Wednesday, October 27, 2010

9 years ago today...

...we made it official.

Mere babies.  Unknown was what the future held.  We were bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.  Ready to take on the world.  We were in love.

I would love to do it all over again.  A re-do of sorts.  A different dress, a GOOD photographer, more colorful flowers, cooler details.  Same guy.

I guess I am lucky to have had the wedding photography experience I did.  It taught me that there was a better way to get it done.  Today I find myself aspiring to take the types of photos I wish I had of myself on our wedding day.  Also to treat people the way they should be treated.  That is what drives me.

Chadley, what a ride it has been.  I wouldn't have rather been on it with anyone but you.  I can't wait to plan our destination vow renewal trip next year for our 10 year anniversary.  haha :D  I love you.

(P.S.  This photo above was one of my favorites that someone took at the end of the night with a disposable camera.)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Jell-o legs

Change is good, right?  That's what I was telling myself as I climbed the stairs to join a Spinning class today at my gym.  It was my first time and I was a little nervous.  Long story short, I pedaled my way through the 45 minutes of torture.  It was those darn "stationaries" that did me in.  You have to pedal while standing up but without bouncing up and down.  Wooo!  It was a doozy!

I am trying to get Chad to start doing it with me.  I want his legs to feel as good as mine do right now.

Speaking of "doozies," how about these two??

Max & Aidan...could you get any darn cuter?  You're growing up way too fast already!  Have you started shaving yet?

Sorry Max, I just had to share this one.  I want to nibble on you.

Happy Monday everyone!  xoxo

Friday, October 22, 2010

90% certainty

My family does not really like surprises.  We are not good at keeping secrets.  We like to just lay it out there.  What you see is what you get.

My sister, my mom and I all can not fathom - no, it is beyond our realm of comprehension - why any couple expecting a baby would not want to know the sex.  I don't know who really wants all yellow and green clothes.  I can't understand why anyone would not want to feel totally prepared in what they are getting themselves in to...and what color to paint the room.

I know, I know, there are many of you right now who strongly disagree with us, and I am not saying we are right, I'm just sayin'.

So when Court went in last Friday for her 20 week ultrasound and left with the sex undetermined, you can imagine her disappointment...and ours.  

But after another ultrasound today (an intern did her first one and did not get all the info they needed) they were able to tell, with 90% certainty, that Ella Bella is going to have a baby sister!  Woot!

I have been saving these little gems for a special occasion and well, that such occasion has arrived.

Court, Adam & Ella have recently moved to Geneva into a beautiful house (it is beautiful now...after all their hard work they have put in to it), and are now ready to lay down roots for the long haul.

If Ella's little sis has even a sliver of her personality, these two could be the even funnier than me and Courtney.  Well, maybe.

By the way, Ella picked out her entire outfit.

It's too bad she wouldn't cooperate.


Yep, a real stinker.  We didn't have any fun at all.

Love the scabbed knees.

I just ordered this one in a 30x40 which I will frame for Ella's room as a housewarming gift.  Surprise, Court!

But nonetheless, she is human and the fun had to end at some point.

Court & Adam, I am so excited for you guys and can't wait to see what this next one will be like.  Hopefully she is a little more like Brynn.  xoxo

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Moms Together

As I pulled into the parking lot, I had never seen so many mini-vans and SUV's in once place before.  This morning I had the best time at a "Moms Together" gathering at my church.  A bunch of really cool moms get together once a month to have some great breakfast, bond with other moms, share stories and hear a great speaker.  I may be biased, but I thought the speaker today was "fablious" (as Brynn would say).  

My aunt, Ann Sullivan, spoke today on self-control and was so inspiring.  I love that I can hear her thoughts and anecdotes for free any time I want, but I was so proud to see her do her thing and share our family stories with so many cool women.

If you would like to join me sometime, give me a shout.  They would love to have you (and I would too!).

On to some photos...

Here is family I have enjoyed watching grow right before my eyes.  I shot Jon & Alexis' engagement back when I was first getting started, and although they did not take me with to Mexico for their destination wedding (boo!), I was able to shoot their reception at the Geneva Country Club which was a blast for me because I knew everyone there from high school.

Now, they have a new addition to their household...welcome Jake!

Jake, you put a smile on my face.  

Thanks guys!  xoxo

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Giving Back

I did a wedding consultation the other night in Oak Brook.  It went great and I was feeling really good on my way home along I-88.  It was a warm night and my windows were down, sunroof open, and iPod blasting.   I was thinking about the bride and groom I had just met with and how I couldn't wait to be a part of their day.  

Ironically, that is the exact moment I looked to my right and there was the old building I used to work in  back in my paralegal days.  An overwhelming sense of relief came over me as I reminded myself I did not have to go there ever again.  Then a wave of nausea hit me as the memories flashed in my mind of working there while I was pregnant with Brynn.  Every morning (usually ten minutes late) I would come in the doors from the parking garage and have to walk by the cafe to get to the elevators.  I am not sure what kind of food they were preparing in there, but it certainly smelled like hot garbage to me.  That memory is still fresh to me.  

I am so thankful life has taken me in another direction.  I am also thankful that I can try to pay it forward by helping out with different causes and foundations in the area.  I have mentioned the Paul Ruby Foundation for Parkinson's Research before and I am proud to donate a photo session and prints to their silent auction every year.

I finally got to meet the family that graciously bid on it last year and I am smitten.  They are a fabulous family.

Meet the Galors...

I had a little, no, a LOT, of fun with the backlighting.  It was so scrumptious I wanted to eat it up.  Or somehow bottle it up and save it for a rainy day.

Thanks Galors!!  xoxo