Thursday, 15 December 2016

This Is Us

Meet our little family. 
I thought this would be the perfect time to share a bit of our story and how I came about starting this blog, and our journey in getting here. 

Over 5 years ago I met my husband, Sean. We dated for less than a year before we got engaged and married 5 months later. Our first year of marriage we spent in an itty bitty basement suite we loved more than I could have imagined. After a year of living there, we decided to uproot and move to La Mirada, California for Sean to attend Seminary.

It was a crazy adjustment. I always thought I was someone who faced "change" well, but instead, after just a few short weeks of living there, I was heartbroken and homesick. Living in a small(ish) town where your entire immediate family is makes it rather hard to leave. 
That summer and winter we excitingly drove the 21-hour drive back home to spend just a few months with our dear friends and family.

During our time in the States I decided to start a blog. I had bought a DSLR camera, specifically to blog and take my own photos. It was just weeks after getting a camera, my high school passion for photography came flooding back. During our time in California I gifted numerous students and families sessions, just to grow my portfolio and practice, practice, practice and in all of it, continued to blog about our life.

Within 6 months of living there, we got pregnant with our oldest you will see below. With the fear of unmanageable medical bills and the lack of family close by, the following winter (one year of being there) we decided to move back home. It was a great decision, one I think we will always know was for the best. Our first son was breech in the end and having a c-section would have cost us beyond too much money while unable to work for pay, and putting any money we did have into school. As sad as it was to leave, there were a few things we deeply fell in love with while there. Our love for the sun (obviously), our community of friends we met and spent endless time with and a unique strength we developed in our marriage through the trials of living off of very little and needing to trust solely in God in times of financial need. It was a challenge, but a life changing one we will never forget. 

When we got back home I was 7 months pregnant and very unsure as to what I was going to do for work. Photography had become a true passion of mine and all I wanted to do was embrace what I loved and take a leap of faith in starting a small business. Completely self-taught, it was nerve racking. But if you know me you would know my determination is a little ruthless and when I see something I want, it's hard to not just go for it. 

Fast forward to now. My photography business has grown and so has our little family. We welcomed our second son this past year in February. Blogging took the back seat throughout the years and I have always regretted not continuing. I chose the name "Dear Loves", from my original blog name "Dear Love, Shine On." Creativity is my jam and I hope I can share my joy and many tips and inspiration of party planning, navigating parenthood, simple DIYs, and more. 

We are now a family of 4. My oldest is a spirited child, with a determination a lot like his mamas. He is a genuinely happy kid and loves his cousins and family more than anything.
Our youngest is a bit more serious, it takes a bit of time for him to warm up to you, and his smiles are harder to come by but when you do get one out of him it's a real treat and it's bound to warm your heart.
They (and Sean) are my village, my biggest fans and supporters. 

We are currently in the stage of life where Sean is in his last week of school and next is finding a job! I have decided to focus my photography business, Julie Christine Photography, more on newborn, maternity, small families and brand photography come 2017, as well as growing our small nursing bracelet business, DearLovesCo., and of coarse blogging! We are so thankful you are here, and thanks for following along.

Our darling family photos are by E Fraser Photo.

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