We’ve been making the intention of having friends over for dinner more often!

The boys LOVE having a little sister for the evening!

She is the SQUISHIEST!!

Our goal this year is to open our home to more “new” friends!!


A few years ago – Nate asked me if he could shadow on a few weddings. He was interested in photography and wanted some experience!

He’s been coming to weddings with me for the past 2 years now – I think – and people are starting to REQUEST him as their second shooter!!


I asked him to take a few family shots for us at our FAVORITE place!!

THIS IS MY FAVORITE SHOT from our whole session!!

I wondered how the horse head mask and the raptor hands would fare in a family photo session – and they did NOT disappoint!!

CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS KID!? It seems like overnight he has changed!! Where is the giant-headed baby!?

AND THIS GUY!? They have both grown into such AMAZING people – I can’t even believe how fast it’s gone!!



Our second favorite place!! The property where Jared and I met (kinda) – got engaged – AND got married.

SOMEDAY (when we win the lottery we don’t play) we will build a house here!!

Jared’s mom asked if they could join us for the end of our session – so we got a FAMILY silhouette shot!!


NATE – I love these photos SO VERY MUCH!!! THANK YOU!!!


Filed under: baby barden,bardenisms,my family,portraits — admin at 11:47 am on Thursday, January 27, 2022

Every year – my friend Megan Hampton of Megan Hampton Photography photographs us with Mom Mom & Bacca!!

Enoch didn’t have shoes on – because it’s SUMMER and shoes aren’t a thing in summer – SO I had to help him across the rocks! And I LOVE these photos!

I cannot BELIEVE that they are 10 and 8!? WHERE DOES TIME EVEN GO!?

In October of 2022 – we will have been together for TWENTY YEARS!? This man loves me SO VERY WELL!!

Every year might be the last year that I can carry him like this – so I’ll keep doing it until I can’t anymore!

MEGAN – thank you SO MUCH for taking the time to come photograph us! WE LOVE YOU!



Filed under: bardenisms,my family,my town — admin at 11:32 am on Thursday, July 22, 2021

Most of you probably know that I’ve struggled with living in this since we moved in – about 16 years ago.

There are so many reasons behind why I didn’t and don’t want to be here – BUT – this kitchen is no longer one of them!

It’s SO MUCH BRIGHTER!! And it feels SO MUCH BIGGER even though it really is smaller – we put these boards right on top of the old ceiling.

THAT SINK!!! It’s the sink DREAMS are made of!

Now our kitchen is finished throughout!!

It’s my favorite room in the house!!


Filed under: animals,bardenisms,daniel,my family — admin at 11:32 am on Friday, June 18, 2021

Daniel really is such a good boy!!

Enoch LOVES having a puppy best friend!!

He loves me the most though!!

Daniel is doing a great job adjusting to our life!!


Filed under: bardenisms,daniel,family,my family — admin at 10:10 am on Saturday, June 12, 2021

