30 September 2011

weekly interrogation: Kim Orlandini!

This week I'm so excited to share Kim Orlandini! She too is a photographer, and an incredible one at that! In addition to all the hats she wears (listed below), she is also an adoption advocate; check out her blog for information and inspiration on the subject. I can also vouch for what an incredible, strong, and lovely person she is!


name: Kim Orlandini

website: www.kimorlandini.com


1.What do you “do”?

I am a photographer, a mother, a graphic designer and sometimes a good wife. Bwahahahaha.


2. Why do you do what you do?

I am fascinated by the process of creating a photograph, from the capture to the print, it inspires me like nothing else. It is like magic, and I love creating magic over and over again for myself and for my clients.


3.Where are you from?

Born and raised in Salt Lake County, Utah where I still reside.


4. Favorite color?

All of them, yep, really, all of them.


5. Favorite food?

I don’t think I even have a favorite food anymore. How sad? Things I love? Steak (so not a vegetarian) and really good sweet potato fries. I also love a good roll slathered in butter.


6. Favorite shoes?

I have a pair of yellowish-tan heels I bought for $10 at Target a few years ago. They are super tall and have the cutest bows on the front. Sigh, they are beauties.


7. Favorite place in the whole wide world?

Well, I hope to travel the world more someday, but of the places I have been, I love the beaches of Brazil and my husband’s home town of Atibaia, it basically hasn’t changed for hundreds of years. The streets are cobblestone and beautiful. Miss it there.


8. Favorite piece of playground equipment?

The Merry Go Round, a close tie to the swings.


9. Your funniest story?

I should probably just link you…it is SO embarrassing yet so funny: http://kimorlandini.blogspot.com/2008/06/i-promised-funny_2034.html


10. Mac or PC?

Just converted to Mac and could not be happier.


11. Manual or automatic?

Automatic


12. What do you consider your best asset?

My eyes.


13. Guiltiest pleasure?

Pissing off my mother in law.


14. Biggest pet peeve?

Lying.


15. What do you consider priceless?

Time spent with family. Capturing those moments on film a close second.


16. If you could sit next to anyone on an airplane, who would it be?

Wow, this one is so hard, there are so many great people to choose from. The 30 Rock episode of Liz Lemon and Oprah comes to mind. Giggle. I would love a chance to talk to Annie Leibovitz.


17. What would you choose as your last meal?

A loaf of white bread and butter from my local Kneaders. (The entire loaf.) A cookies and cream shake from Chick-fil-a and an Original frozen yogurt with chocolate chips, strawberries and brownie bites from Red Mango. Yep, that sounds like heaven.


18. What era in time do you connect with the most?

I love the 40’s. I think it was a turning point in our time, and would love to have been a part of it.


19. Your motto for life?

Never, ever, ever give up.


20. Best advice you can give?

Love deeply and learn to forgive. Life is short, don’t regret not doing either of these things.


Here is some of Kim's work she shared with me (love!):









And some more stuff:

These make me want to go find a farmer's market here:
http://kimorlandini.blogspot.com/2011/08/salt-lake-farmers-market.html

These next two go hand in hand:
http://kimorlandini.blogspot.com/2011/07/ashers-birth-story.html

http://kimorlandini.blogspot.com/2011/07/newborn-asher.html

And another gorgeous birth story. I had to stop myself from linking up every sinle one Kim has done, so go to her blog to see the rest:
http://kimorlandini.blogspot.com/2011/07/welcome-kalista.html


As always, thanks for supporting these fabulous people!



If you'd like to participate, just click on the 'weekly interrogation' tab at the top and follow the instructions there. Hope to see you here!

29 September 2011

just braggin'

Not about me though, about my dad!

You see, my dad is a very talented guy. He got his Associates in Commercial Photography and his Bachelor's in Graphic Design. And on top of that is handy and can fix anything. Not to mention has his own wood shop in the garage where he's built all sorts of stuff. Basically, he can do anything.

After having his own graphic design business and then teaching visual arts he decided it was time for another change. So he now owns his very own Furniture Medic franchise!

And he's pretty good at it.

Here's his website:
www.fmtriad.com

It's pretty awesome what he can do. The furniture you think is 'done' and needs to be tossed? Chances are he can make it look like new again. I'm not pulling your leg either, I got to see some transformations while we were in NC this summer.

