SHINING BRIGHT remaining strong and humble when you want to fall

I blog so that as the time passes by, I can have something to look back on and reflect. I want to be able to see where I started, read about what I experienced, and look at how hard I have to work to get where ever I end up. 

Sometimes I wonder if anyone reads this; does any one care about what I write?

I read it. I care. Me, myself, I. 

I don't ever want to forget where I started. The zero knowledge that I had. In the beginning I was excited and dreamt about what my photography could be. I can't forget about that now. No matter what, no matter who, if I was still back in high school pinning curtains to my parent's library wall and using a desk lamp for light to photograph my mother in her best gown, I'd still be happy.

I can't let anyone take my happy: my happiness and love for the art. It is not perfect. It is not the universal best. But it is subjective and, most importantly, it is mine. 

Today I have a little more knowledge than I did yesterday. What will tomorrow teach me? 

Cheers to the coming weekend! What are your plans?

OUT OF THE OFFICE i'll be traveling to end the summer | USA

At the end of the month I will be traveling through the good ol' US of A and I am really excited. I'll be packing up my camera and find as many new places as I can to photograph. If you are in the area and would like to meet up, grab some lunch, or have your photo taken, let's make something happen.

San Antonio
Oklahoma City

If you are in any of these cities and would like to schedule a session in late August/early September, please let me know. I'd love to photograph you!

You can follow me on instagram (@mary1203) to keep up with my trip(s) and my Facebook page!

OFFICE SPACE missing my old one and making a mess in my current one

I'll be honest, I miss my old office space. Back when I was in Suite 405 inside the historic Villa de Cortez in Weslaco, Texas I had my own little corner, a space all my own, to share with the world. I loved meeting potential clients in my office and absolutely loved getting dressed, driving a few minutes, and climbing the stairs to head up to the fourth flour. I hardly rode the elevator; I was too afraid to ride in it alone. For some reason, having that suite address attached to my name made me feel like I had made it. I was, literally, on top of the world. 

Okay, so I was only on top in the fourth floor but while my office window may not have had a view of Napa Valley, the Caribbean, or the Mediterranean Sea, it still had a view and I loved it. I picked out the most perfect curtains to frame the window and saved for the perfect white leather chair. I used to admire the chair weekly and think to myself one day I would have my very own office space in which to sit in it. 

And I did. It was hard work, a lot of hard work, but I made it happen. 

There I was, looking like a teeny bopper but still making my own decisions and being the boss. My own boss. Fast forward to today and here I am sitting amidst a huge mess - one I made solely by myself. Ahh, I don't even know where to begin cleaning.

After I got married and moved away from my parent's home (finally, ha!), careful thought and consideration led me to conclude that I would be better off closing shop and working from where ever I was until we decided on a more permanent location. Having daily morning sickness, up until the eight :: EIGHT:: month made making this decision so much easier. While I loved my office, it just was not necessary at that stage in my life. It was beautiful to have but I had no desire to maintain it. All I could do was worry about keeping food down my tummy and enjoying playing house. While I did work, I worked a whole lot less and just enjoyed being married. 

But now that our little one has been born, I think the nesting bug left me because I have had such a hard time wanting to organize my workspace at home. I constantly move things around only to make more of a mess each and every single time. Like I mentioned earlier, I don't even know where to begin cleaning. I find myself in here late at night, looking around, hoping to be inspired to create a space where I can work comfortably. 

I am currently typing with one hand, feeding my baby with the other, and sitting on top of a pile of curtains I previously left on that white leather chair I used to day dream about. Yikes! What have I done?!

I've made a mess. A big one.

Pictured above is the current state of my desk... there is nearly enough room for that one hand I am using to type. Oh my goodness, I need to clean up!!! I have been telling my husband that I feel like I am going through a frump stage ever since I cut my hair and realized I miss my long, black locks. Well, I think I am going through a business frump stage as well. I think I know the culprit behind it all. I may very well share with you but I think that will make for another blog post.

So for now, good night. Happy Saturday friends, and to all those who were married today, congratulations!

Yours truly,
Frump Girl

AUGUST GOALS setting a standard for myself | personal

I've been at the office pretty much all day since I woke up this morning catching up on some work, worried because I forgot to file a franchise tax report back in May and after locking myself out of my online account I managed to finally get back in with the help of an operator. I've also been ceaselessly attempting to clean my office but alas I don't even know where to start. Instead of cleaning it, I added to the mess and left remnants of a french fry on my desk along with two half empty cups.


"Tomorrow",  I tell myself, "tomorrow I'll clean up." 

Well, since I began thinking about what to write for tonight's blog post I decided that I needed to pick up that leftover french fry, put away the cups, and really make myself tidy up my desk tomorrow. Now that I think about it, I realized that I should apply that mentality not merely to the aesthetic look of my current state of office but to my overall state of mind, both personally and professionally. Thus, I think it's time I start setting monthly goals. It's a brand new month {Hello August!}, so why not?

I'll start off small...

Business Goals:
1.  Clean & organize my home office
2.  Blog daily for the whole month of August
3.  Order that new sample album
4.  Work on some marketing (it's been a while!)
5.  Book one wedding this month

Personal Goals: 
1.  Learn to make ranchero beans
2.  Clean my laundry room
3.  Maintain my entry way mini-garden
4.  Photograph Abigail daily
5.  Surprise my husband with an amazing home-cooked meal, dessert included

It's a new month so I feel motivated! 

It's almost the weekend, yay! Oh wait - I'm a wedding photographer. ;)


Starting Fresh.

