Since it is Halloween today. I am going back to the standard Halloween choice, Michael Jackson's Thriller. What an incredible talent he was!! I was looking back at a blog post from a couple of years ago where I used this song and I feel even more strongly about what I wrote then, "As much as I love this song and video, it makes me sad to look back at Michael Jackson at what was really the pinnacle of his success. Sad because even with all that incredible talent and creativity, he never seemed comfortable in is own skin. It's such a shame that between his reputation and the tragic end to his life, it's easy to forget what an phenomenal artist and performer he really was." You know, I wrote about one of my seniors a couple of weeks ago, "She is very comfortable in her own skin, and I got the feeling that if someone doesn't like the form that takes, while it doesn't make her happy, it's their issue, not hers." That was true of many of my seniors this year, it is a wonderful quality, to be comfortable with yourself (it took me about 45 years or so to get there). I hope that they know how lucky they are!! Happy Halloween, hope you get lots of treats!!
This throwback Thursday is in honor of the teachers and everyone at the elementary school where I work. I have decided to call it a throwback because I am going to share the pictures of all the kids that went to the school (some may quibble that because the pictures are current that this isn't technically a throwback but you know what I say, it's my blog....) These kids are all terrific kids, and since an elementary student spends almost as much time (if not more) at his school as he does at home, then the teachers, and let's not forget Mrs. Fitzgerald and Mrs. Kaplan, deserve a ton of credit for helping them to become the marvelous young men and women that they are. So everyone at the South School, give yourselves a pat on the back, you deserve it. And seniors? If you see someone from your South days, please say thank you!! By the way, one of the seniors actually had his pictures taken at the school.
With the fall sports season nearing its conclusion for most sports, I would like to take a moment and acknowledge the student athletes that I got the opportunity to work with (okay, confession time, when I think of them, I tend to think of them as "my seniors").
For cheerleading and football, I was lucky enough to work with Alex, Bianca, Brad, Brandon and Joey.
The cross country athletes that I had the pleasure of meeting and working with were David and Shannon. By the way, David set a new school and course record at a meet earlier this month, great job!
For field hockey, I got a chance to hang out with the lovely Ashlyn, Delaney, Devin, Katie and Meagan.
***Please note, this was added to the post later, someone was kind enough to point out to me that I forgot to add golf to my list and hence forgot to mention Peter. Maybe all those years of commercials about the Masters and "a tradition unlike any other" caused me to think of golf as a spring sport. Without any more excuses or my apologies, here is my golf star, Peter.
The soccer players that I had the privilege of working with were Abbie, Emily, Evan, Jacob, Mackenzie, Marissa, Shannon, Stephanie and Yamile.
Finally, my wonderful volleyball players (see I told you, I get a little possessive but it is just because I like them all so much!) were Courtney and Stefanie.
I would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Stoughton High football, boys soccer and field hockey teams on making the playoffs.. While I am impressed with all their seasons, I would especially like to commend the field hockey team on their playoff berth. As recently as early last week, things looked rather bleak for their playoff prospects but the team never gave up and won 6 of its last 7 games to make it into the playoffs, well done!! Congratulations to all the fall athletes, I hope that you all had wonderful seasons, your schools and towns are lucky to have you represent them!
When I put a sneak peek of Jimmy's pictures on Facebook, I got the following comments, "Nicest kid in town" "Jimmy, xo" and "luv that kiddo!" That last one was from a teacher, most teachers remember all of their students but how wonderful to be remembered that fondly so many years later! I have to say it was the same for me, Jimmy was an absolute pleasure to work with and spend a little time with. And not only that but he had a great smile, too!!
We got a really nice day too (hey, that's kind of appropriate for the nicest kid in town, huh?) and we took full advantage of the weather by walking around most of the estate. We got some great foliage too, it was definitely one of the prime foliage weekends. Plus we lucked out because they hadn't raked it all up yet so there were still plenty of leaves on the ground (ha, raked, who I am kidding? No one rakes anymore, I meant to say that they hadn't used those annoyingly loud leaf blowers on the property yet)
Jimmy is also a pretty bright kid as well as a hard worker. He ended up being ranked just outside of the top ten of the class. As a matter of fact, quite a few of the seniors from my town have ended up in the top 20 of the class. I was actually joking the other day that my new marketing slogan is going to be "Smart kids have their pictures taken with eMotional Memories." Well maybe I would do that if I actually had a marketing slogan but I don't. Maybe this is why my husband thinks that I am the worst business person ever!! Jimmy was also dressed pretty smartly too, both figuratively, he looked great, and literally, it is always a smart idea to have an informal and a more formal choice just in case.
