Our Karate-kick Ballerina

Last weekend we took Hannah Rose for a photo shoot.  She’s been doing both Karate and Dance (Ballet and Tap) for some time now, and we wanted to commemorate these parts of her life.  Plus, she’s so cute–how could we resist pictures????

When booking the appointment, I informed them there would be an outfit change.  The girl on the phone was surprised and impressed to hear Hannah Rose has been doing both Karate and Ballet.

The pics we ordered are due in 1 August.  We got some individual shots in sepia as well as a couple of larger prints with multiple images.

In addition to our pics, we get small images electronically…probably to entice us (or friends and family) to buy more pics!


Our Budding Da Vinci

Hannah Rose surprised me today with a chalkboard rendering of E.V.E. and WALL-E. She drew these pictures by herself and completely from memory!

Here’s the first pic I shot:

Here’s the artist with her finished masterpiece. (It should be noted that on this one she incorporated different scenes from the movies…)

It’s interesting that she should do this today–because at dance camp, one of the things they did was to colour a picture of Hello Kitty in a tutu. She’s in a class for 3-5 year olds, and is a young 5. I got to see her picture today, as well as some of the other girl’s pictures. A number of them had coloured in the lines quite well. Hannah Rose had not. She’s still not colouring inside the lines.

That’s not to say that’s a bad thing–and indeed, I’ve not once actually encouraged her to colour inside the lines. I remember being her age, and working so hard to colour inside the lines like the older kids–and to outline everything in black as well. I’ve often wondered if I started colouring inside the lines too soon. When you look at a little kids picture, coloured in “crazy” colours and all over the place instead of traditional colours inside the lines–there’s a certain freedom there.

Kids grow up all too fast. Unless of course, you ask them. Hannah Rose is vascillating right now between wanting to never grow up and wanting to be grown up (so she can have a baby!). So while part of me is anxious to see the woman Hannah Rose will become, and to watch her on that journey–I’m not going to hurry her up along that path. She’s still a child, and while I’m not so idealistic as to believe in the perfect childhood for anyone–I want her to have a childhood.

My childhood ended at the age of 5….and before that, it was hurried up tremendously. And while that’s one of the myriad of things that have created the me I now love, and have brought me to this life I’m now living–I don’t have to want that for her, or for any of our (future) children. I say let her colour out of the lines–for as long as she wants. Let her draw her cats with purple fur and her clouds pink.


I wrote this poem right after my mom’s death. I wish I could say that over time it’s gotten easier–her being gone. The truth is, I miss her more now than ever. She died nine years ago today. It breaks my heart that I wasn’t able to be there with her. Hell, it breaks my heart that she had to die at all!!!


For Judy Ann Strehle
June 25, 1950 – June 9, 1999

Your life was a song sung in a minor key.
But now your song will be sung by me.
A song of hope and sweet forgiveness.
A song of love, of perseverance.
A song of joy and peace eternally.
Jesus has set you free.

And fly! High above the pain.
Fly! High above the strain.
On His wings of love soar wild and free.
In His peace you live eternally.

I close my eyes and like a dream I see
All that you have meant to me.
Your suffering was so long,
But in your weakness He was strong.
I miss you, but you’re not gone.
In Heaven, you live on.

And fly! High above the pain.
Fly! High above the strain.
On His wings of love soar wild and free.
In His peace you live eternally.

The gift you gave
Lives beyond the grave.
A gift you offer still.
Come to Jesus I hear you say,
Come to Jesus I know you pray.
For He’s the only one.

And one day soon I will again know your embrace
As we live in the depths of His grace.
His love and mercy abound.
In Him all can be found.
He is the reason I sing this song.
He is the reason you live on.

And fly! High above the pain.
Fly! High above the strain.
On His wings of love soar wild and free.
In His peace you live eternally.