Photoshoot with the Gratrix Family

While in Ontario over Christmas Break, I had the opportunity to go out and shoot some family photos for a really fun, friendly and enthusiastic family who attend Connexus, my hometown church. A few teaser shots are now up on my smug mug website ::

Thanks Gratrix Family for a wonderful afternoon!


Where Are You Christmas?

I am desperately awaiting Christmas... and snow. Things around our house this past month have been pretty crazy- Kyle flying lots trying to prepare for his commercial exams, and I have finished a whole semesters worth of modular courses, and exams (which I passed, yay!) and am currently in the middle of another set of courses which i will be finishing right before Christmas break. Ideally, after my first set of courses, our class would have been going out for an acute care practicum, but with the H1N1 pandemic, nursing programs all across Alberta have been canceling their current practicums including ours.

Shortly after my last post I began my new courses, which have since been consuming my life: Maternity, Pediatrics, Psychiatric Nursing, and Graduate Nursing. These are the courses I have been anticipating since starting the program, and although I would prefer to have longer then 5 weeks to learn about all these topics, I have been diving right in to gain as much knowledge as I can. However, it appears that this has had an effect on other areas of my life (blogging perhaps?).

(Side Note: I have been trying to get Kyle to blog about his new love of duck hunting... but perhaps he needs a little encouragement from all of you!)

As much as I LOVE learning about Pyloric Stenosis, Rickets, Esophageal Atresia, and the numerous other diseases, conditions and disorders that can effect pediatric patients (and most importantly what I can do to help people in these conditions).... I really want it to be Christmas.

Hopefully it will snow this week! : )


Christmas Sessions are Here!

A Message from VanessaMarie Photography:

Christmas time is quickly approaching! This year I will be offering special mini photoshoot sessions from Oct 19-Nov 29.

This package will include: a 45 minute session for up to 6 people, an online album to view your final photos (up to 30 images), a CD with your 15 favourite pictures to print as you wish, and a complimentary Christmas Card designed by Jaime Schultz (7 styles to choose from) with the photo of your choice from the session in JEG format included on your photo CD! Perfect for this years Christmas Cards!
This package is $60.00

Here are some samples:

Also, if you would like to order just a Christmas Card with a photo I have previously taken this is available for $10.00
Please contact me via email for any questions, or to book a session!



The Meeder's

While in Ontario this summer I had the wonderful opportunity of capturing the beautiful faces of the Meader kids on camera!
The photos of their smiling faces are now on my website:



Rachel & Jarod Griesbach

Rachel & Jarod tied the knot on June 26th 2009, and I had the privilege of capturing this exciting day through photos for them!

Rachel and I have been going through the nursing program together (in Three Hills, Alberta) and have in turn become quite close friends, discovering new things each day we have in common (we are still trying to figure out if we were in fact separated at birth... one year apart). Since we started spending a ton of time together, it became obvious that our fiances at the time would have to start spending some time with each other too, if they ever wanted to see us! But in the mean time Kyle and Jarod have become quite the pair as well... last weekend they went duck hunting together, along with another fellow nursing student, and good friend's husband, Ryan.

So, it was no surprise that Kyle and I both cheered this couple on as they said their vows to one another almost 4 months ago... me behind my Nikon D80, and continue to cheer them on with each month into their marriage!

The photos of the day are now on my website:



First Snow

Well it has officially 'snowed' in three hills for the first time this year... although not enough yet for it to actually make it to the ground. As much as I love the cold, and the snow, there are a few realities that come with this time of year that are putting a damper on things: mainly that our furnace in the trailer is not wanting to turn on this year. Kyle and I are okay in terms of keeping ourselves warm; we have lots of warm clothes, have just purchased a warm duvet for the cold nights, as well as a small space heater to help us keep whichever room in the house we are in at a decent temperature. Our only concern, as it begins to drop below freezing at nights is that pipes will begin to freeze. Please keep this in your prayers!

