Christmas Snail Mail

I’m a huge Christmas card lover. I’m one of the weirdos who enjoy the whole process; shooting, designing, addressing, picking out stamps…totally into it. We’ve also made a couple of big announcements via Christmas cards, namely our babies. Below is a compilation of some of my

I’m a huge Christmas card lover. I’m one of the weirdos who enjoy the whole process; shooting, designing, addressing, picking out stamps…totally into it. We’ve also made a couple of big announcements via Christmas cards, namely our babies. Below is a compilation of some of my favorite Christmas cards & photos of mine and even a video Christmas card !

Anyone remember the ridiculous Starbucks red cup “controversy” from a few years ago ? This one was a nod to the times.

Another special memory involving Christmas cards is when my husband & I traveled to Puerto Rico to hand deliver my Dad his card, which included the announcement of his first biological grandchild. I’m so glad I had my camera set up to record his reaction & we will always have adorable footage of this reveal. All the feels.

10847377_1517452658506964_7454997194538804019_o

Want some epic family greeting cards of your own ? I offer photography & design services & am running a holiday photography special RIGHT NOW !
CLICK HERE for more info.

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Lost in Translation

A lot of my local Southern clients & friends have no idea what I’m saying half the time. I’m cool with that ! I can hardly understand yall either. Kidding 😉 Ok, half kidding. But if you get it, this keychain is EVERYTHING. I ordered mine from website COLORingPins.com

A lot of my local Southern clients & friends have no idea what I’m saying half the time. I’m cool with that ! I can hardly understand yall either. Kidding 😉
Ok, half kidding.

But if you get it, this keychain is EVERYTHING. I ordered mine from website COLORingPins.com

dsc_5440-sm-e1512875184106.jpg63rd Drive, to make it feel a bit more like home

 

From their website:
Coloring Pins is a brand that represents people of color, the mis- and underrepresented. We want people to feel and see themselves in a very popular market. We will expand to apparel and other merchandise to complement our popular accessories. Coloring Pins is just here to add a bit more color to the pin game.

I love it. We need more of this.
Check them out ! You can find the DEADASS keychain HERE.

Faux Glow

Having a fireplace in the nursery-turned-big boy room was something I insisted upon when we had the “baby wing” (nursery & playroom) of the house built. There is something just so romantic & cozy about a fireplace & while 6 months pregnant – and romanticizing everything – I decided I couldn’t think of a cozier room than the nursery to add one.

Having a fireplace in the nursery-turned-big boy room was something I insisted upon when we had the “baby wing” (nursery & playroom) of the house built. There is something just so romantic & cozy about a fireplace & while 6 months pregnant – and romanticizing everything – I decided I couldn’t think of a cozier room than the nursery to add one.

10271533_1563043023947927_3589463156426381698_nConstruction of the “baby wing”, 2015

For a while, it all went without a hitch; my oldest was a tiny baby & his belongings consisted of tiny baby things & tiny baby toys and he wouldn’t ever dream of going near the meticulously painted & placed candelabra-style centerpiece that inhabited the fireplace at the time. Then, boom. Reality. The candelabra turned into a baby death trap, which turned into stuffed animals. Stuffed animals turned to clutter. I hate clutter.

12484746_1642273376024891_4528159616135635561_oFireplace with stuffed animals. Cloth diaper by Mini Moose Diapers.

Finally, I found a solution that would not only be aesthetically pleasing, but baby safe & I wanted to share it with you all. This would work well in any fireplace or mantel in your home, because face it: they’re getting into everything, EVERYWHERE.

24909953_1923378674581025_5648728077577054913_nSometimes it takes another baby to realize what an idiot you are.

Ta-dah ! A way to keep both my fireplace ambience and my children alive & unharmed. The good thing about this setup is that it works both as decor & as a nightlight for my 2 year old, who is beginning to become afraid of the dark. He also likes playing with & rearranging the “wood” logs. This particular set of battery powered candles came with a remote. I attached a magnet to the back of it, as well as to the inside of the mantel & voila ! Out of sight, easy access when I want to turn it off/on & no losing the remote.

