Monthly Archives: July 2009

As I awoke to the buzzing of a pesky fly this morning, I found that my sleepy mind and heart were thinking of my family. I thought of myself as a mother and how much I feel every sickness, every pain, every triumph…how I feel everything for the boys that I cherish so much. How just today with Jonathen away at a sleepover, my house feels so empty. How so much of who I am lives within their lives too.

This week I received a phone call that I knew might be coming soon, but even though, would never be ready for. Through the crackle of tears my Mother called to say that my Grandmother, well that my Grandmother is preparing to leave this world. Overcome with emotion and love, my mind raced with every thought imaginable. How I would never want her to suffer for one moment, how much I will miss her, how she had loved me and I her, how my Mother must be feeling, how my family, how all….. As I hung up the phone the reality of it all started to sink in, the tears welled in my eyes and I felt this incredible peace come over me. I began to feel even more in awe of who my Grandmother is…

I can only relate with who she must be though my own heart. I feel the incredible love I have for my children and can only imagine that multiplied by nine. Then take that and multiply it by nine more for grandchildren. Then take that and multiply it by six more for great grandchidren. How I feel every sickness, every heartache, every triumph times two…imagine that time and time again. How I miss Jonathen for just one night at a sleepover. She has had to say good-bye to two children and even one grandchild. How so much of who I am lives within their lives…she has shared so much of who she is in ALL of our lives.

What an incredible woman, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother. How lucky are we to have such a strong, beautiful mother. How when it is her time to leave us here, that she has loved us so much that she will still be in our lives. She will live in our hearts and our souls.

As my sons and I prepared to leave home this last time. She looked at my oldest Tyler and said to him that she would be watching over him from heaven.  Then told my youngest Jonathen, to have a great life and that she would be looking over him. Then hugged me with all of her might and kissed me on my cheek, one that I can still feel even now. She then told me that she loved me and how proud she is of me. So full of emotion and trying to hold back the tears of a good-bye… a big good-bye. I didn’t have the chance to tell her…

From my youngest memory how she taught me strength. How my faith in God was sealed by her love. How seeing so much of myslef in another could make me feel safe. How sharing a love for baked potatoes could be so special. How home is where you raise your family, anywhere. How to not be afraid of who you are, and sometimes just say it. You are allowed. I could go on but my mind keeps taking me to one of my favorite memories.

My Mom’s favorite place when I was a child was the beach. Her car even shined a Life is a Beach sticker. Many of my childhood memories happend on a warm, sandy blanket. But my favorite trips to the beach were when Grandma would come with us. Mom would ALWAYS make tuna sald and bring crackers, and fruit. Food never tasted so good. And when Grandma would come, sharing that with her would make it taste even better. After lunch one time we decided to go in the water. As Mom sunbathed on the beach, Grandma and I walked down to the water together. I can still see her smile and having that time just her and I felt special. We were swimming and laughing when out of the corner of my eye I saw a fin. I yelled to Grandma – SHARK.  What? she asked…I SEE A SHARK. It was about two feet away from us at this point, swimming towards her as she was closer than I. She couldnt hear me over the waves so I just grabbed her hand and started pulling her as fast as I could to shore. I can still hear her saying, “Well Serena, what is going on?” as I pulled her to shore. When we got there, we shared a laugh. Then we tried to warn the surfers about the sharks, they didnt leave the water. We headed back to the blanket to talk about those crazy surfers, surfing with those sharks!

To close this post is like saying good-bye. There are no words. I will just say See You Later…as I know in my heart I will. I am so thankful for you. Every part of you. I hope you feel how special you are. I thank you for your promise to look over my boys.  That is a mother’s dream. And please, lastly…when you see Tyson, will you whisper to him from me, ” Thank you for the butterflies”. I will be looking forward to seeing even more from you.

So until soon, Grandma. I love you. Thank you for being you.

Grandma

When I first arrived here in Germany, I hit the ground running, working behind the scenes with my business. Contacting several advertising opportunities, meeting with great people in all lines of work. Just to try to get the word out and learn as much as I could about the area.

