The surprise proposal & Franklin Castle – The haunted house!

Hello! I feel like I once again have been absent for WAY too long! I hope all of you enjoyed a lovely and romantic Valentines Day. I spent my Valentines Day alone in Cleveland, however before I left I got myself some beautiful flowers to enjoy when I came home and I really have. 😀

Happy Valentines Day to me!

Happy Valentines Day to me!

SO. I am finally able to spill the beans on what I got up to last weekend and what I was so very excited about! Before I get to that though, I have to ask, do you believe in the curse of Friday the 13th? Well, I did not. Until last weekend I might add! If you have ever flown through the Minneapolis airport, you probably are aware of what a giant mess of trams, moving walkways and endless hallways it is. It is seriously GIGANTIC. My first flight from Saskatoon arrived at 6:50 and my connecting flight was boarding at 6:45 and leaving the airport at 7:14! Because I am from Canada I did have to pick up my bag, and go through security again to recheck the bag. Of course I was chosen for extra screenings and swabs… just the usual for me. By the time I made it out of security it was after 7 p.m and I knew I had to book it. I ran, and ran, and ran until I started to have an asthma attack – something I haven’t had since I was probably in my early teens! I very rarely carry my inhaler with me, because to be honest I am very rarely running so hard that it affects me like that anymore. So I arrive at the gate, sweat pouring down my face, clutching my chest, unable to speak, wheezing heavily, and doubled over not 5 minutes late to the flights’ departure, and what do you know.. they didn’t wait for me. This was truly upsetting because I knew my client had a massive surprise proposal waiting for me the next day at noon in Cleveland and the next available flight wasn’t until the following morning and would not arrive until noon. Yup. That was the start. Now I can’t remember if it was the lotion from my travel kit or the hotel, but when I finally got things arranged for a hotel stay I piled lotion on my freshly washed face and then watched it slowly grow red and blotchy. By the next morning I looked like a teenaged boy who ate nothing but pop and pizza. I was gross. Oh yes, and did I forget to mention they sent my bag to Cleveland without me. So yeah, I really was gross. This was my Friday the 13th. It could have been worse, but it did feel like the day was a little cursed, I’m not going to lie! I FINALLY arrived in Cleveland and ta da! It was weather that made the world news Internationally… Let me tell you, after visiting Cleveland, I have to say that their weather rivaled Saskatoon’s weather BIG TIME. It was a cold that chilled you to the bone, and the blizzard was so extreme you couldn’t even see the road ahead of you. Yes, there were actual deaths that day from the weather and several cases of severe frostbite. Luckily I AM from Saskatchewan so I am used to driving in this kind of weather, but I will admit it was bad compared to what I was even used to. Not exactly the photo-shoot weather I was envisioning! After several failed attempts for whatever reason trying to use my card at the car rental place, it finally went through and I was on my way to meet up with my clients!

Welcome to Cleveland!

Welcome to Cleveland!

Now for the best part! I finally got to meet my client who had set up a wonderful plan to surprise his fiance with me and a couples session (who she thought was being photographed by a friend of his). I have to say, I was so thrilled with her reaction upon seeing me there and I then suggested that we might as well take a few photos of them in their formal clothes before their date at the Orchestra that evening! After doing a few photos of the two of them, my client gave me the signal and got down on one knee to propose. Seeing the pure happiness, joy and elation on her face was what made my whole weekend! It was one of the sweetest and most emotional moments I have ever photographed and I loved every second of it! I am so lucky to have such amazing clients who I enjoy spending time with and I felt very privileged to be a part of this very special moment in their lives. I do not feel at liberty to go into detail, but I will say that this was not a traditional proposal for this couple and the element of surprise and raw happiness that this moment created between them was so palpable it was contagious! I left with a huge grin on my face – probably the whole way to the hotel feeling so excited for them!

The sweetest moment ...

The sweetest moment …

I won’t get too into the other details of my continued cursed weekend but I will say I DID fall down a flight of icy steps at the hotel later that night because their parking garage elevator was not working! My legs and knee are pretty bruised but luckily no permanent damage was done and I am healing up nicely! So to wrap up my super cursed weekend, I did decide that I just HAD to go see an ACTUAL cursed and haunted house in Cleveland. It was called the Franklin Castle and was built in 1865. Numerous deaths occurred in the house and in the 70’s a room or cupboard (different resources have mixed confirmations on this), was discovered with several baby skeletons. This WAS confirmed. So I visited the house. Unfortunately because the house was decayed and I believe being restored to formal glory by it’s new owner who had put a security camera up I was unable to go inside. Standing in front of it was amazing. It really did have that dark, eerie and spectacular appeal. I stood there thinking ‘Wow, this IS a real haunted house – like something out of the movies’. It was truly an incredible sight! Now for the SUPER creepy part. When I got home I quickly posted one of my photos of Franklin Castle and continued to research and find facts on the house as my curiosity about it was growing. I did notice that there was black shadow in one of the windows that looked like a person and thought that was pretty awesome. A couple of days later I found a post in which it said that some people claimed to see a lady in black in one of the windows and believed it was the ghost of a servant girl named Rachel that died in the house. What’s strange is.. going through the other photos I took of the house, there is nothing in the window on any of the other images. I then posted one more and if you look closely in one of the bottom windows it does appear to look like tiny gravestones even though the only thing behind me was a road. So I don’t know. Do I believe in ghosts? No… but I do believe there are evil forces and spirits out there and yes, Franklin Castle did live up to every single expectation I had on seeing a haunted house. I.LOVED.IT 1501109_856554104385981_7348261477945792815_o

