366 in 52 [2016] ~ Week Fifty-Two

Fifty-two weeks plus a day… 2016 has come to a close. I love that I’ve captured more of our real lives this year. Sometimes as a photographer, I get paralyzed by perfection… wanting each image I share to be technically sound (exposure, focus, composition, design, etc.) and also tell a story. This can lead to not wanting to share anything because I feel it’s not good enough. I had a personal epiphany this year, that I suffer from this perfection paralysis as well. I ALWAYS feel like I’m not good enough and I think I’ve passed it onto my children too. That breaks my heart. Feeling like I’m not good enough has affected my marriage, my parenting, my friendships, and my purpose. It’s an awful cycle… that inner voice is sooooo critical. It nit-picks. It is cruel and unrelenting and causes so much anguish. Last year, when I went through those two major surgeries in the space of three weeks, I discovered quite by accident that I have anxiety. I thought everyone felt the way I felt. When I was prescribed calming medication to help with another medication’s side effects, I was relieved of anxiety. It was amazing. I had a couple of months of not staying up while everyone else slept, lying there awake, tossing and turning, with my brain tormenting me… I slept. I felt normal. I had confidence. Even though I was recovering from surgery, I didn’t hear that f@#%ing voice in my head. I hate that voice. I wouldn’t dare repeat the crap to my loved ones that this voice says to me. So as this year winds to its end, I’ve done some soul-searching, I’m reading some self-help books (a great novel that I really related to is called Hi, Anxiety: Life with a Bad Case of Nerves by Kat Kinsman), and I am exploring a lot of crap in my head both through writing and sharing with Curtis. He’s been my rock for so long, I don’t know that I would’ve made the progress I have without him. My mom has also been a constant source of support… she knows when I need help and when I need space. My children are mirrors of my mood and mental health, so I’ve been more conscious of what I say and what I’m feeling when they are with me. My friends and family are so wonderfully amazing, always there to help, to be kind, to understand when I disappear. I’ll do a separate blog entry for my hopes and dreams for 2017 (I don’t do resolutions… I mean, if you are going to change something, why wait for a calendar date???) but I want to say thanks for sticking with me. Our little quirky family has had its ups and downs, but we are strong and fierce and amazing. And we are rocking it. Yes.

Day 358 ~ Last Minute Shopping

Friday, December 23rd, 2016

The best laid plans doesn’t always go to plan. A special gift was supposed to arrive via UPS on Wednesday or Thursday. I called UPS on Thursday and they said they never got the item from the company and the company says it was sent to UPS earlier in the week. So, off I go to find it in person. There were LOTS of people out shopping two days before Christmas. Crazy.

New Braunfels San Antonio retail store photographer

Nikon D750 | 35mm | f/2.8 | 1/250 | ISO 800

Day 359 ~ Christmas Eve Arranger

Saturday, December 24th, 2016

I used to be the present arranger and took great pride in having the packages look just right under the tree, with the big ones at at the back, the flat ones underneath, and the small ones up front. But since Anna can’t really tolerate seeing the gifts under the tree for weeks beforehand, we put them under the tree on Christmas Eve. I can no longer kneel down, so Dominic has volunteered to be our present arranger. He did a great job!

New Braunfels child Christmas photographer

Nikon D750 | 35mm | f/1.6 | 1/160 | ISO 1600

Day 359 ~ My Husband Rocks

Saturday, December 24th, 2016

Curtis insisted I open my big gift on Christmas Eve which he has never done before. I was SHOCKED. Like jaw-dropped-SHOCKED. Ever since I went full-frame four years ago, I’ve missed having a wide angle lens. This Sigma 20mm f/1.4 ART lens has been on my wishlist for a very long time and I still can’t believe he got it for me. Wowzers! I am so very lucky and my husband rocks!

New Braunfels Christmas gift photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.2 | 1/200 | ISO 2500

Day 359 ~ Super Wide Christmas Fun

Saturday, December 24th, 2016

Testing out my new present. Sitting in my chair, I can get the whole room in the shot. There is some distortion on the edges, but the focus is spot on. (My 35mm ART needed to have major micro-adjustment… +20 with the dock, then another +14.) I’m so excited. Some of my favorite work is with my old wide angle (I used to shoot with the Nikon D300 and the Tokina 11-6mm f/2.8) and I’m hoping to spark some creativity with this new lens. Thank you, honey bunny!!!

