My Heart in Peru

I love people. All kinds of people from all places and all walks of life and all shapes and all colors and all sizes. It's hard to pinpoint what I feel when I sit down to look at these photos from our recent trip to Peru a couple of weeks ago... But whatever the feeling is, it penetrates my heart deeply.  I see raw unfiltered emotion of joy, sorrow, hope, curiosity, and confidence. I see family. Most of all I see valuable children in the kingdom of God. 

Without going into a long backstory, my husband Jon and I chose to embark on a missions trip to Peru this summer (in the middle of peak summer season for photography -- I'm crazy, I know!) with ReImagine Worldwide. It was life changing and well worth every missed photoshoot. I love my dear clients here on 30a, but there's just something about getting out of my element here on the beach with sweet matching families on vacation and diving deep to tell a story for a very different kind of life. 

There's a beauty in it all and a thread of love that passes through each portrait, whether here on 30a or in Santa Rosita, Peru. 

As you view the portraits, my hope is that you can look past the faces to see a story revealed! Be inspired to LOVE like Jesus. 

Fantasia Lyons

P.S. A few of these photos were taken by various friends and Pedro in our group -- Thanks everyone!

This woman below in the black hat had the ultimate street style. She was stunning and had a very unique peace about her. 

Below: Michael breakdancing. He became one of my best buddies and he and I had a break-dance-off. Definitely one of the highlights of the trip! 

Below: The hubs with Cielo, one of the loves of our life that we will never forget. We hope to adopt a child someday. For now, we will just enjoy everyone elses. Her name means Heaven. We were able to give her a photo of us to keep and remember us until we are able to return again soon. Buddies!

No man's too big and bad to hold a child's hand. Go Robert! 

The community along with ReImagine threw a big going away celebration on our last day, complete with dancing, worship, and more dancing! 

Below: One of the girls came and grabbed my hand and I was forced to join the dance floor. Oh well, might as well shake it if I'm up here! ;) 

We did daily Bible studies and Brandon was one of the incredible leaders! 

Below: Saying goodbye to Michael. This big boy just walked up to me one day and grabbed my hand. I couldn't believe he was so sweet at his age and just needed a hand to hold and someone to see him. I saw his heart was BIG and just like that, we were friends! 

Below: This handsome dude REALLY wanted his photo taken. He didn't give me much to work with as far as a smile goes, but I'm happier with real-life than I am with a fake smile anyways.

Below: The first day we arrived in the community there was a big group waiting for us with signs and lots of hugs. This one was my favorite as it reads, "Welcom brother american foot." Whatever that means, we will take it! 

Below: Jon making best friends with Ener, another one of our buddies.

Below: One of MANY portraits of the families we were able to print out and give as gifts.

Below: The cutest thing you will ever see in your life. OMG!!! Stealin' hearts, this one.

Below: This cutie was the tickle monster. She tickled people 24/7. I almost got "tickled out" then had to rethink how much that might break her heart, so I just kept letting her tickle me and laughing every time. Oh the silly fun! :) 

Below: Shoes on a telephone pole and Jon and Jordy! He was also a great dance and tried teaching me some footwork. We will work on it more next year!

Below: Heart-stealer, Daisy. She was AWESOME!!! Her thumbs ups and infectious smiles would light up any room. We did each other's hair one day and the next day Jon braided hers. Impressive! 

Below: Daisy teaching us how to whistle super loudly. 

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