CHRISTMAS DREAMS // Dutchman Tree Farm, MI

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on our blog….over a year now! Whoops! We have taken a few wonderful trips since then, and I (Chantal) will be sharing those images soon. The general “busy-ness” of this past year has been made up of us settling into our new home here in the middle west – Grand Rapids, Michigan to be exact. Within that time we got our very own beautiful loft apartment in the city … a dream come true! (and I say “our very own” because we’ve almost always had housemates). We got engaged AND married on our trip to Europe!!! (those photos soon to come). I’ve traveled back to the west coast a handful of times to shoot weddings, and have been lucky enough to be a wing woman to one of my most favorite people out here – Abbey MooreShe’s a kick-ass photographer who has been such an inspiration and motivator in helping me to beef up my photo biz. And Jason is on the brink of resurrecting his wood-working/design business. Some really exciting stuff has been happening for us, and we are so grateful for this adventurous change we’ve made. We do miss our Cali family back home, and man do we miss the ocean and the desert, BUT we’ve also really enjoyed all the beauty Michigan has had to offer. It doesn’t seem like anyone from these parts loves the snow as much as I do. It’s still very new to me, and incredibly magical. When I wake up and the roads, houses and trees are covered in white, and the snow is falling slowly, quietly… I can’t help but think “CHRISTMAS IS HEEERRRRE!!” Growing up in Southern California I only had movies to reference when it came to real weather. I come from the “Home Alone” era where I’ve dreamed of being just like Kevin McAllister and cutting down my very own Christmas tree. Welp,… that dream was completely made possible by our dear friend Austen, and his family’s lovely and charming Christmas Tree Farmcomplete with some of the most beautiful varieties of pines, the most adorable farm animals and the nicest family running the place. It even snowed when we got there! The 5 year old in me came out, and my heart bursted into a million little Christmas Tree hearts! This day was hands down one of the most magical days of my life. Thank you to the Dutchman Family Tree Farm for helping to make my dreams come true, and thank you, Austen, for making sure I was in front of the camera for this moment in my life. EVERYONE…COME VISIT US IN MICHIGAN!!! We promise you’ll love it as much as we do!

 

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Sleeping Bear Dunes

So the story goes a little something like this –

Long ago, along the Wisconsin shoreline, a mother bear and her two cubs were driven into Lake Michigan by a raging forest fire. The bears swam for many hours, but eventually the cubs tired and lagged behind. Mother bear reached the shore and climbed to the top of a high bluff to watch and wait for her cubs. Too tired to continue, the cubs drowned within sight of the shore. The Great Spirit Manitou created two islands to mark the spot where the cubs disappeared and then created a solitary dune to represent the faithful mother bear.

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Buth Dairy Farm

Michigan – a new place called “home” (at least for me). I’ve only technically been here for 2 weeks now. That doesn’t count the time after having arrived to Grand Rapids that I turned right back around to work in San Diego for 3 weeks. So starting from when I returned from that trip, I’ve only been here for a grand total of 13 days! As we are finding our groove here, we are making it a point to explore new things around us. Even with Jason being from Michigan, there’s still so much more to see. And if it is already familiar to him, he admits to seeing things with a new perspective when having someone to share it with.

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