Amy Schilling Photography Blog

November 30, 2010

just her

Day Thirty: I'm thankful for Avery.


It's different than being thankful for being able to spend the last 15 months with her, or that she's healthy, etc. I'm just so thankful for her. She's such a good baby and I'm so glad she's ours. I can't really even get down the words to fully explain it. She's just...the best!!

Today we painted Christmas ornaments. Avery really loves paint, markers, crayons, and chalk. For the most part she's really good about only using them on paper or the window or the sidewalk, wherever we're working. But the highchair is the safest place when holding a sponge brush!


And just like that, she was done.


November 29, 2010

Day Twenty-Nine: I'm thankful for nap time.


In particular, when that nap is spent snuggled up to her daddy. One of these times I'm going to get my camera out, but once again my iPhone was on the counter when I walked through the room.

Day Twenty-Eight

I'm thankful for a healthy family.

In addition to being healthy myself, I'm so glad our family members are okay. There have definitely been trials over the last few years, but God has seen us through and I'm very thankful for that!

Day Twenty-Seven

I'm thankful for good deals!

D & I went Christmas shopping Saturday night and totally went crazy. Well, not super crazy, just a little. I think we're both excited to play with the new toys! :) Among our purchases was this horse stable. We were pleasantly surprised to find out it was on sale!

November 26, 2010

that's some temple

Day Twenty-Six: I'm thankful for my health.

I'm so thankful I'm healthy. That even though I've been through some minor health worries, I'm okay. I really give thanks to God for a healthy body because I absolutely believe he is the Great Healer and has seen me through each circumstance.

Unfortunately, I don't treat my body as a temple...more like a circus tent where lots of sugar and other unknown greasy foods are aplenty. Seems like I'm forever working on it, or at least saying I'm going to! So delicious food has been consumed in vast quantities two days in a row, but tomorrow! Tomorrow I exercise and make a conscious decision to treat my body better. To build it up for His service, whatever it may be.

November 25, 2010

full of thanks and food

Day Twenty-Five: I'm thankful that this is my life.

That's right, on the one day you're supposed to be all counting your blessings I'm basically thankful for ME. Just kidding! I mean, I'm definitely thankful that this is my life, but I'm also thankful for so much more. We had a nice lunch with my family followed by some Christmas decorating with my mom. Tomorrow we'll do Thanksgiving part deux with more family. I'm chock full of good times and good food tonight!

Today was a really great day. Avery & I woke up first, cuddled and spent a few minutes creating monsters. Then instead of Deran trying to con me into letting him sleep for another 15 minutes, he got up and squeezed me & Avery in a family hug and said, "Let's be thankful together." Then he played with Avery while I made turkey pancakes, complete with cheesy beaks, strawberry wattles, and craisin eyes.


My two turkeys enjoying their turkeys and watching the Macy's parade.

Then I started making Avery a shirt to wear to lunch.

While I ironed Avery kept herself busy...

Then while I prepared deviled eggs Avery walked around the house dragging this blanket behind her. It was so random and funny!

In the car, on our way to eat.

So very tired (no nap!) about to leave Nana & Pop's house.

And we made some monsters in the car on the way home.

I documented the day with my trusty iPhone. Shame on me, but it's so much easier to use! I really am so thankful for my family and for my life. It's not perfect, but it's really close.

November 24, 2010

melmo's world

Day Twenty-Four: I'm thankful for Sesame Street.

I remember watching with my sister as little girls and now I'm enjoying it with Avery. It's basically the one show we watch regularly Monday through Friday. I think it's a good program that actually captures Avery's attention (for the most part, she is one after all!) and of course I love the educational aspect of The Street. Oh yes I did. There are certainly segments and characters I could do without, but overall I really like the show and I think the Sesame Workshop is pretty awesome in general.

Avery's taken a particular liking to Elmo. I've never been much on characters - clothing, bedding, etc. BUT, I'm embracing the love of Elmo. Not that we've gone crazy by any means, but I've picked up a couple of activity books, some flashcards, a figurine here and there. It's's just that when she sees him and says, "Melmo!" it's really hard not to give in. Melmo. So dadgum CUTE!!!

