Monday, January 30, 2012

A Daddy Post - Love Poem for Addisyn

Everything I Have

Tonight I laid you down to sleep
On the night you turned two
We held your hands did mom and I
And said a prayer with you

We tucked you in with your stuffed pig
And kissed you on your cheeks
Then told you how much we love you
As you drifted to sleep

Later on that night while I was

Thinking of you down stairs
A passing train rumbled our house
I thought you might be scared

Did I hear something from your room?
I thought I heard you cry
Maybe I wanted an excuse
To hold you for a while

When I got upstairs to your room
In peace you laid at rest
Just in case, I still picked you up
And laid you on my chest

Holding you tight with all my love
I kissed you a time or two
And as you slept there in my arms
I whispered this poem to you,

“Baby I know when you wake up
Tomorrow I’ll be gone
But I’ll be back that afternoon

Promise it won’t be long

Daddy will be away at work all day
It’s what daddy has to do
Please know that while I am away
I’m thinking about you

I’ll never be so far away
That you should feel alone
You’ll never be so far away
That these arms aren’t your home

So though I have to leave sometimes
I’m always coming back
‘Cause you and mom and Jesus Christ
Are everything I have”

I kissed your head another time
And laid you in your crib
Knelt down and grabbed your little hand
And prayed with you again

“Lord I thank you for my daughter
Next year she will be three
I pray one day I can love her
The same way You love me”

To: Addy
Love: Daddy

*Addisyn was sick this weekend so we couldn't do our photo shoot. Below are some pictures I took at before her party :-)








Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Mom to Mom - A Lesson Learned

Mom to mom I’d like to share with you a great lesson in parenting that I learned yesterday…

It was a smidge irrational to believe that my sweet baby was going to stay a sweet baby forever. She was bound to disobey, test my patience, lie, scream at the top of her lungs in an attempt to get her way, and say or do things that would hurt my feelings.  These are all things I pretended to “know”, but I hadn’t quite understood because my sweet baby Addisyn could do no wrong…that is until yesterday. Yesterday was the day when my happy-go-lucky-parenting bubble burst and washed away all hope that my precious Addy was going to be the one and only child on this earth who didn’t have any disciplinary issues.  Disobedience was at an all-time high as she voiced her three favorite phrases (“Stop It!”, “No, No, No!”, and “Mine!”) with no regard for mommy sanity.  Patience and logic were exhaustively tested as I still can’t figure out how my daughter can’t count, but never comes to me when I ask her to until I get to “three”.  And, I know she wasn’t trying to hurt my feelings, but it breaks my heart when she will hug and kiss the dog who has been plopped on the couch all day and won’t even give me a little squeeze when I have a day of cooking, cleaning, running errands and changing diapers ahead of me.
Okay, I’m no idiot. I mean, I knew at some point I would have to rummage through my closest to find my discipline big girl pants, but I wasn’t prepared to dig up that outfit just yet. I was still riding on the fact that I have always had awesome communication with her and thought I could reason with my two year old if I ever needed to.  Usually just one timeout will do the trick, but it has never been like it was yesterday. Nope, yesterday I spent the whole day in a battle of wits and perseverance against a two year old girl with the super powers of heart melting smiles, irresistibly infectious laughter, the scream of a banshee, and the resilience of Rocky Balboa (queue Eye of the Tiger and visual of Addisyn shadow boxing in front of me).  
So here I am, finally writing this post one day late, three gray hairs (no lie), and two mini meltdowns later arriving at this one point (thanks to some awesome friends): I had a successful day yesterday. Parenting isn’t all about crossing things off my list, being the mom-of-the-year, or having the perfect day. Sometimes things are going to get chaotic and, no matter what I am up against, parenting is about doing whatever it takes to raise my child to be a good and loving person.  It’s true that with all the love I get to experience with the gift of Addisyn, I also have the great role of teaching and molding her to know right from wrong, truth from lies, and love from pain. It will be exhausting and discouraging at times, but isn’t that why being a mom is so special? I have been given a job to do. And like any other occupation, there will be days in the office that I will want to quit or scream or go “Office Space” on the nearest inanimate object, but at the end of the day as long as my daughter was shown what is right, remains safe in my arms, and is unconditionally loved; I’ve done my job.

This post is for the mommas J

Addisyn had a “Winter Wonderland” birthday party this past weekend that was so amazing! I am saving it for another post because we have two year pics coming up this weekend and a love letter to give to her. I can’t wait to show you!
"Life is like photography - Just use the negatives to develop positives." - Unknown

Addisyn at school...









