:: Team-up Thursday ~ Animals ::

While there’s certainly no short of animal references and playing around our house these days, we actually got a chance to sneak out and see some real, live animals this past week.  On Sunday, the kids and I headed to the circus with Grandma!  It was absolutely adorable to see Calder jumping and skipping with excitement after seeing the elephants before the show started.  And since it was the elephant that made the for the most memorable…er, um…”performance!” 

My fabulous and ultra-talented partner Jaimee took an outing to the zoo where she captured the most amazing shot!  Seriously, what’s not to love?  The squinty-eyed look of relaxation and I {love} the beautiful effect around the edges!

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Hopefully we’re not the only ones who feel like we live in a zoo or a circus!  See what everyone else has to share this week.  Thanks again Megan and Melody for hosting this great challenge!

:: Team-up Thursday ~ Comfort ::

I absolutely adore serendipity.  So, while Jaimee and I talked about this theme before the self-portrait challenge, it seemed logical to come back to it this week, now that we both have our feet planted a bit more firmly beneath us.  Honestly, the word itself feels good.  After the business we’ve had in our schedule, the unexpected vehicle repairs, the tantrums and stresses of life…it’s a good reminder to take solace in those things, those people who offer comfort

Comfort Dip

I can imagine Jaimee needs a healthy dose of comfort right about now too, so when I opened her picture, I literally laughed out loud.  Jaimee, I don’t know the story behind this shot, but if it’s anything like the fun around our house, it involves a harried Mom and busy sibling.  What’s not to love about that sweet face – so relaxed and looking all grown-up.  I loved the brightness and the contrast of his sweet skin and the texture of the carpet.  I admit, I really resisted the urge to convert my shot to B&W, but now that I see them together, the warmth seems good…comfortable

Be sure to visit Megan and Melody today to see what creative themes are being captured this week!

:: Team-up Thursday ~ Self-Portrait ::

{Gulp!}

This one was definitely a challenge.  I have this “gift” of being hyper-critical, especially of myself, so the task of taking, liking and publishing a picture solely of me – not me as Mom, or Teacher, or any number of other titles.  It was uncomfortable.  It was difficult.  It took thought and planning and time…and it forced me outside the comfort zone I never acknowledged behind the lens. 

I grew.

Perhaps the most rewarding part of this experience was learning what works and what doesn’t, and thinking like my subjects for a moment.  I have no plans to do anything more than have fun with my photography right now, but recognizing the feelings of awkwardness or uneasiness, feeling “posed” or less-than-natural.  That was good. 

Plus, knowing that my partner would be there with me, made this not quite as scary.  There’s comfort in company, in friendship, in recognizing common ground.  I look forward to “meeting” everyone today!

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Thanks Megan and Melody for pushing us to try new things!

:: Team-up Thursday ~ Snow ::

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I wouldn’t have imagined that Jaimee and I would have had an opportunity to tackle this theme together and in such a similar way given our geography.  There is a certain sense of awe, wonder and beauty that comes with a fresh blanket of fallen snow.  I admit I do have an affinity for icicles, twinkle lights, and a good cup of cocoa after a hard afternoon’s play.

For this week’s interpretation of our theme, I turned to one of the two winter weddings I had the pleasure of photographing.  After one two three computers crashed since late-November, hundreds of my pictures spent far too long sitting in loneliness on our external hard-drive.  How fun that today they came out to play! 

So far, it’s been really fun to see how our images and interpretations of our chosen theme come together.  I love the way these are both shot from behind the subject.  The way the river draws the eye, the fact that the gals are both on the same side of the guys…there’s just too much to love!  In fact, at a time of year when most Michiganders are pretty much over the novelty of snow, today’s challenge has made me happy to have it around for at least a few more weeks!  Thanks for the great shot, Jaimee!

Be sure to visit Melody and Megan to see what other’s are teaming up to share this week too!

Team-up Thursday

I’m so thankful I’ve made the commitment to get back to a bit more regular blogging.  It’s felt good to get my camera in my hands again, get my mind working on processing the things that happen throughout my day. 

Team-up Thursday - Health

One thing that helps me stay focused is having a purpose for a post, so you can imagine how thrilled I am that Jaimee agreed to be my partner for Megan and Melody’s Team Up Thursday!  I always adore her photos and can’t wait to see her creativity as we dive into the various themes!

In the throes of dealing with the flu last week (all four of us within 2.5 days), pnemonia and then a double ear infection (the last two were solely Li’l Lady) I threw out the theme of health.  Here are our interpretations of our theme this week!  A quick glance at other shots around my place will let you know that my picture is the sniffly girl, and Jaimee’s is the tea.  Thankfully we’re all on the mend now and hoping for health from now ’til spring!