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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

No Pictures Today Either

Just wanted to let you know that I won't be posting any pictures for a few more days. The whole family got sick a couple days after Christmas. I'm being nurse, Mommy, and sick-person, and none of that leaves time for pictures. Hopefully we'll all be well soon.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all!!!

Peanut saw Mommy kissing Santa Clause. ;)


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Spinning tops

Sometimes I believe my daughters are spinning tops. They are wound up with lots and lots of energy, and eventually they crash.

Today has been a pretty good day. Actually, all this week has been good. What do I mean by good? The house has stayed reasonably clean, I haven't been losing my temper with my "spinning tops," and we've all been pretty jolly. Not too shabby.

Even though the weather outside is windy and very cold, we had good light, which enabled me to take some pictures. I found a way to get my girls to sit reasonably still and with a top. These are a few of what I managed with my fully manual 50mm:



Have a Merry Christmas, everyone!!!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Snowy Day

I love that my girls get excited about playing out in the snow. I've seen other children, who were just around the age of two, cry inconsolably about being out in the snow. Peanut just loves to eat as much snow as possible, and Popper likes making snow angels, throwing snowballs, and building snowmen. Our first snow of the season brought us dry, powdery snow. It probably would have been good for sledding, but we do not currently own a sled. We'll have to rectify that situation. Popper made about 6 or 7 snow angels, and Peanut was quite content grabbing a stick and using it as a spoon to help her eat snow.

This might be my favorite shot of the day. I have others that I'd like to tweak, but this one really didn't require any tweaking at all.


Sunday, December 19, 2010

Tea Party

If you've never had the pleasure of having afternoon tea at Pinkadilly Tea in Fredericksburg, you really should make a point to go. My sister-in-law treated me to a wonderful time there, and even the kids love it. There is one spot, in the back of the tea room, where they have a wide assortment of hats to try on. Of course, this spot is a favorite with the children (not just because of the hats, but also due to the low hung mirror).

Popper, as well as her cousins, loved the fact that they got to put sugar cubes into their tea. I'm pretty sure more than a few sugar cubes skipped the tea cups and went straight into the children's mouths.


Thursday, December 16, 2010

Been Busy

I've been busy doing Mom stuff, taking pictures, doing a few photo edits, and playing in the snow!! Here are a few quick pictures:




Sunday, December 12, 2010

Two Posts in One Day?!

I was looking through some pictures I took this fall, trying to decide if I liked them or not. In particular, I was looking at the ones I took with my manual focus 50mm lens. It's tricky to shoot with this lens (although it wasn't back when I was using my film SLR) because my DSLR has no way for me to make sure my image is in focus (except for my eyes). Also, the metering won't work with this lens, so I have to guess with that as well. I would LOVE to own an AF 50mm, but I don't have a spare $120 to get one right now, so I'll just make due.

I took this one with my old lens, and while it wasn't the most interesting shot, I was impressed that my daughter's face is in focus (she hardly ever stands still, making manually focusing even more tricky). After playing with this using photoshop for a bit, I came up with this:


I rather like it.

Cookie Exchange

I had the opportunity to leave my girls at home with my husband and escape to a cookie exchange. I jumped at the chance (been having a bit of a nightmare week), and I am so glad I did. I had an AMAZING time: got to enjoy wonderful conversations, see friends that it has been far too long since I've last visited, listened to some fun Christmas music, ate some delicious food, and saw my friends' beautiful children! This little girl not only sparkled with beauty but also with an electrifying personality. What a darling! I would love to babysit her just because she's so happy and so much fun!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas at the Farm

They aren't the greatest pictures, but I did learn about Photoshop while I was making the collage. It was REALLY cold, so my fingers were pretty numb as I worked the camera controls. Popper didn't want to stand still, so it was difficult to take a picture of her waiting in line for Santa; that is, until Bear picked her up.

So my collage consists of Popper and Peanut waiting in line to see Santa, the wreath on the barn, Santa driving a tractor, and a picture of Popper talking with Santa (with improper exposure). The picture we paid for had an unsmiling Santa, Popper not looking at the camera or at Santa, and Santa's hand in an odd place and weird gesture. So, we opted for my picture.


Monday, December 6, 2010

Playing with Photoshop

I was playing with various actions on photoshop,and it seems many people liked the "toned down" or "vintage" look to pictures. Typically, I'm all about lots of color saturation or as close to "normal" as possible, with a little help. While looking at one of my pictures of Popper apple picking, I thought I would go ahead and try some of the toned down actions. I combined a few, and played with opacity, and came up with this image. It actually kinda like it.


I know, no pictures from our Christmas fun at the farm...well, the one picture of Popper with Santa that I really like was messed up due to me not having my camera on the correct settings. The rest of the pictures are just snap shots...nothing I feel like sharing...well, not right now.

