Saturday, November 19, 2011


For Thanksgiving most years my mom puts me in charge of the table decorations. 2 years ago I put a bunch of branches together and asked everyone to write on a card something they were thankful for and hang it on the tree.
 This year I have decided to change it up a bit and use quotes and scripture verses with mason jars and candles. I never really know how these things are going to turn out, but I thought for now I would share the quotes and verses I have picked and will be using:

"Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!" -2 Corinthians 9:15

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more." -Melody Beattie

"Give Thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God is Jesus Christ for you." -1 Thessalonians 5:18

"It is not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy." -unknown

"I thank him who has given me strength, Jesus Christ our Lord" -1 Timothy 1:12

"What if tomorrow you woke up with only the things you thanked God for today?" -unknown

"Do not be anxious about anything bit in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God." -Philippians 4:6

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." -John F. Kennedy

"I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers" -Philemon 1:4

"And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful." -Colossians 3:15

My 6 year old sister at the time wrote this card- precious!
"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." -1 Corinthians 15:57

"You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God." -2 Corinthians 9:11

"And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the father through him." - Colossians 3:17

While the seems to think thanksgiving is a noun, I have to disagree and say that it is a verb- it is an action. Notice how the various definitions below all require action...and how it is clear who we are thanking...


[thangks-giv-ing] noun
the act of giving thanks; grateful acknowledgment of benefits or favors, especially to God.
an expression of thanks, especially to God.
a public celebration in acknowledgment of divine favor or kindness.
a day set apart for giving thanks to God.

I hope your Thanksgiving day is full of more than food, traditions, shopping and football- but that the greater part of the day will be spent in reflection of God's grace and giving thanks for the many things you are blessed with. 

Saturday, November 12, 2011

mason jar peach cobber *sweet yummy goodness*

I must be on a run with cooking cause here is another recipe I must share! We made the peach cobbler in mason jars as a fun end to dinner with friends (for extra fun make the dessert together! Thanks Amy!) This is the not only one of the simplest desserts I've ever made, but also one of the best ever! It is an instant family favorite! I found the recipe HERE

Here is what you need to make 4-6 jars:
1 large can of peaches in heavy syrup
1 box yellow cake mix
3 table spoons of butter per jar
cinnamon to sprinkle on top

Fill the botton 1/4 of the jar with peaches, divide the dry cake mix between the jars and just pour over the peaches (thats right- do not mix together the cake mix with anything!) melt the butter you will need and pour the melted butter over the top of the dry cake mix. Sprinkle cinnamon over the top and bake at 350 for approx. 45 min. (These instructions may not exactly match the link- but this is how we made it!)
The results:

Adding icecream made it even more unbelievable!
Too amazing and too easy not to try!

Friday, November 11, 2011

pepperjam chicken bundles

So today I went to Trader Joe's because I was feeling like cooking something for lunch but didn't want to take the time to look up a we went for something very experimental! As I put these in the oven I told Kevin they would either be terrible or wonderful- he seemed pretty excited about the experimental cooking and concluded it was a winner. Since I NEVER cook I thought I should blog this as evidence that once in a far while I do actually cook :o)

So we need a better name for these...suggestions are encouraged!
I don't really know how to format this into an actual recipe, so I will just tell you how I made it: 2 crescent roll triangles placed together to form a rectangle (one can of crescent rolls makes 4 of these) with precooked chicken placed in the middle, topped with a spoon full of creme cheese and then topped with a spoon full of pepper jam. I then pulled the edges of the dough up and closed it up then cooked about 15 minutes at 375.

Kevin said pairing these with the apples was perfect. It ended up with a sweet taste and almost unnoticeable spice taste which was awesome with the chicken and creme cheese. I must admit- they were pretty awesome!


Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Ok this is way out of order from other photo sessions I should be editing and or posting...but I had to just post a few of these because this tiny little baby is so precious! Last week my amazing assistant Amy and I got to play with anastasia who was only 6 days old at the time! Her mom was incredible- so relaxed and calm! I hope one day to be as calm as her! So here are just a few shots....warning: if you suffer from "baby fever" proceed at your own risk! :o)

Sunday, October 30, 2011


So I walk into my bathroom a couple days ago and find this on my sink:

I have no idea how this think got there...but I have never see a slug this big! I thought we were done with the random critters in our house now that we've moved! Guess not...haha

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

...and 1/2

We recently made a challenging downsize into our new little home. It has been a really good experience of having to take a serious look at everything we own and determine what it is that we actually use and what we actually need. But surprisingly there has been little to no stress with this challenge- it has been really good and unexpectedly liberating! Now when I look around my house I see the things I treasure and enjoy the most rather than just a bunch of stuff. Needless to say there was a very big yard sale and we have done several drop offs to goodwill since then.

Who knew yard sales could be so much work yet so much fun? We weren't alone- we were joined by several other friends and all together it was a grand sale!

Our load is about 1/4 what is was when this began and I feel great! So now begins the creative challenge- organization and decor. I have found lots of inspiration from -but be warned: it is very very very addictive!! So I shall hereby commence the before and after shots of each room as they are completed hopefully with some success stories of organization feats!

Our new address happens to be 411 1/2. Everyone is totally perplexed the the "and 1/2" as I was. I thought it was hilarious! So here is the first before/after of our little 1/2 home :o)

 Its amazing what a little paint will do! This front porch is my absolute favorite part of this house. Kevin and I have eaten several meals out there just enjoying the fall weather. It is so peaceful! There is a large tree ( not sure what kind...) right in front that has beautiful red and orange leaves. In fact, there are trees bursting with color all up and down the street- it is a wonderful time to be outside.

Coming soon: the living room! It is nearly completed and certainly the riskiest paint choice I've ever made!...

Saturday, September 24, 2011

summer photo fun

So here are some of my favorite photos from a few of my summer photo sessions. This will be my final "catch up" post and then we will resume to present day life! :o) But these were great times so I don't want to skip over them! I am currently editing pictures from one of my favorite senior picture shoots and also soon will document my finished crafting projects!

In an effort to make this blog helpful rather than just a photo posting zone here are some of my personal photo taking tips: (these are in no way like "official tips" just things I would personally suggest!)

1. When taking a photo outside put the sun behind the person (professional people call this back-lighting, I think) This keeps the person in the photo from having harsh shadows on their face from the direct sunlight. 

2. If you want to take your own outdoor portraits- avoid the mid day hours when the sun is high.

3. Many people I talk with think taking pictures on a clear day is the best- but you actually want to look for a slightly overcast sky- or at least some cloud coverage.

4. Wear vibrant colors for pictures- avoid the black and khaki look!

5. If you are wanting to slender yourself through your pose then always pull your arm away from your body, put shoulders back, pop the very top on your shoulder forward (this accentuates your choler bone) and lift your chin.   

6. You can totally change your picture by experimenting with angles- try tilting your camera to the left or right or try getting on the ground ( I do this a lot! haha)

7. The most flattering photos are often taken from a higher position then the people in the photo (rather than lower) 

8. Try to have as much depth as possible in your photos- in other words look for layers of depth in the background of your photo. For example- in the photo below of Whitney with the blue panels behind her- this angle produces more depth than if the building was flat behind her. 

9. Lastly, if you can't afford a fancy editing software then get a membership to it is only $4.95 a month (or a better deal to sign up for a year...) and it has some great editing tools. Some of the best are: "curves" and "clone" and most of their "touch up" edits are great. The key with these editing tools is to notice you can use a brush with most of them rather than changing the whole picture.