I downloaded a few new apps on my phone for Avery recently and tonight we had a little fun with this one. And it was free!


Day Twenty-Three

I'm thankful for my parents...for too many reasons to list in one post. They are kind, they are Godly, they are generous, they are mine. And I'm so very very glad.

November 22, 2010

go texans

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Day Twenty-Two: I'm thankful for happy clients.

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Nothing makes me feel better as a photographer than to have a client love their family photos. I get a little nervous before each session and I always come away thinking about what I forgot or what could have been done differently. But it's hard to go wrong when working with such an awesome family!

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The C Family was fun to work with and they didn't seem to mind too much when trekking across dangerous terrain. Really, it was kind of dangerous!

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As always, it's fun to stand back and watch a family interact with each other. Earlier in the session S warned me that her boys were boring, but I think her silliness rubbed off on them. :)

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S is such a gorgeous woman and a really sweet mom.

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This family also happens to be Texans fans. Now, at our house we cheer for a totally different Texas team, so Deran probably won't read this post due to the title. But these guys changed into their team gear and we headed to the stadium. Great idea S!!

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I really enjoyed meeting you guys, C Family, but I have to say...GO COWBOYS! Though if A makes it to the NFL I'll totally cheer for him. :)

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November 21, 2010

the two p's

Day Twenty-One: I'm thankful for my grandfathers.

Today I ate a cinnamon raisin bagel and it reminded me of my two grandfathers. I had a Papaw and a Poppaw. When we'd go visit my Mamaw & Papaw or they would come visit us, my Papaw always made me fresh cinnamon raisin bread. And my Poppaw kept my freezer stocked all through college with cinnamon raisin bagels. I'd go see him on my way back to school and he'd fill a bag with packages of bagels. It's funny really, because cinnamon raisin whatever is just okay to me, I mean it's good but I don't love it. I'm not sure how or why either of them came to associate me with a love of cinnamon raisin but I gladly accepted their carb-filled gifts because it was absolutely done with a love for me and was so thoughtful. For a long time after they'd passed away I didn't eat cinnamon raisin bread or bagels, just made me kind of sad. But last night we picked up some bagels at the grocery store and today they're both on my mind.

I'm so glad they were a part of my life as long as they were, sometimes I really miss them. They were so different, yet very similar. I'm thankful they stayed married to my grandmothers, took care of their families, and loved their grandchildren. So many memories brought about by a bagel!

And speaking of memories...this is probably one of the last pictures I have with my Poppaw at our wedding in 2004. He passed away the following year. My Papaw wasn't able to make it but we went by the house afterward and someone took our picture with a disposable camera. He passed away a week later.


November 20, 2010

perfectly planned

Day Twenty: I'm thankful for a God that provides.

He knows our needs and He always comes through. Time and time again God has shown His presence and power in our lives. This morning Deran made the comment that it's kind of odd, the number of blessings we seem to be receiving lately. When things are going so well it's easy to become apprehensive and wonder when it's all going to come crashing down. But maybe He has a different plan, maybe life can just be...good. Instead of waiting for the next bad thing to happen, I'm going to give thanks for today and enjoy our blessings.


November 19, 2010

a colorful memory

Day Nineteen: I'm thankful for the memories pictures provide.

One of the main reasons I take so many pictures of Avery is because I want to remember all of the details. She does so many new and adorable things each day, but I get caught up in life and two days later I may have already forgotten when she started doing X. Photographs certainly help me recall what was happening and when it happened.

Of course there are some this one...when I just live the moments and record it all in my head (and on my blog!), without any photographic evidence. Last night she signed and spoke, "More." She does sign a few things, but she's really starting to talk more too so I haven't been working on the signing as much as we used to. So last night after she finished eating a snack (actually ate it!) I asked her if she wanted more and she tapped her fingers and said, "Mo." She's brilliant, I tell ya! I was so excited to see her using the sign and also that she actually wanted to eat.


So I like to take pictures because it helps me remember, but sometimes life is just so much better than what the photograph shows. I've really been noticing the leaves changing color this fall and it always makes me happy. The reds, oranges, and yellows are such a welcome sight because honestly, sometimes it's hard to tell when seasons change around here!


