About Me

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Our family consists of Paul/Daddy. He loves his little girls, wife and family more than anything in the world. Velvet (aka MaMa Velvet or Mommy). I'm a photographer and very happy stay at home Mom who can't get enough time with my little ones! Lily (aka Monster or Princess). She's our 12 year old smart, talkative, beautiful young woman who is impressing us everyday! Addison (aka Doo or Addi). She's 8 (almost 9!) artistic, sensitive, lovely young lady who has a quick sense of humor! Scarlett or Bo for short! She's 7, sassy, outgoing, cute as a button and has a passion for a few very select food groups! Finally we have our littlest princess, who has blessed us with her presence until it's time to go home. She's almost 1 and the happiest little baby around! She loves clapping, snuggling, shaking her head no, and laughing at her sisters!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

How To Get Your Kid to Smile!

This came up last week when I was discussing a recent blog post with a friend.

She was wondering how in the world I got my kiddos to smile naturally.

Not your "say cheese and please for the love of all that is holy show some teeth!" smile, but their natural, beautiful, full of joy, reaches the eyes and soul smiles.

My children, having been forced in front of the camera for their entire lives, are not always the happiest about portrait time.

So to ease them into it, and get those beautiful faces captured forever, I have a few tried and true tricks.

#1. Bring a prop.

A toy, something they found on the ground, school artwork they're super proud of.

Make that "session" about something other than forcing them to pose and say cheese.

#2. Talk to them!

Talk about their day, ask them to look into your camera when they tell you about it.

Sometimes I don't even hold up my camera till we've been talking for a minute or so.

It's hard being in front of that thing!

#3. Try out a "will you smile for the camera?" once you think they're warmed up enough.

If their still not ready...

talk some more.

Ask them about their favorite cartoon.

Ask them about their favorite things about Mom or Dad.

Talk to them about their most exciting dream.

But most of all just let them tell you about what makes them happy.

You're bound to get at LEAST one beautiful smile.

and when all else fails...

#4. Forbid any smiles upon pain of tickling.

So. Much. Tickling.

They won't even be able to help themselves.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Cheese and Reality

"Sometimes" the interwebz can be a deceiving space.

Mother after mother after frustrated mother has perused through family blog wondering how in the world other peoples children are such perfect little angels.

How they were always so perfectly dressed, brushed, and food crumb free.

How in the world do these Mom's do EVERYTHING and not become completely insane.

The cold hard truth of the matter is that most of these blogging Mom's pick and choose how they want to represent their family.

I've even heard comments from some of my readers about how adorable and well behaved my kiddos are.

That always amuses me.

I love to present my children in a happy light, looking their best, and showing off their hilarious quirks.

But the cold hard truth is, all 3 of them are monsters.

Well trained and polite monsters, but just like the rest of us, they have their bad days.

Case in point...

Scarlett and her cheese habit.

And yes, I mean habit.

Here she is getting caught trying to sneak some cheese I intended to use for potato soup last week.

She likes to think she can "cute" her way into getting what she wants.

This is after 4 "No"s and an upturned chair.

This is where she chose to drop the cute and go full on tantrum turd.

Do you see that look?

Hank and Mr. Harriot saw it.

Apparently my lack of interest in her hissy fit led her to the conclusion I'd given in.

But Mommy doesn't give in.

(Normally... most of the time...on wednesday's...)

Scarlett is quickly becoming my most stubborn child.

I think her sisters are giving her tips.

She's still cute, and I still love her despite her dairy addiction.

Even if she's made it her life mission to consume all the dairy in our home, come hell or high water.

Probably both if we continue to tell her no.

Crazy little dairy thief.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Pest Lessons and 3 Kinds of Kids

Mr. Harriot is an operations manager for a pest control company.

Which in our house means, if you catch a bug, you save it and ask Daddy a million questions when he gets home from work!

The funny thing about the girls catching bugs (aside from spiders because we're all on the same page about how evil spiders are!) is Addison is the only one super willing to pick them up.

Lily will touch a lady bug or a caterpillar.

Scarlett will start to touch a bug right up to the point where it moves. At which point she shrieks like a sissy and calls for Addison.

Addison will pick that bug up, name it George and try to convince Mommy to build a bug home and bug bath and bug dinner table and bug kitchen.

Lily was perfectly content to just watch Addison or Daddy hold the bug.

Scarlett attempted the courage to take that bug from her Dad...

and managed to overcome her fear...

For about 5 seconds.

I swear I heard "BURN IT WITH FIRE!" escape those sweet little lips.

Maybe that was just me...

This one though...

Missed her new best friend George.

She also enjoyed the new found knowledge that he scared the literal toots out of her baby sister.

You wanna plaaaaaay?

He's niiiiiiiice!

I think Daddy just enjoys being able to share a little bit of his day with the ladies.

Who says you need little boys to touch bugs and make fart jokes?

Scarlett went in for one last attempt and gave us one last good giggle.

3 little ladies and 3 separate reactions to bugs.

They all have the same reaction to Daddies "Smile while I make silly faces over Mommies shoulder!" shenanigans!

Love these kiddos!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Big 'ol Pile of Fall

Lily was at her Mom's last weekend and my parents were awesome enough to take Addison and Scarlett overnight so that Paul and I could enjoy a date!


Without kids!

(We love you guys, but good lord the break was sweet childless bliss.)

When I went to pick up the middle and little the next evening Addison just HAD to tell me all about her giant leaf pile and how much she loved it and how giant it was and how jumpable it is and how it's full of leaves and how she can JUMP IN IT!

All of this was of course said as she was leading me right back out the front door (camera still in hand from my evening family session) to show me this giant glorious pile of joy.

She was like a child placed directly into heaven.

Scarlett on the other hand hated every last second of that pile of gold leafy hell.

Two of my littles.

Continually proving that each child is different in their own special way.

Yet all equally as obstinate as their parents.

God help us.