Frinally: First Friday Recap

jessica ryan photography lay flat design of mobile website and note from wedding photographer

Today is the first Friday Recap on the new Jessica Ryan Photography website! I was planning on writing this post about the new launch, the Google stats from yesterday and all of my Thank-You’s! I even took the time to photograph this flat-lay design and everything! As my website launched yesterday I enjoyed spending some quality time with my friend, Dhalia and periodically checking and reading all of your kind words on Instagram and Facebook!

You may know from my other social media platforms that Cory, my fiancé, put so many hours and hard work into designing my website with me. It has been truly a work of love and he put up with every question or concern I had along the way. The past several nights getting ready for the launch we had late nights where we both were on our computers feverishly working on different aspects and details. Besides our dogs pawing at our feet to play with them, you could have heard a pin drop in our home. One night during our hours of focus, Cory all of a sudden says, “Hey Jess?” As I glanced up from my computer screen he pressed the play button on his computer and I began to hear the music. I heard the lyrics start, “Have I told you lately that I love you?” As Rod Stewart sang his heart out Cory and I stared at each other and then proceeded to laugh uncontrollably. It was exactly what our hard working souls needed at the moment. Laughter with each other and a gesture that reassured us and reminded us to look at the big picture that was within reach.

So on launch day, after spending the day apart, with Cory at his work and me running around doing wedding photographer things, I was looking forward to the evening where we would sit together. We would make a toast and enjoy our evening in the backyard with our dogs. As we clinked our glasses together and sat down in our chairs we saw our dogs sniffing this tree in the back corner of our yard. This tree is perfectly in the corner almost completely pressed up against our fence, nothing could fit in between the tree and the fence. It just isn’t physically possible, or so we thought! To our surprise, a big tortoise was in-between the tree and fence, head first, and wedged tightly between the two! This was impossible and we still cannot figure out how he got stuck there. For the next hour and a half we worked together with shovels, saws, tree branches, a hammer and I think a crowbar. I realize how ridiculous this sounds and I joked the entire time with Cory how we did not NEED another team-building exercise now, especially right after we just built an entire website together! What kind of cruel world do we live in? We just wanted to relax and after an hour in to this rescue mission, we were both thinking it was going to become mission impossible. Still, somehow neither of us mentioned once about quitting. Our attempts were mixed with tree hugging, my left arm and Cory’s right arm, each having a grip on this large tortoise shell and pulling in unison. Then I took a shovel and wedged it between the fence and the tree, placing my right foot against another part of the fence, I gripped the shovel’s arm and pulled it towards me with all my might to loosen the fence so Cory could pull the tortoise out once it was lose. This did not work! None of it did! Once Cory drilled numerous holes into our fence he jumped over and tried to pull the bottom piece out so it would break off.

Finally, in an instant I heard the old nails in the wood cracking and the wood came loose! Cory picked the tortoise up and showed me him over the top of the fence, which reminded me of the neighbor in the 90s TV show, Home Improvement. We quickly realized this guy was a snapping turtle as he clawed at Cory’s gloves and that is why his face looks surprised in this snapchat photograph below! I’m sure he was scared, hungry and thirsty but we just saved his life! He could have showed us a little gratitude! I was expecting Franklin the turtle, needless to say this guy will be named Frank, the older more grumpy version of the friendly Franklin from our childhood cartoons.

jessica_ryan_photography_holly_ridge_manor_wedding_roost_flowers_jamie_leigh_events_dhalia_edwards_candid_vibrant_wedding_colors_1380 But Frank and his entire ordeal he was going through, and what we did to save him, reminds me so much of all of our lives. We have these ideas and plans of how life should be. When we are tired we want things to go our way! We want to relax with our fiancé and we want to soak in the accomplishment we just created together. When things are going bad for us, like Frank here, we want so badly to get free that we are blind to others that might be lending a helping hand. We sometimes do not know how to accept or ask for the help we need. Frank couldn’t speak and he couldn’t see us because his tortoise behind was in the air and his face towards the ground, but if he was human would he have known we were saving him? Granted the first hour, there wasn’t  much saving going on!

Cory and our relationship has made me realize how much of a team we are and how important it is to have a team with someone. We share our ideas, our goals and even our dreams that seem out of reach until we say the words out loud to each other. Then, after they have been spoken, we work. We plan and we brainstorm how they are going to become a reality. I wanted a new website that truly reflected me as a person and as a wedding photographer who’s heart is one hundred percent invested into my couples. Cory, he wanted to become a website designer and brander that knows the ins and outs of every web code and the navigation system to be effortless. We believed in each other and officially, as of yesterday, we took another step together in pushing each other to be better and we celebrated by freeing Frank from a certain death.

There is not a pond close to us, but I hope Frank made his way to one and is now swimming, eating a lot, and relaxing! I hope we all can have the strength to make that long journey to our dreams and I hope we all have someone, multiple someones, in our lives that help, pull and push us to get there. Just so you know, I am prepared and willing to use a crowbar, drill, saw, hammer, tree branch, and a shovel to help YOU get there! Metaphorically speaking of course!