PRAISE

Filed under: an hour in the life,bardenisms,family,just because,newsworthy,word of God — admin at 11:44 am on Saturday, October 13, 2018

I had a session in August with a GORGEOUS family! They asked me to keep the family photos off the interwebs since they wanted to use them for CHRISTMAS!

And when I got done – they were some of my FAVORITE family shots! But – I couldn’t “show them off” – go figure!

I had a session in September with a family and they asked me to NOT post the photos – and … THEY WERE MY FAVORITE!!

But – since you couldn’t see WHO they were – I did post a few!

I REALLY REALLY hope they order a GIANT print of the dancing one!

ALL THIS TO SAY – who am I looking to get praise from?

Obviously my clients – at the end of the day – it doesn’t matter WHO might happen to “like” my photo if the client doesn’t love it.

Shouldn’t that be it? I could argue that in this business I NEED other people to see photos of families & seniors & brides & grooms & babies AND love those photos and therefore ask me to take their photos!

But what if the ONLY people who saw the photos I take were the people IN THOSE PHOTOS.

Would it be enough? Shouldn’t it be enough?

I post the photos I take because I LOVE THEM! I love the people in them. I love the moments I capture. The tiny details.

I believe that the unique eye God gave me is worth something.

Do you know what I love to do most to relax? Edit. (and binge-watch star trek series) but – EDIT. I love taking photos and I LOVE editing photos.

It’s relaxing and life-giving and inspiring and BEAUTIFUL.

Like I said – I believe that God gave me this gift. And I praise Him by using this gift. By giving you long-lasting memories – BEAUTIFUL long-lasting memories.

And really – at the end of the day – it ONLY matters if the person paying me LOVES their photos.

It’s hard being stuck in that place where I need other people to see and love my photography and ask me to photograph them BUT I need the people IN the photos to be happy with what I’ve given them.

When I have a FANTASTIC session and the only people that see them are the ones in them – it’s been hard for me to not show the world.

I get it. I respect that my clients don’t want their faces ALL over the internet.

I’m discovering that your (the general public) praise might be what I’m looking for.

WHAT JESUS SAYS ABOUT ME IS ENOUGH. Should be enough.

A girl at after-school care asked me about shaving her head – because she hates her hair. People pick on her about her hair. And her teeth. And her weight.

I asked her – do those things bother YOU? No. But they bother everyone else.

LISTEN. People are ALWAYS going to tell what they THINK is wrong with you. I wish I could tell you that it will get better as you get older.

You can’t change other people. And while what they’re doing isn’t kind or right or good – you can only change YOU.

And Jesus LOVES you. And He would die for you OVER & OVER again. And He looks at you and calls you worthy. He looks at you and calls you BEAUTIFUL!

REMEMBER THAT!!

SO – if I’m gonna practice what I preach – I need to STOP CARING about what everyone might think about these pictures I take. STOP CARING about how many likes they might be getting.

STOP CARING that people might not see some of my best work. Because – the people who are hanging those photos in their house – LOVED THEM.

START REALLY BELIEVING THAT I AM ENOUGH. Because Jesus tells me that I am.

A NEW START

Filed under: family,friends,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,love,my family,my town,newsworthy,word of God — admin at 11:18 am on Tuesday, August 28, 2018

If you read THE baby announcement – you know a little bit of Missy & Cody’s journey.

Cody recently encountered Jesus and it’s been AMAZING to watch his transformation!

He made the beautiful decision to be baptized!

So – I’ve known Sierra for a while now – since she and I were pregnant with Asa & Enoch – but only in the terms of yeah – I know WHO she is.

But – we’ve grown closer over the years. Her husband and Cody have gotten pretty close – starting with their shared love of ALL things car-related!

Missy & Sierra have gotten close while their husbands were growing their friendship.

Jared & Cody & Jose all get along really well. Sierra & Missy & I all get along really well. AND our kids LOVE hanging out with each other. WIN WIN WIN!!

Jose and our pastor Mark were in the water with Cody!

