Sunday, December 19, 2010

Happy Holidays!

...to this family, and all of the families I had have the pleasure of meeting this year! 

(A sneak peek, Mark & Tor...you have a beautiful, sweet family!) 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Love these kids!

Did a recent family photo session with this amazing group of energetic people!  They are funny and sweet and smart and kind...and beautiful...and, oh, they are MINE! 
We consider ourselves very fortunate to call these wonderful young women our daughters...and so blessed that they have chosen to love these wonderful young men, who cherish them in return!



Friday, December 10, 2010

Contentedness.

This is Jackson.  He is patiently waiting for our guests to arrive, quietly counting the days until there will be turkey giblets to eat, calmly awaiting the tree decorating and the holiday bows that he loves to take off of presents (curling ribbon is like a drug to him).  I should be more like him, calm and demure...BUT...I AM JUST SO EXCITED!!!  Family pictures this weekend (clients and my own!), the treasured & traditional tree hunt (hide and seek in the tree lots!) and then tree trimming, a special birthday treat, cookie day, stocking stuffing, game nights...did I already say that I am so excited?!  Abundantly grateful, contentment abounds.



Monday, December 6, 2010

I must've taken a wrong turn somewhere along the way...

...in life, or maybe just along this highway, but definitely a wrong turn...pretty sure I didn't sign up for snakes and scorpions?!


Friday, December 3, 2010

Living in the moment...but day dreaming of Costa Rica!

I do subscribe to the philosophy that we should appreciate the here and now, live each moment as fully as we can, be present in our lives...all of that gibberish...but as I was recently editing images for our annual calendar I came across a few Costa Rica shots...and couldn't help myself but to recall those long, warm days where the sunshine was plentiful and the sounds of ocean breezes filled our open air cabanas.  I'm just saying...

Monday, November 22, 2010

The view from my deck.

Hmmm.  So, yes, I know...it's November, it's Winter...and it's Pocatello, Idaho...but seriously...

Normally, most days of the year, this view would include our pretty yard, with its wild bunnies and rolling hills, and the adjacent strip of natural landscaping which is mostly sagebrush and spruce trees...and then you'd see the street (which I constantly wish was a river)...and normally, you'd see the nature trail across the street and the park on the hillside...and you could even see the lights of town and a hint of the cityscape...

Today...this is the view from my deck.  Visibility...oh, about 20 feet!

I am starting my real estate search for somewhere...well, closer to the Equator!

In the meanwhile, the stew is bubbling, the biscuits are rising and my slippers are on!  (Okay, so that's not a bad deal either!)  I hope that wherever you are, there is warmth, of some kind.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

What is your "one thing"?

I used to work in an elementary school, with an inspiring collection of children and an amazing team of educators.  At a training session one morning the facilitator asked us all to stand, one at a time, to introduce ourselves and to share a little bit of ourselves, as a way of getting to know each other.  She asked, "if you could bring one thing from your home that best represented you, what would that one thing be?" 

All of the participants then shared their "one thing"…many said "the family photo that is on the fireplace mantle" (please refer to my "NOW is the time for family photos" blog entry for my commentary on the importance of having family portraits!).   Others' replies ranged from sentimental to humorous…the family Bible, the family dog, the quilt hanging on their wall, the alarm clock, the bottle of wine on the counter, a tattered stuffed toy…and many spoke thoughtfully of the things they had inherited from their family members; old writing desks, a crackled, antique mirror, a special storybook or a doll they had played with as a child. 

When my turn came, I stood and said…"my name is Kris, and I would bring my refrigerator."  After the laughter subsided, (I think they assumed I had a really deep connection with my food), I explained…  "My refrigerator door is cluttered and is full, much like my life…and it IS my mantle…it IS my storybook…and it represents my reflections, my inspirations, my 'Bible', my childhood…and my family!"  It is me; imperfect and sometimes chaotic, a collection of things that have touched me, influenced me, and ultimately created me…
I have a note, as an example, written on a piece of torn paper bag, I wrote 8 years ago, thanking my mom for bringing me lunch while I was working (she had it pinned to her frig for years, as if it was a special prize…and when she died, I kept it, and pinned it up on mine, as a way of reminding me to be grateful for all the little things in life). 
I have magnets from many of the places we have visited, from "Going to the Sun" road in Glacier National Park (where I tested my fear of heights), to a brewery in Pittsburgh, PA (where I tested my limited beer drinking abilities with my Dad the year he passed away), to a little glass sea turtle from Coast Rica (where we helped baby turtles to find the sea)!
I have photos galore…of our beautiful girls, and our handsome son-in-law, and of our wonderful nieces and nephews (who braved the cold weather to allow me to experiment with my camera), and photos of some of our furry animals! 
And quotes…lots of quotes…words that inspire or encourage me…and some that just make me smile! 
There is no "ME" on my refrigerator…but, collectively it represents all of me, a jumbled, crazy mess at times, full of adventures, hopes & dreams, memories and honest love. 
I wonder, friends...if you could share one thing from your home that best represented you, what would that one thing be?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Are your ducks in a row?

