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!

2017 + January Goals

January 1, 2017

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God has made one thing very clear to me in the past couple of weeks: Your goals for 2017 are going to look different than ever before. 

Over the past couple of years, I have been very disciplined in setting and working towards my personal goals. I have accomplished a lot and am happy to have a system in place that moves me forward and holds me accountable. But this system has always just been about me and my goals.

This year, I bought Jamie and I the Powersheets Companion Goal Setting Guide for Couples in hopes that this would be a good starting point in setting goals as a couple. I didn’t have a lot of expectations, as Jamie tends to do things a bit different than me and I didn’t want to force anything. But after a 5 hour goal setting meeting filled with lots of laughter, tears, honest conversations and hopes for the future, I realized what God had been speaking to me. This year isn’t going to be about me. It’s going to be about US. We decided on three goals that are going to be our primary focus this year. Yes, I still have some personal and work goals, but we are going to be making our goals the most important.

We are going to work through them together, and I hope at the end of this year we can say that we fought hard, that we have grown closer to each other and The Lord, and that we have begun to build our legacy. We have big hopes, and to be honest, the goals that we set are really personal. They have numbers and realistic measures. They include both of choosing to make daily changes. They are challenging and I’m not entirely sure how to talk about them in detail right now but am hopeful that we’ll be able to share more in the future.

2017, you are our FRESH START!

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As a Couple:

1. Fight for intimacy in our marriage
2. Give, Invest and Save
3. Implement Sunday meetings

Personal:

4. Deepen my relationship with The Lord
5. Say YES to my circle people
6. Take care of my body
7. Learn to play
8. Read 12 books

Work:

9. Grow into my new “seats”
10. Give one session away per quarter

Goals don’t happen without a clear picture of your why and your how. Below, I have listed the why and some of the action steps for each of my 10 goals.

Goal 1: Fight for intimacy in our marriage
Why: To strengthen our marriage and create a solid foundation for our family.
Action Steps: 1 date night a week away from our home, travel, less tv and more one-on-one time

Goal 2: Give, Invest and Save
Why: To build our legacy and honor The Lord with what he has blessed us with.
Action Steps: Pray, communicate regularly about our finances (during our Sunday meetings), seek counsel

Goal 3: Implement Sunday meetings
Why: To care for and love each other well, to make sure that we are communicating clearly and that we are on the same page.
Action Steps: Create a schedule and stick to it, say yes even when it becomes a burden or hassle

Goal 4: Deepen my relationship with The Lord
Why: 
To grow my faith, rely more on The Lord and less on the world.
Action Steps: 
Less noise and more silence, get on my knees and pray, continue journaling and writing in my thankful journal, social media fasts, continue to stay connected in our church small group, begin serving at our church

Goal 5: Say YES to my circle people (inspired by a chapter in Present over Perfect)
Why: The people that I love deserve my yes and full attention when needed.
Action Steps: Create circle diagram specific to my life, learn to be more comfortable with letting down the people who lie at the edges of the circle, ask Jamie to hold me accountable

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Goal 6: Take care of my body
Why: My body will fail faster in the future if I don’t do this and it will help me keep going now.
Action Steps: Join the YMCA, plan realistic times throughout the week that I am able to exercise, run a 10K in Charleston, add personal care reminders in my planner

Goal 7: Learn to play (inspired by a chapter in Present over Perfect)
Why: Life shouldn’t always be so serious and life is too short not to have dance parties or do cartwheels in the backyard.
Action Steps: For 5 minutes each day have no purpose on purpose, create margin, celebrate small milestones in life, dance when I feel tense

Goal 8: Read 12 books
Why: 
To learn, grow and do something that is restful.
Action Steps: 
Make a running list of books to read in 2017, read 1 book a month, read a book(s) with Jamie

Goal 9: Grow into my new “seats”
Why: To serve and grow the Nancy Ray Photography team and our clients.
Action Steps: Pray, help hire and train a part time studio assistant and three interns, learn to freely delegate tasks

Goal 10: Give one session away per quarter
Why: The Lord gave me the gift of photography to bless others.
Action Steps: Pray, ask more meaningful questions, give freely

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January 2017 Goals

Read The Magnolia Story
Finish and order our 2016 Artifact Uprising Family Yearbook (click here to see 2014 & 2015)
Activate my YMCA membership
Create a Downtown Raleigh restaurant bucket list with Jamie (recommendations welcome!)
Implement a bedtime routine (specifically washing my face and reading for 15 minutes)
Help hire NRP studio assistant and three interns
Purchase a new camera
Clean out and organize laptop files

Lastly, I want to thank YOU, my reader. Thank you for being loyal to me even when I have hard seasons, for following along on this crazy adventure we call life, for holding me accountable with my goals, for commenting and making me feel like you’re an actual friend and not just a computer. Your support means more to me than you’ll ever know! Please comment below,  introduce yourself if you haven’t already, and share a link to your 2017 goals. I would love to be your friend, cheer you on and give you hope that you’re not in this alone!

Happy 2017 friends! Let’s make this a year that matters!

Our Christmas Decorations

December 22, 2016

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When it came time to decorate our home for Christmas, I knew exactly how I wanted to do it. There is already a lot of green in our home with our indoor plants, so I wanted to add to those with more natural elements, like fresh garland with twinkle lights, fresh cotton and red berries. I made some red and green plaid pillow covers for our couch and purchased a couple new accent decor pieces like these affordable glass candlesticks, peppermints to add to our glass hurricanes and a red striped table runner from Target’s dollar spot to add some pops of red! I love our decor so much, I just might never take it down!

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