Franklin Castle - Cleveland Ohio

Franklin Castle – Cleveland Ohio

So guys I hope you have enjoyed hearing about my Friday the 13th weekend and I truly hope yours was more blessed than mine! Despite all of this I am so happy to have met my clients and to witness such a beautiful moment! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and keep warm out there! xoxo – M Resources Dead Ohio Forgotten Ohio Prairie Ghosts

A week of insanity and a frosty little engagement session preview!

Hey everyone!

I hope all of you had a wonderful Easter and were able to spend time with your family & friends!

Sooooo the boys are out of school this ENTIRE WEEK…. I hope I can stay sane through it all. I will just be continuing on my with my spring cleaning and clearing out massive amounts of props. I am trying to make an entertainment area in the basement so we will see if I accomplish that this week! I am also painting my boys bedroom and looking forward to have some brand new paint for them to draw on and for me to clean haha.

What else is new!? A LOT. I have been doing a lot of photo sessions as the weather is FINALLY coming around to the idea of spring. Thank goodness, because I was really going to wonder if we were ever going to see a blade of grass again! I got some fantastic new business cards made from ProPrint here in Saskatoon and they did an amazing job. They are working on the second set as well and after that I have one set left to go! I have some exciting news coming up in about three weeks and also expect a post soon about my newly redone website 🙂

So I thought I would post a few shots of a sweet little engagement shoot I did recently with couple Lauren & Dan! I am excited to be photographing their wedding as well and I had fun with them on this wintery frosty day!

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Saskatoon Engagement Photography

Reasons I love AND hate Saskatoon.. and stuff I have been up to lately!

So what have I been up to these days? Sitting here bitterly cursing the Saskatoon weather for one. Isn’t this ridiculous?! For all my fans out there who live in India, Mexico, Jamaica I want you to picture this. Snow whipping at your face in -35 below (with the wind), nasty wind so bad its blowing cars off of highways and roads combined with the sheer iciness. Deadly combinations. Not exactly photo session weather either, unless you want phenomena or just to look very red (and really, who wants that?). I met this pretty cool guy in Cuba and I told him that we needed to plug in our cars in the winter time, otherwise sometimes they wouldn’t start. He was blown away! “Where would you plug it in?” he asks. Haha yes, we are one COLD province.  With Days like these, I hate it; I’m not going to lie. Seriously, I question myself all of the time why on earth I still live here. I can never really come up with a good answer. Today I did think of some.

-We have some of the most amazing sunsets and sunrises in the world because of our big wide open prairie skies. Our skies are one of my most favorite things to photograph!

-Yes we are a very flat country, but it has its very own beauty. There is something about being able to see everything for miles ahead of you on the open road.

-We are not close to an ocean so we lose the risk of tsunami which is pretty awesome. I am not going to say we are not at risk for flooding since the run off from this years snow should be interesting!

-We are not close to any mountains so we not at a great risk for earthquakes, volcano’s erupting or anything like that. This is also pretty awesome.

-We are actually known as the sunniest city in Canada here in Saskatoon (It’s true, even when it’s cold, windy and frozen outside the sun will generally be out.)

-We have a great community, with good people and businesses!

I am going to have to remind myself more of these things on days like today when I question why I am still here. The weather is just gross. I am not impressed and I really, really want to do some shoots annnnd other things!

Otherwise I have had a lot on the go. The boys are super busy and obsessed with the Wii. It’s ridiculous! I am getting a gym membership sometime during the week and planning to try out some new recipes. I started a project planner book a couple nights ago and wrote out all of my plans for the year (photography plans, car plans, house plans, décor plans, etc) and ideas I have for shoots and concepts. Sigh… I just LOVE organizing. I just finished watching Call The Midwife (season one) and I am totally in love. I can’t wait for the next season to start. I also love the start of the new season for The Client List…..guilty pleasure…yum!

Image

I just finished up another wedding set and I am working on a couple more! I am excited to put up more shots from the Jamaica Destination wedding! I have been working hard on updating my portfolio and newly designing my website and I am really looking forward to uploading it! I have so many positive things happening for me in the next few months and I have been so happy about all of it. I have a feeling it’s going to be an amazing year!

