Tuesday, May 28, 2013

memorial day weekend 2013

Our 3-day weekend started off spending time with our awesome friends.


Sunday was National Paper Airplane Day. One of my favorite blogs had the cutest printables, so we headed out in our backyard to fly paper airplanes.

Sunday was also the new Arrested Development day, so we sat in front of the TV and watched all 15 episodes, which, by the way, is nothing to be proud of.

And on Monday, we headed to our church to celebrate this beautiful girl's 8th birthday!

8 more days of school!!!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

ride to fly

Several weekends ago, Blee and I headed to Rolling Hills Estate to participate in the annual Ride to Fly fundraiser. Ride to Fly is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing therapeutic horseback riding to children and adults with disabilities.

I think this was the first time Blee got so close to horses. He was super excited, and kept yelling, "I see another one! LOOK! One more!" I tell ya, he's a true city kid.

After the initial fear of stepping on horse poop (which was basically every 2 steps), Blee expressed his interest in riding the mechanical bull. He was so giddy when I bought the $8 tickets that I was a little impressed of how fearless he was. I mean, those things are meant for kids much older and/or drunk college kids, right? Well, I was fooled. I should have known better.

This is what he REALLY wanted to do. His true motivation.

REALLY? SERIOUSLY? Did I really pay $8 for this? I let him jump for 10 seconds because he had the biggest smile on his face, but quickly forced him on the bull.
Guess what?
He screamed and cried bloody murder. I wasn't about to back down, so I asked one of the girls from church to take a picture with him.
Whew! So much work!
The remainder of the day was spent with our good friends. We ate, did some crafts, enjoyed the petting zoo, collected leaves, and danced to the band.



Wednesday, May 8, 2013

365 days of...april

Still going strong with my 365 days project. One photo, everyday for a year.

Here's my April...

Sunday, May 5, 2013

may 5 - children's day

While many are celebrating Cinco De Mayo, we are here celebrating Children's Day. In Japan, today is the day where families celebrate their child's unique personality and pray for their health and growth.

Blee made the traditional kabuto (helmet) and koinobori streamers at his preschool. He was very excited to show them off.

Our little boy is full of energy, spirit, and smile. We are excited to see him grow strong and happy!

upcoming photo series : finger over lens

For the last several months, my son has been actively taking photos on our super old, shock-proof, water-proof camera. I didn’t realize how many he has taken, or how amazingly funny the photos are until Jimmy showed them to me. I tell you, he definitely has a future in photography.

So, without further ado, let me present to you the collection titled: Finger Over Lens
1. bedroom
 2. Daddy in the living room

3. Den

4. Cooking

5. Selfie

6. Selfie ; Part II

7. Grandma
8. Laundry basket
 Jimmy and I are probably the only ones who think this is hilarious. Thanks for putting up with us!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

what Blee says...

Scene 1

He’s currently seriously into Party Rock Anthem (I know, it’s about 2 years too late). BUT it’s cute to watch him rock out and try to skip around the house.

                Me: “Sarah’s mommy got us tickets to a music show!”
                Blee: “Party Rock music show?”

LMFAO. Get it? LMFAO?? Haha…I’m so funny.

He also sings the clean up song while picking up his toys.

              Blee: “cue: clean up song - Clean up, clean up, everybody….(cue – Party Rock Anthem) have a good time! Lalalalala lose your mind…PARTY ROCK!!”

Scene 2 : 10pm, bedroom            

              Blee : “Mommy, I don’t wanna go to bed! Mommy…Mommy…MOMMY…MOMMY!!!! (silence). SAKURA COME HERE! JIMMY COME HERE RIGHT NOW!!”

He’s also kicking butt in the area of Japanese accent.

                Backu loom is backroom
                Shirou pu is syrup

                 Bulan ket-to is blanket

                Pan-tsu is pants

Jimmy and I both think it's the funniest thing.

*The photos have nothing to do with anything. I just can't post without pictures!*

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

shooting INTO the sun

For the longest time, I avoided shooting into the sun. I was terrified of sun flares, over exposed skin, blurs, and blown-out colors. I preferred open shade and cloudy days or waited until the sun went down. It took me YEARS to embrace shooting INTO the sun. It took a lot of practice, patience, and trial-and-error, but now I LOVE the outcome. I think these images convey emotion, and I love how warm they look.

So, how do you shoot these?

First, you need to position your subject so that the sun is BEHIND them. The key is that sun must be low enough so that it is behind the subject – not above. If you have a lens hood, definitely use it. If not, you can use your hand to shade the lens.

If possible, the photographer should be in a shade. If there is a tree or a building that casts shade, get in there. You can also try to be in the shade created by your subject. 

Below are 2 photos. The photo on the left was taken while I was in the shade. The image is nice and crisp, and the sun is behind Blee, creating a beautiful rim light. The photo on the right was taken after I backed up a bit and is a little hazy because the camera was in the sun.

Focusing on the subject is probably the hardest thing to do. Because of the sun’s glare, auto focus will be difficult. If your camera allows manual focus, switch it to that setting. Depending on your focus setting, your images may come out extremely over exposed, or extremely under exposed. Make sure it’s set on “spot focus” and try to put the focus dot on the subject’s eyes.

When all else fails (or after a long day and you just want a decent photo of your kid), position your subject in the shade, get yourself in the shade, and then snap the shutter.

Good luck!