Day Two

I survived day 1.  But, I had to go to bed at around 9:00 b/c I was so hungry and wasn't allowed to eat anything else.  Plus I barely had the energy to get out of bed.  I've heard there will be about 2 more days of this.  Well, 1 1/2 now.
I just ate lunch.  Salad and asparagus.  Yuck.  Love salad and asparagus, but not without lots of butter, salt and ranch.
I took the 3 boys to the grocery yesterday.  On a normal day this tests my patience, but yesterday it was tested 5k times.  They get $25 each every week to buy lunch food.  Well, for some reason they think they are entitled to get whatever crap-food they want.  Lane was trying to buy Mountain Dew, fruit roll ups and bubble gum.  Seriously?!  Not ever, and definitely not while I'm starving myself.  I would never do that to his underpaid, overworked teachers.
Lord help me.

Day one

I'm taking sugar out of my diet starting today.  And a lot of other crap-food.  Today is day one and so far, I haven't turned into a monster.  A little fatigued and quite hungry, but bearable.  I have heard that the first 3 days are the hardest by far.  So I'm thinking that day two and three are going to get a lot worst.  
I have 15 lbs to lose.  Not sure what happened, but I've never weighed this much besides being pregnant.  I'm guessing it's that I'm getting older and I sit at my computer more than I have ever done.  I've always had to work at my weight.  If I'm not watching what I'm eating and not exercising I will gain a lot fast.  Never have I been one that could maintain no matter what I eat.  Those girls piss me off. 
Hopefully by month 3 I will be fitting back into my clothes.  Mainly my jeans are all I care about.  Love my jeans.

Oh and I found this quote from a book I'm reading that I thought was pretty good:

‎"The trouble with opportunity is that it often

 comes disguised as hard work" 

Dog love

I never really loved dogs until my youngest was about 2.  I've always liked dogs somewhat, but never loved.  I think if I lived in the country I'd have lots of dogs.  You'd probably see me on a dog hoarding show.   I shouldn't say that,  I'm not a psycho dog lover, I just love dogs, BUT I could easily live without any. 
This is one of the dogs I really want.  Yes, it's so ugly it's cute.  I love how it snorts and walks like a hippo.  
Maybe someday.  And, isn't this girl about as cute as they get?!

Where I am in life right now

I feel like I have come out of a thick, dark photo session fog.  The past 3-4 months are like a blur to me.  It was by far the busiest fall season I have ever experienced in my business.
Now that I'm out of the fog I can reflect back on what I did right and what I need to improve on, both professionally and personally.  I do know that I don't ever want to experience another season like the last.   Not at home and not at work.

I spent the last few days at a Professional Photographers Association conference in New Orleans learning new techniques, photoshop skills,  and connecting with others in the industry. OH, and eating TONS of delish New Orleans cuisine.  PLEASE let my jeans fit again someday soon!

I focused on nothing but photography while there and it made me remember why I do what I do - which I feel like I forgot.  I never took pictures for praise, awards, or even for money.  I have always loved being able to capture life, I want every image I capture to be a piece of art, a memory captured, and a historical print.  An image (print) is NOT just a piece of paper.  In order to create these images it takes time.  I REALLY wish I had more time.
In order to get back to being the photographer that I have always wanted to be, I have to make some big changes in my business.

Here is what you will see different:
--- I won't schedule more than 3 sessions per week.  In order to devote the 8-10 hours I spend on each session I can't take on any more.  Most clients don't realize that after the 2 hour session I spend approximately 8 more hours on the post processing part of it.  When I schedule 10 sessions a week, like I did this fall (I can't say no) I either end up working 20 hour days / 7 days a week or doing half ass work.  Both are unacceptable.
---Your session will now include the gallery disc.  That means that you will get all the edited, digital images that were taken at your session.  95% of my clients purchased the gallery disc anyways, so this will simplify the process and my life.  You won't have to stress over whichever images to print at whatever sizes to display on wherever walls.  You will have all the images forever. 
The fee for the session and gallery disc will be $675.  In 2011 it was $650, but because I will be investing more time in each image there will be a slight increase in cost.  You will still have the option to purchase a la carte items like prints, canvases, print boxes, cards, etc. through my lab, which is the best professional lab out there.
--- I will continue to do what I love, and that is give back to the community and raise awareness of needs.   Only accepting 3 clients a week allows me to have time to donate sessions, which brings me joy.  I don't ever want to be too busy to turn away these opportunities.
--- My first priority is my family.  I have 4 children.  I don't ever want to put them on the back burner like I have done.  Photography is not worth it.  Don't get me wrong - I LOVE photography and sometimes I use my photo sessions to escape my kids ;-), but with one already in high school, they all will be out of the house soon and I don't want them to remember me always gone to photo sessions.

So, with that said, these changes I feel will allow me to serve you better and keep my creativity fresh and my relationships strong.  

Much love,