Baby girls+tutus=cuteness

Six months old has got to be one of the best ages!  Little Miss A was so cute and chubby and I loved getting to take pictures of her.  I feel a little bad because it’s taken me so long to get these peeks up on the blog.  Between a week of spring break fun and my husband being gone for a week, all photography related things got pushed to the back burner!  Anyway, without further ado, here she is in all her tutu, flower-headband glory.  I love it!

And one of Miss A and her beautiful mama.

A Whole Hand


Today my middle turned 5 years old.  A whole hand.  I keep asking him if he will please stop growing up so fast.  He just laughs and tells me I’m crazy.

It’s hard for me to even put into words how I feel about my Logan.  He’s my middle baby, and maybe it’s because I am a middle child too, but we just get each other.  He’s not the oldest or the youngest or the only boy or the fastest or the strongest (yet..), and I understand how that feels.

He is special.

His smile and his personality can light up a room.  He is constantly in motion, a perpetual snacker, and a lover of stuffed animals.  It’s hard to get upset with him, even when he says something sassy to me like “you go get my socks.  What, are your legs broken or something??!”  (Okay, I might have gotten upset with him at that one, but on the inside I was chuckling a tiny bit.)  It’s impossible for Logan to hold a grudge, and he finds joy in the most ordinary of things.

He loves his baby sister. Oh, how he loves his sister!  “I love Camryn more than she loves me, mom.  And I love her more than you do.”  He and Connor have moments of being best friends, but Logan and Camryn have something really special.  I remember being a little worried that the almost 3.5 year age gap between them would make it harder for them to be close.  Boy was I wrong about that!

It’s hard for me to believe that he will start kindergarten in a few short months.  He’ll be ready, but I’m not sure that I will be.  Like I said, he’s got a hold of my heart in a special way.

We had one last birthday celebration for him today.  He had already received his big present from us, Mamaw and Pawpaw, and Nonny and Pops.  We all went in together and got him a Nintendo DS.  (actually, the DSi.  The boys keep correcting me when I call it the “ds”.  My bad.)  And he already had his big party with his friends.  But, I cannot let the actual day go by without a celebration.  So we had cinnamon rolls for breakfast,


and went to Chuck E. Cheese for dinner (his choice).  His cousins Justin and Kayla, his Aunt Kathy, and his friends Noah, Brady, Lexi, and Laura came along to celebrate with us.

He was in no mood for pictures.  This cracks me up.


We love you Logan!  Even when you are Mr. Grumpy Pants.  Because like 15 seconds after we took this picture you were smiling and laughing again.  Happy Birthday, sweet boy!

“The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.” -Numbers 6:24-26

Spring Break: Part 4

Once again, our original plan changed for Thursday.  We were going to head to Schlitterbahn, but as it turns out, Maisy had her heart set on the beach, and Ryan doesn’t really like water parks (sidenote…doesn’t like water parks??  Seriously?  I LOVE water parks, and even though he tried to explain what he doesn’t like, I still just don’t understand!)  Derek and I decided that we would probably have just as much fun at the beach, and I’m so glad that we changed our plans.  The beach was actually relaxing, even with 5 little kids!  After a full day of activity on Wednesday, a nice relaxing day at the beach was just perfect.  It was only about 70 degrees on Thursday.  It was a beautiful day with not a cloud in the sky, but not exactly the kind of weather where you want to get in the water, which was good because it takes out that whole drowning thing.  The kids played in the sand and had so much fun.  When we were leaving, Connor asked if we could go back the next day.  Of course we didn’t, but I can’t wait until we go this summer!

I think this was the only time Logan ventured into the water.  I thought he was crazy!  It was cold!


Derek did some soccer drills with Camryn.  We are training her young to either be a soccer player or a volleyball player.


Connor’s masterpiece.  He had some help from Derek, but he was so proud of his castle!  And, just for the record, it wasn’t a castle…it was a torture chamber.  That’s boys for you.


Connor and Maisy.  Future lovebirds?  Ha.  Those childhood arrangements never work out, but just in case, here’s their childhood beach picture to hang in their house.


Love these kids.  Loved our week together.  They sure make me smile!


