Friday, May 27, 2011

Graduation: Zach!

Meet Zach!  Zach just graduated from ASU with a degree in elementary education.  Isn't he handsome?!  I mean his family must have good genes!  ;)  Just kidding!  Well he is handsome and as his older sister I can say that I am very proud of him and was very privileged that he let me shoot his graduation pictures!  To my surprise he was a natural in fort of the camera.  It made me wonder why I never thought of using him as a model before!  He just wanted something simple that captured his personality, light hearted and very intellectual.  I think we succeeded!

Zach, this was so much fun!!!  Like I said I was honored that you would let me capture this exciting time in life!  You are going to be such an amazing teacher!  I am so proud of you!

I wish I could take credit for the awesome idea of the books but that was all him!

This last one is my absolute favorite!

Pretty handsome, right?!  Like I said, this was so much fun!  I feel like these very much represent what Zach is all about!

Hope you enjoyed!!!  Happy Friday!!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Cutie: Brody!

Meet Brody!  Or as I call him, brodnugget.  (His parents use to call him nugget.) Anyways, this is seriously one the the cutest, sweetest, funnest (yes I know that's not a word!) little boys ever!  He just has such a great personality!  His parents are some of my favorite people in the whole world!!!  I was very so excited when they asked me to do his pictures!

Thanks Hil and Jeremy for letting me hang out with you and capture your little man's handsomeness!

One in color so you can see those amazing baby blues!

Like I said, ADORABLE!!!!  Hope you enjoyed!  Happy Wednesday day, or as hubby and I call it MFDN (Modern Family Date Night)!!!!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Baby bump: Jaiden!!!

Meet Drea!  How cute is that belly?!  If you saw her from behind you would have not idea, other than having the pregnant women stance, that she was 9 months pregnant.  She is all baby belly.  This shoot was close to my heart as Drea is a cousin of mine.  Her family has always been a big part of my life.  I still can't get over the fact that she is pregnant!!!  I am so excited for her!  She is going to be an amazing mother!!!  Baby Jaiden is going to be so loved and I'm positive, so cute!!!!

Congrats Drea!  I can't wait to see and meet baby Jaiden!!!

 I was so excited when she said she wanted to do bare belly pictures!!!!

Isn't she just so beautiful!!!  And how cute is that little hat?!

I think this one might be my favorite!!!  Pregnant in heels!!!

This was such a fun shoot!  Drea was such a trooper and up for anything.  Not to mention she was beautiful and glowing!!!  I can't wait to meet baby Jaiden!

Hope you enjoyed the post!  Happy Monday!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Happy Friday Continued

Here are some pictures from my walk this morning!

Happy Friday!

  Today, Friday, I found myself signing on my walk with Ellie Mae, taking pictures of God's wonderful beauty, and actually enjoying doing laundry and dishes.  Now if you know me, you know I HATE doing laundry with a passion!  Its not so much the doing as it is the remembering to change it over and most of all the folding and putting away.  Ugh, I dread it!  But today I was excited about it.  And even though I don't mind doing dishes as much, its still not my favorite thing to do.  But today my heart is, for whatever reason, filled with joy and excitement.  Maybe its just because its Friday and I can't wait to spend the weekend with my hubby or maybe its because I've been taking time to slow down and smell the roses.
  Now don't get me wrong, I am really excited to spend the weekend with my hubby.  I wait all week for those two day we get to have and spend together.  But I was thinking about this last night...I was thinking about the fact that ever since we moved to WI my life has been moving at a slower pace.  Now this is a big thing for me.  I'm use to going a million miles an hour and trying to do a million things at once.  As a retired Starbucks barista of 8 years, I'm use to zooming around and my idle speed being around 80mph.  Yes, I was that annoying girl at Starbucks that greets you right as you walk in the door and your thinking to yourself, "GEEZ!!!  I just woke up and just walked in the door, I know you have had your coffee but I'm here to get mine!!!".  Yep that was me! :)  But since moving my life has been moving at a much slower pace.  And until now, I have hated it.  I NEED to have a million things going on to feel normal...or so I thought!
  Sometimes its just me and the silence....and that can be scary when your use to all the background noise. But I am definitely learning to embrace it.  I actually look forward to it.  I feel like that is the time when God really works on you and speaks to you.  Now that I'm slowing down I have time to, "smell the roses" as they say.  I appreciate things that I use to take for granite.  I see God in everything and know that he really is everywhere.  I feel like I use to be consumed with what was going on around me, who had what, what was the newest thing I needed, gossip....I was getting sucked into the world and worldly things.  I use to always say that I hated to notion of "keeping up with the Jones"but here I was giving into it and trying to be the "Jones".  Now, I'm not saying that I have kicked my shopping addiction and that there aren't still things that I want (an iPad) but what I am saying is that instead of trying to find happiness in all of those things, I'm actually starting to find happiness in the prayer time I have as I walk Ellie each morning, the quietness that I have when I'm doing dishes, the ability to stop and listen to God while I'm folding laundry.  Now I know that I don't have kids and that right now I have the luxury of staying at home and that for people who have "normal" lives with kids and jobs that slowing down is hard to do, but I urge you to try and find time to be alone with the silence.  Find peace in the little tasks and to try and see God in everything!
  Now I know I have been doing a lot of complaining about how hard it is living in WI and how I miss home more then I ever imagined I would....but God is working in my life and I'm really starting to appreciate it and actually kinda like it.  I like slowing down.  I like seeing his plan in action.  I have to admit to you that instead of enjoying the silence while doing dishes this morning I turned on Air 1 and was listening to it on my computer.  Sometimes I just like to worship all by myself.  I like to bust out and full on worship God all by myself.  This most often happens in the car but sometimes when I'm doing dishes and cleaning :)  Anyways, this idea of silence and prayer and taking time to "smell the roses" had been on my heart and then all of the sudden this song came on and the words of it made my eyes well up with tears!  The song is "Listen To The Sound" by Building 429.  It is an AMAZING song, you should listen to it!  But the verse that got me was this:
I hear you say you're alone
I hear you saying that you'll never make it
I've got to tell you you're wrong
Cause I have been down this path you're taking
You never know what faith is
Til you don't understand
Sometimes it takes a silence
To finally hear His plan 