Everything was going smoothly – Cody got a little choked up giving his testimony – but nothing too weepy for the crowd – until …

Jose started to pray – then Cody was crying – I was crying – Missy was crying – and I’m guessing a few other people were crying!

Cody didn’t really care whether Sierra wanted a wet hug or not!

The ONLY blue-eyed kiddo IN THE BUNCH!

That guy – so much going on in that head of his. And Asa JUST turned FIVE! Enoch will be FIVE in November!

The ONLY GIRL in the bunch! FOR NOW!

CODY – I am so thankful to walk this journey with you and your family! I CANNOT TELL YOU HOW MUCH WE LOVE YOU!!

FITZY’S SWEETZ

Filed under: bardenisms,chef fitzgerald,family,FITZY'S SWEETZ,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,my family,my town,newsworthy — admin at 11:41 am on Friday, August 24, 2018

Fitzy has been working on a business plan throughout the summer!

He decided to name his company – FITZY’S SWEETZ!

I made him some business cards!

He is specializing in dairy-free brownies & desserts!

A fellow MOPS mom – Rachel – started a Young Entrepreneur Group in Wellsboro this summer and Fitzy was so excited to join!

We waited until the WEEK of the fair to make brownies! You gotta have FRESH brownies for the fair!

MINT & REGULAR! He priced the mint a little higher than the regular since we used essential oil for the mint brownies!

STAR WARS BROWNIES!!

I don’t eat chocolate – but let me tell you – they SMELL SO AMAZING!!

He didn’t count how many he started with – but it was a FULL table!

He was SUPER EXCITED ABOUT HIS FIRST SALE!

This guy – it was hard for him to understand that he couldn’t do ALL the things that he wanted ALL the times that he wanted to do them.

It was a good thing his bike was in the car!

CARICATURES!!

I ABSOLUTELY ADORE THAT RENDITION OF HIM!

Beaded jewelry – slime – cookies – brownies – rock pets – charms – seashell jewelry – old bottles – painted tattoos – caricatures – SO MANY AWESOME little businesses!

AND the kids got to be a part of the Wellsboro HOMEPAGE broadcast!

RACHEL – thank you SO MUCH for putting on this fair! We cannot WAIT to come again next year!

WE’RE HAVING A …

Filed under: . babies . babies . babies .,babes,bardenisms,expecting,friends,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,my town,newsworthy — admin at 10:56 am on Wednesday, August 15, 2018

I say WE because I feel like it’s “my” baby a little bit too! Actually – I know a few others that might say WE too!

I’m sure you’ve read about my best friend Missy! I met her because of this little page RIGHT HERE! She saw a blog I posted from someone on FACEBOOK and realized we both had great dane puppies!

We got together for a few puppy dates and grew closer through our shared struggle – infertility.

I took their family photos and we talked about how hard it was to be happy for other people that were expecting. Other people that got to hold their babies.

How SO VERY HARD it was to hope.

She would read my blog and call me and SOB! WHY DO I ALWAYS SOB WHEN I READ THIS!

That’s how we became friends. Because I was open and honest and raw and vulnerable.

Missy & Cody needed to use the amazing technical miracle of IVF to conceive. The day after Fitzy was born – Missy stopped in to see me on her way back from the fertility clinic. They were pregnant!

They had several embryos fertilized in the early months of 2011 – and while more than one was implanted – only Aiden stayed. I was ending my miracle pregnancy and she was starting hers!

About 4 years ago they had more embryos implanted – but those babies didn’t stay here on this earth.

Missy & Cody have BEEN THROUGH IT. Not just with infertility and multiple losses but the “normal” stuff life throws at you and even some of the “not-so-normal” stuff.

Missy prayed. I prayed. We prayed. So many people prayed. For their family – for their marriage – for their journey.

Did you know that Jesus is RIGHT THERE? WITH YOU RIGHT NOW? You only have to reach out your hand and your heart and say – YES! PLEASE! HELP ME!

Cody discovered that truth recently – and it TRANSFORMED HIS ENTIRE LIFE!!

I have very rarely been able to WATCH someone be completely transformed because of asking Jesus into their life – AND IT IS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!

Grace. Upon grace. UPON SO MUCH GRACE.

