Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Jonathan and Mary Margaret: Engagement

Let me preface this photography post with a little comment about this couple. THEY ARE AWESOME! This session was probably one of the longest I've done, but it went buy in a flash because we were chatting and laughing together the whole time. These guys are just so easy to talk to, and I cannot wait to photograph them on their wedding day!

I took all of these photos in Memphis, which I've only gotten to do one other time. Memphis is FULL of great places for photos, and these two picked out some amazing ones. The first couple of shots were taken on a trail near Mary Margaret's house, and that is where Jonathan proposed. I loved getting to shoot them in a place that is so dear to them!

Once again, I just can't wait to see them again and shoot their wedding :)

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Professional Patterns

Last Thursday I got together with Margaret to do some outfit pictures at work. It's really just turned into an excuse for us to get together and hang out. I happened to be dressed a little nicer than I normally do for work, so it was perfect. I wear dresses to work only occasionally since I sit down most of the day. Pants are better for me to sit in because I tend to sit crossed-legged (a.k.a. Indian style for the politically incorrect) in my desk chair. I do like to get fancy sometimes though! This particular dress was in my very first StitchFix order (post about it here). I've actually worn it quite a bit, and I love pairing it with this fun jacket, another StitchFix score!

Dress- Many Belles Down (via Stitch Fix)
Jacket- Ark & Co (via Stitch Fix)
Tights- Express, forever ago. These tights are resilient, y'all!
Booties- Target
Leaf Earrings- Etsy (shop no longer open, unfortunately)

Did I mention that this dress has pockets? It does, which makes it pretty perfect in my opinion. Margaret also took a photo of me in this outfit to use for her column in the local paper. She does a "style watch" kind of thing, and I'm so honored to be in it! I just cancelled my paper subscription though, so I probably won't see it unless my mom saves it. Actually, I'm sure I'll see it because every other time I've been in the paper, I've gotten a couple of copies from friends. If I do get it, I'll add it to this post later! 

I hope you're all having a fantastic weekend. I got to cheer my friends on at the zoo run yesterday, which was so much fun! They dressed up as penguins for the race (don't worry, I got pictures and I WILL be posting them). I also just enjoyed spending a lot of time with my closest friends. Alanna tried to take me to a vintage store she found, but it didn't open at the time it was supposed to so we missed it. So sad! But it gives me an excuse to go back to Nashville soon :)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


Earlier today Etsy posted some photos on their Facebook account featuring an art form called quilling. I've seen things like this before, but I never knew what it was called! It's created using lots of strips of paper coiled and curled into an image. It looks so intricate, and I can't imagine how much patience you would need to create something like this. One of the shops that was featured is YakawonisQuilling. Here are a few of my favorites from her shop

I think Rhett would enjoy the Ron Swanson piece in his room upstairs. That room needs some manly touches! A lot of the pieces in her shop are prints of her originals, so they are affordable. I think it would be amazing to own an original piece though! It would definitely be an investment. I know it's odd, but I'd love the full figure muscular system original...it's just so amazing!

I hope you all are having a fantastic week so far! I guess it's been about a week since I posted, but not much has been going on. I'm very excited about the weekend, though! I'm heading to Nashville with some friends for the zoo run. I'm not going to run it for a few reasons, but I'm going to be the best cheerleader for my buddies! We'll also get to hit up Trader Joe's afterward...which is an essential part of any Nashville trip.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Eat Up: Parmesan Potatoes

One of Rhett's favorite foods (possibly his #1) is the potato. It's not the most nutritious vegetable, but I like them too, so I enjoy cooking them. I went to Trader Joe's with my friend Emily and she introduced me to the teeny tiny potatoes. They're so adorable! I went ahead and bought a couple of bags then searched for a recipe to try with them. In my Better Homes and Gardens cookbook, I found a recipe for parmesan potato wedges. I used the little potatoes cut in half instead of wedges and they turned out awesome!

Here's what you need:

  • 6 medium baking potatoes (about 2 pounds...or in my case a couple bags of teeny tiny potatoes)
  • 1/3 cup of butter, melted
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning, crushed
First you line a 15x10x1 pan with parchment paper (I used foil). Cut each potato however you want (wedges, halved, etc). In a large bowl stir together butter, garlic, Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper. Add potato wedges and stir to coat. Place the potatoes on the pan. 

Bake, uncovered in a 425 degree (F) oven about 30 minutes or until tender. 

