Passionate wedding + portrait photographer, storyteller & filmmaker based in the beautiful city of Kristiansand, Norway.
Let's meet! Available for family sessions, couples, maternity, weddings, and editorial/commercial work.
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One and a half year ago, I started to work as a full time Product Photographer for Brandsdal Group. A new chapter was unfolded in front of me. With it came new friends. Very special friends to be exact Meet Birgit Jansen. The girl that conquered my friendship in a matter of seconds. BAM! We were friends. That’s how easy and fast it was. We just “clicked”. Some people it’s harder to click with than others. With Birgit it was instantaneous. When a click happens, it happens for sure. It felt like she came from another Norwegian planet that was unknown to me. I liked it. She was different. While everyone is a square, she is happy to be a triangle. She just doesn’t fit in the normal square, and I love that about her. It brings diversity and uniqueness. Norwegians are known for being reserved, shy, and not very open to new friendships. But hey, no rules without an exception! Especially not for this friend of mine, and yet she is Norwegian. She embraced me from the beginning. Her first initial thoughts were probably: “Yey! Here is a weirdo like me! Let’s be weird together”. I have heard that “Weirdness attracts weirdness”. And so it was with us. She would come to my office from time to time to say “hi”. We would have a short and nice chat. And that’s how our friendship flourished. As time has passed, I realize that she really awakes the silliness, craziness and childishness in me. They kind of have been frozen with the nordic cold, I confess. But she just melts it all with her insane energy and vibes. A while ago, we went out to take photos. I wanted to improve my portraiture skills and I think I picked the right person for it. Five minutes from my house, there is a gorgeous and peaceful forest where I like to take walks. There we went and had the best afternoon we could possibly imaged. Oh! We laughed and laughed, talked, shared experiences, told stories, and enjoyed our time together. Life can be so busy and stressful at times, that we forget how simple things actually are enjoyable. Like two friends having a good afternoon in the forest. As simple as that. Today is her birthday. The Heavens rejoice for her existence. And I am happy to have her in my life! H.a.p.p.y B.i.r.t.h.d.a.y my dear and crazy friend Birgit Jansen! You are an amazing human being! “May He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.” - Psalm 20:4 God bless you! Bear hug, just the way you like! :) <3
6 months ago, I was on my way to Portugal to fulfill my inner girl’s dream. Becoming a motorcyclist. Finally, at the age of 28, I got the courage to fulfill the dream. Interestingly, a couple I knew were going to marry while I was in Portugal. They had contacted me 3 weeks before, requesting a wedding video of their Big Day. They had no idea that I was in fact planning to go to Portugal! Quite convenient, right? Some believe in coincidences, but I believe in God’s providence. I strongly believe that God pulled some strings so our individual planning would merge. Even though the request were on short notice, I could not deny. I had known them for many years and it would be so special to be a witness of their love. Pathfinders camps and Adventist youth gatherings had kept us in contact throughout the years I lived in Portugal. Currently it must be about 15 years ago. Wow! There is something very special about adventist youth and their social/spiritual activities. They are nice, creative, happy, energetic people with a great sense of humour. I knew their wedding would have all of it. And so it was. I have been at many wonderful, magical and great weddings. But this one was special and remarkable. Maybe because I knew the couple and most of their guests, which are also my friends. They made me feel comfortable, welcoming and free to do my work. From the beginning till the end, I experienced a day full of laughter, joy, happiness, friendship and love. Couldn't have been better. Often when I work, I feel like I am walking around with a camera and making people uncomfortable and shy, but not this time! I experienced a wedding as a guest where I had the privilege of having my camera ready, to register their day from my point of view. I ended up with 93 Gigabytes of video material to edit. Quite a lot for a day, compared to 343 Gb of a 17 day long trip to Canada last year. I filmed everything that was needed to be sure I would have enough raw material to tell their story the best way possible. There were so many good things happening the whole time, I barely had time to relax! Ha ha Sadly, I had to make choices of what to include or not to the final video. This was the hardest part of the whole process. It took me a lot of courage to leave out so much good content. But that’s how it is when weddings are this great! I