Spring Forward

The grass seems lusher. The sky seems bluer. And, as the barbeque smoke from the neighbor’s grill wafts slowly through our yard, it is official. We have sprung forward. In more ways than one, but tonight in its literal sense…in that blessed time of year when the day is stretched for one more hour of light. One more hour to pitter patter the bottoms of our blackened feet in the driveway, waving to neighbors, joining the boys for an impromptu game of basketball, or watching as our blonde one screeches with delight, speedily pedaling her scruffy little bike as wisps of that feathery head dance in the wind.

We don’t wear shoes much from here on out ’til December. I used to get all mad mama with the dirt we brought inside to the tile…but then I got real. It’s a lost cause, and besides…bare feet and spring are like ice cream trucks and summer. Just complete symbiosis, that’s what.

The week ended on Friday with this grayish sky and cold, lonely air and rebirthed on Saturday with sunshine and dewey grass and that March scent of spring. I felt like I was eight years old again when, in Michigan, the beginning of spring meant packing up the snowpants and digging through the closet for my purple jelly shoes, even if there were still snow leftovers on our front yard. We did’t care. Spring meant Joyce Moberly’s mom was going to bring over bags of their upscale hand-me-downs from last summer and my sister and I were going to dig through it and fight like wild dogs over who could get their hands on the Esprit stuff first. Spring meant my brother would start mowing the lawn again and we would smell the rich scent of cut grass. Spring meant my sister and I were going to get ridiculously decked out in our Easter finest from those cheap woven plastic hats and new white tights right down to the polyester lace gloves. Our old Easter pictures look like two badly dressed middle-aged women, except I always had chapped lips and too-short bangs. Why my parents didn’t just stop with a cute dress, I’ll never know. We had to go for the topper. With hats. And patent leather shoes. And gloves. And strange matching miniature purses that we had nothing to put in them…except Bonnie Bell chapstick.

Regardless, an up-north spring is nothing less than revival, its first rays of sun and buds of crocuses and jonquils like sudden bursts of heart rhythm on an otherwise flatline screen. Life. Breathing and birthing and promising so much more. And although we, unlike so many others, get to enjoy warmth and beach and sandals for most of the year, I can still feel it come March. The anticipation of life. Zealous, colorful life.

We celebrated this weekend with our nothing-more-than-ordinary weekend…just the way we like them.

And the return of the garden hose. She’s flashed more grins and expressed more giggles over this silly hose than any Fisher Price or Playscool could even hope for.

And Mama loves her some spring inspiration.

A) Crafty baking. Especially when no oven’s required.
So, today we tossed some marshmallows and butter in the microwave, threw in some shredded wheat squares, placed a few Whopper eggs, and voila…spring birds’ nests.

I’m thinking, with some pink and white “eggs” nestled in there, this would make a nice garden fairy treat for an upcoming birthday. Which, by the way, she’s invited every person she’s talked to the past two weeks. Everyone. The UPS man. You comin’ to my birthday party?

B) Spring Make-up. I’m a MAC junkie. I drool over that inticing pallette of eyeshadows on their display counters and I want every. single. color. It’s like telling someone to choose a favorite color from Crayola’s 96 crayon box. Not possible. Especially when they have super cool names like Goldmine and Paradisco. And then they take advantage of your happy-go-lucky spring-is-in-the-air mood this time of year when they launch these succulent lines of fresh pinks and juicy peaches and, I’m just a big fat sucker for pretty make-up lined up on department store counters and the pretty girls that sell them and tell you you’d look fabulous in Pretty Plush.

Which is why I love their Back to MAC program because, when I’m yearning for Pretty Plush, I can dig through my cupboards at any time and find some old shadows Lainey’s dug the bejesus out of and, if you bring in six old containers, you get any eyeshadow, lipstick or lipgloss free.

Meet my new lipgloss…”Prrrr.” It’s very spring. And was very free…two things we like.

C) Our Yard. We live there this time of year. Picnics. Bikes. Reading books on blankets and riding trikes in princess dresses. It’s all good.

I laid in the grass Saturday afternoon and just watched the Nellabean stretch out on her blanket.

And, I have to say, one eye peeking out at me is even cuter than both. She was pooped and didn’t have the energy for a full head stretch but wanted to still let me know…
Hey, I see you.

But two eyes is pretty cute too.

There have been a lot of photography questions lately, and I think I’ll have some upcoming posts answering a lot of these and perhaps some fun photo challenges to come. Taking pictures of our life is such a passion for me and viewing life “through the lense” certainly adds to that whole high-on-life thing and having a story of beauty to look back on years to come, so…when I know how much it has enriched my life, I’m only eager to share that in hopes that paying it forward will inspire others to find this same joy.

My camera/lense/editing answers can be found on this post.

As far as editing my photos, I like quick edits. I take a lot of pictures and don’t have time to spend a huge amount of time on each picture. And, while I have found some great editing tricks, editing and cameras and technicalities can be so intimidating. I passionately believe that a beautiful photo comes from the heart…passion and love and wanting to capture beauty but not trying too hard. I taught myself most everything I know and did so not because I wanted to do it professionally but because I wanted to capture the beauty I saw in things that inspired me. And then I had kids and…well, hello. It never ends. The professional part just kind of fell into place and I can pick and choose how much time I want to be away from the girls. And, I guess what I’m trying to say is…for so many that have expressed a desire to take better pictures of their kids or document like this… …Do it. Do it today. Start small and grow and, I promise, you will be better for it. And your babies will thank you someday.

Just a couple before and after basic edits from today:

More to come on quick, basic things you can do to your pics. And I’m not an expert…I’m just someone who loves pictures. Like art.

This spring thing has me completely inspired. Maybe I’ll even, God forbid…clean. Because my catch-all counter is so covered with the most random junk, it looks like a garage sale. I swear, at this very moment, lying across the three-foot stretch is an extention cord, a roll of tape, two barettes, an oven mitt, a card from last Christmas, a phone cord, a broken pen, a stale Jolly Rancher and a maraca.

It’s late…the hour has sprung forward. But that’s one hour closer to my blessed coffee hour tomorrow morning. Looking forward to my steamy cup already.

And, as a reader just commented (see, I do read them all…I really do! I’ve smiled so many times reading your words and looking at your families too!)
“…when almond eyes are smiling, the world is bright.”

My precious big girl shared her puppy tonight…just nestled it right next to her sleeping little sister and then walked away.

~love. -k

Two quickies…

a) The interview is on CNN International (CNNI) Tuesday at 4 p.m. Eastern (I think the actual interview doesn’t air until 4:35…and it will be live). If you don’t get the CNNI channel, it will be available online soon after here.

b) The camera strap, for the many who’ve asked, is called Capturing Couture, and their site can be found here.


Leave a Comment
  1. It is after midnight, but I knew a new post was coming…call me addicted to my children…all three of them and their rich and resplendent lives that I really try not to live through, but if I do, it is there pennance for all they put me through! You see, on the blog I pinch cheeks and pull toes and tuck them into bed from my very quiet home. Enjoy the noise, dear young parents, for an empty home draws closer every day…and you will look at an undented couch and clear countertops and miss it all. And yes, we did Easter like the Vatican on speed…and at the time, those girls really looked “pretty.” Now, they look like matronly midgets that escaped from the day room of a convalescent home. What were we thinking?!!! But our little ladies grew up to be wonderful mothers…and our son into an incredible young man…and they all make me proud. Well, springing forward, my heart goes to bed happy. G’nite love.

  2. Was I first? Ahhhh, sweet victory. There should be a prize, but then, there is…my baby loves!

  3. I don’t know where to start — I can’t even pick a picture I like best this time — they’re all so amazing!!! I’m partial to lainey’s but only because I have a blond haired Lainey myself & love her pics too! But Little Miss Nella is too stinkin’ cute in that black/pink/red outfit!! and the last one with the puppy just has to make you smile!!
    I too love Mac make up & thanks for the reminder to go do my recycling with them & hook myself up with a new lipgloss!! Good way to kick spring into gear…
    can’t wait until the CNN interview — set my DVR already & as always it’s great to start the week off with one of your fabulous posts & beautiful pics…
    thank you!!

  4. I thought my favorite picture today was little Nella in her I love Daddy onsie and the red turbin looking hat. Then I melted when I saw the one where her big sister shared her favorite puppy with her. Just precious! Especially since Lainey spontaneously shared her precious treasure with her little sister. :)

  5. Just read Poppa’s first comment. I totally forgot to tell you that I adore the Easter picture from when you and your sister were young! It’s precious!

    Oh. And my DVR is set as well. LOL

  6. Hey. I’ve been reading since my sister turned me to Nella’s birth story. I’ve been skimming through the past posts ever since.

    I heard a song today in the car and thought of you. I heard the version by Ronan Tynan of the Irish Tenors (my favorite version) but here is Sinead O’Connor’s:


    You are beautiful. Keep up my favorite blog :)

  7. A fellow Mac Addict! I love you even more :)

    Oh your babies are truly precious. A few of my faves this post. Lainey with the yellow flower in her hair..oh my, so beautiful! Nella with the puppy(last pic), that is so so so darling. Love it!

    I’m happy Spring is coming too, means my boys can get some of their energy out, outside~~!

    Cheers to a happy weekend :)

  8. I LOVE little girls in princess dresses. There really isn’t any other way.

    also, speaking of holland. Made me smile the other day when my aunt posted the same holland story on her own blog.–as they’ve just found their little boy is autistic.–I’m thankful for holland.

  9. I love how much you all play outside. I am in rainy Oregon right now, but as soon as I get back to California for Spring break I am going to follow your very inspirational lead and play play play in the great outdoors! Beautiful photographs of your beautiful family!

  10. I just have to say I loved reading your dad’s comment!! He’s seems like such a wonderful man and dad!! He’s funny too!

    Love all your spring inspiration- not quite that warm where we are:(

    Love that quote about the almond shape eyes!!

    I think I used the word “love” a ton, didn’t I?

  11. Anonymous says:


    I hope this link works, a short film by and about 4 artists with DS. I think I got the info straight…found it on a Canadian news site.

    Hearing your updates really adds something special to my life. Thank you for sharing.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I can not tell you how adorable little Nella is…those eyes and that little face!! I melt. At 31 years old, with two daughters of my own (3 years & 10 months) – reading your blog has inspired me to pick up my camera again and capture the little memories that are sure to fly by all too fast. Thank you so much for sharing your life with all of us. And because of you, and you’re amazing outlook on life, I look at my little girls complerely different. They are such a blessing and joy, even on the hardest of days. I look forward to reading more about you and your family. KEEP INSPIRING!! You are an amazing mom and woman. :)

  13. Happy Spring!!! I love seeing you go through the journey, and I think I would be one of the Aunts in your analogy in your earlier post!!ROFLMAO!! I too have caught the spring fever ahhh… thanks for giving me my Lainey and Nella fix! I too look foward to that cup of coffee in the morning…kindred spirits indeed!!!

