Sunday, December 26, 2010

52 Weeks of Me (gasp!)

I tried last year to do a 365 project but as week 20 approached life got out of hand. I had put the project on hold only to not go back to it at all. I had considered for about 1/2 a second to give it a go again this coming year and decided, NOT. I have then seen a few blogs and Flickr groups that did more of a 52 week project and thought that would be much more manageable.

When I read that Jessie @ The Lucas Zoo was thinking of a 365 project, I mentioned the idea of a 52 instead. She is a busy mom like me and I thought she might like that idea instead of 365. Jessie then asked me if I was going to host the 52 week project, I had not even thought about hosting. I was just going to post a picture each week, then she mentioned she was thinking about a 52 week project but was going to do self portraits. Wow, what an idea! I told her we should co-host it and she took me up on it.

Now I don't like to be in front of the camera but I was telling Jessie that when I saw a picture of myself the other day I had not recognized myself. I am in so few photo's that I almost forgot what I looked like. So I thought this might be a good project all around, one- to get me thinking creatively, two- to remember what I look like (LOL), and three- to get to know how to use my new camera (yes Santa was good to me).

So join Jessie and I for "52 Weeks of Me" project. We have come up with some themes but you can do what ever you like. We decided to do our post's on Sunday's and will kick off the New Year, Jan. 2nd with our first theme of a Traditional Portrait. Using the Mister Linky widget you can link your photo and join in on the project. You don't need a blog to participate just create an account with Flickr, upload your photo there, and use that link.

I look forward to seeing the creativity that will come about.


Friday, December 24, 2010

Morning Frost

The other morning I was up with the kids early, like that is a surprise, and notice the frost outside. I go and throw on my boots, my jacket and my husbands ski hat and venture outside. Yes, I am in my jammies too. In our backyard there is a huge area of land that is overgrown, full of weeds, sticker bushes and wildlife. Not exactly a wooded area but close. The sun also comes up on that side of the house. So there I am, in my little get up, trampling through the bushes at the crack of dawn taking pictures of weeds. Can you imagine what the neighbors think, then again they know me and the camera so it probably didn't even phase them.

This is my favorite, it's a dead weed but looks so pretty full of frost and the rising sun bokeh.

These are some type of berry on one of the bushes.

More frost covered berries.

Weeds again, isn't nice how the light can even make weeds look interesting.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

I tried while Michael was away one day after work and bath to get the boys photo for our Christmas card. I had the speedlight, the tripod, and the 50mm. That should have been a recipe for success, it was not. The one photo that they were even smiling in was not a true smile. They had that I am smiling because Mom is yelling and I am getting chocolate when this is all over.

So they were not going to work. I tried again and out of 150 shot, no lie, I actually got one that I liked. Not loved, but really like. Even better were some of the outtakes from the attempt. One of these day I will actually send one of the outtakes as the card.

So here is the shot I managed to get:

Of course I need to include some of the outtakes:

I hope that you all have a Merry Christmas this year!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Busy Just Gets Busier

So I went from busy to busier and there seems to be no slowing down. I can just imagine all of you are also just as busy. Why does everything seem to come all at once and around a Holiday?

I forgot to post on Thursday my diptych that Jen and I did for the Team-Up Thursday. I thought I had done the post the night before but it wasn't until the end of the day Thursday that I realized I hadn't. I think that was the night I laid down with the boys for a few minutes and fell asleep. (I've bet we have all been there before.)
I just love Jen photo and how ours go together. I think her's is of decoration on a mantle maybe since I see the lovely bokeh of the Christmas tree in the back ground. Mine is of the Snowman outside on our front lawn patch of grass. I really like how we both had the bokeh on the same side and the color red in the focal point. The color red definitely makes me think December.

One of the nice things about December is the Christmas light, the kids ask me to drive down our street when we get home just to look at the other houses and their light. We also look for lights along the way as we travel home and sometimes take alternate (off the highway) routes just to see them.

I tried to take a shot of my neighbors house with the tripos and a longer shutter and I love how the light look like little sunburst. I am really hoping to get the chance to take more pictures over the Holiday. Shelly and I are talking about doing a "52 Week" project instead of a 365 this coming year. 52 seem so much more manageable than 365. We haven't iron out the details since there are a million more pressing items on the list. Like I said busy just got busier.

