Ahh, the annual culmination of embarrassing photos of ourselves all in one place. We look terrible or confused or hangry, and are occasionally seen straddling logs in the middle of streams or getting caught in gym equipment. We are always, always, always pointing out in vague directions, gesticulating wildly, or petting dogs. I also decided to add an always-smooth-looking fannypack to my arsenal of wearable camera gear this year, so now I look like I’m ready for a week long trek in the wilderness after I’m done rock climbing. Not pictured this year: multiple pictures of Geoff eating wedding cake. I don’t know why. Maybe because I was able to eat more cake this year than ever before due to my gluten-free wedding guest brethren, so I was also busy eating cake at the same time? Either way, a disturbing lack of pictures of Geoff eating. I’ll work on that for next year. To make up for it, there is a picture of the Virginia Tech mascot hugging him against his will. Enjoy the stupid expressions and awkwardness of it all. To all of you who worry about how you’ll look in your pictures, we promise it won’t be this bad.

The “Making Fools of Ourselves” posts started in 2011 at the end of our Class of 2011 post. Here’s a look at younger versions of us:

2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
2011

Class of 2017.

Phew. Many of you know that this was a crap year for us. We had a significant death in the family, a laundry closet that was flooded, two cats in the emergency hospital, a computer that died, and a small kitchen fire that Carolyn valiantly extinguished… saving the lives of everyone in attendance. We blame 100% of the bad things that happened to us on a small wooden tiki carving we discovered under the dryer in said pre-flooded laundry closet, but that’s neither here nor there. Anyway, it sucked. We were hit with one thing after the other. But you know what didn’t suck? Our 2017 professional year. It ruled. Every single one of our clients was sane, kind, welcoming, pleasant, and fabulous in every way. We got hugs and thank you letters and toys for our cats and invitations to drinks and gatherings and copies of Hocus Pocus on DVD. You all took immense care of us this year when we needed it most, and we can’t thank you enough. You all were a very special class indeed, and we’re glad to see you graduate ::sheds tear::. I’m not sure where you’re graduating to… but… come back and visit us, please. We love each and every one of you. Thanks for making a bad year have tremendously good moments.

The year end “Class Of” posts date back to 2011.

2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
2011

Mom’s Southern Tour.

I’m lucky enough to make my own schedule (yay!) and Geoff is lucky enough to work from the road or at home. So we didn’t schedule any shoots or weddings for the month of March, and instead Geoff, my sister Laura, and myself took my mom on a two week road trip for her retirement! I’ll now field the following frequently asked questions:

#1 – But where was your dad?! Yes, this is the number one frequently asked question, and I believe our dad is flattered by how many of you are wondering about his whereabouts. Our dad was working because he’s not yet retired himself, and is saving his vacation days for the prized annual family beach trip.

#2 – Where did you go? We visited Charleston, Savannah, New Orleans, Natchez, and Asheville. We drove over 3,000 miles in my 2008 Mazda3 and listened to approximately 3,000 miles worth of Counting Crows. It only rained once. We saw alligators, cats, many cemeteries, ghost tours, the Mardi Gras Indians, and a surprising amount of hoop skirts.

#3 – Natchez? Natchez is a little town in Mississippi that has been calling to my mother via a southern cocktails book I got for her birthday several years ago and we’ve all just come to accept it and decided to take her there. She particularly wanted to tour a bunch of old houses, so that’s exactly what we did.

#4 – Did you have fun? We did indeed have all of the fun! We stayed in a bunch of Air BnBs and nobody was murdered. We drove all over the south but managed not to have any roadkill accidents, car accidents, or tickets of any kind! It was a bit cold, but otherwise everything went extremely well and we are all alive to tell the tale. Our mom got to see all sorts of great things that we love about living down here, and we got to eat a bunch of salted caramel donuts from HiVolt again. We took a ton more pictures of various other activities we did, but we used our cell phones for a lot of it (I usually don’t feel like lugging the big boy camera around if I don’t have to or else I feel an obsessive need to document because normally I’m paid to do that, so then I have a harder time living in the present moment… so sometimes cell phone pictures are a great relief for me). :)

#5 – Best part? We loved touring the Mercer Williams house in Savannah (house from Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil) where there are several resident cats. If you look closely underneath the roped off antique furniture, you can spot cat toys that have been batted under there and not yet retrieved.

#6 – Second best part? Seeing John Goodman walking his golden retriever.

#7 – Worst part? Slumped across a table in my pajamas holding back hungry tears while eating instant grits and a gluten-free Girl Scout cookie at 12:30am for “dinner” when Domino’s failed to deliver what should’ve been an 11:30pm pizza after an all-day drive to New Orleans from Savannah.

#8 – Second worst part? Driving through Atlanta’s i-85. Normally Geoff does this because he’s braver than I am, and I close my eyes and pretend it’s not happening. But Geoff had some work to do, so he sat on his laptop and I white-knuckled through it in fear.

#9 – Best food? Eating at the Gumbo Shop in New Orleans!

#10 – MVP? Our mom, of course! We love you and are so happy we got to take this trip with you!