As a first time mom, one of my biggest fears was traveling with a baby. I have heard too many horror stories from other moms about their journey’s as a family with a baby baby tagging along. We hesitantly made plans to visit some family in California in October to meet our son for the first time.
When we clicked the “Flight booked” button and I got an email confirmation with our itinerary, my heard started to race. I had lists and to do errands to run to get us prepared for this unfamiliar voyage ahead. Our first airplane ride, car rental and hotel check in as a family of three.
As they days approached, I was going through everything to make sure we were 100% prepared for this trip (it was only 4 days long). Running around and making sure our house was also ready for us to leave was a task too! While we were leaving, we planned to get the entire house painted from top to bottom, so a lot of prep work needed to go into this project.
As we laid our heads down to sleep the night before our trip, I was tossing and turning from anxiety. Everyone knows that I HATE flying, so my nerves were being triggered left and right. I think I got about 4 hours of sleep when our alarms when off and we needed to hustle to leave the house on time.
All our bags are packed and we are loaded up in the car heading toward the airport. Surprisingly, I am calm and just trying to stay focused. We park out car, find our gate and head to security. What’s great about Sky Harbor International Airport is that they allow families’ traveling with infants to skip the standard security check so that was nice. We made it and with plenty of time to spare!
The clock is ticking and we are getting closer and closer to boarding the plane. I am more concerned with how Ben is going to do and not as focused on my own anxiety for flying. We get in our seats and I was able to give Ben a bottle right as we are taking off. As soon as we reach altitude, he falls asleep and stays asleep the entire flight (1 hour and 40 minutes from PHX - SAC). We could not have asked for a better flight! Not to mention the flight itself was not full so we had the entire row to ourselves.
We land and get our bags at baggage claim and head to get our rental. We were able to pick from about 15 different card and we decided to go with a new 2018 Dodge Mini Van. I have always told myself that I would never get a van but after this trip, I think it might be my new car!
We are now headed for the hotel. After about a 20-minute drive we arrive and check in with no issues. We had a crib sent to our room for the baby and we get settled in before we headed off to visit with family. So far so good!
It’s time to finally introduce Benjamin to the California family who has only seen pictures. Everyone fell in love and he was such a trooper with all the love and attention he received. He was able to meet his cousins too for the first time and we could not have asked for a better trip. Jeremy and I got to also meet our nephew for the first time too who is 2 months older than Ben. We just enjoyed ourselves and embraced all the love we could get in the short trip we took.
We were able to do a few fun activates while in Sacramento. We made our way up North to High Hill Ranch. This place is BEAUTIFUL! There were gorgeous scenery with Pines, colorful oaks and plenty of apple cider. They make their own donuts, hayrides, pumpkin patches, fudge, apple picking and so much more. The entire ranch was covered in local vendors and plenty of food options. It was such a perfect place to spend the day with the family enjoying the fresh air and amazing food.
We try to make it out to Sacramento at least once a year to visit family. With the baby tagging along, it has changed how we travel for sure! I am not going to lie; it is stressful but so worth having him with us on our adventures. He was a trooper the entire trip and with one adventure under our belts, we are ready for more!
What are some travel tips you can give when it comes to traveling with infants or children? Comment below and make sure to Follow Me on Instagram for more photos and content.
High Hill Photo: http://www.edc-farmtrails.org/member/high-hill-ranch
Apple photo: https://handbookofnaturestudy.com/2010/10/apples-autumn-series-challenge-day.html/
Picking the right shade of gray for your home can be a challenge. When it comes to gray tones, picking the right shade can make our break your homes interior design. When they say 50 shades of gray, it’s more like an infinite amount of shades. How do you pick the right one?
We headed to our local hardware store to start looking at all the different options. After about 45 minutes of standing there with my finger in my nose and an overwhelming array of possibilities, I started to feel dazed. My mind started to play tricks on me and I wasn’t getting anywhere. I would pick up a swatch and say, “yes I found my gray”! But then, I would move a few shades down and find another shade that I thought was the same color. Once I compared the two I could see tones of blue, green or purple in each gray. How can you pick the right one????!?!?!?
After battling back and forth between colors and a nauseating overload, I decided to leave empty handed. This was a big decision for our new house and I had to make sure I was making the right one. I headed home and jumped online to see what others were doing about color choices in their homes. After some research I found some great tips and tricks when it comes to picking that perfect shade of gray. Now, time to test the theories...
