TUTUS AT THE PARK – June 2014

Tutu session

The warm weather has me anxious to get some tutus outdoors.  So we are having a free tutu day at a location in Boulder, CO on June 8th, 2014 from 9am-2pm!   We dance, we play, and of course try on some custom tutus by Kimber Cyr of Kim’s Designs.    If you have a little ballerina, or just a princess that loves her some tutus and pearls, then give us a call to set up your time.  The day is very limited on times available, so please call or e-mail us as soon as you can!  It’s photographs of your little ladies that they will be talking about for days, weeks, months and years to come!!!!

Contact us for your appointment:

jennyb@fototails.com

or call us at (720)566-9770

The experience that end with portraits.

Deviled Avocado & Egg Salad

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Easter is almost here, and if you’re like me – you’re hard-boiling those eggs for the kids to decorate.  Well – I don’t actually boil any more, we bake them… so much easier.  For the next week we will be trying to consume the eggs in various forms, and I needed something light and quick for a snack or fast lunch.

1-Avocado (split in half and pitted)

2 – Hard-boiled Eggs

1 – tsp mustard of choice (I love the stone ground to give it a little texture)

1 – tbs of mayo (again – you can substitute with Miracle Whip or any Vegi variety)

Take the yolks out and lightly mash the yolks with the mustard and mayo.  Then chop the whites and lightly fold into the yolk mixture and spoon it on top of the avocado!  Easy, quick, yummy.

Variations:  Add some paprika to the top, or I love adding some chopped green onions and jalapeño into the mix too.

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I cater to rock stars.

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“I cater to the Rock Stars.”

The people who own their imperfections and know that these are the very things that make them who they are.  The people who may know or not know that they are Rock Stars every day of their life.  The people who will look me in the eye and stand proud that they are special; as well as the people who don’t know… because I’m here to tell them, to show them, and to be their biggest cheerleader.

See, we are all rock stars at some level in our life.  What we see as rough around the edges can be years of trying to define ourselves or years of trying to escape our definitions.  The boy who is called crazy, the girl who is called self-centered… labels are useless pieces of information.  But what I like to do is see those things that make you different, show you that attitude and smile that you rarely see… and hope only to point out that YES, you are different.  You are different from everyone else on this earth… and if we were all the same, how boring would that really be.  So I feel honored when I get the chance to photograph you, because I study your face, your gestures, and the way you move and react to me any others around you because I’m searching for an expression or a “thing” about you that is different… I’m looking for you.

YOU ARE A ROCK STAR.

~Jeanine~

Photographer

Moms rule.

You have a child or children?  Yes, I’m talking to you.  You have a mom?.. again, I’m talking to you.  You have a grandmother? Yep – them too.

You rule.

I’m not even needing to go into details of why moms are so amazing.. .it is clear cut and I’m going to say it a few more times during this post.  YOU RULE, YOUR MOM RULES, YOUR GRANDMOTHER RULES.

If you would like professional photographs of your children with you, parents, grandparents I would love to have you.  But in any case…

Don’t stop taking photographs.  If there is something that you think is absolutely amazing about your mom or grandmother… or your children.  Photograph it… and photograph often.

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Jeanine Thurston Photography 2014

Honey Tahini Cookies

These Tahini cookies with honey, almond meal and sesame seeds are amazing!  The kids had a blast – and although they look a little crazy in the photos, I did make some that looked perfectly round… but the kids were so proud that they made these – I promised I would only post photos of what they made!  Image

HONEY TAHINI COOKIES

1 1/2 cups almond meal

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup tahini (sesame paste)
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4  cup plain toasted sesame seeds

1/4 cup of black sesame seeds

Yields about 20 cookies
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Preheat oven to 350F & Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a bowl, combine almond meal, salt and baking soda.
In another bowl, stir together honey, tahini and vanilla extract until combined.

Add the almond meal mixture to the honey tahini mixture and stir until well incorporated.

You should be able to form balls with the dough. If it’s too wet at a little more almond meal.

Form small balls and then roll in sesame seeds.

Flatten it to 1/4 inch thickness and place on the prepared baking sheet. Leaving about 1-2 inches space between cookies.

Bake for about 10 minutes or until bottoms are golden.  I find it’s best to let them cool right on the cookie sheet so that they don’t break apart.

 

 

What is a referral worth for your wedding vendors?

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THINGS TO LOOK FOR IN A “GOOD” VENDOR REFERRAL FROM ANOTHER VENDOR.

There are many unwritten rules of playing fair within any industry… the line is faded and frustrating.  Many years ago, when you were a photographer, videographer or other vendor you saw referrals based on quality and trust. It is amazing to get referrals from other brides and grooms, from planners, from venues… and the list goes on.  But that line of why we are referring someone is becoming quite jaded, and we need to keep our eyes and ears open for little ques that make a “referral” not so sweet or solid.

The biggest issue that has come to light is that vendors have learned that over the years they can get “paid” by other vendors for referrals.  This is the first line that was crossed some time ago, when some venues and vendors decided that you had to only be of “average” quality and pay a huge chunk of money and they would put you on their referral list.  There ARE some upstanding vendors out there that choose their referral list by experience, merit, value, quality of work and customer service ~ but definitely not everyone is in this category.

