A Beautiful Year: Our In Home Maternity Session!

This time last year Brian and I were sailing across the Aegean Sea and on our way to Mykonos Greece for a vacation that we would never forget. This vacation was special to us in many ways because it not only was a dream of mine (ever since seeing Mama Mia) but it was a much needed break for us both. It gave us time to recharge our hearts and reconnect in so many ways. Most importantly it was the first time that we both discussed starting a family without any nervous laughter or sideway glances.

It was during this vacation that we both realized how much we accomplished together. All the goals of our 20’s had mostly been achieved, we learned from our mistakes and now in our 30s we felt like something was missing and that maybe we should be sharing all of our blessings with a child. Fast forward an exact year later and here I am, 37 weeks pregnant, very round and expecting our baby girl to arrive (a bit earlier than expected) in 3 days! YES, in just 3 days Sadie Violet Sanabanda will be here! And although it is our busiest wedding month of the year it is only fitting that she arrive in the middle of it all on 10/15/18 because that is of course how we do life. This past year we have built a new home, moved into a new warehouse, worked regular jobs and ran a specialty rental wedding business in Wilmington, NC all while expecting our first baby and we believe this to be the greatest gift of them all.

So how will we spend our last weekend before our baby arrives? With weddings of course! Mixed in with some good meals and family time and we couldn’t be happier.

Many thanks to our friend Anna Taylor of Anna Taylor Photography for capturing this special time in our lives through an at home maternity session. We are forever awed by her talent and grateful to her for finding the time to capture our memories. If you are ever need of a photographer, you won’t regret choosing her!

Please enjoy a peek into our home and current life…Prayers and good vibes for this coming Monday is much appreciated!

xoxo,

Martha

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 Always craving strawberry waffles with nutella!

Always craving strawberry waffles with nutella!

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 Stewart had to join in on the fun!

Stewart had to join in on the fun!

 Gallery wall of our favorite places to travel. Greece is right in the middle!

Gallery wall of our favorite places to travel. Greece is right in the middle!

 Our little white house and most favorite place!

Our little white house and most favorite place!

 Rocking Chair ready for Sadie!

Rocking Chair ready for Sadie!

5 Things I've learned While Owning a Business for 3 years!

I've been meaning to write this blog post since January, when our wedding rental business turned 3! I could say that life got in the way of my writing but the truth is, I procrastinated out of fear.  What's there to be afraid of? Opening up and sharing my experience as a small business owner is tough and I wasn't ready to open up and put myself out there like I had in the past (read: year one and year two blog posts here). But now we are planning for the year ahead and I'm feeling a bit nostalgic as we get ready for some exciting new changes and so here we go, it's time to open up, buttercup. 

1) If you're tired, learn to take a break but don't quit! We were very tired this year. 67 weddings + full time jobs + trying to figure out how to adult in life as 30-year olds kinda tired. And there were times when I felt like a crazy furniture lady as I tried to move a heavy piece up stairs and thought to myself, "Why did I not fall in love with Photography instead?" And every time we BOTH found ourselves thinking that way (it usually involved a very heavy piece of furniture and stairs) we planned a BIG trip. The kinda trip that's on your bucket list and would give you something to look forward to... This year we went on TWO big trips - Greece and a Caribbean Cruise (with 20 of our family and friends). These vacations allowed us to discuss our life, business and dreams with a clearer head and fully recharged hearts.

 Riding around on our moped in Mykonos, Greece!

Riding around on our moped in Mykonos, Greece!

2. Comparison is the thief of joy. Those 67 weddings I just bragged about (I know, it's not quantity it's quality)...Well, I was feeling super proud and accomplished with our little husband-wife team until I spoke to a rental friend in another state and heard they did over 100 events that year. And *poof* all of a sudden I felt like my proud number wasn't enough!!! Looking back now I want to tell myself, CHILL OUT GIRL, that was the perfect number for us at that time! We've learned so much from every single event we did and it gave us knowledge and EXPERTISE so that when we do hit over 100 events in one year, we will have the logistics and planning down pact and can continue to pull off flawless events time after time.

3. Change is ok!  Funny story, When Brian and I first started living together he had this habit of moving all the furniture in one of the rooms while I was out of the house to surprise me. I would come home from food shopping and our sofa would be on the wrong side of the living room and I don't know why he did it but he really thought he was doing me a favor! And I of course hated it but didn't know how to tell him so I would instead tell myself that I could be open to the change for 24 hours before vetoing it and moving things back to the way I liked it. But you know what would sometimes happen? Every so often I liked some of the changes and kept it the new different way. I've learned to apply the same concept in our wedding rental business in Wilmington, NC and it's helped me to grow and adapt in this business world. 

4. Stop Thinking Small! I recently spoke to a rental pro (and idol) about some upcoming developments we have planned for this year and she said " I don't want to scare you but years 3-5 can make or break your company, so be prepared". And although it was slightly terrifying to hear, it was also exciting because it meant in order to continue to thrive and grow the way we have these first 3 years, it's time we think BIGGER and BETTER. And when our local paper wrote a story about us for the business section it felt like validation (read it here). We also have lots of new exciting things on the horizon this year and in the words of Joan of Arc, "I am not afraid, I was born for this" (I know what you're thinking...dramatic much Martha?! haha)

5. We are better together- I'm not sure if anyone noticed but this year Brian has taken more of a lead on all things with the business. I used to think that I was the captain of this ship and had to be responsible for everything from meeting with brides, to making invoices, to confirming delivery times and even delivering furniture. But the truth is he is much better at some of those things than I am. I stopped pretending that I was the best at everything and let him take the lead on things he was good at. And THANK YOU JESUS because it not only made life easier for me, but certain aspects of the business ran a bit smoother too. There was one time when I went to a venue to help him with a delivery and the person on site was all like "Ohh you work for Brian?!" Yessss, I do and we may have to consider changing the business name to Brian, My Dear<<---he actually says this every time he pulls something off without my help... and I secretly love it!

 Photo by Anna Taylor Photography

Photo by Anna Taylor Photography

This past year has been such a rewarding, humbling and enlightening experience! We were able to play a small part in so many dream weddings but really they all just played a big part in my own dream. We were able to see the benefit of our sweat equity in so many ways and I feel really lucky to call myself a business owner. Cheers to all the crazy furniture ninjas out there and the significant others who support the beautiful habit! Thanks for following and supporting our journey!