Tag Archives: photography

Internet Hiatus

At the end of May I found myself needing a break from this place. Sometimes it’s just too much, you know? Plus, I’d been obsessive over it, spending all my free time on social media instead of doing productive things that actually leave me feeling happy with myself.


I told myself I’d just get away from it for June and spend some time reading, which is something I’ve failed at majorly this year. And maybe be able to finally write something after giving myself a much needed dip in the creative well. Unfortunately, I didn’t end up reading all that much, or writing a single word for that matter, and as you can see by the date of this post, it’s August and I’m just now returning. Sort of. But my time away wasn’t a waste. In fact, I was super busy. And not just busy doing things that are or feel like work, though there was some of that too.


So what have I been up to? Well, let’s see….


I did read a little, but more comics than books. That’s basically been the story of this year. I don’t know what’s gotten me so much more into comics this year than previous years (probably, it’s partly Heather’s fault. 😉 ) but my comic reads and purchases are leading by a landslide. A few of the more notable reads during the hiatus include: Jem & the Hologram Comics, Morning Glories Graphic Novels, and The Haunting of Sunshine Girl Novel.


Photography’s been keeping me the busiest outside of my day job, between actual photoshoots and hours of editing. I shot a wedding, a superhero birthday party, a pregnant lady, and a little diva! It’s both weird and awesome how much paid work I’ve gotten photography wise, considering how little I broadcast the business. God’s been good to me this way. As I look toward fall, which is notoriously my “busy” season when it comes to pictures, I’m a little nervous about how I’ll juggle it all alongside wedding prep, but I think I might be able to make it happen with designated weekends for taking ALL the pictures. Sort of like Fall Minis or whatever that trend is… I’ll have more on that later if anyone’s interested.


VBS CollageI had two opportunities to work on one of my resolutions during the hiatus. First, I shot most of Vacation Bible School at my church. Not only was it fun capturing all the kids being kids, it was awesome to see how excited they got about Jesus. And just how many of them showed up night after night. My small church saw a record breaking number of 106 attendees! That doesn’t even include all the adults who worked or attended the adult class either. At the end of the week there was a slideshow presented with a bunch of my pictures mixed in. My cheeks were sore from all the smiling I did watching the recap of a great week. I hope I get to do even more next year.




Sharing Table CollageI also finally got to volunteer for the Sharing Tables (aka Soup Kitchen) during the hiatus too. I didn’t take my big camera to capture that, just a few camera phone shots, but it is definitely something I want to commit to every time my church participates. We served the 70-some people that showed up lunch and dessert and then, thanks to the goodness of local grocery stores and everyday people donating their goods, every person gets to leave with a bag of food and necessities to get them through the week. These Sharing Tables are open to them every Saturday and while it was really sad to see how many people have to rely on this to eat and live in general, I am so glad such a thing exists for them. It’s disheartening to see just how many people right around me go without; the veterans, the disabled, families with an abundance of children. Their struggle tugged at my heart in a serious way and I left there feeling both humbled and blessed and really happy I got to serve God this way.


My toy collection grew somewhat substantially during the hiatus, but that’s probably no surprise. I was extra excited about all the toys I got in June & July though because for the most part I’d pre-ordered them all months ago and even though they weren’t necessarily slated to release all at the same time, they basically did, leaving me with what seemed like days and days’ worth of toy hauls. Toys received include: Inside Out Funko Pops!, Mystery Minis, and Disney Tsum Tsums, Winnie the Pooh Tsum Tsums, The Breakfast Club Funko Pops!, a full case of Garbage Pail Kids Funko Really Big Mystery Minis, Funko 10” GPK Adam Bomb Vinyl Figure, the 17” Monster High Freak Du Chic doll Gooliope Jellington, and Tokidoki’s Unicorno Series 4! You can see pictures of all them HERE!


Some random things I did during the hiatus that are worth noting include: Starting two new subscriptions services in addition to my Loot Crate. One was Nerd Block’s latest venture, Comic Block. I’m still not entirely sure how much I’ll love this in the long term, but I think I’ll probably keep it around until I switch back to Horror Block for Halloween. And I also subscribed to a treat service called Universal Yum, which sends you snacks and treats from different places around the world every month. So far I’ve gotten goodies from Mexico & Japan. It’s been really fun tasting places I’ll probably never get to travel to.