My husband and I found a few photos of kitchen and living rooms from others who have painted with grey colors and found out what color and brand they used. We headed back to the store and without looking too hard into the other colors, we had the tec make up samples of the 4 colors we decided to go with based on the online research. One of the tricks we learned was to make sure to test the colors on multiple walls around your home: Living room, kitchen, family room, office, stairway, master bedroom and bathroom. We placed all 4 colors on the wall and wrote below what colors they were. After letting the paint dry, we went back to our locations to rate each color. We changed the lighting from natural light to artificial lighting to get a feel for each color. We began to rate each room based on our favorite colors we placed on the walls and then compared our answers. This seemed to be a great way to get multiple sets of eyes on the colors without feeling like they are meshing into each other.
We finally decided on a gray!!! The process was so easy and simple. We are going to go with the
Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray. It is going to be exactly what we are looking for in a gray shade. It’s not blue, it’s not green and it’s not brown. It feels like an authentic true gray that doesn’t sway one way on the color spectrum.
We can’t wait to get this project started and show you the after photos of our home!
First off, let me just say that Flagstaff, AZ is one of the most wonderful places to visit. My husband and I went to college at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff and we adored the city. If we ever have the opportunity to move back, I am sure we would pack up and leave in a heart beat!
This was our first mini road trip with the baby and he did such a great job. It was a spur of the moment decision to pack up and head up to Northern Arizona, and it was so worth it! He was such a trooper and slept the entire 2 hours it took us to get up there.
The entire drive is a scenic experience. Every turn is pure beauty. Mountains, desert landscapes, open fields and meadows all lead the way into Coconino National Forest which is covered in great pines and aspen trees.
Nothing beats Flagstaff’s ability to literally take your breath away. At 12,000 elevation, you may experience some shortness of breathe while walking around down town, but don’t sweat it because there are plenty of great bars and restaurants to stop in and take a rest. One of our favorite spots to hit for something tastes is Pato Thai Cuisine right in downtown Flag. They are a smaller location with great service and fooooood! Ben really enjoyed himself in the fun and exciting atmosphere.
One of the really neat features of Flagstaff is the great railroad system that is still used today. The trains that storm through town are always so fun to watch. Kids get so excited to see the big train chug by with all its power.
After the waves of nostalgia crashed into us, we decided to head off to see the rest of the city we loved so much. We headed up North toward Snow Bowl at the bottom of Mount Humphrey’s where you can ski, hike, camp or just enjoy nature. We were able to capture the Fall leaves changing around the base of the mountain. By this time the baby was pooped, it started to rain and we needed to hit the road.
A perfect way to end the day was with some great sunsets we watched on the way home. Nothing beats the sunsets that we have here in AZ. Read more about AZ living. With a 25 degree difference only 2 hours away, it was nice to be back home in our own neck of the woods. The great thing about Flagstaff is that it is only a 2 hour drive North for us to be able to be in a complete different world. Many do not know that Arizona has snow or 4 seasons in some locations. Flagstaff is a great place to raise a family, ski, go to school or just enjoy the outdoors. If you ever get a change to visit, it is worth the trip.
Share your Fall adventures below!
If you want to read more about Living in Arizona CLICK HERE
I grew up being a Phoenician and have never really considered leaving. Our entire family resides in AZ and the weather isn’t as bad as people make it out to be. Yes, the summers are HOT, but that’s why AC was invented, right?!
Here are a few reasons why I love living in Arizona
1. The views are breathtaking.
Not only are you surrounded by miles and miles of rich desert landscape but, there are amazing mountains and peaks surrounding all of Arizona. No matter where you go in AZ, you will have a view!
2. The Weather!
Yes, June – September can be pretty brutal with temperatures reaching 115 degrees! But the great part about bad weather means you need to find other activities to stay comfortable. Just like in the mid west when it snows, we too have to find other ways to beat the heat! Going to a movie, swimming in the pool, and believe it or not we do have ice skating rinks. But the best part about the weather in Arizona is during the FALL! It’s a perfect crisp 60 degrees and 80 at the highest up until April or May. PERFECTION!
The commute around the city has been planned with excellence. With some many freeways available and so many of them connecting to one another, getting around this larger city is a piece of cake. This means that traffic isn’t as bad as some places like LA or Chicago
(not to say we don’t have traffic).
