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sometimes, somethings got to give - catching up on the last 6 months!

Here it is, December January (I started writing this in December).  My last post was July.  

July.  5 6 months ago.

A huge portion of starting this photography journey was for the writing.  I love it.  I love what it invokes in me - deeper thinking. awareness. appreciation.  documentation of life.  To be honest, the photography was almost secondary.  Life, Love & Lemons - is really about life.  My life, and others.  About the journey - ups and downs of life - through words and pictures.  This blog has been neither, lately.

Life is happening. It is moving so fast, I can't keep up.  My passion for writing, is now just another thing to do.  At some point, something has to give.   I have many posts that I have started in my head - lovely short stories that have come from the tender moments with my kids.  And others, the tender moments that arise while taking family pictures, celebrating new life - of bellies, babies and weddings.  I just can't find the time to post them.  I want to! I want to boast about this little chubby cheeked girl that has graced my life - and the highs and lows about everything else.  The photography business is booming with weddings and families and adorable kids -  and one more reason why I can't get sessions blogged - I try to pride myself on a prompt turn around time, and I have been able to keep it - but not blog. I just can not find the time. 

Here it is, December January and I am finally able to put some words down.   I call this the start of my slow time.  And, it isn't.  It is still busy.  It is the time when my mind and body finally get to catch up to each other.  I am once again, thinking about the next step - the next adventure that I want to start down.  The best part, through all of the hussle - I get to keep dreaming.  I am still finding inspiration at every turn.  Winter is my time to plan my attack.  Approaching and building ... right after I update my website with a new look and updated pictures!  What a difference a photography season makes.  I'm learning a lot - and I love the loyalty I get from clients, and the referrals they continue to bless me with!

Below is just a taste of all of the beautiful people I was able to first meet, or watch grow - from engagements to weddings and from growing bellies to growing families.  I loved 2014 and am super excited for 2015!  




 Thank you for all of the loyalty - you all have become more than clients -  you are dear friends!  Can't wait to see what happens in 2015!





1000 of my unique viewers

I just had to share....  I have reached over 1000 unique daily readers.  Pretty big deal for me :) Thank you Pinterest, Facebook, - and of course everyone that reads my little rants, pictures, and mommy stories.  Very flattered and excited! 



Grand Opening - Life, Love & Lemons Studio

Tomorrow marks the Grand Opening for my little corner space studio :) This is a really great space and place for me to start out - in many way - financially this perfect little space makes sense.  And, within myself it makes the most sense - I feel great about it, and beyond excited to feel and see the growth of my little love.  

Putting up prints last night, and this morning makes me giggle like Christmas - I have the most amazing clients.  They are all so beautiful, truly art.  

It isn't finished - I have some visions that I haven't yet got to complete to make it feel like home, but much like moving, it will evolve as I evolve in my little corner.  

Stop by Saturday and Sunday to check out Knee High to a Grasshopper and LL&L Studio.  Abby has some super cute things...  It's a good thing I don't know any babies coming soon or she would have to be ordering more stock!!  And, the little baby girl clothes...  oh my...  the cuteness! come check it out! I will be snapping away for the spring minis tomorrow with cute little faces, 2 bunnies, and some ducks and chicks!!  Can't wait to share!  We will have drawings for a free session, a $50 print credit and a raffle for a hand made toy box!!

Here are a few peaks...  :) But, you really should come see it live this weekend!!  

Hope to see you all there!


I teared up putting my little logo in the frame...  I asked Abby if I was a total dork, she smiled replying "No."  I think she feels it too.  

This little guy will be in tomorrow for his 6 month pictures!!  I CAN'T WAIT!!!!  



Spring Mini Sessions and GRAND OPENING!!

tick tock....  I am feeling the pressure to get all of this stuff done and ready....  I am feeling kinda ready...  but a little bit like my head might explode too! :) 

Abby has been stocking up and the store is coming along beautifully.  Our plan is to be done and ready by Monday!!  Fingers crossed!!  Until then, we are asking you to do a few things:



Come back visit the next couple of days to see previews of the store and studio and to see the sessions I did this weekend;  Two first birthday babes and a family session.  :)  A few give-a-ways will be coming soon too! ; )




little wins, one day at a time

January was a big month for us.  They are little milestones, with big meaning. 