    Poppa, congrats on being first!! LOL

  14. Whenever I see your new pictures, I am SO inspired to pick up my camera and shoot anything!

  15. I must confess…I was literally racing to be the first to post a comment…like how we used to run down the halls in elementary school to be the first in line for lunch! And racing, I left typos like there for their…and missed a word–“thought” those girls looked pretty…but my apology for the “m” word (midget)…I really don’t use it and try every day to be more sensitive about words that wound. Mea culpa…they simply looked like mini-matrons…like little girls of 6 and 8 going on 76 and 78, ’nuff said. It was too late and a filter wasn’t working. Love to all…sleep well…wonder awaits tomorrow!

  16. Thanks for answering your lens question! I need my new lens now! :o) I just tell myself it isn’t about the camera it’s the photographer! I have a minor in photography and as I was leaving college digital cameras were just coming out at their fancy 1 megapixel! What a time for change. I do miss working the darkroom. Now I just immerse myself in photoshop as it is my “darkroom” now.

    Spring has sprung in Texas and it is so beautiful. After our “cold winter” I really appreciate spring! And our winter is like spring to those in the north! :o)

    We went strawberry pickin’ yesterday and that was a great photo op! Made a memory too.

    Look forward to your CNN interview!



  17. Thank you for reminding me to enjoy the small things in life…to cherish the giggles and tears..to squeeze the kiddos a little tighter and be grateful for their flaws. I leave your blog humbled everytime I read. Thank you. You are an inspiration!

  18. Oh, I can just smell the fresh-cut grass and new spring air….and my favorite smell ever: sweaty-been-playin-outside-all-day-kid-head.
    Love the first taste of spring…more please!!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Nella is learning the art of the cuddle…just look at how she cuddles that puppy….you’re doing great, mama and daddy. And sweet Lainey…her eyes just tell you all you need to know…love is love…one word for Poppa….ok maybe two…true blue…

    Looking forward to reading your photography tips….I too am addicted to seeing my life through a lense and can’t wait to read your suggestions.

    Deep breathes for Tuesday.

  20. Hi there,

    Thank you for your sweet comment about my kids on my blog, that just made my day!

    I don’t have a huge bunch of readers of my blog, just friends and family, but I figure that if they also become readers to your blog, heck, every reader counts, right? And selfishly, just wanna do my part to get your BOOK to come out quicker!

    Great post today, and can’t wait to see you on CNN.



  21. …laughing out loud at you and carin in your easter clothes! for one, i am laughing bc it brings back the memories of my own easter ensembles complete with homemade easter bonnets.

    ;)city mouse vs country mouse! half-pint vs holly golightly! you both look beautiful!

    mac rocks my world and the pictures are so pretty! lainey inviting the ups guys made me laugh and those eyes…so enchanting.

    …and if i were diana barry i may say i don’t have any black dresses.
    love you kells bells!

  22. Oh my goodness!! Another delicious post…I love spring too. It’s a time for fresh starts and new beginnings, and your words and pictures capture it perfectly! And how adorable is your Poppa!? I’ve begun to look forward to his comments almost as much as your updates. Thanks Kelle, and good luck on the interview!

  23. I adore Nella’s diaper cover! Adorable!
    As I have said a million times in my head, and on your posts..your children are gorgeous.
    Whether it be Lainey’s gap toothed grin, or Nella’s perfect almond eyes….I melt.

  24. What a sweet Poppa! No wonder you are such a wonderful mama! Can’t wait to see what other treasures your life brings you.

  25. oh, i FEEL the Spring, the warm, the fresh, the renewal…even the cleaning, but the weather doesn’t feel it yet here. where you are? it sure looks like i feel!

    thanks for sharing your beautiful life. we’ll probably make some of those nests this week!

  26. Just loving the photo’s of Lainey w/ her tongue sticking out…. and her and daddy being so playful.
    Amazing photos ALL of them……so awwwed by your talent and eye for beauty!
    I’m draggin arse thanks to the time change..but it’s worth the longer days.
    Goodnight friend!

  27. thank you soo much for your beautiful posts. you have really inspired me to take better and more pictures of my little man… i even recently took the plunge and bought my own dslr camera and i am already in love with all the beautiful pictures i have gotten of my jamie. thank you! i want to book a session with you when my husband gets back from afghanistan in april. you are amazing and inspiring!

  28. Oh my goodness, your pops is so funny!

    Great blog post! I am amazed the difference in the editing. The colors are so rich and lush. It really brings out the beauty in the shots. It makes me feel better about my shots straight out the camera.

    I love the old pics of you and your sister. I am a native from Illinois and was born in ’75, so I can feel your polyester pain. I always remember Easter being soooo cold. I bet Florida is so much better.

    Anyhow, love the pictures you posted. I feel like every post you submit makes me want to be that much better with my own camera. So, thanks again for sharing.

  29. I just can’t get enough of your sweet little family. I feel like a peeking Jane looking in on your life. My husband often asks if there is anything new with “Nella’s Family” and he always takes a peek over my shoulder to look at the newest pictures. I can’t thank you enough for sharing your family and your journey with all of us. It has been eye opening to me on many levels and helped me to make changes in my own life. I hope the weather holds this week and we are all able to enjoy the beautiful Spring weather here in Florida. My big kids (almost 8 and 5) have learned how to ride their bikes sans training wheels and we are spending LOTS of time outside. The little one (4.5 months) loves it! She squeals as P and D ride by calling out to her to watch them. Perfect! Just perfect!

  30. I though of you and your family tonight wile watching Desperate Housewives! They mentioned Holland and wooden shoes in the opening scene! :)

  31. for editing, some of the pictures i noticed how bright and jewel-like so many of the babies’ eyes look, do you do something special to bring out that intensity? or is it just the babies awesomeness?

  32. love that i am not the only one with a super cluttered counter full of the most random things. oh well :)

    love love LOVE your pictures & posts. have a happy monday & enjoy your steamy cup of coffee….

  33. Thanks for answering questions and sharing your tips! we all appreciate it! Thanks most of all for just being you

  34. Life is too short and the days too sweet to worry about cluttered counter tops.

    Poppa, you need to comment more often.

    It’s still far far too cold in PA for jelly shoes or bare feet, so I’ll just enjoy your warmth from afar. The cold weather has broken, but not enough for that yet! I heard the song birds this week and saw that many of the geese are back. The clean, wet smell of spring is in the air and I’m seeing a bit of green popping up.

  35. *Wesley* says:

    The weather was gorgeous in Missoula (MT) today too! My husband and I went on a walk to the U of M campus and soaked up the sun, talking and watching the hula hoopers and slack liners. It was great! Awe…I love running barefoot – even if it means dirty, calloused feet.

    Our coffee table sounds like your kitchen counters! We’ve got head phones, candy wrappers, tape, a recipe book, a dead box elder bug (uh…EW), some coupons, Mod Podge and an old chocolate Silk carton. I think I’m going to have to get out all the cleaning solutions and vacuum tomorrow. Our house is MUCH overdue for it’s seasonal scrub down.

    Glad you and your girls were able to get outside and enjoy the weather! As always, love your pics.

  36. wow- can we all just collectively say “Poppa- time to write a book!” Love it. I have my own “Poppa”… they are treasures.

    PS taking photography class at local comunity college. Gulp. Thanks for the inspiration.

    you. are. a. rockstar. real live CNN rockstar!

  37. Your dad’s comments are almost as much fun to read as yours! It is too sweet how excited he was to see your post and be the first to comment. I too have a father I adore who lives to far from me and my little loves and reads my blog to savor our moments from afar. As a big fan of hats, your pictures of the girls with their adorable hats are always my favorite. Insomia brought me to your site this evening, hope Nella is letting you sleep better than me!

  38. amazing & inspiring…. as always. Sweet Dreams.

  39. Another breath of fresh air…i can feel your spring a coming.

    Ours sadly is fading into autumn now….so you and the family enjoy the warmth a coming your way, looking forward to more spring photos.
    Ohhh and bunnies poop a whole lot don’t they…. :-)

  40. Ok, I have to say this first. I LOVE your dad, seriously! I HEART HIM! His comments, the love coming from his face in your photos!!! LOVE IT!

    Another thing I love is MAC! Seriously, I’m a J U N K I E !!! I have 3 empty’s but I also have a GC to Macy’s and I’ll be going there soon to check out the spring stuff. WOO HOO!
    I’m skipping the Ingrid Michaelson concert tomorrow to see you L I V E on CNN. Plus I didn’t have a babysitter, LOL!
    I am really looking forward to your editing posts! I bought myself a Nikon D90 for my birthday in December and I love it. I have the lenses that came with it, but bought a Nikon 35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX and mostly use this. I am learning to play around with shutter speed and aperature. I would LOVE to know which lense you use most often? I’m thinking about buying the 50mm but don’t know if I should get something else if it is similiar to the 35mm….. I love the way you change your colors and would love to learn the same!! I would LOVE your suggestions, but I know your quite busy. :)
    And I also pretty much neglect the inside of my house when Spring hits. It’s quite scary in here by mid summer, lol. And I know you have mentioned your tile before. I am a former tile owner and contemplated ripping it out for years. Finally did it last July and L.O.V.E. my hardwoods! Do it my friend, no matter how trivial or selfish it seems. YOU WILL LOVE IT I PROMISE! Life is too short to live with things that drive you crazy and CAN be changed! 😉
    Can’t wait to see you Tuesday!

    ps- I go from barefoot and flip flops to uggs, lol. No more uncomfortable shoes for me!

  41. A little bit of happiness to a heart heavy day for me! Thankyou! I needed to be reminded of spring and most especially of spring forward and that I should in bed but instead I’m listening to your lovely music and adoring your pictures! :) Goodnight! :)

  42. Hello there. I have been reluctant to comment until this post – mainly because there are just so many I didn’t want to ‘clog up your inbox’ so to speak. Secondly though I’ve been following for a few months – was utterly affected by your story before Nella even came, and after she came, well let’s just say your blog changed my whole perception (and made me use up alot of tissues!). You’re very gifted Kelle Hampton.

    But this post – is just so full of life and love and SPRING – makes me smile! What I would give to be barefoot outside – I fear we have hmmm – a number of months until we get to that stage…well in the meantime I live vicariously through your wonderful Florida spring…

  43. Gorgeous pictures of your lil princesses! I love when the season changes and your outside more than in. It reminds me of my childhood. Have a wonderful week ahead.

  44. Your little Nellabean is getting very big. She is losing that newborn look and turning into a regular ole’ infant :) Ooooh I just LOVE love love love the newborn/infant stage. It’s probably why I have so many kids — because that stage only lasts for 12 months. And as soon as it’s over….I need my newborn/infant fix again. <<< just kidding. that is so NOT why we have so many kids. But it’s definitely a perk!>>

    I love your photography style. For Mother’s Day I am requesting a new camera (the one I use now is a Canon EOS and it’s film — FILM!! — and so I really want a new one that is digital, with all the fix’ns to go with it, including a really good zoom lens!)

