Thursday, January 26, 2012

Lucas-3 Years Old

I got to take pictures of an adorable guy named Lucas today to help celebrate his 3rd birthday which was a few weeks back. He is definitely a full fledged 3 year old with a mind of his own. He wasn't having any monkey business, this photo shoot was going to be his way or no way at all...and we made it work : ). The props you see in the pictures were all his idea and his mom and I decided this is the most authentic way to capture him anyways...him being himself, doing what 3 year olds do!
We went to the Walker Art Center and the Sculpture Garden to take these was such a nice morning!
Hope you enjoy...he is such a cutie pie!

see what I mean? cutie pie!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I need me some photography!! : )

I am excited to get my creative juices flowing tomorrow because I feel like I am stuck in a mini-rut. One that I know I placed myself in.
I crammed a whole lotta work into the last week and this current week as well because I am going on an all girls tropical vacation next week : ) I didn't want to take much if any vacation time out of my flex time bank (those 12 hour shifts really suck up the savings!) so I decided to get it all in before I left. I know I'll be glad I did it but that made for a week of not seeing much of my husband, cooking, or making time for anything else (including photography). Squish in another new semester of clinical instructing and classwork and I was pretty much sleeping before I hit the pillow. Those of you who know me and of my anxious worrying before bed know that falling asleep fast is not my usual in a way it was a good thing.
This week isn't nearly as bad as last week and tomorrow I have a day off and am going to the Walker to take some pictures of an adorable little guy. I plan to have those pictures up by Friday at the latest! My creative energy feels pent up and I can't wait to get out in the snow and hopefully work some photography magic.
Sometime between now and a week from now I also need to write two big papers for my'll happen....eventually. Hey, I read for 3 hours for class and did my weekly assignment already can't expect much more from me.
I have strategically placed winter vacations in between of some insane work weeks...I will earn those vacations for sure. Next week, me and 4 other lovely ladies from the old 8th floor are heading to Mexico. We are staying for a long weekend in Cancun at an all inclusive hotel. We got an awesome deal that we couldn't refuse and I am so pumped. Of course, I am kind of a weenie and will miss Jason a lot but I'm sure the free alcoholic beverages will help me feel a little better. ; )

Alright so it's not even 8pm yet and I am so ready for bed. I am trying to reign in my lameness by somehow trying to motivate myself to start on one of my papers for school. I strategically placed one my ''studying movies'' in the DVD player to set the mood. I have a few movies that I don't really like but for some reason when they are on I get really focused and get things done. Tonight it's Sex and the City the movie....sorry guys, it's really not good. Haha. Though I have seen it too many times to count. It doesn't make any sense but it works so I go with it. Another example of a bad movie I like is the first Twilight movie...among others. Yeah I'm weird.

Monday night I made pot roast and Jason and I got to hang out for the first time in over a week. I could have cried I was so excited. That's kind of sad, yes...but we had a great time. I had just finished reading Water for Elephants (finally) so we watched that movie. I liked it a lot. And cried a lot. We had one of those really fun, fabulous nights together where neither of us were tired (miracle....not even after a drink!), both in a really good mood, and both feeling like watching the same kind of movie. Sounds simple but it goes a long ways! : ) Love you baby!

Last night I made one of the BEST recipes I have ever made. I wish I was creative enough in the kitchen to have made it up myself...but I am generally not. I got the idea again from Pinterest and I would highly recommend you try it.
Here is the recipe link....if you even remotely like Mexican food...try it!
Here's how my white chicken chile enchiladas turned out!

Jason loved them just as much as me!

Alright, Big just left Carrie at the alter...I guess I should start writing my paper. Waaa waa.

Stay tuned from some cute toddler pics! : )

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Bri-licious original recipe...and more!

It's been a busy week/weekend/and now start of this week as well! Aren't you surprised?

Yesterday I started my own clinical shadowing experiences for my grad program and today I started teaching a new group of clinical students.

