august 2011 | the move

When we put our first home up for sale in December of 2010 I thought we had it all figured out. We had our sights on moving to Wilkesboro, NC and renovating an awesome live/work space where we could have an awesome studio and modern flat. Despite the horrible housing market we knew how much we wanted for our house, when was the ideal time for it to sale, how much we would have in our pockets to put down on the new place, etc, etc.  Of course being a total Type A personality I had a plan A,B,C in place. My biggest and only fear was of the house selling in June, the absolute busiest wedding month of the year, when I simply could not squeeze another hour into the day for packing on top of shooting and editing. What I could not and did not plan was how utterly emotional the whole process would become or how much it would open my eyes to the work God was doing all along the way.

Ryan and I bought our first house together on August 22, 2004. It was cute and needed work but even then the deal I thought was to good to possibly be true. I remember being a leader on a youth mission trip one late night in Pittsburgh asking the youth pastor (who happened to be the same man who married us a year earlier) if we were making a mistake. Could this possibly be what God wanted for us, did we deserve it? After he laughed at me, he reassuringly put my mind at ease.  We worked alongside family and friends for months renovating and improving and making our own mark on it. The major work continued room by room through December 2009. 7 years later there wasn’t a room or a wall that we hadn’t changed in one way or another.

What I learned is that Ryan and I made a great team. That we weren’t always going to agree on the process of getting from point A to point B. That major arguments would happen when were utterly exhausted. That laughter in the rooms we made sounded more beautiful. That I had the vision for the finished product and Ryan had the talent of a great handy-man and carpenter and could make my visions a reality. (I still think he can have a show on HGTV.) What I also learned is that all the labor and memories we made in that house made it harder to say goodbye.

Here are just a few of the major renovation before and after shots. Keep in mind we did all the work ourselves with some help from friends and family.

When the offer came through in late July with the closing date set for three short weeks later on August 19th (within 2 days of being exactly 7 years from the date we bought it) I suddenly went into a state of shock. All those well-thought plans seemed more like hazy dreams. The troops around me, mainly Ryan and my Mom, rallied to keep me on track. Once again looking back on it the deal seemed to good to be true. Now I know I was never really in control of the situation. What I had thought would be best for us wasn’t at all. What God had planned for us was so much greater.  For example, there is no other time in the entire year that we have 3 consecutive weeks with no photo jobs on the schedule! If you had an hour of free time I could bore you with the long list of items that shouldn’t have happened or worked in our favor but they did.

The following shot was taken after a long hot day of packing on the very last day in the house.  The trailer and cars were fully loaded and all that was left was for us and the animals to load up and hit the road for the 104 mile trip to the new place we would call home.

I cried and I still cry which even seems silly to me when the outcome is exactly what we wanted.  I miss the place we called home and where we made so many of our first memories. We don’t yet have a location in Wilkesboro and Ryan is still working in Charlotte. We don’t have as much time together but I know all this is only temporary. Our dreams are being fulfilled without us even knowing. Seeing it happen and now fully trusting that God has it all planned out for us makes it much easier to relax and enjoy the ride.

Now that things are somewhat settled  we are taking on the Fall photography schedule and looking forward to sharing the art that we create and the passion that drives it. Sorry for the extended break.


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Bec - September 13, 2011 - 2:27 AM

Those renovations are amazing! I love, love, love your kitchen cabinets. Is that a Rustoleum cabinet kit?

admin - September 13, 2011 - 2:46 PM

Bec, We did those before the Rustoleum kit was available. It was pure good old elbow grease, sand paper, and a palm sander to remove all the old finish on the wood. Then we applied a new coat of colored stain once the wood was clean. It actually wasn’t hard, just time consuming.

Desi's Floral & Design Studio - September 19, 2011 - 2:03 AM

Wow, you two make one awesome team in so many ways! Love the renovations! I am sending a hug, for your touching story and time of transition. I know you will find your perfect home/Studio here in Wilkes, even if it is another project in the making.

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