When we were making the arrangements to have Jimmy's pictures taken, his mom asked if we could possibly do some family ones as well. You all know that I am a big proponent of this and I am sure that you also know my theory (or maybe it is my mantra since I repeat it so often, "If one is dressed and in the picture taking mode, might as well seize the opportunity). Well they certainly did seize the moment, they were perfectly coordinated and perfectly happy to be in each other's company! We even managed to get the various combinations, just the kids, just the boys, just the girls and even one of just mom and dad! We also got a bonus shot of the proud parents with their senior!
Thank you Jimmy (and family) for choosing to spend some time with me. It was a pleasure to meet you all and to spend such a beautiful afternoon with you. Best of luck, Jimmy, this year and in the future. Although I am not sure that you will need wishes of luck since I kind of see you as being in the Thomas Jefferson school of thought, "I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it."
If the other day was the perfect day for Brad's post, then it is really perfect (oops, can anything be really perfect, wouldn't that be redundant?) for Joey's post to follow it. Joey is an integral part of the football team and a lot of the credit for their success belongs to Joey, not that he would tell you that, Joey is the consummate team player. And Joey had a monster game this past Friday. He scored 3 touchdowns and ran for a first down on the game clinching drive. I was so happy that Joey had a great game because he is just a great guy. So polite and respectful. He was also a good listener and posed however I asked him to.
Joey is another one of those kids that I have known pretty much forever. I taught his 3rd grade CCD class. I honestly can't believe that the time has gone by that quickly. And yes, I know how old that makes me sound but c'mon, I taught this guy in third grade almost ten years ago, I am old!! I didn't know Joey and his friends that day when they were assigned to my class and I admit to feeling a little trepidation when they were put in my class. They were always full of personality and liked to have a little fun in class but I could always count on them to know when I meant business. Joey seems to be the same way to this day, quick with a smile and to appreciate the fun in the situation, but always in a very thoughtful and respectful manner. Like Brad, he brought along a couple of different shirts plus a more formal option and his football jersey.
I was especially glad to see the football jersey and the button down shirt. I love changing the look of things by adding a slightly more formal option. And the football jersey? Well you all know how I feel about making a portrait session more meaningful and what could be more meaningful than proudly wearing the jersey of a team that went undefeated? Although football is such a brotherhood (well, all sports are really) that it would be meaningful even if they didn't win a game. Although it is a tad more fun when you're winning.
Like I mentioned in Brad's post, Brad and Joey have been best friends since kindergarten. It was such a pleasure, not to mention, really entertaining, to get to spend some time with them. I love the pictures of the two of them together and they are some of my favorites from this senior picture season.
Thank you Joey for choosing me to document some of your senior year, it was nice to get a chance to chat with you again, it's been a long time since 3rd grade. I am so happy for the football team and I wish you all much success going forward. Win or lose, you guys should be very proud of yourselves, you have set the bar high for future teams. Not just with winning but with the way that you play with such drive and determination. Best of luck with the rest of senior year.
Once again, we are celebrating a birthday in my house and once again, I can't believe how the time has flown. Today is my youngest daughter's birthday!! By the way, this means that we now have 4 teenagers in the house. Hmm, can this be the reason that my hair seems to be turning gray at an alarming rate lately? Happy birthday, honey, I love you more than I can ever begin to express. Your work as a gymnast astonishes me. Not just the fact that you are amazingly flexible and really good but the amount of work that you are willing to do and the amount of time that you are willing to spend at the gym. As much as it pains me to watch if you fall or make a mistake, I absolutely love to see the resolve that you show when you pick yourself up and try it again or move on fearlessly to the next event. You are growing up so fast, too fast, but I could not be prouder of the person that you are growing up to be!! I will always miss my wonderful, affectionate little girl, the girl that constantly bubbled over with personality but I must say that I am pretty happy with the wonderful young lady that has taken her place. I love your spirit, your gentleness, your perseverance and your determination. You are pretty great photo assistant and helper too. I have said it here before but it certainly bears repeating, I am so proud of you and even prouder to be your mom!
