I think I am proud of my perseverance in 2013. It’s been a long time coming, but I’ve finally started to make a name for myself and my photography. I’m excited to continue to build on the foundation I’ve set up.
I’m also pretty excited to watch my husband, brother, and daughter shoot photographs more in the coming year. Both have expressed interest in the craft.
I Love You
We’re inching towards two years in this marriage-thing and I’m still feeling like a newlywed. Funny how someone I met at 15 years old could be absent so long and then return with the same strength of connection we found as teens.
With seven people in our immediate family, any attempt for a presentable family photo becomes a laughable endeavor. From misfiring remotes to pouty faces to odd expressions and blinks to missing persons, it’s hard to predict what might happen.
I wish we’d had a wondrous winter. Instead, the weather has teetered between hot and cold extremes with periods of heavy wind, rain storms, and the occasional flakes. RiAnne was not a fan of the snow — she called it “hot” and whined and cried to get away from it.
The older kids enjoyed what little snow fall we did have – enough to build a miniature snow beast (because this is hardly a “man”).
We’ve been trying to do an annual birthday shoot for the kids on their respective birthdays. JD insisted on repeating his balloon dozen from the previous year for this, his seven-year-old birthday photo.
Cousins can be the best of friends. [RiAnne at 12 months and Arion at 8 months, December.]
This outfit we got for Ri makes me feel spring is near.
We visited a tulip farm this spring. It was simply beautiful! We’ll for sure go back each year with ample memory cards and all our lenses!
One of our favorite shoots for a costume for Tutully Cute Designs
Travel or Vacation
Edisto aka Edislow Beach South Carolina, Spring Break 2013 (March)
Racing against our Nanny… who starts early, turns midway, and beats everyone with a smile and a cheer. Priceless.
This little guy came to visit our house this fall. He was hanging out on the garage door when we came home from an errand. I’m pretty sure the neighbors still think I’m nuts for making such a fuss about photographing the many insects around our neighborhood (instead of insisting they be eliminated).
Lazy days with late starts, visits to the park, and simple fun… this is summer break. It’s amazing how different Ri looks now from in this picture taken in June! Next summer, she’ll be chasing her siblings and playing along side them. Or maybe she’ll be leading the pack – - she seems to prefer it when everyone follows her.
RiAnne’s cupcake smash on her birthday, Dec. 6. Cupcake Confections obliged my request for a pink frosting and sprinkles cupcake, the sweetness of which Ri loved. She was on a sugar rush for much of the evening!
A day at Belvedere Plantation for Ya and Ri.
A Day In My Life
The life of a mom of five children is a little bit calm and a lot chaos… it’s a series of events – most unpredictable and funny after they’re over. I’ve got to hand it to big brother Ya for not jumping up and tossing his sister aside when he realized she’d returned her last meal and it was quickly en route to his vulnerable chest. Yuck!
I Miss You
This is probably going to sound a little odd, but I miss the authenticity of my blogging and my photography. While I’ve grown a lot this year with styling and posing for fashion-esque portraits, I think I’ve ventured too far from the memory catching that I so loved in past years. The snap shots I gather throughout the week sit untouched on Tetra. Rarely do I blog about the moments of our lives.
Were the kids to look at this year’s blog book, they’d probably not sit in reverie of our awesome adventures, our random excursions, our “lost” travels. I never talked about the two hour drive to a pizza place we loved – - a joint that’s only 15 minutes away if we actually turned when we were supposed to instead of driving in a scenic, but long circle. Or the ride to Edisto, the speed signs with odd limits (19 mph?) and the alligator warnings along the grounds of the hotel. Did I share the rest of Rico’s football season, or blog about Chi’s crazy on the track mishaps? I don’t think I did, and we’ll likely not remember those things for much longer if not preserved somehow now.
I’m the only one who can change my blog – return it to the little reverie of childhood and parenting that it was once. I really need to get that back before our todays are yesterdays and yesterdays fade completely away.
Family or Home
I’m convinced that children know when they are loved… why else would both Ri and Ya (when introduced for the first time) immediately gravitate to Mimi with absolute devotion? We don’t see her often. We don’t talk enough. But I treasure ever thought, every memory, and especially every visit we have with her.
Let’s Do It Again…
If I ever had cause to question my hubs’ devotion to me, it’d never have anything to do with his faith in my abilities as a photographer. He’s constantly sharing pictures I’ve taken with people he encounters, and even has a marketing pitch (I’ve heard it!): “Yes, that’s the youngest. She’s a model. My wife’s a photographer. You should really schedule a shoot with her.”
It’s because of this hub-pitch that I was afforded the opportunity to shoot a rising boxing star, Dusty Harrison. This kid (okay, he’s 18) is awesome. He’s got talent, drive, and most important, a humble heart. I know where he gets it, his dad Buddy has instilled in him that paying your dues and giving back to the community that raised you are key to success in all endeavors.
I loved hanging out at the gym. I was awed by these would-be competitors assisting each other in the sparring ring and pausing to help out newer athletes.
Each win earned in the ring is a win for every person who works out at the Old School Boxing center. They’re a family, and I want to visit them again soon.
I Was Inspired…
Our Alice in Wonderland “Mad Hatter’s Tea Party” shoot in June is the first of many whole-family themed shoots we’ve attempted.
Hopes and Dreams
Despite many a stumble in our financial walk this past year, we’ve made some pretty good moves as a family. Certainly we don’t have much – another hospitalization, for example, might squelch any plans we make. But what we do have – faith, conscience, work ethic – should keep us steadily pushing on. I’m hoping 2014 brings us a better year. A new job (or two), more family time, more opportunities to enrich our children’s lives – that’s what I dream for us. Our kids are working hard to maintain their grades in school and I’d love to be able to reward that in real time, not with the promise of future successes. It’d be nice to continue to grow our resources for my photography – a home studio backdrop set up and some basic soft boxes, maybe. And because of schedules, I feel like we’ve moved too far from family worship. I’d like to renew our commitment to the church and re-establish the routine of attending an actual service and/or fellowship and study. A family that prays together, they say, stays together. I’d like to strengthen us in God.
still hunting photos…
Holidays – a picture from the Holiday of your choice.
My Favorite – share your favorite picture or memory from 2012.
Don’t Ever Change – something you love about yourself, someone, or something that you never want to change.
Just Because…So There! – share any picture(s) that you really want to share, but doesn’t fit in any other category.