I can say that I did finally send my Christmas cards which is a huge accomplishment for me. I will post some pictures and the out-takes (which are the best) soon.

Don't forget to head on over to Megan and Hip Momma to see the other Team-Up Thursday photos for the December theme.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Team Up Thursday - Busy

Jen emailed me Tuesday and reminded me that we had not pick a theme, it had again slipped both our minds. On her list of possible themes, one was busy. It really stood out to me because that about sums it up for me at present.

What is it about the Holidays that make us so busy we can barely keep our heads above water? The one thing that is constant for me is the incessant amount of stuff I pick up on a regular basis.

Once I finished this photo all I could think of was how great it would be to have 3 clones of myself. I would give each one a list of thing to do, while I sat back, supervised and read my favorite blogs. Oh, a girl can dream.


I am not sure what those are that Jen is busy working on but they sure are cute. I am not sure if they are buttons, pins or magnets (I could use one that says I've been mostly nice!). I am pretty sure she up-cycled them from something because she is so crafty like that. She inspired me to look at something I might throw away and think of another purpose or how to up-cycle it into something new.

For more great dipytch's:

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Team Up Thirsday -End of the Day

OMG, can this time of year get any busier?
I feel like I go from one thing to the next. The one thing that is constant for me is bed time. Nothing beats, footy jammies, a pillow pet and a school bus (in my 2 year old's mine). The footy jammies are my favorite. By 4 1/2 - 5 they are a little too old (more because I can't find them) and the babiness is gone. Nicolo is on the cusp of big boy/baby and I am grasping at the baby aspect everyday. The more he talks to me as a child the more I wish I never hoped for the day he would be a boy.

There are so many parts of growing up that I want him to achieve, but there are just as many infantile trait that I will so miss. A part of me thinks I may try for another, but a bigger part of me know he is and always will be my baby. I also think he knows that too (which he plays to his advantage regularly).

Jen on the other hand had represented the "end if the day" in a manner in which I would love too and will participate in on a regular basis (LOL).

Her photo reminds me of a conversation I had with my Doctor once. She said, "Do you drink regularly?" I said, "Yes, everyday after the kids go to bed." She said..."Good for you."
3 weeks later she was telling me I had the lowest cholesterol in practice...I reminded her of my daily relief.

end of the day

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Sunday, November 28, 2010

When in doubt and true to form.

I was questioning Nicolò's language development over the past few months. The only gauges I have are Francesco who, once started, never stopped and the girls in his class that speak like little women. The other day one of the girls from his class saw me in the hallway and said, "Hi, Nicolò's mommy! Are you coming to take him home now?" The most I get out of him, with prompting, is to just say Hi. Then when I get to his classroom I am inundated by the girls explaining to me what he did today, if he followed the rule, if he was nice, where his cubby is, etc. Nicolò is in the corner dressing his Matchbox car in a Barbie dress.
So in my mind I questioned and I was concerned.
I then took him on Wednesday for a follow-up Hearing Test and Ear Check (he has those wonderful tubes). He aced the hearing test and his tubes were in and clear. Since I was concerned I told the Audiologist and the Nurse Practitioner my fears that he was behind. I wasn't sure so, when in doubt...ask.
They were great, they reassured me, gave me handouts on where he should be at 2. 2 1/2 and 3 years of age. These handout also had tips on how to foster more language development.
So I took these handouts and was on a mission to figure out how "behind" he was. They also said if I felt he was really behind to talk with his Pediatrician about it.

Well...I began to question, test and listen to him all the time.

True to form, Nicolò decides to prove me wrong. Just like the last time when I told the Pediatrician he didn't put two word together. The next day he was doing just that. Since I said something, I SWEAR, he has gone through a major language leap. It may also be that with my concern and the handout I was tuning into him more, but I am floored by the resent developments.

So the next time I am worried about a developmental milestone I am going to bring it up to the doctor sooner so he can prove me wrong...again.

I don't like to be wrong, but in these cases I am good with that!
**Update 11/29/10 - last night (or really early this morning, let's say 4ish) Nicolo was sitting up in his bed, calling for me. When I go to see what was wrong he point to his sheet and say, "look a snowman." Can someone please smack me, what's that saying...careful what you wish for!