I'm not the only one who is impressed, Orson Scott Card is too:

The Help, Refinishing, Wonder

(Refinishing is the part about my dad; skip down past the section about the Help and there it is)


I've been privvy to some pretty awesome genes, if I do say so myself. (my mom is incredible too!)

28 September 2011

army life lesson three.

DSCF2624
(photo from 2006)

Goodbyes never get easier.

In fact, they only get harder.




I think anyone (military or not) who has to say them a lot can attest to this fact.

27 September 2011

my five year old.

Well, ready or not it came. Max's fifth birthday. I'm happy to say I think he enjoyed it, which makes you feel like you've done something right as a parent...

So, here is my five year old in all his glory:
harmon_birthday_1
harmon_birthday_2
harmon_birthday_3
harmon_birthday_4
I made him his crown and shirt the night before his birthday... for some reason it didn't cross my mind to do them until the last minute. (typical)

I was also not planning on doing a party since we'd already done one this year (before you butcher me, they're a lot of work and money and I think it's good for you to not go all out on every single birthday as a kid. Makes you stronger and all that jazz). But Rob told me I was a terrible mother for even having such thoughts and insisted we do one. So we scrambled and put one together last minute. So no cute invitations or themes this time around.

Max does like Captain America a lot so I made these cupcakes for him:
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Nick really liked them, that's for sure:
IMG_6950

Of course, Max really liked getting sung to and blowing out his candles:
harmon_birthday_5
harmon_birthday_6

And I made him a pinata... I figured that was enough activity for us and it doubled as the goodie bag. I made it myself, following this tutorial. It was really easy, just a little time consuming, and I love how it turned out!
IMG_7013

Unfortunately it was a little too well made for these little kids, although they gave it their best shot:
harmon_birthday_7
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(also, I realized the day of the party I had no idea how we were going to hang it. We have no trees here and it was really heavy after I filled it. Thankfully I have Rob who was able to jerry-rig something up)

After the kids gave up we let Billy have a go:
IMG_7005
He successfully tacked the beast and the kids attacked.
IMG_7007

Max also got completely showered with gifts, and for the first time dug right into the pile without waiting for anyone or anything once he decided it was time. It was a new experience for me not having to guide the present opening.

I'm glad he had a great time, especially since the rest of us were sick all weekend and were no fun. Thankfully Max escaped it and managed to get in lots of time on his new video game:)

26 September 2011

what i wore to the field.

We've been sick all weekend so there is no Sunday best outfit to share since we didn't make it to church. So instead you get to see what I wore out to the desert this summer!

One of the things I was absolutely clueless about when Rob joined the Army were things called "Field Problems." I knew about OCS and Basic and deployments, but nothing about "The Field." Ends up, it is necessary for soldiers to conduct training away from where they work (called "in garrison"). Which now makes sense, I mean, you can't train to use a tank in a parking lot. But not knowing about field problems meant not realizing they're gone away a lot because of them.

And since Rob is currently non-deploy-able he gets to go the the field a lot instead (oh joy!). And when I say a lot, like he is gone for 3 months. Fortunately he can come home for some weekends, but that's almost harder because you have to say goodbye again.

Anyway, last spring and early summer Rob was gone. But I was very fortunate to get to go out to the field one day to see what they do out there. Unfortunately I didn't get to see Rob since he was way out in the desert, far from where our little group of dependents (spouses. I would just say wives but there was a husband with us) was. I'm SO glad I got to go, it was an eye opening experience. (one that I'll hopefully write about one of these days).

And here is what I wore. This area is blistering hot in June, so I tried to plan accordingly. In addition to what I'm wearing in this picture I had a lightweight long sleeved button-down I wore when we were in the sun (the indigenous people here have dark skin for a reason. My Irish skin doesn't stand a chance against the El Paso sun). And I had a lot of sunscreen on, for the same reason. If you are curious what I'm pointing at, it's the layer of dust on my boots. Made me VERY grateful I wore high boots instead of tennis shoes or hiking boots. We were pretty much walking through lots of small sand dunes.

shirt: Old Navy
pants: Old Navy
shoes: Minnetonka Mocassins (soft soled, the only way to go)
bandana: no idea, we just have a bunch

IMG_2921

I was really happy with this outfit, I was able to protect my skin without getting too hot AND I felt kind of cute. I credit it to the boots. They make any outfit feel cute.

