I am so thankful, y’all. I’m sitting at my new desk beside our first Christmas tree, with a sweet cinnamon candle flickering beside me. There’s still a little bit of coffee in my Make It Happen mug and I’m savoring every last drop – even if it’s gone cold. Nature’s confetti (snow) is falling outside. I set my tomato timer to give myself a few minutes to write this post because I want to remember this time in my life.
Sitting here by the tree, writing and dreaming at Christmastime, is such a sweet and familiar feeling for me. In 2013, I was designing Etsy prints and learning Illustrator by the tree. 1 year later, I was pulling together wedding inspiration boards and dreaming of a life in the South. Every December marks the anniversary of when I began my blog, too. Now, 4 years later, I am defining a dream that ties all the previous pieces together in a beautiful way. I think it’s fitting to share some snippets of the past four, sweet years of my creative journey too!
2013: first learning graphic design / my first blog / the very first prints I sold on Etsy / my first ‘studio’
This particular season has been beautifully marked with planting seeds for my own business. I have been working hard each day to write my business plan, craft my new website, and dig deep in my heart to build this all upon the vision I have in my heart. There has been much prayer, reading, and waiting. So much waiting. The best laid plans are those that come from surrendered trust in God.
Today marks 30 years of marriage for my mom and dad! I am incredibly thankful for the solid example of a strong marriage they’ve set for me. Their marriage is part of a legacy of strong marriage in our family. Their love has taught me the importance of serving one another in marriage and having a joyful spirit every step of the way.
They met when they were just 9 and 12 years old while my dad was a paper boy. He honored my Grammy’s wishes and waited until her 16th birthday to call and ask for a date. My later proposed during her senior year of high school and they married just six months after she graduated. They waited five years to start their family, exploring so many amazing places while my mom was a travel agent. Their story is a testament to the way true love can take root at any age and hold fast through the highs and lows of life.
Marriage is beautiful. I’ve shared 2.5 weeks alongside my best friend and it has been the greatest adventure of my life. I know Dillon well, but I’ve learned him even better in these past few weeks. Early in our relationship, I fell in love with his character and ambition, his heart for others, and his complete trust in God.
I have the privilege of sharing firsthand in his joy in the best moments and am spurred on by his faith in the trials. Since day one, he has been alongside me in my joys and sorrows too. He listens to my goals and speaks truth into my fears. He strengthens me at my weakest and challenges me to be my best. Thankfully, he always leaves so much room for my dreams, too.
Ruth Eileen Photography
Faith and vision fuel me every day. God has blessed me with beautiful, vivid dreams for my life – which is now our life together. After months of pouring ourselves into wedding and marriage prep, my creative well had started to feel dry. I was investing almost every ounce of creativity into making our day meaningful and intentional. While it was sweet and rewarding to see it all come together, I wondered when I’d get my usual measure of creativity back.
I found myself filled with so much vision since a few days after our wedding. When the excitement and exhaustion balanced itself out after our day, a refreshed vision took its place. I had always wondered what it’s like to bring your existing dreams and vision into a marriage. After all, you are taking two lives and unifying them into one. The unexpected blessing of it all is that Dillon has celebrated, spurred on, and contributed to my dreams and vision even more in marriage than before.
Dillon has his dreams too, and they are combining with my dreams to become our dreams together. Marrying him has only added to my vision. He encourages me to bring my dreams straight to God in every circumstance. My husband leaves plenty of room for my God-given vision, and for that I am so thankful!
If you are married, what unexpected blessing did you find early in marriage? Please share in the comments below – I would be so grateful to learn from your wisdom!