Monday, November 8, 2010

Thought I would share

Michael's awesome Christmas list: "I want a yo yo, a skateboard, a sauna, the Backyardigans Christmas movie, a pack of gum and 16 Wishes (a movie.)"

I thought I would alert everyone, in case they want to get a sauna too. I anticipate they might be a hard-to-find item. ;)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Well, isn't this convenient?

I just start blogging again and already I have a small prayer request. Funny how it works like that, eh?

So I had to go back for a second ultrasound because of low fluid and the baby having enlarged kidneys and they were not able to see the heart entirely.

I went for that ultrasound on Monday and had an appointment on Tuesday. They lost the ultrasound and it took them until Wed. afternoon to call back.

The kidneys are still enlarged and dilated, though the fluid is not so low. So, they said the baby has Prenatal Hydronephrosis. It could totally end up being pretty much nothing. Or it could be something, but it sounds like it is not anything life-threatening or anything. In fact, it sounded like the most common abnormality found on ultrasound. It is really likely it will be something the baby grows out of either before or after birth and it SOUNDS like the worst case scenario is surgery needed to clear up a blockage in the kidney or in the output tract to the bladder. The WORST WORST case would be prenatal surgery, but that doesn't seem to be the case we are looking at.

The amount of enlargement has not changed in the last 2 weeks. So that is good and bad. Not getting worse, but not exactly getting better. They want me to go in and get more ultrasounds as the pregnancy progresses, so that they can keep an eye on how the baby is doing and how the kidneys are doing. I am ok with that to a point, but I sort of feel like sometimes poking around leads to more times that they find things--whether they are issues or not. So I am not totally wanting a BUNCH of extra ultrasounds. I think I would rather go with a couple towards the end to check if things have cleared up or not, but we'll see what they say.

They offered me the chance to get followed by a perinatologist, but I would rather not. Again, from the times I have had to go to a peri before, I found he was quite busy, didn't really have time to check the chart beforehand, and it was generally an unproductive thing. Maybe I'm wrong, but I am just not sure I feel the need to do this.

So, I feel, overall, pretty good that things will calm down and be ok. But I would also really appreciate any prayers anyone wanted to offer that the baby would be ok. It is alway
s nicer to have fewer issues, right?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Tap. this thing on?

I've been kind of busy lately. Blogging sort of took a backseat to getting all of the work done and still having enough time with the kids and to get done all that need to done.

So a small update and then some pictures. And then I will try to be better on top of blogging.

Our biggest update is that we are expecting our 6th baby at the very beginning of March (hopefully earlier, considering how big our kids get.) We know it is a boy and his name will be Maxwell Atticus Rehart. We'll just call him Max and the kids are super excited. McKay is especially sweet. I love seeing how sweet the kids are with each other. (Of course, this sibling sweetness does not extend into car rides. ;) )

I also got a fun new lens and have some pictures of Hannah, Ella and Michael. Hopefully Garrett and McKay will let me get a couple of them soon.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Happy Birthday Michael!


Michael was the kiddo who made me a mommy for the first time. And he was so tiny. At a week old he was barely over 5 lbs. And now? I can wear his flip flops. *sniffle*

He's so big! So old!

For his birthday he had some school and neighborhood friends over and they did a scavenger hunt and broke codes. I was so impressed. They broke pig latin, Morse code, found the right Cardono grilles, figured out the invisible ink, etc. It was pretty cool. Smart kids.

Michael is such a great kid and I am glad to have him in our home. In fact, at school, Michael never lost even ONE star ALL year long. So that pretty much means he was always on task, always nice, always well-behaved. He is a great great great kid and we are so lucky to have him.

Happy birthday, awesome boy.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Happy Birthday McKay!

Oops, a little late.

It's been crazy with the end of school and then the whole family getting so sick, but I really did want to post that McKay is 9 now.

Sheesh, I almost have 2 kids in double-digits.

It's been a good year for McKay. He's done so well with Michael in Mrs. Chirrick's class. He has been so good about learning and following more rules, so he gets to go out and play at friend's houses more. (He's never been naughty, mind you. Just prone to disappear.) In so many ways, he's growing up so quickly this year.