    Well it’s 12:25am here on the West Coast, and I should get some sleep. Just wanted to stop by to see what you guys were up to — and of course to gawk at your beautiful girls :)

  45. I love the second to the last picture…such beautiful blue eyes!

  46. I agree with Mel, Nella has such beautiful blue eyes.

    You give me such inspiration to take beautiful photos of my daughter when she arrives.

  47. I love seeing the world through your eyes.. You make everything seem so beautiful and inspirational.

    Gorgeous photos as always! I love the one with Nella and the puppy.. Also Lainey with the garden hose is beautiful! :)

    This morning I woke up and the sky is blue and the sun is out.. Spring is coming!

    Thank you for another inspiring post x

  48. Hi, Im a new reader from Norway and I think you’re blog is fantastic! Lovely kids and poictures! :) But I wonder, it looks so much like its summer in your pictures. So where do you live? 😀

  49. Beautiful family and beautiful mommy! You always make me smile :)

  50. Your pictures made me smile – so very sweet…your little one is going to have the most amazing blue almonds ever! Don’t youlove differences and patterns? I have 2 blue eyed, 2 brown, 2 girls, 2 boys… love it!

  51. Anonymous says:

    Again, you have added to the beauty of my day. I’m sitting at home with pink eye (when I’m supposed to have a teaching interview) and I just received a phone call letting me know that my great grandmother has been put in intensive care. Though I am discouraged and frustrated and worried, I’ve stopped with you to reflect on spring, on ending a winter. A renewing of the earth, and my mind and soul. Today I am inspired by and loving, that I am the only one awake, and I can hear my husband’s sleeping breaths mixed with very cute puppy breaths. The memory of spring mornings long ago where I was wrapped in a passed down afghan and grandma’s arms sitting on the swing. We didn’t speak, but the cool air, the steady movement, and the love were there. I can hear the frogs in the creek behind our house. They are loud and proud. We too, have sprung forward. Thank you, Kelle for inspiring a good moment in my morning full of uncertainty and frustration.

  52. oh the weather looks lovely there! Although we are slowly starting to experience signs of Spring here, it’s not quite so green and lush yet. Normally we don’t get that until May or June…sigh. Gorgeous pictures as always of your sweet girls. I am a MAC lover myself, I had my wedding makeup done there and instantaneously fell in love. It actually stays on all day!!

  53. ok seriously, i cannot believe lainey can still fit that mini jean jacket! uh thats a 12 months size if i recall. lol.

    fave lainey pic – toss up between the ones with daisy and the one where she’s holding out the “birds nests” fave nella pic – cant decide between the last 2.


  54. This morning in the hustle and bustle of getting Gracee off to school she turned to me and said “Mommy…what snack are you making for girls night”. Girls night is the night that we snuggle in her sunroom on our lovely yellow couch and do nothing but watch movies, color, read or share secrets. Secrets like who is in love with her at school this week or what plans she has for the future..my personal favorite was when she planned on getting married but never leaving us..hmmm..guess we better add a wing on to the farm to house her future husband and all those grandbabies I want! Well anyway I said girls night is not until friday night and she said not this week it is Tuesday…I asked why and she said (with a little attitude and the hands on the hips) “Don’t you remember it is when we get to watch Nelle’s family on tv”. After a weekend filled with the Amish, hotels, swimming and good friends, she remembered about your show..aren’t our little ones amazing and don’t they have such hugh hearts! So prayers to you tomorrow and we will be snuggling on our big yellow couch eating something yummy watching..making another memory..what a great girls night!

  55. i would love weather like that where I am.

    i started reading your blog a few weeks ago and was captivated by your amazing words and stunning photography

    your children are beautiful and they look like they are having quite a fun time!

  56. We moved to MI from TX last fall, and I can safely say that I have awaited this spring with more anticipation than any in my thirty-one years. With it (in seven days) will come our second baby, who is a true miracle.

    Seeing your two miracles, your gorgeous family (those boys will break hearts, I’m sure) and hearing that you too have dirty tile and a junk counter (we call ours a “crap repository”) has made my heart happy this morning. Thanks for being you.

  57. Anonymous says:

    Good morning Kelle! I must say Im envious of your warm spring weather and sunshine there in Florida – Im in northern Illniois and it’s cold and gloomy – we all hope spring arrives here by the beginning of May!

    I sure hope when you do write your book it contains half pictures! I wouldn’t know which ones to pick tho! I love the ones of Lainey with the flower behind her ear and that last one of little Nellabean with the puppy is the best!

    Have a great week – keep inspiring and I can’t wait to see your interview tomorrow!


  58. Each and every time I see these pictures I want to smooch on your babies more and more. LOVE THEM!!! How can I love 2 little girls so much that I have never met? I don’t know but I do!!!! The last picture of Nella with sissy’s dog, take my breath away. And the perfect picture of her tiny perfect ear. One of my FAVORITE characteristics of Ds, those tiny, perfect ears that I could just sniff and kiss all day. A whole lot of yummy!

  59. I love the water out of the garden hose! The garden hose features prominently in many of my childhood memories – hooking it to a sprinkler, washing our dogs and, too dirty/excited/in a hurry to come inside to get water taking a gulp of that fresh, cool water. Thanks for the taste of spring for this rain drenched Boston girl.

  60. Kara Brown says:

    Love it!! I am totally in love with your pictures! It inspires me to take better pictures! Always love seeing how happy your kiddies are, they are beauties through and through, and lucky ones at that. Enjoy the first signs of Spring, I know we are in CT! AND…I always love Poppa’s comments. :)


  61. Love Poppa’s comment!!!! The picture of you as a young child dressed for Easter brought back the memories of my mom doing that to me only no hat thank goodness. I love that you were showing us some new things we could do with our pictures. My favorite picture this post is the last one of Nella snuggled up with Lainey’s puppy!

  62. Your girls get more beautiful every day! I am so amazed with how creative you are and the activities you come up with! I have a 7 month old, and I hope that I can keep him as entertained as you seem to keep Lainey entertained! Your pictures seriously look like something out of a storybook. I will definitely watch the CNN interview! God bless you all! :)

  63. The good old garden hose. My daughter is nine and she still gets endless hours of entertainment playing with water. Nice to see you still are able to read everyone’s posts even with such a large volume! I wondered with all of the new readers if us old rock star groupies of yours would be forgot. :) I love your spring pictures of your family. Your photography is gorgeous. I wish I could have you shoot my family. So cute how excited Lainey is about her birthday! Well, gotta go to work. Sweet post as usual and especially nice for a Monday morn. xo. M.

  64. Love reading your blog & seeing your beautiful pictures! Thank you for sharing your story :)

  65. The picture of Nella with her older brother is priceless. So many wonderful pictures in this post (as always).

  66. beautiful pics… the one of you and your sister – priceless!
    Me and my sisters had the lace socks up to our knees, the gloves and the big huge bows in our hair as well. Hopefully our kids won’t think our style is funny in years to come…
    Can’t wait to see you on CNN… I bet you’re feeling nervous? You’ll do great. Be your beautiful natural self and take deep breaths! xo

  67. Amazing post! Lovely Pictures… as always :)

    I am running out of adjectives to describe your posts! :) I am even recruiting some of my friends to join the “lainey and nella blog” bandwagon! :)

    Your words are so beautiful and they complement the breathtaking pictures that you take :)

    Thank you for sharing your lens collection :) Now… I just have to beg my hubby to get one of those lens for me :) LOL :)

    Have a blessed day!

  68. The picture of Nella And her sissy’s puppy brought tears to my eyes! So sweet! I am just starting out with Photography and love to get ideas from your blog. can’t wait for you tutorials!!

  69. You are a fantastic photographer and I love all your pictures. I especially love the way you dress your children. I don’t have the fashion sense to pull that off! But they always look so beautiful.
    And Nella is looking cuter every single day. Love it!
    Enjoy your spring weather, out here in Canada we’re still donning boots and winter jackets – but not for long!!!

  70. What a great post!! You are a fantastic photographer and your daughters are gorgeous!! I love all the pics….Just beautiful

    Have a Happy Monday
    Summer ;0)

  71. I absolutely love reading your blog. Everyday, I jump on the computer in hopes you have an updated post. Your pictures are amazing and inspire me to use my camera more! 😉 Your daughters are beautiful.

  72. My favorites pictures today: Lainey in pink with the yellow flower in her hair and Nella in her black/pink/red flower outfit! Gorgeous girls :)

    Congrats Poppa on being first commenter! Every time I race to comment I get so nervous, that I find myself breaking things on my desk, unable to read/think/write and I what end of posting is not pretty…

    Looking forward to your live CNN International Interview!

    “I dwell in possibility.”
    Emily Dickinson

  73. Lovin the spring pics….Nella gets more beautiful every day. Thank you for sharing your journey with us. We are all better for it. And I tend to think that messy counters mean you’re spending time in the right place…enjoy today for we all know too well that we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. And I know I didn’t comment on the last post, but congrats on the increased following! Someone with your passion and beautiful priorities deserve the world to know about them….I will, however, count it a privilege that I knew you before you got all famous on CNN. 😛 Cheers…

  74. Your pictures make me want to move to Florida…but I must remind myself that the same fun can be had right here in VA if I get up and get outside. Thanks for all the camera tips…I’ve gotten much better with my plain digital camera, but would like to move on to something else soon.
    How sweet of Lainey to share her puppy. Young kids have such tender hearts. After a little melt down from me last night, my son was hopping up on the counter asking for a bowl. “What do you need a bowl for?” I asked. “You’ll see.” A few minutes later, he brought be the bowl filled with beautiful strawberries, an apple, and a bunch of grapes. “A fruit bowl for you mom… to cheer you up.” And it worked.

  75. Love the Easter pictures!! I have some childhood pictures that look very similar. We were outside enjoying this beautiful Florida weather this weekend too. I am so ready for the warmer temps. I don’t think I will ever complain again about not having seasons in Florida! My eight year old actually jumped into the the pool, but it is freezing, so she did not last long.

  76. I’m in Chicago so I totally know what you mean about the spring and rebirth, etc. We LIVE for spring and summer here. I read a Shel Silverstein poem to my daughter last night about summer’s coming, summer’s coming and whoosh, it’s gone. And it is so true. So, I savor this time of year where the days are getting longer and the prospect of months of warm weather and backyard time with my girls approaches. Also, seriously Nella is cuter by the day. I think I say that in every comment. And random, do you nurse Nella exclusively? I nurse my 7 mo old still and I LOVE my coffee yet always wonder if my one cup was keeping her up. How does it go for you? Sorry I’m writing you like you’re my bff lol.

