personal

365 | February

A few of my favorite personal photos from the month of February. We started off the month with a family vacation to Brian Head, UT.  The kids loved playing in the snow and we all enjoyed taking day trips to see Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park

Oliver started baseball for the first time this month. It's a family affair; Grandpa is the team manager while George and his brother are the coaches.

A few moments from life at home. Amelia would get up right around sunset most mornings. The kids are having more interactive play with each other.  I'm just trying to capture it all as creatively as possible.

Adventures around town : We love exploring Descanso Gardens ahead of the cherry blossom festival. 

Pictured below: We bought Oliver a new bike on a whim, Oliver getting his haircut and Oliver's first purchase (candy buttons from Galco's).

Childhood Unplugged

One of my favorite things to photograph is kids being kids. I love this window of time during childhood when imagination and creativity are in full force. There's no filter, anything is possible and everything is new and exciting. It's also pretty funny to see how the minds of toddlers work. :)

Here are a few photos taken over the past couple of months of childhood unplugged.

This is how a two and three year old play hide and seek. Where could they be?

This is how a two and three year old play hide and seek. Where could they be?

Run for your life, Bruiser! The kids are coming!

Run for your life, Bruiser! The kids are coming!

Childrens black and white portrait-1.JPG
It became quite in the bedroom, a little too quiet. I came into the room and found them in the closet like this.

It became quite in the bedroom, a little too quiet. I came into the room and found them in the closet like this.

Superhero masks and capes for stocking stuffers

Superhero masks and capes for stocking stuffers

Ironman and Bat Girl

Ironman and Bat Girl

She found my makeup in a drawer and had no idea what any of it was. I'm guessing that it must have looked like crayons to her two year old mind...so why not color your feet?

She found my makeup in a drawer and had no idea what any of it was. I'm guessing that it must have looked like crayons to her two year old mind...so why not color your feet?

They're always on the go

They're always on the go

Our Everyday Moments - August

August went by in a big fast blur. George and I have been trying to figure out what to do with our backyard. Living on a hillside has a lot of challenges when it comes to construction but we're excited to finally make that space fun and safe for the whole family. We also spent a lot of weekends visiting and catching up with friends and family. I hosted my first photography workshop at Pottery Barn Kids in Pasadena which was a HUGE learning opportunity for me. Here are a few images at home from last month...

Amelia has been fascinated with changing the diaper on her baby doll. This was a morning ritual for almost an entire week.

Burning the midnight oil. Most nights George works after the kids go to sleep. I'm so impressed with how he's been able to balance his workload and still be present with the kids.

Most nights I ask the kids to color before dinner. Amelia loves to scribble and Oliver usually draws cars, rainbows or the family driving in a car together. Some nights we'll all eat at the kids table so they can continue coloring :)

One of the last summer barbecues. It's almost impossible to get Amelia to sit down for a meal. You can't see Myles in the photo but rest assured that both dogs like to circle the table hoping for a tasty treat.

everyday august kids at piano

We finally have beautiful art above the piano thanks to Laci Fowler

Our Everyday - July

Sharing more photos of life at home. I'm still not quite sure if I'll keep this up every month but it's a good motivator to keep shooting and help me remember these little details of life. In July.....

Oliver drew his first family portrait! From left to right : George, Oliver, Amelia and me. We're surrounded by fireworks and a few hearts. You may be wondering who that little person at the bottom is supposed to be.....sorry folks, we are not expecting a third. I am NOT pregnant. I asked O who it was and he said he didn't know :/ My best guess is that it was his practice figure. In this drawing, George, Oliver and I are sticking our tongues out. Amelia is 'just smiling'.

I don't style Amelia's hair. At best, I use a hair clip to keep her hair out of her face and on those hot summer days, I manage to put it into a ponytail. When I pick her up from daycare though, she usually comes home with some pretty cute hairstyles like this one.

We've been eating a lot of watermelon lately. Amelia was so upset because she wanted two pieces - one for each hand. So, George took her slice and broke it in half. All was right with the world again.

Oliver is so proud of his worksheets and crafts from school. On this day, he made a pair of 'sunglasses' and was very concerned about repairing the broken frames.

Amelia will sit down at the piano every once in a while. Sometimes, Oliver will join in too. These moments are a good reminders for me to continue playing. I hope to pass on my love of music and would love it if they took an interest in learning.

Amelia loves to color now. Give her something to draw with and she'll quiet and distracted for at least a few minutes. 

Oliver in a common 'I'm watching T.V.' pose

Band aids are necessary for each and every injury (real or imagined)

They can sit quietly together watching T.V.