In October and November (and December) I was really struggling with Brayden.  He is a fantastic little man - and most often, the light of my life.  But, there are days when I ask myself how I will make it through the end of the day without committing myself to an institution.  Understandably, Brayden experienced lots of changes in a very short time frame.  He moved into a new home.  He started a new daycare.  His Dad moved into a new home.  He spent long periods of time in Virginia.  We tried potty training - my goal was to have it done by the time he turned 3.  That is hard.  That is a trying time - for the toddler and his parents.  Also during that time, I was really busy with my 9-5 job, and super super busy with photography.  I was one fuse shy of blowing up.   That is also during the time when I wrote, "they come and they go".  I reread that yesterday, and I smiled knowing that those days have passed, for now :) 

During the counseling with my Mom, I cried.  I told her I was struggling with Brayden.  Age 3 is so much harder then the so called "terrible two's".  Two was a cake walk.  Three is tantrums and talking back and refusing to eat, sleep, and poop (literally).  I wanted 3 things from Brayden this year - in all of 2013. If we can over come these, I will be a content parent: 1. Poop on the potty 2. Eat (try) the food that is put in front of him 3. Sleep in his bed.  To date, he is doing exceptionally well with two of them.  I can happily say, we broke him of the phobia of pooping on the potty.  It took a little nudity, tough love, and some bribery but we made it through.  He still gets nervous about it but he hasn't had an accident in two weeks.  To me, that is success! He is also eating the dinner we eat.  Brayden has been a picky eater - and I, a tired single mom, gave into him.  I created the little picky monster - and, it has been hard breaking through the 2 years of me giving in.  But, we are doing it.  Together, at the kitchen table we all sit and eat the same meal.  It doesn't sound like a big deal - but, it is.  I wish it were a little quieter, with a little less protesting and less demands from me.  But, we are doing it.  It isn't perfect and we still have lots of room for improvement but, I will take the little wins, one day at a time. 

Can you guess the battle I have not yet conquered?

(don't you just love his shirt?!?!)

Yes, he is still sleeping in my bed.  It hasn't always been this way.  There was a time when he slept in his crib - through the night, happily.  But, he developed allergies, and sleeping through the night was rare.  Sleep deprivation is horrible.  All Moms know.  He would wake up every other hour.  Back then I didn't know why.  After a year of investigating and constantly going to the doctor, we finally figured it out.  He was never healthy.  The poor kid felt miserable.   I don't blame him for wanting the comforts of his Mom.  And, I don't blame me either.  I was tired.  Even with him in my bed, I never slept through the night, because he never did.  But, it was easier to fall back asleep - for both of us.  So, I will give it some more time to bask in the glories of our little wins.  I will continue one day at a time to build on the achievements he is making.   Hopefully, by summer, I can write that we have successfully over come the 'in mommy's bed sleep-overs'.  Until then, I will keep snuggling the little guy - who is growing bigger every day.  Because, I really don't mind all that much.  I know there will come a time and he will be in his bed.  Until then, I am ok sharing.

Another little win, I celebrated with John as he watched me do my daily count of viewers to my website, I had a record breaking month in January.   I made a goal to break 600 - and by January 31st, I had 765!!  Some bloggers/ photographers can get that in a day - and some, in an hour.  But, for this small town farm girl, I will take that little win.  One day at a time, I will reach new people and hopefully I can snag them to keep coming back - and maybe give me the opportunity to photograph a few of their little wins.  

Thank you for all of those who read.  You are more than a number.  You keep me passionate.  You keep me inspired. 

Happy Friday and have a wonderful weekend!  I am gone next week for a training course for my 9-5'er.  If I get a chance I will try to post some of my secret happenings from this weekend! 



projects and studio peaks

We finally got a start on organizing the Knee High Store and the LL&L Studio.  It was great to start to see it unfold.  Just a few weeks and we will be open for business!  I can't believe how quickly it has snuck up on us.  

Here is a little peak at the store / studio with a few furniture pieces that will be used for display.   I LOVE the beautiful floors and tin walls and ceiling.  The tin is original to the building, from the late 1800's.   It  has a great history to it.  

Old Dresser Face Lift:

My desk - and my little helper: 

The little manikins (they will be cuter with clothes on, and maybe arms and heads too)!

Did you notice the chippy yellow door in the pictures above?  I wanted to use that as a head board, but it is seriously super heavy.  I was worried about attaching it to the wall.  And, I would like to use it in pictures too...  so, I purchased another door, not as heavy and I think it turned out great.  

What do you think about they vintage yellow laps? Should I keep them yellow or paint them white?  I don't want to ruin them, because I LOVE  them - but, I am not sure if I love the yellow...  any suggestions?



picture proof....

... this is happening!  My prints arrived last night!!  It was like Christmas ; )  I was so excited I could barely get the box opened!  And, I think I am going to order more!  I really had to narrow down my selections... but, I am so in love with these I think I may just have to order another 6 or so!!  hehe!  I have 2 personal canvases coming - I will have to decide if I want them at home or at the studio.  

