Jul 29-14

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If I can summarize this wedding with one word, it would be “sweet.” The tear-filled first look, the heirloom veil from the mother of the bride, the unique dress that fit Anna’s personality perfectly, the pickle mason-jar favors, the beautiful floral printed stationery, the photos on display from weddings gone by, and hands down, the best father-daughter first look I’ve ever photographed – there was a sweetness to this wedding that is hard to put into words.

Over the months that I spent getting to know Anna and Ben, it was evident to me that this couple was different. They live in Boston, so "getting to know" them usually meant a Skype chat or conversations on the phone. Even so, I felt that it was so easy to connect with them. They were real. They were full of joy. (each time I saw them, they couldn't stop smiling!) They were not afraid to be themselves. They were so refreshing to me, because truly, all they cared about was getting married to each other and spending the rest of their lives together.

At the end of the evening, my intern leaned over to me and said, "This couple is my favorite." That is the kind of impression that Anna and Ben leave - you cannot help but adore them! I’ll never forget this couple, their precious families, and the sweet atmosphere of their wedding day. Anna and Ben sure have friends and family who treasure them individually, and now, as a couple. What a sweet, sweet day!

A big thank you to Steph (a guest at the wedding!) at Style Me Pretty for featuring this lovely celebration!

Ceremony: Kirk of Kildare Presbyterian
Reception: The Pavillions at the Angus Barn
Cake Artist: Blue Moon Bakery
Caterer: Angus Barn
Florist: Flowers on Broad Street
Band: Hey Brothers
Hair & Makeup Stylist: Hairlines, Cary NC
Dress: Traditions by Anna
Paper Goods: Paper Daisies Studio
Film Processing: Indie Film Lab

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Comments: 1

  1. Em July 30, 2014 3:13 am

    What a gorgeous veil!

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Jul 28-14

Featured!

Press ~ by Nancy Ray ~ no comments

2014:04:01 - The Knot Magazine : Megan and Spencer : Callie Davis - 1

Things have been busy here at the NRP Studio this spring and summer! We have been photographing engagement sessions, bridal sessions, editorials, and of course - beautiful weddings. We've been meeting with brides, editing, emailing, traveling, and... getting featured! We are so honored to partner with such beautiful blogs and magazines that want to feature our work. Here are a few of the features that have popped up over the last few weeks. We are so grateful!

Megan and Spencer's Fearrington Wedding
Featured in The Knot Carolinas Magazine : 2014 Fall / Winter
Photographer: Callie Davis

2014:04:01 - The Knot Magazine : Megan and Spencer : Callie Davis - 2

2014:04:01 - The Knot Magazine : Megan and Spencer : Callie Davis - 3

2014:04:01 - The Knot Magazine : Megan and Spencer : Callie Davis - 4

Anna and Ben's Engagement Session
Featured on Style Me Pretty
Photographer: Nancy Ray

2014:07:21 - Style Me Pretty - Anna and Ben : Nancy Ray

Anna and Ben's Angus Barn Wedding
Featured on Style Me Pretty
Photographer: Nancy Ray

2014:06:05 - Style Me Pretty : Anna and Ben Engagement : Nancy Ray

Katie and Josh's Fearrington Wedding
Featured on the Southern Weddings Blog
Photographer: Callie Davis

2014:07:28 Southern Weddings Blog : Katie and Josh : Callie Davis

Comments: 0

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Jul 25-14

60 Years

The Rays ~ by Nancy Ray ~ 4 comments

Barnhardt 60 Anniversary 23

Our family recently gathered around to celebrate 2 incredible people. I am so thankful for Grandpa Gene and for Grandma Neva. They have loved and served and fought for the 60 years of marriage we celebrated. 60 YEARS. Less than 5% of couples make it to that milestone, and I sat in awe as we celebrated their love. Grandma Neva kept taking me by the hand and saying, "It wasn't easy, getting to this point. I don't ever want you to think it was easy."

Wise words, and true words. Nothing worth achieving is ever easy though, is it?

Hoping and praying to follow in their dedicated, wise, selfless footsteps.

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Comments: 4

  1. Kyla Fetzner July 25, 2014 11:19 pm

    Everything about this is so beautiful Nancy. My grandparents have been married for 55 years and their love continues to inspire me :)

  2. Jessica July 26, 2014 5:02 am

    I read this post exactly when I needed it most. It’s never going to be easy, getting that far along together in life. All the best to them, what a wonderful milestone. x

  3. Kristen Johnson July 26, 2014 6:34 pm

    Love these pictures. Especially the first one radiates love and affection. Watching both my grandparents celebrate 65 years has been precious.