WOW!  "You never know what faith is til you don't understand".  That pretty much sums up the past 3 months here, not understanding.  I have been a Christian for as long as I can remember, I grew up in a Christan home.  I have gone through periods where my faith has been stronger, weaker, where I have strayed from God's path...but this move has really tested my faith.  Why would God take ME away from MY family and MY friends just to move me to a place where I am all alone?  "Sometimes it takes a silence to finally hear his plan".  Would I have been able to stop, listen, and accept God's plan for me in AZ?  To be totally honest, probably not.  I was to busy.  I was to consumed with myself, my wants, and my desires to take time and listen and accept God's plan for me.  Sometimes it takes a silence.  I am having to re-learn that its not all about me and that even though I can do most things on my own, God can always do those things a million times better then I can.  I am having to accept that Gods plan is always better and more important then anything I could ever put together for my life.  I'm still trying to figure out exactly what His plan is for my life, but now I'm actually taking the time to hear and appreciate the silence and listen to Him.   
Happy Friday!  Enjoy your weekend and take time to smell the roses! :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 have my heart!

So today is my first day back in WI after spending a week in AZ.  Its is definitely bitter sweet to be back. I am very happy to be back in my house, spending alone time with the hub, and being able to cuddle with my girls, Ellie Mae and Patience, but I very much miss my family, friends, and Scottsdale Bible Church.  

The whole purpose of the trip was to see my little brother graduate from ASU.  But I did a lot more then that.  This trip had A LOT of high points....mixed with a small low point.  Flying into Phoenix has become such a weird feeling.  Its like flying home...but its not my home anymore :/  While in Phx I had 4 amazing photo shoots!  Each one of them was with a great friend and each one was amazing in its own way. 

I started out shooting one of my friends from long ago.  We met at church years ago and even though our lives are very different and we don't see each other much we still try to get together whenever we can.  Her name is Lina and she, along with her husband Cole, are expecting their first child.  Its a girl!  And they are planning on naming her Gabbi!  So cute, I know!  Here is a quick teaser from her shoot.  (I will post more pictures from all the shoots later in the week)

The second shoot I did was for my cousin.  She is just a few years younger then I am and is expecting her first child.  Its a boy!  And his name will be Jaiden!  She is SO CUTE pregnant!!!  She is ALL tummy as you will see!  

(How cute is she?!!!  And if you think, for one second, that doing these two belly shoots didn't make me want to be pregnant you have another thing coming!  I CAN'T WAIT to be preggers!!!  I just hope I can be as cute as these two!)

So as if seeing two beautiful pregnant women wasn't enough, I also got the opportunity to take pictures of the cutest little boy ever!!! (Not helping with the urge to be a mommy!)  His name is Brody and his mother is one of my dearest friends.  She is one of those people who is truly beautiful inside and out.  Brody just started walking and will be 1 in July!  Seriously, he is SO cute!!!  He has the biggest, most beautiful blue eyes and the sweetest disposition!  

The finial shoot was very special to me!  It was graduation pictures for my little brother.  I felt very flattered that he let me take his graduation pictures...seeing as he isn't the biggest fan of having his picture taken.  He is graduating with a teaching degree from ASU.  I am so proud of him and have NO DOUBT that he is going to be a amazing teacher!  How handsome is he?!  

I was very happy with the way all of the shoots turned out!  It really doesn't get any better then doing what you love, having the pictures turn out more amazing then you could imagine, all while hanging out with the people you love!  I am so blessed that God has blessed me with this opportunity!  (Like I said earlier, I will post more of each shoot in older posts.)

