Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Family Fun Time

I have known Amy for over 10 years... she was my big sib in vet school (by default... my husband was her big sib and he forced me upon her). After graduation, we spoke on occasion as she was a vet at the emergency hospital that my clinic referred to. And now I am fortunate enough to work with Amy at the emergency hospital. She is one of those exceptionally brilliant people and I wish I could plug my brain into hers and download all of that knowledge she has inside. Just as I looked up to her in vet school, I look up to her in practice.

On the occasions that our shifts overlap, we discuss family and life outside of the hospital. Often we would talk about what we wanted to be when we grow up... I always claimed that I wanted to be a secret shopper for high end spas, where salon owners would pay me to have a massage and a pedicure in exchange for my anonymous opinion on the service I received.

Well, I never ended up doing that, but I did end up starting a new career in photography. And Amy has been super supportive of me since day one. Last year, I asked if I could take some photos of her daughter for my portfolio, and Amy was so gracious. I spent a few hours out her her place, stalking Ellie with my camera... and I am so glad that I did because three photos from that day ended up on my website.

A few months ago, Amy asked if I would take some photos of her family and I was so super excited!!! We had a hard time coordinating our schedules... Amy works crazy overnight shifts, her husband works full time and their daughter has about 40 different extra curricular activities. After a few attempts, we finally set a date and took some pictures.

Amy lives in this great community in Cool, which gave us plenty of different photo opportunities. We started out on the golf course, where it was blazing hot and the sun was melting everyone in sight. You would never guess by looking at the photos:

Okay, so most of the time that I see Amy, we are at work. And work can be very, very serious. It was so much fun to see Amy in her natural habitat... far from any BBBD, HBC, or GDV. Amy and Darrin have been married for twenty years (I think...) and look at how sweet they still are together:

It was such a treat for me to see Amy as a mom and a wife.

We headed on over to the pond to feed some geese. They were very hungry and were glad to see us. Or should I say, they were glad to see the bag of bread Ellie was carrying.

Near the pond were several horses. Ellie loves horses. I am terrified of horses. And despite my fear, I enjoyed watching Ellie love on two horses who were safely behind a large fence. Although I was a bit concerned when the pony started chewing on Ellie's sandal... I thought a trip to the ER was imminent for either a laceration repair or to re-attach Ellie's foot to her leg. Don't worry, everybody came away in one piece.

Amy, thank you for being so supportive of me in both of my careers. It was such a pleasure for me to come out and to photograph you and your family. What a wonderful day...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

My First Week

Last week was my first week as an official photographer... woo hoo! My website finally launched, so I feel that I can now legitimately call myself a photographer. Even though I am not doing anything different than before my site debuted on the world wide web.

My first week was a busy one, with three sessions scheduled. Each one very different and all incredibly special. The first session was with a great family:

The second with an adorable 9 month old girl and her mommy:

And the third, a beautiful memorial ceremony that celebrated the life of a wonderful woman:

I feel so fortunate to have found a photography. To be able to capture moments, emotions, life. Because a photograph is timeless and has the power to transcend generations. As time passes by, and it passes all too quickly, it is easy to forget the details that we love so much. A photograph can preserve those details and those moments... forever.

I encourage you to pick up your camera and capture images of the things that you love. Don't wait for the perfect occasion, or until you lose those few extra pounds, or whatever excuse you have been using to avoid the camera. Take a picture... you will be so glad that you did!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Team Touponce

I first met Team Touponce 8 years ago when I made the transition from dairy to small animal practice. I was inexperienced, to say the least... and totally lacking any self-confidence. Chris and Lanette were two registered veterinary technicians who worked at my new job. Chris was larger than life, if his nickname "the Chrissiah" was any indication. He positively reeked with the confidence I so desperately wished to have. His wife was his benevolent counterpart who, while equally experienced and confident, had a way of putting me at ease. These two helped raise me up into the veterinarian that I am today.

As time passed by, Chris and Lanette became my friends. Lanette usually greeted me at work with a "hey sexy!" which always started my shift off in a good mood. And there was the momentous occasion when they announced they were expecting their first child... I practically forced Lanette onto the ultrasound table so that we could all get a glimpse of their new baby, who was promptly nicknamed "the grape". Lanette tells me that she still has the ultrasound photo in her son's baby book.

After a few years, I ended up taking a new job. We drifted our separate ways and I received the occasional update from a mutual friend (a quick hello to Tina, if you are reading this). It wasn't until I discovered Facebook last year that we were able to catch up... Chris and Lanette were about to earn their RN degree from Sacramento State University. Their little grape is now a young man named Aiden and he has a little sister named Jillian. Lanette asked me if I would come photograph their pinning ceremony, a wonderful tradition in the nursing community: each graduate selects a nurse who has been inspirational during their schooling, and that nurse presents them with their pin.

Chris and Lanette, aka Team Touponce, thank you so much for inviting me to document your pinning ceremony. I feel like a proud mama watching her babies grow up...

