Friday, August 29, 2014

Photo Friday 2014 ~ Week 35

This week has been mostly consumed by trying to get ready to start school next week.  This is our first time starting the year as true homeschoolers since last year we started out with the Florida Virtual Academy.  It's completely overwhelming!  It's mostly my own fault for not being more proactive and waiting until the last minute to order curriculum and sort through last years materials.  I'm still working on updating the kid's homeschool portfolios required by the state too.  Since we started homeschooling in the middle of the school year (January) we have to keep records to be reviewed on the anniversary of that date each year.  That means our records will be kept for the calendar year instead of the grade year.  At first that didn't seem like a big deal, but it means reporting on two sets of curriculum and trying to show progress from the end of one year to the beginning of the next as opposed to just showing progress from the beginning of the grade to the end.  I'm going to see if I can go about getting our review date changed if it proves to be too much of a challenge.  Anyway, I did get a trip to Ikea in this week where I was able to purchase a cart (among other things because hello, it's Ikea...who can go there and not buy anything?!  Expect one of my friends who exerted amazing self control and didn't buy anything while she was there in some sort of super human feat) to use to make an art cart for the kids which I plan on blogging about soon.  All of that to say that I didn't get my camera out this week yet again.  I told the kids this morning that whoever let me take their photo would be my favorite kid for the day.  They both raced outside to let me take their pics, but my boy went back in and said it was too bright and his sister could just be my favorite.  She was in a very cooperative mood and we just walked around our condo a bit and it was so nice to just hang out with my girl for a few minutes.  We even met a new neighbor while we were out who has the cutest teacup poodle I've ever soon.  Here are my favorite shots.

I just love her sweet face.  She got some new streaks in her hair and wanted to show them off.  I like that they are subtle.  Can you believe she is starting 5th grade in just a couple days?  I'm not ready.  It's going too fast!

I like taking walks with my camera because it causes me to notice things I would normally just walk by and not appreciate.  Like these beautiful coral flowers.  I'm not sure I'll ever get tired of the flowers here in Florida.

We had to stop a few different times so she could climb trees, of course.  She's my ninja warrior girl.  She's so muscular!

There's this one corner of our landscaping that we walk by to get to our condo and it's so jungle like.  I love it.  Some days I get down about condo living, but then I need to just get out and go for a walk and I'm reminded of how gorgeous the grounds are and I don't have to lift a finger to make them that way.  Then I feel grateful for our vacation style condo living.

We have this neighbor who lives on the first floor and has the most amazing plants on his patio.  I can look down on it from my balcony.  These flowers grow up his wall and spill over the other side.  I love them.  They remind me of daffodils.

I am looking forward to many more walks as the weather gets more bearable.  I've missed them for sure.  I hope you have a wonderful Labor Day weekend and check back next week for our back to school pics!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Photo Friday 2014 ~ Week 34

This week was spent hanging around the house again.  I'm starting to learn that summer in Florida is kinda like winter in Ohio.  You spend a lot of time inside.  It's a weird mentality.  When we lived in Ohio I felt like I needed to spend my entire summer outdoors to make up for the winter where I barely stepped outside.  Here I keep just having to remind myself that in about a month it will be gorgeous and I'll be able to spend about the next 8 months outside.  It's hard to get used to though.  It just feels weird to spend summer inside, but it is so hot that you really need to be near water if you are going to go outside for any extended amount of time.  I've been missing the park and just sitting outside on the balcony and going for walks.  It's okay though because I know those days will be back soon.  I also now understand why some homeschooling families down here might choose to homeschool through the summer.  I'm seriously considering it for next year.  Or at least some sort of modified schedule where we take a few weeks off here and there in the nice winter months and school a few weeks while it's hot.  It's just hard to do the opposite of what everyone else you know is doing.  Yesterday we spent the day at my mom's pool which was really nice.  She's headed back to Ohio for a few weeks (I'm sure it will feel wonderful compared to the heat here) and then she'll be back for the winter.  We are going to miss her!  We've gotten spoiled having her close.  I took my camera with me to the pool knowing I needed some shots for this post.  I got some fun ones, but I only took a little bit of time to take photos before I had to get in the pool myself!  Here are my favorites.

I love the way the light refraction makes everything look so distorted.  I should do a science lesson at the pool someday.

They have so much fun together.  My boy always has goggle face at the pool.

They play this game where she is a seahorse and she gives him rides.

Doing the disco jump. :)

Don't all kids love how you can pick people up in the pool?  I remember loving that when I was a kid.

Another cool shot.  In my opinion at least. :)  I like her shadow on the steps.

