Archive for February, 2010

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Last weekend in my post about leaving Cleveland and returning to Sarasota, I mentioned that I wanted to bring E home in my jacket. Well, I did! My sister found a great deal on a last-minute flight, so we threw their things together and brought them back to Florida with us. I put E in my jacket to surprise my mother when she picked us up from the airport, and then we had three days of fun.

I of course took the opportunity to take more photos of him (because we don’t have enough…), and here is a collage of his many expressions (that smile on the top row is new – and I can’t get enough of it):

E's faces

And a strip of outtakes because I couldn’t narrow them down…

E's faces - outtakes

And now I am officially back to missing him like crazy. One month, little man, and those cheeks are mine.

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This was my biggest family shoot yet. I’ve photographed little Brian many times before, starting from when he was 6 weeks old (!!), but I haven’t gotten the opportunity to capture him with his parents, let alone the whole family! (Will post some prior photos of Brian one day, hopefully not too far from now.)

This session was particularly special because it was a birthday gift for the kids’ grandmother, Marcia. She and her husband Richard, along with their sons, daughters-in-law, and grandchildren, got together for a family portrait session of 9 people – a tricky feat without a studio or access to the outdoors (it was snowing)… but we definitely made it happen. I lucked out with this bunch.

This family is so easy-going and was a lot of fun. I hope Marcia loved the birthday session – and the photos that come from it! Here are just a few.

Marcia and Richard with the three very loved little ones, Cadence, Brian, and JT:

Marcia and Richard with Cadence, Brian, and JT

I am in love with this next photo, not because of my skills but because of the fact that Marcia and Richard are giving their grown boys (very grown – these guys are giants) bunny ears:

Marcia and Richard with their sons

The whole nine:

Marcia, Richard, and the whole family

One last preview photo, this one of the lovely couple on their own:

Marcia and Richard

What a special way to honor a birthday, and I had so much fun photographing them and being part of their celebration.

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Raphael is another 6-month-old boy I photographed in Cleveland, along with his parents, Abby and Matt. Rafi is such a sweet little boy, with adorable, super soft cheeks and a huge grin. His hair is also absolutely amazing.

Here are some preview photos from their session.

I love how Abby and Matt are smiling at Rafi in this photo:

Abby, Rafi, and Matt

6-month portrait shot (seriously, isn’t his hair awesome?!):




And lastly, because of the not-too-freezing weather, we ventured into the snow for an outdoor family portrait:

Abby, Rafi, and Matt

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Almost all of my sessions in Cleveland were of one baby – and sometimes the parents. While I love focusing on one child, with his/her individual personality and intimate relationship with mom and dad, it’s also really fun to photograph siblings/cousins. They are of course so comfortable around each other and are often pretty funny – and sweet.

This session was of three siblings – Sophia (5), Ava (2), and Thomas (3 months). The kids are adorable, and the whole shoot was so much fun – cooperative, super cute kids, a fun, easy-going mom, a beautiful house… what more could I ask for?

There are lots of photos from this shoot that I’m still going through, but here’s a three-image preview.

Seriously, look at these little ones… I am obsessed with the girls’ haircuts. And I want to fold up the couch and take it with me to future photo sessions:

Ava, Sophia, and Tommy

Cassie and her baby boy, Tommy, who has ridiculously long and dark eyelashes:

Cassie and Tommy

And the adorable family (minus Dad – hopefully we’ll get him next time!):

Ava, Cassie, Tommy, and Sophia

More to come – some of just the girls, a few family shots, and portraits of the little munchkin.

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J and I are heading back to Sarasota today. Not sure why I thought two weeks would seem like plenty, or enough, but they sped right by…

The visit was so great, jam-packed with both jobs and family/E time… and the weather really wasn’t so bad. Apparently it hasn’t been too amazing in Florida anyway.

I have lots more photo previews and full sessions to post about, but for now, here are some of the things I loved about spending every day with E, along with photo from yesterday at the art museum (yes, I try to eat him sometimes):

With E

  • Snoozing together in the very early hours of the morning
  • Reading Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? and Goodnight Moon
  • Sleepy bathtime
  • Our snowy walk during Lauren’s visit
  • Tickling his belly and hearing him laugh so hard he had to take deep breaths
  • Putting him in a shopping cart for the first time at Trader Joe’s
  • Driving around really pretty snowy neighborhoods while he napped to his really pretty lullaby CD
  • Him falling in my arms after a very drowsy but anti-nap morning
  • The best day of his life after a few days of being under the weather
  • Picking him up after naps, from which he wakes up with huge smiles
  • Watching his second tooth sprout through so that he now officially has a toothy grin
  • …And a million other things – I realize they’re probably just amazing to me

So, back to Florida. I hope no one notices that I have E in my jacket…

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I love this little guy. Nathan is E‘s cousin, born exactly one week earlier. I’ve taken a bunch of photos of Nathan, but this was our first official shoot – and just as I’d expected, he was an awesome model. He is a shockingly easy-going, funny baby. After just traveling the night before from across the country and through two time zones, Nathan was still happy, alert, and fun. Ben and Jill are always great and laid back, so the threesome made for a very easy session for me!

