October 24, 2016

Five Days in Seattle | Click Away 2016!

I have always wanted to see Seattle and, earlier this month, I was finally able to do so!

Every Seattle native that I have ever known has shown so much exuberance for their city and, honestly, this fact alone has put Seattle on my must-visit list for years. People are so passionate abut Seattle – the whole city has the most creative and unique vibe! – and I loved it. Seattle in October was totally my jam. I love rain and I love farmer’s markets and I love plaid and flannel and water and fog and I also really, really love having access to all kinds of amazing food within walking distance of a hotel room. Seattle had all of this and more! This five day getaway was a dream!

Back when Click Away 2016 was announced and applications were opened for teaching positions, I jumped on that train in lightning speed and I was beyond excited (and surprised!) when I was chosen as one of the instructors for this incredible conference. I love Clickin Moms so much and it was so fun to see a web-based forum come to life in the middle of a booming city. But! More on that part later! Right now, we’re sticking (mainly!) with the good stuff: Good Old Fashioned Tourism.

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Since Click Away started on a Friday, my bestie Lauren and I flew out that Wednesday and spent Thursday sightseeing. Lauren has the sweetest baby boy ever and he was so amazing during the trip. Seriously, we took him everywhere and he still smiled and cooed half the day and then slept the other half of the day. And first up? We headed out to Pike Place Market!

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^^^ The cookie above cost five dollars (!!!) and it was worth every single penny. Just FYI. ^^^

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After we spent the morning at the market, we walked across town to see the Seattle Center.

We didn’t really have a plan for this – we totally just wandered – but we ended up going to the Chihuly Museum and it was one of the most beautiful museums I have ever seen in my entire life (and I LOVE museums). The glasswork is stunning, of course but, just as importantly, the light in the museum was awe-inspiring. I’ve seen Chihuly’s work several times – the first time was at the Missouri Botanical Gardens back in 2006-ish; the second time was the first time I went to Las Vegas in 2007 – and, while I thought his work was beautiful every time, I don’t think I ever really appreciated it until I saw his work in a darkened room. The light the glasswork gave off was the most beautiful light I’ve ever seen and the whole museum was so inspiring and heart-warming. I loved it so much! If you ever have the opportunity to go, don’t hesitate! Pictures don’t do this place justice.

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The rest of Thursday passed in a flurry of food and check-ins and friends and food and camera cleanings and more friends and more food. And on Friday? The conference started!

I taught four classes during the conference but, on the first day, I attended two as well! In the morning, I went to a shooting class by Megan Cieloha. Megan is an extremely talented travel photographer and she has the most amazing ability to capture unexpected details in her photographs. This was the first time I ever met Megan in person and I loved hearing her thoughts on taking photographs that capture the vibe of your surroundings. As a wedding photographer, this is something I think about frequently and it was so inspiring to hear Megan talk about the same idea through a different photography genre.

Megan’s class took place near (and in!) Pike’s Place and it was so fun to photograph the same location in a different way just one day apart. Thanks so much for this class, Megan!

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My classes were on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and they were a blast.

Here’s a few behind the scenes photographs! Pike’s Place had the most amazing bouquets of my life and, two and a half weeks later, I’m still in love with them. Before arriving in Seattle, I was a little nervous about finding (six!!) bouquets for my bridal shoots but, as soon as I saw the flowers in the market, I knew we were set. Teaching at this conference was so much fun and I love how engaged all of my students were with the class materials. I received so many awesome questions about high school senior photography and, in my bridal classes, my students and I had some amazing discussions about why certain backgrounds would work with one bride and not with another – and about when too much texture is too much. The only downside about these classes is that I couldn’t shoot for, like, three hours straight. With such amazing models and fun locations, I easily could have!

And here’s a funny story! On Saturday, I had a morning class and needed to pick up three bouquets before class began. The walk from the market to the hotel was about ten minutes and walking back to the hotel was one of the funniest moments of my life. It was drizzling, I was alone in the middle of a new city, and I was holding three bouquets so big that I couldn’t see over the top of the flowers. Like, I literally looked like a walking flower and it was amazing. Also, huge shout out to the Click Away staff (specifically April and Nina!) who didn’t even bat an eye when I brought three enormous bouquets into the Click Away Speaker Room and then spilled water behind the table when I unwrapped the second bouquet. Pretty sure I ran in and out of that room, like, seven times in a ten minute time period. Ha!

Sidenote: Yes! The doughnuts pictured below are the best doughnuts in the world. Like, I can still smell the doughnut shop and Lauren and I totally went there twice in three days.

Also, huge shoutout to Color INC for sponsoring my classes! Their products are AMAZING!

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Once the conference wrapped, Lauren, Sawyer, and I went sightseeing once again!

Lauren and I have been friends for over four years now and, if shopping trips to Tulsa count, we’ve been to at least four states together. I love this girl and had so much fun with her (and Sawyer!) in Seattle. Also, not going to lie – the last night we were in Seattle, we picked up Indian food, watched the Presidential Debate, and fell asleep at like 8pm. No regrets!

Fun Fact: I’ve developed an uncanny fear of heights after having kids (weird, I know!) and, when we went on the Ferris Wheel with Vironica Golden, I totally panicked with fear for a good fifteen seconds and, in retrospect, it was hilarious. More hilarious? Sawyer – a five month old! – and Vironica’s one year old went on the Ferris Wheel with us and, of them all, I was the biggest baby in our cart. Extra hilarious? I FaceTimed with my boy Max while we were on the Ferris Wheel and he said “it doesn’t look that high, Mom” nonchalantly and was over it real quick. Ha!

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Our flight out on Monday was in the afternoon so we spent the morning at the Seattle Aquarium! There were no sharks – which was a total bummer! – but I picked my kids up Otter Star Wars shirts that they are now obsessed with so it was a total win. Aquarium light is my very favorite light ever and one of my (many!) dream wedding locations is an aquarium. So! If you’re getting married in an aquarium (especially one with sharks!), I am your girl!

Also included on my dream wedding location list? The New York Public Library, Venice in Spring, Niagara Falls and the Redwoods. If I’m going to dream, I’m going to dream big!

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To end our trip, Lauren headed to Le Panier for one last round of goodies (pretty sure that was her favorite part of the trip!) and I stopped by Piroshky Piroshky to grab one more pierogi! Alice Che – who saved my Sunday morning texture class (more on that later!) – showed me this place on Sunday afternoon and this pierogi was, hands down, one of the best things I ate on our entire stay.

Thanks for having us, Seattle! You were the perfect fall getaway and I love you!

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