My tattoos have changed since the last time I was online. I’ve had two sessions to add color behind the leaves and snowflakes and they finally feel complete! I’m hoping to squeeze one more tattoo in before the wedding, so long as schedules and funds work in my favor. If not, I suppose I’ll have to be patient till next year.




Heath and I went to see Cirque Du Soleil’s Varekai. I’ve always wanted to see a Cirque Du Soleil show, but I guess I was ignorant to the fact that they’re entirely in French. Despite having taken 4 years of honor French in high school, I had no freaking idea what was going on. But it sure was pretty and they’re some crazy talented performers. I think before I make too much of a confused judgment on Cirque Du Soleil as a whole, I should probably see another show first and see if I can follow that story a little better.


I actually went to the movies. Twice! As someone who loves film as much as I do, you think I’d go more often, but I just can’t justify the cost and am strangely patient in most cases when it comes to waiting for movies to come out on DVD (probably because it happens so fast these days). That being said, I miss the theater. I used to go A LOT and even though it’s crazy how much it costs nowadays, there’s something about seeing it on that big screen that you start to miss. So, Groupon had a deal and Heath and I just picked whatever looked the funniest, which happened to be Amy Schumer’s TRAINWRECK (and it was perfectly hilarious, btw) and we found ourselves at the movies randomly one day after work. I think it’d been a year since I’d been to the movies so it was odd that I’d find myself there again, for a second time, in the same week. But that following weekend my sister called and said, “We asked Gideon who he wanted to go see Minions (his first theater movie) with, Mommy or Daddy? And he said, “Aunt Sarah,” so I don’t know if you wanted to take him or not, but…” And of course my heart was melting and I was all, “I’ll be right there!” God, I love that kid. He was scared initially, of the bigness of the theater, of the darkness (he’s scared of everything new these days, it’s a phase), but once that screen lit up he was so captivated he forgot all about those fears, he even forgot he had an ice cream sandwich in his hand (and no one ever forgets about ice cream). When it was over he was so excited to see it again on that “Big TV.” And I’m excited about the idea of getting to see kids movies in the theater now, because Aunt Sarah will always be willing to take him. 😉


I’ve finally started to panic about the wedding and the lack of planning I’ve done for it thus far. It’s 3 months away now and I’ve only just now locked down a photographer and sort of locked down a caterer, but haven’t decided on a menu yet. There’s still so much to do that even thinking about making a to-do list for it all overwhelms me. I’m sorely regretting not taking this more seriously earlier on in the year. It’s still just going to be a laid back, sort of non-traditional wedding (I keep referring to it as a glorified cookout, but it’s definitely more than that), but that still requires serious effort considering I’m making so much of the decorations and whatnot by myself. I’ve really got to get busy.


Ocean City CollageThe most exciting thing I did during the hiatus was taking a real vacation for the first time in ages, to the beach for the first time in over a decade. It was only a 3 day getaway, but it was much needed and oh so fulfilling. My parents had rented a giant beach house and my sister’s family and neighbors came down too. Being at the beach again with my entire family had me nostalgic for my youth and all the vacations we took there when I was a kid. Heck, just being on the boardwalk after so long away from it had all the feels buzzing happily inside me. We did all the necessary, OceanCity things; Candy Kitchen’s Fudge, Fisher’s Popcorn, Thrasher’s Fries, Skee-Ball, and Old Time Black & White Photo booth pictures. We walked a ton and ate a really good seafood restaurant called Hooked, and even got to take home some really pretty blown glass ornaments from the Christmas Village my parents have always gotten their own ornaments from. The waves kicked my butt and Heath and I were both so sunburnt we looked like lobsters, but it was incredibly fun and relaxing. Just the long overdue escape from life we needed. I hope my parents get that place again next year. My camera performed like a champ while we were there, and if you’re interested in seeing pictures from the trip, click HERE!


This hiatus was good for me, mentally and physically, and while I did miss the internet a little (Okay, that’s kind of a lie. I mostly only missed Twitter – lol.), I think I need to practice staying away from it a little more often. It’s a bad habit I don’t want to let takeover me again. Because even if I didn’t get all the things I thought I would do done in my absence, I still did a heck of a lot more than I would have had I still been wasting all my free time with it. Stuff that was way more fulfilling than the internet’s ever made me feel. Everyone should take a break from time-to-time. It’s good for you to actually live life, you know? Not just watch how other people are living theirs. 😉


What have you been up to while I was gone?





