Sunday, June 30, 2013

181/365: Back to PA!

I hate leaving. There's the rush to pack up on top of coordinating it with the nap and feeding schedule (which we aced this morning, by the way!) and then the low energy that comes with knowing vacation is over. Before we left, I set up the tripod (which I broke promptly after taking this picture) and got a family shot. I think I should try and do this on each trip. Look how much Hannah has grown since our first camping trip in early May!

Oh, and if you can zoom, look how Hannah's laughing at me! God, I love her.

180/365: A Pot of Gold Kinda Vacation

Today was our last day to explore. We went out and saw waterfalls, gorges, an old mill, a couple more wineries and breweries, and a beautiful end to a beautiful vacation. Looking through all the pictures I took today, it was so hard to choose the picture of the day.

Hannah was so intrigued by this waterfall. I love that she's really starting to take notice of the things around her!

I had my 50mm with me. It's actually frustrating because I love the 50mm for the portrait shots, but would love a wide angle lens to capture the landscapes. However, the 50mm was kinda fun in the old mill we visited.

We then went on a hike in Robert Treman State Park. It was an unbelievable gorge - the views were spectacular (and also anxiety provoking carrying a 3 month old around, even though she was securely trapped to Daddy's chest. As I explained to Dustin, the anxiety is real, but based totally on irrationality! I suppose it comes with being a mom). The picture below is Lucifer Falls. This was a picture I would have loved to take with a wide angle and a tripod! The 50mm and the rock ledge worked, though.

After our day of exploring, and sweet baby Hannah was down for the night, Dustin and I enjoyed hanging out as the sun fell. I couldn't get enough! Here's one of my favorite shots during the golden hour.

Then, it began to sprinkle (again!). I loved how the drops delicately landed on the water. ..... would have loved a macro lens for this one! I better save up!

As Dustin and I sat down to dinner, I had a huge smile on my face. It was a short trip, but perfect. Yes, we had a ton of rain, but we made such wonderful family memories. I'm so thankful I'll have these pictures to show Hannah one day. I'm so blessed to have Dustin as my husband; he's such a wonderful man, and now I'm blessed with this amazing little girl. How did I get so lucky?

JUST as I was thinking all of these wonderful things, I looked over Dustin's shoulder and saw this.

A rainbow. Really?! So, even though I took tons of pictures today, this obviously wins the title of picture of the day.

179/365: Cayuga Lake Wine Trail

 I'll let these pictures explain why we love Finger Lakes...

Need I explain more?

We hit up some of the wineries on the trail for our rainy Friday. This stop was at the Thirsty Owl Winery... awesome views and awesome name! I love how the clouds hovered over Cayuga Lake.

After our wine tasting and two cases of wine (purchased, not consumed) later, we decided to head over to Seneca Lake to visit a brewery. The views from this brewery were just as breathtaking.

Though I was able to capture some awesome pictures in between the rain, this one was my favorite.

Look at her laughing at her Daddy! Hannah was such a happy, social baby! She was a wine tasting natural :)

178/365: Pretty Little Camp Site

Early this morning, we were off to Ithaca, NY to explore Cayuga, which is  a part of the Finger Lakes. Our very first trip to the Finger Lakes was last year. We were invited by a friend of mine for a Memorial Day weekend trip, and it is still one of our favorite trips to date (thanks, Heather!). We pulled up to our campground and immediately noticed it was pretty empty, which isn't always a great sign, but we figured it is the middle of the week and it has some nice sites. In fact, we got to choose between two. When I saw that the one site had this adorable little pond behind it, it was a no brainer. Though the campground is a bit sparse, and doesn't have a ton of amenities (including WiFi?! How dare they expect people to camp without WiFi?! .... kidding, kidding! :)), it's a nice relaxing site and I just love the pond!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

177/365: Backyard Exploration

I wanted to get a picture done earlier today so that I can pack up my camera and laptop.... we're leaving for vacation tomorrow. Wahoo!

One of Hannah's favorite things to do is hang out outside. She's so intrigued by all there is to take in. On our exploration today, we found that our berries are starting to ripen.