23 September 2011

weekly interrogation: Jana Kleitsch!

This week is another one of my oh-so-talented photographer friends! So many of them are crazy gifted in more than ways than one and Jana is no exception: she's got quite the impressive resume:) But I'm glad she rekindled her love of photography 'cause her work is gorgeous! ... and I think you will agree too!!


name: Jana Kleitsch
website: www.janakphoto.com

1.What do you “do”?
I had to stop and chew on this one for a moment. Currently I’m designing mobile apps for high tech companies and working on my portrait photography business on the side. I’m about to finish a contract position and at that point I hope to make the transition to more photography, less app design.

2. Why do you do what you do?
Many reasons! Going from design to photography has some cross overs in terms of tools and such, but I love photography as a business for many reasons. 1) Family photos are treasured forever. (Web sites and mobile apps… maybe six months!) 2) I can live off the high of a successful photo session for months. 3) I like having a business that is “me” and not just trying to make a client happy.

3.Where are you from?
Seattle, Washington.

4. Favorite color?
Blues of any shade.

5. Favorite food?
I love a good salad.

6. Favorite shoes?
In the winter I consistently wear boots. Right now I have a pair of low boots by Steve Madden that are comfortable and urban looking. They are my “uniform” shoes. In the summer I rarely remove my flipflops.

7. Favorite place in the whole wide world?
Paris

8. Favorite piece of playground equipment?
Swings

9. Your funniest story?
My golfing story. Too long for this document! Let’s just say, I can’t golf but people had money riding on me to win (unbeknownst to me).

10. Mac or PC?
Mac, PC and now Mac again.

11. Manual or automatic?
Automatic, but I learned to drive on a manual. While my friends in driver’s ed were conquering the freeways I was still trying to get out of first gear in a parking lot.

12. What do you consider your best asset?
Being an optimist. Might be my worst asset too.

13. Guiltiest pleasure?
Jersey Shore (season 1). I had to put a stop to it.

14. Biggest pet peeve?
My husband never unpacking his suitcase.

15. What do you consider priceless?
Vacations with my family.

16. If you could sit next to anyone on an airplane, who would it be?
Oprah

17. What would you choose as your last meal?
Salmon, salad, good bread, and strawberries dipped in chocolate chased with mojitos.

18. What era in time do you connect with the most?
The present!

19. Your motto for life?
Life is about the journey, not the destination. Live like you’re on vacation.

20. Best advice you can give?
Don’t try to compete with anyone, and keep it simple.

Some of my favorites:

These made me smile. Kids are the best:
http://janakphoto.com/2010/07/planning-a-pajama-party/

As someone who lives in Texas I LOVED these (i think I'm turning into a Texan people!):
http://janakphoto.com/2010/09/the-old-west-not-so-well-preserved/

Boys make me happy:
http://janakphoto.com/2010/12/holiday-photo-at-the-beach/

I just love these. Not sure why, normally a bunch of people in swimsuits isn't my thing:) :
http://janakphoto.com/2011/01/happy-new-year-3tp-2011-polar-bear-plunge/

The first 4 of this session gave me warm fuzzies I love them so much:
http://janakphoto.com/2011/03/family-photo-session-at-the-olympic-sculpture-park/

I love the third one down and the second from the end the most!:
http://janakphoto.com/2011/09/san-diego-destination-wedding/


Thanks for reading, I hope you liked it!



If you'd like to participate, just click on the 'weekly interrogation' tab at the top and follow the instructions there. Hope to see you here!

21 September 2011

how?

a week ago he looked like this:
DSCF1289

and a couple days ago he looked like this:
IMG_3607

so how is it that THIS:
IMG_6915
will be FIVE on Friday?!

I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around this fact.









So don't tell me how in another week he'll be going off to college... I won't be able to process that information yet.

19 September 2011

sunday best!

