January 4th/Week 52

Yup. You guessed it. Christmas – again. I suppose this would be Christmas 2 and Christmas 3.  We traveled to Chicago to see Keith’s family for the actual holiday. It was exhausting, but a lovely visit.  We also got together with my brother and his family, and my mom and step-dad this past Sunday for the final Christmas of the year. It’s one of the best days I’ve had in a really long time.  There are 140 photos in the set, so this is just a small sampling of the ones I love the most.  The rest, as always, are here.

DSC_3557 - Copy
DSC_3574 - Copy
DSC_3590 - Copy
DSC_3620 - Copy
DSC_3664 - Copy
DSC_3705 - Copy
DSC_3740 - Copy
DSC_3781 - Copy
DSC_3791 - Copy
DSC_3794 - Copy
DSC_3813 - Copy
DSC_3822 - Copy
DSC_3827 - Copy
DSC_3866 - Copy
DSC_3882 - Copy
DSC_3889 - Copy
DSC_3924 - Copy
DSC_3933 - Copy
DSC_3944 - Copy
DSC_3959 - Copy
DSC_3976 - Copy
DSC_4005 - Copy
DSC_4094 - Copy
DSC_4098 - Copy
DSC_4121 - Copy


And with this post, my 52-week guarantee has come to an end. I made it two years, at least. Working full-time and being a mom doesn’t leave a ton of time for blogging. I will still be posting photos as frequently as I can, but I made no more guarantees.  To the people who have followed for the last couple of years, THANK YOU. My gratitude is all yours.  ❤


Year 2/Week 51

This week’s post is brought to you by Christmas.  And yes, next week’s blog will be much the same.  For this week, though, it was Christmas at home with our girl.  She got some cool stuff – but I got my macro lens and put it to immediate use.  Yessssssssss.   Enjoy a few, or view the set here.



December 17th/Week 50

On Saturday morning, Emma met Santa.  And I’m like….98% sure that he was the REAL DEAL.  We had Breakfast with Santa, at the University of Dayton, and it was a very cool event and it benefited the U.S. Marines Toys for Tots program.  The crowd turnout was solid, the food was decent, and Emma seemed to enjoy herself – especially when she discovered her belly button and was making sure she showed it to as many people as possible. Here are a few shots, and the rest are in my SmugMug account. DSC_3323 DSC_3388 DSC_3392 DSC_3469 DSC_3479 DSC_3497

December 5th/Week 48

This was a very dry photo week for me. I traveled to D.C. for a work conference. We were in classes all day, and by the time we were done it was already dark. S I didn’t get much time to shoot, unfortunately. Forgive me?

So the conference was at the Ritz-Carlton Tyson’s Corner. One of the first visuals upon walking in was this staircase.


And this chandelier – just one of dozens.



There was an entire village made of gingerbread houses.


And my favorite, of course, was the metro. I love how it’s lit.



The trip was great, the conference was really interesting, and I got to meet up with friends while I was there.  Even with the lack of photography time,  I’d call it an overall win.

November 28th/Week 47

Ok, so. Let me preface this post by saying that I am using a different computer to go through my photos. So the watermark changed, and the photos may actually look different since the colors and brightness can vary by monitor when you’re not calibrated.  There’s a good chance that this post may disappear when I get back to the normal comp and see how they look at that point. For now, though, here’s what I’ve got.

As we all know, last week brought us Thanksgiving.  Along with Thanksgiving, it was also my niece’s 2nd birthday party (cowgirl-themed).  So we traveled down to hang out with my brother and his family for the day.  Here are a few that I love, and the rest can be found in my SmugMug page.

Paige likes to play shy at first…

…until you introduce the cake.

Then she’s quite happy to give you a grin.

My brother, Mike, is a seriously great dad. 

What a gorgeous family, right?

Keith was kind enough to take this shot.  

Peyton was flying high…

…and giving me big grins.

Emma kept herself pretty well entertained chasing toys and cousins around.

And the birthday girl totally earned her nickname – RamPaige.

November 20th/Week 46

Two pretty awesome things happened this past week.

