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    I'm Janica, a Houston-based portrait photographer, and this is the JBO PHOTO blog. Here, you can check out my recent work, get the scoop on jbo photo sessions, and find out more (probably a LOT more) than you ever wanted to know about the day-to-day adventures of my quirky family.

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I have an 11-year-old. His name is Parker.

Eleven years ago, at 12:45 p.m., my life was ruined.

An 8 pound, 9.6 ounce baby CAME OUT OF MY BODY…and he changed everything.  The life that I had been leading for over 24 ignorant, care-free years was ruined.  And on October 19th, 2004, the personified promise of Parker snuggled warmly against my chest and I understood in an instant how much fuller life could be.  It’s hard to believe that I even existed until my child was born.  I never truly knew the depths of love, hurt, fear, or pure joy until he taught me how to experience them.  Motherhood is filled to the brim with violent emotion.  I savor it.

Now let’s talk about Parker Day Boles.  He’s not a boy, not yet a man.  OK, actually, he’s totally a boy.  But more and more often, I can catch glimpses of him furtively dipping his toe in to the proverbial pool of manhood.  For example, he has an official crush!  Even if he hadn’t told me himself, his Instagram profile would have.  Yeah.  It’s THAT serious.   His awareness of the world is simply blowing up, and I want so desperately to give him all the spoilers, but I know that some lessons are best learned first hand, even (especially?) the painful ones.  But, 11-year-old Parker, I will offer you the following:  Tell lies….and then feel the way they burn hot and ugly in your guts.  You’ll discover how the truth, even the difficult truth, will keep your heart light and your head clear.  Be a friend.  You will never understand the power of a genuine smile until you are the lonely recipient of one.  (They can be a game-changer.)  And finally, don’t ever assume that you have things all figured out.  My greatest hope for you is that your life will one day be ruined by something of epically awesome Parker proportions.

I love you with all that I am, my sweet P.  Happy birthday.

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