Film 366 Favorites of 2016

The year has ended and I have survived 2 366 projects.  One was a digital 366, using my Nikon d610 and Fuji x100t.  And the 2nd was a film 366, using a variety of film cameras and film stocks.  I went a little crazy exploring the world of film.  I’ve acquired a ton of film cameras, tons of film stock.  I was all over the place.  I wasn’t able to keep track of my film 366, because I shot SO MUCH FILM.  Here are some of my favorites of 2016.

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I’m crazy enough to do my 4th 365, for 2017.  I’ve also decided to slow down with film and focus.  So, I’m doing a digital 365, and I’m doing 1 roll of film a week, and for each month that I shoot film, I’ll be using the same film camera, same lens and same film stock. For January 2017, I’ve started shooting Acros 100 with my Nikon f100 and 35 f/2 lens.  Let’s hope I come out with some decent shots!

Letters to our Children – December

Dear Ariya,

What an exciting month it’s been!  Your daddy had to go to a work conference in Orlando of all places, so you got to experience your first trip to Disney! You were so excited to ride on a “jet plane” to meet your favorite princesses, like Elena (you asked where Gabe and her sister Isabelle was), Rapunzel (who twirled you and talked about her friend/lizard Pascal) and Ariel in her grotto (you were so starstruck meeting Ariel!).  We ate at the Beast’s palace and you wore your Belle dress.  We met all of your favorite characters like Minnie and Mickey, Daisey and Goofey.  You were over the moon.  We took pictures of you with all of them, and you even got their autographs.  I think your favorite ride was Dumbo and Winnie the Pooh.  And you LOVED the Frozen Sing a long at Hollywood Studios.  I mean, you just sang your heart out, and it was amazing to see.

Then we had Christmas!  We baked gingerbread cookies, made reindeer food and read tons of Christmas books.  The tree was decorated, the presents were stacked and you were ready to see what Santa brought you.  Nani and Nanu came to visit, and you had a blast playing with them. Santa must have thought you were a very good girl, because you got a TON of presents.  You are one very lucky girl. We also so Moana that day, and I think Moana might be your new favorite Disney princess.  I have to admit, I can’t get those songs out of my head!

And for New Year’s Eve, your Grandma and Auntie Carmen came to visit!  More presents! But more importantly, more quality time spent with family.  You loved working on the life size puzzle of Doc McStuffins with Grandma.  And that Read Along Princess books was THE best present ever, Thanks Grandma!

Looking forward to what 2017 brings us!

Dear Asha,

You turned one!  We ended up having your birthday part at your Grandma’s after Thanksgiving.  Nani and Nanu came to visit, and Grandma and Auntie Carmen got you a beautiful cake with your face on it, along with a chocolate flavored smash cake.  You went to town on that cake!  Lots of family from your daddy’s side was there, and it was so much fun for you and Ariya playing with them.

You were such a superstar on the plane to Disneyworld.  You pretty much slept in the ergo while Ariya had her fun.  But you did get some play time in the pool, and got to meet some disney characters too.  You won’t remember this trip, but I do have pictures to prove you were there!

Santa must have thought you were really good too, because you got some pretty good presents too!  Lucky girl!  I think Ariya loves playing with your presents more than her own, but it’s good because you two play together so well.  You love following her around, and she loves tackling you to the ground.  You laugh together, even when you make Ariya upset after destroying all her cities and towns made up of blocks and legos.  We call you Asha the destroyer.  (We used to call Ariya the destroyer too).

You are still waking up at least once at night, but it’s ok, I’m hoping you’ll grow out of it eventually.  Crossing fingers!

You’ve got a ton of teeth now.  4 on top and 4 on the bottom.  You love eating eggs for breakfast and you love bananas, strawberries and pears.  Apples are funny, you love to just chew them to get the juice but then you spit the pieces out.  So messy.  And you love spaghetti, although I think you like making the mess more.

