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Nataly Hernandez Photography


I love our story. Sure it’s messy, but it’s the story that got us here.

Our Story_0007.jpg

“I love our story. Sure it’s messy, but it’s the story that got us here.” – How I Met Your Mother

Well, here goes nothing! It’s my first officially personal post on my blog and that’s so freaking exciting and yet so intimidating at the very same time. Earlier this year I shared on Instagram that I felt as if God has placed it on my heart to share more about myself, my life, our story. It was something I felt God had been asking of me for quite some time but taking that step isn’t always easy. It’s scary to put yourself out there, ya know?

Being that it’s my first official personal blog post of hopefully many, I thought I would start with our story! How “MFD” came about and why it’s important to me. A lot of my couples and faithful followers from the beginning know where it was rooted from but not all know the full story. I recently incorporated it to the website for the first time. I can’t believe it’s taken this long to do so! Most people know the quicky version of how MFD Photo came about but here it is, the full version…


Our Story

David and I met when I was 12 years old and he was 13. We met in a cadet program, similar to an ROTC program… but better. We “dated” at that time. I say “dated” because we were kids. Literally, babies. It didn’t amount to much, my parents moved from LA County to Riverside County and a year later his parents moved from SoCal to Central CA. We kept in touched throughout the years on birthday’s but eventually lost touch for most of our teenage years. My senior year of High School we got back in touch thanks to a friend of ours who also was in our Junior High Cadet program. I had seriously dated someone in high school for several years who I had just broken up with and he was in a relationship at the time. We said our hello’s and caught up as if time had never passed by but it also wasn’t a good time in our lives for a whirlwind of feelings. Six months later we met up for a group dinner with a few other people and the rest is history.

Little did we know that it would only be the beginning of a crazy, messy (in a good way), roller coaster relationship. I think our families knew before we did that this time it was forever and were more excited for us than we were at the time. When I saw his family again they were quick to tell me that when we were young and had just met David used to tell them he was going to marry me one day. I thought it was pretty stinking cute and possibly one of my favorite moments.

David was in the Marine Corps when we started dating and while him being in the military was no surprise to me considering how we had met, it wasn’t easy. One year after we started dating he deployed overseas to Afghanistan for 8 months. When he returned from his first deployment he was told one week later when he was deploying again, which would be 6 months later. He deployed for almost 10 months that time and 5 of those months we had absolutely no communication. They would cut communication for many reasons, most reasons always unknown but months was definitely unheard of and not easy! After returning from his second deployment he was home a few months before he proposed during a hike after 4 and half years of dating. That’s how I knew he meant it because I was a sweaty gross mess. Four months later we were married and a month after that he deployed again to Afghanistan. We didn’t spend any of our first holidays as Husband and Wife together but it’s okay actually. Deployments taught us invaluable lessons.

To be honest, most people wouldn’t choose what we had and wouldn’t consider our relationship ideal but if you ask us if we would do it again I think we both would say we would! In a heartbeat. While it wasn’t easy, each deployment taught us huge lessons. We learned to trust each other unconditionally because if we didn’t we wouldn’t of made it. We learned patience, good Lord did we learn patience. Although, if you ask him today he will tell you I’m a very impatient person, ha! It was worth it in the end though. David served almost ten years in the Marine Corps and while it wasn’t easy it was also a wonderful time in our relationship. We learned so much from it not only in our relationship and marriage but about ourselves. It grew us as human beings in so many ways.


Through all of this is when MFD Photo was born. One of my favorite things to do when David was deployed was to send him care packages. I had a file on my desktop named “Memories For Dave”. It was full of photos, letters, memories and moments that I would send in those care packages or email to him when I could. The first photo on this blog post is actually a small stack of the letters and cards we exchanged to each other during those deployments. When I started this journey David was a huge part of it. He bought me first DSLR camera and was my “why” when I started taking pictures. Little did I know at the time it would turn into a business when I started a facebook page name “Memories For Dave”.

When I became a legal business I wanted to keep out story but to be totally honest I don’t like photography business’s with the words moments and memories in it so I abbreviated it! At the time we weren’t yet married and my maiden name was too hard to pronounce to name it after myself so I figured why not keep the story! It has been a good conversation starter with potential clients and those that have heard it, loved it. While a folder on a desktop doesn’t mean much the story that created it does.

If you made it to the end of this you deserve a medal but most importantly a huge thank you for sticking around to read our story! I really hope this is the beginning of many more stories to share!


Our Story


  1. Shirley Cotton says:

    Thanks for sharing your story. Can’t wait to read more. 

  2. Maribel Martinez says:

    I got shivers and very emotional of your love story this is one unique story to tell in the long run to your kids family and friends. Loved every sentence written.

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