I am a list person.  Those who know me will know that if you want to know what I am up to, look for my lists!  Grocery lists, to do lists, client lists, long term project lists, house projects and even, sometimes, indulgently, wish lists.  I cannot sleep at night until at least a few things have been crossed off of my lists!  Admittedly, I will even write things on my list that I have already done, just so I can cross them off!  (I mastered that technique when my girls were little and it was impossibly hard to complete anything on my list...so at the end of the day I would write things like, "be flexible", "survive the crazy day with sick kids"...check, check!)  I love a nice dark, definitive line through the things that I've accomplished, or a healthy check sign! 

Sometimes, though, I stare at my lists, in a bit of dismay, and think...is this my life?!  Has my life become defined by these lists?  And if I am the author of these lists, why don't the "big" things make it to my lists?  And, what ARE the "big" things?  (Did I mention that I was a Philosophy major!)

The adage "get your ducks in a row" suggests that we have to get all the little things in our life straightened out before we move forward (some suggest the saying refers to bowling pins, others say it references momma ducks getting their babies together...but the meaning is the same).  Thus my lists, my ducks, are itemized neatly, and reworked when they get too messy on the page, and someday, when my ducks are in a row, I'll be able to tackle the big things?!  Right?

What ARE the big things again? 

...I am probably going to have to make a list....


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

NOW is the time for family photos!

I read an article a little while ago, a heart-wrenching true story, and if I can find it again I will attach the link, about procrastinating family photos.  Seems everyone has good intentions of "someday" getting a good family photo for the living room wall (and for family Christmas cards)...you know, to update the one there on the wall now, before you had kids, or when the kids were just babies!  But, as I know all too well, "someday" has a way of slipping by pretty quickly.  Someday is, in fact, pretty elusive. 
You get busy, we all do...especially as the holidays approach...and you tell yourself you'll get them done when "things slow down", when you "lose a little weight" (that's a really common one), when you grow your hair out or get your hair done, or once the yardwork is done, or, or, or, or...  In the meanwhile, the kids are growing so fast, people come and go from our lives at the blink of an eye....and time passes by so quickly. 
Whether you have little kids, big kids, or no kids...or whether your kids are the 4-legged kind...whether you are a young family or a more "seasoned" one...whether you have an extra few pounds or you wish your hair was longer or wish you still had hair!  And, whether or not you hire a professional photographer to take your family pictures...just DO IT!  Time passes by so quickly.  Preserve this time, this memory, now. 





  
If you'd like more information about my family portrait options (and I can customize it to suit your time and budget) give me a call or email me!  Kris @ 339-4339,  heartandsoulimages@cableone.net, http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Pocatello-ID/Heart-Soul-Images/142705035975

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The 3 Bears!

We were fortunate enough to get to hang out with this beautiful mama black bear and her TWO cubs for a little while in Yellowstone this past weekend.  They were on an opposing hillside for a bit, digging in the soil and hopping over fallen trees...and then they dropped down into a ravine, a trickling creek, and out of sight.  We guessed that they would follow the creek for awhile before heading up the hillside again, but were surprised when just moments later they popped up, right in front of us! 
We had a moment to consider each other, and then she changed her course and disappeared into the trees with her babies.  Thanks for the visit mama!



Tuesday, October 19, 2010

It's official!

They are engaged!  Looks like we'll be planning a wedding for next summer for these two...Allison (my daughter) and Stephen!  Yaaaay!  So happy for them...and happy for us, that we get to be a part of their lives together!  Congrats you guys...we love you!



