Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Air Show

Growing up, one of the most exhilarating and exciting family traditions was attending air shows.  I remember sitting on the steps of the Gateway Arch gazing over the edge of the Mississippi River watching Blue Angels dive swoop and jet over my head.  Growing up in Oakville, it wasn't uncommon to see a variety of aircraft cruising up and down the river in preparation for the shows.  This past weekend I had the opportunity to expose my children to the amazing feats these pilots can do with a giant aircraft.  They loved it, well Katie was kind of terrified by it, but Ally LOVED it and so did I.  When the first set of Blue Angels flew low over us, I was spying on them with my telephoto and screaming in excitement.  I felt like a little kid!  Here are the results.  Enjoy!









New beginnings

Tomorrow marks the beginning of a new year and new possibilities!  Reflecting over 2014, I accomplished so much!  While I didn't blog much, I was a busy woman learning and experiencing new things.  From traveling to be a national speaker for the Williams syndrome association to doing some published writing and earning teacher of the year, I can honestly say that 2014 was one for the books. 

In 2015, I'm looking forward to a quieter year.  I'm focusing on  getting my National board certification in teaching so that will consume much of the time but I have some personal goals as well:

1. I'm going to focus more on my health.  My children's schedules have always influenced my day and I'm planning on taking some of that back for myself.  In 2014, I had back pain unlike the pain I've lived with since I was 16.  After seeing a physical therapist and seeing the change I can do to live pain free, I'm going to take time for myself every day to ensure I don't go back.  I admit I haven't been doing my exercises and this holiday season I'm starting to feel the effects again.

2. Continue my photography hobby.  I adore photographing my kids and learning new ways to stretch my photography skills.  I got into a rut in 2014 where I wasn't feeling inspired and my photos weren't looking the way I had envisioned them.  This year I'm going to do two things to keep it fresh- first I'm going to make personal photography a priority over scheduling sessions with friends and family.  I found I was getting burned out and didn't even touch my own photos.  I'm also going to keep my project 52 going because it does inspire me to pick up my camera.  Second, I'm going to print my favorites and rotate the pictures hanging on the walls in my house.  I already started this and it's really exciting to see my work on the wall!

3. Declutter my home.  Enough said!  I have a serious issue with letting go of stuff.  I'm going to reclaim my basement and display some of my nice things since my kids are old enough now.

4.  Try to blog more.  I saw my last post on this blog was a year ago.  Ouch!  

Here's to new possibilities!  Happy new year, friends!  Sincerely, Sarah

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Cup of ...

Last night I was making my children some hot cocoa and we were out of marshmallows.  I looked in the fridge and saw a container of whipped topping and became overwhelmed with memories of my Grandmother.  I remember as a child going to Dohacks with her and her "old" friends.  They used to meet for breakfast on weekends and socialize.  Everytime we went I was treated with a big cup of hot cocoa piled high with whipped topping.  As I made a copy cat cup I felt compelled to photograph it for the "cup of __" theme on my project 52... a cup of nostalgia to pass on to my girls.



 
 




I also played around with a new bokeh backdrop idea.  I love the result and it's SO easy.  You just set up crinkled foil far back from your subject and photograph on a very low aperature.  The result is that beautiful bokeh.  So fun!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Light

Lately I'm becoming somewhat obesssed with light.  I've found the next step in elevating the quality of my photos have been in chosing the proper locations based on light.  I often fall victim of chosing a place for a portrait because of a beautiful background and then find later that with low apertures, you can't even see the background.  Light has a profound effect on the color of the skin, the clarity of the photo and the emotion it portrays.   This month's photo blog challenge from Clickin'Moms is dramatic light.  All three of these photos were taken on Thanksgiving.  The first two are from a window at my uncle's house that has the BEST lighting.  The last one is the after dinner trip to the park.  Enjoy!


Experimenting with backlighting
 
 
This one is from the same window with Ally turned about 45 degrees towards it.


