I took this picture last week of my friend’s baby and I think it’s crying for a caption or meme. What do you think it is?
I graduated almost 1 year ago. Why in the world am I writing about finals week? Probably because I still feel so busy during finals week even though I no longer have school. I feel like haven’t had time to sit down this whole week. Winter semester always seems the most busiest because finals week ends up around the holidays. My husband is in graduate school and my brother is also college so “school” is still on my mind all the time. Dallin and I stayed up all night yesterday trying to get his paper done. I’m exhausted today… all I can get myself to do today is sit at the computer during my kid’s naps. I’ve also been making Christmas treats all week and today I just want to take a break!
Most of the time, sitting at the computer is relaxing for me. I love going through my computer and organizing my pictures. I have taken so many pictures since the baby! I am way behind sorting my pictures but all I do is take more pictures. During the Christmas devotional last week, President Monson said, “Christmas is a glorious season of the year. It is also a busy time for most of us. It is my hope and prayer that we may not become so caught up in the pressures of the season that we place our emphasis on the wrong things and miss the simple joys of commemorating the birth of the Holy One of Bethlehem.”
So I’m going to take it easy today and let myself sit down at the computer to do something relaxing for me. I recently discovered totally awesome natural lighting in my apartment… it’s almost like studio lighting. We have east facing windows and white curtains. During the morning when the sun is out, the white curtains provides almost perfect diffused lighting for indoor picture taking.
Thank you God for providing free lighting in my apartment shining strait onto our kitchen table! I was able to get a few pictures edited today but now my kids are awake.
What kind of things do you do when you take a break?
I recently took pictures of this family. They have three cute little girls. We believe in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in families and that we can belong to an eternal family. “The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities.” –The Family Proclamation to the World
Of course in our imperfect world, we face hard things. “Disability, death, or other circumstances may necessitate individual adaptation. Extended families should lend support when needed.” God does not expect us to go through these hard things by ourselves, this why we have The Church. This is why church has home teaching and visiting teaching. Everything we do in our church is to help each other to be happy even during the toughest parts of life. We invite everyone to come to our church meetings to learn more about eternal families! We invite you even if you don’t have a family of your own and we want you to meet your ward family.
My neighbor and friend, Heather has a sewing blog and I took her family pictures while they wore clothes that she made herself. How cool is that? Isn’t it such a unique idea? Here‘s the link to her post about making her clothes for the photo shoot. Also, don’t you think the cool big leaves they brought really added to the picture?
On a side note, I’ve taken pictures of a lot of little kids. Little kids are definitely my favorite to take pictures of. Here are some tips for taking family pictures with little kids.
First, use the first 10 minutes wisely because that is probably all the time you’ll have to get your little kids to pose for the picture. My best pictures always come from the beginning of the photo shoot such as the picture posted on the top. Also, before the shoot, make sure your camera is set to continuous shooting mode so you can snap pictures fast.
Second, go the direction the kid is looking at instead of making them turn to you.
Third, poses while holding the child is best if they won’t stand still for you.
Fourth, after the child/children get restless, just capture the moment as you and the parents play with the children. Bring something that will capture their attention like a whistle or toy. Tell the parents it’s ok if their kid doesn’t want to pose. Little kids gets really upset when they are forced to do something they don’t want to and that doesn’t make a happy family picture.
Fifth, don’t drag out the photo shoot. Once the kid is done the photo shoot is over! 🙂
What are your tips while photographing little children?
Every six months (in April and October) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints holds a worldwide church meeting called general conference. The meeting last for 10 hours over the course of two days. During general conference, we receive counsel from our prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, his apostles, and other church leaders. General conference is broadcast on TV, the radio, and online. The talks are then available afterwards on lds.org to read and study. We believe that if we follow the counsel given in the sermons at general conference that our lives will be blessed. As we listen to general conference, we believe that God can speak to our hearts through the Holy Ghost. Everyone can receive their own personalized counsel during general conference.
After pondering and reading over my notes from conference, two things stuck out to me:
1) Be a Mom
2) Be a Missionary
…. Be a Mother Missionary.
