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Birth Photography | Welcoming Baby Ava

Being present for Baby Ava's birth was a special treat because I had the opportunity to celebrate with her Momma Amanda, who was empowered to choose a home birth for her second baby. Her induced labor and delivery of her son was apparently a very long and grueling experience that she would rather not repeat. I discussed in this post how there are always two stories unfolding in the birth of a baby. One is the child's and one is the mother's. The power of a woman’s body in carrying and delivering another human into this world is a beautiful intersection of pain and triumph… the end and the beginning And how that story plays out can have a huge impact on the way a mother thinks of herself. It can be a very empowering and beautiful experience! (Jessica Aiduk)   Amanda and Art waited patiently as Baby Ava decided that she would extend her stay at Hotel Uterus past her due date. Then they wanted patiently through labor at home. There was soft music playing

Happy St. Martin’s Day

Today in Germany, villages of children will celebrate St. Martin's Day with a parade of lanterns. I got to see the celebration once through the eyes of my daughters. And the memories of the night have always stuck with me... I think of it when the leaves have mostly fallen and the nights get longer. St. Martin's Day chases away the dreariness of long cold nights with thoughts of cheer and warmth and generosity. St. Martin is a famous Christian saint.  He was a bishop known for his charity and good heart.   Every November, the children in the German villages celebrate the day he was buried. The legend is that when St. Martin was a soldier, he was out on a cold winter's night and saw a poor man with no cloak. Martin took his sword and cut his own cloak in two so he could give the freezing man something to wear.  This scene is re-enacted each year (the bigger kids in the kindergarten did a short play) and it is the act that St. Martin is famous for. So in

Travel Adventures | What to Eat [and Where!] in Colmar, France

You're going to want to have a snack nearby (or just start with a full tummy) when you see this post. Don't say I didn't warn you... cause I intend to make you drool. Here you will find everything you need to know about my favorite eats in Colmar. But this on is literally a walk through the city using my food daydreams as your guide ;-)     Since breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, we'll start with Bagelstein for an old fashioned, homemade bagel sandwich to die for! We liked it so much that I almost cried a little the next day when we were hoping to go back for sandwich number two, only to find them closed! BOOOO! So make sure you find your way to 55 Grand' Rue.     The manager's name is Philippe (can you get more French?) and he speaks fabulous English, for those of us who speak zero French. He's Mr. Smiley. He really likes to joke. It makes for a great, cheerful atmosphere in the

Donna’s Famous Cinnamon Rolls

We did it! We finally got to Donna's on a Wednesday morning IN TIME for cinnamon rolls! (Back story - once this summer we made the mistake of thinking there would still be some at 9am ;-) but then Donna and her son Michael informed me you can just let them know on Tuesdays how many you need "reserved" for your party and there will never again be a sad-faced-little-girl among you! Whew!) We joked that we were there celebrating the fact that Elsa lost another tooth. Don't tell her, but we were really there because Mommy was on Market Street running errands on a Tuesday and actually remembered to pop in and ask Donna for a reservation ;-) A couple notes on Donna's: Great diner food Cash only open Mon-Fri 6am-2pm open Saturday 7am-1:30pm closed Sunday call (607) 936-9732 on Tuesday if you want cinnamon rolls on Wednesday ;-) Donna also has an amazing collection of vintage Pyrex sets on display. Anna and Elsa love the blue and pink the best

Birthday (and Holiday) Presence

This past week has been a whirlwind of fun fall festivities and Elsa's 7th birthday. I always have a tough time at family outings and events being torn between my photographer-self and my mom-self. Specifically, to take a picture or to enjoy a moment?  As a photographer, I place very high value on a photograph to preserve a memory... not just for my clients but for myself. I want so desperately to remember every little moment and I have this fear that if I don't take a picture I WILL FORGET... but then I have known for a long time that if I always have the camera in front of my face, I miss something else that I can't ever get back: being present in the moment with my family. I still take a lot of pictures, trust me.  But sometimes when I am out with my girls or we're home celebrating an event, I remember this moment I had with them once when we were traveling in Germany... If you travel with small children, then you know what it means to be tired of bathroom