You might know that we had a great dane named Schrute for two years before we brought Fitzy home. We re-homed him to a GREAT couple who loved him more than we did – if that was possible.
Fitzy never really cared about having a dog but Enoch has been asking since he could talk – I think. Enoch talks to the animals. They LOVE him and he LOVES them. He has been seriously asking for a dog for the last 2 years. And I’ve said – absolutely no. I do not want an animal in my house again. I do not want to lose the freedom of going where we want when we want. I do not want drool. I do not want dog hair. I do not want to take them outside in the rain and snow.
Some of our friends – I won’t name names – like to look on PETFINDER for animals. Just because. And one night I found myself looking – just because. And Enoch kept asking. Not nagging. But saying – I wish we could have a dog. I can’t stand all these commercials on TV cus they have dogs in them and it makes me so sad. A dog would be my very best friend.
The last time he asked – I said – it’s not a hard no anymore. He cried – for about 20 minutes. Sobbed and sobbed. He was just so happy there was a possibility that he might get a dog.
So we looked on PETFINDER and found George – a family friendly german shepard in Waverly. He talked about him for a whole day – about the things they would do together. The places they would explore. I e-mailed the shelter and they said – he’s been placed.
When I told E in the morning – I was prepared for a full-blown breakdown. But instead he said – oh mom. That makes me sad – but I’m so happy George went home to a good family. There are lots of other dogs out there!!
THIS KID. This kid is blowing me away with his maturity and growth. So we looked again and found a picture of Daniel and Waffles. Daniel looked SO VERY SAD and lonely. We emailed the animal sanctuary and they said they were both available! Daniel was 1 – shy and such a gentleman. Waffles was a great family dog and 3. We set up a meeting Sunday May 2nd to see them. We met Daniel first and he was a little bit afraid of us – but SO sweet with such good manners. Waffles was also sweet and happy to be with people. The boys had pretty much had their hearts set on Daniel from the beginning – BUT we had an overnight trip planned for the next weekend – so we couldn’t pick him up till Mother’s Day. We spent the week getting all the things we needed and preparing our house for a dog.
We don’t know what kind of dog he is. His birthday is April 25th, 2020 – so they told us. He shares a name with me and almost a birthday with Fitzy.
When we brought him home – he was scared to come in the house. Jared and I were distracted with bringing stuff in the house and didn’t realize what was happening. The next thing we knew – he slipped out of his harness and ran away!! Thankfully he ran down behind the neighbor’s house and Jared was able to call to him and grab him. Many tears (from all of us) and a bloody lip later (on Fitzy’s part from falling in pursuit) – I carried him into the house.
The boys spent that week waiting talking about how they can make Daniel feel loved and at home. They understand that he may have had a rough history. He was a stray in Texas and was picked up and transported to PA. It seems like maybe he wasn’t treated the best and is easily scared. BUT he is gentle and cuddly. He is already listening well and exploring the house. They are SO excited to have a dog that they can give a happy home and teach him love and trust.
It’s been a month since we’ve had Daniel. He must have had a home in Texas – because he goes to the door to go to the bathroom. He is allowed on one couch and has followed those rules pretty well. He likes to nip when he plays – but when we tell him no and re-direct him – he does well. He almost always goes right to his crate for the night. He almost always goes to his crate when we leave the house without a problem. He explores with us. He can swim. I take him on a walk almost every morning. He is doing pretty well with a leash. He likes to lunge at birds and squirrels and would love to say hi to every person and dog we meet. He knows SIT and DOWN and we’re working on shake. We are looking at ALL the fencing options for the yard so the boys can run and play with him and he can get exercise.
I’m still not sure saying YES was the greatest thing. Just last night someone asked me – how do you like it!? I said – meh. I don’t love it.
The bottom line is this. I am about giving experience gifts instead of MORE stuff. Daniel is their Christmas present this year. And – he really is adjusting SO well with our family and it’s exciting to see the boys love him and explore with him!!
These photos are from that first afternoon we brought him home!!


Filed under: an hour in the life,bardenisms,family,farmlife,just because,lifestyle,my family — admin at 11:16 am on Monday, April 26, 2021

A quick shot of me with that dreamy hubby of mine!!


Filed under: an hour in the life,animals,bardenisms,family,farmlife,just because,lifestyle — admin at 1:47 pm on Saturday, April 24, 2021

It’s been a LONG time since I took photos of my kids with my parents!!

BASEBALL in the backyard!!

I can’t deal with how GIANT this guy is! He’s only TEN and he’s THIS tall already!?

Hey Enoch – can you just make a normal face!? No!? Okay – weirdness will do too!


Time for a bigfoot hunt!!

I need to make sure to bring my camera with me on adventures more often!




Filed under: bardenisms,family,just because,my family — admin at 2:58 pm on Friday, April 23, 2021

You would think that I would be better about getting my own family on the schedule for family photos!!

Thankfully Megan was able to fit us into her schedule in October.

I absolutely LOVE our red Japanese maple trees that line our driveway and I REALLY wanted to have our photos with them this year!!

Fitzy LOVES to read – much like his mom & dad!!

The one who made me a momma on this earth. My beautiful – old-soul boy who is growing into such a unique and thoughtful guy!

This guy – We worked to find a rhythm and a healthy relationship together – and I’m SO happy we put the time and hard work in! Because he is truly a joy!!

BARDEN BROTHERS!! That might be one of my favorite photos of the two of them!

Last year I said that i might not be able to pick him up like this again – but I can. I can’t hold him very long and I’m pretty sure that I won’t be able to do it this fall!!


Jared and I will be married SEVENTEEN years this June – and I can honestly say that I love him more than ever!!

We try every year to get a shot with mom-mom and bacca!

Some updated shots of me – JUST BECAUSE!!

And as I’m sitting here typing this – I am resisting the urge to shave my head again. BECAUSE I LOVE IT SO MUCH!

He loves me so very well!!

Megan – THANK YOU for fitting us into your schedule and giving us memories every year! I love you dear friend!!


Filed under: bardenisms,family,friends,my family,my town — admin at 11:49 am on Saturday, August 29, 2020

Last year we took a photo of ALL the kids together – so I made sure to recreate it again this year!!

Do you remember the photo from last year!?

Grace has certainly changed the most!!

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