Tomorrow I hope to have a 'project' reveal on all of the things I have been working on to put into the store / studio.  This weekend will be spent organizing and decorating... and so will the upcoming weekends until opening day! 

Stay close by and be sure to 'like' our facebook pages to get grand opening information and specials! 

Knee High to a Grasshoper  and Life, Love & Lemons



be fearless

"a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step" ~ Lao-tzu

I am beaming. glowing. bursting with excitement.  

Opening a studio is a big jump.  Big commitment.  Big rewards, God willing!

Little did I know that when I took pictures of Abby and her family that it would lead me to this point.  I didn't know Abby.  I didn't know any of her friends.  I didn't know any of her family.  We had never crossed paths.  She happened to see a facebook post of mine advertising for family photo sessions.  As the four of us walked to the destination for their pictures we chatted about our lives.  One story lead to another, and then she threw out the idea of me having a studio in her someday store.  I loved the idea, but was I ready?

Abby and I shared a few correspondence back and forth.  She commented, "... to be successful, I have to surround myself with successful people..."  She's right.  Her and I meeting was not by accident or coincidence.  It was intentionally planned by someone greater than us.  And, I know that she is the right person to join forces with.  Being successful separately will make us successful together, and visa-versa too.  We will lift each other.  

When you first meet Abby, she is adorable.  great smile.  bubbly.  personable.  sincere.  kind. driven.  organized.  There are many characteristics of hers that I can learn from.  We are both alike and different in all of the right ways. 

Something that resignates with me, she is a great Mom.  Evan is an adorable little guy.  He is her priority. 


Abby is following her dreams.  She is taking a risk.  She is taking that first step to be successful for herself and her family.  The rewards will be numerous - but, that doesn't come without a lot of hard work.  I am following my dreams (one of them - I have many on my bucket list).  I have spent more nights laying awake planning and dreaming then I could ever count.  Ideas flood my mind during the day.  This dream that I am living now, I never knew I could make it here.  My life and myself have evolved so much in the past 2 years.  The new me doesn't even recognize the old me.  I have lots of growing still but that is an important part of life that I am happy to admit to do.  I grow.  I change, happily.  

The truth about chasing my dream; I am scared.  I have invested time and money - anticipating success.  But, that doesn't come without it's risks.  Loss of time with family.  Loss of money.  Loss of pride if it doesn't work out.  The key to be successful isn't being fearless - it is about pushing through it, one small step at a time.  Doubt and fear can be incapacitating.  They have the ability to keep you static.  I refuse to be static.  I don't know how, honestly.  Step by step we work through the discomforts - even when the finish line is too far to see.  Anything and everything we can think of started this way - an idea and determination to over come fear and obstacles.  We all dare to dream to prove to ourselves, that we can do it.  We can live it. 

What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail?

For Abby and I, It is Knee High to a Grasshoper and Life, Love & Lemons!!  

Stay close by to get sneak peaks of the store / studio in progress and for Grand Opening Specials! 



2013 quickly approaching

The past 5 years have represented many changes in my life.  And, as life should have it, I know 2013 will be filled with many more.  Some that we can plan for, and some that we can't.  But, I am really looking forward to 2013. 

Just over a year ago - I started this photography journey.  It has been a excellent way for me to develop a different side of myself.  And with that, I stumbled into this writing that is turned into my own type of therapy.  I love writing.  I love sharing the challenges of parenting and living, and rejoicing in all of the everyday blessings that are so powerful.  It is the little things that make life worth living - they are why we do what we do.  We love and connect with people - our friends, families, strangers.  We share joy and sorrow - we empathize, together.  That is what makes us human.  I want to celebrate more of those connections. 

photo credit Chris Bland

This year, in the quickly approaching 2013, my focus is connecting.  I love the connection I have found from the past that has come to bless me this year, and every upcoming year for the rest of my life.  This is developing through my engagement and wedding planning...  but most importantly, life planning.  In my personal life, I get to share wedding planning and many, many more stories of my baby boy that is quickly turning into a little man.  

I love the connections I have made with new families and clients and I look forward to the many more that I will meet and the continued experiences I will get to share with the clients that call me to capture their life.  For Life, Love & Lemons Photography, I will be opening a studio!  It isn't all mine - I am sharing it with a wonderful and ambitious young lady, Abby,  that I happened to connect with through taking her family pictures.  She is opening a baby boutique, Knee High to a Grasshopper - and I will be sharing some space with her.  I am really looking forward to the expansion of my business and the many, many new faces I will meet along the way.  Click on the logo to take you to her FB business page - like and share! ;)

I will be selling some of my painted furniture within her store as well.  I am SO excited to be able to dedicate some time to this side of my creativity.  I have 6 pieces I am working on now for the store...  a few for sale and a few for display. 