was impressed by the effort and planning that Joana, Pedro and their friends had done to make their day the happiest of all. The day before the wedding, I went to Lisbon to sleep at Rita’s house. She would be at the same wedding and she had part of the responsibility for the decorations. Four different people were at her place till late in the night to prepare the last decoration details. This taught me the value of their friendship. The importance of being united to make someone happy. Not only decorations filled the atmosphere with romance and beauty, but music as well. OH, the music! Music played a huge role at their wedding. There was many moments with beautiful music and voices. Goosebumps, goosebumps and more goosebumps! From a choir of 20 members, to a cute little girl singing while walking down the aisle to deliver the rings. Music was in fact what brought Joana & Pedro together. And with music they celebrated and committed to love one another, forever. Very special. I would like to thank Joana & Pedro for wanting me to record your wedding. May this video be an eternal memory of the day you said yes to each other. I would also like to deeply thank to Richard Havstein Melkersen from Music2Media. He made the beautiful and exclusive song for Joana & Pedro’s wedding video. Richard, thanks for your patience to attend to my musical demands and wishes. If you ever have any projects, please contact him for further projects. Check his webpage here: www.music2media.com Thank you Ângelo Bártolo and your lovely wife that together made a wonderful photography team. It was a team effort that resulted in a great experience for both of us. Thank you for your professionalism and dedication, it was an honor working with you! And thanks to you all that made this wedding memorable. May God bless you all. <3 For better video quality, watch here: https://vimeo.com/243551925
“Time to say goodbye”. The summer is officially over. At least in Norway. It took me some time to accept that fact. But as the trees undress themselves, and the ground is covered with leaves, I am forced to see that the greatest season of the year is fading away. Oh no! My friends are still posting pictures of the beach while wearing summer clothes in Portugal. I wish that was my reality. Oh Portugal, why are you so nice and warm? It’s so unfair. Luckily, I won’t have to wait too long to experience its warmth. The most amazing event of the year is happening next weekend in Portugal! My sister’s wedding!!!! Yahooooo! I am soooo excited that I have been dreaming about the day quite often. This summer was awesome, and so was this family photo session. I am in love with this family. Sonja Agirman, (the aunt), wanted to have some photos taken of her nephews and her mom. The messages we sent were a very pleasant experience. I really enjoy when people are easy going, and trust my creativity. It’s a wonderful feeling. She took my ideas and suggestions into consideration and she also was 100% willing to collaborate. How wonderful is that? After every detail was planned, we booked a sunny day (pretty rare days around here), choose a location and we met up. When I first saw the family I said a silent WOW to myself. They all looked so great. The best part? They have great personalities too. Being with them reminded me about my portuguese roots. They are expressive, energized, welcoming, friendly, talkative, and loud people (in a good way). Just like Portuguese people. You can imagine how easy it was to bond with them. I felt at home. I had so much fun! Lilly, the 2 year old girl, wasn’t so happy. Her brother, on the other hand, was doing just fine. During the photo session, I was told that Lilly loves water. Interestingly, the location chosen had lots of water. Guess what? As soon as she saw water, she started to point at it. I guess she thought: “Put me in the water. Now!” It didn’t happen right away though. We tried to take some nice portraits and cute sibling photos first, but it didn’t really work out. She cried, and cried. Her aunt and cousin tried her very best to make her laugh and smile. Unfortunately, I was the only one who laugh at the things they did. They danced, made funny sounds, sang, and moved in weird ways just to make the little girl smile. Hilarious! :D After a while, I thought that it would be nice to make her happy. If she likes to play in the water, well, let her play in the water then. So, into the water she went. Oh! And what a joy! She was having the best time of her life! After a few seconds she was freezing. But she still smiled and enjoyed her hand splashing in water. Her brother, Sebastian, was trying to get my attention. I didn’t mind at all. I ended up with nice portraits of him. Such a cute boy! One hour passed, and I didn’t want to be done with the photo session. I was having a great time. But it was time to say goodbye. I do not know if I will meet them again in the future, but for sure, I will carry with me great moments and memories from this day. ;) Goodbye Summer!
