I Am Baker

froggy business

If you can agree to any of the statements below, just stop reading this and move on with your day.  Trust me.

1.  You passed high school Biology.  (The frog dissection part).

2.  You have basic knowledge of how frogs procreate and give birth.

3.  The idea of seeing frogs being intimate does not gross you out.  Likewise, watching frogs have babies is not gross.  Because really, I don’t actually know what I have captured a picture of.

pond life: frogs

 If you happened to have answered yes to the above statements but are still here, don’t say I didn’t warn you.  The sheer stupidity that I am about to admit has sent me lurching down a shame spiral.  To this day I still do not know what I saw.

It all started innocently enough.  I was working inside last Saturday and the kids came running in.

“Mom, mom!  The leeches are taking the frog down.  They are killing it!”

Well, that sounds lovely.  Why don’t I head down to the pond with you and check things out.

So we all venture down to the shoreline, me with camera in tow.  In my mind I had conjured up an image of a poor sickly frog being slowly sucked to death by dozens of ravenous leeches.  I was prepared for gross.  Or, at least I thought I was.

There was one little froggy hanging out on a branch so I snapped his mugshot.  But as I looked into the water, things got weird.

pond life: frogs


There were a lot of frogs.  I want to say at least a hundred just in one of our ponds. And they seemed to be mating.

I stared at them.  I mean, as a city girl I had never really seen a lot of frog mating and honestly I was a bit fascinated.  Grossed out, but fascinated.

The kids were asking questions and I was pretending I didn’t know, because having a “birds and the bee’s” discussion wasn’t in the cards for that day.

I mean, there were frogs humping everywhere.  It was like amphibian smut.  Explicit frog art.  The “birds and the frogs”.


pond life: frogs

But then I looked even closer.

There was this stuff everywhere.

Black strings of stuff.  EVERYWHERE.

MASSIVE amounts of it.

pond life: frogs

All around in the water there were globs of it.

pond life: frogs


Turns out its frog babies.

That is not the technical term (and since I am not planning on looking it up anytime soon I will just stick to that), but I will hold fast to the wild assumption that it’s babies based on the little I do know about the birthing process.

That and this picture.

pond life: frogs


Where it seems that the babies are being ‘laid’ or ‘born’ or excreted from a frog.  Is it coming from the top frog?  So the female frog is on top?

Oh,  ok.  I get it now! 

Um, no, no I don’t.

So as I stood there in complete disbelief that I could be so entirely clueless about the frog mating and birthing process, I noticed the blobs of black frog babies were moving.


pond life: frogs

That’s when I noticed the leeches.  There are three that I can see in the picture above.  They were feasting.

Ugh, that word makes me shudder.

They were writhing and rolling and feasting on the unsuspecting unborn.

It was a horrific.  It was nature.  My husband got excited at the prospect of fat leeches for fishing.  I declared myself incapable of comprehending the frog baby murders occurring right before my eyes.

The kids got hungry and went inside for snacks.

My disbelief froze me.  I stood there, camera poised but not taking any pictures.  Just watching.

After some time a lone frog made his way over to me and started croaking.

It was so loud it hurt my ears.  Was it a mating call?  Was he warning his fellow comrades of the brutal leech feast occurring on his potential offspring?  Was he just sick of me standing there?  I will never know.


pond life: frogs


I did manage to capture this moment of that sweet little frog croaking so loud his vocal sac was about to burst.

It was so still in the moment leading up to his song that the water reverberated with his chorus.

pond life: frogs

That was cool to see.

So while I am  fully scarred from the days events and will never fully understand what we all witnessed that day, at least I can look back and appreciate the frog song.

And when I say appreciate I really mean not appreciate.  It is SO loud and annoying!  My brain was hurting.

Moral of the story: Frogs are weird.  I do not understand frog sex and baby making.  They are loud. Leeches are disgusting.  Having ponds is not as cool as you would think.

The end.

I Am Baker


Life has been crazy.

I have been stressed and calm and happy and sad and excited and dejected and that was just today.

Since updating my mommy blog has been something I have been wanting to do forever but have been woefully negligent in doing so, I am just going FULL BOAR on it tonight.



This little man is growing up.  In less than a month he will be 3 and I cant handle it.  He is my snuggle bear and so stinking cute and makes us all laugh on a daily basis.

I have started taking our sweet Eddie to speech therapy once a week.  It was a tough choice because he is so small and because it’s quite expensive and our deductible is very, very high so we pay for most everything!  But he is worth it and I am hoping to see some improvement soon.  He seems to have a hard time with “sm” words and “pr” words.  He also drops words and doesn’t care to identify ‘he’ and ‘she’ correctly.  All fixable, and the prognosis is very good.



This sassy malassy is a stinker winker bear.  My sweet Audrey.  Full of spirit and words and energy, I find that she is my greatest challenge everyday.  Not only does she love to get dressed up as a princess (every.single.day.) but she is now obsessed with Elsa from Frozen and is constantly asking for us to tie blankets around her so she can have a long cape.  Not that the cold bothers her, that is.


Cookies on Blue Plate by Parker


 Cookies on Red Plate by Colton

I have been trying to teach Colton and Parker photography basics.  So far we have started on food photography, and they are LOVING it.

