It seems that every time I meet a new family, I fall in love with them. This family was no exception. The love, respect, and friendship they had was apparent from the moment they arrived. I am so excited to get to watch them grow and document their big (and little) moments.
Whenever we went to my grandparents or my great grandmother's house you would find me curled up in the corner sorting through boxes of old pictures. I loved to stare at those pictures and make up stories about all of those people I didn't know. That hard working men, the glamorous women in red lipstick and fur collars, the smiling kids in metal wagons and newsboy caps all captivated me for hours. Even today, I still head straight for the boxes of old photos when I visit an antique store.
I have been playing with the idea of doing 1930's style photo shoots with my kids and then on Pinterest I saw a photo that a mother had taken of her little girl wearing her mom's wedding dress. She said she would use that photo for her daughter's wedding day. Today I decided to try to get vintage style photos of Abby in my wedding dress to show at her wedding one day.
For the last photo she asked if she could show some attitude. Ha! A pre-teen? Attitude? Un.Heard.Of. I had to include her version of attitude:
Baby Bella has the coolest parents. At the time of her mother's maternity shoot, they had not yet choosen a name for this sweet little girl. They had it narrowed down, but had not picked the final name yet. They had the coolest way of picking her name! They put their two choices into enevelopes. Each envelope was paired up with a lit candle. They let the candles burn down to see which candle would last the longest and chose the name from the candle that lasted. How cool is that??? It's thoughtful, symbolic, original....one of those things I wish I had thought of!!!!
Bella is going to have one fantastic life with these wonderful parents. I'm so honored that I get to be a very tiny part of it:)
I told his mother that I could shoot his photos all day if he would let me. He was just that sweet. He gave me moments of wide awake and moments of sleep. I got yawns, smiles, kissy lips, and all kinds of other fun that made us laugh. This baby boy pulled out all of his tricks for me....and he was only a few days old!
A little over 2 weeks ago my husband finally returned home from a deployment that kept him from home for a year and a half. Last week we did something I never imagined we would be able to do for our kids...we took 5 days off of life and spent it in Orlando, Florida at Disney and Universal. It was such a wonderful way to bring our family back together. We loved everything about the trip...even having the 5 of us squished together sleeping in one room was wonderful. Several times during the trip I had tears in my eyes as I shook my head in amazement at our blessings. We have come so far in so many ways. Looking back at where we have been, I just never thought this would be possible for us.
You see, although we both had college degrees and jobs, there was a time when we had to apply for public medical assistance to take care of our kids and use WIC to feed them. It was a hard choice for us to make and we didn't want to do it, but we did it for our kids....then we worked our butts off to not have to rely on it anymore. We started to get back on our feet and then Caleb was diagnosed. Cancer is not cheap...even with medical insurance. I took leave without pay so I could stay with him in the hospital and Josh went down to part time.
Between the past financial struggles, long deployments, and cancer all I ever want for our family is health, happiness, togetherness, and enough money to pay our bills and feed our kids. Thoughts of vacations have never crossed our minds...thoughts of a week at Disney never seemed attainable so it never even crossed my mind. Honestly, I am just thankful everyday our kids are healthy, everyday our family is whole, and each time I can fill our pantry and fridge with healthy things to fill their bellies. I literally get down on my knees and thank God for every normal day. Although we are comfortable now, a part of me will always remember our struggles. Those struggles have made me grateful for our everyday blessings like health, food, and shelter. Those struggles have moved me to tears of gratefulness when we can do something like we did this week: