Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Not a great day around here. Very busy and things just didn't go my way. So you're getting a shot that a friend took and I played with:


Monday, December 29, 2008


Happy Birthday to me!
My parents sent me flowers and I went all wild and crazy with both a square crop and close up:

I took pics specifically for this project yesterday with the intent of practicing with the 580. I tried a few with the Sto-Fen and just don't like it as well. I complained about the skylight effect but it just dulls everything down to the point I'm not sure what I'm doing (even moreso than without it). I put a giant white coloring book up beside him in an attempt to get some catchlights (hello, amazon.com, I need a reflector!):

Friday, December 26, 2008


I got gift cards from Amazon.com for Christmas and was able to swing a 580EXII for Christmas. I mostly just bounced off the ceiling for our Christmas pics which seems to give this skylight effect but I was so happy it arrived in time!
It was a great Christmas, for real. My dad gave my big kid a Lionel Polar Express train and it made for the quintessential Christmas moment. I hope the recipient remembers it as along as the giver and the observers:

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Another snow shot. Winter went from novel to miserable in one day. We got about 8" of fluffy snow at about 20 degrees on Thursday. Then a few more inches yesterday paired with 40 mph winds and windchills around 40 below. My weatherbug thing tells me it's -2 which is the 'warmest' it's been in 24 hours. We might hit 10 by Christmas. Blech!
Out my front door yesterday:

Fun in the snow on Friday:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I've been busy doing Christmas cards. I've just done a few this year but they've been extremely customized. Lots of revisions. But here are the first three that came in. The last one is Tess' beautiful photography!:

And the best news we've had in a while, not only are swimming lessons over but the little guy did great! Thursday, 12/11/2008:

Skip to Sunday, 12/14/2008, where suddenly we find ourselves in South Bend, Indiana contemplating a transfer to a new location:

Then home Monday in time for the big preschool program:

And today, 12/17/2008, we get a Secret Santa gift just as I had the kids dressed in their Christmas outfits for an attempt at some shots for the 2009 family calendar:

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Let's start with Saturday...we made pretty ornaments:

And Sunday we got the tree:

Monday, I was dissed as the tooth-brushing assistant in favor of the big brother!

And today, for Eric, I took a shot out our back door. Just wait; it will be whiter in a few weeks!

Friday, December 5, 2008


I had to count on my fingers to get the number. 44 is close enough!
I was a fun mom for about 20 minutes today as we used window markers (love those things!) to draw a Christmas tree and presents on one of our sliding glass doors.

and a bonus because the expression cracks me up:

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Playing catch-up...

Sure, I missed a few days in there but I've really been making the effort to put thought into a picture every day over traveling, Thanksgiving and a last-minute effort to get in my 30 hours of continuing education for my Occupational Therapy license.
Let's begin with 11/26/2008; I stayed up late to complete the Handwriting Without Tears Level I National Certification application. Seriously a ton of work but worth 8 hours of continuing education that I for sure needed (and needed the chocolate after all that work!):

Then 11/27/2008; just proof that I got my camera out. And I guess evidence that my daughter is 'that kid' with the chapped face from licking and sucking on her lips:

11/28/2008; Are we the only family that has to take a series of pictures of the table before enjoying a meal? Really? Just us? Hm.

Next day; 11/29/2008. My parent's house has good light, that's for sure. And here's my greedy, obnoxious little son with a beanie baby. Our dear friend Evelyn passed away earlier in the week and what's the first thing this kid did when we went to see her widower in the nursing home? "Ooh, Rudolph, can I keep him?" He stole a beanie baby from a grieving man. And my mom stooped so low as to paint his nose red with fingernail polish. I took the shot for Carl in an effort to act like I think it's as cute as everyone else does:

Enjoying the light:

No words:

On 11/29/2008; Family that tailgates together:

Skip to yesterday's Christmas program; 12/3/2008. I barely take this kid to day care so she didn't know the songs but really; they're 2. She behaved better than the rest of the kids stomping and jumping on the stage:

And hello tonight! A night alone in a hotel. Most of it was spent working on yet another continuing eduction home study course but that's done and after the workshop I'm attending tomorrow, I'll be set to renew my license next week!


Monday, November 24, 2008


I really thought I wanted to see this in color but I just couldn't resist seeing it in b&w:

She was leaning over so her hair was all hanging down funny but a 11 x 14 crop seems to have helped that. I do like the color too:

Sunday, November 23, 2008


You know the family shoot from a while back? I wasn't pleased with it but mom totally loves the shots and she loves this really dark b&w shot. She's using it on their cards and wants prints of it. I'm so happy that she's happy but wow. Just wow.
No new pic today, just the fruit of my labors in working like crazy to get this light enough to use:

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Oh the toenails! I'm not sure who makes a bigger deal about the painting toenails, the kid or the dad. I've chastised him out of praising her for wearing nightgowns (instead of jammies) and dresses (instead of pants) but I'll let him have the toenails.

