Me. Quintessential Oregonian. Wine and craft beer, coffee (of the "fru fru" sort according to my dad). Piloting through life in my Subaru with a camera in hand, and my daughter by my side. Adventure awaits.
So now that I am one of the cool kids with my iPad I thought I’d check out how to go about blogging on it. Maybe that will inspire me to be more regular with my posts.
Right now I am trying to see how to import photos via the WordPress app into this post, though its looking like that may not be an option. 3rd party apps for WordPress might be the needed component, but my luck with those has not been stellar (pretty big failure with Blogstomp as an example).
5 Minutes Later and a Google search……..
Turns out the WordPress App does not come high much acclaim for posting. As a reader and comments manager it does just fine. Good thing it’s free. But to post this photos (which was shot on my D800 then processed in Snapseed and Over on my iPad) I had to back out of my post and use the Post Photo option. It’s called Quick Photo. Doesn’t appear to have any key wording options. Lets be honest, key words are how we are seen! Looks like more exploration to come.
****after having saved a draft of this post when I backed out on the iPad, when I went back in to edit there was a new option to add a photo. It may have redeemed itself.
For anyone who’s been keeping tabs on my Facebook page you’ll notice my family and close friends are generally my favorite test subjects for photos. I mean, why not?! I have some pretty awesome people to use as guinea pigs. My daughters life has thus far been documented to an absurd degree through photos. Thank goodness for unlimited file storage on websites like Shutterfly (although it was originally Kodak, poor poor Kodak.com).
Every so often we decide we need some pictures of us as a family. Out comes the tripod.
First few attempts were a bit dicey, but they are memories none the less I wouldnt’t trade. Natalie was just a wee 5 months old.
So now, 4 years and a couple months later, she can help me during picture taking. She has ideas for what she wants them to look like. So this years photos mark 7 years for Ellen and I. Probably the couple with the fewest overall photos starring both of us that I can think of.
Maybe over time we’ll try to do more of these. Now that I have the perfect miniature assistant, now only if her hourly rates were lower.
I was fortunate enough to spend the afternoon and evening photographing Melissa and Rob’s wedding on 10-11-12. There is nothing I can say about how great they are together that would say as much as the tears of joy in their kids eyes throughout the day. Congrats you to you guys!
The nurse. The fireman. Probably sounds a bit cliche, but before they were the nurse and the fireman my cousin Rachel was a nursing student, and Chris was going to paramedic school. Wrapped in the romantic ambiance of an Anatomy and Physiology class she caught his eye, and as the physical therapist father-of-the bride said “Rachel found a guy with his head on straight”.
Although I was not the photographer for this wedding (I completely “uncle Bob’ed” this one), I had my camera at the ready with the permission of my cousin to snap a few shots since they only had 2 photographers for part of the day. Pinterest did its job on this day, and my cousin worked hard with the help of family and friends to detail out her wedding beautifully.
The apple licorice things were amazing.
Given to my grandfather when he retired.
Pre-Ceremony group shots for the wedding part.
I may have been just a little bias, and overwhelmingly honored that my little girl was the flower girl. Instead of the traditional throwing of flowers, the bride chose a bucket full of goldfish crackers, which she could conveniently snack on during the ceremony. Great idea!
First flower girl appearance.
Father of the bride.
Best Man = best dance moves.
I was so thrilled to get to spend time with family I haven’t seen in so many years. For many more photos from this muggy Southern Oregon wedding visit my Facebook page!
Springtime in Oregon is full of love, flowering trees, and sun… well, maybe not so much sun. To schedule anything outdoors beyond the 10 day forecast takes a crystal ball and the psychic hotline. But after several rescheduling attempts we made it out to shoot some pre-wedding/engagement photos for Brandi and Mike. I wanted to share some of my favorites and wish these two luck on their upcoming wedding in June!
They’ve known each other since before high school, and with an upcoming casual backyard wedding I thought a nice evening shoot out in the hills East of Newport would be perfect for these two.
I was excited to get out there and see cherry blossoms, a light breeze, and the typical cool spring evening.
