Sunday, October 26, 2014

Neglect

I have neglected my blog again. I hate it when that happens. Time just gets away from me and before I know it I'm so far gone with so many ideas to write about that I don't know where to start first. I will do a little re-cap.

Photography - - - whirlwind! I have been so busy lately and seriously I have no idea why. I love taking the pictures, and then … there is the editing. I dread it, just because I know how long it takes me. Maybe it takes every photographer as long as it takes me, I have NO idea. Once I start editing a few though, it's so rewarding. I LOVE seeing the finished image and am sometimes floored that those are the images I took. I have been blessed with some amazing subjects lately. I have to share one quote that just made my day and made me work to have a wonderful session. This came from a senior boy and sometimes those are not the most enthusiastic about a senior photo session, but this particular individual, who will remain nameless, came out with his changes of clothing and told me, "I am so excited. I have been waiting for this all day. I usually don't like pictures, but I'm so excited today." A word of advise from me, and my personality; that talk will get you far in my book. I worked so hard to capture perfect images and this young man's pictures, yup, unbelievable. It was so fun!

Homeschooling - challenging! We are now a full two months in and I'm getting a pretty good feel of it. It was hard to judge at first what I thought and how it was going. I almost have to break it into two parts because the girls are so different. Dannika: LOVE it! The girls do two hours online with a teacher and other classmates. (Virtual school so to say!) They get to do break out rooms and small groups and games and I am impressed. She is reading and discovering the pure joy of reading. Of course, she still prefers that I read to her, but… I don't want to miss out on the books either. She's reading books that I never did. Her first novel was Adam of the Road. We loved it. Devan read this last year as a 7th grader and hated it. The Science curriculum is unbelievable. She is studying Anatomy and the book is from Fullbright. It is so well written that she can't wait to read the next section and neither can I. Things are presented in such a way to make it so interesting and really stick with you. Geography is learning all 50 states this year and the order in which they became states. She's learning the capital cities, the landmarks, the interesting facts about each state and the mottos, flags, birds, trees, etc. Math is Saxon math, the good old fashioned kind of math. She is doing well and mastering so much. Fractions and long division, story problems and working with money, and she finally has her multiplication facts down. That is a huge relief. It is a huge relief to me to see the math that I know works. It works for us and all is well. The homework - well, lets just say it takes a long time. School is for two hours and then we have at least three hours if not more of homework. It's different than public school - there seemed to be more distractions or more built in breaks. Now, she has to deal with drill sergeant mom who is the homework police. This week she is trying it solo. If the girls can get homework done on their own - no reminders from mom for Dannika and no whining or complaining for Destiny there is a great Lego set that's up on the shelf. Dannika may get it and Destiny may not. I'm hoping I'm happily surprised. Yes, I have resorted to bribery here. I'm stooping to a whole new level and I'm not one bit ashamed. Bribery is what I work for every day. The paycheck is bribery - and for us this week, so is that box of Legos!

Socially - that big word that everyone fears with homeschooling --- not really an issue so far. Sure, she missed her friends and the every day "school commotion" that went on, but hasn't been in distress over it lately at all. We have time for piano lessons and studying "outside the box." She has done a little horse back riding and basketball will start soon. We have made it to every Wednesday night youth meeting and even our Junior Bible Quiz at church early on Sunday mornings. I find she is happier with more sleep and so far, healthier. I'm not saying she won't still get sick, but so far, it's been great. I also have to share that the girls have never gotten along better. Their days are spent together instead of apart and for the girls and I, the bond is growing deeper. Destiny needed that immensely. After some time in Sioux Falls last week, and I have to mention that is NOT a fun place to go with our Destiny and her sensory overload issues, I saw such amazing progress. Destiny has never done better - and I don't know if it was just a fluke or if it is really just that all cylinders in her life are clicking on progress and safety and life is good.

Now for my Destiny and homeschooling. Well, where to begin? She is learning and starting to really read. For reals! The comprehension is so much more than it has ever been. I'm not sure if that would have come at the same pace in public school or not. It could very well be. Math addition is being mastered for 0-10 numbers and they will start subtraction soon. Science is botany this year and she and I have learned so much about seeds than ever before. Wow! She has history which started out with Egypt and Mesopotamia and Sumer. It is so interesting and I am pretty sure I may be learning more than she is, but then she will have a test and I'm amazed at what she has picked up. Her handwriting is improving tremendously, but she still pretty much hates it. After the two hours online I have to decide her mood and what homework can be tolerated right away - what has to wait for more patience (on my part) and we dig in. I have to take one day at a time with this and I won't lie… I look forward to that Friday like never before, and now for totally different reasons. I do think it's good though. I'm still learning and we are getting our groove on. So far, so good. Those nudgings on my heart were real and I'm so glad I listened.