  77. Hey Kelle

    I just wanted you to know you been nominated for the Happy 101 blog

    http://blogs.parent24.com/tanya2177/happy-101-15-Mar-2010-161013 the Happy 101 blog

    I love your pics and your story

  78. Anonymous says:

    What a beautiful post about spring! Yes, it has finally sprung as we spent the weekend cleaning the lanai and drinking in the warmth and sunshine. How true about going barefoot and enjoying that extra hour of daylight! So hard to get up in the morning in the dark, but so worth not rushing inside in the evening. I love seeing Lainey’s wispy hair. And the one with Nella on the blanket peeking at you is just so cute!
    Do you know what channel CNNI is on here in Naples on Comcast? I need to set the DVR! :) Have a beautiful spring week! Leslie L.

  79. I loved reading about your “growing up in Michigan” reminiscences of spring. I grew up in Michigan too and have many of the same kinds of memories. I think I even had a very nearly identical Easter outfit one year!

    P.S. My Little loves looking at pictures of your Littles!!! She points to them and says “ooooh!!!” and smiles.

  80. KC…that’s hilarious. Cracked me up. And I love that Emily D. quote. It should be printed on every fortune cookie.

    Danielle…yes, exclusively but I’m not a nut about it. I know it’s best for her, but to be honest, I do it for me because that bonding thing just gets me. And my one cup a day never seems to affect anything so far.

    And Kristi, my favorite lense as of late is 50 mm, 1.4.

  81. ok, seriously, I get so giddy when I see a new post from you. it truly lights up my day to see gorgeous pictures of your sweet babies. I also love seeing life through the lense and your photography is such an inspiration. I have to go take some pictures of my Mia now.

    P.S. I’m incredibly jealous of your green grass. Here in Indiana everything is still brown and dead. Send Spring this way if you don’t mind :)

  82. good morning, kelle! love how lainey shared her puppy and how you’re going to share some photo tips with us! also, love, love, love the spring birds’ nests. did you follow a recipe? just wondering how much marshmallow! and that outfit of nella’s, the bw&red one … mmmmm…….

    happy, happy day!! i gotta go make my steamy cup … better late than never!!!! and i read your last comment – the one you posted, and i gotta say … a cup a day never hurt anybody!! i just weaned my little guy (okay, not so little, he will be 2 next month) last wednesday, and i’m still not sure i’m done. i’m having a hard time with it! i thought he’d wean himself, but i’m thinking not.

    really, i’m gonna run … i hear the kitchen sink – and eli is the only little home with me!!!!!!

  83. Hi Kelle.
    got my starter dslr..love it so far and thank you so much for free advice. i was wondering about the lense too and the 50mm 1.4 is my next purchase…darn this shitty economy making me wait till i have the dough..ugh! the babies are beautiful. nella is just yummy..omg seriously, you must kiss her all day. i cannot wait till the interview tomorrow. are you nervous at all? we are all waiting in anticipation! :) im in chicago too…50’s this week, whoo hoo…feelin’ like spring and hope. i love it.

  84. I live in St. Louis and although we have had a couple of glorious days, we have not quite made it to barefoot weather yet. I am drooling over these photos (like I don’t always drool over your pics). Can’t wait for the interview!

  85. Anonymous says:

    I am a part of the What To Expect website and someone posted your story. It was so touching, and brought me to tears multiple times. Your story is beautiful. The night you wrote your beautiful story, was the day I had my first born child. A little girl. Reading your blog, the way you write, you truely touch lives. I went back and started reading from the day before you had Nella, up until today. I couldn’t stop reading… You are truely blessed with 2 beautiful little girls and an amazing husband, and wonderful friends and family! I am looking forward to seeing your interview!!! Love from North Carolina

  86. I linked to your blog for Nella’s birth story… I’ve been here every day since. The way you document the lives of your girls has inspired me. I love photography. I was photographer for my high school yearbook and editor my senior year. I just knew “when I grew up” I was going to do what I loved and be a photographer. Then life happens and you get married and have kids and have to get a job that pays the bills. We took lots of pictures of my oldest, then less of the second and even less of the third. My kids are now 13, 12 & 8. I find myself only taking pictures at “events” and holidays. After following your blog and reading it front to back, I have decided that it is never too late to start taking more pictures and documenting your kids’ lives. So… I will be taking more pictures, and I will be doing it with my Cannon Rebel that arrived in the mail last week. You inspired me (I think you should get a kick back from Cannon). I’m going to start taking more pictures of my kids. I also made some business cards. Kreation by Kari…photographer…me. Who knows, I may end up having that “when I grow up” job after all. Thank you. Thank you for giving us a little slice of your girls and a little slice of you.

  87. we make those nests with melted chocolate ….yyum

  88. Dear Kelle, some fabulous pics this w/e, Nella, in her black and white outfit with red, in her Dad’s arms, Beautiful, and Lainey on her trick, so cool, learning to love photography too here …Like I said in previous post, I can’t wait to be a Grand-mother some day I hope …And Kelle, I wanted to say thanks again for bringing all Your followers here, for through You and Your blog, I got to meet Dan Drinker and His girl friend, and Brother who helps Him blog… I’ve not read Him all yet, but I look forward to get the time to know him better and to write them as well ….So thanks for that Kelle, cause it is cause of You and Nella …And BTW, in closing I must say, You and Your Sister might of not been in today’s styles, but both very beautiful for the times …and I am sure cherished by Your parents as much as You cherish Your fab pics, and the pic of dght #2 and two son #2, also a great pic….Thank You, Thank You, Thank You ….*warm smiles*

  89. I found you beautiful blog today. It has been a joy to read some of your stories from your life. You share so much! Your generosity makes me feel thankful. For life.
    Suddenly my eyes stopped at a post dated Thursday, February 18, named; “Normal Day”. I read the post once, twice. This has to mean something , I said to myself. It has to. Because this morning I posted today’s words and pictures at my blog. Today’s topic was “Normal day”. I found a beautiful poem written by Mary Jean Iron…
    I had to write this comment, as I find this fortuitousness kind of special.
    My oldest daughter, Caroline (19) is a caretaker once a week for a girl with Downs. Our families are friends and neighbours. The sweet girl, Stine, is 5 years old. She is still quite small, due to being born 8 weeks premature. Stine is a sunshine girl and enrichens our life. We treasure her.
    So I think it was some meaning when I found your blog today.
    This is the link to my post this morning:


    I wish you and your beautiful family the very best!

    Warm regards from
    Anette Willemine  

  90. I read your blog everyday, and it brings me to tears more often than not. I have never left a comment, but after today’s pictures I couldn’t resist. BOTH of your girls are so beautiful! I love the picture of Nella over your shoulder, it made my heart melt. They are very lucky to have a momma like you!

  91. Thanks for the response Kelle, that really made my day! =) (when I said I’m writing you like you’re my bff I said it b/c I felt silly I was asking you about your coffee/nursing like I do my other mom friends) =) Yeah, deep down I don’t think my one cup a day has affected her either, I think she’s just a restless sleeper, though I hate to admit it haha. I always ask other nursing moms (who drink coffee) when I can b/c it seems so many moms I know don’t drink it when nursing, but I just love love love my coffee. My one cup. 😉 I also nurse for the bonding and closeness though I know it’s best for my daughter. My 7 mo old is my last baby and I just can’t imagine that I’ll never bf again after this. My daughters are 2 years apart so it feels like I’ve been nursing for 3 years straight lol. I’m hanging onto her “babyhood”, though at 7 months she’s already at the stage of fidgeting and trying to see what’s going on instead of nursing. Aaaah, it just goes too fast, and ever since finding your blog I’m even more conscious! (and taking more pics thanks for you =) )I read your dad’s post about the empty house, and I know it’s so true!!

  92. I’m back, just forgot to tell you I did a post (with some incredibly CRAPPY iphone pictures, lol) about music on blogs and of course linked you and your awesome playlist! :) I also posted some Coldplay pictures (just as crappy!) LOL!

  93. Kelle – Thank you so much for sharing your life with us all. Ever since I came across the link to your blog on a mummy board I go onto, I can not help but check in every morning.
    The way you write is so open and honest I just love reading what you have to say. Your photo’s are amazing, it makes me want to pick up my camera and do better.
    I shared your blog with my husband and he was in awe of your photo’s, in his words…..”It makes me want to get married all over again just so we can hire her”.
    Your daughters are adorable. I myself also have been blessed with two girls. I have a two year old bundle of energy, and a 5 week old eating every 10 minutes newborn.
    I can relate to your posts, in so many ways that sometimes just to read your words puts a smile on my face and reminds me that everything will be ok.
    I can deal with the fact my oldest has times when she pushs every button I have, or that my 5 week old is spitting up over every new outfit she is put in.
    Thank you, simply thank you for sharing your story you make me want to be a better mummy.

  94. Tabby vonKuhlmann says:

    I love your photos! Miss Nella reminds me of a fae baby, with those beautiful eyes of hers, so much wisdom behind them.

  95. Oh! And I totally would have never thought about Esprit ever again if you hadn’t have brought it up!! Thanks for the laugh!! I am 29…totally of the Esprit era LOL!

  96. So much here, I don’t know where to begin…loved it all. Your spring looks like summer to me..my kids never wore shoes in the summer and I didn’t either! Love the nests and eggs, good idea. Your hub looks like a kind man…cute, cute girls! Love ya! 😀

  97. My son is in love with your sweet Lainey! Every time he sees a picture of her he points, says “Uh huh???” and gets a HUGE smile on his face. I scroll down and he smiles even more. He is 18 months…would she go for a younger man? Ha! Anyway, he was particularly fond of the princess riding the bike. I got lots of smiles from those pictures! As always, thanks for sharing. YOU inspire me to be a better mom…I’m going to go and bake snickerdoodles with my munchkin now!

  98. I think I return to your blog alomost as much to read your Poppa’s comments as I do your yummy posts! :-)

    Looking forward to seeing you on TV tomorrow!

  99. I’ve never posted. I’ve been reading since I was directed to Nella’s birth story through RichmondMommies.com, but I’ve never posted. I even have your email and I haven’t written…I have too much to say. But right now, reading Poppa’s comment, I have to share: I love what your dad comments back to you and his comment above just brought tears to my eyes. That man loves you and it makes me cry every time. What a great dad & poppa.

    Kelle – you are beautiful (inside and out) and I admire you deeply from Richmond, VA. I am inspired by you. Thank you for allowing your inner light to shine so brightly for those of us who bask in its glow. We pray for you and your family in our bedtime prayers every night ending with “God bless Nella”. Someday I’ll let my (now 16-month-old) Ellabean read about who Nella is and about Nella’s family. Thank you.

  100. P.S. I have very similar Easter pictures of me and my brother (though he isn’t in a dress or hat) and I just bought Ella that type of hat for $1 at Target.

  101. I am not sure if my first comment posted. I’ll do it again.

    I wanted to tell you a few things. The first one is that I love you blog. It is the first think I do when i get my coffee and sit in my desk. It brightens up day and it warms my heart. Your girls are precious!

