Well, I finally got some pictures of Joanna in her beloved hat a couple days ago… I just had to wait for her to be in “diva mode!”  I said I’d share them once I took them, so here they are.  Jo is literally attached to this hat.  She wears it all the time — which is rather uncharacteristic for her.  I have had the hardest time keeping anything on her head — even in the winter (and now you’ve seen the pictures and know what a bald little one she was… if ever a child needed a hat to stay warm, she did!) 

And, I managed to find a brick wall, Jamie!  Thanks for the inspiration!  (Jamie took a picture of Kendra in her favorite hat in front of a brick wall.  It’s a FANTASTIC photo!  These don’t even come close!  If you haven’t seen hers, you need to!) 

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I really love portrait photography — it’s one of my favorite aspects of the art.  Each person is a unique canvas made up of so many complex parts — passions, dreams, likes and dislikes, personality and quirks (even a two-year-old!).  Most of the time you don’t see all the layers; but a portrait (a good one) is like a portal to the soul.  You get a glimpse of the multiple aspects that make that person who they are because just the right moment was frozen in time.  There is so much to learn!  I don’t often hit the nail on the head… but even just trying to, there is something indescribably satisfying about capturing a bit of a person’s soul on film (no wait! that’s not entirely true with most photos anymore… I guess now it’s capturing a bit of a person’s soul “in pixels” — hmmmm, doesn’t quite have the same ring to it! 🙂  At any rate, I love it and am always looking for subjects…  Henry doesn’t know what he’s getting into!

It was a fun little photo shoot and I took waayyy too many pictures (what can I say?  She was in diva mode and these days I have to take advantage of it!) 

But as I said before, don’t for a moment, let this cherubic little face fool you! She is not all sugar! There’s been a lot of spice lately! The last week has been quite difficult…  Why? What is it that gets into kids and makes them wake up in the morning determined to fight to the death on every issue?  It’s like they decide… “today is a good day to die. I will NOT back down! I will NOT surrender! I will stand my ground to the end! There will be no survivors!!”  Arghhh… Seriously… it’s been trying. She brings out my worst side, too.  I am not a mean person by nature. I really like little children… and I love her dearly!  But the last few days I have been such a crabby impatient mother.  Darn it!  (I am definitely getting that book you recommended, Angel!)

Actually on a serious note, I am recognizing patterns that are contributing to some of the difficult behavior. So I suppose it’s actually beneficial to feel like I’ve run into a wall because it’s forced me to stop and evaluate my effectiveness as a parent and not just continue with the same methods of disciplining and training that obviously aren’t working in certain areas. I am learning to recognize that as she grows and changes, my methods of training have to change as well. My philosophy needs to stay consistent, but my methodology needs to adjust to her age and maturity in order to be most effective. Phew… there’s A LOT to learn as a parent. It’s all the stuff they DON’T put in books that gets me!

Although I do have to say that after a difficult week like this one, I end up appreciating the sweet, spontaneous hugs and cheerful, obedient responses so much more. I suppose that’s the silver lining… I’m learning to not take the sweet moments for granted!

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