2016 has been such a wonderful, event-filled, and super crazy year! Every year gets more exciting than the last.
I’m so thankful every day for my family. Duane, baby James, my parents and my in-laws are my world. I have such a loving, kind, and generous family and I am so glad for every day I get to spend with these wonderful people.
Here’s a round up of what has happened this year!
I photographed Jocey + Darren’s amazing wedding in Disney World. It was such an honor and an unforgettable experience as it’s the most magical place!
I photographed some pretty awesome corporate photoshoots, family sessions and boudoir sessions (lots featured on the blog), in addition to the fantastic weddings this year. Every wedding is pretty spectacular individually, and I love what I do more and more each wedding I photograph.
James turned 1 in June and we had a super fun party for him! We also had a cute family shoot done by Bezanson Photography, and Duane and I had an incredible couple session photographed by Green Tea Photography. It’s super important to have these documentations. I’m always so glad to have photos done, as I cherish the moments and look at them daily.
We went to Japan to photograph a couple, but also enjoyed the city while we were there!
I got accepted into the BSc Nursing After Degree program at the University of Alberta. It’s one of the most competitive programs to get into post-grad at the University of Alberta. I firsthand felt the effects of that – I had a 3.8 GPA getting in and I felt like it wasn’t enough, since even though I did rather well in the courses, comparatively there were many of my peers who were striving for perfect scores. Though I had to juggle many responsibilities in photography, teaching piano, being a mother, and studying for this crazy program, I made it through and I’m glad I survived to tell about it!
There were definitely times I thought it wasn’t possible. I would start to study for a midterm at 10pm the night before the exam. It wasn’t that I was procrastinating, it was that I had so many other things to do before getting to it. Perhaps I had to photograph a shoot, teach some students, get baby James ready for bed, hand in an assignment, and then it was time to study.
I just finished finals right before Christmas and it was a sigh of relief. However I felt very good being in nursing, as it’s been a long term goal of mine for over a decade. I’ve learned so much in the past few months and am excited to do my clinical placement at the internal medicine ward in the hospital, starting in a few weeks!
Duane and I and baby James moved in to our dream house that we designed from scratch. I had a specific vision in mind, a bright white kitchen, an open-to-below living room with a cool-neutral palette, chrome light fixtures, a client/piano teaching room, a loft for James to play, and a finished basement suite. We love it!
Of course, these are the highlights and the great things that happened during the year. But there are also times of tribulation, for example one of our tenants abandoned the unit leaving major damages and excess cleaning to be done, or another tenant stole all of our furniture and appliances from the furnished unit. Usually in such instances, people don’t share about these difficulties on social media. On the bright side, when you face troubles, you become stronger, and you have more gratitude for the things that you do have.
We continue to embrace minimalism after all these years, which means mindfully consuming less, paring down everything that may be unnecessary, excess, distracting, and keeping what’s important and essential. We try not to buy too many material goods, but only the things that bring us joy. Coincidentally, I’ve been reading Marie Kondo’s “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”, a gift from my sister, and it strengthens my resolve to live an edited life. One method that helps us to avoid clutter is to take a photo of an item, and discard or donate it. We have the memory and enjoy it visually. I reiterate this motto:
Having ‘stuff’ is not a measure of success as a human being. We should redefine ourselves by what we are, rather than what we buy.
One thing that I don’t mind investing in is photos and good photographers. Photos hold great value to me and become more valuable as time passes on. Another thing which we invest in is travel. The experiences from travel are priceless and bring such joy. These are things that we continue to cherish, as we move forward each year. In conclusion, it’s been such a wonderful 2016. Happy New Year!
Elaine Green | Photographer