Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Baby Photo Session: MinJee

 Goodness. This was lovely fun.
It was my first real "newborn" shoot, and forced me to get a little creative as you can't quite take a newborn outdoors for pictures...especially a sweet nekkid one. : )

I took all of these pictures on my bed upstairs in the afternoon. 
I get nice light from west and north-facing windows. 
And then I draped by four-poster bed with white sheets, and voila! a little studio.
Recognize that pillow?

It's been awhile since I spent some time around a newborn.  I was so awed by how little she is. After awhile you forget how little your three-year-olds started out.

That little yawn!

And feet!

Sigh. I think I want one.

I love that momma wore her pearls.

If you live in the Ft. Collins, Loveland, Greeley {Colorado} area and you would like to plan a photo session just for you, email me at everydaylovelyblog@gmail.com  for info.

See portfolio {HERE}.

Monday, January 30, 2012

I Found It! A Lovely Pillow

Isn't it beautiful?  It's a hand-drawn, silkscreen print by Jenna Rose.  I stumbled upon it over at the inspiring Birch & Bird site and was instantly smitten.  She's created such beautiful prints, but the ships are my favorite.  I love the movement of the waves.

Also love this bag in the same print ...but I think the pillow will be what makes it to my birthday wishlist. : )

Jenna also makes these lovely bucket hampers.  Wouldn't one of these be so fun in a little boy's room?  (imagining it in the ship pattern, of course, though this honeycomb would be lovely in the right setting, too)

Also taken with this anatomy of a bicycle print - would be such a fun gift.

Here's also a little bucket in her "tree house print".  Such a handy little bucket, especially useful for storing and toting your needlework.  Someday I will start crocheting again and then, I will most certainly need one of these.

You can find these and Jenna's other beautiful creations at her Etsy shop {HERE}.

Note: this is not a paid advertisement. 
Just had to share the talented Jenna Rose with you quick-quick.

Off to have a hopefully lovely, productive Monday morning - payroll tax reports are due and the laundry room is flooded....with laundry.

Good times : )

Friday, January 27, 2012

The Perfect Cookie

 Now, I title this post fully aware that there are many wonderful cookies out there...(I believe I've made and tried most of them ;), but this one is perfect in the sense that it has ingredients I always have on hand, it comes together quick-quick,  it combines two of the best ingredients ever (peanut butter & chocolate), and since it has protein in it with the peanut butter it almost qualifies as a meal replacement. I kid, I kid.....I think.

Anyway, make some for your people quick-quick 
and have yourself a merry weekend! 
(oh! and these can easily be gluten-free)

The Perfect Cookie (a.k.a Monster Cookies)

Blend together:

3/4 cups butter
1 1/2 cups peanut butter  (use natural peanut butter, you won't regret it!)
1 cup (or less) sugar
1 1/4 cup (or less) brown sugar

Mix in:

2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla


2 tsp baking soda
4 cups quick or regular oats (might need an extra 1/2 cup to 1 cup if it isn't stiff enough depending on how runny your peanut butter was)

Finally add:

1-2 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips or 1 cup semi-sweet and 1 cup milk chocolate or half semi-sweet and half M&M's!

Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes for fairly large cookies (do not over-bake!!! This would be terrible)

Enjoy! Hope you have a lovely weekend.
I'm off to clean-up and bake for company tonight -
sure, it is a bit of extra work, but I love Friday night company.

 More Everyday Lovely recipes {HERE}

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Photography Notes: Picture Taking Tips 2

So today I'm going to continue my little photography tips series.  Remember that I'm not an expert, even a real professional at this, but like many of you, I love photography and as I have sorted through a little bit of the technique I thought I'd share what I've learned.

Today I'll share three picture-taking rules/tips in regard to Layout:
the Rule of Thirds, Lines, and Framing.


The Rule of Thirds

The rule of thirds is basically dividing what you see through your lens into thirds, and placing your subject in the top, bottom, right or left third.  Here's a (very) rough idea of what I'm talking about.  You want your subject to be close to one of the points where the the lines meet.
  In other words, don't put your subject in the center. Not that it's a crime, but it's generally true that putting your subject dead on center makes for a less pleasing composition.  Off center adds balance and makes your subject more captivating. 

See here is my little Gideon pretty much on dead center.  I still really love it (the fence helps give some weight to the left, adding balance ) and will keep it because he's cute, but...

 Here he is moved into the right third of the photo.

Here's some other examples.



 I use this rule with my home and food shots too.


  Next we have Lines.  This is a technique involving using lines you find in your setting to draw attention to your subject.  It makes for a much more dynamic picture.

Lines in fence leading to face.

Box lines leading to cute feet.

 Grass line leading you from brother to siblings.

Always lots of lines at a park - slides are great.  Here swing lines lead you to subject.