I have been wanting to write this post for a while now. It’s time to share the wedding photos of my Norwegian sunshine, Ida Emilia. Ida & Johannes married a year ago. Wahooo!!!! Congratulations guys. <3 You might already know them from previous posts. Not only are they a romantic and so in love couple, as well as an example of what true love is. A love that endures all things, bares all things, hopes all things, believes all things. A kind of love that never fails. They inspire and amaze me by who they are and for their incredible creative skillset. They are the most creative couple I know. For real! Coming up with ideas is not a problem for them. He is a graphic designer and a web nerd, and she is a filmmaker, storyteller, scriptwriter, and so many other things. She is that type of woman that is able to do anything she is asked, simply because she can and want! One day, she will be part of my dream team! She just doesn’t know it yet. ;) I am imagining how it will be when their hair turns grey and hands start trembling. Nursing home is not going to be a place for them. I see them aging in a house full of creative work accumulated by the years. She will be teaching her grandkids how to storytell visually and how to make pan bread. She is the best pan-bread-maker ever. He will be teaching them all the nerdy things about technology. It is going to be wonderful! I imagine them being a old couple walking down the street while holding hands. Or being silly like these two: https://static.boredpanda.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/old-couples-having-fun-33__605.jpg Their love will grow strong and deep as the years pass by. The more time they spend together, the more in love they will become. Love will always be colorful even though there are dark fights to fight. I had the privilege to follow their love story as we lived in the same area in Sweden for a year. There was something pure, beautiful and deep about their relationship. I began to desire the same for my own life. Never I thought that such relationships were humanly possible. They had an impact on the way I perceived love and relationships. Two crucial lessons I learnt with them: First: true love can only be found when you allow Jesus to be part of your life; Second: friendship is the crucial key to a successful relationship. With that in mind, I want to finish by saying: don’t let yourself believe that you will never find the woman or man of your dreams. He is out there waiting for you. She is out there waiting for you! Maybe you are not ready yet. Maybe you haven’t had the opportunity to meet her/him. Do not despair! It will happen! Be patient. Pray. It happened to me. It happened to Ida & Johannes, and to so many other people too. The time will come for you too. ;) True love stories exists! You will find yours. ...And whenever you need a wedding photographer, you can always contact me :)
Facebook reminded me that two years has passed since I moved to the astounding nordic country, Norway. Wahoo! It has been a remarkable time, for sure. Many of the best experiences in life has taken place here. Engagement, marriage, house, job, friends, trips, motorbikes, downhill biking, cross country ski, snowboard, windsurf. Wow Norway! So many things you have had in store for me! Hold on girl! There is more to come. Life is surprisingly exciting! :D But let’s be real. Not everything is a beautiful adventure. Being an immigrant is a huge challenge! Oh well...I guess it’s good that I like challenges. :p The first year, especially, has a lot of challenges. A lot of complex and tedious tasks has to be taken care of. This makes for a lot of different and unpleasant feelings. A feeling of being lost; not knowing where to go, what to do, and how to do it; also existential questions and the sense of not belonging, becomes a part of an immigrant’s daily life. The legalization process, integration in the society, adaptation to a new way of living, learning the national language, searching for a job, finding new friends, understanding the culture, norms, rules and laws, dealing with isolation and pressure, and adapting to the climate, are some of the many aspects a foreigner has to face. I remember tears of sadness, and i remember tears of joy. This followed while I faced the challenges of being an immigrant. It was emotionally tough. Now tho, I look back with a feeling of gratitude. I’m grateful that I went through the different phases that every immigrant is so unfortunate to experience. The path was harsh