Twenty nineteen. For some, it was a difficult year. For others, it was a great year. For me, it was an odd mix of exhaustion, unexpected surprises, and more blessings than I could count. When the calendar rolled over last January, never in a million years would I have guessed there'd be a new house, travel to Europe, and such amazing couples in store.
One of our personal goals for this past year was to spend six weeks traveling. Brian and I love to travel and explore new places, whether on a roadtrip to the desert or an overseas flight to an unknown land. We had decided 2019 was our year to book a trip to France and Spain, after dreaming about it for ten years. I found sale flights to Paris (direct from Denver!) and took the plunge to book them! We spend the early months of last year researching and reserving hotels, transportation, and tours for our trip, which ballooned into a week in France, a week in Spain, and a layover in London.
In the meantime, I had also continued my casual searching and dreaming of houses. Most nights, you will find me watching a favorite show with Brian, wine in one hand, Zillow open on my phone in the other hand. I love looking at floorplans, getting decor inspiration, and dreaming of what could be.
Well, that "what could be" turned into "what is."
In June, we get a strong tickle to look into what it might take to sell our house. We connected with a local realtor and begin talking to a good friend in the mortgage business. We had purchased our first house in Johnstown seven years ago, when housing was too spendy in Ft. Collins. While we loved our first home and small-town feel of JTown, we always knew it wasn't our "forever home." And so when the numbers began to fall into place, suddenly we were not lightly shopping homes on Zillow, but in the serious hunt for our "forever home."
Within a couple of weeks, we had set our sights on Berthoud. We visited, tried restaurants, and fell in love with a neighborhood just south of downtown. The problem was that the home builder in our chosen neighborhood was sold out and only had a few homes available several miles away.
And then two homes popped up for sale.
One house was right in our comfortable price point, while the other one was far outside our range. As we walked through the first home, we just couldn't see ourselves there. Brian and I love to entertain, host parties, and enjoy big get-togethers so having a large main living space was crucial.
So we walked next door to the second home... and the rest is history. After many stressful days calculating and re-calculating numbers, working ourselves into a stress-induced hole, and praying, we put in an offer, put in a counter offer, and went under contract. In the meantime, we got our JTown house prepared to list and within 5 days had it listed and ready to sell. Eleven days later, while laying at a chateau in the middle of France, we got a call from our realtor with a strong offer and we went under contract to sell our house.
July and August were a scary, but exhilarating, two months. Looking back, I'm just astounded and grateful to have had the support we did. There were too many logistics to work out with our travel, showing our house, making sure we had a cat-sitter during said showings and our absence, signing documents from overseas, communicating with all parties involved, packing, cleaning, and oh... shooting 9 weddings over the span of 32 days in August and September.
Our new home will take some time to really make ours, but it's beautiful and perfect and our forever home.
I also look back over 2019 and cannot feel more blessed than I do with the gracious couples we had the honor of working with. Each couple is unique and each wedding I photographed was beautiful. We spent a lot of time in the mountains, dodging rain or snow, sweating in the hot summer sun, and spraying on mosquito spray. But in the end, sending off each gallery with hundreds of moments to each couple makes the hard work so worth it.
Number of photos taken: ~129,000
Miles traveled for business: ~13,500
Weddings shot: 27
Portrait sessions: 34
Number of shoots in Rocky Mountain National Park: 12
Gear broken: a broken toggle on one body + missing dial cover on one body
Number of new venues: 15
Let's get to the fun part! Being able to work with not only one of my best friends (ahem, looking at you Christina!) but also my husband at each wedding is a dream come true. We work hard to provide a consistent, timeless, and beautiful end result. We also push one another to better ourselves each season, each wedding. And good golly, we have fun. Lots of it.
Cheers to an incredible 2019 and to what lays before us in 2020!