Looking forward to what 2017 brings us!

(Taken with the contax g1 and Portra 400vc (expired), rated at 100, with flash and pushed +1 in development, at Disney)

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(Pentax 645nii with Portra 400, rated at 800 and pushed +1 in development, Ariya)ariya-9

(digital, Ariya baking gingerbread cookies)

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(digital, Asha’s official 12 months)

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(contax g1 with flash, fuji super 400, Asha’s 1st birthday)

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(digital, Ariya and Asha, Christmas morning)

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(contax g1 with flash, ferrania 400 (expired) film)asha-3

(digital, Christmas afternoon, with wacky Christmas outfits purchased by Santa (I mean, my husband))

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Letters to our Children – November

It’s been a crazy month as your father and I have worked through our emotions during this year’s presidential election.  I want for both of you to grow up in a world where we take care of each other, no matter what color your skin is, what religion you practice, what gender you are or think you are.  We are all created equal and should be treated so.  I want you both to stand up for yourself, to not be bullies or mean girls, but to be kind and always look out for others.  If you see something wrong happening, do something.  Always voice your opinions, be strong in your beliefs. Be kind, respectful, caring, inspiring, smart and fair.  Take care of this world that we live in, because it’s the only one we have.  Let’s not be wasteful.  Let’s give to the less fortunate.  And always appreciate what we have.  We love you both so much and always want what’s best for you.

 

a few photos on film, assortment of cameras (contax g1, pentax 645nii, pentax 6×7) and film (portray 160, 400 and 800)

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and a few digital photos on the fuji x100t

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Letters to our Children – October

Dear Ariya,

You survived the 10 hour flight to Venice.  You were so excited to get on the “jet plane” because it was one step closer to seeing your cousin Eila and Niraj mama (uncle) and Hyeon mami (auntie).  Once we got on the cruise ship, we saw them, along with Nani and Nanu, and you were so excited!

You were a trooper with the time change.  You slept most of the way through our excursion to Dubrovnik.  you loved running through the halls of the cruise ship.  You liked Athens, because we got to explore the Acropolis and there were a lot of rocks and dirt to play with.  You loved playing with Eila in Santorini, going on the “rocket ship” (cable car to get to the top of Santorini).  The double stroller definitely came in handy in Split as we walked around the historic town.  Of course by the time you were adjusted to the time change, it was time to go back home.

Getting back to our regular routine wasn’t so bad.  You were excited to get back to school and ballet.  We went on your first field trip, to Marker Miller to pick apples and ride the wagon around the orchards.  Your next field trip was to Handley Library, you had so much fun singing songs and dancing.

Halloween is coming up.  You’re so excited to be Princess Elena of Avalor.  We even got a scepter to match the dress. You can’t stop singing and dancing with your Elena accessories.  So much joy and happiness.

What I need to record on video is how you pronounce your S.  School becomes cool, snack becomes nack, snake becomes name.  It’s so so cute.

Venice, Italy.  Accidental (but AWESOME) leak.  Fuji Reala shot on Fuji GA645ZI

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Gelato in Venice, Italy.  Fuji Natura 1600 shot on Nikon f100000056410022

Spending time with Nanu in Santorini, Greece.  Fuji 160s shot on Nikon f100000060410023

Partners in Crime.  Ella and Ariya, Santorini, Greece.  Fuji 160s shot on Nikon f100000060410030

Exploring in Athens, Greece.  Fuji 160s shot on Nikon f100

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Another awesome light leak in Santorini, Greece.  Fuji Reala shot on GA645zi000064290003

Double stroller came in handy in Dubrovnik.  Portra 160vc on GA645zi000064300017

Asleep in Dubrovnik.  Portra 400 shot on Nikon f100000064270030

Gladiators in Split.  Portra 400 shot on Nikon f100

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Scratch pads (melissa & doug is the best!) and double strollers in Split.  Porter 400, shot on Nikon f100

