Breaking Nine

Backpacks gather. Shoes find the right feet. Dogs go into their crates and in all the rustle, bustle of preparing to leave Thursday night, I hear her Dad call out, “Can I hug nine-year-old Molly for the last time?”

She sheepishly grins and wraps her arms around him squeezing tight. I turn from my office chair and say just as loud, “Ohhhhh, I want to hug a nine-year-old Molly for the last time, too!” She smiles and opens her arms to me.

I hug her hard and I try to remember every single thing about her, right then, right in this very moment. I close my eyes and concentrate. Did six years really just flash by in a blink?

She is heading home to her Mom’s house for the weekend, and the next time I see her, she will break nine at ten-years old. Ten!

The tiny tot of four who I met all those years ago? She doesn’t miss a step as she leaps into her double digits. She does it and she does it with all the grace and muster of a grown-up, and all the soft, gentle sweetness of a child.

I can’t believe it.

It really doesn’t seem that long ago…

Molly at four years of age.
Molly at four years of age.

It’s bad enough I watched one little girl grow up too fast. Do I really have to watch another? And really, two more? What was I thinking? This is not cool. Not cool at all.

Dear Life….slow down!

::Sigh::

I put together some photos through the years. Mostly because, I like to cry like to see how fast they grow. Maybe it’s my proof that this all really happened, and I watched it happen.

Six years of it. Right before my very eyes.

I can’t imagine the next six.

But I guess I have to try. It’s happening…whether I like it, or not.

Molly - Easter 2014 - almost 10.
Molly – Easter 2014 – almost 10.

Happy Birthday to the biggest, brightest ten-year-old I know. You broke nine. Let’s see what you can do with ten.

I’m that Grandma

You know the one…

Always carries a “brag” book (my iPhone).

Always snapping photos of their darling grandchild.

Always proud to share every moment of achievement (whether you ask or not).

Always beaming from ear to ear about how cute she is.

Yes, I’m that Grandma.

More puffed up than I ever thought possible.

More honored than I ever dreamed.

Hey, I am part of the reason this child is here…there is something astonishing about seeing a new generation in your life.

So…I’m that Grandma.

And do you know? That is just fine with me.

Happy Seven Months to Grammy’s sweetie pie!

The 5 Ways I Put My Dogs To Shame

  • 1) I made them the most ridiculous signs to wear.
  • © Angelia's Photography 2014

  • 2) I set them in front of my best camera to share their stains with the world.
  • © Angelia's Phtography 2014

  • 3) When they didn’t look properly chastised for the photo. I reminded them of their indiscretions by pointing and shaking my finger.
  • © Angelia's Photography 2014

  • 4) I used special lighting, props, and wardrobe to add drama and flair to their event.
  • © Angelia's Photography 2014

    © Angelia's Photographym 2014

  • 5) I am posting them on my blog, my Facebook Photography page, and entering my favorite into a special contest at work.
  • © Angelia's Photography 2014

    And that is how you do it. Five easy ways to humiliate your pets.

    Are they properly mortified? I’ll let you be the judge.

    My dear pets…I am not afraid to put you on the spot in front of the world wide web.

    Besides, I think you look pretty darn cute ashamed.

    © Angelia's Photography 2014

    A Photo For Every Month of My Year 2013

    I can’t believe it. I can’t believe I am posting about my entire YEAR.

    Really? So soon?

    Well played year, well-played.

    I decided to pick ONE photo to represent each month of 2013, and trust me – very hard! In fact, it is pure torture for me. But I told myself ONE, and so, I picked ONE (or two). Heh.

    January 2013

    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    Oh, what this photo holds deep inside. Things we did not know as we traipsed through the park, children and dogs, on a gorgeous North Texas day. I look at this photo and I see my daughter for the last time as my young girl. In this year, she will grow and change in more ways than I thought possible. Although she will always my little girl, she will never be the youth of this photo, because becoming a mother does that.

    February 2013

    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    I went to quite a bit of trouble to get these floating bokeh hearts. And even though I have tons of other photos for February, I am choosing this one as it represents my journey into trying a Project 52. Sadly, I did not complete every week, but I tried. And I failed. Then, I finished.

    And you know what? That is good enough for me. I’m going for it this year too. Maybe, I will complete it? Maybe, I won’t. I’ll put my best effort into it, but I won’t stress over it. I am learning/unlearning perfectionism in the most beautiful way. If you would like to join the same Project 52 I do, there is still time, just click the link and ask to join Daphne Ellenburg’s Project 52 on Flickr.

    March 2013

    Here is my cheat month. There are two photos, but it is ONE mosaic and ONE photo is not mine. My husband went to Seattle (and all he brought me back was this picture he took – heh), but yes, he took one of my cameras. He didn’t have much time to get out since he was working, but I do love this shot. I want to go to Seattle something fierce.

    It will happen…. I just know it. One day.