 Another fence line.

Railroad track lines.


Finally, we have the Framing technique.  Like with Lines you look for ways you can frame your subject in order to bring your eye to the subject more dynamically.  I haven't challenged myself much creatively with this one,  but here are a few examples.

Here parents frame the baby. 

 Same idea here.

Peek-a-boo face.

 Hopefully this was a bit helpful.   Next Wednesday, I'll share a bit about photo-editing.

Until then, happy picture-taking to you. : )

You can find the rest of the series:
{HERE}  Photography Notes: About My Camera

{HERE} Photography Notes: Photo-Taking Tips I

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Most Unexpected Surprise

Thanks to God who knows even the little "impossible" desires of our hearts.

Last Fall, I found an email in my inbox from House of Fifty e-magazine.   In a state of complete giddy shock, I managed to realize they were asking if they could include Everyday Lovely in their "Blogs We Love" feature.  Could. not. believe. it.   I compulsively ran downstairs to tell my sweetheart, deep in his dissertation work, and took a good fifteen minutes trying to make myself intelligible.   

Such a lovely boost, but at the same time so humbling - I am way out of my league in the midst of all this beautiful, polished talent. 

If you've never seen an issue of House of Fifty, you are in for a tremendous treat.  Miss Janell of Isabella & Max Rooms is the visionary behind this magazine - and every issue is packed full of such lovely inspiration for everyday living.

The Spring 2012 issue just came out today - click the link to view!


{p.s. I'll be back with the photography tips post tomorrow. promise.
Off now, to tackle and purge heap big mess in the playroom. yikes.}

Monday, January 23, 2012

A List for Daily Simplicity & Magnetic Clipboard diy

 I love making grand plans for our home and daily doings and writing long to-do lists.  And while I have a planner that I love and have used for years, I've found myself more and more transferring my to-do list from my planner to a scrap piece of paper that I could carry around with me - stick to the fridge - essentially something I could have out before my face and help keep me on track throughout the day.

I recently came across this Daily Plan Sheet or "Daily Draft" put together by Ann Voskamp, the same remarkable lady that wrote One Thousand Gifts 
(which I am reading now and it is so good).

Anyway for the last week or so I've been using this Draft to order my day, and while I'm still trying to figure out how to make each section work best for me, I'm liking it - I especially like how it draws my attention to things that I might otherwise overlook.  Like, what relationship could use some extra attention today...and exactly what verse am I memorizing right now??  Hmmm.  The "Doxology" part corresponds with One Thousand Gifts as a place to add to your list of gifts/blessings you are thanking God for.

I also appreciate the "Day's Dire" section, and that there are only 3 lines here.  I think Sister was telling me that she heard somewhere that it's a good idea to expect that you will at least get three things done a day (along with all the daily demands of home and children) - anything more than that is pretty much superhero stuff.   Singling out 3 Must Do's for the day has really helped me focus on what's really important.  I feel like I'm being more realistic with myself and therefore more accomplished and satisfied at the end of the day.

Here's an example: my Draft for Today.

I'm thinking that having "clean bathrooms" feels like a dire need today is...not such a good sign.  But it is going to get Done today!  (Still haven't figured out what to do with the "Dailies" section, though I think it's supposed to help you establish a "rhythm" for your day...)

So anyway, an important part to actually using and following this list is to have it out where I can see it - primarily on the front of the frig - but easy to take around the house with me.  So I made this little magnetic clipboard:
Needed:  old funky clipboard from the thrift store, hot glue, button magnets, twine for a bit of fun along with a dried-out flower from the vase by your sink.  : )

Glued Magnets on like so.

And added a little lovely embellishment on the top.

Now to actually do my to-do list.  That's the tricky part.  ; )

{Linking to Bowl Full of Lemons}

Thursday, January 19, 2012

I Broke My Target Fast

It was inevitable.  How long can a person really go without a little visit to Target after all?
In my defense, my primary reason for finally going was for returns...and then of course I had to check out their clearance end caps.

Good thing I DID.  Because I found these little Mrs. Meyer's Christmas candles, which I somehow missed seeing during the Christmas season.  I love this Iowa Pine scent, which heretofore I've enjoyed only in hand soap form.   And now Iowa Pine seems especially appropriate...kind of like it's made just for me, suppose? 

 And would you look at the cute little gift tag packaging.  I only bought two.  Ten points for self restraint.  But now I'm seriously considering going back and buying the rest - what better way to win the affection of my new Iowa neighbors next Christmas?  ; )

Does this stock-up idea jive with my purging plan?  Hmmm, feeling conflicted.

 Especially, considering they're on clearance at 1/2 of!  Deals like this only happen on Target end caps.  I highly recommend you check yours out quick-quick.