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Lamp and Light

It is so easy to get so busy, and forget about the things that really matter. I put on my goals list for February last week that one of my goals was to rest this month…isn’t it silly that I even have to make that a goal!?!! But, if you are like me, sometimes you just let busy take over. I am trying so hard this year to not let that happen. I am trying to be more intentional with my time, and only spend it on things that really matter.

I think Instagram has become my favorite form of social media (sorry Facebook). I love it so much that I am trying to get Jeremy to join in as well. He has had an account for awhile and as of Friday had instagrammed 2 photos…what to do with that boy. Since I am trying to be more intentional and spend my time on what really matters, I started up a hashtag for some friends to instagram a photo of our devotional time to help keep each other accountable, and it has been so much fun to see them start coming in. If this is something that you are wanting to be intentional about this year, please join us! You can hashtag your photos with #lampandlight and follow me on instagram at kristinschmucker! Can’t wait to have some of you join us!

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I just came across your page after looking up #lampandlight. I had seen it on Instagram and was curious about it. Thanks for sharing this great idea! I will be adding it to my daily devotion posts.

Kelli Jernigan

Seen your hashtag and the 30 day photo challenge on Facebook and decided to look it up and now I am going to do the challenge on Facebook and Instagram!

Mark N Sarah Terry

This is awesome :)


Looking forward to learning and being inspired through your sight! Thanks🙏🏻😍


Karen J

Found you about you through Amy Hale on Instagram. Looking forward to this.

February Goals

January was a great month. I think there is just always something great about the start of a new year and the feeling that everything is a clean slate. We had two great bridal shows booked a bunch of fabulous brides, and I finished “Love is the Killer App” which was my first book for my 12 in 12 challenge. I admit that I spent a good portion of Wednesday finishing up the book so I wouldn’t get behind…but I did it.

My goal for February is to not lose track of that fresh start feeling….because, really, there is nothing magical about January. There is however something magical when you get to cross things off your goal list because they are done!

February’s goals:

Read the 2nd book for 12 in 12. (Right now I am leaning towards Entreleadership by Dave Ramsey)
Keep working on keeping the office hours (Its a bigger adjustment than I anticipated, but we are making progress.)
Keep going strong on our cash budget (We started a cash budget in January to try to cut mindless spending, it has been challenging, but rewarding at the same time. Like when we had $40 left for groceries and spent 39.51…it was a nail biter)
Get working on the big print project (Didn’t get to this one last month)
Start thinking through and making a storyboard for a promo video!!!
Work hard and take time to REST and just enjoy life. (February is the last month before wedding season officially begins, and we get super busy!)

Petty Texas engagement session vintage rustic engagement vintage truck western southern engagement photographers

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I just love your 12 in 12 challenge. I’m really into reading too and I gave myself a limit as well. But I’m already falling behind and I don’t like it. I’ve had Entreleadership since it came out and still have yet to read it. It’s on my list though! I love me some Dave Ramsey. I’m going through Financial Peace University right now…so it’s nice to hear about your budget.

Good luck!

Laura Yang

Awesome! Just have to chime in about the cash budget — God really does make it work. One time, I had only $20 left in my grocery envelope and needed to get a few more things to be able to finish off the week’s meals. I had calculated everything before the cashier began ringing me up, but was afraid I hadn’t added up the change correctly and would have to remove at least one of the items. Then the cashier said, “Okay, that’ll be twenty dollars exactly.” My jaw dropped. God knows what He’s doing. :-)

Kristin Schmucker

I love that Laura!

Heather Wright Autry

Thanks for sharing your goals – now I’m inspired to go blog ours. I need the inspiration kick in the pants! Lol

Bethany McDonnell

Cash budget is definitely the way to go! Makes you think more about what you are spending. I’m excited to see what your print project will be AND your PROMO VIDEO! So cool!

Rachel McCloud

Thank you for sharing. I need to make my list now that it’s February 1st ;) I love the contrast of the ring shot :)

Amanda Jameson

Isn’t it funny how rest is a hard thing to make time for? I completely agree!
Here are mine:

Kristin Schmucker

Absolutely! Kinda sad that I have to put rest on my calendar…lol. Loved reading your goals and can’t wait to hear about the workshop!

Kate Monroe

Love your goals! I have Entreleadership in my bookshelf waiting to be read also. How did you like Love is the Killer App? Should I put that on my list for the future?

I absolutely agree that there’s nothing special about January for fresh starts. Every day is a new day. Every morning is an opportunity for a fresh start. <3

Kristin Schmucker

Love is the Killer App was ok, but I just started entreLeadership and I am already fired up, so definitely read it! I am only 2 chapters in and it is already so good!

– Hi Deborah! I just booked my first weinddg tonight! It’s not until August 4th, and I would LOVE to chat with you about your flow/timeline and process for weinddgs. I am also getting ready to brand for real, AND I think I have found the person that I want to hire, but want some good, honest feedback on my choices so far. My main goal for this year is booking more clients. Thanks for this opportunity!January 13, 2012 10:58 pm

– I’m just jumping into the bnssueis book world and honestly am a bit skeptical. There is a lot of advice out there, and its hard to know where to invest my time and money! However, all of the quotes that you shared really resonated with me. I will surely pick up this book in the near future!Also, I read the Jose Villa book at the end of 2011, so I’m excited to jump in on that conversation! January 18, 2012 11:42 am

– This is so great that your offering this(found tgrhuoh p31. The area that I am really stuck at right now is this idea of Branding. I am trying to create my own vision but I keep getting stuck. I would love to hear about how you overcame this process and created a successful brand!it would mean so so much and I think it would push my photography business to the next level!January 13, 2012 2:04 pm

– Hmmm I think that mine isn’t so much about knowledge, but goals and geinttg over my fear. Sometimes I get client emails and I don’t respond because I’m terrified. Wow, how stupid is that? I would love to have someone to hold me accountable, about my time management and GETTING BUSY, taking ACTION and making things happen! Thank you for the opportunity. January 13, 2012 12:49 pm

Kevin Autry

Entreleadership is an AWESOME book, I listened to the audio version and then still went out and bought the physical copy! Love it!

