My Family Adventure | 2018 Throwback #5

My Family Adventure | 2018 Throwback #5

6,690 miles in 18.5 days with 3 kids 7 & under in a 30′ bus with a 22′ trailer attached, across 4 time zones and 19 states; this past summer our family road trip took us from our home in Eastern Pennsylvania to the Pacific. 

“You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you, as you are to them.” –Desmond Tutu

It was our 2018 epic family adventure. It was quality time spent with each other and with dear friends and family along the way. It was a memory we will never forget!

Join us in the travelling, the awesome scenery and the joy of the journey through the photos below.


This post is the fifth in a 5 part series: Throwback to 2018.

Check out the other posts in this series:

#1 Riley’s Remission Party!

#2 Twins!

#3 Kids on the Farm

#4 Beautiful People

Getting ready to go! Test drive and then loading up all the snow plow and jeep parts that my husband, Jeen, brought to deliver along the way. Bonus, the deliveries helped cover all the trip expenses! 

getting ready for road trip

Excited to start out, and then we slowed down. 15 minutes into our trip we were sitting in a stop-and-go line of traffic.

traffic on 78 in berks county

All three of our kids were ready to be on the road.

modified bus for road trip

We tracked our trip as we went with a marker line trailing across a map that my sister gifted us before we left. 

 road trip map for family road trip 

Painted Desert Panorama!

panoramic photo of the painted desert family portrait at national park foliage in painted desert

The grandness of the Grand Canyon is something you can only really appreciate in person. See if you can spot Jeen and the kids in this first photo. grand canyon family photos grand canyon family photos grand canyon grand canyon family photos with siblings grand canyon scenery

Here is the inside of the bus and everyone’s “bedrooms”

bus set up for a road trip

Ella’s bedroom! Complete with stuffies and her pink pillow (our “kitchen” is at left – storage drawers held snacks, utensils, napkins and other supplies)bed for child in a bus

Evan was often found upside-down, whether on his bed or hanging from the bars.

bus in a bed for a child to sleep on

At left is Nyah’s “bedroom” occupied by her dolly. Moving a set of seat backs up against the row behind made the perfect sized spot to cradle her while she slept.

 bus modified for family road trip

Slide Rock State Park in AZ! We highly recommend checking out these natural water slides if you ever get the chance.

slide rock state park in az

family bus trip stop in azmonochromatic image of boot in dirt  

Luxurious road tripping! My sister and I drove across America when we were in high school, and let me tell you, the level of on-the-road luxuries has gone up a few notches since then. Smartphones (enough said) are only part of the equation. There is also Pilot’s recently renovated travel stops. Not only are the shower rooms clean and  well-equipped, but they also have ground-on-demand coffee machines that allow you to choose your desired roast and brew settings!road trip luxuries at pilotnicest bathrooms in america

I also came up with a system for making coffee on the go.

    making coffee on a bus trip   

So many beautiful western skies to enjoy out the big windows of the bus.

scenic photo in usafamily road trip scenery  western skies road trip road signs

While visiting my grandmother in Irvine, we were struck by the yellow color lingering in the air. It was a time in August when wildfires were looming to the East and North. The fire retardant being used to fight the fires cast an eerie yellow glow that could be seen everywhere as though you were walking in a photograph edited with vintage tones.

california fires looming over irvine ca

We made it to the Pacific! Our kids loved the time of swimming!

family road trip to the pacific ocean  

Driving up the beautiful Pacific highway – we were enjoying the views, but for Evan it was just a reminder of the fun he had swimming – he wanted to stop every time the ocean came into view.

driver in rear view mirror west coast  

Fairytaletown in Sacramento, CA was a fun stop for the kids and I while Jeen drove on to check out a famous Jeep junkyard.

fairytaletown in sacramento california tunnel fairytaletown in sacramento california train fairytaletown in sacramento california hippo

The Capitol of CA! Governors’ unique portraits (they get to choose their  artist), Ella dancing in the Capitol building, and a stop in a chocolate shop. 

 sacramento capital building and governor portraitssacramento sights 

More scenes from the day-to-day inside the bus. 

activities on bus trip around america

Our dining table – used for eating and games.

dining table homemade in a bus

Fast asleep in their rooms 🙂

kids beds in modified bus for road trip  

With all the deliveries dropped off and an empty trailer, it was time to pick up the vintage golden eagle jeep Jeen bought. It was over 100 degrees the day he loaded it.

bus pulling jeep truck portraits of children chiaroscuro bus pulling jeep truck at sunset

We noticed a bunch of words and names written with lava rock on the side of the road, so we stopped to leave our mark.

rocks at side of road stork rocks

Along the “loneliest road in America” one night, we came across this gem of a stop.decaying vehicles on loneliest road in america lonliest road in america  scenic views childrens portraits natural and authentic childrens portrait with genuine emotion

We pulled into Arches National Park in Moab, Utah when it was pitch black. We drove in the park road not being able to see the sites around us. We laid in the parking lot watching the shooting stars, and then woke up the next morning to see we had parked next to incredible views of the park’s red rocks.

bus pulling jeep truck in utah

Here is Jeen driving through Arches, now his favorite scenery in America.

driver in bus arches national park young boy walking at arches national park sunlight bursting through arch in utah national park roadtrip bus and jeep in arches national park arches national park scenic photograph boy walking in national park

dad with daughter at arches national park girl rock climbing at arches national park 

In the cool shade of the surrounding rocks, we spent a long time in this soft, red sand.

girls in sand at arches national park girls in sand at arches national park

Evan grabbed the camera a few times throughout the trip 🙂

adventurous couple at arches national park  

Succulent favors from the last stop on our road trip –  a gorgeous family wedding we attended in Denver, CO.succulent wedding favors family photos at wedding

The trip summary!

road trip mileage log

It was epic! And we even managed to get a family portrait along the way, which made hauling the tripod and all the camera gear worth it.

family portrait on road trip

We returned home to a garden growing like crazy!

garden growing rapidly

And thanks to getting this blog post ready, I gathered and sorted all the photos from our trip (finally!)…now to design a printed book! (oh, and another number to add to the list at the beginning of this post…ONE driver because I did not get my CDL in time – thanks to my hubby Jeen for all the hours behind the steering wheel).


