May Around Our Clocks

9:00 a.m.

Now that I'm looking back at this photo, it seems so long ago!  The kids were still in school and my 9 a.m. hour was pretty quiet on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  Right now I miss spending time in my kitchen!  With the craziness of summer, I've only actually cooked a handful of times in the last month - either we eat at the ball diamond, on the run, or I throw something together super quick.  

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This year, I am taking part in a group project and blog circle titled Around Our Clocks.  Each month, photographers from around the world (most of them alumni of the Clickin Moms class The Documentary Approach) take a photo during a certain hour of the day. This year, we are encouraged to be in the frame. Click here to be taken to my friend Nicole's blog post!

April Around Our Clocks

2:00 p.m.:

My mom has been bowling in a league for years on Wednesday afternoons...I never quite understood the appeal until I started subbing a couple of years ago for their team.  It was really fun!  This year, I formed my own team with my sister and two friends.  At first, we all felt a bit out of place and weren't sure we wanted to make time for it every week.  However, as the season went on, we all really loved it!  Our bowling scores improved a bit, but we didn't stay very consistent. One week, we'd bowl super good (I hit almost 200 twice) and the next week we would bowl really bad (I had several games where I scored less than 100).  That kept our averages from going up which helped us!  We ended up in first place (out of four teams) in our league.

One of the best parts of bowling was spending a couple of hours with the same girls every week - it was fun to get to know each other and solve all the world's problems :) We also had a ton of fun while I was trying to take these photos - we ended up with so many great outtakes!  

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This year, I am taking part in a group project and blog circle titled Around Our Clocks.  Each month, photographers from around the world (most of them alumni of the Clickin Moms class The Documentary Approach) take a photo during a certain hour of the day. This year, we are encouraged to be in the frame. Click here to be taken to my friend Rachel's blog post!

Wedding | O'Neill {Nebraska Wedding Photographer}

What a beautiful wedding!  I knew from the beginning that I would have an awesome time photographing this couple. Jenna made a wedding website that completely captured the story of how she and Jeremy met and their vision for their wedding.  They felt so lucky to have found each other and it was evident in their glances and stolen moments throughout the day!  

Their family was great and the fish fry on that Friday night was amazing!  

Hendrix Joseph Fresh 48 {Nebraska Newborn Photographer}

Just 15 months ago, I did my first Fresh 48 ever when Mark and Marilee's boy Kinnick was born.  They asked me back again for the birth of their second baby.  Again, they didn't know what the gender of their baby was, so I was there to capture the birth of little Hendrix.  The next day, I went back to the hospital to take photos of this sweet growing family!  Kinnick was so sweet with his baby brother (but what is it about toddlers wanting to poke baby eyes?? Mine all did the same thing!).  

Larson Extended Family | Aurora {Nebraska Family Photographer}

The holidays are always the best time to get the extended family together and take some updated family photos to hang on your parents' or grandparents' walls!  Suzanne contacted me when all of her siblings would be gathering at her parents' house in Aurora over the Thanksgiving holiday.  

Unfortunately, the weather turned super cold and we braved 30 degree temps with 20 mph winds! Since half the family lives in Arizona, it was pretty miserable for them.  We warmed up with hot chocolate and quickly captured the photos they needed!

March Around Our Clocks

6:00 p.m.

The 6:00 hour in our home is always the same: supper.  I aim to have supper on the table right around 6, but now that the weather is getting nicer, it seems to be about 6:15 or so before we actually sit down and eat. After supper, the kids usually go play together: outside if they can, or inside on the trampoline.  Sometimes I make them help me clean off the table and do the dishes, but honestly, I kind of like a quiet kitchen. I always think I hate doing the dishes, but once I actually have my hands in the water, I don't mind the task so much.  I especially love warm spring evenings when I can watch the kids run around with the cats outside the kitchen window!

