Archive for 'our life'
I am still in pajamas, letting the ac blast, listening to the kids play in the other room as I cross a few things off my to do list and start to mentally prepare for the next few weeks. I have mixed feelings about summer ending. I will miss the late nights, sleeping in and lack of schedule. I will also welcome back the routine that keeps us all running smooth around here.
If you ask the girls how their summer was, they will tell you it was awesome. We took a trip to see Paul graduate from college, celebrated lots of birthdays, flew to Colorado for our own family pictures (BEST experience ever!) and finished it out with the best family reunion in Bear Lake, Utah we could have ever imagined. Our family of 15 piled into a 5,000 sq foot house and spent a week with extended family from all over the US. We got to see our cousins, aunts and uncles. We played games outside, late night poker games, rented boats (the kids got to fly across the lake on inter tubes for the first time ever. Pretty sure that was the highlight of their week!) and had coffee (and wine!) on the deck overlooking the gorgeous scenery. We don't get to visit often, but as soon as we are together again it is like no time has passed. The kids became best friends with cousins they have never even met, and the end of the week came way too fast. We came home with a few new freckles and a lot of great memories.
Since a blog post isn't complete without pretty pictures, here are just some of my favorites from our summer.
Bob & I have wanted to visit New York for years now. The right time for such a big trip didn't seem to come along until this year. One of my favorite photographers advertised mini sessions for fall photos in Manhattan, and I was lucky enough to get one. So we did something we never do and took a week out of what is typically the busiest time of year for us to slow down and enjoy some family time.
Except slowing down isn't really what happens in the city. A lesson learned the first time we ventured underground for a quick ride on the subway.
We needed to take it all in, to do as much as we could in the short time that we had there. We packed a ton into the week and easily could have filled up another if we were able to.
New Yorkers are good people. The man that went out of his way to make sure we knew how to get from Midtown to the Financial District on the subway, the lady walking next to us on the street that upon seeing the lost look in our eyes and hearing our kids whine for food the first night we were there, stopped and pointed out a good restaurant down the street, and the gentleman that stopped to turn around and apologize for running into Hannah in the hustle and bustle of the 5 o'clock crowd downtown. Not only were we in a city that wasn't familiar to us, but we had three kids in tow. We were greeted with kind hellos and understanding smiles, and for that we were grateful.
Ok, so there were a few that hated me and my camera but documenting my girl's excitement trumped the embarrassment.
Did I mention how beautiful this city is?
Hannah's favorite view at the end of the day was from Dad's arms.
Central Park in the fall. Officially checked off my Bucket List.
Oh, New York. You have my heart.
It's become a tradition to take a group Halloween picture of our three with my niece and nephews every Halloween. I have to say, wrangling this group when they aren't covered in makeup that smears is hard enough. Add that, the wind factor, the fact that we were coming off a lonnnng weekend and they were all starving...and I have to say it might have been the hardest yet. But these kids know how to work the camera, and I am glad we still got some fun pictures to keep this tradition alive. They enjoy it, and they are almost as excited as I am to see the finished pictures.
Clark Kent, Superman, Captain America, Cat Woman, Wonder Woman & Bat Girl.
Fun fact: Jordan told me it was not right to shoot Superman and Clark Kent in the same picture because they are the same person. In fact, he said it would be like taking a picture of Jesus and God at the same time. He also thought it was inappropriate that his COUSIN was Wonder Woman- because that is Superman's girlfriend. I love how his little mind works.
Now for info on this year's Halloween Mini Sessions for YOUR kids!
Please read ALL the way through the information before booking!
Cost: $125 for 10 minutes and 5 digitals (although I am known to throw in more if there are some really cute ones.All depends on what we can get in the short time we have!). You only need to book one spot for siblings but I do not allow cousins/friends to share a time for these. You may book back to back time slots if you want cousin pictures together, though!
Children MUST come in costume. No exceptions.
To book a mini session email firstname.lastname@example.org with the time of day you would like – MORNING or AFTERNOON on Sunday, October 26th. I will email you back the time slots available and a link to pay to secure your time. Please be patient while I am responding to emails. PLEASE email me- when I get texts, facebook messages, comments on the blog/facebook/instagram and phone calls it can get really overwhelming. If I just have emails to respond to it is so much easier. I really appreciate your help with this!!