But in a lot of other ways, he's always the same. He loves to cuddle. He says the funniest, awesomest things ever. He's keenly observant. I think if people knew how much he was watching them, and really, how accurately he was assessing them, they would be shocked.

Having McKay in our family is one of the most sincere blessings I could imagine. He brings a sweetness and peace (most of the time...;) ) to our house. We also are in a unique situation. Seeing how people react to McKay is a very interesting filter for people. We have seen the best of people come out and we've been able to bond with people more deeply than I would have imagined over McKay, and on the flipside, we have seen some of the ugliest of human behaviors over McKay. But, it has been a blessing to our family to be able to learn and grow with McKay as a guide.

Happy Birthday, sweet boy.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A piece of my heart

I shared this on Facebook, but I love this.

A day in the life of Michael and McKay at school.

I love their teachers, their friends, their school. It really makes life so much easier to know that they are in such loving and capable hands when they are away at school. I am so grateful I got the chance to go and document all of the kids and make a keepsake for my boys and their friends.


Summer's here.

I just had to let out a little stress there.

Whew. Ok. I feel a little better.

It's not that I don't like summer. I actually generally prefer the slower pace of summer up until like Aug. 4th or so. Around then, I start feeling like my house needs a deep cleaning and I need a moment of silence. But until then, I love the slower pace of mornings. I love hearing the kids playing together. I love the splashing in the little pool outside. I love all the fresh fruits and veggie from the backyard. I love how the grill makes cleaning the kitchen SO much easier. I love the light in the longer evenings for photographs.

But, gaaah. I swear, every end-of-school time, the kids get sick! So this year was no exception. All of the kids have fallen prey to this nasty nausea/vomiting thing. It's been a pretty low-key end of school/Memorial Day weekend.

Still, the kids were able to participate in the dance festival, so that was fun. Hannah had to miss out on field day, and she was super sad. We told her there would be other years, but that's hard for a first grader to really grasp. Still, while it would have been memorable, a field day with vomiting would have been all kinds of bad. ;)

Michael's class danced to the Hoedown Throwdown. (He was also in the middle of a lot of tall boys. It was hard to get a good angle.) It was so cute to see him dancing so wholeheartedly.

Hannah's class danced to the Ice Cream Freeze (notice a Hannah Montana theme here?) and she was really into it. I giggled half of the time just enjoying her seriousness.

And McKay uh...danced? to Footloose, a Lehi favorite! He mostly just watched me and giggled. Which was probably fair, since I was giggling at Hannah, right?

Friday, May 7, 2010

We're party animals

Sheesh, I'm all fun-ed out. (Yeah, I think there should be another n in fun-ed out, don't you? It is tough to make up words, I'm telling you.)

The kids think IHOP is all kinds of fun. Faces on pancakes, and all that jazz. And well, did you know that for every adult meal you get, a kid eats free? And the others are only $1.99? It's great when you have 5 kids. Plus, there is a balloon guy who strolls around making all sorts of balloon creations. McKay got a balloon motorcycle. I mean, really, that is talent. He was really nice and recognized right off that McKay has autism and was so kind and attentive to him. (You can check out his website. He's super nice.)

But really, between pancake faces, balloon creations, all the kids that come with restaurants that offer free kids' meals, and just taking 5 kids out to eat...I think I might need a nap. IHOP is not for the faint of heart.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Quality time

I am still not sleeping well.

So I'm all caught up on Lost. I also have seen all of the House episodes. Now I watch Castle at 3:30 am. A year ago I did over 65 hours of online Photoshop training at 3:30 am.

But, in the last few weeks, I've decided to just be still.

Usually Ella or Garrett have climbed into our bed by this time of the night. So, rather than getting up and trying to find something to do to keep my mind off of the quickly advancing hours that I'm not sleeping, I've decided to just be still and listen to their breathing and watch them sleep.

I still don't fall asleep again, but there is something so beautiful about watching my kids when they sleep. It feels like bottling a little bit of time. They're getting so unbearable big and while I adore each new stage and discovery, it is hard to give up their precious baby years.