DSC_5493If only everything in this house came with a remote…

And there you have it ! The links to the products I used are below. Enjoy !

Wood Log Pillows  |  Amazon
Flameless Candles & Remote  |  Amazon

Laundry Room Tour & Freebies

We can all recognize it: the forced smile. The muttering of, “Ohhhh, it’s great…”, between clenched teeth as you attempt to keep a frozen smile on your face & try to remember to blink your eyes, which have widened in horror. It’s the

We can all recognize it: the forced smile. The muttering of, “Ohhhh, it’s great…”, between clenched teeth as you attempt to keep a frozen smile on your face & try to remember to blink your eyes, which have widened in horror. It’s the expression you force when you’re trying to be pleasant & polite about something, yet are absolutely mortified by it. This was the situation I found myself in when I saw my then-boyfriend (now husband’s) laundry room for the first time (sorry, Matt). I could immediately tell it was an awesome room – spacious & full of potential – but it was dark, smelly & packed with years’ worth of dirty clothes & god knows what else. You couldn’t enter without climbing over something. Inside was a 10 year old DVD player still in its sealed, dust covered box. 40 dusty hats that have probably never been worn. Bright blue ceramic tile with black grout that held the secrets of laundry days past. You don’t even want to know what was in those cabinets. “Cool room…”, I muttered, as I quickly shut the door. Well, I tried to. Piles of clothes were blocking the door from fully closing. Okay, something had to be done. Something. Had. To. Be. DONE.

before1In his defense, he was a single guy & rarely home for a LONG TIME

For a while, the room was an abyss I avoided at all costs except to toss my clothing into & out of the washing machines. I attempted to clear the floor space numerous times, but a few weekends’ worth of travel & suitcases later, the same mess reappeared. Eventually, I gave up.

before2So. Many. Hats.
Inside that particular cabinet: Wrestlemania Gear

Then we had kids. Imagine doing laundry 2000x a week in this. It was not fun, nor was it efficient; an already tedious task was made even more miserable by depressing surroundings. At this point, I had begun to start storing miscellaneous odds & ends in here too and it had truly become the black hole of the home. As embarrassing as it is to be literally airing your dirty laundry, the before has to be seen to truly appreciate the after.

before3Before
laundry6After. Full makeover gallery below !

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What a difference ! It was a lot of work, but I was able to get nearly all of it done within the span of a few weeks & mostly DIY – backsplash & flooring included – with the exception being the folding table & washer/dryer surround, which I had my builder put together for me. I now actually enjoy laundry duties & sometimes hide out in here just to relax & have a break. After all, the door can actually shut now 😉
Check out the details below !

Vintage Style Wall Mounted Drying Rack  |  Amazon |  I painted mine with white chalk spray paint.

Peel & Stick Backsplash Tile | Amazon |  It looks like glass. This stuff fools everyone.

8×10 Matted Frames  |  Amazon |  * More on this below *

Crystal Chandelier  |  Amazon  |  Because everyone needs a chandelier in their laundry room, AMIRITE ?

Groutable Travertine Flooring  |  Lowes |  I did grout mine & it made a HUGE difference. Also be sure to caulk around the perimeter of the room & baseboards.

Steele Rolling Laundry Baskets  |  Crate & Barrel |  These were a splurge that ended up being totally worth it. They’re super durable & the wheels are helpful in a home like mine, where the laundry room is as far away as possible from our closets.

Hemnes Shoe Cabinet  |  IKEA  |  I mounted it right next to the dryer & use the bottom left drawer as a dryer lint trash can. The remaining three are actually used for shoes & have freed up a ton of floor space in here. The crystal knobs are from Hobby Lobby.

Floral Wallpaper  |  Indy Bloom Design |  I ordered the peel & stick option and it couldn’t have been any easier.

Laundry Decals  |  Creative Concepts by Kristin  |  These really added a polished look & help with cabinet organization.

