Fountain Gardens Tauranga Wedding | Renee + Chris

Chris & Renee were married last Saturday in such a gorgeous setting! Guests walked down a winding path at Fountain Gardens in Tauranga, to find the ceremony location in the middle of a beautiful clearing set among lush native trees! It felt like a secret garden, and was incredibly special. Chris and Renee went to school together from the age of 7! Their Mums also teach together and are friends. Renee told me they didn’t start dating until many years later, when they ran into each other at a bar, and have now been together for 7 years!

I was so blessed to capture their amazing day. Casey from The Heirloom was doing the styling, so (as always) every detail was perfection. This girl is so talented! The marquee looked amazing, and like always I walked out with a huge grin on my face! After a month off, I was extra excited to photograph this wedding – my first of 2015. It was a stunner, I hope you enjoy. xx

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Venue | Fountain Gardens, Tauranga

Dress | Alma J Bridal

Styling | The Heirloom

Makeup | Lilybeth A Beautiful Education

Flowers | SweetPea & Jasmine

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‘Filling our bucket’ holiday up North!

NZ is having an incredible hot summer! We were so fortunate to have spent over a week at the top of the North Island of New Zealand, exploring many beautiful beaches and staying at Pataua and Cable Bay.

I’ve been reading such an inspiring book (the start of my goal to read 12 books this year!) called ‘Simplify’, by Bill Hybels. In it, he talks about the need to ‘fill our buckets’ with streams of replenishment, so we can work with more energy and greater impact in the work we do.

So often, I have felt guilty for going on holiday. I run a small business, if I don’t work, who will?! But over time, I’ve discovered that taking regular time out is nothing to apologise for. I know that after a break from work, I am completely re-energised, I have more clarity about what I’m doing, I’m more inspired and excited, and I can be more creative. I love how Bill words it in the book:

“Sometimes, people derive a disproportionate amount of their self-worth from being overachievers. They keep doing and doing, thinking that what matters most is the end product, not the process. Sometimes, people feel an undercurrent of guilt for taking time to do things that fill their buckets, as if someone will judge them for having fun or for spending time doing something for themselves rather than for others. But this is backward thinking.

When your tank is empty, you have nothing to offer anyone else. You can’t give what you don’t have.

Engaging in replenishment activities is not a form of selfish entertainment; it’s vital to the end goal of living your one and only life at it’s best. Be unapologetic about it. Prioritise and protect these replenishment streams in your life. It’s YOUR responsibility to fill your bucket, to identify streams of replenishing energy that will take you to a depleted state to where your tank is filled to the brim and overflowing.”

Who doesn’t want that right? I would highly recommend this book, it contains such wise words. So, I want to share these photographs, for me as much as anything, to remind myself (especially in this busy season) that it’s okay to take time out to fill my bucket. I hope you do the same. xx

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Mt Maunganui Lifestyle Portraits | Kerry + Aaron

These guys are so special to me! As well as being amazing friends, I have had the privilege of photographing their engagement (in 2009!), their wedding, both of their families, PLUS an Encore session in a plum field – for my promo video! I haven’t done many maternity sessions, it’s something I don’t specialise in…but when Kerry asked me to take a few photographs of her and Aaron in this next exciting stage, while they were back in NZ over Christmas, how could I say no?!

Like us, lots of Sam and I’s closest friends are living all around the world now, Kerry and Aaron are currently based in Dubai, but I really hope that one day we can all be together again in little NZ! I don’t know what God has in store, but I’m so excited for the future. Kerry and Aaron, I couldn’t be happier for you both! You are going to be amazing parents, I can’t wait to see what this next season of life brings! xx

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