you’re the sum total of everybody in your life

This quote really resonated with me because I would not be where I am right now without a group of truly amazing and inspiring people.

I am so blessed and thankful that you have shared your life, wisdom and knowledge with me.

You shaped me into who I am by sharing your gifts with me and in turn, I’m able to share my gifts with the world.

Family is everything

To my beautiful mother who passed away too soon, I love you and I miss you so much. I’m sorry I put you out of my thoughts for so long. Now that I’m a mother, I understand what you went through and I understand your love.

To my step-mom Cecilia, I’m so grateful you are in my life. You accepted me just the way I am and love me like your own daughter. Thank you for giving us Cheryl and bringing our family together.
 
To my sister Maggie for putting me in my place and loving me just the same.
 
To my husband John, thank you for taking care of me and waking up early to take care of Elle when I’ve stayed up way too late the night before. Thank you for silently supporting and encouraging me. I could not have done this without you.
 
To my parents-in-law Betty and Ray, thank you for taking care of Elle and loving her just like your own daughter. I could not have pursued my dreams without your support.
 
To my little girl Elle, even though you are so small, you’ve made the biggest change in me. You opened my heart.
 

Friends are the family we choose for ourselves

-Edna Buchanan

To my un-related brother Rockie Lee, thank you for answering my questions with more questions and for letting me figure things out on my own. You have believed in me from the start and your gentle encouragements have got me to where I am today. Thank you for being my ‘photographic Jedi Master’,  for pushing me to leverage how I see life to find my own voice and capture life that is outside the box.
 
To my dear friend Vanda, thank you for always being there for me no matter how busy you are. You have always comforted and encouraged me though good times and bad, and for that I’m very grateful.
 
To my Monday night family, your support and advice have helped me get to where I am now. You have created such a safe environment for us to support each other and use our skills to help one another.
 
To all my like-hearted photographers who are sharing your life and hearts with me, thank you for enriching my life with your amazing stories and experiences. When I’m with you guys, I feel I’m home. We are all doing something so amazing and fulfilling. The best part is, we are changing and impacting the world just by being ourselves and doing what we love.
 

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day.

Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

-Chinese Proverb

To my dear friend Jesh de Rox, you helped me discover my voice. You shared so many ‘generous hours’ with the world and I have greatly benefited. You taught me to truly see people and love them just the way they are. That is the most powerful gift you’ve given me.
 
To my orphan hugging coach Kristen Kalp , thank you for pulling me back when I’m going off on my crazy ideas and constantly reminding me to balance what I’ve learned to how it applies to me. I think I’m getting the hang of it. Also, you’ve helped me move forward using what I ready have and concentrate my energy and resources to what will make the most impact.
 
To my trainer Collin Sprake, not a day goes by where I don’t have one of your quotes in my head. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and incredible knowledge and for introducing me to my Monday Night Family.
 
To the very funny Elizabeth and Trey Holman, your generosity and spirit really touched me. Your dedication to your craft and your desire to impact the world in your own way is inspiring.
 
To the wonderful Barb Uil, you taught me every person has their own voice in post processing. Even with the same image, I can not duplicate the magic that you add to it.
 
To Michelle Cormack my wonderful talented graphic designer, thank you for sharing my vision and creating something that is an extension of me.
 

To everyone, from the bottom of my heart and with immense gratitude, thank you.

 
Kristen -

::hugs::