Overall, the price you pay for a home in AZ is pretty cheap compared to other placed around the US. Our real estate is priced appropriately to the city you want to live in. Scottsdale, Paradise Valley and Peoria are priced on a higher end scale due to demand, location and overall desired living.
5. Sunrise and Sunset
We have some of the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets. Even Forrest Gump made 3 different appearances in his film due to the beautiful nature of Arizona! Check out the clip here!
6. The Grand Canyon… need I say more?
We have some really amazing places you can visit in Arizona.
If you are looking for cold weather with snow, we got it.
If you are looking for a tale gate weekend at an NFL game, we got it.
If you are looking for a great aquarium, waterpark or theme park, we got it.
If you are looking for the best Mexican, Italian or French foods, we got it.
If you are looking for sand dunes and off road racing, we got it.
If you are looking for haunted hotels or spooky towns, we got it.
If you are looking for a relaxing day in a botanical garden, we got it.
If you are looking for a weekend on the lake, we got it.
If you are looking to hike some of the most beautiful places, we got it.
If you are looking to escape the freezing col and enjoy the sun, we got it.
Comment and let me know where you live and why you love living there!
Check out my other blogs on Motherhood, Photography or Beauty
Its Sunday evening and you are getting ready to start the week. You have your lunch packed in the fridge, fresh coffee grounded and in the coffee maker on a delayed brew, and your ready to get your outfit together.
You walk into your closet, possibly trip over a pile of dirty clothes that should have gotten washed over the weekend but you had one too many and “forgot”. You gaze into the void of colors hanging in front of you and say out loud,
“ I have nothing to wear”!
Well, have no fear; your fashion inspiration is here!!
Don’t stress about what you are going to wear this entire week. These inspiring outfits are perfect for each day of the week.
I hate that feeling that I have NOTHING to wear. My better half can’t stand it when I ask him to help me pick something out. I am hoping a new set of eyes will see something that I can’t and fix my boring style???
Watch out Monday, here comes the start of a great fashion week!
Not only is this very casual, but it has a nice comfort/professional look to it. Some of us may not be 100% ready for the week to begin and this is a great transitional outfit from weekend to week.
Ok, we’ve had our coffee, made out task list for the week and are ready to kick booty! This very sophisticated yet sexy outfit shows the boss whose boss. A nice pair of slacks and a great blouse is a great way to go.
Its HUMP DAY Y’ALL!!!
This is a great combination of sophistication meets classic. An iconic blazer with a really fun pair of slacks lets people know you have a strong exterior shell but once you get to the inside, you have a gooey caramel center.
Yes!!! Its Friday eve and we are ready for it! This outfit says more than just casual, it has such a great neutral feel that will go with any setting; especially those after work cocktails to start kicking off the weekend early.
TGIF!!! It’s finally here and it could not have come any sooner! Hitting the town with a classic black and white will ensure you fit in no matter where you go for dinner, drinks and maybe a bit of dancing.
Weekends are for warriors! This outfit is more that just a quick throw on but a great outfit to get things done. Go to the grocery store, grab a coffee, get lunch with your BFF or head to Target to get that one item and end up walking out with half the store. It’s just a perfect weekend ensemble ideal for any errand.
Some people like to relax on Sunday and so absolutely nothing. That’s me. I usually wear a t-shirt from the hubby, a pair of leggings and my hair thrown up as I lounge around all day long. Sundays for me are for spending time with my family and sitting on my butt! But, for the sake of the blog, here is a nice friendly outfit great for Church, brunch with your mom or maybe some last minute shoe shopping you didn’t get to yesterday.
I hope by now you have seen an outfit or two and realized that you DO have stuff to wear in your closet. You aren’t going to walk into Monday with pajama bottoms and a robe because you couldn’t find anything.
You got this!
Take on this week with confidence, style and a great attitude because you are gonna look fabulous!
Photo Credit: M: bloglovin.com T: EP Style extrapetite W: Outfitsz.com Th: Plussizeall.com F: Jackie Long SA: My Voguish Diaries S: Girwithcurves.net
Being a younger female in today’s world has brought mixed feelings about body acceptance. The constant interactions with magazines, TV, social media and other forms of media have started to mold the minds of women all around the world. We are being told to look a certain way to be considered beautiful. Not only are we seeing many young girls struggling with body image, but they have no options when it comes to learning how to embrace their bodies. Why should we be told what is beautiful and what is not? Why can’t we all just be beautiful regardless of our shape or size?