I served them with some tilapia filets and it was a good dinner! Of course you'll notice there is a lack of non-starchy vegetables. I realized that I've been slacking in that area a few weeks ago, so I've been trying to be better about having greens and other veggies with our dinner. Some of our favorite options are okra, green beans, salad, and peppers (mainly in soup and chili).

If you guys like potatoes, you should seriously try this! It's super easy and really delicious. I put ketchup on some of them :) 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Something New in the Lens Department

The main point of this post is to show off my darling Dudley. Isn't he precious? He sits in that papasan chair pretty much all day. Except when I'm home, he sits next to me on the couch (like he's doing right now). Anyway, last week I got a 40mm lens for my camera. I got rid of my 50mm 1.8 because I had it for a long time, and I was just ready to try something new. There's not a whole lot of difference with this one...but it's nice to be able to get just a little wider! I do feel like it might be a tad sharper, especially if I'm far away. I took some engagement portraits this morning, and the full body shots I took with the new lens are as sharp as with my really high end lens. This never happened with the 50mm!

I hope you've all had a great Saturday! I had a couple of photo shoots this morning, had a run and did some thrift shopping with Paige. It was a great day! I've also been watching a LOT of Parenthood. I just started the second season tonight, and I'm hooked. Are any of you into that show?

Thursday, January 10, 2013


Before the new year, I got to do a few really laid back family portrait sessions. Both were for people I know in town, so they were fun to shoot! First is the Bradys...

These guys were AMAZING to shoot. Kids are usually a huge pain, but all four of these little guys were fantastic. It was such a dream to shoot such little sweeties! I am also excited for the Bradys because they are in the process of adopting another little boy. Soon they will be a family of 7. How exciting! Next is the Tenhet family...

I know Taylor (glasses) and Anna (scarf) through mutual friends and work. They are such a great family, and their kiddos are just a blast. Quinn was not really into taking pictures, but he was making me laugh :) I enjoyed getting to explore a local college campus for this shoot. There are tons of great photo locations there. I want to go back there again!

Both of these family shoots went really well, and they made me want to do more similar shoot. Hopefully some more families will hire me soon! I think family portraits might be one of my favorite type of shoots to do.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Wedding Talk: The Invites

It's been a while since I blogged anything wedding related, so I figured I would share my invitation suite today! My degree is in Digital Media Studies, so I took a lot of graphic design classes. I thought it would be kind of sad for me not to put all that school to good use for my own invitations. Here's the suite laid out all together...

It was SO HARD for me to pick out colors for the wedding. I just like all colors! I ended up just picking gray and yellow, but I also used blue and purple here and there. It was just really mis-matched, but I like hodge podge, so it's all good! I knew that I wanted something consistent throughout the whole suite, so I came up with the idea to use this bouquet of white paper flowers in all the designs. The lovely and talented Katie of Lemon Jitters made the bouquet for me and I photographed it on white. I loved the subtle photo with simple type...it's just a great reflection of my style. It's kind of a reflection of Rhett's too, I guess. We are both pretty simple people. After the save-the-dates came in, I realized the gray was too light, so that's why the rest of the text is darker.

detail of the beautiful bouquet that Katie made

This is what went out with the invitation. I had the folded yellow pocket envelope (seen open and closed), and it was sealed with a sticker showing the bouquet on it. Inside the pocket was a card with a map on one side and a photo on the other. A lot of people have put the photo on their fridge, which makes me happy! The pocket also held the RSVP card and envelope. I pre stamped the envelopes and had a stamp made to add our address as well. That address stamp cost me about $12 and saved me a TON of time. I definitely recommend getting one! The big part of the invite had the address and date and whatnot on it. I put all of that inside a gray envelope and stamped our return address on the back. It seems like a lot, but it was actually really easy! It was also pretty cheap for the number that I had to get. I got all of the prints on gotprint.com and the envelopes at envelopes.com

I did a long card for the programs, rather than something folded. I was honestly just trying to save money! I also didn't want to have to tie or staple or fold stuff, so a single card was my best option. I had the ceremony schedule on the front and the wedding part stuff on the back. 

I also went ahead and printed thank you cards with the same design. Unfortunately I received WAY too many, so I have a ton left. Got Print is very strange about quantity. If you order 100 prints, you may get 150 or you may get 99. That kind of frustrated me because I don't understand. I guess they just fill up whatever box they are sending it in? If anyone knows why they do this, I would love to know! 

