Outtake from our annual Christmas card photoshoot. It was definitely a lot easier to do this when Alex was younger and less wiggly.  Update:  If you're interested in the process of how we took these shots, please click here (and leave a comment!).

Crazy busy today, but wanted to pop in and share a few outtakes from my life, lately:

1. I've just started writing a new feature for Gadling, called Through the Gadling Lens. It'll be a weekly feature, published on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. EST, and will hopefully provide useful tips on taking great travel photographs. Please pop by, check it out, and leave a comment, won't you?

2. Marcus recently downloaded Life Through a Lens for me -- the story of photographer Annie Leibovitz. I was freaking riveted, and after it was over, I told him it was the nicest thing he'd bought for me in ages, I loved it so. It has renewed my passion for portraiture, and I now have a couple of ideas for a project I'd like to start. More very soon.

3. My friend Elspeth recently posted some notes taken during a talk she gave over the weekend. I loved the points, and wanted to share them here with you:

  • develop your intuition - this way you are more in touch with the world and by extension, yourself.
  • Do what your heart calls you to do - don’t do things just for money.
  • FIND THE DEEPER THINGS IN SIMPLICITY- this is something which I have been doing for the past year. Since this, I appreciate all the small things in life.
  • Creation= transformation
  • Creativity = life : creativity comes from the heart. It is the root. It is the foundation.
  • Don’t hold on to your best work - Sometimes by throwing things away, you actually create or you allow new things to be created.
  • Don’t force things to happen - sit back and allow things to happen for you. The earth takes a natural course. If it is meant to be it will be.
  • Magic is art and art is magic.
  • Emptiness allows for other things to fill us.

SongCharmed life, as performed by Diana Krall