CLOSED VOTING HAS ENDED! Giving Back – Cast your Vote so a Deserving Family can WIN a FREE session!!

VOTING HAS ENDED..FAMILY #1 is the winner of the free portrait session, CONGRATULATIONS!!! I need families #2 and #3 to also email me their info for a special offer.

So if you are just now finding out about this contest to win a free session and are here to place your vote I will briefly explain why I am doing this. I feel so blessed to have the ability to record lives and special memories that I felt it was time to give back and use my gifts for the betterment of someone else who has had a lot more struggles in life than most. If you want to donate any money to help purchase a large printed piece for the winners home please send me a message (amanda{at}

They are all very deserving and their stories have brought tears to my eyes. I couldn’t decide on my own or even narrow it down to 3. I leave it in your hands. Thank you for being part of this journey with me. I hope to do this more in the future.

Read the submissions and then comment below which number you think should get the free session. Please only post your vote on the blog.  

VOTING ENDS ON JULY 12th at 9 p.m.

Example of entry submittal:
Sally Jones – story #3

Extra entry Like my page on Facebook and then come back here and say one more vote for story#3 I liked your page.

*After the contest ends the winner will notified and they will receive a full session to redeem whenever they are able to do the portrait session. Location will be decided with the winning party.

Story #1 –  Entry by Crysta Rappleye

I would like to nominate a friend of mine whose baby has had to endure more than anyone coud imagine in this life. Her baby was born at just 26 weeks,but was growth restricted to the size of a 22 week old baby. She was just 15 oz at birth, and only 10 inches long! She had eye problems, breathing problems, kidney issues, and even had a g-button ad trach to help her little body breathe and eat. She spent 7 long months in the hospital—she endured many blood transfusions, surgeries, times when they almost lost her and 24 hour nurse care when she finally got to go home. Her family remained strong and postitive when doctors said that this sweet baby would not make it. She is a fighter. Her family is amazing. Now she is a happy healthy 2 1/2 year old girly girl whose only battle now is learning to eat without the assistance of a g-button. I would love for them to have amazing pictures of their little miracle baby! They lost 7 months with their sweet girl—but still never missed a day of going back and forth the hospital. Cassie and Tara are so deserving of this photo shoot as I am sure many others are. I just could not pass up the opportunity to enter them in your free session giveaway.

Story #2 – Entry by Melanie Chapman

I would like to submit Juen and Darrell Whitworth. They got married the first paycheck out of high school back in 1952. They are celebrating their 60th Anniversary this August. They have just endured the most grueling and devastating 9 months of their marriage. Last fall the large wildfire in Bastrop, Texas destroyed the log retirement home that my father built from the ground up. They lost EVERYTHING. A lifetime of cherished memories gone in an instant. One week later Darrell was diagnosed with a brain tumor. He now suffers from seizures several times a day and will eventually have to have brain surgery. They had to move into a 30 year old run-down mobile home and gather up donations from generous family, friends and members of the community. The insurance company is refusing to pay and they cannot re-build. Through it all they have taken things one day at a time and grown stronger and more in love. A photograph of them, 60 years together, heads held high after all they have endured… would be a deeply meaningful symbol for not only them, but for their 6 children, their wives and their 30 + grandchildren and great-grandchildren. They truly deserve it!

Story #3 – Entry by Meredith Breinholt

So I have a family that instantly came to mind when I saw your post for the free photo session nominations. They have never had the time to have their photos made since they have had so much on their plates, they are a pretty amazing family in many different ways.Kevin and Cindy Trotman. They actually live the next street over from me. Cindy is one of the first two people who introduced themselves to me when we first moved to the neighborhood. She is one of the kindest people I have met. She and Kevin have had so many struggles over the years. They were not able to have biological children of their own…they have lost 8 babies. A few years ago they were blessed with three beautiful girls who became theirs through adoption. The girls came from an abusive home and you can imagine the trauma that came with them.  K&C went from no kids to having three daughters all at once! Talk about taking on a huge task! :)All the while, their health was a serious issue. Kevin has an arthritic disease called ankylosing spondylitis (I also have this) and can tell you it is awfully painful. Kevin’s disease is much more progressed than mine and causes him lots of pain. He has gone through a LOT because of this. Cindy has rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and I believe a few other fairly traumatic conditions. Right around the time they were getting the girls, Cindy got an infection in her leg. It led to numerous hospitalizations and 47 surgeries on her leg to date. Because of this, Cindy walks with a crutch and a pain “lollipop” in her mouth wherever she goes because of the pain she still experiences from this infection she had in her leg. I believe there is still work that needs  to be done on her leg, she just hasn’t had time to do it. She is so busy trying to give her girls a good life.  In the very near future, she will be having major dental surgery to repair and replace her teeth that have been damaged from her pain pop and the toll that her health issues have taken on her mouth. The Trotmans recently moved from their two story to a one story house, the stairs were too much for K&C. On top of all their health issues, their girls have a fair share too. One of the girls has a very serious heart problem and is on a transplant list, she has been  in the hospital numerous times. Cindy home schools because of this. She also coaches cheer leading!  Anyway, I could go on and on but you get the picture. They have a ridiculous amount of challenges but still try to keep a good attitude and be optimistic. I can honestly say that i have never heard them complain! Like I said, Cindy is a gem. Kevin just keeps plugging along despite his pain, well both of them do that! 😉 And they are trying to make a good life for these girls who came from such a horrible place. They inspire me as a parent, as a community member, and especially as a person! I am continually amazed by the things they are doing and I know they would love the opportunity to have a family picture made to capture them with their beautiful girls! 🙂