Monday, January 16, 2012

My 101 in 1001

I mentioned last week that 2012 was going to be the year that I finally write down my goals and maybe by sharing them with you; I would be held accountable to these goals.  Yay!, for people keeping me accountable. Ya’ll rock!  You know what? You’re already helping me because when I sat down to actually write these goals down I started getting sweaty palms and wanted to quit.  Raise your hand if you’re a spaz like me? You see, the word “goals” to me sounds like “things-to-do” and given my minor obsession with writing daily things-to-do and my even bigger obsession with crossing them out, I had NO idea how I was going to handle seeing 101 things-to-do that I couldn’t cross off right away. That is until I realized I had promised you this list and a blog promise is about as strong as any pinky promise so I decided to get down, dirty, and honest.
I think you have heard me say that I belong to a group called Pursuit 31 which was started by Karen Stott. Well, that group is full of awesome ladies/photographers; one of them being Damaris Mia. She is the owner of Le Magnifique Wedding blog and an amazing photographer from California. She told us about a website called The Day Zero project which you can read more about here and basically that is all it took. Hundreds of people have started and finished their own lists and are scratching items off as I write this post. I am hoping by doing this that I get to share with you my successes and see your accomplished goals. Anyone want to give it a go?

*pictures at the end of the post
1. Build a website that fits my style, make it my own, and love it.

2. Change my blog to match more of my website and give it a clear direction to what I want it to be.

3. Book 15-20 weddings a year.

4. Design and complete a new office for my business.

5. Read the Bible every weekday morning before Addisyn wakes up.

6. Memorize Bible verses. Knowing the word of God will help me witness to others more.

7. Write at least two posts a week on my blog (personal or photography)

8. Go on a vacation with Steve to somewhere we have never been – Italy? New Zealand?

9. Go on vacation with my whole family to somewhere we have never been.

10. Either own a house or have my current home half way paid off – Dave Ramsey style.

11. Workout three or four days a week for a year.  

12. Get down to 19% body fat.

13. Weigh what I weighed in May 2006 – my goal weight.

14. Plan my dinner meals and cook dinner five days a week.

15. Get my nice flat toned tummy back.

16. Do 10 pull-ups without assistance.

17. Give Addisyn a brother or sister (God willing of course).

18.  Submit a wedding I shoot to a wedding magazine and to a wedding blog.

19. Have one of my weddings published in a wedding magazine.

20.  Go to Showit United.

21. Learn how to coupon and put it into practice.

22. Buy most of my food all natural and cut down on processed foods permanently.

23. Have headshots done by one of my favorite photographer friends.

24. Photograph another photographer’s wedding.

25. Create a fun promo video for my website.

26. Shoot a wedding in at least ten different states  (I have done North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware so far).

27.  Go to bed with my husband every night even during the busy season.

28. Drink more water each day – minimum of 60oz.

29. Make time to read more books (I love reading and in 2011 my reading was almost non-existent).

30. Get some of my blog printed up and bound for Addisyn and our family.

31. Design/create a personal year in review photo book each year-starting this year.

32. Go on dates with husband at least once a month.

33. Organize a minimum of two stylized shoots.

34. Mentor a new photographer.   

35. Enter my photos into three photo contests.

36. Create an LLC for “One More for Love” for the purpose of our family’s savings and investing.

37. Invest my money in some way.

38. Study the Scriptures and understand it enough to relay it in conversation.

39. Make more time to hang out with my sister’s, brother, mom and dad.

40. Write more love letters to Addisyn.

41. Take more photo journalistic pictures of Addisyn.

42. Pray more (I don’t do this nearly enough).

43. Practice weekly on different photography techniques.

44. Get a Mac, Macbook pro, and Ipad for the business.

45. Go to more photographer’s workshops.

46. Go to another P31 event.

47. Meet Jasmine Star at an event. She is just plain awesome.

48. Meet David Jay at an event. He is such an amazing human being.

49. Stop comparing myself to other photographers or bloggers. I am exactly where I am in life because God wants me to be here.

50. Do something for my community with my community group or as a family.

51. Share my faith more on my blog.

52. Grow my hair long and don’t cut it until these 1001 days are over with.

53. Wake up before Addisyn every morning so I am 100% awake to love her. Maybe I can even get some things done (i.e. my Bible study).  