    Since you love make-up, especially MAC, did yo know you can get a discount for being a photographer. They have a program called MAC PRO.
    It is a program for people in the Arts industry. You get a 30-40% discount on almost everything. You pay a $30 annual membership fee. Here is the link:

    Bobbi Brown also has a program, but not sure if it is the same as MAC. I work as a freelance make-up artist for both MAC and Bobbi Brown, and I love these perks. I must admit, I am more of a Bobbi fan than MAC, but I have a lot of customers that love MAC.

    Bobbi Brown’s studio in Monticello, NY number is (973) 783-3506. It doesn’t hurt to call and ask!

    Thanks for sharing your life!

  102. Your pictures ARE art Kele! Thanks for sharing and making my day better! HUGS, Nicole
    PS Is that your step son? His eyes are GORGEOUS!

  103. Thank you Kelle, for putting a smile today where there wasn’t one. I was sitting here with my coffee, feeling moody and upset because I have a teenage stepdaughter who lives to torment me. It’s still cold here in Washington, but spring is beginning to peek out here, too. Your blog today gave me a smile and some spring fever, too. I know your blog is your therapy, but if you can make someone else feel more at peace and even happy while doing it, why, then, you’re doing something really special. I can’t thank you enough for that.

    Cynthia Kleppang in the Puget Sound

  104. Spring! In the gloomy North East it feels like Monsoon season! Thanks for giving us New Englanders a beautiful taste of color and spring. beautiful! beautiful life!

  105. Your posts make me smile, always :)
    You’re inspiring and beautiful – I hope I’m like you when I’m your age :)

    Lainey and Nella are such beautiful girls and, through your words, we see them through your eyes and feel the love you have for your ‘littles’ – it’s amazing :)
    I think I’m too hooked on this blog: I check it waay too often and am beginning to pick up some of the words you use (see ‘littles’ above :D)…but it’s too fantastic not to read!

    Keep inspiring us all :) you’re fantastic xxx

  106. I just have to write you that I laughed out loud when I read about the hand-me-down clothes and fighting over the Esprit items…my sister and I did the exact same thing! We had an older friend of the family who always sent over their old clothes and the Esprit items were definitely the most desirable. I can remember a white sweatshirt I had with Esprit written in large red letters vertical down the front. Love it!!

  107. Superman's Mom says:

    I absolutely LOVE your blog! It’s the first thing I look at when I log on to the internet. Your story is amazing and your talent is as well! I can’t wait to see what the future holds for you and your family.

    I’m looking forward to your post on photography tips! **I’m dying to know how you make your girls’ eyes sparkle. They are beautiful!**

  108. Your girls are beautiful. Our sweet “almond-eyed” girl was born in October and is having heart surgery next week. I have been following Nella’s sweet story and find inspiration and hope in your words. Every day is better with our sweet girl and I truly feel as if we have won the lottery! Thank you for bringing those feeling to light through your amazing blog! Someday I would love for you to take her picture…you are so talented and such a great voice for our children. Thank you.

  109. Love the spring inspiration… I feel it too. I have to say my eyes welled up with the last note and picture where Lainey gives Nella her doggie. Melts my heart!

  110. Beautiful girls! I just found this blog and love it, thanks for sharing!

  111. After reading this post I am left asking myself, “Where does she find the time?” How do you find the time to spend the quality time with your family, take beautiful pictures AND edit them, and post to your blog nearly every day? I started my own blog back in January after my sis-in-law insisted I should so that I don’t forget any special moments of my baby boy, Brody. I was doing better than I had expected at posting often (though not daily) until I read your blog for the first time a couple weeks ago. I must admit, I feel a bit inadequate (okay, a lot inadequate) at the whole blogging thing now. I haven’t posted since and I now feel like I’m in a rut! But, that wasn’t what I wanted to comment about. Sorry for the tangent. I was actually hoping you could share how you find the time and energy to do it all. I need the tips! I have the desire to take and edit beautiful pics of our life and blog about them, but I just can’t figure out how to juggle it all while life continues to happen around me. I’m impressed by your ability!

  112. While I do absolutely love your photos, the words you put on have such an inspiring effect. The positive way you portray hardships, or the detailed memories bring back so many thoughts.( I remember jelly shoes!!)
    My sister in law pointed me to your blog for her beautiful Ella also was born with down syndrome. I have been reading ever since as well.
    Makes me want to move to California! Honestly, here in Canada there is still snow. Yet, I have the spring bug too because it has been a glorious plus 5 !! Spring is coming…slowly.
    Good luck in your interview!
    P.S.- Love the music choices! I had to refrain from putting some of them on my blog because now they remind me of you!:)

  113. Anonymous says:

    WOW, another set of fabulous photos!! My mother and I joke because we are seriously addicted to reading your blog! We talk about all of you like you’re our friends! Is that weird! haha My sister lives in Naples and played a trick on me the other day saying that she ran into you at Home Goods! I was so excited and then she broke the news that she was totally kidding me! Thanks for another great post and such amazing inspiration to live life to the fullest! You are totally a rock star to my mother and I in Savannah, Georgia!

  114. Thank you. Those are not empty words, but thank you for so many things, on so many levels!

    Not to get all sappy spiritual but your blog has drawn me closer to God in so many ways. And yet, you don’t even mention God at all. To live it with our life – not in words. My heart dwells on those thoughts daily now.

    Thanks for challenging me to be the wife, mom, and friend God designed me to be. And I hope to learn from your artistic eye as well!

    My son was born on 12/29 so it is fun to see your Nella grow as well. Her cheeks are loosing that newborn look and now are getting all nice and squishy! Mmmmm! Just devine!

    Thank you for sharing your story.

  115. I can’t WAIT to see you on CNN!!!
    Love the throwback Easter photo (my parents did the same thing) and your girls are as gorgeous as always! <3

  116. What a gorgeous post — your photos are like candy for the eyes (especially since I gave up chocolate for Lent!) I love the quote about “when almond eyes are smiling…” precious. I love my little almond-eyed man, his touseled blond hair and his quick grin. Spring is finally springing here, too. 70’s this week and all is good.

  117. I don’t know how you do it, EVERY post makes me cry, usually happy tears. It can be in your descriptions of your love for your beautiful family or just the way you capture your loves on film. thank you for sharing your family with us. You make me want to be a better person, a better mom, and yes someone who can take amazing pictures of the loves in her life (10 month old twin boys and an awesome hubby). I look forward to EVERY new post like a new addiction, seriously, I check too often to admit. I can’t wait to see the CNN interview. You and your babes have already touched so many people with your life story, and I know there is so much more to come. Blessings,

  118. P.S.

    My 5 and 6 year old just asked about why I always read your blog… I explained Nella and T21 and the magic extra chromosome which they have heard many times as our sweet nephew has the magic too…

    And they were jealous they were missing that extra piece of magic. That somehow they were jipped of the 21st chromosome. They almost cried. So sweet the innocense of children.

  119. This comment has been removed by the author.

  120. Yes, thank you for the inspiration, daily affirmations and tips. I’ve stolen your great idea of adding a color panel beside pictures to balance the page. Hope you don’t mind.

    If you’re taking requests:

    1)Are there any free programs you use to edit the pictures?

    2)Any tips on posting them to Blogs? I have such a hard time getting them side by side or stacked. It took me 6 months just to figure out how to insert them in the middle of posts (cut and paste, right?)

    March 15, 2010 11:22 AM

  121. I just have to say… That picture of Nella looking over your shoulder literally took my breath away! You have such stunningly beautiful girls.

    Every time I walk away from reading your blog, I feel a bounce in my step, joy in my heart, and I see love everywhere. It’s an amazing thing how contagious attitude is. I’m so glad I catch a good one when I visit you and your beautiful family here on kellehampton’s blog :)

  122. Hi Kelle! I recently found your blog and I’m hooked! You write so beautifully and the images you capture of your girls are very inspiring. Thank you for sharing!

    I have a quick question for ya! I know I saw somewhere on here that you have a lens hood that is squishy? What is that called and where can I find one? Thanks!

  123. So jealous of your nice weather! It’ll be months before we get to run around barefoot, but it’ll come eventually. Every day a little closer.

    And, yes, documenting your children’s lives with photos is worth it. Every day :)

    I’d love to hear if you use commercial actions for your photos. I’m addicted to them myself!

  124. This is from Gracee to Nella or as Gracee insists on calling her “Nelle” (I giggle each time she calls her that). “Don’t be nervous about being on tv because everyone that is watching you loves you”…out of the mouths of babes. ♥

  125. ahh… spring and mac nothing more to say! great post and gorgeously intriguing photos! you have a fabulous eye! i only wish i lived closer so i could have you photograph my 3 little ( soon to be 4 ) beauties:)

  126. Your pictures are beautiful as always. I wish i still lived in FL, then I would defiantly have you do our pictures. I have always been into taking pictures of everything, but reading your blog, and seeing your wonderful pictures has made me want to take even more pictures and capture everything. I have been learning how to take better pictures with my point and shoot digital camera. Maybe for my bday I will ask the hubs for a dslr.

  127. I’m happy to know you also love Emily’s quote, Kelle. You are so generous, I feel the least I can do (since I’m shy & don’t have a blog) is to share with you some of the quotes that speak to my heart. Fyi: there are many Kelle Hampton’s quotes I LOVE. :)

    I will be sending you lots of positives energies for your TV interview tomorrow. I “know” you are going to be amazing!

    May you always be surrounded with love and grace ~

  128. dearest kelle,
    what a beautiful post, but alas they are all beautifull, i too dress my children like little old lady midjets which spring threw up on but i have too i have 3 girls after all,thanks for sharing an old pic:), oh and the mac thing,i am the biggest sucker i live an hour and a half from the nearest mac, but i frequently find a need to treat myself and i have convinced my husband i am worth it:)
    have an awesome day,
    ps thanks for the strap info.

  129. A friend of mine turned me to your blog whenever you posted sweet Nella’s birth story & I feel like I have fallen in love with photography by seeing the pictures of your adorable brood. Your children are so beautiful! Lainey looks like she squeezes every ounce of fun out of life, it shows through your pictures that she is a little social butterfly! Nella is so sweet & snuggly, beautiful in more ways than words & will without a doubt do amazing things to the world! I couldn’t help but comment :) After all, I have been loving your blog for roughly a month & a half! Look forward to more beauty in the pictures you post! xo.

  130. My favorite pics from this post?… Little Nella peeking one eye at you! So cute! And little Lainey taking a big ol gulp from the hose! So great!

  131. The last photo is so perfect and just makes my heart burst.

  132. Lea Anne says:

    Love, love, love your blog and photographs! You have inspired me to take more pictures of my three little boys in our everyday, ordinary life. I know there will be a day when my house will be clean and quiet and I will be sad. I love the chaos, the noise and the endless clutter of superheroes, video games and puzzle pieces. Your baby girls are absolutely beautiful and your little Nella…she is the most precious, adorable baby girl I think I have ever seen!

