April Fool's Day

I really don't like this day. What moron decided to pick a day to play tricks on people? Well, I must be a glutton for punishment because I picked today to roll out the new blog. I decided that I'm going to use Stacy Mae Photography as a business name. I think it sounds unique. Thanks for helping me choose.

So, I wanted to start another blog to chronicle these next few months. My journey has officially begun. I'm giving myself a year ~ 365 days to learn and grow a business. The new blog will be a diary of my highs and lows, my successes and failures. Who knows, maybe it'll help another aspiring photographer too!

I've compiled a list of links to other photographers who inspire me and I've also put together a list of tips that I've found really helpful. There are a ton more to add, but I can't do it all in one day. Come check it out and add me to whatever list you've got going on. I'd love to hear your thoughts and, more importantly, your support. I could really use it!! Thanks :)


Oh Monday, Why Do You Have to Come So Quickly?

I think that's the longest blog title I've ever written.

The weekends just fly by, don't they? I worked on Saturday and Sunday so I don't have much to say except that I really wanted to have my new blog ready and I just didn't have time to finish setting it up. I know you were sitting at your computer, waiting, weren't you? Hahaha!

Anyway, I took a lot of pictures this weekend, but none that I can show you. They were all taken at work. A little girl came in to the studio and she had the most beautiful blue eyes. We hit it off and her mommy loved the pictures I took. I was so grateful because I hadn't photographed in a while and I always get a little nervous when that happens. I wish I could show you what I do at work, but I don't think the customers would take too kindly to me putting their kid's pictures up on the Web.

My niece sent me this really cute picture of Little J from Disney and I think I'm going to use it as my Best Shot for this fine Monday (even though I didn't take it). Hey, I can do that, it's my blog!


Glamour Girl

I took the girls to the mall yesterday and Big J asked if she could get a princess makeover at Libby Lu. She's been asking for a while and this time I said, "yes." She looked adorable.



I'm a little bummed with myself. A few weeks back I signed up for a writing class. I was hoping it would kick start things for me, get me back into a writing groove, and it didn't work.

Things have just been so hectic around here that I let it slide and I didn't even hand in the last few assignments. I just don't have the desire anymore.

I took the class as a last ditch effort to drum up some motivation as far as writing goes, but it's just not there anymore. It's actually been more of a burden, just another thing I feel guilty about. So I've decided, once and for all, to finally stop freelancing and to put all of my energy into my photography.

It feels kinda good to let it go, to actually say it (or write it) out loud. Because writing is something that I've been doing since I graduated college, I felt like that was my only talent. For a time I felt like that was what I was supposed to be doing. Don't get me wrong I still love to write, but not on a deadline. I'll just continue to write for me. To record the things that are special to me.

On that note, I'm going to start another blog. I decided that since I'm going to focus on my photography and all the things it takes to start a business that it might be fun to document it all. As it stands now, no one knows about this blog. Not my husband, not my mother, not even my twin sister. I wanted a place to write about things that are personal to me and I didn't want to worry about being judged. It's one thing to have strangers read about my life, but I felt like I would always be holding back if my family was reading.

So, the photography blog will be something they can all take part in. I'm going to work on getting it set up by the end of the week. I'd like to document my journey from here on out. I hope you'll join me!! I'll let you know the link as soon as it's ready.

And now for this week's Thursday Theme: Collections. I would like you to come check out my portfolio building set on Flickr. It's a collection of photos that I think are pretty good. Some are of my girls and some are not. I hope you'll leave me some feedback. What can I do better?


Easter Pics

I've finally gotten through all of my pictures from our vacation and Easter. Here are a few from Sunday.

We were at my in-laws house. She always makes way too much food. We had lamb, lasagna, stuffed mushsrooms, artichokes, spiral ham, potatoes, and meatballs. You could seriously feed a small country.

Update on the house: Things are moving very slowly. It takes a while to do a short sale apparently. There's a lot of paperwork and approvals that need to be taken care of. The couple who bid on our house are getting antsy. They are worried about waiting all this time and then losing out on the house and we're worried they are going to pull out. We've started packing, but I'm so nervous something is gonna go wrong. We'd be soooo screwed.

Anyway, positive thoughts right?

Lasr but not least, I've been trying to decide what to call my photography business once I'm' ready to open shop. What do you think? J&J Photography or Stacy Mae Photography?

The first one is obviously the first letter in each of the girl's names. They are, after all, my inspiration. Plus, I had a logo in mind for that. The other is my first and middle name. Mae was my grandmother's name and it is kinda unique. Which one do you like better?


Home Sweet Home

We're back from Disney World! And I'm so glad to be home. It was everything I expected and so much more. I was so worried about how the baby would be on the place and that turned out to be the easy part.

The trip started off on a bad note when I lost my purse! Yup ... with $600 in cash in it! Plus, my license, all my credit cards, yada, yada, yada. We called the bus company who brought us from the airport to the hotel ~ nothing. We called the hotel that the bus went to after it dropped us off ~ nothing.

