I’m back with more cousin style from my trip to Colorado. These photos were taken in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Denver, an area that I was a big fan of. I’m so glad I had Katelyn to show me around all the cool parts of the city. After we grabbed iced lattes at Hudson Hill, we stepped out into the hot summer air and walked the streets to discover the beauty and architecture near Pearl Street.

capitol hill
Continue reading Capitol Hill

Last week while in Denver, Katelyn and I had some photoshoot fun downtown for a collaboration with one of our favorite shops, Sparrow Boutique. They offer great styles for business casual lady bosses with a wide array of premium denim, chic dresses, unique handmade jewelry, and so much more. They provide a balance of current trends and classic styles at unbeatable prices. They have a brick and mortar located in West Michigan, but ladies from afar can just shop their online boutique here.

sparrow boutique

It felt very nostalgic working on blog things together again. It was just like the old days when we blogged at Relatively Offbeat and were roomies in Grand Rapids. It’s crazy how we’ve each lived in our new cities for over two years already. It always feels good to spend time together.

Continue reading Cousin Style with Sparrow Boutique

Today I’m sharing a photo diary from last week’s Colorado trip.

colorado trip

Steve and I took off on Wednesday morning (our anniversary) and landed in Denver in the afternoon. That evening, we headed to the NEEDTOBREATHE concert at Red Rocks with my cousin Katelyn (The Suitcase Blonde— check out her blog!) and her husband Alex. Katelyn and I got to experience this for the second year in a row, but we thought we’d bring our husbands along this time around.

colorado trip

The show was excellent, but NTB can do no wrong. They put on a flawless performance. What’s even better is the four of us got to go backstage during their encore since the bassist is my boss’s brother. PERKS! If you’ve ever been to Red Rocks, I’m sure you can understand how cool of an experience it would be to go backstage during a performance. We got to walk up the famous hidden tunnel where so many legendary artists have been and signed their names. It was a pretty epic moment.

colorado trip

The next day Katelyn and I headed downtown for a cousin photoshoot. It was just like the old days when we used to blog together at Relatively Offbeat. It felt good to be doing photos together again. We visited Hudson Hill Coffee and got iced almond milk lattes before getting some photos outside in the sweltering heat.

colorado tripAfter our photoshoot, Katelyn and I headed to downtown Boulder to do some shopping and have lunch at Bartaco. I can’t stay away from that place, even on vacation. It’s the best. We walked around the Pearl Street Mall and holy cow, that town is adorable! I loved the charming shopping district vibes surrounded by gigantic mountains in the background.

colorado tripcolorado tripcolorado tripcolorado tripcolorado tripWhen we returned back to Denver (after a mishap with Katelyn almost losing her car keys, haha!), we made a stop at the Denver Athletic Club to watch Alex play a squash tournament before grabbing dinner. On Friday, we grabbed breakfast at Snooze and headed out for a 2 and a half hour drive to Glenwood Springs. When we arrived, we got settled into our room, changed, and took off to Iron Mountain Hot Springs which was right alongside the Colorado river.

colorado tripOn Saturday morning we traveled 1 hour southeast to Aspen so we could check out the Maroon Bells. It was absolutely breathtaking, even with the fog and hail that was coming down when we finally made it to the highlands. It was the most bizarre weather but everything was so beautiful. I’m glad we made the trip because it is just one of those places you have to see in person to truly capture the beauty.

maroon bells colorado tripmaroon bells colorado tripcolorado tripIt was an incredible Colorado trip and we look forward to going back again sometime soon. It’s so great having cousins that we can visit and stay with. Katelyn and Alex are always such a good time and we’re grateful that they were able to show us so many amazing sites.

Stay tuned for more soon!

nashville blogger

Today I’m going to share a bit about my experience at my very first boudoir photoshoot with The Adore Girls. I knew it would take a dose of bravery for me to share this with my readers, but there might be some women out there who have been toying with the idea of booking a photoshoot but haven’t brought themselves to actually doing it yet.

