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It’s my Birthday, come celebrate!!!

It’s my birthday, yipeeee!

I’ve always loved my birthday, even as an adult, I want it to be special, celebrated, and I try to encourage all my friends (who think they are too old to feel special) that it is important to enjoy that one day each year.  Last year, I posted a bunch of pictures of my birthdays celebrations through the years, so check it out for some vintage fun.

I’ve been quite self reflective lately.  I’m constantly in check, trying my hardest to be the best mother, wife, friend, daughter, sister I can be…while also fulfilling my creative outlets which in a big part encompasses what I do on this blog.  I love the idea that through what I share, I can also impact others whether its from my weight lost post, or a TV cover we built. I know how much countless of other bloggers have inspired me and affected how I think and do things, and I’m honored to be a part of that for others…but sometimes it takes over too much of my thoughts.  I have to give myself “electronic time” just like me kids.

I don’t like to give into the facebook birthday bit where everyone comes out of the woodwork to just say the token “happy birthday” but if I do take the time to write something, I like to make it meaningful, a memory of what sticks out to me from that person…a funny story or memory.  Think about that next time you write “happy birthday” on someone’s facebook wall…take a few extra seconds to say why that person makes you smile.

So today, on my birthday, indulge me a little.  I’d love to hear from you on how something I posted on this here bloggy blog has affected you. Whether it be something personal I shared from my ramblings, a recipe that has become a part of your repertoire, photography tips that have helped improve how you shoot, or parties.  Tell me about the project(s) that STICKS OUT in your mind that inspired you.  It helps me know how to best move forward, and it makes me happy to hear;)



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  1. I love your photography. it has been really inspiring to me and makes me want to take more pictures of my kids. Makes me miss Texas though. Love your story about how you met your husband. I wait anxiously for each installment. Makes me miss Utah though. You have a great zest for life and it is contigious. Happy Birthday.

  2. So through your blog I learned about your Say No to Auto Workshop. When I got to take it, I FINALLY learned how to use my camera and since have gained more and more confidence. I was telling a friend who just got her camera about your workshop because since then (Jan of this year), I haven’t taken my camera off manual and I have no plans to!

    I also LOVE your love story and it inspired me to start writing my own for a book for me and my hubby.

    Happy birthday!

  3. Jessima says:

    Thank you SO much for all your photography tips. I have both your books and LOVE them. Before I purchased your first book I was scared and felt overwhelmed by the manual setting. But your books spoke to me in a way that I can understand and made it easy. I’m just a mum photographer and I’m getting better at capturing the moments with the kids. I still need to get into more pictures with them, but I’m getting there. Thank you SO much for everything. You have really helped me :) Happy Birthday Kristen!!

  4. Heather says:

    Happy birthday Kristen! I love all your posts. Your blog is great because of the variety of topics you share. But I especially like your what I wore Wednesday posts. I love your creative and colorful fashion choices. Have fun celebrating today girl!

  5. happy birthday!! I agree, they should always be a special day! And I have loved all sorts of your posts, especially the “how to decorate your home with photos” series that you did, but what I think has made the biggest difference is the tips on how to look better in photos (ie, how to stand better!) – its made SUCH a difference to how I feel about the photos I see of me now!

  6. Have a great birthday Kristen – - you’re so upbeat and cheery and I love how you encourage others to be the same!

  7. Jess Parrish says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! Who knew my b-day was so close to yours??? I’m 38 on the 9th! :) Well, I just LOVE your parenting style, joy of life and of course the photography tips. All very inspiring. Hope your day is wonderful!

  8. Jessica says:

    Well, I don’t even know you personally and I think you’re VERY special!!! You are a source of light and love – and I’m glad you were born to brighten ATX! Happy Birthday!!

  9. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I also love my birthday, always try to do something special and it’s fun to relate to you that way. You are such an inspiration! When I “grow up” as a photographer I really do want to be like you. Thank you for blessing us with snippets of your life through this blog and being such an inspiration! May God bless you greatly this year!

  10. Jess Parriah says:

    PS- I sent you a text this morning b/c I just framed the pics from the photo session in March and wanted you to see how it looked. Then I went online to Facebook and saw your post about your birthday. Isn’t it wild that I happened to send you a text this morning when we haven’t spoken in months? What a coincidence! I’m hoping it didn’t wake you up early on your special day! :)

  11. Jenny Paysan says:

    I check your blog every single day. You inspired me with your photography and also on your weight loss journey. Because of your inspiration I have now lost 25 lbs on the hcg diet. I have gained back my old self :). Happy happy birthday!