What a perfect day for Brad's post. See last night, the football team (Brad's the placekicker on the team) completed their quest for an undefeated regular season. It's appropriate that his post is today because he gets a lot of joy from his team and all that they have accomplished, most especially his best friend Joey's terrific three touchdown performance last night. And you know what? That's Brad, he is just as happy for Joey as he would be for himself. Generally when I take pictures of friends, I end the post with the pictures of them together but Brad and Joey have such a great bond, I think that I will start with them this time (I am the one in charge of these things around here, after all). Plus, I have to say, I had an absolute blast with these guys, and I was honored to to capture their senior pictures. From what I've heard, they make a point of taking a first day of school picture together every year together. I am sure that you can just imagine my delight when I heard that. I am always thrilled to capture best friends together but this? The symmetry was just wonderful!
Although I had never met Brad before (another senior in a long line that I feel that it is my loss that I didn't know before now), I felt like I knew him forever as soon as he got out of the car. He was really funny and really friendly. He was also full of advice, when I told him that my son was on the freshman football team, he told me that he should look into becoming the kicker, that it's a great position. He also very sweetly backed up his advice by offering to coach my son in the art of kicking. What a prince. He's also handsome with a great smile, too!!
Brad also has a great sense of fashion, he had a couple of casual outfits plus a more formal choice. He also wanted to make sure that he had some taken in his football jersey. By the way, as much as I liked his smile, Brad's "model face" wasn't too bad, either,
Brad has such a great sense of humor as well as a great sense of fun. He thought it would be really funny to photo bomb an unsuspecting Joey. These guys have been best friends for so long that Joey obviously has come to expect anything from Brad and wasn't fazed in the least. As a matter of fact, when I started laughing, Joey simply said, "Brad's in my picture, isn't he?" He certainly was, and I have to say, in a season full of memorable pictures, these are definitely some of my favorites!
Thank you, Brad, for sharing this part of your senior year with me. It seems like every time that I mention to someone that I took your pictures, that person then says, "Oh Brad's the best" or "I love Brad" which makes me wish that I had the pleasure of meeting you sooner. Best of luck this year and beyond. By the way, don't be surprised if I take you up on your offer to coach my son in kicking, I totally agree with you, it is one of the best positions on the field.
When I mentioned at work yesterday that I was free this morning and that it was the first free Saturday morning in more than 2 months, one of my co-workers immediately said, "Oh good, I have been missing your Saturday morning cartoons. I haven't said anything because I know you have busy but can you get on that? The Jetson's would be good." Done and done!! I love knowing that people are out there paying attention and I love any guidance or suggestions of any sort so this was a double bonus of the best kind!! This is a pretty cool clip too. It is a pretty short, less than 10 minutes, documentary featuring some behind the scenes stuff. Thanks, Miss Cathy. Have a great Saturday, everyone. I know that I will, especially since Weebly (which continues to rock, by the way) has just added the ability to schedule posts to their repertoire of awesomeness. So I can schedule this to post when I write it, no getting out of bed to post, yay!!
So this week, I finally finished up with my Stoughton High seniors. As of this past Tuesday, everyone's selection has been submitted to the yearbook. As fun as it was, and it was a total blast, it was also slightly overwhelming, especially at the end. So this week's video celebrates the fact that I am getting a little bit of my free time back, you might say I am getting my life back. And what a very, very Good Life it is.
Part of that good life is going to the homecoming football game tonight (and hopefully watch the team stay undefeated). As you all know, I am a huge football fan so I can't think of a better way to spend a Friday night. And now, I have even more of a reason because I have taken the pictures of many of the seniors that will be participating in one way or another tonight, which makes it a mega bonus! On the field and on the sideline, I will be keeping an eye out for Brad, Joey, Brandon and Bianca.
And let's not forget the band. I am especially excited to see the band perform. I can't believe it but I have been so busy this fall that I have not yet seen a performance. The band is always so much fun to watch that I can't wait to rectify this oversight tonight. And I will be paying a little special attention to Peter, Sammie, Abbie, Danielle, Mack, Sarah, Kristina, Rachel, Jamie and Diksha.
Finally. I would also like to congratulate all of the seniors that were selected to the homecoming court. I'll be rooting for everyone but I'll be rooting just a bit harder for Devin, Ashlyn, Diksha, Courtney and David. Having spent some time with you, it is no wonder that you were chosen to represent your school. Way to go guys!!
Have a great weekend, everyone!!
