Sunday, February 23, 2014

I had the best date this weekend!

I had the best date on Friday night...with my son.  On that evening, my daughter and husband headed out to the Daddy Daughter Dance at school.

Each year, on the night of the dance, I take my little guy out for a date.  We've gone to a variety of places.  It's been just the two of us for most of these evenings but on others, we've met up with friends. This year, I decided on just the two of us.

He loves to get dressed up and wear ties.  So, I thought we'd go out for a bit of a fancier date and I'd join him in truly dressing up.  After the rest of our family headed out the door, he and I took our own photo (using my really cool new gorilla pod to hold my camera) and then we were on our way to our restaurant.  I'd searched earlier in the day for an upscale brick oven pizza place and found exactly what I was looking for.

We headed out to the car and my little guy opened the door for me. Such a gentleman!  When we arrived at the restaurant, he asked me to stay put so that he could once again open my car door.  He insisted on opening the door to the restaurant for me, pulled my chair out when we were seated and even made sure I got to the ladies room right before we left so I didn't get lost.  I was so spoiled!

The restaurant was fabulous and exactly what I was hoping for! We had a lovely dinner, sharing bruschetta, a pizza and then dessert.  I had told him he could have anything he liked to drink and he chose Root Beer.  

I'd loved having this sweet face smiling back at me.

A really nice woman at the next table offered to take our photo.  I'm so happy she did!

At one point, my date took out a little black notebook and started writing in it on his lap. I asked him what it was. Turns out, he was taking notes about our night together and writing down our memories as they happened - his version of my camera. We had the absolute best time talking about all kinds of topics. He shared things with me he normally wouldn't have ( I'm sworn to secrecy) but the evening lender itself to that kind of chat.  I loved every second!  

It was such a special night and I'm truly looking forward to next year! I'm one lucky mom!

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Sun has Set

I have a whole other family and life, so to speak, up in Canada.  A good chunk of my summers were spent up North as well as every other Christmas while I was growing up.  My mom is still a Canadian citizen.  It's funny that I also married a man whose mother is still a Canadian citizen too.  For all intents and purposes, I should have dual citizenship as I feel half Canadian. (maybe one of these days I'll look into that). In addition to my relatives, I have many others whom I consider family by choice.  I can thank my grandparents for that as they introduced some amazing people into my life during the time I spent with them.  Any time spent in Canada always included visits to see the Parchments, the MacMillans and several other families who lived up by the cottage where I stayed with my grandma and grandpa in the summers.  Even once my grandparents had passed, whenever I traveled up North, I still made time for a quick visit with my Aunties and Uncles, as I referred to them.

Some of my favorite memories from those great summers are of the Canada Day champagne brunches my grandparents would host at their cottage every year.  There would be 50 people or more, all bringing food, drinking champagne and having fun.  (Only one summer did I sneak some champagne - and it was a long time before I ever did that again!)  The Parchments were some of my grandparent's best friends.  Uncle Trevor and Auntie Alison was how I referred to them (and still do).  Uncle Trevor always seemed to be the main chef in the kitchen, whipping up scrambled eggs with cheese, frying bacon and making all kinds of other yummy foods for the brunch.  Auntie Alison was right there by his side helping both him and my grandma. I can still hear Auntie Alison and my grandma laughing and telling jokes and having a fabulous time. We would also spent New Years Eves with the Parchments, all sitting around the dining room table playing Scattergories while my dad argued with whomever over the definition of a light vs. a lamp. Oh my.  As I got older, the kids would have their own New Years Eve party downstairs in the basement and the grown ups had their fun upstairs.  Oh I have just some fantastic memories!

My heart is heavy and sad tonight as I learned that Auntie Alison passed away yesterday after a long, hard battle with multiple illnesses.  While the heydays of my time in Canada have long passed, my memories are so clear and those snapshots in my mind bring me such happiness. Knowing that another one of the key members of those memories is now gone, makes those days seem just that much farther away. I'm thankful to have known Auntie Allison.  While I'm happy that she is no longer in pain, that doesn't make her loss any easier to accept. I have no doubts that she and my grandma met up right away, upon her arrival in Heaven, to do some much needed catching up and lots of laughing.

This image is one from two summers ago but seems appropriate. It was taken on Four Mile Lake, where so many of those summers were spent and so many of those memories were created.  You will be missed Auntie Alison.  Sending love, light and peace to all of those still here on Earth, missing you so very, very much.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Life as it Happens - A new kind of session!

One year ago today, I became a full time photographer!  While that had been my intention one day in the future, I hadn't planned on it happening quite exactly when or how it did. But, looking back, I couldn't be more thankful. I always say that life takes you where you need to go and the universe brings you what you need.  What I needed was to have the time to pour all my focus and energy into this deep passion of mine for photography and capturing life around me. Here I am, one year later, following my dream.  I couldn't possibly feel more fortunate!

So, I thought to myself, what a perfect day to announce the launch of a new type of session I will be offering called Life as it Happens.  This is something I've wanted to do for awhile now and I finally feel like the time is right.  It's truly my favorite kind of photography and I do it all the time with my own family, as well as occasionally for a few friends. Now, I'd love to do it for you!

This will be approximately a 3-4 hour session (can be broken up into several segments) and is not a family portrait session.  It's exactly what the title of the session as it happens.  Think of it as a snapshot in time of what your life looks like right now.  When you look back in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years, you'll have a time capsule of what life looked like back then. It's the small details, the moments as they happen...the games you play with your kids, the special toys they love, the snuggling, the playing, the nap time rituals.  It's the trips to the park or the visits to the ice cream store you take when a special treat is in order.  Perhaps it's playing in the snow.  Maybe it's the art projects that take over your kitchen a few times a week.

This is me, being a fly on the wall, capturing your life as it really is. That means it isn't always coordinated or neat or perfect. (I mean, whose life is, really? Certainly not mine.)  It's the world you've created and a day in your life, captured so you can revisit it as many times as you'd like as life continues on. It's real moments.  No stress about having matching clothes or everyone behaving or looking at the camera at the same time with perfect smiles.  It's the Mommy moments, the sweet looks, the chubby cheeks, the blanket that gets carried around everywhere.  It's being able to be in the photos with your kids, simply being mom or dad and giving them the gift for the future of seeing these moments when they are all grown up. (okay, I'll stop - I can't think about mine being all grown up right now either...)  

While this type of session is more ideally suited for parents with little munchkins, it could also be good for a special outing or special time with any family or friends that you would like to have documented.

You will receive a custom made book with all of the best images we captured from the day, giving  you a snapshot of your Life as it Happens. This can happen in all kinds of weather - even ones filled with lots of snow.  I'd love to connect up and get a session on the books for you!

So, there it is.  One year down, a new session being offered and lots of excitement about the year ahead! I can hardly wait!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

One Month Down

My first month of this year's Project 365 is complete. Off to a good start, I would say!

On to February!