May 31, 2011

In the mist

I love sunrises....
This mornings was no disappointment, especially with this mist.

This shot straight out of the camera. Not editing, only re-sized for web :)

May 30, 2011

Dairy Free

When I was pregnant with Jesse, milk and cheese would bother me. In a way compared to heart burn but not quite exactly heart burn. I didn’t think much of it and just assumed it was a side effect of pregnancy, I mean almost all pregnant women talk about having heartburn when they’re having a baby. However after Jesse was born, it didn’t go away. On top of that Jesse was a very fussy baby and had a few other symptoms that would later be diagnosed by our pediatrician as a cow’s milk sensitivity or colic. So I cut out dairy or I thought I cut out dairy...Jesse was much better but not perfect...and the more severe symptoms went away. And about a month after I finished nursing Jesse my own sensitivity to dairy went away as well....go figure?!!? Amazing what our bodies tell us if we just listen to them. Jesse has since outgrown his own sensitivity (normally only lasts til they are 12-18 months old) and now has his own love of cheese and milk :)

However...very early into this pregnancy I started feeling those old “heartburn” symptoms whenever I had milk, cheese, and now even eggs. So I talked to my friend Myrna who went through it with her daughter just recently and she advised me of a VERY helpful website that she found through her own research that listed some GREAT tips about knowing what ingredients to look for in foods to know if I was actually having milk or not. Boy was I shocked to learn how little dairy I actually had cut out with Jesse....poor little guy :(

The website, The Fussy Baby Site and more specifically this article (  )  has been awesome! I’ve been gradually switching to soy and vegan products and overall feel much better. Which hopefully means Baby Hann is feeling much better too. I know there are still days that I totally give in to temptation and have that rose sauce on my pasta or have a bit of cream in my coffee but overall I’m doing well....which in my world is amazing considering how much I love milk and cheese...oh how I miss cheese :(

But giving it all up is worth it if I know Baby Hann isn’t going to have a bad tummy and cry the way Jesse did as an infant.  I’ve also tried adding a few more foods with calcium and food that have been calcium-fortified along with my prenatal vitamins to be sure I’m getting all the nutrients that I need right now. It’s been a challenge but I’m working through it with the support of Kristen. I did want to share this on my blog because sooooo many babies are colic and in MOST cases it’s cow’s milk that’s the problem but never diagnosed. As I Mom I felt I should share this knowledge cause I know how hard those early months can be and if anything of this can help you and your baby it’s worth sharing. 

May 27, 2011

Just Because: Myrna - Trash the Dress

About a month ago I posted an "On a Whim Session" with Myrna.
That session actually took place on our way to the beach to do Myrna's trash the dress session.
And I must say these did NOT disappoint!!! No further explanation needed ....just enjoy.


Hit by another wave

Love the moon in this one

May 26, 2011

Go Ahead...Make My Day

She told me she was proud of me....
...then continued on to say that she's enjoyed watching me succeed and even likes to read my blog with her breakfast.
I'm not quite sure what I said, I might have said thanks, I might have looked at her in disbelief and said really?! But I do know that I talked, and rambled on in true Christa fashion. Speaking for the sake of speaking and speaking just to hear my own voice.
The truth is I didn't know what to say because as good as her remark made me feel, I wondered in my head what success is she talking about!?!?
Then there's days like today, when baby hormones and self doubt sneak in, okay well maybe mostly self doubt and a little bit of baby hormones...and I'm an emotional mess. A day where the lump in my throat refuses to subside and there's a moment when the tears spill over and I'm trying to hide them from others.
But as always, the unexpected happens. I get not one, but three separate emails telling me to stay positive and that they believe in me. Huh....go figure :) 
I don't think we realize how perfectly our timing can be sometimes when we're saying that one nice thing to someone. I don't think we realize the impact our words, whether spoken or written can have on the outcome of one's day.
It really could make it or break it. 
So my's not too late, go out and make someone's day today!
Tell them you believe in them, tell them to keep their chin up, and even tell them you're proud of them.
And if you're the recipient of the kind words....don't talk like I did, but do what I should have done...
which was to simply be silent and hug her so she could feel my gratitude and appreciation for the kind words she had spoken. She made my day!

May 25, 2011

Loving Right Now....

There's just something about her voice, love her and this song!


May 24, 2011

What I'm Reading Now...

