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Archive for July, 2011

Break…

I knew it was bound to happen…

…between photography, landscape design, and rearing a child…my life is too wonderfully chaotic to blog. 

Big things have been happening, though.  Sister can sit now.

That's it girl...find the light.

So until things die down the frequent blogging will become less frequent.  But we’re still here…living, growing, loving. 

We’ll catch ya on the flipside.  🙂

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It may be sad how much I look forward to these challenges. 

Last Tuesday my sweet baby girl turned 4 months old…and in the past couple days has learned a new trick.  She can sit!  So of course any and all pictures now involve me propping her up on her hands and snapping away.  I had all these ideas for this challenge…how I was going to set up the shot (which almost always never works when you’re dealing with a baby)…the location…the possibilities seemed endless now that baby girl can pose upright.  It figures that my favorite image is of my husband refilling our pondless water feature with Charley watching in awe.  I love my little family.  🙂

 

Check out more pictures at i heart faces!

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Reset…

It never fails.

I’m supposed to be editing photos from a recent session, and I stumble upon Charley’s birth photos…and I’m swept away.  Before I know it 20 minutes have gone by…and the emotions are flowing. 

I look at this picture…

…and I can remember that exact moment that my life changed forever.  I remember memorizing her face…the face that I spent 9 months trying to imagine.  She was perfect.

And she still is.

Even with the crankiness and sleepless nights that left me with a ‘who the *bleep* took my daughter from me?!’ feeling. 

Yes…last week was just plain awful. 

Tears were shed (both baby and mama), pity parties were held, and frustrations were taken out on husbands (sorry, baby)…but in the end we survived it.  Slowly but surely…my happy baby returned to me.

 

Sunday I did a beautiful maternity photo shoot…which meant Andy had Charley all to himself.  Now I love the bond that Charley and Andy share…they talk to each other and smile and play, but once she gets hungry it’s mama to the rescue.  However…when mama’s not there…and Charley refuses a bottle (her new ‘trick’)…daddy is left with one unhappy baby.  When I left that afternoon I had a horrible feeling that Andy was in for it.  We were at the tail end of her growth cranky spurt, and she had been extremely clingy towards me.  I had no choice, though…so I left Andy with a prepared bottle of breastmilk and two all in one cloth diapers (daddy friendly).  My last words besides “I love you”…”She can smell your fear!”.  Once I had a break in my shoot I decided to call Andy and check to see how things were going, and when he didn’t answer I figured it was for one of two reasons:  He didn’t hear it ring or Charley was melting down.  My phone immediately rang again, and when I answered I was greeted with the screams of my baby girl.  My heart sank…I tried to give advice over the phone, but neither one of us could hear the other one…only the desperate screams from an angry baby.  From then on I tried to focus on the shoot…but in the back of my mind I kept thinking of how helpless Andy must have felt.  Once the shoot ended I hurried to my car.  I imagined myself as Fred Flinstone, punching my legs through the bottom of the car and using them to help get me home faster.  I kept saying to myself, “I’m coming baby girl…just hold on!”.  And once I got home…all was well.

And the bottle war…we’re working on it.  

Sometimes a girl just needs her mama.  I don’t think that need ever goes away.  Just like I rescued Charley that afternoon so did mine the day before. 

The past two weeks we have been showered with relatives. First Andy’s family…followed by my parents the following weekend. We are used to family visits…especially now that Charley is here. However this wasn’t just an ordinary Spencer family visit…Charley finally got to meet her cousins.


Blake was pretty intrigued by Charley…most of the pictures of their first meeting you can see his little hand just touching her.



This picture cracks me up…all the hands. It’s like their praying over Charley.
You’re healed!

It was great seeing everyone get to know my little girl. I can already see how excited Charley will get in the coming years when we say “We’re going to visit Grandma and Grandpa and your cousins”.

Great visit…check.

Uncle Jayson and Charley hit it off big time!

The following weekend my parents headed down for a quick visit.  I think I will always be the kind of girl that gets excited to see her parents.  I am a family girl at heart…always have been.  Andy is one special man to have gotten me to move away from them.  I feel like we all have a timer inside us that goes off when it’s been too long between visits…and these timers are in sync (thank you 1999 for ruining the words ‘in sync’…now I’m singing ‘Bye Bye Bye’).  Three weeks since our past visit, and our alarms started ringing.

Baby girl loves reading with her Lolly.

 Reset timer.

Here’s to the weekend!

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Dear Lord, help me…a challenge with props!  Those that know me know that I LOVE photoshoots that involve props…it can be as simple as a flower…but it definitely adds that missing ‘something’ to a photograph.  I actually did this photoshoot for the whimsical challenge, and I was so torn between this image and the one I entered.  As soon as I entered the previous one I regretted not using this one…and now I get to use it! 

Check out more fun props photos!