One of my stops was at the Spotlights magazine that is published by Services here in Ramstein. They were super great and offered me a chance to sponsor their “Biggest Looser” competition that they were having on base. Being a big fan of the Biggest Looser Reality TV show, I instantly jumped aboard. Part of my sponsorship led to getting to meet the contestants. That is when the inspiration began to really hit home. The contestants were all so amazing and each had their own inspiring story. I found myself wanting to get to know them better and sincerely interested in their weight loss goals. It was a wonderful program that ended with proud tears as they announced the winners and I was able to come to the front and give them a gift from the Studio. Tears continued to stream down my face as they each shared their stories with the crowd.  My heart beamed with pride and admiration for each of them.

A week before the final presentation I got a phone call that made it even more special. They asked me to photograph the cover with the winner of the Biggest Looser. The Spotlights Magazine had never had a cover created locally from a photographer, so it was and extreme honor when they asked me.

The day came for the shoot and I got to meet the winner before he even knew he won. My heart grew so much for him and his family. He truly is an amazing role model for us all. Staci, my dear friend, and WAY over qualified ‘assistant for the day’ came out to help me and I was so thankful to have her by my side. It was a special day. We all had such a nice time.

Then the cover came out and I was so proud of Fred and what he had accomplished. I loved hearing the stories of him being famous around Ramstein.

Well to my delight it didnt stop there. I got another call to do June’s cover as they had loved the positive response they received.

It has been a fun little project to do on the side. I wasnt available for July’s issue…but if you keep an eye out you will see my work hit the cover again in August.

CG

CG2

A special little thank you to Spotlights Magazine for allowing me to be a part of your publication. I feel honored and look forward to more fun in the future… For the rest of you, I will be sure to share the August Spotlights cover with you as soon as it hits the stands…

Hugs,

SN

For some of you, you will know what I mean when I say summer time means CONSTRUCTION! Well Serena Nicole Studios is no exception. Beautiful weather outside means lots of fun shooting outside and in the meantime the studio is getting a huge makeover! I am beyond excited as I have dreamed of building this type of studio for years. Some of you may even remember conversations of a whole different type of studio shooting…well it is starting to come into light. It is all happening thanks to a very dear friend and a great supporting cast. I could never do this alone and I am beyond thankful for each of you!

This will be a small scale of where I hope to go in the future when life is more permanent…but that doesnt limit the excitement.

Want to see a sneak peek?

construction

CRUEL, I know…not much of a sneak peek…

construction-2

There that is all you get for now!  Just enough to make you wonder and dream for yourself….

I cant wait to give you a virtual tour…wont be long now because we are very busy BIG bees!!!

Hugs to you,

SN

The little man just celebrated his first birthday! I can not believe how much he has grown since our last session!

I loved getting to see and play with him again…

Feetsies...

I am still in love with his little tootsies and his smile! Not quite a walker yet but a very cute CRAWLER!!! Maybe next time I see you 🙂

Crawling Fun

Sweet

 

 Just before we were about to head out from the studio for his session, I glanced down and saw the little tub on the floor and thought –  hmmmmmm that might make for some fun splashing!  It was the best idea for this little guy! I have never seen him so happy. I love this shot of his little finger just before it touches the puddle.

Splish Splashy!

Thanks little Man for such a fun afternoon! I loved getting to splash and get wet with you!  I have to say as I was driving home from this session in my soaked blue jeans I got all warm and fuzzy. You see in Okinawa I never made it home dry and clean. Here in Germany I may not come home clean but I havent been wet yet!  It just seems right after years of shooting on the beach to come home dirty and WET from as session!

Many hugs and I cant wait to see you again soon when we capture your family in October!

SN

So my little Jonathen came out to work with me this day and I was so glad he did! Because it turns out this little Princess loves little boys! It was so fun to have my little man as my sidekick for the day and even more fun to capture this little beauty!

Eyelashes

Flower Girl

Princess

Tootsies

Sweet

I love this shot of her with her feet…We were playing a game about our stinky feet!

Stinky Feet, LOL!

And for the last shot of the day…I think we wore her out!

Long Day!

I ran into this little princess on the fourth of July and as soon as she saw me her face lit up with a huge smile,she then grabbed her feet and said “STINKY FEET”!! I guess our little game left an impression! I am now known to her as STINKY FEET! How fun. Have I mentioned how much I love my job lately? The hardest part was narrowing down only a few of her to put on the blog!

Thanks my little stinky feet princess for such a fun morning!

Many hugs,

SN