  4. LEANNE CAROLINE July 27, 2014 8:45 pm

    A beautiful post Nancy. What a lovely family you have!

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Jul 23-14

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I have been waiting to share this beautiful wedding, and I am so happy that today is finally the day! Kaitlin, one of my dear friends who owns Simply Put Vintage and Kaitlin Holland Creative (she also founded the School of Styling. Yes, she is quite talented!) married Clay, who has a heart for the Lord, for ministry and for planting churches. What an incredible couple!

It was no surprise to me that Kaitlin put together one of the most beautiful and unique wedding celebrations I've ever had the honor of photographing. My favorite part about it all was the simple fact that their day was driven by love. Yes, it was beautiful, but they displayed love that runs deep in their family relationships, in their friendships, and especially their passionate love for the Lord. While the day was absolutely beautiful, the true beauty came from within these two beautiful people.

Kaitlin and Clay, words cannot express what an honor it was to photograph your wedding celebration!

Venue: The Lofts at Union Square
Officiant: Bobby Herrington
Cake Artist: Maxie B's
Caterer: Holly Tate Fine Catering
Florist: Tre Bella
Event Designer: Kaitlin Briley
Event Coordination: Orangerie Events
Rentals: Simply Put Vintage
Reception DJ: Joe Bunn DJ Company
Hair and Makeup: Make Up For Your Day
Invitations: The Postman's Knock
Bridesmaid Dresses: Joanna August
Film Processing: Indie Film Lab

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Below: This had to be my favorite detail from their wedding. Kaitlin and Clay personally wrote letters to each of their guests, which greeted them at the entrance of the ceremony. Can you imagine how special that would make you feel at a wedding? I loved this small touch that meant so much!

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Comments: 4

  1. Graham July 23, 2014 3:46 pm

    Incredibly beautiful Nancy! LOVE their portraits and so many awesome details!

  2. Chiantia July 23, 2014 7:44 pm

    AMAZING!!!

  3. Kaitlin Holland July 23, 2014 9:13 pm

    Nancy, thank you so much for every single image you captured!! Not only are the photographs beautiful, but having you and Will there that day was such a joy! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  4. Carrie July 24, 2014 12:35 pm

    Nancy! These are to die for. You captured this stunning wedding so beautifully.

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Jul 22-14

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I had the best time with Sarah and Will on her uncle's farm in Faison, North Carolina, complete with a windmill, barn and miles of corn fields. What more could a photographer ask for? I am so thankful that the weather cleared up just in time for us to explore the grounds on a very fun golf cart driven by Will. The farm had so much to offer... I turned and squealed in every direction! Sarah and Will are the kind of couple that make you feel like you have known them your whole life. They are so comfortable with one another, and that is so inviting. Will had me laughing the whole session and taught me a little about corn farming, which he has been recently helping his soon to be father-in-law with. Sarah is honest, kind and hard working. She is currently in Dental School at UNC, and Will is in the process of applying to medical school. While it might seem like a lot, for this couple it is just the next step to being able to do what they truly love!

Sarah and Will both attended the University of North Carolina, which makes perfect sense why they will be married at the beautiful Carolina Inn. I am so excited to capture their upcoming Spring wedding!

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Comments: 2

  1. Sarah July 22, 2014 4:20 pm

    Callie,

    Thank you for your kind words and gorgeous pictures. We will cherish them forever! We can’t wait to keep celebrating with you in the coming months!

    Sarah and Will

  2. Em July 23, 2014 1:58 am

    So fun! I love a good corn field :)

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Jul 21-14

Good morning, friends! It's Monday morning, and I'm hopping on my blog to invite you to join me and several Insta-friends on a 1 week journey of logging our time. Here's how it works. I hope you join us!

After I mentioned on Instagram how excited I was to use the new Dayflow App, I have found that it is brand new and has a few glitches. It doesn't work quite like this article explains it. So for now, I'm going back to my standard old-school way of logging my time : with pen and paper! (If you have success with the Dayflow App, or any other time management apps, please comment below so we can all learn from you!)

So, I hope you'll join us!

First, choose a day this week to start. I'm starting today - Monday - and I invite you to as well! But if you are reading this later in the week, it's not too late to join. What IS important is that you log 7 consecutive days in a row, to get a solid week.

Second, you have to commit. Take the time to do this - I promise it will be worth it! Then follow these 4 steps, and we can all encourage one another. I'll be writing another blogpost next week, to recap how I did. I hope you will too!

•••

4 Steps to Logging your Time 

Step 1 : Print this 1 Week Hour Log 

Step 2 : Fill out how you spend your time every 1-2 hours
(It only takes 5 seconds each time! Be sure to keep your time log near you all day.)