So far I love this book!
It's not about branding but being yourself and actually caring about your customer.
And so much more....yes yes...this book has become one of my own personal lovemarks :)

Thanks to Mary Marantz of Justin & Mary for mentioning this book on their blog.
Boy am I ever glad you did :) 

May 23, 2011

Take a Baby Step...Today!

Right now...this moment,'s yours.
Take it all to yourself. There are no significant others, no children. You have no worries about bills, what to make for dinner, that cobweb you keep seeing out of the corner of your eye, or worries about what to wear.
Imagine this...if only for this moment, that your finances are better than ever, in fact, you're quite wealthy and on top of that have abundant amounts of free time on your hands to do whatever it is you please.

At this moment, with this new found freedom, where is it that you picture yourself? What's your deepest, and most honest hearts desire, right now?

Maybe you're picturing yourself walking along a beach?
Maybe you're in France, learning about and of course tasting the fine french cuisine.
Are you a stay at home mom who's just finished slicing up oranges for your child's soccer practice?
Maybe you're on a farm, getting your hands dirty at the crack of dawn as you help with the cattle.
What's your dream?
Did this 'new found freedom and wealth' allow you to feel fearless and adventurous? Did this idea of the perfect circumstance stir flowing of desires that every day life pushes down and dehydrates from your spirit?
I want you to know that being "rich" doesn't keep us from those desires. We do....
If we just decide and act, then we can have the life we truly desire....and here's a secret...most of the time it isn't 'stuff' that we want, it's people and relationships that we desire more than anything.
This post isn't to depress you today my friends. Nope, in fact it's to ENCOURAGE you.
Today I want to encourage you to take a baby step.
Yep I want you to take a baby step today, tonight, right now towards making one of your hearts desires a reality.
It may require you to get out of your comfort zone, but then maybe that's exactly what we need to do if we haven't obtained that dream thus far?? Maybe it's time to think outside the box and try something new?
 Who knows, maybe the end result will be exactly what we've been wanting all along.
Today I'm taking a baby step towards one of the desires I have for my life and that's to simplify.
I've become completely overwhelmed with trying to update blogs, facebook, websites and client galleries, oh and let's not forget keeping up with that inbox.
So I'm simplifying...I'm taking baby steps towards consolidating where I can. Taking away the websites that do not benefit me or drain me rather than help me. 
I have a huge idea of the simple life I want to live but this is the baby step I'm taking today.
I'd love to hear what step you'll be taking :)

May 19, 2011

Sock Monkeys

 I love Angela, she's sweet, funny and quite talented.
Angela is my Cousin Ken's wife...
One day while on Facebook I saw these "sock monkeys" in one of her albums and was immediately smitten.
I just LOVED them!
Not only were they cute and oh so adorable.
They were homemade,....Angela had MADE them.

I then proceeded to add up how many kids were on my Christmas list this past year and placed an order.
Really what a better gift,...they're homemade, customizable, made with very few products so in my opinion that falls under the environmentally friendly category and honestly...they're just all around awesome!!

See for yourself, this is Jesse's version

All the kids, and the parents too, loved them. 
Thanks again Angela for helping me give an actual thoughtful and unique gift this past Christmas.
To see more of Angela's talent, check out her blog The Daily Turtle.

May 18, 2011

Stand Out Mounts

I've been wanting to share the few but awesome items I'll be carrying in my studio this season. Next up stand out mounts (these are also what I use for the storyboard designs as well)

And here they are!! Take note of the edging and backing that's ready to hang. No frame required.

May 17, 2011


Today I am grateful for....

-Rainy nights that make my house feel more cozy
-dairy free chocolate cake
-the amazing people in my life that although might only be classed as "acquaintances" are still a positive influence in my life.
-for these same people that I cherish & do not take for granted
-Lovemarks.... The book I'm reading now :)

What are you grateful for today?

May 15, 2011

Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & Spa Wedding: Steph & Ed

She stood at the beginning of the walkway and quickly blinked, trying to hold back the tears that were welling up.  In the hot afternoon sun, as the wind blew softly through the palm trees, she watched her son and then her sister lead the way to what would soon be one of the happiest days of her life.
I quickly leaned over, kissed her cheek and said "You're beautiful...."
She looked at me with a smile of love and appreciation and kept blinking back the tears.
She then looked straight ahead and watched me go down that same walkway, towards the gazebo overlooking the aqua blue ocean.
And now it was her turn....her turn to walk towards the man who made everything right.
To the beginning of the rest of her life. To a life of happiness and love...with him.

