Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category

  • 18 Months

    Date: 2012.10.11 | Category: Baby, Bonnie Barrell, Dogs, Family, Home, Leela Fish, Life, Nostalgia, Photography, Sarah | Response: 17

    18 months. A year and a half.

    Where has the time gone?

    Almost every day, Mark and I stare at our girl and try to imagine how that little lump we brought home from the hospital has turned into this amazing, energetic, intelligent, little person.

    And to think I was worried about speech? Our girl is now enthusiastically saying a number of things, including: “Dog, Kit-Cat, Pretty, Uh Oh, Ow, Today, Star, Shoes, Stomp, Doll, Duck, Go, Tickle, Doc,  Jake and Hotdog (thanks Disney Junior). Oh, and her favorite phrase, “What is it?” Not to mention she can enthusiastically roar like a lion, mew like a kitty and mmmm like a cow?

    She can also identify her eyes, nose, mouth, ears, head, hands, foot and bellybutton by pointing.

    Climbing has become her favorite activity and one of the most difficult phases for us as parents. After a week long assault on the glass coffee table, we finally just got rid of it. She’s taken more tumbles out of her high chair, off the couches, and off her plastic picnic table than I can count, but it doesn’t stop her. Climbing on the arm of the couch and leaping onto the cushions is one of her favorites, as is scaling on to the back of the oversized chair to turn the fan switch on and off.

    We’re starting to see signs of the terrible two’s with complete and utter meltdowns over small things. Take something away from her? Game over. Try to pick her up when she doesn’t want to be picked up? Limp noodle body.

    Did I mention her favorite toy is a neon green and orange rake? She uses it to rake things up in the house, especially while daddy is sweeping. She totes it around the yard and dips it in the kiddy pool water. She combs the dogs with it, and she freaks out if you try to take it from her. That’s why it appears in all these photos.

    Also that head of hair is like woah. You would think we were sprinkling magic growing dust on it or something. Though I am thrilled that means crazy pigtails now.

    She also likes to do the motions to the following songs: “Wheels on the Bus” (especially the babies crying), “Itsy Bitsy Spider” (especially the part where we wash the spider out) and “If You’re Happy and You Know It” (with rousing stomps for the angry part).

    She loves day care now, and runs from us when we go to pick her up. I guess mom and dad aren’t quite as fun as throwing stuffed blocks in the air? Either way, I’m happy she’s happy during the day.

    Food has also become a challenge. She still hates fresh fruit with the exception of bananas (unless I put them in smoothies), and has decided that she doesn’t like a number of things she used to, including cheese. However, foods she suddenly does like include red beans and rice with turkey sausage, and mild Indian food. Who knows?

    All I know is that this kid wears me out and fills my heart with more love than I knew was possible.

    Happy half birthday kiddo.

    P.S. For reference on growth, here’s a few with lambkin over time:

    It’s the incredible shrinking lamb!

  • Nina

    Date: 2012.09.24 | Category: Family, Mark, Photography | Response: 10

    It’s hard to believe Mark’s little cousin Nina, the same girl who was the flower girl in our wedding, is now a Senior in high school. Yesterday, she, her mom and I waded through the droves of people taking homecoming photos at a local park to take some senior portraits. She has blossomed into such a beautiful young woman. Taking her photos was easy and fun.

    I love how she looks like she’s out in the middle of the jungle in this one.

    This one is by far my favorite!

  • Look Ma, I’m Famous!

    Date: 2012.09.06 | Category: Baby, Family, Friends, Home, Me, Photography, Sarah, Style, Work | Response: 17

    Guess what guys, my mom and Sarah are locally famous, at least for a month. They’re on the cover of a local magazine, The Best of Times, (and in the inside story along with my friend Susan’s baby and dad).

    I had a great time taking photos for this story. Here are a couple outtakes that didn’t make it into print, but made me smile.

    These two little girls did an amazing job during their photoshoots. Though that may have something to do with how often they’re already photographed!

  • Doggy Celebration

    Date: 2012.08.21 | Category: Bonnie Barrell, Dogs, Home, Leela Fish, Pets, Photography, Sarah | Response: 19

    Bonnie’s birthday is sometime this month. I’m not sure of the exact day, but I do know before the month is out, she’ll be four.

    And I think it’s been far too long since I flooded this blog with pictures of border collies. So, here we go.

    That’s Leela (licking the air in anticipation of the frisbie I’m dangling over my head for this shot), Bonnie and Cooper, who we were dog sitting. Cooper is Leela’s brother from the same litter.

    Tic, Tac, Toe… and the baby, erm, I mean toddler, too.

    I love that while I was taking photos of the dogs, Sarah was rearranging yard furniture.

    Happy Dogs.

    Happy Birthday Bonnie Dog. We love you.