I guess I can count insomnia as a blessing in the end.

Monday, May 3, 2010


I am just so excited! I never get to get pictures of Michael. He gives me about 2 seconds of looking at the camera before he is just 100% over it. But today, he sat for about 5 minutes. Yay! Isn't he handsome?
He's perpetually right up in the camera, but hey, I'll take it!

Aaaaaand, that's a wrap. No more pictures, please. Talk to my publicist.

Hannah was a little miffed that it was not her turn, but when I told her it was her turn...she just wanted to make funny grumpy faces. Love her! What a ham!

Maybe it really is spring?

This has been a flat out weird spring. (I actually accidentally typed winter, which would not be such an off-thought.)

The amount of snow we've gotten has been surprising. May 2nd, we woke up to a white lawn. That just ain't right.

But finally it looks like the weather is turning the corner. For the next five days, there is no snow in the forecast. So, with that meteorological blessing, I went ahead and planted my garden today. It's mostly just a bunch of tomatoes, peppers, and spaghetti squash, but we do have a few sunflowers, tomatillos, beans, and peas. We also had to replace one of the blueberry bushes, as one didn't take very well a couple of years ago. The fruit trees are doing really really well this year. I just hope the blossoms didn't freeze. The strawberries, raspberries and blackberries look promising too. Our grapes never look good. ;) I keep hoping one year, they will perk up, but it's never happened. I think I chose a bad location.

It was so much fun to sit outside and plant away while Garrett and Ella played and jumped and ran. The weather was so nice that it was really an afterthought. Not too hot, nor too cold. I love days like this. Nothing really remarkable happens, but life is just productive and good. I want to hang on to these days, because before long Garrett and Ella will be too old to be my partners in crime everyday, and I'll be so sad when that day comes.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Spring Beauty

Because Spring is beautiful...

It's been so long since I've posted

I don't know why I always feel like I need something really amazing to post about. When I read blogs, especially of people I know, I usually just like to know what's up in their lives. What are their little triumphs and what are their daily concerns.

I need to get better about doing that again.

For the most part, things are great. The kids are loving the warm weather. They go outside and play and bring half of the front yard in on their clothes. ;) Yay! Spring is here! I will gladly take the extra laundry if it means that the days of warm weather, outdoor fun, and social times are back.

McKay has done wonderfully this year. He asks before he leaves now. He loves to go visit our amazing and wonderful neighbors, the Farleys. If I call and ask if he can come over, Amazing Eve lets him come over and play. If he shows up and I have not called, she knows he's left without permission and sends him along home. I cannot tell you how this has changed our lives. Suddenly Spring is amazing and fun and wonderful. Not a constant running headache. Love Eve.

Ella loves playing outside. She's discovered riding tricycles, and playing with little neighborhood friends. She seems almost unbearably old! She also has such an expressive demeanor. With all of the warm weather has come pollen. Her little nose was running, so she came to me and said, "Ewwww mom! Icky water in Ella's nose!" Ha! I love how 2-year-olds think. And I love hearing all about it.

Life's been busy. We've been booking weddings and families and babies for photographing. Darwin's always busy with work or with being the most supportive husband ever. That IS a rough job, but he does it so well. We're still on the homework train. There's always laundry to do. But life feels so beautiful in the spring, doesn't it?

Monday, March 22, 2010

WPPI Rocks!

WPPI Vegas 2010 9

We had a most excellent time.

We decided in the summer of last year that we were going to go to WPPI 2010 in Las Vegas. WPPI is Wedding and Portrait Photographers International. So we joined this awesome organization and started planning.

Now, a quick trip to Vegas from Utah seems like no big deal, but to me, it was! I have 5 kids at home, ages 10 to just-turned-two. I never leave them for very long. A shoot is about the length of time I leave them, and usually it is with my ever-patient husband, Darwin. I even brought two of my kids (McKay, who was then 6 and autistic and Garrett, who was then 2) to the hospital to stay the night when my youngest daughter was born. So leaving for 5 days...big deal.

