Saturday, December 29, 2012

christmas break days

we spent this christmas with chas' family at their parent's glorious farmhouse in fairview, ut. i've never seen hero so continuously happy and enthusiastic! she loved being at the farm. 

chas' dad had gotten the sweetest little charlie brown tree for the farm and had, of course, decorated every inch of the house with garland, lights, and nativity sets. on christmas eve, he was outside all day in a crazy snow storm building a manger inside the barn, attaching a lighted star to the roof, and placing 400 tiny candle lights inside the barn, around the manager, and up in the rafters. bless that man and his undying devotion to all things christmas! 

that night, the grandkids found little notes from the elves which eventually led everyone outside to the manager. there, we huddled around together and sang carols. it was lovely. 

then i learned, that my dear family back at home was spending their christmas evening gathered together watching dumb and dumber. sometimes it's amazing (and hilarious) how different our two families are. i love them both so much. 

on christmas morning, disaster struck and i was hit with the stomach flu. i spent the rest of the day in bed. and since being that sick anywhere other than your own house is one of the worst things ever, we decided to leave that afternoon and head back home. and then, of course, as soon as we were home i started feeling better. grrrrr! we were pretty bummed about not getting to be with chas' family for the rest of the week but decided to make the time we have, just the three of us, as enjoyable as possible. 

so we've spent the last few days sleeping in, laying about in our jammies, and making yummy food. 

yesterday, right before we ventured out for a family activity day down at city creek mall, we snapped a few pictures of me and my hero girl. it's so hard to resist that beautiful, freshly fallen snow. could you ask for a better photo backdrop?! 

while we took these pictures, hero was having the time. of. her. life! she just couldn't stop laughing and smiling! totally loving it! these pictures are coming preeeetttty close to describing how fun and full of life she is at this age. such a sweet, sweet girl! 

our no-present christmas

this year, chas and i decided to do a no-present christmas. there wasn't any huge reason behind this choice. we had just gotten out of grad school debt and neither of us were feeling the need to spend money on things we didn't really need just for the sake of buying something for christmas. and hero is still too little to know or care about christmas and presents. 

(the one exception and "real" present we did get was a piece of camera equipment for our business.) 

so we went to target, each picked out a pair of christmas jammies, and called it good. 

even though it was nice to not have to worry about braving the hoards and trying to find each other that perfect gift, i thought i would miss having something to open. but when christmas morning came, i didn't miss presents nearly as much as i thought i would. chas' sisters had gotten us some fun little stocking goodies and his mom gave us $50 worth of gold dollar coins (awesome!). so we did get a few treats AND felt like rich pirates! what more could we ask for!? 

all in all, the no-present christmas was a success. we were able to sit back, relax, and just enjoy the season, being with loved ones, and eating amazing food. i'd definitely recommend it! 

and i'm definitely excited for next year when watching hero unwrap presents will be the main event of christmas morning! 

Friday, December 28, 2012

i (phone) spy

instagramming @samajama


i've been busy soaking up every minute of our christmas break together. having chas home all day with me is amazing! i'll be back to soon to tell you more about our first christmas together as a family of three.

hope you are all enjoying some time off!

Friday, December 21, 2012

sandy hook donation sale!

hello, friends!

this morning, as i was washing dishes and wishing i could do some kind of meaningful service and giving for this christmas season, i had an idea! (does anyone else's strokes of genius happen either while doing housework or showering?)




i'm super excited about this because it provides not only myself with an opportunity to support this important cause (an event that i'm sure we've all been impacted by, one way or another), but it also allows for others to hop on the love train and give as well!

i continue to think about this tragedy every time i squeeze my little chubby girl and i hope, in a very small way, i can contribute to the healing of those devastated parents, families, and community.

merry christmas.


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

6 months

6 1/2 months, to be exact. 

and oh my goodness! one day she haaaates tummy time and then next, i can't get her to stay on her back long enough to take more than one picture of her before she rolls over. i feel like this big girl is going to up and crawl any second! i'm definitely not ready for that! 

oh well. at least her forearms and wrists are still chubbier than anything else i've seen. 

new film! oliver & dantzel (part II)

this is the cut of the full day of this wedding- temple + reception.

ok. so i know i already got to plan TWO weddings, BUT...if i got married a third time (not happening), i would have dantzel plan EVERYTHING. this reception was seriously the funnest party ever! there was a photo booth, hot chocolate station, crepe station, and a dance party to end all dance parties- complete with the groom break dancing! it took everything i had to not just throw down the camera and jump into the mix!

and how often do you get to see a photo booth strip of an apostle (elder nelson is dantzel's grandpa) and his wife?! pretty darling.

