10 things you didn’t know about Maria! | Girl behind the Camera

Personal

April 3, 2019

If you’re new around here or you don’t know much about the girl behind the camera, here are some fun facts about me! 

1. MY FIRST CAREER WAS AS A BOAT CAPTAIN IN THE CARIBBEAN! 

Growing up we spent every summer living + sailing on our family’s 40 foot sailboat on the Chesapeake Bay. Right from the start I had a passion for sailing that carried on throughout my childhood! In college I taught sailing to teenagers with Sail Caribbean in the British Virgin Islands! After I graduated college, I looked to pursue real estate and join my dad’s business.  My dad convinced me to pursue my captain’s license and follow my passion in yachting. Three months after I passed the test, I moved to the British Virgin Islands. For a few years I worked as a Charter Boat Captain and Sailing Instructor on the island of Tortola and spent my summers teaching in Nantucket (which is how I met my husband)!

Maria Burton Photography as a boat captain!

2. MY MIDDLE NAME BEFORE I GOT MARRIED WAS “BURTON”. 

There is sometimes confusion about what my actual name is! My middle name before we got married was actually “Burton”, after my deceased grandfather + uncle. I started my business when my husband and I were first dating, and when we got married I just decided it had stuck! My new last name is actually “Coughlin”.

3. I DIDN’T EVER WANT A DOG…AND NOW I HAVE TWO! 

I was always allergic to dogs as a kid – in fact, I was that kid who should have lived in a bubble!! I was allergic to everything!! As I got older we traveled a lot as a family, so a dog was never in the cards. When Andrew and I got married, Andrew begged for months to get a shop dog. After a year he “won” with a few conditions tied to the win. The dog could NOT sleep in the bed, sit on the furniture, or go in certain rooms of the house. He would be an outside + shop dog that was Andrews, not mine.

Well, the jokes on me!! Because now we have TWO fur babies who sleep in the bed, sit on the couch and have full access to our house. And let me let you in on a secret: they are both momma’s boys!  Moose and Whiskey, uncle + nephew Bernese Mountain Dogs, are our pride + joy! I am head over heels for our fur babies and they know who the sucker is in the family!

Bernese Mountain Dogs Moose and Whiskey by Maria Burton Photography

4. AFTER COLLEGE I SPENT TWO MONTHS BACK PACKING AUSTRALIA + NEW ZEALAND

I graduated from JMU (Go Dukes!) in December 2008 and decided to forgo the working world for a few months! So I packed up a big blue knapsack and got on a jet plane to Australia + New Zealand…alone. Yep, I went on a solo adventure! I spent 3 weeks on a group tour of New Zealand where I promptly got diagnosed with Mono three days in! Needless to say the adventurer in me still managed to climb a glacier, sail the Whitsundays, camp out on the largest sand island in the world, photograph Ayers Rock at sunrise and see the sights in Sydney! It was the adventure of a lifetime!

Maria Burton Photography travels to Australia

5. AMONGST OTHER THINGS, I AM ALLERGIC TO CHICK PEAS! 

Total weirdo alert. I am not just allergic to chick peas…I am anaphylactic! After eating hummus at work one day, I blew up like a balloon in hives and now carry an EPI pen just to be on the safe side. I’m also allergic to almonds, hazelnuts + gluten free! Going out to eat can be super fun with me:)

6. MY HUSBAND + I BACK PACKED THROUGH THAILAND + VIETNAM FOR OUR HONEYMOON

When choosing a honeymoon location I totally recommend picking something off the beaten path. And going 3-4 months AFTER your wedding! My husband and I are adventurers so we knew we wanted to make our honeymoon a BIG trip! We chose Thailand + Vietnam and spent ONE month exploring. It was not the most relaxing trip of our lives, BUT we ate the most incredible street food, walked through caves that once housed Vietcong hospitals, went rock climbing + scuba diving in the islands of Southern Thailand, mountain biked through the hillside of Chang Mai and traveled by boat, tuk tuk, bus, plane and bike!

Maria Burton Photography honeymoons to Vietnam

7. I KNOW HOW TO HANG SHEETROCK, CUT TILE + BUILD A PORCH

For the last 6 years Andrew and I have been a version of Chip + Joanna Gaines. Without the work crew! We have taken our 1906 house and transformed it into our home. We have knocked down walls, installed 11 new windows, re-insulated + re-wired the entire house, re-finished floors, put up cedar shingle siding, renovated two bathrooms and not gotten divorced!!! Haha. It’s been a labor of love and we are so proud of the work we’ve put in together to build our life together!

8. GROWING UP IN VIRGINIA, I NEVER IMAGINED LIVING IN NEW ENGLAND!

I never in a million years thought I’d live over the Mason Dixon line. I know that sounds cliche and very southern of me…but, its true! Throughout my teens + early 20s, I envisioned living in Charleston, SC or North Carolina. I love the word “y’all”, sweet tea, sunshine + warm temps, and the southern culture. But then, I met a man. The love of my life. And he is a New Englander! And so, 7 years later, we are rooted in the tiny state of Rhode Island and I am more in love with this part of the country (except in March + April – literally the worst months ever!!!) every day! I have learned that LL Bean + Patagonia are the only gear to wear to survive the winter. That hydrangeas are my love language. And that weekend trips to Vermont, Maine and New Hampshire are what I crave. This southern girl has slowly but surely turned into a New Englander!

9. I STARTED A BOOK CLUB THIS YEAR!

My favorite thing to do in the morning is read. I particularly love historical fiction and am known to not finish half the books I start if I don’t love them!  This year I wanted more community, more insightful conversations and less screen time. I sent out an email to a few friends and started my first book club.

10. I AM OBSESSED WITH ICE CREAM + TRYING OUT EVERY CREAMERY IN NEW ENGLAND!

Ice Cream is my love language. But seriously. I have a slight obsession with ice cream. It’s a toss up between mint chocolate chip + chocolate peanut butter as my favorites. Woods Ice Cream in Westport, MA is hands down the best ice cream of all time. They are only open Memorial Day to Labor Day and you better believe that I stock pile it throughout the summer!

 

That about sums up the girl behind the camera! More to come in future posts! 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.