Still, we got the tickets in December. We booked a hotel. Crystal and I also called two other photographer friends, Leah and Eve, and before we knew it, the day had arrived and it was time to go. I was a little nervous, I admit. But before long, we were giggling and reading photography magazines in the car and counting the miles to Vegas. We were riding in Crystal's brand new Eddie Bauer Ford Expedition, enjoying the comfort of the space and the peace of no "road trip bickering" that every parent knows too-well. But we still called home every few hours. :)

Things were going pretty smoothly. And then suddenly...bam!

WPPI Vegas 2010 5

A loose bit of gravel cracked the windshield. Eek. Crystal's brand new car. Crystal broke the news to her husband, and he took it pretty well. The rest of the ride was pretty uneventful.

We went to check into our hotel, tired and hungry. We stayed at the Stratosphere, since it was a lot cheaper than the MGM and we had a car and parking is free. (Hey, we're a new photography studio...we're frugal!)

WPPI Vegas 2010 8

WPPI Vegas 2010 7

The next morning, we got up and headed down to the MGM to register and attend some classes. It was still early in the conference, so there were not many classes and not everyone had really arrived. We saw a presentation on album design and then we got to hear the amazing children's photographer, Audrey Woulard, speak. She was fun and funny, open and honest, and completely charming. It was worth it, arriving early to hear her speak. We were also so grateful we were able to get in, as it was a full class.

WPPI Vegas 2010 4

The next day, we got up to get to classes at 5:30 AM! The classes started at 8 am and we wanted good seats. What can we say? We are THAT dedicated. We saw greats like Kirk Voclain (LOVED his presentation on photographing seniors, and can't wait to incorporate some of his stuff. WISH we could do the underwater photography that he does. One day), Doug Gordon (crazy guy, great posing and lighting ideas), Marcus Bell (W.O.W.) and JB and DeEtte Sallee (genius wedding photographers and business people.) I even caught a free t-shirt in the Sallee's class that says "I Shoot People." Anyone who knows me and my tendency to say non-sequiters like "I just shot a newborn today!!" thought it was the perfect shirt for me.

But the speaker we were HOPING and waiting to see was Jasmine Star. was close. We almost missed out. The line was HUGE and thousands were turned away. But we got in. She was amazing. SO inspirational and so funny. So real and so giving. No wonder she is one of the top photographers in the industry. Her spirit and personality are larger-than-life to say the least. She held the packed room's attention for the full two hours. Amazing.

WPPI Vegas 2010 10

We also went to the tradeshow and were tempted beyond what any mortal photographer should be expected to withstand, but most of us came away financially-unscathed. (One of us...that might be debatable.)

WPPI Vegas 2010 6

One of the super cool things about the tradeshow was that there were tons of nifty speakers there. So we got the hear from Doug Gordon again, Baby as Art (Crystal was in heaven) and I was amazed and inspired by Louis Pang. He's a wedding photographer from Malaysia who is one of the best and most sought-after in the world. His lighting is first class. I soaked up his presentation and was humbled and inspired. I have lots of plans now for adding more lights to our OCF set ups. Woo! So, the tradeshow was also very very educational. (Not just shopping!)

WPPI Vegas 2010 7

Overall, we spent over 26 hours in classes, presentations, etc. at WPPI this year. We have so many plans and ideas and we feel recharged and ready to go. We are absolutely heading back next year.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Wait--isn't she already two?


Two years old today.

We usually are about to have another baby when our youngest reaches two years old. So, the fact she is still firmly in the "I'm-the-baby" category sort of makes her feel younger. She still gets toted around and cooed at by the older siblings and everyone calls her baby Ella.

But make no mistake. She is much more little girl than infant.

She will tell you exactly what she wants using a fairly complete phrase. She stays dry all night and all day. She dresses herself, even down to picking out shoes and socks. She is pretty darn fast once she hears the "Clean up" song. She can get her own carseat straps on and she waits patiently to be buckled up. (She also sings the "Buckle Up" song when she does this.) She LOVES nursery at church. She's just so big.