On Friday, I had the opportunity to go take photographs of the Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center in downtown Dayton. It’s their 10-year anniversary of opening, and they’re having a photo contest to celebrate. In order to take photographs inside, you were asked to schedule an appointment.  So I did. While access was still very limited, it was an awesome opportunity and I took full advantage.

On Saturday, Keith and I took Emma up to the Franklin Park Conservatory to enjoy an afternoon together. The grounds were beautiful, and the indoor gardens were pretty amazing.

Per the usual, here’s a small selection of my favorites – and the rest can be found here.

Franklin Park Conservatory:

Schuster Center:

November 15th/Week 45

BIRTHDAY! That’s the word of the week.

Our darling daughter, Emma, turned one this past Saturday.  We had a kick-ass Rock Star-themed party, replete with friends, family, food and fun.  A lot of the photos were taken by me, but a lot of the party photos were taken by Emma’s birthmother after I handed my camera over so that I could actually BE IN some of the shots.

Yeah, that’s right, a ton of Emma’s birth family came to the party. It was amazing. We had probably around 70 or so people there throughout the evening, including NINE other adoptees that we just happen to know, and we had four states represented. Emma had all three sets of her grandparents there, her Aunt Michelle and Uncle Mike, and all three of her cousins, as well as her birthmother, birthfather, birth aunt and uncle, and birth grandmother and father. It was a beautiful, amazing, touching sight to see all of these people there for Em, wanting to be a part of her life, and loving her such a staggering amount.

Anyway. I ramble. Here are a few of the 70 photos that I narrowed it down to, and as always, here are the rest.  If you make it all the way to the end, you’ll also find her official ONE-YEAR shot! It was more of a candid shot, but I love it.

And finally, the official ONE-YEAR shot (and the last of the every month photos):

November 5th/Week 44

It was a spoooooooky Halloween week. Well, really it wasn’t so much spooky as adorable. Emma was a strawberry, and she mostly dealt with it very well. Other than that, we got to go to the Pumpkin Glow as a little surprise family date and it was incredible.  Here are a few, but here are the rest.

Halloween Outtakes: (you saw the Halloween shot last week)

Me: “Emma, Eeeeeeemmmmmaaaa, look at Mama!”

Em: “What’s in the pumpkin, Mama? What’s the shiny shiny light?”

Me: “Emma, you can’t eat that! No, honey!”

Emma: “Wanna bet?”

Emma:   ::bites::  “WAAAAAHHHHHHHHH my teeeeeeeeth huuuuurt!”

Me: “Ok, Em, look at this! It’s so green and weird and interesting and stop crying pleeeease!”

Em: “Ok, my heart is basically broken and you’re trying to distract me with OMG THIS THE MOST INTERESTING THING EVER IN THE WHOLE WORLD LOOOOOK AT HOW IT STACKS!”

And of course, there are always brightly colored candy bags. Too bad she’s far too young, eh?

The Halloween Shot (from last week):

Pumpkin Glow:

October 31st/Week 43

Once again, we met up with Emma’s birth family for dinner last weekend. As always, it was a pleasant evening.  They’re really cool people.  But the kind of BIG thing that happened last week was that on Tuesday, President Obama and VP Biden both came to Dayton to speak at a rally together.  The crowds were HUGE, the tickets were gone very quickly, and it was incredibly inspiring to see such a large group of people getting along together so well.  The speech itself wasn’t all that long, but it meant the world to those of us who had been waiting in line for hours to get in.  If you make it through to the end of this blog, there MIGHT be a special sneak peek of our Halloween.  Per usual, here are a few of my favorites – but the rest can be viewed here.



Taken by Keith – he was much braver in his attempt to get to the front of the crowd.

Halloween Preview:

October 22nd/Week 42

Thanks to Groupon, this past weekend we took a trip down to Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park in Hamilton, OH.  It was INCREDIBLE.  The park was amazing, the weather was perfect, and we had an absolute ball wandering around and letting Emma roll around in the leaves and grass.  I took a LOT of photos, and couldn’t narrow it down below my favorite 40.  So, here are the ones that set my heart aflutter, but here is the rest of the group.  And if you ever have a chance to visit this park – GO. It’s just incredible.