Turns out it was in our hotel lost and found the whole time. I must have left it in the lobby while we were waiting to check in. We didn't find that out until 2 days later!! Yeesh!

It was so stressful with both kids and we ended up forgetting a lot of things. One day, we left our room keys in one of the strollers we rented!!

I got sun burn on the first day.

Little J didn't nap during the day ... at all!

It was interesting, but we finally settled into a groove about 3 days into the vacation. So there were some high moments (as well as some low moments). Big J was so adorable meeting all her favorite princesses. She got so shy. She wanted to pick a flower for each one. It was so sweet.

We saw a lot of fun things, went on a lot of rides, and stayed up really late. I'm so beat!

I missed checking my computer everyday so I have a lot of catching up to do. I also took a lot of pictures. Here's a link to my flickr page if you want to check 'em out.

I picked one for my best shot. Hope you like it.


Be Back Soon!

We're off to Disney!

Be back on Good Friday ...


My Inspiration

I mentioned taking an Intro to Photoshop class at a local high school in my last post. I thought I show you what I worked on. I scanned an old picture of my mother when she was 20 years old and hoping to get into modeling.

I was able to take out all the crinkles in the paper, smooth her skin and clothes, add a little more contrast and viola!! Isn't she purty?!?!?!


Thursday Theme: Change

What a perfect topic for this Thursday Theme. There are a ton of changes going on over here. I've written before about our impending move, but there's also another big change coming. On March 18th, my little munchkin is turning one!

It's so crazy to think that 12 months ago I was getting ready to deliver this beautiful child into the world. I was a bundle of nerves, wondering what it would be like to add another baby to our perfect threesome. I was worried, I was anxious, I was scared to death. As with Big J, I went into labor right on my due date. Both kids were right on time, can you believe that?

For some strange reason my husband and I decided to have a couch delivered on my due date. The delivery men were here while I was in labor. I was pacing the house waiting for them to be done so we could high tail it over to the hospital.

I handled the pain pretty well considering the first time around they had to give me morphine. When I was finally admitted around 3 o'clock in the afternoon, I was 3 centimeters. Things progressed pretty quickly after that. I gave birth at around 8 o'clock that night.

It was the most wonderful thing in the world! I had an epidural when I delivered Big J, but it was so strong I didn't feel a thing. I pushed so damn hard, I tore every which way. This time, with Little J, I could feel what was going on. I could feel her come out of my body. It was so surreal! I felt much more calm, much more in the moment this time around.

I can't believe it's been a whole year since this little person has come into our lives. Some of it has been stressful, some of it has been frustrating, but all of it has been wonderful. Even when I'm at my wit's end about how to get my children to actually be in the same room together without screaming and crying, I feel blessed to have these two beautiful girls.

This past weekend we celebrated Little J's birthday. Here are a few more pictures to celebrate the big changes that are on the horizon.

For more on change, check out The Land of K.A.

Happy Hump Day

This week is just skipping along. Yesterday I packed up the girls suitcases for Disney. Today, I have to pay attention to the laundry. It's piling up quickly and I want everything clean before I even attempt to pack my own stuff. I'm so nervous that I'm going to forget something. Plus, I totally forgot about Easter. I guess I have to go out today and get some stuff for the girls because I won't have time when we get back.

We also had a ton of boxes delivered yesterday. If you're moving, check out Ebay for boxes. He got 30 big ones for a reasonable price, much less than he would have paid at a storage place or wherever else you get boxes. Or, I guess you could scrounge through the dumpster at the supermarket. Now I just need bubble wrap or something to keep all the glass stuff safe.

My last photoshop class is tonight and I'm not sure I really learned anything. I'm kinda disappointed. The teacher moved way too quick for me. We're supposed to bring in a picture or something specific we want to work on tonight. I can't decide what to bring. Last time I asked her how to create a vignette around an image. She didn't even know. I guess signing up for a class at a local high school wasn't the best idea. I might have to seek out a tutor or something.

Well, I'm off to clean some dishes. TTFN!


More Birthday Party Pics

I was up until midnight last night editing pictures I took from Little J's birthday party. Hubby got me a copy of Adobe Lightroom and I haven't had a chance to play with it until last night. Cool program! I like it a lot. I also won a 3 month membership to Piknik (sp?) which I was fiddling around with too. There's so much stuff out there for aspiring shutterbugs like myself. I'm so excited. I'm just curious what most professionals use. I guess it's Photoshop. That's what we use at my job.

Hubby's bringing home a copy of Photoshop CS3 today so I'm going to try and learn that too. Shouldn't be too hard, right? Haaa!

The pictures aren't that exciting. I haven't gotten to the cake ones yet, but I think they still came out cute.


Yay for Birthdays!!