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On the cruise. TriX 400 shot on Nikon f100

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resting on a bench in Split Croatia.  TriX 400 shot on Nikon f100000063410033

Selfies, pictures and film .  Tri X 400 shot on Nikon f100000063410037

Girl loves her apple.  Cruising.  Porter 400 shot on Nikon f100000064270001

Some digital images

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Dear Asha,

You survived the plane trip as well!  I was really hoping that you wouldn’t be screaming/crying/fussing throughout this plane ride (your first!) and you didn’t!  I’m so proud of you, you did awesome!  The time change on the other hand…..well that was rough.  The 4 of us sleeping in the same cabin on the cruise…that was rough.  But you got to meet your uncle and auntie and cousin, and got some really good quality time in with Nani and Nanu.   Family time makes it all worth it.

You were pretty much in the ergo carrier throughout our excursions.  You also started pulling yourself up and standing on this trip like a pro!  You’re growing big and strong, way too fast!  You have your bottom teeth in and now your top 2 teeth are coming in.  You’re still waking up in the middle of the night.  Sometimes once or twice in the middle of the night.  I’m convinced it’s the teething that’s making you so fussy.  But seriously girl, when are you going to start sleeping through the night?!?!

You’re 10 months old and we’re celebrating your first Halloween!  I got you an Elephant costume for Halloween.  I’m not sure how you’ll feel about it, but I guess we’ll find out today, when we go trick or treating.

You love clapping your hands, especially when we’re in the car and you sister sings songs from Frozen (usually “Let It Go”).  You love grabbing for my glasses and pulling my hair.  And you love love love laughing with your sister.  And I love seeing you play with Ariya, and how much you two love each other. I hope that never changes!

Plastic cups are so much fun. Portra 400 on Nikon f100.

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“I feel like partying!” t max 400 on nikon f100

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Another awesome light leak.  Fuji Reala on GA645zi

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Getting some auntie love. Portra 160vc on GA645zi

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Cruising.  Portra 400 on Nikon f100

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Nanu QT . Portra 400 on Nikon f100

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nanu gets a smile. Porter 400 on Nikon f100.

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Some digital images

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**We had to say goodbye to our cat Lucky last week.  It was rough, Lucky was 10 years old and the sweetest most affectionate cat ever.  We all miss him so much.

 

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Letters to our Children – September

Dear Ariya,

It’s been a pretty busy month!  We went to Verdant View Farms as our last vacation of the summer.  Our close friends joined us, and you had so much fun playing with them!  We started off the vacation at Lake Tobias, where we got to see some pretty cool animals!  There was a petting zoo, reptiles, and safari ride.  Ostriches, donkeys, zebras, buffalos, llamas.  It was pretty fun.

Then we made our way to the farm.  It’s a working dairy farm.  We had a chance to milk a cow, feed baby calves, pet the goats, play with the dog Scooby.  We got to ride on Thomas the train  And you had so much at the children’s museum.  It was a fun filled few days, but we had to go back home and get ready for school.

But first, Labor Day Weekend.  It was a great time spent with your grandma, auntie Carmen and Phelix, and auntie Anjuanette, uncle Kashiff, Mekhai and Jayden.  The only person missing was uncle Eric.

You’re now in the 3s class at Sonshine Learning Center.  You are so excited to see your friends and Ms Lisa and Ms Janet.  I’m so happy that you’re love going to school and love learning.

You’re also in ballet this year.  You’ve got a few friends in ballet class as well, and you love practicing to twirl.  Every day you ask if we’re going to ballet, and every day you want to put your leotard and tights on.

And now we’re taking another trip.  I know it feels like we’re taking a lot of trips, but it will slow down, I promise.  We’re going on a “jet plane” to go to the “cruise ship”  to see Nani, Nanu, Niraj mama (uncle), Hyeon mami (auntie) and your cousin Eila!  I’m nervous about this 10 hour flight (more for Asha than for you), but I know we’re all excited for this adventure.

