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Well it has now been one whole year since we packed up our family home in Mission and relocated to the Okanagan.
I truly believe everything happens for a reason and all the cards lined up in making this move a successful one. The timing, the house, the kids school and daycare. It was like one thing after another just kept falling into place. It was about damn time and it felt so good.
The last year has been full of memorable moments. We started off the year by taking possession of our new home, then spending the next few weeks (ok months) doing renovations and making the house our own. We converted one giant room into 2 smaller ones for the kids, this was definitely the biggest job and worked on some other smaller projects around the inside of the house.
Once the weather started to warm up we painted the whole exterior of our house (wow what a difference that made) Installed a new fence, Brian ripped out 90% of the trees (Nixon still tells people his dad hates trees because he took so many down lol) and did a lot of clean up around the yard.
Brian was lucky to be able to take the first few months off after we took possession to “get shit done” before he found himself back working in the Lower Mainland 3-4 days each week. While it wasn’t too bad, and most weeks he was home for at least a 3 day weekend, it was tough being home solo with the kids while trying to rebuild my business here in the Okanagan.
Nixon started a new school and I was blown away at how well he adjusted. The staff has been amazing and he definitely isn’t lacking in friends (my little social butterfly).
Brooklyn started at a new daycare and found herself comfortable very quickly. She loves to play and make friends and she is anxiously awaiting the day she can go to her big brothers school (mom is a little sad that this is coming up so quickly).
And what have I been up to? Between juggling the kids and the new house, travelling to and from the lower mainland for sessions and starting my new VA Business my plate has been full. I am working on saying no to the things that no longer serve me and taking time for myself, ie. lots of bubble baths with Netflix and wine. The hardest part about this move for me I would say is keeping connected to friends and family back in the Lower Mainland. I am not one to send messages without a reason and who has time for phone calls with crazy kids screaming in the background lol. My trips down for work hardly allow time for visits and home life is well, busy, with 2 kids and 2 businesses on the go (3 if you count my Epicure side biz lol). But I am grateful for those who I have been able to stay in touch with, those who came to visit this summer and all the new connections I have made over this last year.
As a family we went on a few camping trips, we knew we wanted to stick close to home and enjoy our new area. With the pool, beaches close by and lots of visitors we had no problems keeping ourselves busy this summer.
Fast forward to winter, Brian landed himself a new job only 15 minutes from home and is learning to adjust to this much colder weather than we are accustomed to.
After a whole year of firsts for our family I feel like we have settled right in. We love the beauty of the area we live in, the slower-paced lifestyle, the happy home we have made and having family close by is a huge bonus. We are looking forward to another year of making more memories here in the Okanagan.
I will be really pulling back on my Lower Mainland sessions this year. After getting stranded in the Lower Mainland after Christmas Minis this year it has made me realize travelling back and forth so often, especially in the colder months, isn’t ideal for my family. I will still be coming down for Mini sessions and I would be happy to fit in full sessions when I am there. I will keep you updated through the Facebook group and Newsletter on when I will be venturing to the lower mainland. Don’t worry, if you have a 1 year package booked with me, or any other session, this won’t affect you.
Make sure you are a part of my Email List to get updates on sessions, promos and when I will be driving down next. If you are planning on visiting the Okanagan this Summer, I encourage you to book your next session while you are here!! We are in Peachland, which is pretty central, so I don’t mind venturing around the Okanagan to meet you somewhere beautiful. Pentiction and Summerland are two of my favourite places to shoot!
I will be focusing on outdoor sessions in the Okanagan this year. Studio sessions will still be available upon request and I have found an awesome studio space for use in Kelowna!
I have launched a new business Your VA 4 a Day, a virtual assistant company focused on helping photographers and small business owners streamline their business practices through automated systems and outsourcing. If you want to check it out, sign up for my weekly Newsletter and follow me on Instagram. Join the free Accountability group on Facebook to connect with like-minded Mompreneurs and tackle your to-do list with accountability.
The best way to support a small business is to share your experience with friends and family. If you have worked with me in the past, I would LOVE to ask that you share my name with anyone looking for a Photographer in the Okanagan or Virtual Assistant. And, if you could take a moment to leave me a Google review I would be forever grateful.
Adios to 2021, while you were a challenging year, you were also a great one that I will never forget. Looking forward to 2022 and all the big goals and memories to be made. Check out my highlight Reel on Instagram. I included one photo from every session I photographed this year, hope I didn’t forget anyone lol.