Thanksgiving-Christmas-Birthdays-Adjusting to life as a family of Four

November and December are pretty busy months for us.  We welcomed Marley Claire into the world on October 29th and so happy to have her here for all the holidays.  It’s been a whirlwind with my son turning two the day after Christmas and adjusting to life as a family of four. This year we celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas in our new house for the first time.  We headed up to Omaha to have Christmas with Zach’s family over New Years, where Maddox had a little birthday party with family. When we got back, Maddox had an Elmo themed birthday and even Elmo himself made an appearance at the party.  I thought me may be scared but he loved it!

Now that we have become a family of four and things have settled down, I have more time to reflect. Having a girl is so different than having a boy.  I have been so excited ever since the day we found out and I’m loving every minute so far.  Boy clothes are fun, but girl clothes are really fun. She has been a pretty easy baby so far luckily and sleeping very well too. Everything related to her seems easier since I have already done this once and when she is going through a fussy time or wakes up a lot in the night, I savor it because I know the phase will pass. I tried soaking up more time with her too because now I do know how quickly things go. I remember with my first always wishing he would get to the next milestone, now with her I find myself living in those moments more and wishing time would slow down.  The logistics are a little harder with two and I just have to start getting ready an hour before we go anywhere to make it on time.  The one thing that has been rough is realizing that I am never totally childless. I did enjoy the time when Maddox was going to Parents Day Out and I had those two days to myself.  I just have to keep telling myself that they are not little forever and someday I will be wishing for these days back. 🙂

Baby’s First Christmas and 1st Birthday

Last year at Christmas I was going into labor and I just kept thinking about how next Christmas will be so amazing because my little man will be here with us enjoying and taking it all in.  He came December 26th of 2014, so not only did we get to celebrate Maddox’s first Christmas, we got to celebrate him turning one. It was a whirlwind of family, good company and toys. Oh and did I mention TOYS? This kid got enough toys for the whole neighborhood to play with. I’m so thankful though for our families and how good they are too us.  Enjoy 🙂

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Birthday Party at #2 at home in Kansas City

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33 weeks…and counting {personal pregnancy post}

First of all, let me say that we have been very blessed with being able to get pregnant quickly and so far a pretty healthy pregnancy with no complications.  With the nature of my business, Zach and I decided that it was a good idea to have this baby in the winter months. Business is pretty slow for me and that way I can focus on him.  Most people told us that things don’t really happen that way and you can’t “plan” on when to have a baby.  Zach and I are pretty big planners so we were going to try.  We have traveled, we have gone out, we have went to the bars plenty of times and we were ready.  We wanted to do one more big trip before we started on this journey so we planned to to go Ireland, London and Scotland in March in hope of conceiving there.  About a month later I photographed a friend’s wedding in the Dominican Republic and we are pretty sure baby was made there after lots of rum drinks 🙂

I was feeling great and pretty excited about this journey. It was not as hard as people said and we got pretty lucky it happened so fast. Until the day I turned 6 weeks. Started the morning by throwing up every 30 minutes from about 8am-2pm. I found out that this so called “morning sickness” can happen all day. The next day it happened again. That night Zach and I went to Whole Foods in search of natural remedies for morning sickness. Ginger root, peppermint tea and the list went on and on. Needless to say, nothing helped. On top of this I got sick with a cold. Everyday I was either in the bed or the bathroom floor. Sleeping or puking. I could not eat anything either.  I was feeling so defeated because everyday I woke up hoping to get things accomplished but I could get nothing accomplished. That was so hard for me because I am not used to resting. I am always on the go and usually on top of everything. I was really starting to not like being pregnant after two weeks of this. I remember crying on the bathroom floor as snot was running out of my nose and lifting my head up to try and puke, just feeling like I wanted that baby out of me and to feel normal again.  Now I know that is a very shallow statement and I did feel bad for thinking that way, but it’s how I felt.

After going to the doctor, I was put on prednisone because I had already lost 6 pounds and its dangerous if you loose more than 10.  Plus I had weddings to shoot and there is no way I could do that puking every 30 minutes. Prednisone is an anti nausea medicine.  It worked…thank goodness. I started eating again and we went to the lake for Memorial Day weekend. When we got there I realized I forgot to bring the medicine. Instant puking the next morning and we had to go home.  I am usually a pretty healthy eater but all I could stomach was junk, junk and more junk.  I wanted only carbs, chips and anything else terrible for you. I am obsessed with apples and even they turned me off.  My body was changing too. I am also an avid workout person so this was just killing me. Not being able to workout, eating like shit and my body getting bigger.  I had Zach take my first belly picture at 12 weeks. I looked at the back of the camera and cried. Now I know, that you get bigger when you are pregnant, but it was just devastating to see myself like that.  After all this I was just not really loving pregnancy and I still do not get those people that say they love it.  I defiantly do not love it and as ashamed as I am to say that, I know there are other people that feel the same.  I sometimes feel bad about it but I didn’t really develop any bond with the baby and I just didn’t feel like it was real. I was physically and emotionally broken because my normal way of life was so interrupted.  I mentally broke down quite a few times.

