At long last…

A blog update

… A BLOG UPDATE!!! Where to even begin?? We have been neglecting this blog for WAY to long and are going to start making it one of our top priorities again! I’ll start by giving you a little run down of where I’ve been for the past two months…

On December 17th, I got the best Christmas present I could imagine – my little sister took a 3 day train ride home (like me, she refuses to fly!) after being out west since April. There were lots of hugs, tears, dance parties & yummy vegan food (my sister has been vegan for many years and is an amazing cook!). I only had two weeks to visit with her so needless to say, I tried to spend every minute I could with her. We went to Mamma Mia along with our mom, out for some amazing dinners, and had at least three amazing dance party nights! I even had her over helping me with all of HRM’s holiday orders just so I could be close to her!

Here’s me and my beautiful baby sister!!!

At 6am on a Monday (New Years Day), in a brutal snowstorm, my husband, Dad and I took off for the DWF (Digital Wedding Forum) Convention in Tampa. What an experience…. I’ve been home for a month and I still haven’t processed everything that I took in!

On the way there, we decided to stop in Nashville. Friends of ours had just been and couldn’t stop talking about what a great city it was! I must agree – we were there for about an hour and it was decided we’d stay two nights instead of one!

Dinner our first night in Nashville – 2 for 1 beers, catfish, corncakes, brunswick stew…. any diet related New Years resolutions were saved for AFTER our trip!!

Eric and I had a really good laugh at this musician’s name:

After our brief stay in Nashville, we continued to Tampa and arrived Thursday evening. The first person I saw when I walked into the hotel was my friend Judy (of Elementz of Fotographie)! It was so nice to see a familiar face right away!

The convention was one of the most overwhelming, inspiring and fun experiences of my life! Not only did I attend many amazing seminars presented by some of the world’s top wedding & portrait photographers, I also had a mentor session with Jesh de Rox, who in 30 short minutes gave me some of the most thought provoking insight into my business that I’ve ever received, met some amazing people who I hope to keep in touch with with and caught up with some of my Ontario colleagues – Emma Smallbone & Karolin Balash were my partners in crime for most of the convention and I must say that besides being fantastic photographers, these two girls are sooo much fun to hang out with!!

Emma, me, my hubby & Bill (Emma’s hubby) our first night in Tampa

There was an amazing boardwalk behind our hotel

I’m still amazed that this photo was taken in JANUARY!!! This is how I’d like to spend my winters from now on!!

Eric & I with Jerry Ghionis and his wife Georgina

Me, Jesh & Emma

My new friend Cindy Smith from Kennebunkport, Maine (who I hope to visit during our east coast trip this summer)

The Canadian Crew: Me, Karolin & Emma

While I was soaking up photography tips, my hubby & Dad explored the city and soaked up some sunshine. Here’s a shot Eric took while wandering the city.

While my dad and Eric were exploring Tampa, my dad decided to look up how far away New Orleans was…. all three of us had always wanted to go there and next thing I knew we were on our way!!

There are stray cats everywhere in the city… I made many new furry friends!

Our first night there, we met a great girl named Alissa who was in town for a big college football game. She came out for dinner with the three of us and wandered around the city with us. I LOVED these pink masks she bought as souveniers… but couldn’t find any for Lindsay and I 🙁

One of my favorite parts about our entire trip, this AMAZING band playing in the streets… this seemed quintessential New Orleans to me!

I love beads:

New Orleans is one of the most amazing cities I’ve ever been to. My dad loved it so much that he’s going back there next week with my mom! Despite the tragedy of hurricane Katrina, there was an overwhelming sense of hope, pride and determination in the air. This city needs to be kept alive – every person who travels there is helping to do so. If you haven’t been – go!! I can’t say enough good things about it!! Since this was technically a “vacation” for me, I didn’t take very many photos… my hubby however, took over 1000!! I’ve posted them ALL online here if anyone is really that interested in looking at all our vacation snapshots (me with beads, me with cats, etc.). I couldn’t resist and did pull out my “real” camera and took about 200 photos in New Orleans – I’m going to make myself a deal – one I get all our September weddings up on the blog I’ll post some of my New Orleans shots!

– Heather

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