Monday, December 25, 2006

old friends. new babies!

how sweet it is to gather with your oldest friends! the glencoe girls recently got together for our annual christmas reunion...and we all got introduced to precious jackson, the little boy our friend amy just adopted...whom many of you prayed for! ginny has started her first teaching job and is really enjoying it, holly was back for her first visit from germany and got to meet anna caroline and see amanda as a mommy for the first time... and update us on life overseas. it was a fun night! God has been so faithful to all of us this year through granting us health, the provision of new jobs, safe travel and new babies!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

a home for gingerbread men

last night, we in the parris household made our first gingerbread house.
the boys LOVED it! sumner said it was more fun than Zoolight Safari :)
they did all the decorating, except for the "snow....i found this craft very addicting and had to die to any perfectionism that i might would have exercised during this family activity!
i could totally go buy more of these sets and spend hours making these little houses. but, alas, there is no time for that!
amazingly, we had enough candy to decorate the house with....grayson would eat one gumdrop for every one he placed on the house ;)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

kids say the darndest things....

a few recent quotes from the boys....

Grayson to Mommy-"Did you get married?"
Me-"Yes, I married Daddy"
"Who are you going to marry?"
Me-"You can't marry Sumner, silly! You are a boy and need to marry a girl."
After some thought, Grayson said, " I'm gonna marry Mommy!"

*exactly what a mommy wants to hear :)

Upon coming downstairs from room-time, Sumner, dressed in Jamie's work gloves, a cowboy hat, and carrying his K'nex container, he looks at me through squinted eyes (his mean face) and says, "I'm going to take all your nickels and dimes!"
(pretending to be a bank robber....a great aspiration :)

Studying his drawing of Mary and Joseph from school, Sumner said, "Mom, What if it happened this way? What if Jesus was in the trough and got eaten by the animals?"

Also, we've been trying to explain smoking to Sumner and why it's bad for you. From time to time we'll see someone out in public who is smoking and this sparks conversation. After explaining that smoking hurts our bodies and can make you sick and die, Sumner pointed out a man smoking and said, "You reckon he'll die?"

Yes, my child used the word "reckon."
I told him that he might if he continued to smoke and Sumner said "I reckon He wants to die."

After I closed the door to Grayson's room for naptime, he starts yelling, "HEY! HEY! Come back Jessi-ka!!!"

And one more....
When putting Grayson down the other night, I told him, "I love you sooooo much, Grayson Ford." He replied, "I love you, Mommy Ford."

Saturday, November 25, 2006

the practice of thankfulness

as i sit here in my warm home after thanksgiving, i thought i would make a list of some of the things for which i am thankful. mainly for myself, but also for those of you who read my blog from time to time ;)
it's so easy to lose sight of what's important and instead concern myself with how my house looks during the holidays, with buying just the right present for each family and friend, the non-stop schedule that sometimes i forget to be thankful that i have a home! a recent trip to huntville to serve the poor living there was certainly an adequate reminder of how luxurious my day to day life is compared to the majority of the world.

so i will start with that....i'm thankful for my home! instead of complaining about how far I am from everything, i will focus on things that I often a home with heat that works, running water, a bed for each family member...pest control!
i'm thankful that the laundy is never done because my family is blessed with plenty of clothing to wear.
i'm thankful that there are dirty dishes in my sink because my family had food to eat for dinner .
i'm thankful for friends who pray for the "details of life" and for me and my family, for the good health of my husband and children, for 7 years of marriage to a husband who loves me unconditionally, for two new "nieces" to love on, for the scent of a cut Christmas tree in my living room, for the excitement of getting the mail each day in the coming weeks as I open cards from friends and family across the country,
for the twinkle in the eyes of my two boys as they take in the lights on the tree, for the sheer joy that my four year old finds in decorating sugar cookies, for the answered prayer of a dear friend and the joy of a new son, for the body of Christ and the joy that comes with serving with friends, and mainly, for the grace that God daily gives me regardless of whether i am faithful. where would I be without that? His character and love never change whereas mine seem to change daily! He is always faithful to me, even when i go through an entire day without acknowledging him.
my list could go on and on...i just wanted to make a conscious effort to list some of the things that i often overlook.

"how great the Father's love for us, how vast beyond all measure. that He should give His only Son to make a wretch His treasure. "
~Stuart Townend

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

i not a piwgwam!

found these adorable hats at the dollar store and couldn't resist sharing a photo with you.

grayson likes to joke around whenever we call him pet names with "i not sweet pea!" or "i not beanie, i grayson"
so these hats were met with "i not a piwgwam!"

sumner on the other hand was happy to have more "dress up" gear!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Holiday Cards & Announcements

Holiday Cards & Announcements from Jessica Parris Photography!

See more designs by clicking here:

editable text on this card reads "away in a manger, no crib for a bed"

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Vacation Photos

Thought I'd make a quick post with a couple of favorite shots from our beach trip back in August.
Usually, my boys have the typical expressions of the child of a photographer....the glazed-over eyes, the look of complete boredom, but the beach is so great...there's a whole new
territory to explore and I can shoot away! In a new environment, sometimes they forget I'm there! While getting the biz started, they've been models for more sessions than they or I can count...each time I learned a new technique or got a new piece of equipment, out we would go to the backyard to practice!
So, this post is for my two little troopers. What a joy they are!

Thursday, August 31, 2006

recent sessions

Lately, I've been privileged to be able to photograph the precious children of several of our friends. Below are some of my favorites from their sessions.
This little guy is the son of one of my husband's friends from high school. What a cutie! I love this expression!

This year, our beach vacation lined up with the vacation of some dear friends of ours. What a treat to get to photograph their family while in Seagrove! This is one of my favorites of beautiful Olivia...

