Did you miss me? I’ll be back soon to write more….yeah my blog is back up!!!!!

Got to go get Biggest Brother from school, until then check out what my amazing husband is up to in Haiti!


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  • Lauren Roberts - Yeah!

  • Meagan - I know! I friended him the other day on facebook and have been enjoying his status updates! It’s really awesome! I have always wanted to do missions. Sounds like they are really doing good work! I bet you miss him, though—and miss his help with the kids!!!

  • candace - Yay for amazing husbands in Haiti! Looks like yours is working hard and changing lives. Mine returns this Friday. Glad to see the blog back up and running.

  • Jill R - So glad you are back!

  • Brooke - You know you’re pathetic when….
    You have nightmares that you will never get to see the adorable kids room for inspiration again…
    You think about the crate (rolling) bed (to lounge on in your kids’ room) when you pass by the back of buildings, and see their loading docks..
    You think about writing Meg (from Whatever) to ask if she knows where you have gone…and where I can find you…
    You were missed, don’t you worry!
    Glad you’re back…and happy 500th post…

  • Katie - I loved the one about rice night!

  • Shauna - I just read your husbands tweets and couldnt stop crying, especially when I saw the pics of the kids and their stories. Makes me want to adopt them all….

Well there won’t be a post tomorrow or Friday, but be sure to check in on Monday and all next week. The blog might be down for a couple of days, but it should be back up and running shortly. I have some celebrating to do and some exciting news. At least it is exciting to me. No I am not pregnant. Enjoy the rest of your week & weekend and I’ll be back on Monday!

Get ready for it….ready for it….ready for it….I HAD FUN IN THE SNOW! Shocking, I know. We made it through a whole 15-20 minutes without one boy crying! The snow was coming down hard and it looked like something out of a holiday romantic comedy. Beautiful. The boys were happy – which makes for a happy mommy. Later the big boys got to go sledding and I was stuck at home with the little ones. I look forward to when the kids are old enough to leave at home so Chris and I can go sledding to all go sledding together. To top it off all those dripping clothes and wet boots in the kitchen forced me to mop…so my floors were beautiful for all of 5 minutes!

Serious cuteness going on here.Ā  This little guy brings so much laughter to our home.2.01snow-012.01snow-042.01snow-022.01snow-03


Now, to address the remaining questions from a bit ago (I think these are the last questions):

Suggestions for snow pictures?

For the pictures above my camera settings were: 85mm lens, 1/400, f/2.8, ISO 100. Sometimes in those conditions it is easiest just to switch to automatic…I do increase the contrast in the post processing to make the darks darker and not washed out looking.

Do you have a blog button?

Technically “no”. I have a jpeg image, but haven’t figured out the button thing yet. Do you have a suggestion on how to make them? I hope to get a couple of options made soon.

Will you offer online SnapShops?

Honestly, it never crossed my mind until recently and especially after so many of you asked about it. Part of the fun of SnapShops for me is the ‘real life’ interaction and the practice photoshoots. However, if I can figure out a way to offer them online in such a way that reflects all that I would want….then “yes” maybe one day I will offer that. I will say it won’t be anytime in the near future, maybe next year? I am open to it, so we’ll see.

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Check out Smile & Wave today for a little Valentine’s story about Biggest Brother

Since there was so much interest after last week’s post on my family albums, I thought I’d do a follow up with the actual albums this week.Ā  They just arrived and I am so happy. I do want to say I am in no way ‘sponsored’ by MyPublisher, nor are they paying me or giving me free books to post about their product. I am just sharing what I do.

There are so many album companies out there. I am sure there are many that are of better quality than MyPublisher. In fact, the album companies I used for my wedding clients are an example of a MUCH better product. So…if I know there are better ones out there why do I choose MyPublisher for my personal pictures?

1. I ended up ordering 2 100 page albums….this means COST is very important. Since I know I can always get a 50% off or a Buy One Get One Free coupon with MyPublisher – that is a winning point for me.

2. I am very pleased with the quality. Yes, there are other album companies I like, but for the price I am able to pay MyPublisher makes me very happy.

