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growing up and other random ramblings

My love for blogging seems to ebb and flow. Some months, I can find a story or a picture to share every day. Other months find me ducking in to share a quick anecdote and a picture. That’s the way I roll. I’m not apologizing for it, or anything.

But sometimes, after lurking on other blogs instead of writing my own, I find that I’ve lost my voice. That hasn’t been too much of a problem here, but on my professional blog, I am suffering from a major case of laryngitis. I find that I either repeat myself over there and just repost things from this blog, or I agonize for hours over what to type. It’s so hard to just let go and throw my personality into it.

I wonder if this is what it’s like to be shy.

Our darling Bri has been growing up during my long silences over here. She’s such a big girl now. Today we went to the mall with my assistant for practice shooting. Before we left, I packed the diaper bag with her sippy cup and some treats. Then I left it on the counter and marched right out the door! Brilliant! Luckily we keep spare diapers in the van, so all I had to make up for were the forgotten treats. Bri surprised me by using the straw correctly on her juice box. I didn’t know she could do that by herself now! Usually she makes a huge mess by squirting juice everywhere.

She also surprised me by climbing up the flower slide all by herself several times on the playscape. Usually she asks for help, but today she figured out how to do it all by herself.

We were delighted to discover that the pretzel shop was giving away free pretzels in the food court. And even though we got booted from Sephora (because I asked if we could take some pictures – harrumph – didn’t even get to take the lens cap off in the store) it’s pretty safe to say that all three of us girls had a marvelous time.

Bri still says cute little things that I hope I’ll never forget. She likes to say Mumby instead of Mommy and at night when we draw up her bath she asks us to “put bubbles known it.” We have a plethora of baby dolls that she adores. Her most recent treasure came from her Daddy for Valentine’s Day.

We were all sick last weekend and didn’t get to celebrate. So Thursday afternoon, when we arrived home from school, Hubs had a vase full of roses and a new Dora doll on the kitchen table for us. He’d also cleaned the house and bought me dark chocolate. Each of us had a sweet card with his love to us. It was so much more special than the expected commercial holiday! We loved it!

tiny moment amidst a busy day

Today I did my first staged wedding shoot. It’s the first step of a giant project for the premiere wedding venue in my small town. I was positively giddy when I discovered a few weeks ago that I’d gotten the green light for the job. My twitter peeps may remember a secret that I was bursting to share. This was it.

So many things were up in the air for the shoot, including the weather. There were several days when I thought we’d have to (insert screaching brake sounds) post. pone. I had several models cancel for various reasons. But the day came together and went off with only one major hiccup. My very nice, external flash that I paid full price for a month ago (grrr…) decided not to work today. I have a feeling that it will sort itself out, but we didn’t get any of the indoor pictures that I’d planned to capture.

My favorite moment of the day: Bridoodle was traipsing around the gorgeously restored old mansion in her flower girl finery. She was singing one of her favorite songs as she skipped and hopped through the room. A sweet grandmotherly lady asked, “Is she singing Jesus loves me?” I blushed, “No… err… she’s singing ‘You’ll do it. You’ll use the potty. It’s a song from Sesame Street.’” Still giggling about that!

kit-kat post

I had to think of something clever for this post title, because my original idea would have made you hit “mark already read” in your feed reader. You can go ahead and do that if you want!

I’m sitting at home in a quiet house all by myself for the next few minutes. Today was a rainy gray day and I got soaked on the way to the car, so I decided to indulge myself with some alone time at home. I changed into jeans before grabbing the computer. It’s eerily quiet around here.

Every day after school I stop by the daycare to pick up Bri on my way home from work. Then we go on to do our normal errands or we go home. It seems like I melt seamlessly from one role (teacher) into the next (mother) and the next (wife) and the next (photographer). I rarely stop to just be me.

So today I thought I’d take a thirty minute break. And it was fun. It’s nice to know that I still like myself, because I don’t get to spend much time with just me anymore!

Good-bye evening sessions.

I never had much of an opinion on daylight savings time until this year. In one fell swoop my evening sessions were pretty much eliminated. Since I work from 8-4:30 most days, that leaves precious little daylight. Most of my clients won’t be able to meet me that early in the afternoon anyway. And I only have a few weeks before the sun will be setting at 4:30pm anyway!

The light has been beautiful as the sun has set in the late afternoon, though. I’ve been itching to get out with my camera. Instead I’ve been chained to the computer finalizing orders and editing photos. Maybe next week I’ll be able to get out early enough to grab a few shots.

So, I’ve got an official position of daylight savings time now. It stinks! I want that hour of sunny evening light back! Darkness in the morning would be much better. Stepping off of this soap box now. I’ll have to think of some creative solutions to this problem. Or maybe we’ll just enjoy a few more movies in the evenings now.

OMT Syndrome

I have a disease. My husband became aware of it about fourteen months after we started dating. On Halloween that year, I showed up for class at 8am and had an obligation that accounted for every hour of the day until 3am the next morning. I attended class, meetings, work, volunteered at the hospital, went to a BSU party and then met friends for a post-football game celebration. I drooped across his shoulder at the Waffle House while my old friends from high school told stories about me, and he patted me on the back. “I don’t know where you find the energy,” he said.

If left to my own devices, I tend to pack activities into my weeks like a fat kid piling goodies onto his plate at a church picnic. There’s always “one more thing” that I want to do and “one more thing” that I think I can squeeze in to my schedule. When I look at my schedule it makes me smile if it’s all jam packed.