Monday, October 18, 2010

Yellowstone in Fall.

I remember when I moved "out West", from a life primarily lived in urban environments of the East and Midwest states. I rode in the upper bed of a camp trailer (unadvisable, I know) and stared out the window, for hours and hours, as the scenery changed from the familiar lush green trees, to endless fields of green and tan farmland, to mountainous horizons with little or no population, and finally, to our destination, a small town which was, it seemed to me, populated mostly by sagebrush. I thought it was ugly. Awful, really. It was desolate and drab and depressing, to a young teenage girl. I recall my Dad being so excited by the varied landscapes, while us kids were so disenchanted with miles and miles of sagebrush!

Well, years have passed, and while I still love the cities...and I still love the lush greens and beautiful colors of deciduous trees of an East Coast & Midwest Fall...I have become quite accustomed to the muted tones of the deserts as well. There is a subtle beauty in the tones and a surreal quality of the landscapes that cannot be found anywhere else. Perhaps I had to reach a certain "maturity" to see it. Thanks Dad!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

To the Chilean miners!

Congratulations to the miners and their families and friends...and to all the men and women who helped to ensure a safe rescue! 
I'll bet they never take the beautiful sky for granted again!



Monday, October 11, 2010

I love him!

I love it when kids contemplate.  I love it when anyone takes the time to be reflective, but there is something so pure and sweet and innocent about a child in thought, even for just a moment.  Okay, so maybe he wasn't deep in thought...he may have been thinking about whether he wanted to climb on the nearby log, or chase the cow...or maybe he was thinking about the balloon we just let float away, on accident...which may have led his mind to the impermanence and fragility of life...and how delicately we have to hold on to what we love...  Okay, but likely, he was thinking about the cow!  And maybe how much he loves his mommy!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

It's starting to feel like Fall...

...what was with that sleet storm today?!  Granted it lasted about three minutes, but it sure got gloomy quickly!  So, maybe it's Fall finally? 
I love Fall.  It usually is way too short in S.E. Idaho...as the snow will come far too soon for me...but I love the crispness in the air in the morning, the cool evenings with homemade crock-pot dinners that make your whole house smell like comfort, and all of the rich, warm colors of Autumn.  Fall makes me want to retreat, dust off my cookbooks and cook & bake, to read those novels I collected in my travels over the Summer, and to finally finish those little projects that piled up throughout the year.  Maybe I will actually get to that unpainted laundry room?!  I am thinking maybe a warm chocolate color...
So, if you're in the neighborhood, stop by and say hi...I'll be the one in my cozy sweatshirt!


Monday, October 4, 2010

Tetons in Fall!

There is no better time to visit the Grand Teton National Park, than Fall...well, unless it be Summer, when the temperatures are warm and the days are long, that's nice too...or Winter, when the mountains are white and the animals are visible...or Spring, when the wildflowers are in bloom...  But I digress...  Fall is really spectacular! 


Thursday, September 30, 2010

Confession...I've been a photographer for awhile...

I know it's crazy...but I actually shot film for many years!  Remember film?  I still have some in my freezer!  Do you remember the darkroom...not the digital one, but the one that smelled like chemicals and had that ever-present sound of running water?  And Velvia slide film!  Oh, I loved the saturation of Velvia!
Anyway, that's where I began.  In a darkroom, with black and white photography, then onto color slides...which is what these images were, until I scanned them for use in our digital world.  If you ever shot film you may remember being really selective about when to click the shutter, 'cause you only had 24 or maybe 36 images on the roll.  Nowadays it is easy to shoot through a 4 GB card (a couple of hundred images in RAW) without much thought.
One of the most important things I learned, as a film user, was how important is was to be selective about your composition.  Sure, you could crop into a photo to eliminate extraneous elements, but there was no easy "bandaid" for spot healing or "clone stamp" for erasing things you may or may not have even realized were a part of your image.
My style, maybe as a result of trying to eliminate all of the "noise"...became one of simplicity.  I prefer the simplest version of an image, whether it be a sweeping landscape, a personal portrait, or capturing a sense of place...my style usually reflects a sense of simplicity.  It isn't right or wrong, that is certainly not the lesson here, it is, instead, that you have to find your voice, in everything you do.  Make it your own. 



Monday, September 20, 2010

Sweetie!