It’s Sunday night now, and our Spring Break is officially over.  We had fun, but I love getting back into our normal routine.  Bring on Monday!

Spring Break: Part 3

Wednesday was a big day for Derek and Ryan.  Ryan’s birthday was on Monday, and Maggie had the great idea for the guys to go skydiving together as a birthday present.  It only makes sense that they would do this together since they bungee jumped together 10 years ago the night before Derek and I got married.

I think the pictures really tell the story for this fun event…

First there are the waivers and the forms.  They pretty much had to sign their lives away…


Then it was time to get all harnessed up.  Please do a good job!


Both guys all ready to go!


Then it was time for some final pictures…you know, just in case.




And a picture of the supportive wives.  Where would they be without us?


Camryn had this worried look on her face a lot that morning.  I’m sure that she had no idea exactly what the guys were about to do, but she could sense that it wasn’t something normal!


Finally, it was time to go.


And about 20 minutes later, Derek floated harmlessly back to the ground.


Ryan followed just a few minutes later.


They both seemed happy to be back on the ground.



Camryn was happy, too.  She sure loves her daddy!


The peanut gallery.  These kids are so much fun!  They had a great time on this little adventure.  There was plenty of space to run around and plenty of iPhones and snacks when they needed a diversion.


Overall, Derek and Ryan enjoyed it.  I think that Derek liked it more than Ryan.  Derek would definitely do it again someday.  I think I’ll join him next time!

You might think this was enough activity for one day, but nope!  After lunch and a little bit of playtime at my house, we headed to the Kemah Boardwalk.  It was fun, but so packed!  The kids only had time to do a handful of rides.


Camryn finally crashed when we rode the train.  I wasn’t surprised because she had pretty much only catnapped in the car every day.  And by this point, it was like 9:30 at night.  Way past bedtime!  She really was great though.  I think it’s a third baby thing.  They are used to just going along with whatever is happening!  Oh, and do you like Derek’s headbands?  That was Camryn’s doing, and I think D forgot they were on his head.


We finally got home after 10:00 and needless to say, everyone crashed.  In fact, Connor walked into the house, sat down on the couch and fell asleep.  We really know how to wear the kids out!

Spring Break: Part 2

Our original plan for Tuesday was to head to Kemah for a day of rides and fun, but when we woke up and saw the rain we knew we needed a different plan.  So we headed downtown to Ryan and Maggie’s hotel for some swimming at the indoor pool.  I didn’t take any pictures of that part, but the kids had a great time even though it was just a little 3 lane lap swimming pool.  Once the kids had had enough swimming, we walked to a nearby mall to eat in the food court.


We set up Maisy and Connor at their own table away from the “little kids”, and we all cracked up at how much it looked like they were on their first date.  I have so many good pictures for their wedding slide show should they ever need one!



After a little walk though the mall and a few escalator rides for the kids, we decided to head to the Houston Museum of Natural History since it’s free admission on Tuesday afternoons.  We’ve never been there before, and I think I’ll have to plan a trip back with the kids so we can spend more time.  It was pretty fun (and I will be the first to admit that I am NOT a museum person.  Don’t even get me started on the two times I’ve been to the Louvre!)  We saw the dinosaur bones and a few other displays, but then it was time for us to head back home to get ready for Logan’s birthday party.   Before leaving the museum, I made the kids sit here for a tourist-y picture since we were acting like tourists in our own town.  Please take note of Logan’s face.  He makes the funniest faces in every picture and it cracks Derek and I up!  Love that kid.


After a quick run to the grocery store to pick out a cake (notice I said pick out, not pick up…I flat out did not have time to make one or order one ahead of time!  Oh well.  I think the more kids I have the less worried I am about everything being “perfect”), we headed to Fun Max Jumpin’ for Logan’s 5th birthday party.  His real birthday isn’t until Monday, but it just worked better for our schedule to do it during the middle of the week of spring break.  We actually had a good turnout and had almost 20 kids join us for some crazy jumping and pizza eating fun!