I cannot even begin to describe how happy I am to fit back into my "sophisticated" skirts! I missed them. Plus it's nice to be reminded you have a skinny waist from time to time. (NOT that I think I'm fat or anything, it's just that having two babies hasn't left my body completely unscathed)

shirt: Old Navy
sweater: Forever 21
skirt: Forever 21 (this skirt makes me feel hott)
shoes: street vendor in San Francisco's Chinatown
necklace: Forever 21
If you haven't noticed, I don't buy expensive clothes. And 90% of what I buy is on sale. And I manage to make them last (hello red skirt from high school). Take that Clinton and Stacey! And proof you don't have to spend a fortune to look nice and fashionable. (at least I think I look fashionable, I could be wrong!)

IMG_6854

This week I got attacked:
IMG_6894

By this very cute monster:
IMG_6906

16 September 2011

weekly interrogation: Amy Beth Harkess!

So ironically, today we have the very same friend of mine as yesterday! This is Amy Beth, another one of my cyber photographer friends (they're seriously the best! If it weren't for the internet my life would be a lot less fun) who lives in Chicago. If yesterday didn't prove to you that she has a great personality I don't know what will:) In addition to her wit she also possesses a great eye and uses it to create some stunning work!


name: Amy Beth Harkess
website: www.amybethphotography.com

1.What do you “do”?
By day, I’m a mild mannered administrative assistant, but by night (and weekend), I’m a photographic ninja. I fight the dark underbelly of the city, with my camera as my only weapon. OK, that’s a stretch. I mainly photograph weddings, unions and portraits.

2. Why do you do what you do?
I can’t imagine doing anything else. The photography bug bit me years ago, and there doesn’t seem to be any vaccine available. I love photography because of the people it allows me to connect with and because it changes the way I look at my corner of the world, even when I don’t have a camera in my hands.

3.Where are you from?
What I like to call Chicagoland. Which means that even though I’m a mere 20 some miles from the city, it takes 8 days to get downtown in traffic, construction or snow. OK. Again, that might be a stretch. I’m from the northwest suburbs of Chicago.

4. Favorite color?
Green

5. Favorite food?
I used to answer this question, “cupcakes!” with no hesitation at all. However, cupcakes seem to have taken over the universe. And with lots of cupcakes, that means I’ve encountered far more bad cupcakes than I imagined possible. So let’s just go with mojitos. That’s a food, right?

6. Favorite shoes?
My ugly as sin orthopedic style SAS wedding shoes. They will not win me any style awards, but they have made 10 hour weddings so much more pleasant, so they will always have my gratitude.

7. Favorite place in the whole wide world?
Savannah, GA. It holds so many wonderful memories for me from many different times in my life. I love that place.

8. Favorite piece of playground equipment?
Tire swing

9. Your funniest story?
I’d tell you, but I’d have to kill you.

10. Mac or PC?
PC and proud (but you can pry my iPhone from my cold, dead hands)

11. Manual or automatic?
automatic

12. What do you consider your best asset?
I see things that other people don’t notice.

13. Guiltiest pleasure?
The movie Mean Girls. I could watch that 100 times. I probably have.

14. Biggest pet peeve? Unapologetic bad grammar. Listen, we all make mistakes and typos and forget the dangling participle rules here and there. It happens to the best of us. But people who know how to communicate in an effective manner, but choose not to do it? Drives me bonkers.

15. What do you consider priceless?
The time I’ve spent with my niece in the darkroom teaching her how to develop black and white film and print from her very own negatives.

16. If you could sit next to anyone on an airplane, who would it be?
Sally Mann

17. What would you choose as your last meal?
Mojitos and cupcakes. Just kidding. It would be whatever could be served on a big table with all the people I love most surrounding me and sharing it with me.

18. What era in time do you connect with the most?
I suppose modern day. There isn’t a time I look back on fondly and think, “oh, I wish I could live in the olden days when we all died of cholera and women couldn’t vote.” I feel pretty lucky to live in a time when just about anything is possible.

19. Your motto for life?
Always follow my gut.

20. Best advice you can give?
Be the honey badger, not the cobra.


And here is some of my favorite stuff she's done:

I LOVE the colors in the first one. And the vines:
http://www.amybethphotography.com/2011/05/rockford-il-portra40/

I can't help but love all of these (my dad is from Chicago and I have lots of family still there so it holds a special place in my heart):
http://www.amybethphotography.com/2011/06/millennium-park-ektar/

b&w photography is one of my absolute favorite things in this world... and that picture of the tree is fabulous:
http://www.amybethphotography.com/2011/06/black-and-white-film-botanic/

LOVE love love the third photo. Makes me miss moss, all things green and moisture in general:
http://www.amybethphotography.com/2011/06/zeiss-canon-test/


Hope you enjoyed it!!


