5.17.2016

here's to the lilacs.

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hillary's graduation w/dad.

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4.25.2016

LifebankUSA

six weeks.
( baby Asher, 6 weeks old! )
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     I'm partnering again with LifebankUSA again on my blog to share a little bit about their company with you today!
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     LifebankUSA is a private cord blood bank that offers stem cell preservation services to expecting parents. It's becoming more well known that stem cells can be saved from the umbilical cord at birth and later be used to treat an illness in the child or family member but did you know that stem cells can now be saved from the placenta as well? Storing cells from both the umbilical cord and placenta increases the number of life saving stem cells that are stored which also increases the possibilities to use them later on. Ongoing research has shown that stem cells saved at birth can be used to treat up to 80 diseases so far!
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     LifebankUSA is now offering placenta banking as well. Possibly therapeutic uses of placental tissue are in early research stages and LifebankUSA now offers placenta banking as one more layer of protection and peace of mind as part of their complete banking services. Seeing that stem cells preserved from cord and placenta blood have successfully been used to treat patients, who knows what technology will be able to do in the future!
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     Be sure to check out LifebankUSA and learn more about their services if you are expecting a baby. I'm curious to know if any of my readers have experience with cord blood banking. Did you know that placenta banking is now an option? If so, what do you think?
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Thanks for reading; have a great week!
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six weeks.
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2.03.2016

snow globe childhood.

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My blogging / photography life is kind of all over the place right now. (As usual maybe?) 5 years ago my goals were working in portrait photography. Once I started getting clients and trying that out though, it didn't really feel like my passion. Last year I decided to step away from taking clients so I got a part time job and went to school full time. Honestly it was the best decision I could have made during a hard year in my life and I felt so filled up there. I was able to branch out and focus on some really cool projects that made me feel a little more alive art wise. I was able to see through my teachers' and fellow students' eyes what my style was. I have found that sometimes it's hard to see your style even when you're creating and staring at it everyday. I always wanted to be a blogger and over the summer I started focusing more on the Instagram community as well. I remember dreaming of being able to work with a company through those outlets and now I've had many opportunities to work with some awesome big companies and small business alike. I've made money and received all kinds of cool packages. I've had an outlet to write and I've built special memories doing photoshoots with my boys.
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So, now what? I'm not sure. I only took one class this past fall and now I'm taking a break from school. Is this the best decision - I'm unsure. I was planning to transfer to an art school, now I'm unsure. I think, no I know, that I can be really hard on myself artistically. Which is so silly. Art is a lifestyle and it should be something I enjoy and breathe not something I put pressure on myself about. At the same time, I'm the kind of person that needs a little pressure or I kind of just exist in my own world for too long.
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So yeah, there it is. A bunch of rambling that doesn't really amount to anything. I guess I'm trying to think, "what do I want to do in 2016?" I think I want to rebrand my blog a bit which is something I've wanted to do forever. I'd like to have a new photography website that serves as a more cohesive portfolio of all of the work that I've done. I don't have huge blogging plans right now but I would like my sites to be updated and more professional so that they are there for me when I need them. I'd like to try new things, maybe sell some prints in town, maybe upgrade my camera. These are the ideas going through my head right now. End rambling.
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Here are some photos I took last spring when I was focusing on a free lensing project for school. Honestly I didn't put much thought into this series of photos because it was just me messing around with the technique of free lensing in the beginning but I'm very in love with them now. I clearly have a thing for white space and kids jumping on the bed and I love how free lensing abstracts that, kind of like looking at childhood through a snow globe.
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Thanks for reading, friends. Words of wisdom/advice more than welcome!
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1.26.2016

little style: FamLove Clothing

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    Okay, so I'm secretly obsessed with Valentine's Day. I'm not really a huge holiday person honestly but it gets me every year when stores start filling up with all the cute heart things. As if the Target dollar spot could even get any more tempting!
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    FamLove Clothing sent us this adorable tee shirt and it's absolutely perfect for Asher to wear this year for Valentine's Day! I love that it has the sign language sign for "I love you." We taught both of our boys some sign language when they were babies and the "I love you" sign has lasted all of these years and they still use it to this day. FamLove is a family owned brand run by 3 cousins whose mission is to spread positivity and love through trendy clothes! Their shirts are super soft and high quality and of course absolutely adorable.
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You can use my code: bygillianclaire to get 20% off  your purchase!
Be sure to check out their site 
and grab one of these adorable shirts for your little one's Valentine's Day. 
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shirt: c/o FamLove Clothing
camo jogger pants: Old Navy clearance (sold out, similar here)
car slip ons: Old Navy clearance (sold out)
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*I received this shirt for free as part of my work as a Brand Ambassador for the FamLove Clothing brand. I never accept clothing from or support brands that I do not honestly admire and love! 
Thanks for reading along!*

roman turns 8.

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Can hardly believe that this little ( BIG ) boy turned 8 in December. The time since he was born has gone by so quickly yet at the same time feels like an eternity. I can barely remember Roman as a newborn, Roman as a 2, 4 or 6 year old. Other than today, all the other days feel like a blur of memories swirling around somewhere high above me out of reach. There are millions of little moments that stick out in my head, playing back in my mind like clips from a movie. That's how I feel as a mother. Their story is playing out fiery quick as I to grab onto a few bits and beautiful pieces to play on repeat in my mind, trying to preserve some of the miracle that is happening right in front of my eyes.
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The sweetest you see in that photo above truly personifies Roman exactly. He is sweet and sentimental and wise beyond his years. He feels deeply and loves passionately and I couldn't be prouder or happier to call him mine.
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Last night we laid in bed together when I was putting him to sleep. 
He says, "I love you." 
I say, "I love you more." 
He says, "Don't get me started." 
I say, "I love you moon." 
and he says, "I love you star," just like he always has. 
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I'll finish this post here before I dip in too deep into that realm of loving my babies so much it hurts. Too late, I'm already there. <3
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Here's to the best 8th year for my sweetest boy. 
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1.05.2016

2015 in pictures.

     I hadn't really put much thought into the new year this time around but the other night I was looking through old blog posts and it filled me up with happy feelings and gratefulness. It's been a rough year for sure. I'm so happy that I took the moments to pick up my camera and remember the good things. Looking at the year through some of my favorite pictures makes it easier for a while to look past the hard things and see the beauty that was growing alongside me all along.<3 
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Happy New Year, friends. Thanks for spending 2015 with me. 
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