Saturday, February 26, 2011


We had SO much fun with Aunt Abi!!!
On Tuesday we visited my sister and her family. It was so worth the three hour one-way drive! We all had such a great time.

My sister's little guy - isn't he so cute?!



Beth - gathering balls for IsaacDSC_7774
More on my photography blog!

My beautiful sister and her family

The hubs is out of town this weekend and as much as I have missed him we have also managed to have a really good day today. I was really dreading getting through the weekend without another set of hands and eyes but so far it hasn't been too bad. I think it helped that I rented MegaMind - which the kids seemed to really like (It's about the same as Monsters Vs. Aliens - same action violence and mild romance).

So anyway... I've got a little extra time tonight to post some photos that have just been sitting on my computer, calling out to me to be posted! Yay!

You may remember that I posted earlier this week about my trip to see my sister and her family. I always enjoy my visits with her - we get along really well and both enjoy photography so there is always a lot to talk about. Her husband is also a photographer so dinner with both of them is always a treat. We discuss cameras and lenses and lighting, it's like being in a photographer's heaven! Not to mention the fact that they are both excellent cooks in their own ways so the food is always amazing whenever we visit.

One of the highlights of my visit with my sister was when we let the kids play outside. They have a nice big yard and our kids chased each other through just about every bit of it. So while they were playing Abi & I got our cameras out and took photos of each other's kids and, of course, each other.

Aunt Abi
My sister, Abigail. Have you visited her blog? I took this photo with my 18-55mm f/3.5-5 lens and was zoomed in all the way to 55mm - I notice I get better bokeh zooming in like this - so I do that when I can afford to shoot at f/5. Indoors I almost never zoom my lens in, unless I am really doing a still life and then sometimes I'll zoom in a little - but there really should be an entire blog post for that - to zoom or not to zoom?!

This is the only photo in this post that is edited. The shot came out pretty dark so I adjusted the levels a bit and sharpened. It was really challenging to shoot in this environment because some areas were bright and some were quite shady. The porch was a great place to shoot but I had to really watch my settings and continually adjust them.

Oh I so love this shot!! The lighting is so right.

I switched to my 55-200mm zoom lens pretty early on in the day. I was able to frame my images closer without standing too near my subjects and interrupting their play. I LOVE the pretty bokeh and sharp focus I get with this lens - even though I don't use it very often.

Playing hide and seek. I followed her around for probably ten minutes trying to get a shot with her eyes! Patience payed off though and I was able to snap this cute shot of my sweet little niece while she was hiding from Katie-Abigail.

Josiah found this pair of binoculars and played with them nearly all day long!

Shooting through the slats of the deck was tricky - but I really like this perspective and the expression on Josiah's face on the photo above and below the light was just so pretty at that angle!



Beth - gathering balls for IsaacDSC_7591

Here is another example of a not-perfect picture that I really like. Katie-Abigail was having a quiet minute by herself in the sand box while her favorite cousin played with Josiah for a bit. The sun kept going behind the clouds and then coming back out again so it made it a little tricky but it was a nice challenge. I got a technically better shot after a couple more shots - but I really like the composition and mood of this one best.

My little athlete - his cousin threw the ball for him and he actually hit most of them! I think he would have played with that baseball bat all day long if he could have.

We had SO much fun with Aunt Abi!!!
Having SO MUCH FUN!!

My sister is such a good mommy!

Zoomed in just a little too far here!! That's the thing about my zoom lens that I have to watch out for.


my nephew
I really like this shot - even though it's slightly overexposed and the focus is soft I really like the soft tones.

I'm a bit behind gathering photos for my 365. I've taken a shot (pretty much) every day it's just getting them loaded that's the trick. I've missed posting them every day though and will try to do better. How is yours going?

In case you've missed it - don't forget to enter my giveaway! It's open until Tuesday night. Also I hope you'll check out my upcoming photography classes. I'm really excited about the classes coming up and my brand new mentoring sessions!! Also, if you missed my latest SLR classes and want to be notified when the next SLR class opens for registration please let me know! If there is enough interest I will re-arrange the class schedule to include another SLR class earlier in the year.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday Favorites - crafty edition

I think Little Birdie Secrets might be my newest favorite non-photography blog. There are so many crafty ideas, recipes and DIY projects and tutorials. 


This is from a craft show - there's no tutorial on the blog.
Isn't it the cutest?

These are SO pretty! I need to make a spring wreath with these!

If we are having a girl I am SO going to learn how to do these!

And there are a bunch more that I could post but you'll just have to see them for yourself!

If I don't make a wreath - I'll buy one from handmade collectables

i {heart} Friday - vote for your favorites AND a giveaway!

Sorry to keep you waiting for this post for so long. You all are the best.

At the moment I'm listening to the preview of a new CD by Adele that just came out. SUCH a great sound, and a departure from what I usually listen to. I especially love "Rolling in the Deep" (I just had to throw that in there!)

Also, while I'm starting this post off on a random note I just can't help but mention that my sister Abi blogged about our recent visit with her and has some adorable photos of my kids - and hers - on her blog! I've got a ton of photos to post as well, just haven't had the time...

To celebrate 500 followers I'm hosting a giveaway this weekend - well, until the end of Tuesday anyway :)

Flickr® from Yahoo!
Giveaway #1 - Flickr Pro Account!!
Anyone who registers for any of my photography classes will be entered to win one year's Flickr Pro Account. One year of unlimited uploads and storage!!

Giveaway #2 - FREE Photography Class!!
Leave a comment on this post and you'll be entered to win one of my photography classes!
Extra entries for this giveaway: Tweet about it, Blog about it, post a link on Facebook. Leave extra entries in a separate comment :)

Now on to my picks for top five photos from the last two photography challenges!

Feb 8: Happy Hearts Day






Honorable Mentions:
Wildflower Photography
Susan at Happy No Ears

Feb 15: Colorful
How can I pick just FIVE photos from all of the amazing photos you all submitted? Let me try:



Dirt and Lace



Honorable Mention:
Jeannie Thiessen
Ashley Sisk
The Mrs.

P.S. Today is the very LAST day to register for my March Photography Mentoring Group!!

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