Travel Announcement | LKM is in Ireland 2019

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TO TRAVEL - TRAVEL is like the crack word of this generation… that might be crass or crazy but i’m pretty certain most wouldn’t disagree. To travel is to live and to adventure is to exist…. the ethos of the millennial and the hopes and dreams of the i-gen-er. Maybe the thrill and obsession has always been in the undercurrent and social media is simply it’s megaphone. 

Either way, in a world where globe trotting is the most popular form of adventure, we would like to note that the value of adventure is quickly becoming the people we meet and the stories we hear and get to capture. It’s not a job that is making us rich monetarily, but rich in depth and breadth of human experiences. We are putting food on the table and paying the bills and learning all sorts of new tricks to keep costs low and exposure open and itineraries full. 

With that said…. 

MAKAYLA IS HEADED TO IRELAND TONIGHT!

This will be our first hop across the pond since 2015 and our first love story in Europe. She’ll be shooting an elopement and a couple love story sessions while scouting and exploring the hills and castles and coasts around Dublin, Castlerock, and Salthill. Have you ever been? Oh man, if you happen to be reading this…leave a note about a spot you love or a place you recommend!

LKM at WPPI // Behind the Scenes of the "Time Talk"

Today is the day I get/got to share a few business thoughts and speak for the first time at WPPI. It's a small thing--a little 20 minute presentation titled: "The Art of Running Your Business by Treating Your Craft Like One." The process of preparing this short talk has been one of the funnest and most engaging and stimulating.... as well as frustrating and daunting projects I've ever done in my 8 year journey as a photographer. It immersed me into research about current photography trends, challenges faces photography business owners, and areas of my business that hemorrhage in the time department. 

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Trudging through the photography landscape of dreams, vision, hopes and realistic capacity cultivated an empathy for fellow artists who genuinely want to survive if not THRIVE within their craft--to make it provisionary; sustainable; productive. There is stress. There is fear. There is this crazy bad habit of tending to either unnecessary urgent things or trivial time-suckers. There is a lack of systems or discipline or even the awareness that those might be missing.

And yet still there is this crazy beautiful stir for growth--something that keeps you at the helm--maybe it brings you back on deck to assess the storm or the ship. And you've got this fire that can't be snuffed and hope that there is something more than inspirational chatter with empty promises blessing ambition. You want something real, tangible and applicable. I did. I craved it. I needed help if I was going to sustain. survive. and dare i even dream of thriving? 

A CALL TO ACTION:

If you would like to get a copy of today's script and key points, please fill out the mini form below AND answer this question in the comments below: WHAT IS AN AREA OF YOUR BUSINESS THAT TAKES UP TOO MUCH TIME?

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If this resonates with you, please share!

Post this meme and tag @LKMstudios and be entered to win an "on the house" business consult skype or phone date to talk tangible systems and schedules; areas of TIME you crave to redeem!

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7 Tips on How to Make Camping With Kids Worth It

Before kids I thought kids would mean the death of independence and spontaneity. 

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Instead, this last year particularly, kids have helped me be more spontaneous. Live more. Experience more. Invite people over more often. Hang out with families more intentionally... BECAUSE Of my kids, camping this weekend was 10 times more rich. Us #MobofMoores, with 2 other families, nailed an awesome labor day weekend in Arizona's Cochise Stronghold Campground. (search instagram: #spourevacay15). I came home with a whole list of things that were fun successes! We concluded: family camping can be supremely awesome--cheap, flexible, raw memory-making. Here are 7 things we did that worked out really well:

(1) First and foremost, Anticipate kiddos needs ahead of time. No matter how "go with the flow" kind of person you are, just having an arsenal of activities and forethought can save your brain space and keep things restful (read: NOT CHAOTIC). A few things we did worked surprisingly well

(a) We brought an extra activity tent that provided a coloring / quiet space / introverts' hide-away. It provided breaks between activities and places to hide when it drizzled and otherwise rest and be contained.