This last weekend we had a great time when we stayed at a water park/ I didn't realize a) how much I missed going down water slides and b) how scary they are when it's been a while since you've been down one. We also hung out with friends on Saturday and my friend Katie and I saw the latest Twilight movie (finally). Sunday evening I took some pregnancy announcement photos which turned out really cute. I can't share them until she has them all distributed to her friends/family. Can't ruin the surprise : )
before heading to the water park!

yay! Josh and Danielle came with!

after some serious water slidin'
part of the water park

A bit of exciting news, I think I am going to do my very first blog giveaway within the next week or so! A company with a product I've tried and like contacted me about doing a giveaway. I'm pretty excited about it! Stay tuned : )

Also, stay tuned for a toddler photo session, a newborn session, and an engagement session blog post within the next few weeks...yay! 

On the food front...I had great ambitions of making a nice meal every night this week despite our busy schedules. I picked each recipe and even made my grocery list, so I meant it! Turns out Jason's week is just as crazy as mine. He is working on a big case and has been working into the evenings. So much for fancy meals! Guess I'm off the hook. Thai food it is tonight : )

I did try a new recipe the other night...and it was share-worthy!

Bri-licious Chicken Fajita Paninis
mmm mmm mmm mmmmMMMmm!

Jason and I love paninis, so here's a twist on the norm : )

-Sour Dough Bread
-Rotisserie Chicken, shredded
-Cheddar cheese slice (1 or 2...any type of cheese works)
-Sauteed and sliced onions, red peppers, and green peppers
-Crisp Bacon slices
-Ranch dressing (if you're Jason) or Salsa (if you're Bri) to dip
-Olive oil (for drizzling)

Add all topping to one slice of sour dough cheese on top of peppers and bacon to keep ingredients inside the sandwich : )
Jason's sandwich is on the left...Mr. American Cheese lover
Place second piece of bread on top of sandwich, drizzle panini press with olive oil as well as the top of the bread. Grill until golden brown.

I made my sister-in-law Nikki's signature salad to go with it. Her and her hubby eat it with their meal every night! I wish we ate that much salad...we need to attempt to do it more tastes delish!
The dressing is just a mixture of olive oil and apple cider vinegar...until salad is somewhat moist. She uses spring mix lettuce, croutons, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, and whatever other toppings you desire. Nuts, berries...etc. It's simple and good for you...and that dressing combo is to die for! Thanks for letting me steal your recipe Nik! : )

Jason and I make paninis a's one of Jason's favorite meals. Just last week we made club sandwich paninis...turkey, bacon, cheese, and sauteed onions. We had a side of chicken tortilla soup that was delicious too (that was a Tastefully Simple mix)

Well, I really need to get working on my homework...I have a lot of stuff to do. And I really should work out...I really should...hmmm. : )

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Insomniac Attack

Clearly I have discovered the downfall to the night shift. Just as I expected would's three AM and I'm two benadryl deep and no such luck in the sleep department.
I knew the actual working of the night shift wouldn't be too hard for me...I love staying up late and sleeping all day. My favorite past time. It's the..'getting back to a normal routine on the days you don't work' that I am struggling with. Some people say...''just make yourself get up''...those people don't know me. Willpower and Bri DePauw aren't always the best of friends. We try but we clash.
We are meeting some of Jason's uncles and aunts for a drunch tomorrow...I had never heard this term before...a drunk lunch or a drunk brunch....sounds intriguing. But 9am is going to come mighty quickly and alcohol is not going to help the deep yearning for a nap that is sure to follow shortly thereafter.
I need to find a routine that works for me....I am sure it will come in time, I need to be patient.
Anyways, I will take advantage of this insomnia to share several snippets I have been meaning to write about at one point or another.
First off, I don't have any pictures from tonight but I did have a great time. Me and some of my St. Ben's girlfriends went to see Keri Noble in concert. She first came to St. Ben's when we were...gosh I don't remember what year we were...but she was amazing, awesome, and has a beautiful voice/music. After she came to St. Ben's we have turned into mini-fantatics of hers and have followed her to a few different random shows...even one she only played 2 songs at. She's so cute and has an adorable style. She always has a different hair color every time I see maybe we are kindred spirits somehow ; ) If you haven't heard her music, you need to! Here's a video of one of her many great songs!!