Missy & Cody had their last set of embryos in storage and they prayed. Was the time was right – do you stop freezing them? While they are only TINY TEENY little embryos – they are indeed very alive.

So – no. They didn’t stop. They had three implanted earlier this spring.

Missy traveled to Syracuse several times over the course of a few months – and she asked me to come along on one of those trips!

SEVEN WEEKS PREGNANT – and you CAN SEE A HEARTBEAT! YOU CAN HEAR A HEARTBEAT!!

Grabbing a snack via IV! IVF is no walk in the park! Shots. Hormones. SO MANY SHOTS!! Hopes. Disappointment. More shots. Hormones. Exhaustion. Tears. Miles.

Three little babies were implanted and ONE stayed.

This time – Missy has been SO VERY SICK!

And she went and got herself a full-time job and we don’t get to spend nearly as much time together as we used to – but being involved in the details of this baby – MEANS SO MUCH TO ME!

SO VERY VERY SICK – ending up in the ER for fluids. A little bit of a scare in losing this baby. It’s been a dramatic few months!

YESTERDAY “we” found out whether this AMAZING little soul was a boy or a girl!

I went with them to the ultrasound yesterday morning to take some photos!

It’s hard to make out – but that is a profile! 20 weeks old – not even a pound yet. And you can see the 4 chambers of the heart. You can see the arms. The fingers. The legs. The eyes. The little mouth yawning. ALL THE THINGS!

Aiden got his very own picture of his new baby! AND had to keep a secret – ALL DAY!!

LOOK AT THAT FACE! THAT SMILE!

THEY KNOW!! WE KNOW!!

CAN YOU TELL? DO YOU KNOW?

We stopped for brunch on the way home and Aiden helped me in a cute little picture of what his new baby will be!

BUT – the four of us were sworn to secrecy until last night – WHEN EVERYONE WOULD FIND OUT!

SHHHHH!! AIDEN – you can’t tell anyone!! YOU ARE ALMOST DONE KEEPING YOUR SECRET!

IT’S A GIRL!!!

They MIGHT be a little excited!

Missy’s mom might be a little excited!

We ALL might be a little excited!

And we all know that this sweet little girl NEEDS a girl-friend in this group of boys!

SUCH A CELEBRATION OF LIFE & LOVE & SO MUCH GRACE!!

Find your tribe. Keep them close.

Jared snapped that one of Jose – SURPRISED MUCH!?

MISSY – I LOVE YOU SO VERY VERY MUCH! Thank you for asking me to come along on this journey with you! EVERY STEP OF THE WAY!

GRACE UPON GRACE. SO MUCH GRACE UPON GRACE!

REPTILAND

Filed under: bardenisms,family,friends,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,my family,my town,newsworthy — admin at 11:44 am on Monday, August 13, 2018

We spent Friday night with Matt & Johna – getting ready for the boat regatta (that rhymes!) and then we spent Saturday racing and hanging out in the rain rain rain!

On Sunday we went to REPTILAND for their DINOSAUR DAYS!

SPITTING DINOSAURS!!

Enoch KNOWS that there’s a person in there but it’s still a little creepy!

A GIANT SNAPPING TURTLE!!

Those birds – getting them to sit on a stick was QUITE THE ORDEAL!

Macy got TWO on her stick!

I love his I’M SO EXCITED BUT I CAN’T REALLY SMILE face!

THE HAPPIEST BOY!!

We had a FUN-FILLED weekend with our dear friends! We can’t WAIT to go back to the campground this fall!!

CHRISTMAS IN JULY

Filed under: bardenisms,family,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,my town,NCA,newsworthy,parties — admin at 11:48 am on Thursday, August 9, 2018

Our school is expanding! And as you know – expansion costs a pretty penny!

We are trying some new and fun ways to raise money for the school – including a DRIVE IN MOVIE!!

In July we watched HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS!

Enoch didn’t hang for the whole movie but Fitzy made it to the end!

