25.8.11

More Then I Dared to Ask {Personal}

he never ever saw it coming at all,
he never saw it coming at all
regina spektor | hero
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Growing up I was a bit of a know-it-all goody-two-shoes.
I thought I was the ideal good girl. 
A's in school, no "trouble" at all, wanted to live with mom + dad until I got married at 20.
(Maaaaaybe 19.)
I was a brat ;)

(Not saying that all girls who want that are brats,
just so happened that my heart and attitude about it was very "Aren't I sooOoo good?")

God has taught me a lot the last few years.
I'm know I'm still a brat at heart.
But I honestly don't think about that so much.
There's no beating myself or gnashing of teeth,
because God has shown me in dazzling colors how good He is.
He is sooOoo good.

In my plans of old, I would have never dreamed of living on my own.
But God had good plans for me and last year I moved into an apartment on my own.


This little house has become my friend.
It really, really has.
I've never felt like this in a home
(maybe because of my big family, there was never too much personal space)
but I feel like the walls "know" me.
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I know, I know, I know... sounds dumb.
Try not to vomit in your mouth.
It's true though.
As my life has just gone so shockingly different then I thought it would,
my home has been a little haven.
It had very humble beginnings.
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As late summer turned into fall I geared up for my first Thanksgiving "by myself."
(my siblings flew up to celebrate with me.)





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I've loved having family, friends and little kids come to my home.
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Many nights I would get in from the day and sit on my couch,
drinking water,
listening to cars drive by,
watching the sky melt into night.
It made me feel safe.
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Winter called for my first Christmas Tree.
That baby was up a good seven weeks!
I would always make sure to turn the lights on before I left,
so when I came home there would be that magical Christmas glow :D
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This winter was a bit of an emotionally hard one for me.
Sometimes you just realize a lot about yourself and it's hard.
It's hard to know that we can hurt people, it's hard to be hurt by people,
it's hard to grow up and not live in la-la-land.
It's hard to have regret, but it's sweet to be forgiven.
It's hard to cry tears, but it's so sweet to see them redeemed.
I had a lot of alone time being snowed into this apartment,
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An incredible "perk" this winter was my basketball team.
We had a handful of pizza parties over at my place, and boy did my neighbors hate it ;)
The squealy, excitable, funny girls blessed me so much.
It was so fun when they would "oooo!" and "oh my gosh I want to live here!" when they visited.
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Thankfully winter always turns to spring,
and somehow the physical surroundings always lend to an emotional transition too.
Hope, ideas, creativity, excitement!
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(ahem. excuse the picture quality, but this is me standing on my friends shoulders trying to climb into my apartment after I locked myself out.  I HATE LOCKS.)
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Weekly for almost a full year my dear small group from church met at my house.
We'd spend hours eating, talking about God + life, playing games and making memories.
I would love it when I'd go to bed and people would still be out talking.
I already miss it and it's barely ended :D
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Freshly motivated and alive, spring started strong.
Social activities, decorating, work, travel plans... Oh boy it was fun!
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I am so grateful for every single person who has come to my house.
I really am.  My mind floods with memories of visitors.
With helpers.
With baked-goods-deliverers.
With friends.
With concerned neighbors (my fire alarm is needy, one could say.)
With family.
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Shortly after these pictures were taken, my life headed down a deliciously sweet time.
Summer of 2011 is one I'll never forget.
It's been my favorite summer of my life.
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I go to sleep content, and wake up smiling. 
My little house has been a part of that.
It's been a part of my growing up, it's been a part of my mess, it's been a part of the beautiful.
It's been such a physical representation of what has gone on inside me.
I will forever love this little oddly shaped home of mine.
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But it's time to go.
It's time for a new home, with a new "family."
(I canNOT wait to live with people again!!!! ajakjasjakjaskja!!!! YAY!)
As much as I loved living here, and inviting friends over, I'm ready to have "home" include permanent and dear  residents.  I don't just want "room mates."
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And God worked it out perfectly - literally down to the hour - that I could move in with my favorite Klesses.Photobucket
It's a story, I think, worth reading :D 


