Happy New Year!  I am amazed at all that 2009 has brought me, and I wish all my lovely clients and blog stalkers the best 2010 possible.  February of 2010 will mark the beginning of my third year as studio owner and full-time photographer - crazy!  I feel like I've learned so much, and pretty much every shoot I do, I fall more in love with my job.  That sounds kind of lame, but it's definitely true.  I am so grateful for the many amazing people I've met over these last two years.  My friends and family have been so supportive and encouraging.  I have loved working with old friends, meeting great new people, and my favorite - turning new clients into close friends :)  For example, the outstanding Leslie and Brian gave me this awesome gift after our Dia de los Muertos trash the dress session.  I have it sitting directly across from my computer, on the table next to the door, so when I'm feeling overwhelmed I can look up at it and smile and remember what awesome clients I have.  It makes me happy.  Check it out.  Just look at it.

2009 has been crazy!  I paid off the studio two years early, my business has grown, and I've learned so much about photography, business, and my own work ethic :)  I'm not really the "resolutions" type, but since this is a good time of the year to reassess, I've decided to make a few business changes.

1. I will limit myself to 10 hours of work a day.  Weeelll.... that's my goal :)  Moderation is hard when you love your job and you're your own boss, because when something needs to be done, it's hard not to just go do it.  However, especially the last six months or so, I feel like I'm saying "no" to my friends and family all the time so that I can get work stuff done.  I've neglected important relationships, and caught myself editing or designing albums at 11pm more than once, rather than doing whatever it is that normal people do at 11pm.  I'm usually a notorious gym rat, and I haven't been to the gym in months.  I love books, and the last time my dad asked, "What are you reading these days?", I laughed, and responded, "Um... my email?"  Uncool.  In 2010, I will strive for better balance between my work and my personal life.  Because, no matter how much you love your job, it's okay to have a personal life.

2. I will respond to phone calls, emails, Facebook messages, etc. more quickly.  This really goes along with #1.  I've been so so busy (which is awesome!) that I haven't always been easy to get a hold of.  Most of the time, if you call me during the day and I don't pick up, it's because I'm with a client, either on a shoot or a consult.  This means that, at the end of the day, I have a lot of communication to catch up on.  Phone calls are definitely welcome, but I prefer email because I can keep track of it better.  Also, I love Facebook!  Be my friend, become a fan of Cedar House Photography, and let's get to know each other!  Feel free to use Facebook to get in touch with me for any reason.  If you have any questions that are specific to your account or your order, please don't text me or ask those questions through wall posts or the the chat feature on Facebook, only because I'm easily forgetful and I like to have things in writing so I can refer to them later :)  Otherwise, feel free to text or chat with me about anything!

3. I will be implementing a re-design policy for cards and albums.  Actually, I've always had one, but this year, I'll be enforcing it :)  For each album or set of cards, I'll give you an initial design.  You can give me your input and I'll do one re-design, if necessary.  After that, there will be a small fee for each set of changes.  Thanks for your understanding.

I'm looking forward to a lot of good things in 2010, including

- a short trip to Nashville this month for Imaging USA

- a large, and growing, list of seriously fun weddings all over Colorado - if you're looking to get married in 2010, contact me soon!  Dates are being gobbled up... like Pac-Man... or something.

- a road trip to Santa Fe, NM, where I grew up

- a trip out to the East coast for my beautiful sister's graduation from college (and hopefully a few shoots)

- a whole new crop of lovely seniors - you guys make me so happy and I can't wait for senior season again!

- working with new studio management software and a cool new album company

- taking French at the local community college.  Because I'm a nerd.  Because I can.  And mostly because they don't offer any more Spanish, Mandarin, or Arabic.  I guess I'm kind of settling.

Anyway.  Thanks for being my clients and my friends.  I appreciate your comments, your encouragement, your business, and your friendship.  Happy 2010!