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(b) Our friends, the Gouge's, whipped up a super simple scavenger hunt and we had a morning family activity breaking into different groups and hunting for pieces of nature and info about Cochise Stronghold History.

(c) Nature books made the kids more interested in the nature itself. Dave found this fantastic illustrated nature book that even the adults were waiting to have a turn with. 

(d) Charades. Kids thought it was hilarious. And it kept them contained while waiting for breakfast AND helped them be mindful of the rest of the campers who weren't quite ready for kids to be noisy in the campground. (note: incorporate silent-air-high fives. they are very conducive to noise reduction).

(e) Bring an "Anything-biodegradable" Launcher. Warning: men become boys and boys become enamored with their child-like dad. WIN WIN.

(2) We DELEGATED MEALS between families and each were responsible to anticipating the timing and the materials needed. Also, I learned new ways how to utilize the campfire this past trip! Brit & Dave really utilized the fire a lot. The wonders of aluminum foil people. #mindblown And it makes pretty much all things taste like gourmet. Apparently, if done right, foodie's don't suffer when camping. 

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(3) Love each other's kids. Quickest way to another parent's heart is to love their child. And that is where community is born. This also might mean some collective work when it comes to setting up boundaries and expectations for the campsite together. Having like-minded standards and rules for all kids to follow collectively will help them glean a spirit of community too.... (grin) All you flexible free spirited campers--don't freak out on me. I'm just talking about group pow wow before hand about basic standards. Things like parameters, am and pm quiet hours, where to wander, where not to, what to touch, what not to (i.e. FIRE. ANIMAL POOP. INDIGENOUS DANGEROUS PLANTS. etc). Also, having a pow wow as a group agreeing that all kids must listen and obey to all adults will help the community vibe. You guys are in this together. Be discerning. Be careful. Be respectful and sensitive. And if you mess up and step on toes, talk about it. Parenting in community is super challenging but camping with multiple families is a sweet opportunity for solidarity. Equip each other as adults with the trust and comraderie to navigate kiddos well.

4. LET GO. Speaking of rules and boundaries...here are a few we relaxed on. If you are brave, you can do this. Control freaks, my people, I salute you. Let go friend. Relax and let kids experience... i'll be honest, this one is hard for me. What is safe, clean, efficient, convenient... aren't always the highest of values. Especially when camping. And that is hard for me. So with that said, here are things I experienced:

a. Forts are ok. Let them Collect. Gather. Dig. Assemble. Be kind. Include others. Help the little kids have fun too. 

(a) Dirt. Get Dirty. Let them be dirty. Let yourself be dirty. Own it. 

(c) Climb. Letting kids climb boulders the size of buildings was terrifying. My safe voice says, "dummy" and my raise-kids-to-be-brave voice says, "God is in control and they won't know their body unless they use it." Twitching reader of this blog... I'll pray for you. My mommy-heart had to work over time to quiet and let my kids climb... They survived. And watching them be little monkeys--limber and excited--was amazing. Lawson and I were drop-jawed often.

(5) Plan for special ways to craft and provide for quality time. Breaking up the mornings and afternoons with little break-aways made for some special memories. The last morning a couple of the dads took the older kids down the stream for 2 hours and it was the highlight of Lawson's whole experience. It also let some quite space settle on the campsite where us other adults and 2 toddlers packed up leisurely. That was valuable too.

(6) Do sugar mid-day.  One of my most favorite things to do camping is make smores. We did it in the mid- afternoon this time and are never going back. We somehow gloriously snagged a decent NAP time for a few kiddos and adults and woke to enormous jumbo size smores glazed with the Moore staple ingredient, Biscoff Cookie Butter. The rest of the afternoons was spent running off the sugar rush which was much better than giving tired sugar-high little humans long, sharp utensils to stick in a blazing furnace. Brilliant parents. 