I pass by this field on the way to my mom's house and I've really been wanting to get out and take pictures because I know that soon the colorful leaves will be gone and empty branches will remain. Deran was feeling particularly generous after a recent trip to the park so he drove me just a bit further down the road and let me hop out for some photographs.


But the thing is, every time I put the camera up to take a picture I swear the field transformed into something else - something a little more drab, a little less beautiful. Sometimes it's really hard to capture in camera what you see in person. I was kind of frustrated.


Then I look at these pictures and I remember getting out of the car and Deran telling me to watch out for snakes. And bending down to fit a whole tree into the frame and hearing the sweet voice of my girl say, "Momma? Momma!" Her window rolled down and eyes on me. D telling me to hurry, then asking if I enjoyed myself as I got into the car.


So I look at these pictures again, with the colorful leaves and weeds and setting sun, and I just may be the most beautiful season I've ever been through.

November 18, 2010

brotherly love

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Day Eighteen: I'm thankful for siblings.

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I mean, I only have the one sister, but I know Deran is thankful for his brothers too. I'm really glad I wasn't a lonely only. I know lots of people without siblings who are perfectly content with their single status, but I'm the youngest so I never experienced even a moment without my sister.

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I spent some time with two brothers recently and I'm pretty sure I grinned behind the camera through most of the session. It was so fun to watch them interact and and watch T take care of little A, such a sweet big brother!

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H is a great mom, at one point during the session she had a four year old falling over her and a one year old trying to escape. Lots of tickling, laughing, and two happy boys. And speaking of Brotherly Love, was anyone else a fan? I do enjoy some Lawrence brothers!

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A sibling can be your best friend, your worst enemy, and everything in between. Who else can you talk about your crazy parents with?! :) And while I'm totally in love with my one baby, I also look forward to the day she has a sibling.

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November 17, 2010

blue eyes

Day Seventeen: I'm thankful for the unexpected.

Sometimes the unexpected surpasses all our expectations. Deran comes from a family of boys. Brothers, cousins, nephews - he had me convinced we'd have a houseful of sons. We were both quite surprised to find out we were having a daughter, but so so glad.

Deran also had me convinced our children would have brown eyes. Now, nothing against all you brown-eyed folks but I really prefer a little color. I'm delighted Avery has the most beautiful of blue eyes.

And yet another one from the archives, this one was in February.


November 16, 2010

friends and family

Day Sixteen: I'm thankful for today.

I'm thankful I got to spend time with family and even a quick visit with a friend. I'm thankful that my cold is pretty much gone. I'm thankful that I remembered to give Avery her vitamins...even though she threw them up two seconds later...the gagging may have even started before the syringe was in her mouth. I'm thankful to be here, just living life.

Overall it's been a good day. One that deserves some recognition...and a few funny-faced iPhone photos from last November!





Day Fifteen

I'm thankful for the Internet. Though I'm way more amazed by the technology of fax machines which drives my husband insane. But you can put a paper in and it makes a copy and that you can send across the globe. It copies my paper. That's amazing!

But then D is all, "We're wireless Amy! I'm going through data now" as he's waving his arms around his computer. Whatevs, there's no paper.

November 14, 2010

mmmm, bacteria!

Day Fourteen: I'm thankful for the five-second rule.

Even if it's not true. I was all set to go with another post tonight but as I sat down at my computer I dropped a tasty bit of bread and watched it roll twice on my way to pick it up. Harper may have even gotten a lick in. I grabbed it, looked at it, then took a bite. And that sounds so gross! It made me think of earlier in the day when I dropped a bite of blueberry muffin on the kitchen floor (apparently I'm incredibly food clumsy today!) and Avery, always a step behind me, picked it up and put it in her mouth. I couldn't help but cringe as she grinned up at me with a bit of muffin sticking out. Not that she finished eating it, that would be silly!

In general, we don't eat off the floor. But I really wanted that bread tonight and so I thought, what's a couple of seconds? Hopefully not a case of ecoli.