THE BREAKFAST CLUB

Filed under: newsworthy,portraits,seniors — admin at 10:45 am on Thursday, June 21, 2018

Amy contacted me about an idea she had for her daughter’s senior pictures – a BREAKFAST CLUB THEMED SESSION!

WITH HER FRIENDS!

WHAT?! YES!! ALL THE YES!!

YOU GUYS! I MEAN – SERIOUSLY!!

BAM!!

So – that’s a bad copy – but you get the idea!!

I LOVE those locker shots!

PERFECTION!!

AMAZING RIGHT!?

GORGEOUS!!

We didn’t have a football field – so we improvised!!

We met the day AFTER school got out – and it was SO VERY HOT and muggy! These kids were AMAZING for our HOURS long session!

Stay tuned next month to see the other HALF of their senior session together!

Amy – thank you SO MUCH for asking me to take on this project!

*B* FAMILY – DOTERRA

Filed under: . babies . babies . babies .,babes,DoTERRA,family,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,newsworthy,portraits — admin at 10:30 am on Tuesday, May 15, 2018

I met Carrie through our MOPS group AND her daughter goes to preschool with E!

She needed some photos for an article in an upcoming DoTerra publication about her success within the company!

MY FAVORITE SHOTS – the unexpected ones!

SISTERS!

I LOVE THOSE!!

SNACK BREAK!!

I LOVE THOSE SHOTS!!

ADORABLE!!

SO SWEET!!!

ADORABLE!!

SO ADORABLE!!

Those are my FAVORITE!!

ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL! SWEET SWEET SISTERS!!

BALANCE!!

Carrie – I CANNOT wait to photograph your family this summer! Thank you SO MUCH for asking me to capture this EXCITING time in your lives!!

HELLO FRESH

Filed under: bardenisms,family,hello fresh,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,my family,newsworthy — admin at 1:12 pm on Monday, March 26, 2018

My friend Arica gave me a HELLO FRESH coupon for a FREE box!

We LOVE having ALL the ingredients ready to go!

This guy – he really loves the ready-made boxes!!

Sweet potatoes with maple syrup!

Pork chops and sweet potatoes and garlic green beans!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS

Filed under: baby barden,bardenisms,holiday,just because,kiddos,lifestyle,love,my family,my town,newsworthy,word of God — admin at 11:51 am on Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Jared and I stopped giving Christmas gifts quite a while ago – typically because if we see something we want – we get it. Obviously – within reason.

We don’t really live life that way anymore – but we still don’t give gifts to each other.

BUT – Fitzy and Enoch shopped for us and for each other – so we were REALLY looking forward to opening those gifts!

That little handwriting – the excitement he could BARELY contain!

We LOVE our puzzles!!

Fitzy got Enoch a fence for his animals – his many many animals!

Enoch got Fitzy marbles and a car! And Enoch was SO surprised – he thought the things he picked out were for HIM!

We did get Jared a little gift – STAR WARS FOR LIFE!!

Fitzy picked out this sweatshirt for me! He said – MOM! It’s so ugly – I KNEW you would love it!

And the leggings – they were ONLY FOUR DOLLARS MOM!!

He asked if I would wear that sweatshirt EVERY CHRISTMAS! Yes sweet thing. Always.

Enoch got Jared a book of 5-minute STAR WARS stories!

And he got me a STAR WARS activity book and a mosaic sticker book!

Fitzy got a set of knives and his VERY OWN CUTTING BOARD!

We’ve played that game SO MUCH already!

Puzzles and games. Crayons and notebooks. Undies and matching shirts. And a lego set for Fitzy – one I’ve been holding onto for FOUR years!

I love that they didn’t need LOTS of presents under the tree. And almost everything I got them – I had bought on clearance throughout the year!! WIN WIN WIN!

Fitzy was VERY VERY excited about this lego set – he’s seen it in the closet for SO LONG! And he wasn’t expecting it because he isn’t 9 yet! And you should be 9 to build then on your own!

He worked most of Christmas day and the day after – with only a tiny bit of help from us!

I really really do not enjoy winter – but Christmas – I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!

I hope you had a lovely Christmas with the ones you love – snuggled up nice and warm doing ALL THE THINGS you love!

 

 

 

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