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Why am I seeing this?

I got a message from my friend Ashley this summer, “I need some new photos and really wish you lived here so you could take them.” So I told her to say no more, and we scheduled a special trip for a cozy weekend in Oregon to photograph a very special couples session.

See, Ashley and her lovely husband, Moni, are the kind of people that are at the top of the list to invite to dinner parties and on camping trips. The kind you’d want to bunker down with during a hurricane party (shoutout Florida friends – iykyk). They’re both magnetically wonderful humans, so it’s no wonder that as soon as they met, it only took them 7 months to tie the knot and start their lives together.

After meeting them, you’d also pin them both as being the coolest parents. Moni’s grown sons are incredibly wonderful as a reflection of his inviting and strong character, and Ashley has blended seamlessly into the family with her fun and caretaking demeanor. Naturally, bringing more love and little ones into the family was on the agenda early on.

They’ve had incredible highs and soul-smashing lows over the last few years together. Regardless of the sacrifices they’ve had to make, they’ve put in the work to make sure their dreams become a reality. I love the tenacity of their family unit to not take “no” for an answer, but to find the flow that brings another option forward – and that’s exactly what they did.

Ashley had a sense of urgency when she messaged me about this session and a need to make sure they’d encompass their household, their daily surroundings and interactions, and most importantly, their relationship. They’d be submitting these to an adoption consulting firm where a mama somewhere would have the opportunity to get to know Ashely and Moni through their photos and words. Enough to choose them as the parents to raise and love her gift of life.

We shot all weekend all over Ashland to get a wide variety for the couple, and their beautiful Oregon home was so cozy and inviting. With Ben Howard playing in the background, the smell of coffee and wood finishings in the home filling the air, and their two sweet puppies romping around the house together as Ashley snuggled baby talk into their ears, you could tell love filled this place. We dined out in town several times and ventured to the nearby park and town square where kids and deer frolicked on the grass. It felt like I stepped into a Disney movie.

By the end of the weekend, we were all tired but full from the laughs, good food, and great company we’d shared. We said our goodbyes and I reluctantly left the little slice of paradise they’ve worked so hard to make a reality, crossing my fingers and toes that I get to return soon to take updated family photos.

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