Makes me think a little of Elli's Sharpie incident though ;)
I know there's a cast; is it red or yellow or both?

Friday, November 21, 2008


Back to the golden arches for a shot of the other kid. She just wasn't feeling well, had to take the sippy cup in, had to have milk in it. Sipping and twiddling the hair. Still pretty cute:

Attended a wonderful singing performance at the mall of the 4 y/o day care class. No decent shots of the star and one very flashy and over-burned shot of daddy and daughter. I think my favorite thing here is my over-burning led to a significant reversal in the hair-loss process:

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I got my hair cut today and for the first time in months it looked so cute! So I tried to snap a few in my new found love of unconventional natural light but it turns out either my car is too little or my arms are too short; maybe both.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I realized that my tendency to take my kids out to eat out of convenience actually affords the opportunity for good natural light! My buddy here earned the right to choose where we ate lunch after swimming lessons today by helping me clean baseboards. I had to explain it to him but I think we'll be able to get the rest of the house done with me just supervising. He loves to clean and he loves to have control so it was a win-win for him!

Monday, November 17, 2008


and 26/365
I tried snapping a few of a spontaneous hug last night before we left for dinner but there just wasn't enough light but I couldn't just let it go. No editing. It was more the moment than the image:

So right before bed, I had to snap another one as I realized when I went to get my vitamin that my toes are disappearing:

Goodbye toes, see you in February.
So nothing today. First day without a shot. So I'm counting this post as two days because I'm not ready to skip a day just yet!

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Looking around, uninspired, husband's away for the night, on my own with the kids...very thankful for their recent rekindled interest in everything Little People. This bus offers up to an hour of entertainment for either kid (but never at the same time of course). Sometimes the kids get dispersed throughout the first floor and carefully picked up at their homes, greeted warmly by the bus driver, "Good afternoon, Myra!" then dropped back off after a busy day (we say day but hello, it's 2 1/2 hours) at preschool. Love the bus, especially since it can't honk or sing now that the batteries are dead:


Friday's post. The 'actual' PB shoot for my friend! Not only did I shoot in RAW and like it but it was a great learning experience overall; good and bad. This is one of my favorites of the little girl:

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I know what you're thinking. "Mm-hmm, what's the 'story' behind this not-so-great shot?" Well I'll tell you. I shot in RAW! I wanted to try it before I attempted it with the family pictures tomorrow. I kind of dig how it opens in photoshop and I was quite relieved to see that picasa will view the RAW files. And I can officially add 'indoor swimming pool' to my list of Worst Places To Attempt Taking Photos list. Wowza.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


My goal for February: Two kids that can dress themselves.
It happened today, that's for sure!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Really just a terrible image but mostly a comment on winter setting in.
Rain and ice all day. Snow tonight. Up to 4 inches.
This is the first year I've used the fireplace and it seems like I have it on all the time. Now that both kids are old enough to stay away from it (unless I make them sit by it for a picture), I can really enjoy it.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Not my kid!
I'm doing a PB family shoot (really my first ever...ack!) on Friday and my friend let me come over to scope things out today. It would have been better to go in cold, I'm so worried about it now! So the best thing about this shot? It's NOT MY KID!

Sunday, November 9, 2008


And 18/365 and 17/365

Took a few as I was pulling out of the driveway with Ellie as she was in full Diva Mode. As soon as I drop Bradyn off, she wants to be in his seat, she wants to choose a new DVD, it's all about her and she knows it! Friday she just had to had to had to have a cookie!

The snow. The boots. Kids too cold to stand still!

I tried using a 'paper diffuser' over my on-board flash and wasn't impressed at all with the results. And for some reason, had a harder time with focus when using it. That was my objective today, to see how the paper used but when I opened this image, I tried the "over expose vintagy wow" from Itty Bitty Actions and just had to post it without further messing.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


The end of fall. The end of color. The end of even considering opening the door to snap a shot!
It's supposed to snow the next few days. I keep thinking I should take some shots of our 'view' here in Iowa since there's a chance we'll end up being transferred soon or at least in the next year. So that's what I see out my back door. Iowa. There are windmills you can't really distinguish but they're there. We see them out every window in our house. Brian has a 20 minute drive to work and I bet there's not an inch of his trip that he doesn't have a view of a field full of them either!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


The 4 y/o photographer in action. There are lots of technical issues with this picture but I'm looking at it in this positive light:
1)the graininess is a good thing for the b&w
2)me being the only thing in focus is good for this purpose
3)I'd have never had him take pics of just the two of us otherwise
He shot this at ISO200, f2.0 (which I'd have increased but oh well) in Av mode.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Election Day!

The Harvest Yule Log. I bought this candle last year. I burn it when Brian's working long hours during harvest. We've had a decent day but I usually want to turn myself off around 6pm so that's when it gets hard around here when I'm home alone with the kids night after night. Then the evening drags on and on.
Someday this candle will burn out and someday harvest will end!