Without further adieu, here are some photos from the Pinning Ceremony. We met before the ceremony to get a few shots of the family, which was not easy with two little ones running every which direction. And since Chris, Lanette and I have rarely ever been serious, it was really hard for me to direct them in any sort of "traditional" pose. So we ended up with this:

and this:

and this:

Although I did get a couple of sweet photos of Lanette and the Grape, this one being my favorite of the bunch (ha ha, couldn't resist the grape reference):

The Grape sure does look a lot different from the last time I saw him. Well, he was a 6 week old fetus living inside Lanette's uterus... He has grown up so much and is such a handsome little man!

And little miss Jillian is such a cutie. She had just recently developed a new pose which she used throughout our session. Yes, her finger pointing would do John Travolta proud!

At one point, we sent the kids off in search of flowers so that I could get a few shots of the graduates. Which of course set up a whole new set of portraits: Chris, with foliage.

Alas, we were able to get a few shots of the grads and lovely couple:

It was time to move inside for the ceremony. There were several very nice speeches and some awards handed out. Then finally it was time for Team Touponce to receive their pins. Chris and Lanette came up together and received their pins as just that, a team. Ladies first:

I love this shot:

Next up, Chris:

And introducing... Team Touponce, RN

In case you are wondering, Chris will be working in trauma and Lanette will be working in intensive care. Which I would consider to be two of the most stressful and demanding fields of medicine in which to work. If their performance as RVTs is any indication, I have every confidence that the pair will be stellar in their new careers.

Congratulations Team Touponce!!! What a wonderful career path you have selected... even if it is working on humans! I wish you the best of luck and know you will do me proud.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Tree

We have been in our house about a year now. The liquid amber tree out front somehow did not enjoy our hospitality and proceeded to die. Today, the process of bringing it down began. Here is a glimpse of the process, which all took place under the watchful eye of one very cute and well dressed foreman.

The miniature Snow White was far from the danger of falling limbs...

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Little Fishies

The weather this spring has been totally bizarre... one day it is hailing and the next it is 90 degrees. Fortunately, this past Sunday was a nice warm day because we were headed off to visit our friends JT and Mel who have the most incredible pool! I forgot my swimsuit, which gave me the perfect excuse to take photos of 3 little fishies.

First we have Gage and his mommy Mel:
If you followed my older blog, you may remember that Gage is Ella's future husband. Yes, she is still smitten with the boy. Speaking of Ella, here is my little fish and my bigger fish:

They had such a great time in the pool, we had a hard time getting them out. Gage was a good little boy and got out when he was supposed to. But I think it was because he was looking forward to some lounge time:
But then it was time for hide and seek with daddy:

And to race daddy:

And to go flying with daddy:

I felt a little bad about this one... I was having trouble getting the right shot, so I had JT throw Gage in the air over and over again. Did I mention that he had a sore back? And Mel, bless her heart, was worried that Gage was scared. I don't know, I think he looks pretty happy here. Hopefully I haven't traumatized him for life.

After lots of swimming and running and flying, it was time for Gage to go to bed. Because Gage is a good little sleeper and goes to bed at a decent hour and sleeps all through the night. If only my girls would pay attention to this:

My girls were too excited by all the new toys to settle down. Chloe's favorite was JT's phenomenal fish tank. Would you like to see it?

I'm pretty sure there is an imprint of Chloe's hands and nose still on the glass. She was fascinated by these little guys. Oh, who am I kidding, I was, too! I must have spent over an hour trying to photograph the little creatures inside. Several of the inhabitants have great little stories. Like Big Mama, the clown fish JT has had since freshman year of vet school (which was some 11 or 12 years ago)...

See that little black spot on her side? Apparently that is a battle wound from a wayward urchin. Well, it hasn't seemed to slow her down any. And her she is with her little friend, Little One:

I tried to get them to pose together... they didn't. Do you have any idea how difficult it is to photograph fish? And I thought toddlers were hard.... geesh! Speaking of difficulties photographing fish, let me tell you about a little fish named PoPo. PoPo is this little yellow fish who likes to make tunnels in the sand. He is super shy and was reluctant to come out of the hole he had dug for himself. That, and he was probably more happy hanging out with his best buddy, a shrimp named Ray. Ray was equally as shy. So I spent a long time hovering about their corner of the tank, waiting for an appearance. Would you like to meet my new little friends?

Meet PoPo. Isn't he handsome? I am so happy that PoPo decided to give me the time of day! And would you like to meet his friend Ray?

You can see PoPo's little yellow fin just behind Ray. I tried super hard to get a photo of the two of them together. I would have better luck getting a photo of Brangelina... Anyhow, this is the best (and only) shot that I got:

Perhaps some other time I will be able to get a nice portrait of the reclusive couple.

Here are just a few more shots from the tank:

Thank you again Mel, JT and Gage for having us over the other night. I apologize that we stayed so late... we were having such a good time we didn't want to leave! Chloe is still talking about it and can't wait to go back: