Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A note from My little brother; Michael

Click here to find out more about what my little brother Michael is gearing up for.  


Val :-)

Racing to Save Lives

Dear Friends & Family,

Without a doubt, I am getting ready for one of the most fun challenges of my life. On September 12, 2009, I will be racing in an Olympic distance triathlon in Pacific Grove, CA! That's a .9 mile swim, 24.8 mile bike ride, and 6.1 mile run, and yes all in one day. Luckily, I am not doing this on my own. I have joined the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team in Training program. Through this program, I have great coaches, mentors and teammates whose support will help me cross the finish line.

More importantly even than my physical commitment to the program is my commitment to raise funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in its effort to battle Leukemia and related cancers. These diseases strike some 107,000 Americans each year and acute leukemia is the number one cause of death of children under the age of 15.

One of the greatest contributions of the Society is toward research. Significant progress has been made in the treatment of this disease, and researchers are now optimistic that they will find a cure within 6 years!

I am not only competing in this race for the Society, but also in honor Esther Fluke, a Baby Boomer and a mother of three girls and two grandchildren. Esther was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma in June 2005, along with fighting T-Cell Lymphoma, which was found in 1992.

Research is the key to finding a cure, and funding for this research is essential. I have set a personal goal to raise $3,200 toward this effort.

As I compete in this Olympic distance triathlon, you will be with me in spirit, and your sponsorship will inspire me to train harder and faster to the finish line. Whatever you can do to contribute matters it all adds up! With over 75% of your donation going directly to research, you truly can make a difference.

Please send your donation along with the enclosed pledge form by June 19th so I can monitor my fundraising efforts.

Thank you so much for your support and generosity!

Michael Burnias


Saturday, May 23, 2009

Please accept my apologies

*UPDATE: The spot seen is believed to be benign. The doc feels that with Jan's frail state it is too risky to biopsy it. She will have another scan next month. Our hopes are that this tumor will stay the same and not continue to grow. Under normal circumstances it would be removed by surgery. The MD does not feel she will withstand surgery. Please keep her in your prayers. The power of prayer, good hopes and positive vibes is so powerful. Thanks so much.

Just a little note to all of my friends, colleagues and clients. The last two weeks have been filled with out of the ordinary surprises. Not that happy kind of surprise. The kind of surprise that is defined by the unexpected. I have had trouble sleeping, have been having random bouts of crying but then I bounce right back because I realize all the positive things I have in life. Best of all YOU! My supportive family, my friends and my awesome clients turned friends. I would hate for any one of you to ever feel that your not important to me.

Let me share with you someone VERY special in our lives, Janet. Janet is my husband Jack's Aunt technically; but in reality she is his mother. You see when Jack was a toddler his mother unfortunately lost a battle to MS. Jack's father was left to raise his two children alone. Working nights made this nearly impossible so Jack's two aunts stepped in to help raise him. The family suffered another loss this time to cancer leaving only Aunt Janet to raise Jack. She basically dedicated all of her time to raising my husband. Never marrying or having any children of her own. Jack is her son.

Janet is the most kind and caring person you will ever meet. Anyone that has had the pleasure of meeting her could tell you what a kind gentle spirit she is. I am so lucky to have such a wonderful mother in law. Janet has not been herself lately. This Tuesday the day started with a visit to her doctor. During the visit this nagging won't go away cough was mentioned. After having an chest X-ray the doctor called with concerning news. A spot was seen on one of her lungs that was not there on previous X-rays. After of series of events she had a CAT scan today. We will not hear the results until Tuesday.

As I type this I can't help to think what will we do without her? I pray that it is something very simple, something that can be fixed. I believe in the power of prayer, in positive energy, in good vibes whatever it is you can send our way would be TRULY appreciated. I am so thankful for all you.

Janet with my youngest Aedan.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Krystyna & Kenny - Engaged

They meet through mutual friends; had dinner at Ruby Tuesday's and the rest was history.  She could light up a room with her beautiful smile or as Kenny would put it; her smile is like the sun.  I met Krystyna and Kenny for the first time on the day of their engagement session.  I felt as if I have know them for years.  She told me about the house they bought together and how hard they have been working on it.  She also told me all about their baby; Mishu (their Yorkie).  Krystyna is also an avid gardener and what a green thumb she has.  It absolutely made sense to start their session at home!

Mishu was so FUNNY!  As soon as the shutter would stop he was like ATTACK CANON MARK II!

Out in front of their home sweet home.
One of Krystyna's favorite flowers in the garden pictured here with her favorite rock ;-)

Yeah, I was totally loving the wind and light.

New Cologne Ad anyone?  Call me.... LOL.
Yep, I was so excited about the light; I was talking like a chipmunk on crack again.
Those eyes!

Had a great time Krystyna and Kenny!  Even though Mighty Ranger kicked us out, lol.
Enjoy the show!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Taylor and Matt - Engaged - Boston, MA/Fenway Park

Another post LONG overdue!  Before I get to Taylor and Matt I have just got to say that this was such an interesting day!  It took us longer to get to Boston than what we planned on.  Let's just say spike strips, federal, state and city agencies, rifles and propel water was to blame.

