The Pursuit of Happiness // Personal

There have been a lot of times in the past few months when Nathan and I have been able to talk about life - the purpose of it, and if we are living our lives in the best way. I think there will always be room for growth, and I hope that each little change we make steps us a little bit closer to where we are supposed to be.

One huge topic of conversation lately has been simplifying. Our lives, our stuff, our focus, and even our food. I grew up overseas, and because of where we lived, my family did not have a lot of extra stuff. There was almost no storage space, and my parents chose to live like the people around us, who generally had to live on much, much less than we do in America.

Because of this, I was taught so well growing up that stuff doesn't matter. My siblings and I would make fun and games out of nothing, entertaining ourselves for hours without the latest toy. I don't even remember watching TV hardly at all while growing up - my memories are thankfully much richer than that!

It's easy, though, to slip into a different mindset once you get your first job and have enough money to start buying your own things. It's exciting! And fun! And in all honesty, I know we never went overboard - Nathan and I are both very careful (sometimes too much) with our money and have thankfully never been in debt or bought something we seriously regretted.

Still, we came to a point a few months ago when we realized just how much stuff we have. For two people without kids, our closets were getting full of things. So we started to ask why. Why accumulate stuff? Why buy more things? We have never been concerned with 'keeping up with the Joneses,' but the biggest thing we've realized is that unless we INTENTIONALLY make a habit of minimizing our stuff, we will end up with way too much of it, and for what gain? Nothing

So we've slowly started to get rid of stuff. Clothes we don't wear, shoes that we love but never put in, all kinds of trinkets and gadgets that aren't particularly meaningful or useful - the list goes on. And it feels amazing! With each item sold on eBay, each bag given to Goodwill, we are living our lives with so much more intentionality than we used to (and I know we still have a long ways to go!)

Next up - selling our house and downsizing to a smaller one. A huge step for sure, but one we are so excited to make. Our joy cannot be found in things or the idea of having a lot, so why even try?

Here's to intentionally leading a simpler life, and all the joy that comes with it!

 The Pursuit of Happiness

Maria Grace Photography

My name is Maria, and I am a wedding and family photographer based out of Hampton Roads, Virginia, but I am always excited about traveling. I love families who truly enjoy spending time with each other and living life together. I love couples that are looking forward to their wedding day because they are so excited to finally be married to.