a makeover…

i’m contemplating it: a new and improved blog that will showcase my photography. i think it’s time. i’m feeling like a scared little ladybug. but i know i’ll get through it.


i’m taking the dive (well, it’s a dive for me) and attempting to sell some of my photography at a second saturday showing here in town. my good friends are opening a home brewing store and i will have my photography on their walls for the opening reception. i’m nervous. i’ve never done anything like this. everyone tells me “you should sell your photography!” or “you should do this as a living!” – well, i’m going to see where this takes me. one of the biggest hurdles i have is that a majority of the photos i’m proud of are of my kids…can’t exactly sell those.


but, i will have a few of my favorite photos up for sale. this is one of them:


so, if things start looking a little wonky (that’s a technical term) around here, just hold on…it could be a wild ride, but it’ll be worth it!


(i just realized i wrote this as if anyone is really paying attention…you are, right? the two of you out there that read this thing?! right? anyone? bueller…)

father’s day and mare island

yesterday was father’s day. we took john out to one of his favorite places…lucky cafe (it’s total greasy spoon and soooo yummy!) of course, i forgot my camera. but, after breakfast, we headed back home to get our camera gear together and head out to a place we’d never been to. i love those spur of the moment road trips.

the destination?…mare island. this is a former naval shipyard – in fact, mare island was the nation’s first naval shipyard on the west coast, established in 1854 and ultimately closed in 1996. that’s your history lesson for the day!

it’s a photographers’ dream. in fact, the few people we saw meandering around there had cameras in their hands as well. so many great buildings and bold colors and peeling paint (my favorite!). here’s a little glimpse into our day…


anya was a good model this day. very cooperative!


stella on the other hand would give me about 3 seconds and then run up to ask to see her picture. she loves looking at the photos right after they are taken. she’s so my kid!


i just love the colors there. it’s very inspiring!



these barrels might have been my favorite.


and some photos with daddy




it was a great day. mare island is in vallejo, ca. if you live nearby or are visiting the area, i highly recommend it. there are tons of areas that are off limits, but there’s plenty that isn’t and you will have a blast snapping away – it’s one of my new favorite places to take photos now!

dress-up madness, super heroes, & bitter-sweet goodbyes

so, this week is the end of my time watching our neighbor’s son, jackson. i pick him up from school and watch him in the afternoons. he’ll be in summer camp at the ymca so i won’t be taking care of him after friday. it’s bitter-sweet in that i think it’s hard to have another kid in your house nearly every day – it sort of messes with our daily routine and it makes getting things done a  little more difficult. but on the flip side, i will really miss these moments:


they came up with their own names.

“canaskit cat”:


and “storm hero”:


together, they are super tough…


…well, they tried anyway.


have fun at camp, jackson. be sure you only use your super powers for good and not evil.


all about babies…


the theme at iheartfaces this week is “all about babies”. how fitting since i just got done taking a bunch of maternity and new baby photos of my niece and her adorable belly and now super cute little baby boy! it was hard to decide which photo to submit, but this is one of my favorites (and yes, he’s a very hairy little monkey!)

i hope you enjoy! be sure to click the link above to check out all the other awesome entries this week.


pantry – a little goes a long way

so, after reading this post over at young house love, i was inspired to finally do something about the chaos that was my pantry. i headed to ikea with a mission; organize the pantry! we only have a small set of built in shelves between the oven and the washer/dryer at the end of the kitchen, so it gets messy fast. i’m hoping this new, improved, organized pantry will at least hold up for a week. ha! we’ll see.



the first big challenge facing me is that each shelf is a different height. the top being the tallest (it’s great for cereal or larger boxed items) and they get shorter as they go down. with a total of 7 shelves that are equal in depth and width, i had to find something to a)line the shelves – cans have left terrible scuffs on the white paint, and b)some sort of storage bin or basket that could hold things that took up too much space in a box, like two packets of oatmeal.

so, off i went to ikea. low and behold, i found some great placemats for $2.49/4 pack – and yes, i totally stole that idea from young house love…but hey – it’s a compliment, right?? right? ok…back to my progress. i also found these great little clear plastic bins for $1.99/ea (they come with a lid to purchase separately – so i was happy to only buy the bin since i didn’t need the lid!)

i now had everything i needed. you won’t believe this, but i walked out of ikea spending only a total of $9 for my pantry redo! (we won’t talk about the other $87 i spent in the store…i’ll save that for another post!)

the obvious first step was to remove all the food and get rid of anything old and gross. it happens all the time. i buy something that sounds totally good and it just sits there for a year. now that i’ve become much more strict with myself about making a list and weekly menu, it doesn’t happen as much.

after removing the food, i cleaned the shelves (i know i’m going to cover them, but they were gross!)


with clean shelves, it was time to rip open my handy placemats! i like the fun pattern – even though not much of it shows, i know it’s there.


now with the shelves all prepped and ready to go, it’s time to “restock” the shelves. i started at the top and reserved the tallest shelf for tortilla chips, pretzels, and crackers. next came canned items. next shelf – pasta, grains, and sauces. next – breakfast items like oatmeal, cereal bars, peaches, etc. (note: i got rid of 3 boxes and put all the oatmeal packets in one of the plastic bins…total space saver!) next shelf is baking items. i put all the chocolate chips, raisins, and nuts in a plastic bin and now they stay put! the last two shelves are virtually empty!

so here’s the finished product. you might look at this and think it doesn’t look that different. for me, it will be a time saver. i can look and easily see what we have or need at any given time.


i love it!

thank you sherry and john over at young house love for all the inspiration and great ideas.

summer list

thanks to megan over at whatever, i have started the first “summer list.” i think it’s a fantastic idea and the girls really enjoyed helping create their summer, so to speak. we have some busy days ahead of us, but i’m so excited to start crossing off some of these fun activities!