There are 5 indulgences in my life that bring me instant happiness.
in no particular order...
#1. Dark Chocolate in my computer desk drawer.
chocolate = stress reliever
#2. Straight from the dryer, clean, yummy-smelling, new sheets on my bed.
Nothing feels better... well unless I've just shaved my legs, then it's like DOUBLE awesome!
It always fits... 'nuff said
#4. Random staycations with my hubby.
Usually in hotels just less than 20 minutes from home.
#5. Fancy photoshoots with my little girls.
Pretty, fun, beautiful pictures of my sweet daughters throughout all different ages and stages of their little lives. It's something that I've done since my chicks were just wee babes.
Most of our photoshoots happen just right outside of our homes front door on our small porch, so believe me, it's nothing too fancy; but that's okay, because to me, it's not really about the background being awesome in these types of situations, it's all just about capturing that moment of childhood in a beautiful way. From the clear, falwless sun-kissed skin and naturally highlighted hair, to that melt-your-heart toothless smile.
90% of our photos are really casual and portray our everyday life; PJ's, messy hair, dirty fingernails, scrapes & bruises, snotty noses, well-played-in clothes... and guess what?... I LOVE THAT! But every once in awhile it's just fun to get all dressed up, put on a little lip gloss, pull out your best poses and look and feel extra pretty.
Besides simple body location prompts and an occasional "chin down a tiny bit" reminder, I let the girls do whatever they please. Sometimes it makes for an interesting set of photos... like this last time when Jocelynn decided that for the first few minutes she only wanted to do "REAL model poses" and didn't want to smile with her teeth, because she's still "waiting for the other front one to fall out, and just having ONE looks too crazy!"
Yeah, this headstrong chick took me the longest, because I was determined to get a toothy (ehhrr... toothless) smile in at least ONE picture if it killed me.
wonder who she gets that 'headstrong' trait from... hee hee
And then other times, letting these girls take "creative modeling freedoms" is the best payoff EVER!!!
Seriously, I can't tell you how into clothes, shoes, bows and POSING this little 5 year old is. The twins like dressing up, but EVERYDAY is a "fancy day" for our Miss Aubrielle. I pulled her outside after about 20 minutes of photographing the twins and we were finished with her shoot in only about 3 minutes flat. No joke. I need classes from her, I swear! And she's exposed to less than my older girls and still picks up on this stuff somehow.
Oh, and by the way, those nude colored mini heels are ALL Cason's doing. He went to buy hiking shoes one day with her at Payless and came back with these ones instead. (huh?) In his defense, he said she ran into the store, spotted them right away and then proclaimed, "DAD! These are the ones that I've always been looking for my WHOLE LIFE!"
She has been wearing them with EVERYTHING and refuses to take them off until bedtime.
If you would have told me a little over 7 years ago that I would be THIS in love with 4 human beings (husband included), well, I don't even know if I would have been able to comprehend it. It's mind-blowing to me how quickly life flies by. It feels like just a year or so ago that we were bringing Aubrielle home from the hospital to meet her excited little sisters... and now look at them! eep! (tears)
As precious as those baby years were, I'm really excited and looking forward to the new, happy, drama-filled, giggly years that are to come for our little family. I can't imagine going through life's journey without each and every one of my personality-filled daughters by my side.
That being said, I hope you'll allow me to switch gears for a minute, to shed some light on something that really hit hard with me this past week. Childhood cancer.
One morning while laying in bed, I came across an email from one of our readers who wanted to know if I'd like to try out some cute, gold polka dot skirts for my girls. After scrolling through some pictures she sent, I was sold! These summery, cotton skirts looked comfy and super stylish... I knew my kiddos would love them!
It wasn't until later that day, when I finally got back to my inbox, that I realized that 100% of the proceeds from these adorable skirts went directly to CureSearch; an organization that funds and supports Children's cancer research and provides information and resources to those who are affected.
After sobbing for a good 30 minutes while I read Cami's cancer story (the young daughter of Chelsea, the House of Smiths reader who originally sent the email) and Brielle, an adorable, sweet girl who after years of battling cancer, just last week had to go to school and share with her 6th grade class that she won't be here on Earth for much longer... well, I felt the overwhelming need to share with all of you, how you can maybe help, even just a little.
Chelsea and a couple of other Mom's who's children have been affected with cancer, have pulled their time and resources together to create a site called P.S. I Adore you. It's a daily deal site that you can shop from, that gives you the opportunity to purchase great products AND contribute to the CureSearch fund at the same time.
And this, my dear friends, is were you can go, to purchase a gold polka dot skirt for YOUR daughter, granddaughter, cousin, niece, sister, neighbor... or just ANY little girl that you know in your life, for a reduced price of $8-$12, this week. They also have an Aztec Tribal print available in an adult size as well, during this fundraiser, so go check it out!
So often we take our own children's health for granted, and rarely stop to think of those less fortunate parents who have to go through watching the most precious human beings in their world, struggle with diseases, illnesses or afflictions that cause their tiny bodies to become tired, exhausted and sometimes so rundown, that they can no longer even go on.
If you're on the hunt for something comfy, cute, trendy and affordable this summer, for your little Miss, then consider one of these cute skirts to be part of their wardrobe; and also help these little kiddos effected with cancer find a cure, at the same time.