Ten years ago I met a fabulous young lady during my first stint as a dance and cheerleading summer camp counselor for the local YMCA. It was kind of a rough summer for me; lots of emotional ups and downs, growing pains and typical teenage fighting with my parents. Coming to work each day was always a welcomed relief to escape my swirly, angst-y 17 year old thoughts. My new friend Steph (who is a few years my senior) was a wonderful confidant and sounding board. She was always kind and supportive, fun and caring. We connected deeply early on in the summer and continued to genuinely enjoy each others company as the weeks rolled by. Her advice always seemed to resonate perfectly with my current emotions and I was (am) eternally grateful for her words of encouragement. In short, I completely adored and looked up to her.
I was thrilled to learn a few months ago that Steph and her new husband (but partner of many years), John, were going to be venturing out to San Francisco for vacation. We immediately began to plan a meet up and my excitement grew as the trip got closer....we hadn't seen each other in 7 years!
It's true what they say about real friendships; neither time nor distance can change or affect the connection you have with one another. Sometimes when I reunite with folks I haven't seen for awhile I find myself feeling a little anxious; unsure if we will run out of things to talk about or if we have grown too separate to really mesh the way we once did. I didn't, however, have this fear about Steph and when I opened the car to greet her with a hug it was as if we were right back on those YMCA gymnastic mats, giggling over cute life guards and warming up with the kids.
When Steph first mentioned she and John were taking some photography courses and really finding enjoyment in it I told her what I tell all of my friends who are considering pursuing a new passion; whatever it is that makes your pulse race, you go for it. In just a few short months they've put together a really lovely collection of photographs of their adventures, travels and every day life. I love that they use photography as an escape from daily stress. I also love that they embody a philosophy of celebrating and capturing the beauty of life; it is all worth remembering, big or small.
Check out their Etsy Collection here: The Durfs
And their Facebook page here: The Durfs Photography
They also do custom photos---people can email them with an idea or a quote and then they go for it! They charge $50 an hour to go out and shoot (it usually takes an hour) and then charge for the photo. Some examples can be found here.
Below you'll find a handful of my favorites from their trip to San Francisco. There were SO many to choose from, but these were the ones that hit me in a certain way. Thank you Steph and John for sharing your beautiful photos of my amazing city with me!
Cheers to reunions with old, wonderful friends in new, fabulous cities!
ps- the new header to my blog is also the work of Mr. and Mrs. Durfee :) Pretty sweet, right?