Story #4 – Entry by Karen Britton

I want to nominate Rachelle Wansley.  I met her a family reunion.  Her warmth was comforting; her honest way of talking about herself and her trials put me at ease about anything I could be going through.  I was going through chemo. She said both her parents had gone cancer and chemo.  She lost her father. Rachelle has had Multiple Sclerosis for 15 years and Addison’s disease which prevents her from sleeping, sometimes inducing seizures.  At our next reunion she told me she’d shave her hair and give it to me.  I would have gladly taken her beautiful hair but she deserved it so much more than I.

The next year we missed Rachelle due to a coma.  She pulled out of it and made a full recovery with an appearance at our reunion this year.  She’s  divorced recently and continues to raise her two children alone.  They are truly blessed to have a mom with so much strength and faith.  I think they would be happy to have a new family photo.

Story #5 – By Karen Britton

I would like to nominate my grandmother Dorothy Waldrop for a photo shoot.  She is my American Idol.  She has been the best grandmother a child could have.  Dorothy loves people and is always a friend to those she meets.  She has lived for 92 years and lost her husband about 5 years ago.  Together their lives have inspired many people in the panhandle of Texas with their hard work and service.  She has the talent of handiwork and has made many beautiful things.

Dorothy lost her vision when she was about 70 years old but continued to can fruit from her garden, cook, and take care of her husband.  She always has the best attitude and a kind word for you.  Recently she has been hospitalized several times.  As I watch her struggle and fight to gain her strength back she is an inspiration to everyone around her. She is my most important hero.

A post is not complete without a photo. 🙂


87 thoughts on “CLOSED VOTING HAS ENDED! Giving Back – Cast your Vote so a Deserving Family can WIN a FREE session!!

  1. I vote for story #1 and story #3, love both of them so much. So hard because so many families are deserving. You are blessing so many with holding this giveaway Amanda! Thank you for sharing your talent with the world and helping capture memories!

  2. I vote for Story #1. Having a little baby change so much on a daily basis, I think it would be awesome for this mommy to have some beautiful pictures of her baby now that she is finally home<3

  3. I would like to add to story #1 Tara Grace is a surviving triplet. Her identical twin brothers passed before they were born. My daughter Tara’s mommy had a severly infected gallbladder and had to have it removed while pregnant. Tara was passing away and had to be delivered 1 month later. Dr’s told us she would not live but we spent every day all day at her bedside singing, talking, laying our hands on her praying and she has overcome all of her medical issues even getting her trach out and breathing on her own a year ago. All except learning to eat by mouth… She goes for inpatient for 5 weeks in October to the hospital to learn to eat we pray it works! She is perfect and has no cognitive problems! We have been through 3 home nursing companies and still have strangers in our home it has been tough. My daughter never really does anything for herself so this would be a nice reward for her!
    Thanks Tara’s Nonni

  4. Thank you for adding this Christine, I could never fully describe everything you and your family have been through. I wasnt sure how much detail you were comfortable with me sharing. I just know you are a special family to have overcome so much with sweet Tara!

  5. I vote # 1! We have been on Team Tara from almost the very start! I also had a micro-preemie…..and like Tara….my miracle! She just turned 8 a few months ago and you would NEVER know she was a preemie! If anyone deserves this it is definately Cassie and Tara!

  6. # 1 is my vote! My wife met Tara’s family over the internet not long after she was born…..Team Tara is a very familiar phrase in our house!

  7. I am voting for story #2 because I couldn’t imagine losing everything after 60 years together. They need a new photo of the two of them.

  8. Pingback: GIVING BACK CONTEST WINNER ANNOUNCED! | Creative Photography by Amanda

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