  12. I’m not really quite sure what draws me to read your blog almost every day, but I always feel happy. I feel inspired to be more in-the-moment with my kids and husband, and I love seeing your different photography ideas and how to decorate with portraits. I love being validated for wanting to be in pictures with my family rather than just always snapping the photos. Thanks for all your blogging! I enjoy your upbeat personality and fun!

  13. Happy birthday, Kristen!
    I will always be thankful to you as the one who introduced Back Button Focus into my life, which was life changing. No exaggeration! – it has changed my photography, how I capture things. I have won photo contests, had photos published, captured unforgettable images for my family, and for others. You aided that success & growth. Thank you!
    But I have also grown to identify with you as a wife, mother, & blogger. I feel that you are a kindred spirit. I respect your life values – and I must admit – for me, that’s a pretty big deal.
    You have much to celebrate – enjoy your day!!

  14. I love reading your blog. The photography tips are awesome and I love to see what a fun and happy person you are. I don’t know you, but you are a great example to me of a good person. Happy Birthday!

  15. I too looooooove birthdays! I love my birthday month, errr um week, I mean day! :) I love celebrating with friends and my family. Now that I have a little boy I ie sheer bliss to celebrate with him on his day! I love checking out your blog, happy posts, fun pictures, and to see what you wore on Wednesday! :)

  16. I hope you have a fantastic birthday! I visited Alaska as a child and thought it was a very fun place to visit. I enjoy reading your posts. I’m so happy that you took pictures of my family before we moved from Round Rock. They are a treasure of the good times and memories we have of living there. Thank you for all the lovely walks on the trail too :)

  17. You just radiate happiness, joy, and creativity in everything you do. Just looking at pictures of you and pictures that you take, you can tell that you love life.

  18. Happy birthday, sweet friend! Love that pic of you! SO happy to ‘know’ you. :) Hope the day is super-duper lovely!

    The post that changed my life in the blogging world, was the tutorial for adding a watermark strip. I use it with every picture that I post! Thanks for helping to make my photos safer from those bad people out there. :)

  19. I love your enthusiasm in life! My favourite posts are your photography related ones, but enjoy all of your other posts as well and check your blog every day. Hope your day is extra special!

  20. Where do I begin? You have been my friend for a long time – almost 20 years!!! That is insane. I love that you feel like a sister and that no matter how long its been since I have seen you, we can always pick up where we left off. You are generous with your time and talent and my family has benefited again and again. I always feel inspired by your adorable ideas, from birthday parties to home decorating, to the things that you share which means most to your family. You are a GOOD friend and I love you for it! We have celebrated many birthdays together as friends and I hope this one is happy happy happy and that you and your husband are creating memories that will be special forever!!

  21. Jacqueline says:

    Love your relationship with your husband and kids, your values, and your fun ideas. Happy Birthday and God bless!

  22. happy birthday, kristen! miss you! thank you for introducing me to the wonderful world of photography! i’ll always have you to thank! hope it’s a great day.

  23. caroline says:

    Happy Birthday dear friend!! you inspire me in more ways than you’ll ever know! not just through your blog but mostly by knowing you and having you for a friend. My favorite memories of you are crafting, talking and just hanging out! Hope you are having a great day in Alaska!! We’ll have to celebrate when you get home! love ya!

  24. Happy Birthday! Your blog is one of my favorites because it gives me a little window that I can peek into your life. I love seeing your creativity expressed through different outlets and that I can pick your brain about how you go about doing things. Its been so fun geting to know you better over these past couple years. I love to hang out with you and our half marathon will always be a favorite memory of mine!

  25. Happy birthday again!

    I love how you love life and live it to the full. You are so intentional about parenting your kids and I love, love, LOVE that you make life fun!

  26. My b-day was a few weeks ago and this afternoon some friends took me out for ice cream. I told them that I love that my birthday lasts more than one day. I hope yours lasts more than one day too!

    Your blog is one of my favorites. Let’s see. I love your photos (of course) but I also love that you have such a full life and you seem to enjoy life to the fullest. And, I also have 3 brothers so I’ve enjoyed the photos/stories about your brothers!