We had Little J's birthday party on Sunday and it was so nice. I think Big J was more excited than the baby! Everytime someone rang the doorbell she came running through the house yelling who was at the door.

On Saturday we all got gussied up and went to get a family picture. It was such a disaster. I fought with my hubby before we left and it ruined the day for me. Little J was miserable. She cried the whole time!! We still got a lot of really great pictures which I'll show you guys tomorrow, but it was so painful. I did learn something really important though. When I have my own studio, there will be no 30 minute sessions. It's too stressful, especially when you're working with kids.

Here's my best shot for Monday though. It's a picture I took myself. I can't believe my little munchkin is turning one next week. The time is rushing by! Gosh, I can't believe we're going to Disney next week too!!!



I'm so glad this week is over. It's been a stressful one and it totally dragged. I hate weeks like that.

We're still waiting to get approval for a short sale so that we can move along with the house. We were supposed to be out of attorney review yesterday but apparently whoever was assigned to our case closed it and we had to resubmit everything. So hopefully we'll be able to get that today and finally get going. I want to know that everything is settled so that we can start packing. We are leaving for Disney next week and if everything goes okay we're supposed to close on the 31st ~ a week after we get back from vacation. Whew! It's going to be busy around here for a while.

Little J's first birthday is on the 18th, while we're in Disney, so we're just having a little get-together on Sunday. My mother-in-law is cooking stuffed shells so I don't have to worry about food. I was debating whether or not to do goodie bags for the kids. I just feel bad because this is so last minute and I feel like Little J is getting shafted. We had a big party for Big J's 1st birthday. But, then I remind myself that we'll be in Disney. What better way to celebrate a birthday!!

I'm excited to go away but still nervous about traveling with kids. Little J has been such a pain this past week too. She just does not sit still. She's not happy in the stroller, she's not happy in the car seat, what's she going to do stuck on a plane for 4 hours? Oy!!

Anyway. the weather was pretty nice here yesterday so I took the girls outside to play and of course, I can't go anywhere without my camera. It was Little J's first time playing on the ground. She kept putting the acorns in her mouth. I took her for a spin on Big J's trike and she liked that.

Oh, we're going to the portrait studio where I work to get some pictures of Little J for her 1st birthday. I'm bringing a cake and we're going to let her get all messy. Should be fun! I'll let you know how it goes.

Have a great weekend!!


The Spirited Child

The theme over at Stacy's this week is spirited. It's the perfect word to describe my darling little diva. She's full of energy, full of spark. She's got attitude.

I mentioned in my last post that Big J had a playdate this week. Her friend Patrick came over and they had a blast playing together. This picture makes me smile every time I look at it. It's a moment of pure joy I was fortunate enough to capture.

Jumping for Joy

I love this picture I got of Big J yesterday. She had a playdate with her friend Patrick and they were jumping on the couch. How fun!!

Oh, and check out the Mamarazzi School blog. They have a photography homework contest every week and I was a runner up this week!! Yay! It was all about your child's favorite things. Mine are listed under my real name ~ Stacy.


Living Up to My Name

When I first started this blog, I struggled with the name. There were so many clever ones taken, I had no idea what to call my own. I thought about where I was in my life, a phrase that would describe my feelings about motherhood.

I remember being in a fog in the weeks and months after Big J was born. Always forgetting things, my brain had turned to mush. It was not uncommon for me to search frantically for my car keys only to find them in my purse, right where I left them. Or, to have cereal for breakfast and put the box back in the refrigerator. Oh, and there was one time I washed my hair with conditioner. So I settled on "Another Mommy Moment," because I felt that described what I was going through. I've often been accused of having a "blonde moment" so I figured a "mom moment" was the next logical step.

As J got older, I had less and less mommy moments. Then, I got pregnant again. Little J was born a year ago this month and my brain is mush once more. Case in point: the hubby and I were cleaning out a bookcase, getting ready for our impending move when he found a book about Jerome Bettis, one of his fave football players. He was kind of confused.

"Where did this come from?" he asked.
"Isn't it yours?" I said.
"I've never seen this before," he continued.
"I got you that for Christmas." I reminded him.
"You did?" he asked.
"Yeah, don't you remember?"

It finally dawns on me that I never gave it to him. I picked up the book around the holidays, stashed it in the bookcase so he wouldn't find it, and totally forget about it!!

Merry (belated) Christmas honey!


Best Shot Monday

One of Big J's favorite things to do is make chocolate chip cookies. Not the kind you get from a package. The soft, chewy homemade kind. The problem is she loves to sample the dough. It's almost impossible to keep her fingers out of the bowl. Now she's resorted to stealing the spoon and holding it hostage.

I can't really blame her though. My mom used to let us taste the batter. It was the best part of baking. Tracey wrote about reflections for her best shot. I see myself reflected in my daughter. I love creating memories with her that echo my own childhood.

Hmmm, a cookie sounds good right about now. Yum!!