Calvin: Sometimes when I'm talking, my words can't keep up with my thoughts. I wonder why we think faster than we speak.
Hobbes: Probably so we can think twice.
~Bill Watterson, Calvin & Hobbes

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Our First Thanksgiving

This year was the first Thanksgiving that we hosted. I was a little worried that something would go terribly wrong but I am happy to say it went off without a hitch. It was a super busy day but everyone pitched in.


My favorite part of this Thanksgiving was having my own little helper. He loves to watch "cooking shows" with me (partially to stall from going to bed, but also because I know he enjoys learning about cooking). I am hoping he will be able to take over for me in a few years.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Car Conversations

I need to put these things down just so I don't forget.

On the way to school/work this morning Nicolo was playing with the voice recording on the DSi. Francesco's voice is recorded in all the files and Nicolo was making them do all kinds of funny sounds. Francesco proceeds to tell me how it's his voice and Nicolo should record his own to play with. I told him to let it go, he could play with the DSi on the way home. (now repeat the last two sentences 3 times.) Finally I got tired of the banter and said:
Me: For the last time, he is playing with the game now and you can play with on the way home. Do you understand?
Francesco: Yes.
Me: Good, then I don't want to hear another word about it. Got it?
Francesco: Yes, but your difficult.

I'm difficult? OMG, I hope to God he gets one just like him! :-)

Fast forward to the trip to the store after school/work.

Nicolo was telling us he wanted something, in the struggle to understand the word we figured out he was saying he wanted a bus and a car. I said we could look at the store. Francesco adds in the he wants a "Red Race Car with Flames". I again say we can look. They then have a little discussion between the two of them about what they want from the store. Francesco then asks me.
Francesco: Mommy, what do you want?
Me: Peace and quiet.
Francesco: Does that come in a box?
Me: I wish.
Francesco: We can look for it at the store.
Me: Now that I would pay money for!

Now don't think he forgot that we need to look for a box of "peace and quiet."


So for a couple of bucks at Target, you too can get your very own box of "Peace and Quiet". Isn't it lovely?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Team Up Thursday - Siblings

Jen and I went with the theme "siblings" this week. I like the theme because I really wanted to concentrate on getting a nice shot of the boys together, but as always (and I mean always) things never happen as I plan.

To start off the kink in the plan my battery died, not like need recharging but like you need a new one died. I shouldn't complain, I've had the same battery since I first got the camera. So I had to whip out my point-n-shoot. Now, don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with a point-n-shoot, but if you love your camera and all the things it can do you know what I mean.
Then to help matters the one day it wasn't raining and the sun was out the boys were a) not cooperative and b) not getting along. I cropped their heads out of this picture so you can just guess the expressions on their faces. Let just say this was not a nice exchange of the toy. I thought about leaving their faces in but I wanted to keep you wondering.


Now Jen's is so sweet, if my kids were that close to each other one would be yelling that the other is touching them and visa verso. Then I wonder...did she pay them to sit nicely with each other? No matter what it's a sweet shot and I like the angle and perspective.

For more great Dips!

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Time Change: Sunset

The fading light is so intense that I can not help but to stop and capture it in all it's glory.


Monday, November 8, 2010

Best Shot Monday

Sometimes being a brother is even better than being a superhero.
~Marc Brown

in the leaves

boys leaves


Friday, November 5, 2010

A little disclaimer

The other day I posted a photo of Nicolo:

I only wrote one sentence:
You answered so many questions...and created so many more!

I didn't think much of it because that was the thought that went through my head as I looked at the picture.

Then Joanna commented:"Intriguing post. Beautiful boy! :)"

When I read her comment I went back to the post and read the sentence and thought, "that is a bit intriguing, what excellently did I mean by that?"

I thought I might explain.
"You answered so many questions..."

1. What would it be like to have another child?
2. What would it be like to have another BOY!?
3. Would those two boys be very similar or COMPLETE opposites of each other?
4. What would it be like to see myself in another human-beings face?
5. Can you really love another child just as much as the first?
6. Will I every be able to get two kids and a husband out the door and be on time for work?
7. What did my dad looked like as a little boy?
8. Do some kids really eat dirt?
9. What is it like to have a child that is content to play solo and spend time by themselves.