I've watched Steph grow into a beautiful and strong woman. I've watched her fall in love with Ed, a man who is perfect for her. And I've now watched them share vows as they committed their lives and love to each other until death do them part.
Joy fills my heart when I think of Steph and Ed. I couldn't be happier that you have found each other.
It was not only my pleasure but my honour to be part of your special day.
With much appreciation (and love) Christa

I don't know why but I just love the "getting ready" photos of any bride. Steph was no exception

The simplicity of her dress was perfect

 Tristan checking out Mom's shoes

He wasn't a nervous ring bearer at all. Just hung out and played DS

Ed on the other hand was feeling the heat, both literally and figuratively.
That day was probably the hottest day we had the entire week that we were in Punta Cana.
Myrna got this great shot of Ed 'getting ready'

Love this!!

Here we go....

Steph & Ed chose the gazebo overlooking the beach rather than having the ceremony directly on the know so you have that man in his speedos in the background of all your ceremony photos.
I think the location was georgous.

Exchange of rings

I love how happy they look 

Steph you're beautiful...seriously how many times do I need to tell you?

Another great shot by Myrna, I can't thank her enough for her awesome work as assistant photographer that day. I can't even say second shooter because at certain points during the day she was the only photographer.  Thanks again!

Yep Ed can definitely pull off this look.

LOVED this little hut on the beach

 Steph & Ed here's to a life filled with love, happiness and maybe even a bundle of joy or two.

May 13, 2011

Already Awesome

Did you know that you are already awesome?

You have a unique vibe that's all your own.

Let's appreciate who we are RIGHT NOW! Curves, lack of curves, straight hair, curly hair, blue eyes, brown doesn't matter. Let's embrace our individual selves.

YOU are an original mold of you! And that....well that simply makes you awesome.

Now that you know you're awesome...what's next? Own it!

Go out and be that fabulous person. Don't dream any longer, act! Just BE!

May 11, 2011

For Photographers: Packaging Resources

So I love packaging...maybe it’s the scrapbooker in me (the scrapbooker who hasn’t scrapbooked in years since photography has taken over her life) Anyway...I love packaging, the boxes, the ribbons, the colours,....everything.

This past year I’ve really been trying to put together some packaging that says “Christa”  that I like and that I won’t bore of too easily. Yes I get bored easily and picking colours to stick with for my branding has been a HUGE challenge for me.

So anyway...I always found I could never find one website that carried everything that I needed....until now J it’s called HB Photo. I discovered them through another recently discovered website called the Paperie Boutique and I’m hooked.  I find it very helpful with unique photography products and packaging ideas, and not only that, actually tells you where to purchase the products!!!!   

HB Photo carries various size print boxes, folios, CD cases and the list goes on BUT the kicker is the VAREITY in the colours they offer. Oh’s very exciting. Go ahead, check ‘em out.

Here’s another few websites that I like for some of their packaging products.

DNL Photo   - again has boxes, folio’s and CD cases, variety or colours definitely NOT as extensive but definitely another choice supplier.

Effectuality - love these guys for their Tin CD & DVD cases. Plus their white CD sleeves are convenient back up’s to have in stock as well.

Etsy  - as an Etsy lover the sky is the limit. I’ve searched CD cases, marketing packages, album layouts to birth announcements on this site. And that’s just from the photography side, I haven’t even touched on the quirky, personal stuff that I love on there.

Creative Bag  - even has a location in Mississauga for you photographer’s in the Greater Toronto area. Love their black CD sleeves and deluxe boxes which are perfectly sized for 8x8 up to 12x12 albums

I’d love to hear what suppliers you use or what creative ways you may have designed your own packaging :) for anything...not just photography related.

May 10, 2011

Never a Dull Moment...

With a 19 month old in the house I've realized there's never a dull moment....

Yes that's wet spots all over Jesse's outfit....

Yes that's Boone's water dish tipped over on the floor.....

And yes it all started with him dunking his sweatshirt in the dish, where obviously it all progressed from there.
Oh and I did not miss the little "saying" on his shirt that day either....eeesh! :)