My favorite part about our walks around outside, is that Hannah sits so happily on my hip and is now learning to "hold on." Sooner than I'd like to admit, she'll be walking around on her own without my help, so I'm taking in every moment.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

176/365: Today, I Give You a Bud

There are some days I find that the sun is falling and I have yet to take a picture. In these moments, I don't fret, I simply pick my camera up and start hitting the shutter button to see what I come up with. Today was one of those days, and today you get a bud.

Monday, June 24, 2013

175/365: Me (and Hannah) Monday

Hannah and I have our regular Monday routine back! We had our Monday Morning Moms group (we missed our friends!) followed by a grocery store run. Although, doing the grocery store trip after group might have to change because Hannah's no longer able to nap as well when we're out and about.

Every day, I can't imagine loving this little girl more.... and then tomorrow comes.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

174/365: Puppy Love

Our friends stopped by today with their new puppy, Jake. What a little ball of cuteness! I can hardly stand it. We traded babies for a little bit :).

On another note, Hannnah's 3 months today. In celebration, I mugged her...

Saturday, June 22, 2013

173/365: Busy Photography Day

I had two photo shoots today and loved them both. I'm learning so much with each shoot. For those of you who have faith in me to capture your families and kiddos, thank you; you're giving me a priceless experience... you're my teachers!

Despite taking hundreds of images today, I lacked in the project 365 department. I grabbed this shot very quickly at my evening shoot at Lake Nockamixon. I wish I used some different settings and tried some different perspectives, but my goal was trying to find spots to take pictures of the beautiful family that was about to arrive. The lake had many people around it and the bike trail wasn't exactly the prettiest of locations, but we made it work. A sneak peek is on my professional Facebook page.

Friday, June 21, 2013

172/365: First Day of Summer

Today was a wonderful first day of summer. Hannah and I had such a great day doing all things baby; followed by a walk with Daddy and Riley, bedtime, then a yummy take out dinner with my darling husband! Today, I took lots of pictures, but here are my favorite two.

Riley's favorite thing in the world is to hang his head out the window of a moving vehicle!

Could she be any more beautiful?!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

171/365: School's Out for Summer!

Today was officially the last day of school for staff. Wahoo! AND not only was it my last day for this school year, but it was my last day until the 2014-2015 school year. I was approved to take a child rearing leave. How awesome to have the opportunity to have a full year home with my baby and still have a job to go back to?! I absolutely love being a counselor; there's something so special about it, but being a mommy... man... there's just nothing like it, and I'll never get this first year back with Hannah. (I'll also have a lot more time to play with my camera!)

I couldn't choose a picture today, so, here's what I got...

My parent's are bird geeks. This is just one of many bird accessories in their backyard!

One thing I love about taking pictures everyday is that I notice so much more. Right now, I'm loving the tall grass. I noticed today that almost all of the fields of tall grass have been chopped down today to get prepped to be baled. I just love the bales! Hopefully, I can get to my mom's to take some shots of this grass when it's rolled up!

Nothing beats a beautiful haning basket.

And of course Noah. Hannah's been at my mom's everyday this week (thanks, Mama!!) and Noah has been a tad jealous. He's the baby, and he was making sure we didn't forget.

I've actually taken a picture of these horses before. They're the ones that were in a distance standing in the field of yellow flowers. They were up by the fence today, so I snapped a peek-a-boo shot.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

170/365: Last Day of Spring

Today is the last day of spring, and it was a gorgeous one at that. Humidity was low, and the temperature was comfortable with the sun shining bright!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

169/365: Bumbo!

Hannah has been aching to sit up! She grunts and groans as she uses her belly muscles with all her might to sit up whether she's in your arms, in her car seat or in her rock and play. So, I decided to get out the Bumbo.  Boy, did this kid LOVE this seat. She sat on the island with us as we ate dinner, and she looked around cooing and giggling the whole time!

Monday, June 17, 2013

168/365: Me Monday

Many of my fellow 365ers partake in "Me Monday." It's a day devoted to getting out from behind the camera. Mondays, I try to do macros, but I think I might want to try to do "Me Mondays" instead, or in addition to "Macro Mondays."

Recently, I read this article. Check it out. It's an article written by a mom who explains how mothers always try and stay out of the picture because of how we look. We may still have baby weight to lose, our hair's a mess, our make up is a mess (or not on at all), our eyebrows aren't waxed or tweezed... we come up with so many reasons not to be in the picture. However, while we're obsessed with our appearance, our children see none of it. We're simply their mommies. No matter how big, small, tall, short, done up or done down we are, we are still their mommies. Our kids only see our hearts. Why short change their memories caught on camera because we're so vein? So, in spirit of this article, I hopped in front of the camera. Dead tired, make up totally melted off, skin a mess, but I'm happy as hell with this gorgeous baby in my arms. She deserves pictures of us together.

