the dreaded family photo


Another thing on my list of things-to-do-before-Zach-leaves was family pictures. As in pictures of our entire family. Can I just add something here? UGH. I already struggle with trying to photograph just a few of my kids together. Getting everyone in the same frame, still relatively clean, all looking in the same general direction and not making a face is, honestly, ulcer-inducing. Add to that the fact that for the entire family to be in the same frame, I had to figure out the self-timer (thank you, Victoria), set up the tripod (thank you, Asher), and … [Read more...]

out and about


It's summer. And all my babies are home. My most favorite time of year. And there is so much I want to squeeze into the time we are all together - all fun stuff, of course. But the truth is, we just don't get out a whole lot. For several reasons. 1) I am a homebody 2) "We" is a whole lot of people 3) For this mama to get this crew rolling, it has be good. And it has to be affordable So when we found out that this much-talked-about, National Historic Landmark, 20th century blast furnace was open to the public, (and free!) we were all … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: 14 from 2013


I did it last year. The year before. And even the year before that. It's sort of a thing, I suppose. And, since 2013 doesn't want to be left out, here are my favorites from the last year. Not necessarily technically my favorites, from a photography standpoint. Just from a mama's standpoint. 1. Princess Vivienne. 2. My incredibly silly pony. 3. My brave and beautiful Velvet, just days before she passed away. 4. Isabelle... being Isabelle. 5. Tallula, home one wonderful year. 6. My babies. Every one of 'em. 7. My biggest boy, the … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: ice, baby.


I've got a lazy bone. And even though I'd promised my kids I'd take them ice skating, the lazy mama in me was so not looking forward to it. Because I knew. I knew taking 6 kids - 4 of whom have never donned ice skates before - was going to be painful. Thankfully, my tickets had an expiration date. Because, even more than I am lazy, I am frugal. So we ventured out, our first official homeschool field trip this year. The girls were ecstatic. Despite the fact that they could barely let go of the side, and their feet got sore, and they were cold, … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: one picture


... is all I'm posting for today's Sunday Snapshot. Sometimes one is enough. Having the best time in my friend Lisa's photography class... it's breaking me out of my photography slump in a genuinely fun way. … [Read more...]

just a picture


... of my first and and my last. ... of a child that came to us through biology and a child that came to us through adoption. ... of two cherished daughters. Just a picture... that pretty much sums up how what adoption looks like in our family. … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: Victoria


My biggest girl. She's at home for a season. And I am ecstatic. It's not often a mom gets to spend this kind of extra time with one of her babies once they have flown the nest. Because fly the nest she did. She graduated with a Biology degree. Then started back to school to pursue a nursing degree. But she tucked in one extra course, just for fun. Maybe not-so-surprisingly, it turned out to be her true passion. And so she made the brave decision to start over and is now going full-steam to pursue a career in graphic design. I'm not sure if … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: 24


24 years ago, and some change, I gave birth to my first child. It was late August. In Dallas, Texas. And I was hot. I had taken the idea of "eating for two" literally. I'd gained *ahem* more than the recommended 35 pounds. A lot more. Due in part to my cravings, of all things, for Long John Silvers. With the vinegar and tartar sauce and everything. What can I say. It was a dark time. But my baby girl was soon to arrive. And I was beyond ready to meet the little one who had taken occupancy of my belly. Finally, three days after my due date, I … [Read more...]

a summer tradition


Trying to carve out special time with your biggest isn't easy. Especially when you have 9 younger ones afoot that are usually messier and bossier. And louder. But this summer we managed a few hours every afternoon. About 4:00, we ice down the coffee. Pull out the Quiddler. And put on our thinking caps. Okay, it's not really a very cerebral game. But we do like to think we're pretty getting our smarts on... at least for a few hours a day. We actually laugh more than anything else. Nothing better than making memories with your … [Read more...]

Sunday Snapshot: my babies


It's been a busy summer. In a good way. I've let a lot of "regular" things slip because I wanted to be intentional about spending time with my kids. And it has been so ridiculously fun. One of the things I put on the back burner - besides blogging regularly - was my photography. I used to pull my camera out every day or two. Lately it's been every week or two. Despite the layer of dust growing on my camera I was determined, before summer ended, to get a picture of all of my babies - together. To be honest, though, just the monstrosity of the task gave me … [Read more...]