In other news, I have set some goals for 2012. Some are incredibly random, others not so much. One thing I really want to learn how to do is surf, but I don't think we will be going anywhere this year where I will get the opportunity so I didn't include it....but it's for sure on the list of someday soon goals. These are in no particular order:

1) Photograph a wedding (I have my first full wedding now booked for excited!)
2) Take a community ed class. Every season we get the booklet and I pick all these classes I want to try out...but never sign up. Maybe it's because I don't have time....but this year I will make time!
3) Finish grad school. I have been taking the slow track so I don't have to take out loans, but I am hoping to be done by December...that would be so lovely.
4) Figure out my natural haircolor, keep it that color for at least a few months to see if I like it. I am afraid if I keep dying it it's going to fall out! But this goal is a loose one.
5) Work on writing more of the book I started last summer. I don't need to finish it this year, just make a good dent in it!
6) Learn something totally new...that could go along with goal 2 I suppose...or not at all, who cares!
7) Learn to sew something other than a blanket...and then do it!
8) Delve deeper into meditation, different types, and practice it regularly.
9) Grow my photography business : )
10) Figure out a way to eat generally healthy while also incorporating the occasional junk without making it such a struggle. I am so black and white in this area for some reason...I either eat awesome or eat shitty....let's compromise folks!
11) Get back into a better 'routine' for working out. As we see, I do well with routines and my current schedule has been so sporadic that I haven't had the opportunity to make it into a routine.
12) Learn how to drive our boat, dock, and anchor it with confidence....this is NOT just a man's job.
13) Travel whenever opportunity arises and funds are available : )

There are a few more that are more personal that maybe I will share someday but those are the basics. I think it's do-able don't you?

Another thing I have been having the itch to do is to re-decorate some room of our house. I LOVE doing this. Only problem is it's not the cheapest hobby to have. But I plan on doing that at some point this year and blogging about it. I want to try to do the work all on my own too...that would be a great accomplishment. If you haven't read the Young House Love blog, holy have to. Super cute family who just remodel their house constantly and blog about it, and also talk about their baby. It's so cute, you need to check it out!

Tonight after the concert...Jason said he had a YouTube video I needed to watch but warned me it was very depressing. Now, you may have seen this already and I am behind the times...but if you haven't, you have been's f-ing sad. But somehow comforting and beautiful. I am not sure what I believe in when it comes to religion, etc. I do believe in a higher power...but stories like this make me even more certain. There are two parts....
He died of a heart attack on Christmas day and had posted this just a few days prior. Here is his sister's eulogy. So beautiful. I sobbed.
Now that you are likely crying I better wrap things up. But I do have to say it's things like this that make you pause and appreciate the life you have around you even more than you usually do. I know I am thankful. 

Ok, the benadryl haze is kicking in. I better stop typing because chances are I might not remember what I wrote tomorrow...or later today since it IS tomorrow. Haha.
Happy weekend everyone! Be safe : ) 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Wait! What?

As I was sitting down, relaxing on the couch today after a long day of errands, working out, and cleaning...I thought to myself, ok now you can relax Bri! The holidays are over, enjoy this time before teaching clinical starts up again in a few weeks. And then I looked at the calendar... annnnd my grad school classes start up again...tomorrow. Whoops. That is the beauty and curse of online schooling, so easy to ignore yet if you want to graduate participating is generally advised ; )
Truth is, I have been doing plenty of relaxing...this past weekend Jason and I did a whole lot of nothing after celebrating our anniversary on Friday night. In fact, I felt like a huge nasty piece of shit today and had to drag myself to boot camp in order to feel like I still had some physical capability left in me (turns out a still had a little). I get kind of depressed and lose track of time when left to my own devices. I mean I did keep busy during the holidays and have been working a decent amount (ok, not that much) but if you compare that busy to my normal psycho busy, it was really nothing. And now here I am, starting up that psycho life all over again.
I can't wait. I look forward to that structure...and it will be here in no time.
In other news, I had so much fun photographing my friend Brittany's new baby this last week...and I am so excited that I have gotten a few more inquiries in the past day that will give me even more cute faces to capture by the end of the month! It is so much fun...I can't even describe it. : ) Thank you to everyone who has given me the chance and trusted me with their memories!

