World, meet Noah. Noah, meet the world.My heart loves visiting newborns in the hospital! My mind floods with memories of my own children and I am reminded of both how tiny and precious life really is. Noah was only one day old and I am thankful I met him so fresh in this world! His tiny hands and feet and scrawny newborn scream assure me that there will always be beauty mixed in with the fear of parenthood and joy mixed in with the pain of childbirth. Celebrate that beauty and joy with me!
Tis the season of high school graduation parties! I wanted to share one of my favorite invite designs from this year. This two-sided card was printed on an iridescent pearl paper and the shimmer was the perfect touch! Savannah's favorite colors are turquoise and red, and we coordinated her card with her album design as well. You can view her beautiful book here! Gorgeous girl in a gorgeous book - it was oohed and ahhed over her entire party.
With all the beautiful berries starting to show up in the produce section, I thought I would share my favorite, and easiest, cobbler recipe with you! I love that you can mix in a huge variety of berries, either frozen or fresh, so you can even whip one up with whatever is on sale or stashed in the freezer. Eat it on its own in the winter for a cozy treat and serve it up with some ice cream on a hot summer night!
1 cup sugar
1 cup self-rising flour
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 cups berries, fresh or frozen
Optional: 1/4 cup sugar topping
Grease an 11" x 8" baking dish.
Whisk together sugar, flour and buttermilk just until blended. Whisk in butter. Pour into dish. Sprinkle fruit on top. Sprinkle sugar on top of fruit (optional).
Bake at 350° for 50-60 minutes or until edges are bubbling and center is golden brown.
The optional sugar topping really depends on your fruit choice. Raspberries and blackberries, with their tart flavor, really need the extra sprinkle. Strawberries and blueberries are sweet enough without it so you can omit it altogether or use less. The recipe works great with bing cherries or frozen bags of mixed fruit, too. The one pictured is 'mixed cherry blend'.
I use my immersion blender to really whip it up, but I was making this recipe long before I got that handy gadget!
If you don't have any self-rising flour, you can make your own. Simply mix together 1 cup flour, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt. I use so much self-rising flour that I make bigger batches at once. 6 cups of flour, 3 tablespoons baking powder and 1 tablespoon salt. Just make sure you mix it well! (And in case you have forgotten if what you have is self-rising or not just place a little bit on your tongue. You'll be able to taste the salt if it's self-rising.)
I was recently asked to create a series of fine art images for an auction. In the United States, I often donate sessions or product credits, but this auction was in Suriname, South America! Benefiting the Suriname International School, the Second Annual Gala event, held on April 27, 2013, included a wine tasting and silent auction. I was able to have the art prints mounted and delivered locally and I am excited to share the images here! The best part? I was told the moody, late winter images were 'Unique in this country. Perhaps chicken soup for the expat soul.' Now that spring is here, these images seem foreign even here!
This week we have a special guest blogger, Maggie Wenthe of Style Simplified in Prairie City, Iowa! She specializes in wardrobe consulting (and home organization, too) so I asked her to share some of her great fashion advice. Read on for Maggie's tips on what to wear for your portrait session!
It's not easy - getting your toddler to stand still, begging your tween to smile, getting dad to keep his eyes open... Clothing is just one more thing to worry about! My advice? Keep it simple with coordinating colors and simple styles!
1. Coordinate Colors
• Solid Colors - patterns are wonderful but take more effort to coordinate properly. Solid colors in lots of different shades adds interest without taking away from faces. Tone-on-tone blocking, stripes, checks or argyle blend nicely with solids.
• Patterns - are fun for kids! Coordinate the colors and enjoy a wilder mix. A group of patterns is actually less distracting than if only one person is wearing one.
• Neutrals - these include brown/tan, navy/blue, gray, green. Keep them in the same shade - tans with blues and light gray, brown with navy, dark gray, dark green.
• Jewel Tones - think emerald, sapphire, ruby and amethyst. Purple, green, royal blue, dark pink, turquoise all look great together. Added bonus: Jewel tones look good on everyone!
• All White - tops with jeans is an absolute classic best for outdoor pictures. White doesn't translate as well inside. Suggestion: either go all white or no white.
• Current Trends - Guys in blue, girls in purple. Accent with yellow (shoes, scarf, necklace, tie). Or compromise and go green – the 2013 Color of the Year is Emerald. Put everyone in a shades of emerald and blue, accent with lime or red.
Use the swatches above to accent with lime.
Use the swatches below to accent with red!
2. Wear Simple Styles
• Great Basics - Crew neck, polo style or button down shirts work well.
• Similar Bottoms - if everyone has similar bottoms, you're not distracting from faces. Dark denim is a flattering choice.
• Moderate Necklines - too much skin can be very distracting in a photo as can too much fabric. Aim to have the neckline at your collarbone. Not too high and not too low – You want everyone to focus on your lovely faces!
These are general guidelines, but let your personal style shine through! If your daughter LOVES dresses, let her wear one! Is your husband a farmer? Let him wear his cap in a few of the shots. Whatever you choose, don't let what you're wearing stress you out. What's most important is capturing your family through the years and having those images for a lifetime!