Friday, December 3, 2010

A Not Quite Christmas-y Picture

I was torn on whether or not to leave this picture in color or go for the black and white. In color, the poinsettias in the background definitely give the picture a Christmas feel. But, with combination of how A has his lips and the black and white, the whole picture had a very classic little boy feel. I'll have other Christmas pictures to post, so I decided to go for classic little boy. Hope you like it too.


Tomorrow we head to the farm for some country Christmas fun. Wish me luck on getting lots of great pictures.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Rainy December Day

It's one of those days where you are tempted to wallow in self-pity, but know that you really shouldn't. So, instead, you think about how sinful that action would be, which then leads you to think about other sinful things you have done lately and how you aren't living up to the standards you had set for yourself, which then causes you to want to once again wallow in self-pity. Yeah, it's one of those day.

It is rainy and chilly outside, but the girls are on the insane side, so we all went outside for a bit. It is REALLY tough to take pictures of an object that moves constantly in random directions, but I did manage this one.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Just a quick post of more pictures from yesterday's outing.





Monday, November 29, 2010

Rediscovering Joy

For a while I was using a point and shoot camera...for a long while! When I got my DSLR (maybe 2 months ago) I was concerned that I wouldn't use it to it's full capacity. Well, my friends, these past two days I've been having fun shooting with just the manual setting. Ahh, it feels so good to have the power to control the exposure, depth of field, and then edit my results! I forgot how awesome it is to be so creative (after all, one of the ways we are different from animals is our creative abilities). I'm almost angry with myself for letting me get so far away from a hobby I love so much, but then I remember...I was busy going to school full time, during which I got married and had a baby, then I graduated and had another baby, and moved. So, ok, I've been busy, but what joy to rediscover photography!!

I have been blessed by God in many, many ways. One way is my amazing neighbors!! Not only are they fantastic people, but they are all beautiful and willing to let me take their pictures. So, here you go.




Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Two for your consideration

I have two pictures of Popper but done in different ways. Which do you like? Husband doesn't seem to like either one.



Monday, November 22, 2010

I'm a godmother!!

I have been blessed by being asked to be the godmother for this precious baby boy!!
What an honor!! While he slept, I practiced taking portraits of his sisters.


And, I just couldn't resist posting this heavily edited one of Peanut. The original was a very flat, uninteresting picture. I like it this way.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Hurray for leaves

It seemed to take forever for the leaves to finally fall off the trees here. Who doesn't love raking leaves and jumping into the giant pile?

It took me 4 attempts to edit this picture until I was satisfied. It seemed like everything I did to really pop the color of the leaves made Popper's eyes look fake. I guess that's what happens when you have AMAZINGLY blue eyes (I'm just a little biased).

Must run, the natives are getting restless.

Fall leaves

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Portrait Attempt

I was trying to use natural light to take some portraits of my daughters. Well, that's not an easy task when they refuse to sit still, and you just end up with pouty children and an angry mommy. Not a good combo. Peanut (so called because she is SO small for her age) at least sat in a chair to color, and, as fate would have it, there was some good natural light coming through nearby window. She didn't sit very still (lots of moving from side to side...I think she had a song stuck in her head), but I did manage to get this picture. I like it, but wish I had a little more of her face in it. Perhaps shouldn't zoom in quite so much and crop to what I'd like.

Peanut portrait

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Apple Picking

In September we went, with a few of our neighbors, apple picking. It was my first time ever doing that, and it was wonderful. We traveled to an orchard that was 10 minutes from where Bear and I rented our first home as man and wife. Being out in the country brought back the yearning for moving out there again. How did we ever leave?? The weather was perfect, the mountains were beautiful, and the apples were plentiful. Popper (my oldest daughter) had so much fun picking apples that we wound up with two pecks!! I made three batches of applesauce (so good), carmel apples, apple coffee cake, apple/bacon/cheddar grilled cheese sandwiches, and apple pie. We still had plenty of apples left over on which the girls happily snacked.

Here I practiced using photoshop. I didn't really do much: popped the eye color, boosted the apple color, and softened some of my little girl's face (typically I don't need to soften her face at all, what AMAZING, creamy, perfect skin).

Apple picking

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Going to try something new

Well. I'm really, really bad about blogging, aren't I? Since my life is so boring...or something...I'm going to try something different with my blog. I would like to start a photography business (doing children/family portraits). I'm not ready to start this now (need a new computer, perhaps an external hard drive, need to learn how to use either photoshop or lightroom, and would like one more camera lens and perhaps some filters). Anyway, what I'm going to try to do is post at least one pictures a day (either an old one that I've edited with photoshop or a new picture) just to keep my creative juices flowing and to learn more about my camera and it's settings.

So, this is going to become my photography blog, which I think is pretty exciting. :) If I don't start it this week, you'll see the changes next week.

Wish me luck.