Suzuki cello: book 4

There are A LOT of hours that are required to pass off a Suzuki book. Day after day of practicing every detail of each song included. A lot of time on your own listening and playing. I admire ALL OF IT!

Kate’s teacher accompanied her. He was kind enough to bring his wife and children. (It was his sweet daughter’s 6th birthday!) . His wife joined the recital and his children played with Sophie downstairs. Kate loves to learn from him…and they sound amazing together.

Two grandma’s were able to attend! Aunt Sharon came with cousin Finn (who played cello with Kate’s teacher for a bit too). Our friends, the Passey’s, joined us. Jenna is Kate’s favorite cello friend.

money doesn’t grow on trees- or does it?


I was sitting in a home that was beautiful and inspiring. It was filled with relics and artifacts from around the world. It was set in a breathtaking spot, surrounded by trees with massive windows to let in the beauty. I was there for a parenting seminar. The family that was teaching this seminar is amazing. They have sold millions of books. They are asked to speak and teach all over the world, and rightfully so. They are very intentional and proactive individuals. It was inspiring to learn from them. Toward the end of the seminar, a concept came up that I disagreed with. A question was raised to the attendees:

What do you want your children to know about money?

There were answers spilling out that I feel can poison potential…

  • “take care of what you have, because it is limited”
  • “when you spend it, it is gone”
  • “money doesn’t grow on trees” with a chuckle

These are well meaning thoughts that I was taught growing up. They sound good. They sound like the building blocks to inhibit entitlement. They sound responsible and like common sense. But do we really want to believe this? What if instead we taught our children-

  • “making money is easy and fun”
  • “there is always enough”
  • “money is there for you whenever you need it”

I am letting go of scarcity. I am teaching myself, and hopefully teaching my girls, that life and it’s resources are abundant. That they are there for whatever we need. That I know what to do and how to find it. What if they believe that now, at their young ages? Imagine the good they could do in the world!$

Utah Youth Orchestras & Ensembles

Ellie has been participating with UYOES since seventh grade. She began in the junior orchestra with Dan Rich, which she loved. She then advanced to the Philharmonic. She has loved having Barbara Scowcroft as her conductor.

For their program this year they performed:

RUSSIAN EASTER FESTIVAL OVERTURE, Op.36 by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

PEER GYNT SUITE No.1, Op.46 by Edvard Grieg

  • Morning Mood (Morgenstemning)
  • The Death of Åse (Åses død)
  • Aitra’s Dance (Anitras dans)
  • In the Hall of the Mountain King (I Dovregubbens hall)

It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL! As audience members, we LOVED every minute of it!

This was Ellie’s last performance with Utah Youth. She has decided not to continue for her senior year. We are so proud of how hard she has worked. She has never complained about spending her Friday afternoons in rehearsal. It is amazing to watch her fingers move up and down so quickly on her finger board. She is now so skilled and carrying her bass, with a stool and opening doors all on her own. We are so proud of her-and grateful to have heard her beautiful music.

The concert video is HERE

create a dream: Canyon Creek Hollow

He rode these same hills on his horse as a child. Now, with kids grown, he has created an oasis for any horse lover. He is living the dream he has had since his childhood. I am grateful that they trusted me with this story.

Let me start by saying, I am a total beginner when it comes to video! Most teens that have never taken a videography lesson, are more skilled than I am. I took @haileybe ‘s class at @illuminateclasses almost two years ago I think. 😬 It was amazing! I have A LOT of room for growth and went into it thinking I would never do it again- but I actually loved it. Maybe I will switch that toggle over to video a bit more often when I have my camera in my hands.

a light study

50mm | f1.8 | 1/250 | iso100

It is the last week of school in our neighborhood (YAY!!!!!!!!!!!) and this beautiful friend of mine is graduating from high school. I felt lucky to be able to create these images with her. I have known her since her preschool days I think! I love seeing the amazing person she is and how she has found so many things she is passionate about. She has a beautiful future ahead of her.

I photographed her at Tunnel Springs because I love it there and it is really close to where we both live. These were shot in the evening. (See the warm glow of the sunset behind her!?) The sun is setting behind her left shoulder. These are backlit with the tree as a sort of buffer so that the back light doesn’t overtake the background. She stays in the same general spot in all of the images I will share with you. I am using the 50mm 1.2L prime lens. It is without zoom capabilities. When you see the photo brought in…it is from me moving physically closer…and also to her right side to change the way the light effects the image.

50mm | f1.8 | 1/250 | iso100

I have moved directly in front of her and closer in this image. Shooting at f1.8 will create a soft back drop. The softening will increase as you move closer. Remember the sun is over her left shoulder (right of the photograph).

50mm | f1.2 | 1/640 | iso100
50mm | f1.2 | 1/640 | iso100

The subject is backlit here but I am slightly above her so that the light is not hitting the lens…there is no flare. I try to remember to bring a step stool to every photo session. The sun is still behind that left shoulder but I have moved and Gabby has turned her head to face me.

50mm | f1.2 | 1/400 | iso100

I have positioned myself, still above but facing the light more straight on. Notice how the warmth increases with these small adjustments.

50mm | f1.2 | 1/400 |iso100

I positioned myself at that spot (more straight on as said above…) and a bit lower to add more light around the subject. If you like a stronger backlight fill- position yourself so that you are facing the light. Your subject will be between you (your camera) and the sun. Move your camera up|down and side to side to make little adjustments that will add more or less light in the image.

lower…and more light…and more warmth

50mm | f1.2 | 1/400 | iso100
35mm | f1.8 | 1/200 | iso100

In this image I have moved back to where I started, directly facing Gabby…moved back and did trade lenses to the 35mm 1.4L . I think it is fascinating how the light, it’s color and intensity, changes just by small adjustments.

Do you like shooting with backlight? Do you ever “buffer” it’s intensity with something- like this tree?

al fresco

35mm | f2.5 | 1/125 | iso100

I have a goal this summer to eat at least one meal a day outside. We carried plates with BLT’s, tomato soup, and sweet potato fries out to the backyard tonight. My soup was cold, but with all of this green, how could I be mad? I also need to cut back these chives…but these flowers are so pretty. 🙂