Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas

I am happy to report that our Christmas this year was very laid back and uneventful - the perfect holiday :o)

It was unfortunately also the last uneventful time since... more on that later ;o)

As our families are geographically spread out across a moderately sized city, we typically spend most of our major holidays in the car traveling between them and making sure that everyone gets their time with us. This was especially important this year, as it was Owen's first Christmas and everyone wanted to be a part of it. We, however, were not looking forward to a day spent couped up in the car with a 3 month old lol and honestly, what way is that to spend any holiday?

So this year we decided that we wanted to host Christmas at our own house and have everyone come to us :o) It was important to us that Owen spend Christmas in his own home, but still be surrounded by family. Of course, we were still dealing with a 3 month old and so I was on a mission to make hosting such a major holiday as easy as possible. Each of our families came and went throughout the day, we put out ham and rolls for sandwiches, along with various other finger food type items - things that could be picked at throughout the day. No formal sit down dinner for us, and it worked out just fine!

Owen was a great sport - despite going on minimal sleep (it's difficult to try and not miss anything, when you're used to sleeping most of the day lol) he passed out from exhaustion in various people's arms here and there, but got no real sleep sessions in that day.

 (LoVe this pic of my two favorite guys :o)

 (santa feet :o)

He absolutely LoVeD opening gifts :o) Like any child, he was more interested in the wrapping paper than anything else haha but as usual our families were overly generous, and Owen made out like a bandit! Who knew that someone so small, could get soooooooo many toys! I have no idea where we're going to put everything lol

 (very unamused lol)

 (the best present this year :o)

 We wanted to start some Christmas traditions with Owen and although he is too young to really get any of them, it was important to us to start them now so that we can truly say we had been doing them since his very first Christmas :o) He got his first ornament for the tree, we read The Night Before Christmas on Christmas Eve, watched the movie Elf, and opened Christmas jammies and wore them to bed that night and took a family picture in them in front of the tree :o)

Hoping that all of you had safe, happy and healthy holidays as well! Here's to a wonderful New Year!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

3 Months

I cannot believe that my little bug is 3 months old already!

I am sure that every parent says that all of the time, and I am sure that I have and will continue to say that at each and every milestone - but it seriously just blows my mind how quickly he's growing and how fast time is going. If only we could freeze time and keep him like this forever :o)

But since that's not possible, I will "freeze time" in my own way by capturing as many of these moments as I can in pictures :o) I am so glad that we invested in a nice camera before Owen joined our family, we are definitely getting our money's worth. Even with all of the pictures that I am taking (which is A LOT), I still don't feel like it's enough... I'm not sure that it will ever be enough, but I am making a conscious effort to get the camera out as much as possible.

So we had a few mini-photo sessions this week, to capture Owen's 3 month portraits:

I keep saying that I am going to practice and improve my photography skills - well let me tell you, photographing a baby will definitely help you with that! I am sure that toddlers and young, mobile children are a challenge of their own... so I'm glad that I'm starting now and working my way up to that lol Lucky for me, Owen is a great and happy baby :o) Plus, he's super cute and having a great subject to work with makes any photograph easier to take (what, you're saying I could be biased ;o)

Overall, I am thrilled with how these came out. We tried to experiment with different settings, backgrounds and props - living in the Northeast leaves photographers with very little natural light come this time of the year, so I am getting lots of practice with studio portrait photography setup right now.

My goal is to continue to get the camera out as much as possible (I have yet to actually bind myself to a specific goal, like daily photography). I also take a daily cell phone pic of Owen to text message to our parents each day - I am looking forward to compiling these photos into a 365 Days of Owen collage at his first birthday :o) I mentioned previously that we also recently invested in a HD video camera... now that Owen is reaching more developmental milestones, I will be trying to capture those in action as well.

Monday, December 12, 2011


I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned that Bryan's family is originally from another state - he, his brother, and his parents are the only ones of his extended family living within a 4 hour drive. So naturally, we try to go down and visit at least once a year and that usually happens to be when they celebrate Christmas together. This year, that celebration took place this past weekend - we piled into a vehicle (which is getting increasingly cramped with 5 of us and now Owen too) and headed south for the festivities.

This was Owen's first major trip - his first extended car ride and his first night(s) away from home. All-in-all he did surprisingly well :o) Aside from his daily schedule being off (including complete lack of solid naps) he plowed through like a champ! He even slept great, despite the fact that his routine was non-existent and he was in a new strange place.

It was also his first taste of Christmas :o) He got some really great presents from family and was just really excited to be with everyone.

I love his little holiday outfit :o) That was a gift from Bryan's dad - a sweater-vest, just like grandpa's lol

It was a great family weekend and I was so happy to share it with Owen this year :o)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Santa, baby

In honor of his first Christmas, we took Owen to see Santa :o)

He's at an age where it doesn't really mean much to him and it didn't really phase him one way or the other (unlike next year, when he'll be old enough to really freak out about it lol), so we figured we'd take advantage and put him on the jolly guy's lap to snap a few pictures:

And of course we had to snap a quick family pic in Santa's Village :o) Please excuse my dishevel look - this was a spur-of-the-moment trip and I was not planning on having my picture taken lol

As you can see Owen wasn't thrilled with Santa, but he really didn't care one way or another. No less, it was a good photo opportunity and now we can start this yearly tradition :o)

Sunday, December 4, 2011


Owen was baptized today :o)

Please excuse the extremely poor quality picture - I am embarrassed as an amateur photographer to say that I was completely unprepared for this event :o( Most of the pictures were taken with a point 'n shoot camera, which lends for poor quality overall. So you'll notice us sporting some lovely red eye and poor lighting in most of these shots.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Holiday Decor

Tis the season :o)

My holiday spirit (i.e. tree, stockings, lights, music, SNOW lol) usually lasts from Thanksgiving to New Years, and then I'm ready to move on. So I am one of those people who throws their tree and decorations up the day after Thanksgiving, and you'd better believe it all comes down the day after New Years! Now if only I could get the snow to do the same :o)

So our holiday spirit is currently in full swing - here's what our home looks like this year:

I ordered Owen his first Christmas stocking :o) We probably wont really stuff it (at least too much ;o) this year, since he's still unaware of what's really going on - we might as well take advantage and save some $$$ while we still can haha But now we all have matching stockings, hung by the chimney with care!

I also took some time to practice with my photography skills a little more - I am currently focusing on a technique called "bokeh", which is Japanese for "out of focus". The holiday season is a great time to utilize the bokeh technique; all of the lights make for some great photo opps :o)

(who is that I see, hanging in the Christmas tree ;o)

My next task will be attempting to get Owen in the foreground of some of my bokeh shots (good luck, right? lol). Now that he is able to situp a little more on his own, I'm hoping to be able to attempt a few shots - stay tuned!

Happy Holidays!