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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Annual top 10 photos - 2014 edition

Ya, it's late.
Like so so late. 
I run on late these days.  
Am I sounding like a broken record?  Papa is still traveling weekly.  He just got home from Las Vegas and next week he's off to Kansas City.  (Anyone from Kansas City that wants to recommend a great place to eat?  Papa thinks he's a foodie.)  If I count the big kids, our kids are in 6 different schools.  Luckily I only have to carpool to 4 schools... only.  If you read a bit of sarcasm in that sentence then I've written it correctly.  The amount of time I'm spending in the car is crazy.  I am well versed in all things reported on by NPR though!  As I reminded Papa recently, the things that matter most to our family are all getting done though.  Like training up children, and we even all seem to like each other these days.  The teenagers are being pretty awesome and not yanking my chain too much.  And that's not a given by any means.  So my apologies are with you my bloggie friends.  I'm sorry I'm behind on my Q&A posts and family favorite recipes, and just plain ol' life posts.  I'm sorry.  We knew it was going to be a year of crazy busy, and I am so ready for May 22nd, the last day of school this year, when I'll be high tailing it to Little Cabin in the Woods and done done done with this busy year.  
86 days and counting... not that I'm counting or anything.  
But I am so counting! 

So onto my top 10 pics for 2014.  After 2013, 2012,  2011, and 2010 I don't want to miss this tradition.  And it's also a tradition that I go way past 10 pics.  We had a lot of big stuff happen this in 2014 and as usual narrowing it down to 10 just wasn't going to happen.  So here it goes no particular order. 

Liv's 18th birthday, highschool graduation, trip-of-a-life-time trip.  This is looking through a glass door at St. An's Orphanage in VietNam.  The children stole our hearts.  I miss it.  So much.  I love this pic because Liv is doing one of the things she does best, loving on the children there and giving of herself.  But I also love it because I can see myself, with a baby on my hip too, in the reflection of the glass.  My time with my daughter on this trip was so special.  
In order to go to VietNam I sadly missed my favorite pow wow.  Thankfully my papa took me to an itty bitty pow wow in my home town and it was different and still wonderful.
I'm photographing this gorgeous young lady again later this week.  It might be one of my favorite BWs that I've ever taken.
Kids in the mud?  What can go wrong.  Well Jude was NOT happy with me at all for making him get dirty.  I'm not sure he'll ever forgive me or forget the horror of this moment.  The girls had fun though!
I love love love this pic.  I might in my top ten of all time.  I love how it empowers little girls. specifically my little girl.  Yes, I miss FireDog so much.  But our 24/7 ninja is awesome too.  If Tess could do anything this is where she'd be all day long, in the air, fighting off evil with a sword.  She is the best ninja ever!
This pic is special to me becuase I remember my papa doing this exact thing to me in my home town, lifting me up to see the Christmas display.  Now Papa does it for Mimi.  ***sigh***
I discovered a deep love of my macro lens this year.  Like I love this lens.  And I love these little lips.  Heaven  Pure heaven.
I had an occasion to shoot my first birth in 2014 too.  It was the most amazing experience ever!  And I'm excited that I'll get to photograph another one in April too!  I love the details in this shot.  The vernix on her finger and the blood drop on the blanket and skin.  So very new was this gorgeous baby!
If you've followed my photography for a while, you know I love color.  Mimi in orange and on orange is pretty much the best thing ever!
Oh how much I want to be back here!  I love that turquoise house in the background.  I love the oxen in the rice fields.  I love the red tile roofs.  I love this country.
This little one was a pre-schooler when this was taken, just a bit older than Mimi.  I saw her sitting in this doorway and it took my breath away even before I took the pic.  And I remember thinking as I walked over to take the pic, oh please don't move before I can get the shot.  Thankfully she didn't.  And the image turned out just like I hope it was.  That doesn't always happen.   This time it did.
More VietNam?  Ummmmm, YES!  I have this one blown up on canvas.  The yellow was behind her is the outer wall of St. Ans.
I think this is the same little one that is in the pic 2 above this one in the door way.   She really is a gorgeous child.  And I love all the peachy tones in this image.  Not to mention the little top notch on her head.  All the children were just this gorgeous!
This next pic was a finalist for Adoptive Families annual contest!  And I love it too for the way it shows how Jude is the consummate big brother, teaching his littlest sister how to twirl.  Those little cheeks of hers and the way her dress and pony tail fly out are pretty awesome too!
VietNam in HaLong Bay and one of the floating villages there.  In just a few moments after I snapped this pic, we hopped on board that orange boat and got the tour.  Ya... it was that freaking amazing!
Seriously, a pic of me made it into my top 10?  Oh yes it did!  My good friend Kate took this pic of Mimi and me.  I love everything about it, and it's just how I still feel about this little Chinese princess of mine... giddy! And I even love the urban background setting.  If I die this year, someone please tell my family to use this photo at my memorial service!
Oh my goodness this child just amazes me!  She isn't stereotypical Viet looking, but I love how God has created her with her own unique look, and it's a gorgeous one at that.  Flash forward... she's gonna be 17 someday.  Someone help me when we get there!
This pic made it into the top ten because it's one of my favorite places on the planet, about 90 min from my home.  That's water coming down from the top and 5 of my kiddos on the bottom.
Yep, she did it!  Sunny got married and this is the pic I have to show for it.  But the words are better than I could have ever chosen. united to his wife... So they are no longer two, but one. And we are amazing proud of both Sunny and her Airman!  We love you both!
Ya the love affair with the macro lens continues!  Waiting and waiting for the honey bee to be in just the right place.  Those little suckers are fast!  Let's just say it was an exercise in patience.
Their first day of school.  Tess wasn't happy with me.  Sometimes that's just how it is.  And he's usually got his eye on her all the time to be there when she needs.
More macro.  I'm not a carnation kind of gal, but I'm thinking that maybe I am now!  Carnations never looked so delicate and pretty to me.


  1. Love them all! That Mimi is a doll, you just want to eat her, but Tess is an aloof little beauty! Jude is a charmer! All of your pictures are awesome.

  2. Beautiful pictures Nancy!! We were in Kansas City at Thanksgiving and our friends took us to Joe's Kansas City Barbeque at the corner of 47th and Mission. It is world famous and the bbq is truly that good!!

  3. Goodness, you inspire in so many ways! I so often visit your blog for your thoughts on adoption and parenting and photography, and this post of photos was such a treat. A piece of my heart is in Vietnam, and the photos (and the time you captured there with words) are gifts. I am grateful for your space here.

    1. THANK YOU so much! I'm just a plain ol' soccer mom and feel so fortunate to meet people I'd never meet if it wouldn't have been for this crazy blog. re VietNam, Papa and I would love love to go live there for a couple years... some day. Just yesterday Tess made me promise that I'd take her back in the next few years so she could see her "home." Sweet girl. Can't wait to do that!

  4. Hi Nancy, I nominated you for The Versatile Bloggers Award.

    Please check my nomination

  5. I just came back from VN, we, all 5 sisters celebrated Lunar NY in Saigon, the seacoast of Nha Trang, and Vung Tau. One month ago, we were able to gather $1500 for my 3 sister living in Saigon, to visit, and donated to the blind orphanage, located outskirt of Saigon, and they were tremendously happy with the donation, since they receive very little help from government. The orphanage 's funding is mostly coming from selling skillful crafts made by the blind children, and from private donation group. It always a humble experience every time I visit home. Thank you for posting these images of VN again.

  6. The last one of Tess and Jude; perfect!


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