The above assignment was for the kids to pick any props they wanted and they had to “style” the shoot.  Once they got everything laid out they way they wanted, we put the camera on a tri-pod and talked about lighting.  How light bounces and reflects and shadows and natural vs. artificial.

This has been challenging because I am always learning as well!, but youtube has some great tutorials.

Secretly I am hoping one of them really has a passion for photography and I can start asking them to take all my blog pictures for me!

Intentional Parenting


I started writing a series on Intentional Parenting.  I have two weeks done now, and its really making a difference in my life!  Just hoping to do some more research and get some life experience before I share it.  Hoping it will help others as much as me!

I have also started running.  As in, running.  I know that is hard to believe as anyone who knows me knows I HATE RUNNING.  One day I just woke up and said, “I think I need to like running.”  And I did.



This was the first time I ran over 2 miles.  I think I had a permagrin that whole night.  It felt SO good to reach that goal!

Tonight I ran 4 miles in 52 minutes.  That actually equals out to be a slow jog, like a 13 minute mile, but its a big deal for me.  A BIG deal.  The night before last I ran for one hour straight.  No stopping.  An hour!

I look forward to my run everyday and have thankfully avoided injury thus far.  My biggest challenge to date is mental.  I get bored.  I get distracted.  I get tired. (da)  So hubby downloaded The Biggest Loser and I watch that.  It’s been REALLY helpful and inspirational.  (I tried running without it and was only able to go a mile… that goes to show how mentally weak I am!)

Just hoping I can stick with it and get healthy (er).

Surprise Inside Cakes Cover1

image credit susan powers

Last but not least is this guy.  Officially on the book store shelves in 2 days.  Talk about a labor of love!  I have developed such a huge respect for the people in this industry.  The literary agents and publicists and publishers and editors and copyeditors.  Wow.  Those folks are such a talented and creative and AMAZING bunch.  I hope to have the opportunity to know them more in the future.

That being said, if you have not purchased the book do it NOW! (please)  I want to share this experience with you and read it with you and bake cakes together!

Amazon: http://goo.gl/zX1V9k

And with that I am headed to bed.  (And I didnt even talk about homeschooling!  I have some big changes to report on that front.  Hopefully soon!)

Be blessed!

I Am Baker

keep on clickin

Photography has been a bit of a conundrum for me.  I love love love to take pictures, but have never felt much confidence in it.

Hoarfrost in Minnesota #iambaker


I am enamored with the idea of capturing a moment in time.  With causing others to stop and appreciate something that they may or may not have noticed prior.  With finding beauty in the ordinary.

Hoarfrost in Minnesota #iambaker


Recently I created a new Media Kit, which is basically the equivalent of a bloggers resume.  I actually hired someone to do this, as resumes are not my strong suit.  One thing that I was tasked to do is define my occupation.

(Apparently “blogger” is not sufficient.)

Hoarfrost in Minnesota


And there, in black and white and looking as scary as ever, I had written ‘Photographer’.

The timid insecure girl in me wanted to immediately follow it up with, “…but not a good one, I just do it because I have to!”

Hoarfrost in Minnesota 2013


But I shouldn’t have.  Because even if my images are not as professional as they should be, or correct in composition, or are over sharpened, or are of the same leaf that has been photographed a million times before…

Hoarfrost in Minnesota 2013


…even if they are not beauty in someone else’s eyes, that is ok.

I have to say it again;  If others don’t like what I do, its ok.


Hoarfrost in Minnesota 2013


They are an extension of me.

Of my perspective in this world.

And my soul finds purpose in that very simple expression of self.

So for now, I will keep on clicking.

I Am Baker

things i am thankful for

Something I have been trying very hard to do is be intentionally thankful and grateful for the blessings.  Here are a few of late.

The Kids Playing

cute kids congregating

Symmetrical Swinging

sensational smiling and symmetrical swinging (see?)

Spider Web

dads and husbands dutifully destroying arachnids


intelligent indépendant infinitely


incredible inga

Baby Olivia

 original olivia

(and all my babies!)

I am also thankful the beautiful setting in all of the images above.  It is a luxury rental home that we rented through All Star Vacation Homes.  I can’t wait to show you the inside… and tell you why its the best choice we even made!


I Am Baker

nothing gold can stay

iambaker.net landscape photography

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.

iambaker.net landscape photography
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.

iambaker.net landscape photography
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,

iambaker.net landscape photography
So dawn goes down to day.

iambaker.net landscape photography
Nothing gold can stay.

-Robert Frost

I have loved this poem since the moment I first heard it; which ironically was in the book The Outsiders.  I couldn’t help but be reminded of it as I gazed upon golden leaves falling to a diamond frost covered ground.  Its a good thing I live in Minnesota, as the changing of the seasons is often a soul event for me!

I Am Baker


I could not resist sharing images of the sunrise this morning.

sunrise in minnesota
As I stepped out into the cool crisp morning air, its almost as if I could hear the colors the sun was weaving through the sky. They laughed and danced and stretched and paraded about in subtle grandeur.

The peace and joy that overwhelmed me can only be likened to intense love.  It was fulfilling.  It was majestic.  It was awe inspiring.

sunrise in minnesota


I stopped and prayed and gave thanks to a God who delighted in delighting me.

How lucky I am to get His grace anew every time the sun rises! (Did you know YOU are that lucky too?)