    Enjoy your birthday!

    heart ep

  27. I love the wall art series you put together. It’s given me so much inspiration :)

  28. Donna Anderson says:

    Happy birthday!
    Your Houston class last year have me the knowledge and confidence to say no to auto. I continue to learn and use what you taught me!

  29. Happy Birthday Kristen!
    I want to just thank you for sharing your photography knowledge. I’ve loved all the tips and really enjoyed your workshop. I now feel like the cost of my big fancy camera was actually worth it because my pictures are so much better now that I really know how to use it. Thank you for making manual not so scary.
    I hope you have a great day!

  30. Happy Birthday Kristen! I loved this post and I have to tell you, the day I signed up for your workshop I read your capturing joy post. In it you said something along the lines of getting out from behind the camera to show you were there and if you don’t like what you see. Change it! Well I’m happy to say that I used to hate being in the family pictures, but now I make sure to be because I am changing so far I have lost 34 pounds and counting. Thank you so much for inspiring me to get in those pictures! Even if they aren’t always in focus! ;)

  31. Jennifer says:

    Happy Birthday! How wonderful to celebrate your special day on an exciting trip. I love your pictures and your decorating with portraits have inspired me to get my pictures up. I finished a window project similar to yours and I have a few other projects in the works. Thank you for all the photography tips and inspiration!

  32. Happy Birthday :) :) I really enjoyed the post where you shared the link to the tv appearance you made in Utah. I loved that, because it was really easy for me to follow the photography tips. So now I use my manual settings much more when I’m out and about taking photos ;) :)

    Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

  33. Kristen, Happy Birthday! I’ve been following your blog for about a year. I love your photography work… It’s so “real”, pretty. I was so excited to be able to attend your Houston class this summer aaaaaand I’m happy to report I’ve been shooting in manual all the time!!! Love it! Hope your day was great!

  34. Happy Birthday :) I love being inspired by all your beautiful photos. You have shared so much knowledge on photography that helps a ton. I appreciate the cheerfulness of your blog and check in daily. Thanks for all the time and effort you put into sharing!

  35. Kristen, Happy Birthday my dear!! I too think that birthdays are special and that we shouldn’t be afraid to celebrate ourselves once a year :) Hope you had an amazing day! I love your blog, and as soon as I get a “real” camera, I plan on taking your workshop in person… even if I have to fly halfway around the country! Haha, ok maybe I won’t have to go that far :) I think my favorite part about getting to know you through your blog was actually meeting you in person at SNAP. You are so genuine and fun! And you have some wicked dance moves :) I hope we can hang out more next year. Love ya!

  36. Norman hill says:

    I’ve always liked your birthday. It renews my spirits to see how much zest for life you have. You go girl! Keep it up!

  37. Suzanne says:

    Happy Birthday! I love the variety of posts as well. I have added your zucchini/sausage soup to my repertoire and think of you every time I make it. I also appreciate the photography lessons and your book. I definitely think differently about what I see through the lens now. May you be blessed throughout the year.

  38. Happy Birthday!! There are so many posts of yours that I really enjoy. Overall, the common theme is just that you seem to love life (with a side of sharing your expertise behind the lens). That attitude is contagious and I am so glad to have found your little piece of the internet. Hope this year is a great one for you!

  39. I’m a little tardy to the party, but wanted to still wish you a belated happy birthday. Your writing style is so great, very conversational. I was initially drawn to your blog from a link on iheartorganizing (about decorating with portraits), and have been addicted ever since. Thanks for the daily dose of fun in my day!

  40. Sorry this is late but, you know what they say…better late then never…Hope you had a great birthday. I can’t wait to see all of your pictures and hear all of your stories about Alaska. So jealous :) Thanks for all of your photography tips, pictures, and daily readings from your blog. You’re so darn talented!!

  41. Hi Kristin,

    My first time commenting on your blog. I love the photography tips and seeing your cute accessories. You seem like such an upbeat fun person… it’s contagious so thanks for spreading sucha good attitube. Hope you had a wonderful birthday.

  42. We share a birthday! I was four when you were born. :) I love your blog, but due to busyness hadn’t been here for a while until I saw your summer mantle on Pinterest – beautiful!