Saturday, December 31, 2011

...And A Happy New Year!

Another year is ending and I am, as I am each day,
 overwhelmed with amazement at what God has done for me in the last 365 days.

Has he miraculously delivered my body from an incurable illness?
No. But I believe He can if it is His will.
Has He, in His infinite power, brought me and my family into a lifestyle of wealth and richness,
able to buy anything our hearts desire?
No. Not by the worlds standards. Not monetarily.
Has he given me a year of raising perfectly behaved children,
with no road bumps along our homeschooling journey?
No. Definitely and assuredly... NO!

What He has given me is experience and time.
Another year of learning how to be the wife, mother, teacher, mentor, sister, daughter,
 photographer, friend and business owner He would have me be.
He has given me peace that surpasses all understanding.
I can honestly say, when I lay my head down at night, because of Him,
I can sleep, be well rested, and wake with purpose.

We all face challenges along the way on this journey through life.
At the end of the day, we all have our own story to tell...
our own personal and unique set of circumstances.

When the year ends and the new one begins, if we honestly evaluate ourselves,
each and every one of us have a list of things we would have done differently.
"I should have guarded my time, used it more wisely...I should have been more disciplined...
I should have done the work I needed to do to get to the place I know I could be...
I should have been more patient and understanding...I should have taken that path instead..."

Whatever it is we think we should or should not have done differently,
 the fact is, the year has come and gone.
But today is a new day.

I have found, that even though those yearly "big picture" goals are very important,
the real nucleus of the challenge exists in my daily choices.

For example:
If I want to lose 10 pounds in a month,
 there have to be daily goals,
 decisions put into action throughout the day,
every hour, minute, and even every second,
 in order to obtain that goal.

Envisioning the big picture, is usually the easy part.
It's the little, every day things that pose the biggest challenge.

There are opinions and voices coming from all around us,
from pulpits and stages across the nation, from our neighbors, from our friends and family,
from bosses and co-workers, from the White House, from Hollywood... everywhere.

This is the year to focus on our relationship with God.
To trust fully in Him. Not in others, and not in ourselves. In Him alone.
Growing closer to Him and developing a stronger communication with our Lord.
When we focus on Him, lean on Him, rather than our own understanding,
everything else will fall into place.

 "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
 and all these things shall be added unto you."
~ Matthew 6:33

An image from my last photo shoot of the year. A sweet one year old baby girl.
 Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Language Of Love

Christmas has a way of bringing out the child in everyone.
The gifts are passed around, and the sounds of squeals and giggles begin to roll through the halls decked with boughs of holly over the excitement of tearing into a well wrapped box of surprise.
The time of gathering with loved ones, young and old, is a time shared all across the world
 as the year ends and a new time of endless possibilities begins.

Baby's first Christmas.




Our niece received a Karaoke Machine for Christmas.
We all played childishly and endlessly with that gift.
Fun, Fun, Fun!

Our middle daughter, Laural, is always prepared to pose for the camera.

Just hanging out in Nana's living room.

Proud Papa and Nana.

Our girls love babies.
Some people have deemed the girls with new nicknames.
For example, at the ballet school in which my daughter is enrolled,
our girls are other wise known as "The Baby Buggers".

Such a happy boy.

A baby's first Christmas is a special one in indeed!

Even in those golden years the heart is filled with joyful blessings.

I love this image of Dad reading his first copy of Fly Fish Journal.

We do our best to make sure the children understand what Christmas is really all about...
"It's more than our minds can conceive, and yet somehow in our hearts we believe!"

The spirit of love can be freely shared when gifting to others
out of the goodness of the heart.

I hope your Christmas of 2011 was filled with many wonderful instants.
Thanks for letting me share some of those captured moments with you today.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Harp

A few shots I took just before the school performance of the Nutcracker at Furman University.
What better way to kill time than snapping a few shots of my favorite ballerina.

Friday, December 16, 2011

A Christmas Tradition

Come join us for a magical night:
The Beautiful Christmas Tradition of
"The Nutcracker" Performance:
for over 30 yrs now!
Let's fill up these seats and show our support
for Greenvilles best, most respected ballet school!
Saturday, December 17, 2011 @ 2:00pm.
McAlister auditorium, Furman University,
Greenville SC!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

An Opportunity & A Privilege

 For four months now the Greenville School of Ballet has worked diligently in getting ready for their annual Musical performance of The Nutcracker.

