Dear 2017, Thank You

Ottawa-Lago-Wedding-Stephanie-Beach-Photography-bouquet-flowersFor the past few years I have posted a Thank You to all of the couples we worked with over the year. It is hard to find new words to describe how lucky we are to be able to capture these big days and really when it comes right down to it I think a heartfelt Thank You is the best I have.

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One Year Older

One year ago today was my (29 + 1)th birthday, which makes me one year older than that today (shh…don’t do the math).

Stephanie Beach Photography Birthday Collage 31

The last couple of years I have done these birthday collages (see year 29 here and 29+1 here) and I have realized that I really enjoy putting them together so I decided to do yet another one this year.

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Champagne Birthday

I have been wracking my brain trying to come up with the perfect birthday post. It’s not perfect, in fact it is far from it – but today is my birthday and I think I am allowed to be a little less than perfect. Enjoy!
(and yes, this was posted at 02:12, which is the time I was born – or so said the plaque that hung on my childhood bedroom wall)

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Today is my birthday. My 29th birthday in fact and since my birthday is on the 29th of March, this year is my Champagne birthday.
(this is also known as Golden, Grand, Star or Lucky Birthday, but I have always called it Champagne)

When I was growing up a friend of mine had her Champagne birthday. I remember thinking how cool the whole idea of it seemed and how far away mine was. I believe I was around 14 or so at the time and 29 really was an eternity away. An eternity in which anything could happen. I could do or become anything I wanted. I look back now and wonder if that 14-year old girl would be happy with who I am and what I have achieved.

As I sit here, I think of what I have achieved in the last 29-years and who I am today.
I have finished school, though I will never stop learning, having successfully graduated from a rather difficult engineering program, and managed to find a job in that field. I am rather good at this job, despite the fact that I don’t truly enjoy it. That being said, I have found what I do truly enjoy doing, something that makes me immensely happy – photography. Better yet, I am slowly, but surely, working towards having that be my job – if not full-time, then at least often enough to make the non-photography days well worth it.
I have an intimate circle of friends who I adore and a wonderful family that is now larger than it ever has been.
I own a home, and a lovely one at that, and I am able to pay for it and improve it.
I am not wealthy, but I can afford the things I need, and with proper budgeting and saving, even the things I want.
And let’s not forget about that wonderfully amazing husband of mine who loves me and encourages me to follow my dreams. Without him, many of the above things would not be possible, or really even matter that much.

Sure there are some things that the 14-year old me aspired to that I have not yet achieved, but I think the things I have achieved would make her happy – I really do.

Birthday Collage

While most photographers have done a year in review for 2012, the above compilation is a review of my 28th year. A quick look at 20 mostly personal images that I think sum up the year (more or less). They include images from our wedding, friends and family, travels and daily things. I could make this compilation again, and likely half of the photos would be different, but the overall message would be the same: Year 29 has a lot to live up to because Year 28 was pretty freaking great.