4.27.2015

chasing the moon.

IMG_4722( dad + me )
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     Last Monday, April 20th, I was driving home from work and saw the most amazing crescent moon. April 20th was Easter last year and even though I have the flightiest memory imaginable, I remember that the 20th was Easter and I remember vividly the events that occurred in my father's last week of life because time seemed to stop and tick by slowly and deliberately. As I drove home last Monday, I decided to drive up the mountain road behind my house to the little spot where I scattered flowers on my dad's birthday last year, to think of him under the light of the biggest most beautiful moon. 
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     The raw emotion of trying to find a spot closer to him flooded over me and as I drove higher up the road, I watched the moon start to sink below the mountain peaks. Staring at that last little sliver peeking out as I drove over the dam, I felt panicky wanting the moon to hang on. It's the same panic I felt last year, hearing the words of many telling me that my dad was passing away but wanting him to hang on, filtering through the events that happened but desperately wanting it to not be true. As the moon sunk low, I felt gypped. I wanted my moment; to climb in the night and feel the stillness of the huge Colorado sky, to feel comforted by that quintessential crescent moon hanging over the mountains and to feel my father in the stillness I'd find there. As I got to our spot, the moon finally slipped away and the light that brought me there was gone. When I pulled into the little parking lot at the spot I was looking for, I realized that 4/20 to me is different than to the community up there who were dancing around with light sabers, smoking weed to celebrate their made up holiday and adding the perfect punctuation to my disappointment. 
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     It was then I realized that I was silly to try and chase the moon. I'm grown up now and I should know that I can't always catch the things I want. I know tragedy and big pain and have struggled with the best of them. I can't catch the moon and I can't hold onto it's light. I can't have my dad back on Earth with me. As hard as I freaking try to wish these things into reality for myself, they will not come true. 
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     Driving down the mountain that night, crying and sorting through ideas too big to ever truly understand, I felt a weird sense of truth washing over me. It's the sort of thing that only happens after losing someone close to you,;you figure things out on a deeper level than you ever have before. I do know that I'll find the moon again, that every night it will be back, standing strong in the sky. I also know that when I take a step back from the giant pain of losing my father, when I climb down that mountain a couple of steps, he's there shining in my life as well. In everything I feel my father; I feel him close, I hear his laugh, I feel his approval wash over me when something goes right in my life. It almost seems that a person is more alive after they die. Before, my dad was a person; he existed in constant phone calls and texts, Thursday night dinners at Namaw's house and Christmas Eve sleepovers. He still exists, but now he is scattered everywhere. In the wind I feel his memory, in the future I feel his presence and I see him right there in front of me when I look into my babies' eyes. He's with me somehow everyday and every night he's shining with the light of the moon. 
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     I can't catch him or pin him down but if I sit back and close my eyes, I can feel his warm glow, and I always, always will.
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4.10.2015

happy friday!

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i'm just itching to put a blog post up but can't seem to coherently put anything together so i thought i'd share these photos from a personal project i've been working on! i finally got around to trying free-lensing and i am in love. the randomness and dreaminess of it is just soothing my need for something different in photography. the photos here are very consistent with my usual style of photography but i've also been pushing and trying some new things lately and it's been so refreshing and fun. i'm taking a class this semester that consists of building a semester long project and i've been putting a lot of work into it. i'm trying to push myself as an artist and it's an ongoing and wonderful journey.
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happy friday friends, thanks for stopping by!


We Are A Top Baby Blog

4.06.2015

jogger pants; yes please.

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     Hello friends, it's been a while! I wanted to pop in this Monday morning and share these pictures of my sweet 7 year old modeling the outfit that FabKids sent us recently! I am a huge fan of the jogger pants trend and can't get over how adorable they look on Roman! I'm also so pleased with how perfectly these pants fit because, as I've mentioned, finding pants to fit Roman's body type has been a real struggle this year! They will get us through the rest of the chilly days that may happen this spring. It's been super warm here in Colorado but we also had a snowstorm last week so you never know! Also, this color blue on him - sigh! It brings out his sparkly blue eyes. :)
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     Cheers to a happy Monday! I'm itching to update my blog so hopefully I'll be able to put together a few posts this week. In the meantime, I'm loving being back on Instagram - you can find me here: @bygillianclaire! Leave a comment if you follow me so that I can follow you as well! <3
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Be sure to check out FabKids for yourself! 
Use my link to get 20% off your first outfit with free shipping!
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( Roman's faces here - hah! )
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outfit: c/o FabKids, shoes $3 Old Navy clearance (score!)
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We Are A Top Baby Blog
 

3.09.2015

asher in the mountains.

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just some pictures today. asher had so much fun hiking and exploring in the foothills while i worked on a project i'm putting together for class. i'm not really sure where my project is going, but i do love these photos; my littlest surrounded by the big blue sky,
those salmon pants + baby sized boots,
such sweet, specials moments of childhood and a sweet, special boy to match.
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3.03.2015

pirate boots.