Amelia playing peek a boo

The realities of raising a young children and building a business at the same time

My version of a family in home session. George was so helpful getting the kids ready and distracted while I set up the room and  camera. We took over 100 shots. Even though they're not quite what I had envisioned, I love having these moments of us just playing and being together.

Mommy and Son Date

Trying to balance the needs of my young family and building a business at the same time is a challenge, to say the least. There are days where I feel like I'm on top of things and there are days where I feel like I'm a hot mess. Lately, I've felt the need to spend some quality one on one time with Oliver. I'm realizing that my window of fun random adventures is slowly closing because he'll be in kindergarten next year (I'm in such denial!!). So, one day I let go of my ever growing to do list and took Mr. O to visit the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, CA. It was a fun day with no agenda and the time together was good for both of us. 

He was thrilled to see a penguin swim over his head

He was thrilled to see a penguin swim over his head

Petting the stingrays was his favorite part of the trip

Petting the stingrays was his favorite part of the trip

White spotted jelly

White spotted jelly

When he sees something cool, he'll say "mommy, take a picture!" As often as possible, I'll give him my phone to document what he sees. I think I might have to get him an instant camera soon :)

When he sees something cool, he'll say "mommy, take a picture!" As often as possible, I'll give him my phone to document what he sees. I think I might have to get him an instant camera soon :)

Photo by Oliver :)

Photo by Oliver :)

Flower hat jellyfish

Flower hat jellyfish

Japanese Sea Nettle (or as Oliver calls them, "spaghetti jellies")

Japanese Sea Nettle (or as Oliver calls them, "spaghetti jellies")

Oliver looking at comb jellies

Oliver looking at comb jellies

Three

I just finished putting together a photo book for Oliver, full of images that either reminded me of fun times we had when he was three or that exemplify being three years old. These photos range from homework assignments to vacation pictures. Here are a few of my favorites. I can't wait to show Oliver the final book!

Our Everyday

Lately, I've been trying to document more of the everyday moments at home. So much of our time is spent here and this is where our family memories are created. These are some of the images taken in June. I'm trying not to use the tripod for now (Amelia is at the stage where she'd just knock it over) so I'd still like to play around with different angles for future photos. At this time in our lives....

 Oliver and Amelia LOVE to play with Legos

Amelia is at the age where she is crawling and standing on top of EVERYTHING. She knows she's not supposed to but I can't help laughing sometimes when I see that look of satisfaction on her face when she's up to something.

There are subtle reminders that little children live here

One of Amelia's favorite things to do lately is to read books. She turns the pages faster than I can read them, grabs the next one, and says 'dis wan'

I really wanted to document the kids brushing their teeth together. On this particular night, Amelia was too tired and went to bed before I could grab the camera. I was still able to get a few shots of Oliver being a big boy and brushing his teeth all by himself.

The next evening, George was helping the kids with their pajamas and I knew I had a min (if that) to get the bathroom ready for this photo. It took a few tries and cooperation to get them to share the step stool but I'm so glad we finally got the shot.

More photos of the kids playing and running in the house. 

Dana + Mike

Dana was one of the first friends I made in LA when I moved here 11 years. Over those years we’ve shared lots of meals, walks and talks. Because of her, George and I learned about the area in LA that we now call home. Dana is a great friend, who helps me with the kids when I’m in need, is a great cook and is usually the first to invite everyone over for a holiday bbq. It’s been wonderful to watch her fall in love and find happiness with Mike.

Last weekend, Dana and Mike were married at the beautiful Villa at Sunstone Winery in Santa Ynez. Here are some of my favorite photos from that fun day. Wishing the newlyweds years of health and happiness!

Amelia at 18 months

Dear Amelia,

At 18 months, we are starting to get a glimpse into your strong and feisty personality. Having an older brother, you easily stand up for yourself and always try to keep up with what he’s doing. Also, like most toddlers this age, you are extremely active. One minute you're running around the house and then the next second you've climbed on top of the coffee table or jumped on the couch - there's never a dull moment with you! You’re very eager to help out around the house. Feeding the dogs, find socks or other toys for Oliver and bringing me your empty plate are some of the things that make you proud. All three of us are trying to teach you new words and we know you understand everything we’re saying. I love to a question and hear you respond with a valley girl ‘yyyeaaaah’.  Purple is your favorite color (it's also the only color you can say).  You get really excited when you see other dogs and have the best wave (the queen's wave) when you greet people. At night, you ask for "brush?" to brush your teeth but we all know its just an excuse to eat fruity toothpaste. You love books right now. It’s sometimes hard to get you down to sleep because you pull out book after book and say, “dis wan” or “dat wan” and “more?” after we’re through. You're a big ball of energy and we couldn't love you more.