Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Life as we know it right now

Seeing as though Ken Bruggeman has captured our family through his lens at each milestone in our lives this past year, it was without hesitation that we once again took advantage of his perspective as we sought to preserve through photos our life as we know it right now. {Thanks to Ken, we have memories as expectant first-time parents, memories of the day our sweet boy was born, and of our new family of three}.

I knew Burke would be a difficult subject to shoot, being highly independent, impressively mobile and possessing that token one-year-old interest in doing everything but what you want him to do. Burke is the most pleasant little boy I know {a compliment we are paid so often}. But just as soon as I say that he's always happy and cooperative, he goes right ahead and makes a filthy dirty liar out of me! Kids!!! Truthfully, although I remember a few devilish charming smiles scattered throughout the shoot, the majority of my memories centered around the panic I felt at the fact that our photos were going to be terrible. Because my son would just not cooperate. He was being a stinker. A stubborn little one-year-old stinker! And yet, when Ken showed us our photos yesterday, I was in love. He had captured our little boy just as we know him--happy, independent, playful and loving. So, without further ado, here are some other photos from our family photo shoot. {To see the entire gallery click here}

And it wouldn't be a complete family photo shoot if we didn't include our one on the way! 

Monday, June 25, 2012

Dreams, Desires and Destiny

I don't want the doubts of others to change the way I love
I don't want the fear of others to change the way I fly

Have you ever wanted something so badly that it consumed you? It was your dream. Your destiny. It filled every waking thought and invaded your dreams. It was organically rooted in your soul and sometimes felt like its mere presence was about to suffocate you. Like you couldn't catch your breath under the weight of it all. But it was a good weight, a hefty gravity you welcomed.

And have you ever told anyone--your close friend, a family member, a stranger even--about this desire only to be shot down? Rejected. Deflated. Brought back to "reality." At least their perception of reality. Come on, be realistic. You're such a dreamer. You know that will never happen. What about blah, blah, blah...

Well I have. Many times. First, when I wanted to be a movie star. Then there was the time I wanted to be a famous musician. No one ever scoffed when I said I'd decided to become a lawyer. But a model...that was a different story. A mom? No problem. My small town could understand that one...although they may not have understood why I waited so long. {Married at 26, a first-time mom at 28--old maid!! I was lucky my reproductive organs were still functioning, I guess} But the bright lights and fairytales...apparently, those would never be my reality. Settle down. Get a job. Raise kids. Make money like a responsible adult. Realistic. 

Okay so maybe I wasn't destined to be a movie star, have a Top 10 hit or model for Victoria's Secret. {Don't get me wrong, though. If someone offered me any one of those things I would accept without even a moment's hesitation.} But in the course of dreaming, suffocating and deciding to pursue that thing that weighed on my soul at each juncture in life, I have discovered my destiny. And here I am once again suffocating under its beautiful gravity as it threatens to surface. To consume me. And to prevail. Once again, it's not realistic. Not even possible, really. At least not humanly possible. But I have a good feeling about this one... Good thing for me, I happen to possess some superhuman tendencies. It's why I was created. To fulfill this very purpose. Because I've finally arrived at the precise intersection of destiny and desire. It is this special place where my dreams have become my desires which have been revealed to me as my destiny. It's super sweet.

And I'm not going to let anyone's doubts or fears or talks of some silly old "reality"--which is really just their flawed perception of circumstances and life--keep me from this one. And I challenge you to do the same!

Don't limit yourself by the realities of others. Expand their realities by pursuing your dreams, desires and destiny!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Was it really just last year

that I donned makeup and did my hair for the first time as a Mama so that we could rush off to capture Burke's precious innocence in his first photo shoot?
Really? A whole year?
 This photo hangs in his nursery and he loves to point at it asking wha da?
 I tell him that it's him...when he was a baby. And then I wonder what my baby is if he's no longer a baby.
And it hits me. He's a big boy. A toddler. Really, in the true sense of the word. He toddles around all the livelong day stopping only for an occasional drink, a brief hug, and maybe just a moment of reassurance that he won't suffer permanent brain damage from all of the knocks his hard head sustains.
Oh and that precious innocence decided to poop right in my hand that day. Right in the middle of his photo shoot. He didn't even bother to wake up. Guess he taught us who calls the shots. But you'd never know that my white shirt was stained with baby poop in this photo.
Or this one.
I am so thankful for these photos because without proof, I never would ever believe that my baby--my toddler--was ever this tiny. I would never remember that he resembled a little old man and that he looked nothing like he looks now.
As I look at these photos, I have no idea how in the world we determined that he looked like Burke. But he couldn't have had a more appropriate name, as he could be any one of my mom's or grandma's boys. His resemblance to my dad is uncanny.
 And these photos help to remind me of those first days, weeks and months when I would measure his growth by the width of his back. In the beginning, his tiny back fit in the palm of my hand. And slowly, it began to spread. But each day, I'd say to myself he's not wider than my hand yet. Until one day, I realized that he was.
While he may look like my side of the family, his personality is so much his daddy. Energetic, enthusiastic, determined, bullheaded slightly stubborn, smart {so smart}, funny, and 100% boy! He's also gentle and loving. A snuggler and a sweet sweet boy. He's content, happy, laid back and comfortable with himself. And he's already so independent.
I am so proud of the little person he's become. From the cutest little peanut on the planet to a roaring ball of energy {literally...he roars...or growls...} this kid has made our lives the best. Really--he's awesome. And we're so humbled to be his parents.
Give up once more for my friend Ken Bruggeman. He did such an incredible job capturing the memories of our journey as parents. I am excited to round out Burke's first year with another shoot with Ken and to see how artfully he will capture the warmth of our son's brown eyes and the charm of his toothy grin. Ken's photos always tell a story. And I love how beautifully our story is being spun.