    The other photo is Easter at Grandma’s house. Easter just isn’t Easter unless it is celebrated at Grandma’s, and Grandma’s yard has lots of pretty spring flowers. Pretty girls in frilly dresses. And pretty, pretty Easter eggs to hunt. So pretty is as pretty does and I give you this lovely lily.

    April 2013

    Another cheat (sorry, not sorry!) – my baby girl’s Gender Reveal Party with her boyfriend Brandon. Listen, no one knew what the sex of that baby was going to be. Not a soul standing there – including Mom & Dad – not until those balloons floated out of the box. And let me tell ya, it was a SHOCK to see Pink. Almost everyone, all the old wives tales, Chinese calendars, and then some, said it was a BOY. Most everyone there was SURE it was a BOY, including myself, but I wanted a girl. I don’t know why. We have a plenty of girls. I just couldn’t give up my hope to have another. Maybe, because I had a girl first and I wanted her to have that incredible experience too. I wanted my baby girl to have a baby girl. And that dream came true when I watched those pink spheres float up into the sky. Wow. A very precious moment shared with family and friends; one I will never forget.

    May 2013
    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    I don’t like photos of myself. I don’t like others taking photos of myself. I am just uncomfortable this side of the camera. But I took a photo with my little girl on Mother’s Day. To record her pregnancy and a special event. This is a candid shot of us together (unposed). My sticker says World’s Greatest Mom. My step-girls gave me a Mother’s Day card they picked out and that sticker was inside. You bet I wore it all day. Loud and Proud. Oh, how I love allllllll my girls!

    June 2013
    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    I had space at the Arlington Museum of Art for the Chics Who Click art exhibit. I showed for three months April, May, and June. This is the month I displayed “people”. My family, friends, friends of family, and more that I had done photo sessions of. I gave it back to them by printing and framing their shots. It is the month I am most proud of.

    July 2013

    Maternity photos of Sydney in the stockyards, plus one of her and Brandon at Penn Farm. Maternity photos in July – talk about a scorcher. I have to say Sydney is quite the trooper having to endure a Texas Summer in her pregnancy. She did really well with it all; very impressive for a nineteen-year old.

    August 2013
    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    A little child is born who fills the hearts of so many. A little girl loved by her parents, grandparents, great grandparents and many other relatives. She is the most loved baby I know.

    I photographed the birth of her one day after I turned 42 years old. I took her newborn photos. I breathed in the sweet, new baby smell and I fell, so completely, in love with this new little girl – every finger, and every toe. I still fall to pieces when I see her. This Grandma thing is pretty darn amazing.

    September 2013
    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    Surprise, Cousin Tasha is pregnant with twins. TWINS! Little playmates for Averey. The family and I head to Iowa Park, Texas to photograph her shower. These are my outlaws and I love that they welcome Jason and the girls as family too. This is definitely the cutest theme I have ever seen, and so much SUGAR. The cake with babies on it is my favorite. A very precious and detailed piece. I can’t wait to meet these two new little people.

    October 2013

    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    My step-daughters on Halloween. This is quite the pair. The cat pounces on the prey and the Vampire Princess comes in for the kill. Genius! I missed seeing them trick or treat as I had to work, but I am glad Jason took pictures for me, and that he took Fred the Cat trick or treating, too.

    © Angelia's Photography

    November 2013

    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    Finally they meet, the Great Grandma and the Great Granddaughter. I think they thought it a moment greater than both of them. We call it The Grand PooPaw of all time. Oh yes. A pretty big deal for sure. And I loved every bit of it.

    December 2013

    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    Christmas 2013 – Full of gifts big and small, inside and outside.

    December is a big month for me. I am promoted at work to supervisor. I traded in my car with my husband’s car to share ONE car. Years past, that would have freaked me out to put so much trust into being that dependent, but you know what, it didn’t bother me in the least. Working from home, I can do without wheels.

    I am completely off antidepressants and I feel amazing. My husband will turn the big 3-9 tomorrow. He mentioned to me it was our 6th Christmas together. That blew my mind. SIX? So many? Which means this is our 6th Birthday celebration for him. When I met him, he was only 33.

    I am ready for the New Year. And yes, I do love resolutions! I plan to get strong and fit. To ACCEPT imperfection as my new reality and be just fine with that. I want the critics out of my head. Ain’t nobody got time for that! My resolution is to exercise one hour a day. I did pretty good with a resolution in 2006 to stop smoking. I am hoping this one will stick for eight years as well.

    That’s right, my anniversary of no more smoking is January 1st! I haven’t missed it. Not in eight years. So happy I made that resolution.

    And of course, I have this eleven and half pound bundle of joy to watch grow and change.

    © 2013 Angelia's Photography

    She turned four months old Christmas Eve (and only 11.5lbs – little shrimp).

    Do you know how big she makes me smile?

    © Angelia's iPhone Photography 2013

    This big and more. We are something when we get together and start grinning all over the place.

    My year? Full.
    My life? Loved.
    My heart? Overflowing.

    Top that 2014, I look forward to it.

    Happy New Year, everyone! Hope it is blissful and bright! Cheers to 2014!