Out on the Town

This last Christmas, my darling Hubbz surprised me with a ticket to see Harry Potter #1 accompanied by the London Symphonia. This combines two of my loves – The Boy Who Lived AND orchestral music LIVE! I was beyond pumped and excited.

Continue reading Out on the Town

Being Crafty. Staying Sane (mostly).

I’ve taken up another new hobby while off on mat-leave. It always seems like my breaks from work, whether long (mat leave) or short (recovery from surgery), include a craft or hobby. Often these creative ventures are new to me:

  • Needle Felting – picked this up when I was recovering from pacemaker surgery last year. I haven’t done much by it, its MUCH trickier than I thought it would be. I’m hoping that once our basement is done and I have my craft station/computer desk all set up and organized, I’ll be able to fiddle about with it again. If you’re interested in needle felting, there is a fabulous instagram account (and etsy shop) to check out:¬†Its All My Felt¬†. This little gem is a girl I went to high school with! She makes some fabulous/amazing felty treats.
  • Crochet/Knitting – i’ve been doing this for a while, but with the little man in my life now there really hasn’t been much fibre art. Id like to eventually finish my hexagon blanket which I started 5 million years ago.
  • My most recent experiment has been SEWING!

I have sewn before, so its not entirely new, BUT that was a lifetime ago. Back when I was in elementary school and high school my mum was BIG into sewing. She created hallowe’en costumes, practice skating outfits, graduation dresses (I of course picked a big poofy ballgown for my grade 8 grad), and formal wear. Mum has made herself gowns for work Christmas parties and conveniently we were the same size back then so I got to wear the dresses too.

Since being on maternity leave, I’ve been on social media more often (downtime when little is napping, early days when I was pumping after every nursing session, etc). I became hella inspired by loads of awesome baby gear made by stay at home mums and full time working mums alike. I thought to myself “what the heck, can’t be that hard!”


Where have we heard this before??


I had a gift card to Walmart and spent a portion of it on a Brother brand sewing machine. Mum helped me pick out a decent machine – it can monogram, do buttons, and quilt. I probably will never use all of its features, but they’re there if I get super crazy ūüėČ

Not long after that I found a few facebook groups (interested? google “patterns for pirates” and “made for mermaids” – no affiliation, but their patterns are ballin’). I ordered some knit fabric from a place not terribly far from my city and got to work. There was much cursing. Then my mum gifted me her old serger! Things improved quickly after that. I took the serger to get serviced because it needed to be cleaned up and adjusted – conveniently there is a place maybe 5min from my house. I’ve since made a few pairs of harem style pants for my boy and my friend’s kiddo. I’ve made my sister and her daughter matching dresses too.

I just finished a new pair of tights that look like they’ve got leg warmers at the bottom. They’re super comfy!

I’ve got plans to make myself and Kasper semi-matching Christmas duds out of that gorgeous red and black plaid I’ve seen everywhere. I’m going to make a dress with black sleeves for myself and I’ll make a fun bubble romper for him. Its going really well and I hope to keep it up so that i keep improving and learning new tricks. I will definitely be including more sewing updates on the blog so make sure to check back here!

xo

7 Months

Be prepared for an overload of cuteness! 7 months of Kasper. Its amazing to see just how much he’s changed – how he’s filled out, how his eye colour has shifted from blue to green, how his expressions have gotten more wild and fun. Smiles, frowns, sleepy faces… This little wonder has stolen my heart and soul and I couldn’t be more happy about it. Continue reading 7 Months

Photos for Friends

Hey Internet Family (and actual family?)

Remember last post I mentioned that the hubby and I had the opportunity to take some maternity photos for our friends? Well, I heard back from the Mom-to-Be and she’s totally cool with me including some photos in today’s blog post! Brilliance… if you’re interested in seeing some photos of a gorgeous woman and her amazing baby bump, read on! *Warning – I’m also including an update of that whole day haha… continue at your own risk!

Continue reading Photos for Friends

Snapshots

Photography is a wondrous adventure. It is a magical medium that is perfect for documenting life’s moments both large and small. The hubby and I both love photography and have been expanding our knowledge on the subject since before we even met.

Many (many, many) years ago – waaaaay back in highschool, I scored a job at the local public library (“The GPL” as we liked to¬†call it). It was the kind of job nerdy highschool kids coveted (or was it just me?). Working at the GPL was only possible while you were still in highschool and I started there in grade 10.