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Charley has been off all week.  My ‘used to be cranky but now is a laid back, happy baby with a kick of spice’ has reverted back to her cranky pants self.  Teething?  Could be…she’s showing all the signs:  insane amounts of drooling, chewing on her hands, cranky.  Not to mention she’s picked up on her newborn sleeping habits.  It’s crazy how quickly you forget…it’s exhausting waking up every 3 hours at night.  But then she wakes up in the morning and smiles at me with a ‘I’m so glad you’re here…I missed you, mama’ smile…and all is right with the world.

These days…I’m lucky to even put on clean underwear.  Parenting is a rollercoaster…and sister and I are definitely going uphill…and it’s hard to see the drop-off.  However…during one of Charley’s night feedings I remembered how it felt when Andy and I were trying to get pregnant…and how awful it was to see only one line on the pregnancy test.  Yes…every mama has her breaking point…but I am a glass half full person…it’s what gets me through the tough times. 

Blurry...but one of my favorite Charley faces

I remind myself how wonderful it felt to see the faint second pink line…how my life instantly changed.  I remember what a joy Charley is in our lives…despite being in a funk this week.  And even when I’m dragging myself out of bed to rescue her from her crib in the middle of the night…I still feel proud and blessed to be her mama. 

Charley’s ‘funk’ face

 
 Until then…baby girl and I are riding uphill together…waiting for our car to find the peak…because once we do…
…what a rush it will be.
 
 
 HAPPY weekend 🙂

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My computer may be on it’s last leg.  It takes entirely too long to upload pictures onto my blog (have you noticed how far behind I am on my photography page?)…not to mention I no longer have an ‘F’, ‘J’, ‘M’, and Spacebar button…and my ‘mouse’ is about to kick it. 

So here’s another filler post…

Charley finally got to meet her cousins!

Can you find Charley?

Hopefully my computer will mend itself…although the last time I checked, computers don’t regenerate their own keys (I can dream, right?)…because I have lots of pictures and lots of thoughts to go along with them.  

Until then…

 

 

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Watching Charley grow like a little weed has made me quite the reflective person.  I find myself looking over itty bitty Charley pictures and re-reading her birth story over and over again.  While I am in absolute love with her story, and I find it perfect in my heart…I can’t help but notice I left out some things.  Maybe it was because Charley was only days old when I wrote it, and I was living off the natural high of just bringing a life into this world.  I would never change the words…but here are the missing pieces.

Anyone that has followed my blog knows that I went through some pretty intense nesting.  Every day I was creating/decorating/baking…poor Andy would come home, and I would have paint and tissue paper all over the living room.  However about two weeks before Charley was born my nesting seemed to come to an abrubt stop.  I figured it was just God’s way of telling me to rest up and just went with it.  Then…the day before I went into labor the nesting urge came back in full force.  I woke up with the brilliant idea to make favors for everyone that came to visit Charley.  So I dragged my 9 month pregnant self to Michaels and Target to get supplies, and once again Andy came home to a creative mess.

I assembled 50 wedding favor boxes and tied 50 little pink bows.

Sad...I had to google 'how to tie a bow without a knot'.

I then cut apart 50 peat pots and made 50 little envelopes to put cosmos flower seeds in. 

I’m sure all the nurses thought I was crazy walking in to the hospital with a huge tray of little boxes…but I had so much fun making them, and you better believe there are only 3 left.

During my pregnancy I had many posts about songs I wanted to have as part of a birthing playlist…while I listened to quite a few of them there was one that I kept repeating over and over and over again.

I listened to it laboring in the tub at the hospital when I wasn’t sure I could handle it anymore.  I listened to it during my toughest pitocin contractions after my epidural failed…it gave me strength.  I am proud to say that my faith got me through labor….and I know my Mamaw is smiling about that.  She would have been proud.

And because I’m me…it doesn’t suprise me one bit that a Disney movie was playing while I was pushing Charley out.

At least it wasn’t Step Brothers…because we watched that too.

Moving right along…

As I was looking through all the birth pictures I found this awesome shot. 

I don’t know how this picture got skipped over when I was writing her birth story…even at birth she had the lip.

A couple other random sidenotes that got skipped over…

A week before I gave birth I decided to order a dozen gluten free/sugar free carrot cupcakes from Cupcrazed…honestly thinking I still had at least 2 weeks left in my pregnacy.  I’ll never forget the conversation with the woman who took my order.

“What’s the occasion?”

“Ummm…I’m 9 months pregnant.”

As fate would have it…the pick up date for the cupcakes was the day we got back from the hospital.

A dozen cupcakes just for me.

Nom nom nom!

Andy has always said he was going to get our babies’ foot prints tattooed on his chest…so when it came time for Amber to get Charley’s prints Andy wanted to make sure they looked good.

Turns out it took 3 tries to get it right.  Charley kept squishing up her toes and smudging the ink.  Even at a day old she had some spunk.

And look at baby girl now. 

Still rockin' the cloth

 

My heart gets bigger every day because of that little girl.

And…get ready for this, Dad…as Paul Harvey said…

Now you know…the rest of the story.

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