Stephen married Sarah : June 1, 2013

I was pleased and honored to be the photographer at my friend Sarah’s wedding yesterday in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Sarah married my bestie’s older brother, Stephen so I’ve had a front row seat to watching their love story unfold and it was as lovely and perfectly suited to them as their wedding day, here is a sneak peek of this amazing day!

Sarah and Stephen, I hope that your lives together are wonderful and perfect and beyond your wildest dreams. May you always know peace and grace and joy.

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Sarah and Stephen decided not to see each other before the wedding but they had a sweet quiet time of prayer hidden around a corner of the church.

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We found a band stand and we said, “Yeah it is, it’s an AIR BAND STAND!”

Love me some bridal parties that know how to have a good time and rock some invisible instruments! 😉

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Happily ever after’s all around!

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina

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Ryan loves Rachel

One day there was a boy that fell in love with a girl, and finally she said she would marry him so we took some pictures!

This is Rachel and Ryan, they are getting married this summer and I am so excited for their wedding and to see their lives unfold together. They are so fun and adorable, and were great sports about the ferocious Oklahoma wind too. 😉

Here is a sneak peek of their awesome engagement shoot:

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So happy for both of you and cant wait for your wedding!

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina

She said yes!

Last week Inspired Life was sent out on a special assignment to be a part of a very important life event that happened in downtown Tulsa, OK.

Cory asked Jamie if she would be his forever… and yes said she would.

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Congratulations you two! May your life together always be full of peace and grace and joy!

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina

Josiah :: Senior 2013

Had an epic shoot in downtown Tuesday evening. It was extra special because it was a shoot for my little brother’s senior pictures! I can hardly believe that he is graduating already. Seriously, where does the time go?

Josiah is currently doing some college prep courses while he scouts out his options for the next chapter of his life. Whatever he chooses, I know it will be amazing and I cant wait to cheer him on.

Jo, you are a ton of fun and I am really proud of the man you are becoming. Thanks for being my bro. Stay awesome!

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Cheers!

~Alaina

Snapshots from Australia : Thursday, April 11, 2013

Exploring a little bit of Brisbane and the Queensland museum.

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Brisbane.

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Pretty buddie.

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Best ice cream bar in the history of the WORLD.

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Cheers and love,

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina

AUSTRALIA!

G’day from Down Under! The weather is incredible, the sun wont stop shining, and I cant seem to get tired of swimming in the ocean.

It’s lovely. Perfectly lovely.

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Hi from the Aussie and the Yank!

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina

Packing up.

This is how I pack a carry-on for an international flight.

Now this is not my first international flight, or even my second, but my most recent international flight was USA to Iceland and the most important things in my carry-on were my doll Mara and my pink blankie.

It’s been a while.

So that being said, I might have overpacked. But this is what I did and after the trip I’ll let you know if it was too much or not enough.

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Firstly let me say my new carry-on bag is huge. Massively huge. If things get dire I could probably wear it as a skirt… or maybe a parachute. Sheesh. Anyway…

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I am packing an entire outfit change. Partly because it’s going to be a warm day in Aus when we land and also because I dont trust airlines to be able to get my luggage from point A to point B and want a back-up.

{from left to right}

1} Dress

2} Wool socks {these are in case the plane gets cold}

3} Light hoodie {again, for the plane. I wont travel without this thing}

4} Compact purse {I like to organize things to the hilt and this nice flat job fits into just about any space quite nicely, and holds #5}

5} Sunglasses

6} Bag of assorted food. Nuts, granola bars, dried cherries, and some tea. Why? I get hungry a lot and airplane food is dumb. Just saying.

