Burkley Maternity+Family Photos | Smith Rock State Park

Allie Harrington
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When your family members live miles and miles away, the time together becomes sweeter…richer. I couldn’t have been more thrilled to welcome them back to Oregon for a visit recently, all the way from Texas. We stayed in Sunriver, where we relished the fresh air and outdoor activities that the area is known for.  We dipped our toes in the river, saw Devil’s Lake, and hiked and biked our hearts out. Benham Falls was another favorite spot, which is up the Deschutes trail. Of course, no family vacation is complete without ample board games (we can play a mean board game, folks), and we had such a precious time together. Not only are we family, I am so thankful to call this crew the dearest of friends.

My stunning sister and her husband are expecting a sweet baby girl in October, and I couldn’t wait to celebrate this season with them, with this maternity session. We were in Smith Rock State Park, which is always jaw-droppingly beautiful, with views that never disappoint. What you may not know is that this family of four is actually a family of five. This darling baby girl will be their third child. My nephew Asher would have been four years old this year, and his life had an impact on myself and plenty of others in ways we cannot even imagine. Thinking of him brings tears to my eyes. The Lord was gracious to use what was any parent’s worst nightmare -a season of devastating grief and loss beyond compare- to envelope my sister and brother-in-law in His deep love. It was heartbreaking to walk in that valley with them, knowing they were experiencing the deepest sorrow a person can bear, but it was a privilege to see Jesus carry them so tenderly and sweetly, strengthening them in the most beautiful, wrenching ways. I have read that the sweetest joys can come from crushing grief, and I understand that in a tiny way now. If you’d like to read my nephew’s story, you can find it HERE.

Today, we celebrate Asher’s life, and cannot wait to celebrate a baby sister for Cedar (my other nephew), making her arrival in October. I already love her dearly, and cannot wait to spoil and cuddle her! Meagan, Chris, and Cedar, I love you so.

PS. My brother in law Chris just shared a message on how God doesn’t cause suffering, but He doesn’t waste it, and you can check that out HERE.