She's also pretty funny, because she is also not a girly-girl. Giving her a choice of birthday presents, the pack of Nerf balls--football, basketball, soccer ball--won out over dollies or dress-ups. She also can correctly name the different types of balls. When she picks out her clothes, she chooses Garrett's soccer ball shirt, or his Buzz Lightyear sweatshirt. It'll be interesting to see if these preferences stick, or if they are a passing thing.

Gosh, my littles are growing up.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

A revision on an old classic

So, once upon a time there was an old lady who lived in a shoe--or rather, a house in Lehi. She had so many children she didn't know what to do. Actually, she didn't know what to do alone anymore. She was ok with what to do with the kids. ;)

She also taught primary and nursery for years. Lots of kids came over to the shoe to play, so it was always full of busy kids.

In fact, when this little old lady had her youngest baby, she even had a few of the shoe-dwelling children come sleep at the hospital with her.

But then, this little old shoe lady decided to do photography. And then she started a studio with an awesome photographer. And she started hanging out with some really fun photographers. And they decided to go to the decidedly non-shoe-like Las Vegas to a big conference. WPPI.

The old lady was very excited...but she also wondered how would she do without her shoe and all of the inhabitants? Would the shoe still be standing when she returned? Luckily the little old man who lived in the shoe would be working from the shoe for a few days while the old lady was attending classes, going to shoots, and networking. Such a nice little old man.

So the little old lady is off to the crazy city for a lot of fun...but it is going to be a bit of a stretch to leave the shoe.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Big Four-Year-Old


He's FOUR!

Three is still *kind of* a baby. But there is an inescapable fact staring me in the face now. Garrett is NOT a baby. He's a little boy.

Of course I knew this, because he doesn't act like a little baby, but gosh, time has gone by so fast. This birthday has made me want to cuddle him more often. Because he's getting so old, so quickly.

It's been a big year for Garrett. He started preschool. He is getting pretty good on his trike, the trampoline, riding the scooter, etc. He started Sunbeams. He rocks at the Wii. (He is a backseat Wii-er though.

Also, he and Ella are becoming the Dynamic Duo. They spend the mornings devising all sorts of games. They color, they play with the Little People and superheros in the dollhouse, Garrett plays the Wii and Ella flails the inactive remote about as she impersonates Garrett. It's hilarious and touching.

While a tiny part of me is nostalgic for baby Garrett, I am excited to see what this year brings. And I am lucky that he's such an eager cuddlebug.

Happy Birthday, bud.

More funny stuff--Overheard

I have to tag all the funny stuff that my kids say as Overheard, so that when I search for it, I can find them all quickly. Ya know, for when I write my book. ;)

First, Michael came DASHING downstairs in a bit of panic. "I have GUM DISEASE!" he informed me, urgently. I looked up, alarmed, trying to figure out what he meant. He continued in his frightened tone. "I swallowed some gum!!"

Then we took the family and a few friends to play in the McDonald's playland for Garrett's birthday. While there, McKay ran behind the counter and said, "May I help you?"

Oh and McKay (referring to his robe pulled over his head): It's a Jedi Master thing. Then McKay says, pretending to talk to C-3PO, "Oh hi there, 3PO, what is that you're wearing?" Then, pretending to be C-3PO he said, "Oh, it's nothing but a pile of junk."

And finally, not so comical, but extremely poignant, McKay said, "I forgive people. That's my job." Which, when you deal with autism and how people react to kind of is.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Ella is not going to be 2 until March.

But she likes to wear the other kids clothes a lot. I assumed it was random. She's been doing it forever. Especially in the mornings. But then, today, she was dressing in her motley assortment of clothes, and I was astounded.

She put on a shirt and said, "Michael", and it was his.

And then she put on some shorts and said, "Garrett"

Then a button up shirt and said "McKay"

A light jacket and said, "Hannah"

Finally, a little purse and said, "Ella."

And the more I think about it, she DOES seem to pick more than one person's clothes, all the time. She seems, for whatever reason, to want to pick one article of clothing from each child.