During the school year, the hours were enough such that you could walk over after school (maybe a 30min walk), work for two hours, then get a ride home from mom or dad. We would do the 2 hour shift twice a week, and one day a week we would each get an ‘evening’ shift (6-9pm). While I was definitely saving up most of my doubloons for post-secondary, there was one thing I REALLY wished to treat myself to: a digital camera!

¬†I didn’t even know what a “DSLR” was back then, all I knew was that I wanted to take photos to document all of the great things that I was experiencing: time with friends, class trips, etc. My first camera was a¬†“Fujifilm” point-n-shoot. I doubt they even make it anymore. I think I could take like, maybe 35pictures on “high quality” so I often used the lowest¬†quality so I could take more photos.
Fast forward¬†six years to when I met my future husband who also owned his own Point-n-Shoot digital camera (with many more features). Quite a few¬†of our first adventures (and in fact, the first adventure where we met) were full of photographic opportunities. Our first Christmas together¬†I was lucky enough to be gifted with my first DSLR from my parents – a lovely, petite Nikon D40. I think the hubby was more excited than I was! He was 100% “can we charge the battery now, can we take some photos…” where as I was super pumped, but wanted to relax and enjoy time with the family.
This began a small obsession for the two of us. We went on many adventures specifically to take photos with the new hardware, to learn as much as we could. The next Christmas, I convinced his siblings to go in on a gift with me, and we ‘surprised’ him with a Nikon D60 (he wasn’t surprised, he’s too clever and had a good idea what was happening… that and I can’t keep my excitement a secret at all). Many (many, many) more photos have been taken since that Christmas – and its been such a blast.
nikon-d5500-dslr-camera-comparison-550x265We have both upgraded our camera bodies since then – it was a very hard decision to let go of my little¬†D40 because it was my first, it was from my parents, and I LOVED it so much. BUT I finally upgraded to a D3500 — it does video, has a flip out screen, and has a few more neat options. The hubby had upgraded just before that to a “FFS” (full frame sensor) Nikon (I think he has the D600 now). The FFS bodies are a bit too heavy for me to lug around (esp if you add on a beefy lense). So I’m quite in love with my D3500 which is just slightly lighter than my old D40.
If you’ve been keeping up with my blog, you’ll have read that we recently had the joy of photographing my sister and her fianc√© for their engagement photos.¬†I definitely took a LOT of images – most of them are duplicates, or funny faces because the lovebirds were talking and such. But I try to do this so that I can capture the true moments of happiness and love. I managed to come away with about 10% of the total number of images. So out of 600 pictures (not all of them were of the couple), I have about 60 or so that I’d like to edit for them.
I noticed two things¬†when I uploaded the photos into my editing program – not all of the photos were¬†in focus (or well they are, but its not always the spot I WANTED to be in focus), and even if you take a million photos (I didn’t take quite that many!), only about 10% are going to be on-point.
There are two links I’m going to put up here from one of my favourite photography websites: “Digital Photography School” (a super helpful website for anyone interested in photography!)
Both of them discuss focus modes and how to avoid blur in your photos. We were shooting almost exclusively outside on their farm, and so I made sure to have a very high FPS to help avoid blowing out the brightness on the photos. Occasionally my photos can be a touch fuzzy or soft (a nice way of saying out of focus) because I can be a bit shaky or my FPS is too low. But shooting at a high FPS, I was anticipating having nice crisp images.
I also use “back button focus.”¬†I align the focal point with my subject, focus using the focus lock button (I set it up this way to avoid re-focusing when I moved), then use the capture button after recomposing my shot. Sometimes though, this can change the plane that you’re focusing on and even thought your subject was in focus initially, when you recompose the shot, the focus point moves forwards or backwards << Insert sadness when you import to lightroom and realize the person is very slightly out of focus.
Luckily, most of the photos were in focus (fewf!). Between the hubby and I, we probably came away with nearly 150 images for my sister and brother-in-law-to-be (thats a mouthful!). I have just finished editing the photos and will be adding a few to the blog when my sister has had a chance to see them all. Until I have the thumbs-up to post photos from their shoot, please scroll down to enjoy a few photos from the wine-tasting tour I was on last weekend.