2014 Year in Review | Personal

2014 was such a fun year! I have really enjoyed reflecting back over this year. I’m not trying to brag, but this year has been so full of adventure! I’m so appreciative of everyone who has helped me experience these wonderful things!  I’ve been so blessed and I am so thankful! I pray I never take this season of my life for granted. It’s such a fun adventure. I can’t wait to see what next year brings! 🙂

Here’s a little recap of how 2014 went down:

  • Arizona – I traveled to the west coast for the first time in my life! January was the perfect time to visit AZ! It was inspiring and really refreshing. The travel bug bit me and I can’t wait to do more exploring. I went to photograph my cousin’s wedding, spent time with family, and had an amazing time!
  • I saw a cactus that was bigger than me!!! SO COOL! 
  • Encouragement Sessions – this was something I really enjoyed doing and I hope I have the opportunity to do more this year!
  • Baltimore – I got to visit Baltimore, Maryland back in February and it was so fun! COLD, but fun! 🙂 We explored the inner harbor, went to Poe’s grave, and ate delicious crab cakes!
  • Indian Ceremony – I was able to visit Baltimore because I photographed my first Indian engagement ceremony! It was so much fun! It made me want to photograph an Indian wedding even more! I love the colors and the cultural traditions! Hopefully one day! 🙂
  • Turned a Quarter of a Century25!!!! AHHH!!!
  • Hosted my first Workshop – I still can’t believe that happened!!! Never in my wildest dreams did I think that would come true! I love sharing what I know with others and encouraging them in their businesses. The photography industry can be intimidating and I love encouraging others to pursue their dreams. I can’t believe I was able to host a workshop for 10 amazing women! I’lll never forget it! It was a blast and I’m hoping to do another one! Eeeep!!! 🙂
  • My sister graduated college – so proud of her! Amanda graduated from CNU and then traveled to Disney for a college internship! Working at Disney?! Dream job!!! We were so lucky to visit her twice!!! 🙂
  • Justin got accepted into the fire academy, graduated, and started his first day as a firefighter! 🙂
  • Visited the OBX for the first time ever!
  • Had Duck Donuts!
  • FLORIDA! We took a fun road trip when we drove Amanda to her internship. We stopped in St. Augustine’s and had fun exploring!
  • Threw a surprise party and actually kept it a secret! We’re so proud of Amanda! Disney has always been a dream of hers!
  • Pursuit Conference – I attended the P31 conference again! I had so much fun this year and made 2 new friends! It was a blast! I’m sad I don’t get to go back this year, but I hope to see my friends very soon! One is in Pennsylvania and one in Ohio! ROAD TRIP! 🙂
  • Visited my sweet friend Anna and her husband! We’ve been friends since high school and it’s always such a treat to see each other!
  • Nana’s 90th Bday! Can you believe Nana is 90?! Me either! She’s gonna live longer than me! So thankful that she’s doing well and enjoying life! 🙂
  • Sang karaoke for at the beach. After shooting a wedding in SC, my friend and I gather our courage and sang karaoke! It was AWESOME! We even had a bachelorette party be our back-up singers! 😉
  • CALIFORNIA!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Stuck my feet in the Pacific Ocean for the first time ever! 
  • Did a fun mentoring session with Sharon! Seriously, this lady is the sweetest! I love her because she is so genuine and that really can be hard to find in the photography industry!
  • DISNEY!!!!! It was so much fun visiting Amanda in Disney! The first time we went to Hollywood Studios! We had a Frozen sing-a-long, rode the Tower of Terror, and ate Mickey ice cream bars. The second time was even better (if you can believe it! ;). We went to Magic Kingdom and I almost think it was better than my first visit when I was in elementary school. SO MUCH FUN!!!! Thanks, Amanda, for sharing your perks! Best SISTER adventure yet!
  • Shot my first real maternity session! This was so much fun and I hope I get to do more! 🙂
  • Went to PA twice! I loved meeting two of my 2015 brides! Pennsylvania was so fun! I even got to eat an authentic Philly Cheesesteak!
  • Had chronic pink eye for 6 months! I kid you not, I got pink eye for the first time in February and got it every 2 weeks until July. Legit. It was the worst ever. I had to take predisone, which is terrible by the way. It apparently makes you gain weight like crazy. I gained 25+ pounds. <—- That was when I gave up fast food for 40 days. I knew something was off. My eyes made me look like a zombie from The Walking Dead. It really was discouraging. At first, it wasn’t bad. I got a day off from work. Woohoo! Then I kept getting it and the doctors didn’t know what to do either. It was awful. Just ask anybody who saw me on the daily. I even bought fake glasses so people wouldn’t stare at my zombie eyes. Finally, we found out my tear ducts were blocked and everything got better *knock on wood*. Now, anytime one of my kids at school has it, I wear a hazmat suit. #youthinkimkiddingbutimnot 😉
  • Went to my first wedding as a guest! It wasn’t that bad! It was fun to sit back and just relax, but I sure did miss taking photos! 🙂 And YES! I left my camera at home! 🙂
  • Became obsessed with Frozen! Okay, maybe obsessed is an understatement. I got an Olaf pillow pet for Christmas, I dressed up as Elsa for Halloween, and I might still sing songs from the soundtrack every week with my kids at school by myself in my car. 😉
  • Loved Iggy’s, “Fancy.” May, or may not, have YouTubed the song for an hour to memorize the rap!
  • Became even more obsessed with The Walking Dead! You guys, it doesn’t come back on until February! I don’t know, if I’ll survive!
  • Shot 19 weddings!!!!! You guys!!! This is so huge for me! One of my goals was to shoot between 15-20 weddings! I did it! It was so much fun! I honestly love it so much! I’m getting so much closer to this being my main job! AND because I shot 19 weddings, I was able to accomplish this:
  • PAID OFF MY STUDENT LOANS AND CAR!!!!! I hope this doesn’t sound like bragging. I’m just really proud of myself for doing this. I would have never thought I’d have the willpower to pay these off so soon. I thank God so much. He gave me (and gives me) strength to work 2 jobs. It’s not easy, by a long stretch. There are many (many) nights of little sleep, lots of long hours, and many times where I’m plum exhausted. BUT, it was totally worth it! Now, I’m going to start saving for a place to live! Anyone looking for a roomie?! 🙂