On a different note, please keep Kyle in your prayers this week as he studies and takes 3 different exams toward his written commercial license testing!


And Enjoy!... 4 Months from Now

This past weekend Kyle and I made Grape Juice! We got the recipe from one of the cookbooks we received as a wedding gift, which was actually quite simple : )

We had purchased the concord grapes from the local grocery store (on sale!) ,2 2L containers which was enough to make 14 1 litre jars, earlier in the week.

Here is the recipe (these grapes are only in season once a year so grab this opportunity while you can!)

Prepare your jars as you would for canning:
1. Wash jars and lids. Place jars on rack in boiling water canner; cover jars with water and heat to a simmer (180 F/ 82 C).
2. Set screw bands aside; heat snap lids in hot water, NOT boiling. Keep jars and snap lids hot until ready to use.

Grape Juice Recipe:
1. In each jar place:
1 cup concord grapes
1/4 cup sugar

2. Fill the jar with boiling water, up to 1/2" from the top.
3. Seal and process in hot water bath for ten minutes.
(center your snap lid on the jar; apply screw band securely and firmly- until resistance is met- do not over tighten. After jars are in canner with hot water-covered by at least 1 inch of water- bring water to full rolling boil).
4. After time has elapsed allow water to cool and remove jars. Store in a cool, dry place. Inspect after 24 hours that jars have sealed properly. (Sealed lids curve downward and do not move when pressed. When a jar 'pops' it has sealed).

and enjoy... 4 months from now!

(Store for 4 Months before using)

Now we just have to wait until January 23rd! (we already have it marked on the Calendar!)

estimated costs: $6.00


Married Man

Everyone asks: how was you first birthday as a married man? Totally and completely awesome. Waking up to the smell of deliciousness and trying to stay in bed but drawn into the kitchen to what was cooking. There is Vanessa making banana, chocolate chip pancakes with strawberries and bananas and whipped cream on top. We bring a big pile back to the room and have breakfast in bed.

The whole day was so good, including the weather outside. Warm weather in Canada must be taken advantage of so it was out with the tarp, and the hose and the soap to make a slip and slide in our backyard. That night I got to dig into my first Skor dessert which is a layered dessert with brownies ( my favorite) chocolate pudding, whipped cream, and skor bar crumbled and sprinkled on top. We spent the nigh with friends just talking and laughing together. Life is good!

Its not uncommon for people to be excited about of how many years they have been married, but the years they have been alive - for some reason that's a different story. I'm proud of each candle on my cake and each gray hair on my head( i already have 3 or 4 : ) because with each comes many experiences that I can take with me and share with others. I also took the advice of my best friend Mario and enjoyed some time with God being thankful for the fullness of joy that he gives me. How awesome it is to now live in it with the love of my life.


A Wedding DIY: Poms

One of my bridesmaids gave me this idea to add a little colour to our outdoor wedding. As I began making them, I had a lot of fun and soon a mountain of pompoms had developed! We hung them from tree branches, used them to decorate our getaway mobile, etc.

A fun, inexpensive way to spread your wedding day colours around your ceremony/ reception sites!

Here is the How To:

1. Grab your supplies.

1.cutting mat 2. twine 3.craft paper (if you want to add leaves) 4.assorted tissue paper 5.scissors 6. floral wire

2. To create the tissue paper pom poms:
Accordion fold 7 sheets of tissue paper together with 7 folds, each about 1 inch wide. Find the center of the stack and wrap floral wire around the center to create a divide. Fan out each side of the tissue paper and carefully pull out each layer of paper until you have a ball.

3. Attach the wire from your pompom to the twine and hang.
You can use various sizes of tissue paper, and various lengths of twine to hang each at different levels/ sizes.

Grab some Friends and have fun!