Sometimes, until you get behind the scenes,
 you don't realize all the hard work and dedication that goes behind a professional performance
 like this one.

Last night was my first experience. It was intense, exhilarating, and oh so exciting.

Greenville Ballet has been putting this
 performance on for over 30 years now.

My daughter and I went to last years performance and it was so sweet and lovely.
I am so excited that my daughter will have the opportunity and privilege to be a part
of this magical night.

We are in rehearsals all week and looking forward to many wonderful things to come! 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Birthday Bliss & A Beautiful Baby

It was chilly out, but the crisp cool breeze felt like Christmas in the air.
I happen to love Christmas.
I also adore little baby girls (and boys),
with big beautiful blue eyes.
I always wanted a little green or blue eyed baby.
All of my little ones ended up with dark brown hair and eyes to match.

I feel so blessed to photograph some of the most beautiful eyes in the world.
The eyes of children...




I love images of kids not smiling. I find it totally endearing.

Happy Birthday To Us!
That's right, it was our birthday!
I'm a little bummed that I didn't bring a cake.

I LOVE capturing these instants. The real stuff!

The moments that go right by us.
In a flash, the moment is gone.
I like to grab that instant.
To remember every detail. 

Oh my goodness gracious! So cute!!!

There's that sweet smile!

Actress Tiffany Amber Thiessen said, "

“There are too many rotten things in this world,

 and if I can put a smile on one little girl's face,

one little boy's face, then I've done my job.”

I concur Tiffany!

Profile pic for mom!

This was fun, but um...

 I'm ready for my nap now.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Geocaching: The Real-World Outdoor Treasure Hunting Game

Enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving with my lovely family.
So many fun things happened over the weekend but this
 particular post is about our geocaching adventure
with Dad, Mom and the kids.

In case you didn't know,
geocaching is a global game of hide-and-seek
 for global positioning system (GPS) users.
Participants hide geocaches and then others,
 using global positioning satellites, seek out the hidden caches.
In addition, players move traceable items from cache to cache all over the world.

 That's my family on the left, and a flower (which I just happened to think was pretty) on the right.

Mom (above) with her walking stick down by the creek.
This was the day before the adventure, Thanksgiving Day.

This (above) was the trail on which the cache was found.
"Cache" is short for geocache.

Did you know that there are 1,586,594 active geocaches and over 5 million geocachers worldwide.
Those are the official numbers as of right now, as I write this very sentence, 
per the official Geocaching website.

Dads GPS must have sent him to the correct latitude and longitude for the given cache we were hunting because this was where the walking stopped.
Of course, I was too busy taking pictures to pay attention to the GPS,
and lagging behind all the others.
But Hannah and Dad stopped and began looking around...

I am pretty sure it was at this very moment that Dad quickly spotted the treasure.
It was "hidden" in plain sight, in a five gallon bucket,
right there only a few feet away from where we were standing!

And there it is!
Now let's open the treasure chest!


Above is the log book, this is where people who have found the lost treasure sign in to say "HI!".

This is Dad signing the log book and the kids checking out all the goodies!

I thought it was appropriate that the first thing we pulled out was this tin box
with a picture of some kids playing in the snow.
The box said "Happy Holidays!".

This cache was a level one, on a scale of one to five.
A level one being the easiest to discover and a level five being the most difficult to discover.

My daughter found this picture frame and set of wax lips. The Comedian.

The box was filled with tons of little nic nacs, but my favorite was this bookmark that read,
 "Believe in Yourself!"

Laural picked out the fireman puppy dog.

Rachel found a Hot Wheels racecar, and Hannah found a small piece of tile
which she said would be added to her rock collection.

The girls also enjoyed playing on the old fallen logs and trees surrounding the treasures location.

We replaced the taken treasures with new ones, much nicer ones in fact,
  rehid the cache and headed out for more holiday shopping! Ugh!!!

What the heck is Geocaching? Find out all you need to know.
Click here for the complete Guide.