Monday, September 27, 2010

My daughter....and a tree....

Round three of senior pictures yesterday. Hoping the kid finds something she likes SOON. Here is one that cracked me up yesterday....and just now. Gotta love her.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Just right this second...

I love it when this happens. When you are in that "place" where all things seem to come together and even through the mega-stress of getting things done you feel completely at ease.

It doesn't happen often. Trust me. I'm a freak of nature most of the time....mind racing, eyes twitterin', spazin' out all over the place (slight exaggeration, but ya feel me?).

But today, right this second, it all feels....easy.

Right this very second I have been reminded:
  • that I have a HUGE God who has seriously proven, once again, that He is here and He is GOOOOD....
  • that I have been so beyond measure blessed with a husband who means what he says and does what he means....
  • that my "quiver is full" and no matter how much it scares me that one of my "arrows" will be flying off my bow in no time flat (231 days til graduation!), she will always be in my heart and never far from home....
  • that I've been given a gift. Something I truly love, deep, deep down....and people keep "showing up" and needing photos for this and that. The latest? An author from TEXAS, here in my town, meeting my pastor at the very moment she gets the call that her book is going to publication NEXT WEEK and she needs to submit a headshot for the BOOK COVER ASAP. Just so happens that my pastor knows a photographer that will "rock your socks". Tell me God wasn't in THAT. Shoot is tonight. :0)
  • that no matter where I am, what I'm doing, how I'm feeling or anything else, all I have to do is LOOK UP. It is in that act of just slightly lifting my eyes toward the sky that I find my greatest peace.

Ahhh.....I feel safe in the wisdom I have just regained. Just right this second.

"I lift up my eyes to the hills, where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth." ~ Psalm 121:1-2

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

1 + 1 = a couple a nuts

Meet twins Vanessa and Trevor (I put Vanessa first...Trevor is a minute older and always gets to go first. You're welcome, V...).

Boy, did we have fun. I'm pretty sure we laughed all afternoon. This family = too funny. They call mom Vivo (Vivian) and dad DJ (his initials). Only time I ever heard "mom" was when Vanessa would yell "MA!" like a good italian girl from Jersey. Believe me when I tell you she is NOT from Jersey....rather a small farm town in Iowa. We just don't have accents like that. She was seriously channeling some Jersey girl. :0)

They also had a plan.....and, man, do I love a plan. They knew where they wanted to go and what they wanted to do. I got to take them to one of my favorite places too....the campus of Central College in Pella. Beau-t-ful.

So here are my favorite out-takes and the ones that worked. It was a tough choice....these kiddos are too cute and too funny.

I paid him .50 cents to show me his best "diva pose"...... hahahaha!!!!

I wanted her to put the ball by her face and give me her best "I'll kick your arse in volleyball" face, but she could NOT do it. :0)

And for my favs....

So thank you Jack family for making our trip a fun one! You guys are seriously awesome!!!
"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!" ~ Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Babies no longer...

T&C tagged along on a shoot I had on Sunday. I took this of them waiting on us. My babies are babies no longer. Part of me is excited about that and part of me is sad. There are days I miss them being little! Oh, well. Life moves on without you if you stay in one place too long.....

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Calm during the storm...

As the storm of doubt, fear, worry and anticipation swirls around me, I stand, protected by the full force of my God....again. Just a few minutes ago I was being blow around with great force. Feeling the full affect of "what if's" and "maybes" as my mind raced to all the undeniable possibilities. But now, by simply typing and reading the scriptures below, I calmly feel fully protected by the promise that NO.MATTER.WHAT, He is here and He is good.

"And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." ~ James 5:15-16

“The Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting …” ~ Psalm 100:5

“For with God nothing will be impossible.” ~ Luke 1:37

“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” ~ Ephesians 3:20

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds … Great is our Lord, and mighty in power …” ~ Psalm 147:3

“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” ~ Philippians 4:19

“For the Lord is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” ~ Psalm 84:11

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” ~ Hebrews 13:8

“Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray.” ~ James 5:13

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” ~ Matthew 7:7

“Yet you do not have because you do not ask.” ~ James 4:2

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” ~ Hebrews 11:1

Today I'm praying for hope, peace, understanding and the ability to stand upright no matter what.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

"I do, you do, we're done"

"I do, you do, we're done"....

Those were the words Jack (jokingly) thought they should use during the vow portion of the wedding.

Yeah. That didn't fly.

What did fly, though, was beautiful. What a gorgeous, absolutely beautiful day for a wedding! Turns out Jack and Lea Ann clean up well! :0) They had a ceremony made just for them, gorgeous flowers and dresses and a church full of people who all have seen the walk they have taken and the way God has turned them toward each other. What a cool, cool thing.

I personally was more dressed up for this wedding than I was my own. :0( Not that I wanted more dressed up for mine, just that I'm a simple girl who wears hardly any makeup so to go from nearly zero to a full face, I felt like a hussy. I will NOT be sharing any pictures.

You're welcome.

