Hi!  I'm Jen Lebo.  I'm here to help you with all things

photography!  Life is more beautiful when you share it, so let's

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What Am I Doing?
02/28/2017
The Great American Portrait Project: Laura's Story

 Something is changing.  I can feel it.  Every morning, I sit down to write, and nothing comes out.  I mean nothing.  Nada.  Zilch.  Writing blog posts is becoming less fun and more challenging.  It used to be something I looked forward to, something that poured out of me.  Now, I find myself looking at a blank computer screen day after day.I've been wondering what has changed.  So I've been doing a little digging.  First I went to my blog.  I checked out the numbers.  Did a little research.  I took a look at what blog posts get the most views.  What do people enjoy reading from me?  I discovered that it was my personal blog posts that were most read.  The ones about my own children, my own struggles, my own journey.  These are my most read blog posts.  Now, before I say anything else, let me just clarify that I know this is not because my life is so interesting or dramatic.  Far from it.  I'm a wife, and a mom of three kids, doing some photography work on the side, trying (and way too often failing) to keep my ducks in a row.  This is not very different than most of the women I know who are reading this blog.So what is it then, that makes these blog posts more popular?  I'm not 100% sure, but I might have an idea.  More on that in a bit.But first, let's ...

50 Ways To Show Love With Your Camera
02/23/2017
The Great American Portrait Project: Laura's Story

 I am lucky and blessed to have a lot of love in my life.I love my family.  I have the most wonderful friends.  I love photography and my job as a portrait photographer.  I love encouraging others.  I love writing this blog, and sharing my thoughts and ideas, even if only five people are reading it.What I'd like to share with you today is how fun it is for me to combine all of these wonderful things together- friendship, family, fun, photography.  I love to use my photography to express my love.  But rather than bore you with more stories, I thought I'd just offer you a list of my favorite ways to do that.  Short, sweet, and to the point! 1. Display photos of the ones you love!  Get them off your computer and onto your walls.  Be reminded daily of your favorite people.2. Do a "photo a day" project for the first year of your baby's lives.  My sister-in-law did this and it was wonderful!3. Take photos of your children doing their favorite things.  This could be as simple as reading, or coloring.  Capture it.4. Invite your girlfriends out for coffee and photos.  Tell everyone to bring their camera (or phone!), as this date is for capturing photos.  Share them all with each other.5. Send your parents a framed photo of your family- one that includes you!6. Carry your camera with you more often. ...

Life Lessons From My Little Girl
02/22/2017
The Great American Portrait Project: Laura's Story

 "Brady, do you know who I am?"My sweet little girl looked at me and scrunched up her forehead, rubbing it hard with the palm of her hand.  She looked frustrated and confused, and very scared.  She could not answer me.  She could not speak to me.  I could tell that she knew me, but she could not say it.  Mom.That moment was the beginning of five of the longest hours of my life, when my sweet little girl had a partial seizure, stripping her of her speech and her motor skills.  That moment was just this past weekend, a long weekend watching my daughter lose a part of herself, then slowly come back to us day by day.  She and I spent three long days in the hospital, while doctors and nurses poked and prodded her, running tests to rule out everything from meningitis to stroke.  We cried together, snuggled a lot, and eventually got back to laughing and talking together, while our boys came to visit and took care of things at home.And after what felt like an eternity, my little girl and I left that hospital and went home, back to the love of our family and friends, and two brothers who were thrilled to have their sister back. I can say with certainty that I will never ever forget this past weekend.  But not just because it aged Scott and me at least 10 years each.  I know that I will look back at this weekend ...

The Day Everything Changed
02/16/2017
The Great American Portrait Project: Laura's Story

 I thought this would be an easy blog post to write, but for some reason it's been the hardest one yet.  I'm not sure why.  Maybe it's because it's not that easy to put down in words how one day, one event, can change the entire trajectory of your life.  Maybe it's because I'm feeling a little emotional about that day because it's moving too quickly into my yesterdays.  I'm thinking it might be a combination of many things.Like most moms, I can remember that day vividly.  I can remember the nine months of anticipation and excitement leading up to that day, how excited I became as my belly grew, how engrossed I would become with every kick.  I can remember the complete shock when my water broke and we knew the baby was actually coming.  I can remember how clueless I was that day to what actually lay ahead of me, the absolute certainty I felt that I was about to deliver a girl, and the pure shock (and delight) when the doctor said “It’s a boy!”.  I can vaguely remember the 24 hours of contractions and labor, the 3 hours of pushing, the momentary mention of needing a C-section, and the enormous and somewhat pointy headed baby that we eventually delivered.  I can remember the hospital room, the movies we watched as we waited, the hour my mother arrived to hold my hand, the moment Scott fainted, and so many other ...

Who Am I Really Expected To Love?
02/14/2017
The Great American Portrait Project: Laura's Story

 Happy Valentine’s Day!  I thought it would be fitting to spend some time today thinking and talking about love.  After all, today is the holiday for love.  But I don’t want to talk about romantic love today.  You’ll be bombarded with that all day as it is.  Today I want to talk about brotherhood, about love in the universal sense. I’m not necessarily speaking politically here.  We all struggle with feelings of love, and with feelings of hate.  We can look across the globe, or as near as our neighborhood to know that love can be a hard thing to come by these days.  But why is that?It’s important for me to note here that I’m not writing this post to educate anyone on something I’ve already learned, as if I’ve got this all figured out.  Far from it.  This might be one of the most difficult challenges I face everyday, and one I’ll struggle with until my final days.  In fact, it is because of that struggle that I want to write today.  Perhaps I am not the only one struggling with this.I also don’t want to throw my Bible at you, and get all preachy with you.  I know that some of you might not come at this from the same viewpoint that I do.  But bear with me, because I do want to share my faith with you a little bit, concerning this topic. ...