Step 3 : Do this for 7 consecutive days

Step 4 : Use the hashtag : #loggingmytime on Instagram and share your
progress / accomplishments / disappointments / realizations

•••

Who's in? Comment below!

Comments: 8

  1. Sarah Becker Lillard July 21, 2014 2:22 pm

    Woohoo! So excited to do this (again, I’ve done it sporadically in the past!) with a group! I’m using the ATracker app which I’ve found to be super awesome and I’ll definitely be Instagramming #loggingmytime! xoxo

  2. Ashley Flores July 21, 2014 3:21 pm

    Well, I have a conference I’m going to all weekend so this wouldn’t be the best time to record a whole week, but I’ll try to do it next week :-)
    xoxo

  3. Priscilla Chamessian July 21, 2014 3:38 pm

    HI Nancy! Great idea. Logging my time is always a valuable [and sometimes disappointing] tool. Have you ever used the app Toggl? There’s a mobile and web version. It runs in the background and tracks how long you spend doing each activity, and then you can create graphs, tables, etc., to show how long you completed each activity. This is the time management tool that I’ve found to be the most useful. It will even email you reminder notices if you happen to forget to start/end a certain activity. Best of luck, and I hope to join you in #loggingmytime too :)

  4. Katherine Forbes July 21, 2014 3:58 pm

    I’m in! Just printed :-)

  5. Megan Minns July 21, 2014 5:44 pm

    I actually just discovered a new app that does this beautifully – it is called Hours. It is marketed towards tracking time spent towards projects but I have been logging all of my time for the past 3-4 days and have loved it. So simple, beautiful, and easy to use. Watch the video tutorial on the website to see what all it can really do – otherwise you might not even see the potential. I’m planning on writing a post about it on my blog soon but I knew I had to post it here to share too! http://hourstimetracking.com/

  6. Monique Richardson July 21, 2014 9:18 pm

    I’ll do it again – with a twist. Last time I did it I wrote down what I did without scheduling. I normally schedule, only blocking “work”, “kids”. This time I will try scheduling and adhering to the schedule. I’lll start tomorrow!

  7. Emily July 22, 2014 1:48 am

    Ohh I’m definitely doing this! Thanks, Nancy! :)

  8. Kyla Fetzner July 26, 2014 8:30 pm

    I have been reading 168 Hours and logging my time this week and both have been very helpful! Thank you for suggesting this :)

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Jul 17-14

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Anna and Barrett have waited for this day for a long time. They met for the first time in 7th grade, but it wasn't until junior year of high school that they really connected though - in French class. After knowing one another for so many years, and then dating for several years after that, one can only imagine how sweet it must have been to wake up that morning and say, "today is the day!" I personally loved their story as it's so similar to ours: Will and I have known each other since middle school, and we began dating just after my junior year of high school. There is nothing greater than watching someone become your friend, your best friend, your boyfriend, your fiancé, and finally, your spouse. The wait makes the day so much sweeter!

When I asked what made them unique as a couple, they said these simple words: "We have withstood the test of time." That is true. And honestly, that's the stuff that good, lasting marriages are made of. Commitment. Time. Selflessness. Patience. Barrett and Anna certainly have a firm foundation for a strong and lasting marriage.

What stood out to me particularly about these two is their personalities. Anna is vibrant, type "A," punctual, and passionate. Barrett is laid back, funny, charming, quiet, and loyal. I love how different they are, because they compliment one another perfectly. Not only were they smiling from ear to ear all day, but their families were celebrating with more joy and tears that I've seen in a long time. It was a sweet day of celebration!

Venue: Washington Duke Inn and Golf Club
Cake Artist: Edible Art
Caterer: Washington Duke Inn and Golf Club
Florist: The Watered Garden
Event Coordinator: Washington Duke Inn and Golf Club
Band: Men of Distinction
Videographer: Good Earth Films
Hair & Makeup: Kristin & Aubrey with Tanas Hair Designs
Cornhole Set: WG Cornhole
Stationary: The Write Image
Calligrapher: Calligraphy by Carrie
Film Processing: Indie Film Lab
Bride's Gown: Tara Keely
Bridesmaid Dresses: Alfred Sung
Bridesmaid Necklaces: Lauren Van Dyke Jewelry
Groomsmen Attire: Jos. A. Bank

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Above Right : I was so happy to see Jessica and Richard again! I photographed their wedding back in 2011, and Anna was a bridesmaid then. It was so wonderful catching up with friends!

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Comments: 1

  1. Samantha July 17, 2014 7:33 pm

    Such a lovely wedding and that bouquet toss!!! Great work, friends!

