Her Bird

The Rhinoceros Hornbills are back at the National Aviary (in case you missed this gem from us earlier).

But now? One of them is “hers”. Our cousins adopted her a Rhinoceros Hornbill for her birthday, and she got the certificate last week.



I am not even sure if there are words to explain how happy she was to see this. And she (somehow) knew right away what it meant when she had an envelope addressed to her from the Aviary.

That’s our Avi-Ari!

How (not) to Prepare For a Photo Shoot

Today was ‘lil Man’s 2nd birthday photo shoot. Our scheduled time was 1:00, but because I know my family, my aim was to get us out the door by 12 to provide extra time.  Good thing, because the morning was full of blog fodder. Thus, this post.

When you are preparing your young family for a photo shoot, here are some tips.

* Ensure those being photographed have matching outfits laid out completely the night before. We were searching suitcases to find shoes. A minor detail, but the day didn’t call for rain boots, the only closed toed shoes around.

* Mamas, make sure your nails are polished or clear. You never know when you might be in the shoot, even as a “prop”. So glad I removed my scuffed polish this morning. Wish I had gotten that mani/pedi I wanted yesterday!

* Baths should be taken in order of who is being photographed and AFTER they’ve dipped eggs, bacon, and fingers in ketchup.

* Workouts can wait if kids need attention.  I made this mistake and a simple workout took over 20 minutes longer than it should have, pushing our timing off track.

* If you will be outdoors,  plan for the weather. We walked out the door with pink gloves for ‘lil Man because we (still) cannot find his gloves, oops!

* Give stuffies a bath…they could be the star of the show!

* Mamas, relax. Your kid will do just fine and show their personality. As long as you avoid “chain” photographers or those that are impersonal. If you need to find a good one,  I can clue you in! My kids have grown used to “our” photographer and always manage to open up and provide classic shots.


Until we get some pics back, here is a sneak peek to where they were taken…’lil Man’s favorite Pittsburgh place!