  • Olivia

    Date: 2012.07.23 | Category: Baby, Friends, Love, Photography | Response: 18

    A  little over a week ago, my best friend Susan gave birth to a beautiful little girl with a head full of soft brown hair. I consider this little one my niece and I can’t get enough of her. So this weekend we went to visit and brought the camera. We moved furniture, shifted blankets opened windows, took down picture frames and turned her living room into a studio. It was great fun.

    I loved how she looked like a little pixie in this head accoutrement.

    I photoshopped out her full name and birth date for privacy sake. Her mom gets the full version though.

    I really can’t get enough of baby kisses.

    I think that’s how she must have looked in utero.

    Don’t be surprised if there are a million more baby photos in the future. But that’s what we do around here, lots of babies and dogs.

  • Pittsburgh: the Vacation Edition

    Date: 2012.07.06 | Category: Family, Food, Friends, Life, Mark, OMG YAY!, Photography, Sarah, Travel | Response: 18

    The rest of my time in Pittsburgh was like a vacation at a bed and breakfast. Cassie and her husband cooked for us and let us lounge on their deck in the gorgeous weather.

    Mae and Sarah even took to sharing the Elmo chair and watching Rio together.

    Note: that stuffed dog Sarah is holding is one of Cassie’s childhood toys. Sarah fell in love with it and carried it everywhere.

    Sarah also joined in the kids’ dress up shenanigans and Luca was kind enough to lend her his boots.

    Cassie and Matt were excellent hosts and treated us to a Pirates baseball game so we could take in the beautiful view and sports culture of the city.

    On our way to the game, we stopped in at Primanti Brothers to get one of their infamous French fry sandwiches. Mark and I both thought they needed some kind of sauce, but we enjoyed them.

    The walk into the park was gorgeous.

    And Sarah took to the game like a champ.

    We rounded out our time there with a day in the park. We couldn’t get over the beautiful weather and neither could the kids, so I pulled the camera out and snapped some photos of their beautiful faces.

    Sarah joined right in with Cassie’s three.






    And let’s not forget their beautiful mother Cassie.

    Thanks to the whole Cassie family for an amazing vacation in a beautiful city. I hate that we live so far away, but I’m counting down the days until I see them again. Which, believe it or not, is already scheduled and not that far away!

  • Welcome to Steel City

    Date: 2012.07.03 | Category: Family, Food, Friends, Life, Mark, Me, OMG YAY!, Photography, Sarah, Travel | Response: 7

    Somehow we managed to perk Mark up with antibiotics our last day in Indy, but he was still feeling tired that evening, so Sarah and I met Tammy, Dylan and their little girl at Steak and Shake for burgers and shakes.

    Sarah had fun wearing the hat…

    And nearly falling asleep on her tray.

    Bright and early Saturday morning we were off to the airport to fly to Pittsburgh to see Cassie.

    Another strange thing happened there.

    During my conference I met the Rome (as in Italy) photographer for the news wire service we subscribe to. Well, at the airport I bumped into him again and he was on the exact two flights to Pittsburgh we were. We had a great time talking professional photojournalism and I quizzed the poor guy on the best lenses and settings for different atmospheres for the better part of our layover.

    Once we got to Pittsburgh though, it was totally like one of those cheesy movies where I spotted Cassie at baggage claim and ran into her waiting arms. I think Mark chuckled, but it was great.

    After a lot of traffic, we drove through the tunnel which opened up to the spectacular view of the  rivers and city of Pittsburgh. Once I got over the fact that I had somehow screwed up my camera lens, I was amazed at how beautiful the city was. I mean, when I think of Pittsburgh, I think of the steel industry, but this was just different. Water, yellow bridges, mountains, sports stadiums. Beautiful.

    And Cass was even forced by traffic to take us through downtown and graciously pointed out where Mark and I should each get jobs so we can come live there.

    We headed to her house and met her entire family. I promptly fell in love with them all. Mark and Matt even hit it off and, considering how shy my husband can be, I was amazed by that.

    That night we went to a blogger meet up graciously hosted by Bluz Dude and Cassie at La Tavolla at the top of Mt. Washington. Not only was the food outstanding, but I finally got to meet Bluz (who is exactly what I thought he would be, except even nicer), the Carpetbaggers (the Mrs. loves walking and border collies!), Cassie’s Mom (who I felt like I already knew) and the hilarious Bethany. There were a few other bloggers who came, but I didn’t get a chance to talk to them. The boys took the kids home early so Cass and I could enjoy the wine and conversation. And let me tell you, with a group of bloggers there is never a lull in conversation.

    The lens chose to focus on the wine bottles, but that’s Cassie, Me and Bluz.

    I’m so thankful they arranged the meet up around my visit and I felt honored to be the special guest. I really hope I can make it back to future meet ups. Great people, great food, great city… what’s not to love?