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( boots c/o FabKids )
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I have always been a fan of rain boots on little boys so I kind of flipped out when I got these matching pirate boots for my little guys. I guess it's been a while since they've worn rain boots  though because no joke, they both dramatically toppled down within minutes of putting these on. I have to admit, it's pretty funny to look back on. Don't worry, they have since mastered the art of boot wearing again and no children were harmed in the making of these photos. ;)
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Asher has been proudly prancing around town sporting these babies. While waiting in line at Starbucks , a lady told him she liked his boots so he shrugged his shoulders all coy-like and said, "yeah, they're pirate ones."
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Now we're all ready for splashing in puddles during summer rainstorms, our favorite. I just need some rain boots of my own...
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3.02.2015

asher at 3 years, 7 months

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. still sleeps next to me and somehow sense the moment i wake up and wakes up as well. sometimes in the morning i'll wake up before his normal waking time and sneak out to the living room to be alone and without fail, he wakes up and comes padding out. he heard me talking to aaron about this the other day and he said something along the lines of, "because i love you mommy. if you are awake, i want to be awake with you too!" melt.
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. going downhill in the potty training department. once completely potty trained, he has now started running into the boys' bedroom and peeing on the floor instead of peeing in his potty. "it's because i'm too tired to pee in the potty, mommy." this is really grating on my nerves!
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. loves to vacuum. he has gone through this phase before but in the past couple weeks he has picked up his old habit of vacuuming the house to perfection by himself and then showing us what a great job he did. it's so cute to see him down on the floor with the vacuum hose concentrating on his work. 
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. is very confident and loves playing with other kids. he still loves to be a monster and scare the other kids at the playground. the other day, he was sad after playing and said, "no one was scared!" also, the other night he was telling me stories and kept incorporating himself into the story as "monster-boy." oh my gosh, i died.
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. likes to watch daniel tiger, which he refers to as "tiger daniel." he often incorporates the little life lessons into his life and it's over the top adorable. usually in the mornings we go out to the living room and watch daniel tiger together while i have coffee and read blogs. 
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. plays with his big legos and makes transformers out of them. i'm so impressed by his creativity, of course he is just the smartest little 3 year old in my eyes. ;) he also loves to have fights with his giant robot, power ranger and iron man figure. it's just so adorable to watch him bring all of his toys out into the living room to play. i think he is more into toys than roman. 
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. mostly, he is still my "teeny boy" and my baby. i can't believe asher is over 3 and a half years old; somehow he still feels so tiny and cuddly to me. <3
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2.19.2015

portraits of roman.

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My blog has been a little Asher heavy lately. It's natural because Asher is three and at an overall easier to photograph stage.  Roman, who is seven now, is going through a trying-to-be-funny in every photo stage. I mean, I can't blame him - he is a kid after all. As far as photographer-moms go, I'm pretty relaxed about the camera. I don't always have it and I'm very particular about when I bust it out. I try to read my kids and I try not to push it. I just couldn't handle being someone who always takes pictures, it would stress me out. In fact, I definitely need to relax a little more in this regard. I need to let the camera be a little more a part of me, a little more convenient.
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My passion is definitely photographing my children. I enjoy it more than photographing anything in the world. The pictures that I take of them are, of course, so meaningful, a part of me. I also love the laid back feel of photographing my children as opposed to "other people". Don't get me wrong, I enjoy photographing others - but it's more set up, it's a job. Photographing my boys is the purest way to make a photograph for me. They are themselves, I'm truly in the background, recording them as they are.
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But of course, it's not always just happening in front of me eyes. As many other mother/photographers know, there is that struggle of "oh, oh wait, wait wait, stand over here! smile! can i take one more? can you just do this-this-or that?" I know this is frustrating for kids. It is. It's certainly a lesson in patience because I love photography, I love photographing them, and ideas are going through my head and there are those moments I just want them to cooperate. Which of course, are the moments when they want nothing to do with it.
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Even though it can be frustrating, I think the fact that children don't always want to cooperate adds to what is so wonderful about photographing them. Any adult can model and pose and do exactly what you want in front of the camera. Of course there is also an added awkwardness + insecurity that adults feel when having their picture taken. But with kids, it's more pure and real. Yesterday, while we were taking some FabKids photos, Roman was goofing off a little of course but he also, knowing how much it would mean to me, looked into my camera with these wonderful little faces and I couldn't be happier how they turned out. Because, truly, even though these photos were directed in a way and didn't just happen, this is the boys he is - the absolute sweetest boy and these are the smiles he gives me after I say no and he knows that I'll give in, and it's way he looks in the last moments of night when I tuck the blanket up by his face and whisper, "You are the sweetest, sweetest boy," and he says, "thanks mom."


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These pictures were certainly worth the wait. :)
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