Everyone keep telling me the sickness would go away soon, as I entered the second trimester. Well it did not. I was finally able to ween myself of of prednisone around 20 weeks.  The bump was becoming more noticeable and I was able to handle my normal healthy foods again. I remember I made a kale salad and I was so happy to actually want to eat it and not feel like it was going to make me hurl. The first apple I had tasted so good, I had two more that day.  Things were looking up. I still never felt normal or like myself which made me still not love being pregnant.  At 22 weeks we found out were were having a boy, which really helped because I was able to start bonding and getting things ready for him. I was working normally and able to workout normally. Although Fusion Fitness was a little more challenging, it was feeling so good to go 3-4 times a week like I normally do.  I have not really had any cravings, nor have I been eating more. I eat about the same. I am getting less tired, which has helped me get back to normal working hours. Now this is my busiest time of the year and I realized I can’t do it all. It’s been hard realizing that this pregnancy is limiting me on certain things and knowing when to let my body rest.

As I enter the third trimester I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Although still not loving being pregnancy, it has gotten better. I was starting to feel kicks so that was pretty cool. I could feel them all the time and see them, which helped my bonding with the little mister.  That first trimester was the longest 3 months of my life, but after reaching 20 weeks it has sped up a little.  I don’t have anything on my “must have while pregnant” list because I didn’t really have anything that I couldn’t live without. I did buy maternity jeans and maternity leggings which have been really nice. Plus some really soft and cozy maternity shirts from Gap.  Other than that I have just tired to resume life as normal and what I am looking forward to the most is the little nugget being here and not in my belly.  I know things will be harder when he is here and life will throw even more challenges at me, but I personally think I will like that stage more. It’s been a tough road for me to be excited and happy about being pregnant.  I have just now started reading all the baby books and getting his room all put together. We started our class at Shawnee Mission Birth Center and things are becoming more real. I’m shooting for a natural birth with no interventions.  Zach supports me fully in this and we started on a birth plan. He has been reading some great books too about coaching and getting me through it, so I am feeling pretty confident. I know that women have been doing this for hundreds of years so I’m not anyone special which makes me believe in myself even more that I can do it.

I know everyone’s pregnancy is different but I just wanted to share my story because I think some people do feel the same way as me and I think its ok. I have felt bad about it and shallow in my thoughts, but at least I am being honest. Would love to hear your stories and experiences as well!

We did get some amazing maternity pictures done by Marie Photography. Very glad we did this in the place that we both love. Can’t wait for Maddox to be a lake baby 🙂

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personalpregnancystory004We tried doing the week pictures but didn’t get too far. These were not my favorite thing 🙂

personalpregnancystory001I have loved getting everything ready for his room. That part has been very fun and helpful in this whole progress to lift my mood. 🙂  Here is a little sneak peek into his room.

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Tool Shed Originals {Headboards}

I am so excited that our good friend Joey Williams got our headboard done and installed. I absolutely love it! Joey’s company is called Tool Shed Originals. He makes handcrafted furniture and home decor. The headboard mounts right to the wall and is super easy. You can even customize your color. Check out his Etsy shop:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/ToolShedOriginals and like his page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ToolShedOriginals?ref=br_tf

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Pond Photography Studio Opening

I am so excited that Pond Photography has taken the next step to opening our own studio. We have partnered with Rob Garza with ARGEE Design and could not be more happy.  I have been looking long and hard for the perfect little place and the perfect partner.  Luckily I found both and it all just fell into place. We got possession of the studio in February and started one month of working and getting it ready for our opening in March.  I love how it came together. For the open house we had such a great turn out and shoutouts to a couple people for helping with our opening:

Catering: Expressive Catering

Cupcakes: Sweet Perfections

Flowers: Roses Only

BEFORE PICTURES:

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AFTER PICTURES:

Copyright © 2014 Pond Photography KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0002 Copyright © 2014 Pond Photography KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0004 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0005 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0006 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0007 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0008 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0009 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0010 Copyright © 2014 Pond Photography

OPEN HOUSE: Thank you to Janie Jones Photography for all these photos.