enjoy the film!

kelly arts: films
like us on facebook

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

new film! oliver & dantzel (part I)

on friday, we had the privilege of filming an amazing-upon-amazing wedding. this couple wanted us to do two films for them: a same-day edit of the footage from the temple grounds to show at their reception that night as well as a full wedding highlight film of the entire day.

this is the film from outside the temple. don't you love how relaxed and carefree these two were?! they were too busy photo-bombing each other's pictures to be stressed at all! oh- and bonus points if you can spot the apostle in this film!


kelly arts: films
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Monday, December 17, 2012

love for ct

on friday night, chas was putting hero down to bed. from our bedroom, i heard him start singing to our little daughter. he sang "i am a child of god" but wasn't able to finish before he got choked up. he came into our room, climbed into bed with me, and we both started crying together. he told me how as he was singing to hero, he was thinking about how much he loved her and all those parents in connecticut who, earlier that same day, had lost their own little hero.

our hearts ache for those who are suffering so deeply at this time. i cannot even fathom the kind of pain they must be feeling.

we are so grateful for our baby. every day with her is a blessing.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

snow baby

i feel like i may be falling off the blogging train a bit. i just don't have the same desire to post as often as i once did. i've stopped (at least temporarily) taking on paid sponsors and find myself thinking less and less about my blog.

honestly, it's a refreshing change.

at this point, i definitely don't want to totally stop blogging. i do still love how this blog gives me motivation (however dwindling) to take a moment to step outside with hero and take a few pictures in our neon bright dresses today, for example. and i will forever love and be grateful for the small community of friendship and support i've found in my wonderful readers.

so even though the posting may be less frequent, i'm still here and appreciate you all.

here's to a great last week before christmas!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

a handmade christmas event

here's a great way to kick off this weekend! and if chas and i weren't busy filming a wedding all day on friday, you can be i'd be here!

the lovely hostesses, claire and brittany, are offering an additional 15% off one item to anyone who blogs about the event! all you have to do is write a blog post, (include the above image, if you'd like), make sure you include a link to either claire or brittany's blog post, and then simply leave a comment on either claire or brittany's post telling them you did so! they'll gather the list of bloggers who helped spread the love. all you have to do is come to the party and claim your 15%!

*discount must be used on the night of the pop up shop, december 14, 2012.

make sure to check out claire's shop here & blog here
and see brittany's shop here & blog here

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

around this duplex


i don't have time to write much for this post. i'm preheating the oven for a frozen pizza dinner and hero is having a good cry with her dad in the other room.

just thought i'd say hello to my wonderful blog friends and post a few little pictures from today.
have a wonderful evening!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

the best feeling ever!

a few days ago, chas and i accomplished a HUGE goal that we've been working on for the last three years. we finished paying off allllll my student loans from grad school! i cannot tell you how blessed we feel to now be completely out of debt. we are so excited to not have to give away huge chunks of money every month and finally be able to start saving towards things like a house down payment and maybe a fun little trip to italy or something!

we don't make tons of money and the amount of loans i had was pretty sizeable. also, during this time we didn't have health insurance and paid for all of my maternity care and hero's birth completely out of pocket. if we can do it, you can do it too!

our secret?

shove every single bit of extra money towards the debt. everything.
try get by with less, put off that fun vacation, share one car, etc.
obviously, not rocket science but it really does work! and the feeling of accomplishing your goal is amazing!

Monday, December 3, 2012

new film! fugate family

one of my favorite parts of filming these families videos is getting to meet such wonderfully adorable people! the fugates were so much fun to work with and- get this- their little boy's name is ladd! love it, right?!

these guys are getting a bunch of dvd copies of their film to send to family members across the country as christmas presents. such a good idea!

kelly arts: films
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Friday, November 30, 2012

book update

remember how i've been working on trying to write a book for about 2 1/2 years now?

i put it on the shelf during the last trimester of my pregnancy and have picked it back up again.

throughout this whole process, i've found that allowing for periods of "down time" with the book, periods of time in which i'm just letting it "sit," has actually proven to be helpful. it seems that every time i come back to the book after having a little break from it, i have new insights and ideas on what to do next, different directions to pursue, and improved perspective on how i want the finished product to be.

this stop-and-go method of working is pretty different than my natural inclination and habit of working. i usually am the go-go-go-until-it's-finished type of person. so, at times, as i've had to be more slow and patient with this process, i've often worried that it will never be finished and, instead, in a perpetual state of "in progress." i would hate to have that happen. i've worked so hard on this and to just have it never amount to anything would be so disappointing.