Swinging during golden hour
 
If you enjoyed my blog post, head on over to Gina's blog to see her take on dramatic light. I hope you enjoy this month's blog circle.
Each month I'm participating on photography challenges with fellow Clickin' Mom photographers... You can follow the blog circle by clicking on our links at the bottom of each of our posts. You can also see them directly here:

Gina / Megan


Saturday, November 2, 2013

Spooky!

This month's Clickin' Mom's challenge is Spooky!  My kids are still young, so not into the scary stuff yet.  Just this season, Ally has discovered Scooby Doo and has more interest in the darker side of Halloween.  We started the season off with Boo at the Zoo.  It's a kid friendly style haunted house at the zoo that benefits one of the local Children's Hospital.  You don't see any animals but they have light displays and costumed staff who look kind of spooky.  So, that's about as far as my spooky set went.  Enjoy!

My little bat fairy

Lady bug

One of the light displays
 
If you enjoyed my blog post, head on over to Gina's blog to see her take on spooky. I hope you enjoy this month's blog circle.
Each month I'm participating on photography challenges with fellow Clickin' Mom photographers... You can follow the blog circle by clicking on our links at the bottom of each of our posts. You can also see them directly here:

 Gina / Megan

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Turn of Fall

This is my favorite time of year ... the turn from shorts and t-shirts to jeans and fleece jackets...  The turn from greens to auburns, golds and oranges... the turn of summer boredom to overscheduled weekends filled with pumpkin patches, school events and camping!  One of the best parts of this photography hobby I've discovered is that I see the world in a new way.  I know that sounds hokey and all, but I really do.  When I drop my kids off at school, I see how the light shines through a tree's branches in their playground and creates a beautiful glow.  When my neighbor cleaned up his yard I mourned the loss of the weeds that were flowering and stood out in the morning fog.  It's funny how brainwashed I've become and I often regret not having my camera on my neck many times throughout the day.  It's kind of a cool problem to have.  I guess I've made a turn.  One where I see the beauty in little details that I didn't notice before.  My environment and the people around me are like art.  The whole process makes me see the beauty of life... definitely a turn for the better.  So, I hope you like my little collection of botanicals I've taken this month.  I call it the ...

Turn of Fall

 One of my turns- seeing texture in ways I never noticed before
 
 Another turn... seeing how blank or negative space turns something ordinary into much more.
 
 Turn three... when you learn the settings of your camera, you picture ways you can turn an ordinary weed into something soft and beautiful.

 Turn number 4:  My husband made a comment that I was crazy when I took this picture.  He saw a tiny leaf on a picnic table.  I saw leading lines and contrasting color that promised for an interesting photo.

 Turn five- I've slowed down.  Now a walk to a destination holds so much more... even little weeds are interesting.

I hope you've enjoyed my turn of fall collection and maybe inspired you to pick up your camera.  With practice you can really train your eye to see your world in a different way!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Seeing beyond the surface

Nothing has such power to broaden the mind as the ability to investigate systematically and truly all that comes under thy observation in life. -Marcus Aurelius

As a science teacher, I'm always teaching students to develop keen observation skills.  So when the Clickin' Moms blog challenge of the month surfaced- I had to put those skills to the test!  This month we were looking for ways to humanize the non-human.  I had ideas to use Ally's toys.  She likes to set them up in little scenes and play pretend.  I also took my camera to the outdoors and looked for ideas.  I actually found my favorite- a face in the bark by looking through my camera and focusing on small sections of the tree bark.  All kinds of faces surfaced by eliminating the surroundings and looking at little pieces at a time. 

Curiosity 

 Rage


Wisdom- this one reminded me of the stone carvings on Easter Island :)

If you enjoyed my blog post, head on over to Caristy's blog to see her take on humanizing the non-human. I hope you enjoy this month's blog circle.

Each month I'm participating on photography challenges with fellow Clickin' Mom photographers... You can follow the blog circle by clicking on our links at the bottom of each of our posts. You can also see them directly here:

 Caristy/ Gina / Megan