"and created so many more."
1. Why do some kids just refuse to use utensils?
2. Why is it that dirt seems to find you?
3. Do I want to do this all again?
4. Do I need to do this all again?
5. Will you be as interesting as a boy as you are a toddler?
6. Will I survive those years?
7. Why did God think I could handle two energetic boys?
8. Will you and Francesco be friends and can I do anything to make sure that you are?
9. Will I able to instill in you what my parents did in me?
10. Will your love of dirt take you to places like MIT?

No matter the question or the answer, one thing is very would not be the same without you. I will always remember the day I realized you were on the way and never forget the day you joined us forever.

You...are my baby.

Friday Light - The Morning

With the impending approach of standard time coming and the shorter days of winter I have been compelled to take photographs of the morning light. I know that I will miss it so I am hoping my pictures will hold me till the spring.
Right now if I leave for work on time and get the boys to school without incident the sun is just barely making it's appearance. If I am running a little late, even 5-10 minutes the sun starts to rise and really draws me in. I will even go out of my way to a spot that I may have been to and thought, "wonder how this looks in the morning sun?". I mean if you are already late what's a couple of minutes more.
I know that with the time change there is going to be a little more morning light, but believe me that is short lived here (about3 weeks). There comes a time when we are leaving for the day and coming home in the dark (which seems to last forever to me).

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Team Up Thursday - Morning

Jen and I again pulled it together last minute. We both couldn't remember if we had pick a theme and if we did we couldn't remember what it was. We were both relieve to find out we were on the same page, be it the wrong one, but on the same.
We decided to pick the theme "Morning". I found this park near where I work that has these ornamental grasses and thought they might look neat in the morning sun. Yesterday I decided to stop and take a picture. I know that come this weekend I won't see the sunrise for a while. When the clock turn back it will still be dark when I get to work in the morning so I've be compelled to capture the light before it is gone.
I like how Jen's photo tells the story. Who wouldn't like a nice cup of fresh coffee while enjoying the sunrise? I also like how the colors in the coffee cup are similar to the colors in the sunrise photo.
It's a good thing I stop yesterday, today we are having downpours.

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Team Up Thursday - Books

Jen and I choose the theme BOOKS this week. We both were cutting it close this week and pulled it together last minute. Sometime the pressure is good, makes you think even harder. I love how it came out. I like the fact that the bottom book looks like it could be one from the top just opened.

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


You answered so many questions...
and created so many more!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Team Up Thursday - Milestones

Jen and I went with the theme "Milestones" this week. I originally thought that I would try to find a mile marker with the number 3 on it to symbolize my ability to run 3 miles. Unfortunately the only place I ever see a mile marker is on the interstate, and I am not stopping there. Fortunately though my son is hitting milestones left and right.

Francesco is learning to write his name, I get all ver clempt just thinking about it. This is a milestone that really get to me for some reason. It this huge symbol of him not being my baby anymore and really, really growing up. He already gets the first 3 letter FRA all on his own and only needs me to point the others out on the alphabet chart for him. I still just can't wrap my brain around my boy writing his name.

I am loving that Jen and I both featured out little men. Miller is awesomely riding that bike with no training wheels, what a huge milestone that is for a kid. Way to go Miller!!!!!!!


For more great dips:

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Monday, October 18, 2010

Best Shot Monday: Good Morning

This time of the year the sun does not come up till I am almost to work. There is something about how the morning sun peaks out from behind the trees that draws me in. I love the warm light and the long shadows the morning sun creates. I really don't have the time in the morning to go out, explore and photograph but today I had to capture the sun. It was calling me.


For more Best Shot head on over to Tracey's!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Picture Fall - Week 2

Week Two of Picture Fall is now done. I got a little behind but somehow found time today to catch up. It feels good to be caught up with something.

Picture Fall Week 2

If you are looking at this and thinking to yourself, "is that a chin with stitches in it?" you would be correct. This is not the first time Francesco has done this either. He fell while trying to walk on a balance beam at the park. I saw his chin smack the beam and knew what had happened.

