Saturday, December 31, 2011

Reflection. Rewind on 2011.

Goodbye 2011. Hello 2012.
I, for one, am excited to see what the New Year brings. It's a fresh start. A new beginning.
This past year was filled with a lot of growing... both emotionally and physically. First of all, my baby turned ONE in February. I couldn't believe how quickly the first year had flown by and throughout 2011 he grew even more. By the end of this year, his vocabulary had expanded along with his personality which is bigger than life itself. Then there's Cohen. Cohen had a pretty big year too... He spent his last summer as a little kid before entering Kindergarten! Is it really time for Cohen to be a kindergartener?! I just couldn't believe it. He rocked it in baseball and soccer this year and I can't wait to see what this next year brings for him! And then there's me... Well let's just say I had a lot of fun this year... 2011 was filled with new (and old) flames, amazing friendships and even a spontaneous girls weekend in Las Vegas.
Emotionally, I found myself in a much more stable and peaceful place. It sounds funny, but when Rachell and I chose to go to Vegas that particular weekend in August, I also chose to leave the past behind there. I figured, what better place to leave some extra emotional baggage than Vegas!
2011 flew by so quickly that a lot of it seems like a blur. But just to share a little bit... here are my top 10 moments of 2011:

1. Celebrating my 27th birthday with some of my closest and best friends. 2. Watching my baby turn 1. I can't imagine missing a single experience of his beautiful life. 3. Watching Cohen play a whole season of T-ball without using the Tee! 4. Spending sunny summer days out lounging on the river with friends. 5. Ethan's first trip to the waterslides. Did I mention this kid is CRAZY!? ;) 6. CRAZY girls nights with Lindsey (I swear I need a liver transplant after each one) 7. VEGAS 8/13/11. Need I say more? 8. Him. 9. Learning photography. My camera has been like therapy. 10. Hearing Ethan say "I love you" for the first time.
Cheers to another year! ♥

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Holidays.

I'm sitting here staring at my Christmas tree, complete with lots of presents underneath it, and I can't help but be so thankful for my life and all I have in it. My life is far from perfect, but it's perfectly imperfect. I have two of probably the healthiest kids (knock on wood), I have my own personal health, a roof over my head, a comfortable lifestyle... There's just so much to be thankful for. This past week has definitely helped me to realize that.

Last weekend, my friend Amanda and I volunteered with HELP PORTRAIT, a non profit organization that provides family photos to the needy and homeless. In addition to free family photos, hair and make up is also provided. Amanda and I captured some wonderful candid moments in the hair and make up room and I even jumped in to help with the make up. One lady in particular has stayed in my thoughts since...

This particular woman was 41, homeless and pregnant. First of all, I cannot even begin to imagine what her life must truly be like and the things that she must endure every single day. I ended up doing her make up and Amanda even captured on camera the very moment that she looked in the mirror at her new self... tears in her eyes and all. I touched a life... a human being... even if it was just for those few minutes and even if it was something as superficial as making someone feel pretty, I helped to make her life better for those few minutes.

I don't know what happened to her or where she went after pictures that day. I pray to God that her and her unborn are safe and warm... One thing that I do know is it made me snuggle my kids a little extra that night, tuck them in to their beds extra warm and give them a few extra kisses.

None of us know what our future has laid out for us. I, for one, know all too well that life as you know it can change in an instant... but one thing that I do know is that I will raise my kids with compassion, love and an awareness of the world around them.

Happy Holidays. xo

Monday, December 12, 2011

Taitym: Part II.

So I just can't get enough of this baby girl! So precious!


Almost exactly a week after I shot Aimee's belly pics, Miss Taitym made her entrance into the world... talk about timing! Yesterday, we (attempted) to get some awesome newborn shots of Taitym (at 13 days old) but this little girl was SO alert, strong and stubborn. She was determined to do what she wanted and we had to work with her on her terms. Typical girl! ;) Here's just a little sneak peek of what we did yesterday!