This past weekend, Jason and I celebrated 2 years of marriage. In some seems like it hasn't been that long, but in others it doesn't seem like enough time to justify all the amazing things we've done/been through together. We have been so lucky to be able to go on trips, have great jobs, relax and be bums together, and embark on many other random adventures together : ). Before we got married, I think we both shared the fear that marriage could cause our relationship to somehow take a negative turn. There was no evidence to back up this fear, but we both had it. Of course, this has not been the case at all and everything we have been through has made us even closer, happier and stronger. I used to think people just said that to save face and say...yeah we are happy...mmhmm. But it's possible, we are very happy. If we can make it through law school, a death of a parent, a summer away from each other for a law clerkship, and other various challenges...I am confident that we can face just about anything together. It doesn't hurt that he is hilarious and awesome. I think we are very complimentary (he is more clean, I am more free-spirited in that department...he is strong, I am emotional...etc, etc) but he thinks we are two peas in a pod (both very obnoxiously strange and hyper at times, love a lot of the same things, have the same general life goals, have no trouble supporting each other to pursue those goals) so I guess that means we are a little of both, and this has worked out well for us : ) We are lucky. We talked at dinner about how we are still in awe that we found each other and how lucky we are to have each other. Not a day goes by that I am not incredibly thankful for him.
Since our anniversary is on New Years Eve it's the perfect time to reflect on our favorite memories of the year and talk about what we want to do next year too. Clearly 2011 is going to be hard to compete with but of course we will try! We recently bought a boat and by far, our top excitement for 2012 is going to be using that baby as much as humanly possible. That has been something we have talked about getting since the first day we started dating I'm pretty summer cannot come soon enough...heck just the early signs of Spring work for us. 
Anyways, we celebrated our anniversary by going to Pazzaluna which was delicious, they even gave us a free dessert since it was our anniversary and I posted it on facebook : ) We then had some drinks at the St. Paul Grill and spent the night at the St. Paul Hotel. It was such a great night.
However, that day before we went out, I was feeling incredibly sad or something...not attractive mostly...could be hormones, paleness, winter blues, laziness, eating shitty, gaining a few pounds...who knows. But regardless of the cause, (and yes I am aware that none of those things reflect positive self talk...I am working on this) as I was getting ready to go out I looked in the mirror and thought to myself, I need to change! Now, normally I am semi-impulsive at times so this shouldn't surprise me or anyone...but I don't know how I thought picking up a scissors and cutting my bangs was going to turn out even remotely as cute as when my hair stylist does it...but apparently I did. And that's what happened...and they didn't look very cute. Good thing I went to nursing school, I would suck at doing hair. Luckily Jason either actually liked them or saw the panic in my eyes when I came out after cutting them and told me he loved I went with it. I guess I didn't really have a choice. I really need to find a healthier outlet in which to make changes in my life besides always changing my hair style or color. For some reason it is my drug of choice...I guess it could be worse. Hey, I was thinking...should I go back to blond or what?! ; ) One of my goals for 2012 was to figure out my natural hair color (I know how sad that must sound to some of you) and try to let it grow out so I am not dying it so much. Luckily, this goal is at the bottom of my list so if I accidentally forget about it, I can't be too hard on myself.
As for other 2012 goals, that is a whole other post...but I will be posting it because if I put it out there...I figure it's more likely to be accomplished. And don't worry, they aren't all as boring as the one in the previous paragraph : )
I do have a few goals for this week though: work out, eat better. I feel kind of icky after all the junk food and lack of exercise the past week or so...and I'm sure I'm not alone. Simple enough, right?
I hope everyone has a great week!
p.s. I am watching 'Soul Surfer' as I type this post...great movie, I highly recommend it. Simple but great. Makes me want to learn how to surf even more than I already did (minus the whole shark part of course). Looks exhilarating. I need to get myself back to Hawaii one of these years.
Here are a few pictures from our anniversary weekend and maybe one or two flashbacks...way back to 2009 : ) (all the pictures from this last weekend were taken with my point and shoot camera...FYI...I don't lug around that big guy everywhere!)
our free dessert at Pazzaluna

mocha cheesecake

we might be between dinner and more drinks...

I guess two peas in a pod makes sense

Rice Park was lit up gorgeously!

always have to get one of Jas contemplating life's big questions...

Rice Park

the snow storm on New Years eve, I love the big chunks plus the streaks in the background...that was an awesome snow!

doesn't even look like snow...looks like long tree branches or hair hanging down (in the background of the big flakes)
Flashback to 2009: seeing each other for the first time : ) me crying...shocker right?!
I just loved my shoes...
One of my favorite pictures of the whole day
or maybe this is my favorite...
or this....
: )
you get the was super fun!