We're not your typical or average family. We're not all bonded by DNA. We all have unique stories, and we all come from some very different places. But what we are connected with is love, and a whole lot of it! One big, crazy family who would do anything for each other.
Some of you may not know my whole story, and today isn't the day I'm going to share it all (maybe one day!), but I'll give you the short version. When I was four my parents started doing foster care, and overnight our family changed and grew. And it never really stopped. Over the last 20+ years my parents have opened their doors and hearts to over 100 kiddos, mostly girls, and mostly teenagers. (Yes, you read that right!). There are a million crazy and hilarious stories packed into those years. Countless amazing memories, and some we'd probably all like to forget.
It all started when I was four though, so I never knew anything different. My life was a constant flow of people coming and going. New sisters to share the ONE bathroom with (if you want to get good at sharing, share a single bathroom with 5+ girls! Goodbye, personal space Haha!), a promise that someone around would always want to play dress up, a constant ear to listen to my stories, a consistent shoulder to cry on, and big sisters to let me know when I was being just a littttle too annoying!
In all seriousness though, I learned so many priceless life lessons and values from the way I was raised, and I wouldn't trade it for the world. These family photos would be a whole lot smaller if my parents hadn't made that choice over 20 years ago, and I'm SO thankful that they did.
I wouldn't trade this crazy group for anything, and I'm so extremely thankful for the support system I have right here. Life is constantly changing, and there's no way to know what the future holds. So don't wait for a special occasion to capture your own family. Especially you photographers - get on the other side of the camera with YOUR family! Don't wait until you feel pretty or skinny enough to get in front of the camera. Do it now! Remember your family just as it is, right at this very moment. And cherish those memories. Because time passes too quickly, and this period of life is just as important as the milestone moments.
A HUGE thank you goes out to the amazing Erin Kaye Photography for capturing our crazy family! We are beyond grateful for the memories you've captured for us!!!