I know this isn't the most interesting post in the world, but I put a lot of time into this aspect of the wedding, so I really wanted to gush about it. I hope you guys enjoyed seeing it all! 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Read a Book a Month: December

In December I picked up a book that I've had in my stack for quite some time. As you can see, I picked it out of a bargin bin. It's a collection of short stories called Varieties of Disturbance by Lydia Davis. The stories range from 2 or 3 lines to 20 pages, and there are subjects all the way from domestic servants to passing gas! Some of them really made me laugh, but of lot of them just made me think. I actually really enjoyed the one where she analyzes the lives of two elderly women and determines what factors might have contributed to their long healthy lives. I know it sounds super boring, but it was interesting! I don't even know if it was a true observation...she may have just completely made up these characters. Anyway, I enjoyed this! It was a nice cap to a great reading year for me.

I'm planning to do this again in 2013. I'm going to read a little more on Les Miserables  then start on something to complete in January. Maybe I'll finish Les Mis by the end of the year! Have you guys read any good books lately?

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Things to do in 2013

Last year I made a list of things I wanted to do for the year, and I loved having something to refer back to all year! I decided to do the same thing this year, but first let's see how I did in 2012.

  1. Raise $1500 for St. Jude - Success! I raised $1570. I will be doing this again at the end of this year :)
  2. Maintain running and good eating habits - Success! Of course my eating habits wavered now and then, but for the most part I did well. And I'm still running.
  3. Watch 100 movies in my book - I didn't really get close with this one, but here's what I did manage to watch (tumblr)
  4. Get the garage organized and keep it that way - Don't know if this will ever happen. haha
  5. Learn how to sew and make something - I haven't made it all the way through the tutorial book I bought, but I did make table runners for the wedding. I also made some sachets! I hope to do more next year.
  6. Switch to a king size bed - Done! And I now have someone to share it with :).
  7. Paint the kitchen - With all the wedding business, this never got done. Maybe 2013!
  8. Lay laminate floor in the studio - Again, too busy and not enough extra cash in 2012. Still needs to be done, for sure.
  9. Keep the house clean - I think I did decent with this. I keep things pretty tidy at least!
  10. Change pricing and structure of photography - Success! I made several changes, including finally getting a website. I also raised my prices some, which was long overdue
  11. Keep taking my vitamins - Decided they weren't helping much, and the iron in the multi started making me sick. Oh well!
  12. Do more photo challenges - I did well with this! It's fun doing extra projects.
  13. Read a book a month - Success! This was my favorite thing on the list, and I so enjoyed keeping it up. Doing this again in 2013! See what I read this year here
  14. Do good things for other people - I like to think I did.
9 out of 14 isn't too bad, I guess. Here's to an even better 2013! Now on to the new list...

  1. Run a marathon - Really excited about this one! Emily and I are going to do the St. Jude marathon in December. I did the half in 2012 and LOVED it. 
  2. Do at least 5 personal/fun photoshoots
  3. Get rid of stuff I don't need - minimize - I feel like I am constantly needing to do this.
  4. Paint the kitchen - really must do it this year!
  5. Be a great wife - we'll have to ask Rhett about that one at the end of the year :)
  6. Read my Bible regularly 
  7. Continue to read a book a month
  8. Maintain fitness and eat cleaner more clean (eat cleaner sounds like I want to eat Clorox)
  9. Decorate the guest rooms - They are pretty bare, and I'd like to make them inviting. Maybe just some curtains and wall decor will help!
  10. Organize the attic - This will be a Spring activity
  11. Save Mo $$$ - would like to buy a new fridge, so I need to save save save!
  12. Paint and re-floor studio - here we are again! This will depend on time and money
  13. Make more time for friends - a lot of my best friends live in other places now. I need to make more time to either visit or call them. I miss us all being in the same town!
  14. Keep the house clean - I think this always needs to be on here
2012 has been a GREAT year! Rhett and I finally got married, and I couldn't be happier. That was the one thing I really longed for, and now that it has happened, I feel extremely content. I don't know that anything could happen in 2013 to top getting married, but I still expect that it will be a good year. 

I hope you all had a wonderful New Year celebration! Rhett and I spent the evening with some friends at the lake. We had some delicious food, played games and just enjoyed time together. It was a perfect way to ring in the new year!