(7) Speaking of wind down. Bed Time.  Plan for it. Cranky Kids ruin everything. There i said it. It doesn't change when camping. Run 'em hard. (Good luck with naps.) Engage fully, share favorite highlights with each other, stretch the kids in asking questions or listening to others, wind down with songs and stories by the fire. 

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Hubs and I spent the car ride home and the rest of labor day weekend debriefing. We were so pumped by how well the weekend went, that we realized we could do it more often if we just plan ahead. short little spurts to mountain nearby--even over nighters. That's how much fun we had. So thankful for the Speares and Gouge's for being friends to experiment a little and learn alongside. We'll be adding to this list, i'm sure, for years to come! What would you add? 

LKM in Sedona | Arizona Wedding Photographers

The beginning of 2015 has been a bit of a dryer cycle. With tennis shoes in it....(beat)...if you can really feel the imagery...it really has been precisely how I (Laura) have felt. 2014 we were in the washing machine. Gathering the untidy, tossing in the smudged, cleaning up our game.... 

Then 2015 launched. Refined business plan and perspective and trajectory of all things LKM. So we gathered our forces, created a new and improved bridal exhibit, hired a few amazing friends and LKM fans, dubbed ourselves the #LKMwooteam and showed up Sedona ready to laugh, love and woo. :)

Here are a few highlights from our trip to Sedona. I'm kicking myself for not snagging more pictures! At least you can get a sneak peak into some of the hilarity. Shout out to my ladies Nicky, Corrie & Elizabeth. They were amazing. They traveled several hours to just come and represent LKM. They met brides, shared stories, answered questions, listened to couples share ideas, visions and dreams of beautiful pictures... 2015s focus is to build a brand defined by joy, beauty, patience and excellence. This was an amazing launch! :D | LKM

p.s. also, shout out to Pink Java Cafe. Their chai was perfect...and necessary. 

and one final image of the #lkmWOOteam in one of the rad photobooths provided by All Pro DJs AZ at the bridal show! 

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That one time a couple girlfriends surprised me with a night away...

Christe showed up at my house Saturday afternoon and said, "get in the car." I was shocked. Lawson had just spent the last 2 hours helping me decide what to wear on our "hot date" evening and instead was sending me out with the ladies.

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We pre-gamed at The Abbey Tucson. I had a custom-made espresso martini that rocked my world. 

Then when we arrived at Aloft, the modern ALOFT hotel in mid-town, and saw Hope waiting for us in the Lobby. Realizing that they had been working on this surprise for almost 2 months...Collaborating. Planning--it all clicked and I felt loved and affirmed and my heart felt like it got a deep, solid soul hug. 

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We flopped onto an enormous bed and chat for awhile.

We kept our 'night out on the town' super low-key, enjoyed some Glory Curds at The Hub and finally admitted that pjs and wine and chocolate and bed sounded better than anything else available downtown. 

Christe & Hope laughing off a lame latte experience at a coffee shop downtown. Win some you lose some. 

Christe & Hope laughing off a lame latte experience at a coffee shop downtown. Win some you lose some. 

The next morning it was past 7am with zero kids needing us, no butts to wipe, no breakfast to make, no sounds, no pressure, no mind-over-matter gumption needed to get on with the day. Just quiet, blissful nothing. I mentioned something out loud about it. "This is so awesome guys" to which Hope replied, "that deserves a butt-slap." So I got a butt-slap...and then I had thoughts and wanted to talk about those thoughts. (Hope cuts me off:) "Too many words Laura. It's too early for so many words."  

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Christe and I sneaked off to the gym and then Cartel Coffee Lab.

I could not remember last time I simply sun bathed without being smacked in the face by a toddler or have grapes squished between my toes or bombarded with squirt guns . This was my view for a solid hour of quiet and talk about community living and being wives and mentoring and loving our church and being okay with the mundane and being okay with deferred hopes and weight-loss and good food and all sorts of heart stuff in between...

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I came home beaming. Thank you ladies. Thank you for loving me lavishly. :) | LKM

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