Hey! I'm Emily... homebody, amateur philosopher, professional photographer, mama and wife. This is my little world-- a place for me to preserve the little snippets of my life that bring me joy, make me think, or show my creative leanings. I'm so happy you're here. If you get a minute, please introduce yourself in the comments. If you like what you see, you are invited to follow my blog through your RSS Reader. Just click the link at the bottom of the page to add me.
Thank you for being part of my little world... :)

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Me:

Me:

Wednesday, May 28

Adding Frames: A Fun How-To!


So in my last post, I received at least two requests/inquiries on how to add fun frames to your photos. It is something I started seeing on other favorite photographers' blogs about two and a half years ago, and I've been adding them here and there ever since. And since this activity brings me great joy, and adds a bit o' pizazz to my photos now and again, I thought I'd post a lil' tutorial for you here.


To begin with, all you need is:

1.) Photoshop
2.) a good photo
3.) a digital frame, usually purchased from a digital scrapbooking site online (though you may be able to unearth some freebies online if you look.)

Basically, these digital frames are created by artists who have way more time on their hands than I do (apparently!!) who them set them up into a collection and make them available for purchase online. When you "buy" these frames, you are paying for the right to download them and you are agreeing not to share the files illegally through pirating. Once payment has been received (usually through Paypal or online credit card transaction), a link is given to you where you can click and upload the digital file to your computer. I save these files in a folder under "My Documents" called "Borders", so I know where to always go to get these frames.


Though I have been finding and purchasing my collection of digital frames for a long time now, I thought I'd save you some of the virtual legwork and give you a few links to some of my favorites, all found on www.twopeasinabucket.com and www.scrapartist.com (and if any of you have any good leads to other sites, please be a dear and leave us the link in the comments!!):

A Few Good Choices:
1.) mostly fancy, artsy HERE
2.) "Schmootzy Frames II", all fantastically over-the-top ornate and FANCY (some of my VERY favorite) HERE
3.) "Schmootzy Frames I", basic raw-edged inky-looking frames HERE
4.) Fun "Toy Camera" frames HERE
5.) More FANCY fun swirled frames HERE
6.) A single colored grunge frame HERE

{schmootzy II frame}


{toy camera frame}
{schmootzy I frame}

To actually add the frame to a photo, I do the following steps:
1. Open a photo of your choice and resize it to about 4x6 at 300 dpi
2. Do all post-processing you plan to do
3. Make sure the color swatch on the left tool bar is set so that the white square is on the bottom (See image below)



4. Go to Image:Canvas Size and enter in 1 inch wide and 1 inch long (make sure that "relative" is checked). This should give you a white border all around your photo.
5. Now go open one of your new frame files. Using the arrow key, drag the frame onto your already-opened photo. Resize is to fit the photo by dragging the corners/ides until you are satisfied.
6. Flatten the image.
7. If you like, you can then go back and crop out some of the white border you created, or keep it if you like the way it looks.

Ta-Da! Your photo now has a funky frame on it!

I would recommend saving your original photo first, then re-saving the framed one under a different name. Some day you may grow tired of the framed look, but if you don't save the original, that digital frame is MIGHTY hard to get rid of!!

Hope this made sense, and I hope some of you go out and try this fun little trick! Feel free to ask questions on the comments. I will respond to them there.

{white grungy frame with wide white border}

*

and P.S. I have more fun things yet to blog about (like my trip to Richmond, my Girls' Outing, my amazing sister Beckie, etc.).

Soon, my friends. Soon.

Saturday, May 24

Seriously.

...could he BE any cuter??

Tuesday, May 20

It's a Cupcake Party!

The Idea:
everyone brings a dozen or two yummy, already-decorated cupcakes. We sit, chat, nibble, socialize, discuss recipes and decorating ideas, and then trade the rest around and go home with a bunch of different, equally delicious cupcakes from each batch.
Some of the cupcakes present:

{buttercream and fondant goldfish on white cake with cheesecake pudding filling-Mine}
(decoration idea totally stolen from online! )
{vegan chocolate brownie cupcakes with cream cheese cookies and cream topping- Jaime's}
{spaghetti and meatballs(ferrer roche dipped in strawberry jam with buttercream piped icing "noodles") atop white cake- Emily T.'s}

piped yellow buttercream atop chocolate cake- Taina's}
... plus many, many more, including an amazing lemon meringue, pina colada, rocky road....

~YUM!~

Drinks were fruit punch and milk... Games included a scavenger hunt...
Babies enjoyed the scenery, guests enjoyed each other's company...
Noah and Joe were as handsome as ever...
...and everyone went home happy and loaded with extra cupcakes to share (or not) with the rest of their families!
The End.

(it turned out to be a really cool, fun party, and something I really think I'll have to repeat sometime. And you should throw one of your own sometime. It's like a more fun version of a tea party! and who doesn't love a nice cupcake now and again?? )

Sunday, May 18

Home Again...

