Sparks Family 2015|Snohomish Family Photographer

Mrs. Sparks was Gracie’s 5th grade teacher a few years back. She is one of our most favorite teachers (we can’t pick just one because we have truly loved EVERY teacher the girls have had thus far-I know, we’ve been super blessed!)

Last Fall, I was given the opportunity to do a family shoot and her little guy and he completely captured my heart.  I wanted to take him home with me! I was thrilled to be able to see him again when I visited their home in August, just after little brother was born. Big brother was so darn proud.  He was ready and waiting with his sweet smile whenever I wanted him to join in!

I just loved being able to capture them in their home!


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and just before I left.  This…LOVE!





6 Months!

I am in the process of organizing photos on my hard drive and editing program…GOOD TIMES!  As well as editing an printing photos for my personal photo project “Project Life.”  I have approximately a year to catch up.  Sad trombone. I saw this little session and thought that this would be a great first one to get me back into blogging.   I seem to have fallen off the cliff on that one.  I blame the remodel.  I feel like I am finally getting organized.  It was a doozy.  But, we sure do love it.

I took photos of this little guy all last year with a newborn session, 3 month, 6 month, 9 month and 1 year session.  It’s been so much fun to have a darling little model that lives nearby.  I am quite biased I suppose. My daughter has been a mother’s helper to his mom and on a couple occasions I got to supervise while she baby sat him. I have loved watching the bond between them develop.  It warms my heart when we see him and he reaches out for my girl!

The first photo cracks me up.  He will laugh and smile at me but the minute I put the camera up to my face he gets so serious.

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He just celebrated his first birthday and we were so happy to be a part of it!!!  Love you so much Little Man!!!

These Two


What do you do when you’re waiting on a prescription to be filled for a raging ear infection?  Go to the park to take some pictures and bribe them with frozen yogurt for posing.

That’s what you do.

Happy Place, Happy Weekend

We escaped to happy place again and the L’s were able to join us.  Cass and Eric were roommates (in the most disgusting rental house in the history of college rental houses) but even before they met, Cass and I went to high school together.  Over the years our families have grown closer and have really enjoyed doing things together.  We have become “festival” buddies, which is one of my highlights every years.  It’s really too much fun.

Friday night we grabbed some pizza at Tower.townhomewlatons-1and after I snapped Annie’s picture he ran up and said MY TURN.townhomewlatons-2and then Miss A wanted a turn too. townhomewlatons-3and then we went to ice cream, of course.townhomewlatons-4 townhomewlatons-5and then I put my camera away for the rest of the weekend.  It was freakishly hot.



Annie’s taking a musical theater class this week.  She spends half of the day dancing and half of the day singing  and acting.  For her end of the week performance, she signed up to be a student director.  “MOM, I don’t really like people telling me how to act. I want to be the one in control.”

Oh dear.  I think we’ve created a DIVA.

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Ice Cream

We were east of the mountains this past weekend.  Our tradition is to go get Elke’s Ice Cream after dinner on saturday nights…and most days during the week, if we’re there for any extended period of time.  In this case, it happened to be before dinner, but after a basket of shared fries.

Hey, it was saturday afternoon and we were at a beer tasting. We were simply trying to support the local economy. No judgement.

Annie asked if she could order ice cream.  Real, dairy full ice cream.  Usually she’s stuck with a snow cone.  It’s so not the same.

I said, “It’s your body.  You just have to be prepared to handle the consequences” (It gives her reflux)


She was pretty proud of herself and no reflux to date.  WHAT????

And Then There’s This Girl

She had double duty in music/recital concerts. Last night piano and tonight the spring concert, where she was very excited to play the xylophone during one of the 3rd grade songs.

It was a little blustery.


As you know, this girl makes me laugh.  On the ride home from the piano recital she tells me (out of the blue) that Adam Sandler and Will Ferrell are her favorite actors.   Please know that she’s ONLY seen them in kid movies.  AND…that she can’t wait until she’s 18 so she can watch Anchorman. Oh dear.