54. Get better about sending birthday/anniversary/thinking of you cards. Even though up until this point I have tried my hardest to boycott all cards (even some coming my way), I will admit that they make the recipient feel better.

55. Be interviewed and featured on another photographer’s blog.

56. Shoot a true destination wedding.

57. Stay more in contact with my in-laws. They are all awesome and live much too far away.

58.  Get finished with steps one through four on the FPU baby steps.

59.  Hang up a wall display of my pictures in my office and a wall display of our family in the living room.

60.  Experiment with different lighting situations.

61. Start doing same day slide shows at my weddings.

62. Create office hours and do not work outside those hours.

63. Create a structured workflow and follow the workflow steps making adjustments when necessary.

64. Inspire other mom’s to follow their dream and find a way to be a stay at home mom and do the thing they love to do.

65. Buy an 85mm 1.2 and 24-70mm 2.8 lens for my collection.

66. Create yearly slideshows for my children and of my family.

67. Do whatever it takes to help my hubby and his friend Donald get a children’s book published because it is awesome and all the children in the world need to read it.

68. Go to a Jasmine Star event.

69. Make a big purchase with cash (i.e. car).

70. Organize my house and keep it clean each day.

71. Create fun bridal packets.

72. Go to a Crossfit competition.

73. Go shopping for a bikini again.

74. Go on mini field trips with Addisyn.

75. Find a ministry to get heavily involved in or start a ministry.

76. Be in a flash dance mob.

77. Shoot a real life proposal.

78. Be asked to shoot an international wedding.

79. Take more self-portraits because I hate myself in front of the camera.

80. Challenge myself to do something that I never thought I could do.

81. Go wine tasting somewhere on the west coast.

82. Write more and practice more writing.

83. Create my brand and stick with it.

84. Network with other local photographers.

85. Read the whole Bible.

86. Start a workout group with other SAHMs.

87. Be even closer friends to my two sisters.

88. Hike a mountain somewhere with my family.

89. Go on date days with Addisyn.

90. Get our Love Story printed and bound when it is finished.

91. Give abundantly of my time, treasure, and talents.

92. Help someone accomplish one of their 101 in 1001.

93. Book five weddings a year with videography. Our videographers, Becca and Dave, are just fantastic.

94. Eat more natural fiber.

95. Build a sand castle with Addisyn.

96. Go to the zoo as a family.

97. Go running with our dogs more.

98. Run 3 miles in less than 26 minutes

99. Buy a back up Mark II.

100. Be an accountability partner for someone’s 101 in 1001.

101. Create another 101 in 1001 list when the time comes.

Whew! That was fun. I can't wait to see yours too. Comment below with some of your favorite goals.

And now for some fun pictures from the last few days.

Saturday was puppy play time and Addisyn loved being out there watching "Pithes" run really fast.

"Up! Up! Up!"

She took off her gloves so she could wear dad's gloves.

You see?

That is one happy puppy!

...and one happy girly!


Peek-a-boo "I see you".

Be still my heart...

We were trying on dresses for her party this weekend...

and she decided to read to her friends.

She didn't want to change.

So we kept it on while she showed me how to pray...

and while she put Pig and Baby down for a nap.

But first she held their hands and prayed with them because daddy and mommy do that with her.

Next, she said "Amen!" in a joyful voice because that is what she does with mommy and daddy.

Finally, she kissed them goodnight and they went off to sleep.

 Addisyn wanted to sleep too! I will never get tired of those little tootsies!

Poor Pig was thrown out of the bed.

Only long enough for Addisyn to realize that Pig was getting the camera attention and then she came back to get him.

The End!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Mom to Mom - Blog post dtd 1/9/2012

Mom to mom, you know I am having a good day when it starts off in a coffee shop.  It still comes as a shock to me sometimes that this is my real life. I am snug in a corner with which I have unofficially deemed, “mine” with my laptop, my cup of mint mocha, and listening to an assortment of righteously relaxing music pumping through the coffee shop speakers.  I use words like “righteously” because they are perfectly appropriate for any situation that involves typing away on my laptop while sipping on a warm, fresh cup of coffee and listening to Jack Johnson, Adelle, and Jason Mraz. I also have no idea where this post is going or what I am going to write about so my Word document is cleverly entitled, “Blog post dtd 1/9/2012” and I find much contentment in that. I can simply write, breathe, and enjoy the moment that I’m in.