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Dear Asha,

You’re 9 months old now!  And you have 2 bottom teeth coming in.  Its crazy how big you’re growing, and how fast time is flying.  You always follow your sister around.  you laugh with Ariya, you grab for her face, her hands, her hair (which, let’s face it, is the easiest thing to grab).  You’re crawling so fast and you want to stand so bad.  Actually, at 3am the other night, you WERE standing, in your crib.  It was pretty amazing.  I would have taken a picture IF IT WASN’T THREE IN THE MORNING.  I shouldn’t complain, last night you slept through the whole night and even took a 2 hour nap this morning.  I felt like a completely new person, with a full night of rest.  And you were so happy in your crib this morning.  Of course you’re starting a new sleeping habit just in time for us to take this trip. You’re first airplane ride.  It’s happening.  In a few days.  I’m hoping it will be a piece of cake!  You get to meet your Niraj mama, Hyeon mami and cousin Eila for the first time!  How exciting is that!

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Letters to our Children – August

Dear Ariya,

August has been a pretty chill month.  You wrapped up your swimming lessons with Asher at the Winchester Country Club.  You went down the slide for the first time and attempted to swim on your own.  But I think we need to work a little on your swim strokes.  You like to put your face in the water, but only on your terms.

We’ve also gone to the playground a few times.  It’s been so hot though, so it hasn’t been that often.  So we’ve spent a lot of time indoors, where it’s air conditioned.  You are ever so active, running around, jumping off the couch, acting like a superhero.  You’re a great helper and big sister to baby Asha.  You’re always holding her and giving her your toys.  You’re also taking a lot of your toys away from her, but we’re working on your sharing.

You had your first movie experience!  We all went to see Finding Dory and you LOVED it!  We had popcorn and lemonade.  Asha took her nap in the ergo.  And you only got up once to pee in the potty.  I’d say it was a success!  Can’t wait to see our next movie.

Nani and Nanu came to visit.  You loved doing puzzles with them and showing them your yoga skills.  Nanu even did some yoga with you!

 

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Dear Asha,

You’re CRAWLING!  You are seriously crawling, and it’s crazy how fast and determined you are.  I will turn around for a second and you’re at the other side of the room.  Now we have to watch out when Ariya pulls out her puzzles, because you love chewing on those puzzle pieces!

You’re eight months now.  We had your 8 month check up and learned that you’re not gaining any weight.  The same thing happened with Ariya at 6 months.  So now it’s time to supplement your diet with formula.  I always hoped that I’d at least nurse you for 6 months, even a year.  When we passed the 6 month mark, I thought, wow, maybe we can do this, maybe we can make it to a year? Unfortunately, this is not the case. I have so many thoughts about this.  I’m sad.  I feel like my little baby is growing too fast.  I’ll miss our moments of nursing together.  The quiet, the calm, the bond we have.  I talked to 3 lactation consultants, just to understand how it all works and where it went wrong for me.  It’s interesting how everyone’s nursing experience is different.  I may have to make this a personal photography project of mine, documenting the women that have trouble nursing successfully (and what successful means to them).  But that’s for another blog post.

I think your first tooth is coming in!  I can feel it, just ready to break through.  Wow, you’re growing so fast.  Can we please freeze time just for a little bit?  I’m not ready for you or your sister to get bigger and bigger.

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All these pictures are an assortment of film and digital.

 

Letters to our Children – July

Dear Ariya,

We’re back from the beach and you were so sad to leave.  We had a great time with family but our biggest lesson is “that was fun, and now it’s done”.  We came back to the house, ready to take more swim lessons.  Last week, you took an “intro to ballet” class, and you LOVED it.  The first day was iffy.  You kept looking for me, waiting for me to come with you.  But by the 2nd day, you were ready.  You loved the leotard, the ballet shoes.  You love twirling around.  So we’re all signed up for ballet in the fall.  I can’t wait for the recital!