Due to the nature of these sessions I only allow babies that can sit on their own, held by a sibling or can be propped against a haystack.
Feel free to email with any questions. I can’t wait to see all the cute costumes this year!
The school year has started and I barely blogged any of our summer pictures. So here is a big catch up post.
The girls went to the Pretty Pink Princess Prom with their dads again this year. What a fun tradition for them! They truly look forward to and love this night! I can't get over how old they look.
It was only for the big girls, but had to get a picture of them all since it was Father's Day weekend.
We took a trip up to the Bay area to celebrate Bob's moms birthday. We don't get to see them often enough, so this was a fun trip. We got to stay in the city and had a blast! Hotel beds make the perfect set for a photo session. Poor Madison got sick on our last day and ended up in the ER, but other than that it was a great (but too short!) trip.
I love the beginning of the year. January 1st- you get a clean slate, a chance to make all these grand promises to yourself. My own included blogging more, updating my website to reflect my current work, and planning mini sessions farther out than I typically do. Then January 2nd comes and you put off something on the list, "just for today". Before you know it, the sun is setting later, the fields are greener...and only a small handful of blog posts later, it is time to discuss spring.
I really will get to those goals of mine. Right now, I am letting myself off the hook, setting more realistic expectations of what life looks like running a small business and raising three children under the age of 7.
So, let's talk spring! It's most of your favorite time to get pictures, and I can see why. It is a gorgeous time of year for us spoiled Californians. We also gain those extra hours at the end of the night, making it easy to book several sessions the same day. I like to take advantage of this and offer mini sessions, and I have had so many requests for them this year that I am blown away! This year is going to be way more limited than usual, because I am taking almost all of April off to travel out of the country with Bob (he earned another amazing trip from work this year!) and will also be out of town for my little brother's wedding.
With all that said, I will be offering FIVE mini session time slots on Saturday, April 5th. There is a catch, though. My turn around time for proofs will be longer than usual (3-4 wks) due to my time off.
The cost is $350 and will include 20 digital files. Please email email@example.com to book.
I have also opened up the books to schedule sessions for the remainder of May and into summer. Just cut me a little slack if I take a few days to get back to you 😉
No blog post is complete without cute pictures, so here are some fun ones from a few weeks ago. This was actually on Hannah's birthday, one of the rainiest days we have had. Keep our sweet Hannah in your thoughts and prayers over the next few weeks if you can. She goes in to get her tonsils/adenoids removed and possibly get ear tubes put in. This girl is sick ALL the time, so we are really hoping this will make a huge difference.
I know I take a lot of pictures, but it still always amazes me to see just how many little moments make up a year. Our family had a lot of big milestones this year. A new baby nephew, Tim & Brit engaged, Madison starting kindergarten, the first of the girls to have to get stitches, and LOTS of lost teeth.
So here it is.
All the big moments and plenty of the little ones in between.
disclaimer - several iPhone pics used (some of my favs!)
I didn't get to share our personal pictures from the summer on here yet, so here they are. Almost 3 months squished down into one post of some of my favorite memories.
This girl. She did her very best to keep up with her sisters. She has NO fear. She runs into the pool. Seriously. Like right off the edge. (We don't let go of her for this reason and she wears a puddle jumper every second we are out there). She is going to be my wild one. This I am sure of. Good thing she is so cute.
Then there is our little mellow Brayden, who got to experience his first 4th of July. He's just thrilled can't you tell? Megan & Ryan got an easy one this time around. He is just a happy baby boy. Love this nephew of mine!
Sophia learned how to read towards the end of kindergarten, and by summer she was reading chapter books, or anything else she could get her hands on, nonstop. This was at the firework show. Hundreds of people, a loud band, dancing, and she can tune it all out. She is in her own little world with a book in her hands. I love it.
Sophia, Madison & Aubrey were escorted by their daddies to a very fancy Princess Prom. They thought this was the best night ever, danced their little hearts out and are still talking about it. What a special night for them!
