kate's christmas dance recital

From 11/30 Kate's "official" Christmas dance recital was held on Dec. 21 at the high school auditorium, but I took an untested zoom lens with me (BAD results), and Nick's iPhone video didn't turn out either. Fortunately, Kate had another performance of her recital piece ("Run Run Rudolph") just after Thanksgiving in the McKinney square for the "Home for the Holidays" event. Unfortunately, not all of her class was able to attend this performance, but you get the idea. :)

These were taken with my 85mm f/1.8 lens. It's so sharp, but I need more reach!  I'm thinking about getting a (reliable) zoom lens for these types of events.














Strike a pose!SPC_0343Here's that face, at 100% crop! close-up

Here's the video. I was taking pictures with my big camera AND trying to video w/ my iPhone at the same time, so it's really bad quality. Sorry if you feel like you're being tossed around in the dryer! (Oh, AND I didn't get the video started on time, so you miss the first little bit. I'm guessing you won't mind.) :)

it's the little things: local

Our McKinney farmer's market is open for the season! Nick was on a guys' trip, so we three girls made a morning of it. It was not especially easy to wrangle the girls (since of course they weren't content in the stroller) and try and shoot, but I think we had fun all in all! We came away with some yummy food, too - my favorite being some extremely fresh goat cheese. Kate's already begging to go back to get her hand painted again, and we'll definitely oblige.... the farmer's market followed by Patina Green sandwiches for lunch is one of our favorite Saturday morning traditions.

Follow our circle to Allison McSorley to see her "local" images. She's an NYC girl, so I can't wait to see what she posts!


it's the little things: food

It's blog circle time again! This month's theme is "food," and while I love to take food shots, I don't really like to bake or cook (and nothing would come out photo-worthy), so we went out instead! Follow our blog circle around to my talented friend, Allison McSorley. Her images always wow me!

Patina Green is a shop in the McKinney town square, and it's been a family favorite since it opened about 3 years ago. Inside is a lunch counter with a rotating soup and sandwich menu using local ingredients. We made it somewhat of a tradition to eat here as a family on Saturdays back last summer when the weather was nice and our schedule was free. It all fell apart when fall hit, and our calendar was quickly filled.

But this past Tuesday the stars aligned: my fave sandwich was on the menu, I only had one baby in tow, and the weather was gorgeous. So, I opted to make it a one-on-one mommy-daughter date with Caroline. 

Of course, bringing Baby + camera meant that she ate and I snapped. I finished about half my sandwich before she was done and ready to go! (And I was lucky I got that much down!)

If you're ever in our neck of the woods, you really should check this place out...

Her sandwich was cooling to the side, and she was finding it hard to be patient!

Caroline's grilled cheese and "fancy" apple juice-

My sandwich: spaghetti squash, Full Quiver cheddar, sweet onion + arugula, walnut pesto on sourdough (+ a side of tomato bisque)-

And cranberry + white chocolate cookies for dessert-

Taking the girls out to eat usually means Mama doesn't really get much time to scarf down her own food, but we still had fun... just the two of us.


Starting to play blog catch up here!! 

For Halloween, Kate wore an Ariel dress, and we put Caroline in the clown costume Kate wore for her first Halloween. (It was a 9 month size that ran really big, and Caroline's on the short side, too!) We went to the "Scare on the Square" event in downtown McKinney for a little while, and then we came home for dinner and some trick or treating! It was Kate's first year to go door-to-door, and she had a blast! You might notice she had a costume change. She decided she wanted to change into her bumble bee dress for trick or treating. We have a lot of dress up options in this house!

erwin park

Sunday afternoon we went over to nearby Erwin Park for a little while. While it doesn't have a playground, it does have lots of space, and we enjoyed letting Kate "off leash." ;)

I really should bring the tripod so I can get in the shots, too. My three loves...

 Kate, show us your flower.

Kate got SO excited when she found a "forest." There was really no way through, but she found ways to get in the trees.

It won't be long, and this one'll be running around out there too.

 Gross. But it kept her a little occupied. Second child.

Where's Caroline?  Peekaboo...there she is!

 I loved this branch. If only she'd pose for me, I'd be set. Tongue sticking out wasn't exactly what I had in mind!

Watching a family shoot off rockets.

I was there! See??

No wildflower fields, but there were flowers, so I practiced a little w/ my macro lens.

And Kate actually "took" this one. (She pressed the shutter.) The camera was on the ground. I thought it was interesting!

Thanks for checking in on our blog!

downtown mckinney "krewe of barkus" dog parade

After a really rough 2 year old morning, we turned things around for Kate by taking her to the dog parade in downtown McKinney this afternoon. We somehow missed the actual parade, but there were still plenty of dogs to be seen!

Caroline's first time in a real stroller seat. 
It went okay. Just okay.

And Daddy got some smiles from this girl. She LOVED all the dogs!

This Golden puppy was such a sweetheart! 

Next year we'll know to get there a little earlier so as not to miss the parade of the dogs in their costumes! 


{lens baby: the heard-craig house}
The historical Heard-Craig house in downtown McKinney is a great spot for portraits. Only problem is that Kate doesn't "model" for me quite yet. She runs from place to place, getting into things she shouldn't. I guess I should say that someday it will be a great spot for portraits.

When I called the historical society to make an appointment for our group at the house, she gave me instructions to keep our children with us at all times and keep them out of the gardens. Here's a collage of pictures I got of Kate doing nothing but getting into the gardens. I'm sure the lady from the society would have had a fit. Sorry, lady! At least she didn't step on the plants or pick any flowers. I don't think.