It is time for New Year's Resolutions....

A YEAR!  It has been nearly an entire YEAR since I posted here.  I remember posting Rylee's 6 month session like it was yesterday.  I remember realizing back in July, when I was taking her one year pictures, that I hadn't posted anything since her last session.  I told myself then it was time to catch-up.  I put a post-it note on my computer with the words "Update Website."  Here we are another 6 months later and still no posts.

So where have I been??  I can assure you I have still been taking pictures.  I actually have 30 unposted sessions.  Babies, birthdays, families, a wedding and even a proposal.  I have kept my LIFEshots Facebook page much more up-to-date, but have neglected the website.  Once I missed a few it snowballed.  I don't want to just skip over sessions ... start fresh and just do better going forward.  I DESPERATELY want to have all of the sessions I have photographed documented in one place.  Not just for the clients, who I treasure so much, to have their images shared with others, but for me.  As a self taught photographer I am constantly growing.  Constantly learning.  It makes me cringe sometimes to look back at those early sessions from 4 years and 2 camera bodies ago, but it also helps me realize how far I have come.

Aside from the 30 unposted sessions, I have been insanely busy living life as a SAHM to my 3 kiddos.  ALL of which will celebrate a birthday over the next 7 weeks ... 7, 5 and 3!  When we found out we were expecting for the 3rd time (with a 1 and 3 year old), I remember talks on the couch with my husband after the kids went to bed.  Discussions of what life would look like when the tiny life inside of me was the age of our oldest then.  We had no IDEA what parenting semi-selfsufficient children looked like.  Fast forward and we are here.  All of those late night talks, dreams of what life would be like, are now our reality.  Life with 3 small kids is demanding. Exhausting. Exciting. Rewarding. Challenging. The list could go on and on.  But the thing I am coming to realize more and more is that life with 3 small kids is ... FLEETING.  I have taken fewer pictures of my own children this past year than ever before.  I have made a point to go out a few times and take some planned pictures of them together, but have fallen very short on our day-to-day life.  Thankfully my iPhone has sufficed somewhat in documenting our year.

So ... on this eve of 2015 ... I am making a few resolutions.  Aside from the typical "make healthier food choices and exercise more to lose weight", what I really want more than anything is to get back to LOVING photography.  To get back to photographing my kids just being kids, while I still have them home with me.  I am beyond excited to be a part of a year long photography project organized by my wonderful friend Carey, with Images By Carey Pace.  She is a master of lifestyle photography.  The Ordinary Everyday Project 52 will have us focus on weekly themes and photographing our families, telling our stories and documenting the little moments in life that would otherwise be long forgotten.  I have a feeling some of my favorite images of my children will be taken this year.  That thought alone gets me excited.

On a more professional note, I resolve to get caught up and keep the website up-to-date.  It will take a while to get there, but by the close of 2015 my goal is to have no backlogged, unposted sessions.  Fingers crossed.

In the meantime ... I leave you with a few recent pictures of my sweet babies.  The color ones are some of those "planned" pictures I mentioned earlier and were taken in early October.  The black&whites are some I took yesterday just because, and goodness can I just tell you how nice that felt.

Rylee : 6 months old | 1.17.14 {Kingsport TN Baby Photography}

This is the post that inspired me to get caught up on blog posts.  I have been so excited to share this little beauty with you guys, but had 6 other unposted sessions as well.  I mentioned in the Maitland's family session post that even though Rylee wasn't her usual smiley self for those pictures, to check back soon for her 6 month pictures .. where she shared soooo many adorable grins and giggles.  
Tiffany (Rylee's Mom) recently introduced me to a little local children's boutique called Super Twirl that has the most adorable and affordable headbands, bows, jewelry and lace rompers.  The little pink rompers Rylee is wearing came from there, and they have dresses as well.
It is a good thing Rylee started getting hungry during the session, because I seriously could have continued dressing her up and photographed her for hours!

Jonah : 2 Years Old | 1.2.14 {Kingsport TN Children Photography}

In honor of my niece's 2nd birthday you are getting a 2-in-1 post.  I cannot believe that the same little TINY baby girl born at 4lbs 7oz back in 2012 is now 2 YEARS OLD!  When my own son Sullivan was born 7 weeks later, he was already bigger than she was .. she was tiny ya'll.  

