Beach camping in Grayton

Khang has been working his video magic and has officially made his first guest appearance on WithJules today!

Pictures are great for memories, but gosh, so is video and it just takes it to a different level.

Here’s his video of us camping with our friends in Grayton last month.

Please watch in highest quality-preferably in 4K.

Enjoy!

So we started camping at Grayton State Beach Park about 5 years ago and have been trying to go back every year since.

The camping grounds are only a 8-10 minute bike ride to Seaside, which is THE cutest little beach town.

We love it so much. 

And we kinda got our buddies into it too. 

Our group went back this past April and it felt so good to be back.

I love exploring town on bikes, dancing and story-telling around the campfire, and falling asleep underneath the stars. 

I made reservations more than 6 months in advance and highly recommend sites #14, 16, and 18 since they have private access to Western Lake.

Or choosing sites #15 or 17 for direct pathways to the bathrooms.

We own all the camping gear needed so it only cost the 7 of us a total of $60 to rent the campsite for two nights. There are even electric outlets and hot showers. 

If that still seems too rough for you, then we met this sweet couple celebrating their anniversary with Fancy Camps and y’all, their set-up was the absolute cutest!

Complete with a queen size mattress, AC unit, and even twinkle lights hanging on their tent for a wonderful glamping experience.

We like to rent bikes since it’s easier to get to places. Parking sucks at Seaside. Big Fish delivers and picks up your bikes right at your campsite.

Thanks for reading and following along 

with us,

Jules+Khang.

PS. Special shout-out to our awesome friends, Francis+Tran, Augustine+Haley, Cecilia+Ramsey, and Brian+Ashley, who got us a badass drone as our wedding gift. 

We hope to share more videos in the future! 

Read more

A dream come true

It started off as just an idea.

At first you think to yourself “this could be really good”…and then reality sinks in and you realize it’s a total looong shot.

So it turns into a dream.

And you tuck it in the back of your mind for “someday”.

But it’s so close to your heart that you slowly and secretly plan it out in your head, even with all the doubt in the world that it’s never going to happen.

Then suddenly, you find yourself checking off “Step One” of “The Plan”…and it just keeps rolling.


I’m so happy to finally share my dream come true.

Those closest to me know my love for service.

I went on my first mission trip to Belize in May 2014. And I’ve been thinking of ways to go back ever since. Of course, life sank in and I was faced with limitations and little funds to finance more mission trips.

Somewhere along the way, my idea to “start a blog” crossed paths with my other idea to “go on another mission”.

A lightbulb went off.

“I could use money I profited from the blog to fund more mission trips!”

It was brilliant!

And then reality sank in again and I realized no one would ever pay me for my crafts or want to advertise on my blog. Even if they did, then it would take a really really long time to get to that point.

Two months.

Two months was how long it took for a old high school friend to reach out to me earlier this January because she read about my recent blogging adventures on photography.

She asked if I would be interested in photographing her wedding.

Her wedding.

Y’all, my mind was blown. Like what?! I doubted my capabilities and told Khang there was no way I could do it!

But God works in wonderfully mysterious ways…

–Keep in mind during the time that little dream of mine started creeping back and I found myself praying about it a lot.

So I realized that this crazy, cool, and scary opportunity was God working and answering my prayers.–

I quickly informed her of how inexperience I was, but if she was still interested then I would love the opportunity.

She could not have replied in a better way by saying “I think you’re so talented and I have all the faith”.

Faith. In me.

Gosh okay, so I quickly accepted the invitation.

I still feel beyond honored to be given the important task of photographing Katie and Jory’s wedding.

Thanks to them, my dream is coming true and I’ll always remember it started with them. And because of their sweet love for each other.

So here begins my new adventure, which I named a long time ago as “Helping Hands”.

My long-term goal and hope for this blog was always to use any profitable opportunities and setting it aside to fund my next mission trips, wherever and whenever that may be.

You can bet, I’ve already started those plans.

This is my reality now.

Ahhh! This is truly near and dear to me and I cannot thank my lucky stars enough that it’s all really happening.

I hope to have an update with Helping Hands in the near future.


I’m excited to share a few sneak peeks of J+K’s engagement session too!

Katie made sure to include Jory’s two precious daughters in the shoot.

I’m not going to lie, it made me really nervous because not only was it my first time shooting an engagement, but technically, family portraits too.

They did great!

I really enjoyed watching them interact together. They’re already such a sweet little family.

& I can’t wait till the wedding.

A special thank you thank you to all those who’ve been reading and following along,

with me,

Jules.

Read more

 

Lifewithjules: Looking back on 2016

 

As I was gathering up photos over the past year, I quickly realized there was no way I’d be able to post all of my memories with all my loved ones in 2016. Just too many favorites. So I decided to share only the ones of me, which were scarce since I was not alone during most of these adventures.

They show some of my highlights: Running my 4th half marathon, soaking up the sun in Miami and San Diego with my sweet sisters and friends, exploring breathtaking Switzerland and Italy, starting my little garden, SNAGGING MYSELF A HOT HUSBAND, and… launching WithJules!