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This year, I am taking part in a group project and blog circle titled Around Our Clocks.  Each month, photographers from around the world (most of them alumni of the Clickin Moms class The Documentary Approach) take a photo during a certain hour of the day. This year, we are encouraged to be in the frame. Click here to be taken to my friend Catherine's post

Bethesda Preschool {Nebraska Documentary Photographer}

Last fall, my daughter's preschool teacher asked if I would take photos of her class...I said sure! (But only if I could also take some storytelling photos and not just portraits).

I had such a fun time hanging out with these 4 & 5 year olds for a couple of hours...and I gained a new appreciation for preschool teachers - those kids are exhausting!

February Around Our Clocks

10 a.m.

This was a tough one for me to figure out what I wanted to share! My 10:00 hour is so varied depending on preschool schedules, Bible study, moms groups, etc.  This was taken on a day in late February when my middle daughter was home sick from school. Our electricity was also out for the day (not weather related) so we had a relaxing, quiet day at home.  We worked on a puzzle, read books, drew pictures (her) and scrapbooked (me).  It was awesome.

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This year, I am taking part in a group project and blog circle titled Around Our Clocks.  Each month, photographers from around the world (most of them alumni of the Clickin Moms class The Documentary Approach) take a photo during a certain hour of the day. This year, we are encouraged to be in the frame. Click here to be taken to my friend Nicole's blog.

Wedding | Hastings St. Cecilia Catholic Church {Nebraska Wedding Photographer}

Kayla and Chris were married on a beautiful October day in Hastings, Nebraska.  Kayla told the sweetest story of how they met: She worked in a nursing home and because close to a resident, Rose, while there.  Kayla shared everything with Rose and one day mentioned that she was attending a wedding that weekend. Rose said something about a man and Kayla asked her what she meant. Rose replied that she was praying for Kayla and that weddings were the best places to meet someone.  At that wedding, Kayla met Chris and the rest was history.  

Also, this was an awesomely fun wedding reception.  1990s/2000s country songs will always have my heart.

January Around Our Clocks

Almost two years later, The Documentary Approach class though Clickin Moms continues to be my favorite class ever.  This year, I'm teaming up with other alumni for a project called Around Our Clocks.  Each month, we take a photo during a certain hour (this month it's noon) and the twist this year is that we have to be in it.

This year I want to focus more on things that change or might be a "last". Every Tuesday and Thursday I drive my youngest into town for preschool. Although this is a routine that I'm looking forward to being done with, I never would have thought to take a photo of it until this project!

This was taken on Thursday, January 25, at 12:06 p.m.

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Follow the blog circle - starting with Nicole - and see what photographers around the country did during the noon hour in January!

Samuel's Adoption | Grand Island {Nebraska Documentary Photographer}

I was thrilled to be part of this little boy's adoption day!  I could tell from the moment I arrived at the courthouse that Samuel is so loved by his family, extended family, and friends.

Shortly after I arrived at the courthouse, a text popped up from one of my mom's friends (or should I say, my friends' mom? Either way, I've known Arlene for years and years).  She asked where to go in the courthouse for the adoption ceremony...I was a bit confused at first, but answered her like I knew what I was talking about (I had no idea she would be there - I had just met Mindi and her family that day!).

As it turned out, when Mindi went to pick up Samuel shortly after he was born, she was caught in a Nebraska summer storm.  Not knowing what else to do, she called some friends and eventually they told her to keep driving until she arrived at the friends' mom's house. Mindi ended up staying at Arlene's house overnight with her brand new baby boy, so Arlene was invited to the adoption ceremony since she was a part of his story!

I love finding connections like that with clients - Nebraska is truly a small town and full of hospitable people!

The courthouse adoption was full of love and lots of face-timing and then the whole group gathered at Sutter's Deli for lunch.  So much love in the room!  Samuel was mostly there for the cookies :)

Flynn Matthew {Nebraska Newborn Photographer}

I cry every time.  Every newborn video that I put together makes me cry.  It's something about the combination of music and little newborn gestures and it being 5 years since my baby was tiny.  Flynn was born back in September and between the busy fall and holiday seasons I didn't work on his video until this month.  