My friend Lauren met me at the botanical gardens one day and I got some sweet photos of her two children. Ellie is just 4 days older than Sumner and it has been such fun watching them grow up. They are so silly when they get together! Below are a couple of my favorites of Miss Priss and her little brother.

you gotta try this!

I have to share the yummy recipe I just tried! It is a five-star rated pumpkin bread recipe at allrecipes. com.
My best friend is in labor as I write this and I've been baking some goodies to take up to the hospital after while for the new family! I hit the jackpot when I found this recipe.
The recipe makes 3 regular sized loaves-thus the exorbitant amounts of sugar and oil! So I'm freezing some to take to the boys' teachers for holiday gifts. Enjoy!!

Prep time -15 mins.
Cook time -45 mins.

Servings -36


  • 3 cups canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 4 cups white sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 9x5 inch loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, oil, sugar, and eggs. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves; stir into the pumpkin mixture until well blended. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. The top of the loaf should spring back when lightly pressed.

Would also be delicious with pecans and/or chocolate chips mixed in! I used whole wheat flour for added nutrition and fiber and I can't imagine it being any better with white flour!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

opening pandora's box

The hubby and I are always on the hunt for new music. We got an ipod for Christmas which has opened up a whole new world...especially for these parents who are trying to stay relevant! Ha!
So, fellow music-lovers, if you haven't already, check out It is a fabulous site that allows you to explore new music similar to the genres/artists you already know and love. Just click on
Create a New Station and type in an artist or genre and they will create a "radio station" of songs they think you will enjoy! You can rate each song to tell them how closely they chose to your preferences.

We love it when people introduce us to new music so I thought I'd post some faves from my playlist:

  • Ray LaMontagne. I just recently discovered his music. His 2004 release, Trouble, is amazing. I highly recommend this guy! Soulful, comfy music! On the playlist...Shelter, from the above album.
  • An old favorite, David Wilcox, is probably my favorite songwriter. I cannot count the times I've seen him in concert. Great, great thought provoking folk music. One writer describes his music as "balm for the soul". I have to agree. On the playlist...Vista, Get On, Start with the ending, Good Man... and many more.
  • John Mayer-Comfortable is probably my favorite from his first independent release. Neon is also a favorite. Love everything on Room for Squares and really looking forward to the release of Contiuum next month.
  • My other favorite songwriter, though not in the folk genre, is Sting. I've liked him as long as I can remember. On the playlist...Bring on the Night (from the early days), 1000 Years (All this Time arrangement is a great one), Shape of my Heart, Fill 'er Up, If I ever lose my faith in you....
  • Corinne Bailey Rae-don't miss this new artist from across the pond. An itunes review says she could be "Billie Holiday's pop-influenced granddaughter." Check out Like A Star from her self-titled album.
  • Derek Webb's, Mockingbird, is a very honest collection of music. This guy will make you think...and about things that you need to think about! To quote one reviewer, "Study it. Argue with it. Wrestle with it." On the playlist, A King and a Kingdom and the title track, Mockingbird.
  • Mary J Blige and U2- One...a stirring rendition...
  • KT know her for Black Horse and Cherry Tree and Suddenly I See...both songs were highlighted on hit tv shows this summer...American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance. I really like her sound.
  • Keane-songs on the playlist-Somewhere Only We Know, Is It Any Wonder?
  • Brighter than Sunshine
  • coldplay...doesn't everyone love coldplay? faves on the playlist are the scientist
  • and white shadows
  • i couldn't forget my "mood" music. there's something about an acoustic guitar or banjo that just calms me down...and for some reason, makes me think of fall. my faves? phil keaggy's
  • beyond nature and bela fleck's tales from the acoustic planet. HAPPY LISTENING!

Friday, August 18, 2006

apple crisp chez nous

Yesterday I took the boys down to the library for story hour. Afterwards we decided to check out a few books. One of our finds was a book by Swedish author, Gorel Kristina Naslund, entitled Our Apple Tree. What a neat book! It takes you through the life of an apple tree during each season and tells of what one can make with apples once harvest time is here! Apple art, applesauce and apple pie, to name a few. And...a plus for Sumner, who is my little Frank Stitt in the making, a recipe for Apple Crisp! Sumner LOVES to help cook or bake anything. So, we came home, put on our Publix Preschool Pals apron and starting baking! Soon the kitchen was filled with the comforting scents of apples and cinnamon. I'm secretly hoping that this little kitchen activity will be a "rain dance" of sorts and hurry apple season and cooler weather to us here in the sun-scorched South.

I've included a picture of Sumner, who dubbed himself, "Take Home Chef Bob" (in case you haven't seen Take Home Chef on TLC, check it out, it's a really fun cooking's the link:, as well as the Apple Crisp recipe.

1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 T. all-purpose flour
1/2 T. cinnamon
1/8 t. salt
8 c. peeled apples
(we just used 4 granny smith's and put it in a round casserole dish*)

1 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. rolled (not quick cooking) oats
1 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. baking soda
1/2 c. butter, cut into small pieces

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. In mixing bowl, combine sugar, 1 T. flour, cinnamon and salt. Add apples and toss gently to coat. Spread into 9x13 dish *
3. In bowl, combine 1 c. flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder, and baking soda. Cut in butter pieces until clumps form. Sprinkle over apple mixture.
4. Bake, uncovered, at 375 for 35 mins. or until bubbly and apples are tender. Great served w/ whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
Serves 8.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Welcome !

welcome to fotographie femme's blog! this will truly will be a hodge-podge of interests & ideas. i'm certainly not one known for her literary prowess! however, i thought it would be fun to share the occassional deep thought ;), recipes, tips, music and movie "reviews", updates on family life, and samplings from my creative outlet and home!
so, thanks for stopping by and check back often.