It was the perfect birthday party.  Fun, no stress, so easy, no clean up.  This was the first big party Logan has ever had, and he certainly enjoyed it.  Especially because his bff Noah got to come home with us for a sleepover.  I’m sure if the boys were any older they would have thought that I was so lame because they just took baths, built one of Logan’s small new lego toys, and went to bed.  They were asleep by 8:30!  That’s a sure sign that it was a great, fun-filled day.  Spring Break Day 2 was a great success.

spring break: part 1

We’ve been so busy lately! I seriously cannot believe that it is already March. This past weekend was such a busy and fun weekend. It started with Connor’s field day on Friday afternoon. I think that C’s school was genius doing field day the day before spring break. They weather was absolutely perfect! Last year field day was in May and it was SO hot. It was miserable! I love a good field day, so I was more than happy to volunteer to bring waters and help with the festivities.  Field day is so different from when I was a kid.  It’s no longer a competitive thing at all.  The kids go around as a class from station to station.  I’m not sure I agree with the new way they do field day, keeping it all fun with no winners.  I think that it’s good for kids to learn about healthy competition and being a gracious winner as well as a good loser.  On the other hand, I get that they don’t want they kids to feel bad about themselves and they want everyone to have fun.  And the kids really did have fun, but I sometimes wonder if the “everyone wins” thing is such a good idea.  Because you know what?  Everyone doesn’t win.  It’s sort of an important life lesson if you ask me.  At any rate, the kids had a blast and I guess that’s what really matters.  Connor’s favorite station was the relay station.  Doesn’t he look like a hard core runner in this picture?


A little potato hockey is always fun…


Camryn was right in the middle of it all, having a blast.  Connor seems to really like having her around at his school, and it makes my heart so happy.


After field day, I headed out for a maternity photo shoot.  We did this shoot just in the nick of time because baby Claire was born the very next day!



That night, we loaded up the party van and drove to Arlington.  We arrived at 11:45 p.m.  Talk about a long day!

We spent Saturday with Derek’s parents, Nonny and Pops.  We went to the Ft. Worth Botanic Gardens, saw some amazing butterflies at a special exotic butterfly exhibit, and enjoyed a gorgeous day outside.





Just one of the many butterflies we saw.  They really were amazing and I could have stayed in there for much longer taking pictures of them!


After a yummy lunch at a hamburger place, we headed back to spend the afternoon at Nonny and Pops house.  They boys headed with Derek and Pops to the park, and I headed to a photo shoot.  She was such a sweet little 7 month old!  I love this age.


Sunday after church, we went to my parents house to spend the day.  I finally got to meet my newest nephew!  He is such a little chunk of love, and a precious, precious (and loved!) little boy.


These kids had a blast playing together.  Cousins are so much fun.  I have such fun memories with my cousins, and I’m so glad that Connor, Logan, and Camryn will have to the same kind of memories.


Monday morning, we packed up and headed home.  Our good friends Ryan and Maggie are in Houston visiting, and this week is going to be as busy and fun-filled as this weekend!  This spring break is going to be a good one!

Number 4

This is my friend, Erika, who was pregnant with her 4th baby on this gorgeous Friday afternoon.  I say was pregnant because 24 hours after we took these pictures, baby Claire entered the world!  Erika was such a trooper through this shoot even though I think she was having contractions the whole time and obviously about to pop!

Erika is such a beautiful pregnant woman.  Well, she’s a beautiful woman pregnant or not.  She is amazing with her little brood of children.  She is one of those people who you can tell was just made for motherhood.

And she’s got a great husband who supports her every step of the way.

I love this next shot of all the girls. It’s one of my favorites from the entire session.

Thanks a bunch, Erika, for letting me take your pictures.  You are beautiful and your family is beautiful!

Mom to Mom: From my kitchen to yours

One of my friends from high school, Jessica, had an idea for all us moms to post recipe and food ideas.  I’ve been lacking on blog material lately, so I thought it might be fun to jump in and play along!

First, let me just be honest…we eat the same things over and over again but I’m okay with that at this point!  Food is one area where I do not stress.  I am a big believer in choosing my battles, and for the most part, it’s a battle I choose not to fight.  I have one great eater, willing to try anything new (Connor), one pickier eater who is slowly and surely trying new things but most of the time still not liking the new things (Logan), and one that I just never know what her food mood will be (Camryn).