And still no picture taking this week. But wait! I do have never-before-seen photos to unveil tonight! Avery & I were playing in her room earlier today and she got the box of hair bows out of a drawer. She actually wanted me to put them all in her hair, very funny. So I asked Deran to grab a camera quick and of course he did not so the hilariousness was lost. He doesn't do fast. But then! Then she let me do it again and ran into the kitchen where Deran was able to take a picture with his camera. When I was going through the card tonight I found so many others that made me smile.

Just being cute, sitting in her baby bouncer.

Getting eaten by a goat on our recent trip to the zoo.

What Avery does with the empty water bottles she can find and reach.

Gettin' all up in Oscar's space.

And all the bows! I've since done the dishes so that's a little neater. Just a little though. And she's wearing Christmas the afternoon.

Day Thirteen

I'm thankful for the kind (unintended) encouragement from strangers. Twice this week I've conversed with strangers and days later I'm still thinking about their words.

On Tuesday Avery & I went to Hobby Lobby and while discussing the various shades of green paper I needed for an upcoming project on the scrapbook paper aisle, another customer commented that Avery was such a cute girl. And that was sweet, but then she said that she really liked the way I talked to Avery - pointing out colors, including her in conversation, etc. She was a pre-k teacher in the public school system and she said if more parents talked to their kids like me, she'd be out of a job. An exaggeration I'm sure, but I told her thanks and later when I thought about her words it made me feel like I'm doing something right on this journey of being a parent. My Mamaw once told me a story about my Aunt Wanda as a little girl. They were with some friends and my aunt was a toddler asking, "Why this?" "Why that?" for everything and my Mamaw would answer her. The other mom commented that she couldn't believe my grandmother took the time to try to answer all her questions instead of just saying "Enough!" or "Because!" or "Don't worry about it!" My Mamaw told me that it never occurred to her to not answer the best she could because why wouldn't she take the time for her daughter? I hope I always feel that way. All our days aren't perfect and sometimes the TV is left on longer than it should be, but I hope I always take the time to explain things and talk to Avery because why wouldn't I want to make time for my most important girl?

Then on Friday when I was about to walk out of a store, the clerk put her hand on my shoulder and asked if I was okay. After about a minute of polite conversation, she told me to try to enjoy the rest of my day with emphasis on enjoy. So first of all, I thought that I must've been looking pretty sour or something for her to randomly ask me that. But sour face aside, I really thought about enjoying my day. Like, finding joy in my surroundings and remembering what I'm thankful for.

My life is blessed, it really is. It's not perfect, sometimes it's messy, problems arise, and I may get a case of the grumpies. But at the end of the day, I have so much to be thankful for. To really really really just thank God and find joy in the everyday grind of my life.

And just because a post is kind of boring without a picture, and I haven't taken any this week, here's an old one that brings me joy.


November 12, 2010


Day Twelve: I'm thankful for my husband's good job.

Even though he sometimes (or often) has to work late, whether it's at the office or at home, I'm so glad he's got a good job. That he's able to provide for our family and allow me to stay home with Avery compensates for his crazy hours...mostly.

November 11, 2010

our best vet

Day Eleven: I'm thankful for our soldiers - past, present, and future.

I really do appreciate the sacrifices made by those who've served our country and those who will make the decision to do so in the future. Avery is lucky enough to count two great-grandfathers who served in the Navy during WWII as well as various other family members who've spent time in the military. So in honor of Veteran's Day, we called up our favorite Vet this morning to chat for a bit and tell him thank you.

The first picture was taken when she was about 8 weeks old, sometime in September 2009.


Then one day in March when Paw stopped by for a visit, I got my camera out again.


I'm so glad he's here to be a part of Avery's life and hopefully he'll share some of the same stories with her that he's shared with us over the years. We're very thankful for his past service to our country!

November 10, 2010

america, i love you

Day Ten: I'm thankful I live in the USA.


Yeah, that's all I've got really. I'm sure other countries have a lot to offer, but I'm so glad I live in America. And I'm glad I took these pictures on the fourth of July.


She was still a crawler, didn't have enough hair to hold a bow, and her legs had an extra roll. She's looking decidedly more toddlerish these days. I'm a little excited to see who she's becoming, a little sad to leave the baby behind. Oh Life, you never slow down!
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