All other decor & accessories were either from Hobby Lobby or Home Goods. Fortunately, I renovated between spring & summer and pastels were rampant (and on sale).

Now for the freebies…

I’ve had a few people ask me where I got the laundry themed artwork for this room & I actually just made it myself. Since there has been interest about it, I’ve decided to offer the full resolution artwork for you to enjoy in your own laundry havens. Of course, my diaper routine may differ from yours, but feel free to customize it however you see fit.
Click view full size & right-click/save to download from there. These are all formatted to 8×10.

 

Selfies

Self portraits were a big segue into professional photography for me. Working as a model, I began to tire of frequently needing to find reputable sources to update images in my model portfolio & began to take my own photos

Self portraits were a big segue into professional photography for me. Working as a model, I began to tire of frequently needing to find reputable sources to update images in my model portfolio & began to take my own photos. I learned a lot & am happy to say that I’ve gotten it down to a science now.

I believe that if you can take your own photo – a tedious & often rushed process – you can take anyone’s photo, and 10x better. Photographing someone other than yourself allows you the luxury of taking your time, constantly tweaking & revising your composition, reviewing your shots, etc.; something you can’t really do during self portraiture. A lot of times, however, it is the only option, as it was during my trip to Easter Island, which was a journey worthy of an entire blog in itself…but I will try to keep focus here.

My husband has his own set of extraordinary talents, but unfortunately for me, photography is NOT one of them. So, when we travel, our holiday photos are either in the hands of (mostly camera illiterate) strangers or, well, me.

lenny-green

The photo above is one of my favorite examples of self portraiture on the fly that happened to turn out exactly as I wanted it to, without the use of any studio lighting or assistance ! As we were traveling to & on the most isolated populated island in the world, I knew I had to travel light; no reflectors, tripods or additional baggage that would have slowed us down or been a hinderance to carry. For this shot, I balanced my camera between a pile of jagged rocks & ran back and forth between my spot – marked by a smaller rock I used for my focus point – and a spot close enough to my teetering camera for the remote to send a signal, every 10 shots. Did I mention there was a sleeping baby on my back ? Shhhh….

13000133_1678575052394723_5212198225011525220_nCellphone photo of my madness, snapped by my husband

Many ended up crooked due to the camera falling a bit & there were a lot of awkward shots, since I was in constant movement trying to flare my skirt to give the illusion of wind – the waves below were dramatic due to the rocky coastline & I wanted to mirror that in my stance – but my efforts were not in vain & I ended up with one of my favorite shots, ever.

DSC_4395There are about 40 other photo outtakes from this shoot

 I guess I just wanted to make a post to show that it doesn’t matter where you are or what gear you (don’t) have; never pass up an opportunity to execute your vision !

Santa Sacks

I was recently made aware of the tradition of Santa sacks: A child puts the toys they no longer play with into a sack on Christmas Eve for Santa to

I was recently made aware of the tradition of Santa sacks:

A child puts the toys they no longer play with into a sack on Christmas Eve for Santa to bring to other children who might not get many toys & returns to fill it with new toys. Sounds like a great way to give back & add a little extra magic to the holidays !

I found these gorgeous personalized sacks that I just know my boys will love.
You can find them HERE.

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I did it

At least it’s not a podcast.
I’ve had curious minds urge me to start a blog for a while now. I always thought the internet was inundated with too much content from all sides; after all, you know what they say

At least it’s not a podcast.

I’ve had curious minds urge me to start a blog for a while now. I always thought the internet was inundated with too much content from all sides; after all, you know what they say: The best thing about the internet is that it gives everyone a voice.. and that’s also the worst thing. I was afraid of being just another blog, posting to the void of an imaginary audience or to people who didn’t really care – and that may still be the case – but I do often get questions about the contents of my social media posts & figured it would be easier to hit the posts’ FAQ here. This will also be a space to showcase my favorite images from recent & past photo shoots.

For now, let me know that I’m not posting to the void:

twitter: RebyHardy
instagram: RebySky
snapchat: RebyHardy