Choosing a Location for Your Engagement Session

We love engagement sessions! We love getting to spend time with our couples before their weddings, getting to know them better, and getting to capture amazing images that show their love for each other. We encourage all of our couples to choose their own locations for their sessions instead of us just taking them to a place that we choose. We do this because we know that couples will choose a location that is totally their style, and that they love, which results in images that capture them even better.

Sometime couples aren’t sure what to choose, so we try to help them think through what would be perfect for them. We tell our couples to think about what they like to do on the weekends? This usually is all we need to say and they start coming up with ideas. We also ask if there is a location that holds a special significance to them, like where they met, had their first date, or got engaged. And if they still aren’t coming up with anything we will ask them what their style is. We don’t want to choose a rustic field for a couple that loves the city and architecture.

Here are a few examples of couples that picked amazing locations for their engagement sessions.

Dominique and Anthony met at the State Fair of Texas, so it was an obvious choice for them to have their session there, and it was so much fun!

Texas State Fair Engagement Session Dallas State Fair Engagement photographers colorful modern engagement photographers

Beth and Brody chose to have their Dallas engagement session at White Rock Lake in Dallas because they live close by and often bring their adorable dog to the park who even made an appearance at the end of the shoot.

Dallas White Rock Lake Engagement session photographers

Taylor and Nathan’s first date was at the Rodeo so they chose to have their engagement session at the Fort Worth Stockyards and at a rustic field in Fort Worth.

Fort Worth Stockyards engagement session Fort Worth field

Lucy and Cole are planning a rustic vintage wedding and Cole’s family has this huge piece of land for hunting and baling hay way outside of Dallas in Petty, TX. So we did their engagement session there on the gorgeous land and it fit them perfectly!

Petty Texas rustic vintage engagement session Fall engagement session antique truck

Stephanie and Mark love the city and they love the arts. They even got engaged after seeing a performance of Jersey Boys. Downtown Dallas overlooking the skyline and at the Dallas Arts District was the perfect spot for their modern engagement session.

Dallas Arts District engagement session modern engagement session

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gorgeous pics!

Brainstorming for Blogging

I often get questions about blogging. I have blogged from the start of our business though the frequency has varied at different times. For quite awhile now I have been blogging 5 days a week so I often get questions about how I do it. People ask: Where I get my content, how I keep things organized, how I keep things fresh, what do I do when I feel like I have nothing to say, and many more questions. I am going to try to answer a few of these questions today, and hopefully I can answer more soon. Also feel free to check out this post that I wrote a little while back about the types of posts that we blog.

A lot of the questions that I get revolve around how I blog so often and where I come up with new content for the blog each day. I blogged just a few days ago about my Emily Ley Simplified Planner which I adore, and I mentioned in passing that one of the tabs in my planner is dedicated to the blog. Blogging is basically a full time job by itself, so it deserves its own tab.

One of the biggest things that has helped me to get organized and keep fresh content is to brainstorm blog posts. If you have ever written a blog post, you know that feeling of having that blinking cursor staring at you while you try to come up with something to say. We are so busy, and I really do love blogging, and even though it takes a lot of time, I want to make sure I keep it as a priority in our business. Having content and topics ready to go helps me to accomplish this.

So how do I do it? I have a whole tab dedicated to the blog in my Simplified Planner. In that tab, I have several different sheets labeled with different categories of blog posts. For example, I have categories titled: personal, for photographers and, tips for brides. Each catagory has its own sheet and on that sheet I will take the time every so often to just brainstorm blog post topics in that catagory. I have lists upon lists of things that I want to blog. This way I can plan ahead of time what I will be blogging for the week. I can pull topics from these lists and insert Weddings/sessions or other time sensitive posts that I would like to post right away, and then I have a game plan for the week. I strive to have my blog post scheduled the night before so that I don’t have to stress about doing it in the morning and so that I can maximize the blog traffic that will see that particular post, as opposed to waiting to post something until the afternoon and losing all of the mornings potential blog traffic. As I think of new topics that I would like to blog about I simply add them to my list. This may seem simple, but this little thing has saved me so much time in blogging. Hopefully it will be helpful to you as well!

The blog got a mini face lift this week…how do you like it?


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Your blog looks beautiful! Great post :)

Excellent post! We’re newbie bloggers, so this post was super helpful :)

Great post always great to read different approaches

Southern Weddings Magazine V5

I am not exactly sure where we first heard about Southern Weddings Magazine…I just remember it was love at first sight. I may have grown up in the north, but I love the south. Sweet tea in a mason jar, and biscuits and monograms sound pretty perfect to me! Southern Wedding Blog and Magazine are just fabulous, and we were honored to be able to write a tip for their article about planning your ceremony. So fun to see our words and names in print in our favorite magazine ever. The latest issue V5 is on sale now…so make sure to go grab it since they tend to sell out. If you are a bride, a photographer, or just a lover of beautiful things we just know you will love it!

Dallas Fort worth Wedding Photographers featured in Southern Weddings Magazine ceremony tipsDallas Fort worth Wedding Photographers featured in Southern Weddings Magazine ceremony tipsDallas Fort worth Wedding Photographers featured in Southern Weddings Magazine

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Tammy Damore

What an amazing accomplishment !!!! I am so proud of both of you!!!