I Took My Son's Senior Pictures

So, Jake, my oldest is a senior this year.  Moment of silence...

I have been struggling with the prospect of him leaving for college, pretty much since he was born.  I'm a mom and have to work to find my own thing every school year.

I have seen lots of beautiful senior pictures over the years. Lots of beautiful backgrounds and great lighting. I've seen photographers coax smiles, coach poses, tell jokes. And the pictures are beautiful, really they are.

But, I'm selfish. I wanted to take Jake to his favorite places, I wanted to make him smile, I wanted to be in that memory when he looks at the pictures years later.

So, I asked him...I was a little nervous... "CanItakeyourseniorpicturesIpromisewecanhireaprofessionalifyouhatethem?!?"

He said yes! He was relieved! He was dreading going to a studio!

So, we spent the summer scouting out all the special places in the city he loves...

The alley where his dad parks, the painted streets he walks on to get to Penguin games, the roof of his dad's work, middle of the street he crosses to go to Pirate games, she shiny buildings he hopes to work in someday, the ivy covered wall across the street from our city theater he loves.

It was an amazing day! He loved walking down memory lane and we spent the whole morning together laughing, posing, joking, talking...

The pictures aren't the perfect, photo-shopped studio pictures I've seen, but they are perfectly Jake.

 They look like him.  He is happy and relaxed, and now we have the memories of that day every time we look at the pictures instead of struggling to recall a random train track or fence in a photographer's backyard.

Have you considered trying this yourself?  Here are some tips:

1)  Rent a good lens (or camera).

I have a Nikon d3200 and I found a spot to rent an 80 mm portrait lens ( www.borrowlenses.com ).  It was only $75 for the week and it shipped to me in 2 days then I shipped it back 7 days later.  I'm not getting any compensation for this post at all, but it was a revelation to me that you can do this!  The customer support was very knowledgeable and helpful and I just think they deserve some props.

If you don't have a good camera, you can rent a whole set with different lenses for what you need.

 2) Collect pose ideas.

I used Pinterest and made a board (Senior Pictures Board).  When I found a pose I liked, I took a screenshot and saved it in an album on my phone so it was easily accessible.

3) Decide what to wear.

I let Jake pick from a bunch of options I pulled out:
A nice t-shirt
A golf shirt
2 button up shirts
A pair of jeans
A pair of khakis
A blazer

He chose his favorite plaid button up and jeans for most of the pictures and changed into khakis and threw on a jacket for some.  He like the way the bold print showed up and the color looked great on him.

4) Have an option for changing clothes.

If you are changing outfits, park nearby and drape a sheet over the window for changing.

***Or, make a "Portable Changing Room".  I'll teach you how on Friday!

5) Choose spots with significance to your senior, and make a plan.

drive around, reminisce, laugh, have fun!

6) Edit the photos

I use www.PicMonkey.com because I don't have PhotoShop, but use whatever you have.

If you decide to try it, I want to see!! Post about it and link in my comments so we can share!


Ski Condo Disaster

Remember a few years ago when I showed you how I decorated our little ski condo on the cheap?

We have had so many great years there and I have always loved the cozy colors and pine cones and plaid curtains. Well, they have been renovating the exterior of our building to repair some rotted siding and replacing windows.  We drove up to check it out last week...

We saw the exterior on our way into the building.  I'll take you through our thought process...

Wow! Looks extensive, but I love the new color of the siding!

Holy crap, the deck has been removed and reattached!  The railings aren't even on!

 Um...Do you see 2x4's inside that window or is it just me???

We walked into our condo...

Holy. Crap. Is that wall totally gone???

The carpet is even ripped up and the ceiling is ripped out!

All our stuff is thrown into one of the bedrooms! 

So, stay tuned to see if there will be another ski condo makeover here soon...


Tutorial Tuesday!

(It's that time of the year!) How to Get Rid of Head Lice:

Back to School Printable Sign:

Get Your Kids Back to School Ready:


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