I love being a Navasota photographer, but getting to shoot in different places really brings me joy and all kinds of new creativity! I recently had the opportunity to visit Malibu with my friend Chelsea where we had a delightful meal at Malibu Farm, walked around on the beach, and we also met up with my dear friend, Katie, in Santa Monica. The morning was beautifully grey. The horizon melted into a bright sky and the sea foam frosted the entire beach in a blanket of soft white. It was a day drenched in happy, even though Chelsea did at one point get drenched in water. But man! Sometimes what the soul needs is just a day of escape, shooting fun photos with a good friend with only Google Maps as a guide. :)
A thing about me: I work at the barn at Camp Allen. Unfortunately, a lot of people will never get to know what that is like. There are a million little moments that occur throughout the day that I would happily relive over and over again. So here's photo story of those little moments to give you an idea of how beautiful it is to spend a blistery January day outside working with your human and horse teammates to create a great day of riding at the barn.
Each morning we pour feed and open the big barn doors to let in a swarm of hungry horses. They come in and each stand outside their own stall until we come by and let them in. As the team eats, we tack up. Then we bring the saddled and bridled horses into the arena where they wait for guests to come for rides.
Each ride is guided by at least two "wranglers," one in the front and one in the back. In between rides, we find things to do, like... hug? I don't know. Or we love on Winifred, the photogenic two year old steer. Or we clean. Or we go around taking photos of our dogs and the horses and stuff like that. But regardless what we do to fill the space in between rides, the day ends up being about waiting, but waiting in a good way. With horses, waiting is a discipline. When working with or training horses, patience is key. You can't rush the learning or trusting process, so you give them time to absorb the concepts. If you don't wait on their understanding to catch up to your requests, it will very likely take longer to undo the damage created by rushing them into compliance. It's all about trust. Trust can be about waiting.
*You know when you have one of those moments where you say something truthful and you realize God is actually saying that same thing to you, through you? Yeah, just had one of those.*
Anyway, the day is all about waiting. We wait for guests to arrive for rides. Little girls impatiently climb the fence, waiting to mount their horses. Horses are tied up in the arena, waiting for dinner. We wait for horses to finish eating dinner before cleaning out the barn. Then, waiting for tomorrow to do it all again.
Bonus pics: Bowie looking out the window (more waiting - waiting on me to liberate him from the office) and Bowie loving on Kaylee.
You know your small Texas town is cool when you get a rock n' roll flavored coffee shop right down town (which just happens to be about 2 min and 37 seconds from my house). Classic Rock Coffee Co. opened up late last year but it's been movin' and groovin' since. There are people in and out all day, including fun/awesome/weird youth group people from our church like when I helped film a skit intro video for their Dnow weekend. We'll do anything to make kids laugh, won't we?
I was honored to shoot our new town watering hole and I think the photos really represent the rhythm you feel when you walk inside for a muffin or a cup o' joe!
Recently, I shot some spots around Camp Allen's conference center. Here's just a a tiny taste of what a banquet evening looks like at camp!
Bogart's is a little BnB in Navasota. It was such a pleasure to work with Dwayne and photograph this local unique venue!
I would never classify Kenton and myself as the "spontaneous" types, but about a month ago we totally jumped ship and booked a trip to Mexico. And by that I mean we entered the payment information on a Wednesday and boarded a flight the following Sunday. It was definitely a leap considering we've never been to Cancun and we selected our resort based solely on price, pictures, and Yelp reviews. BUT, we had an awesome time. We swam, snorkeled, played in the ocean, and enjoyed the sun. Very grateful for the quick trip and happy times and pina coladas. Alllll the pina coladas.
A few weeks back my sister, mom, and a friend of ours, Lauren, all stayed at (basically) the most beautiful space in Texas. We spent two nights at The Prairie by Rachel Ashwell in Roundtop, Texas. We go for good company, good food, alllllll the white, and of course, the antique show in Warrenton (there's also Roundtop, but I love and have only ever done Warrenton). However, I personally feel "show" isn't quite fitting. It's more like an antique abyss or festival - tents and vendors and beautiful things as far as the eye can see. And as long as you have enough beer and kettle corn to keep you fueled (more on that below), you might be able to see it all! It felt like a dream to come home to these beautiful spaces at The Prairie after long, lovely days of scouring fields for treasures at Warrenton!
Recently, on a random Wednesday, Kenton and I had a little escape to Cow Creek Haven, my Mimi and Papa's ranch outside Marble Falls, Texas. Cow Creek is one of the places that has shaped me. I just adore the big field, the rustic cabins, and the romantic swimming hole on Cow Creek. There is nothing more restful and restoring to me than sun, fresh water, and family. We sat around for hours taking in the Texas country beauty, listening to the sound of a full, happy creek, reading books, eating healthy snacks, and watching Bowie enjoy the afternoon of a lifetime.
My friend Ashley is a dreamer. And a go-getter. She has big trust that trumps over what little fear she has. She and her family recently moved into the most precious fixer upper farm house right next door to Whitehall, Tx., and began to restore it into the most beautiful space. Living at their farm house was fulfilling a dream of theirs until another dream came calling: a wonderful new job in Austin, Tx.! Despite their excitement for a new chapter, they will soon sadly say goodbye to their farmhouse. No doubt what lies ahead for this family is just as dreamy as what lies behind: this sweet and enchanting little home in the country.