Taylor and Matt knew each other since they were little ity bity grade schoolers.  After high school they didn't see each other until fate brought them back together while Matt was in the military in North Carolina. Matt popped the question after spending the day together in Boston, MA.  His favorite place so I've learned.  (Side Note: Matt makes an awesome tour guide, LOL.)  Matt is also a HUGE Redsox fan.  

Here was the plan.  We shoot their engagement session in Boston (that was a given).   Here is where the crazy day begins:

Matt's idea of the day that was planned was:
Arrive in Boston.  Get some shots around the outside of Fenway Park on Yawkey Way., visit some breweries, go to Mike's Pastry on the North End for some Canolli's (Which they did the day he proposed), Go back to the spot where he proposed and get down on bended knee for the Camera (Surprise Taylor).

Taylor's idea of the day that was planned was:  
Arrive in Boston.  Get some shots around the INSIDE and OUTSIDE of Fenway Park and on Yawkey Way. (Surprise Matt), Go to the Commons and to Mike's Pastry because they are so good and "Val, you have to try it!"

Val's idea of the day that was planned was: This is going to be AWESOME!!!

Here is Matt's expression when he found out we were actually going to be privately escorted into the Ball Park.  Straight from he camera.....He really did turn that shade of red!
Matt and Taylor are getting married July 19th so of course I had to incorporate it, Val style into the session.

Matt was in heaven by the dug out and his girl :-)
We were not there at the best time of day so I had to bust out the reflector for this shot.

After leaving Fenway Park we headed over to the Boston Common.

I absolutely LOVE this shot.  I become such a dork when I get shots like this; I practically hyperventilate from the excitement and begin to talk like a chipmunk on crack!
Seriously, shoes and hint - o - hands...

How hot are these two?
After leaving Boston Common we headed over to the waterfront; to the exact spot Matt proposed.  He then went down on his knee.  How sweet is that?
We were all cracking up....Wouldn't you like to know why?
Thanks so much Matt and Taylor!!!  We had a great long day.  Matt and Taylor treated me to Mike's Pastry and Fiore's restaurant in the North End.  If you haven't tried either of those places put it on your list of things to do.  It was incredible!  There were far too many to post so check out the slide show to see the rest.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

And we've got a WINNER!!!

Val McCormick Photography is participating in this years Miller's Professional Imaging Baby and Child Contest.  Last year their were over 10,000 entries and this year entries and votes and soaring to new heights.  Schedule an appointment with us up until June 20th, and your child's portrait will also be entered into the Miller's Professional Imaging Baby and Child Contest.  A range of prizes will be awarded from $500.00 - $5,000 in cash!

Portrait sessions are VERY limited so please contact us today to reserve your child's appointment.

Contest Rules:
Children and infants up to the age of 12 are eligible.  Only images taken between January 1, 2009 through June 20, 2009 may be entered.  Only one image per session may be entered.

Here are some more details:
Categories for this year's contest include: Color, Black & White/Sepia, Special Needs and Humorous.  The contest will consist of four different qualifying rounds and one final round.  Each round will last for one month.

I am closing this post with some super exciting news:
goes to Baby Olivia and her family!  This image won during the second round in the Humorous category and will be entered into the final round for a chance to win up to $5,000.00

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Body Shoppe Salon - Vote & Win a complete Make-Over!!!

One of these images of the beautiful women of The Body Shoppe Salon will be up on a new Billboard SOON!!! The talented and ever so generous Kellie Steeves Owner of the Body Shoppe Salon and Oxford Hair Academy contacted me asking if I can help out by shooting her team and Salon for her own promotional usage. We had so much fun!

Kellie's work has been featured on television, infomercials, newspapers, fashion shows and a numerous amount of other events, including giving a mommy makeover on TLC!

If you would like to win an entire makeover including, cut, color, blow-dry, style and make-up application. Here is the scoop! Check out shots #1, #2 and #3, vote for the shot you think should be their next billboard in the comment section. If the shot you voted for is chosen you will be entered into a drawing to win the Make-Over! That is SO COOL!!!! The make-over will take place at The Body Shoppe Salon and winner must make their own arrangements to get there. Voting ends June 30, 2009. Winner will be notified by July 15, 2009. Good Luck to you all!

If you would like to check their salon out and make an appointment be sure to mention "Val McCormick Sent Me" and you will receive a FREE cut with purchase of any chemical service! If your a Val McCormick Bride and book with Kellie be sure to tell her your a Val McCormick bride for a special treat.  

Also look out for shots taken this day including the girls at work, shots of the salon and so much more on their website as it becomes updated. You can check them out at by clicking

Here is shot #1 is this their next billboard?
Shot #2?
How about #3?
These girls were rockin' and rollin' vintage style!
The beautiful Mrs. Kellie Steeves....
Some more fun shots!