Three of the big influencers of body image are through social media, ads and magazine covers. Women see these forms of media on a daily basis. Ad campaigns like Victoria Secrets “Perfect Body” campaign has spark a ton of backlash on the woman they used for the shoot. Each one is about 100 lbs with ribs and bones showing. They are giving such a false impression of how the average woman looks and causing young girls to question their own bodies.
Why don’t I look like that?
Why cant my tummy be that flat?
Is this what men want?
Is this considered sexy?
How do I get my body to be perfect like this?
These are such unhealthy question that company are implanting in young girls and women.
Other examples of this poisons belief are seen by Allure, Vogue, Cosmopolitan and many more.
Just as a simple example, I Google searched the words “Magazine covers” and this is what I got as a result:
I did the same thing with Glamour magazine company and this was the result:
"The bottom line is that 50 percent of American women are a size 14 or above, so that means magazines [that aren't including plus-size fashion] are willfully ignoring 50 percent of their readership," said Redbook editor in chief Meredith Rollins.
So what do we do as 50% of the female population who are not a size 2?
Its time to embrace your body!
Self love is something many women struggle with on a daily basis. The hardest part about self love is that no one can teach you to believe it besides yourself! We are women and we are strong. No one can tell us what is beautiful and what is not.
Here is a good example:
I painted a portrait of the ocean. After hours of work I think it is one of the most beautiful painting I have ever seen. I show my mom and she also things its beautiful. I show 4 more strangers and they too believe it is beautiful. The final person I show thinks it is ugly and should go right in the trash.
So, who is right? Who gets to determine if the painting is beautiful or not?
It is subjective!!
There is not one person who gets to decide if my painting is beautiful or ugly. This same concept applies to our self-image!
Not one person gets to decide what is beautiful and what is not.
Not one person gets to decide what is perfection or not.
Not one person gets to decide what is the ideal body type.
Everyone is going to look different. There is no way around it. It’s great that we are not all made out of cookie cutters. We are different heights, shapes, colors, and sizes and that the most beautiful thing of all.
When did this become the new normal?
Did you know that if Barbie were a real person, she would tip over? She wouldn’t be able to stand at all! So why do we buy our kids these dolls? Uggh..
I am slowly learning to love my body. It is hard at times but I continue to work on loving myself and the shapes I am. Sure, shopping for clothes can be a challenge. It drive me insane when I walk into a store and try a shirt on that is a size medium and then walk into the store next door and I need an extra large. Either way, I buy whatever size fits my body best regardless of the stupid label and the letter on the tag. People ask me what size I am and I honestly can’t give them an answer.
Usually the response is, “It all depends on where and what I am shopping for… so I don’t know”.
I am a big fan of things that accentuate my butt and things that synch my waist. Dark colors are always a safe bet but I do like to try to wear as many lighter things as I can. I love skinny jeans with a looser top. If I can tuck it in, then I am one happy girl! High waited jeans and a cardigan are always a good way to get that combination of trendy and comfort. If I can get my hands on a great maxi dress with a jean jacket then my confidents shoots through the roof!
Remember ladies; we are all beautiful regardless of our sizes. We all have flaws and struggle to shake off the negativity. We need to stick together in this crazy world. We are on the same team and we need to remember just how incredibly perfect our bodies are no matter the size or shape. Slowly, the fashion industry is swinging its views and providing great fashion options for all body types. My wish is that the beauty and fashion industry swings its views of body image to accept everyone as they are without judgment or separation of sizes.
The industry defines “beauty” for us unfortunately. I would love to see a new definition written in the near future to incorporate and admire all women.
funny thin to thick photo: https://lissyluli.wordpress.com/2014/01/17/real-women/
Barbie photo: https://fashionatjasminehernandez.wordpress.com/category/art-302/
The topic of makeup has been ringing in girl’s ears at such early ages.
Every magazine cover, music video and social media site's have shown women what they must look like in order to be beautiful.
Why can’t I just look beautiful my way?
I am here to set the debate straight.
NOTE: I am not a professional makeup artist or know how to apply products perfectly, but I do things my own way and that is okay!