7} Flip flops {again, in case of lost luggage}

8} EMPTY water bottle with built in carbon filter. To be filled up once I get through security from a water fountain or sink {hence the filter}

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A bag of assorted odds and ends and emergency items. As well as my clutch wallet that contains my passport, identification, cash, currency, and a Visa debit card. My emergency bag contains the following items that I plan on using shortly before we land to hopefully avoid looking as bad as I think I’m probably going to look on arrival. Not holding my breath but I figure I would try. 😉

9} Tic tacs and chewing gum {for the pressure}

10} Lip balm and tinted lip balm

11} Natural sleep aid

12} Mouthwash*

13} Travel sized toothbrush and toothpaste*

14} Hand lotion*

15} Mascara

16} Face and hand wipes

17} Portable phone charger

*= the only carry-on items that will have to be placed in a separate bag for security. I purposely take as few liquids and gels as possible.

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Fun stuff.

18} Sketch book and markers, pens, and colored pencils

19} Journal

20} Gratefulness journal

21} Reading glasses

22} DVD’s {some of my faves: Dickens, Disney, and DC comics ;)} and a thumb drive with a few extra movies  {it’s a 16 hour flight, for goodness sake!}

23} Sonic Screwdriver

24} My adventure buddy: Pascal

25} Ear buds and headphones

26} iPod

27} Instax camera

I wanted to take a book but I cant make a decision so that may or may not get thrown in later.

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There you go… I feel like I could face anything with that stuff.

Oh. Remember what my room looked like before?

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Yeaaaaah. Pretty bad.

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Well this is what it looks like today. Before and after. It’s a beautiful thing. And my floor is vacuumed which is even happier.

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Gracious. You’d think I was moving. But hey… the airline gave me 2 free checked bags and 2 free carry-ons. Why not use them? 😉

Hopefully I’ll be able to blog a bit from Aus… but if not, I shall have lots to tell and show you when I return. 🙂

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina

Posey, packing, and the best way to fold your shirts.

Hello, my name is Alaina. This colorful disaster is how my room looks when I pack. Yes, every time. I will say this time it seemed a little extra chaotic this time because I happen to be packing for a 3 week adventure in Australia.

Yes. Australia. Down Under type of Australia.

I leave Sunday. I’m a little bit excited.

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Rainy days are for british tea and listening to Les Miserables.

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Oh, you havent met bunny yet. Well this lop-eared fluff ball is called Posey. She joined our crew last Saturday and she is settling in beautifully. Technically, she belongs to mom but we are buds and I’m still going to miss her when I’m gone. She’s a sweetheart.

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She’s still fairly little as you can see… oh and apparently she likes to hang out in my closet.

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Time for a new soundtrack… this time, Tangled. On repeat. And I sang. And danced. And sort of packed. Pascal is very little help with packing, by the way.

So that was my day. To be honest, I enjoyed it. Everything is still a mess but most of my packing is done and I just have odds and ends to finish up before leaving on Sunday.

If you’re interested in absolutely the best way in the entire world to pack shirts… keep reading… if not, then enjoy the rest of your Thursday and…

Stay beautiful,
~Alaina

The Best Way to Fold Shirts :: DIY Wednesday… only it’s Thursday.

{this is how the Army teaches recruits to fold their shirts, by the way. My brother Gabriel taught me =) }

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See how neat it is? And nothing comes unfolded.

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Step 1: Lay the shirt out flat.

Step 2: Fold the hem under 2-3″

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Step 3: Fold in both sides and sleeves.

Step 4: Now fold into thirds.

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Step 4: Roll it up!

Step 5: Tuck the roll into the folded end to secure.

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See? Neat, tidy, and so awesome. I love it for globetrotting, but also for keeping my drawers neat at home. It will save space, keep you organized, and they double as an excellent substitute for snowballs if you need something to throw at someone. 😉

Meaghan :: Senior 2013

The other night I went out on one of the most fun shoots ever… the weather was beautiful {a little chilly, but fantastic for early March!} and I got to hang out with this lovely girl right here. Meaghan is my friend and she is graduating this year. She’s going to study to be a nurse practitioner, oh and next week she is going on a spring break missions trip to Nicaragua… She’s really awesome like that. She is also hilarious and we laughed the entire shoot.

I like laughing. It’s good for my health.

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Meaghan, you are so sweet and so lovely, dont ever let the world change you. Keep on being an incredible representation of Christ. May these next chapters of your life exceed your wildest dreams.

Stay beautiful,

~Alaina