Jennifer Stork
"I believe every family's story is worth cherishing."

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Beautiful People | 2018 Throwback #4

Beautiful People | 2018 Throwback #4

I enjoy people. There are 7.7 billion people in the world, but only 1 you! One, single, individual YOU, uniquely created. I love to capture faces, because a face is a window to the individual story of a person who is not exactly like anyone else. 

In 2018, we launched BERKS HEADSHOTS – a co-brand that serves individuals and companies who simply need to update their chest-up headshots. On the surface, it may seem like a mundane job to photograph headshots compared to the grandeur of weddings or the touching moments of portrait sessions.

Yes, Berks Headshots is helping to fill a simple need in our image-driven world – to show what someone looks like. But behind the scenes…it is more than that to me. It is the art and joy of peering into the uniqueness of individuals and producing an image for them that says “this is the one and only, valuable, wonderful you.”

That’s why I titled this blog post “Beautiful People.” I believe every person is valuable; the beauty I see in every face goes deeper than physical features – it is about the story behind that individual and the essence of who they are.

I will end this post with a special thanks to two beautiful people – my mom of Weixler Consulting who is my featured headshot model, and Crystal Merrick who is behind all the design for Berks Headshots, including the website and logo.

This post is the fourth in a 5 part series: Throwback to 2018.

Follow Along! Scroll below to subscribe to the blog and get the next posts sent straight to your inbox.

See other posts in this series:

#1 Riley’s Remission Party!

#2 Twins!

#3 Kids on the Farm

Coming Soon:

#5 My Family Adventure



gray background headshot

headshot of woman with half covered eyemodern headshots for young adults woman with smile black background headshot

headshot with blue tie headshot with red lipstickvertical headshot with red lipstick headshot with red tie  headshot of professional woman consulting business headshot of gray haired man with glasseswoman on white headshotshort hair style 2019

photo of headshot studio setup

Jennifer Stork
"I believe every family's story is worth cherishing."

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Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

2015 was a year of monumental progress in the studio. By the end of the year, it was ready for our first in-studio Christmas Mini Session Event! We have also had a blast hosting clients in our new space for their maternity, newborn, engagement, senior and family sessions – along with wedding consultations and photo reveal appointments.

We still do many sessions on-location, but with the scenic grounds surrounding our studio, and the convenience of the dressing room inside, many clients choose to come here for their whole experience! Some choose all outdoor photos, some choose all indoor studio shots, and some choose a combination of both. We love the variety we are able to offer!

We have dreamed about this space for years – we want clients to get the feeling – as soon as they walk in – that this is a place where their story is important, where it is going to be celebrated. That this is a place where they will make the most of capturing their moments and bringing the images into their lives in a meaningful way.

A big THANK YOU to all our clients who have made the trek to our location! The studio is attached to Jennifer Stork’s home on a countryside hilltop in Bernville, PA. The driveway winds a half mile uphill. It is a distance from many of the people we work with, so we are honored to have our clients come to us for their photo experience.

We are looking forward to all that is yet to happen here…  The finishing details that are yet to be put on the studio, all the people we will get to meet and the stories we will tell.

If you haven’t been here – we would love to have you visit! We are open for business, contact us if you want to set up an appointment. Please check back for info on our official grand opening. We still have some big ideas in mind before that time comes – but we will be putting it together piece by piece and hope to be ready for the party by the end of this upcoming summer – 2017.

And without further adieu…please enjoy this visual tour of the Life Story Photography studio!

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

The meeting table in our studio is one of our favorite features

it is where we share hot drinks while getting to know people and their stories.  It is where we get to see smiles and tears as our clients see their images for the first time and realize they will have these moments forever. It is where we meet as a team and talk about how we can work together to make your experience great.

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Samples – we stock samples of everything so you can see and touch the products we can create for you

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Newborn props and backgrounds – we help stylize your session!

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

The Dressing Room – our pretty place – complete with chandeliers and a baby changing station 🙂

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA

Wedding and Newborn Photo Studio Berks County PA


BEFORE AND AFTER – because who doesn’t love to look at that?

Before and After – the Life Story Photography meeting table

before and after photography studio photos

Before and After – props and backgrounds storage

before and after photography studio photos

Before and After – the reception area

before and after photography studio photos

Before and After – the dressing table

before and after photography studio photos

And a few more pictures – the studio in action

Note from Jennifer Stork: When our family’s newest addition – Nyah Rose- arrived on Valentine’s Day, I was so grateful to have the studio ready to use for her newborn photos!  You can see more of the photos from this session here (because I am a mom and I love to share photos of my babies!) 

Newborn photography studio near Reading PA

Newborn Photographer near Reading PA

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