    After Cass became the object of three misguided drivers while she held on to two bottles of wine, we made our winding way to the lookout platforms at the top of Mt. Washington.

    Talk about a breathtaking view.

    And the weather? Well it’s what we would consider fall weather in Louisiana. It was the perfect farewell to Indy and into to Pittsburgh.

  • Flying and Babies

    Date: 2012.06.28 | Category: Baby, Family, Friends, Life, Mark, Photography, Sarah, Travel, Work | Response: 13

    I have so many amazing stories to tell you from the trip I just took and I’m having trouble deciding where to begin. I suppose with these sorts of things it’s best to start at the beginning.

    I’ve been planning this trip as soon as I saw my conference would be in Indianapolis this year. The conference itself is always interesting, plus one of my best and longest friends lives very near Indy and was expecting her first baby. Then Cassie and I schemed and figured out that I could make my way over to Pittsburgh cheaply from Indy the groundwork was laid. I convinced Mark to come with me and bring Sarah. The only problem with this whole plan was the SIX total flights it took to complete it with an irritable baby.

    I guess since flying with little ones is so difficult, airport security figures you have your hands too full to risk doing anything stupid because if you’re carrying an infant you can get away with the following:

    1. The baby can keep their shoes on.
    2. You can bring on a wide range of liquids exceeding 3 ounces as long as the baby might need them on the flight.
    3. You get to bypass body scanners.
    4. Everyone talks to the baby and you make a million new friends.

    Sarah was amazed by our first two flights over, anxiously looking out the window and blissfully sleeping through most of the long flight from Houston to Indy so she woke up refreshed and happy. She even liked the dogs in Sky Mall.

    When we landed, my friend Tammy’s husband Dylan was ready to get us with car seat in tow, despite having a one-week-old and being extremely sleep deprived. Tammy was doing so well that she met us at the Indianapolis Museum of Art with a packed picnic basket in tow.

    Just to recap, this is a mom who has a one-week-old and managed to pack a full picnic basket and drive herself and her newborn 40 minutes to meet us at a museum. There is no way I would have been capable of all those things one week postpartum. She’s an amazing friend you guys.

    So we ate the wonderful spread while Sarah enjoyed the freedom of outside and tried to jump in the questionably deep fountain about 100 times.

    We took tons of photos on the museum grounds, especially of her sweet little gal. I figured it was the least I could do since they were so amazing and all. Plus, their little girl is the best behaved newborn I’ve ever met.

    And did I mention the grounds there were beautiful? (Please ignore my awful post-plane hair).

    We finished the day with dinner at The Ram and local beer. It was the perfect first day in Indy. Too bad the subsequent days would prove to be a bit more insane…

  • New Camera Means More Photos

    Date: 2012.06.15 | Category: Dogs, Family, Home, Life, Me, Pets, Photography, Sarah | Response: 14

    So I bought a new camera… a Canon Rebel T2i and I’m in love. And because my dogs and my child are always willing test subjects  (well at least they don’t care if I put photos of them on the Internet) I have lots of pictures of them. Here are some of my favorites I’ve taken over the past couple of days.

    I love that if you zoom in on this one you can see her eighth tooth popping through in the front. Now that’s detail!

    Leela says “Cheese!”

    And Bonnie’s just too focused on the ball to do anything else but stare and obsess. But look, you can see the grass and dirt on her tongue, so that’s fun!

    Duh na na na na na na na na na na…  bat dog.

    We let dad snap a pick. Pardon the raccoon eyes, it had been a long day.

    And finally, I think pigtails are one of the best parts of having a little girl.

    Wouldn’t you agree?

  • Beach Part 2: The Wedding

    Date: 2012.05.11 | Category: Family, Friends, Love, Photography, Style, Travel | Response: 12

    The main reason we ventured down to Ft. Walton Beach was for my sister’s best friend Kari’s wedding. Shannon was the Matron of Honor, my nephew was the ring barer and I was the photographer.

    Despite the morning rain, the weather for the wedding was perfect.

    Only one misstep happened when my nephew Jacob tried to swallow the wedding ring, leading the officiant to say, “Holy Mother of God, where’s the ring?!” while the groom frantically asked if he had swallowed it. Turned out the little guy had spit the ring right back out and it had landed in his front pocket. No harm done, just lots of laughs!

    Here are a few photos I took from the wedding.

    My nephew cutting up during the ceremony. Good thing my sister could handle him.

    With this ring…

    Bridesmaids with the bride and ring barer.

    Love birds.


    Dip and kiss.

    Thumbprints = the most awesome guest book ever.

    Matron of honor speech.


    This was one of the most beautiful weddings I’ve ever been to and I was so honored to photograph it.

    Congrats Kari and Chris!