My website.  I was ready for a face lift - so, I made a few changes to bring in the new year.  My Gallery has finally been updated!  It is great to say that I have been so busy that my gallery was not reflecting my most recent work.  And, now it does.  I still have some updating to do - but, I have started and feel proud to display all of my beautiful clients.  Same layout, but different, yet kindof the same color scheme.   And, the linen vintage fabric look is a great representation of another new avenue I am working into.... 

Vintage Rentals.  I don't know what this scope is totally yet, but I have a lot of old stuff.  And, I have an addiction to keep buying so - I thought I might as well rent it out!  I will have different pieces that can be rented for events: Parties, Baby and Bridal Showers, Weddings, etc.  A big investment I have been making is in China :) I have almost 250 complete table settings available for rent.  This will include silverware and napkins, dinner plates and salad bowls, teacups and dessert plates.  It is my newest love and addiction.  I will be working to get my own rental gallery online for viewing and rental.  The hard part is the name...  I want it to be connected to my lemon theme but still have a name for itself...  So, I will be kicking that around.  

This busy wonderful life never ceases to amaze me.  It is full of new exciting experiences, the planned and unplanned!  The best part is - I know that wherever I (we, John, Brayden, and I) end up - we are exactly where we are suppose to be.  There is always a plan that is bigger than our own, and I know there are great things in-store for us in 2013. 

Bring on the new and meaningful connections of 2013! May you all have a happy and safe New Years Eve and New Years Day.  God bless! 




{life, love & lemons} bloggerversary

Today I am celebrating my bloggerversary.  

It was actually about a month ago.  But, today my web host is taking out my annual subscription fee...  so, it was a pleasant reminder of how this all started, and where I am today :) I started thinking and planning this venture long before I actually started it.  Years before.  But, life takes over and somewhere, somehow the days come and go.  All of the times I said "someday I will" kept passing me by.  

I always wanted to do the photography.  However, I didn't really know how bad until I started to dig into all of the beauty that is captured.  Photography seems simple.  Take a picture, edit, print.  But, it is so much more.  It is a vision.  It is an art.  It is an expense.  It is time.  Time away from family to pursue something that fills my heart.  It is time researching and shopping and packing and unpacking a car.  It is a garage and basement FULL of props.  It is always working to be better.  It is about taking 800 pictures to get just that perfect 1.  There is always at least 1 perfect one.  It is consoling children - and their parents.  It is trying to sell a business - but really, it is my heart.  It is guilt in selling something I love to do.  I have so much to learn.  But, I am learning every day.  I love the world that families let me into.  I am hired to capture moments that they will treasure forever.  I love my job, my hobby, my passion :) 

I didn't have a passion for a blog - never even considered it.  My Mom actually mentioned it once...  I thought she was nuts!  Then as I researched, I realized most photographers had them.  So, I came around to the idea.  As I have mentioned in the past, I found several bloggers and I fell in love with their writing.  The way they tell stories and share ideas.  They would share their heart - out for the whole world to critique.  I haven't come up on many critics.  Thank goodness!  I don't think my skin is thick enough for that.  I am SO thankful no one has commented on all of my grammar and spelling errors.  I was never very good at those! But, I love to write.  The blog has evolved into much more then it was intended, and I love it. I realized through writing, I always felt like I had something to say.  In my quiet moments, I would talk to myself, sometimes out loud - sometimes in my mind.  But, I always have something to say :) This blog has helped me talk out some tough times. It has helped me to stay positive; stay focused. I read back a year from now and I love that I have a chronicle of my life.  An evolution of who I was, where I am going, and who I am not yet.  More importantly, I have captured Brayden's everyday life, his innocence, his charm, beauty and wit.  It has given me the outlet to share my pride, my joy, My Boy.  I will keep that forever.    And oh how he has changed!  So much can happen in a year.  

A year from now, life will be different from where I sit today.  I anticipate it will be very different.  There will be many more posts about Brayden and how he is growing too fast.  I will share lots of new client faces (God willing) and lots of repeat clients too (God willing).  I will share my own wedding chaos...  oops, I mean planning.  And, who knows what else will come along the bend.  :)  Many more ups and downs of life.  We will make plans for a future and I am sure there will be many detours that we wont see coming.  That's life. 

Thank you.

To all of those who have given me the opportunity to photograph your special moments.  You gave me a chance when my portfolio was very small.  I love that we have laughed together through difficult children, uncooperative weather, and pooping babies.  Together, we smile pridefully at a beautiful moment captured - both sharing our hearts, yours of your family and mine of my work.  And to everyone that has read along this crazy, extraordinary, everyday, wonderful life of mine - thank you for reading (especially through the grammatical errors).  To everyone that has commented through the site or through facebook, I don't know that I could ever express how much your words mean to me.  You take time out of your lives to read and comment.  I appreciate it all.  