Somehow that seems just insanely intricate for a not-even-two-year-old to come up with.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Overheard a la Ella

Every morning Ella wakes up just before Michael, McKay and Hannah go off to school. Today, Ella was seeing them off with, "!", "!", "!"

Then Darwin was leaving and she said, "Daddy....hide!"

Uh oh...what does she think he's hiding from??

The Science Fair

D'oh, again with the backwards pictures. I always forget how Blogger uploads. Oh well.

Michael did the Science Fair last week. I was so proud, because he REALLY wanted to do it, even though he got the information really late. He only had a week and a couple days to do his stuff, but he worked so hard every night.

Michael and Darwin did an experiement on energy efficency and asked the question, "Does it hotter water cool faster than warm water?"

They designed an experiement to test their hypothesis and ran it 6 times. They recorded the data and put it into Excel and made some graphs and they proved that yes, hotter water cools faster, so it takes more energy to keep hot water hot than to keep warm water warm.

I was really proud of how scientific Michael was about the whole thing. And with Darwin on the case, you can bet they followed the scientific method to a T.

I can't wait to see what they come up with next year! Give the boy three weeks and he'll blow them all away!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Overheard and other awesomeness

Yesterday was "Dads and Donuts" at the school, where the dads come and read a story with the kids and have a donut and just spend about a half an hour having some quality time together. In the morning, as we were getting ready for school, we told McKay that was what was going on today. McKay was so happy he did the "Dads and Donuts" dance. Once he finished performing his masterpiece, he asked if dancers ate donuts. I said I wasn't sure if they did. He said, "Well, they do now!"

Also, I am excited because I got to get another lens from my "reaaaaaallllllly want" list. A super cool macro lens. (Mmmm, for those photographers who read the blog, it is the Canon 100mm 2.8 L IS. Nice.) I am super excited.

Another bit of random awesomeness (as that is the theme of this post), Hannah and Darwin had a daddy-daughter date a couple of days ago and McKay and I did last night. (Well, not daddy-daughter, with McKay...substitute the appropriate nouns, if you will.) We'll rotate through all of the kids shortly. It is always easier to do these little evenings with the kids in the winter, because in the summer they seem much busier, much later in the evening.

Michael and McKay also started their third session of rock climbing with 'Splore this month too. They love it and it is a great sport for them. We shall see if I love McKay's newfound mad rock climbing skillz in the spring though. Hopefully he won't try to use them illicitly on the back fence. ;)

In some non-awesome news, poor Michael is so sick. He might be a super picky eater and I might worry about his nutrition, but he is one of my kids who is least likely to get ill, so when he does, it is always a bit of a shock to him. So, he was quite unamused this morning when he woke up, feeling violently ill. (Which is why I am posting this at 5:30 am. He is finally resting comfortably in a warm bath, and I am sitting here on the side, watching him--so he doesn't fall asleep in the water. Poor guy has been up since about 2:30.) So, a little prayer for Michael would be great. I think he'll be good to go in a few hours, but these first hours are always so uncomfortable and unfun.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Ok, I am gonna toot my own horn for a second

So, I revamped my Rachel Rehart Photography blog, because, honestly, it was getting TONS of Google hits and was leading people to the R+C Photography blog, so we figured we'd make it more accessible and easier to navigate and book from there, if people were interested.

So, I fancied it up with a new template and I designed my own logo! By MYSELF! (Well, I have to be honest, Melissa totally did help me figure out where the line tool was...because uh...yeah, I admit, I didn't know where it was. *blushing* I don't design much.) It is fun though, because it has galleries and all sorts of cool stuff.

Anyway, check it out and let me know what you think.

Rachel Rehart Photography

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Diary of a Worm

Have you read this book? Hee, it is so funny. The pictures are hilarious and the wry comments are sidesplittingly awesome. But the best part?? McKay quoting it at random times.

Imagine if you will, McKay saying (in a fairly serious tone), "April 15th: I snuck up on some kids in the park today. They didn't hear me coming. I wriggled right up between them. They screamed when they saw me. I love it when they do that."

Oh the hilarity.

Or, as McKay informed me last night, "I am such a joker." Truer words were never spoken.