I do try to feed my kids healthy, wholesome foods.  I don’t buy organic unless it’s cheaper than than the regular, which is very rare.  We do eat whole wheat bread items for the most part.  I don’t buy special high fructose corn syrup free foods.  I bought the natural peanut butter once, and Derek asked me not to to that again.  Since he eats a pbj sandwich every day for lunch (and has for the past 10 years!), I didn’t fight it and bought the man his Jif.  We do eat fast food, but not every day.  I would say that my food philosophy is “everything in moderation.”  I have never been one to buy into diet or health food fads.  If you are looking for all organic, all natural food and recipe ideas, you are definitely not in the right place. 🙂  Just felt like I needed to say that right up front.

–half of a bagel toasted with butter or cream cheese
–strawberry fruit bars (nutri-grain bars, but I buy the store brand)
–granola bars (fiber one are the favorites, but we also eat good old Quaker granola bars)
–cereal: Raisin Bran, Cheerios (all the different varieties), and those new mini wheat chocolate squares. Those are a big hit!
–English muffins with Brummel and Brown strawberry spread. I eat those almost every day, but the kids like them occasionally too. I buy the high fiber, whole wheat english muffins.

–PBJ for the boys almost every day.
–Deli meat for Camryn
–Turkey hot dogs or all beef hot dogs.
–baked chips
–fruit snacks, or our new favorite fruit leather/smooshed fruit. I like those better because they have a half a serving of real fruit in them.
–fruit: applesauce, mandarin oranges, grapes, apples, strawberries, sometimes bananas, frozen blueberries, canned peaches and pears, etc. I always have canned fruit on hand. (I like the ones packed in fruit juice the best.)

–Goldfish all the way. We love them.
–Snyders big pretzel rods, sometimes dipped in Nutella.
–Granola bars or fruit snacks if they haven’t already had one that day. I only allow one of those per day or we would eat them faster than we already do!
–raisins, sometimes plain, sometimes yogurt covered. Camryn especially loves raisins.
–other crackers: cheez-its, ritz (the new cinnamon ones are yummy!)
–Peanuts or cashews

Varies. I don’t think I do anything that great or exciting with dinner. I don’t love to cook; I do it out of necessity and for my husband who loves to come home to a hot meal. We eat a lot of spaghetti, tacos, chicken casseroles, etc. I am not good at vegetables. We mostly eat canned veggies or a salad. This is one area where I am hoping to improve. I try to serve the kids a vegetable or a fruit with dinner, and probably more often than not, it’s a fruit. Connor likes a lot of different veggies. Logan, not so much. He will eat lettuce with ranch dressing, potatoes, and corn, but that’s about it.

My big thing with dinner is I am not a short order cook. They eat what I make. There are a few exceptions, but 98% of the time, they eat what I cook or they just go hungry. I don’t worry if Logan misses a dinner. He won’t starve overnight.

The kids only eat dessert on occasion. I’ll usually treat them with it if I see that they both ate a really good dinner without any complaining.

I guess that’s about it! It’s nothing very exciting, but it works for me.

I can hardly handle the cuteness

We loaded up the party van this morning and headed to The Woodlands to hang out with Derek’s college roommate and his family.  It was such a fun day!  I love catching up with old friends.  We’ve come a long way from the college days (and the days shortly after college when Eddie met and married his very own Megan.)  I love this family so much!

I love this picture of Claire.  Love it!  She did not want to smile for me, but you can see in her eyes that she is one sassy, spunky, and sweet little girl!

I did finally get a laugh out of her.  I am pretty sure that Logan had something to do with it.  Tonight Megan and I decided that Logan and Claire had our blessing to get married someday.  🙂

I have several cute ones of Claire and Eliam together, but I could not resist this one.  The look on his face is priceless!

This is Claire and her cousin.  Such a sweet little girl moment!  They see each other a lot, and I imagine that they will grow up more like sisters than cousins.

There are lots more cute ones…these are just the first few that stood out.  After a shoot, I can hardly wait to get home and pick out my favorites.  Then as I edit more and more, my favorites constantly change.  I sure enjoyed taking these pictures today, and even more than that, hanging out with some great friends.  I love this job.