and steep, but God helped me to walk through it by assuring me that something beautiful and better was ahead. Nothing that was accomplished would have been possible without Him. Today, I raise the Norwegian flag with honor and respect, as a gesture of proudness and happiness. I embrace this country as mine. I do not know if I will be cheering for Norway, when they play football against Portugal...but that is just a detail! Ha ha I will still love Norway, don’t you worry. :) Thanks to all of you who bade me welcome, supported and cared for me. Life wouldn’t be the same without you. A special thanks to my best Norwegian friend, Linda Torkelsen, who had the patience to take these photos. You rock! <3 Thanks Jørgen Flå for lending me your flag ;)
I love weddings. They are probably one of the most beautiful and meaningful celebrations we commemorate. After all, we live because of love. I have had opportunities to participate either as a guest, professional or as a bride at weddings in Portugal, Canada, Sweden and Norway. All of them celebrated with different concepts and traditions. Talking about traditions...One of the best ways to get to know the norwegian culture I am in, is by attending to a wedding. Feel free to invite me. ;) Not knowing what to wear at a wedding it is not a problem to a norwegian. They have something very special called Bunad. They wear it on special occasions such as 17th of May National Day, (very, very, very important celebration in Norway), baptisms, confirmations and weddings. Bunad is a traditional rural costume that varies from region to region. There are approximately about 200 different types. I hope Wikipedia is giving me the right information on this. ;) Rebecca & Ole Martin’s wedding was a fabulous and beautiful wedding with some interesting norwegian traditions. One that I found hilarious, happens when the groom goes out of the room at the venue. Every men in the room takes a chance to kiss the bride...on the cheek, of course. They try to do it as fast as they can before the groom comes back. Sneaky! You suddenly see a massive amount of men running towards the bride and you wonder if everything is okay. Now I don’t wonder anymore. I actually laugh when it happens. I only feel sorry that the bride has to carry all of their bacterias on her cheek. :p Another tradition occurs when guests produce noise by hitting a cup with a fork or knife. Bride and groom, as a response, stand on top of their chair and kiss each other. But that’s not all. If guests stomp their feet loudly on the floor, the bride and groom must kiss under the table! Yes, under the table! No cheating. The first time that happened, I began to questioning people where the bride and groom went. I didn’t get it...all of the sudden they disappeared. Ha ha If there is something that has cannot be avoided at a norwegian wedding, it is…FOOD! No…that is not what I was going to say...let’s try again... If there is something that cannot be avoided at a norwegian wedding, it is...speeches! A wedding is not a wedding if there are no speeches! And norwegians love them. Trust me, they do. The father of the bride, the groom, sometimes the bride, maid of honor, best man, groom’s father, bride’s mother, groom’s mother, grandparents/godparents and friends, must hold a speech each! Oh, and there is also a "Thank You for the Meal" speech. Laughter and tears usually follows those moments. And this wedding was no different. A pretty english woman, Rebecca, and her norwegian gentleman, married on a cold sunny day. The temperature was minus, but their love kept the atmosphere in plus. I hope that sounded romantic because I am not really good at these things. Ha ha Looking at this video reminds me about the beauty and greatness of that grand day. Wonderful people, beautiful locations, good music, lots of fun and a day I will always remember. Rebecca & Ole Martin, you are very special. I appreciate your willingness to serve others and the big heart both of you have. Even though I don’t know you both very well, I could see so much inner beauty. May God keep shining on you and bless each and everyday of your lives. Much love <3