This week you’re taking music camp.  The theme is America the beautiful. And this time, you didn’t even look back, you went straight for Ms Karen and was ready to go.  You’ve been having so much fun this week.  Friday is the last day, and afterwards, we’re going to celebrate by taking you to your first movie, Finding Dory.  You’re so excited to see it, and of course to eat popcorn.

 

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Ektar 100 shot on Nikon Action Touch

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Ektar 100 shot on Nikon f100

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Ektar 100 shot on Nikon Action Touch

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Kodak Gold 200 (expired) on Nikon f100

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Dear Asha,

You are 7 months old this month!  And you keep getting bigger and bigger.  You love avocado, and eat lots of bananas, pears and apples.  We’re trying out peas and spinach, but you need it sweetened with some bananas.  Your naps are getting longer and longer.  You only wake up once during the night, maybe twice, but usually just once, which is awesome.  I can see you rolling around getting from one end of the room to the other.  Next step is crawling.  And you’ve started to pull yourself up to sitting.  uh oh, watch out now.

Kodak Gold 200 expired on Nikon f100

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Ektar 100 shot on Nikon f100

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Kodak Gold 200 expired shot on Nikon f100

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Trying out some double exposures here

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Can’t wait to see where August takes us!

 

Letters to our Children – June

We’re at the beach now, taking our first beach vacation with the girls.  I thought I’d go ahead and write this letter while Asha’s taking a nap, and Ariya’s playing with her cousins.

Dear Ariya,

We went strawberry picking this month.  You were so excited to spend time with daddy and pick strawberries.  They were so yummy!  And there was a playground to play on.  But the best part of all was the strawberry slushy.  So delicious!!

The last time you went to the beach, you were 6 months old.  We went to Jamaica for a friend’s wedding.  The water was so calm and clear, blue and green, warm.  A great way to ease into the water.  You’re not so impressed with the beaches of North Carolina.  We’re staying in Kure Beach, and you are so scared of the waves.  You love playing in the sand, digging, building sand castles.  But you’re will barely get your feet in the water.  Even when your dad or I go in the water, you cry and get scared.  You’re afraid we’ll wash away.  We won’t, we’re pretty good swimmers.  Nani and Nanu stayed with us this weekend at the beach, and you were so excited to have Nanu at the beach with us.  Nani is not a fan of the sun, but she’s been waking up early to go for her walks, gathering sea shells for you. And Nanu wanted to take you in the water, but you weren’t ready.  Now, your grandma and cousins are here, Auntie Carmen and Uncle Eric.  Your favorite cousin Jayden is here, and Phelix.  And Auntie Anjuanette, Uncle Kashiff and Mekhai are coming tonight.  What an exciting beach vacation!

You started taking swim lessons with your friend Asher at the country club.  You love seeing Asher and his big sister Marni.  And I guess the pool is different from the ocean.  You love splashing and kicking in the water.

When we get back from the beach, you’ll take soccer camp.  Right now you love kicking the soccer ball around so I think you’ll playing soccer.  You’re taking soccer camp with Asher, so at least you’ll have a friend with you.  I can’t wait to see how much fun you’ll have.

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Dear Asha,

You turned 6 months old this month. You’ve been rolling over like crazy, enjoying tummy time.  We started sleep training you, but you have the hardest time going to sleep on your own.  You’re ok to fall asleep in our arms, or when I’m wearing you.  The car sometimes helps.  But I’m hoping you’ll figure it out soon.  Your morning naps are getting longer (YES!!).

We’ve started you on solids.  Your first food was sweet potato.  You made the funniest faces, trying food for the first time. Since then, you’ve had apples, pears and now bananas.  I think you like it.  Now you make the cutest faces, every time you see your spoon.

