Saturday, December 27, 2008

Zach, Aubrey & Gage

I was fortunate enough to be referred to Aubrey through my sweet friend, Celesta (previously shot photos of her with her mom). Aubrey is such a sweet heart and needless to say, the energy between these three pours through the photos! I was friends with Zach in high school but haven't kept in much contact since so I was thrilled to find out I'd be shooting photos of him and his little one, Gage! As you can see, Gage is too cute for words! I had so much fun shooting these photos...thank you Aubrey for the opportunity! Hope you all enjoy!:)

Click to play Zach, Aubrey & Gage
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-Abby
PS- HOPE EVERYONE HAD A WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cora

I was asked by my good friend Tmonster (aka Tristan) if I could shoot some photos of his beautiful little niece, Cora, for Christmas gifts. This means that this slideshow must be kept top secret! We don't want the word to get out to Tristan's parents so if you see this and you happen to know them, please keep quiet! :)
Cora is another facebook baby I would stalk, one day hoping someone would let me take her picture. She is absolutely gorgeous! And such a fun little being to be around. T wanted photos downtown so we headed there then to the wonderful Paseo District! I just love that area. Anyway, here she is ladies & gents...the little beauty...Miss Cora Shutt!

Click to play Cora
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PS-The song on the slideshow is my favorite Christmas song right now...."It Wouldn't Be Christmas" by Jaci Velasquez.
I highly recommend her Christmas album!

Merry Christmas!
Abby

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Light A Candle

Light a candle
for the old man who sits staring
out a frosty windowpane

Light a candle
for the woman who is lonely
and every Christmas is the same

For the children who need
more than presents can bring

Light a candle
light the dark
light the world
light a heart or two
light a candle for me
I'll light a candle for you

Light a candle
for the homeless and the hungry
a little shelter from the cold

Light a candle
for the broken and forgotten
may the season warm their souls

Can we open our hearts
to shine through the dark

Light a candle
light the dark
light the world
light a heart or two
light a candle for me
I'll light a candle for you

And in this special time of year
may peace on earth surround us here
and teach us there's a better way to live
and with every flame that burns
we must somehow learn
that love's the greatest gift
that we could ever give

Light a candle
light the dark
light the world
light a heart or two
light a candle for me
I'll light a candle for you.
-Avalon

I've been listening to this song a lot tonight and couldn't help but post the words. I don't typically write a lot of personal stuff on here, but I really felt like sharing a few words about something I've been feeling this holiday season.

First of all, I've YET to buy Christmas gifts. I've hardly had time in-between holiday shoots and temp work to even think about what to buy everyone. I know I want to buy gifts that will benefit, but I'm coming up blank this year.

After hearing this song tonight I couldn't help but stop and think about the true meaning of this season. I'm part of a "mission group" that meets on Wednesdays. We are currently learning what it means to be a community and how we can live out our lives the way Jesus TRULY wants us to together without selfishly interpreting the bible to fit our needs. Anyway, last nights discussion really got me thinking about what it fully means to "sacrifice" my life for the Lord. I got to thinking about Christmas and all that it means for the world of believers. This season represents the best gift of unselfish love, for a world that is hurting and a people who yearn for truth and meaning. It represents every bit of good that one can offer to humanity and in the most non-material way. So why do I, as a believer, drown in the disappointment (mostly caused by myself) when I have yet to find the best "present" for my friends and family? Why do I struggle so much with the fact that consumer America spends more on Christmas crap than we do on giving things that go much further in humanity? How did we ever get so far into gift giving, rather than the sacrifice of ourselves and physically helping others, and of all times at Christmas?

Don't get me wrong. I'm no grinch...I love giving to my friends and family. I'm just deeply convicted this year about the KIND of gifts I give. I mentioned before that I'd like to give gifts that benefit organizations. My first thought is "what can I get that will benefit and in turn be a physical gift I can hand to my people come Christmas day?" But why does it even have to be that way? Why can't I NATURALLY ask myself "What can I give that will benefit humanity?" and end there. I want to give and I want a physical gift. But is God calling me to sacrifice in the sense that I give every non-material part of me to help people who need it way more than any present ever could? And how does He view the time I spend shopping for material items and the money I spend on them? Could I really be sacrificing myself so much more?

Sometimes I wish we just took the time to light a candle for the world. For the widow, for the poor, for the hurting, for the starving. And I wish that would be satisfying enough.

I encourage everyone to listen to this song and think about how you can help a person in need this holiday! And think outside the box...give things that will help and make a much more lasting impression than anything material ever would.