On this bloggerversary I will have to do something special.... I may wait till spring (nice picture taking weather).  Maybe do a "Re-Grand Opening" of Life, Love & Lemons :) 

Thanks again!  And, stay tuned!  New updates to the site will be coming and some other surprises too!

A million thank you's - and many more to come!  

xo ~Megan




Introductions {Meet the Photographers}

photo by ChrisI don't think I have ever formally introduced myself.  :) So, I thought I would take this opportunity to share my vision of Life, Love & Lemons {blog & photography}.

I have had this dream for as long as I can remember.  I didn't dream of doing it professionally, all I knew is that I wanted to take beautiful pictures to have to cherish throughout life.  A whirlwind of life experiences were thrown at me, and life has taken a few turns that I never anticipated.  And as I say most days, this is the happiest I have ever been.  I have the privilege to be a Mama to, who I think, is the sweetest and most adorable little guy on the planet (I may be biased).  I am now chasing dreams that have always been there, but I never totally knew what they were.  I stumbled, not by accident, onto the beautiful writings by Amy Kolz. I poured over her writings and her story.  She inspired me.  My personality doesn't allow me to sit and wait.  I chase.  I act.  I do.  Now.  So, that is what I did.  I had my camera already so, I plunged into researching photographers, DIYers, techniques, props, backdrops, prices, reviews of photographers, reviews of equipment, ect.  I am still learning - and I love that.  I love that no day ever passes where I am not learning something new.  

I have a much larger vision for where Life, Love & Lemons is going to go.  A few other passions that I have waiting in the wings - and I look forward to developing and sharing along the way! But, I love where we are at right now.  I am meeting amazing people.  I have bookings more often than not, which is a great place to be!  Every mile is accomplished one step at a time.  For now, I am just enjoying the experience and not looking too far ahead.  I am taking it one step at a time, and smiling along the way. I love the journey.  

My blog is kinda random.  Someone asked me what my message was?  "I don't know" was my response.  It is just life - and life is kinda random.  It is reflection on the past and cherishing living in the now. It is about the evolution of self and the crazy funny and sentimental moments that get us through the day to day.  It's a journey and record.  Basically, I get to share all of the 'stuff' in my head.  I really enjoy writing it.  And I LOVE when people tell me that they read it...  I am glad they are able to sift through my grammatical errors!

photo by MeganThe interesting part of this all is that I have shared this dream with someone who has inspired me for many years now.  It is my brother-in-law, Chris.  He has an amazing eye and his technique is flawless.  He is teaching me, a lot!  Also, he has industry experience through web design (and a lot of other techy stuff that I have no clue about).  Basically, I showed up at he and my sisters house and said, I bought a domain name and site.  Now what :)  From there, we have been supporting eachother.  Chris is more than a partner in this business, he is the husband to my sister and the father to my neice and nephew.  He is amazing in all of his roles.  He doesn't sleep either! Of course, none of this would be possible without my sister (his wife's) support.  They have a relationship that I not only admire, but aspire to have the same amazing partnership in my personal life as Mallory and Chris have developed. 

Chris' photo sessions will start to be subject matter of the blog and his pictures will also be joining the Gallery very soon!

Check out our tabs with our own personal bios.  Meet Megan! and Meet Chris!  Contact us to capture your special life moments! 

Thank you to the readers and clients for your support!  Share the love on FB! ;) 




The little engine that can...

I have a wonderful life.  We all do.  I know I have been blessed.  I think of those I love who have really been faced with trials.  The really hard life stuff.  Sick babies, sick children, death of family and friends, loss of jobs and homes.  I have my life intertwined with those who have the tough stuff.  And sometimes, when I think of the challenges I have been faced with I know it doesn't even scrape the surface of what challenges others have gone through.  And those, they are so strong.  They transcend. Forever changed.  

I suppose that's all life is.  Every path is different.  For each person who walks their own, it presents its own challenges.  It isn't fair to compare because theirs is theirs and yours is yours.  Each is difficult in its own right.  It is the outlook you choose along the way.  