There is nothing easier than photographing a couple that really love each other. Something that was apparent through any awkwardness they felt in front of the camera, or uncertainty about this person (me) they had just met.
As the evening wore on we decided to head on down to an old cattle pasture. No pies left, but plenty of room to roam.
Newport is a small town, and after I posted these photos on my Facebook photography page (www.Facebook.com/KrisMillerPhotography), I had several different people approach me to let me know how happy they are these two are together. Best of luck to you both!
“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.” ~ Dr. Seuss
I am the oldest of 3 boys. Growing up I often recall people looking at my mother with pity, sympathy and gut wrenching fear when she informed them she had 3 boys. I never really realized how differently wired little boys were than girls until I had a little girl of my own. Its as if little boys are predisposed to destroy. Not maliciously, that just seems to be how they test things. Sharks bite to see if something will make a tasty meal. So when our friend Julie had her 3rd little boy I remembered all those looks my mother received. So instead of sympathy, or pity, I smiled and said “you’re in for a hell of a ride”.
Reef, Kai, Finn
I approached my most recent photo shoot with a plan. Since I had seen Reef atop the highest point in of every piece of playground equipment in the greater Newport area I knew that I would have to get him on my team. The oldest brother team. Since Grandma was in town from Ohio it was important to get this right. Give her something to take home from her time with her boys. Reef and Finn are fearless. I’ve always taken a lot of enjoyment over watching their antics at the park, or playgroups since nothing stops them. No force is greater than 2 brothers with a mission to explore.
Soon the 3rd musketeer will be old enough to climb, shimmy, and rush headlong into the fray with his older siblings. But until then he watches them with wide eyes, sometimes you can almost hear him say “you fools are crazy… can I go to!?”.
The hour long shoot was an awesome time of playing catch up with the boys. It reminded me of what happened when my brothers and I were at the beach. Climbing on logs, running through the brush, and peering over bridges. These boys couldn’t be happier to be on that bridge.
And even though little Kai couldn’t be peaking over the edge with them, he was looking around on his own.
Bribing them with the promise of chocolate pudding, we even got everyone looking at the camera a few times.
I am excited to continue to watch these little guys grow. I admire their tenacity and desire to explore. I don’t envy the emergency room bills that will likely occur in the future, but my brothers and I all survived it. As did my mother, and so will Julie. My only advice is that if it has value no matter how high the shelf it, they will get to it. Put it in a box and hide it until they are teenagers… or maybe in their 20s.
A friend is a brother who was once a bother. ~Author Unknown
All games have a start. A beginning. A go. It isn’t terribly important which game it is, whether you move by a spinner or roll of a dice, the object is to safely and effectively reach the end. Unless it’s Trivial Pursuit, then you want to reach the middle. When my daughter was born I passed Go, but I didn’t collect $200. The real game of Life started, her life.
Realistically when she was born everything became a proverbial roll of the dice. Which foods would upset her stomach (for your information it was a lot of them), which diapers would leave to butt-reddening diaper rash, or even whether or not she would sleep longer that 45 minutes at a time during the night. With a little luck we moved on from chance to training. Our game was to anticipate her needs, and react accordingly like a sport. Now as she approaches 4 we are very much so entrenched in games. Her games, our games and the continual test of limits.
Now as she approaches 4 I am amazed at her ability to outsmart and out maneuver me. I am aware this will only get worse. We question our children time and time again with “how many apples do you see?!” or “what do YOU think will happen when you mix blue and yellow?!”. Most days I think she wonders how I passed Kindergarten based on my line of questions for her. And when the time is right they bust out a vocabulary word you didn’t know they knew, because their spinner landed on “frustrated” or “podiatrist”. Not things you expect them to say.
She jockeyed ahead. I don’t even try to let her win anymore, she is perfectly capable all on her own.
Sometimes the game is long.
I’ve never been one to say it’s all about winning. I like to play the game. I like learning new tricks to be a better player, which my daughter seems to teach me every day. Somedays she’ll best me, she will land on the short cut square and I will be playing catch up. But that’s ok.
