Sisters, Past and Present

I’ve been photographing Elizabeth and Rebekah since they were babies, and it’s been so fun to watch them grow up!  Now they have welcomed a new little sister to the family and we’ve gotten to photograph them all wearing the same little dress, and gotten some of the same poses with each baby over the years.  Here are a few of my favorites, from past and present:

Elizabeth, as a baby (one of my very first photo sessions):

LR 7 copySister Rebekah in the same little dress:

LR 9910 copyAnd now we have sweet Susannah!

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Here’s another of my favorite series of baby pictures:

Untitled-1And look at them now!…

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Thank you, Jon and Katie, for allowing me to photograph your beautiful girls!

 

These images were shot as part of a special Mini Session package we have going on right now!  Mini Sessions include a one hour session in Brownsville or Smiths Grove, a high resolution CD and full printing rights for $100.  Mini sessions can be booked for ANY TIME within the next 24 months, if they are paid for between July and August of this year. If you would like to schedule a mini session as a gift, we have beautiful gift cards you can present to friends and family members that make great birthday and Christmas presents and they can schedule a session at their convenience. Please pass this information along, and share with your friends!

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Zane has a sister!

You may remember Zane from this post, and this one and this one, and now this handsome fellow has a new little sister in his family, Aven!

Isn’t she beautiful?!

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And, of course, we had to get a shot of Zane with his frog.  He wasn’t quite as interested in taking his picture with the frog as he used to be.  I have a feeling it’s going to be especially difficult when he’s a teenager.  :)

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The Pegues Family

Normally, I like to put a little blurb up about the families I photograph, but if I did that here, it would easily turn into a novel!  Manuela and Patrick are my family in every important sense of the word.  Patrick introduced me to Jesus almost 15 years ago and Manuela has become one of my very best friends in the world.  Truly, our friendship is a story that deserves to be written about, and perhaps some day it will be.  In the meantime, thank you, Patrick and Manuela… for everything.  I love you both so very much, and even though I don’t get to take pictures of you very often, it’s always a blessing to me when I do.  So thank you for that, too.  :)

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What a Small World!

I met Amy and her family through a mutual friend when she signed up for a mini session, but I’d actually “known” Amy long before that!  After our session, our mutual friend asked me if I’d ever read her blog, and though I’m usually horrible with names “Amy Scott” DID ring a bell.  “Wait a minute, she’s not Amy Scott from Amy’s Humble Musings, is she???!”  Sure enough, that’s exactly who she was!  Funny thing is, many years ago I’d actually emailed Amy about getting together some time, because I knew she lived in Kentucky.  Who knew it would take several more years before we would meet in person, and then I’d meet her without actually knowing who she was!!!

Amy’s family is just as beautiful, sweet and kind as they appear on her blog, and I wish we’d had more time to get to know each other!  Amy, thank you so much for allowing me to photograph your beautiful family!  I hope we can get together again some time in the future!

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Once again, I want to express a HUGE “thank-you” to everyone who has already signed up for a mini session, and if you haven’t signed up for one but would like to, there is still time!!!  We’re trying to raise money for some things we desperately need to take care of (like the drain in our basement, which has collapsed and will cost an estimated $1500 to fix, among many other things!)  We could still use all the help we can get, so we’re extending the time period for mini sessions!  They can now be booked for ANY TIME within the next 24 months, if they are paid for between July and August of this year. The price is $100 for a 1 hour session in either Smiths Grove or Brownsville and includes a high resolution CD and full printing rights.  If you would like to schedule a mini session as a gift, we have beautiful gift cards you can present to friends and family members that make great birthday and Christmas presents and they can schedule a session at their convenience. Please pass this information along, and share with your friends!

Thanks!

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The Sewell Family

I met this beautiful family through a mutual friend when they signed up for one of our mini sessions (more info on that, below.)  Their kindness and generosity was evident right from the start of our session and the children were a pleasure to work with!  We took these pictures at The Garden Patch, in Smiths Grove, which is becoming one of my favorite places for pictures!   If you’ve never been there, you really ought to check it out, it’s a really great family-friendly place to take kids and there is always something fun to see and do there!

Thank you, Sewell family, for your kindness and generosity and for allowing me to photograph your beautiful family!  More to come, soon!

 

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I want to express a HUGE “thank-you” to everyone who has already signed up for a mini session, and if you haven’t signed up for one but would like to, there is still time!!!  We’re trying to raise money for some things we desperately need to take care of (like the drain in our basement, which has collapsed and will cost an estimated $1500 to fix, among many other things!)  We could still use all the help we can get, so we’re extending the time period for mini sessions!  They can now be booked for ANY TIME within the next 24 months, if they are paid for between July and August of this year. The price is $100 for a 1 hour session in either Smiths Grove or Brownsville and includes a high resolution CD and full printing rights.  If you would like to schedule a mini session as a gift, we have beautiful gift cards you can present to friends and family members that make great birthday and Christmas presents and they can schedule a session at their convenience. Please pass this information along, and share with your friends!

