JenniM

Baby nursrey, huntsville newborn photographer, madison alabama,

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Newborn Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – Simms

This little guy was just perfection.  His mama wanted a natural feel to his session and it is honestly my favorite way to do a in home newborn photo session.  This little boys family loves adventure and travel and once you see his nursery, I have a feeling you will fall instantly in love, just like I did.  He is their “little explorer” taking them on a brand new adventure.

Family photography will always be my first love, but the more Newborns I get to photograph, the more I am really beginning to fall in love with this genre as well.  <3

His daddy built that wall in his nursery by hand.  He said it was like putting a puzzle together, but you have to create every single piece!  Five different tones of wood and a lot of time later, and the coolest nursery wall I have ever seen was created.  It is even more gorgeous in person.  I can’t think of a better place to have the family portion of their photo shoot.

This little boy is so insanely loved…  I can’t wait to see how he grows and the adventures he gets to experience with his parents.

As much as I love the intimacy of in home newborn sessions, I have been dreaming of outdoor newborn photography for quite a long time.  I have finally figured out all of the details and I can’t wait to show you what I am planning.  I am anxiously waiting on the wildflowers to bloom.

 

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

 

10 healthy dinners that my whole family loves!!!

Lets talk about something that has absolutely nothing to do with photography.

Something that is only one step above my least favorite daily thing I do every day.

Something that CREATES my least favorite thing to do…

Cooking food.

I know…  There are a lot of people out there that LOVE cooking.  I just don’t.  AND it creates dishes.  I hate doing dishes. So I play this game while I am cooking, to see how few dishes I can use to create dinner. Lol.  I am also a firm believer that no “unitasker” belongs in my kitchen (thank you Alton Brown <3)

So why am I writing this?

It’s complicated.  You see, as much as I have an intense dislike for cooking, I actually care about the food we eat quite a lot.  Health starts in the gut, and through my Hashimoto’s diagnosis last year, I strongly believe that our food really matters.  My mom was always a bit “crunchy”.  Growing up, she often baked our bread to avoid the preservatives, there was always a veggie tray on the counter as our snacks, fruit was the go to sweet treat, and most everything she cooked didn’t require a box.

I started off with a good model of what “healthy eating” looked like, but matched with my distaste for cooking, and how much more work creating meals with fresh items is, and 6 years in college (working full time AND going to school full time) I developed a more “simplified” way to eat (packaged food on the go) After that came about 4 years of seriously struggling with my thyroid levels, and barely keeping my head above water.

Fast forward a few years and we moved from Alaska to Alabama.  We were on a tight budget, and I hit couponing HARD!  It got us through the lean times, but it truly wasn’t a healthy way to eat.  Slowly, I started to shift.  I found a local co-op where I could order high quality food in bulk to get the price a bit lower.  I found a source for raw milk and I started cooking from scratch.  All the while, I was popping Sudafed and Motrin like there was no tomorrow!  For the past 8 years, I easily had a headache that bordered on migraine 5-6 days a week!  It wasn’t always like that, but around the time my thyroid crashed, I started getting them, and it slowly started to take over my life.

My husband finally got mad at me. “JENNI, you are spending a ridiculous amount of time providing healthy food for our family, but you have got to stop “just medicating”, and figure out what is wrong!  Its not healthy!”  He was not nice about it… but it was said in love with lots of frustration.

 

He was right.

I started researching different supplements that might help treat the cause instead of the symptoms…  It took 6 months to finally stumble upon Turmeric.  Apparently, my headaches were driven by inflammation (something that makes complete sense now that I have my Hashi’s diagnosis) and Turmeric helps decrease inflammation.  Once I had that figured out, I learned that there are 5 main foods that contribute to inflammation in the body.

Sugar   –   Wheat   –   Soy   –   Corn   –   Conventional Dairy

I began to pay attention and keep a food journal.  I noticed that sugar gave me an instant headache, and wheat made my joints feel 20 years older.  I could eat some corn and soy in moderation, but too much would give me a lot of edema in my hands/feet and make them ache like I had arthritis.

I can’t even tell you how amazing AND frustrating it is to FINALLY figure out why I have felt like crap for the last FOURTEEN YEARS only to realize I will never be able to indulge in Christmas morning cinnamon rolls and birthday ice cream cake without serious consequences.  I had figured out the puzzle to feeling better, but the answer was difficult to accept.