Have a great weekend!  Hopefully you are able to get outside and do something fun.  We'll probably be inside. ;)

Friday, August 15, 2014

Photo Friday 2014 ~ Week 33

I like rainy Florida days.  Probably because they don't happen nearly as often as when we lived in Ohio and it would rain for what felt like months at a time.  Today is one of those days so we are just hanging out at home.  The kids are playing quietly while I listen to Pandora and edit photos.  My house is clean for the most part.  We have nowhere to be and nothing on the calendar. favorite kind of day.  There is low rumble of thunder in the background and I can hear the rain softly hitting the ground.  It's so relaxing.  Unlike the insane thunder last night that jolted me out of bed because it was so loud and shook the entire building.  I have never in my life heard thunder like the kind we get here.  It is ridiculously loud.  I even googled it one day because I thought maybe it was because we live right by Tampa Bay and it was echoing off the water or something.  Apparently it has something to do with the air temperature and certain types of clouds though.  I'm not super sciency so I didn't really get it all, but it at least confirmed for me that the thunder here is in fact louder than I've ever heard in my life.

I hadn't taken any photos this week yet again.  My girl and I even did something exciting...we went tubing on Rainbow River.  I didn't take my camera though since I was in the water the whole time.  We went with the youth group from church.  I drove a van load of middle school girls.  They were really sweet and all got along really well.  The water in the river was crystal clear and so cool and refreshing.  The trip was little long for me at over 4 hours, but it was definitely a fun experience.  We will have to go back as a family sometime and take the boys.  I'm thinking a 2 hour tube ride sounds about perfect.  And next time we are taking goggles so we can look at all the fish and plants underwater.  

Since I hadn't taken any photos I got my camera out this morning and took a few shots of the kids hanging around here.  These are my favorites.

 He always sits like this with his chin on his knee.  He was looking at his legos.  I love his profile.

My girl wanted to do a craft this morning so she decided to make a pom-pom puppy.  She had gotten a book kit for Christmas and made one right after she got it and it was so much harder than she thought it would be.  She promised she would do it all by herself this time and not get frustrated like last time.  I didn't hear a peep from her for about an hour.

She then came over and showed me this adorable little guy.  She was so excited and proud that she did it!  She named him Marshmallow. :)

Okay, I'm off to make lunch.  Have a great weekend!  

Friday, August 8, 2014

Photo Friday 2014 ~ Week 32

I had a beach photo shoot this week and it was hot.  Like sweat dripping down your face hot.  Have I mentioned that it's hot in Florida in August?  Yeah, well, it's hot.  Not that I wasn't prepared for it or anything and I certainly don't want to complain, but it definitely feels like summer.  This is our first summer here and when we moved here last September everyone gave us knowing looks and thought we'd melt into a puddle come summer time and run screaming back to Ohio or something.  Here's the thing though.  It gets hot in Ohio too.  Maybe not melt your face hot, but I can handle the heat okay?  I've done the hot summer thing for 30 some years of my life, so I'm sucking it up and dealing.  I am most definitely looking forward to our next Florida winter, that's for sure.  AMAZING.  That's all I can say.  Anyway, this somehow turned into a post about weather and I have no idea how that happened!  I'm here to share my favorite photos of the week and they just so happened to be taken during the super hot beach photo shoot.  I was doing shots of this adorable little 6 (almost 7) year old boy and the most amazing birds were all over the beach.  It couldn't have been more perfect.  So, even though I don't usually share client photos for Photo Friday, I decided to include a couple of that cutie because they are my favorites.  Here you go...

Pretty much love everything about this.

This bird was huge!  Like almost as big as that little boy.

I'm normally not a bird person, but the birds around here are very cool if you ask me.

I like how he fluffed his feathers out here.

Like a typical boy he wanted to chase the bird off.  That bird didn't really seem too fazed though! 

It did eventually fly off.  Beautiful.

Hope you have a great weekend and stay cool if you can!  

Friday, August 1, 2014

Photo Friday 2014 ~ Week 31

It was a pretty exciting week around here because my mom finally moved in to her house!  I am so happy to have her here for at least part of the year.  Her house is so cute.  I'll have to share photos on here at some point.  It's not quite photo ready yet as she still has unpacking and decorating to do, but it's definitely getting there.  I'm still busy with editing photo shoots and life in general.  I did read a book this week though, so at least I did get a little bit of relaxing in...although it was mostly just me staying up late to finish it, so it really wasn't all that relaxing.  Oh well, at least I got to read!  I took a bunch of photos on my phone as usual and didn't get out my real camera at all.  Check out my Instagram feed here if you want to see them.  So I took a couple shots of my daughter this morning in the parking lot of our building as we headed out to the grocery store to use for this post.  Obviously I'm stretching myself creatively with these...not.  But I did try out a new Photoshop action that I got as a freebie because I'm a member of the Chic Critique Forum.   I don't use a ton of actions, just a couple of favorites for sharpening and skin smoothing, but these new ones are really great.  I think they will be fabulous for beach shots.  And since I have a beach shoot coming up on Monday that will work out perfectly!  So, here are my favorite photos of the week.

My pretty girl.  I like the matte look the action gave these.

 I even used a different lens than usual.  35mm vs. my normal 50mm.  I had good intentions this week to try some new shots.  Maybe next week I'll actually follow through.  At least I got a couple cute shots of my girl.

Have a great weekend!!  I gotta's movie night and I haven't even started cooking dinner.


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