Friday, May 28, 2010

In Case You Thought I Forgot Again {Project Two Times Twelve}

I didn't! In fact I took these pictures shortly after the last ones were taken. In all my outdoor picture taking frustration, I've had the kids outdoors a few times. This month I was all about yummy back lighting with a slight bit of haze, and if I could catch a little bit of sun flare, well then, all the better.

I'm sure that all means nothing to you.

That's OK. It barely means anything to me either.

I am still struggling with these three techniques, but I love them so much, I can't stop trying. I am completely addicted, and I am hoping to perfect it by December.

With all that being said, I only have a few shots this month because I was more miss than hit. I will also say, that these are still a far cry from what I would like to see eventually, but it's where I am this month. I have to keep reminding myself that I am not only documenting my kids this year, but also my growth as a photographer.


Here we go:

Probably one of my favorites of The Girl in a long time. In fact, since this edited version, I have worked on the editing of this image a few more times. Maybe, I'll share again another version. I love the hand placement, the facial expression, and the back light. I don't love the bright spot on the brim of her hat, and also, because I was being impatient, the sun is still too high in the sky for the yummy light I was hoping for, thus, the haze is WAY too strong.

The Little Man is next. Again cute expression and natural pose, which for me, is a plus. I am not going for the posed, but more natural with this Two Time Twelve challenge. I was playing with using a reflector in this one, and I think it makes the front lighting look a bit unnatural. Plus, like the first image, I am too impatient here and the lighting and haze is still a bit harsh.

Here's a cute interaction. I could say the same for this image as I have said about the above two.

But I won't.

Because that gets boring.

Just know I feel the same.

Lesson learned: Be patient for the perfect light. The sun should be LOW in the sky, and ditch the reflector, but keep the kids. They're cute.

Here's an example of what I am working towards. Although he's not mine (well, kind of. He is my nephew.)

I love the warmth of these! Can you see the difference in waiting another hour or so for the sun?

I am glad I've had some success here, now to apply it to my own kids.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

It Was a Happy Day

School is over.

The week(s) from you know where are done.

Time to sit back and take in the summer!

If we don't get blown away first.

The wind. OH THE WIND! While we have had some nice temps so far this Spring, we have had no days yet that had both nice temps AND no wind.

Until today that is.

It just made this day so much more happy. The end of school, field day, school parties, AND nice weather! It was like the perfect official kick off to summer vacation. I know I don't need to tell you how ready I am for summer break. I think I was ready about, oh, last August. And here we are!

Here's some pics to recap the day:

First up: Field Day at The Girl's school. A little balance beam obstacle course:

Oh, and I brought along Mr. Grumpy Pants:

Who quickly livened up when he could get to the playground:

I think I have mentioned this before, but nothing quite says "Field Day" to me like having your face painted:

Alas, it is still her favorite part of the day.

Then I had to take a break from all the action and head over to The Little Man's school for his Pre-K graduation. After a long year of studies he has decided he'd like to go a little deeper in the field of Jr Kindergarten, next year.

Something that I thought was really cute about this particular event is that his teachers came up with what they thought each student would grow up to be. (I so wish I could share the video with you all, but I can't because it includes some private 4-1-1.) His teachers this year were really great, and you could tell they really got to know each child individually. They predicted that The Little Man would become a high level CEO based off of his leadership abilities and interest in numbers. I am now curious as to what type of leading he was involved in this year with his friends on the playground. Hmmmm. Anyhow, it was cute. He did come up to me and ask what a CEO is after the presentation was all over.

Quickly, The Little Man and I ran back over to The Girl's school to finish up Field Day and have fun at the End of the Year party.

Here they are getting ready for some bounce house/slide fun! The Girl was so sweet and allowed her little bro to tag along for a short while:

Quickly, she went back to her friends. This little girl is her BFF least this past year:

This pic cracks me up. The Girl just thinks that rabbit ears in a pic are funny. She doesn't realize yet that it's only funny to do it to someone else unsuspectingly:

She's a beauty anyways, so I'll keep her:

The Girl's First Grade teacher:

Even though the year had it's ups and downs, The Girl adored her teacher.

And I, for one, am so glad it's Summer Break.

Did I say that already?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Not That I'm Counting or Anything

9 days of School.
6 days (possibly) of homework.
5 more Lunches to pack.
5 days of running carpool.
36 days until it's officially summer.


Monday, May 10, 2010

At the Front of My Mind

Around these parts, May is living up to all it's hectic glory, and earning the right to be called the "Spring December". The good news about that is when you are super busy, you don't have the time to lament over how long the month is dragging as we try to approach summer. I feel like it was just April 1st yesterday, yet as Friday approaches, we will be at the mid-point of the month. My prayer right now is, once the kids are out of school, for the next ten or so weeks to sweetly drag their feet.