You know what happened though?

The headaches went away.  I don’t feel like there is sand in my joints anymore, and I actually have motivation to DO things again! So when I talk about “eating clean” or “healthy food”, I’m not just talking about something trendy or a way to loose weight.  I am talking about dramatically improving the quality of my life, and actually enjoying living it again. <3

All that to say, I have gotten really good at cooking healthy foods that don’t require a ton of time or require you to use every dish in my kitchen! (I know, I know…  Took me long enough to get to the point. lol)

 

So, here you go!  My favorite 10 healthy dinners that my whole family loves!!!

 

Rainbow Chicken Salad (My kid’s favorite salad!)

BBQ Ranch Salad (Probably MY favorite salad in the whole world!  I replace the onion with avocado, swap the tortilla strips for crunchy onions, and make the BBQ dressing by thinning BBQ sauce with seasoned rice vinegar and a dash of cyan!)

White Chicken Chili (Had this last night and they ALL went back for seconds and thirds.)

Home Made Spaghetti (I always make a huge batch of this and freeze the extra for a quick dinner.  It’s the same sauce I use for ratatouille, meatball marinara and spaghetti squash bake as well.)  This is a family recipe, so don’t loose it!!!

  • 1 lb. Hamburger
  • 1 tbs. Dried Onions
  • 1 tsp. Oregano
  • 1 tsp. Basil
  • 2 can Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 can Tomato Sauce
  • 1 can Tomato Paste
  • 2 tbs. Sugar
  • 2 Trappeys Jalapeños chopped
  • 2 tbs. Jalapeño Juice

Brown hamburger with dried onions. Then add basil, oregano and sugar. Salt and pepper to taste. Dump in cans of tomatoes, sauce and paste. Add jalapeños and juice. Simmer for about ½ – 1 hour. Cook noodles for 10 min and eat.

Tacos (I normally skip the tortilla and put it all over lettuce.)

Hamburgers (Just add a package of Lipton’s Beefy Onion Soup Mix and a splash of Worcestershire to the meat before making patties.)  No sugar apple sauce and sweet potato fries to the plate and call it done.

Breakfast Casserole (I add spinach, mushrooms and sausage to this as well.  I also intentionally make extra and my husband eats it for breakfast the rest of the week.)

Chicken on the grill with mashed sweet potatoes, cooked mushrooms and broccoli. (I also do the meat in my instant pot if the weather is crappy.)

Beef and barley soup. (It is SOOO good!  Shout out for the Eating for Life cook book!)

Pork Tenderloin with asparagus and sweet potatoes. (Love me some Alton Brown. <3 )

 

I plan to share more recipe/food ideas in the stories on my Instagram account in the future (all mixed in with pretty pictures of course) if you would like to follow along.  <3

 

I get my chicken from Zycon Foods

I order a lot of stuff from Azure Standard

I also order a lot of stuff from Amazon

 

So that’s pretty much it…

I hate cooking, dishes are even worse… college, couponing, headaches, medicating, buying in bulk, autoimmune disease…  and all along, the thing that “fixed” me wasn’t medicine (although I do take thyroid daily), it was food.

If this helps even one person, it was worth the time to write it. <3

Leave any questions in the comments. <3

Dark kitchens and crappy light…

Hello!

It has been WAY TOO LONG since my last personal post.  I am sure the 5 kids, homeschooling, busy season, the holidays, an autoimmune diagnosis and a teething baby have something to do with it… lol

It is what it is, and I will try and do better. (but no promises) ;-)

So I joined a “Project 52” this year.  There aren’t any weekly themes and the only rules are that you submit 2 images each week that were taken that same week of your own personal life.  I decided to join as a way to stay accountable.  My own family’s photos sadly, fell through the cracks this past year.  We had our last baby this past year (who is now ALREADY 7 months old!) and we will be moving out of our home and in to a rental soon, to get ready to build on our 17 acres of land.  So many changes and adventures are coming our way, and I desperately want to document it.  This is our story, with our completed family, and the first step towards so many of our dreams will be happening this year.

The last time I participated in a 52 week project, I lasted until week 22 and then fizzled miserably.  Since then I have thought “if I’m not going to finish, whats the point?”, until I was going through personal photos a couple months ago…  You know what?  Some of those shots I took in the first 22 weeks are some of my FAVORITES!  Who cares that I didn’t finish!?!  I got some precious shots I would never have otherwise been motivated to take, that represented us, and perfectly documented them.  This year, I will need all the accountability I can get. lol.