Receiving a message in my inbox is always a reason for excitement. 7 months ago, I got a message from Katrine. A conversation about my wedding photography services started. Questions were asked and answers were given. It didn't took long until we began to exchange emojis with each other. :D Sometimes people “click” faster than others, and this seemed to happen very quickly with us. I was unsure of how to feel about it. Should I be happy or scared? The more we talked, the happier I became. I had a feeling that everything would work out. But there was still a long way to go in the process of booking me as her wedding photographer. Later, we arranged a skype meeting, so we could get to know each other. Me, Katrine & Christian and they easily shared their love story with me. They were in Australia at the time. Planning a meeting wasn’t easy though. We failed a few times due to timezones. But, we finally made it. I wanted to get to know them and explain my services in detail. I told them it would take about one hour. It took 3. Not that I regret it, not at all, quite the opposite. :p Sometimes, you meet amazing people and you just never seem to run out of things to talk about. After a great talk, I knew that they wouldn’t be just “customers”. I saw something so special, pure and wonderful about them. It is quite rare to find it in couples. I didn’t see a crazy and blind passion for each other. I saw pure friendship and love right in front of my eyes. A relationship that I believe has grown in the love of God. <3 After 3 hours of joy, laughter and stories, I felt blessed. 😇 Days after the skype meeting, Katrine sent me photos from Pinterest with wedding decorations and some other details. I immediately felt I was part of the wedding. She included me in such a beautiful way that I felt my opinion mattered to her. So special and sweet. The more she shared, the more excited I was about their wedding. Time passed and a friendship grew. As we got closer to their Big Day, we went to their chosen location to find the best spots for their wedding photos. I snapped some photos of them here and there, just to get the feel for it. They didn’t feel very comfortable in the beginning. ...but Katrine made everyone laugh and created a good atmosphere for everyone involved. She has a unique laughter that brightens up the mood. After hearing her laughter, I knew she could react just like the bride from the infamous ”Waffley wedded wife” youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=waffly+wife Location was chosen, details were planned. Last step: their wedding! Exciting! :D
“Ladies and gentlemen, as we start our descent, please make sure your seat backs and tray tables are in their full upright position. Make sure your seat belt is securely fastened and all carry-on luggage is stowed underneath the seat in front of you or in the overhead bins. Thank you.” My heart was beating fast as the airplane landed in Kristiansand, Norway. Not because of the landing. But because of a thing called Love. I was going to see the man that worked hard, really hard, to conquer my heart. Bjørn Øyvind Halvorsen, was his name. As I stepped out of the airplane, my heart beat increased. I was nervous to meet him. I quickly went to the bathroom to find a mirror. I needed to check how I looked. Hair was ok, nothing in my teeth. Everything checked. Ready to go. I got out of the door, looked around and there he was. Waiting for me. My heart was pounding. Butterflies were swirling around in my stomach. He looked at me with his beautiful blue eyes. I tried as best as I could to keep my feet on the ground. The butterflies were almost flying me away. I had to stay grounded. We spent some days together in Norway. Once, he invited me to join him on a jog. Not knowing where we were heading or how it would be, I accepted the challenge. What a challenge! We ran for almost 6 kilometers on the woods. To get into the woods, we had to run up on long stairs. That was the first of many obstacles. The only thing that kept me going was the fact that I wanted to impress him. On the inside I was dying! I did what I could to keep a good impression. Every time he looked at me, I pretended I was doing okay. But after a while I could not pretend anymore. It was impossible. Haha I have always been a girl involved with sports. Yet, as I grew older, I became less active. Let’s say that I wasn’t in the best condition for a romantic 6 kilometers run. Having the right company in such moments is kind of useful. I had Bjørn. Luckily for me, he was encouraging. He gave me the support needed to face the vast obstacles we encountered, such as steep hills. My worst enemy. There was a particular part, almost at the end, where he prepared me to face a long steep hill. He said that when you think that you are on the top, it is still quite a bit left. He also said that I shouldn’t give up. He promised that