I enjoy doing my own makeup. It gives me a sense of sexy confidence that I need to start out my day. I do not do it for my husband, my family or strangers. I wear makeup because I want to accentuate my traits that I am proud of having.
The beauty industry has told us for so long “you are only beautiful if you are free of pimples, wrinkles, greasy hair, curves or thin lips”. Well, I am not a Barbie doll and I have everyone one of these “flaws”.
I think the greatest part about having the ‘flaws’ is that I do not look like every single one of these girls on the cover of magazines. I do not look like a robot that just walked off the assembly line. I am unique and different and that’s the most beautiful thing of all.
My Go 2 Items
Here are my 24/7 go to items for makeup both Drug store (DS) & High end (HE)
Foundation: DS: Maybelline 24 hour foundation
HE: Dior forever foundation
Concealer: DS: NYX HD studio photogenic concealer
HE: Tart Creaseless Concealer
Powder: DS: L’Oreal Infallible pro-matte
HE: Lancôme dual finish milti-talking powder foundation
Mascara: DS: Maybelline volume express
HE: MAC in Extreme dimension Lash
Bronzer: DS e.l.f. bronzer palette: Deep
HE: Marc Jacobs Coconut bronzer: tan-tastic 104
Blush: DS: L’Oreal true match super bendable blush in spiced plum
HE: Tarte Amazonian clay in paaarty (nude)
Brows: DS: e.l.f instant lift brow pencil in coffee
HE: Anastasia brow wiz in dark brown
Lips: DS: Revlon Super lustrous lipstick in Primrose
HE: Lancôme L'Absolu Rouge 361
Primer: DS: Jergens non scented lotion
HE: Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer
Brushes: I only use cheap brushes haha (e.l.f. or ones that have high reviews on Amazon)
Eye Shadow: I don't really use it. If i do put anything on my lids I use a bronzer.
Being a mother is one of the most rewarding, tiring, amazing, frustrating, wonderful, crazy things I have ever be honored to do. Anyone who is a parent can relate to these feelings and understand what it takes to be the best parent we can be to our little ones. Yes, I am sure people are going to disagree with some of my responses and that is okay! We are all entitled to our opinions. What kind of parents would we have if they didn't teach us to be independent thinkers?! Thanks mom and dad.
Do you think spit cleans better than water?
Spit wins every time.
How did you feel when you first found out you were pregnant?
I was ecstatic! We had been trying for a while and were not getting pregnant but as soon as I started having really sore breasts and missed my period, I made an appointment with my doctor who told us we were pregnant. I had been taking pregnancy test before I made the appointment but they were all coming up negative. I had very low HCG levels, which is why I didn’t have any symptoms of pregnancy through the entire 9 months.
What’s your favorite part of being a mom?
My favorite part about being a mom is being able to stay at home with my baby boy and enjoy every moment with him. I can’t wait for him to say ‘mama’.
Do you think it’s easier to be a mom or a dad?
This is a tough one. Before I became a mom, I had a career and worked 40 hours a week. I went to college and had a social life. Currently, my husband works and I stay at home. I will say that this is one of the toughest things I have had to do. I don’t call being a mom a “job” but for the sake of the question, this is a hard "job". I would say that each parent has to make sacrifices. We chose for me to stay home, but that mean no breaks, no required lunch times and when its 5:00pm I don’t get to go home from my job. I am on call 24/7. My husband gets to leave the home and go to his place of work. That means he doesn’t have to deal with crying, teething, poopie diapers, nap schedules, breastfeeding, and being up all through the night.
That being said, his sacrifice is that he gets to see his son for only a few hours every night. He misses a lot of milestones like crawling, walking and talking. He doesn’t get to build that relationship with his son in the ways that I do.
SO I would say that moms and dads are split 50/50. Yes, I had to give birth, but the man who loves me and doesn’t want to see me in pain had to just stand there and watch me go through something traumatizing. That’s got to hurt too.
What is the best piece of advice you could give to someone who is about to have their first child?
You are going to be just fine. You have natural instincts that will kick in. Trust me, I was so scared too. I went from being Kristyn to being Mom in a matter of a few hours. Its weird to think but I promise you, you will get in the rhythm of things in no time. It is kind of like starting a new job or being in a new city. You will learn how things are done and you will figure out all the street names. It takes a bit of patients, self-assurance and time.