 My Mom gave me a big compliment the other day.  She said "You are the engine."  WOW!  I had never thought of myself that way - I love it!  That has been stuck in my head and I just think it was so accurate. Well, even though I am sure she meant it as a compliment - it could be taken two ways.  The good:  You drive.  You push.  You pull.  You are the force the keeps chugging no matter how heavy the load.  You don't stop.  Then, maybe the not so good...  I don't slow.  I enjoy the view, but at a fast pace.  My head spinning as the scene passes me by.  I don't smell the roses.  And, I may run over things that get in my way....  eek...  that sounds really bad.  But, sometimes the truth is brutal.  I have always thought that a sure way to get me to do something is to tell me I can't, because I know I can.  I will find a way.  Life has been good to me.  But, as life will have it, it isn't without its curve balls.  And that is ok, because that is what life is about.  The twists and turns and the unexpected.  Some are blessings because they are gifts and the others are blessing because they are life lessons.  Stumbling, tripping, falling - but always getting back up, stronger and wiser  than before. Max, Me, and B - watching the trains pass :) Through and through, I chug along (maybe mumbling and grumbling along the way) but I will get there.  Some days I win.  Some days life gets the better of me.  But, I am working always on the balance.  

Can I be a slow engine?  One that is always moving but not too fast??  Can I be the focused engine, passionately driven to catch professional goals?  Then when it comes to the every day, Can I be the mom and son waving and clapping from the park at the train rushing by?  Can you have both?  Is there a balance?  Maybe this is a working Mom theme / conflict?  I don't know... Something to work towards, I guess :)  




Passionately Curious

"I have no real talents.  I am only passionately curious" - Albert Einstein

I borrow great words from great people - I sometimes have difficulty trying to convey the message that I am attempting to put together.  I am often captivated by the words (or pictures) that people string together to tell their story.  They leave me in awe and intrigue me to want more.  As is such with the quote I used today.  I have found in my growing that I am not very talented, naturally.  I fail, ugh - I mean learn, a lot the hard way - and often! I mess things up more often then I can count.  I have learned to accept this about myself - I learn by doing and that is that.  

My wonderful Aunt Lisa gave me a book over the weekend, Photojojo (very cool book)! She told me that I was talented - which made me smile, but I also didn't really hear her ...  talented?  Me, really?  That was sweet!  I actually just do it because I really, really love it!  Thinking back to my Aunt Lisa, She inspired me - she doesn't know that, but she always had a nice camera and would take great pictures for important moments - family stuff, sporting events, graduations, ect.  I remember thinking how perfect her pictures looked when she would print them out and give them to us.  I remember thinking, 'I am going to do that, someday.'  She has been very supportive and encouraging through this adventure of mine.

I have found that with photography I don't really 'mess up', per say.  There are still moments when I think "Oh, I wish I would have tried this, or done that. "  But actually, it has been the opposite - I should learn to scale back...   I see potential in every angle in every image.  I think most photographers pick their favorite 10 ...  well, not me.  I pick my favorite 50 and then go from there...  I spend a lot of time on the editing.  I edit to highlight the beauty of the pictures.   (Because of this, I am going to need botox at a very young age - this squinty eye wrinkle on my forehead keeps getting worse and worse!) That is where the passion part comes to play - I love it. Really.  Scale back? - I don't think I am able.   It is my creative outlet that was always there - but, I could never find my 'talent.'  Now, that doesn't go to say that I 'have talent' but it definitely means that I have found the patience to cultivate my creativity.  I have finally found my avenue to do that.  Talented?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  But Passionate? - :) 

Speaking of passion.  Here is my truest love - who often happens to be the subject for my passion:  

We went fishing over the weekend.  It was a blast!  We fished for sharks - but mostly caught Nemo (or his friends).  And, I am a catch-n-release kinda gal - so, Nemo and friends didn't stay with us long.  We also went searching for Salamanders.  LB is becoming quite the Little Boy...  Loves dirt and worms! Below are a few pictures of him and his Dad.  

And, here is a video clip of 'Catching Nemo' ( ignore the annoying narrator)!




"A world to be born under your footsteps..."

"A world to be born under your footsteps..." ~Saint-John Perse

Just 2 weeks new, in all of her grace and glory.  Meet baby G!  She made taking pictures of her so easy and fun.  To be honest - It is hard to limit the number of pictures I post of her, each one is beautiful.  

Check out all of her newborn pictures here.



