Here’s To Never Really “Growing Up”

 

My best friend turns 30 today.

Meet Stephanie. 17098646_644899472378728_1038129901294048006_n The saying, “to know her is to love her” is something that rings true, like really true, for this one. She is the most loyal and caring friend a person can have, she chooses wisely who she lets in close to her colorful world and I am lucky enough to say we are best friends.  Let me digress a moment.

I met Stephanie, I believe around 7 years ago, it’s all a little blurry.  I had a lot happening then, I had just changed jobs after working at 3rd and Lindsley for 5+ years, shortly after that my best friend Brandi became very ill with what we would find out to be Cancer. Somewhere in there, my sister and I had also decided to open a photography business, again, it’s blurry.  I needed a friend, though I didn’t know it.   I was also still a party girl, living the bartender life, working to play and playing to work, here in Nashville, trying to “find myself” and juggle what life was handing me. You could say I was a late bloomer, I was almost 30 still in search of me, feeling lost, dealing with a lot, but I’d never let on to very many of the struggles I was dealing with.  Steph, 5 years younger, but somehow more mature, has never really been “the party girl” and was dealing with a few life things herself.  She tells me I was her rock back then, and that I showed her how to exude confidence and stand up for herself.  It helps to hear that, because when I look back at that time, though I was slowly, but surely coming into my own, for lack of better words, I would say I was somewhat of a hot mess.  Though I didn’t know it at the time, Steph would be the one who would show me how to have fun without a drink in hand, not to say we haven’t had too much to drink once or twice, but our friendship has never been based on it.  Our friendship has ended up being more about creativity, travel and our journey’s.  I can say it now because I know, but then I had no clue I had met my friend soulmate.  Back then Steph was feverishly chasing her dreams, but hitting all the bumps in the road that most of us experience our entire 20’s, but because Steph is smart and passionate and truly a unique individual she never lost sight of what she was after in this life.  Our friendship developed in a time that we both needed each other, though again, I don’t think we really knew it, it just happened. Something greater must have been in control to bring us together.  We have so much in common from our social anxiety and lack of giant groups of friends, especially girl-friends (we talk about shoes, but it’s brief) to our love for travel and our need for genuine creative outlets and of course, for those that know us, our love for Halloween.   Photography has played a huge role in our relationship, serving as a creative outlet for us both (and what would end up work for us both too), we have documented the majority of our friendship.  Steph moved west a couple of years after we became friends, but that hasn’t kept us apart.  We spend many of our evenings drinking wine and talking on the phone or face timing the giant spiders we find in our house, or like the “adults” we have become showing each other our wedding dresses because we couldn’t be together to do it.  And we see each other as often as we can living on opposite sides of the country.  Here’s a montage, our friendship in a nutshell:

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When this pic was taken we had no idea all the stories we would eventually have to tell
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One of the many “photo shoots”
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On this road trip we came across this sign, confusing…but appropriate for our zombie loving selves.

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Steph’s Mom got us owl hats for our trip

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We took a road trip down the PCH with no itinerary.  One of my favorite trips ever.
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Only Steph will get this
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We were so cool it hurt back then

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My first trip with Steph after she moved west.  On this day we paddle boarded in a harbor in San Mateo, Ca.  Wild spotted seals popped their heads up around us.  #rad
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Steph loves her “jumping” pics.  #AirborninSanFran
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Lake Tahoe

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Morro Bay #aradvideowaspartiallytapedhere
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#Stephmoveswestnightout
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From our first Halloween photoshoot
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No big deal, just tossin’ a zombie baby around

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I had this one turned into a painting

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WBFF:  Weirdo Best Friends Forever

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Steph and Kelby both travel for a living…this is a time they were on the same flight unplanned

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The most colorful person I know

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One spider we face timed about…*heart attack*

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The painting
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See above pic.  I had this one turned into a painting too.  It hangs on with my creepy collection
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Most recent trip to Truckee to visit Steph.  She showed Kelby and I the ropes with snowshoeing.  #somuchfun
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Die hard packers fan
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She is the brilliant one behind Kelby and I’s awesome engagement pics

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#twobestfriendscreepin’
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Remember that song Thrift Shop?  Yeah we made our own music video.  (Link below)
There are a thousand more pics, but I hope you know…

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Steph,

We may not own a “friend selfie” of us that falls under the category of normal,  but I wouldn’t have it any other way.  You are the best friend a person could ask for.    We have had so much fun together over the years and I can’t wait for more adventures.  Our bachelorette road trip will be one for the books.  You may be 2,174 miles away (to be exact) but I know you are always just a phone call away.   I’m proud of the person you are and have become.  You care deeply and sincerely, and that is a rare find in people.  Your colorful ways and outlook on happiness is one I hope to always share in.  Here’s to many more photos, life experiences, travel, and the year we both get married (WHAT!?!…yeah that is happening).  But most of all here’s to you turning 30!  Welcome to it.   I have always told you your 30’s will be awesome, and I promise to to be here when there may be a hiccup in awesomeness along the way.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!  I’ll see you in 1 month from today and then one month from that I will see you again!  2017 will be the best yet!

HERE’S TO NEVER REALLY GROWING UP!

 

Love ya,

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Linds

 

The Best Video Ever Made (that features us). 

 

 

 

 

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