Even I can admit that the last ten days have been insane! I’ve had two photo sessions to edit, breakfast duty for Sunday School, my family came to visit, I taught 6 year olds in VBS this entire week, hosted friends at our house for dinner one night and attended an awards banquet with Hubster. I haven’t even been to the pool. It’s been that busy.

I think I’ve learned my lesson this time. (I always say that about my One More Thing Syndrome). But this time I really mean it. I will cut back on my obligations, not take on any new obligations, try to do better from now on. We’ll see!

Train Study

Today was one of those kind of days. You know. The kind where you set out to run a twenty minute errand. Like, maybe you need a signature from the health department. Only you get stuck at a train on the way.

train1

Then you get stuck in the waiting room until they’re ready for you. (Because they had to finish the sudoku puzzle tucked neatly under a stack of charts.)

train2

And then you get stuck in a social history with a nurse who needs a cup of coffee.

And then you get billed $18 for the list of ridiculous questions preceeding the simple signature that you came for in the first place.

train3

And then you get stuck at a train on the way back.

Look closely and you can see a hospital tower peeking out between these two train cars.

It was one of those kind of days.

Princess Bri

We were folding laundry. Despite being under the weather this weekend, Bri and I have managed to get quite a bit of housecleaning done. Hubster even helped out with vacuuming and the dishes when he got home from work. As I was folding the clothes Bri was testing them to see if they were “Hot.” And I came across one of the dresses we bought on Memorial Day weekend.

scooting down stairs

Bridoodle wore this dress to church with her cousins last Sunday. (Today we stayed home because our drippy noses and hacking coughs would raise eyebrows.) These pictures just don’t do justice to the cuteness of this dress. I had to *wince* use the flash on my camera for these shots. It was too dark to go without the flash like I usually do. And I really hated to miss this moment between baby cousins.

baby cousins

Anyway, I went to hang up the dress and as I was putting it away, I stumbled across a purple princess dress that Mimi bought for Bri a couple of months ago. She’s never going to get a chance to wear it before she outgrows it, I thought mournfully as I passed over it. I pulled the dress out at and looked at the satin roses and crinoline. Bri leaned around my legs and pointed up at the purple chiffon, “Pretty!”

dressing up

So I did what any good mother would do. I let her play dress up. Forget the laundry! We grabbed the camera and she had fun posing and playing in the glowing morning sun.

playful pose

Then she decided that she wanted to ride the pony. So I staged a few shots with our resident rocking horse as well.

gleeful ride

her royal highness

But don’t let those sweet smiles fool you. There were plenty of royal temper tantrums mixed in with our dress up game. She played her part very well. Maybe she’s destined to be a real princess. (Or maybe she’s just really spoiled!)

pouty princess

“Spoiled? Me? Why you wouldn’t believe that, would you sweet intahnets?” says Bri. “I not spoyed.”

pure innocence

Look out world! She’s irresistable.

Bridoodle Discovers the Internet

My darling girl has a Sesame Street obsession. She’s not yet two, and she already knows the main characters by name. Her favorite furry little monster goes by Elmo. And there are usually about five exclamation points trailing his name. She gets very excited about him. We’ve been checking out Sesame Street DVD’s from the library and we’ve even purchased a few. (Yes, we live in the stone ages. No such thing as TiVo in this house!) At the end of the movies, there’s always a spot for SesameStreet.com and tonight I though I would explore it with Bri.

skeptical Bri

She wasn’t so sure about this idea at first. But as soon as she saw her friend Elmo, she was all smiles. I made the mistake of pulling out the computer while she was still eating. Ooops! She didn’t touch her food again. Her eyes were glued to the computer screen from then on!

gleeful girl

She sat still, mesmerized by Elmo and his friends, while I grabbed the camera to document it. Occasionally she would look at me in amazement and then point to the screen before shouting, “ELMO!!!!!”

TV dinner

Eventually, she figured out where the controls were on the keyboard. She actually leaned forward and tried to stand up so that she could reach the computer. Crazy kid! I think she got tired of seeing the Count and wanted me to play more videos of the younger muppets. So I obliged her and found a section devoted to Elmo.

elmo and abby cadabby

There were several videos of Elmo with Abby Cadabby. She’s a pink fairy muppet and she loves words. I think she’s just as cute as a button. Bri however didn’t seem to care for her too much.

nail-biting suspense

She seemed a little worried that Elmo and Abby Cadabby might start holding hands. I think Bridoodle feels very loyal to Zoe. We have about five Sesame Street books that picture Zoe and Elmo together all the time. Only one shows a picture of Abby Cadabby and she’s ice skating all by herself. So when I found a video of Elmo and Zoe together, Bri got really excited again.

elmo and zoe

You can see her greasy finger prints on the keyboard. She wanted to get closer to Elmo and Zoe. (Note the missing arrow key. That’s why we don’t let her get close to the computer. She did that when she was six months old. Lesson learned.)

brand new internet addict

All in all, we had a blast playing on the internet together. I think this is the beginning of a whole new adventure. My baby’s growing up!

day 5/7: bri doesn’t like april fool’s jokes

serious bri

Bri needed a diaper change after dinner and when we were finished, I jokingly said “Night, night” and tossed her into the crib. Poor little girl. She’s not old enough to understand a joke, and she started crying. Ooops! So I grabbed her back out of the crib and got the camera out to snap a picture. She was enamored by the auto timer, hence the studious expression. We then spent an hour jumping on Mommy and Daddy’s bed before it was really time for “Night, night.”

PS- I thought about posting a belly shot and saying “Guess who’s preggers? April fools!” But Hubs argued that some people can’t take a joke. So I decided not to do it.

Technical Difficulties

Please standby while we experience technical difficulties. The computer doctors need to have a look-see at our precious computah.

computah

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