Fall Planting

I was itching to photograph something this weekend, but couldn't bear to snap another photo of the back of my child's head as he/she ran/crawled away from me.  

The weather was perfect both Saturday and Sunday and we had lots of mums and pansies and sweet potato vines to plant, so out to the yard I went, macro lens in hand.  I really need to play with this lens more.  It's quite a challenge to shoot macro, especially after drinking a big cup of coffee (*shakes*), but lots of fun to see the final product, blurry water droplets and all.

Sam "helped" me with some of the fall planting and porch cleaning, and in his underpants, no less.  After I cleaned up all his messes and mine, the front and back yards both looked really nice.  I can't wait to see everything filled in.  So glad autumn is finally here.

Back to School 2013

Sam starts Pre-K in three days, seventeen hours and forty-two minutes.  Ish.  It's not like I'm watching the clock or anything.  Ahem...

I knew we had a playdate with our Lens Baby friends coming up, and our plan was to get some back-to-school pictures of our kids.  I


knew that I would be more likely to get some nice shots of Sam if we were alone without the distraction of our sweet friends running circles around us!  So I struck a deal with Sam that if he did "nice" pictures with me in McKinney on Monday, we'd have some silly fun when we came back with our friends on Thursday.  He agreed and it was a success, I'd say. 

♥ Happy Back-to-School 2013 ♥

Beach Babies

We met up last week with some of our Lens Baby friends for a day at the "beach".  If our California family had been with us they might have felt "beach" was a bit of a misnomer.  It's more like a small stretch of sand, or a large sandbox if you will, alongside Lake Lewisville.  But having not yet seen the real-deal, this little pseudo-beach was plenty exciting for my two!  It's pretty nice to have something like this smack-dab in the middle of North Texas, about twenty minutes from our house in fact!

We decided to meet here to let the kids play in the sand and water while we practiced shooting full sun, mid-day, when the sun's light is overhead and at its harshest.  As it turned out, the weather was partly-cloudy, but that was good too, as it kept us cooler (or less miserable) than we would have been otherwise.  

This was Sam's first time swimming here.  He took a minute to scope it all out, then jumped right in with the rest of the kids.  It was the perfect little spot for him to swim on his own and I was able to watch him from the shore.

This one loved the beach, too!  I wasn't sure how she'd do in the sand, but it didn't seem to faze her a bit.  I plopped her down and she played and played.  Finding this red bucket was pretty neat, too.

Evie's made her first friend, another little baby in our playgroup named Evie (pronounced Eee-vie), who is just a couple months older than she is.  She smiles whenever she sees her new friend which just cracks me up.  They had a great time at the beach, both of them watching the big kids swim while they stuffed fistfuls of sand in their mouths.  I promise my baby's not sunburned, despite her looking like a sweaty, pink Easter ham that's just been pulled from the oven.  It appears she's going to flush just as easily as her brother.  Boo.

Oh my, look at those rolls!  Is there anything cuter?  She had a great time exploring the wet sand, dry sand and rocks on the beach.  I was impressed with how well she handled all these new textures.

Eventually we had to head home for a nap, but we'll definitely go back someday this summer.  Just waiting for the forecasted highs to dip below 100!

The Niagra

I love these photos.  Love them.  I wasn't planning on photographing Sam that day, and I certainly wasn't prepared to capture these since I never in a million years would've thought he'd go on something like this.   Some are blurry or too warm or too cool, all of them too tedious an edit to be done very well, but I'm so glad I have them.  They crack me up each time I look at them.

This was one hundred percent his idea.  The three of us had popped over to the soccer field next to our house where our neighborhood had set up a little pre-Fourth of July celebration.  There were sno cones and bounce houses and these blow-up water slides.  It was hotter than you-know-what so we planned on having a quick sno cone in the shade and trying a bounce house for a second before heading home.  As we were walking back to the house we passed this slide.  It was the biggest by far (and called "The Niagra") and go figure - he begged to go on it.  I couldn't believe he wanted to try it; he's never been one to go for things like this.  We had just been at Jack Carter Pool the week before and he was terrified of trying the baby slide that wasn't even as tall me.  Where all this courage came from, I don't know.

As we headed home to put on his suit and sunscreen I thought for sure he was going to change his mind.  But he didn't!  He hopped right in line and slid down over and over and over again.  He looked so little in line with all the big kids and the ladder to the top of the slide just dwarfed him.  Every time he'd get to the top he would disappear around the corner and I never knew when his little body was going to come flying down the shoot!  I had to stand pretty far back and only had my wide-angle; I can't believe I caught the expressions I did!  He looked absolutely terrified going down, but once he reached the bottom, he was grinning every time.  It's so wrong of me to laugh at these pictures of him scared out of his mind - but I do!

Fearfully and Wuhn-fully Made

As soon as Sam and I got in the car yesterday after school, he asked me if I wanted to hear a Psalm.  I thought he said "song', so it took me a second to figure out what he was doing when he started reciting (almost yelling) "Lord you know what's in my heart".  I watched him in the rearview mirror as he rattled off the rest of Psalm 139 at lightning-speed.  I was so impressed with how much he'd memorized and how well he spoke.  I asked him if he would do it for me again today so I could record it for all the grandparents to hear and luckily he agreed.  After I stopped recording he informed me that Psalm 139 does not have an amen at the end!  Sorry...

Resurrection Eggs

Sam made a special project at school last week to celebrate Easter.  Each child received six plastic Easter eggs and an empty egg carton.  In each of the first five eggs they put a small object that helps tell the story of the Resurrection - a plastic palm leaf, a crouton, a small cross, a piece of cloth, and a small rock, leaving the last egg symbolically empty.

When I picked Sam up at school last Thursday he announced loudly and with great excitement (in the hallway packed with parents) that he made en-erection eggs at school this week.   My eyes got big and I giggled, then I asked him to tell me again what he had made, as if I hadn't heard him right the first time (when really this was just for my own amusement).  He repeated himself, this time with even more enthusiasm, and with a smile I replied "Oh!  Resurrection Eggs!  You'll have to tell me the story when we get home".  And he did.

By the time we got around to recording his retelling of the story he decided they were called something different - closer, but still not quite right.  Nevertheless, he tells the story well.  The things kids say!