I Heart Lemon Yellow {furniture}

This weekend I tackled my first furniture makeover!  I was so excited to start this.  I have a lot of my own furniture that I is a hand-me-down, yard sale, or thrift store find.  I have been looking forward to finding the time to do this – it has been several years in the making!  I have steps,  tips and lessons learned (you can’t have a first project without learning a thing or two)!
1) First, I bought this great dresser from a thrift store for $25 (give or take a buck) – I bought a bunch of stuff that day I can’t really remember.  It was pretty sound – nothing that can’t be fixed with wood glue and some nails.  
2) I have done a lot of reading on furniture painting – so I tried to do my homework before starting (good for me – I don’t usually do that).
3) I selected my color.  I wanted something bold – but would still match my furniture.  I love blues and greens – but, I wasn’t sure where I was going to put it so I wanted something a little neutral.  I decided to stick with my lemon theme – yellow, bright vibrant Amber Magic yellow!  
4) Bought supplies.  I had to start from scratch on supplies.  So, the initial investment was a little more costly but I will be able to use these for multiple projects:
Paint - $16
Paint brush - $4
Grout - $5
Stain - $5
Hand sander - $8
Sand paper - $6
Handles - $20
5) Using the chalk paint – you aren’t supposed to have to use a primer or have to sand first (I LOVE eliminating steps)!  The recipe for the chalk paint is approximately 1 Cup of latex paint to 2 Tbls of sandless grout.  It should look like cake batter.  
6) I painted.  The first two coats didn’t cover like I wanted so I needed to do a third.  
7) I did some light sanding after.  
8) Wiped off dust.  
9) Then put the stain on with a brush and wiped it off with a rag.    
I love my lemon dresser!
Lesson learned:  I couldn’t get the handles off initially so I decided to leave them on and painted them while attached.  That caused streaks in my paint, hard to cover handles, and I didn’t like the way it looked.  While laying in bed I was being haunted by those handles.  So, I decided to give them another try to get them off.  With a little luck, a rubber mallet, and my brother for the stubborn ones the handles came off!  I had to back track a few steps.  I had to re-sand and repaint where the handles where… that’s right, three more coats…  3 more hours of waiting between coats… ugh!  I am so impatient!  Then I sanded, stained, and wiped.  I put the new handles on and the drawers back in the dresser and (almost) PERFECTION ! 
My mom was cautious of my color and technique – but after she saw the final product, I won her over!  I convinced her to let me paint a stand in the bathroom BLUE!!  I can’t wait!!  That is on this weekends to-do list! Also, I just bought an hold sewing table to conquer as well! 




February 1 {one month follow up}

Well, a month ago (give or take a day) I wrote Reflection and Anticipation {2011 Review / 2012 New Beginning} and I am happy to say that I am making progress - and progress can never be a bad thing.  Here are the action items I highlighted for resolution for 2012: 

Smile more, frown less: I think I am doing A LOT better here.  I am making a conscious effort to control my thoughts, both the positive and negative and I can honestly say my outlook is better.  I continue to check Marc and Angel for some helpful tips but all in all I can say that after 30 days in, I am smiling more. Very important question: Can frown lines be reversed by smile lines??  Here's to hoping!! 

Compliment more, critique less:  I am complimenting more.  If I think it in my head, I try to say it out loud.  Critiquing is more of a conscious effort to not be negative so, ...  I am working on it :)

Be a more effective listener: Still not very good at this one.  I interrupt A LOT!!  And I multi task while listening, which does not make me a very effective listener.  So, much improvement is still needed here!

PATIENCE: Still working on this.... 

Challenge myself: I think every time I take pictures, blog, and tackle one of my DIY projects I am challenging myself so I would say this is going well.  I am hoping I can add many more posts in February. At least 2 per week - that is my goal. 

Live a healthier lifestyle: Daily struggle.  I am a yo yo junk food junkie...  I go in kicks - buy healthy food = eat healthy food.  Buy junk = eat junk.  It is a vicious cycle! One the positive side, I am working out in the morning!  A few things that are helping my motivation: 1) the gym is right next door to LB's daycare -literally next door so I am not wasting time driving.  2) I am working out with my girlfriend.  We text every night to coordinate schedules.  Having someone else to keep me accountable has been beneficial! 3) Realistic standards - my goal is 3 times per week and if I go more than it is a bonus! I am hoping to get up to every weekday - but I am trying to keep realistic standards until I can develop my routine. 

Take more pictures: check! I still want to do more but until I can have a cool phone (I have one from the 1990's to save money) that will do this for me, it just isn't as feasible to drag the Nikon around everywhere I go.

Set the 'To Do' list aside: I AM making less lists - but, I am also forgetting a lot of things at the store due to my lack of lists...  working on the balance!

Life, Love and Lemons Update: For the month of January I had 232 unique viewers and almost 2000 pages viewed!  That is more than double for December! I have a couple of photo sessions to edit and add this week and a few more to take this month.  Looking forward to February!  Don't forget to get updates via the Facebook page and to contact me on great deals to capture your special moments! 



Learning by Doing... {And loving it}!