If you'd like to participate, just click on the 'weekly interrogation' tab at the top and follow the instructions there. Hope to see you here!

15 September 2011

just for laughs

So one of my photographer friends shared something funny today...

I'm sure you've heard of internet scams and may have even received a scam email before. As a small business owner you get a ton of them and deleting them becomes part of your routine. But instead of deleting this one, Amy decided to respond. She put the correspondence on her blog if you'd like to see:


Always be the Honey Badger. Never be the Cobra.


I asked her if I could share the rest of the conversation that she didn't put on her blog and she yes! So here is the rest of the story:

"I decided to call it quits, because he started going for the kill right away:

Thanks so much for your quik response and acceptance of the pet.Am very much happy to read about your availability and the session charges,Kindly calculate the total ...amount for 2 urban session(9th and 10th) for the selected date and any additional charges that may incur or you can let me know your own arrangement.

Kindly get back to me with the following details so i can instruct my associate to make half or full advance payment IMMEDIATELY.

1: Your Full Name to be on the payment
2: Your Address and zip code
3: Your cell phone number

Again I will like to have an idea on printing price for the listed size below:
1-8x10
2-16x20
3-20x24

Hope to read back from you soon.
Best Regard
Await your reply.
Rafael
0020149733728

------------------


Fantastic, Rafael!

I’m guessing you are going for the full Walk Like an Egyptian/Shih Tzu package? That will be a total of $1,050. Also, the prints that you have mentioned will be $500. In addition, I require an Internet Fraud Fake Money Wiring Scam fee of $3,942.15. Please use the contact information below for payment:

FBI - Chicago Branch
2111 W. Roosevelt Road
Chicago, IL 60608
Phone: (312) 421-6700

Pyramidly yours, "



Hope you enjoy it! I wish I had her wit:)

14 September 2011

army life lesson two.

Military life is not for the faint of heart.

You learn to weather the tough things and revel in the good. To just let stuff roll off your back when normally you'd have an anxiety attack. To just "suck it up" and keep going.

The military really is a whole 'nother world. I can't tell you how many time I've said "It's the Army, that's just how it is."

But it really is a wonderful life if you keep a positive attitude. The lows may be low but the highs are the highest you'll ever experience.

12 September 2011

sunday best!

This week I finally pulled some pre-baby stuff out of the closet to see if it fit and it did!! Finally. I was getting very tired of wearing the same two skirts.... And what's even better is that it was this skirt, one of my absolute favorites!

shirt: Old Navy (surprised much?)
sweater: Old Navy
skirt: Forever 21 (I miss having knee-length skirts in fashion. Stupid mini skirts)
shoes: Target (little girl's! Sometimes having small feet pays off)
necklace: Saddleblanket place here in El Paso (I LOVE turquoise)

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Usually once we get home from church I throw on some pj's or something, but this week I liked this outfit enough I just threw on some jeans instead:
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(being small doesn't usually pay off in the pants department...)

11 September 2011

ten years later.

I hadn't planned on saying anything today simply because I don't know what to say. Ten years later it's still hard to make sense of all the emotions of that day.

But I read this article and I wanted to share. I especially love this statement from it:

"Destruction allows us to rebuild our lives in the way He teaches us, and to become something different than we were."

Even if you aren't LDS, or even Christian, this still applies...

"Destruction allows us to rebuild our lives... and to become something different than we were."


It is important to remember, but to change as well.

(hopefully for the better!)

09 September 2011

weekly interrogation: Caitlin Sheffer!

Today you get to meet Caitlin Sheffer! We go way back to the teenage years... we are both members of the same church and were in the YW program at the same time (I wish I could say I'm as young as she is, but alas I am not). She has always been one of the happiest, cutest, and funnest person I know. And just a beautiful person all around. She now lives in Utah with her husband and is a talented photographer herself:)


name: Caitlin Sheffer
website: www.ciaobellaphotography.blogspot.com, www.ciaobellaphotography.etsy.com


1.What do you “do”?
I take pictures of people, places and things, read chick lit, keep a clean house, and make delicious dinners and desserts for my hottie-mchothot husband. I lead a simple, but blessed life.

