Giving is Awesome: And the winner is…//December 24, 2008

It was so, SO hard to choose a winner, but I’m pleased to share this very touching story send it by Ashley C. with you.

I would love to nominate my parents… they have been through so much together and have been married for 26 years and have always been there for me. About a year and a half ago my mom got really sick. It hit all of a sudden, out of no where. She couldn’t remember who everyone was, where she was, and what is going on. I would call her on the phone and talk to her, and most of the time she didn’t even know who I was and what we talked about. She would say things that didn’t make sense, and whenever she stood up, she got really dizzy . It took the doctors about 5 months to figure out what was going on. They told us she was having silent seizures in her brain, and it was a side effect from one of her medications that she has been taking for years. We don’t know what triggered it, but thankfully they figured out what it was. Those 5 months were some of the roughest times. It was about 5 or 6 months after my husband and I got married and moved away, and at that time she only had my dad there to help her with everything. He was trying so hard to take care of my mom, taking her to the doctors, trying to figure out what was wrong with her, and while he was doing that, he was stressed with work. At the time, my husband and I were living paycheck to paycheck, i was working a fast food job, and to this day I am kicking myself for not being able to fly down and help. When my dad finally called me and told me that they finally found out what was wrong, I was so thankful and happy that this wass over! That was one of the longest 5 months my family has ever been through.

My dad works so hard for his job and a lot of the time they don’t even like to pay him over time… In the past three months he worked a total of 123 unpaid hours, 323 overtime hours! When he came home one night and he told me that one of the people he works with only worked 6 overtime hours, I was in shock! He works to hard and I worry about him. Every day he gets up at 5 am and goes to the gym for an hour, then showers there, and then leaves for work about 645 and most of the time works until 9-10 pm. He works Monday-Saturday EVERY week. When he comes home, he tries to eat before falling asleep. There have been a few times where he has fallen asleep while eating his food. It makes me want to cry when I see him like that.

This deployment [Ashley’s husband] has been also hard on me and everyone in my family. My mother flew down in April to be there for me and help me with my husbands deployment. She helped me move across country from El Paso, TX to Kissimmee, FL. Along the way, we came across some hard times with my truck acting up, and not having the money to fix it, having my truck being broken in to and having some of the most precious items stolen from me, and also moving my sister from Huntsville, AL back to Kissimmee, FL. When my truck broke down, I didn’t have the money for fixing it. I was upset and scared because I didn’t know how I was gonna get it fixed. My parents told me not to worry, that they would help me. I am currently still paying them back for my truck. Having my husband be thousands of miles away in a dangerous place, and not knowing what is going on or having any way to reach him in case of an emergency is horrible. Also having him worry about my mom and I traveling cross country with our 2 dogs, was very stressful for him. I didn’t want him to have any distractions away from his work.

Recently, my mom has been very sick. We have taken her in to do tests, and they can’t figure out whats wrong with her. They think its her gallbladder, but they don’t see anything that would be aggravating it. She just wants to sleep all day, her side hurts her so bad that she cries, and its so hard to be strong when I see my mom like that. My dad is ALWAYS there for her, and it hurts him so much to see her upset and sick..

This is why I would love to nominate my parents, Kurt and Peggy M. They have been through so much and I think they deserve it. They haven’t had a photoshoot in about 15 years. I would love to give them this very special gift to tell them how much I love them and how thankful I am to have them in my life.

Thank you so much for reading and listening to my reasons on why I think my parents deserve it!

Thank You,
Ashley C

Congrats Ashley, Kurt and Peggy! Kurt & Peggy will receive a complimentary photo shoot, a 10 page 8×8 album, and their digital files. For nominating them, Ashley will receive a complimentary photo shoot and a $100 print credit!

I’m so looking forward to photographing both sessions. It’s a small thing that I can give, considering all you’ve been through, but I hope that the images I create will hold a special place in your heart.

I’m off to celebrate Christmas Eve with my family. Check back after the first of the year for the 2008 year in review slideshow!



Award-winning wedding photographer Lori Barbely splits her time between Orlando, Florida and the New York/New Jersey area. She is also a seasoned traveler and is available for national and international destination weddings. Lori’s unobtrusive manner allows her to capture the moments of your wedding day in a fresh, fun style. Every love story is unique and Lori strives to capture the emotional aspects of each wedding to tell each couples love story. Her work has been featured in Brides Magazine, The Knot Florida, US Weekly, Destination Weddings & Honeymoons Magazine, and numerous wedding blogs including Style Me Pretty, Wedding Channel, Celebrity Bride Guide, and Moment Junkie. In addition to weddings, Lori is available for engagement sessions, family and kids portraits, maternity photos, newborn photos, and pet portraits.

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