Home from our whirlwind trip to Richmond, Virginia to see Joe's bro Dave get his Master's---
Home to dive back into the madness that is my life...
In the vein of my BFF Genny's blog, I am posting a to-do list. This is as much for my own organizing purposes as it is an apology and an excuse for my lack of posting lately (and upcomingly). I NEED the chance to blog to keep my sanity, but there is no sanity left to allocate to the task of blogging. It's a terrible Catch-22. *sigh*
To-Do:
Unpack
Set up 1/2 day substitute for Noah's appt. on Wed.
Proof Beckie's pics
Proof Megan's pics
Proof Chelsey's pics
Proof Girls' Outing pics (Jodie and Erin)
Proof Eva and Dawn's pics
Proof Alecia's pics
Decide on Memorial Day
Recycle Oberweis jugs
Grocery shopping
Blog about Cupcake Party
Blog about Richmond
Blog about Girls' Outing
Put away laundry
Sweep/mop kitchen
Mail maternity clothes to Katie!!
Juli's photo book
Steven's photo book
Deposit checks
Vacuum Mason stairs
Create review games for school
Thank-you gifts for Dob, Skinner, SROs
Sew eyes on turtle, mail to Stef
Take Noah's 6-mo. pics
Bake/blend/freeze squash and sweet potatoes for Noah
Pay bills
Pay Vicki***
Paint toenails
Organize mail
Return Liesl's book
Get tire repaired
...collapse.

Ah, home. Glad to be home, even if it doesn't slow down much. Tomorrow is a new week, and maybe I can chip into some of that huge list. Wish me luck!!

{photo of Joe and Noah taken this morning in the prettiest part of Richmond. We LOVED taking walks and taking photos!}

Sunday, May 11

Mama Day, Noah Style

Enjoying my Mother's Day:
* a baby that slept SO well last night * box o' chocolates from the kids at church * a cool photo frame and some candy from Joe * a 1.5 hour NAP for me, and a 2.5 hour nap for Noah = a PERFECT afternoon!
* homemade apple pork chops with mashed potatoes and asparagus, made by Joe... YUM. *fun photos of my baby boy * phone calls and well-wishes * no school tomorrow!! (zoo, anyone?) * time AND energy to curl up in front of a movie with my hubby * a lovely little life with my two boys...




{And check out Noah's blog for the very most recent video of this handsome boy, if you want to!}

Wednesday, May 7

All Too Swiftly, Time is Passing Us By...

Can you believe it's been almost six months? I can't.

I photographed the sweetest little newborn baby boy yesterday-- all 7 lbs. 12 oz. of him, and I was amazed at how frail, tiny, and new he was... And that Noah has been that exact weight when he left the hospital nearly six months ago. I hate to be cliche when I say this, but they grow so fast. It is a bittersweet thing.
Lately, I have been trying to recall the exact moments and feelings of that eventful day in the hospital-- it soothes me to sleep each night for the past few nights... calling to mind the minute details of that surreal time of my life-- checking myself to see if I have already forgotten anything...
And I continue to be in awe of this miraculous calling I am fulfilling here-- a MOM. How did I get so lucky to get to be the mother to this remarkable little boy? How did I luck out in having Joe as my untiring, unselfish partner?

I love this photo-- a buried gem in the bunch of wonderful photos my sister-in-law Mary took of us just two weeks after Noah's birth. I am grateful for the hundreds, if not thousands of photos I already have to preserve the fleeting moments. They help me keep my past close to me.

Anyway... I'm just feeling reflective these days. I cherish that side of me. I love my beautiful memories of my beautiful life.

Tuesday, May 6

Spring ={equals}=Twitterpated Couples

Oh FINALLY it is pretty enough outside to take lovely, loving couples to the park to take their pictures! There is just something so disheartening about the end of a bleak winter and a slow spring start that kills the passion for photography...
But then there is something to the new rebirth of life and flowers and warmth that helps the creativity flow back.

*
Enjoy my latest subjects. The first couple is engaged to be married this August and was so fun to work with-- they had me laughing and I had them laughing right back.






*
The second couple is a pair of really cool kids from my school-- seniors about to begin their journey into college life at Mizzou. I have a particularly soft spot for Danielle-- one of my very first students ever and also one of the neatest kids I have ever met.


...Back in the flow of photography season... Here we go!

Friday, May 2

Oh, Friday, How I Love Thee.

Finally Friday. Man this week has been longer and harder than the last. What is this?? But I made it to today, and managed not to lose my mind. At least, not ALL the way.
But it was tough, let me tell you-- lots of tears, lots of yucky feelings, lots of venting... and in return, lots of loving, supportive, willing friends/husband/family to let me let it all out. Not the least of which came from a friend I've never even really met. A fellow new mom, a blogging and email buddy, and a true kindred spirit. Stefanie-- how can I ever thank you enough for this? :
The card began, "when life gives you lemons..." and the vase has a LEMON in the bottom. Could this be any cuter, sweeter, more cheerful, more thoughtful, more NEEDED??

I am humbled by the love this universe has to offer. I am blessed to get to partake of even a small portion of it. I am grateful for my circle of friends, near, far, met, unmet...

Thank you.

And since I feel rejuvenated, I have other things to share.

First, can you guess what this is?


Hint: It's a semi-antique my mom found for me last summer...and it's in my kitchen as of a week ago.

You think you know?

did you guess this?


And you know what that means:


Ta-Da! Noah is eating REAL food! I have more photos, video, and details on his blog, so feel free to go over there to see more of this adventure.

...oh, let me give you ONE more photo of him here. He's too cute to resist.
(I love how vintage the high chair is... And I love how timeless a black and white photo is.)

Okay... for now, that's it. I have so much more to blog about. Someday. One day at a time, people.

(Stefanie. Seriously. THANK YOU. I am floored.)