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Kamel Turns 30! Today!

Several months ago I started plotting about what to do for Kamel’s 30th birthday. I wanted to get him something more extravagant than usual, something that would mark this birthday as one of the Big Ones. And I wanted to get him something he wasn’t asking for. Last year on his birthday I bought him cake and we signed the lease on this apartment. The year before we went on a sail boat in Monterey Bay.

I was hoping that we would also have some sort of big party thing. Maybe take a group up to Napa, maby have a big dinner at Kamel’s favorite restaurant – but I couldn’t pull that off this year. The whole making-a-human-thing set me back a few social planning points.

Anyways – back to my scheming. I wanted to get him a camera he never thought he would own. A camera that he always talked about renting, the camera he wished he could shoot our own wedding with. The camera he was using when we met! A Hasselblad.

The problem is I have no effing clue about cameras. Like… none. What I do know is that photographers are super picky about their cameras. They prefer certain lenses and brands. A camera is an intimate thing. So how was I going to pick this out not even knowing what the specs meant?! And! I had never used ebay before… I know, I know… but ebay is scary place of uncertainty for me and also the only place I could find the camera without a spending a lot of foot effort tracking one down. So! I asked Christy Tyler to help me figure out which camera would be a good fit for him.

We emailed back and forth, I sent her links to what I thought was doable and she read specs and told me which camera (500 CM, 500 CW, 501 CW, 500 CM?) would be a good one. To this day I still have no idea what these numbers and letters mean. So thank you Christy Tyler!!!! You saved Christmas Kamel’s Birthday and made me an awesome wife. I couldn’t help myself and gave Kamel his birthday present a few weeks early:

He took it to work to play with it and to test some portrait taking. But more on that on Kamel’s Saturday Post this weekend.

An actual film camera that limits the amount of photos you can take in one roll and makes the photographer really think about the shot. No automatic focusing and you don’t get to see how your picture turned out until they are developed. Kamel is now in medium format nerd heaven. Figuring out light settings, film type, what kind of focus he wants. And now that he is headed into old fart land, he has an old man camera to carry around with him.

We took the camera to the zoo. At one point a bunch of people started to gather around and say, “Wooaahh!! Look at that camera!” It’s pretty freaking cool.

Happy 30th birthday Kamel!! You will always seem so much younger than you actually are (in a good way) and I am incredibly lucky to have you as my buddy on all of our adventures. Here is to many many more years of your amazing laugh that makes me laugh, your magic forehead that never wrinkles, great food, building our family, and supporting each other through it all. I am loving you.

Taken this morning before 6:00 am because he is a Birthday Champ. You are 30 today Kamel!! YAY!


  1. Happy birthday, Kamel!! :)

  2. Happy birthday bo-belly!!! YAAAAY!!

    • Wooooo!!! Thank you!


    (Ok, fine.)

    Happy Birthday, Kamel!!

    • hahahaha Margaret you are always making me laugh. :) I had to give Kamel a little shout out room. I already had to tell him “No twitter! No facebook! Wait until I post it on your birthday!!” haha

  4. Happy happy birthday, Kamel! Have a wonderful day!

  5. YAY! Happy Happy Birthday Kamely!! So glad you got to be spoiled!

  6. Yay! Nice gift choice!!! You guys are so super to each other- stay well. :)

  7. Awwww YAY!!! Did he like it?! Did I suggest the right camera?! I was so nervous!!! It looks BEAUTIFUL! I want one! :)

    • Oh my god he LOVES IT! And yes! The CM! It is perfect. High five team us! hahaha Secret camera mission guru!

    • You guys rocked! =)

  8. That sounds like an awesome birthday gift! Can’t wait to see some of the pictures.

    And happy birthday to Kamel!

  9. “I am loving you” ?! I thought that was something only I said to my boo! <3s

  10. That is such an amazing gift! Happy birthday Kamel!


  1. BusyTown, USA | I'm Better in Real Life - [...] Finally a photo post from Kamel and his Hasselblad! [...]
  2. Saturday Edition on a Holiday: Hasselblad 501CM, The First 3 Rolls | I'm Better in Real Life - [...] for my birthday as you all know, Lauren got me my own Hasselblad 501CM and for Christmas I got …

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Who the hell is she?


Seattle/Writer/Adventurer/Married to Kamel/Maker of many mistakes/Mom of 1 Gabriel and 1 TBD/Baker of things/Roaster of Vegetables/Maker of videos/Normal life photographer/Romantic/Irreverent/Honest

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