Friday, January 31, 2014


Today is Colby's seven-month birthday! Geesh! Where has the time gone!

She's starting to develop quite the personality. She's pretty giggly and smiley still; however, she has started to do the whole whining thing when people leave the room. It's quite annoying, and we hope she gets over it.

She's army crawling everywhere, and this week she started pulling herself up to things. It doesn't matter if it's a couch, toy, or person, she gets herself into a standing position and wobbles back and forth for a while until she takes a tumble. I took video of it today, but since I didn't have time today to download it to my computer and upload it to the blog, in it's place I'm offering some recent pictures that Carolyn sent me of Colby and Henry playing!

Video will be coming sometime this week hopefully...along with some family and children's portraits I've been working on!!

Thanks for checking in! Kelly

Carolyn told me that Colby figured out that she could pull on the tabs on Henry's diaper. Geesh. Last thing a mother wants to hear about her little girl.

She's always so excited to see Henry in the morning. She gets all smiley when she sees him. :)
Btw, this picture was taken the day Colby got her six-month shots. Little story about that: There were a TON of 5-year-olds in the lobby waiting to get shots for kindergarten. We went back, Colby cried for a second and was done by the time we left the room. As we exited the building, I heard someone yell, "Hey!" I turned around, and there on the sidewalk outside the door was a group of 5-year-olds. The one that had yelled at me proceeded to ask, "Did she get shots?" "Yes," I replied. "Then why isn't she still crying?" she asked back. "Because it only hurts for one second. It's like someone pinching you. If you cry longer then one second you're being a big baby," I told the group. "Hmmm," the ringleader replied, and the group went back into the building They had to think about that one for awhile. I chuckled the entire time I was putting Colby in her carseat.

Either hanging out or in timeout. Knowing my child, it's probably timeout.

Carolyn had to get a second exersaucer/walker because they would each get upset when the other was playing in the exersaucer. Now they get upset when the other's getting a bottle...even if they've just had one and aren't hungry. God bless Carolyn and her patience.

Thursday, January 30, 2014


WARNING: This is a REALLY long post. Why? Because I just couldn't decide which images from a recent shoot were my favorites!!! So, I've posted a TON of them!!!

I have to admit, it's a treat when I get to shoot a couple of young men that are as handsome and cute as these two are, but when you throw in FUN personalities too, what's a girl to do! That's how you end up with 100 'favorite' images from a session!!!

Since moving to Shelby County 2 1/2 years ago, Hair Extraordinaire Brigit has been taking care of my mane needs ( my play on words?). Occasionally, while Brigit snips away, her polite and adorable boys come in with a quick question. Sometimes it's 'can I have a snack'...'sometimes it's can I play a computer game'...and sometimes it's 'Mom, where's the stapler? I need it to make Peter Pan pants out of this green paper.' I love their big eyes and their even bigger imaginations.

I do truly believe that you should capture kids' personalities as they are; so, when Brigit asked if I would take her boys' pictures, I asked her to trust me and bring a couple of their superhero costumes along!

A few of my favorites from our session are below. Click here to see a few more!...or read through all the way to the bottom of this post where there's a link to see all of Briar and Wyatt's images!

Look at those eyes!!!

One of my tricks that I use with kids (and adults) is that I tell them not to smile. They either can't contain their smile (and I snap away), or when I tell them that they can now smile it's a great natural smile. Wyatt informed me during one of our 'non-smiling' moments that his mom probably wasn't going to like any of those pictures. :)

I think this is my favorite picture of Briar out of the whole day. I love his eyes and his gentle smile!

I think this one will make Brigit both happy and sad. Happy that her son looks so handsome. Sad that he looks so grown-up in this picture!!

Wyatt has the J Crew pose down.

A sweet, simple pose from Briar. At one point, I was down on the ground shooting pictures. Seeing me down on the grass, Briar all of sudden asked, "Kelly, are those your play jeans?!" Yes, Briar, when you're my age, they're ALL play jeans. :)

I've actually had these pictures done for over a week. However, at the original shoot, almost every time I'd ask the boys to smile, Wyatt would turn and look at Briar and I wouldn't get his smile head on. So, I called Brigit this week and asked her if I could come over for just ten minutes to get this picture! I had to get one where I could see their beautiful eyes AND their beautiful smiles!

Briar cracking up at either me or Wyatt! For my own pride, I'm going with Wyatt! You have to love his expression though!

