Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Captivating | What to Read Wednesday

This week I thought I'd mix it up a little by highlighting a book for us big kids. I read this book several years ago, and it came up in conversation recently as I was talking to one of my friends (who is near and dear to my heart because she introduced me to my husband). Here's what the book jacket has to say about Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge:
"Why do little girls love to dress up in twirling skirts? Why do they dream of a day their prince will come and together they will live in a great adventure? Because that is the heart God set within every woman. That is the role she as created to play - to be a valiant and beautiful woman whose life changes the world."

I won't give away too much, but one of the ideas that resonated within the depths of my soul is that God created man and woman in his image and we each are endowed with different qualities of God. God created woman to display His beauty, and as a result, woman sets about making her world beautiful. As I look through the viewfinder on this new passion of mine, I know that with every click I'm trying to capture that beauty.

(By the way, I decided on my way home from school that I wanted to highlight this book. It was either me or my husband for this picture. Call me crazy, but I just didn't feel right asking my hubby to pose with this book!)

Monday, September 28, 2009

Orchard | Goshen Family & Child Photographer

I was so excited when this mom contacted me to take her family's portraits. Reason #1: She wanted to take them in an orchard. I drive by an apple orchard every day on my way to school, and every day I think about how fun it would be to take pictures in there. Reason #2: She's an amazing photographer! Click here to see her awesome work. She brought along this great table, and it was perfect for this setting! And those sweet little girls of yours. You are blessed! They know exactly what to do when I raise that camera to my face. Mom has trained them well. :) Thanks H family!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Perfect | Nappanee Family & Child Photographer

Perfect weather, perfect colors, perfect family. Today was too much fun with these friends of mine! Mom and I teach together at New Paris Elementary (where we probably have too much fun!). You saw just the kiddos earlier this summer (although I guess it's technically not summer anymore. I'm in denial). It's been great to see their family grow up over the years. I also had an assistant today (my husband), and he was very handy to have around. It was a beautiful day, and it was an honor to spend it with this beautiful family. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

First Steps | What to Read Wednesday

No book this week for What to Read Wednesday, but I have something that I think is very important to highlight. Early Intervention. As the saying goes - the sooner the better. A child's school education begins long before they enter any classroom. I am a STRONG advocate for early intervention, especially after working day in and day out with students who need extra support to be successful.

I was perusing the children's section at my local library recently, and I came across the postcard pictured above. First Steps is a resource to helps children ages birth to 3 years old who are experiencing developmental delays or have a diagnosed condition that may lead to developmental delays. As the postcard says - Trust Your Instincts. Here's a link to their website: Please, please, please share this information with anyone you know who you think may benefit from it. Many of these developmental delays can have an impact on reading, and we know that reading is a vital ingredient in experiencing success in school and in life.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Green & Blue | Middlebury Child & Family Photographer

As soon as this family pulled up for their session and got out of their vehicle, I knew it was going to be great! Mom is a budding photographer herself, so I enjoyed a chance to chat about photog stuff! And come on - these kiddos! Little Miss E's eyes - simply gorgeous. Thank you to the Creator of heaven and earth for giving us eyes the color of the sky! I was mildly concerned about the weather, but it held out for us tonight. I'm mildly obsessed with the color green right now (I can't get enough of this Vera Bradley print), so I'm lovin' this mom's choice in attire. Thanks family and enjoy!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Stylin' | Nappanee Family & Child Photographer

Saturday afternoon I got to meet up with this stylish family (thanks to their hip mom)! :) I have so many great photos that I finally just had to eeny-meeny-miney-mo them to narrow the list for the sneak peek. Unlike today (boo to the rain), the weather was absolutely perfect. The only downside was that we were missing the Notre Dame game, but thankfully they won despite our absence from cheering them on. Miss K will be making a solo appearance on the blogsite in the near future. I hope you enjoy your sneak peek!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

12 months = 1 year | Goshen Child and Family Photographer

Decisions - sleep in or take photos of this cute little girl (who just happened to turn 1 last week)? That's a no brainer - take the photos! And take the photos I did. I go to church with this great family, so I was super excited when T contacted me to take pictures of their petit chéri. I also took little A's photos back in March (clickety clackety click). It took her a little bit to warm up to the new surroundings. Once she did, she was on the move. Talking her 1 year old talk with every step. This little girl is as sweet in person as she is in her photos. It almost makes me want to have children of my own! (I had to throw that last comment in for my sister - she's rather disappointed that my husband and I have not given her a niece or nephew yet.) :)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Poems & Flare

This week, I decided to have the book take center stage. I wanted to showcase one of my favorite poets that writes for children - Valerie Worth. There is just something about the deep simplicity of the poems in all the small poems and fourteen more by Valerie Worth. I decided to capture this book with some flare from the sun after reading the poem entitled sun in this book. Here's a taste of that poem:
The sun
Is a leaping fire

Too hot

To go near...

