Thursday, March 29, 2012

Makes Me Want to Lose Myself

Four years ago today I first laid eyes on the man that would become my husband. It may not have been love at first sight -- a crush, yes -- but love was just around the corner and I was in no way prepared for the way it was going to absolutely sweep me off my feet. So completely and quickly, in fact, we were standing hand-in-hand at the altar five months and one day later. The first time I heard the song "Feels Like Home", it brought me back to those days when Andy would come and see me... When he told me he loved me... When he held my hand... When he stood loyally by my side when the road got rocky... The first hug, the first kiss...  When his beautiful blue eyes caught my gaze, making me oblivious to everything else as I walked down the aisle towards him in my pretty white dress...

The last four years certainly dealt its blows to us, each blow only made our love stronger. I love being married to the love of my life. I love the adventure our life together has taken us on. I love that he still makes my heart beat fast. I love that marriage is until death do us part, because I am so twitter-pated with that man I want to spend a couple dozen lifetimes with him!

Pardon me for being cheesy, but the words to this song completely describe my feelings for my husband. I love him so much and I'm so grateful to the One who created us for each other and then brought us together.

There's something in your eyes, makes me want to lose myself
Makes me want to lose myself, in your arms

There's something in your voice, makes my heart beat fast
Hope this feeling lasts, the rest of my life

If you knew how lonely my life has been and how long I've been so alone
If you knew how I wanted someone to come along and change my life the way you've done.

If you knew how much this moment means to me, and how long I've waited for your touch.
If you knew how happy you are making me, I never thought that I'd love anyone so much.
It feels like home to me, it feels like home to me
Feels like I'm all the way back where I belong.

(lyrics by Randy Newman, 
sung by Chantal Kreviazuk at this link:
  "Feels Like Home" [youtube])

Monday, March 26, 2012

Jimmy, Easter Portraits Sneak Peek!

These are Jimmy's Easter 2012 pictures. He moves constantly and is inquisitive of everything, therefore I should have waited to do this for when his daddy was around to help me keep him adorably in one spot for more than 5 seconds. Doing this on my own made it more into a series of candid shots... But I personally think they turned out pretty classic Jimmy.

Puppy Love

I bribe Jimmy with marshmallows... Here he bribes his puppy.
Little Drummer Boy

These are just a sneak peek... There will be more on facebook!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Catching the Breeze

This is how I embraced the camera this week... It was an overcast and very windy day (you know it's windy when even Jimmy's hair is blowing!) and since the lighting was perfect I thought it would be fun to experiment with "catching the breeze". I love wind-blown photos, and it was fun to take some together with Jimmy.

Another way I embraced the camera this week is by taking a photo of my latest accessory. I wear this bracelet every day to remind me to pray for Braxton. If you follow me on facebook, you will know that Braxton is a 13 year-old Nebraska country boy (my sister's nephew) who was diagnosed this last winter with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. If you wish to follow this boy's story and journey towards healing, "like" the Pray for Braxton Nelson page on facebook. He's a tough cookie and he's kicking cancer's butt, but every day is a battle. I know him and his family appreciate every prayer prayed on his behalf.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Want to Dance?

Today I'm trying to set aside those pesky, mundane household chores and get my head in the game for a big day tomorrow. I like to get mentally geared up for photo shoots and events and I do that by reading all my favorite photography blogs and admiring as many stunning, inspiring images as possible. I ran across this article -- How to Photograph a Dancer -- and it makes me really want to go to my niece's ballet recital all the way over in Nebraska next month (insert the sad why-on-earth-are-there-so-many-miles-between-here-and-Nebraska sigh). I have never had a chance to try my hand at dance photography, and now I want to. The article in general has great tips to keep in mind while photographing any event... But now can somebody please give me a pair of ballet slippers with a graceful little girl inside of them!

(photo from a family shoot I did last Fall when big brother randomly decided to take baby sister's hands and start slow dancing with her.... So cute. I love kids.)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Bam! And then it was Spring

When I started this blog I certainly intended to keep it a little bit more interesting than the silence you have been hearing all week... But the mental plans of blogging occurred during the detestable doldrums of Winter. Let me tell you, my house, my office work and my blog were in no way prepared for the beautiful, sunny and extremely early onset of Spring. It has been so gorgeous here...which makes the normal struggle of balancing home, family, and business even harder because suddenly there are hours of sunshine that it all has to revolve around and there is simply not enough hours in the day for all of that!

It was a no make-up, anti hair-fussing week, and I still managed to embrace the camera... even if I cheated through a window reflection. And now begins a fresh week with new resolutions of better balance in the priorities, chasing dreams and little boys in plaid overalls, and embracing the camera a little more.

Monday, March 12, 2012


We are having unusually warm weather in our Northern neck of the woods. It has me so jacked for Spring! I even bought a little packet of zinnia seeds at the grocery store and can't wait to start some plants.

I took my little Jimmy out for a quick jog in the stroller yesterday and then allowed him to romp in as many mud  puddles as he could find, which happened to be quite a few thanks to the rather recent dumping of snow. He was so thrilled. He was being his ever adorable self and naturally I needed to get a picture, but my camera was inside (for shame!) and lazy me found it more convenient to whip out my handy phone.

