Sharing My Heart with a Crowd | {Dreams Do Come True}

Back in January, I started Five Ten Girls and during the midst of the wedding season it was set aside but with school back in session I'm really excited to see opportunities come to life for being able to have a greater impact on the lives of young girls. It's been a little dream of mine to one day be able to address my peers. It's a dream that's come and gone but it was incredible to see it come to life... Last month I was blessed to travel to Springfield Missouri and share at the Summer Sizzler, hosted by Black River Imaging. It was an incredible experience from the nervousness to the pure delight in seeing a message that isn't always easy to hear taken to heart and truly having an impact on so many different people. I shared with a room full of people about finding a purpose for your passion, the story of how Five Ten Girls came to be (you can read it here). A message of the real face of trafficking and a challenge extended to my peers as well- as professionals to carefully watch how we work with these young girls and to spread the message of the dangers of engaging with strangers online.

The room was engaged and so supportive. The conversations that were started by sharing about trafficking and letting people know it's not just international- it's not just in the cities but it's all across the United States were incredible and I know they'll be lasting. I hope that what we discussed is shared and passed along so that others will also be more aware of the dangers around them.

We started the evening at the hotel with a fabulous senior Ike & Tash brought all the way from Washington state. Tara is gorgeous- she was such a natural in front of the camera. She'd had her hair and make up done and was stunning but after speaking about natural beauty I really wanted to be able to capture her- without the make up so you could see her true beauty shines from the inside.

What may have been most inspiring was when a handful of ladies all decided to come the next morning and keep their faces makeup free. For a few this was an "everyday" routine but for many this took a whole truck load of courage and guts. So afterwards we went out and with about an hour before I had to leave for home I took pictures of each of them that came bravely showing their natural beauty... it was one of my favorite afternoons to date.

 

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Tara is gorgeous, she's Miss Washington.

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But her beauty really shines when she rocks the all natural look.

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You can learn more about Five Ten Girls here. I look forward to making it a non-profit over the next year as my way of giving back and making a greater impact on the lives of those around me.

I'll be speaking in schools, capturing the beauty of girls that may never realize their beauty otherwise and working to prevent more girls from falling prey to the predators and fall into the world of sex trafficking. (all this while still continuing to shoot weddings.. I promise!)