Sep 24, 2010

Nanny’s House

~a series on places I love~
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     I’ve always been a bit envious of people who got to grow up very near to their grandparents, seeing as how my father’s military career kept us farther away from our relatives. I never got to run over to grandma’s after school, or play with cousins on a regular basis. Both sets of my grandparents live in Columbus, Ohio (Go Buckeyes!!!) and that was a good ten hours away from the Naval Base housing in Norfolk Virginia, and even further from other my dad’s other assignments, like Jacksonville, Fl and Newport, RI. Thankfully, every summer my parents would load up our big blue Chevy Astro, compete with our bikes on the bike rack, the six of us kids,  and we would drive to Ohio to spend a couple of very happy weeks with our grandparents. We always stay at my maternal grandparent’s, Nanny & PopPop’s, and take turn spending the night at my paternal grandparent’s house, Grandma Jan and PopPop, who only live ten minutes away. We would be doted on by my mom and dad’s many siblings, and were generally royally spoiled during our visits. Like I said, we did this every summer (besides the summer that Patrick made his appearance in mid-August), and I assumed things would never change. Ohio was my happy place. Where the grass was greener, where there was no school, where my cousin & I spent all day playing on the tree in the backyard, where we played hide-n-go seek in the basement (basements were a HUGE novelty to me, don’t find too many basements living so close to the water!), hours of entertainment sending messages down the laundry shoot, Nanny’s cooking, PopPop’s candy, my aunt Angie’s room where I could here the laughter and chatter of my mom and her sisters long after we were tucked into bed.
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     Now things are different. My big ‘ole family can’t seem to coordinate schedules to get to Ohio together, so we all go separately at different times in the summer, there are not a lot of toys littering the basement floor, my beloved cousin is living in Arizona, and the tree in the backyard no longer has a tire swing hanging from it. I’ll admit it, I am a big baby about change. I was feeling really nostalgic this summer when Marcus and I made the trek up to Nanny’s. Yes, a lot of things have changed, but as I walked around taking some pictures of my favorite spots at Nanny’s, there was so much of the same.        
     {Dried flowers in pretty vases. Miniature tea sets. The smell of tar blacktop driveways. The old brick walkway to Nanny’s front door. Bunnies and chipmunks in my Aunt Angie’s garden. Riverside drive. Buicks and Cadillac's from my grandfather’s used car lot in the drive. Loud creaky floors. Nanny’s bunny decorations. Old photographs. Nanny’s voice when she answers the phone “Hi, Honey.” The music box on the dresser in the room I’ve rested my curly head for the past 24 years. Longaberger baskets. The candy shelf, where I snuck so many M&M’s. The smell of Nanny’s bread. The smell of strong coffee in the morning. Walking to St. Andrew’s on Sunday. The bells of St. Andrews. The smudged wall in the toy room—where all our height measurements were taken with love from Nanny. The boy Zach next door and his tree house. Hastings pool. Columbus Clipper baseball games and Wyandot lake. Riding our bikes up the hill. Playing Cowboys at the ‘bar’ in the basement, ‘smoking’ Lincoln logs ;) I could go on and on. Probably one of the best things about going ‘home’ during the summers was how  happy my mother was when we were there. In the house she grew up in and loved. In the town were her and my dad fell in love. In the company of her mother and brothers and sisters and all their warmth and love}
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This is the first of a series I will be doing on some special places, places that I have have crystal clear memories in my head, places that shaped me :)
**DISCLAIMER** These pictures are nothing fantastic, simply meant to be a snapshot of a scene I already know in my heart! NOT professional photographs here, friends..sorry!

Sep 14, 2010

:: Curly Girlies::

    When I was growing up, I was very intrigued by twins. It is probably because I grew up in the Mary-Kate and Ashley era. Anyhow, I never knew any twins personally, so it sounded very glamorous to be a twin. Fast forward many years, and my life is suddenly full of twins. It all started when my older sister got married and had my first niece & nephew, twins! And if that was not enough, our cousin, was pregnant with twin girls at the same time as my sister. Then our cousin on the other side of the family had twin boys. Then I took a Nanning job in college for twin girls. Then I started dating Marcus, who had twin sisters. Then I took pictures of these twin girls. So, I love twins! (& secretly hope that if God blesses me with children..they will only come ONE at a time.  Little twins, while glamorous, are A LOT of work!)
     Remember how I mentioned my cousin having twin girls?! Well, here they are!! Sarah is more than a cousin, though..she is a good friend. We both lived in Jacksonville, Fl as little girls, before my dad’s naval career took us to Hampton Roads. Since moving away from her family, we have spent summers at our grandparents together, and were devoted pen-pals through middle & high school. Well, now she is a nurse, just like she always wanted to be, raising her beautiful twin girls in Jacksonville, Florida. This summer, when we were both on vacation at our grandparent’s, I finally got to take their portraits. I had such a ball taking their photographs, mainly because I finally was able to tell them apart by their personality & character. I think I was able to capture their personality & love for each other in their pictures, too. Enjoy!!
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Sep 10, 2010

::Mr. 2011:: {Dominic’s senior portraits}

      I have  three brothers. and a dad. and two grandfathers. and seven uncles. and I could be quite the tom-boy when I was growing up.In fact, my mom even once cut my hair so short that a little girl on the playground asked me if I was a boy (yes, I was that attractive of a child). Just being real with you!....and getting pretty off topic.. I just  feel the need to explain that I am not one of those girls who thought boys were gross or foreign. BUT I was still scared.
       I was still scared stiff to take Dominic’s senior portraits. And not because he was a high school senior. I love high school seniors! They’re not scary! Yup, I was scared because he was a male. I mean..would he be cooperative? Would he joke me? Would he make dumb faces? I have brothers, I know how they work. Dominic very, very pleasantly surprised me! I’ve never taken pictures of a more smiley person! I thought teenage boys were supposed to be sullen and sarcastic and difficult. Dominic never got that notice, apparently. He had lots of input for the pictures, and made the photo-shoot so fun for me. And he smiled, a lot :) I guess there is something about graduating from high school that puts an excited grin on your face!
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Thanks for being awesome! I’ll always owe it to you for helping me overcome my fear of photographing teen-age guys ;) Study hard this year, Mr. 'I am taking a gazillion AP classes’. See you around!

::Little Miss L::

     When I accepted a part-time Nanning job over the summer for this sweet little girl, I had all sorts of visions running through my (early childhood education college degree) mind. She was the perfect age for learning letters and numbers and patterns and developing fine motor skills and all types of exciting cognitive developments. I couldn’t wait to teach her!! Turns out, she had way more to teach me this summer.
Little things like: the importance of front porch sitting
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She also taught me how to be a faithful friend to our furry counterparts ;)
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She reminded me how to play pretend & the importance of long distance phone calls to loved ones (pretending to call her father who is currently deployed)
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She even taught me how to frolic in flowery fields, take time to smell the flowers, bask in the early morning sunshine on our 730 am walks..
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And to believe in a little magic!
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