I’ll be posting more photos of their session, but here is a preview for now.

Ben, Nathan, and Jill

Doesn’t this just make you want to squeeze him?


Loving his time in the bucket in the snow:


And if Nathan and E are cute on their own, the two of them together is just too much. Photos of their day together to come.

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A few days ago, I photographed Alexander and his parents, Brad and Christina. I’ve had a bunch of 6-month-olds as models here in Cleveland (like Brennan), and it’s really fun to see how different yet similar they all are. Alexander has two super cute teeth and melts my heart with his little voice because it sounds just like E’s.

And Brad and Christina gave me Peruvian shortbread dulce de leche cookies – pretty much the best cookies ever. YUM.

Here’s a little preview of his photo shoot. Christina loves black and whites (and so do I), so that’s what I focused on for their session.

Alexander getting some love from his mama:


Happy family:


And a closeup smooch from his dad (check out his teeth!):


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To endure these freezing days in Cleveland, whipping up warm comfort meals is necessary. For this dinner, the ingredients are easily accessible and the whole process takes about 20 minutes, but it tastes pretty refined for comfort food. We made it vegetarian, but it’s also great with some roast chicken from the supermarket (home cooked of course being better, store bought keeping with the easy factor).

It’s a bit of a mixed inspiration dinner – Asian in the veggies and seasonings, Mediterranean with the Israeli couscous.

Bok Choy Couscous

Bok Choy Couscous

  • 1 package toasted Israeli couscous (there are many other brands available)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube
  • 4 bunches baby bok choy (or 2 larger bunches), washed and chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 pint white mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 cup snow peas (with ends trimmed)
  • crushed red pepper
  • olive oil
  • 1.5 tbsp rice vinegar
  • salt and pepper

In a medium-sized pot, heat 1 tsp olive oil and sprinkle 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper on medium-high, letting the pepper flakes toast for a minute or two. Then add the couscous, and stir until it’s fully coated with a light shine and a bit browned, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add 2 cups water and the chicken bouillon. Dissolve the bouillon, turn the heat to low, and cover. Stir every couple of minutes until the liquid is fully absorbed, about 10-12 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large pan on medium heat, add about 1 tbsp olive oil, the rice vinegar, and another 1/2 tsp of crushed red pepper. Add the mushrooms, bok choy, and snow peas. Toss and cover. Stir every couple of minutes until fully cooked, about 7 minutes.

Bok Choy, Mushrooms, and Snow Peas

When they’re both cooked, toss together or top couscous with veggies – and enjoy! A slightly spicy, cozy, super tasty meal.

Bok Choy Couscous

And it tastes especially good with snow falling outside and a baby sound asleep in the other room. 🙂

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E is 6 months old today at 5:18pm… I took this photo when he was exactly one week old.

E - 1 Week

Wowzer. They sure don’t spend much time being this tiny. Now here he is on his first half-birthday:

E 6 Months

I miss when he was just a little peanut… But he is so cute these days, I can barely stand it.

Some of the things he likes to do at 6 months:

  • Laughing – at “sneezing” (we’ve started to fake sneeze now that we’ve discovered he finds it hilarious), at belly tickles, at our faces in the mirror, and at one of his toys that makes really silly noises (check it out: this thing is amazing)
  • Sitting up like a champ
  • Showing zero interest in crawling
  • Grabbing things, especially non-baby-friendly objects like cell phones and tissue boxes
  • Not being in his car seat
  • Singing – “Eensy, Weensy Spider” and “Pants on the Ground” are fun; J and I instituted the latter into his repertoire
  • Reading – He even flips pages, albeit accidentally (or shuts the book when he decides we’re done)
  • Not being in the snow

Happy 6-month birthday to little E. So happy I get to squish him and kiss him.

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Due to the snowy weather the last couple of days, we’ve been hanging and playing at home, just enjoying E and his amazingness. Of course, I had to capture some of his cuteness on camera…

In the left, smiling at his mama; in the right, eyeing his Uncle J:

E at home

E has a little cold… and he LOVES tissues:

E with tissues

And one of his new favorite toys is a yogurt container (thanks to his Safta’s idea via Skype):

E with yogurt

The little man will be 6 months tomorrow! Crazy…

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