These were big moments, but to be honest, every single damn day in 2016 was a good day. There were a few sad days when Khang was traveling for business, but my heart felt full.

“Living life to the fullest” rang true for the entire year and that’s why I’ll always remember twenty sixteen.

Channeling the positive vibes of 2016 is what I’ve been doing to motivate myself into starting 2017 off in the right direction. Praying my little heart can handle my plans for this Year of the Rooster.

One last thing to address: I have no intentions of changing careers.

Several people have asked since starting WithJules if I’m trying to become a professional blogger, photographer, calligrapher, wedding planner, and even gardener? Say Whaaa?!

Y’all have been nothing short of supportive and encouraging of what I’ve been sharing on here. I truly don’t know where she will take me… and I really love that part about all of this.

To be clear, I immensely enjoy being a dental hygienist.

[along with crafting the crap out of my hands]

Please understand I feel being a dental hygienist does not limit me on just one skill for the rest of my life. My profession doesn’t define my life.

I do.

And what I do during my lifetime is what’s important to me; it’s my passion.

I strive to live.

I have this intense desire to explore and feel as if I’m just getting started in discovering what life has to offer.

These are exciting times while I’m crafting this beautiful life of mine.

And I hope y’all have been enjoying the view so far,

along with me

Jules.

Read more

 

Phamtastic Together [Part 3]

Um yeah. I’ll just let most of the pictures explain.

We danced to “Oceans” by Hillsong and “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell.

My brother-in-law Lou recorded most of it and I’ll admit that I’ve watched it at least once a day so far. My favorite thing is actually watching my Mom’s reaction in the background. She was loving our first dance so much and looked so tickled with joy. Totally worth it.

I rushed straight to the restroom after our Father-Daughter dance, collapsed on a chair, and bawled my eyes out. Ngoc came in right after and asked if I was okay. I reassured her between my sobs that they were just “happy tears”. She smiled and said she understood because she knew how much my Daddy meant to me.  We asked everyone to “take a break” and sing along with us. The song was “I Want It That Way” by the Backstreet Boys. It was ahhhhmazing! I highly recommend stopping your wedding to belt out a favorite song.kj-803

kj-832


kj-820 kj-847 kj-763 Please note one of our groomsmen, who I shall not name, in the background. Now look at the photo below. kj-784 kj-773 kj-749kj-710kj-681

kj-674

kj-663 kj-672

And I would do it all over again. Best. Day. Ever. 

And crazy thing is life has only gotten better and better.

Read more

Phamtastic Together [Part 2]

This church is special to us. Khang actually asked me to be his girlfriend on the front steps of this church after mass on June 25, 2005. Who knew we’d be married 11 years later? Not us, we almost broke up during the first week of dating! It’s seen Khang and I flourish under its roof at many different stages in our relationship. In theory, our church and its community watched us grow. I remember the priest telling me once to practice “humility” in showing my affection with Khang and recall the nun bribing Khang to play the role as Joseph because I was Mary in a Christmas play. Oh those were the days.

I think some might feel nervous about having a church full of people focused on them the entire time, but I felt very comfortable up at that alter. I think it’s because Khang and I had been up there  together multiple times before.

The ceremony was a blur. However, during our profession of love there was a short, clear, and vivid moment when I looked up to see Khang’s eyes welling up with tears. It was only a glance and I later asked him about it. He admitted he was on the verge of tears and tried very hard to not blink so they wouldn’t fall down his face. Khang is not one for public emotion. So I was pretty happy to catch him when I did.

I finished my profession of love at around 4am the day of the wedding. Not because I procrastinated! I found the right words to say that morning…I guess all the emotions and realizations finally hit me. Here’s what I remember:

“Khang,

Words cannot describe how blessed I am to have found you before finding myself.

My heart has not been still since age 15 because of your crazy and beautiful love.

Growing up together has allowed our relationship to evolve. The truth is…our love…has and will always be changing.

Because our love isn’t just an emotion but a continuous thread of actions towards one common goal. I used to think this goal was to make you happy. But I was wrong.

I learned from Day One of Marriage Preparation that my job from this day on as your wife is to make sure you make it into heaven by the grace of God when the time comes.

Now this means many things, but I’m overwhelmed by the thought that I get to love you as much as God loves you.

I know it won’t be easy. Rest assured, I’m ready.

I’m ready to…

Help you grow,

Help you explore,

Help you discover.

Because with every passing day you my dearest only get better with age and with that so does our love and our relationship towards God.

And I know with His guidance,

our love knows no limits.

You are my greatest adventure Mr. Pham and I look forward to continuing this beautiful life we’ve created together thus far.”

Or something like that. Yes, all from memory. I’ll never forget it.

kj-314

After our ceremony, things just started rolling.

The bestest wedding party giving our very bestest attempt at “serious faces”. Naaaaaaailed it. Maybe. Still waiting on video.

But no joke, this group of beautiful people did an hour-long photo/videoshoot in summer weather. In formal attire. In June. In the South y’all.

kj-360

Up next was the reception. Or what I like to think…a series of epic dancing proportions.

Read more