2. Why do you do what you do?
I’m a photographer because aside from being with my family, it makes me the most happy. I am incredibly lucky to be able to do what I love.

3.Where are you from?
Is this a trick question? ;);) I grew up in a military family so I would have to say Texas, Arizona, Virginia, Georgia, Virginia a few more times, England, Florida, and finally Utah.

4. Favorite color?
Definitely and without a doubt turquoise.

5. Favorite food?
Anything Italian. My mom’s homemade meatballs are to DIE for.

6. Favorite shoes?
I adore any kind of flats…the brand Rocketdog is my favorite. I also really love flip flops by Roxy. They are basic but super comfortable!

7. Favorite place in the whole wide world?
Europe!! I’d kill to go to Italy again.

8. Favorite piece of playground equipment?
The swings. I used to tell my dad that I was going out to “get my exercise” when all I was really doing was swinging. He laughed when I told him that, but he didn’t realize what a workout it is to pump your legs back and forth. ;);)

9. Your funniest story?
I can't think of anything in particular...I try to laugh every day so everything is pretty funny to me!

10. Mac or PC?
PC. I’m not opposed to Macs, but I hate to think about learning a new operating system.

11. Manual or automatic?
If you’re talking about cars, automatic all the way. BUT I did learn how to drive a stick on a vintage Porshe. Consequently, that’s the only thing I remember about driving manual. If you’re talking about cameras, manual. NEVER automatic.

12. What do you consider your best asset?
My sweet, adorable husband. Honestly, he is my other half.

13. Guiltiest pleasure?
America’s Next Top Model and romance novels. I LOVE chick lit.

14. Biggest pet peeve?
When people slurp their cereal/soup/hot chocolate. Just say no.

15. What do you consider priceless?
My faith and my family. (Is that cheesy or what?)

16. If you could sit next to anyone on an airplane, who would it be?
I constantly have dreams about meeting the photographer Jonathan Canlas (I’m embarrassed to say that out loud) but I’m obsessed with his work. I don’t shoot film so I would have lots of questions. I would also want to sit next to Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman) because I think she would have me doubled over with laughter, she is SO funny. And awesome. And her recipes are delicious.

17. What would you choose as your last meal?
Hands down, my mom’s homemade meatballs with a loaf of parmesan-garlic French bread, a bit of leafy salad with ranch dressing & croutons, and chocolate covered strawberries to top it off.

18. What era in time do you connect with the most?
I have a lot of respect for people who lived without today’s modern conveniences…especially the early settlers of America. I tried making a cake from scratch the other day and I think it took me three hours.. I just don’t know how they did everything! But if I were to say what era I connect with…it would probably be the 40s or 50s. Deep down I just want to wear pretty dresses, have five kids running around, kiss my husband when he comes home from work, and cook delicious meals. I would have to infuse this with a bit of feminism though so I could work as a photographer from home…but other than that I always thought it would be so dreamy during that period.

19. Your motto for life?
“I am a strong woman and I can do anything!” I became seriously ill over the past year and when I was talking to my mom one day she said I needed a good mantra. Apparently my Great-Aunt Helen used this mantra and it fit perfectly!

20. Best advice you can give?
Take life one day at a time. Do what makes you happy. Be with those you love. Those are the three things that get me through it all.

Here are some of my favorites images:
I LOVE the third one and seventh ones:
http://ciaobellaphotography.blogspot.com/2011/07/family-campout.html

I just love the big wide open sky (one of the perks living in Texas):
http://ciaobellaphotography.blogspot.com/2010/08/clouds.html

This series is perfection to me:
http://ciaobellaphotography.blogspot.com/2011/02/my-brother.html

Beautiful lichen (makes me miss trees...):
http://ciaobellaphotography.blogspot.com/2011/04/color.html

The mood and color of these is absolutely gorgeous:
http://ciaobellaphotography.blogspot.com/2011/05/americana.html


As always, thanks for reading!