I think now I'm going to wait four months for every newborn video because theres's something special about seeing how tiny a newborn is compared to how big a four month old is.  I got the sweetest text from my friend after she saw the video...and I love that I made her cry, because that means I'm not the only over-emotional one around here.

This was my first in-home newborn session...now I can't decide if I like hospital or home sessions better.  Good thing I don't need to decide :)

Meghan + Jon Engagement | Hastings {Nebraska Wedding Photographer}

I was super excited for Meghan + Jon's session; Jon is a lineman, so we had plans to take some cool photos involving a power pole and his equipment.  But...shortly after we arrived, their keys got locked in their truck, which meant no change of clothes and no lineman equipment.  However, this couple rolled with it and managed to rock their session!  I can't wait for their wedding in August!

Extended Family | Grand Island {Nebraska Family Photographer}

I really enjoy taking portraits of extended families - grandparents + children + grandchildren + sometimes great-grandchildren.  It's fun to watch the family dynamics and typically everyone is in a great mood!  (Well, most of the time).  My goal with these sessions is to get everyone looking, even if that means a bit of Photoshop work in editing ;)  

The Johnson Family called and asked me to fit them in last minute - I was so glad that I had an opening for them!  We met at Mormon Island and it worked out perfectly.  Grandma did have to bribe her grandchildren with cinnamon rolls, but I'm pretty sure those cinnamon rolls were worth a smile!  

Doremus | York {Nebraska Family Photographer}

Fall sessions!!  I love them...but they can also drive me crazy.  Everyone wants "those fall colors".  I get it, they photograph well and I love them too!  But...everything is so unpredictable in Nebraska.  This year, we had about 2 days where the leaves were actually pretty.  Then, it turned cold and windy and all those beautiful colors were gone.  :(

This session was amazing though; I've known Amy since we were young and it was fun to catch up and meet her little ones (who actually aren't so little anymore!).  We played and explored and convinced the kids to smile for at least a little bit.  

Wedding | Stone Creek Event Center {Nebraska Wedding Photographer

Kayla and Blake were married on a beautiful fall day at the Stone Creek Event Center in McCool Junction, Nebraska.  Well, it was beautiful except the little tiny biting black bugs :)  

Their wedding was a family affair: Kayla's dad, a pastor, performed the ceremony; Kayla's mom made the bouquets and all the centerpieces; Blake's dad made sure the snowmobiles showed up for a photo; and Blake's mom helped keep everything running smoothly the day of!  

Kayla and her dad danced to "Butterfly Kisses" for the father/daughter dance...I hadn't heard that song since I was about 12 and I have to admit that I teared up a bit!  My awesome second shooter, Lauren, just laughed at me ;)

I always think that I will share just a dozen or so photos from a wedding and then it ends up being more like 53.  Ha.

Siebert | Henderson {Nebraska Family Photographer

Meghan came to me because she wanted a photo session to document her last days of pregnancy but she didn't necessarily want a maternity session.  We explored the pretty bridge at the end of their driveway and spent some time playing while not focusing on her baby bump :)

I wanted to do a few photos of just Kendal and Meghan - they are always super cute together!  Here, I asked them to whisper their favorite dessert in their sexiest voices...I loved the reaction!

Their daughter is adorable and she is now the greatest big sister to her little brother!

SO pretty.

October Day in the Life | Our Story {Nebraska Documentary Photographer}

So...it's been over 6 months since I last did a day in the life of my own family.  My goal was to do it every month...ooops.  I wasn't sure if I'd actually do this one - I haven't been feeling very inspired lately and I feel like I always take the same photos over and over again.  But, I'm pretty happy with the 51 photos I ended up with our of 200-some.  

Sometimes I'm a bit discouraged when capturing my family...we aren't very wild and crazy or very "touchy" and expressive.  We just...are there.  My kids like to read and draw a lot and Curtis is the typical farmer with a lot on his mind and always working on something.  I get distracted easily and it's hard for me to stay on one task (so my afternoon photos when the kids aren't around may not be the easiest to follow!).  But...this is us.  And I like us.  

