I decided to make this assignment a bit more personal. It just worked out that way and I find it fitting that way. I have not decided if I would ever share this with the world.

This is my mom, she is a woman in her sixties, she lives alone, has been divorce twice and still works a full time job selling timeshare. The one thing she hates more than working is her job. But, she is really good at it and has been able to support herself and my little sister through college and veterinarian school.

Less than a year ago she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to have a full Mastectomy in order to save her life. She accepted this with the courage that anyone who is faced with such a situation has to have. Thankfully she is recovered well and as of today  is is cancer free. If you know anything about cancer is that once you had it you have to constantly continue to be checked for recurring kinds. So, I value the minutes I spend with mom more than I ever have. I love our long and intense conversations on the phone, as my wife will say. “what the hell do you guys have so much to talk about” But we do, mostly about same old shit, family shit, nothing, some kind of philosophy or other chatter.

Being busy with my life has really limited the time I can spend with all my love ones., Thankfully my mother is healthy and comes to visit and stays with us twice a week on most weeks. But I usually take advantage to work as she spends time with the kids. So, this morning when I went to surprise her and also help her take care of some stuff she needed was beyond amazing. I am grateful to The Parsons for this class beyond anything I can change in my business and my work as a photographer. It has reawaken me to be aware of the time I have in this earth and to be aware to spend it right.

Event though I mentioned to her I was sopping by she had forgotten and I scared her a bit. I do wish I had stopped by a bit earlier since she was already up and I missed her ritual prayers and making of her bed. :(
As you will be able to see my mother and I are quite comfortable with one another. She never even bother to put on pants while I was there. I never told her that I was gonna be taking pictures for anything in particular so its good to she is used to me carrying my camera and photographing the family.

We talked and I told her that I was her to out and take care of the chores she needed me to help her with but to go ahead and just do her regular morning routine. Even though my motive was to document her life in an honest way it really turned out to be one of the nicest mornings I ever spent with mom.

This is a bit explicit post hence me making it private to be shared with you guys till Monday only.  I know it is a wild topic even for this class and if it offends anyone, I am sorry. But I wanted to document a morning in the life of the most amazing woman I know. My mother. The woman who protected me to no end growing up. The woman who left a man I call a father when I was 1 year old because he was no good. The woman who refused to leave me behind when her boyfriend who became my step father asked her to come to the USA for a better life and promised to return to get me once they were settled and who later rather risk it all and travel through some Mexican desert to reach a promised land. The stories are endless but I wanted to touch the tip of the iceberg to clarify it a bit.

This is my mother, my hero, my love, my heart. An incredibly gift from God.

 

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Her reaction as she was coming out of her room as I was walking in.

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Lime with water, another of her many morning rituals

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Always getting bruised up trying to get some shit done herself or being clumsy and bumping into shit

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She hides that middle finger that she stuck into a coffee grinder of all things when she was a small child and it healed deformed. Luckily it made its way in this shot while making coffee ironically.

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A book she started for me a while ago of sayings that her mother and grandmother used to say… priceless.

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A painting I started a long time ago when I was in college and got int o Oil painting but I never finished it. Sh still hangs it proudly and everytime she moves it goes with her.

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coffeepouring

Coffee is our addiction and we do it so well together.

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Keeping it real and eating on the couch

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her battle wounds…

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momsmastectomy

She talks with her hands and makes lots of expressions and hesitantly let me take a picture of her mastectomy scars

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I am super excited to share this images with an awesome couple and I am so grateful that they let me be a part of their day.

A great story that Tiffany shared with me pretty much sums it up. On their honeymoon Tiffany and Corey went to Nicaragua where they spent a few days relaxing up in the mountain overlooking the world.

The following week they join a medical mission team up in the mountains. Who were setting up clinics in different villages each day they spent they last week of their honey moon traveling helping people in need. Handing out shoes, and medications that villagers did not have access to otherwise.

Hands down probably the coolest honeymoon story I heard up to this day.

Thank you my super awesome friends Nathan and Becka from By The Robinsons who hooked me up with this two great souls. Plus it was super cool having Nathan as one of the groomsman.

Thank you as well to my friend Hector from Thirty Three and A Third for coming along and shooting with me.

SOOO… A Wedding gown, pretty hair, awesome people, laughing, crying, dancing, kissing, loving, guns, beer and more dancing… What else can you need for a pretty cool wedding.

Enjoy!

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When I did Jenna and Kent’s engagement session we got to bond quite a bit mostly and in particular about cows. “Flesh eating zombie cows” OK!  Not really but they really seemed to be the very intimidating Tony Soprano type. However, Kent saved the day and spooked them away. These has remain a good conversation starter for us and it usually gets everyone laughing.

The reality was that there were a lot things going on at that time which were quite serious. Jenna’s mother was diagnosed with cancer as they planned their wedding. Needless to say it was a time of conflicting emotions. But during this time they kept their spirits high and were always filled with joy and hope for the future.

On their wedding day we found out that Jenna’s mother cancer was in remission. God is good. You could sense this sense of faith and gratitude throughout their wedding day. It was a super fun and easy going one. The girls got their make up done and got dressed with out any rushing what so ever. The boys drank beer and help each other get dressed. Something that most people who are not wedding photographer will probably never know. Man have great locker room etiquette with each other. Kent  found time to saw a button back on for one of his groomsman’s vest.

Their wedding ceremony was intimate and sweet and they did a ritual I had not seen before. They put together a cross rather than doing like a unity candle or the sand ritual. I though it was pretty cool and unique too.

Their reception was fun all the way through their farewell sparklers exit where Jenna was the one who stopped Kent in the middle of it and lay a big fat kiss on him. They are lovely together and I am sure this is one of those live happily ever after cheesy stories without the cheese I guess 😉

I am so glad I got to know them and I got to capture their story. They let me shoot the day any way I wanted, I even got them out of their reception for 15 minutes to do some long exposure light trail images. They were troopers and I am grateful.

Thank you guys for trusting in me and for being so easy going. Most of all thank you for letting me be a part of your lives even if only for these brief moments. May I have capture some great memories that will last you a life time. Nothing would make me happier.

Enjoy…

Venue: Lake Wales Country Club

Officiant: Ken Parrott

Wedding Coordinator: Vangie De La Concha

Make up Artist: Orlando’s Mobile Make Up Artist – Jenny Satin

Gown : Casablanca Bridal

Bridesmaides Dresses: Bill Levkoff

Men’s tuxes: Men’s Wearhouse

Floral, Decour, Linens & Chairs: Blossoms Arrangement of Distinction

DJ & Lighting: Gary White

Cake: Anna Cakes

 

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