AND - my life is BUSY! I love it, but there is even less time for me. That's ok. This season of life is going by so fast and I feel like I am steadily getting older and wiser. Things the world sees as so important are really not all that important in the big picture or life. The boys are still busy in school and with sports and hunting! They've taken a strong liking to waterfowl hunting - duck and geese. I can tell you, I don't know what else to do with these birds! I've used crock pot duck and tonight we had a little chislic duck - which was delicious, but if I see any more duck in my refrigerator I may scream. My freezer will be stocked with birds I guess. I was also doing a little reflection when I read something on Facebook about being so proud of your kids. It made me stop and think about why parents are proud. This particular parent, who I do not really know, was proud for their child's sporting ability - probably football as that is what's all around us right now! It just made me stop and think - I, too, am proud of my children's intellectual and athletic accomplishments, but… I want to be proud for the faithful servants they are. I want to be proud that they are living out their faith. I want to be proud that they live for Christ and if that is through sports or grades or hard work in another area, hooray! I've been noticing the vast differences between people who truly "live for Chirst" and those who do not, because they don't know him or don't know how to live for Christ, or don't want to, or simply don't know what He is really saying to them. The happiest and most content are those that have the close relationship with their Lord and Savior. It's true, true peace and contentment can't come from earthly things but from fixing your eyes above. God bless!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Jacob and Marcia

I just started to edit pictures for this fabulous couple. I enjoyed a Saturday full of nerves for I wanted everything to be perfect on my end for them! The venue was beautiful but provided a few photography challenges… lighting and heat and stairs! I can't wait to get through them all to see what other treasures unfold. I'm so happy to have been able to capture memories for these two and I pray they provide you much joy for years and years to come. 


Ssshhhhh….. the BIG reveal!!


Love this one - Jake's first glimpse at his bride.



And I LOVE the pure joy on Marcia's face here. LOVE the smiles!! 


Thanks for letting me be a part of this very special day. I only pray that I, one day, will get to see my own daughter with Cystic Fibrosis experience all the beauty life has to offer. I admit, I shed a few tears, and went through many emotions, but was so thrilled to be a part of it all. 




Thursday, September 25, 2014

Hamlin Volleyball

I didn't want to leave out these wonderful volleyball players. I have been a little busy and missed getting them up on my blog. I have posted some on Facebook, but now I can share on my blog, too! I LOVE how they all turned out and for a drizzly and dreary day, we got great results. Thanks for letting me capture this special time in your high school history! 








Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Renmoe Family

LOVE this picture!!!! This family totally rocked the family session. It was quick, painless, and funny. They were so prepared with coordinating outfits and the most amazing props around their farm. It was a photographer's paradise, and I only saw a tiny portion of it. I can't imagine what other treasures I would find if I spent more time there. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this truck… 


"Hey picture lady. Hey picture lady. Hey, hey picture lady!" I think I could make it a song. This little man wanted ALL of my attention, all the time, and really, that's not such a bad thing when I have to take his picture. It payed off here! What a precious little man. 


And these older two, they got it going on - quite photogenic they are. Thanks for a great evening. I hope you all survived the mosquitoes. They seemed to like our picture spots too! 





Monday, September 22, 2014

Jacoby

Jacoby was simply perfect - until he had had enough of this picture taking deal! Seriously, I don't know as that I have ever seen a cuter baby. He had all that dark hair and chubby cheeks and simply adorable. I might have to say that I love the last one though - what's your favorite? 






Saturday, September 20, 2014

Midwest Medical Service

Got to do a commercial shoot for Midwest Medical Service! We all laughed and got some very non-traditional pictures along with the typical. Thanks for a fun afternoon and I look forward to seeing these in your advertisements! 





I loved the clouds that spotted the sky. What a beautiful day. 



Love this one too!What a fun group to work with. 



Thursday, September 18, 2014

Tellinghuisen's


Little Kate is full of personality. Love her sense of humor and all her stories. She is such a little hoot! Thanks for a great session Kate. It's been so fun to watch you grow and see you change so much every year! We did a little back road driving to get to these spots and it was a real adventure!