New Braunfels Christmas gift photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2 | 1/125 | ISO 3200

Day 360 ~ Santa Came

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

Early in the morning, just before the sun comes up. Santa came. It’s dark outside, the air is pregnant with excitement and joy and anticipation. The cookies are eaten, the milk is gone. Anna asked for a Biscuit FurReal friend and Dominic didn’t really ask for anything but mentioned in passing that he wanted a robot that he could control with his phone. He showed us a video about the Mebo a couple of months ago. I love this part of Christmas.

New Braunfels Christmas gift photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/1.6 | 1/125 | ISO 2500

Day 360 ~ Opening Gifts and Happy Dogs

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

Dominic made everyone DIY gifts. Mine made me cry… he took a deck of 52 playing cards and wrote something nice about me on each one, then hole-punched the corner and put them on a keychain. Nana is opening her gift from Dominic in this photo… he created a small book for her. Everyone was in such a good mood, even the dogs! Yknow, this year I didn’t get the dogs anything. Sometimes I do get them a little present but most of the time, I forget… then I feel bad. This year I didn’t feel bad. Ha!

New Braunfels Christmas gift child photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2 | 1/160 | ISO 1250

Day 360 ~ Anna’s Favorite Gift

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

Anna has been playing her Nintendo DS so much that she actually wore it out…. there were lines of dark pixels burned out along the bottom screen. Nana got her a new DS, which this Christmas turned out to be quite the undertaking! Apparently the Pokémon Go app has created a whole new frenzy for Pokémon on the DS… and Pokémon released Sun and Moon in December just in time for Christmas. Mom had to call around a lot of local places and she finally sweet-talked a GameStop employee to order one for her on the DL. This ended up being Anna’s favorite gift. Sometimes it’s hard to predict how Anna will react to a gift. She is always gracious but she did already own this item, so we worried she might not be excited… well… she actually cried. Aww.

New Braunfels Christmas gift child photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2 | 1/160 | ISO 1250

Day 360 ~ Christmas Beauty

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

I wasn’t sure how the 20mm lens would do taking a close-up portrait. There is some distortion but it’s not nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Jenny is so pretty that I could take her photo with a fisheye lens and she would still look amazing!

New Braunfels family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.2 | 1/250 | ISO 800

Day 360 ~ Nana’s Christmas Table

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

My mom set the table for Christmas dinner, bringing over her own dishes and napkins. She folded each napkin to look like a Christmas tree. Isn’t she clever?! Chris made the entire Christmas meal… minus the potatoes which are mom’s specialty. I’ve never had a holiday where I didn’t have to cook… and I loved it! Thank you to Chris and my mom for making such a delicious dinner!

New Braunfels Christmas family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.2 | 1/250 | ISO 800

Day 361 ~ Day After Tex-Mex

Monday, December 26th, 2016

There is something about being at home on Christmas where you know that most restaurants and businesses are closed that makes you feel cooped up. Even though many weekends we chose to stay home and not go out, not having a choice to do that makes us all antsy. So we went out on Monday to go see Sing at the movie theater. Well apparently so did everyone else in New Braunfels. We have never seen a line at our theater before and we just don’t do crowds. Instead we decided to go for an early dinner. The first two restaurants we chose were closed and we ended up at our old favorite, Herbert’s.

New Braunfels child family restaurant photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.2 | 1/160 | ISO 2000

Day 362 ~ Sky Gets a Flight Cage

Tuesday, December 27th, 2016

Mom adopted Sky from us about a year after we got him and she’s been taking such good care of this little parakeet. She studied parakeets a little and found that some owners get their birds a flight cage. It’s shorter but wider and longer to allow the bird more room to fly. Sky loves to fly and flap so mom ordered him his own flight cage. He took to it right away! Anna has been spending a lot of time with Sky and actually got him to step up on her hand a couple of times!

