It takes a village

I talk a lot about family. Some of it is family by blood, some of it is family by choice and some of it is family by internet. I'm not one to get stuck on the idea that someone has to be of blood relation to be a piece of your heart.

You've seen Scott's brothers and you've seen my parents and brothers over and over again. To me there is no difference between these groups.
Once you're a part of the family, you are family for life. I'm not a fair weather friend. Good, bad, ugly, beautiful, fat, skinny, rich, poor...I'll love you know matter what. It's just how I am made. I may not always agree or like what you're doing but you're family regardless.

Maybe it's because my Dad isn't really my Dad. We share no direct DNA. You wouldn't know that though. I have some of his mannerisms, his music ear, and I married a guy just like him. I love him the way every little girl loves her daddy and he loves me right back. Even if he wouldn't stop picking his nose when I was in junior high.

My point is we have a big family. A support group, that grows with each passing day. As I've said time and time before, if you're reading these words you are, in your own way, a part of that family.
I believe that you cannot get through life alone. You simply must share life with the people around you. It's just the only way to go.

All that said, Scott wanted to do something special for me for our anniversary, my birthday and Christmas. For Scott to do so much as get a card takes a small army.
He wanted to give me something that I've been coveting since before it's release a few weeks ago.

These photos of Kate that you've been looking at were all taken this morning. Kate chose this outfit right down to her rockstar shoes. She looks pretty cute doesn't she. And old, she looks really, really old.

We were having a fun time running and playing for a few minutes this morning.

So what do you all see when you look at these photos? Maybe you're saying what a beautiful little girl, or Brandi is a crazy mom that photographs everything. Heck maybe you're looking at that gray Chicago day.

When I look at the photos I see soft focus. I see distortion. I see grain. I see a slow shutter. I see cloudy images. **
I didn't always see these things. In fact, there was a time that I would have died with excitement over the quality of these photos. Those days have passed. I've grown, I've evolved, I've learned. I now have a better eye than my camera can keep up with.
I've been longing for, drooling over and obsessing about this beauty.

This is what I've been dreaming of since I first heard the rumor of it's existence. It's the Nikon D7000 (for more specific sexy info go here).
She's beautiful. She can take 6 frames per second, handle high ISO, has 16.2MP, can take HD video and has 39 glorious focal points (my current camera has 3).

The D7000 is exactly what this photo nerd desires.

Scott wanted to get me this.
His words to me were "I know you'll get this eventually, I want to be here to see you enjoy it."
Because Scott is a smart man, he knew I would balk. So, he went around me. He went to my parents, my siblings, my Grams, asking all of them if they wanted to help make my photo geek dream come true. They all did, they are super fabulous like that.

Then Scott took it to the next level and started talking to S12 (the Scott of other blog fame). Scott wanted to make sure that the D7000 was really the right choice so he went to the best resource for camera gear that he knows. In discussions between the Scott's, S12 said that he had some benefactors (that are unknown to me at this time) that wanted to help as well. S12 had shared our story with these unknown people, he shared the blog and told them how far I had come with my photography and what the pictures I was taken of were for.
I'm overwhelmed to say that these people, wanted to help too. S12 began getting donations for the "Brandi needs a D7000 fund".
I knew nothing of this, Scott knew nothing of this. It's something that S12 did alone out of the goodness of his heart because he cares. Or maybe because he is sick of listening to me complain about the camera I have now. Whatever his intentions were, I am beyond grateful.

Grateful for my husband for wanting this for me. Grateful to my family for supporting Scott and wanting to make my dreams come true. Grateful to S12 for going above and beyond and helping make this happen. Lastly, to the anonymous donors, in this time of financial hardship for almost everyone to have people want to contribute and make this happen for me... well... I'm at a loss. I'm humbled, overwhelmed, elated and awe struck.

Here again my family, rallies. Finding a way to rise above and let love shine. My family, some of whom I may have never even met.

My pretty new playmate has not been ordered yet. Soon enough she'll be on here way here and I will be able to share the D7000 love with all of you.

From the bottom of my previously hardened heart.... thank you. There simply are no words.

**All these photos were taken straight out of camera (SOOC for us photo geeks) no alterations of any kind except for some cropping so they fit on the webpage properly.
The Nikon D40 is a truly fantastic camera. I am honored to have it and if it's all I ever had I would be one lucky girl.**

Colleen  – (November 4, 2010 at 10:12 AM)  

Awesome gift!!! Your photos are gorgeous anyway but I can't wait to see what you do with the new camera.

Sere  – (November 4, 2010 at 7:16 PM)  

Amazing, all the love! I'm in tears, all choked up, but wow how awesome! Love ya chickie! Can't wait to see pics from the new camera.

missy dappen  – (November 4, 2010 at 7:21 PM)  

Congrats on your new friend. I can't imagine even more lovely stuff from you, but I'm excited to see it!

Anonymous –   – (November 9, 2010 at 8:28 PM)  

You mean something can take better pictures? WOW
This last entry brought me to tears. How wonderful it is that you have so many people who love and want the very best for you and your family!

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