Each time I come back from a trip to AZ it gets harder.  Harder to leave a place full of memories and people I love.  BUT!!!  And I hate the BUT!  But I know God has a plan and living in WI is part of it right now.  On Sunday we went to church at Scottsdale Bible with my family.  I love the pastor at this church!  Kevin and I found this church right before we left for WI and since we have been gone my parents have started attending.  It is a ridiculously huge church, but I love it!  The pastor at this church just has such a gift!  On Sunday he was teaching on the book of Philippians.  The whole basis of his sermon that day was struggles and the struggles we go through and how just because we are Christian's that doesn't mean that we won't go through times of struggle.  In fact, he said, this means we could actually go though more struggles because once a person becomes a Christian the target on there back doubles in size.  But he also said that the struggles are good and that they give us room and reason to grow in our faith and trust in God.  ISN'T THAT THE TRUTH!!!  I sat through the sermon thinking, "Geez God, you didn't have to bring me to AZ to preach this message to me.  Next time just send me an email!"  But in all seriousness, I'm pretty sure that the message was for me.  It was exactly what I needed to hear!  That is one of my favorite things about God, he meets you where you are and walks beside you through it all.  Tough as it is right now, and as easy as it would be to just pack everything up and move back to AZ, I know this is where I'm suppose to be right it or not.  I guess my only choice now is to get on board and stay on board.  Its time to take a huge step and try to let go of what I want and understand that God's plan may not include moving back to AZ....but I REALLY hope it does!  (Clearly I'm still working on the last part ;) )

Thanks for listening!  Hope you enjoyed the pictures!!!  Keep looking for more post with more pictures! Love you all!!!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Our life in Wisconsin thus far!

Well, its almost been 3 month since we moved from sunny AZ to snowy and rainy WI.  No, I'm not complaining about the weather.  In fact, I love it!  Although I must say I am sick of hearing the question, "Are you sick of the weather yet?!"  NO, I'M NOT SICK OF IT!!!!  People here think I'm crazy for liking the weather!  The only way I can explain it is, the way most people feel about winter in WI is the way I feel about summer in AZ.  If you think about it, its kinda the same thing, only extremely opposite.  People hate winter because you can't go outside and do anything because its to cold, BUT I hate summer because you can't go outside and do anything because its to hot.  See what I mean!  I guess it all comes down to personal preference but I will always choose to be cold over being hot.  Plus, you get seasons here!  Now I know people complain about spring in WI, but at least they get spring!  I never really knew what spring was like until now.  So much color, so many beautiful flowers...yes its still a little cold and rainy but at least you aren't stuck inside any more.  And at least its a gradual change.  I feel like in AZ spring is going from a BIT chilly outside to the first 95 degree day....NO THANK YOU!

Here are some pictures from when we moved here!!!

The snow is SO pretty!

Our favorite thing to do is walk Ellie Mae!  We walk her by the lake and in all kinds of dog parks!  She loves it!

I love to walk by the lake.  We always stop by Alterra (a coffee house) on our way home and get a treatsies.  Its my favorite!
Kevin sitting, waiting for his drink on a "warm" spring day

Life for the Kundingers has been a lot different in WI then it was in AZ.  That is good and bad.  For me (the MRS.) life is very different here.  I went from a place where I grew up with lots of people I love to a place that I had only visited a few times and can count on one hand the people I "know".  People say, "but isn't it exciting to get to start over?!"....I say, no not really.  I like who I am.  I don't want to start over!  Don't get me wrong here, I'm not saying that I'm perfect and there is no room for improvement, I'm not saying that AT ALL!  I'm just saying that I try very hard to be true to who I am and there for "starting over" isn't that exciting.  In fact its kinda scary.

One thing is for sure about us living in WI, God is certainly moving.  And it hasn't always been fun or uplifting.  One of my favorite sayings has always been, "If God can bring you to it, he can bring you through it".  Well he has certainly been making me eat and swallow those words these past three months.  Its hard, at least for me, being away from everything I know, everyone I love.  Most days my life consists of the four walls we call our house.  That has been tough for me.  I'm use to a social life, being surrounded by people and working a lot.  In our preparation and prayer time before we moved,  Kevin and I both felt that God was telling us that I should stay at home and work on building my photography business.  MAN HAS THAT BEEN HARD!  There are days of doubt, days of anger, and then every once in awhile I get that one day that makes it worth it.  Although I hate not seeing and interacting with people everyday this has given me the opportunity to get to know me.  Its amazing how much you have to rely and trust on/in the person you are and more importantly the person you are in GOD when you are all alone.  One of my favorite things about these last few months and the rough patches we have had  is that Kevin and I have never been so close.  I truly believe that part of this whole journey God is leading us through is bringing Kevin and I so close to one another so that we can be prepared for our future together.  Whether that is more trials, business travel, or kids.  We have learned to rely on one another, rely on God together, and speak our minds to one another with out fear, doubt, or question.  We are doing good here.  Every day has its challenges in one way or another but I feel like I'm learning more here right now then I have learned in a long time.  Don't get me wrong, I miss my family and friends but I do for sure know, and hold onto with a death grip, that God is one, going to bring us all back together soon and two, is changing me into the person I need to be in order to glorify and trust in him completely.  Oh man, does trusting in him mean SO MUCH MORE when you feel like you have nothing and are going nowhere.  MY trust is in the Lord!