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MAK Rescue Foster Program – German Shorthair Pointers

On our way to Nebraska Furniture Mart three years ago we saw puppies and a huge sign that said GSP puppies in the Russel Stover parking lot. We stopped, we fell in love and now have our beloved German Short Hair Pointer Canon. We knew nothing about this breed, but we have come to love this breed.  I just quit my full time job to go full time in my photography business. We were one a walk in our neighborhood and met Bri and her husband who were walking two German Shorthair Pointers. She told us that they fostered them. Since I was going to be working from home we took in our first foster. Caylin. Then we couldn’t stop. Canon loved having a playmate and we had to get these poor dogs out of shelters. It was such a good feeling to know they went to a loving home and we saved their life.

MAK GSP Rescue is a volunteer-staffed organization that works to raise awareness about GSPs in need. We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit group dedicated to the rescue, fostering, and re-homing of adoptable German Shorthaired Pointers.

Learn more about German Shorthair Pointers here.

Click here to learn more about fostering or how you can contribute.

Interested in adopting? Click here to see available dogs

We love saving these dogs and seeing them go into loving homes. We successfully fostered 7 pups this year and we can’t wait to see how many we can do next year!

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Christmas 2013

Love the holidays and spending quality time with family. My grandmother always make cabbage rolls and bigos for Christmas. To keep the tradition alive my mom and I took a stab at making cabbage rolls for the first time. Turned out pretty good.  This Christmas we had a foster pup named Emmy. She is still looking for a good home and is the sweetest little girl.

WPPI 2013 – Las Vegas

WPPI is a wedding and portrait photography conference + expo.  It is the largest annual convention and trade show for photographers, held at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. When I was first starting my photography career, I heard of this conference. I thought to myself…one day I will make it to this. I had heard so many fabulous things. It is so surreal that I did make it to this conference earlier in March.  I was really there and it shows how far I have come. Almost had to pinch myself! I was chasing a dream and I caught it. It just goes to show that if you push yourself and believe in yourself you can make all things possible.  So the planning for the trip began and I wound up in the MGM Signature suites with 7 other girls who I could not of found more amazing. I got to know them all that week along with crazy class schedules, amazing speakers, pool time, parties, shootouts, meeting new people, the desert, secret pizza places and more! My head is still spinning from everything I learned. Trying to take it all in.

My biggest take backs from WPPI 2013:

Staying with 7 people I barely knew and loving them all by the end of the week!

Reaching out to Nikki Closser and spending time with her. She is an amazing person and I am so glad I met her and can not wait for our paths to cross again.

Attending the Victor Sizemore shoot out and the Madera Books party that night. I love how humble Victor is and even though we only spent one day together, I feel like he is so genuine I could call him for anything. Met some amazing people in this group.

The awards show is amazing and you should not miss it!

Shooting in the desert at Red Rocks Canyon. Hiking in flats and bare feet, just trying to get “the shot”

Red Rocks Canyon Shoot Out

Las Vegas Nevada

Victor Sizemore Shoot Out

Photo Credits listed below photos

Las Vegas Strip, Las Vegas Nevada

The Palms Penthouse, Las Vegas Nevada

Shoot Credits:

Victor Sizemore Photography

http://www.vcsphoto.com

http://www.facebook.com/victorsizemore

Renee Delsigne – Stylist

http://www.facebook.com/renee.delsigne

http://ocpropgirl.com/

Amelia Cline-Cooper – Hair and Make-up

http://www.amelia-c.com

http://www.facebook.com/amelia.cline.cooper

 Models:

Sarah Scott

http://www.facebook.com/margueritelilly

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1552940/

https://twitter.com/lovesarahscott

Danielle Wyszomirski

http://www.modelmayhem.com/2220829

http://www.facebook.com/danielle.wyszomirski

 

 

Happy Valentine’s Day

I love love. What can I say. It’s in my blood and that is why I love what I do. Good love stories warm my heart. I love to love and I love to be loved. This is why Valentine’s Day is such a great holiday! Plus I got engaged on Valentine’s Day, and I congratulate all of you who get the same surprise!  This year I did a whole week of Valentine’s Day things for my husband with each day being something different. This week I also received my Knot award for 2013 Best of Weddings!  Starting with home made cards:

Card supplies, and decor: Hobby Lobby

Candles: 5B and Co (This place is AAAA-MMMM azing) and local, in Brookside 🙂

Bobbi + Mike Workshop {Fall 2012}

This was my very first real workshop. I flew all the way to Indianapolis Indiana. Bobbi and Mike invited us into their home and into their lives for the weekend. I could not of felt more at home and more welcome. They are amazing people who are very down to earth and comfortable to be around. Plus they are damn good at what they do. I loved all the wonderful people I met and hope to keep in touch with them.  I truly needed this workshop as it taught me self confidence in my work, which is what I was lacking. I enjoyed every minute and can’t wait to see them again some day! 🙂