Howdy my beloved friends!

After much consideration, I have decided to start fresh with my photography blog. It's been a decision I have long been contemplating and it finally excites me to begin writing and blogging once again. There are a couple of reasons that have pushed me in this direction and I thought, in the spirit of honesty which is what made my blogging so personal in the past, I'd share them with you.

My photography blog served a purpose: sharing my most recent work and aspects of my life which inherently showed the progression of my life both professionally and personally. It's always been easy for me to intertwine the both of them because I am, after all, my business. Part of what makes running my photography studio is being myself. My clients choose me because they make a connection with me and I pride myself on that. But the past year, 2012, to be exact, both my professional and personal life took me for a roller-coaster ride. The trip, filled with both positive and negative, has drastically changed my life. And since my life and all that entails in it makes me who I am, it also impacts the type of photographer I become. 

The negative events kept me from wanting to share all the positives on this blog for one simple reason: fear. 

I feared that by sharing all the great, wonderful and amazing things in my life I would be opening the door for someone to step back in and ruin it or, much worse, take it all away from me. Oh Marisol, quit being so dramatic... 

My blog shows a progression of my work, the things I have learned, from the very beginning. It also shares a lot about the personal aspects of my life and it, too, shows how I have grown as a person. It is for this reason that I heavily contemplated deleting it completely. I want to be able to look back and see how far I have come but I also wanted to metaphorically break free from some of the past. 

Am I being selfish?

I don't know. What I do know, however, is that I finally feel like I am getting back on track. The past cannot hurt me; I have to let go of that fear. Things happen for a reason and the most important thing I have learned is forgiveness.

I saw this quote on line last week and it seemed to open my eyes and heart to something I thought I knew...

"Forgiveness doesn't excuse their behavior. Forgiveness prevents their behavior from destroying your heart." #beyondordinary

I am unaware where the quote originates. If you know, please feel free to let me know so I can properly give credit. 

In my heart, secretly for the most part, I have spent the last year fighting my blessings and happiness with a lot of hurt and anger deep inside my heart. I whined and complained to my closest loved ones about the emotions I felt. 

So here it is, out in the open and finally leaving my chest.

I was angry that I ever allowed someone to hurt me.
I was angry that I fell in love once and trusted only to be tormented.
I was angry that I lost some of my most beloved friends I once considered family.
I was angry that my once best friend could so severely turn on me.
I was angry that a simple no could not keep me away from anything.
I was angry that I could not stand up for myself directly.
I was angry that I didn't know how to stand up for myself.
I was angry that I was fearful of a ringing phone.
I was angry that I felt my life was crumbling in front of me and I couldn't see the love I felt.
I was angry that allowed myself to still care when I should have focused on taking care of myself.
I was angry that I was shouting and no one could hear my voice.
I was angry that I worked so hard to build this business and had to let a lot of it go.
I was angry that didn't know how to deal with the crazy.
I was angry that someone could so easily use your concepts, your thoughts, your wordings, your self.
I was angry that everything seemed to be moving forward for the world and yet I felt stuck.
I was angry that I couldn't so openly share so many of the blessings I enjoyed.
I was angry that I couldn't shout it louder when I found the man whom I truly love.
Most of all, I was angry that I was hurt.

I was hurt.

But I don't want to hurt any longer. I am choosing to forgive and forget, openly.

Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV

So you, whom I once ago trusted, I forgive you. You, who I envied because you took some of me and made it better, I forgive you. Most importantly and above all, I forgive myself for the mistakes I made, the walls I crumbled, and the pain I felt. It was necessary to experience everything, all of it, so that I could pick myself up and accept the blessings God has for me.

My beloved husband, Joshua... thank you for embarking on this journey with me. Marriage has been honest, beautiful, exciting and so very rewarding. Together we built our little family and we became one the day we married. Our sweet baby girl is the biggest blessing we received and I am so glad I followed my heart and met you. 

Opening my heart to let go of all the hurt is the only way I can foresee myself moving forward. If I can finally forgive and forget, I can move on and be who I enjoy most being, myself. 

And who am I?

I am a wife and a mother.
I am a lover of life and believer of kindness.
I am a child of God.

And I am ready to start picking up my camera once again, and do what I enjoy - my job!

Thank you for reading through. Thank you for always coming back to follow. Thank you for trusting in me and allowing me to create heirloom memories for you and your loved ones. My clients are amazing. My clients are the best. My clients become special in my eyes and hold a special place in my heart. They take up the courage to smile, invest, and receive. For all my past, current, and future clients: THANK YOU!

For myself, smile - the best is yet to come!

Eloping. {Courthouse Weddings}

I love all of the details that go into photographing a wedding. Some brides plan lavish and extravagant affairs, some plan last minute family soirees, and some plan intimate courthouse weddings Regardless, they all plan some sort of wedding day and it is my job to photograph it.  

Since getting back to work after maternity leave, I have photographed a couple of elopements and have really grown fond of them. I love that these couples still care about recording such an important event in their lives. I love that they still plan details, however small and intimate they may be. Most of all, I love that I get to photograph them. Thus, it is my pleasure to announce that I am now officially offering a special collection for the Bride & Groom who chose to elope on their wedding day and still have amazing wedding photographs. 

Are you getting married? If you are having a beautiful, big wedding or a small, intimate elopement, I encourage you to give meet with me and see if we are a fit together as your photographer. The new "Chapel Collection" is designed for couples who wish to elope but still have wedding day photos. 

Congratulations on your engagement & happy wedding planning!