zac & carrie | couple portraits on the beach

I intened on posting this yesterday... but I couldn't figure out how to put into words how much I love this girl. I am still struggling... so here is something like my 5th attempt at writing this blog post. So let me start with how we met. Our husbands deployed together in 2010 and Carrie and I met and instantly clicked during the 4-day weekend the guys got in New Orleans... our last hoorah before they were really gone for a year. The whole time our guys were gone Carrie and I made it a priority to get together almost weekly... which is saying a lot since we live about an hour from each other. She was my person who "got it." Having a deployed husband... but not being surrounded by a lot of other military families at the same time. (Our guys are National Guardsmen so we aren't stationed on a military base where it is easier to find and connect with people experiencing the same thing you are going through.) Carrie and I would get together and talk about the struggles of a long-distance marriage, how we tried to pretend the guys weren't really in danger, and how we learned to enjoy life without our husbands being around all the time.

But Carrie was more than just a deployment friend. She is probably the most servent-minded person I have ever met. Her heart is so sweet, she is thoughtful and considerate... and truly a treasure to me and the other people in her life. Our conversations are transparent, we have called each other in the middle of the night in tears and been honored to comfort and encourage one another during the tough times. Her presence is never, ever a burden. She is a constant blessing to me and my family.

When I found out I was pregnant I called Carrie first. She was absolutely thrilled for me and her joy was contagious. My pregnancy was a surprise - but Carrie made me remember that it was a gift from God... that this was totally in God's plans for us... and it was a wonderful, beautiful thing.

Like I said, she is a treasure.

I am skipping so many wonderful memories... stories... moments. Camping trips, babysitting, crossfit and paleo journeys, crewing races, exploring Tombstone, ikea trips, coffee dates, sooo many dinner dates, sleepovers, girl's nights out... I can't even figure out how to prioritize what to say! So I will get to the point of this post...

Carrie and Zac are some of our very best friends. Zac actually deployed - again - for another year this past year. He just returned a few weeks ago and we got to be a part of the surprise reunion! Carrie had no idea Zac was coming home so early - she thought he wouldn't be home for another two weeks! But, alas... he came home and quickly whisked her away to Aruba for a fun getaway. When they returned we took them to the beach with us... not the same as Aruba... but I think equally as fun. Maybe... maybe not. ;)

While we were at the beach I asked them if I could do a session for them... at sunset, of course. So, I introduce to you... Carrie and Zac...

Equipment used for this session:  canon 5d mark ii // canon 50mm f/1.2 lens // canon 70-200 f/2.8 lens


Liz Cook is the owner and photographer of sincerely, liz: photography. She is a virginia wedding photographer and virginia portrait photographer who loves virginia weddingsfamily portrait sessions and couple photography.

To see more of Liz’s work, check out her latest work as well as some of her favorite weddings. To hire Liz, simply fill out this form.

Liz Cook

Liz Cook is a wedding, birth, and motherhood photographer based in Central Virginia. Her intuition and creative perspective allow her to connect both professionally and personally with her subjects, and thus, her portfolio is saturated with authentic emotion. Whether she's sharing her story with fellow entrepreneurs or enjoying quality time with her husband and two daughters, Liz is both present and passionate about capturing and celebrating life. Her work has been featured by O "Oprah" Magazine, The Huffington Post, The Glitter Guide, Essence Magazine, domino, Rue Magazine, among others.