We vacationed to San Diego for 5 days and got to visit with some really great friends while we were there. We stayed at an awesome resort (La Costa - highly recommend it!), swam, roasted marshmellows, went to the zoo, won a little cash at the horse races, and got some time in at the beach for pictures.
We celebrated Linley's birthday at the zoo. She is two!! Her little sister will be here in the next few weeks, and I can't wait to witness her birth just like I got to see this beautiful girl arrive into the world!
My mom put together a Back to School scavenger hunt for all the grandkids. She left clues all around her house, and the final clue led them to the playhouse in their backyard where all their school supplies were hiding. She even included Hannah & Jordan, making them their own special little baskets. Yes, we know how lucky we are to have her! Seriously, this deserves a post all in it's own, but here are just a few from that day.
The first day of school this year! My big kindergartner and first grader! Hannah is lost without them, but we are slowly adjusting. It's by no means a "quiet" house without them (see Hannah's pictures above) but it is definitely strange only having one home with me in the mornings!
And now we roll into fall! I hope at least. This summer heat has been TOO much! I am ready for fall leaves, pumpkin candles & chili in the crockpot!
My precious little nephew, Brayden Daniel, was born on June 20th. I was lucky enough to be in the room and hear his first cry. He had a few low blood sugars at birth, so Megan wasn't able to hold him for the first few hours. She was recovering from her c section in her room while he was being attended to in the nursery. Naturally, I had to keep running back with my camera to show her pictures.
This little guy is such a sweet babe and has stolen our hearts. Again. It's amazing how you don't know what is missing until one day there he is, the final piece to the puzzle. Brayden completed their family just perfectly!
A little over a year ago, my mom & dad, Bob, the kids and I were having lunch at Chili's. It was the middle of the week, not too long after Hannah was born. In fact, I still remember trying to get comfortable enough to nurse her in the booth we were sitting in, right in the middle of the bar, surrounded by business men on their lunch break.
The window behind us looked out to the front of the restaurant, and as I glanced out I saw my little brother Timmy walking up. I assumed my parents had invited him to join us, but the look on his face told me otherwise. He wasn't there to have lunch with his family. He was there to meet Brittney, who he had recently started dating but hadn't quite gotten to the "meet the family" stage. Until today, when he had no choice but to drag her past the window we were all staring out of over to our table to introduce her to us all. They didn't sit down with us, but got a booth on the opposite side of the restaurant to finish their little lunch date while we all whispered about what we had heard about her so far. She worked in insurance. This was their second, no third? date. She lived in Glendora. Timmy was usually pretty private about the girls he took out, but he couldn't stop talking about this one.
Not too long after that, we had a more formal introduction at a family event, and Brittney soon became a regular face around here. She slid right in, like she had been a part of the family all along. The more we got to know her, the more we loved her. And the more we knew this was the ONE.
Tim planned out how he was going to propose months before, and he made me rehearse my part, complete with a trip to Pasadena to show me exactly where to casually run into them. It was their anniversary, and they were going out to dinner in Pasadena, where I coincidentally happened to be waiting for a client that was VERY late for their session. I pretended to be killing time by calling Tim & Brit to see what they were up to (at which point Brittney got really mad for me that I was standing there waiting for my "pretend" client to show and suggested I charge them an extra fee. ha!). They were stuck in traffic, so I told them to park in the structure just north of Colorado where I was hanging around outside waiting.
By the time they arrived, my "client" still hadn't shown up, so I offered to take a picture of them as they were heading off to dinner since they were all dressed up. Brittney, never one to turn down a picture opportunity, thought that was a fantastic idea.
After a few pictures, Tim said he had another pose in mind.
Brittney kept asking "Is this for real? What's going on?" and looked to me for my reaction. I don't think it really hit her that he was proposing until she saw me bawling and him pulling out the ring. Best. Moment. Ever.
We are all so VERY excited, could not be happier! Brittney is everything I would want in a wife for my little brother, an auntie for our kids, and another sister for me!
Congratulations Tim & Brit. Love you both!
Let's get to planning this party!!