New Braunfels pet family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.5 | 1/200 | ISO 800

Day 363 ~ Heart-Shaped Pansy

Wednesday, December 28th, 2016

Looking back over the last couple of weeks, I realized that I haven’t gotten any macro shots and was hungry to play. I never have to look far… I found this heart-shaped pansy in a potted plant on our back patio (thanks mom for being the best CEO of Landscaping ever!).

New Braunfels nature macro flower photographer

Nikon D750 | 105mm | f/4 | 1/320 | ISO 800

Day 363 ~ Cucumber Beetle

Wednesday, December 28th, 2016

The blooming pansy was pretty but I also wanted to find something unique out in the yard… it can be challenging since I’ve shot just about everything there is to shoot back there. The dandelion puffs are going to seed but I have several beautiful puff shots in my portfolio already. When I picked one (I thought of blowing the seeds to capture them mid-air), I saw a ladybug. It wasn’t red though, it was yellow and it also had a green neck. I remembered a news story about a ladybug lookalike that was dangerous to dogs, but this wasn’t that either. This is actually a cucumber beetle!

New Braunfels nature macro beetle dandelion photographer

Nikon D750 | 105mm | f/4 | 1/320 | ISO 800

Day 364 ~ The Most Beautiful Leaf

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

We took Anna to the doctor earlier in the week because she twisted her knee last week that produced a sharp sudden pain. It quickly subsided but left a dull ache and persistent discomfort for more than a week, so we took her in to get it looked at. (Looks like it was a stretched muscle or tendon.) While at the doctor’s office, we saw hundreds of huge leaves all over the ground from the large maple trees surrounding the property. They were so gorgeous that mom grabbed some for me to take home. This was one of my favorites… it reminds me of acid etching. The colors are so vivid and pretty and the patterns so intricate.

New Braunfels nature macro leaf photographer

Nikon D750 | 105mm | f/7.1 | 1/640 | ISO 200

Day 365 ~ Vintage Baby

Friday, December 30th, 2016

We had new friends over Friday night to eat dinner and play some Mexican train. Terzah had remembered that Anna loved baby dolls and she brought her childhood doll for Anna to babysit for the evening. What an incredibly sweet and kind thing to do! Anna was so excited to play with this vintage doll, and she took very good care of her.

New Braunfels doll child photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2 | 1/200 | ISO 1000

Day 366 ~ Going Out for NYE

Friday, December 30th, 2016

Thanks to my mom (I am incredibly grateful to her for so much), Curtis and I got to have a grown-up New Year’s Eve out. Dominic stayed at a friend’s house and Anna stayed with my mom. Last year we went to San Antonio and had such a good time being part of the big crowd and watching the fireworks. But it was a bit overwhelming. This year we started the day with a couple’s massage… an amazing gift from my mother-in-law. The massage was at the Gruene Day Spa and we were so relaxed when we were done (thank you, Judy!!!). Then we drove to San Antonio, checked into the hotel, showered, them met friends for dinner. After that, we just went to a bar and met more friends for drinks and dancing. We had such a good time! (Hence why the blog is so late, ha.) We ended the old year in love and started the new one even more in love and I feel abundantly blessed by so much in my life. (Photo taken with the built in wifi on the camera and I used my iPhone as the trigger… I love technology!)

New Braunfels couple family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/1.6 | 1/160 | ISO 1000

Thank you all so much for sharing my Project 366 with me this year… even though I only posted once a week and I missed a few days here and there, I feel like I have a real record of our lives for 2016. I know I probably overshare here on my blog about our challenges and triumphs, but I think of it as a diary for my children to read when they are my age. Wouldn’t you like to look back at your life and your parent’s lives from decades ago? (I’ll need to remember to have someone always pay for this domain and hosting!) Thank you for reading and for being a part of my life. Bring on 2017!!!

Jenny 25 ~ Anna 15 ~ Dominic 12 ~ Curtis and I 47

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


serving Central Texas

& surrounding areas

How may I help you?


Form submitted successfully, thank you.Error submitting form, please try again.