if I make it to the top, we could rest for awhile. And resting was all I wanted. Ready. Set. Go. Run! On the way up, I prayed to God for help. It was so hard, i needed all the help i could get. With almost no power left in my legs, I made it to the top! I made it! Bjørn gave me his word and I finally got my rest. We took a slow walk, to recover from this extreme physical activity. We walked by an astounding lake surrounded by narrow paths, tall trees and enormous rocks. There we found a bench. Without thinking twice, I walked faster towards the bench. I just wanted to recover my untaken breath. While I was breathing in and out as much air as I could, Bjørn sat by my side. He smiled at me and said that he was proud of my victory. I could barely look him in the eyes because I was blaming him for my exhaustion. Poor guy (?). Suddenly, something unexpected happened. He asked: “Do you want to be my girlfriend”? - “WHAT????? What? Did he really asked me that question? Right here and now? While I am all sweaty and messy?” - I thought. Boom! Like a bomb! I didn’t even have time to catch my breath. Wait a second...I don’t remember the rest of the story... ...Of course I remember! I said YES! No shadow of a doubt that I wanted to start an adventurous journey by his side. And what a journey it has been. This was the moment where our friendship advanced to the next level. A very interesting one indeed. :) After I answered Yes, I asked: - “Are you ready?” - “Yes” - He said. He slowly moved his head towards mine and I moved my head towards his and we...kissed! I didn’t see that one coming. Did you? I was confused. I was ready to run back home. That’s why I asked him if he was ready. He thought that I was asking if he was ready for a kiss! Hilarious, awkward and convenient misunderstanding. Oh well. And that is how it was. It felt weird to kiss him for the first time because he was my best friend. After a lot of practice it’s not weird to kiss him anymore, in case you were wondering. ;) A little over 2 years ago we assumed a relationship that has been the best friendship I have ever had. Bjørn is one of a kind. That is why I had to tell this story. I’m very happy that my husband got this crazy idea. Running 6 kilometer and then asking me to be his girlfriend. It was a remarkable experience and because of it, we are together. I am also happy that Bjørn was impressed, and that God gave me the strength to perform. I don’t know if it would have been possible without that extra help. Everyone can find their love story. You don’t have to be a princess or a prince. You don’t have to live in a castle or have a steed. You don’t even have to go for a six kilometer run. (Unless you want, of course). Do your best in every situation, be tough and strong. Always be the best version of yourself and one day you might also have a story to tell. I found my prince. He is a viking and rides on 2 wheels with many horses powers. <3 Note: These photos were taken with the help of a tripod, Canon app, husband, blues skies and sunshine. The local is the same where our wedding photos took place.
You already know my struggle with Norwegian weather. Sun, rain, cloudy days and snow (hagl, eitresnø, sludd, fauker, fluskra, fana, fyklen, føyr, snøslit, valleslette, drivsnø, frostrøyk, kunstsnø). These are all the norwegian words for snow. Phejw! Crazy...I know! If you are (un-)lucky, you can see the four seasons in one day. Saturday was for instance, a magnificent sunny day. Kinda warm, but still barely 6 degrees. Feeling like it’s Spring. But then Sunday came, and Winter came back. Again... The previous day I had been ready to welcome the spring of all my heart. Apparently not yet. At this time, most norwegians are desperate for the coming of Spring. But I think I might be more desperate than them. After all, I come from the “Country of nice weather”, as people use to say. Spring has said “Hi” to portuguese people a while ago. Flowers are already blooming and the temperatures are between 22 to 27 degrees. Oh my dear Portugal, how I miss thy wonderful weather! It seems like the seasons are a bit slower to change here in Norway. In a way, I am glad it is that way. Even though I love Spring, I also like snow. The white carpet of powder that covers everything. It is very pretty. Except when I have to shovel it. Tons of snow have a tendency of placing itself in front of my garage door :p I think the Norwegian weather is bipolar. Saturday was Spring, Sunday it was snowing and Winter had come back. And that was