Artifact Uprising 2016 Family Yearbook

February 21, 2017

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When Jamie and I got married, we decided that we wanted to make yearbooks, filled with images from each year. A book that we could flip through and that would remind us of what we experienced and accomplished. But when I sat down to make this happen, I found that it was going to be way more difficult and take a lot more time than I had anticipated. As a professional photographer, you might think that I had all of our personal images perfectly organized and used to enjoy to my full advantage… but I didn’t. That is until I started following Nancy Ray’s Organizing Your Personal Photos PDF. I put her methods into practice and it’s made the biggest difference. It’s allowed me to take hold of our family’s images and use them in a way that they are enjoyed, not just taking up storage on my phone or computer. It’s allowed me to easily put together our family yearbooks! So easy, that I believe that you can do it to!

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Process For Past Yearbooks:
1. Implement a photo organization process
*If you’re looking to organize your personal photos, I would highly recommend Nancy Ray’s Organizing Your Personal Photos PDF. I can promise you that putting a strict system into place for your photos will allow you to enjoy them more than you had ever hoped!

2. Gather all the images that you would like to use in one folder
Gathering Tips:
– Look through each of your final images folder and copy the images you would like to use for your yearbook into a new folder on your desktop called “AU 2016”
– Copy iPhone images into AU 2016 folder. I use Google Photos to backup my iPhone images! It’s an easy backup for your images and an efficient way to transfer them from your phone to your computer.
– Gather images from other family members if possible. Because it’s only Jamie and me, I just hijack his phone for an hour or so and send all of his pictures to myself to add to the AU 2016 folder.

3. Create an account and choose your book type and design details in Artifact Uprising! Be sure to choose one that you love, because you will want to continue to use the same design so that you have consistency over time! I choose to use the Smoke 8.5×11 Hardcover Photo Book with full dust jacket and 100 pages, but all of their options are awesome!

4. Design your book. I like to do mine in chunks of time rather than sit down for hours to do the whole thing. It allows me to step away and rethink some of the designs.
Designing Tips:
– Less is more! Choose the best images that remind you of that time (1-5), rather than tons of images that all convey the same thing. My favorite layout option is the one image full bleed, as it makes the design look like something out of a magazine!
– Tell the story! Design it chronically if possible. I sit down with my planner and go through month by month to make sure the images align and that I don’t forget anything.
– Don’t be afraid to mix professional photos with iPhone photos!
– Make sure all of your images are the correct size. If you get an exclamation point in the corner of some of the images, it means that they are not going to print well, and you don’t want that! Try to find the original picture, rather than saving it via social media or taking a screenshot of it, as this will compromise the size of the image.

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Process For Current Yearbook:
Follow the same process above, but instead of waiting until the end of the year, add the images to your design quarterly. Set a date on your calendar at the end of each quarter, and use that time to fill your yearbook with photos from the past 3 months. Be strict with your due dates! I promise you, this project will be easy to put off if you let yourself. Don’t let yourself! By the end of the year, your design should be finished and you’ll be able to order your yearbook in January of the following year!

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Thank you so much to Artifact Uprising for partnering with me on this fun project! They graciously helped me with some of the cost of this book, but I would have used them even if they didn’t!

Brown Paper Bag Wine Tasting Party

February 16, 2017

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Whether it’s a casual cookout or a themed party, Jamie and I love to host people in our home and we love to bring people that we love together. A couple weeks ago, we hosted a wine tasting party and we had the best time! We are always looking for fun events to host, and after hearing about this idea from a friend, we knew it would be a good time!

If you’re a fan of red wine, heavy hors d’oeuvres and good company, this party is for you!

