Wednesday, August 31, 2011

a year later

I was so excited to take pictures of Jake and Ivy again, almost a year later!  They've both grown so much since the last time I saw them and I think I've grown so much as a photographer. The last time I visited my parent's home I rummaged through my old desk and pulled out my old photography notebooks from my high school days.  I slowly began re-learning all the nitty gritty details and have spent many many hours taking picture after picture using every setting combination on my camera. I've gotten a lot of good practice chasing my cats around the apartment trying to capture their every waking moment of cuteness. 

Here are a few of my favorites from the photo shoot!

Monday, August 29, 2011

New Name

I hope you don't mind.
I changed the title of my blog.

It's still me.  And I'm still here writing about the things I love.
Thanks for reading along!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

i love the smell of dryer sheets in the morning

When I was little I never minded vacuuming the house or dusting the furniture...and I often did these things without being told. I loved surprising my mom when she got home from work. I couldn't wait to point out all the things I had perfectly cleaned for her. 

My family still jokes about how different my twin sister and I are when it comes to cleaning.  One of our favorite phrases growing up was, "Looks like a bomb hit Kate's room again!" But I would always come to her rescue when she was told to get her room cleaned up right now. She would be sitting on her bed, sniffling, and wondering how she would get things put away before dinner. I would quietly knock on her door, sneak in without being seen, and secretly help her put things away. I'm sure my parents knew it was always me who cleaned it...

Now as an adult, when my home is in order, my life feels in order...even when it's not.  I can deceive myself into feeling like everything is the way it should be and it puts my mind at ease. 
Last week amidst the chaos of my life, my sweet husband came to my rescue and cleaned the apartment for me while I was at work. The giant pile of laundry had been folded and put away, the floors vacuumed, the bed made. It was such a wonderful surprise. And I'm still finding surprises, like finding my dress pants folded in my pajama drawer :) 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

New Day New Dress

Last night my husband took me out on a date.
I knew it was a real date because he let me choose where we got to eat.
There was a card waiting for me when I got home.  It said it hoped my heart was happy today and it was...because I got to spend the evening with Martin laughing and enjoying his company.
I know life has its ups and downs. And I know it's about how we react to situations that make our lives what they will be. I am pulling every ounce of strength I have to be positive and know that this is my life...and I can't let it be effected by a few bad apples. It's a new day and there are so many things to be grateful for.  I'm done dwelling on the negative and I'm ready to look forward to all the happy things in my future.

Thank you readers for your kind words, they mean the world to me :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

smile when your heart is breaking

Truth was the hardest day of teaching I've ever experienced. I got home and completely broke down, crying until there were no more tears left to cry.  But after pep talks from everyone closest to me and advice that will get me through I can wake up and go again tomorrow. And maybe I'll need a little encouragement everyday this year, but that's what my family is for. 
This evening I took a long, long, long, hot shower to calm myself down (sorry neighbors if you no longer have any hot water)and when I went to take out my contacts I saw this in the case.  My eyelash had formed the perfect smiley face. It was looking up at me telling me that life was going to be okay.
And of course this little guy makes me smile everyday, especially when he sleeps in my husband's underwear basket. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Nursery Project

I had to share a little project for all you moms-to-be out there in bloggerland (and my there are a lot of you! :)
My older sister and I headed to the craft store to start a very important nursery project. The teacher in me knew my little nephew needed some sort of educational wall art and I had found this inspiration on Etsy a while back and fell in love.  
We knew that we could create our own alphabet wall ourselves...using less money and making it fit the nursery perfectly.  
My mom has sewn everything for the nursery using the most adorable fabric filled with blue, green, orange, and a hint of yellow.  The perfect choice for a little boy. 
There are just a few letters left waiting to get their face lift...but all in all I think they look PERFECT!  
I can't wait to show you the finished room very soon. My sister and brother-in-law have done such a great job. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

July Wedding

I met Bill and Anne through a mutual friend at work. They were looking for a photographer for their July wedding...someone who was maybe just starting out. That was me :) I'm so honored that they asked me to photograph their special day, trusting in me.  I learned so much from that day...mostly about being brave and confident.  It was such a beautiful day in Castlewood Canyon State Park, the rain held off, and their closest family and friends were able to witness the marriage of two people very much in love.  Here are just a few of my favorites.

Monday, August 15, 2011

the power of words

School started today and it was not the day I had been envisioning for the past three months.  I was praying and hoping that my fifth year would be THE year...the year with mild behavior problems, a year where I could get through a week without feeling emotionally let down and drained. Maybe year six?  
I've known and have always known that where I teach takes more patience then you ever thought you had in you and the thickest of skin. It's rough, it's tough, it's not always pretty.  Sometimes I just don't understand...I can't understand.  And I shake my head in confusion and want to shout at the heavens to make things right. 

I came across this quote and I think it is so powerful. 

“From the moment a child begins to speak, he is taught to respect the word; he is taught how to use the word and how not to use it. The word is all-powerful, because it can build a man up, but it can also tear him down. That’s how powerful it is. So a child is taught to use words tenderly and never against anyone; a child is told never to take anyone’s name or reputation in vain.” 
Henry Old Coyote

Crow Tribe Author,excerpt from Respect for Life

Don't you wish all parents upheld this responsibility? Sometimes I have the sneaky feeling that parents don't think this is their responsibility. It is their responsibility. It's our responsibility to show our children that we must be careful with our thoughts, our actions, our words. That these things become who we are. 

Today, as one of my new friends thought it was funny as he defiantly shouted from his lungs that Kindergarten was "so boring" and that I was "evil Mrs. Wolfe", I took a deep breath, closed my eyes and tried to remind myself that this child has not been taught the power of words. He has not been taught to respect this life he's been given and to show that respect to those around him.

Oh my.
It's going to be a long year.

my best friend is a model

Well, I think so anyways :) She's actually a first grade teacher and I'm sure all the little children look up at her in awe when ever she's reading a story or teaching math.  Caitlin and I have known each other since 7th grade...when I bravely asked if I could sit at the lunch table with her.  We were in Singing Sevies Choir together and we made sure we sat by each other every day...eyeing the boys across the risers, making each other laugh with our inside jokes. She still makes me laugh until my face turns red and my eyes are watering.   
My twin sister and I became friends with Caitlin at the perfect time in our lives. Seventh grade was hard and I don't know how I would have made it through without her. She liked me for me and we didn't have to pretend to be someone we weren't when we were around each other.  We could be our silly selves while having dance parties to Backstreet Boys and laugh until we couldn't breathe. 
I think it's truly amazing that after 14 years we are still as close as ever.  We have watched each other grow up, been there through heartache, during the best times, during uncertain times. I remember in college whenever I needed my best friend she would jump in her car and drive an hour to see me and tell me everything was going to be okay. She has reassured me time after time and we have supported each other in everything that we do.
 I can't tell you how happy I am that we still get to see each other. I know someday we'll get to live in the same city...maybe eat at the same lunch table just like we did when we were twelve. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

sunlit walk

My older sister, Elizabeth, came over last night for a walk along the canal.  It was the perfect summer evening when the sun is golden yellow and shining perfectly through the trees. It's so nice to spend some time alone with her...especially before her little boy makes his way into the world!  
She has three more months left, which I'm sure will fly by. It still feels like yesterday when she shared her exiting news with :) We talked about ideas for the nursery and when we think his birthday will be.  I'm so excited to meet him (and maybe spoil him just a little...) 
I can't wait to help show him all the enchanting things in this world, like sunlit trees and beautiful pictures of his mom, and to love him to pieces.