Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Parents of the Week: Kelli & Brendan

This week’s Avant Garde Parents of the Week are Kelli and Brendan. They are photographers and own and run Nine Photography. As if that doesn’t keep them busy enough (!) they also have a smart, cute, talented son whom they adore. Read on as Kelli and Brendan talk about balancing owning their own business and being parents.

And remember, if you would like to be an Avant Garde Parent of the Week or have someone you would like to nominate, please email me at deluna.jamie@gmail.com.

Photo by Nine Photography
Tell me a little about you...do you dance in the car?
We are professional photographers who own our own business. We basically love to do anything artistic, and of course, we are parents most importantly. Photography was our hobby, and so now since we do that all the time, we haven't really taken up anything else. When we have time, we are usually still shooting, just for fun though.  Oh yeah, we totally dance in our car.  And we're good.......VERY good.

Tell me a little about your kiddo
Our son, Grant, is 10 and he's in the 4th grade.  Kiddo (We call him kiddo A LOT) is so funny and has a dry sense of humor. Before we got married, we were in a comedy troupe, so now we love watching Saturday Night Live and comedy movies with our son. It's just sort of our family dynamic to appreciate comedians and funny people in general. So Grant has picked up on sketch writing lately. I used to write sketch comedy, so it's easy to talk about what is funny and what makes something funny to you personally. Grant will be like, "Wouldn't it be funny if you had a guy who was dressed up in a chicken costume and then he........". Or we will be watching a funny movie, and he will say, "That wasn't really funny." He's becoming quite the critic.  :)

Photo by Nine Photography
He is very good at sports. He pretty much loves to play and be active doing anything that involves running and/or throwing a ball. He does well in school. Although, as much as I'd love to say he LOOOOVES it, he definitely would rather be playing than reading or doing home work. But he is an "A-B" student, so we aren't complaining.

OH, and he is a HUGE animal lover. He says he wants to grow up and have a farm with a 100 dogs.  He is a stray dog magnet, and if we'd let him, he'd take each and every one of them home.

What surprised you most about parenting?
All of it. Parenting surprises us pretty much on a daily basis. Just when you think, "Alright, we got this." BAM! Your child will go through another stage in their life. And you do wonder what you can do better and try to figure out what doesn't work at all. Grant responds well to discipline when we just simply talk about it. If you yell at him, he is a very sensitive kid who takes things waaaaaay to heart. Discipline changes with each stage, so it's been a constant learning. Also, not to steal Art Linkletter's thunder, but kids really do say the darndest things. We are always surprised at things Grant will say and what he knows and his intuition and common sense. They know so much.  

What one tip would you give other parents?
As sappy as this sounds, cherish every moment and don't be too busy with other things.  If you have a busy job (like um, well, most of us do), make time every day to stop and listen to your kiddo.  They are awesome.

How have you had to be Avant Garde as a parent?
Owning your own business and working from home is such a challenge because you can literally work 12 hours a day.  Taking my own advice from question #4 has been the biggest thing we have had to do.  We have had to get very creative with time and family nights and keeping on a consistent schedule.  Since we work from home during the weekday and shoot on the weekends, we have found that doing something on a weekday is awesome for us.  We will have a family fun night on a Tuesday.  And usually we will have the whole place to ourselves because most families are having fun on the weekend.  We went bowling last Thursday and played laser tag, and we were literally the only people there.  It's almost like we have rented out places for the night just for us!  


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