Invites:
– I recommend having no more than 12 people (6 couples). The more people you invite, the more wine that you have to try, the longer it takes.
– Explain the rules of the game (see below) and ask each person to bring 2 of the exact same bottles of red wine with a strict spending limit of $10 (1 bottle can range in price anywhere from $00.01 – $10.00). *You can make the spending limit anything that you want, but I would recommend doing at least $10*
– Ask each guest to bring their favorite appetizer to share!

calliedavis-brownpaperbagwineparty-1004 Preparation:
– Print out Tasting Notes, Voting Cards, and Bottle Numbers (according to your number of guests)
– At your local wine store or grocery store, ask for brown paper wine bags to hide each of the tasting bottles.
– We purchased plastic cups and had each guest write their name on it, to keep the wasting of cups to a minimum.
– Be sure to put a spit / washing bucket and a pitcher full of water in the center of the table for people to spit out their wine (drink responsibly!) and to rinse their cup between tastings!

calliedavis-brownpaperbagwineparty-1002 Party Logistics:
– When each guest arrives, ask them for both of their bottles of wine
– Take both bottles into a separate room. Put 1 bottle in the “Winners Pile” and use the other for tasting. Put the tasting bottle in a brown paper bag with a number. Be sure to take the cork label off at the top so there is no way to tell which bottle is which.
– Once everyone has arrived, bring all of the bottles out and place them on a table in order from least to greatest.
– Begin the tasting by explaining the rules.
– When you believe everyone has tasted each wine and completely filled out their voting card, gather all the cards for tallying.

calliedavis-brownpaperbagwineparty-1008 Scoring:
– 3 points for first place
– 2 for second place,
– 1 for third place
– The wine with the most points wins! The guest who brought the first place wine gets to go home with 11 bottles of wine that were set aside at the beginning of the game! Last place has to take their bottle home (because no one wants last place wine!)

First Anniversary Session

February 9, 2017

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When Jamie and I got married, we decided that moving forward we weren’t going to give each other gifts for any holiday. Instead we were going to have our pictures professionally taken and go on an awesome vacation together once a year to celebrate all the holidays. No gifts? I know it might sound crazy, but it’s been such a blessing in our marriage. We don’t have to worry about sneaking around or buying things that we don’t actually need. We get to put that money towards an experience that we’ll remember forever and pictures that will forever remind us of our first year of marriage.

To celebrate one year of marriage, I knew that I wanted to do something fun, so I brought together a couple of my favorite local vendors and put together a small little shoot that embodied the celebration of one year of marriage. We popped and enjoyed a bottle of champagne from our wedding day, cut a small “top tier” wedding cake, read our vows to each other and frolicked around on a beautiful farm with Bokeh by our side. I’m so thankful that the Graham and Samantha were there to capture each moment so perfectly. We’ll cherish these pictures for the rest of our lives!

Photography: Graham Terhune Photography
Film Processing: Richard Photo Lab
Tulle Skirt: BHLDN
Florals: Erin McLean Events
Cake: Sugar Euphoria
Calligraphy: Samantha Terhune

Truly honored to have these images included in the Winter/Spring 2017 issue of Trendy Bride Magazine!

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February 2017 Goals

February 1, 2017

calliedavis-christmascard16-1000H We’re 1 month into 2017, and I am really loving this beginning. January was full of rest, slow moving mornings, quality time with people that we love, magical snow days and multiple birthday celebrations. Although today was sunny and warm (yes, it was 70 degrees) in NC, February reminds me of cozy, snuggled up days, and I’m looking forward to weekends in the mountains, weekly date nights, trying new recipes and playing board games!

Read The Zookeeper’s Wife
Invest in a nice pair of pajamas (recommendations welcome!)
Plan a fun date night
One TV free week (when Jamie and I are together)
Shoot 1 lovely wedding
Spend a weekend in the mountains with the #nrpteam
Enjoy a weekend in the mountains with some of our best married friends (see our 2015 trip here)

*Leftover from January Goals:
Clean out and organize laptop files
Purchase a new camera

To all of you who filled out my reader survey, thank you SO much! Your feedback has been so much fun to read through, and I’m feeling inspired and encouraged about the content that I’ll be sharing in the coming months!

CMC Reader Survey 2017

January 30, 2017

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Image by Nancy Ray Photography Picture Box

Dear readers, thank you so much for following along on this journey! When I say that I am so grateful to have each of you here, I truly mean it. I started this blog 2 years ago in hopes to share more of my life, inspire others and to improve my writing skills, and I can’t believe how far it has come since then. My hope from the beginning hasn’t changed: to share content with you that is inspiring, honest and genuine. Moving forward, I want to make sure that what I am giving you is just that! Below, you can click on a link to fill out a quick, 6 question survey. I would be SO thankful if you would take the time to fill it out and let me know how I can best serve YOU!

CLICK HERE!