In the last few days these things have stuck in my brain amidst the craziness:

1. The Little Man was invited to a birthday party. This is a pretty rare event since he is still on the younger side. Many of his friends don't have birthday parties for friends yet. That and no one wants to invite him. OH, I KID! Seriously though, he doesn't have a ton of friends yet since he isn't officially in school. So, when the rare invitation gets thrown his way, it's a big deal. He loves going shopping for the gift...or at least he likes any opportunity to peruse the toy aisle. As he was planning which day we would go to Super T, he was making sure I too was putting it on the calendar so we wouldn't miss getting the gift.

p: Mom, we need to go to Target and get my friend a gift because his party is on Saturday, OK?
m: OK, we'll make it over there before the end of the week. Don't worry.
p: We should go now, Mom. We might forget.
m: I don't think I'll for get, Buddy. We'll get a gift in the next few days.
p: But, Mom, if we forget it will be horrible.
m: yea.
p: Yea, you know how you say "Happy Birthday!" to people?
m: Yes.
p: Well we couldn't say that to him because he wouldn't have any present. We would just have to say to him "Regular Birthday to you! Sorry, it can't be happy, but we forgot your present!"

So, in order to avoid a "Regular Birthday" we made time to get over to Super T later that day.

2. I don't know if it was officially my "Mother's Day Gift", but I did get this a few days before Mother's Day this past week. Two words for you peeps with hardwoods or tile floors, IT ROCKS! Super, super easy to use, and to clean AND sanitize all at once? HELLO! I'm in love. It was also nice to not have to lug around water for a mop, or any of that spray stuff I normally use. Nope, I just plug this baby into the wall and BANG, I'm a moppin' fool. Another little tidbit I would like to add, especially for those of you living with the male species: It cleans AND SANITIZES around the toilet without you having to bend down and scrub with your face just mere inches away from the nastiness.

So, to summarize, I love my new mop, it cleans AND sanitizes, I don't have to put my face near any more "misfires" in the bathroom.

And I love it.

Oh, I said that already.

3. Currently, I am trying not to inhale an entire pint of this delicious goodness. I am eating the Island Coconut flavor. Yum and more yum. It tastes so fresh and perfect I really don't have many other words to describe it except fresh and perfect. It reminds me of the Coconut ice cream I recently fell in love with while in Cancun last month. I also love that it has ingredients I can read as opposed to all sorts of crazy wild junk that not only is hard to read, but you wonder what it's doing in ice cream and why. I mean, just give me milk, sugar, eggs, and then whatever flavors I choose. You don't need all that other junk. Just the good stuff is all I require, and that's just what this ice cream is.

As I sit here eating it, I feel like I have been transported to another place and time. A place and time that is warm and sunny.

I am also pretending that I am in a place that is NOT being threatened with a large amount of snow in just a mere 48 hours in MAY.

People, it is past Mother's Day, which means we should be DONE with the white stuff. Also, I feel like I could have officially run out of patience with the cold weather. I have planted my garden for crying out loud!

OK, I will not freak out about something that hasn't happened yet. I will calmly wait and see.

And find the tarp so I can cover all tender vegetation.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Almost Missed {Project Two Times Twelve}

Technically, I did miss April.

By two days.

I could get all anal, freak out, give up, and walk away from the project of two kids in twelve months, but I will instead persevere. This time learning that sometimes fun can happen unexpectedly, and in cooler weather than hoped for.

In April, we had issues. First, at the beginning of the month The Hubs and I went to Mexico. In preparation for this trip, I worked my tail off so I could leave and enjoy myself without feeling guilty about all the work I left behind. Next, we had fun entertaining the stomach flu for a week. Lastly, the weather took a nose dive for the remaining days. Add that to a repeat performance of "Preparation so I could leave and enjoy myself", and we are now in May.

Yesterday, out of no where, I told the kids they were headed outdoors for a little impromptu session. They kept on their clothes from church, and outdoors we went. As you can clearly tell, the setting could have been mapped out a little better. Not the best location, but it was close to home. Plus, I didn't want to ruin the fun of the impromptu-ness of it all by spending all our time traveling somewhere.

Also, I have to admit, I have TOTALLY lost all my outdoor photography mojo. It's been a long winter. I am totally itching for outdoor stuff, but it's been while. Sadly, I am battling the whole "If you don't use it you lose it" scenario. I am in a MAJOR funk about it. And it shows. I hope it isn't too long lived! My kids are going to learn to hate my camera and I because I refuse to let this funk beat me. I have to get over it, and QUICK!

No more excuses....just bear with me for this month.

Even though I was having a hard time, I didn't want the kids to know it. I just let them have fun and run around. We all pretended it was a warm spring day (for 20 minutes) and went for it:

Love the way she leads him and the umbrella leads her:

Running is always fun and it keeps you warm:

The Little Man was working some seriously crazy faces...I just went with it:

The Girl who was working her beauty and an umbrella:

Some crazy sun haze and wild wind:

I hope May turns out a bit better. I am looking for more outdoor fun and to GET OUT OF MY FUNK.

The End.