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Rustic Maternity Portraits: Samantha

“To be pregnant is to be vitally alive, thoroughly woman, and distressingly inhabited. Soul and spirit are stretched – along with body – making pregnancy a time of transition, growth, and profound beginnings.”

– Anne Christian Buchanan –

20170205_Maternity_Eu_Jin_Samantha-63 This is one couple I have had the privilege of journeying alongside with them from their pre-wedding session to their wedding, and now maternity session. The road to becoming a parent is really special, exciting, nerve-wracking and challenging, all at the same time. It’s the one thing that will challenge marriages, yet draw couples together, in one unified purpose – to give the best to their children. I am so excited for Eu Jin and Samantha as they embark on this new phase of their lives, this March! (It’s a special month too, cause I was born in March as well!)

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Construction themed pre-wedding, Cameron Highlands: Wan Hong & Yee Mun

Both Wan Hong and Yee Mun are working in the construction line, so it just made sense to take photos at Wan Hong’s family owned construction site in Cameron Highlands! We also managed to stay at their lovely home where Wan Hong grew up, but has now been transformed into a relaxing homestay which you can book via Airbnb. Through Yee Mun’s generosity, our entire team headed to Cameron Highlands for a 2 night retreat. We also had a good time planning for 2017, eating yummy meals, filming funny videos about each other, and taking new profile photos.

So yes, it was a productive trip! Here are some of our favourites from the session… and then a few more ‘formal’ shots with her wedding gown as well.

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Rustic Romantic Pre-Wedding: Calvin & Queenie

Every great love story starts with friendship. Conversations that make you feel connected, understood, and ultimately, loved. It was 4 years ago that Queenie joined the firm Calvin was working at. Their story took time to unfold though. On her first day at work, Queenie met a rather grumpy Calvin, who was having a rough day as he had to take over some additional work from someone who had left the firm. He was swamped with work and hardly had time to talk to her (though she sat next to him). Basically, Calvin just kept his distance.

Maybe being introverted had something to do with it, but during Queenie’s training over 3 months, Calvin hardly spoke to her. It wasn’t as if she hadn’t attracted his attention… through all that work, Calvin found time to just glance at her, half the time, wondering what she was doing (he claims he is a nosy person). He wanted to actually talk to her more, but didn’t know how to approach her. Finally, when her training period was about to end and she was offered a work contract, he found the courage to properly chat with her. It was a turning point for them, and after that, they became normal work colleagues, chatting about general stuff.

When their firm moved location, they started having lunches daily and that was when Calvin discovered the real Queenie, over conversations about family, life and relationships. Though their friendship grew, they were both in different relationships. In 2013, Calvin took a year off for personal family reasons. During this time away, he missed their daily lunches and thought about her often. In 2014, he joined the firm again, and it felt natural to hang out with each other again. That same year, both their previous relationships ended. Calvin decided she was worth it, took the plunge and bared his heart to Queenie. They have been inseparable ever since.

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And so the adventure continues: The 10th year milestone

20160813-ALEX_GRACE_10TH_ANNIVERSARY-06910 years ago, the adventure began when we said our vows to journey together through the calm seas and raging storms. Ever since then, we’ve gone through adventures together as we camped in the freezing White Dessert in Egypt and cycled through pitch black darkness to view the sunrise over temples in Bagan, Myanmar. We’ve also experienced challenging moments as my dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s shortly after my wedding and deteriorated through the years until the remnant of the strong man he was, was gone.

We’ve worked through differences, argued about which way to press the toothpaste, made conscious decisions on how to live life God’s way and also shed tears of joy when our two children, Krysta and Kyle were born. (we also shed tears when we had to carry them through the streets of Japan recently, but that’s another story).

20160813-ALEX_GRACE_10TH_ANNIVERSARY-144I can’t believe 10 years flew by, just like that. Some people say we hardly aged, but that’s a lie. I think my wrinkles are a testament to how much wiser I am now, but also how much joy I experience in life, through the relationships I share with friends and family. I learnt that it takes a lot of hard work to make a marriage exciting… the routines of life can easily drown you and soon, you start to take person next to you for granted. Even more so after kids arrive, as our focus tends to be on the children, hardly the spouse.

So we’ve done things like go on planned dates, holidays alone, random hugs in the middle of the day… just because.

Ever since I was a young child, I have been an idealist. I want to believe with all my heart that love can flourish and grow stronger through the years… that marriage can indeed prosper even when I am old and grey.

And so the adventure continues…

20160813-ALEX_GRACE_10TH_ANNIVERSARY-005On the 13th of August, we had a party at our home to celebrate 10 years of marriage and moving in to a new home. We were blessed to have family and friends pray for us as we acknowledge God’s goodness in our lives over the past 10 years. Pr Kee from DUMC who married us 10 years ago prayed for us, and Pr Shaun from Kingdomcity KL blessed our home as we use the space to connect with people from all walks of life. Rachel and Jin Ann’s team did a great job with the styling (and yummy desserts!) and Michelle exercised her magic make up skills on myself and Krysta (who was delighted to have curly hair for one day). I am also appreciative of Jennifer, Chi Yin, Nigel and Johan who took some of these amazing photos you see here.

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Rustic Datai Langkawi wedding: Graham & Elaine

Two architects with an eye for detail and the love of the outdoors found their perfect location to celebrate their union – on the beach at the Datai, Langkawi. Graham grew up in Scotland, and that was where he met this cute, Malaysian-born girl named Elaine. With such a deep attraction to life off the grid, Graham and Elaine chose to live in Nova Scotia, Canada (google it, the location looks totally AMAZING!). It boasts a totally magical natural landscape, and they own a house in the forest overlooking the cove to the south and the Atlantic ocean to the east. Photovoltaic panels power their house with electricity, and they use wood for heat and water from a well. Their neighbours include birds, squirrels, porcupine, loons, ducks, deer and mink.

What a lifestyle that is so connected to nature. I love the thought of it, though I don’t think I am personally able to live like that!

20160227-WEDDING_GRAHAM_ELAINE-01 20160227-WEDDING_GRAHAM_ELAINE-02Graham and Elaine’s wedding was the perfect blend of Scottish tradition meeting Malaysian flavours. Even her wedding gown had elements of the Scottish kilt and the top of her gown had Indian elements, representing Elaine’s heritage. The colours green and purple are their favourites and they have incorporated them into their attire and wherever possible. Elaine’s mother crocheted the sole-less sandals for the bride and her bridesmaids and the whole look with the decorations were so rustic, organic and natural.

At the wedding reception, they shared stories of places they have been to and things they have done through story cards displayed on each table. So many intricate details that are simple, minimal and thoughtful.

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