Our First Christmas || The Blunkalow


There are a few things I dreamt of as a girl. 
You know, like really, really, really

My top five included:

  1. Having a boyfriend
  2. The proposal
  3. Being kissed
  4. Getting married
  5. DECORATING the tree because, hullo, OUR first Christmas!!!!

So yeah, I about died this year with excitement.

Because this wasn't with some random, nameless guy in a dream (whom you never seem to be able to see his FACE - just shoulders down / back-of-head-type of dreams - which were always the worst). This is real life.

side note fact:
I always liked the name Stephen.
And brunettes with deeeeep eyes.
What. I knowwww. Pfff!

Here's to our First Christmas adventures in our little "Blunkalow."
(decor sources & recipe deets at the end)

With hot chocolate steaming & Bing crooning, we decked the tree. And then watched a Christmas movie.

P.S. I plan to use an extra piece off the tree trunk to make a "our first Christmas" ornament. 

And because no Saturday is started well without brunch,
I clanged dishes around until something delicious happened:
bacon wrapped egg cups
with a side cinnamon croissants topped with creamy, pumpkin butter. 

It's taken some time, but our little 536 sq ft apartment is festive & cozy!

There are some quirks.
Read: Our tree star being 2x bigger than it needs to be & the tree being in our bedroom.

But we've decided that these things are endearing...

Welcome to our Blunkalow!

What do you think?? 

How I did it: 
I knew that our space would be super limited - both inside the apartment and then afterward in our storage areas - and needed to keep costs to a minimum. In light of this, I prioritized use of textures and a consistent color palette with the decor I already had. 

  • Christmas Tree: Cut-Your-Own at Eckerts Tree Farm
  • Silk ribbon & birch logs: Left over from our wedding
  • Tree Ornaments: Hobby Lobby, all 70% off
  • Embroidered Ornament: Handmade by the talented Marigold + Mars
  • Paper Star(s), tree skirt, fur rugs & velvet pillow: IKEA. The "skirt" is just a blanket I found for $12!
  • Lights & Tree Stand: Walmart
  • Stockings: Target - Hearth & Hand with Magnolia
  • Minimalist Wooden Christmas Tree: Handmade by my Virginia-Dad.
  • Cinnamon scented pine cones & grape vine wreaths: Michaels, 70% off
  • Wrapping Paper: Michaels, 50% off
  • Gold plastic ornaments (shelf decor): The Dollar Tree
  • Fresh Garland, wreath, & pillar candles: Trader Joe's
  • Glitter Star: Pier 1 Imports - back from when I worked there 4 years ago
  • Bacon egg cups: Recipe here.

Happy weekending!! Christmas is almost here!! 
Do you have any fun Christmas Traditions?

--Tara M


BIG ANNOUNCEMENT - We're A Husband & Wife Photography Team!


It's been on the down low for over a year now.
There's been so many times I've been bursting to share more.
I've wanted to bring you into the journey...

But I've also realized sometimes massively exciting news can be quite complicated. And take strategic planning. Oh and also, actually getting married (read: no more long distance) would be REAL helpful in transitioning this business dream into a reality.... 

But yes, the rumors are TRUE! 
(*insert 1,000 more !, please)!

The other super rad thing?
We created an entirely BRAND NEW website! AH!!
(the blog (to be called The Journal from here on out) will receive that face-lift in the next two weeks, yay!) 

Click over to HERE and begin exploring & learning about us as a dynamic duo!!

Let's be real, though, what does this actually mean?

  • Together, we're your people for your engagement / wedding day photography. No more hiring random (but cool) second shooters. As a couple, we'll partner with you (cry, laugh, celebrate!).

    Because. We. Get. It. As newlyweds ourselves, we know what it feels like to be the bride, to be the groom. We feel those feels right along with you because we were JUST there. And we also know that truly the best is yet to come!!

    To be perfectly blunt: We want dibs on adventuring with you. Think of it as one rad double date. ;) We're photographers who happen to be madly in love working with our madly-in-love couples. Win/win.
  • In January, we're hoping to create a mini series to help you all get to know Stephen a little better - so let us know if you have any specific / fun questions we can answer! 

To all our 2017 couples:
Thank you for being so generous and welcoming to Stephen!! On behalf of us both, words can't describe how honored we've felt to have come alongside you - from one couple to another. We are SO grateful!!

...behind the scenes & maybe some bloopers coming soon! 
Because why the heck not?!

In the meantime, go check out our NEW SITE & leave a comment for Stephen?!!

I can't believe this is now out in the open!
**pinch me....I mean, us!**

--Tara AND Stephen