If you'd like to participate, just click on the 'weekly interrogation' tab at the top and follow the instructions there. Hope to see you here!

08 September 2011

just be nice.

Life is hard.

Over the past year, and especially recently, kindness has been on my mind. I don't think anyone can argue the fact that there isn't enough of it in the world these days.

My goal since Rob joined the military has been to treat everyone with kindness and respect. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail, but that is my goal. But recently I've been really feeling it. Like, I want to be more than kind. I want to be charitable.

I know that to be charitable is an eternal goal, one that I will strive for (and never actually reach) my entire life and beyond. But I want to try harder, to be more aware of more than just me and my own problems.

So this article really spoke to me when I read it a few days ago:
We Must See Past What it Seems…
I hope it speaks to you too.

And after reading that article, this video came to mind:















Who wants to join me? I think there's plenty of kindness and charity that needs spreading.

07 September 2011

the story of the elk.

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Yes, that is an elk. If you did not surmise from Monday's post, last year we went camping and hiking and swimming and shooting on labor day weekend. But the elk incident occurred whilst we were hiking...

We camped Friday to Saturday and hiked Saturday after packing up the campsite. But first we stopped by the wildlife refuge's visitor center to find out where the trail heads were. While there we checked out the little museum and watched a video which highlighted various animals within the refuge. Then we headed out. Thankfully the trail was easy (although not the one we were intending to take; the trails there were hard to follow at times because there was no clear definition through the landscape, unlike back east) and Max ended up at the lead with Chris. We were getting close to the lake at this point, and the trail ahead entered some brush/vegetation (if you have never been to Oklahoma, for the most part it is wide open space. But there are trees and other vegetation near water... but it's very short scrabbly stuff that is like a wall. So you can't see through it or really walk through it, so the vegetation we were coming to had been cleared for the trail and was almost like walking through a tunnel). The rest of us were a few paces behind Chris and Max so were not sure what was going on when Chris said VERY firmly "Max, STOP!" Immediately thoughts like "rattlesnake?!" go through my head and we catch up to where Max and Chris are stopped and we hear it; a "HUFF" sound coming from a very large animal. I seriously think a mountain lion or something is going to come at us from it's hiding place within the vegetation. Then we hear some more grunting then a loud splash. Chris is brave enough to creep forward to see what animal we stumbled upon and discovers it is a VERY LARGE ELK. Like, Max was as tall as maybe it's leg. Max had scared the poor thing so it retreated into the water, a safe distance from us. We were incredibly relieved it hadn't been a more vicious animal or that it was too scared to charge us or something. But we decided that was enough adventure for one day and headed back the way we had come. And for the rest of the day, and beyond, we love to tell Max that he scared the elk.

And here are a few more pictures from Tiffany's camera of that weekend:

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06 September 2011

what I wore to the ball.

Here is what I looked like at last week's ball:

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dress: Madison Ave. by Shabby Apple
petticoat: Malco Modes #582
shoes: Linea Paolo from Nordstrom (sorry, no link 'cause I can't find them)
lipstick: Covergirl Lip Perfection in Embrace #335
flower: made by me from 100 Flowers to Knit and Crochet (it's the Dahlia)

I chose to accent with purple because everyone always does red with black and white. (I have to go against the grain). So I made the flower for my hair and wore some purple lipstick. And I have to give a shout-out to my friend Michelle who did my hair... it's not an easy thing to do because it's so fine and doesn't hold curl AT ALL. The above pictures don't do it justice either... we were running really late so I didn't have time to take pictures of every inch of me beforehand. So the hair pictures are from when we got home that night, after the style was 'done' and starting to fall out. (but hey, it's better than the OCS ball where I got NOT ONE good picture of me... don't have your husband's tipsy friend take pictures of you at the end of the evening because you forgot to earlier. Not a good idea if you're expecting a decent photo)

I hope you like it! I had fun putting the whole outfit together and making it "ball worthy." I still am not quite sure what Rob thought of it, but I did have plenty of women complimenting my get-up:)

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And here is me and my Lieutenant at the ball. The only photo of us together that evening.

05 September 2011

labor day weekend 2010

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shot with a Pentax K1000 w/ 50mm 2.0 and Lomo Lubitel 2 on Fuji 400h and 800z.