So this little sweetie stopped by the other day, in preparation for his 2nd birthday party!  He has a little mischief in his eyes, as all boys do...but such a sweetheart!  Happy Birthday T!


Cuteness.

Okay, so he is a boy, and someday he won't want to be called "cute"...but for now, for today, he is my definition of CUTE!  He is surely going to break some hearts...what a charmer, with those baby blues...!   
Thanks Amber, for letting us play!  And, this is just a teaser...!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

This one's for you, Stephen!

I dream about love.

I read this the other day, and wrote it down because I appreciated and identified with it, but now cannot recall the authors name...nor do I think I quoted it exactly...so, I apologize for my inadequacies...but I gratefully thank the author for these words...
"I dream about love. 
I dream about loving those close to me
in a way that affirms
the beautiful life within them. 
I dream about the possibility of love
that can be captured with photography
being able to transcend boundaries
and remind people
of the real reason we are here on this earth...
to love."
I dream about love...

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Burma...a primer.

I do not know how many of you have heard of the country Burma (Myanmar)...  I had heard of it at one time, but probably could not have pointed to it on a map, until a few years ago, when I took a really great Anthropology class from a professor at I.S.U. who was very familiar with S.E. Asia, particularly with Burma.  (Map)  It is a country rich in history, tradition and beauty, but ravaged by what is now decades of a brutal military regime.

As quoted from Partners webpage, "Burma is a country of extraordinary beauty: Its people, the landscape, the culture. And yet, it is disfigured and scarred by one of the cruelest regimes in the world."

I was fortunate enough to receive a wonderful birthday present this past month (from a pretty great guy, thanks Stephen!)...this book, "Displaced Reflections" by Oddny Gumaer, co-founder of Partners Relief and Development...in which she captures a few of the stories and lives of some of the most remarkable people, refugees from Burma.  The book is currently available on their website, along with some great information about the country and its people.  Please take a minute to look at their site...and maybe even consider how you can help.

I am fortunate enough to be considering a humanitarian trip there this Fall, with Partners...and will surely keep you posted on my experience. 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Kylie!

I love my job!  Particularly when it involves clients like this one, so sweet and genuinely beautiful...makes my job easy (but don't tell anyone!).  Thanks to Kylie and her mom, for a fun morning! 
Don't forget, seniors, it's time to think about scheduling your senior picture...particularly while the weather is still so agreeable!  Give me a call soon to hold your spot!  Kris @ 339-4339

Sunday, August 22, 2010

More Seattle...

So, once you've wandered around Pike's Place Market, catch a ride over to the University area (yes, Husky grounds!) where you can rent a kayak (Agua Verde Cafe & Paddle Club) to paddle around Portage Bay, into Union Bay and through parts of the Washington Park Arboretum. If it's a warm day, it will be the perfect afternoon activity and a unique experience of being in the city and yet removed from the hustle and bustle as well...and, lots to see (beautiful waterfront homes and houseboats, the Montlake Draw Bridge, particularly friendly water fowl, and lots of people hanging out in and near the waterfront). Upstairs from the Paddle Club is a great little Mexican Cafe...yummy food and perfectly blended drinks!



If you want to spend more time outdoors, and like to people watch, the evening hours are fun at the Seattle Center. From downtown, it's a quick ride on the Monorail which ends in the heart of the Seattle Center. Between the Space Needle, the amusement park, the live music almost always happening there and the International Fountain, there is always a steady stream of entertaining sights and sounds!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Seattle! Pike's Place Market!

The best way to start your morning in Seattle? Head down to Pike's Place, grab a cup of Starbucks' coffee along the way or at their very first store (there are 416 Starbucks in the greater Seattle metropolis!), and find this little place, the "Daily Dozen Doughnut Company" for a fresh batch of cinnamon donuts! (I asked them if I could move in, but, they didn't seem interested...something about profit margins plummeting...!)
Then, after a sufficient amount of fat and sugar...head to one of the many produce stands and pick out your favorite fruit (the best peach I've ever eaten...and yummy cherries...and raspberries...and, and, and...!)...like I said, pick your favorite...you can't go wrong!
If you are lucky, this gentleman will be serenading you as you walk along the market...and the fish will be flying...and the sun will be shining all day, as it was when we visited Seattle this past weekend!




Don't forget to re-visit the market in the evening hours...