After we were done with the 'real' pictures, the boys changed into their superhero outfits. Watch out! Superman is mad!

Spiderman is mad too!

Spiderman is stretching...getting ready to take off and catch some bad men!

I asked Briar who his favorite movie character was. He told me Darth Maul off of the Star Wars movies. "Isn't he bad, though," I asked. "Yes, Kelly, but he has a double-edged light saber." Duh, Kelly, duh!

When I asked Wyatt about characters he liked, he told me he liked "Edward" off of Twilight. Well, any followers of this blog know how I feel about that. Wyatt, if you treat girls like Edward treats Bella, you will get all the girls!

Wyatt and Briar, I had SO much fun at your shoot! Not only are you both handsome young men, but you are also polite, caring, and have great imaginations! I wanted to do something special for you. So, I put together this slideshow for you. Click here to view it. I hope you recognize the music!!!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


I've had several people remind me over the last few days that I promised a lot of posting last week...and failed; so, I'm trying desperately to make up for it this week! Yesterday I posted Trent's Senior Pictures (see post below), and today we have the Anderson family!

My sister Kim and her family live in northern Minnesota...what my family calls "The Great White Nort'". Every year during the summer I make the trip up to spend time with her family and all of her great friends. I used to go up over 4th of July and partake in their killer annual celebration; however, this year I decided to pick a more Colby-conducive weekend.

Kim and her husband Scott hadn't had a family picture taken since they were married five years ago, and while Kim and I had discussed it briefly in passing, it was Scott who took the lead on this project! The night I got up there he took me on a 45-minute 4-wheeler drive through hills, pastures, and streams to scope out beautiful sites for their pictures! It was the most fun I've ever had looking for possible locations!

A few of my favorites are below. Click here to see more of their family pictures.

Jacob is 2 1/2 and picked that night to be my best friend. He wanted to help me with the camera vs. being in the pictures. But, we still managed to get a bunch of fun shots of the little guy!

Scott and Kim just purchased a combine, and Scott washed it all up so that it could be in the background.

You know me. I'm a sucker for a candid image...especially one as sweet as this.

Isn't my brother-in-law handsome? To get to this hill in a wheat field, Scott had to take each of us on a 10-minute 4-wheeler ride through trees and brush. Scott, Kendall, and I went first to test out the light before he went back for Kim and Jacob.

Props to my excellent assistant for the night: Our sister Kendall!

Jacob loved playing in the wheat field.

But he loved playing on the fence at his grandparents' farm even more!

Kim and Scott displaying their ornery relationship.

Probably my favorite picture of the day.

My favorite picture of Jacob that day. He's practicing his GQ pose for when he gets older.

Thanks for checking in!!! Kelly

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


There are things in life that just make you feel old. Taking the senior pictures of someone you used to babysit is one of them.

A month ago our family friend Connie emailed me and asked if I would take her son Trent's senior pictures. My mouth dropped open. I used to babysit both him AND his OLDER brother. Geesh. Well, as ancient as I felt, I was still deeply honored, and I had so much fun! Trent truly thought (or hoped, at least!) that we were going to take just a few pictures and be done with it! Boy oh boy, I'm not sure he realized what he was getting into!

Trent, seriously, you were great! Not only were you willing to do anything I asked to get 'the shot', but you are also witty, humble, and intelligent. Your parents should be proud! Thank you again! Kelly

Click here to see more of my favorites from Trent's shoot.

When we first got into the car, my first question to Trent was "So, how opposed are you to trespassing?" I do a LOT of trespassing when I take photos. Luckily, Trent was on board.

Trent and his killer green eyes.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this photo. Julie Gathmann, thank you for letting us trespass to get this photo!!!

Trent's the pitcher for his team, and his mom requested pictures of him in his uniform; so, we headed to the baseball field. Throughout the night, I had asked Trent a lot of questions about where he was thinking about going to college. He was unusually vague for a senior about his college plans. After I got home, my mom told me that Trent is a PHENOMENAL pitcher and will probably be scouted this spring and play in college. Hence the vagueness...and the humility I mentioned above.

Trent in action.

By this time, Trent had "Stockholm Syndrome"...he was working with his captor. He was giving me different smiles on command and changing the angle of his head after every shot. He's ready for GQ!

We actually took these a couple of days after the original shoot. It was getting ready to storm, and the sky was beautiful. They are my favorites out of all the pictures we took.