Okay so here are some of the things that I have been checking out lately!

GUYS: You probably should just skip past this.

Ladies…isn’t this just the most awesome idea? I’m not going to lie, I would consider getting this. Haha it might actually give you something to look forward to around that time of the month.

http://www.leparcel.com/

Also, I have finally discovered Jenna Marbles on YouTube and I am pretty amused by her. I especially like her Drunk Makeup Tutorial… wow.

http://www.youtube.com/user/JennaMarbles

I also have to say I am now crushing on Jeff Gordon after seeing how he drives this car! Mad skills.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YR9UeZKI78

The boys and I made up an awesome little chore chart today which I am pretty enthusiastic about. Hey…less cleaning for me? What’s not to get excited about? Check them out! I found them on an awesome little site called Money Saving Moms

http://moneysavingmom.com/downloads/household-management-forms

Well I picked up my business cards from Pro Print and I LOVE them. I got two new wedding cards made, each with a different photo (one a Destination Wedding and one a local wedding!). I can’t wait to start distributing them and giving them out. I am going to be getting one done for Fashion & Concept work as well and one for general and life photography! Now I need to find a really cool little business card case for them 🙂 Anyone have some suggestions?

I have also been doing a lot of reading lately. I have a gigantic photography book full of projects and tutorials that I am going through and I am also reading “Some Girls – My life In A Harem” by Jillian Lauren… so far it’s been pretty good! I am also excited to start reading the third book by Lauren Destefano “Sever”. Seriously, I really need to make a list of ALL of the great books I have been enjoying these days. There are just too many to even count.

As always I love to dance around my house in the evenings and when I’m cleaning. My latest guilty pleasures in music are the song “Bright Lights” by Gary Clark Jr. and “Do Your Thing” by Jensen Reed… now those are two songs I could put on repeat and be happy about it. I also love the new Macklemore and so thrilled to finally see him on the radio. I am still a loving fan of Bob Marley’s chill style, Buck Cherry and Wax & Herbal T. Really could it get any better?

Cleaning up a storm today and enjoying a cup of Chai tea…. Still wishing I lived somewhere warm and daydreaming my life away.

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend and are staying cozy with someone you love.

Xoxo – Martine

Adventures in Jamaica Pt 2- My near (camera) death experience with waterwalls!

Jamaica Destination Wedding Photography

Jamaica Destination Wedding Photography

Ahhh finally I have come out of my coma of exhaustion and sickness! What a relief after over two weeks! So what have I been up to? Mostly editing, and also trying to clear out my house for a mega-sized garage sale. Time to clear out some of my hoarder style collections and some of my precious photography props. I hate to see them go, but I really can’t keep everything!

So I hope everyone in Saskatoon has been keeping warm, in this deathly horrid weather we have been having. It’s been … epic to say the least. It doesn’t help that my trusty old van left me stranded with the boys at Safeway yesterday and has basically been acting like a piece of junk for the last few weeks. Great.

So let’s talk about my experience with Dunn’s River Falls, which was where we decided to end our day taking photos in beautiful Jamaica! What a fun/scary time! Basically what happened was, I thought I could handle being in the waterfalls as well, with my camera around my neck. However, what I didn’t think about was, how slippery the rocks were, and how it might have benefited me to bring water shoes for this whole scenario. So a few minutes into our session, I stepped off of a log under water and realized that I was tumbling/falling/tripping/slipping deep into a rocky waterfall grave. As I sunk lower and lower and fell more and more I raised my camera higher and higher. Boy, it must have been quite a sight. It might be exaggerating to say that the only thing you could see out of the water was the top of my head, my arm and my camera… but no it was actually pretty close to that. The groom said afterwards he just wasn’t quite sure who to save; the photographer or the camera! When in doubt.. ALWAYS save the camera! I can definitely survive whatever outcome there is from a fall like this, but my camera would not be so lucky. We had a good laugh about it afterwards and we had a lot of fun! So it just proves to those of you who may think my job is all fancy and frills.. I am in the business of taking risks, putting myself in awkward and potentially dangerous situations (I have done everything from laying on my stomach in the middle of a highway, to getting knocked over by strong stormy ocean waves). Is it worth it though? 100% and I will only continue to push my limits AND my camera’s limits until one of us breaks haha hopefully it will be the camera.

I can’t wait to share more of my Jamaica adventures with you all and more great images from this fantastic wedding!

For tonight, I am going to cozy up with my book and maybe even make myself a cup of hot chocolate (if the boys haven’t completely raided the mix already). Get some good zz’s and work like a maniac tomorrow.

Love & peace – M

Jamaica Destination Wedding Photography

Jamaica Destination Wedding Photography