Corn Shucking

Me and Vanessa brought in the rest of the corn today that we hadnt eaten already to shuck, boil and freeze for the winter. I stumbled across some information i thought everyone would like to know. The corn plant is both male and female. The top part of the plant is the male part.
The female part is the part that you often see coming out of the top of the cobs of corn. The tiny silks catch onto pollen from the males up above them.
Each silk leads to its own kernel inside. Sense it pollenates this way, it is better to plant corn in squares (atleast 3 rows deep) instead of long skinny rows.
Then inside is the delicious  sweet corn. Corn, more than any other vegetable, is best when its fresh of the stalk. The sugar in corn starts turning very quickly to starch right away and after 3 days half is already converted. So its best eaten right of the stalks. We both love it!!
Folks used to have ( and might still do somewhere) corn shuckin festivals where theyd pile all the corn from the fields into a big pile. Then on one side of the pile lined up everyone to shuck the corn. The fastest people sat in the middle, quickly digging their way through the pile of corn and eventually dividing the pile into two. Now the teams were established and whichever team made it to the bottom of the pile first had a jug of moonshine waiting for them as a prize. And so the festivities carried on celebrating the harvest with dancing and having a good time. 


Our New Home


We are finally (almost) settled in! On friday we had a bunch of our friends over after Kyle smoked meat all day (waking up at 4am to start it- finishing at 7pm!) so I hurried around taking some pictures of the different rooms of our house that were clean and pretty much done : ) WE LOVE OUR COZY TRAILER!

Let's start the tour from the front door. If you walk straight ahead you will arrive in the kitchen!
(view from the front door)-->
If you turn right, just before the kitchen you are in the living room!
... See my Tabblo>

It was only a few months ago that Lush made its big appearance in Red Deer. I was just shopping around town, minding my own business, when i stumbled upon this treasure and had to go inside. Instantly I was excited about what Lush had to offer... handmade, organic cometics. The sent of the bath bombs and lotions, the fun, creative style of the shop (it kinda reminded me of a farmers market where everything was set up and labeled on its personal mini chalk board), and the friendliness of the people who worked there.

A few months prior, one of my friends from school, Raye, and I got together and learned to make our own bath bombs and bath salts. I LOVED it, had a blast, which further intrigued my interest in this store.

I can't wait to go back for another visit soon! Maybe for some of you lucky ducks out there it may be the source of future gifts!

if you would like to browse their store online here is the link!


Welcome Home Katrina & Paul!

After our honeymoon, Kyle and I went up to spend some time in Ontario before the wedding of my very dear and best friend, Katrina. Katrina and Paul were married on August 28th; a wedding that definitely reflected their relationship, personalities and true love for each other. After a week in Virgina and then a week in Costa Rica, they have now returned to move into their apartment in Waterloo where Katrina is finishing up her schooling. Yay! Welcome Home... hope you guys had a wonderful Honeymoon Annunziello family!


The Honeymoon


We were admitted! It was definitely an adventure flying to Bermuda... or at least trying to get on the flight from Atlanta. Kyle and I didn't know what was going on, but the woman at the counter trying to get us our tickets kept mummbling about things not looking good, even writing a big VOID on our printed tickets. But- a true answer to the prayers we were both praying in our heads- she without a word handed us tickets, and we dashed to security to get on our flight. A few short hours later we were in Beautiful Bermuda! ... See my Tabblo>


Wedding Photos by Erin

We are thrilled with the photos that Erin, and her friend Arnold, took at our wedding... and want to share them with you!

Visit Erin's Photography website to view the amazing photos she took that capture our special day perfectly... even down to the last detail.
Go To 'CHUPP Wedding'

Thankyou so much Erin!!


New Beginnings

Today marks a very special day- our new blog! We really hope that this blog can be used as a way to keep contact with all the special people in our lives living around the world (updating more frequently then in the past :S).

The past month has been filled with new and exciting beginnings... so we thought, what better time then this to join forces to share a bit about our lives!

So sit back, relax and get ready for the posts to start flowing in! We've got a lot to catch up on!