To be 10 Again

The girls all squealed every time the door bell rang in eager, anticipation for who their next guest could be. The house was full of laughs, squeals and lots of JOY as the 10 year olds gathered around Sofi to celebrate having a double digit age. The birthday girl wanted her guests to indulgent in her favorite foods which consisted of subs and doughnuts (yay for carbs!) and they giggle as they devoured it all. After the girls ate they came up stairs and I taught them each how to make their own crown of blooms.

Mandy Liz Photography 

Mandy Liz Photography 

The girls were so eager to make their crowns. They got to pick out their flowers and colors and then off to work they went, crafting the most perfect flower crowns. What I love about creating flower crowns in groups is seeing how different and unique each crown ends up looking, similarly to how each one of those girls was so unique in personality. Their creation reflected their individual, creativity and had each girl's personal touch on it. 

Mandy Liz Photography

Mandy Liz Photography

Teaching classes or workshops like this makes my heart so happy. I love seeing people come together to learn and create, I think we should all do it more often. 

Sofi, I hope you had the best 10th birthday party ever! It was an honor and joy to be a part, never stop creating! 

Mandy Liz Photography 

Mandy Liz Photography 

Dear Bride...

Dear Bride, 

Truthfully, I hope your marriage is more beautiful than your wedding day. 

After seeing so many weddings, I have observed that each wedding is unique and beautiful, but in some ways identical as well. The events are the same: the bride steps into the most elegant dress she'll ever wear, the pre-wedding jitters are high, the cake arrives, the friends and family file into the sanctuary, the couple says "I do," the cake is cut and the couple is sent off. And each wedding ends in the same way: two become one and leave the reception as a married team with the same last name. The wedding is over, but their life is new and only just beginning. 

Dear bride, after the sparklers die out, the festivity hype is over and you are finally married, it is just the two of you taking on the world. Unlike your dream wedding day, marriage is messy and complicated. There are some really hard moments of personal growth and giving yourself in new and stretching ways. In marriage, you choose to give your whole heart with courage and faith. You choose to laugh, cry and grow with someone. You choose to give grace when you are hurt, and you choose to show Jesus's love towards your spouse. You choose everyday. 

Marriage takes time, prayer and work, but darling, when you put all of those things in, it is beautiful. And that is my prayer for you, that you will put the time into your marriage like you put into your wedding guest list, that you will pray for your husband like you prayed over your wedding day and that you will work at being a better wife as much as you worked for every wedding detail. 

My dear Bride, in many ways the center of your marriage aligns with your purpose in life—to love God with your whole heart and to strive to be like Jesus in everything you do. Marriage is a place to do exactly this, but you have the priviledge of doing it with someone else, with someone whom your soul loves and cherishes. Make it your goal to help your groom become more like Jesus. This means hard work and letting go—letting go of selfishness and working toward making your spouse the best person they can be. Mark 10:45 says, “For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve. Let us follow His example in joy, in pain.” When serving the Lord and each other well is what drives your life together, your commitment will be stronger for the two of you and will also have the power to change lives. 

So no matter where you are on the wedding planning checklist, pause for perspective. A wedding is only a day, but your marriage is a lifetime. 

“Two are better than one… [but] three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.” - Ecclesiastes 4:9-12