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Project 365 Film edition – May 2016

So, as I’ve said in past blog posts about film, I’m obsessed.  like OBSESSED!  I’ve shot a TON of film.  Picking the best 30 or 31 for each month is no problem.  I probably have enough for the rest of the summer, and it’s barely started.  I’ve shared a ton on instagram, so if you feel like checking me out there, the link is here.

Recently, I submitted a few photos to the Analog story.  I wanted to share my story, why I shoot film.  Best decision I ever made, committing to shooting film.  Unfortunately, my husband is starting to wonder what all is involved (cost of film, cost of development, etc).  But then he loves the prints that come back.  So I’d say it’s well worth it.

Here are a few of my favorites from this month. Some Portra 160, Portra 160NC, Portra 400, Lomo 800, Fuji 400h.  Shot with Nikon f100, Pentax 6×7 and Mamiya 645AF.

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Letters to our Children – May

I’m writing this while Asha takes a nap and Ariya is in pre-school.  Let’s hope I can get through this.

Ariya, my sweet girl.

We got to go to the Apple Blossom Carnival this year!  Your daddy was actually off for the week of Apple Blossom.  The weather was horrible for the parade, and we ended up going out of town to visit Nani and Nanu, see Grandma and Auntie Anjuanette, Uncle Kashiff, Auntie Carmen and your cousins.  But I was so excited (and I’m sure you were excited) to go to the carnival and for you to actually be able to ride some of the rides!  You had a blast, you rode a few rides, won a few prizes, rode a horse, had some cotton candy (which you loved!) and a chilli hot dog.  You were tired by the end of the day and didn’t want to go home (which you say all the time now “I don’t want to go home”).

I made the mistake of telling you our summer vacation plans.  For a month now, all I’ve heard is “and now we’re going to the beach.  Let’s go to the beach.  Are we going to the beach now?  I want to build sand castles!”  Yes, Ariya, we’re going to the beach at the end of June.  But until then, I guess I’ll hear your wish to go to the beach now, every darn day.

Lately, you’ve been waking up early.  Like, really early.  Before, your bedtime was 7:30/8pm, and you’d wake up at 7:30/8am.  But I don’t know if it’s that you’re hearing Asha’s cries, or if you’re missing your daddy and want to catch him before he leaves for work at 6:30am, but you’ve been sneaking in our room, getting into our bed early in the morning.  This morning, I almost stepped on you, you were sleeping on the floor next to the bed!  I hope this is a phase, I love that you want to cuddle, but you should really get more sleep!

It’s your last week of pre-school.  I’m a little nervous for this summer.  You’ve become obsessed with Disney Jr and now love Octanauts.  It’s a pretty cool show, but you’d be content to sit on the couch and watch 3 or 4 episodes in a row.  When I’m not feeling well or tired, sure, it’s ok to veg out on the couch.  But I don’t plan to let you do that all summer!

These were all shot with the Nikon f100 and Lomo 800, rated at 400 and pushed +1 in dev.

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Asha Asha Asha.  Why won’t you sleep!  What happened?  You slept for long stretches at a time.  you know how to do it.  I know you do.  But for some reason, the past few nights, you kept waking up every few hours.  It was tough on your mommy and daddy.  I have a feeling you are hitting a few milestones and don’t know what to do with yourself!  You’re drooling a ton!  I keep feeling around your gums, but don’t feel any teeth (thank goodness, I never nursed a teething baby before, and I’m scared to do it now!  Ariya stopped nursing at 6 months and her teeth came in soon after.)  You love gnawing on your toys, our fingers, my shoulder.  And now you’ve started rolling over!  At first, you look at me with this huge smile, like you know you’ve done something HUGE.  And then you start to freak out and cry because you don’t know what you’ve done and you just want to go back to lying on your back again, or better yet, be held.

You’re now 5 months old.  You love to grab your toes, sucking on your fingers, roll to your side and stare.  You’re a pretty calm chill baby, until you’re tired or hungry.  We love playing with you, especially Ariya.  She loves giving you hugs and kisses, and laying with you.

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