Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween 2012

A few days ago, after I had come home from photographing a newborn, the Gleasons - who I am living with - were getting ready to leave for Trunk-or-Treat, an event their church puts on for kids around Halloween time.

When Meg came into my room - all proud of her princess costume - I had to snap a picture of each before they headed out the door.

Then they brought in Lewis, who was dressed as a cow. His mama is his sidekick :-)

Aren't they just precious?

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Monday, October 29, 2012

Gleasons:: Washington Crossing, PA

In 2007 I met the Gleasons. Jamie and I began working together in Student Life at Cairn University. Jamie was the Director of Resident Life and I was the Director of Student Programs. His wife, Charlotte, began to teach part-time at the University as an English professor. At the time, they only had one child - Reid. And I took pictures of Reid when he'd visit the office, clutching onto his baby blanket. Charlotte was pregnant with Meg, and once Meg came, it was one of my highlights to visit with their family, eat meals together and enjoy time with the kids. In 2007, a few of us started a dinner night once a week. We continued to grow our group, as people began to date, get engaged, married, and continued to add kids to our numbers. Often Charlotte got the accolades for her awesome meals/desserts. Some of the favs were her cinnamon rolls and chocolate chip cookies.

In the last number of years, I've continued to be close with their family. When I left the area to attend photography school in MA, I'd stay with them when I visited PA. On one of my trips home, Charlotte and Jamie announced they were pregnant with baby #3 and Lewis was born in 2011.

When I realized I'd be moving back to PA, I needed to begin the search for a place to live. The Gleasons told me they were looking into homes, and if I was interested, they'd begin looking for places where I could move in with them. When they found a house, we began talking about me moving in...and sure enough, I moved in during August.

I've enjoyed being near the kids again and love their curiosity and desire to know what I'm doing. They make me laugh. They make me wish for a kid's energy. And I think they are just the cutest to photograph. Here are a bunch of pictures I took with them last week, in the days when the leaves were just about to begin their fall. In a few days, you'll see pictures of them in their Halloween costumes.

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Kylie's baby shower

I met Kylie in college. I don't remember our first meeting, but I enjoyed getting to know her and becoming good friends throughout our years in college. Kylie and I were both teacher ed. majors, and we student taught at the same time. What I remember most about our time student teaching was that we'd get together for meals together - sometimes it was breakfast at IHOP, sometimes dinner at Taco Bell (I know, we were livin' large!). And throughout those meals shared, I recall Kylie's heart, her desire to know how I was doing, and her dedication to encouraging me and truly being a dear friend.

Ky and I have continued to keep in touch since college. One summer while she was nannying, we talked early in the mornings as we drove to work. And while we didn't ever seem to have earth-shattering things to say to each other, I valued those conversations so much. Kylie continues to encourage me with her care for my life. She is an incredible teacher, a caring wife, and is about to become a mom. I was overjoyed when she shared her news with me about becoming a mom.

This past weekend, a number of Kylie's college friends attended a shower for her. It was so great to spend time with Kylie, and hear of her excitement in becoming a new mom!

Kylie, I am so excited for you and Ben. I am so glad I was able to be at your shower and spend even a little bit of time with you.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Baby Pierce:: Alexandria, VA

I love taking to the road, and a few weeks ago, I went to Washington, DC. A dear friend was in a play and I went to visit the Holocaust Museum because I am writing my master's thesis on Holocaust education. But part of the trip included a much-anticipated visit to see Pierce - the firstborn of my friends Craig and Lizzie. 

Craig and I grew up together and became good friends in high school. Craig met Lizzie in college and soon her name was used more and more in conversations Craig and I would have as we'd catch up on the phone. When I met Lizzie, I loved her immediately. Their wedding day was beautiful and I have grown to appreciate Lizzie as much as I do Craig. I'm thankful to keep up with them, even though hundreds of miles have separated us for the past number of years. They live in Alexandria, VA now, so they aren't too far away. 

When they told me they were expecting their first, I was elated. I am glad I was able to visit them while in town. Pierce is captivating and he is loved and adored by his parents already. Every time one of my friends has a baby - whether their first or not - I feel this innate sense of pride. I think it's because in most cases, I've watched that friend grow/mature and in that moment of becoming a parent, their whole being changes. I see them in a fresh way; their sense of care and devotion is renewed in a whole new way.

Lizzie and Craig - Pierce is amazing. And so are you two. I am thankful for you and for our friendship. I'm so glad to have spent time with you and excited to see Pierce grow in your care.

Love you guys!

World, meet Pierce Thomas.....

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