Muse: sneak

Saturday, October 29, 2011

In my molasses-like crawl to turn my short film script, The Department of Signs and Magical Intervention, into an actual production, I took a big jump forward today, running around town with a friend and muse to shoot some inspiration images. And one of the wonderful things about being a photographer and a woman is that when gobsmacked by a another woman's beauty, I can beg to take their photo and hopefully not come across as weird and skeevy. Who needs Hollywood star Jessica Chastain when I have my own? Here's a fave from today:


Jeff & Elisabeth are married

Thursday, October 27, 2011

One of the wonderful things about my work is hearing the love stories that brought these couples together. Jeff and Elisabeth's is an international affair, he in Bangladesh, she in the states, and on a perfect Sunday, they reunited in Memphis to finally become husband and wife. After a beautiful ceremony and reception at the Metal Museum, we scooted over to the Corn Maze and jumping pillow for a post-day shoot, and now? Now I am super spoiled and may insist on all my weddings including trampolines. A special thank you to Chip Chockley for being my wingman. Congratulations Jeff and Elisabeth! Here's a sampling from the day!
















corn duo




Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I remember many years back hearing about Meg Ryan adopting a daughter, naming her, and then maybe a year later, changing the kid's name to something else. Because, according to Meg Ryan, she just wasn't a Lily or a Ruby but was now whatever new name had caught her fancy.

It seemed a weird if not potentially cruel thing to do, but perfectly in keeping with celebrity whimsy. I mean, they can't wear the same dress twice. Why would we expect them to stay true to their progeny's given name?

So where am I going with this?

It's not that I don't like my son's name.

I do.

I just wasn't my first choice.

My first choice was something that Caleb wouldn't get on board with, but Declan was his favorite. The more I said Declan out loud and in my head, it grew on me, and his first choice combined with my second seemed like the winner.

The baby came, the baby was named, and most of the family seemed to like it, even more than my first choice.

And six months later, I read about the impending birth of an acquaintance's son, baby Fox.

It was a like a punch to the gut.

It was the name I wanted for my son. It was cute and irreverent and a name I'd loved since my obsession with the X Files and all things Fox Mulder. Coupled with one of my favorite movies, The Fantastic Mr. Fox, the name just seemed ideal for the newest Sweazy.

But there was the fear of a lifelong deluge of Fox stuffed animals and figurines that I would have to haul by the sackload after each birthday and Christmas. The inevitable playground taunt that would send my little Fucks Sleazy home crying. (Fucks and Harlot, what a pair, right?)

But still. Fox!

I'm not sure what makes me sadder - that gut realization I should have fought harder for the name or that I have a much larger issue with not being confident with the choices I have made.

My Declan is my Declan. It's a great name. And let's be honest, there's a reason all that bureaucratic red tape exists because of flip floppers like me. I'll take my baby D over months of paperwork with the social security and birth certificate offices.

Any of you have a name that was the Name that Got Away?

McElroy: Sneak

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A favorite image from today's super fun family session!


Anthony & Kate Get Married: Sneak

Monday, October 24, 2011

A favorite from this weekend's lovely fall wedding



Saturday, October 22, 2011


A sneak peek from a favorite family session.

And my obsession with the Asuka wallpaper from Osborne and Little continues. When I die, would it be bad form to have my tombstone wallpapered with this?


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

My guilty pleasure during wedding/portrait season? Netflix. (and whatever Hulu will let me watch for free). When a wedding is finished, I'm giddy because 1) I get to sit down and 2) I get to watch the latest 4 episodes of Modern Family or Fringe or yes, I'll confess, Castle, because I just can't quit you, Nathan Fillion. Even with the terrible. cliched plots and writing.

Because I shoot digitally, every session requires some dedicated editing down time. Sometimes I listen to music while I process photos ( a current fave is the Pumped Up Kicks station on Pandora). A lot of the time I listen to podcasts (Fresh Air and The Moth are mainstays), but really, catching a series I never made time for when it originally aired - while I'm working - makes me feel like I'm eating a giant piece of cake of breakfast, just because I can.

So there's this show? On FX. It's called Damages.


Why didn't you tell me??

