We spent his birthday lounging on the grass with a wicker picnic basket, a cozy blanket and enough french cheeses and fruits to go around. Watching the breeze softly move the willow trees surrounding us, we said all that we were grateful for, not being able to believe that we were here…in France. Thanks to Alex’s job and the fates, we are currently living in Strasbourg, France  for the next 2 years. We always dreamed this would happen, but never did we actually believe it would come to fruition. I suppose that is what happens when you ask for what you want: you dream and hope for it enough times that it actually becomes true. We watched the swans and all the pairs of birds swimming along the banks of the river, the miraculous fountain enough spraying water to create a rainbow. Just like in the movie Paris Can Wait, we were celebrating Alex’s 29th birthday picnicking along the banks of the river in France – we never thought this would happen now, did we?


A letter on his 29th…

To the man who always keeps my chin up, who always cleans up after my kitchen messes, who always cooks our delicious meals and supports, encourages, adores and inspires me, happy birthday. You are a human I aspire to be: silently confident, wise, unselfish, and endlessly compassionate. I’m always joking that you are Jesus incarnate, for you truly are the most selfless, giving and loving person I’ve come across in my life.

With your never-ending curiosity and inquisitive nature, your passion for Cyberpunk and languages, and your steadfast inner strength, you are the grounding force beneath my dream-scheming wings. You bring me to my center, you connect me with all that is. You constantly inspire your friends, your loved ones and your students. Your heart radiates with every new video game, blog and news article you pick up. And most importantly, your kindness is unsurmountable. 

You are the best. my darling, The best friend a girl could have. I adore you. Thank you for always protecting me. For picking up the radishes and olives and pencils that always seem to fall out of my bag. For getting my schedule in line and helping me make sure all my wild ideas are grounded. For loving me for all that I am – flaws and all – and always finding the light in every person and situation you find yourself in. You deserve the world, and I can’t tell enough how grateful I am to be part of your story in this life.m

I meant it when I said that “one lifetime could never be enough” with you. For 27,000 lifetimes could not even be enough. I am excited for all that this life will bring you, and all the exciting experiences and moments of human connection, love and joy your 29th year will give. 

Happy 29th year of living. May this year be filled with many roadtrips, good food, hard cider and hiking expeditions. May this year be a year you will never forget and always cherish.

Make your final year in your twenties the most magical one yet.


Happy 29th Birthday, Alex!

September 20, 2018


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I'm Helena! As a creative storyteller, I document magical moments through my lens and my pen. A lover of childhood, fairytales and natural light, I'm inspired to share the light around me. I'm the ultimate Disney nerd, and I'm obsessed with cats and expressing my love for the simple joys of slow, daily life.

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Helena Woods is a destination newborn and family photographer based in France and New England and travels worldwide. She is known for her natural light, modern classic, and emotive photography style.