Things to look for that can be “red-alarms” when getting referrals from vendors, and questions that are important to ask.

1. Don’t be afraid to ask:  Do vendors on your referral list pay to be on your referral list?  That doesn’t mean that they are bad referrals, however, if they have paid to be there… you need to dig a little deeper.  Check and double-check their experience, quality of work, and try to find other people who refer them as well.

2. Vendors that offer HUGE discounts if you go with ONE vendor only.  If you are a professional, you should work well with multiple other vendors.  Offering 30%- 50% off your services ONLY if they book with a specific other vendor should set off a HUGE red flag. They may be just new to the industry and are trying to align themselves with some great other vendors to pump up the quality of their own work, but playing well and being able to refer multiple other vendors that they work well with shows that they have more connections and people that they can produce well with.

3. Tell me about your referrals.  When meeting with a vendor and getting references from them, ask them to tell you about the references and why you are referring them – be in tune to how excited they get about them and how much detail they can give about how they work, their style or how they service their clients.  They should be able to do this about ALL of their referrals they are giving, including their experience, maybe how well they shoot in different environments, or how helpful and present they are with their clients.

In the wedding industry, referrals are the best form getting the best combination of vendors, which equals your best chances of getting top-notch results from them as a team.  So after you ask the hard questions go with your gut… but vendors that play fair with other vendors and that are knowledgeable about their referrals means you are getting the best referrals.  And vendors that can give you a few referrals from each service and that can describe to you why one or the other may be a great fit for them means they are concerned about what is best for you as a bridal couple too!  However, a vendor that says you MUST go with a specific vendor to get a discount from them, OR locations that refer based on them being paid… let the red flags start flying.

Plan a portrait calendar

Busy is the word, and I always suggest taking time each year to plan a portrait calendars.  It doesn’t matter what time of year you start this, but taking a look at where you are in life with your family/children and making a decision on when professional portraits are best each year is a great way to get those memories at a time that works best for you and for your budget.

Here are some great times and milestones that will mean the most to catch with professional photography:

1st year: Maternity, Birth-3 weeks, When your child starts sitting up, when your child stands, first birthday

Youth: Formal portraits yearly(if you would rather have beautiful images vs. school photographs), Awards and recognition portraits when they have major accomplishments (this is confidence building).

Yearly: Family portraits, children’s favorite interests portraits, special outfits for holidays or from special family members, siblings portraits.  Parents… the most un-photographed couple and it is one of the most important to your children~make time for formal portraits of just the two of you every few years at least.

Generation portraits: children with parents and grandparents, mother or father & child portraits, grandparents with grandchildren, and formal portraits of grandparents.

For you:  Update business portraits every 2 years (yes, get rid of the HS photos on your LinkedIn page!lol),  make-over or boudoir portraits because we all need to feel extra special once in a while – and we also need something to look back at to remember what we were like – and your children will cherish photos of you throughout the years too.

Wedding: Yes of course – but also consider formal portraits with your gown when you have made some time and space without the hustle and bustle of the wedding day.

Love: Celebrate… anniversary, birthday ~special places & memories.

And although I could go on and on ~ start picking through the most important things for you on this list and start plugging them into your personal calendar and making your appointments… you can always re-schedule closer to a schedule date.. but if it’s not on your calendar then life gets busy and these very important times get pushed aside.  Make it real, and set up your portrait calendar.

Need help?  We have a yearly portrait planning date at the studio – it’s absolutely free, and booking with us personally is not required.  I just want to help you get on track to great memories that don’t go missed!

Contact us for details:  info@fototails.comJeanine_Thurston_Z_001

fototails

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Photographer: Jeanine Thurston

Photographer: Jeanine Thurston

Missing time

Every once in awhile I have a few moments when I remember a smell, a feeling… something that brings me back to youth.  At times it’s so strong that I spend even more time searching for a photograph of my grandparents, my parents ~ a point of validation and a more vivid recollection of what is flighty in my mind.

It’s reflection week.  I remember how “NOT” confident I was when I was in my teens and early 20s.  I was modeling at the time, and was surrounded by people that I knew looked better than me, had a smaller waistline, and was so concerned with people liking me for how I looked.  I had to really push myself to think of anything that I really liked about myself.  Now creeping into my mid-40s… if there was one thing I could go back and do I would just smack my young self up the side of my head.  So, here is my taking a deep breath… please know that these hairstyles and clothes were from the late 80′s and I take no responsibility for poofy hair or bangs.  But, I least now I can look back and see I wasn’t fat, I wasn’t ugly – as I did think so at the time.  Silly children… don’t let a day go by that you don’t tell your children that they are beautiful and help them build confidence in who they are regardless of what they look like.  If I can give one thing to my children – I want to give them confidence in who they are as a person.  There is nothing to compare yourself against, every person has something they can be proud of.

So here you go…. and I’m totally fine if you smile, laugh… because it cracks me up too. ;-)

The-80s