You Got This!
Did you always think you’d have kids?
Yes!!! I couldn’t wait to be a mom and for Jeremy to be a dad. We were so excited to start having a family once the time was right for us.
Are there things you miss about life before kids?
I defiantly will say that the one thing I really miss is a solid nights sleep. Since having Ben, it has been one of the tougher things to adjust to. We are on his schedule. If he has a bad night, than so do I. If he has a bad nap in the afternoon, I have to stop what I’m doing and attend to him. But I also wouldn’t change anything, even the sleepless nights.
Who’s the mom that you admire most?
I admire ALL moms of course! I would say that my mom, my older sister who has 2 kids and mother in law have shown me so many things. They have all encouraged me that I am doing a good job as a mother and that I will continue to do so. Their guidance from handling fevers to diaper rash are great resources for me. Knowing that I am getting compliments from some of the greatest mothers I know is a real honor.
How would you describe your life as a mom in just six words?
Have you ever thought" gosh I cant do this", and why?
There have been so many times I have thought this way that I can’t even count anymore. It usually happens when I am feeling overwhelmed or scared. It can be something as little as 'the baby has a fever and I can’t get him to calm down'; Or it can be something as little as he wont stop throwing his food. It all comes in waves. Sometimes the waves are little and you can jump over them. Other times, it feels like a tsunami and the weight is going to crush you. But the best part about all these waves is that the bigger waves are perfect for surfing. Grab a board and coast along the wave and take it in chunks.
What are your views on young mums having children?
There is nothing to view in my opinion. Mothers are all different ages. I believe heavily in women’s rights and I think that as long as the mother understands what her responsibilities are going to be and that she is going to have someone depending on her for the rest of her life, than it is her life and she gets to choose what her life is going to look like. I know accidents happen, but I don’t always think age has a negative definition on a mother. I know PLENTY of young moms and they are some of the greatest moms I know. I know PLENTY of mid-older moms and they are not idea fits for the role. Our society shames mothers abilities based on their age and I don’t agree with that at all. Every mom is different. Who am I to judge who fit to be a mom?
Biggest worry about your baby's future?
I am constantly thinking of how my son is going to deal with bullies. I don’t remember this being an issue when I was a kid in school but this has been a really big issue with children today. I hope I teach him how to stand up to bullies but, also to make sure he doesn’t become one either.
Do you believe in staying home or going to work?
I believe in doing what is best for your family!! I am fortunate enough to be able to stay home, but if our situation was different I would have to go to work. Kids grow up in so many different ways. As long as you have great parents, then you should have a great kid, right? If I could have it my way, no parent would ever have to go to work and money would grow on trees and everyone lived happily ever after but this is the real world and my husband makes the sacrifice for us everyday to get in the car and drive away for 10 hours a day. We love him for this sacrifice.
What is the most rewarding part about being a mother?
The most reward part of being a mom is knowing I made one of the smartest and adorable baby in the world! I get excited to see him after his nap and he claps and laughs when he sees me. Knowing I am almost like a celebrity to this baby makes me feel so amazing. The rewards are worth all the work.
What is the one thing you never had that you want for your kids?
One of our big goals as husband and wife was to have a family. We also wanted to make sure we had financial security since that is something neither one of us had. Our big goal for our children is to make sure they never have to worry about money. Yes, our kids will have to get job and have to pay for their own gas and other treats. We had to work for everything we wanted and we will raise our children the same way. Nothing will be handed to them.
Was your partner a help or hindrance during the first few weeks after giving birth?
My husband was a trooper! I was only getting about 2/3 hours a sleep a day and he weighted on me hand a foot to make sure I got everything I needed. He was able to take paternity leave so I had a lot of help from him for about 3 weeks.
You're in the store with a full cart and your baby starts crying frantically...what do you do?
I see if I can quickly calm him down otherwise…See you later cart!
I secretly have this weird obsession with interior design, home décor and any kind of DIY project I can get my hands on.
When I first went to college, I was an interior design major, but then I had a teacher who ruined my desire to want to purse it as a career so I switched majors.. Anyways, I have always had such a fun time walking through Lowe's or Pier One and seeing all the possibilities.
I found that Pinterest was a great way for me to window-shop any idea I had. I look at everything from holiday decorations, to repurposing furniture and even big DIY project for the home. I get such great inspiration from others and I want to share the great Fall décor ideas I have with all of you!