Lil’ Diva Shoot

What little girl doesn’t want some cool pictures of herself for her fancy new bedroom? She wanted black and whites, but gosh the color just pops so much! Ari gets more and more into these shoots as she gets older and I’m loving it! :)




(Click the image above to see the album on Flickr!)


Hoerr Family Baby #2!

I’ve enjoyed shooting this family with just Brody, but I’m so excited to shoot them once Wyatt’s here too!




(Click the image above to see the album on Flickr!)

Milan Family Spring 2015

I’ve been shooting this family since before Luciano was even born. I’m so lucky they keep coming back for more! I love watching them grow. :)


(Click the image below to see the whole set on Flickr!)



Thrappas Family Spring Shoot

Pretty girls in trees and family cuteness overload!


(Click the image below to see the entire album on Flickr!)



Thrappas Family Spring Shoot

Parker Family Spring Shoot

Unfortunately it appears that Flickr has done away with their album sharing feature, so in the meantime (until I find another way to share albums via slideshow), click on the picture to go to the album on Flickr to see more from this shoot! :)



Parker Family Spring Shoot


Boudoir Shoot

I tried my hand at boudoir photography for a friend a couple weeks ago. I’m not sharing all of the pictures from the set as I’m not sure she’d want her face all over the internet with these pictures, but I’m pretty impressed with the results because she looks HOT!


(Warning: Theses pictures were shot with the intention of being framed art for her bedroom so I believe they are tastefully sexy, however, they may still be considered NOT SAFE FOR WORK.)


(Click through the slideshow below!)



Holleman Family Spring Shoot

Super sunny, super windy, but adorable little kidlets nonetheless! :)


(Click through the slideshow below!)




Mothers and Sons

My sister and Nakia have been best friends since they were in 1st grade (they’ll be 30 this year!), making Nakia our sister from another mother. She lives far away these days and it’s been a long time since we’ve seen her last, but she’s home this week with her son Oliver (who’s only a couple month’s younger than Abel) and we thought we should capture the moment with a Mothers and Sons shoot. Shooting my nephews is hard enough these days and adding a third little boy didn’t make it any easier, but boys being boys is fun to shoot and I’m just happy we got to spend this sort of quality time with Nakia before her and Oliver leave. <3


(Click through the slideshow below! For color versions of this set, click HERE!)


2014 In Review: Photography

It seems strange to have enough to say about photography this year to give it its own post. I certainly didn’t start 2014 with the intention of becoming a real photographer, but that’s sort of what happened. I’m not complaining of course, but it IS strange that it just happened without actually trying.


Apparently, I did 16 actual photoshoots/events this year. Maybe that doesn’t sound like a lot because people who do this for a living probably have multiple shoots booked every weekend all year long, but for someone who works full time (during a year that required more overtime than ever before) it feels like a lot to me.  Especially since the bulk of those shoots took place in just the last three months.


Sadly, right at the height of a photographer’s busy season, my ancient Rebel XS lost its ability to focus internally. I thought maybe it was just a lens issue because I could get a different lens to work a little more consistently, but eventually even that didn’t work. I’d be sitting there, clicking away, and the camera would just seize on me, refusing to even try to take a picture. According to everything I read online, death was near. So I was faced with a tough decision: buy an equivalent camera around 800 bucks or upgrade into the enthusiast level for 1400 bucks. It seemed silly to stay in the beginner levels of camera’s since I’m definitely not a beginner anymore. And I’m also definitely not a professional so I wasn’t even tempted by the even pricier models, but enthusiast did sound like a way to describe myself and Canon’s these days have far more versatility than they did 7 years ago. I’ve hardly even played with this new camera yet and already its features blow me away.


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Anyway, I took the plunge and treated myself to a Canon 70D at the start of December with a 18-135mm lens since my other two lens’ will still work with this new model. With the warranty, it’s the most expensive thing outside of my truck that I’ve ever bought myself. I still feel crazy over it. But, if 2015 ends up being as photo-centered as 2014 suddenly became, I’m hoping it will be worth it.


People are always asking me for prices now and schedules far in advance. I suppose I’ll work on updating the photography section of this site a little more often and add a calendar and pricing list for anyone interested. In the meantime, here’s a few of my favorite pictures from all the shoots I did in 2014!


(Click through the slideshow below!)