3. I don’t have time to write in my books or custom design every page. If I attempted that I would never get any done. So, I like that I can just drag & drop and they have a ‘pictures only’ template available.

So all that to say I need a fast, easy, affordable album company that has quailty I desire – MyPublisher fits that. In a world where money was not an issue, I’d pay an album designer to custom design my books with top of the line photographic paper….

So…here’s some peeks at my books. I do the standard 8x5x11 size, book jacket books.


I order two copies because it is very important to me to have a copy sitting out in the living room that the kids feel the freedom to look at without being worried if they accidently hurt the book that mommy will be upset. I want friends to thumb through the books too, but really they are for my kids. The kids put up with my camera in their face EVERYDAY, so I feel like if they want to enjoy the albums they should be able to. If I didn’t have a second copy tucked away I would be on edge and grumpy everytime little boy hands grabbed the books.2.10mypub-22.10mypub-3

2007 & 2008 albums do not have any tears, smudges – “yes”, tears – “no”. The boys had only made it through about 10 pages before 2009 got a tear.

Oh well.2.10mypub-52.10mypub-6

“Oops” is worth it. They have so much fun looking back at the previous year. Big Brother ‘read’ the albums to Littlest Brother.2.10mypub-72.10mypub-82.10mypub-10

The picture they are looking at is of Biggest Brother completely naked throwing dirt on me. Yep. We got into a dirt fight last year while digging up the garden area. I put dirt down the back of his pants. He ran to the front of the house (pouting I thought). Then came running back around towards me totally naked with the biggest smile I have ever seen. I was so shocked I didn’t even defend myself when he piled dirt on me. We do have neighbors. We don’t have a fence.

It is still one of his personal proudest moments…2.10mypub-112.10mypub-12

Big Brother especially likes to do funny things to his own pictures. For instance, making himself eat the plastic looks-like-a-cow-but-it-is-really-a-jaguar-missing-all-the-paint animal. Goofball.2.10mypub-14

Thanks for all the emails for referrals on my last post,

Here’s another Buy One Get One Free coupon for those of you still thinking you might want to try it out:


If you’ve made it this far on this post, here’s a heads up: Next Week is going to be FUN, FUN, FUN at this blog!

UPDATED: Yes, I know my long time blog readers are probably shocked not to see a LOST post today. I am in mourning…mourning the final season…mourningĀ  I won’t be home to see it tonight (we live in the stoneage…no dvr or whatever those things are called). Guess I’ll be watching it online tomorrow…don’t spoil the premier for me!

Google Reader does not ‘read’ this blog…don’t subscribe.

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  • Rachel Ridd - I really need to do this. Thanks for the suggestion. I take so many pictures and just leave them on my hard drive – such a waste!

  • Jo - Thanks Ashley for the coupon! I might have to try this out!

  • Christy - Such a great book, I am starting to work on mine. Thanks!

  • Alba - Last year my computer burned itself, authomatic combustion, and I lost all my pictures. Thanks God my mother has a copy on her pc. I should learn from it, and make albums like yours. I have to do it.

  • Lesley - Love it! I can’t wait to sit and go through your book. I love the last pic, too funny. I must say, though, a little surprised not to see a LOST post today!

  • Lauren Roberts - I’m excited to see your book too. I’m with Lesley though….No LOST post?

  • christina larsen - Neat idea. This totally beats scrapbooking in my opinion. I sure don’t have time to do it, and feel guilty that I don’t. I might have to give that a shot.

  • Kelly - Oh those are so pretty. I stopped printing pictures and putting them in albums a couple years ago (odd that my youngest is 2, hmm…) so this may be the perfect alternative. I love that you have the back-up in a firesafe. I’m ridiculously paranoid about stuff like that. I won’t even tell you how many times our digital copies are backed up. :)

  • annalea - thanks for the tips! i need to get better at organizing my photos.

  • Our 2009 Family Album « Tatum Family - [...] I read onĀ one of my favoriteĀ blogs about a special deal through MyPublisher, I knew I had to make a photobook to house our favorite [...]

  • John - Hi there!! Those photo books look awesome. Can I ask which, of the mypublisher products (deluxe,classic etc) you bought and/or if you bought a few different types??
    cheers – John

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