Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Bryson and I received a nice camera as a graduation gift from my parents 3 years ago. But I am embarrassed to say that I have only skimmed through the manual once and have NEVER taken it off Auto. Sometimes my photos turn out well, but most of the time they are pretty average.
Lucky for me, my friend Jeanette (or the photographer extraordinaire, as I like to call her- check out her work @ http://jnealphotography.com/) took the time to sit with me for a few minutes to give me a much needed lesson. 
We had 4 crazy kiddos running around, so the photography class was pretty short, but she was able to help me so much!! My photography is still very much a work in progress, but at least I have some clue as to what I am doing, and am inspired by her to take better photos. 

Here are a few from the 'lesson':


Our subject #1 started out looking rather dark and dreary. 

She then showed me how to use my ISO setting (and a few other things that I probably would not be able to explain very well). I had to play with it a little. This one I took was way overexposed.

This one turned out beautifully (maybe a little dark)
As did this

Don't you want to eat one of these? Delicious photo!
My favorite color
And this is the mischief that our children got into during the lesson. Despite the fact that we had to hose them off afterwards, it was well worth it. Thanks Jeanette!!
Although this picture did not turn out that well (Daniel is looking down for goodness sakes!) it goes along with a good story. We gave Daniel this bike as an early birthday present so he could get some use out of it this summer (since 'summer' is only a few short months here). The day after he got it, he came into my room at 6:55 AM, dressed and with his helmet on to wake me up. He said "mom, I'm all ready to ride my new bike today!". It was pretty cold outside, but how could I say no to that?http://jnealphotography.com/

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mothers

I will admit that I am still figuring out this whole 'mothering' thing, but I have decided that it is a pretty great role. It is not for the faint of heart (lots of pain, poop, screaming, exhaustion, and worrying) but I feel more joy and satisfaction in watching my two little boys just play (on any typical day) than I do in everything else I have accomplished in my life combined. 
I feel very blessed to be so supported in this role. I have a wonderful mother who has always been such an incredible example to me, and sisters, sister-in-laws, and a mother-in-law who all shine in their roles as mothers. Not to mention my very loving grandmas (and great grandmas) that have shaped my life and taught me so much. In fact, I know we all come from a long lineage of women who have contributed to our ability to rear our children.  
I am also very blessed to have been raised in a religion that praises women and their roles as mothers. I have been taught since I was very young that raising children is nothing short of divine. 
And even though it is Mother's Day, I, of course, have to attribute so much what I am able to do as a mom to the love and support shown to me by my husband. It is a combined effort and we make a good team. 
And I want to tell all of my friends how impressed I am by you. I am so lucky to be surrounded by so many great moms who set such good examples and are inspiring me.
Again, I want to thank my mother for all that she has done and continues to do. I realize from watching her that being a mother is truly a life-long (even eternal) calling as my mom still takes care of me and my family in so many ways.  

To all mothers:
 Thank you for all you do!
My beautiful mother who means everything to me

My pride and joy
My amazing sister (one of two, but Steph is not yet a mom :)whose friendship, advise, and help I could not live without. 
My very lovely mother-in-law
My very awesome sister-in-laws (minus two, Lauren & Elyse, who are also awesome, but do not have kids and are not pictured)
I hope you all enjoy your day tomorrow!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Bath time is a nightly ritual in our home (unless it has been a crazier than normal night). The boys NEVER seem to tire of bubble baths, playing with their bath toys, and then jumping on my bed naked. It is a blissful time for all of us. The boys get to be clothes free (always a favorite), and I have the assurance that my sweet & crazy boys will soon be in their beds, clean with warm jammies. It is a good time of day around here :)
I happened to have my camera in my room a few nights ago and snapped these photos:

Good Night!