probably the last we saw of Winter. Maybe. hehe The good thing about snow is that you might get a good chance for some nice winter photos. And this is when Anna enters the story. We were so excited about the photoshoot. Whenever we talked about the photo session, she would use emoji’s to communicate her emotions and excitement! It was so entertaining to decipher her messages. A typical message would be like this: “bla, bla, bla, ” Sometimes you come across people who really love their emoji’s, and it’s an interesting experience. I like them too. When I see a lot of them, they remind me of Minions :) After planning our photo session for almost a month, we finally found “nice weather”. With snow! A lot of it! The landscape was painted in pure white, covering everything. From the grass to the tree tops. On the day of the photoshoot, Anna’s boyfriend drove us to the place where we were going to take the pictures. He did us a favor because we were planning to use my car, but it was stuck in the garage because of all the snow. He is such a kind person. It might not have been the most exciting thing for him to watch the photo session, but he was at least watching his pretty and cute girlfriend being photographed. I imagine that seeing his girlfriend happy and having a good time, made him happy too. After all, the saying “Happy wife, happy life”, is kind of true! :p Anna was so relaxed and comfortable while I took the pictures. Having him around probably helped her feel more secure. Me too actually, we were in the forest all by ourselves. So, it is always good to have a man around in case a bear would arrive, and we needed someone to fight it for us. The only thing I could do if a bear came would be to shoot it…. with my camera... which would probably not be that useful in this case. While taking Anna’s pictures, I remember saying ‘AMAZING’ for every picture I took of her. She is very photogenic and has a captive smile. She was comfortable and knew how to model. She had the ‘it’ factor. I don’t always feel happy about the end result, but with Anna’s picture’s I was very satisfied. Besides the great photoshoot we had, I got to know these two fabulous people better. Anna & her boyfriend. Luckily we managed to do the whole photoshoot without any disturbance of bears. It all went according to plan. Today we are left with memories of a great time and some pictures that I wanted to share with you. Love to you all.
Once upon a time, a princess with gorgeous yellow hair and bright blue eyes was born. 25 years ago it happened and marvelous it was. She was so beautiful that all in her kingdom looked at her in awe. There had never been a princess like her in human history. She was known only as princess sunshine. Two years ago an invitation was sent, and I got the opportunity to visit her kingdom. - “Say what? The princess invited ME? Oh my! What did I do? Did I do something wrong? Am I in trouble? I am just an alien. Why would she invite me? I am not worthy of an invitation from princess sunshine! Oh well, let’s see what happens.” - I thought. What would you have done, if you got an invitation from princess sunshine? Most people would probably dress in their best clothes, fix their hair and wear nice shoes to see her. Right? Maybe? Well, I did not. I didn’t care. If she wanted to see me, or get to know me, she would have to accept me as I am. No nice clothes or pretty hairstyle. But I was curious, and it led to her kingdom. I did not know what to expect but I was excited to find out. I was amazed by the beauty of everything that passed my gaze. Beauty, from inside till out. After a few steps, there she was. Waiting for me. And there we were face to face. When I looked at her, I immediately understood why she wore the name “princess sunshine”. Unexpectedly, she hugged me. - “What is she doing?” - I found myself thinking. - “But this is nice.. I like... hugs. Hugs, hugs, hugs” - I thought. From that moment on, a solid friendship started to blossom. Even though we didn’t speak the same language, we interacted with each other using something magical: the language of Love. Today, princess sunshine is still striking, with her yellow hair and bright blue eyes. Still shining like the sun. Her birthday was 5 days ago. I am a bit late but... Happy Birthday Princess Sunshine! I wish that your kingdom of beauty, joy and love can last for ever. May The End be happy! Your friend, Dani Banani Note: This is a story based on only one (or two) true fact: she is a sunshine and it's her birthday!