Elder D. Todd Christofferson gave a talk about the influence of a good women. He talked about his grandma and how she “never learned how to drive a car, but she knew how to help boys become priesthood men.” He also posed the question from Neal A. Maxwell “Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling than what happened in congress?”
Also during the conference, our prophet announced that our church has reached 15 million members and have currently have over 80,000 full-time missionaries.
President Monson said that “Now is the time for members and missionaries to come together to work together to labor in the Lord’s vineyard to bring souls unto him.” He also quoted a past prophet, President McKay saying, “Every member a missionary.”
A couple days before general conference, I got a few of my friends in our ward together for a temple trip. We dressed up our 2 year-old sons as little missionaries and took pictures of them. Aren’t they cute?
I learned during conference being a mother is being a missionary. Mothers in the church are teaching their kids to be future missionaries. Our homes should be like the MTC. Even at this young age, we teach our kids about God and His Son Jesus Christ. We also teach them that they are children of God and that God loves them very much. We teach our kids how to pray to God and how to receive answers to their prayers. We teach them good morals such as sharing their cookies and serving others.
We teach them the reason why they are on earth is to be happy and in order to be truly happy we have to follow of the commandments of God the best we can. We, as mothers, prepare our kids to choose to be baptized when they are eight year old. We teach them that we make mistakes but because of Jesus Christ’s atonement we can change and be a better person.
We prepare our sons to receive the priesthood when they turn twelve and go on missions when they turn eighteen.
We teach our children that the temple is the house of God and we go there to make promises to God to be the best person we can be. We teach them that the temple is where families can be sealed together forever. We are teaching our children to be future missionaries but most importantly we are teaching them to become good husbands/fathers and wives/mothers.
I felt like Heavenly Father was telling me “Don’t worry if your kids take up all your time… it’s what you’re suppose to be doing. Taking care of your kids is the most important form of missionary work!”
So then I asked myself the question “Why do I do missionary work?” For me it is because I know that God lives and Jesus Christ lives. I know that by obeying God’s commandments and following His prophets we are truly happy. Throughout the years my faith has been tested but I still know this day that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is God’s true church. I know that the fullness of the gospel has been restored through the prophet Joseph Smith. I love my kids and I want to share with them everything I know to be true.
Why do you do missionary work? What did you learn during conference? Please share with me what you learned! Feel free to share, pin, Facebook these images.
Missionaries loves cookies! It was the only way we got them to sit still and special thanks for all the moms for letting me use their kids. 🙂
Can’t forget my newest little future missionary:
Here are some fun graphics I made:
Here’s a behind the scenes picture of the moms. It’s so hard to get five 2 year-old to sit still! 🙂
Our little Micah turned two! He is so smart now. He knows that you’ve turned off the music toy so he turns it back on. He has day to day memory now so it’s a sad day when he loses his favorite car toy. I can’t wait to experience the terrific twos!! He is so fun.
At 2 years old Micah likes:
- Peanut Butter Sandwiches, Juice, Milk, Pasta, Pancake, Cake, Peaches, Bananas, Bread, Chicken Nuggets, Beans and Rice
- CARS CARS AND MORE CARS especially Lightening McQueen
- Shoes… he won’t take off his shoes
- Car games on the Ipad
- Thomas the Train
- His balance bike that we made for him
- Reading his Thomas the Train Book
- The color blue
- A Blue Yamaha Motorcycle
- Going outside
Micah can say:
- All the alphabet except “W”
- 90% of his prayers at night
- Count from 1 to 10
- Lots of two letter phrases some of his favorites are “All Done” “Ball Wee!”
- Three letter phrases like “There you go”
- Longest sentence so far “Pee pee in the potty outside”
- Some of Micah’s favorite words are: Outside, iPad, Car, Bus, E-I-E-I-O, Temple (He calls temple bubble), Church, Popcorn, Juice, Food, Cake… cake cake …, Peaches, Baby, Abulance, Air Plane, Ball, Truck
- I would guess he can say about 150 words or more
Micah can recognize:
- All the letters in the alphabet
- Shapes and Colors
- All types of cars
Micah’s favorite songs:
- I love to see the Temple
- Book of Mormon Stories
- Wheels on the Bus
- Old McDonald
- 85% Potty Trained
- Really Funny
- Awesome napper/sleeper
- A runner