Finding My Joy, A Gratitude Project

It's the end of the first week of my gratitude project, and I found myself feeling restless with clutter and decided to tackle it head on. First the laundry room.. bin by bin, I said goodbye to old cake decorating supplies, some pet accessories that have gone unnoticed for too long, shoes that are ignored, lamp shades we don't use and a bag full of neglected clothes.  I then moved upstairs, going through the office, discarding old papers, shredding old documents, filling up bag after bag of recycling, I moved through each of the upstairs room, purging the medicine cabinets, the hallway closet saying goodbye to hair products, a hair roller set that keeps getting pushed to the back of the closet, along with endless amounts of useless things that don't really have a place in our lives. It's amazing to me the amount of stuff we accumulate, like the StarTrek© Tribbles that seem to multiply, stuff just begins to take over.. and all I can hear the late comedian, George Carlin, shouting "WE HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF!"
There are still rooms to tackle and purge, toys and home school books hiding in the basement but I feel like this is a good start to the year, there just might be something to minimalism! 

My 2016 Highlight Reel, Finding the Joy!

On Sunday, January 1st, I sat in church listening to our Pastor talk, he asked us about our highlight reels we had and if there was anyone that wanted to share, several people went up, sharing about jobs, getting married, but I struggled to see the moments despite knowing there was good to be had. I had to stop and think about what this year looked like, because looking back it felt like there were a lot of frustrations, stress and worries that in truth, didn't amount to the worry that was keeping me from seeing all the wonderful things that had happened. While 2016 did it's best to knock me around, despite the lumps and struggles we faced as a family, from out of the shadows there were some pretty wonderful moments that I'd like to share with you. 

A highlight, meeting Rachel Jones and participating with her for "What the Stork forget" contest and having her write for YEGInspired! 

A highlight, meeting Rachel Jones and participating with her for "What the Stork forget" contest and having her write for YEGInspired! 

In February, I found a new church after a very long hiatus, I needed to find a place of community and connection, I found that at Enjoy Life and reconnected with a few old friends and met some pretty wonderful new ones as well!  
My daughter met a wonderful man in the fall, they were engaged in February (with a summer wedding to boot). For April, following Canada Photo Convention, I chose to take the leap and work on my magazine, putting out a short run of a 100 copies to test the market with a soft launch in June.  In May, Rod and I celebrated 25 years of marriage and June, my son graduated high school, which as result had me retiring as a home school mama of 17 years.

Another highlight from June, was connecting with Athena Raypold, who heard my vision, shared my joy and jumped onto the band wagon, helping me with YEGinspired (lots of love to her!) for all she's done! 

In August my daughter got married to Nathaniel, in what turned out to be the most glorious summer day on the farm. Perfect for an outdoor farm wedding as the next day it rained cats and dogs.. and the next several weekends going into September.. it did more of the same.. (perfect timing). 
In October, the Premier Issue of YegInspired came out and in November, one of my best friends flew here from Atlanta to hang out with me for a weekend. She pushed my creative buttons and was inspired for some of the little things I had been missing, thanks Megan Gladden, I so needed that. Along with that, I also photographed some wonderful families and worked with some incredible people this year, it really is an honour to capture your real life moments.

Now that the new year has started, I'm looking at some of the things I'd like to do going forward, the second issue of YegInspired will be coming out in April.. can't wait!! I'm booked already for several family sessions that I'm so looking forward to. And this year, I get to cross off a goal/dream item off my business list where I'll have the opportunity to shoot one of the cover images for Edmonton's Child Magazine! I'm over the moon and can't wait for that!!!
And In February, I'll be bringing back the One Click workshops for mama's, keep an eye out for those workshops, where we'll meet up and I'll teach you the ins and outs of your camera.. but there will be more information coming up on that in the next while.

For a personal project, I want to mindful of the highlight reel, and not get bogged down in the negatives, 2016 was a rough one for many of us and it's easy to look back, to only see the bumps and bruises but for 2017, I don't want to have to pause and think passed all the grey days, I want to be able to directly see a highlight reel of all the joy and the positives that happen, so my goal each week is to share a positive thing that has taken place and post a favourite image/images. If you'd like to join me this year, I'll be using, #findingmyjoy2017 Would love for you to follow along on Instagram @thisislorrainemarie

All the best,


Local Edmonton Business Feature: Appletree Photography

Melissa is owner of Appletree Photography, Birth Photographer, Mama to her amazing kids, Cook-Extraordinaire! It was a pleasure to be able to photograph her for the YEG Inspired Magazine, where she was a feature advertising partner!  
Melissa's home office is located in the Stony/Spruce Grove area where she serves local families in the Edmonton and surrounding regions.  When you come into her space, it's filled with this wonderful light, it's so bright and airy, making you feel right at home. She has elements of her branding through out her space, apple scented candles, newborn onesies and her signature apple brand is on display. There are so many heart warming touches, personal thank you notes from clients mixed among her gallery wall. It's really wonderful! 


The Steven's Family : Elk Island Family Session

My sweet friend, Kess sold her Elk Island home, moving her family into the city.  But the week before they moved & were completely packed up, she hired me to come over to photograph them for a Life Session and to help celebrate their first home as we ventured around their beautiful property they talked about some of their fondest memories. 

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