Monday, October 12, 2015

Documenting Life || Baking Cookies with Grandma

When kids came into my life it seemed so much more important to document the every day stuff. I mean this is the good stuff. This is where memories are made. And I don't want to forget these moments, but I also want to preserve them for the little minds that might have a hard time remembering at such a young age.

Life passes us by so quickly. I hope I will remember the details, but the truth is that many of those details will slip away as my life gets busier and the days pass by-new details will take their place.

Many of my favorite childhood memories come from spending time at my grandparents. We would go swimming, visit around the dining room table and eat lots of yummy food. My grandma always had something freshly baked for us to consume. She also was the first one to say yes to any request......baking cookies, setting up a lemonade stand or planning a picnic. I love to look back on pictures of these times and it makes me even happier to be able to capture these moments with the next generation! Document your life. Tell your story. Save your memories!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Finding the Catchlight

You know the term "baby blues"? Something about that description makes me think about those big ol eyes looking up at mama and for the first time recognizing her face as a familiar safe place. And there is just something about those eyes that I want to always remember....that excitement for learning and that naïve love for life doesn't last forever.

I recently learned a great trick to make sure those big, beautiful eyes can stay with me forever - FIND THE LIGHT. Find a space that is naturally bright and get at an angle where you can see the light reflecting from those eyes - this is called catchlight and will make eyes pop in your picture.  It's so important to create a tangible reminder of these fleeting moments.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Documenting Life || Summer Art Class

This year my Aunt had her first Summer Art Class with 4 girls.  I stopped by during the last class to document some of their work.  The class was 8 weeks and covered an array of mixed media.  Art is such a great way for some kids to work out confusion, stress or aggression.  It can be an excellent calming tool and a great conversation starter as well.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Documenting Life || Water Table Fun

After an unintentional three month hiatus, I am back...maybe.  Life is busy.  The spring and summer months have proven to be especially busy and we have really enjoyed our adventures outside.  This summer is a complete 180 from last summer (hallelujah!) and I am so thankful for the difference a year makes - more on that another time.

In efforts to get better pictures of my baby turned toddler and our loved ones, I have been learning the ins and outs of my camera (finally!) and, as you can see, I never lack in models to practice on.  I love documenting life and the smiles that come with looking back on these days.

Outdoor play is so important!  The fresh air, vitamin D and a little bit of dirt have a way of igniting the imagination and practically guarantee a good nights sleep.  PLUS what is better than playing outside in the water?!  So we got the water table out earlier this summer and played for hours. 

Some enjoyed the water more than others and one little girl couldn't get close enough - she wanted it so bad she crawled right in!

Friday, April 10, 2015

10 Months!

I missed 9 months because....well I don't know why.  But here is a perfect picture of a 9 month old little girl who has no fear and a love for adventure

And just like that she is 10 months old!  I cannot believe our sweet little girl is getting so big!  She has quite the personality, she is independent and she loves to climb, bounce and swing.  She is fearless and loves when her Daddy puts her on his shoulders or when her Uncle Ben does the 'roller coaster'.  She eats all food as long as it's not puréed baby food and is so proud when she can feed herself (and the dog).  She crawls when there is nothing available to assist in walking and would rather play with tupperware than any of her toys. 

Sweet girl you are such a joy!  We love you and we are so blessed to have you call us mama and dada.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Chinese Checkers

When we are at my parents house we play Chinese Checkers.  It doesn't matter who is there or what time of day - we play and it is serious.  But it doesn't get much better than early morning games with this light and these competitors.

Someone makes up his own rules which currently includes spinning the board around half way through the game.

And his little sister - well she knows she is loved and so safe in her mama's arms, so she will sit and watch (a breakfast break is an added bonus).

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Child Life Month :: The Keeper of The Stories

I wanted to share my experiences in Child Life this month.  My goal was to share stories of my profession to bring awareness to the field and those impacted by the work being done.  I have so many stories.  I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly and, if given the opportunity, I would teach the world the importance of play.  I believe in the power of play and I believe in the importance of child life.

I sat down to write on many occasions and reminisced about my work and the work of my colleagues that I so admire.  The words came and the stories were written, but I couldn't publish them.  So many of those stories are so personal.  They might include me as a main character, but they are about so much more.  And to post them in this way may cheapen them or normalize them, but there is nothing normal about what goes on within a hospital and the lives impacted are worth so much more than the words I could type on this blog.

Just know is that hard work is being done inside the hospital.  Lives are being saved, but even beyond the physical healing, there are opportunities for emotional and mental healing that are provided through play.  The Play Ladies (and gentlemen) are there to allow kids to continue their stories and we feel honored to take even a small part in those stories.  We are happy to hold the space and, even though the work is often heavy and exhausting, we will usually be the ones with a smile on our face and bubbles in our hand.

Even though I have been out of the hospital raising my baby, this is still an important part of my life and I am so thankful to all of you who have celebrated this month with me!  If you know a child life professional, there is still time to celebrate their work and let them know they are making a difference!  Happy Child Life Month!