This show has been on since 2008, and I am just now clueing into the fact this may be one of the most entertaining, brilliantly written series on TV.

What I was not prepared for was how I would need to put my life on hold for the next 24 hours to watch the entire season, because y'all, I didn't have a choice. I HAD to know what was going to happen to bloody Ellen in the flashbacks, to the pompous, vulnerable villain played by Ted Danson, and that devil in the $1000 suit skirt, Patty Hewes, played by Glenn Close.

Not every subplot worked (stalker girl?) Some of the logic failed me in the end, but the show was consistently suspenseful, brilliantly acted and my new preferred method of running photoshop actions. Cause the great thing about being so behind on the show? I have 3 more seasons to go!

Man of Mine

Saturday, October 15, 2011

our first pic

Six years ago today I married the man of my dreams.


I had a premonition that I would meet him five years before I did, down to the sweatshirt and the basketball game we were playing.

We officially met on my 25th birthday. The photo above was taken on my 28th. It took those three years for fate - or maybe my love of throwing giant, kickass, joint birthday parties, to lead us back to each other. Whatever needed to happen, I'm so grateful it did.

I love you, baby.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011




Six Months

six months

Jeff & Elisabeth: Sneak

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A fave from last weekend's glorious wedding.



Monday, October 10, 2011

Egads I am behind on posting pics. This one is a fave from a lovely wedding I assisted with the mahvelous Chip Chockley.



Saturday, October 8, 2011

Have the rest of you fallen down the rabbit hole that is Instagram? I was only partly destroyed when I realized I hadn't brought a card for my camera, knowing I could grab some fun shots and make them awesome with my fave app.

But not much magic required when you attend a unicorn party. That's included.

party on the river

party on the river

party on the river

party on the river

Hair today, gone...later that day

Thursday, October 6, 2011


I said I was never going to do it again.

And can you blame me?


After that catastrophe, I vowed to never cut my hair again. It might result in me perennially wearing nothing but long nightgowns and traveling exclusively in the company of cats, but I would just pin that shit up, and when the time was right, let down those curls and exult in the thrill of long, sexy hair.

But then I had the baby, and the Great Shed of 2011 began in earnest. I started looking less fertility goddess and more Jenna Maroney on a windy day. My hair was falling out in gobs, and Declan got into the spirit, doing his part to rip out a few strands every time he could grab a fistful. Every day was a bad hair day, even if I had the blessing of time to wash and dry and style it.

I was tired of the greasy ponytail, the horrible breakage, looking like a haystack with limbs.

So I did it.

Before I could talk myself out of it, I cut it off.

If hair doesn't have nerve endings, why does it hurt so bad?

Long bob


Sunday, October 2, 2011

A fave from today's engagement the Blessing of the Animals. Currently the owner is being very blessed.



Saturday, October 1, 2011


I was in the Target parking lot today (an activity that passes for exercising these days), working to get Declan out of the car when Minivan lady parked next to me hops out, barrels past and I'm like, whoa, lady with a baby here and she's all Yeah? TWINS, bitch! as she extracts her doublewide ride from the back of her Odyssey.

She didn't really say that. But her high pitched "oops!" as she squeezed past totally did.

So I'm staring into her open minivan, the twins' matching carseats locked and loaded, when I noticed a plastic tag affixed to the seat closest to me.

"Please wash your hands before touching mine" it read.


Do I hate it when people come up and touch my baby's hands? Yeah, kinda. But 2 things here. 1) I hate other things more, and I think trying to banish germs while wheeling your infant in a shopping cart around Target is about as logically sound as sleep training an infant at the Volvo dealership. And 2) at my core is my southern upbringing. Southerners don't say what we mean; we expect people to already know it and then quietly seethe when they go and do something to the contrary. You certainly don't just go and have it specially printed on a tag.

And really, what are you saying here? Do you offer a bottle of hand sanitizer clipped on the other side of that car seat? No. While your placard sends Joe Q Public's grubby little mitts in search of warning-free baby cheeks to infect with baby anthrax, you've made a safe getaway to the sitter, just in time to catch the matinee of Contagion.

Every mom's got their crazy re: baby threshold. What makes you batshit? The germs? The cough in the quiet house that wakes the baby? Republicans? Tell me.