Delaney is the friend of Katie's that sent me an email asking to have her pictures done when I did Katie's. I ws happy to hear from her because we had tried a couple of times to set something up but things didn't seem to want to work out. I was starting to get the feeling that it just wasn't meant to be. That would have made me very sad because although I don't know her that well, I have taken note of her because she always seems to be having so much fun. She was on my daughter, Kristen's, softball team a few years back and she was always such a joy to watch There is a post that has recently been on Facebook that says, "Your child’s success or lack of success in sports does not indicate what kind of parent you are. But, having an athlete that is coachable, respectful, a great teammate, mentally tough, resilient and who tries their best is a direct reflection of your parenting." If that is the case, then Delaney's parents should feel very satisfied with their parenting. She certainly was very coachable and respectful while I was taking her pictures. As with Katie, we took full advantage of the beautiful fall colors.
She's also mentally tough which she proved by not once complaining when I made them walk around the entire estate early on a Sunday morning. Not only did she not complain, I think that she may have even liked it!!
Delaney is pretty low maintenance. At one point when I asked her if she wanted to change again, she replied, "No, I think that I am all set. Well, maybe I will change. Oh I don't really care, I look fine. What do you think, Katie, should I change?" I should also mention that Katie told me that decisions are not exactly Delaney's strong suit. Anyway, low maintenance certainly works on Delaney, she looked great whether she changed or not (she did)!! Delaney is contemplating a career in the travel tourism industry. With her enthusiasm for life and her warm, friendly smile, she is sure to be a big hit in that field.
It really was a pleasure to watch Delaney and Katie together. They have such fun together and really seem to balance each other out nicely. I am so glad that they chose to have their pictures taken together, mostly for selfish reasons. Getting a chance to take pictures of best friends together at such an important stage of life may be my favorite part of this whole picture taking thing!
Thanks Delaney for allowing me to share in this part of your senior year. I wish you all the best this year and in the future. Thank you for sharing your infectious laugh and enthusiasm for life with me on a beautiful Sunday morning. Those are truly gifts that you have and my hope is that you always share them as easily as you do now. Please click here if you would like to see the rest of Delaney's pictures.
Okay confession time, the last week or so has been so chaotic and such a blur that I can't remember one thing about my session with Katie. Well, on second thought, that's not really true either. I do remember that we had a blast and that it was a gorgeous Sunday morning out and that Katie's best friend, Delaney, came along and that they were such a joy to watch together. Okay never mind, I remember a lot about the session, it's the specifics that I having a hard time remembering. But since I can barely remember what I had for dinner last night, this is nothing new for me! It was the perfect weekend for the leaves, the colors were glorious! We got started out front and attempted to showcase the colors, and Katie, of course, at their finest.
I absolutely loved the dress that Katie wore to start her sitting. The color was just perfect for a fall day and it looked so cute with the boots. As a matter of fact, I loved it so much that I asked her if she would put it on again so we could take some near the house.
Katie is another senior that I know from church and another one that it seems like I have watched grow up. Like so many of the kids from my church, Katie is a wonderful young lady, so polite and respectful. Katie also has the best smile and both her good character and great smile are sure to come in handy for her future. If I remember correctly (ha, that is always a gamble these days), I think that Katie aspires to be some type of boss someday. I think a smile like hers will be such an asset when it comes to making sure that people follow your lead and do what you say!
Like so many of the senior girls that I have worked with this year, Katie is an athlete, she is one of the captains of the field hockey team and the goalkeeper (goalie, netminder? Not quite sure of the terminology for field hockey). I love to see that athletics has become so popular with girls, I think that being part of a team teaches many lessons and skills that can be revisited often throughout life. Plus it puts them in good shape and then they don't mind so much when I make them hike around the entire (and Katie can tell you, I am not exaggerating when I say entire) estate.
About a week before Katie's session, I got an email from another senior asking if it would be okay if she had her pictures taken at the same time as Katie. Of course, I immediately said yes. Well the day before I was meeting Katie, I ran into her parents and I realized that I had never checked with Katie and her family to make sure that this was okay with them. When I mentioned that; Katie's parents chuckled and said that it was fine, Katie and Delaney pretty much do everything together so it would have been weird if they didn't do this together. I am so glad that they did because they were awesome together and they had me laughing the whole time!!
Thanks Katie for choosing me to document your senior year, it was an honor and a pleasure. It was so much fun to spend a beautiful fall morning with you and Delaney (and your wonderful mom, of course). I wish you all the best for the future. After having been a bystander of your journey thus far, I can't wait to see the rest unfold. Please click here if you would like to see the rest of Katie's pictures.