  133. Everyday Momma, you had me with “…that spring threw up on…” Yes, we did Easter emesis. The children walked like seniors with their new hard shoes. I am sure we chose outfits by saying, “Do you have this in hideous?” There was so much polyester on them, we couldn’t allow them to stand near open flames. But hopefully, when all was over…we gave them memories…of Easter egg hunts, dipping eggs in lush colors (torquoise was always my favorite), baskets they had to search for and too much candy. Perhaps that was payment enough to endure the Mamie Eisnhower couture.
    Yes, “that Easter threw up on” made my day! You sound fun!!!

  134. I can’t get over how beautiful your girls are, I just love, love, love Nella’s gorgeous eyes. Your pictures are absolutely gorgeous, I must admit I have quite a bit of envy that your photo albums probably look just as perfect. Can’t wait for the photo trick entry. Hugs

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  136. Because I say the same thing every time I comment … I just want to say how cute I think it is that your dad reads your blog and comments. :)

  137. Anonymous says:

    I am sure I speak for a lot of us as to how fortunate we feel that you have provided us with a window into your incredible life. It is such a gift, I can’t begin to express=)
    Lainey is a living doll and your little Nella melts my heart each time I see her new photos. The one with her looking at you with her one little eye made my cry….I am not sure exactly why, maybe it was the wonderful commentary you provided and that she was keeping her eye on you. Just so very precious.
    I have to comment on her totally fun “baby knit” diaper cover too. How cool is that? Have never seen one of those and your little model is so gorgeous in it!!
    I consider myself so very lucky to get the opportunity to work with little ones with DS (birth to age three). Each of them and their families amaze me. They all share similiar stories of their child’s birth with me (very much like Nella’s) but then go on to have such intense love for their child they feel sad about their initial reaction. It is an incredible journey…………one that you will rock I’m sure.

    Susan in Boston

  138. Sharing your puppy with your little sister what greater love could there be such a gorgeous photo

  139. Lainey is such a sweet big sister, Nella is one lucky little girl!!

  140. You have an unbelievable way with words. I just wanted to let you know how your words have completely changed me. I’m a first time mom to a beautiful baby boy born at 28 weeks and has fought through a number of issues and is now and always has been perfect. For the longest time, I felt that something was taken from me, the experience, the time to enjoy pregnancy and it has been a long journey to me just being happy to be his Mommy. Your daughters are beautiful, you are beautiful and just by seeing your pictures and reading your posts, they are incredibly lucky to have you. I look up to you for being so open and honest and savoring every little moment.

  141. What beautiful, dear girls you have.
    Your photos are enchanting. Being that my own children were raised in the late 1980s and 1990s, I am intrigued by the darling outfits on your children- the colors and styles I am unfamiliar with but are so very cute and clever. Could you sometimes let your readers know where some of the little hats, sweaters and little shoes have come from?

    I love reading your blog. Your family is as beautiful on the inside as it is on the outside.

  142. I am ADDICTED to your blog – ALL of it, even the comments! Love the photography – it is so incredibly beautiful! Love your kiddos – they are both magnificent, which at this point, I’m convinced they come by quite honestly. And, I LOVE Poppa! After I read the post, I must go see what beautiful things Poppa has to say to his girls…so very precious! I can’t imagine how you find time to do all you do – you must carry that camera on your shoulder 24/7. However you do it, I’m so glad that you do! It’s all beautiful, and so encouraging to get back on the picture-taking bandwagon even when life is so hectic and crazy. You are a wonderful mom…so very inspiring! Can’t wait for the photo tips!! I’m going to Africa to work in an orphanage in a couple of months…I’d love to get some great shots.

  143. That last photo of Nella and the puppy: precious. Made me cry. And then your dad’s comment made me cry. This is a common theme when I read your blog. Almost always good tears, though! Thank you for the happy thoughts of spring – and life.

  144. I was linked to Nella’s birth story this morning and sat at my office desk leaking at the eyes. I just had to skim through the recent posts and see the newer pictures of your little angel. Your girls are gorgeous and you are an amazing mother, writer, photographer, and so on! I will be checking back often!

  145. Hi. I found your blog linked from a girlfriends facebook page (yeah, I know, that tremendous time suck, but right now I am grateful for it since I found you there). I was so tremendously touched reading Nella’s birth story. It consumed me…that honesty you had so I had to read more. I have spent many late nights without sleep reading your little blog from the very beginning.

    What I really want to say is

    Thank you for being you. Thank you for reminding me to be me.

    Somewhere in the midst of the chaos of a husband that works too much, a home that is constantly in disarray, the makeup-less pony-tailed mama of two that I am, these days, I forgot that I am a rockstar. Thanks for reminding me that life is what you make of it. Keep writing, and I will keep reading, but off now to rock the world of my littles. Blessings to you always.

  146. Hi Kelle, I’m Andy.
    Am from Brazil and I’m 16 years old.
    I found Nella’s history in another blog and immediately fell in love with.
    I’m reading you blog slowly cause in every letter, every post I feel free. Free to become a better person.
    You have no idea how much you helped me with this blog and especially with your little daughter’s history. And Congrats!You have and healtly and beautiful family. God Bless you.
    And if I hadn’t already chosen architecture, I would chose Photograph. I lust love the way you take your photos.

  147. Is it weird that sometimes I wish this blog was my little secret? Well not so secret anymore huh? CNN. I cant wait! I was just sitting here listening to my littles run around and play before heading to the park ourselves and thought… hmmm the weekend is over, I bet Kelle posted something. Thanks for the photo editing and camera info. I am getting my SLR next month and cant wait to expand on that more. I have almost no photos from my childhood and the digital age means my children will have 1,453,789 before they graduate high school. But hey, that is love. DID YOU KNOW YOU CAN HAVE YOUR BLOG PRINTED NOW AS A BOOK!??? I plan to do that for my girls as keepsakes too.

    PS: Poppa needs to write the foreword of your book. Seriously. I am growing to love him too. I search for his comments as they are like whipped cream on a really yummy sundae. Or maybe they are the chocolate “jimmies” I cant decide. Either way his comments are delicious.

  148. i’ve been meaning to ask you what program you create your pages for the books for your girls in? you mentioned shutterfly (i think?) which is where you purchase them, but i’m assuming you actually build them in another program? i’m totally inspired AND intrigued. leave a comment on my blog or email me at erin.oranen@gmail.com if/when you have a chance. or post it on your own blog… i check in every few days! i know you are a busy mama so no rush!

  149. ok, not sure how i missed it the first time, but i just went back and realized you did write what program you use to make your pages for the girls’ books. sorry!

    LOVING your blog and love your photos. i am teaching myself day-by-day how to use my camera and best capture the moments of every day life with my little boy. your blog is an inspiration.


  150. Oh, I love your blog. It is my steamy cup of coffee with pictures and words that soothe my soul. :) Thanks for sharing all of these beautiful moments with us!

  151. Anonymous says:

    Lovely pictures as always. Thanks for posting about how you go about your photography and you can tell its your passion! I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures, and hopefully one day when I have kids can take beautiful ones like yours.

    Also love your Nellabean’s crocheted diaper cover, it’s cute. And great baking ideas!

    Melissa H

  152. Anonymous says:

    You expressed spring perfectly. Barefoot and flipflops all the way!
    Thanks for being so open and a “friend” to us all!!

  153. This comment has been removed by the author.

  154. Kelle, thanks so much for sharing your beautiful family and your talent with photography. My “baby” turns 21 tomorrow and your blog brings back so many good memories to me.

    Best wishes for the interview and for the rest of what life has to offer all of you.

    P.S. thanks for posting where that strap can be found – I’m wondering if it could be used for a guitar…

  155. Anonymous says:

    You are a beautiful human being. You have reminded me how to love unconditionally. Thank you.

  156. Anonymous says:

    It all began with a dear friend suggesting on her blog to read yours….so I did….along with a box of kleenix! :) I love, and truly appreciate your honesty, and how you choose to view life. Even though I dont have children..yet..you have inspired me in so many other ways…to not let human nature get in the way and to truly see the good in all things. I love your blog! Thank you.

  157. I was so excited when I got home to snuggle under the covers with a cup of tea to read your wonderful words and see your adorable and amazing babies. My babies are in dreamland…

    You are right, a northern spring is reviving…anything over 50 degrees is considered sandal weather here! It is so refreshing…now if only the rain would stop!

    And I love Poppa! He is wonderful and must be the best grandpa ever!

    Good luck with CNN! Can’t wait to watch!

  158. I love your words about the renewing feeling of spring. I need that renewal right now so badly, just 2 and half weeks ago I lost a baby (Ryan Jane) at 13 weeks pregnant. The new flowers, green grass and bright skies help heal my soul.

  159. ♥you simply amaze me♥… I look forward to your blog daily and find myself reading older posts over again if there is nothing new to read. I am so happy you read all of your comments ♥ you are an amazing writer, and you take amazing photo’s ♥ I cant wait to watch your clip on CNN tomorrow ☺ I’ve asked all of my fmaily and friends to tune in as well… goodluck ♥

  160. I hope I’m never asked to pick my favourite blog post from you! It would be an impossible task….because each one is my favourite (in Canada we spell alot of words with an extra ‘u’!:) ) – until the next post.

    Every one of your posts has my favourite picture – until the next post!

    I love the picture of Nella and her Daddy – with her adorable little dress and gorgeous hat. And the picture of Lainey and the daffodils – beyond sweet!

    Thank-you for sharing another of your days, with your cyber-space family!………Rosemary

  161. Ok- I must have the only little girl on the planet who won’t wear her princess dresses out to play! Lainey looks just care free and happy as a lark in hers- that’s how life should be… riding down the street in your favorite princess dress! Oh and I can’t tell you how “divine” your little Nellabean looks in her photos!

    Love the flashback photo of you and your sis too- priceless!

    thanks again for sharing your more “glamourous moments” with us!

  162. You have the cutest girl on the planet!!!

  163. Anonymous says:

    i think your motto could be “make your life a visual masterpiece” :)

    looking at Lainey (aka, Tiny Blonde Kelle) makes me wonder if part of the reason why Nella’s birth was so jarring for you is that you were waiting to meet the second little you. Another small life that would remind you of your childhood and all the things you loved about being a kid. the cupcakes, the colouring, the fairy princess stuff. and when you realized she wasn’t, you almost felt ….left out? she has the key to a whole other world, which you will be part of, of course, but you’ll never see it through her eyes the way you know for sure how Lainey sees the world. i may be just totally out to lunch, but i wonder if that’s how i would feel in those first moments.

  164. Kelle, your post on spring coincided with the sun coming out in Minnesota today!

    Your raw words and gorgeous images move me everytime I lay eyes here…

    Love Lainey on the bike…everything…the colors, the angle, her smile…I almost feel there!