I hope you don't feel short changed with only 9 tips...thats just all I got right now...So here are some photos from the summer :  


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

summertime love

So this summer has brought many photo opportunities beginning with my very first wedding shoot! Now let me just say that I could not have had a more wonderful and amazing bride- she was so easy going and just pleasant to be around! But photographing a wedding is still hugely stressful! It may be awhile before I venture to do another one! But here are some highlights:

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

mr. turtle

Ok so I completely missed here I am back and ready for the summer catch up! For those of you sitting on the edge of your seats wondering about the sad plant in our living room- it did in fact pass on into the plant after life. Sadly in our laziness we now have a pot of dirt in our living room rather than a plant or sprout as it was in the previous picture...

So we failed at the plant...but before having a child we really should succeed at nurturing something, right? And so might I introduce our new family addition: "mr. turtle"

Kevin has always wanted a turtle- in fact 3 years ago for his birthday I bought him this turtle tank with the promise of a turtle! Finally mr. turtle has arrived! He is a tiny baby turtle (a Red Eared Slider to be exact) at about 2 inches in diameter! SO cute! We are very proud. It is a new experience for sure- we find ourselves worrying about how much he is sleeping and if he is eating enough...he is our first pet and we really want to see him grow big over the years! 

Other big news in the Reed house is our upcoming move- we will be switching to a new rental home going from 1800 sq.ft to 600 sq. ft! It has been quite a challenge of simplifying, but a really good one! It is so freeing to get rid of the things you do not need or use! There is one room in our existing house that I will miss a lot- it is our laundry room/office. 
It is such a perfect space...however I am very thankful for the opportunity to be challenged in the way of simplifying. Already it has brought us a great blessing! 

Thursday, July 14, 2011


I just have to share this sad and pathetic little plant in our living room...

Seriously, doesn't this make you sad?? This plant was from Mannie's funeral (Kevin's grandma) and we just can't give up hope on it! But obviously things aren't going so well...

Sunday, June 26, 2011


I ran across this verse today in 2 Corinthians 1:12...

"...the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God" (ESV)

Simplicity and Godly Sincerity.

There is a lot I "need" to blog about- photography, craft projects, life experiences, books I'm reading ect. But even before all that I must add this to my snippits. Its a verse to mull over and ultimately (hopefully) live by.

As I continue in this journey of faith I am continually confronted with how simple God makes things and then how we complicate it. By the grace of God the testimony of our conscience is that we behaved with simplicity and Godly sincerity. Its amazing how many other things are covered by doing those two things.

This verse reminds me of Micah 6:7-9...
"He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."

Its uncomplicated. Maybe its not simple in action- but it is simple in concept. And possible through God's grace.
Another moment in scripture like this is when Jesus identifies the greatest commandment:
"One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
 Love God. Love Each Other. Live Simply. Have Godly Sincerity. Walk Humbly. Act Justly. Love Mercy.

Its simple in concept, but requires God's grace in action.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

still here...

Well it has been awhile since I last posted! In fact since my last post the "bump" is no longer a bump but perhaps the most beautiful baby girl I've ever seen! I had the awesome privilege of taking her newborn pics... 

Molly was only 4 days old when we took these pictures! And it was only a week and a half after her mommy's maternity pictures! It is just such an unfathomable miracle! This is one of those moments for me that I simply cannot deny the presence and existence of God. One of my favorite picture colleges is this before and after:

God is so good.

Since my last post I have also shot my first wedding (that will have to be a separate post soon...) handmade my first purse/bag (also will post later) and Kevin was ordained! Among other things we have begun yet another very busy summer.
Presently I am wrapping up those wedding photos, and I can't wait to share my experience photographing this wedding! What an adventure :o)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

glass jars and a bump

So here is what I've been up to lately... (other than tons of school work and studying which is no fun to talk about) For mother's day I decided to attempt painting jars with chalkboard paint- having now tried this I plan next time to A) not use a bristled brush and B) do a design instead of just a square.

In addition to this crafting venture I had my first ever maternity session with a remarkable friend who is one of the most beautiful people I know! It was such a fun day too- aside from the bugs I kept finding on me haha So here is just one shot and maybe I'll put up a could more later...