Annie hates taking sandwiches in her school lunch.  I’ve always thought it was because she doesn’t like the gluten free bread.  I learned this week that I wasn’t making the right sandwich.  Monday night she had a bite of my grilled sandwich with Applegate turkey, thinly sliced red onion, Just Mayo (eggless mayo), sliced tomato and basil leaves. Turns out THAT’S the sandwich she wants in her lunch.

This girl hates taking showers, so when she came down this morning and told me that she was going to hop in the shower…well, I nearly fell over.  I was bending down to feed the cat. I looked up with such astonishment that she said “MOM, YOUR FACE!!! Yay, Annie finally learns the importance of hygiene.

On the way home from the orthodontist today (gracie got an expander and they told her to talk a lot to help manage the saliva that is produced when you first get an expander), they requested Love Is An Open Door so Gracie could sing along. Gracie was the girl part and as she was singing, Annie heckled her the entire time because Gracie was singing so funny from the expander.  I don’t know where she gets it.

She’s so sad that school is almost out.  She loves her teacher and her friends and she loves to learn.  This girl’s got a gigantic heart and and even bigger funny bone.

This Girl

Oh, she has grown so much this year.

She has done things this year that she would have never done before.  I credit Middle School and having to learn to navigate her way through the busy day, multiple teachers, new friends and lots and lots of homework.  She’s really taken me by surprise. She’s also made me really, really proud.

Tonight was her piano recital.  The last one didn’t go so well-that’s putting it lightly.  We decided to set her up for success by picking a beautiful song that was a bit shorter and she just seemed to be able to play well.

She got a little nervous once we got there and she tried to practice on the piano that the performance place provided.  There were tears.  Lots and Lots of tears.  At performance time, she played and made one tiny mistake that I wouldn’t have known she had made if it wasn’t for the look on her face when she did it.  Then, when it was over, there were more tears about her mistake.

After, listening to several others after her (who were more skilled) make mistakes, she looked at me with wide eyes and said “everybody makes mistakes. I am NOT upset anymore”

Yes, Gracie. Yes, they do.  It’s about how they (and you) deal with it and move on.

We stopped at a park on the way and had approximately 10 minutes to fire off some shots before we hopped in the car.






There are life lessons everywhere, aren’t there?

Pho Sho

Our Annie has quite the palate.  Some might say she’s picky, but it’s not that she won’t eat a variety of different type of food.  She just likes flavor and really good food.  She has fallen in love with Pho and has declared on several occasions she’d eat it every day if she could.

I’ve been letting her get it so often that the owner now knows us.  She knows that a kids bowl is JUST NOT BIG enough for our girl. If it’s to take to lunch at school, it’s a medium and if we’re taking it home or eating in, a large.






We brought her some for lunch today.  She barely ate it.  A sure sign that she really ISN’T feeling well.

A Happy Mother’s day

It was very lovely.  In fact the entire weekend was lovely.  Everyone chipped in to do the household “stuff.” That in itself was a mother’s day gift.

Although I have learned that Mother’s day right after earnings and in the middle of three weeks of travel provides for really good Mother’s day gifts.  Can you say FEELING GUILTY?

Sunday morning the girls and I went to church.  It was my turn for the month to work with a student with ASD. It was not a very cooperative day for this child, but we made it work.

This what you get when you’re trying to self timer a quick pic after the service and the kids are complaining because they just want to go home. weird stream of light.


For mother’s day I wanted to go somewhere in the Seattle area that we had not explored.  I chose Discovery Park. It’s really big.  Mmmm, let’s just say we weren’t really dressed for the weather and a long walk/hike.  Nor did some of us have the right shoes…new white lacy toms in the muddy forest.  There was much moaning and complaining.


We finally made it to the beach where my sensory kid played in the sand and got it all over herself.  She was still digging sand out of the cuffs of her shorts at dinner that evening.




I love that when they only have each other, they still create elaborate imaginative play schemes.


Hot and tired and out of water (we didn’t pack any in the first place), we headed home, freshened up and met my parents for dinner.



And then we all headed back to the house to have a fire in the fire pit.


And I needed a portrait for my photography class. Gracie was a negatory so Annie let me snap one.