  165. Hi Kelle,
    Been following ya for a few weeks but can’t get in to post b/c the line is soooo long! Your family is precious and you are an inspiration! I have one daughter, Faith, who had a stroke at birth and has Cerebral Palsy. These kids…..shew….these kids….are…..WONDERFUL!

  166. Just wanted to wish you luck w/the interview! Our DVR is set – can’t wait!
    Thought it was interesting that Wednesday’s CNN interview is Eva Longoria Parker who has a sister with DS!
    Also, haven’t seen it mentioned yet but have you read Erma Bombeck’s piece where God chooses a mother for a disabled child? Personally I identify with it way more than the Welcome to Holland. I’m done with Holland. I don’t have a link but it is easily googled. I think you will enjoy it and get another insight on why you were the only one chosen to be Nella’s mom.
    Good Luck!

  167. Anonymous says:

    Can’t wait to see the interview – and there are over 200 comments on the story they posted. Woot woot! I plan on watching the video at work while I eat lunch – fun fun fun! And, I’ll have a box of tissue handy =)

    Your girls are two sweet for words (yes, I meant to spell it that way)…

    Thank you for allowing us to copy your style with the camera strap!


  168. Julie K. says:

    Absolutely beautiful post Kelle!! What a fabulous treat with all the pictures. And you HAVE inspired me to buy a nice new camera…I will do so with my tax return!

    Can your girls be any prettier?

  169. This entire post is just pure bliss I must say. I will reread this post probably a billion times over. BUT the last picture of sweet Nella with the puppy is by far the most precious picture I have EVER seen. It stole my heart in a instant..

    Happy Spring Blessings to you and your very very lovely family.

  170. my twin sister sent me an innocent little email last week telling me i “must read this” with a link to baby nella’s birth story… and well, after many a tear, and reading all your posts since, i am finally commenting here. just had to tell you how lovely and touching and wonderful your family is. thank you for sharing them and for sharing your thoughts on all you’re experiencing.

    oh, and your photography is gorgeous, too. breathtaking is a better word!

    can’t wait to see and read more!

    -jacque in AZ

  171. Brit Girl says:

    Hi Kelle,

    Just wanted to wish you luck for the CNN interview today! I was channel-flicking the other day and I think I may be able to watch it tonight 9pm our time – yay! Have you got outfits sorted?!

    Just caught up on your recent posts – my fave is the spring forward one. The pic and words made me grin from ear to ear!

    p.s. My girl turned two on Sunday! I have a two year old – how is that possible?! Have fun with your beautiful two year old and your beautiful almost-two month old (eek!) today!

  172. ♥ to you and we are soooo cheering for you in PA today! And you must tell Miss Lainey that she is now a trend setter..we have a huge bunny named Bunkins who will now be taking stroller rides! HA! May you find peace today and I will say to you what Gracee said to Nella..”Don’t worry everyone watching loves you!”..kids make even the unknown things sound so easy!

  173. Anonymous says:

    You inspire me to be the best mom I can be.


  174. Oh, that picture of Nella sleeping with puppy just made me catch my breath. So sweet. After a night from hell here, I so needed to read your blog to remind me that even though my children seem intent on torturing me with sleep deprivation right now, that their childhood is fleeting and I need to enjoy it while I can.

    I just knew your makeup was MAC. Sigh. I’m also a MAC junkie. Their beautiful iris eyeshadow is calling to me like a siren.

    Happy Spring.

  175. Oh I just love love love reading your blog, its such a part of my daily routine, like having a cup of coffee in the morning I read everything you have to say and excitedly wait for the next post. Its almost like waiting for a present to open!! You and your family are such a breath of fresh air that I find so uplifting to breath!! I wish I could just put you in my pocket and take you everywhere!! You are such an inspiration daily…..because you are so REAL. I can’t say enough about you!! And your two girls MELT my heart at each sight.

  176. A friend of mine just pointed me to your site today and my first thought is – I SWEAR you have to live in my neighborhood. Or one JUST LIKE IT somewhere in Florida.

  177. Thought you would like to read this story http://www.agoodgrief.com/blog.php?id=42
    I love your blog and your beautiful pictures. Your girls are lucky to have a mother like you. Thanks for sharing, I am a follower for life!

  178. Your before and after edit photos prove that you first need a good photo to make it better! Like my sister told me once “sometimes it’s not the camera, but the person behind it” she went on to tell me that some Sport Illustrated photographer only used Kodak disposable cameras, go figure! I think you could rock disposable cameras!

    ps – good luck today! :-)

  179. Kelle–thank you so much for the letting us into your world. My wife and I just had our first little boy over a week ago, and you’ve inspired me to soak it all in. I even bought a new camera to document all of the “small things”. Wishing you and your family the very best.

  180. Good luck today Kelle, May You and Nella shine on CNN …*warm smiles*

  181. Michelle says:

    I’ve never been a reader of blogs but in one week i fell in love with two: yours and the blog at therainingseason.org.

    Yours has reminded me how important it is to take every opportunity to enjoy all the blessings in my life. The other one has reminded me just how blessed I truly am and how many in the world are not as fortunate.

    Yours has made me want to give to my ‘little’ with such energy and passion. To give her playdates with mommy in the sprinklers. Tea parties with her teddy bears. Pajama breakfasts with friends. The other makes me want to give to the orphaned littles that have no momma. no clean water. no teddy bear. no pajamas.

    take a peak at my other favorite blog and if you feel compelled, please share with your readers.

  182. Anonymous says:

    First, love, love, love your blog – the writing, the photos, your children, your outlook – all of it, from top to bottom. Thank you!

    Next, as a photographer and now mother to an edible child with Down syndrome, I thought you might enjoy this photographer’s work and subjects: http://kidswithalittleextra.blogspot.com/. You’re both fabulous!

  183. Your blog makes me smile! Your words and pictures and funny comments…ah..so good. You have a way with words and a way with pictures and a way with precious little girls. Thanks for making me smile.

  184. The picture of the girls makes me smile. Nella looks just precious in the black and white with the red.

  185. ,,,preparing for spring is always exciting,,,the blue bird nests with their gently laid eggs would make a lovely addition to the fairy garden “pink” party,,,oh how i wish i were on fairy lainey’s guest list,,,i trust the ups driver will indeed have a fabulous time at the soiree,,,your daddy looks familiar to me, is he a lucky resident of scottsdale az?,,,perhaps i have met him?,,,his love for his children and for the “shorter additions” in his world is expressed beautifully in his words,,,good luck today!

  186. I love these posts and will often go a few days so that there will be a definite post waiting for me when I log on to NAK (nurse at keyboard).

    I wanted to respond with a few things:

    1) I live in Fort Lauderdale-ish and would totally schlep it across the Alley to take photography classes with you, should you ever go that route with your business. Besides,then I could eat at the Island Cow on Sanibel…I swear. they have the best.Carolina. Bar-B-Q.ever!

    2. I did what you suggested weeks ago and took out my husband’s Rebel and just started shooting. I try to edit with iphoto and have semi-ok results…I know nothing at all about editing and cannot wait for you to discuss this stuff…but I have just snapped whatever looked good to me and I am.so.happy.I.did.

    3. My oldest turned 12 today and her photo book, which I threw together in days, was a huge hit. You helped make a 12 year old little girl’s Bday amazing! (whose “I am too old to let you be the boss of me” ‘tude, by the way, has had me scrambling around Holland with my map of Italy feeling rather confused, because I wasn’t here awhile ago! As you noted, we can land in Holland for a variety of reasons, and let’s just say that we are hoping 12 will be a bit nicer…)

    4. I cannot wait to see you rock CNN.

    xoxo to all…

  187. This post made my heart squeak with delight today. Everything from Spring, to MAC, to awaiting a good cup of coffee and thinking about it the night before. I was thinking about my cup of coffee last night about midnight. It made me eager to get to bed. Loved how you captured that in writing! I am looking forward to your interview!

  188. Your pictures are beautiful!

  189. Love, love, lioving Nella in her black/white/red ensemble. She’s really growing before our very eyes.

    I look forward to your photo tips and today’s interview.

  190. Lisa in Denver says:

    I have also been a faithful follower ever since reading Nella’s birth story back in February, which was posted on my April 09 birth board. I have been completely captivated by all of your posts! For the last couple of years I have really wanted to get into photography (I *heart* photographing my two boys – almost 4 years and 10 months), but wasn’t sure it was the right path. You have inspired me to follow my dream! I’m hoping to get my new camera soon and already have some babies lined up to start my portfolio. If you did a photo challenge I would be all over that! Your girls and family are so beautiful! Oh, and I can’t wait to see the interview on CNN…right during my boys’ naptime, perfect timing! :)
    Thank you for being such an inspiration to me and for sharing your heart and soul in this blog.

  191. so glad you said where the interview can be found online. living out of a suitcase doesn’t give one much access to cable! Love to you guys today and good luck! : )

  192. I just love all of your pictures and outlook on life! I was so enthralled by your writing that I literally spent days reading from the beginning. You are an amazing wife, mother and photographer and it makes me want to be a better all the above.

    I’m in Orlando and really want to drive down to Naples so you can shoot my 16 month old Jake! I bet you are super busy now though. It would definitely be awesome to do sometime though :)

  193. Kelle….how do you do it all. Like your parents, we are emptynesters and yes…we wish we could turn back time. Why was it so important to vacuum that day when everything was blooming and my daughter wanted to pick flowers. It wasn’t! Now, I never want to be June Cleaver or even Bree VanDecamp…it just doesn’t matter if the laundry hamper is empty! So when I see you pack up the girls and head to the beach, it makes me so happy!!! Thinking of you as I spend time with my little Emma (4)….as she constantly finds “things” to do!!

  194. Your photos are so beautiful. Beautiful doesn’t do them justice… they are so colorful and unique and bright and full of life. They really truly capture the moment. I love pictures, but am not a photographer by any means of the imagination. I had the opportunity to “play” with a friend’s Nikon D90 and I AM IN LOVE.
    I’d love to hear more about your photography and your editing…
    And of course, keep posting your beautiful pictures.

    GOOD LUCK on your interview! I’ll be sure to watch!

  195. Anonymous says:


    One of these days, would you write about how you and your hubby decided on a family bed? I have a baby on the way, and feeling unsure about the sleeping battles that are inevitably coming our way. Does Lainey have any trouble with naps? Have you always had a family bed? Did you/do you ever worry about squishing your babies? (The books about sleep make me so scared about that…but I love the idea of snuggling my little one in bed.) Help?

    Sarah in Salt Lake

  196. kelle – i am sending you a gift but it will take a couple of weeks to arrive. can’t wait to watch your interview online.
    love from nashville!

  197. happy saint patricks day for tomorrow from ireland hope you all have a fun filled green day

  198. it only took one picture for me to fall in love with this blog…your girls are beautiful, and the way you write and photograph them is incredible. what a proud mommy! i am so excited to read more :)

  199. Kelle,
    You were just awesome on CNN! Way to rock it! :)

    I’m almost 11 years into this journey, and watching you talk about the night your sweet Nella was born just got me all misty eyed reliving Ryan’s first night.