He was much better this time in the ER. I was extremely proud of him. I didn't have to hold him down at all, I just had to hold his hand. He is really, really growing up.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

My Storyteller

Lately Francesco has been telling me stories. He likes to make them up with a familiar spin. This is the one he told me on the way home from school the other day.

F: Once upon a time there was a duck. (a long pause)

You need to ask a question Mommy!

Me: Not sure what to ask I say, “was it a big duck or a little duck?”

F: Medium duck.

That duck was looking for friends and he found a straw house. He decided to make lunch. Then all the sudden, he hears (he leans over and knocks on the wall). (In a deep voice he says), “little duck, I mean medium duck, medium duck let me in!”

The medium duck goes over and opens the door and sees the big bad Zebra. He says, “Not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin.”

The Zebra turns around, pick up his legs and says, “then I’ll kick the door in.” The duck runs down the street to find his friend and he finds a frog. (a long pause)

You need to ask a question Mommy!

Me: So I ask the same question as before, “was it a big frog or a little frog?”

F: Medium frog.

The duck and the frog make lunch, salad, cheese, salad. Then all of the sudden (again the knock at the door) and the big bad Zebra said, (in a deep voice)“little frog, little frog, no wait I mean medium frog, medium frog let me in!” The frog says, not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin or ducks.

So the Zebra turns around, picks up his legs and kicks the door in.

All of the sudden Spiderman swoops in and says, “don’t worry I’ll save you.” He put them on his super fast motorcycle and zooms down the road to the finish line and wins the race!

The End


Thursday, October 14, 2010

According to my map...

On the way to school lately Francesco has been using the Flipnotes on the DSi to draw a map of our route. He will them navigate and narrate our trip. It goes a little like this:
F: According to my map we are need to turn to go to Dunkin Donuts.
(which we do...America Runs on Dunkin!)

F: According to my map there is something in our way.
Me: What is it?
F: That car in front of us.

F: According to my map there is a lot of traffic ahead.
Me: Why is there traffic?
F: Due to road construction, you really should take an alternate route. Let me draw one for you.

F: According to my map we are almost there, aren't you glad you had a map?
Me: Of course I am, sweetheart. Thank you!

F: You like my maps Mommy?
Me: Definitely!


Can I tell you I am loving this age!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Best Shot Monday: Slide

Nicolo got invited to his first Birthday party this weekend. He got to go all by himself, no big brother, just him and his friends. He had a great time as you can see by the picture.
The one little snafu of weekend was me leaving my camera at the party. Yeah, I know what you are thinking. "How could you?"
Luckily for me the Birthday boy's mom found it and I got it back this morning. Thank you God!

Now I have to get caught up taking pictures for my Picture Fall prompts. Gotta get clicking!


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Picture Fall

"Picture Fall" is in full swing. Not every shot is from the class but in the last week I have picked the camera up more than usual. Actually I have taken a shot everyday. Thanks Tracey!

Picture Fall- Week 1

Team Up Thursday - Fall

Jen and I went with the girls this week and did the theme FALL. It seemed like just the right theme as the season has begun to rapidly change (at least for us here on the East Coast), to capture some of the start. I have also been participating in a online Photography Workshop called "Picture Fall", the daily prompts have really made me look for things I wouldn't have before.

I am just in love with Jen's photo, I love the composition, the DOF and the bokeh is to die for! I really think it would make a great photo to hang up. I also love the way ours go together this week too (well to be honest I always love the way our photo's go together). Mine is of the Mum's just outside the door where the boys go to school. The prompt for the day was to take a photo of something all the same color (mono-toned). The funny part was I got down on the ground to shoot across the Mum's and of course people started to come out of the building, and looking at me funny :-)

I didn't care, I got my shot and that's what matters!

Hosted by Megan and Hip Momma

Monday, October 4, 2010

Best Shot Monday: In Awe

Amidst all the chaos that is the norm for the weekends we decided to just up and go to the Zoo (well we were actually invited by some great friends). Francesco did not seem to be as interested as I thought he would. He spent most of the time wanting to just push the stroller, but never paid attention to where he was pushing it. Nicolo on the other hand was in awe. He love the zoo! He did not want to leave the Reptile and Amphibian House and as you can see he love the Polar Bears.


I am looking forward to taking them back, maybe next time Francesco will be more into it. I at least know that Nicolo will have a great time.