Tuesdays With Caleb – Week 5

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I had grand plans for today’s photos, but as usual, plans just never seem to really work around here. Instead, we have the usual afternoon playtime, this time with a yo-yo. I couldn’t help but look at him today and think about how big he is getting, in both age and size. In just over two weeks, he will be three. Last week I had to go buy him a new car seat, jeans, and shoes, because he is outgrowing everything at ridiculous speeds.

Looking at him today, in his new big boy jeans and hoodie, growing faster and faster by the second, I can’t stop thinking about how he came to be. What a wonderful surprise we had waiting for us, even when we were nowhere near being ready for it.

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Tuesdays With Caleb – Week 4

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January has been a rather warm month this year. We’re not sweating by any means, but compared to the normal ice and snow that we are used to this time of year, it has been pretty phenomenal.  So yeah, when my boy asks to go outside and play, who am I to squash his dreams? “Of course!” I say, because that is his favorite phrase this week. Any time I ask him a yes/no question, I either get a very stern “No, mommy!” or “Of course!” This kid, man. All of the frustration and stress that he causes in my life is completely made up for in cuteness. He always knows just when to turn on the charm too. Of course!

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Tuesdays With Caleb – Week 3

Today was a quiet day for the two of us. I fought the temptation to get him dressed and brush his hair before getting my camera out, but in the end decided that I would go natural. This – jammie top, undies, no pants – is what he wears more often than not for most of the day when we are staying home. Who needs pants when you aren’t going anywhere, right?

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Tuesdays With Caleb – Week 2

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Well, it is obviously not Tuesday. This week’s edition is being brought to you on Friday instead. On Tuesday, I was in Texas celebrating the life of a very dear friend. Even though we are not related by blood, she loved me like a grandmother loves her grandchildren. My sister and I always called her and her husband our “adopted grandparents” because they might as well have been. It is a loss felt deeply, but I am comforted in the fact they are now together again in a far better place.

Since I was out of town, today is the first day Caleb and I have been together this week. I missed our time together on Tuesday. Little man is suddenly in a no cuddle phase, which is making me a little sad. He is also apparently hitting a huge growth spurt because clothes that fit last week are suddenly not fitting at all. Along with that, he is pretty much eating non-stop. He wakes up in the morning asking for a sandwich before he even gets out of bed. At least it is an easy request.

Here are a few more images from our play time today.

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Tuesdays With Caleb

Perhaps it was all of the sleep that I managed to get in over the holidays, or maybe it is just the time of year, but I’m suddenly feeling the need to write, to photograph, to be creative. I’ve been knitting like crazy (3 hats and 2 scarfs in the last week!), and I’m really missing the feel of my camera in my hands.

When I think over the last year or so I realize how little focus I have had on my photography. I had a blast at Shutterfest, my first photography conference, last April. I came home energized and full of ideas and things that I couldn’t wait to try. Then life happened and my focus went back to just getting through the daily grind while photography took a back seat. I took plenty of photos, great ones even, but I don’t feel like I improved much.

One of my biggest regrets over the last year is not taking the time to just photograph the every day. Sure, I have lots of dark, blurry, iphone camera shots, but I don’t have a lot of great photos that really tell the story of our lives this past year. I’ve gotten lazy about taking my big camera out to capture those moments. When I scroll through my Facebook and Instagram feeds I find myself feeling envious of the great photos that are being taken during the simple moments by my friends. I think how precious those memories will be some day when they look back at the timeline of their lives. I realized even more how much I have missed documenting when I looked back at some old photos of my own this week. The curls on my toddler daughter’s head (that are now as straight as can be), photos of Zach learning to walk, playing with a caterpillar in the front yard. I don’t want to miss those moments.

As I watched Caleb play today, in the amazing early afternoon sun shining through our living room window, I realized how much I am missing of these days (even though I spend more time with him than I was able to with either of the other kids). I decided then that I wanted to commit to capturing more of his childhood. I’ve been thinking about starting a new photo project this year to help keep me focused on improving my skills, but a 365 project is too daunting to take on right now. I’ve been thinking about a selfie project, but I would probably never complete that either. However, a project featuring one of my favorite subjects might just be doable. So, I decided today that I will attempt a “Project 52”, posting one photo a week (at least) of Caleb and his shenanigans.

I’m going to call it “Tuesdays With Caleb” as Tuesdays are one of the days that we get to spend together every week – just the two of us. I’m super creative with the titling, see?

Today I took five minutes out just to shoot him playing. I love that he went and got his little toy camera out and was taking some shots of me as well. I will most likely post a few of my favorites here and at least one shot on Instagram/FB each week, on Tuesday even, if I can keep up. Hopefully, this will help me hold myself accountable as well as help me practice and improve my skills as the year goes by.

Play time with Caleb

Play time with Caleb

Play time with Caleb

Play time with Caleb

Play time with Caleb

Play time with Caleb

Play time with Caleb

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2015 Is Here

We are four days into the new year, and today, more than ever I am reminded of how quickly the time passes by. Last night I had on my comfy, well-worn Garth Brooks hoodie. The one I bought at the concert we attended here in KC years ago…in 2007. I only know it was 2007 because the year is front and center on the hoodie, along with the words “Kansas City” and “I was there!”

As I got myself ready for bed last night, I stared at that ’07 in the mirror, somewhat in disbelief that so many years have passed since that night. The details came flooding back in an instant. The frustration that my babysitter backed out on me at the last minute, relief in finding a friend that was willing to watch Zach when our original plans fell through. I remember singing all of the old familiar songs, side by side with my sister, just as we had done when we were younger. I remember feeling Evie move in my tummy for the first time that night, as I felt the beat of the music vibrate under my feet. I remember the lights, the joy in finally seeing an artist I had admired for so long right in front of me.

How could it be that that night happened over seven years ago? As hard as it is to believe, I know it is true, because that little baby wiggling in my tummy that night is now nearly seven years old. So much time has passed, yet it feels like only yesterday.

Those few moments I spent reminiscing sent me into a spiral of deep thoughts (I’m not sure when the last time I actually had a deep though was, so it needs to be recorded somewhere). I suppose it is the time of year when everyone, voluntarily or not, does a bit of evaluation on their life. A “What have I done in the last year?” kind of thing. For me, because I was suddenly rushed back to 2007, I started thinking, “What have I done in the last 7 years that really mattered?” And, well, the list was much shorter than I would have liked for it to be. There are so many things I wish I would have done, missed opportunities to do good in the world that I passed up or just completely missed because I was too busy living in my own little world.

I’m reading a book called “Love Does” by Bob Goff, which has me thinking a lot about why I say yes or no when the opportunity to do something good comes up. The easy answer is no. It takes little effort. It allows for selfishness and laziness, which are two things I struggle with all the time. But why not say “yes” and see where it leads? Why not give a little more of myself to do good for others? What good can any of us do without action? After all, Love Does.

In 2015 there are so many things I want to do – personal goals, fitness, business, parenting, financial. More than I can possibly accomplish in a year when I add in all of the other responsibilities that stand before my “wants”. I have a list that could go on for miles, but the reality of time is that very little of it will actually happen. When 2015 comes to a close, what I want the most is to be able to say that I added something good to the world, that I did something that made a difference in someone else’s life and changed it for the better. I want to know that I did at least a tiny little thing to make the world a better place.

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