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Introducing the Newest APW Staffer: Maddie!


by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

Introducing the Newest APW Staffer: Maddie! | A Practical Wedding

Two weeks ago, when I told you that APW editor Lauren was spreading her wings and leaving APW, I promised that as sad as you were to see Lauren go, you would be equally excited about her replacement. So today I’m absolutely thrilled to announce the newest APW staffer: Submissions Editor Maddie Eisenhart! Maddie will be back a little later this morning with her own Wedding Graduates Return post, but first, some facts.

Maddie has been reading APW since month two (that’s all the way back in May 2008) and has been popping up on the site for years (Fact: it took me awhile to realize Maddie was all the same… Maddie. I thought we just had a bunch of awesome readers named Maddie because I am slow). Here is a quick recap of Maddie and APW:

  • Maddie shares her lazy girl wedding. She says, “Just when I feel like maybe I don’t belong in the wedding blog community because my wedding didn’t include enough details and pretty things (not a type A), you go and post about lazy, yet blogworthy weddings. Because, here’s the thing. We’re uber lazy.” (Hint: Maddie is lazy about wedding details, not about busting her ass to make her life awesome. Just sayn’.)
  • Maddie shares her ridiculous proposal story, “On the way to the beach so that he could propose after everyone had themselves convinced we were getting engaged but I didn’t believe them because the boy told me we weren’t and I believed him because our relationship is built on honesty and trust. Me: I’m glad that you’re not proposing to me today anyway. Because I REALLY don’t want to have to change my status on Facebook. Boy: Seriously?! That’s the stupidest f*cking thing I’ve ever heard.
  • Maddie pops up in my bridesmaid compendium, as the lady who wanted her wedding party to look like an Erykah Badu music video. Rad.
  • After some months of harassment on my part, Maddie and her partner Monica launch their brand new photography business, Hart & Sol Photography on APW.
  • Maddie writes about figuring out the process of getting married with a divorced family (or as she puts it, having a family rainbow, not a family tree). She says, “While other kids grew up with two parents who arrived at parties together and stayed in the same hotel room for out-of-town competitions, mine were the kind that came in separate cars, maybe didn’t speak to each other at the party, and yet still would be introduced as ‘My family (exclamation point, pause, jazz hands)’ to inquiring parents of friends.
  • Maddie and Monica, now the duo behind the super successful Hart & Sol Photography, write a love letter to APW. Maddie says, “The difference between APW clients and non-APW clients, is that you guys really let us in. There’s no veil here. For one, I’ve seen more APW boobs that I know what to do with. So to thank the community, we’d like to renew our promise to treat your wedding like it is the mother effing boss.”
  • I finally meet Maddie in New York, where she bakes the crazy ombre pink cakes for Yay New York. She is as excellent and hilarious as imagined.
  • And now… Maddie joins the APW staff. I know. I know. Awesome.

How did it happen? Well, the week I was getting my head around hiring a new staffer, Maddie emailed me to tell me she was moving to the San Francisco area. I knew I was looking for someone who A) knew the APW community like the back of their hand, B) loved weddings so much that reading Wedding Grad posts still made them cry sometimes, C) could write, D) was funny, E) was local. And I knew Maddie was already A-D, and suddenly she was local too? RIGHT AT THE SECOND I WAS HIRING? Well, if that’s not fate, I don’t know what is. So I asked her if she wanted the job, and it turned out she’d had a secret plan to work for APW for years. Talk about fate, right?

I asked Maddie to write about joining the staff, and she said this:

I’ve been reading APW since just about the very beginning, and I became fan girl almost instantaneously. It sounds melodramatic, but APW kind of changed my life. As someone who grew up without any real married role models (my parents and my parents’ parents are all divorced), APW provided the communal chorus that I so very much needed in order to find comfort in the commitment I was making to my now husband. And I still feel this way about APW. To this day, almost all of my married friends are ones I’ve made through this community, either as a reader or a sponsor.

