pay it forward

There’s something about a long car ride that really gets your brain running, doesn’t it? At least it does for me. And since I was stuck in some pretty terrible traffic on the way to Madison Saturday – I had a LOT of time to think.

I started to think about giving back, and how I’ve been so caught up in this whole ‘running/building my own business’ thing that I feel like I haven’t been doing as much as I could to help other people. Working two full-time jobs doesn’t leave me much (or any) spare time… so volunteering isn’t really an option for me. I occasionally donate what little money I can to causes I’m moved by, and I’ve been a sponsor to a beautiful little girl, Luisa, in the Philippines for the past 5 years – but all of these things I feel slightly removed from because I don’t see or witness any difference I may be making first hand.

Along with contemplating all of this – I started to think (as always) about how blessed I am to be doing something I absolutely love. And I feel like since I have been blessed with this gift and have a true passion for what I do – I should be sharing it with others more… yes?
So – after two long car rides alone filled with lots of thinking – I decided I’m going to start doing just that and – pay it forward. (I love that movie, by the way, don’t you?!)
And the way I’m going to do so is by giving away two free sessions ($300 value – anytime, maternity, newborn or family) along with a CD of the best images, and a large print – to two very deserving families or couples.
I’m doing this because I realize that not everybody can afford photography (especially in this economy) and that people have other priorities and things they need to spend their money on… things like food, rent, heat… you know – the important stuff. But I also know that even though some people can’t afford to splurge on photography – that doesn’t mean they don’t still wish they could… right?
***So here’s how it’s going to work:  
  • To enter – leave a comment below stating why you (or whomever you’re nominating) deserves the session.
  • As stated above – you can nominate yourself or someone else. (Make sure to login with an email address when you comment so I have a way to contact you if you win!)
  • The person you nominate cannot be a current or former client of mine or have contacted me for session information in the past.
  • The nominee must be willing to travel to Chicago for the session (or willing to meet me somewhere between Chicago and Fond du Lac, Wisconsin on a weekend when I plan to head north).
  • The session must be done sometime this March or April (exact date to be determined with the winners after they are chosen).
The winners will be announced on Valentine’s Day – because what better time is there to pay it forward and share some love?! (If I’m having a really tough time choosing – I may have to pick from a hat though, I’m just sayin’.)  
So please – share this link and post comments galore… because I can’t wait to get this rolling and pay it forward! (And yes… I do plan to do this again, whenever humanly possible within my schedule…)
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And because I can’t leave you without photos… and in exactly one month from now I will be in Mexico shooting my first ever destination wedding (EEK! Happy scream!) – I thought I should post a couple Mexican shoreline pics from our honeymoon last year…  Think warm ~ and enjoy!  🙂 

XOXO ~ Christy 🙂

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Christy & James are Chicago based but happily travel anywhere in the world that beautiful love stories take them!