taking after her brother {shutter speed}

Thank you for all your comments yesterday. I’ve read them all…and I’m going to print them all out to save. Maybe one day my little one will like to read them. For those that asked, registration for the September course is open. It is an exciting time for our family. I am trying to enjoy this journey and not get so focused on the wait to have all my kiddos together. I’m sure I’ll share more as the months go, but it will probably be a year before you get to see pictures of my little one in my arms.

It is crazy hot here. In 1934, Tulsa recorded the longest number of consecutive days over 100 degrees. Today, we tied that state record. The forecast for tomorrow is 112. Easy to say, we are breaking state heat records here.Β  My mom’s neighbor lets us enjoy her pool every now and then. This big kid is a great swimmer. He has loved the water since he was a baby.


The “I love water swimming” gene skipped my other two boys. Their sister, however, inherited it with reckless abandonment.

She is such a thrill junkie…her momma’s girl, for sure.

Photo tip: My camera settings were: ISO 100, f/4.5, and 1/200. I set my aperture at f/4.5, instead of my usual f/2.8, because I wanted to be sure if the distance between us changed, she’d still be in focus. However, my shutter speed of 1/200 was too slow to capture the action of her fall. If I shot this again, I would increase my ISO some, change my aperture to f/3.5 and increase my shutter speed. Her daddy was in the water.

I love this series. The settings for all four were: ISO 160, 1/320, f/4.5


Not only does she love going off the diving board, she is learning to swim. She can go a few feet on her own and almost comes up for a breath. I think if we had our own pool and swam daily, she’d be a swimmer by the end of the summer. It is really odd to watch her swim…looks like a baby swimming. I hate that my underwater camera died. I would love to have some underwater shots of her swimming this summer. πŸ™

It is so hot outside I have half a mind to lay down a tarp in the living room and fill up the kiddie pool…for me. The kids would make a mess.

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  • Robyn Farmer - She does look like a baby swimming! She’s such a hoot.

  • Emma - Ugh Ashley this makes me sad πŸ™ It is freezing cold here in my tiny part of southern Victoria, Australia. Can’t. Wait. For. Spring!! Don’t even get me started on summer…

  • Aaren - I missed your post yesterday as I forgot it was Monday (holiday here in Ontario, Canada). I read it today though and started crying as I got part way though. You and your family are such an inspiration to me. You truly are!! I love that God has placed people like you on this earth. Horray for you and your family your exciting journey!!

  • Carrie - ha, ha , ha – love that you assure us “her daddy was in the water” πŸ™‚ On another note, thanks for taking the heat – out in CA we are having a record “cool” summer with only a few days in the 100s and we are relishing every moment!

  • Kimberly - Adorable! We are hitting records here in Ohio too:(

  • mandi@herbanhomestead - Don’t I know it, sister friend! It is so hot here too. And we are in the worst drought in over 100 years! I feel like if we aren’t in a pool, we are caved in our house. The cabin fever is worst than winter for us!

  • Terry - Do they still sell disposable underwater cameras???

  • AshleyAnn - I’m sure they do…and now you see that I am a camera snob. It never dawned on me to buy a disposable camera! thanks!

  • Kandice - I live in South Tulsa/Bixby and I can totally relate to wanting to put a pool inside the house! I let my LO swim in his small pool in the backyard a couple days ago and he was still sweating despite being in the water!

  • cailan - Cute! Cute! And thanks much for the camera setting tips.

  • lindsey - HOW did you get your 2 year old to swim like that?? My 20 month old likes to play in the water but not put her face in. Any tricks?

  • natalie - I love her little pink toes.

  • Michelle D. - They do still sell disposable underwater cameras. I am going on vacation to Jamaica and bought one and am taking a small Nikon point and shoot because I’m too scared to take my “good” camera. Can’t afford to replace it if something happens and we will be on the beach and in the water a lot!

  • andiejaye - look at her go!! what a little fish!

  • Caroline - oh my! Firecracker IS really swimming!!
    Do show some photos of her swimming in action! apart from the last one in this picture.
    it would be too cool!
    She’s really one brave girl! I love!

  • Summer - Such cute pictures! And I feel ya on the heat. We’re at 31 straight days of over 100 degrees in Dallas, and it’s not supposed to stop anytime soon. 42 until we break our record…

  • Pooi Yee Lee - Dear Ashley, I read your posts today and I am thrilled for u! Congratulations!!

  • the inadvertent farmer - Ohh I love those little piggies hanging on the edge of the board!

    I’m so sorry about the excessive heat, we’ve got excessive cool…we’re only supposed to be in the 60’s today. My tomatoes are getting grumpy! Kim

  • Rebecca - I love her painted “piggies” in the shot with the the diving board.

  • Lisa Pummel - Isn’t the swimming gene a funny thing? I LOVE swimming! Pools, ocean, rivers, you name it! My little one is only 7 months, but so far she is not liking the water at all. Breaks my water heart! πŸ™‚

  • Melissa W. - That’s hilarious! What a sweet little swimmer! My youngest isn’t quite that brave but she loooves jumping in! πŸ™‚

  • Chris Campbell - What Ashley was nice in not saying is that her beloved husband broke our underwater camera and has yet to replace it. Hint Hint

  • Monica - I can’t help but smile looking at these photos of Firecracker jumping into the pool! I, too, was going to suggest a disposable underwater camera until you replace your other one. It’s not ideal, but you’ll be able to capture some great moments.

  • stylefyles - I’m not going to lie, it’s a little embarrassing to see your daughter jump in from the diving board like that. I’m 27 and still scared to jump in without plugging my nose. Good for you to have them around water!!!

  • amanda torres - Addie is a little daredevil also. You can’t throw her high enough, and there’s no height she’s not willing to jump from. I was thrilled she has been the same way in the water. In a lot of ways she’s shown her older brother how to live on the edge. He can’t have his little sister showing him up at the pool.

  • Jeannette - I’m about to put a pool in my house for me too! Not sure what else to do, but when I come in from errands, it takes me hours to cool off! Sweet girl is an adorable little fish!

  • Julie - I’m so excited for you and for your work towards adoption.

    My oldest boys (twins) are afraid of the water but my toddler is fearless. (Which scars me!) We don’t have a pool either but are lucky to have really great city pools which we visit pretty often.

  • Dee - I’m a day behind in your posts so I just read about your adoption…and I’m grinning ear to ear with my 14 year old daughter (adopted from China) sitting just a few feet away. Congratulations!

  • Kae - love the last photo of her swimming on her own!! that is a brave little soul.
    btw, i just read the last post, & i am SO SO SO excited for your family. i was not able to register for this month’s snapshop, but i have every intention to grab the next one! & now knowing that it will help your adoption process is making me reallllyy happy!! good luck in the upcoming months!

  • Kari - Those toes… so adorable! I curl, the color the emotion. Is anything better than a summer day in the pool?

  • Jennie Frake - these pics are adorable. makes me want to go jump in a pool!

  • manda - Thanks so much for sharing the settings.. I am not a photographer, but love taking pictures of my girlies…this weekend we were swimming at grammas and I was messing around with all the settings to get them jumping around. I got some good ones, but it always helps to know what people who know what they are doing, do πŸ™‚