Sometimes in Oregon it rains. But only sometimes. Other times it might be drizzling, misting, sprinkling, pouring, or most often as the weather man dictates “showering”. We like our different words for water falling from the sky. This land where children are so often confused by learning the sky is blue, since around here it is mostly gray. But with these many gray days, wet days, and completely erratic weather days we parents need places to take the kids to run in circles that is not just the living room at home.
We started attending the indoor park at the city rec center about the time my daughter could crawl. The array of toys wasn’t extensive, and the probability of injury was high for the most part. Crawlers intermixed with toddler’s just able to reach the pedals on the tricycles, but not adept enough to steer them, resulted in the occasional scene from “Red Asphalt”. Ok, that’s a bit dramatic. It seemed, though, like there was a frequent invasion of just a couple bigger kids to show the littler ones what kind of dare-deviling could be achieved . . . then all of a sudden that was my child.
Her mother gave the go ahead on this, not me!
As the parents (typically moms) stood along the sideline it seemed that the older the kids got the fewer mad dashes across the room to pick up a crying crawler would take place. Coffees in hand everyone could stand and chatter with the frequent interruptions of “don’t throw that at him/her” or “no, you don’t need to take off your pants”. Without fail, mouths open wide, the kids would come running. It was snack time.
Bartering, Sneaking. Begging. Stealing. All the typical jailhouse cafeteria decorum would take place around the little Fisher Price picnic table. We wonder why our little people are sick so often, then you watch them share food. They sit, they eat, they run off and quickly the food is picked up by a mom so that a wayward crawler isn’t learning whether he/she has a nut allergy yet. But for 2 hours twice a week its a place to go that is dry, and gives us a chance to count home many laps the old fella with a limp can make it around the track above us. Well worth the $2 entry fee.
For a millisecond I ran a fine wines shop in Newport, OR. The floor boards were the baseboard, so the cracks actually just went outside to the ground. When I took over the wines were primarily in bins, covered in large clots of dust. Some people calls those dust bunnies, but these were dust bison.
I was nowhere near qualified when I accepted the job. It was offered to me by default when the business manager and co-owner walked out one day. I was there serving for an event just hoping to get a part time job out of it. But beyond knowing I liked wine, I had no educational background in either viticulture or business. So the adventure began.
In that excerpt of my life I was exposed to wines I’d never heard of. Wines from every corner of the globe. Found many that I loved, and then others that I have happily forgotten. It also afforded me the opportunity prior to having a child to purchase at a marked discount, wines I could not otherwise afford.
Brown Estate 2001 Late Harvest Zinfandel 750ml
This bottle has sat on my shelf ever since. I purchased the last two of them we had in stock. Somehow the first was enjoyed when we had people over. It’s nearly a port, in both consistency and alcohol by volume. But now this one has been rolled ever so often to avoid sediment settling in the bottle, taken out and admired, then put back on the rack. Eventually it too will be enjoyed, I hope. Technically speaking it’s no longer in its prime, but we might get lucky and have a smooth leathery (sweet) zinfandel, or it will taste like rank vinegar.
The sun is deceitful on the Oregon coast. You can look out a window to a clear blue sky, the sun above, then walk out to the bone chilling wind. It’s not rain though, and for the parents in the area that means time to go to the park.
When I was a kid it was called a playground. Now that I am a parent it’s more like a meeting ground. The adults hold tightly to their various coffee mugs, exchanging tales of what their little person did today. Intermittently breaking up the conversation are the “gentle” reminders to our kids to not eat bark chips, as they are not real chips, or as they get old not to physically accost the other kids. There is always a “no” for every age.
They find their friends from school, from dance class, the ones they shared library time with as a toddler. That’s the nature of a small town. Even the kids all know each other before they realize what it means to be social, and exchange stories as well about what has been going on in the respective circles.
When I am not feeling particularly social it gives me an opportunity to follow my little blonde whirlwind around the playground catching some snapshots. My favorites are when she and her little friends don’t even think about my presence, and in this case while playing on some of the unusual equipment at this park, I got my shot.
And no, that’s not a UFO above them. Just because we live in Oregon doesn’t mean we all claim to see UFO’s… often. 😉
A person’s a person, no matter how small – Dr. Seuss (Horton Hears A Who)