Friday, June 27, 2008

Essie 7 1/2 Months

Here are a few pics of little Essie Boo...well...more than a few. I sold a bit of furniture out of our 'studio' and bought a backdrop stand, two backdrops, and a reflector with the money. The reflector hasn't come yet, so you will see that in all of these pictures, one side of her face needs a bit more light. I just couldn't wait to try out the background, though.

I NEED SOME PHOTOGRAPHY ADVICE. I am having a hard time getting the focus right. I am trying to fucus right on the eyes, but I don't feel like they are crisp enough. I am trying to just use window light because I like the way it looks so clean, but maybe I need a bigger window, because when I set my shutter speed to 60 (which is the minimum I can do to get a crisp picture with a moving baby and a shakey hand) I have to have the aperture in the f/2 or 3 range to get a decent exposure. With the aperture so wide the depth of field is so small that I have a hard time getting it to focus right. Or maybe the problem is that the shutter speed isn't quite fast enough, so things are blurring a bit. I'm not sure. I tried increasing the ISO, but I'm not happy with the noise in the photo when I do that. Suggestions anyone?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

First time swimming

Estella is a WATER BUG!!! She loves the water. I have been able to tell that from the first time I gave her a bath. Last night, I gave her a bath in the big tub for the first time. It was like christmas to her. She was thrilled and excited the entire time...even when I poured water over her face to wash her hair.
I really wanted to get some cure swimming pictures, but playing with three little ones in a pool and keeping a camera safe and dry don't mix very well. I did manage to get this one after-swimming shot to capture Essie's first time swimming.

She is in motion. It is so fun to see her set her sights on something across the floor and then half crawl...half squirm her way there and grab it. She is a determined little girl.

This is often the state of Essie's hair first thing in the morning. It is wild!

Last week, we had our Berry family dinner at the park and Bubba (Jackson's dad) brought his RC boat. The grandkids all had a blast manuevering it around the pond. This is a pic of Thomas having his turn.

Nicholas didn't care much for controlling the boat...he was content playing in the mud and throwing rocks into the water.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

We love our garden!

We love to garden. Last year we had great tomatoes and pumpkin, but made mistakes on everything else. The corn was doing great, but we didn't pick it in time and it was all starchy and chewy when we realized it was ready. The peas and squash didn't ever grow well and I think it was that I planted them too late. So...this year I planted peas when there was still frost on the ground. They are doing so well! We picked a big bowl full yesterday and made alfredo and pea linguini for dinner. The corn (in the picture) is doing great. We also planted tomatoes and red and green peppers (you can see the tomatoes in the tires behind the corn). I love fresh produce!

My mom bought my dad a backyard fire pit for Father's day. The day after my sister Kara was married we broke it in for the first time. Before we lit a fire and it was still new and clean, Nicholas enjoyed playing in it. Later that evening we roasted marshmallows and starburst. It was great!
This was Essie's first time having her fingernails painted. My sister Kara did the honors. Essie was not very cooperative. She was intent on grabbing the brush. I was amazed that Kara was able to get any polish on her nails at all. They were so cute! Sorry about the blurry picture.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Random pictures

Here are a few random pictures from the past month or so.

This is Thomas and his cousin Newell. They are good buddies.
Estella eating oatmeal. She is figuring out the eating thing really well. The only problem is that she wants the spoon, so when we feed Essie it takes four spoons. One to feed her with and three others to keep her little hands busy!
Nicholas found a little baby toothbrush that goes on your finger and used it to brush Essie's hair. He knew it wasn't for brushing hair, so he had a "I'm being so silly" look on his face the whole time he was doing it.
For Jackson's birthday we decided to get a babysitter and go on a hike just the two of us. It was so fun to be able to move quickly on the trail without stopping or carrying the kids. We hiked up to a waterfall and decided to explore up over the top of it. When we got up and over we dropped down into a little valley. Suddenly we were surrounded by echoing animal calls of some kind. It took us a while, but we figured out they were frogs. On our hike back we ran into a group of people who were actually hiking up specifically to listen to and watch these frogs. They informed us they were called "canyon tree frogs." It was so fun that we wanted the kids to have that experince as well, so we hiked back up a few days later with all three kids. It took a lot longer, but it was worth it. We had a blast. If you want to see a video that Jackson took, just go to YouTube and search Canyon Tree Frogs.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Kara's Wedding

This past weekend my little sister Kara and Cody Markham were married in the Manti Temple. It was so fun to be there. They are such a gorgeous couple. They were just dripping happiness and new love. It was wonderful.
Here they are having a little moment together in the lobby before they come out of the temple.
She is just stunning!
Kara and Thomas
This is my aunt Gaylene holding Nicholas and my sister Jamie standing in the background. If you click on the picture you will be able to see his big crocodile tear.
These are my dad's parents. They have worked in the Manti Temple for over 10 years now. They are some of the sweetest people you will ever meet.