Thanks!

 

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What’s cuter than a baby goat?

EIGHT baby goats!!!

Three of our goats had babies within six days of each other, the first giving birth to quadruplets and the last two had triplets (unfortunately, we lost two of them.)  Here are the stories….

Suduko’s Birth

LR 20130630-DSC_9751Suduko’s was my favorite birth so far!  Three of the kids ended up needed assistance and it was me and the kids, working together to get them out and get them breathing.  It was the first birth we’ve had that was a real team effort and it was really nice to work with the kids that way.

Suduko lost her ligaments on May 20th, so we set her up in a birthing pen with another goat (we always hate to leave them by themselves unless they’re really making it clear that they don’t want anyone around,) and kept a close eye on her, but by the end of the day it became obvious that nothing was going to happen, so we turned the baby monitor on to listen for her through the night.

The next morning, the boys came running into the house shouting that there was a kid on the ground!  We never heard a THING!  We all ran to the pen, saw a little girl standing up and looking perfectly normal, so we stayed close and waited to see if there would be any more kids.  Sure enough, within a few minutes we saw two little hoofs – back hoofs!  It was a little girl and she was born backwards, in the caul.  I took the caul off of her quickly, wiped her mouth and nose and since she still wasn’t breathing on her own, handed her to Bunchkin to start swinging her (this helps get the mucus out of her mouth and nose.)  She did, and then gave her to Bundle for drying off, because another little guy started making his way into the world – upside down!  I had NO idea what to do, so I did what I normally do in these kinds of situations… panic!  Bunchkin reached inside of her to see if she could flip him around (she couldn’t) and so we tried to assist Suduko by pulling on him during each contraction.  He eventually came out with no major complications and was also born in the caul so Bunchkin again swung him and then went to work getting him dry.  To our amazement, Suduko settled in and started pushing again!  This one, thankfully, was born head first with two little feet tucked under her exactly as they should have been and also came out in the caul.  The three girls worked on drying them off and then we worked to get them nursing.  One little boy continued to show no interest and on checking his mouth, we realized that he was still cold (if they’re body temperature is low, their mouths will be cold to the touch and they won’t even try to nurse.)  We worked on getting his body temperature back up and in the end, we got them all nursing and ended up with two healthy does and two bucklings!

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Mini Colors

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I was gone when Mini Colors gave birth the day after Suduko… none of us suspected she’d go into labor so soon!  Unfortunately, a fluke kept us from checking her ligaments that morning and although  Jon and the kids were home and had been outside almost the entire day, they happened to be inside when she went into labor and it wasn’t until Jon went back outside that he heard the bleating of a newborn.  He ran into the pen to find one live buckling and two dead babies (one girl and one boy.)  We’re still not sure exactly what happened, but if I’ve learned anything from this and from experiences I’ve read about online and heard from other breeders of Nigerians, it is VITALLY important that we be here for every birth.  It’s another tough lesson learned and one we’ll be keeping close in mind as we continue the kidding season.  Thankfully, the little boy is healthy and we already have a home lined up for him!

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Scotch

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I’m pretty sure Scotch’s birth was Bunchkin’s favorite, so far, for reasons you’ll understand once you’ve read the story!  Scotch is the goat we’ve been most concerned about this season.  At her past home, she has consistently given birth to quadruplets, and they have all been dead upon delivery.  Neither the vet or her breeder had any idea why, and that’s actually how we ended up with such an excellent goat – her breeder didn’t feel comfortable selling her, and asked if we’d be interested in taking her (for free!) since she’s an excellent milker.  We’d been praying about her birth since we got her, but if God hadn’t intervened with a set of seemingly random circumstances, we might have missed it!

Not knowing exactly when Scotch would give birth, we were randomly checking her ligaments and monitoring her udder, but she didn’t seem very close to birth at all so we weren’t keeping a very close eye on her.  A few days before she gave birth, I “happened” to notice that the goats needed their nails trimmed, so I worked on a few of them and left the others for the next day, but never got to them.  Finally on Tuesday I got back around to it, and Scotch was the last goat on the list.  When I had her on the milk stand, Bitty noticed that her udder was full so I halfheartedly felt for her ligaments as I was doing other things.  And then checked them again.  And then had Bunchkin check them.  Were they gone?!  Bunchkin verified that they were gone and so we immediately took her to the birthing pen.  Since she wasn’t having visible contractions, we kept an eye on her and worked to get our nightly chores done so that if she did go into labor, everything would be caught up.  Around 6 or 7 that night, we noticed that she was finally starting to have contractions so we got out our birthing kit and sat with her.