Today is the day that senior portraits are due to the yearbook in my hometown. I am very happy (not to mention, honored and proud) to have been chosen by the seniors below to help them document senior year. I had a terrific time getting to know them and I am so thankful that I was chosen to help them remember their senior year. I would also like to wish them all the best this year and in the future. I expect great things from them and can't wait to see all that they accomplish. By the way, Class of 2015, I would absolutely love to capture some more of your senior year so if you see me and my camera out and about, feel free to say hi (and even better, ham it up!!) Good luck to you all, I'll be rooting for you! Now presenting my hometown class of 2015 (In no particular order, ha, you all know me better than that, they are in alphabetical order by first name, of course, why change now?)
** I have a couple of kids that I am still waiting on, I will add them as I get them.
I wasn't planning on posting at all this week but I just sent in the yearbook submission for my daughter and I think that a momentous occasion like that deserves a post. Although momentous may seem to be overstating it a bit, I also was getting to the point where she was going to be the last one I submitted. In other words, it was dangerously close to being a cobbler's children having no shoes type of situation so no, I don't think that momentous is too strong a word. In addition, today marked the first day in more than 2 months that I did not have to leave my house at all!! I can't remember the last time that I did not have to be somewhere for at least part of a day. And with all this rain today it is just the perfect day for it, too!! Anyway, in honor of my senior not being the last submission that I make this year, here's the picture that she chose as well as a couple of her school pictures.
Hi all, I just wanted to let you know that I probably won't be posting for the next week or so. I absolutely love writing about my portraits, especially about seniors, but in the interest of meeting the yearbook deadline for the local high school (October 21st), I have decided that I will not be able to blog again until after that date has passed. Each senior will get a page and I will share the link. I will try my best to make sure that everyone gets a blog once the deadline passes. Thank you in advance for your patience.
I know it feels like I say this every post but taking Sammy's pictures was special to me. Okay, it doesn't just seem that way, it is what I say in most every post. Well, what can I say, this is a very special group of kids to me. And Sammy is especially special (oops, that was a bit redundant) because although I really don't know Sammy that well, I do know her mom pretty well. So well that Sammy trusted me when I asked if we could change locations on the day of the shoot.. It was kind of cloudy that day so I thought a nearby park might turn out to be perfect. It has lots of great foliage and a pond so I thought that it would be great for a cloudy day. It worked out pretty well, in no small part because the soft, diffused light of the clouds was fantastic for showing off Sammy's beautiful blue eyes and flawless complexion
After getting to spend some time with Sammy, I realized that it is my loss that I have not really met her yet. She was such a sweetheart, and very creative. She is considering a career in marketing, what a great choice, all the best people major in marketing. Coincidentally that also happens to have been my major!! Although if you ask my husband, marketing myself is not really my strong suit. Ohh wait, maybe I should hire Sammy to help me out??
In addition to being creative, or maybe as a part of being creative, Sammy also had a wonderful sense of fashion. She looked beautiful in both of her outfit choices. I especially loved the color of the dress that she chose. What a perfect choice for a fall day. Sammy is also one of the drum majors of the marching band. As regulars readers may know, I have taken the pictures of a bunch of kids involved with the band. After getting a chance to meet and spend time with them, it is no wonder that the band has been so successful for so long. Especially when they choose terrific kids, like Sammy, to fill leadership roles!
Sammy's sister, Katie, was part of my second class of seniors. That year was special to me because that was really the year that I realized that I might have a future with this picture taking thing (by the way, Katie is also one of my all-time favorites!). When Sammy's mom asked me if it would be okay if her other girls met us to take a couple of pictures, I not only said yes, but I was really excited about it. They were great, so cooperative and so photogenic. They are beautiful but the nicest part about them is that they are just as beautiful on the inside as they are on the outside!
Thank you so much Sammy for allowing me to play a part in your senior year. I wish you all the best and I can't wait until I get a chance to see the band perform (I have been a little busy of late so it has been hard to make the time to see you all perform). I know I am for a treat when I finally get to see a performance of "Soul with a Capital S" Thank you also for having your fabulous sisters come and meet us too. I wish you much success in the future. I would offer you some tips but I think that maybe the best thing I could do for you is to not offer any advice!! Please click here if you would like to see the rest of Sammy's pictures.