a few weeks ago, when i started working on it once more, i found myself deleting essentially the entire first half of my manuscript. i honestly think it's the biggest improvement yet.

one of the biggest things i learned as an undergrad art student was this:
when you're working on a painting (or anything else creative) there's often one part or aspect of the piece that you really come to love. you love it so much that you start working around it, but keeping that one small part totally in tact. when you realize this is happening, that's when it's time to totally obliterate that precious little part. it's only when you allow yourself to sacrifice that single, beloved aspect of your creative work, will the rest of piece, as a whole, really start to take shape and succeed.

that totally makes sense in my little art nerd brain but i'm not sure about anyone else's...

anyways. that's what i did with my book. it was hard, and took a while to get to this point, but cutting out so much of it, is really helping it move forward in the best direction.

and now, i even have a real-life, super legit editor who's agreed to work with me! you know how nie nie recently published her story? amy hackworth, who was the ghost writer for stephanie nielson's book, and who writes for designmom (and who is also a good friend of ours) is going to be editing my manuscript and giving me advice about publishing! hoooooray! i'm so excited and blessed to have amy's help.



you can read more posts about my book here and here and here

Thursday, November 29, 2012

want free ad space???

this past week has been kind of slow. hero and i have been quarantined inside the house because i've been sick with a bad cold (that chas has also been stricken with for over 10 days now). thank goodness hero hasn't gotten the bug! so we've been laying low. in fact, last night was the first time i left the house allllll week.

so with all this time on my hands, i've been thinking a lot about our little film business. you're probably all sick of hearing about it but, like i've said before, it's been such a fun, healthy creative outlet for me during the sometimes long days at home. and we discovered that we love filming weddings and want to do more of that kind of work!

i've been brainstorming some different ways to help promote our film work and came up with a fun idea!

so here it is:

if any of our awesome readers (that means you!)...

1. blog about your fave kelly arts: films video and embed the film in your post 
2. include a link to kelly arts: films
3. and, in your post, encourage people to like our facebook page

then just email me at with the link to your post, and a 200x100 ad for your blog/shop, and i will post your ad on my blog right away and keep it up through the end of december! 

so whattcha say!? wanna help each other out? you promote kelly arts: films, and i'll promote you!
easy peasey :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

i (phone) spy

this month has been an exciting one! november was filled with so much good food, a huge snow day, and a brand new baby niece! 

so much to be grateful for. 

instagram @samajama

Monday, November 26, 2012

cyber monday special!

happy cyber monday, everyone!

time for a little shameless self promotion... tee hee.

over at kelly arts: films, we're celebrating by giving everyone 25% OFF ALL FILMS- including weddings! so book your shoot today and take advantage of this great deal :) 


check out our website
like us on facebook 

Friday, November 23, 2012


we spent thanksgiving with my parents and sisters (minus rosie in jerusalem). because most of chas' family was in new york this year, we also got to have his mom, sister, and brother-in-law over for the day!

thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. to me, it has all the love, happiness, family, food, and relaxation as christmas but without the added expectation of presents and all the stress that sometimes come with christmas cheer.

we're lucky to be close to family and it's always so fun to get together and be with all my sisters.
and then, to spend the next day with just our own little family, sleeping in and hanging out in jammies for most of the day...this really is the best time of the year!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

you may not know about this blog...

but you should.

my little sister, rosie, is spending the semester living in israel at byu's jerusalem center. she's been keeping us all updated on her adventures through her blog. her pictures are beyond amazing and her writing cracks me up!

so if you're looking for a blog that has a different flavor than most anything out there, check out rosie.

she for sure didn't ask me to write this post or anything- i just love getting to read up on her crazy travels and drool over her pics so i thought i'd share the love with you all!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

a tuesday morning resolve

yesterday, while watching more antm than i care to admit, i decided to fully embrace and love every bit of this season of my life with hero.

i have a baby who likes to sleep a lot. it's a huge blessing and i know i'm lucky to have such a great sleeper. the only downside is that i'm stuck inside my house for hours on end with very little to do. as i've mentioned, it can get boring and it can lonely. BUT i can handle feeling a bit bored and lonely. it's such a small price to pay for a sleeping baby. and eventually she'll sleep less and then my life will likely  never be this kind of wonderful slow-paced ever again and i'll have wished i had enjoyed it more.

so that's my resolve. enjoy the heck out of the free, quiet hours at home. and if some of that time is wasted watching antm or browsing pinterest, that's ok. i don't want to miss this short period of our lives because i was too busy focusing on how i wish it were different.

giveaway winner

congrats to urban wife! you've won the sweet honey bunch giveaway :)