Now Meg doesn’t know this, but I’ve been plotting my eventual membership on the APW staff since they announced Alyssa as the APW columns editor.* I think that for a wedding blog to still be relevant to me two years into my marriage speaks volumes of the content this site puts out. I’m really just excited to be part of that—to read APW stories, to help Meg bring readers content that matters, and frankly to alleviate enough of Meg’s workload so that she can bring us the next big thing.

*This is not an embellishment. I heard APW was hiring and started fantasizing what my future position could be.

And here is the kicker. Last week, Maddie sent me her bio for the site. The next morning I woke up and turned to David eyes wide. “Oh my god,” I said, “Maddie went to NYU, worked in the entertainment industry in New York, decided she hated it and quit, got a corporate job that paid her well but killed her soul a little, started her own business, and is moving from the New York City area to the San Francisco area for her husband’s career. She’s also really funny. Does this sound like anyone you know? Shit. I THINK I JUST HIRED FIVE YEARS YOUNGER ME, and I didn’t even realize it.”

And then my husband laughed at me. The joke is on me kids, and that makes you a really lucky bunch.

So, welcome Maddie, we can’t wait to see what magic you make here!

Photo: Hart & Sol Photo

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA with her husband and son. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit MegKeene.com.

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  • http://laurenmcglynnphotography.com Lauren

    Hell. YES. Go Maddie! <3

  • http://jolynn.wordpress.com Jo

    Yay Maddie!!!

  • Maura

    What a win for apw and San Fran! East coast will miss you maddie!

  • http://poppiesandicecream.blogspot.com Amanda

    Oh Maddie, great to have you here. I want to say two things :
    1. In answer to this : “And I knew Maddie was already A-D, and suddenly she was local too? RIGHT AT THE SECOND I WAS HIRING? Well, if that’s not fate, I don’t know what is. So I asked her if she wanted the job, and it turned out she’d had a secret plan to work for APW for years. Talk about fate, right?”.
    Talk about synchronicity, I just wrote about how crazy amazing incredible this kind of thing happening around us is. and
    2. You describe what APW means to all of us so well, Maddie, I mean this part:
    “APW provided the communal chorus that I so very much needed in order to find comfort in the commitment I was making to my now husband…..
    I think that for a wedding blog to still be relevant to me two years into my marriage speaks volumes of the content this site puts out.”-
    PS, wow, her bio really sounds similar to what you’ve told us about you Meg, talk about magic !

  • http://fromasmallstep.blogspot.com/ Kinzie Kangaroo

    YEAH YEAH YEAH YEAH YEAH!

  • http://www.thefamiliarwilderness.com Erin

    Maddie’s bio talks about how she likes to smile 90% of the time, and boy, this announcement is making me smile too. I don’t even know her, and I love her already. Lucky us :)

  • http://www.lillianandleonard.blogspot.com cara@lillianandleonard

    Hi Maddie! Congrats on your new job.

    Meg, if I move to San Francisco will you give me a job?

    • meg

      No because I need people that DON’T work for me!!!!! But you should move ok?

      • http://www.lillianandleonard.blogspot.com cara@lillianandleonard

        BUT I NEED A NEW JOB. (Um, don’t tell anyone I said that.)

        • http://www.lillianandleonard.blogspot.com cara@lillianandleonard

          And a work permit. Okay?

          • meg

            Well, a *work permit.* Let’s get on that! :)

  • http://elissarphotography.com Elissa

    I KNEW IT I KNEW IT I KNEW IT …. for once I actually knew something and was right about it! *mini gloat*

    Awesome!!!! Go Maddie go!!!

    • http://www.christytylerphotography.com Christy T

      Yeah, I still can’t believe I didn’t put 2 & 2 together?! Duh Christy. This seems so obvious now! ha ha

  • http://bettencourtchase.blogspot.com Helen

    Yaaaay Maddie! Congratulations! :)

  • http://jessicaschillingphotography.com Jessica Schilling

    Awesome and congrats! What a great addition!

