Summer is Calling

IceCream1

I remember vividly where I was when I heard the jingle of an ice cream truck. It was the summer of 1998; I was sitting on my Aunts couch in California when my cousins busted through the door yelling “ice creaaaammm”. Where I grew up, we did not have ice cream trucks.  So I was excited to run outside with my cousins, clutching my dollar and hoping for something good.

When I moved to Las Vegas, ice cream trucks became a normal part of the summer. The choices rarely change; the trucks always look dingy, but I cannot help but get excited when I hear the jingle. Now, I get to share that with Logan…of course, he can not eat his sweet treat yet. It is nice to know that summer is coming, and Logan will get to experience ice cream trucks, playing in the sprinklers and heading to the theater on a hot summer day.

It’s the little things people, the little things.

 

In my city…CupKates

I live in one of the most talked about cities in America, yet, for some reason I have not shared with you “local faves”. So I’m starting a new series called “In my city”. I’m going to share with you local secrets, because Las Vegas is more than just the strip.

Let’s talk cupcakes.

I love cupcakes, it’s a little piece of goodness that doesn’t make you feel too guilty. So I have been on a quest to find the best cupcake store in Las Vegas. I’ve found pretty cupcakes that don’t taste as good as they look, cupcakes that are dry, cupcakes that were too rich, and although I may have gained five pounds, after ten stores, I finally found it.
It’s a small little store called CupKates. They have two location in the valley, one inside the marketplace at Tivoli Village and another at The Container Park. The cupcakes are moist, full of flavor and have just the right amount of frosting. I stumbled into the store inside The Container Park after a photo shoot, I needed a pick me up. At only $2 per cupcake and $1 for a mini cupcake it was a bargain. I picked up what are now my personal favorites: The CupKate and Sticky Fingers.
The owner is so sweet, she makes sure you are treated like a queen. I ordered mini cupcakes from her for my sons first birthday…and have plans to continue making her cupcakes a staple at our family parties.

If you’re in town.. Head to The Container Park (It’s near Freemont Street) and pick up a CupKate, then let me know what you think!

Cupkates CupKates 3 Cupkates 2

 

 

My Secrets for Photographing One-Year-Olds

Photographer or not, everyone wants amazing pictures of their little ones as they grow up. The more they move, the harder it is to take pictures of them. So I’ve compiled some of my secrets to share with you. I hope they come in handy.

Secret # 1 – Don’t Stress about them looking at the camera All too often while I am on a photo shoot or photographing my son, I want him to look at the camera. I’ve found though, letting the little ones look around and become familiar with where they are makes them end up looking at you beaming from seeing new things.   Logan 1 Logan 2 Secret # 2 – Let them feel independent (safely though, of course) Every shoot needs a spotter, someone to catch them if they fall. Safety always comes first. With that being said, let them experience some freedom. Put them on a chair, let them hang out around the stairs or in this case let them hold on to the fence. You’ll get the “look at meeee” look that is priceless, they are so proud of themselves.   Logan 3 Logan 6 Secret #3 – Sing Bust out their favorite songs, and do NOT downplay theatrics. Logan loves when I sing “If you’re happy and you know it” as well as “The wheels on the bus”.. I ad-lib many things, but he knows the tune. When they are happy and do not notice the camera, you can get some fun, real shots. Logan 10 Secret #4 – Peek – A- Boo Peek-A-Boo at any age is funny (try it on an engagement shoot…your couple will look at you in an odd way and then bust up laughing), but one-year-olds LOVE it. Zoom in and capture that laugh when the “Boo” comes. Logan 12   Secret #5 – Not Everything has to be their Face This isn’t really a secret, more of a tip…capture the little things. They won’t be little forever. Logan 4

A Mom…

This morning I opened my news feed while eating breakfast and tears started to roll down my cheek. There is something about being a mom you can not explain to anyone other than a mom. This deep emotion for your child. You are connected to them 100%. So while I read the story of a mother who selflessly gave her life to bring her daughter into this world, I had a lump in the deepest part of my throat, tears welling up more and a sickness in the pit of my stomach because I know…I would have done the same thing. The story I am referring to is about a New York Woman who had cancer and was told she’d never get pregnant, and then her miracle came. One month into her pregnancy she had to make the hard decision…Have a PET Scan and terminate her pregnancy or carry her child knowing it could be the last thing she does. She was a mom…and she made the decision to carry her baby.

This little girl spent six weeks with her mom before her mom was called back to heaven. As unfair as this situation is, it also makes you realize how strong moms are. I bet there isn’t one of my mommy readers that wouldn’t have done the same thing for their child. I would have, and you bet your ass I would NEVER have let that child go.

My heart goes out to the family and all families who have to make the hard choices. I for one will be remembering that each day could be my last and to make it count.

A Mom…

Memories of another time still come
To me and fill my mind, with thoughts
Of you when you were young. I lie awake
‘Till the morning sun comes creeping
Through my window shade, as I dwell upon
Mistakes I’ve made. What I would give to
Go back in time and feel you’re little
Hand in mine. To cherish each fast and
Fleeting day. To hold you close and kiss
Away, each pain that life will have in
Store and try to give you so much more.
You are part and will always be, imbedded in the soul of me. While I’m
Here, I want to say, that I’ve loved you
Each and every day and when my time on earth is gone.
The privilege was mine to have been your Mom.

Hands

Diaries of a Working Mom – Juggling

I was listening to a Rascal Flatt song and the lyrics went a little something like “...Sunday was a day of rest. Now, it’s one more day for progress…”. Is that not the truth. Sometimes, Sunday is the only day I have to get things taken care of. It’s been a solid 15 months figuring out my new schedule. Logan really put a kink in it, because who wouldn’t want to just forgo everything to hang out with him.

Here is a peek into my day – The one thing I REALLY had to learn, schedule me time. 

Monday-Friday
5:45 am, wakeup, shower, get ready 
6:30 am, get Logan up, feed him, get him ready
7:15 am, get out the door, drop off Logan
8:00 am, clock in, start working (even though I’ve been emailing since 6)
1:00 pm, Have lunch, take a walk
5:30 pm, pick up Logan
6:00 pm, feed Logan and play with him
6:45 pm, bottle, bath, book and bed
7:01 pm, Logan is asleep
Then it’s Dinner, Workouts (M,T,F) , prepping for the next day, and time with Wes

Prep work is my number one tip to survive mornings! Especially if you are like me and you hit snooze too many times.

We can’t all be superheroes like this guy…

 

batman

Editing out…

Editing

Top is before Patch Tool   |  Bottom is after Patch Tool

Have you ever noticed that an urban area looks pristine and pretty in a lot of photographers photos? Well, guess what… It isn’t always the case. In fact, most places I like to shoot have less than err clean areas. Enter the Patch Tool on Photoshop. I use it regularly, you circle the area you want to change, drag it to a cleaner spot that is similar to the coloring and look and BOOM clean and pretty.

Do you edit photos? Are you a fan of the Patch Tool?

Oh and this model – Yes…She is gorgeous!

The Nude Files

Nude Nails

 

Everyone has a nervous twitch; mine happens to be picking at my nails. How horrible is that? I spend the time to paint my nails only to chip away at them when I start to get nervous or stress out. I’m not a fake nail girl, so I had to come up with something. Enter finding the perfect nude polish for my pigment less skin.

I couldn’t be more excited for Zoya Nail Polish and the shade Chantal, it’s now my go to when I need to have pretty nude nails.

That is all; I know, I know, longest post ever.