Rita & Rodolfo
The 21th of June, 2016 I received a cute email from a friend. I had not been in contact with her for many years. The email contained a unique request. I was asked to be a Maid of Honor! Say what? For real? Touching request! I didn’t think twice. In my head, I said yes instantly. I believe the first time i met her, my sweet and tiny friend, was in 2004 at a Pathfinder’s Summer Camp. I don’t remember how I met her, or in what context tho.. I just remember we were together in the same camp group. We did activities and games together for 10 days. They say that equals attract, and so crazy met crazy. We became friends! She is pretty, energetic, playful, happy and very social. As such she easily got everyone’s attention. Just the type of people I am attracted to, for some reason. ;) This friend of mine is very special. Very special indeed. One of the weirdest memories I have, is the way she typed SMS. She typed them with all words in capital letters and NO SPACE between words! This happened back when you couldn’t see the entire message on the phone because the screen was so small. When you read the message you had to use arrow keys to show the rest of the message. Can anyone relate to that? Can you imagine how difficult it was to read her messages? Kinda special. :p After that camp, we wrote letters to each other for about 2 years, i believe. She lived around Lisbon and I lived about an hour away. Even though we had phones, we kept in touch by writing letters to each other. Whenever my dad would say “You got a letter from Rita”, I would run towards him to get the letter and read it. A wonderful feeling. An interesting fact to mentioning is that she would always write on the envelop “Sir Post man, Jesus Loves You”. So sweet! In every single letter there was always so much to talk about. Especially about boys. We would share our fears, successes, failures, love stories and disappointments. Sometimes she would be heartbroken and feel confused. These boys were not always easy to understand. Oh boy! Teenage time was a real struggle. We all had our fair share of problems regarding love. She has grown up and has now become a woman. I am thankful that her failures and brokenness from the past brought her success. I am sure that God lead her to the man of her dreams to whom she married, Mrs. Rodolfo. One of the emails she sent about her wedding, she shared that she had to decide between video or photography service. She decided photography service from an amazing photographer. Very smart decision. She very kindly asked me and another maid of honor, if we could take care of the video part. I gladly said yes and warned her that I might be running around with the camera looking less pretty. I had heard that the maids of honour are suppose to stand around and look pretty. My way of looking “pretty” was with a camera pointing to people. It’s a creative way, I would say. :) So there I was, at her wedding. Tasked with the video part. She asked me if I could make some video with a phone, iPad or whatever equipment I preferred. I had to laugh a bit because when someone asks me to do something related to my hobbies, I always go all in. Immediately I felt that I had to do some nice and fancy video production of her wedding. I had brought a camera and two basic lenses. Action mode: ON! I guess people were wondering what a girl in a very yellow dress was doing moving around all the time. Well, you know. :) I did what I could with the conditions I had. I wish I could have done more. But all in all, I am happy I had the opportunity to register Rita’s day. Her wedding took place at a beautiful park in October last year in Portugal. I can’t remember the location. I am terrible at remembering locations and people’s names. I would rank this wedding as second after my own. Beautiful, informal, relaxed, nice, cozy, creative, enjoyable and perfect! ;) I had the opportunity to be with church friends that I have known for many years. Now, living abroad, I miss these people that I used to see every year at youth activities and gatherings. Awesome people! It was a short weekend in Portugal, and then I had to go back to Norway, but the memories were still with me. Meaningful and priceless memories. <3 After many years, I was amazed how Rita thought of me to be part of the best day of her life. I realised that friendships can remain, even tho many years may pass with little contact. That my friends, is the kind of people you want to surround yourself with. No matter how long you have been apart. What matter is what happens when you are together. ;) Rita & Rodolfo, may God guide you and bless you all the days of your life. Enjoy your married journey! It is going to be amazing! A special thanks to the fabulous music group “Vocal Livre” that gave me permission to use their song “Autor da Vida” for this video. It’s the couple's favourite song ;) Love to you all <3 Note: Watch in HD. You can watch the video with better quality here: https://vimeo.com/200864569