I think this one is my favorite picture ever of the puppy-lovin', hat-wearing peanut butter ball. He's usually a smart alec and only shows his somber side to the camera, but this.... This is classic Jimmy. I only regret not having my full-quality camera for this one because I need to blow this up and frame it!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

One Week Down!

So we're one week into this new blogging thing! I'm curious about what you're thinking. Who are my readers? What do they want to see more of? How am I doing thus far? You can tell me!

In other randomness, if you follow me on facebook, you will know that I had the hardest time choosing a "Beautiful Black & White" photo for the I Heart Faces Photo Challenge | Black & White {March 2012}. I managed to narrow my photo choices down to four, but there was no way I could decide between any of them. I was about ready to throw them in a hat and draw, but then I thought maybe, just maybe! my fans would be so kind as to assist in giving me their opinion. And they did!

It just so happened that this military-style one of Jimmy was the one that won the overall vote... by all of ONE vote. The following photos were the other three that I was torn between in the order of their popularity...

Which one would have you have voted for?

Photo Two:
:: :: ::
Photo Three:
:: :: ::

Photo Four:
:: :: ::

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Adam & Natasha's Wedding

February is a great month to break a photographer out of her slump with a wedding! I really love each opportunity I get to take part in a couple's special day, and this wedding was no exception. Sweet, simple, and elegant. It was so evident that Adam and Natasha were made for each other and they knew it. Love like that is such a beautiful thing. 


 "A three-fold cord is not quickly broken."

Adorable grandparents.

Can you tell it was literally waaaaaayyyy below zero? My fingers were numb at this point.

Congratulations, Adam & Natasha! Welcome to happily ever after!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Holy Guacamole!

Have I got a treat for you! 

I have developed quite the appreciation for avocados of late. Do you have any clue how nutrient-rich these babies are? We're talking looooaded with nearly twenty essential nutrients! 

Avocados are an excellent source of fiber, potassium, B vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Vitamin E, folic acid, lutein and magnesium. They are the fruit with the highest protein. One half of an avocado contains 15 grams of heart-healthy unsaturated fat. 

Basically, they are so good for you you should include them in your daily diet.

Truly I could spend all day telling you about the true goodness of these saints-of-a-fruit, but then I would find myself hippity hoppeting down an avocado-strewn rabbit trail and that probably wouldn't be very pretty. 

So back on the subject at hand.... Guacamole. This is truly, completely, totally my concoction. I had never even looked at a guacamole recipe before Super Bowl Sunday of this year when I actually had two avocados in my fridge that needed to be eaten soon. I started mashing and mixing and it wasn't long before I realized my bowl of guacamole could very well be the Super Bowl of the day... it was just that good!  

I have made it numerous times since to perfect and document my technique and now I am letting you in on my secret recipe. 

(Random fact: On average, 53.5 million pounds of guacamole are eaten every Super Bowl Sunday, which is supposed to be enough to cover a football field more than 20 feet thick! I wouldn't mind dipping into that football field.)

Here's what you need.... 

1 Avocado
1/4 cup Salsa (preferably of the slightly juicy home-made variety, fresh salsa would also be delish)
1/4 cup Finely-Diced Onion
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 tablespoon Freshly-Squeezed Lime Juice (optional, but adds that perfect pop of flavor)
Salt to taste (if desired)

Mash avocado fruit with fork--you may prefer a different technique, but I am partial to the coarsely-mashed avocado texture you get with using a fork.

 Put all ingredients into a small mixing bowl and mix together with spoon until well combined. Refrigerate in air-tight container for 1-2 hours before serving "to marry the flavors" (yes, I love Buddy Valastro's shows).
My favorite way to serve this is with triscuits and tortilla chips. It is also delicious with other cracker and chip varieties; in tacos, salads, cold meat sandwiches, burgers; and as a baked potato topping... The options are about as endless as your creativity.

Variation--additional salsa in dip makes it go farther and is still out-of-this-world crazy-delicious. It really depends on your taste preferences and crowd-feeding size.
Probably the best healthy, tasty and guilt-free snack you could have.

Linking to Balancing Beauty and Bedlam's Tasty Tuesday

Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Boy, His Puppy, and a Hat or Two

I realize I may be slightly biased when I say I have the cutest one year-old in the entire world--or, 16 month-old, if you want to be specific. But really, there is no one on this planet that is not completely taken with his adorable little personality and completely charming ways.

For his first birthday, his auntie gave him a little stuffed puppy. It was love at first sight, and Puppy has been his best friend ever since.

More recently, he has developed an insane infatuation with his hat collection--which is quite the collection considering his mommy has a thing for little boys in hats. The other day, after I got him up from his nap, he went straight to his closet and pulled out two hats and wanted to wear them both. Since his hat choices weren't exactly stack-able, we came up with a happy compromise by putting the additional hat on Puppy. Jimmy was very happy with this situation and spent the afternoon sharing hats with Puppy.

I know, I know, I'm lucky to live with such a cute little boy in my house. He makes every day a photo shoot.