Growing our Business in Books

If you didn’t know this about us already, we are huge nerds. We love learning and are inspired from reading blogs & books to watching online videos or attending workshops. Each year we pick a new stack of non-fiction books we think will help us push our business (and ourselves) to the next level.
Last year this was our list…
Worth Every Penny by Sarah Petty & Erin Verbeek *
Start Something That Matters by Blake Mycoskie *
Onward by Howard Schultz *
Book Yourself Solid by Michael Port *
The Power of Less by Leo Babauta
Ignore Everybody And 39 Other Keys to Creativity by Hugh MacLeod
The Little Big Things 163 Ways to Pursue Excellence by Tom Peters
The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz *
Losing My Virginity by Richard Branson *
The Leader Who Had No Title by Robin Sharma
The One Thing by Keller Papasan
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson *
*Our favorite, must reads.
 This list was a mix between business books and those written by or about big companies like TOMS. Here’s the thing, we strongly believe in learning from those who have gone before and been successful. Why invent the wheel if it already exists? All in all, the main theme we learned from this set last year was:
We could read a million books under the sun, but if we don’t implement what we’ve learned or get excited enough to make a change then that was a lot of reading for a whole lot of nothing.
This is our third year challenging ourselves, writing about it, and making changes to our business. Check out our list from year one here.
This time around we’re mixing it up, adding lifestyle books (see our list so far below) to improve our lives as well as ones to enhance our business. We are a few short so let us know if you have a recommendation! ~Erik & Marissa
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Last-minute Valentine Surprises

Valentine’s Day always creeps up. After the onslaught of holidays you think you have all this time and then…BAM, here’s that lovely holiday around the corner. If you need help thinking of a quick, last-minute gift idea here are some of our Pinterest favorites (plus a few we thought of too)!

If you’re thinking about cooking…

Layered Heart French Toast (or it could be pancakes!)


Strawberry Pie with Heart Cutouts, bacon hearts (okay, this might be our favorite), fruity valentines.


If you’re thinking about getting creative…

Take photos of hearts you find around town; use a DSLR slow shutter speed to make hearts with your cellphone light.


If you’re thinking about being crafty…

Post-it heart notes, Heart rock art, heart maps of the places you’ve been together, string heart art


If you’re thinking about being sexy…

Give the gift of a boudoir session. We have gift cards! Contact us for details.


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Photo Challenge 1 of 12: The Splash

Create. Challenge. Educate.

If you know us, you know we’re always trying to grow- as people, in our profession, and in life.  This year we were looking for a fun challenge and decided to complete a photo project each month. We’ve chosen fun challenges that are out of our comfort zone (way different from weddings), to expand our abilities, to grow and to be creative. There’s nothing like a personal project to get creative juices flowing!

We’d love for you to join us, do your own 12 in 12 challenge, or come up with our next photo project! We’ll be sharing ours here each month.

Photo Challenge 1 of 12: The Splash

What we used: a puddle, camera, and lots of different sized rocks *it totally helps if you have a second person too, especially if he can skip rocks

Settings (if you’re interested in trying this project at home): f/2.5; ISO 500; 1/1250 s

Time of day: We picked the golden hour before sunset and used parts of the puddle with tree reflections to make it more interesting. No wind made for better reflections in the still water.

Stay creative. ~Erik & Marissa


I think Erik should be a professional rock skipper.


This is what a skipping rock splash looks like.


Skipping rock splash from a side view.


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