To start, let me give you a short back story…

The past couple years I’ve been in a constant battle with myself about my body. I won’t bore you with the details of all the negative things I’d been thinking about myself, but I’ll tell you I wasn’t nice. Then one day I was contacted by the incredible women behind The Adore Girls and was asked to do a session.

Several things ran through my mind. “I’m scared.” “What will people think of me?” “How do I lose weight in four weeks (while still eating tacos and donuts)?” and “Is this right for me?” I sat on it for a day or two and then finally responded with a YES. “I’ll do it.”

I decided to set aside my inhibitions, doubts, insecurities, and fears to do something for myself that would make me feel like the Laura I once knew. Brave, confident, and comfortable in my own skin. I knew the insecurities I had with my body would come bubbling back up during the photoshoot, but I decided to hell with insecurities. This was something I was going to do for me.

When I arrived at the studio, the women who worked there greeted me with smiling faces and made me feel right at home. The studio itself is a house they turned into a fully-functioning photo studio, so in a way it was a home. They offered me some refreshments (they even have mimosas!) and a place to sit so we could chat about working together. I also brought a full bag of items with me so they could help me pick out what to wear (since I was absolutely clueless and wanted a different opinion). I told them I wanted to be tasteful and have a few photos that I wouldn’t feel uncomfortable sharing since this collaboration would mean sharing a few of the images myself. They looked through my things and made the decision so much easier.

After getting to know their team a little better, I went over to the hair and makeup chair so that their stylist, Sarah, could start working some magic on my mug. She was excellent and made sure she wasn’t giving me a look that was unnatural to me. When she was finished, Jamie took a few head shots of me before I changed into outfit #1 of my wardrobe.

A common misconception: You don’t have to be nude or even half-naked for it to be considered boudoir. Boudoir is about being body confident and feeling beautiful. It doesn’t have to be about sex or gifting a photo of yourself to a significant other.

You also don’t ever have to do anything you don’t want to do.

boudoir photoshoot

boudoir photoshoot

boudoir photoshootboudoir photoshoot

boudoir photoshoot

boudoir photoshoot

boudoir photoshoot

Jamie (the photographer) and her sister were super supportive and easy to work with. They made the entire boudoir photoshoot feel seamless and refreshing. From helping with poses and cracking jokes, we all had a great time. In the end, I felt like a body positive badass who deserved to feel good about getting her photograph taken. I cannot recommend this experience enough.

Don’t ever let anyone (Ahem, even YOURSELF) make you feel like you are unworthy of feeling anything less than beautiful. We can all be mean to ourselves sometimes. Instead of insulting your so-called flaws, try loving them for making you different.

Here are some tips to note before booking a boudoir photoshoot:

  1. Bring multiple outfits/wardrobe items and have your photographer help you choose. They’ll have a better understanding of what photographs well and what doesn’t.
  2. Don’t get a spray tan, spend too much time in a tanning booth, or wear sunless tanner right before a session. Natural looking skin is the most beautiful in photos.
  3. Stay true to yourself. Don’t wear anything you wouldn’t feel like yourself in, don’t overdo your hair and makeup, and don’t pose in any way that makes you feel uncomfortable.
  4. Relax and be open to the ideas the photographer has. They have way more experience doing boudoir than you do. You might surprise yourself.
  5. Don’t be negative. The photographer is there to bring out the inner beauty and make you feel confident. Be positive and be a goddess.

For anyone interested in booking a boudoir photoshoot, you can book a Dream Session with The Adore Girls for $100 off using code LAURA at checkout. Click here to visit their website.

If anyone has any questions about my experience, PLEASE don’t hesitate to comment or send me an email. I’m happy to give any advice that I can.

And, remember– You are beautiful.

nashville blogger

 

It’s been a minute.

I think I’m going to do a full blog post soon about mindfulness and eliminating distractions because I’ve learned quite a bit from making some small changes this past week. But for now, I’m going to share some shots from the other night when the sky was golden and I finally got to spend some time outside in the fresh air. I love the way the setting sun makes everything in the city glow.

glow Continue reading Glow