So consider yourself warned. If you continue to read this post, it is going to be full of positivity…get ready for my random-grab-bag-of-happiness-post.

Where to begin…

Oh, yes! My daughter is TWO! Can you believe it? A whole two years and some-odd days ago my world was changed. Before I had Addisyn, I can remember watching other moms with their children and being exhausted with the thought of the constant love, care, and attention that one child would need. I also remember being pregnant and people telling me “You are  going to be tired all the time, but it is so worth it”- an accurate, but entirely too generic description of how I really feel about being Addisyn’s mom. The truth is I don’t know if I would be able to precisely define my life now that I have Addisyn in it. It is so much more than being the comforter and constant provider of love and support for her. It is so much more than cherishing the kisses, the words, and the moments I have with her. It is so much bigger than all of this because I know that it is a role I have been given by God himself and I can’t fathom why He chose to bless me with this responsibility. I have had two amazing years knowing God has given me a great gift that I get to treasure every single day; a feeling that will likely not be the same, but even better on her third birthday, her fourth birthday, when she turns ten, and even the teenage years!
Of course, with the turning of two comes party planning…stay tuned, but here is a little clue as to what the hype is all about.


It is January 9, 2012 and I have yet to make an official goals list. Although my calendar is beginning to look like a war zone with things jotted in different spaces throughout the pages – scratched off, rewritten, starred, double starred, and triple underlined.  I need to make it formal and share it with someone who will hold me accountable.  The truth be told, I have never made an official and organized yearly goals list, but this year I am going to be cool like that. So here is the deal my friends, next week I am going to be talking about a very specific goals list called “My 101 in 1001” (101 goals in 1001 days).  If you are anything like me, you are running for the hills because it sounds pretty darn scary, right? It’s so definitive. Well, that is why I would love to do this together. I would like for you guys to create a goals list and share it with me and then update each other when we scratch those goals right off our list. I will have mine ready for you next week so you have a good idea of what the list means. Don’t worry, it will be fun ya’ll. Let’s Carpe Diem the heck out of those goals!
Now it’s time to go back to my happiness:  chasing around a two year old, picking up after her, and letting 1/9/2012 be a day without a title, but a day to be enjoyed.


Addisyn spends most of her days taking care of her baby dolls.


She reads to them...


She feeds them and comforts them. She even multi-tasks (see her talking on the cell phone on the picture to the left)


She snuggles with them...


this time with the cell phone away from her ear :-) Love seeing these precious moments!


With Love,

Stacy Hart

Monday, January 2, 2012

A 2011 Recap

“Not what we have but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance.” ~ Epicurus
Hhhhhhhhhhh {inhaling}{deep breath} {sigh of relief}
Did you feel that? That is my crazy, but perfectly designed year of 2011 being closed in the history books.

I am going to index the pages of this year under the keyword, “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”, but accurately entitle that chapter in my life, “Abundant”.  And, while I am sticking to the book themed descriptions, you should know that I wouldn’t have edited it any other way. While there were times when I was anxious to turn the page and get past the slow or overwhelming days, there were footnotes of love appropriately entered on each page that showed me plainly what life is all about.

On the business front, I reconnected with old friends, learned new things, and met and networked with amazing people. The end result? I fell in love with a job that I could do for the rest of my life. Thank you to everyone who made that possible. Without you, I am just a girl with a camera. You are my inspiration.

Harley -1

Arianne 2

Becca and Dave - 3

Jule and Tom 4

Abigail 5

Brooke 6

Baker 7

Adams 8


Anna and Tony 10

Rachel -11


Shannin -13

Amelia 14

Jenelle- 15

Emily -16

Julie and Tom - 17



Marshall 20

Elin 21

Tuttle 22

Russell- 23

Byers 24

Thompson 25


Margie and Bernie 27

Lyla - 28

Gale -29

Chelsie- 30

Burns 32

McGee 33

Hoppen 34

Varrasse -35

Erin 36

Amy 37

Schneider 37

Becca 39

Russ 40


Final 2

In my personal life, I gained everything: confidence, skill, a little organization (just a bit) and most importantly a stronger relationship with my husband after watching him sacrifice so much for me and Addisyn this year.  My cup runneth over…

“Life in abundance comes only through great love.”  ~ Elbert Hubbard






18 months eating feet

Addisyn sept

Addisyn cover

I am happy. Watch out 2012!

Please visit me on my new facebook page HERE ;-)

Stay tuned for a great year and a giveaway!

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