One of the reasons I am so excited for our future home (which isn’t built yet) is that it will have LIGHT!  Currently, our home has the kitchen and living area in the middle of the house.  There is very little natural light, and as you know, I love light!  I can’t help but pick up my camera when the light is beautiful, but on the other hand, it is really hard for me to get inspired when the light is crappy.  Add in 5 kids worth of messes, and my house is just about the least inspiring place for me to take photos in the entire world. lol

The problem though, is that we live our entire life in the kitchen and living room!

Last week I was scrolling Instagram (Are you following Jenni M Photography, Jenni M Designs, and my personal account?) and had the thought “I can’t wait to take sink bath photos in our new house!”  Just as quickly as the thought came, I realized, “I won’t have a baby by the time we finally get the house built!” :-(  Time never slows down…  As close as we are to my dream of a light filled, more minimalist inspired home, my baby just won’t wait that long.

I have to document our “now” right NOW or else it will be lost.  I can’t document her rubber band wrists, the fascination of dripping water, her back rolls and the way she kept licking the water off her lips like it was a special treat in a year, because it will be gone.  forever.

So the light…  I had to figure something out…  I loaded the dishwasher (because I ALWAYS have dishes in my sink) cleaned the sink, filled the sink and got my camera ready.

I knew our crappy florescent bubble light on the kitchen ceiling wasn’t going to cut it.

I then turned it off to see if that would work.  Nope.  Too dark.

Then I tried the LED light by itself.  Nope. Too harsh.

Then I grabbed the milk jug, put it in front of the LED light and turned on the overhead light as well.  Yup, that will do.

My house wasn’t picked up, my other 4 kids kept trying to “help” and the rest of my kitchen still needed to be cleaned, but I kept telling myself “If they don’t turn out, I don’t have to share them anywhere.  They are about her, nothing else.”

And you know what happened?  I freaking love them!  I can’t even tell you how much my heart hurts at the thought that I was just going to not take them because I didn’t have a beautiful sink with a window behind it.  They aren’t perfect, but they are our “right now” and that is priceless to me.

So if you are still hanging in there and have read this far…

Stop waiting until your life looks perfect.  Stop waiting until your house looks better, walls are painted, clothes are clean, kids are easier, floors are clear, weight is lost…

Because as much as I believe professional photography is worth every penny, I also believe your every day moments need to be documented too.  Who cares if they are crappy cell phone photos!  If you take 20 and only 1 “turns out”, THAT’S OK!  Photos are about remembering.  We love them so much because they bring back memories.  If you want to learn how to better use your cell phone for every day moments, I can’t recommend the Every Day Artistry guide enough.  It’s beautifully written, and has so many great tips on how to get better images from your camera phone.

So what does my life look like?  I am truly excited to share some peeks and highlights with you over the course of this year.  You are welcome to join me in the Project 52 as well (hosted by the same photographer that wrote the guide I linked above)!  You don’t have to be a “pro photographer” to be a part of it.  Come document your life with me. <3

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – Miller Newborn

To be honest, I always struggle with something to say when I am writing  a new blog post.  It’s kinda hard writing something heartfelt when most of the time I don’t know a whole lot beyond the hour and a half we spend together…

However…  This happens to be the SIXTH photo session I have had with this beautiful growing family!!!

I couldn’t help but be excited when she told me she was expecting again and wanted me to document the first year of their newest little one.  I get all kinds of sentimental when I think back over our own families photos.  There isn’t anything that makes me walk down memory lane as quickly as our photo albums.  They hold so many reminders of happy moments and details almost forgotten.  I absolutely love the feeling of “remembering”.

It is my goal to give them that gift every single time they view these images.  After all, she won’t be a baby for long. <3

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – Boshers Newborn

It has been my pleasure to photograph this beautiful family twice over the past 2 months.  Two very different sessions celebrating such a precious story of growth and change. (Take a peek at their Family Maternity Session)

Their in home newborn session was easily one of my faves to date!  She had asked if we could work in some fresh flowers in to the session, and of course I said yes!  She said she would go get them, and have them ready. “Sounds good” I said, and I honestly didn’t think much more about it.