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Jul 16-14

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Anna and Barrett's lovely rehearsal dinner was held at the Angus Barn Pavilion. It was everything a summer rehearsal dinner should be! I've never seen a bigger groom's cake, or so many sets of corn hole, or heard so many wonderful toasts. The group of friends that honored Anna and Barrett stepped up, one by one, with beautiful speeches prepared. I'm not exaggerating when I say the entire room was laughing one moment, then crying the next! (Including me!) It was such a meaningful time of sharing; it truly was how every rehearsal dinner should be. To end the evening, Anna and Barrett strolled over by the open fire pit to roast some s'mores and chat with their family. It was a beautiful evening, all around.

Venue: The Pavilion at the Angus Barn
Cake Artist: Edible Art
Cornhole Sets: WG Cornhole
Film Processing: Indie Film Lab

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Comments: 2

  1. Jessica July 16, 2014 2:04 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE! Beautiful night :)

  2. Meggie July 16, 2014 7:44 pm

    These are wonderful, Nancy!!!! Thanks so much for capturing these sweet moments :)

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Jul 14-14

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Ceremony Venue: St. Michael's Episcopal 
Reception Venue: Renaissance North Hills
Cake Artist: Upper Crust
Florist: Greg Warren Flowers
DJ: Joe Bunn DJ Company
Hair & Makeup Artist: Von Kekel
Bride's Dress: Victorian Rose/La Sposa
Bridesmaids Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids
Bride and Bridesmaid's Jewelry: Jennifer-Betty-Jewelry
Bride & Bridesmaid Shoes: Nine West
Groom & Groomsmen Tuxes: VIP Formal Wear
Stationary: Katherine and Darden Coe

Katherine and Chris's wedding day was truly a day not to be forgotten. Every detail was carefully selected by the bride, and she and her groom absolutely relished every moment of their big day. From the sweet moments getting ready to their friends and family dancing the night away and all moments in between, they celebrated and shared in the joy of starting their lives together with a room full of people who adore them. Oh, and the weather was phenomenal - one of those rare dry, warm May days that happen before the North Carolina humidity sets in for the summer. What more could you possibly ask for?

This couple is precious. Throughout the past year, in doing their engagement session, chatting on the phone with them, communicating back and forth via email and then all day on their wedding day - I've really enjoyed getting to know them. They are - truth be told - reserved at first. But with each conversation and each meeting, you see their personalities start to blossom right in front of your eyes and you really understand why they are perfect for each other.

Katherine and Chris - thank you for allowing us to shoot your wedding. Congratulations on the beginning of a beautiful life together!

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Comments: 1

  1. Will Ray July 15, 2014 2:28 pm

    I LOVE that shot of the dress blues, up close.

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Jul 11-14

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If you know Anna, you know she is overflowing with pure joy! She is genuine, gracious, and so much fun to be around. She is confident in who she is, and I love that about her! I have known sweet Anna for years; we went to the same high school, we go to the same church, we are now in the same connect group at church. I grew closest to Anna and saw her sweet heart last year when we traveled to Nicaragua together, and I love how our friendship has grown over the years.

Last summer, while we were raising money for our Nicaragua trip, Anna and I sat together at Moe's after running in the "Nicaragua 5K." I vividly remember a conversation I had with her about the guy she was going to marry one day. At the time, she was single and Peter was not even in the picture. She said, "He definitely has to love fitness and healthy living. He has to lead me. He has to love the Lord more than anything." We chatted about the fact that she was single and she had no idea where she would meet her future husband, but she was just trusting the Lord as she was waiting.

Just one year later, I met Anna and Peter for a morning engagement session. Their wedding is only months away!

Peter is everything Anna said she wanted in a husband. He certainly loves fitness as he's been a personal trainer for years. He loves healthy living. He is constantly learning about scripture, he leads Anna, and he loves the Lord with all his heart.

I love stories like this, and while I don't often get to watch relationships unfold as I've watched this one, it is a joy to be able to do so. I am so honored to be capturing this season of their lives! Enjoy this sweet breakfast engagement session!

Film Processing: Indie Film Lab

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One thing that I love about Anna and Peter is how passionate they are about health and fitness. I was so excited that the last part of their session was in casual work out clothes, doing what they love most: working out together!

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Comments: 1

  1. Emily July 25, 2014 4:29 pm

    Love this pics! You captured them both beautifully! It looks like they had a blast! :)

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Photographer, wife, and worshiper... I am a Southern girl who looks most forward to waking up each morning to drink my coffee, read my Bible, and soak in the beauty that surrounds me. These pages chronicle my work, my life, and the things that I love most. You'll also hear from Callie, Will, and Elizabeth - my amazing team who has so much to offer. Thanks for visiting, I do hope you stay a while!
Nancy Ray