Keeping a personal written journal is not one of my strengths; instead, I keep a photo journal of our family’s year to document our moments together. I love looking back to see how much our girls have grown and each of the memories we’ve created each year.
2020 certainly had many surprises for us all. As I began this photo essay in January, I could have never imagined we would face such a challenging year. With a global pandemic, a lockdown, a reduction in wedding business, and losing multiple properties we tried to purchase due to the housing markets being so competitive–2020 was a lot. The stress of everything had us dealing with health issues like: a nasty case of Shingles for Ben and a kidney stone and a stomach ulcer for me. To say this year has been a challenge is an understatement!
Even with so many dark clouds, I am able to look back through these images to see the silver lining moments and the joy we’ve had as a family. Our family unit has grown closer than ever. With Ben working from home and both girls homeschooling, we’ve spent more time together than ever–something I am so grateful for. As a couple, Ben and I have had to solely depend on one another, which has done amazing things for us as parents and partners. And the icing on the cake was that we finally found and purchased our dream lot (stay tuned for more on this!).
This year’s family album is over 300 pages of more than 1,000 images of moments together in 2020! Though I have so many favorites, I’ve selected one from each month to share with you:
This is an image I’ve previously shared on Instagram, but it’s one of my absolute favorites for so many reasons. It’s such a simple moment, but I love the movement and how Ben (& the pups) are a pop of color in the middle of a neutral scene.
I captured this image during a doctor’s visit in Philadelphia. It was atop of the parking garage at Will’s Eye Hospital. I vividly remember this was the first time I saw large amounts of people wearing masks on the city streets as news of COVID-19 started making headlines.
By March, we were under lockdown, so we found ways to make sure we were getting our wiggles out! We spent many hours taking nature walks and riding bikes and scooters at local parks.
We enjoyed baking chocolate chip cookies to fill our days in quarantine. (Cue the beginning of our Quarantine15!).
By May, the weather was warmer, but we were still hanging around at home waiting for things to settle down. Our pool club remained closed, so we made do with this blow up pool from Target. It survived exactly 24 hours before it popped, then promptly sold out from all stores. It was fun while it lasted.
After almost three months at home, we were desperately in need of a change of scenery. Thankfully, the beaches opened in June! I love this image because it reminds me of one of myself when I was her age.
In our family, we celebrate a few birthdays in August. We love making memories instead of purchasing toys for birthdays, so we chose to take a quick overnight trip to the Hotel Hershey. This moment was captured shortly after we checked in to find Hershey’s chocolate bars in our hotel room!
November surprised us with a stretch of unseasonably warm weather. Remember those amazing 70 degree days? We decided to head down to Ocean City, NJ one final time to dig our toes in the sand and splash around.
This was arguably one of my favorite days of this year. We spent the day swimming and made it to the rooftop just in the knick of time to watch the sunset over the city of Philadelphia.
While 2020 was certainly tumultuous, for us, there were definitely more ups than downs. I am so happy to have these moments and memories captured for our girls to treasure as they grow.
If you’re searching for your own wedding photographer, please contact Alyssa to learn more. Alyssa resides in the Lehigh Valley and documents love stories in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland & beyond.