About an hour later, I called her breeder, Kathy Sullivan, to ask if there was anything in particular we should be doing.  She suggested that I check her cervix and that was, without a doubt, one of the most horrible things I’ve ever had to do with an animal on our farm.  Here I was, with my hand inside of her, up to my forearm, feeling for who-even-knows-what, who-even-knows-where.  She’s screaming and I’m freaking out, when water started gushing out of her!  I got my hand out of there in a hurry, let me tell you!  Thankfully, she started to really push after that and shortly after, we had our first baby – and he was perfectly healthy!!!  I handed him over to Bunchkin because immediately after, she started pushing again and we saw another little nose and a little pink tongue!  Without any problems, she delivered her second buckling and a few minutes later, delivered a third!  They all needed some help breathing, but once we got them going they were perfectly fine!  The girls set to work drying them off and we continued to wait to see if any others would be born.  After a while, Scotch was still not getting up (typically a sign that there is another kid) and Kathy suggested I check inside to see if there was another baby.  So I reluctantly got my glove on, lubed up and started to put my hand in and then stopped.

“You know what, Kathy?” I told her.  “I’m going to put my daughter on the phone and let her do this, because she’s a lot more level-headed than I am, and she’ll do a better job!”

With that, I handed Bunchkin the phone, the lubricant, and another glove and sat praying while her hand, and then her arm, disappeared inside of our doe!  She followed Kathy’s instructions perfectly with a perfectly clear head (I had no idea until later that she was even nervous!) and couldn’t feel any more kids.  Almost an hour later, Scotch delivered the afterbirth and the kids were nursing perfectly!

So our little Bunchkin got to play goat midwife, and Scotch gets to raise kids for the very first time!  What an awesome ending to a crazy birthing marathon!  Three down, five to go!

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The 2013 Measles “Epidemic”

In light of my last post, I thought it might be timely to republish this article from September of last year…

A friend of mine recently sent me a link to a CNN article entitled: U.S. measles cases in 2013 may be most in 17 years.  To anyone sitting on the fence, wondering if they should vaccinate their child, there’s a lot of scary-sounding information in that article:

This year is on track to be the worst for measles in more than a decade, according to new numbers released Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

There were 159 cases of measles in the United States from January 1 through August 24

This is very bad. This is horrible,” said Dr. Buddy Creech, a pediatric infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University who was on a telephone briefing with the CDC Thursday morning. “The complications of measles are not to be toyed with, and they’re not altogether rare.”

“According to the CDC, one to three out of every 1,000 children in the United States who get measles will die from the disease, even with the best of care.”

“Even if complications such as pneumonia and encephalitis aren’t deadly, they can make children very sick; in 2011, nearly 40% of children under the age of 5 who got measles had to be treated in the hospital.”

STOP RIGHT THERE!  I’m calling my doctor… we’re getting the kids vaccinated RIGHT NOW!

Or not.  Lets take a closer look at those statistics, shall we?

According to the article: “one to three out of every 1,000 children in the United States who get measles will die from the disease, even with the best of care.” Okay… and how many children in the US get the measles? Again, to quote the article “159 cases of measles in the United States from January 1 through August 24.”

So in an EIGHT MONTH period 159 out of the roughly 74 MILLION children in the US got measles. Lets give that a visual:

This map comes from the CDC website published August 24, 2013

Number of measles cases (N = 159), by state — United States, 2013:

The figure shows the number of measles cases, by state in the United States during 2013. During January 1-August 24, 2013, a total of 159 cases were reported to CDC from 16 states and New York City. The largest numbers of cases were reported from New York state (65), Texas (25), North Carolina (22), and California (15).

Pretty scary stuff.  Especially for those of us living in Kentucky.

But what about all these bad, horrible, “not to be toyed with” complications?  What about the deaths?!

If, according to the article, 1-3 (we’ll estimate high and go with the number 3) out of every 1,000 children who get measles will die from measles and only 159 children got the measles in an 8 month period, that means roughly ONE child will die of measles every FOUR years.(Actually, there hasn’t been a measles death since 2003, despite years and years of “outbreaks.”)

And all those scary side effects that land so many kids in the hospital every year?

“Nearly 40% of children under the age of 5 who got measles had to be treated in the hospital”

For the sake of argument, lets say that all 159 children who have gotten the measles this year were under the age of 5.  63 of those children (40%) had to be treated in the hospital.  63.  Can we stop and think about that for a second?  63 out of 74 MILLION children in this country had to be hospitalized because of the measles.

Pretty scary stuff.  Statistically speaking, my children have more chance of being bit by a poisonous snake, drowning in a pool, or being killed by a tornado than they have of getting (and having complications from) measles.  (Not to mention the fact that vaccinations aren’t always effective.)

Now lets compare that number with a much, much scarier number. 1 in 88 kids in the United States are suffering from autism.  ONE IN EIGHTY-EIGHT.  Don’t think vaccines cause autism?  Here are a number of studies that show otherwise.  It’s the largest epidemic in the history of the world.

Where are the CNN articles reporting on THAT?  

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Related Articles

Dear parents, you’re STILL being lied to … Exposing the threat of measles, mumps and hippopotamuses on vaccinated children and the unsupportable claims of a pro-vaccination scientist.

(outside links):

The Myth of Herd Immunity

Why All The Measles Outbreaks?

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