Me :)

About Justine

I believe in going too far, in trying everything once, and that we should always risk being truly seen for who we are. I fake being tired to get out of driving on roadtrips. I reread books because I miss the characters.
I believe that emotions are meant to be felt all the way, and that you should take time to indulge in guilty pleasures....except without guilt. I love to cook and bake. When I make cookies, I eat the first dozen and dont tell anyone I baked that many! We put a gym in our garage so I can work off all the food I make, and make room for more calories!
I greet everyone with a hug, full embrace. Never half ass it. I am afraid of the dark. Seriously. Murderers and cougars come out. I refuse to wash my pillow after we get back from camping because I dont want to lose that campfire smell. I believe in living life full. After running after two kids all day, mountains and wine are the only therapy I will ever need ;)

Mike and Maddie: Abbotsford Sunrise Couples Session

January 21st, 2015

To celebrate my launch on Wednesday, and the glorious sunshine that was happening, along with the most gorgeous frost, I decided last minute to giveaway a spontaneous couples sunrise session!

Mike emailed me within a few minutes asking if him and his girlfriend could nab the spot! I was so excited to meet them! He said how thrilled Maddie was when he told her, and I LOVED that he reached out and wanted to do a photoshoot for the two of them! Normally it’s the girls having to convince their guys to do a photoshoot! :) The timing worked out perfectly for them as they had both taken the day off work to pack for their trip to the Dominican the next morning ;)

These two are unreal!! I asked them quite a few times if they had ever been photographed before, but they are seriously just this in love. I didn’t have to give them barely any direction…mostly just “cuddle”.

The frost was gorgeous, and we caught it at just the right time, it melted within minutes after the sun rose! The sunrise was so amazingly pretty! We started about half an hour before sunrise to get the pink/purple lighting, and it was SO worth the extra half an hour! Winter sunrises are my favourite! Partly for the frost, but mostly for the 8am sunrise, and NOT 4:30am like summer ;)

Maddie and Mike, it was an absolute BLAST getting to know you guys! Thank you for helping me celebrate my launch!! You made the morning amazing!! I hope you had an AMAZING time in the Dominican!! :)

**Stay tuned for another AMAZING photoshoot this upcoming weekend to celebrate the launch…this one will definitely be more adventurous!! Fingers crossed the weather works out!! **

 

Take the time.

January 19th, 2015

When I was wrapping up my website design before Christmas, a few friends asked what I was planning on doing for celebrating. To be honest, I hadn’t thought about it much. I LOVE celebrating, I believe in taking the time to celebrate everything, no matter how big or small the success is. But when it comes to myself, I sometimes have a hard time remembering that.

Thankfully I have the bestest friends and husband in the ENTIRE world. Marco planned a day full of adventure (that got rescheduled for next weekend due to rain and cloud! I can’t WAIT!) and a wine and cheese night with my closest friends!

We ate the perfect amount of cheese, had the most amazing bacon dip, my wine supply has been amazingly restocked, and my friends creeped my pinterest board and got me the two most recent things I had pinned to the board of things I would love! (told you they’re the best!)

Everyone crowded around and Marco put my website up on the TV so everyone could look at it!! It was kind of surreal to see months and months of work on one TV screen. It definitely made me feel vulnerable having it all out there, but also so good to let myself be seen!

THANK YOU to everyone who helped me celebrate! I have a few more celebrations lined up and I can’t WAIT! One of my best friends, who lives in Montana and is also a photographer, is coming to spend a few days this week to celebrate with me! I have no doubt there will be lots of candy, adventure and coffee!!

If you haven’t seen the new site yet, or if you feel like checking it out again click <<HERE>>

 

IT’S HERE!!!!

January 13th, 2015

“Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we’ll ever do.” – Brene Brown (aka. my best friend….she just doesn’t know it yet.)

There literally aren’t enough exclamation points in the world to express my level of excitement for today!!! It feels kinda like a wedding day….I spent the last year planning for this day, and now it’s finally here!! It’s kind of surreal! It feels just as big too, and scary, and so ridiculously exciting. The bouncing kind. The perma-grin kind. The dance it out with fist pumps to “I’m so excited.”

Because it’s launch day, and I plan to celebrate the heck out of today, I get to tell you how hard I worked for this, how stinking proud of myself I am for taking business coaching, specializing my brand and launching my most personal, most ME website EVER and that I feel like this year was an accomplishment comparable to my entire 6 years of college all crammed into one!! It was worth every single minute and I am so SOOO excited to share the end result with you!

My next adventure starts now!

Sentimental engagement and wedding photographer for adventurous brides.

I believe that life’s highlights come from venturing farther together, because it’s in the shared moments of warmhearted and ridiculous nostalgia that I know, adventure is ALWAYS worth it.

I am off to celebrate this to the absolute fullest. To be festive! To hug and thank everyone who helped me along this journey!!!

THANK YOU for your amazing support!! You are a HUGE part of this, help me celebrate! Have a glass of wine for me, go outside and enjoy the sunshine, dance extra to a song on the radio, cook your favourite dinner, or share the excitement on facebook by hitting LIKE below :)

Check out the new site HERE!! 

The site has two designs!! One for desktop and one for mobile!! Have fun and check them both out!!! :)

Go too far.

January 13th, 2015

I don’t do well with settling. To me, settling is the same as failure. It drives me crazy to have to wait things out, to not chase the things you want, and do everything you can to get them…good enough is never enough, I want more than enough. I want to challenge life, challenge myself and push the boundaries. The only way I’ll ever learn how far I can go, is to risk going too far.

“It’s better to cross the line and suffer the consequences than to just sit and stare at the line for the rest of your life.”

