30A Photography Education & Healthy Living » 30A editorial photographer inspiring women to savor life through learning about photography and healthy living. Serving 30A & Panama City Beach, Florida.

Spring has sprung here in Florida and we’ve been hard at work planting in our garden.  We find that when we plant our own food we not only have a lot of fun, but gain a real appreciation for where our food comes from.


Half the fun of gardening is planning out what we want to grow and busting out all the colorful garden tools.

The kids always love to lend a helping hand and take any opportunity to sow their own seeds.


We have tried a variety of different garden types, but what we currently use is a series of several raised-bed, square-foot gardens.  We constructed them out of cedar and now are up to four beds – three 4×4′ gardens and one 12×3′ bed.






My favorite thing is watching everyone work hard and get dirty. Well, mostly everyone…


And, of course, no garden is complete without a gnome!  We’re looking forward to another season of fresh veg and can’t wait to watch our little seeds grow!

– Holly




Back in fifth grade, I did a research paper on chemicals in cosmetics – despite not actually wearing any makeup, somehow the topic was something I was already concerned about… I remember receiving hand-written letters from executives at big cosmetics companies along with pamphlets and vague ingredient lists and being grossed out by all the chemicals. This stuck with me, and once I graduated from college and found myself having to fix myself up more I was able to stay true to my younger self. I researched cosmetics and household products, and back before blogging was even a thing I started a blog to share my findings with others. But then babies and life happened and I found myself grabbing the cheapest/easiest skincare option I could find…
A few months ago I looked in the mirror and decided it was time to pick back up my old research. I tried out a whole bunch of skincare lines and finally decided to give up on finding something that a) works with my painfully sensitive skin b) isn’t full of harsh chemicals and c) won’t break the bank. Admittedly, I had completely written off any and all products sold directly (“because, if it’s that good why wouldn’t they sell it in the store???”). Fortunately, I remembered that there was this one company with a social conscience I’d heard about but not looked into- Beautycounter. So, one wild Friday night I dug into researching the ingredients used in their product line for safety and sustainability so I could come to my own conclusions. And boy, was I pleasantly surprised! After trying it out for a few months, my whole family is addicted. Not only are the products top-of-the-line, but they are completely transparent about their ingredients – so much so that my super-allergic preschooler has not only tried their line but begs to use it. (He says “It makes my skin feel so good!”) 


For the food allergy parents, just a heads up – there ARE a few products that contain almond oil. However, they are so completely transparent about their ingredients that you know which ones to avoid.  I’m not looking to make money off this –  I just wanted to share because when I find something I truly believe in I can’t help but be overly enthusiastic. My hope is that I can encourage a few of you to research the products you use every day, so in the end you and your family can be safer and healthier!

If you’d love to learn more about Beautycounter products and their mission, be sure to check out their site.  If you’d like to schedule a social and win free goodies, leave me a comment and we’ll chat!

– Holly

Howdy friends! We’ve been taking a hiatus from blogging because… life. We have lots of things planned to post about, but figured we would kick it off with this VERY important post to make sure everyone knows that there has been an Epi-Pen recall! The recall is a “voluntary recall” of 13 lots of Mylan’s EpiPen and EpiPen Jr auto-injectors.

According to the FDA, “While the number of reported failures is small, EpiPen products that potentially contain a defective part are being recalled because of the potential for life-threatening risk if a severe allergic reaction goes untreated.”

As the parent of a child whose life has depending on administration of epinephrine, this is clearly concerning!  The identified batches are:

Product/Dosage NDC Number Lot Number Expiration Date
EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg 49502-501-02 5GN767 April 2017
EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg 49502-501-02 5GN773 April 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 5GM631 April 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 5GM640 April 2017
EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg 49502-501-02 6GN215 September 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM082 September 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM072 September 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM081 September 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM088 October 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM199 October 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM091 October 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM198 October 2017
EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 49502-500-02 6GM087 October 2017

For full information on the recall, be sure to check out the FDA’s recall page here.

Stay safe, friends!

  • Holly


There is something special about slowing down, turning off all distractions, and opening your heart to God. As a mom/wife/daughter/employee/business owner/obnoxious over-achiever, that’s something that I’ve struggled to learn. Turning off. Stepping away. Saying no to the gigantic, never-ending to-do list and yes to taking care of myself. The kitchen sink will always be overflowing with dishes… What my family needs is my heart, and I’ve learned I can only do that when my own body and soul are nourished. 

This year has been a whirlwind, and I’ve raised my voice and found tears streaming down my face more than I’m proud of. I’ve gotten angry at God and questioned why I keep being faced with such immense challenges. Just over a year ago my mom ended up on life-support for a week after a “routine surgery” went south. My own health was failing and I couldn’t get answers.  In the midst of it, I heard a voice from God say “It’s not done.”  I struggled with the message and questioned my own sanity, but no less than 15 minutes later I suffered a delayed anaphylactic reaction that left me hospitalized and pondering my own mortality.  Ultimately, the experience led to answers that never would have happened if I hadn’t been in the exact right place at the right time.  The Dr’s told me my health struggles would be lifelong and that there’s a high disability potential – I told them that’s not an option. I decided the only option was to commit to doing whatever it takes to get my life on track, and have done so with a fresh perspective. I’ve worked hard to integrate the pieces of my old self that nourished me most, focusing more on emotional and physical core strength and getting back to surfing as much as possible.  The work I know I need to do is not yet done, but forcing myself to checkout and tune in to nature more is what helps me clear my head and create space for God. And that’s a pretty good place to start.

 – Holly

Pictures and songs float through my head- for every moment in life there’s a soundtrack that accompanies it, no matter whether it’s the grandest of days or the (seemingly) most insignificant of moments. Words and images have the power to heal and bring you back to the place you were in life. Whether it’s dancing in the family room with your BFFs to Sir-Mix-a-Lot, the moment you figured out the (too cute and smart for his own good) boy would only serve to mess with your head, the afternoon spent on the beach drinking mimosas with a friend that knows your heart or the sweet (and moderately embarrassing) moment of your first kiss… Name a memory and I can sing you a tune.

Clearly, I take my music selections seriously…   One could say that I’m a little obsessed with finding the perfect tune for the time. While editing Kate and Brendan’s wedding I had one particular tune stuck in my head: “Your love is like radiant diamonds, bursting inside us we cannot contain. Your love will surely come find us like blazing wildfires singing your name.

And so with much ado and a wee bit of dramatic flair, I am happy to bring you a hot new blog post, complete with the perfect tune. So feel free to crank up this song in the background and let your heart be moved.


– Holly




Here are just a few of the many vendors that made this day possible:

Ceremony venue: St. Johns Catholic Church

Reception venue: Private Residence, Panama City Beach, FL

Wedding planner: Shelby Peaden Events

Photography: Holly Gardner Photography

Florist: Myrtie Blue

Cake Artist: Confections on the Coast

Officiant: Fr. Richard Walsh

Cinematography: Sixpence Productions

Makeup & Hair: Deana Kale

Dress Designer: Amsale

Musical Entertainment: Atlanta Pleasure Band and Rock the House