When I think back on the last 15 years of Navy life, there has been one constant in my life – Kimberly. And today she turns 40. Young AF. 40 and Fabulous. Whatever you want to call it, she’s just awesome. I very clearly remember the day we met. And if you have the pleasure of knowing Kimberly – there are a few things that will strike you right away 1) she has amazing hair and 2) her eye makeup is killer. But above that, she has this warmth and kindness that exudes her and you feel like you’ve know her forever. As a young Navy wife, navigating the ins about outs of things can be challenging. I am so glad I had her those early years to help guide and support me – and each other! – because let’s face it, Navy life can really suck sometimes.
We’ve had some great times together, and not so great. Because that’s life. We had the summer of 2006 that will go down as the most epic summer ever. We’ve been through deployments and moves. Through being adults and your parents getting divorced. Losing loved ones. Being pregnant together. Highs and lows of married life. Sex and the City Marathons. Stockdale you bitch – inside joke but I couldn’t resist. Late nights and hungover mornings. Crocheting a million scarves. Road trips and amazing girls weekends. Being moms and wondering why 11 year old boys are so obsessed with Fort Night. Being grown up military spouses and figuring out what that’s all about. No matter what or no matter the miles that have separated us, we’ve always had each other. For that I am eternally grateful.
Kimberly is a friend everyone wishes they had. She’s the drop everything and rush over with a six pack of beer and make sure you are ok kind of friend . She makes the most AMAZING salsa. And pizza. And cookies. And margaritas. Pretty much everything she touches is the best you’ve ever had.
So about 2 years ago an idea hit me and it was for Kimberly’s 40th birthday. Now one other thing you may not know about Kimberly – she LOVES having pictures taken. And they aren’t your run of the mill photo shoots. I’m talking taking a sofa onto the beach and then jumping into the bay while your photographer (ME!) shoots from a boat. Or dressing up in your Elvis Best and standing in the middle of Beale St in Downtown Memphis. And don’t get me started on her Homecoming dresses. To. Die. For. Her outfit selections are alway impeccable. And if you’ve have the pleasure of photographing her gorgeous family you know JUST what I’m talking about! So back to my idea….it had to be epic. With the last name McQueen….something to do with a Queen…..cake…..extravagance….I think you may see where I am going with this. But first we wanted to have a little fun with some loud colors and a Young AF shirt. We landed on the NEON District in Norfolk as our first location and it was perfect.
And on to the grand finale!! Our favorite part!! We spent a chilly morning at The Hermitage with a gorgeous chair from Mad Hatter Vintage and pretended to be royalty! Yes the dress belongs to Kimberly. All I know is she got it online 🙂
Kimberly McQueen, I hope you have the BEST 40th birthday anyone has ever had! I love you so much and am so thankful for you!! Now go have some cake and champagne 🙂