Trent, thank you! Once again, you were great, and I had a great time! Good luck in all you do, and I hope you have a great senior year! KM

Monday, January 27, 2014


Boston had the Big Dig. The McCormicks had the Big Pour.

This past Saturday our friends showed up to help Nick pour a gigantic patio for us. For the 2 1/2 years that we've lived here (btw, 2 1/2 years is a record for me in once house), I've cringed every time I've rounded the curve in our drive and see the back of our house. It SO did not have any curb appeal, and since the entrance to our house is in the back, I hated it when I had to host baby showers, family dinners, etc. at our house.

I know, I thing at a time, but when Nick and I sat down and prioritized projects on our house (finish new windows, new siding, landscaping, remodel bathroom, on and on and on) the first thing on my list was a patio. I wanted something that I could put potted flowers and furniture on that would distract people from the rest of our remodeling project called a house!!

The Big Pour was scheduled for two Fridays ago while I was in MN. I thought I would come home to this rural leisure oasis, but it got cancelled and I figured it would not happen until next summer. So, I was thrilled when Nick told me last week that they were pouring the patio over the weekend! Woohoo!

Here are a few pictures.

All framed up and ready to go!

Nick with his brother Heath.

Taking a break and waiting for the second cement delivery. Brandon on extreme left is our friend who loves to pour concrete and makes several trips down in the summer to take care of all of the McCormick concrete needs...and that's a lot! Last summer Heath and Autumn got a patio and drive. This summer it's us, and Ferd and Arlene are next on the list.

The Big Pour.

Colby slept for almost three hours after everyone left. She is so curious (or nosey) that she wouldn't take a nap. Plus there were so many people to play with her. Here she is with Great Grandma Lenz who came out to check out the work.

The new patio. I originally wanted a brick patio and Nick wanted concrete; so, we compromised wtih a stamped concrete patio. It's hard to tell, but it's tan and once Nick applies the sealant it will have dark accents in it. It's huge. It's approximately 40x20 feet. Well worth the wait.

Nick and Heath also poured new wider steps. I can already see the potted flowers that will line the steps next summer!!
Thanks for checking in!


Sunday, January 26, 2014

Christmas in August...or September...or October | WEDDING, FAMILY, & CHILDREN'S PHOTOGRAPHER | EFFINGHAM, ILLINOIS

Well, Colby and I just got back from a visiting two of my sisters in Minnesota. My mom went with us, and we had a great time...despite the fact that my mom somehow talked me into driving the 12 hour trip with a six-month old! Although Colby is a trooper, I think we'll be flying next summer for our annual visit to the great white Nort'!

Several people have mentioned to me in the last few months that they wanted pictures done in time for Christmas. Well, the time is here! In all honestly, to have the images edited by early November, we need to have your portrait session done by October 15th. So, I just wanted to send a friendly reminder to all who have mentioned this to me to please give me a call or drop me an email so we can get it on the calendar!!

In the meantime, I have TONS to post over the next few days. And, here's a little peek at what I've been up to in my free time!

Some family portraits....

...and some children's portraits...

....and even some senior portraits.

I'll be finishing up the editing of all of these sessions over the weekend; so, check in next week to see more of the above....AND, even some pictures of some local superheroes!!

Thanks for checking in !


Saturday, January 25, 2014


Right now I'm in the Minnesota visiting my two sisters with my mom. Colby and I took off yesterday with my mom, but before we hit the road for the 12-hour drive to the great white nort', we headed to the county fair to watch my niece Emma show cattle at her first 4-H fair! She took two heifers, Tina and Darla. Originally, she was taking Tina and Pedro; however, Pedro was a little skittish...probably because he was blind in one, Darla was subbed in for Emma's first fair! I took pictures, of course!
Emma, congrats on your ribbons and your great job at your first fair!

Colby was quite intrigued with everything going on. There was so much to watch!

Emma in the show ring.

Keeping the heifer happy while the judge checked it out.

Family friend Eric helped Emma out in the ring.

Colby was fascinated with the whole scene.

Emma and her Dad strategizing in the corner. :)

Smiling at the crowd.

After the show. I love the grooming comb in her back pocket.

Displaying her ribbons for the camera. Her mom asked her if she wanted to show again next year. Emma said, "Yeah!"

After the show, Anna walked us down to show us the garden she and Emma took care of as part of their Jr. Master Gardner project that Grandma Budke helps supervise for the county.