started with a bike ride. During the amazing Pursuit 31 Women’s conference last fall, Jody Gray and I went on a bike ride with a few others around the property. We stopped at a little church for a breather and started chatting about how amazing Winshape Retreat center was. The topic of doing something for “Couples” came up and while we both thought it sounded like a great idea, that was the end of our dreaming. However, a few months later, Jody contacted me and said that this was really something that she felt like the Lord was calling them to do…. and so we
joined forces and helped them out in whatever way we could. After some planning phone calls, a few skype sessions and a quick trip to Winshape one weekend, the CONNECT Marriage retreat started to come to life! It was such a joy being a part of this. Not only did we love the chance to really get to know Zach and Jody but we also loved helping out with something that God had such a hand in. I mean really, WE can’t revive marriages or restore relationships… that’s beyond our control… we merely provided a place for couple’s to come and get away so that God could shape them into the couple he designed them to be. It was amazing to meet so many fabulous couples and to hear their stories!! It’s really impossible to write out everything that we loved about this whole experience but I’m going to try to list a few of my highlights!! I loved…..
1. Being a part of something that God totally blessed and had a hand in!
2. Getting a chance to get to know Jeff and Julia Woods! We have so much to learn from them and we’re grateful to add another incredible couple to our “We look up to them” list. :)
3. SMALL GROUP! We loved our small group so much that we decided to start a facebook group so that we can keep in touch! Seriously, we had the sweetest group of couples! They were so genuine and open and honest… I think I learned more from them than they learned from us!
4. All day ice cream access…. they have a Chickfila ice dream machine in the dining hall… bad for the love handles, great for sugar cravings:)
5. Being able to help Zach and Jody pull this thing off! It was an honor to be a part of the dreaming AND executing of this retreat and we love those two… or should I say “Three”:):)
6. I loved seeing Michael in his element. Michael was really the go-to guy for the retreat and I was able to relax and enjoy being an attendee! He loves this stuff and he’s so good at it!
7. Bike rides… we always love our Winshape bike rides… except for the part when a couple of us got stuck in mud… like REALLY stuck in mud. Not cool.
8. Our room! Gah!! Winshape is just gorgeous. We stayed in an amazing room that was so cozy and quaint!
Ok so enough of my ramblings, let me show you some instagrams from the retreat!! Enjoy!!
When I’m scrolling on Instagram or looking through images after a shoot, some images just stand out and capture my attention more than others!
I don’t know if I have ever photographed a more gracious bride in the most horrendous heat! Seriously, Kelsey is a literal angel on earth. She brought her entire family to Virginia from South Dakota for this portrait session and was so incredibly kind even in the midst of 100 degree heat and humidity!
Lenses are NOT cheap, so when you invest, you want to make sure you’re choosing the best option!
If you think about a wedding day and the part that makes you cringe is having to interact and direct the groomsmen, I get it.
This was one of the most beautiful ceremonies I have ever seen, but the timeline didn’t quite pan out like we had planned.. The rings got lost, hair & makeup went long, storms were rolling in and there were some stressful moments!
You’re not going to believe this but this session was probably our easiest DC engagement session to date! We had glow, no crowed, a beautiful setting and the most wonderful couple!