Poems are the perfect size to practice reading with fluency. To be fluent is to be able to speak or write smoothly, easily, or readily. Or as I like to put it, "To read so it sounds like you're talking." We know from the current body of reading research that being able to read fluently enables the reader to focus on comprehension. If the reader has to spend all of her brain power on decoding words, little is left for her to remember or understand what she read. One strategy to practice reading fluently is to read the same text several times (around 4 repeated readings). When asking a child to read a poem more than once, it is helpful to have a purpose for each reading. Here are some purposes: to read/perform the poem for someone else, to understand what you read, to figure out what the author wants you to learn or understand, to learn what a certain word means...

Do you have a favorite poet or piece of poetry? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Leave me a comment and let me know what you're reading these days. Happy reading!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Off! | Westview Senior Photographer

I'm thankful for many things tonight...especially for the makers of bug spray. My blood must be like a magnet for mosquitoes , so I was thankful that this senior's mom had some bug spray to protect me from being carried away. I was also thankful that we rescheduled this session in hopes for better weather. And better weather we got! One more thing I'm thankful for - these beautiful senior girls that I've been getting to photograph! We had a fun time finding the light around her home. I think I found my new favorite spot to photograph in - a boathouse. The light was just glorious! (As I was working with a group of 4th graders today at school, we were talking about the meaning of glorious. I immediately knew I was going to use that word today in this blog post. BTW, in case you don't know, I'm a teacher in my other life.) This family was so generous! They even sent me home with some yummy peaches! Thanks N & D! Enjoy your sneak peek!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

What to Read | Goshen Family Photographer

It's Wednesday? Already? You've seen this family and their cute dog crop up several times around the blog {see their session here}. This week's book in the spotlight is What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? by Steven Jenkins & Robin Page. This book is a Caldecott Honor book, which recognizes the book for its illustrations. I love this book because it is written in a question-answer format. So, you can read the page with the question on it AND before turning the page you can think about the answer...

This book is great to practice a strategy that good readers use - inferring. A prediction is a type of inference, but inferring is so much more. Inferring is taking what you've read and using your background knowledge (or schema) to figure out what the author doesn't say. If I had to pick my go to strategy when reading, it would be this one. I love it like I love Diet Coke from McDonald's (my husband would actually call it an addiction, but that's a topic for an entire different post).

Going full circle back to the book. I bought this book at Kohl's for 5 bucks! It is part of their "Kohl's Cares for Kids" campaign that donates 100% of the profits to support children's health and education initiatives nationwide. Every so often they come out with a new set of books, so check them out! Happy Reading!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


I'm having so much fun with my new logo. When I arrived home from school today, I was super excited to see that my new business cards had arrived!

Pet #1 | Goshen Pet Photographer

As you may have read previously, I'm not a big fan of dogs, cats, hamsters, hermit crabs...basically pets in general. Several reasons for this: I am allergic to pet dander, they cost money, and I can barely take care of myself, so how could I take care of an animal?! BUT I am now a fan of taking pictures of your family pet (as I discovered last week while photography this family)! Isn't she just the cutest? :)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Swarms | Goshen Child and Family Photographer

I was super excited when this mom contacted me to take pictures of her 4 month old girl! A baby girl! That means pink and bows and girliness! {I was so excited because this was my first baby girl portrait session. Everyone I know, and their brother, has been having boys.} The plan was to take some indoor photographs, and then head out doors. I had scoped out a new location to me - a beautiful garden earlier in the day. I was slightly concerned about the mosquitoes since it was near the river, but I didn't have any problem. When we arrived at the garden and stepped out of the car, we were swarmed {and I mean swarmed} by mosquitoes. Not cool! I'm still itching as I'm typing this post. Despite all that, I enjoyed meeting this family {I photographed this mom's sister last week. Thanks for the referral!} Enjoy your sneak peek!

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