Taking a self portrait isn't easy. Getting the correct focus and settings is so difficult... add in carrying a baby on top of keeping an eye on a dog (who's electric fence collar battery was dead, apparently!), it took a lot of shots to try and get anything worth posting.

Here are my favs of my happy baby girl. Oh my, do I love her!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

167/365: First Father's Day

Dustin celebrates his first Father's Day today! I'm so lucky to be married to this amazing man who I have now fallen in love with all over again seeing him as a daddy to our beautiful baby girl. Dustin, you're the man of my dreams and we're so lucky to have you!

Also, a very Happy Father's Day to my step-dad John. You're an amazing man. I wouldn't be anywhere close to where I am today if it wasn't for you.

(Photo by Isabel March Photography, editing done in #PicTapGo)

Happy Father's Day to all of the other amazing men in my life! Father in law, brother (dad to be!), friends and family. I hope you enjoyed your day. 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

166/365: Mr. Great Horned Owl

My beautiful cousin, Amy, married her long time love, Todd, in Audubon yesterday. This was very appropriate considering my uncle (her dad) is THE bird guy. He adores birds and knows everything there is to know about them.

At the cocktail hour, this guy greeted us all. He was absolutely stunning in person. I wish I had had my real camera, but the cell phone did just fine. Now, if only these birds were legal as pets!

Friday, June 14, 2013

165/365: Technology & Two Year Olds

Dustin's sister stopped by after work with our niece Sophia (how cute is she?!). She was playing with a two year old appropriate app on the iPhone with no issues of using it. It amazes me. Two year old babies are using our iPhones and iPads and iWhateverElses with no problem at all. It's completely changing the understanding of what a phone really is... and a camera for that matter! Our 2 year old nephew held up an iPhone the other day and said "cheeese". The days of remembering phone numbers, waiting for a dial tone, pay phones, film cameras... our kids won't know these things! Blows my mind. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

164/365: Rainy Thursday

A strong storm system moved across our area today. They had originally called for the possibility of tornadoes, but fortunately, we ended up with only some heavy downpours. I would have loved to capture the raindrops hitting puddles, or a reflection in a puddle, but time and circumstances didn't allow it. So, here is how I captured the rain...

Dustin picked the picture of the day. He said he liked the shape/lines and light.

Here are the runners up.

What's your pick?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

163/365: What Got Me Through the Day

It goes without saying that getting home and seeing this beautiful baby is what motivates me to get through the work day.

Every day, I'm amazed by how much I love this little person. It's so incredibly overwhelming in the most amazing way. She's my sunshine. (So is Dustin... boy, do I have a lot of sunshine in my life!)

PS... I'm thinking we might have a hazel eyed baby?? Any other guesses?

Aside from this face getting me through today, some of my students helped put a smile on my face. It's no secret that public education is in a pretty tough place right now. Budgets are tight, stress is high, and everyone's stretched to the max. With all of this, going back to work certainly hasn't been easy. Today, after 5th grade graduation, I came back to some awesome cards on my desk from some of my 3rd grade students. They were full of words about how much they loved me and missed me, how they don't want me to have another baby because they're sad when I leave, and one student even said I'm as "nice as a bunny." Now THAT made my day. I just love kids.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

162/365: Starbucks

This ridiculous mermaid is the only thing that got me out of bed this morning. With my current commute, I pass a Starbucks, so I decided it would be my motivation to get to work after leaving my sweet baby.

This is a venti half caf bold, no room. Translation: a big cup of really strong black coffee, mixed with half decaf. I paired it with a spinach, egg white and feta breakfast wrap and I was off to work (by the way, this deliciousness was only $5. So, those who knock Starbucks for price, you definitely can't get this good coffee and decent breakfast wrap at WaWa or Dunkin' Donuts for that price... but this is a debate for another blog post).

This certainly didn't make leaving Hannah any easier, but at least it gave me a little something to look forward to. I JUST might hit up Starbucks for the next two days also!