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

The Legacy Project | Roots

This week's Legacy Project post is all about my roots: how did my parents meet? How about my grandparents?  

I chatted with my mom and dad about how the early years of their relationship and what they knew about my grandparents' early years.  I didn't even want to try to explain this project to my grandparents - I just asked them for some wedding photos!

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^^ These are my mom's parents - Marvin & Fern (Esau) Reimer.  Grandma grew up in Hutchinson, Kansas and Grandpa spent his early years in Janssen, Nebraska before moving to Buhler, Kansas at the age of ten.  They met at the Buhler Mennonite Brethren Church in high school.  Grandpa was a year older and one day he asked her to go for a walk, and then a drive.  After that, he visited her house every Sunday afternoon.  They were married at the age of 18 & 19 in 1946.  My mom remembers Grandma talking just a bit about her wedding day: it was on a Tuesday and they weren't allowed to have candles in the church, so they used floor lamps for more lighting. They lived the rest of their married life in Buhler, having two kids, three grandkids and owning (and later selling) a chicken hatchery.  Now, Grandma is in the nursing home there and Grandpa passed away two years ago.  Grandma wrote a diary entry every night for many years and the highlight of her life is being visited by us grandkids!

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^^This is a photo from my dad's parents' wedding - Lee and Janice (Kornelsen) Jost.  Grandma was born in Henderson, Nebraska and Grandpa was born in Hillsboro, Kansas.  When Grandma was in her early teen years, her dad retired from farming and moved the family to Hillsboro.  Grandma and Grandpa met in high school on a rainy, muddy day.  They were each riding in separate cars when the cars met each other on the road.  The car full of girls slid off the road and my Grandma immediately got out and started blaming Grandpa for the accident. He thought she was charming and they were married in fall 1953.  They spent the first few years of their marriage in Hillsboro - Grandpa worked on the family farm and Grandma got her teaching degree from Tabor College.  In 1957, they moved to Henderson to begin farming.  They went on to have three kids and seven grandkids and still live in Henderson.  Grandpa helps a bit on the farm and Grandma stays busy reading and sometimes painting.

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My parents met at Tabor College in the fall of 1977.  My mom, Jane, was a junior and my dad, Mark, was a freshman.  Mom played tennis and, as an athlete, had to be at Tabor a week prior to the start of class.  Dad also arrived early - freshman moved in a few days before other students to begin orientation.  Dad insists that he saw Mom sitting on a ledge the first day he arrived and knew that he wanted to get to know her (side note: when I was at Tabor, they frowned on any ledge sitting or making out in the Schlichting Center like they all did in the '70s).

They officially met when they both kept their horses at the same place outside of town.  When Mom found out that a freshman guy was keeping his horse there, her first thought was "Good!  I bet I can get him to feed my horse in the morning so I can sleep later."  I asked Dad what he thought about that and he replied, "Well, I said sure, because I wasn't going to class anyway!"  At the time, they were both dating other people, but started to hang out.  Apparently, it was always as friends and Dad's cousin Rod was always with them.  One night while driving around, Rod parked the car, got out, and decided to let them have a little time to themselves :)

Their first date was to Daniel's Landing, a pizza restaurant in Wichita.  Most of the rest of their dating life consisted of driving to McPherson where they rode their horses and roped calves and then stopping at Taco Tico for burritos on the way back to campus.  

Mom and Dad were married on June 2, 1979.  They started their life together in a trailer house north of Henderson (more on that coming in the next chapter!) and have three kids and seven grandkids.  Dad runs the farm my grandpa started back in 1957 and my brother and my husband both work on the farm too.  Mom stays busy watching grandkids, helping on the farm, canning tons of food, scrapbooking and bowling.  


The Legacy Project was started by Francesca Russell (check out her website here!) and a group of fellow photographers have joined her in documenting our own lives.  Often, photographers are so busy taking photos for and recording the lives of others, so Francesca was inspired to write down her own story as a legacy for her kids.  I'm super excited about this project and I've loved it so far!  If you want to join in or learn more, there is a Facebook group you can join.