26 January 2011

Bringing outside in....

Today I pulled out an old activity from my teaching preschool years.  In the winter time we used to bring snow into the water/sand table and the kids loved it!  I thought I would try it with Mallory and it provided a full 7 minutes of joy... typical 2 year old attention span!  She did however seem to enjoy the activity and talked about it all day long!

Of course I used one of these shots for my project 365 photo of the day!  

25 January 2011

Guess who learned to crawl?

At nearly ten months old Jillian started crawling last week! It seems like forever she was on all fours rocking back and forth ready to go but never could quite figure out how to go forward. Last week Tony was in the family room with both girls and I heard him shout "Jillian just crawled". So I ran down there to see her in action and sure enough she was slowly crawling forward!! Since then we have been enticing her with objects to get her to show off her new moves!!

Here's some pics of our little crawler....

19 January 2011

Valentines Day Photo Shoot

Today I had a Valentine's Day photo shoot with the girls!  It took lots of bribing to get Mal to sit and lots of strange-loud-funny-mouth noise making to get Jillian to look up but I managed to get one really good one that I will use for the adorable FREE Valentine photo template I received from Florabella.  Since the girls are not in school yet and don't have classmates I will just send them to family/good friends. 

Here's the picture winner with the template along with some silly out-takes!! 

18 January 2011

All About JJ

Her nickname is JJ, Jilly Jill, Jillybean. She is almost 10 months old and just learned to crawl!! (pics to come for sure) Her laugh and giggle is one of my favorite sounds ever to be heard!! She is bursting with energy, personality and will not be outshone by her older sister (equally as charming in our eyes)! She's standing on her own, leaning against furniture still but with out our help. She loves books, peekabo, Barney, and bouncing on mommy and daddy's lap and she just started feeding herself Gerber puffs!  She also moves to the beat everytime she hears music! She says Da Da and if you ask her "Where's Da Da?", "Where's Mallory?", "Where's Lady?" she finds them in the room and looks right at them! Lately I've been taking a ton of photos of her and all her baby cuteness! I'm starting to feel sentimental (I know...typical mommy stuff) about baby days gone by and I know she will be turning into a toddler right before our eyes!

Here are a some recent photos of my sweet baby girl....

14 January 2011

Macro Love

I've been playing around with my macro lens for awhile in the quest for "true" macro shots and always seemed to come up short until recently.  After much research, trial and error and overall learning I'm still a work in progress but on my way to shooting macro photography!

Here's my latest efforts...

12 January 2011

Snow Day

We finally made it outside to play in the snow!!  Mallory loved her new sled and she learned how to make snow angels for the very first time! 


10 January 2011

Behind the door...

Already grateful for my 365 project, without it I would have never captured this moment!  Since taking on this project my camera is ready at any given moment in the event I run across a good photo opportunity. As I'm going through the day, in the back of my mind I'm always on the look out for that special moment. Some days I have to search a little harder but on this particular day it easily fell into my hands!  I peeked behind the door and found Tony and the girls reading the new favorite book A Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats...given to the girls by my dear friend Naomi!  Thanks again Naomi, they love it!  I know I will forever cherish this photo...

When you photograph people in colour you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in B&W, you photograph their souls! ~Ted Grant

06 January 2011

Old Hat

Pulled out this hat from the summer today for the girls to model!!  Originally bought it for Mallory but Jillian is now big enough for it as well!  Nothing like a bright summer hat to cheer us up on a cold dreary day!

I used Jillian's photo for my project365 today!! 
04 January 2011

So much inspiration....

Wow, since I decided to do project 365 I have been searching through all the other blogs/projects of fellow photographers who are beginning this journey as well and I am overwhelmed with all the inspiration I am finding....not to mention the unbelievable talent of so many women photographers who continue to blow me away!!  I stumbled upon this fabulous blog and had to share this article also written about 365!!  Good golly does this inspire me beyond belief!!  Simply beautiful sentiments.... http://shuttersisters.com/home/2011/1/4/a-day-in-the-life-of-365.html 

In keeping with the 365 discussion, I thought I'd share a photo that is a runner up for today's 365 shot....

Mallory had her first "All By Myself" class today, where she was in a park district class without me for much of the time.  She did fabulous and seemed to enjoy it!! This shot was taken right before we left for the class...
my baby is growing up so fast...

03 January 2011

Project 365

I am thrilled and so excited to be starting Project 365!!  After being part of the clickinmoms (http://www.clickinmoms.com/)  community this past year I learned about project 365 through other members/photographers who were in the process of  the project.  In short, it's taking one photo a day for one year. My goal is simply to document my family, complete the project and hopefully learn and grow as a photographer. The whole idea being that it forces you to pick up your camera everyday.  My hope is to capture the "every day", the times and moments that I wouldn't normally have my camera out.  My friend Tiffany took on the task and completed it this past year!  Her blog post about it inspired me even more to decide to do this challenge!!  For great inspiration check out her blog post here:   http://www.peanutblossom.com/blog/2010/12/life-is-too-precious-to-let-the-days-go-by-unnoticed.html

I have included a link on my blog home page entitled Project 365.  Would love any feedback, if you're interested in checking it out!!  Wish me luck!! 

Update: As my first week doing this project comes to an end, just thought I'd add a runner up from one of the days.

Auld Lang Syne....

Auld Lang Syne translated to english means..old long since...long long ago...days gone by... 

When I think of the days gone by this past year I think of life altering moments, miracles, stress, excitement and lots of changes for the better.  The first miracle was the birth of our little girl Jillian Faith in March.  The second was the recovery of my grandfather...who we were told to pretty much say our goodbyes to as we left the hospital one night and then slowly watched him get passed hurdle after hurdle to make a close to full recovery!   Pretty amazing!

Selling our house and moving was the biggest stress but I think will be greatest reward in the end.  We moved to Arlington heights 2 months ago and have yet to look back.  We love it here and are so excited to discover our new neighborhood and new town in the year ahead!  We are lucky and we are blessed!  I know it's a cliche, but that's how I feel at this moment!!

We spent New Years Eve with Matt, Laura and Rosie, ordering sushi and having great conversations, as we always do with them.  We talked about New Years resolutions and aside from the typical ones...lose weight, excercise more, save more money, read more, etc..  I have one and only one...Take the high road!

When given the opportunity to put someone down, speak being mean-spirited, prove them wrong etc. I would like to stop and simply take the high road.  I don't have to prove them wrong to be right, I don't have to use my energy and words to make someone feel bad, regardless of my intent.  Taking the high road to me means speaking, giving and loving with grace and kindness.  Ultimately it's a road I'm eager to travel and a goal I'll strive to obtain! 

Happy New Year one and all and best wishes for 2011! 

"We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day." ~Edith Lovejoy Pierce

02 January 2011

Christmas 2010

Christmas came and went so very fast this year!!  Jillian celebrated her first Christmas and Mallory is beginning to understand and get excited about presents and Santa Claus.... you know the true meaning of Christmas! ;)  I kid, I kid.! It was fun to see her interested in the nativity scene and some of the Christmas books she has about baby Jesus and the manger.  Although we had some merry and bright moments this season I must admit I'm glad the last of the presents are put away and the tree comes down today! The Holidays are over and I'm looking forward to some calm, non-hectic, stay in our pj's next couple of days with my family!!     

Here are some images of our family Christmas 2010...including decorating the tree, seeing The Wonderland Express, Making cookies for Santa, Christmas Eve at Uncle Pete's, and Christmas morning.   

"No man is a failure who has friends" -Clarence the Angel
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