2014 was incredible! It had some ups and downs, but overall it was a fulfilling year. I can’t wait to see what 2015 holds! I’ll be posting some of my goals for the new year later on!

How did your year go? Did you do something you’ll never forget? Have an unbelievable adventure? Pay off debt? Travel? Enjoy friends and family?! I’d love to hear it! 🙂 

P.S. It’s this pretty lady’s 21st birthday today!!!! Can’t wait for some fun New Year’s Eve/Birthday shenanigans this evening!!! Love you, Alexi!

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  • So many amazing things!
    -Celebrated Al’s birthday (29)
    -Super Bowl party
    -Visited Al’s parents at their farm twice 🙂
    -Saw many, many movies
    -Went on a church mission trip for a week in July
    -Celebrated my birthday (26)
    -Attended SIX weddings, from May to October
    -Celebrated our 4-year anniversary in September
    -Visited Longwood in October
    -Improved friendships and bonds
    -Rebooted my blog
    -Wrote 16,000 words of my latest novel in November
    -Took four classes for my paralegal degree
    -Got engaged on Christmas morning (!!!)

  • I got to see you twice!! yay!!! AZ and CA…you need to come west more often:) How’s about SF next visit? so proud of you for hitting your goal -19 weddings….wow! Here’s to a productive 2015 but watch out for all that wedding cake;)
    Happy New Year.

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I’M  Ashley

a Richmond, Virginia WEDDING & PORTRAIT Photographer

I’m Virginia Ashley, but my friends just call me Ashley! I’m a wedding photographer based in Richmond, Virginia. Even though I live in RVA, I travel all over for photography, which is awesome because I LOVE to travel! I’ve been as far as California and have my passport burning a hole in my pocket!

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