God Bless! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!
Love, Abby

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Dustin, Lindsay & Ethan Ash

I had the honor of shooting holiday photos for the amazing Ash family this season! Lindsay Ash is the sister of my best friend, Hayley, so I've known her about 5 years (almost 6...wow, has it really been almost 6 years since I was a freshman in college?!). Hayley and I were roomies at OBU for a semester so I got to know her family pretty well. Aside from the fact that they are like family to me, Ethan, Hayley's nephew, was born just one week after my nephew, Owen. So I feel our blonde haired, handsome, June baby nephews are just one more common link in our wonderful friendship:) Anyway, I must point out that Lindsay's red coat made these photos "pop" and made editing so simple. I couldn't help but feel the holiday warmth with this family. I hope you do too! And I hope you enjoy their holiday slideshow!:)
Click to play the Ash family
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MERRY CHRISTMAS!!
-Abby

Friday, December 5, 2008

The McColloughs

Introducing... the wonderful McCollough family! These people are seriously such a sweet family...and their baby Nate, is A DOLL!
(I know, I constantly rave about the babies but it's so hard not to when they are so dang cute!) I've known Jessica since elementary school and Michael since high school. We go way back!:) I was THRILLED when Jessica emailed me about photos. I'd been admiring Nate for quite some time on facebook and was hoping she might notice my work and ask me to shoot some stuff for them!:) Seriously though! I know that might sound creepy, but Nate is just such a cutie that I couldn't help but want to look at the photos they always post. Just check out the slideshow and you will see for yourself!
Click to play The McCollough Family Slideshow
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Hope you enjoy!
-Abby

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

TOMS Shoes

As a result of my travels abroad, I decided each year around Christmas time I would try and buy items for my family & friends that would help benefit a non-profit organization. Last year I bought Red Campaign items, Jedidiah HOPE Collection shirts, Invisible Children bracelets/shirts & cd's of the children singing in Sierra Leone. Best part was, it helped an organization and everyone loved their gifts! Being in such a material deprived place like Africa can really cause you to check yourself, and being the Christian that I am, this unfortunately has become one of my biggest convictions. As Americans we waste so much money on things that do not make a lasting impression- only short term enjoyment. Why not buy gifts that help humanity and better the world? Everyone is already going to spend the money this holiday season...why not just take the time to look into organizations that provide gifts for families or children in need?

I became aware of TOMS through a friend a little over a year ago. I have two pairs (I'm not a "shoe girl" or I'd probably have more) and I can honestly tell you they are my favorite. They are so incredibly easy to wear and so comfortable! Better yet, if you buy a pair, they give a pair to a child in need. TOMS does shoe drops all over the world, even here in America. I encourage everyone to check them out: www.tomsshoes.com

I was recently interviewed by the local news station, OETA, about my TOMS. A girl I went to high school with saw mine on some of my facebook photos and referred me to a local reporter while they discussed shoes one day. It is so random! But, I wanted to share the link! It was fun but I'm happy I had the chance to publicly show my support for the organization. You can see the interview here: http://wms7.streamhoster.com/saxum/Loabi_OETA_Nov%2022_08.wmv

For anyone in the OKC area: you can find TOMS at Loabi in Yukon, Shoe Gypsy & Blue 7. They even have baby TOMS!
Watch this video for more information on how you can help children in need this Christmas:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqrFG7xrE1I

I encourage everyone to support non-profits that help people! Buy gifts that keep on giving! Help the world in need!:)

Merry shopping!
-Abby

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Forgys

My beautiful friend Celesta and her mom get holiday photos taken each year and, lucky me, she asked if I would photograph them this year! Woohoo! I went to high school with Celesta but it wasn't until the last few years that we've really gotten to know one another. She is such a kind and happy person to be around...a "contagious" type if you will. I have yet to see Celesta angry! She is always so full of life. If you didn't know better, you might think these two are sisters! Both such lovely ladies! Big thanks to Celesta & her mom, Alesia, for such a fun time!

Click to play Alesia & Celesta Forgy
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-Abby

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Smiths

I have been so lucky with photography the last few months and the Smiths are just one example of that! Amber contacted me about photos for her family after seeing the toddler photos I did of Londyn a while ago. I was so excited when she asked me to shoot for her family! We did these downtown at the Myriad Gardens while the leaves were in full, fall mode. Her little ones are just precious! Thanks Amber for the opportunity!:)

Click to play The Smiths
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-Abby

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