Wow . . . literally, all I can say is "wow". What a whirlwind the 5 days before and after Christmas have been. A good whirlwind, but a whirlwind nonetheless. My mom came down on Wednesday (the 22nd) and on Thursday night, we opened gifts with her. Then on Friday, my aunt and uncle from Missouri, came over and we opened gifts with them. Friday afternoon, we headed over to Omaha to spend Christmas day with Toby's family. Saturday was Christmas number 3. Sunday we headed back to Des Moines for a final Christmas with my dad and step mom. We were very lucky to have my aunt and uncle still in town as they were able to join us Sunday night as well. All in all, it was a very nice holiday. Katie made out like a bandit and now thinks that Santa will be coming to our house everyday. :)
Christmas is in the air . . . I see it everywhere I go. Not sure if I'm ready for it, but am definitely excited to watch Katie rip into her presents this year. Going to be quite the busy Xmas this weekend as my mom is coming to town Thursday and we will open gifts with her that night. Then on Friday we head to Omaha to spend Xmas with Toby's family . . . we'll come back early Sunday and have another Xmas with my dad and stepmom, sisters and aunt and uncle that night as well. So needless to say, Katie should make out like a bandit. :)
This weekend I took Katie to the Jolly Holiday Lights with Carolyn, my mother in law, and her friend, Liz. Katie LOVED going through the lighted archways and seeing all the pretty lights. She was a little apprehensive at the end when we stopped to see Santa, but she warmed up enough that I was able to get a quick pic of her on his lap.
Aside from having some awful 24 hr flu sweep through myself and my family, this weekend was a ton of fun. Molly, Alankar, and Molly's godson, Tony, came over Saturday afternoon. We busted out the Wii and let the kids play MarioKart . . . that was a lot of fun watching them try to play. Poor Katie couldn't figure out that if she turned the wheel, the car would move on the tv but she tried anyways.
Sunday we went to Katie's bff, Jill's, birthday party. Nicole (her mom) knows that when I show up she can put her camera away so I did my best to get some great pics for her. Katie and Jill had tons of fun playing "picnic" and chasing each other through the house.
I just got a new 35mm lens for Xmas (thank you Dad) and took a few pics tonight to test it out. Love the fact that I can open this all the way to f/1.8 and completely blur the background. The one with the tree in the background might be my fav . . .
Just this past weekend, I did a small photo session with one of my coworkers and his family. Originally, we wanted to try and take them at Valley Junction or Grey's Lake, but given the temperature, we decided to do them in the skywalk downtown. Since I was working with only an 18-55mm lens, I was not able to open the lens enough to capture the moments as well as I would have liked to without a flash. Personally, I would much rather be able to take the pictures without the aid of a flash but all-in-all, I think they turned out pretty well. And as long as they were happy, I was happy.
Cooper seemed to have fun once we started encouraging him to say "poopy diaper" and "pee pee" so he would laugh. He is just such a cutie. And Audra is almost 8 months pregnant so I tried to get a couple where her belly was showing. I'm hoping I'll be able to do some dramatic black and white belly pics for her before the baby comes!
We found this red wall inside the skywalk and I thought the contrast between the light hair and skin of Audra and Cooper would look really neat. I did a couple in black and white, but to be honest, I'm a big fan of the wall. One issue I had was the reflection on the paint from the flash. But again, these issues will be remedied with new equipment.
Ahh Thanksgiving . . . a time for belts to be loosened and family to gather. This Thanksgiving was great. Hosted by my stepmother, Fran and my dad, we had a great time at their house with her extended family and my sisters and hubby. Katie had a great time getting into Nana Fran's necklaces and helping Papa Jeff stoke the fire. The food was delicious . . . turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, noodles . . . I know I'm forgetting something! Got some great pics too from this past weekend as well as Nicole and I took the girls to Bass Pro to see Santa.
Recently I purchased a Nikon DSLR for myself. My intent was to be able to take beautiful pictures of my daughter and the rest of my family. Oh how I have NOT been disappointed. Here are a few of my favorite pictures that I've taken.
I've had a few friends ask me to take photos for them . . . Christmas cards, baby photos and even an engagement session with my sister.
The photos below are the ones I took for my sister's engagement. We took these at Lion's Park and at the Urbandale High School as I really love the brick building. They were a lot of fun to shoot . . . Jim was apprehensive at first and not real comfortable with letting loose and acting natural . . . but he warmed up pretty quickly. The whole thing only took about an hour to shoot and I think I ended up with almost 400 shots!
So if you or anyone you know want some pictures done, let me know!!