    Thanks for sharing your story with millions! I wish there was a blog like this when Ryan was born!

    Keep doing what you’re doing cause you’re doing GREAT! Welcome to the club! :)

    Laura & Ryan

  200. Hi Kelle,
    I have been reading your blog for a few weeks now and… I love it. I just saw you on CNN and I wanted to let you know that you were awesome!!!! You and Nella looked beautiful and your answers were perfect. Thank you for sharing.

  201. Just wanted to say you were excellent on CNN. You were watched by all our family. Congratulations all the way from England.

  202. Crap, crap crap, I missed the CNN segment! I got caught up trying to recreate my husband’s favorite dish from his all time fav restaurant. The things we do for our men!

    Will they posting it on their web site?

  203. Anonymous says:

    Simply stated, You have changed my life.

  204. I enjoyed watching your CNN segment. I had my whole family around the TV to see “that lady from the computer” according to my 4 year old. Great job!

  205. I have been following for blog for a few weeks now, and have yet to find the right words to say but I feel compelled to say something so here goes…You are an inspiration, when I read Nellas birth story it brought me to tears. I had to tell as many people as I could. Nella is magic, no doubt about it, shes gonna move mountains. And Lainey, is a beautiful sweet fairy =) Photography is something I have been interested in for some time now and because of you I am buying a better camera and getting into it! You have inspired me to “stop and smell the roses” and savor each and every moment with my sons (ages 7 & 10 mos). I can’t thank you enough for sharing your story, your life and your amazing children with us and I look forward to reading more.

  206. Congratulations Kelle, you were amazing on CNNI!, I loved your interview. You looked GREAT!.

    When you started talking about your first night with Nella, I lost it and started crying.
    I completely agree with you. Nella Cordelia is a BLESSING :). Your blog is definitely about LIFE.

    A beautiful, honest and moving interview, just like your words, just like your blog, just like you. Thank you so much for sharing your journey and for inspiring so many!

    Lots of positive energy coming your way ~

  207. well godamnit it all I can’t be the only human WAITING to see that interview online! Come on CNN.

  208. hi! i just wanna ask about the wooden blocks of Lainey. is that melissa and doug?

  209. Anonymous says:

    I am trying so hard to patiently wait for CNN to post your interview!! I think I have clicked on the link 50 times!!

    One thing I keep on meaning to ask/suggest….in addition to writing your book, what about creating a simple (Down syndrome)picture book for children such as “I Can, Can You?” or ” My Up & Down & All Around Book”. Your beautiful photography would make a book like this extra special. Think about it! =)

    See book examples here…

    Jill B (Overland Park, KS)

  210. Oh Kelle, I was thrilled this morning to finally get to watch your interview and you did great!!! You are an awesome advocate for your girls!! Thank you for sharing your wonderful life and the extra magic with the world! They need to see that yes, indeed, those of us raising a child with Down Syndrome, are just like every other family with dreams and hopes for our children, no matter the struggles they face. I am so proud of you, Kelle and I know Poppa and the rest of your family and friends are proud too!!!

  211. Kelle….finally got to see your interview! You are exactly as I imagined…poised, smart, hopefu! Thanks for sharing your special moments. Your words and pictures are changing lives and today we all need something positive in our lives regardless of the hurdles that pop up. You are a high stepper!!!

  212. Kelle,

    You are so inspiring for so many reasons. Your story first caught my attention because of a new life experience my husband and I are part of recently.

    Our best friends had their first child last June and he was diagnosed with DS when he was just a few days old.

    Their experience was different because they took their son home and never thought for a second that he was different in any way from any other child.

    I think this made it so much harder for them because they had no time to prepare for what was coming. They were in complete shock.

    You and your story, I think, will help them to realize that it is okay, and it can be done. Not that they did not on some level know that already but, you show how this is done so beautifully.

    On a side closer to home with me; you are such an incredible photographer and seem to be so great at being simply amazing in all aspects of your life.

    I have very recently taken photography up, again, after a very long hiatus.

    After high school I was convinced that I would do something with art but never really made it happen.

    It is so hard to get back into something that you once considered yourself to be really good at then you stepped back and everything changed so completely. I am struggling to think digitally and not from a film point of view and is just hard.

    Reading your blog and your story gives me that much needed kick in the butt that says, “You can have it all. Anything is possible.”

    You are an incredible woman, Kelle!

  213. Lisa from Chicagoland says:

    Woo Hoo! totally missed it on TV yesterday, so went to the website today and you ROCKED it Kelle!

    So awesome to see you talking “in person”!!!! he he….

    Thanks for advocating for our babes!


  214. Great interview. Nice what you said about time and being there and how that’s what children really want..


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  216. Anonymous says:

    I am so, so proud of you honey. :)

  217. Hi Kelle – you don’t know me but I feel like I know you and your sweet story. Someone sent me a link to your blog about sweet Nella and now I read your blog regularly. I was just reading this post about your bird’s nest snack and I love it!! I’m helping throw a baby shower for one of my best friends and we are doing a “nesting” theme. Could you send me the recipe if you get a chance? courtneygcox@charter.net. I could probably figure it out but I’m much better with specifics :) Thank you for sharing your story with the world. You have the most beautiful family!

  218. Your interview was Perfect with a capital P. I love the picture of the shared puppy – it feels close to home. When my youngest two were babies they were both in cribs in the same room and older sister (by 17 mos) “shared” her pink blankie with baby brother… but, woops, she never got it back! It’s his to this day – siblings!!! You are inspiring and full of grace. My fav blog- EVER.
    ps – we were just visitng in Naples – I resisted the urge to come by (like I would know how or where!) and hug you and yours but thought of you while we there. You make a beautiful place even more beautiful.

  219. You read each comment. That is so nice. I always wonder if people that get tons and tons of comments read the comments : ) It is nice that you do. Nice that you take the time to read what people are thinking.

    Thank you for your picture advice. I think that is such good advice. Simple is nice : ) Who has time to fuss with each and every picture? : )

  220. Anonymous says:

    Hi Kelle – I was so proud of you when I watched you on CNN. Yes, I am old enough to be your mom and have been reading your story since little Nella was born. Forgive me and others who write and sound like mother hens … once a mom always a mom ( just ask my two sons -almost 20 and 25). My heart was so full when you responded to the questions asked of you on the interview. You were humble, kind, and most of all, a mom just like the rest of us who found that life is going to be not quite what we expected but what God had in plan for us. Love wins always and forever, Amen.

  221. Awe…you inspire me as a mom! I am a pediatric physical therapist and one of my clients shared your blog with me. Your photos capture me and your birth story touched my mommy heart in a way you will never know. I did it, I started a blog and your entry today made it happen…so thank you!!! Now I just need to learn how to do stuff on here and take photos like you 😉 May God bless you & your beautifl family! ~Julie

  222. You are fantastic photographer and writer with a beautiful family. Glad I stopped by!

  223. Your daughters are precious!!!!! I love the birds nest that you made, so I wondering how they were made. I know marshmellows, butter, and shredded wheat, but how much of each did you use? I am making them for Easter as center pieces! Thank you for sharing.

    If you find this comment, can you send me an email with what you used? Thank you!!



  224. I just came across your blog and I was shedding tears of sadness for you but most of all for the way that you have shared your story of your LITTLE BUNDLE OF LOVE. Your always told in life you only are dealt what you can handle. I do not know you but I believe that just what I have read from your blog there is not a doubt that you will be the best mom and go on to make alot of other Mom’s that have to face the same tasks that you will face as a mom with a special little daughter. They will become just as in love with each precious life that they have brought into the world as you are with yours. Thank you for sharing your story with evryone and I hope everyone can learn from you.

  225. I was so deeply touched and inspired by your words and images.Thank you for sharing your beautiful daughter with the world. May blessings ever flow to her and those who recognize her gifts.

  226. kelle-

    you are just amazing! you are just so perfect with your words!!! i have an AMAZING 17 1/2 mth old little boy….my only baby thus far. i was so very scared when he was born, and felt all of the exact same feelings as you, especially wanting to litterally run away. but, i can tell you that nella will bring you more joy and happiness than you can ever, ever imagine. I PROMISE YOU THAT!!! i can’t imagine what that i could have more in store from our little Brody, but i’m sure we do. Good luck, and if you ever want to chat, please look me up. we started a foundation in brody’s name, and you can check out our website http://www.brodysbuddyride.org. Really, these children are just so amazing… little pieces of God himself here on Earth. Good Luck! Hope to hear from you someday!
    Christine Savicki (ps-i’m on facebook if you are, too)

  227. Kelle- really, REALLY? Beautiful, each and every word, photo, the girls, everything. What a blessing to have found your blog. Keep on keeping on in the beautiful inspiring fashion you have… much love from a (normally) cynical NYer :)

  228. Anonymous says:


  229. WOW!!! I do not even remember now what led me to your blog….but what a beautiful way to end the day!! I believe it was the hand of God calming my thoughts before I fall asleep!! Thank you!!! It sure was better to read your blog and listen to beautiful music…..instead of hearing the evening news which can be so dark and depressing!! I will visit more often!! Good Night!

  230. I love the pictures, they bring back memories of my sister back in 1964 who was also born DS, but had more problems with 3 holes in her heart. She lived to be 31 with all those problems, but she was more than special. My Mom and Dad thank God for bringing her into our lives. She showed us how to love each other in a special way the only we could know. I will pray for you and Nella for a long and fulfilling life ahead.

    Donald Cramer from Michigan

  231. Your pictures are amazing. Love that big sis shared her puppy. Being a big sister is so special! :)

  232. I just died when I saw the picture of Nella & Lainey’s puppy. Overcome. Absolutely overcome. Wow!

  233. One more question about the camera. I got my hubby the canon rebel xs and a macro zoom lens (sorry, I dont have any clue what the numbers are!) Anyway, he wants me to get some filters. One person told me you dont need them cause the editing software could take care of that. Steve still wants them though. I just wondered if you use filters.

    Also if you f.i.l had any inkling to do a blog to teach people about photography, I’d definitely read it!

    One more thing from my adhd brain. I’ve been reading since nella’s birth, but have not introduced ourselve. In an effort of time I will let you see our video. My daughter is Phoebe and she was born with Ds and cystic fibrosis. Our tribute to Ds to the tune of ELO’s Xanadu album “I’m Alive” is here (a work in progress) : http://www.onetruemedia.com/shared?p=72c41cca1efc9d37c2ce5a&skin_id=1603

    A short vid I made for a march of dimes contest for phoebe : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bj3WyTuTJtE

    Her caringbridge page (needs updating) http://www.caringbridge.org/tx/phoebe

  234. Oh my GOD!!! so sparkling post, have a nice spring!!!!!

    see also my blog

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