  • Shiri

    Yay Maddie!

  • Nicole

    WOOT

  • http://justneedthisspace.wordpress.com d-day

    weeeeeeeeeee!!! you were not wrong about the excitement factor Meg!

    that is some crazy magic with the bio similarities and the kismet timing. what.

    • http://justneedthisspace.wordpress.com d-day

      oh ps I am totally challenging you to karaoke at my first opportunity. it’s happening.

    • http://poppiesandicecream.blogspot.com Amanda

      Exactly, crazy magic.

  • Amy

    Yay!! So excited to have Maddie join! Though I have to say I’m a bit bummed to lose one of the very cool local CT APW ladies :)

  • Laurel

    Huzzah for Maddie!

    And, p.s. why have I not looked at the bios before? You ladies are all hilarious.

  • Maddie

    Aw, guys, thank you so much for all the love! I think it goes without saying that the APW community has made me just a *little* bit braver about moving across the country.

    Promise I’ll do you proud. :)

    • http://pinchofthis.wordpress.com Jen

      you’re already in blue! You’re totally official!

  • http://pinchofthis.wordpress.com Jen

    First things first. I want to take you out for drinks and challenge you to karaoke. I predict an amazing evening.

    And then this:

    “As someone who grew up without any real married role models (my parents and my parents’ parents are all divorced), APW provided the communal chorus that I so very much needed in order to find comfort in the commitment I was making to my now husband.”

    That. This is me too. I feel so grateful every day to have stumbled into this community. And really? Wedding grad posts make my cry…and now apparently so do the announcements of new APW staff?! There is no hope for me.

  • http://emiliajanephotography.com Emilia

    Oh this makes me so happy!!!! Yay for Maddie!!!! And for APW :-D

  • http://dearhappenstance.wordpress.com Helen Elizabeth

    I’m here in my desk chair, celebrating my getting my move-it move-it on.

    I will have drinks in your honor tonight!

  • http://www.lovelyatyourside.com lovelyolivia

    I’m still so sad you’re moving…but this is so exciting!! Congrats!!

  • http://www.katiejanephoto.com Katie Jane

    This is such fantastic news!!!!!!!! Congratulations, Maddie! I couldn’t think of a better fit! I may have actually jumped up and down a little when I opened up my Reader this morning and saw the news.

    (But we at New York APW are still seriously bummed to lose you.)

  • http://www.3upadventures.com Beth

    Yay! Yay! Yayyyy!!!!

  • http://www.verhext.com tamerajane

    CONGRATS MADDIE! Though I -am- bummed that your trips to VT won’t be as frequent now that I moved from SF > VT. Hmmmph!!!

  • http://Averyhappyaccident.blogspot.com Alice

    This is really sad and pathetic and desperate… but I always read the bios of the people you hire and think gee whiz… I’d sure love a friend like that. And then I remember where I live (very far away from America and all my friends) and go off and cry in a puddle.

    • meg

      Don’t worry. We all have those moments, so I feel you. Hugs.

    • http://www.3upadventures.com Beth

      Alice,
      I feel the sad, pathetic, and desperate. Sometimes the choosing where to live gets in the way of choosing the type of friends you would like to have (aka all the APW women). I get mopy and sad every couple of weeks because I just want to have a glass of wine with someone who gets me and the things I care about.
      Beth

      P.S. If Forrest had his way we’d set out on a South American motorcycle tour for our honeymoon visiting you and Robin (http://tolombia.blogspot.com/) along the way. Not going to happen right now but someday…

  • http://www.christytylerphotography.com Christy T

    How on earth I did not put together that you would be the new staffer after learning a week or two ago that you were moving to CA?!?! Seriously this makes so much sense. So excited for you Maddie!! And for APW to have you!!! =D

    • meg

      Well, I mean, you make it sound like she’s moving to CA to become the APW staffer, when really it’s the other way around. Maybe one day I’ll hire people for jobs which allow them to move, but not yet!