Every past relationship I’ve ever had I pushed the line. In my mind it was better to risk ending the relationship than to settle into a relationship that just wasn’t right. I wanted one that would fulfill me, challenge me and push me to be better. I had big dreams for what I wanted from a relationship in my life and I was willing to risk going too far for it.

When I first met Marco, I knew he was special. He was confident, self assured and he knew exactly what he wanted out of life. He had big dreams too. So I pushed. And for the first time in my entire life, he pushed back. We actually pushed each other almost to the point of breaking up. He invited me for dinner to his house, and I went there with full intentions of breaking up with him. Apparently he had full intentions of making me dinner, and then also breaking up with me. (I mean I gotta give him credit for making me dinner to ease the pain first hey?!)

I walked into candles, and the amazing smell of dinner, which softened my determination to end things. When Marco tells the story, he said dinner was so much fun he decided to wait just a bit longer, see if things got better. When I tell it, its much the same. He made me dinner, we had the best conversation and we laughed so hard…I vividly remember the laughter, and the tears from laughing so hard. It was one of the best dates I had ever had.

From then on there was never a doubt in either of our minds that we had found our one. We continue to push each other to the point of long, VERY heated arguments discussions, and we are both better for it.  We’ve also had those “oh shit” moments where we realize we took on too much, where we went too far, and we’ve learned where our boundaries are. But we’ve also had those glorious moments of celebration, when we risked going too far and found out just how far we could actually go.

We refuse to settle in our life. We fully celebrate our successes, we take breaks to enjoy our life and to live it fully, but we also challenge each other to not be complacent. To never settle into our current situation and take it as the new norm. We have a hunger for our lives that leaves us constantly wondering “what’s next?” and I can’t WAIT to see what’s next for us :)

Try everything once…

January 5th, 2015

…well except skydiving. Seriously. Never skydiving. I am not a fan of heights. Some heights are ok…the kind where I am safe and at no risk of dying. Those kind are ok. The kind where you would jump out of a perfectly good plane….not ok.

Other than my fear of dying from falling from a high height, I also have this other fear. It seems silly really, but it is a daily fear. It’s the fear of regret. The fear that I will be left out of something amazing. Or pass up an opportunity and be left wondering “what if?” A sure way to put a friendship with me in jeopardy is to purposefully make me feel left out. I hate it!

Because of this fear, and intense need to avoid feelings of regret, I can be convinced to do just about anything. This sounds so terrible! haha but really it’s true. (except skydiving….see above) My instant reaction to most questions is no. “No I don’t want to walk across a bridge that is suspended by two cables above a large canyon with a river at the bottom.” or “No I don’t want to travel alone more than halfway across the country and then drive two hours on a 10 lane highway just to see a waterfall.” Buuut I know in my gut, if I don’t do it, I WILL regret it later. Because of this, I am up for just about anything. All it takes is a simple “it’ll be fun!” and I’m on board.

At first I really struggled with this revelation. Does this make me weak minded? Does it make me a follower to whatever it is someone else suggests? Am I really that easily manipulated? Honestly, I’m not at all. I am simply adventurous. I value the importance of trying new things. I see the value in putting yourself outside your comfort zone, and I know that many of life’s greatest memories come from trying something new.

These moments, these stories, mean so much to me, that it’s become an actual fear that I will miss out on the opportunity to make one. There’s no greater feeling than trying something new and being able to say “I did that”. No matter how small it may seem. It doesn’t have to be grand, or life changing. It can be simple.

Eight years ago, while at the mall with my best friend, Jessica, we somehow found ourselves in the travel agents office getting her to price out a Disneyland trip for the two of us. We had our credit cards out, dates picked and were ready to book when I backed out. I had two interviews for a job I wanted more than anything lined up and booking the trip could potentially put that job at risk. So I said should wait. We could go on the trip next year. The trip never happened, and I regret it ALL. THE. TIME. (and for the record I still have never been to Disneyland!)

Since then, I learned to always be up for trying something new. I got convinced to zipline…despite the heights, and near panic attacks, I survived and loved it by the end. (haha it did take a few treks to warm up to it though!). I danced on top of a bar at Coco Bongo in Cancun with one of my brides, I ate bugs at the Aquarium with Jessica (not quite Disneyland but it’ll do for now) I went on a trip to California with my best friend Jackie and we splashed in the ocean and got soaked, requiring us to dress on the side of the highway through Malibu….she also dragged me down a water run off cliff down to the beach, where we then had to walk through a random forest after dark to try to find our way back to our car. I tried hiking more with my Dad and fell in love with mountains more so than I already am. Last year on my birthday I tried paddle boarding in California with two amazing friends! And I am currently planning an ice fishing trip with Jessica and my old work for next week!

I have always been a big fan of bucket lists. I have a huge long list in my head of things I would like to try in my lifetime. Learning to knit, speak French fluently, visit Italy, see the Northern Lights, see a real igloo (haha I’m so Canadian), see Montreal play IN Montreal, go to Bonhomme Carnival, ride on a dogsled, rock climb outdoors, make homemade Baked Alaska, and learn how to play a musical instrument other than the recorder.

I turn 30 (gulp!) in just under two months. With this looming birthday, I have been inspired to try new things even more than normal and I want to see how many new things I can fit in before the big day, or atleast this year! I would love to hear your ideas!! (Keep them clean! haha I already know a few friends in particular will have a hayday with inappropriate suggestions so keep them appropriate!)

Every new thing I try, I will make sure to post an instagram or two about it! So follow along!

Not only do I want to hear ideas for me to try, but I would love to hear your ideas too! What’s something you’ve always wanted to try!?! What’s holding you back?! Try it! :)

 

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