I may be a tad biased, but Jonah is soooo smart .. and already hilarious!  Her vocabulary and ability to speak in sentences blows my mind.  She has the most adorable bouncy curls to go along with her bubbly, bouncy personality.  She is such a wonderful blend of my sister Alixe and Brother-in-law David.  I love her to pieces and love the bond that her and my 3 kids are forming.  My daughter has started spending the night at their house some when we go to NC and tells me all the time that Jonah is her best friend.  I just pray she always has such good taste in friends. :)


Maelin : 2nd Birthday | 11.2.13 {Kingsport TN Birthday Photography}

In our current age of Pinterest, birthday parties are a BIG deal!  For me, this has always been the case.   Growing up my parents gave us the most wonderful birthday parties .. truly some of my fondest childhood memories.  Needless to say, I love a big birthday celebration.  The time, energy and creativity that go into parties these days truly deserves to be documented.  I have done a few birthday party sessions recently, and I can't wait to do more.

Maelin's 2nd birthday party back in November is one of my favorites by far.  Her mom Adrienne did a remarkable job incorporating the Winnie The Pooh theme into every aspect of the party.  The decorations were adorable, and the food labels were soooo creative!  She asked me to just be there to capture the guests and party happenings.  Having taken pictures for Maelin's cousin Stuart's 1st and 2nd birthdays, it was nice to see everyone.  I almost feel like an adopted member of the family.

Maitlands : Family | 11.1.13 {Kingsport TN Family Photography}

Remember this sweet family??  Tiffany wanted updated family pictures for Christmas cards now that Rylee has started smiling and become really expressive.  Unfortunately, Miss Rylee wasn't feeling 100% on the day these were taken and was pretty stingy with the sweet smiles I had seen filling Tiffany's Instagram feed for a few weeks.  I still love the shots we were able to get and couldn't have asked for a prettier day.

**side note** : Due to the fact that I am a couple months behind on posting, I can tell you that you won't want to miss an upcoming post on Rylee's 6 month photo session.  She gave us an abundance of sweet smiles!  I can't wait to share the preciousness!  But for now, enjoy the family "Christmas" pictures. 

Paces : Family |10.28.13 {Kingsport TN Family Photography}

If you read the post with Alyssa's Senior pictures you saw me write about my photographer friend Carey.  As a photographer I know what it is like to have an abundance of wonderful pictures of your own children, but a lack of pictures that include YOU.  I have learned soooo much from Carey and will forever be grateful for the time she has taken to mentor me.  She has a true gift of capturing REAL life and genuine expressions.  I am not going to lie, taking pictures of her family made me nervous.  I put a lot of pressure on myself to provide her with the "real" them that I know she loves.  I am still learning the "lifestyle" style of photography that she does so well.  They were the perfect family to practice on.  While we did several poses, they are so relaxed and natural.  You can't help but feel joy when you watch them interact.

** side note: How blessed am I to have the opportunity to photograph so many kids with AMAZING eyes?!

Andrew & Nolan : Brothers | 10.27.13 {Kingsport TN Children Photography}

Sweet little Nolan is 6 months old ... and well ... what else can I say but ... "THOSE EYES!!"  Big brother Andrew turned 5 not long before these were taken and I took some pictures of him at his party seen here, so the purpose of this session was to document Nolan's new ability to sit unsupported and get some shots of the boys together.  I asked Jennifer to bring Andrew's Tonka truck with her and I LOVE the way it worked out.

Alyssa : Senior 2014 | 10.22.13 {Kingsport TN Senior Photography}

A little over two years ago I met a fellow preschool mom who is also a photographer. Carey Pace with Images by Carey Pace and has taught me SO much about photography, but she also introduced me to YoungLife Kingsport. Being a small part of an organization that is making such a big difference in the lives of local teens has been such a blessing. This past fall Carey and I actually teamed up to photograph one of our Young Life teens. Alyssa is a Senior this year and loves the outdoors, fishing and riding horses. We had such a great time capturing her at this important time in her life.  

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