finally, a baby!

No, we're not pregnant. We're still not planning on having a baby ANY TIME in the near future. Let's stop that train before it starts. BUT, our friend Emily who I photographed here finally gave birth to a precious baby boy.

We're pretty dang excited. I'm pretty sure Emily is too, after 9 hours of labor - and 24 hours of 5-minute-apart contractions prior to that, she was ready to have that baby in her arms. I was blessed, along with our best friend Brooke, dear friend Betsy, and a majority of Em's immediate family (her parents, sister, and husband Charlie to get to witness the whole thing alongside the Doctor and nurses (which included on of Em's good friends, Kelly).

I'll spare you the gory details, but birth is a pretty amazing thing. I never thought I'd be willing to SEE that happen to ANYONE...but at the time, all modesty and preconceived notions totally fell away. It was unexplainable, but one of the coolest things I've ever seen that will stay in my mind forever. It is a beautiful process - painful, yes, but beautiful.

Emily gave birth to Najib Laith Rajeh on May 17th (awesome because his namesake - Charlie's father, Najib - had the same birthday) at 1:00AM. He weighed 8lb even, and was 21.5 inches long. His hair may account for half an inch or so - because it is LONG! (:

Charlie and Emily got to spend their first night at home with Laith last night, so I'm anxious to see how that went!

I'm sorry I'm just now posting about this - I felt like I already had, since I've been posting photos to Em's facebook account as well as a special page for her family. I've been tweeting about it, updating my facebook status...and making phone calls. I didn't mean to leave you guys out!

Without further adieu, I give you photos:

Here's Em, right after she got admitted. Her water hadn't broken yet, which you can tell because she's still smiling.

Seconds after Laith was born - literally. The nurse was handing Laith to Emily as this shot was taken.

Charlie, Emily and her Nurse and friend, Kelly - all admiring precious Laith in his first few minutes of life.

He wasn't too keen on being measured, poked, and prodded. Then again, who is?

Chance holding a day old Laith.

Look at that hair! Seriously!

Getting in his car seat for the first time. Not so sure what to think. (:

cuts so throwed

I am sad to announce the closing of our neighborhood barber shop "Cuts So Throwed". I am not sad because I went there, nor would I go there. I am not sad because I have any idea what Cuts So Throwed means or refers to within the culture that it stands for. What I am sad about is that I can't drive by this local establishment every few days and laugh at my naievity of a language and culture that is foreign to me. Regardless of my cluelessness I will now present to you things that I have found in the last year and things coming up in the next few weeks that I think are "So Throwed".

Feel free to check out the links as I am sure you won't be dissapointed. We will possibly expand on each of these subjects in the future or maybe have a "So Throwed Two" edition.

Tomunchi so throwed: The best yogurt place in Texas. Also the one place that can put me in a good mood instantly.

Obees so throwed: The best deli in Austin serving up traditional deli fare and world class meditternian items as well. Run by the amazing Charlie and Emily.

Polvos so throwed: The best Interior Mexican food this side of the interior of Mexico. Try the Guajillo Fajitas.

Thai-Fresh so throwed: Amazing Thai food prepared by the awesome Chef Jam. She also teaches cooking classes in the Thai-Fresh kitchen. We took a class with her and the Tipsy Texan and it was awesome.

Barcelona so throwed: They just released a new album and it is great. Check it!

Mumford and Sons so throwed: We discovered these guys during SXSW and they are amazing. Haven't stopped listening to them since.

Seabird so throwed: Discovered these guys a while back. Saw them for the first time during SXSW. They had one of the top two shows during the whole festival.

Lex Land so throwed: Amazing, amazing vocalist. Incredible live. Her recorded music doesn't do her justice.

Resident Hero so throwed: In Austin, May 22nd-23rd. It's actually just Ryan White acoustic but it will be incredible.

Paper Route so throwed: In Austin, May 20th at the Mohawk. Great Electronic/Rock out of Nashville.

Laith so throwed: Our dear friend Emily should be having a baby any minute now! Laith Rajeh will join us soon!

San Francisco so throwed: We are vacationing there Jun. 5th-13th. Can't wait for Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Park, Shopping, The Ferry Building, Wine in Sonoma, The Mission, and everything else about this city. The food: A16, The Slanted Door, Chez Panisse, The Creme Brulee Cart, and most importantly Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream.

photoshoots and things...

I might have mentioned in the last blog that we stink at blogging. I might have also mentioned that we've been busy as heck. Chance has been working a lot, and I've been trying to catch up on work, as well as do about a billion other things.

One of the things I've been doing (well, at least attempting) is shooting some friends. Wait, that sounded bad. Photographing friends. Better?

I did a photoshoot with Candace Christiansen, our Realtor and friend, the last day of March. She needed some temporary headshots for business cards and such. I haven't shot portraits outdoors really (besides just playing around with Chance) it was definitely an experiment. was fun for me, and free for her, so hey! It all worked out, I think.

We played around in the arboretum for a while,

And then we headed to Mayfield Park for some different (and better) scenery.

Finally, we stopped on Burnet Road for some of my favorite shots of the day.

All-in-all, it was a relatively good shoot. It made me realize my level of inexperience, and it solidified the fact that I couldn't ever be a professional photographer. It's way too much pressure for me (even though I was shooting in a totally pressure-free situation). I put too much pressure on myself to do well, and when I don't succeed (or meet my own standards) I get disappointed. Also, shoot- photography can get expensive! I shot with my Rebel XT, cheap-o 50mm f 1.8 lens, and the onboard flash - with a DIY diffuser I made from a film canister. If I had better equipment...more experience...anything, these might have turned out quite differently. Makes me respect the Hafners, as well as some of my other photographer friends like Stacy Reeves, Rachel Brooke Stricklin and Michael Cummings even more. But Candace sure is a perrrrrty gal. She was so much fun to photograph (and even more fun to grab a margarita with afterwards)!

I also volunteered to shoot my buddy Emily's maternity photos (I know, you hear a LOT about her, get over it - we spend a lot of time together). I had my concerns, especially since we were shooting so late in the game (she was a month away from her due date). I had even MORE concerns after our failed attempt at a shoot the previous day. We had gotten a very late start, Emily hadn't eaten and got sorta dehydrated/nauseous/terrible feeling, I got devoured by mosquitoes, and the light at the botanical gardens hadn't been what I thought it would be. We went out again that next day - hoping for better, and better we got. I've only edited a handful of these so far, but I'm sure one of us will post more of them on facebook (well, as soon as I give them to her). We shot for the better part of a day, but...I'm glad we did. We got plenty of good shots (although the ones of she and Charlie didn't turn out wonderfully because we ran out of light. Ohhhh well). We headed to Mayfield (one of my favorite new places), and shot a lot at her house, in her own territory. It definitely helped that she's absolutely freaking beautiful.

There have been plenty of other things going on...Em's baby shower (also late in the game, but fun, nonetheless), painting furniture for her nursery, my sister coming in town, re-planting our flowerbed and trying to fix our yard. And that's just the tip of the massive iceberg. Still haven't gotten around to going through the photos from our SXSW adventures back in March (but you SHOULD check out one of our new favorite bands that we heard during SXSW for the first time, Mumford and Sons).

Alritey. That's still all I've got for you. Pretty darn sure we've lost all our readership (and our credibility - well...maybe only from those of you who follow me on twitter). (:

Maybe we'll get better at this whole blogging thing. I think we're both just waiting for things to get less busy, or for something to change...but pretty soon we'll be giving up on that whole thing.

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