I arrived at there home to find two large boxes full of lush gorgeous seasonal flowers!!!

So long story short, I was in floral heaven.  This sweet babe slept pretty much the entire session and I got to cuddle a fresh little one for a few hours.

I love my job. <3

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – Graziosi

This family…  Let me just walk down memory lane with you for a minute. <3

I met them on a very chilly morning in November of 2015.

They then decided to come back to me in 2016 and we were blessed with storm clouds.  It was gorgeous. <3

and now this…  I am pretty sure they have some special potion that makes all of their sessions perfection.  Who knows.  It may be the same magic that gave Lilly her perfect dimples and bright eyes.  I don’t know, but I do know I love this family, and have had the privilege of seeing them 3 years in a row now.  They have already booked their session for next year, and I can’t wait to see what the future brings. <3

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Lifestyle Wedding Photographer Jenni M Photography – Kern

When Stephanie contacted me, I honestly almost referred her to a different photographer.

You see, I had a baby only 3 months before her wedding date, and I had told my husband that I wasn’t going to take on any weddings for a year!

I am so glad I changed my mind. <3

There was so much “depth” and history between these two families.  To see the joy and comfort that they give, not only to each other, but also to the others family, was a beautiful thing to see.  Friends that had walked through the tough times together gathered around in celebration, of 2 hearts that have finally found the one that makes them complete.

These two love the Harry Potter books.  There were subtle touches of it’s inspiration all through the details of their wedding.  As I scouted out the venue, I saw this incredible tree.  I knew I needed to create something special for them with it.

Some people might want doves on their wedding day.  Others might just prefer white speckled owls. <3

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – In Home Newborn

I can’t even handle this little one.  He was SO incredibly precious and these images don’t do his sweetness justice!  All the little squeaks and grunts, the softness of newborn skin and even how they smell.  I love it all.  It brings back memories of when each of my own 5 children were this fresh.  I could go on and on about my adoration of babies, but I’ll just stop myself now. lol

I love in home lifestyle sessions SO MUCH!  Inviting me in to your personal space give images a deeper “context” and a more intimate level of sentiment.  These walls, they will hold so many memories to come, and have witnessed so many beautiful moments so far.

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

Huntsville & Madison Couples Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – Key

Ok, so funny story,

I send out a questionnaire to all of my clients before their session.  It’s a way for me to find out what you really want out of your session, the colors, the environment you are envisioning, unique family dynamics and I also ask for a little “insider info” if you have kids so I can connect with them a little faster and make them feel comfortable.

So I got the questionnaire back around 3 weeks before their session, and was “skimming” through…

  • Bringing their 2 dogs – Check!
  • Dogs are huge – Check!
  • Lists all of their names – Check! (I am HORRIBLE with names.  More on that in a sec)
  • Chewy has 23 thousand followers on Instagram – WOW! Check!
  • “Can we use some of the photos on his IG account?” – Of course! Check!

I reply and say everything looks great and of course they can use images on Instagram!

Fast forward to the day of their session…  I am actually READING their questionnaire again (Trying to commit their names to memory because I suck at remembering names.  Shoot!  I can’t remember my own kids names half the time!) and realize that it isn’t her husband that has 23k followers on IG but their 150# Newfoundland dog Chewy’s account! HA!

So long story short.  I suck at names.  I try, but it really is not my strength, and I am sorry, but at this point it probably will get worse not better. lol

So this is me, introducing Chewy, the 3 year old 150# Newfoundland Puppy, with over THIRTY TIMES as many followers than I do! lol <3

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!

Huntsville & Madison Family Children Lifestyle Photographer Jenni M Photography – Chrisley Family

I think one of the things I love most about working with young children is their unbridled joy.  It is always genuine.  Always open.  Always beautiful.  Their eyes are a direct window in to their hearts.  One of the most precious things I can give to a mom and dad is to be able to see how much their family loves them.  Sometimes in the midst of the work of “life” we forget how deeply and beautifully those we love, love us back.

It’s gorgeous, and I never get tired of getting to witness it.

I specialize in “Family” Photography (Children, Newborn and of course Families) with a lifestyle and fine art twist.  I love this style blend as it helps me focus on showcasing beautiful connections while incorporating the imagination of the every day magical moments.

For more information about my packages click HERE.

To book a session call (907-942-2358) or email jenniMphotography@gmail.com
I would love to hear from you!