That Time I Took A Broken Camera To Florida

You may have noticed things were a little quiet around here last week… or maybe you didn’t.

Either way, I gave myself the week off to enjoy a trip to the TradeWinds Resort in St. Pete Beach, Florida, and to celebrate my birthday.


The lovely Palm Court Italian Grill at TradeWinds surprised me with cake and an amazing dinner on my birthday.

I had super grand plans for this trip I was covering for 5 Minutes For Mom (full review to be posted over there shortly- you’ll LOVE this place if you need a great beach escape for your whole family). The biggest of my plans was spending time taking gorgeous pictures.

It’s so rare that I get a chance to really focus on the act of photography. Most of the time, I try to snap something really quick, giving a little thought to exposure and the technical details, but never having much time to think creatively about posing and lighting before a kid tries to grab my camera or one of them needs me to do something that requires me putting it safely away.

This time, I was going to rent wide angle and macro lenses. I was going to bring a tripod and a remote. I was going to experiment and get creative, spending my days on the beach at sunset, dreaming of getting the perfect shot to blow up and put on a canvas to hang in our room.

And then my plans started to fall apart. My already finicky Canon MK II started giving me a error a couple weeks before the trip. I looked into sending it off to get fixed, but I wouldn’t get it back in time for the trip, and I had other projects I needed to complete with it. I fidgeted and fussed with it to get it to work 30% of the time. I figured if I can only get 30% of the pictures I wanted in Florida, that would be okay. I had 3 days, after all.

I chose not to rent the lenses because I was going to need to save that money… to buy a new camera. Yup. I. was. done. with my MK II. We’ve had a rocky relationship from day one, and I was sick of it. I did a ton of research on the 6D, a new full frame camera by Canon that has wifi capabilities! I knew we were meant to be soul mates.

Scott waited in line with all the kids to go down the TradeWinds big beach slide. Thrill seeker.

Problem? By the time I could order it, it wouldn’t be delivered until 2 days into our trip. I did NOT want to risk having it delivered to the resort, so I prayed my MK II would give me one final run and at least a handful of decent shots.


It didn’t work the ENTIRE time we were there. My tripod, my remote, my plans were all for nothing. I took it out on a sunset sail with us, in hopes I would get just ONE random, lucky shot out of it (because, remember, it WAS working 30% of the time before we got to Florida). Scott’s words as we were heading out of the hotel:

“I don’t think you should bring that. I’m worried it’s not going to work, and you’re going to throw it into the ocean.”

It’s like I throw things, or something, when I get mad. What?

So our entire, gorgeous trip to the beautiful St. Pete Beach and Tradewinds Resort is all documented via iPhone. And you know what? I’m not that upset. It was a great challenge to rock what I had, to not rely on fancy technology or Photoshop and Lightroom (though I did process these with Snapseed and then some more in Instagram for a few).

Of course, I had to indulge in a (virgin) beachy drink. The baby really enjoyed it.

Maybe I enjoyed the experiences more not lugging around my big camera? I don’t know, but that little iPhone camera sure was handy and did a great job. Can’t wait to print the pics using some of my favorite ways to get pictures off my phone and into my home.

Dolphins at sunset on my birthday. AMAZING.  

Stay tuned for the introduction of my new Canon lovah- the 6D! OMG, making out with it so hard right now.

Huge thanks to TradeWinds Resort for sending us out there and giving me all these great photo opps, regardless of the camera I had to use. I’ll let you all know when I do the full review for 5 Minutes For Mom.

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  1. I take all of my pictures with iPhone. Of course, it doesn’t perform very well if there’s not enough life, and I am not a professional photographer by any means, but I have a few shots that are amazing and it’s unbelievable they were made with a phone. Plus – you only get the shots you take, and it’s much handier to carry a phone with you than a big ass camera with appropriate lens selection. The photos in your post are great!

  2. Great photos! I am not a photographer, but my point and shoot got all weird about 6 months ago and I started using my iPhone. I haven’t looked back. It’s amazing what that little sucker can do. Can’t wait to hear about the family friendly vacation!

  3. I’m scheduling a little rendezvous with the 6D at the end of April as a rental. You make me want to get that date moved up on the calendar stat. I’m so worried I’ll fall in love and not want to send it back. Jealous you’ve made her your very own but so sorry it came at the expense of some fun beachy photog opportunities. Way to rock the iPhone!!

  4. Cassandra Nolen on

    Sounds like you had a great trip! I personally have learned the joys of going more places camera-less (fully enjoying each moment instead of fiddling with the camera!). Sometimes all you need is a little snapshot to remember those great moments, not an impressive work of art. Just curious if you were able to return your MK II for a refund? Doesn’t seem like you’ve had it very long?

  5. Courtney Farranto on

    Just curious..which iPhone do you have? I’ve desperately been trying to convince my husband I need to upgrade from my crappy basic phone to one and I feel like this post might help convince him 🙂

  6. I’m currently looking to invest in the 6D and it sounds like it is definitely worth it according to you!!! I have the 5D Mark Series now and just find it is too difficult to take pictures of the fast moving kiddos inside. How is the 6D with indoor light with the kids??? It looks like it does the trick from your previous posts. Also I am new to your blog and really love your honesty about motherhood and life. As a working mom myself, you make the crazy not seem so crazy 😉

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