"If you hold a cat by the tail you learn things
you cannot learn any other way."
- Mark Twain

I haven’t posted anything in a while…  I have had so many exciting things going on (and a sick 2 year old) that it is keeping me busy …  too busy to blog!  However, here are some of my exciting happenings:

Reorganized my photography section on Life Love & Lemons – Pictures are now under Gallery and divided by photography theme.  I have several exciting topics that I don’t have active yet.  One of them is going to be dedicated to Birthdays, of all ages!  I have several birthdays that I will be capturing in February that I can’t wait to photograph and post! The other section will be Birth Stories.  This is special and deserves its own post – so, more on that topic later.  You have to check out the engagement and belly pictures that were added. 

The engagement pictures were done outside in Ottawa at Allen Park.  The bridge and river gave a pretty backdrop, it was cold but beautiful.  There are a few things I would have done differently and some additional shots that I wished I would have captured but all in all not bad for a first time.  The couple is adorable so each picture is beautiful just because they are in it.  I will definitely utilize Ottawa again for some of its unique older buildings, the bridge, water, churches ect.  If you are looking to have engagement pictures taken, I can offer you a great deal!  Contact me for details!

The belly pictures I think turned out great!  I am really happy with them.  Mama and Daddy were so cooperative, and too cute for words!  I have lots of favorites and I am still editing! We took over 200 pictures! If you or someone you know is expecting, contact me for a great rate on belly and newborn pictures!

Last week as I was doing some late night editing and restructuring of my site – I noticed I received an email…  and I was excited (because  I LOVE that someone is interacting with my site) but not only was this someone, this was Amy Kolz.  If you are not familiar with her, you should be!  This requires a separate post as well…  coming soon!

I love checking on how many people are looking at my site and I appreciate you reading and looking at the pictures.  I really encourage your feedback.  Another set of eyes with an open mind and a different perspective is always welcome.  

This is all new to me, the website / content building and photography – I am learning by doing… And LOVING IT!!



Life, Love and Lemons {official logo}!!

I just have to say that B-land Desgn is the best!  And, I am not just saying that because he is my brother-in-law :) He took exactly what I had in my head for an image and made it digital.  AMAZING!

I also made a few page changes based on some much appreciated feedback I received - I also wanted it to support my new color scheme! 

Let me know what you think! 



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Reflection and Anticipation {2011 review / 2012 new beginnings}

Over the past few days I have been seeing a lot of posts on New Years Resolutions for 2012.  I have never been one to take these very seriously...  I make the remarks, "My New Years Resolution is xy or z" but that is about as far as I go.  However, this year I have actually given it some serious thought.  I even wrote it on paper... NOW, I am posting it, publicly.  So, I guess I am inclined to at least attempt to 'resolve' a thing or two. 

I read this really great article - actually, they have a lot of really great articles - I definitely recommend subscribing to them.  It is called Marc and Angel Hack Life.  They have a lot of motivational tips to make you have a more aware and involved life.  The article I read yesterday, 30 Challenges for 30 Days of Growth is a really great read - and I would say they are overly ambitious :).  He is doing each of those action items everyday for at least 30 days, and most likely to follow the rest of the year.  Go Marc!  However, I will settle on a few for 2012.  The motivation behind my 2012 progress has several layers; parenting, personal growth and a more positive outlook, healthy living, and professional progress.  My rough draft list is (drum roll, please):

Smile more, frown less. (this one is for a more positive outlook - but, I also have a serious frown mark on my forehead that needs to NOT get worse)

Compliment more, critique less.

Be a more effective listener.

PATIENCE.  I am not a naturally patient person.  So, I have to consciously work through this one.

Challenge myself.  I love learning and doing new things - I just don't actively pursue the unfamiliar because I get complacent. 

Live a healthier lifestyle.  I have horrible eating habits.  And, I believe that has rubbed off on my son, or he is just a picky 2 year old, however I want to demonstrate healthy eating and hopefully he will come around too.  I want to find fun new recipes and give them a try.  Exercise is so important for a strong mind and body.  I need to put my healthy mind and healthy body higher on my priority list.  It has always taken the back seat to not having enough time and being too tired when I actually find the time. 

Take more pictures.  My family would probably wonder how that is even possible - I take a lot of pictures.  But, I want my camera to become attached to me everywhere I go.   I see so many great views from my drivers seat.  I want to pull the car over a snap a few shots - I never do that and I am missing a lot.  It isn't the physical picture file that I am missing but the moment to take it in and see the art and beauty. 

Set the 'To Do' list aside.  I am a list maker.  I skip out on opportunities to play and laugh because there is laundry and dishes to do.  I need to realize that in 15 minutes from now or tomorrow morning the items on my list will still be there but those moments that I am taking a pass on will not be. 

 2011 was a lot of changing / adjusting.  2012 will be settling in and growing for us.  We are happy and we are looking forward to another great year! Bring on 2012!  Happy New Year!

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