Anyway, I'm so excited for my wonderful friends. For the love they have for each other and the love they have for the rest of us. THANK YOU for letting me be a part of your awesome day. I will cherish our friendship forever and Mark and I are here if you ever need us....just as you have been for us.

Lea Ann: you better get a piece of paper and practice writing that's a doozie, Mrs. DeLeon! :0)

"Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the LORD deal with me, be it ever so severely, if anything but death separates you and me." ~ Ruth 1:16-17

Friday, September 3, 2010

Random mishmosh....


I'm tired. I'm bored (and I should NOT be - I have enough work to do to keep three people working full time for two weeks!). I'm worn out. I'm exhausted.

My ADD is killin' me.

Lots of crazy, random thoughts running through my head today (and everyday) so this post will be a bit mishmosh (I made up that word. It's all mine. Feel free to use it....or not).

I read a new (to me) blog yesterday and God was talking to me. Yep, me. Read this post....especially if you have children leaving or about to leave for college. It's from Soulfari and my new blog buddy, Jay. I'm tellin' ya. Good stuff. My Alli is a senior this year and I am totally avoiding the "what next" stage I am in right now. I'M.SIMPLY.NOT.READY. 'Cuz, you know, it's allll about me. Anyway, read it. Made me begin to think about how blessed I am to be able to let her go. Sigh.

Tonight is Jack and Lea Ann's wedding rehearsal. I'm excited. Tomorrow is the wedding. I get my hairs did and my face "put on". I'll take a picture to show ya. Should be fun....different, but fun. Looking forward to Jack and Lea Ann's wedding. It's been a long time coming (click here to see their engagement photos)! He proposed at our Christmas Eve Eve services last year. They have been plannin' and stressin' and figurin' it all out. This weekend is the culmination of a lot of hard work, but most importantly, God's plan for each of them finally becoming a reality. Woot.

Yesterday I hit a wall. Not literally (felt like it, though). Lots of little things happening lately making me question my photog dreams and desires. I see now, reflecting back on the day, that it was the fat bastard (aka "little guy downstairs") messin' with my head, making me question my desire, my talent and my skill. I'm so thankful for my hubs. He loved me right through my temper tantrum and even said some nice things to the world on Facebook (without being prompted to do so - what a guy). Seriously. Life stinks when things go wrong, accounting goes bad, doubts surface and I want to throw things pout. But God gave me the greatest man ever and he seriously talked me off the ledge....again.

Today is a new day. The joy really does come in the morning. My God is my victory, He is here and He continues to love on me when I need it the most.

Here's to an awesome weekend of soccer for my baby, safe travels for her, my other sweet baby and their dad's family as they get where they are going, for my oldest baby and her "Meals for the Heartland" shift with her friends tomorrow, for my head to stay "clear" of the fat bastard and his crazy shenanigans and for Jack and Lea Ann. May God bless your marriage in ways you can't even begin to imagine. My advice to you both....never forget your wedding day. Tomorrow is your gift from Him. Don't waste it. Happy marriage guys. Love ya!

And with that I leave you with my all time favorite verse: "I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME!" ~ Philippians 4:13

Peace out, my peeps.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


I had the pleasure of shooting a family of 51 (yes....51) on Sunday. The premise for the shoot was not a happy one...the patriarch of the family has cancer (again) and has not been given much time. His entire family came from all over to be there for a family reunion and to celebrate his life.

Now, I don't know about you but doing "end of life" photos is not my idea of a good time. It was a huge blessing to me, though. Larry and his family love each other. I learned a doesn't matter who you belong to, which parent is yours and which parent is your step. It doesn't matter, because you are family. No family is perfect, this one either. BUT....they came together in what is a very hard time for all of them, I'm sure, and laughed. They played and talked and hugged and all that good stuff that happens when family gets together.

It was absolutely my pleasure to be a part of this day. I met a man who wanted to show me his life....the pictures on the wall in the "party barn", the land he owned, the grandchildren and great-grands that are "his"....all of it. I got to hang with, for just a small period of time, a man that has lived his life and has no regrets. I met his wife, who very clearly loves him and their family. A woman who is exactly who she is and could care less if you like it or not. My kind of lady.

I don't know where Larry is going after he passes on. I do know that he still has time to figure that out. God is there, waiting for him to answer the knock on his heart if he hasn't already done so. My God is so big....and I know He loves Larry and each member of that family unconditionally. Run to Him, Larry. I'd love to get to know you better in heaven.

Thank you Wickersham family! For allowing this sinner saved by grace to be a part of your family for just a few short hours. You have truly, honestly changed my heart forever.

Enjoy the video and don't forget to turn off the music at the bottom of the blog before you hit play.

P.S. Mr. Larry gives "the finger" in a few shots. Don't let that bother you. He is who he is and all you can do is smile..... And yes....that is a moonshine still in the last picture. :0)

My favorite of the and Larry. What a cool, cool soul. God bless you, Mr. Wickersham! May your remaining days be filled to the brim with love and laughter.

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." ~ Joshua 1:9