      • http://www.christytylerphotography.com Christy T

        Oh no, I just meant that I knew she was moving to San Jose because Michael got a job in CA. And I knew you hired a new staffer (& that Maddie’s always wanted to work for APW)… so I feel like I should have put 2 & 2 together! :)

        But yes – I’m sure it’s not that far off when people will be moving for jobs with you Meg! :)

  • http://www.cheerleaderforlove.com Jenny, Cheerleader For Love

    This post makes me really happy and also want to cry! I’ve known Maddie since I was a sophomore in college. She told me to wear a miniskirt soon when I was trying to loose my freshman 50 (uh yea, guys that’s a thing). I will literally never forget that. Maddie and Monica shot my sister’s engagement, portrait session AND wedding. She was there while my big sister was getting ready for the wedding- that is a special, special moment and we could not have asked for a better photographer. I am tearing up now just thinking about it! I am so excited for you, Maddie! This is going to be so awesome.
    I’m just really glad we have one more shoot with you/day of hanging out before you go!

  • http://loveyourway.net lizzie

    congrats, maddie!

  • Maggie

    I didn’t realize Maddie was the same Madeline from all of those APW posts and bits and pieces! I liked her already, and like her even MORE after reading this and her bio… APW FTW!

    • meg

      Um, I didn’t realize for awhile either ;)

  • http://discerningdilettante.blogspot.com/ ka

    MADDIE!

  • http://thebestofintentions.tumblr.com/ Sarah

    Yay Maddie! Welcome and congrats! We’re all so happy to have you.

    And yay for Meg, too! I can’t imagine how wonderful it must feel to have given Lauren the kind of position that leads to the kind of opportunities where she can so graciously step away and follow her heart. And then to hire someone like Maddie as her replacement who has dreamed for so long of working with you and APW. I think the manner in which employees come and go says a lot about a company.

    And question?
    What happens to Heart & Sol Photo if you and Monica are on opposite coasts? Or did she come with?

    • meg

      They are going bi-coastal! So they will be shooting on both coasts. And they are staying on as APW sponsors, totally separate from Maddie’s job.

      • http://thebestofintentions.tumblr.com/ Sarah

        Ballin!

        That sounds perfect. Can we say WinWinWinWin!?!?!

        Seriously, y’all. I want pie charts on the joy and efficiency in the world before and after APW. I’m betting on some seriously stark contrast.

        • FawMo

          Um, my efficiency (in the eyes of my employer) has definitely gone down!

          But I get what you’re saying.

  • http://arduousblog.blogspot.com ruchi

    Man, I’m so dense I JUST realized that “Hart and Sol” is a play on Maddie and Monica’s last names. As a word nerd this makes me happy.

    Congrats Maddie!

  • http://www.hibouphoto.com kandise

    Ahhh!!! Excellent. Congrats all around! I should have figured this out.

  • http://www.bridesanstulle.com Sharon

    I *may* have seal-clapped with glee when I read the announcement this morning. Ahem. Yay for more awesome people in SF AND on the APW staff!!!

    • http://pinchofthis.wordpress.com Jen

      *seal clap with glee* is an awesome visual.

      reminds me of *kermit arm flail*

      • http://oversized-cliches.blogspot.com Zan

        This is certainly a *kermit arm flail* moment too.

        I see some APW choreography here…

  • http://www.alacartealbums.com Jane

    Woohoo!

  • Alyssa

    MADDIE!!!!

    That is all.

  • http://webecomeus.wordpress.com Caitlin

    Maddie FTW!!! :) well done, Meg.

  • Kelly

    True fact: Maddie was my RA at NYU and I’ve sort of had a girl crush on her ever since. I’m pre-engaged and have been secretly plotting to have her photograph my wedding – and now I’m devastated she’s moving to San Francisco and I’ll have to find someone else! Good luck Maddie – congrats on the baller new job and you’ll be missed around NYC. :o)