March 25, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

We all want cute pictures of our kids, right?

Well... I think that desire is amplified by about 1,000% for me. 


Everywhere we go. Every first that Lucas experiences. I

Luckily, I have a very supportive and loving husband that only makes fun of my complex on occasion and NEVER utters two very scary words "no camera." He has given me a wayward look or two in the past...but we're married so I just ignore it. ;)

Some of you might assume that I'm spending too much time behind the lens and not living in the moment with my child. If you're that person, well... you're just wrong. Sorry. I do not take over every outing and turn into a raging photog mom looking for the perfect shot. Last week's spring break adventures prove that. I would estimate that I spent a total of 45 minutes behind my camera, capturing some wonderful shots of my little guy. Moments that I want to remember, forever. 

Take a quick stroll with me through a few of our spring break outings. If by the end of our time together you're thinking...

>"I want pictures like this of my kids"

>"I have a nice camera, I can do that"

then I have good news for you. But you have to suffer through my spring break photo album to get there (unless you are a cheater pants and scroll straight to the bottom)!


I am a teacher, so yes... spring break was GLORIOUS! I love my school kiddos so much, but it's nice to get away for a while and just focus on my little man without distraction. We got off to a great start at one of Lucas' favorite places...the zoo!

I love those last two. My kid is sort of infatuated with birds right now. Something I'm sure will pass before I know it, and I will completely forget about it. Until ten years from now, when I flip back through our family pictures and see this. I'll remember that he was listening for the birds...and that confused little look on his face when he pointed to the sky but didn't see any birds?? 

((Because they were in the aviary behind him. Precious.))

Which obviously meant that the Budgie Aviary was our next stop. I'll admit I was a little disappointed to not get a picture of Lucas with a bird... he went right to them last year. My how things change from one year to the next. Talk about a scaredy cat! Yes, he loves birds... as long as they stay away from him. 

Gotta give the hubs an A+ for trying though. On to the goats! What a Jay boy... of course he loves the goats!

And that's it... from the zoo. Total Camera Time: 15 minutes.

To the beach!! Nick and I- geniuses that we are, chose St. Patrick's Day for our beach excursion. We made it about 1/2 mile up the road before changing our plans from Pensacola Beach (where we knew we would get stuck on the bridge and crowded on the sand) to Navarre Beach.

Bingo! It was PERFECT. There were very few people there and Lucas had plenty of room to roam. Best part? It took almost exactly an hour to get there, as opposed to the hour and a half (or more) trip to Pensacola. 

Why the picture of little toes? That's to remind me of Lucas' reaction to all that sand after a one year hiatus. He nearly crawled on top of my head when I attempted to let go of him, after walking him down the boardwalk on my hip. I'll admit, Nick and I got pretty tickled. The quilt seemed safe, so I dropped him off there. Then we watched... little toes scurry to the edge, then back away...scurry to the edge, then back away. This continued for about 5 minutes until he finally couldn't stand that mom and dad were playing with his sand toys without him! 

Before tucking my camera safely away, I grabbed a few more shots of little man having some fun in the sun! He thought he was such a big boy, walking down the beach (10 feet away from us) by himself. 

Of course no beach trip is complete without bubbles. I don't know why!?!? They are impossible to catch on the beach! But it was pretty funny to watch him try! Lucas was so excited when he finally made bubbles by himself!

And to round out our beach trip... we FINALLY got Lucas in the water! Like the sand, it took a little while. Once he figured it out, he loved it... until his shirt got wet, then there were tears. He got over it pretty fast and went right back to enjoying his beach trip. Toddlers are so bipolar.

That'll do it for our beach trip. Total Camera Time: 15 minutes.

The night of our beach trip was a biggie for Lucas. At almost 2 1/2 he was still sleeping in his crib. He has never tried to escape it, so we weren't in a rush to change things. We decided spring break was a good time to introduce a new bed, just in case we went without sleep for a couple of nights.Not to mention, we're only weeks away from moving into our new we thought it best for him to get accustomed to a new bed prior to a new house, new room, new everything else! There's nothing SUPER special about this image from a photography standpoint. I tiptoed into his room after he had been asleep for a while, turned on the closet light, and clicked.

 Lucas' first night in a big boy bed. Which he totally rocked by the way... thanks to being exhausted from the beach!  

The final stop on our spring break tour is Russell Harbor Landing! After a successful Easter Mini here the weekend before, we decided to go back with Lucas and catch a few spring shots of our handsome guy, rocking a bow tie. Since this trip was per my request... we followed it up with pizza and toys at Boomerang Pizzeria and General Store in Downtown Milton. Great place if you haven't been yet! Here are some of my favorite shots from Lucas' shoot. Call me crazy but I send Valentine and Easter cards like most people send out Christmas cards. Needless to say, I have envelopes to seal and stamps to buy so I can share these images with family and friends.

The one below is probably my fave... for those who think Lucas is a perfect little model. I'll admit, he was on point for this shoot. However, this specific shot was after his Daddy and I told him not to touch the blue egg... THREE TIMES. We didn't help our case when we busted out laughing as little toes reached for said egg. Scroll back up (first image) and notice how far away we put the eggs in subsequent shots (we showed him).

Lucas was on a roll and didn't seem to mind a camera in his face, so we brought him down to the water to test our luck. He didn't seem too interested until his Daddy started throwing rocks into the water. I'm telling ya... when it comes to taking pictures of your kids, it's great to have a supportive spouse (or friend/family member)! Nick is responsible for 99% of our smiles at photoshoots. He jumps around like a fool so that I can stay focused on our little subject and wait for my shot. I cannot thank him enough for accepting my love of photography and being a wonderful "assistant."

So that's it. Our own little mini shoot at Russell Harbor Landing. Total Camera Time: 15 minutes.

Which is where I got my average of about 45 minutes total spent behind the lens over spring break...and some priceless images to show for it.

Now, I'm not saying that these are all perfect pictures, but they're perfect to me. I don't always spend a lot of time on my edits of Lucas because I take WAY too many pictures of him to dedicate that much time to nit picking my edits. But if you're like me, then you would probably agree that it's about the moment with our kids. We just want to remember them; how little they were, what made them laugh, what made them cry, all of the little firsts that we never get to redo. 

Which brings me to this...

Over the past month I've had several friends contact me about hosting an affordable workshop to help them learn the ins and outs of their DSLR cameras. I imagine many of you have nice cameras that you paid $500-$800 (or more) for...but you're still stuck on auto. Right?!? 

I am not claiming to be an expert in the field because I still learn new techniques all the time. However, I am a teacher by trade and I can promise you that you will leave this workshop with a basic understanding of your big fancy camera. You WILL get off auto and learn how to capture adorable images of your kids...while they're still kids.  If you're interested in a seat at this workshop please email me at [email protected] for more information!

<3 Nikki



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