Friday, November 16, 2012

5 months

   5 months!? this is getting out of control!

these pictures have got to be some of my favorite of little h. she's such a goof lately and i was so excited to be able to capture that aspect of her growing personality in these shots.

at 5 months old, hero is...

starting to eat baby food! chas and i have way too much fun feeding her and watching her reactions and trying to figure out how to use her mouth and tongue.

exploring the whole new and wonderful world of her "exersaucer." last night, we decided she needed to start practicing sitting up and exploring new toys. so after a late-night family trip to target, hero girl is loving her time in her bouncer toy chair thingy.

laughing more and more! her favorite is when i smell her feet and pretend to start gagging loudly. (that's actually how i got her to laugh and smile in these pictures!) she'll probably get sick of the joke soon, but for now, i'm milking every second that she thinks it's hilarious. :)

still sleeping through the night like a champ.

getting "wrist jam" every now and then. i mean, check out those rubber band wrists! total lunch lady arms.


we love you, sweet bung!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

i had a little breakdown last night.

 sometimes being at home all day by myself can start to eat away at me. i try my best to work around hero's nap schedule and get out of the house whenever i can but sometimes it just doesn't happen and the isolation and loneliness bubble up to the surface.

and it's a tricky feeling to feel sad about staying at home, taking care of my baby. i know i am so lucky to be a mom, have such a sweet, healthy little girl, and to get to stay home and be the one who takes care of her and loves her 24/7. i am truly so, so blessed.

i don't want to be ungrateful.

i'm trying my best to find ways to be productive during this time (our film business and writing my book). and then there are times when i just want to take advantage of this quiet, slow pace of life that hero and i live right now and stay in my jammies until 2pm- which i definitely do from time to time. but, in the midst of everything, there are still days that feel long, boring, and alone.

so i got pretty sad last night.

chas asked if i wanted to plan a little getaway trip with my mom and sisters. he told me how much he appreciated all i do for our girl, what a great mother i am, and his desire to support me in any way he could.

and he made me pancakes for breakfast.
i love him so much.

i feel better today. good, not great. i'm trying to focus on the positive and be grateful for every moment.

there are different benefits and different challenges with every season in life. and it's ok to be sad about the challenges.

the sadness always goes eventually and tomorrow is a chance to feel better.

Monday, November 12, 2012

new film! heather pickett photo promo

this past weekend sure was an exciting one! not only did we get dumped with snow (1 1/2 ft!) but we also got to spend friday and saturday morning filming the sweetest little newborn photography sessions!

heather of heather pickett photography asked if we could do a promo video for her business and we are so grateful for such a fun opportunity. heather is amazing at what she does and it was a joy being there and capturing the magic of how she works with these tiny, new babies.

and seriously, guys. i've probably cried a total of 3 1/2 times while watching this footage.
see for yourself and have a great monday!

Friday, November 9, 2012

giveaway: sweet honey bunch

so, so excited about today's giveaway! let me tell you how HARD it is to find cute headbands for girl babies that aren't those ginormous, bejeweled fake flowers. i know a lot of people love those but i just kiiiinda hate them. :)

then jenny of sweet honey bunch contacted me and my baby accessory prayers were answered! not only does she not do the huuuuge flower thing, she also has a super refreshing and unique variety of looks for her headbands. three cheers for jenny!

today, sweet honey bunch is giving away any headband of the winner's choice!

to enter: 

must be a follower of young people in love

then just check out the amazing sweet honey bunch shop and tell me which item is your favorite in your comment

for extra entries: 

favorite sweet honey bunch on etsy

like sweet honey bunch on facebook


sweet honey bunch is also offering all readers a special 15% discount off your entire order with coupon code "youngpeopleinlove"
(coupon expires on November 23!)

good luck!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

cousin time

headband c/o sweethoneybunch 

i love having my sister just a 45 minute drive away. it's been so fun to be able to sit around with her and be moms together.

yesterday, we did a little cousin photo shoot with her amazing new chairs. also, it was hero's first time wearing her big girl jeans ($5 target score!) so clearly that was something that needed documentation :)

i love how these pics really highlight my neck-less wonder of a baby. i can't believe how chuuuuubby she's getting!

sarah and i are super excited for next summer when hero will be just over a year old. that's when these two are gonna start having fun together...and probably making each other cry. but hey- you're not really having a good time unless there's a little bashing going on, right?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

giveaway winners!

we have three winners to announce today!


the winner of the paule t.b. illustration giveaway is... 

the winner of the trama textiles giveaway is...

and the winner of the urban outfitters giveaway is...


a big congrats to all the winners!!!

send me an email at and we'll get your prize on it's way to you!