Starting off with Kirkland's: They have an INSANE about of Fall decor options available online and in store. I will be honest, but going inside their store if so worth it because the smell of their candles smacks you right in the face. If smells like they literally are throwing fresh based apple pie in your face! mmm so good! Plus, everything is pretty inexpensive and they always have amazing clearance and sales going on.
Next on the list is the amazing World Market: This is the place you need to go to not only get your amazing Fall table setting dishes and candles, but they have some of the greatest wreaths that are full and look really expensive but they are not. Great quality and inexpensive is my kind of shopping!
Lastly, I give you the one and only AMAZON: Surprisingly enough they have a great selection of Fall decor options. The nice part about their selections is that most of the Fall items are heavily reviewed by others who have purchased the items. It's nice to see what kind of feedback they are leaving before you even purchase. If you do not wish to leave the house in your sweat pants, spiced latte and fuzzy socks this Autumn season, then go onto Amazon and see what great items you can find.
Don't forget to share any of your Fall decor finds below so we can all get in the spirit!
I am a big believer is being able to capture the perfect moments. Many photographers believe that you should only take a photo when it is the right time. For me, perfect moments are missed because they come and go so quickly. When I am doing a session, I take as many photos as I can and this is where I find those perfect little moments always pop up.
What camera do you use?
I shoot with the Rebel T6i from Cannon. I do no discriminate against brands of cameras. I shoot with what I have at the moment. I use my iphone for a lot of pictures too!
What is Your favorite lens?
I use the canon 18-58mm for most of my shoots. I tend to take photos within these ranges of focus.
Do You shoot Manual?
Absolutely! Shooting manual allows for me to be able to control my environment. Auto is great for someone who is looking to snap a few photos really quick. If I need my husband to take pictures I give him the auto settings. For me, I like to be able to control what the photo will feel like.
Do you shoot Raw or Jpg
Depending on the project I usually shoot RAW. It is also a good idea to shoot RAW+jpg so you don’t have to convert later. Saves time!
How do you best market to your target client in order to stay busy despite the limited types of sessions you accept?
I am a word of mouth photographer. I do not currently use any kind of advertising. The only marketing I do is on social media through hashtags and word of mouth. The amount of traffic I get using these methods is enough for me at the moment.
How did you get started and how did you build your client base?
I always had a desire to take photos. I originally liked abstract and microphotography. I studied photography in college and began building up my portfolio. I used my family to start building a specific style of photos. Once I had a quality portfolio, I started having my family suggest my service to their co-workers and friends. I ended up creating a logo for myself, getting business cards and handing them out to people I knew. I would look at other local photographers to see what they were charging and I wanted to be at least competitive. After looking around, I noticed that I could not charge a couple wanting newborn photos $500 for 30 edited photos so I made it my mission statement to be an affordable photographer for families looking to have cherished memories. I am not a professional so I can't charge those crazy prices. I am a decent photographer who is looking to give people a great deal on quality photos. Chick Here for more information on my photography services.
What programs do you use to edit?
I use Lightroom. Photoshop is a bit complex for the editing I do. I do not alter photos. I do more of an enhancement.
Do you use studio or natural light?
Depends on who I am shooting and the feel my client is looking for is how I determine the kind of lighting to use. If I am indoors, I try to use natural light as much as I can. It is a bit more rare that I use studio lighting for my shoots. Something about natural light give the subject that perfect glow that you can't always get with studio lighting.
Where do you find your props?
I do not spend much money on props or blankets. The cheaper the better! I go to places like Ross, Big Lots and thrift stores. Believe it or not, Wal-Mart has a great section on fabric. You can get 2 yards for $2.00! Some props I have purchased on AMAZON but I try to make as many as I can at home. Pinterest has great articles on DIY props and shoot set-ups.
Who do you use for prints?
If I am getting standard glossy prints for photo albums or picture frames I use Walgreens or Costco. If I want canvas done or a higher quality print, I use local companies in Arizona.
PRI Graphicswww.prigraphics.com/ is a great source.
I'm Kristyn from sunny Peoria, Arizona. I'm married to my amazing husband Jeremy and I'm a mother to our incredible son Benjamin. I love inspiring and empowering others to see their true beauty and fight against the stigmas that society has created about beauty.