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Hi there! I'm Karen, a photographer serving families and couples all over the world.






Friday Faves: 5 Things I’m Loving Lately {January Edition}


Happy New Year from cold, freezing Ohio! We are having a Snow Day here since school is canceled due to cold temperatures, so I’m typing up my 5 Things I’ve Loving Lately while I watch the kids play in the snow. I’m sure I’ll need to go make some hot chocolate soon. December was a bit of a whirlwind, but we were able to slow down a little to do some fun family activities, celebrate Christmas, and visit with family. Here are 5 Things I’ve Been Loving Lately:

1. Christmas Lights

One of our favorite family traditions is to look at Christmas lights. We have a zoo pass, so we visited the zoo a couple of times and enjoyed their lights, especially the light show set to music on the pond. This was also our fourth year doing “The Pilot Express,” which I think has become the most anticipated Christmas tradition for our kids. They watch their pillows each night for a special golden ticket to appear, at which we all load up in our Honda Pilot – stocked with popcorn and hot chocolate – and drive around town, listening to Christmas music and looking at lights.

2. Advent Calendar

I grew up doing an Advent Christmas calendar, and it’s so fun to pass this tradition on to my own kids. Each night we open a new drawer that has a candy for each of them, and we follow along with this Advent book that comes with special readings, a Bible verse, a poster with daily stickers, and other fun activities.

3. Snowflakes

I may not love the freezing temperatures, but I do love snow, especially macro snowflake pictures! I recently wrote a tutorial for capturing snowflakes macro images for the Clickin Moms‘ blog. It was so surreal to be able to contribute to it after reading and learning from it for many years myself. You can read all my tips and tricks here! AND we had a white Christmas this year! I can’t even remember the last time that happened. It was absolutely beautiful and magical to watch the snow fall Christmas Eve and to wake up to a winter wonderland Christmas morning.

4. Vitamins

If you are like much of the US and trying to start the New Year with healthy goals, a small but great way to do that is with daily vitamins. My absolute favorite vitamins are these gummy vitamins. They taste so good and don’t have artificial flavors or preservatives, which means I feel good giving the kids version to Ethan and Abby!

5. Photo Cubes

One of my goals this year is to print more often. They say that you shoot for yourself and print for your family. I’m always looking for fun ways to get the pictures in my kids’ hands, so when I recently had a chance to test out these photo cubes and ornaments from Walgreens, I was excited to choose some favorite images and print some for myself! They are lightweight but still sturdy and fun! Abby keeps rotating them, trying to choose her favorite side.

I’d love to hear what you’ve been Loving Lately and your favorite holiday traditions! To see what I was Loving Last Month, read here, and to see more of our Schanely family fun head over to Instagram and follow along:
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*This post includes affiliate links. Thanks in advance for any support of Karen Schanely Photography!






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