The Sandefur Family & their dreamy field session

We Created a Dream

written by Zoe Sandefur
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Most love stories start when we’re all a little more mature, after we’ve experienced most heart ache and adventures. But for my husband and myself, it started at the young age of 16. It was in the first few weeks of school, I just started sophomore year. I was sitting in computer class typing away when the door opened, I sat right across from the door so I had perfect view, the teacher stood up and introduced our new senior classmate joining the class. Instantly my heart glowed, my eyes shimmered. There was no doubt it was love at first site. And that is where our journey began!

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We were pretty much married from day one. We did everything together, nothing ever felt wrong between us. We were young, but it never felt like puppy love. We feel like our souls have always been together. Even though we spent the first 16 years apart, we felt connected in a much deeper way. He warned me that he was joining the Marine Corps and didn’t want to hurt me, I didn’t care. I took the risk. It was hard being so young and saying goodbye to your boyfriend, but I knew it was worth it. He proposed to me when I was 18 years old, we got married the day after I graduated high school. Most people doubted us, and I don’t blame them, I was 19 years old and saying I do! It’s not very common these days. But I knew we were about to start something amazing.

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Jason was stationed out in Japan, that was hard on us, but we got through it with no issues. Sure I had plenty of nights with a box of tissues and a handful of pictures, but you make sacrifices for the people you love. Then even bigger heart-breaking news was tossed in my hands, he was being deployed to Afghanistan. My heart broke. I was scared. But again, I had faith everything would be ok. I moved myself out to California not knowing what I was getting myself into. I never left home before so it was very new to me. I waited, everyday to hear my husbands voice. Praying he was ok! Then, it was time for him to come home!! With Japan and Afghanistan back to back, we spent 2 years apart. It was finally time to start our life together. He was home! In my arms safe! I can’t even begin to explain that feeling.

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While he was away I got us our first apartment. I furnished it and made it feel like home, so my husband had a safe place to come home too. It was perfect! 1 year later we found out I was pregnant! We were so happy, even better news, it was a girl!! We named her Maura! We decided the military life wasn’t how we wanted to raise our children. So, he made the decision to get out. We said goodbye to California and moved back to IL. He found an amazing job at the airport and we began to grow our future life!

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We couldn’t have been happier. Jason had an amazing job, I was a stay at home mom. Our daughter couldn’t be sweeter.

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We had everything we ever wanted or needed. Our lives revolve around building our dream family. Four years down the line we found out I was pregnant with baby number 2! It was a BOY!!

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We were so excited, Maura couldn’t have been happier to become a big sister! We named him Jackson. We went through so much heartache and tears to finally have this perfect little family! My daughter is smart, funny, and kind hearted. My son is happy, full of laughter and makes our hearts glow.

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When I look at my husband, I’m in awe. I sometimes catch myself asking myself if I’m dreaming. I look back to all the troubles we went through to get here. I realize that marriage is something you both need to work at to make work. We both have changed so much in the last 10 years. But we adapted to every change. Which is hard at some points, but if you love someone you find a way to make it easy. Our souls are on a different level then most couples these days. He’s an amazing father, husband and leader. Our story is still just in the beginning, and I can’t wait to see where this road takes us.

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The Darwin's Country Family Session

We started to dream and create this wonderful life we have....

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I never knew I loved my husband as much as I did, until I saw how much he loved our children. Of course I fell completely in love with him the moment I met him. Look at him- how could you not? We started to dream and create this wonderful life we have. We succeeded, we failed, we cried and we kept on loving. This incredible man loves me in ways I never dreamt of someone loving me. 

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Then came our children... and I fell in love with him all over again. He was so unsure of himself knowing that we were welcoming a little girl first. When Madeline was born, Aaron transformed into someone that I had never known before. Full of emotions, confidence and compassion. 

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Madeline entered the world in full speed in 2015. Our lives changed forever, and we've yet to slow down. This girl will do BIG things in life. She's kind-hearted, fearless and forever a leader. Full of positive energy and is always a step beyond her parents. She's got her mama's personality and her daddy's good looks. Her big blue eyes are full of wonder and mischief. She truly lights up a room. 

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Hunter, our baby. This sweet lover boy came to us in 2017. Quiet, content and full of joy from day 1. He's got white blonde hair, charming blue eyes and loves anyone who wraps him up in their arms. Some may say he's a mama's boy but I've never seen a bond quite like him daddy's. Forever smiling, laughing and looking up to his big sister.

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I'm anxious to see how our family grows over the years... yet clinging to every moment along the way. The tears flow often late at night when I think about how far we've come as a family in just a few short years. How limited our time really is with our children as "babies." How I'll miss searching high and low for blankies, wiping boogers and being a 24 hour snack dispenser to my children. 

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 I am forever thankful for the beautiful moments that Trisha was able to capture of our family. She made our family feel comfortable and let us act silly, laugh and love together without feeling pressured to do so. An experience with a photographer like none other. Pure LOVE. xoxo  -Amy

I am forever thankful for the beautiful moments that Trisha was able to capture of our family. She made our family feel comfortable and let us act silly, laugh and love together without feeling pressured to do so. An experience with a photographer like none other. Pure LOVE. xoxo

-Amy

This was an absolute dream session, I absolutely loved my time with the Darwin family and getting to know them just a little bit better. Here's to a beautiful friendship, I hope to always capture your family's moments