His Good” kind-of-good.

 

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We have no solid plans –

on where we will live, where our careers will take us,

or even sometimes when we will see one another again after saying goodbye for the week.

While most would be frantic about this, we are so free.

Free to be free in His plans for us,

because freedom is so worth the faith fall.”

 


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At Home in Texas as a family of 7! http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/02/at-home-in-texas-as-a-family-of-7/ http://wildflowersphotos.com/2016/02/at-home-in-texas-as-a-family-of-7/#comments Mon, 01 Feb 2016 18:12:02 +0000 http://wildflowersphotos.com/?p=11698   When we arrived in Washington, two years and three months ago, we had merely picked a place on the map and jumped. Drawn to the fresh air, the tall trees and the fog that settled...

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When we arrived in Washington, two years and three months ago, we had merely picked a place on the map and jumped. Drawn to the fresh air, the tall trees and the fog that settled low on the mountains. It was a place to rest, a safe place to grow. We planted seeds and waited through the cold winter. Far from anything and anyone familiar. We wrestled. We surrendered and held our breath awaiting spring. In that cold, as husband and wife, we dug deep into past hurts and saw that although we had been on the adventure together, for so long we had been walking alone. In that moment we chose to fight hard for the good. The light persisted, breaking down all our walls; it was hope. It was gentleness. We began to document all of our gratitude flowing out of the struggle and our list of thanks grew and grew. Our seeds took root and blossomed. Warmth opened the petals and we saw one another anew. The soft springtime breeze carried that love into every corner of our darkness until only hope remained. In April we renewed sacred vows, bare toes in the meadow with the laughter of our children as our melody of grace in all the days that followed. With an undeserved gift woven from all the broken threads being knit together within me, a baby boy. Redemption.

For the first time in our marriage we prayed together. We listened for guidance. And over time we felt a calling to step out, from the mossy forest to a land drenched in warmth. A season for all things new, as we no longer need a place to burrow in; but a place to give, to share, to build community, and to hold our faces up to the sun and exhale. Hearts engulfed, souls exposed, arms open wide, control released, prayers lifted up, we took the leap. With my belly ripe and expectancy hanging thick, we held tight to each other and the calling that whispered from deep within. And now we are here, in the Texas Hill Country, all seven of us, this new tiny babe cooing sweetly upon my chest. We aren’t clear as to what the next chapter holds but we know we must choose gentle words, tenderness and humility to light the way. And for now, we bask in evenings flooded with pink sunsets and wide open skies, giving thanks for the abundant mercy raining down all around us.

 

Here are photographs of our days so far here in Texas… the first half expectant for a miracle and the second half savoring our new baby boy.

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on january 1st, the day ushering in all things new, our son was born. smith james prouty. 7 pounds, 4 ounces and 19 inches long. born in the living room of our new home in the wee hours of the morning.
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