- Back in 2007 after I graduated highschool, these newlyweds (for one year!) became my small group leaders.
We met in their rented basement apartment with our group, and always teased them about having children.
- Through 2008 and 2009 I learned more and more about them through their open-ness, love of Adams-Morgan pizza, kind texts, prayers, tough love, photography, heart ache, looooots of laughs (mostly thanks to Dre) and time.
Some of the biggest "desires of their heart" included
a career in the FAA for Dre (not just "jobs"), a home of their own and children.
- In 2010, right after my family moved away to Florida, the Klesses left for Oklahoma.
Dre, after literally years of waiting, had been accepted into the FAA.
He needed to train in Oklahoma for about 5 months.
- After they left, I moved into my apartment on August 21, 2010.
- Between 2007 and 2010 Becca + Dre had become such sweet and important friends in my life.
I honestly had no idea how much I'd need them, or that I had room for more "best friends."
But God worked it out :D
- Now, a year later, Becca + Dre own their own home about five minutes from my current house,
Dre has a full-time job with the FAA,
and Becca is pregnant with a baby boy due in Decemeber.
AND they just so happen to have an extra bedroom + empty basement for a certain someone ;)
So many prayers answered in that last sentence. So so so many.
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The cool thing was that they had put an offer on their house this past winter,
BEFORE Becca was preggo,
but for whatever reason the house wasn't accepted/confirmed with bank stuff until July 1, 2011,
AFTER Becs was a few months along.
July 1, 2011 happened to be the deadline I had with my apartment building to re-new my year lease.
If Dre and Becca didn't get the house, I was gonna stay.
Cause I love my apartment.
If they did get the house, I was gonna move.
Cause I love them.
And at 2:00 pm on July 1 I got a text from Becca "Go down to your leasing office! We got the house!"
I ran down their lickety-split,
officially told them I was leaving, with about three hours to spare ;)
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So this weekend "my apartment" will no longer be "mine."
And I'll be the new addition in the Kless household, eagerly awaiting their real new addition.
I'm excited about baby showers, baby home-welcomes, days of working with a friend, meals,
movie nights, stinky diapers and anything else that comes along the way :D

My quote for this year has been one from Martin Luther:

"All who call on God in true faith, 
earnestly from the heart, will certainly be heard,
and will receive what they have asked and desired
although not in the hour or in the measure, 
or the very thing which they ask. 

Yet they will obtain something greater
 and more glorious than they had dared to ask.

That is how I'd describe my life right now:
more glorious then I dared to ask.

I've made mistakes, I've worked hard, I've not gotten things I've wanted, I've lost things I love,
but God in His kindness has only poured out more.
And it's been perfect.
He is sooOooo good!






19.8.11

The August Rundown {Personal, Photography + Anything Else}

"People are seldom too busy to stop and tell you how busy they are."
unkown



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This summer has been one of my sweetest, happiest + fullest of my existence.
One of those summers where you love waking up in the morning,
where each week is filled with activities better then the week before.
A summer where you work hard, play often, travel just enough, chill at home barely enough,
eat way too much, and learn more about why life is just so precious.

I have much to say, much to tell you with words and show you with pictures.
On the eve of my 22nd birthday, here is a little look into my summer weeks work-wise.
(okay. maybe a few of these happened months ago. ssh.)
How I love my job :D

| portrait + engagement shoots |

jay + eva's wonderful and rainy clifton, va engagement shoot
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roslynn's maternity session at a lush nature reserve in belfast, northern ireland
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brandon + naomi's loveable and dreamy engagement shoot in downtown frederick
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| weddings + maew-wij |

nick + whitney's sweet and lovely wedding in st. michaels at the oaks
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matt + amelia's hysterical and carefree wedding at glen echo park
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angel + lindsay's party-times graffiti-ful wedding at the oak room
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brandon + naomi's adorable and giggly wedding at bald eagle state park
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geoff + kelly's preppy "winter in the summer" wedding at the george washington hotel
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| personal news |

the update on my last few days of calling my dear apartment home. and where i'm headed next ;)
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1.8.11

George + Melissa {Collingwood Museum + Library}

"a thousand words just like you"
goo goo dolls | thousand words


george + melissa's wedding was one of the most animated and emotional i've attended.
this post is quite wordless because,
as we all know,
a picture speaks a thousand words.

enjoy their joy!
and be sure to look at their faces very carefully.

| becoming a groom. and becoming a bride. |
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| sneaky pictures of the brides butt. oh girls ;) |
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| gifts for each other |
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| sorority girls candle pass |
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| seeing daddy |
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| ceremony time, but it looks like rain |
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| and the rain came down |
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| the first few minutes of being married |
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| celebration time |
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| for the last song, all the guests got kazoo's.  it was a mad house in there ;) but very happy. |


congratulations george and melissa! you two are two tons of fun.
you'll have the best life together.

:D