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Monday, December 5, 2011

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Quick Update...

I took photos of the most beautiful bride this week. I wish that I could post a sneak peek of her photos but they are TOP SECRET until after the wedding. Her dress is gorgeous and princess like. Her hair was breath takingly beautiful and she has a smile that can light up the whole world. She is over flowing with love and I could feel the affects of her emotions for hours after the session was over.

Since I can't share those photos with you I thought I would share a few random photos from my week with you instead. Most of these were NOT taking with my professional camera - just my point and shoot or my iPhone (whatever I had handy at the time).

Monday: 4/25/11

Tuesday: 4/26/11

Wednesday: 4/27/11
This one was actually taken on Thursday 4/21 at a Jimmy Buffet concert but I am revisiting it today as it's one of those "It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere" kind of days.

Thursday: 4/28/11 - After The Storm...

I am heading out bright and early Saturday morning for a week long vacation at the beach with my big sister. I am so stinkin' excited that I can hardly sit still. I must go now and get more homework done so I don't have as much to do while I am at the beach next week.

Love to you all!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

City Girl, Country Girl

I have been blessed with two beautiful, sweet, loving and very unique nieces. One loves all things "girly" (jewelry, all things purple and pink, glitter, flowers, ect) and the other loves all things, well, "country" (horses, cowboys/rednecks, jacked up trucks, getting dirty, etc). They always know how to make me laugh. They remind me to be silly and let my troubles roll off my back. They remind me that it wasn't THAT long ago that I was their age; boy-crazy and ready to conquer the world. It's amazing, watching them grow and mature with each passing year. I am proud to be their Aunt, friend and #1 fan.

My girly girl, Devin, turned 17 in February. While visiting her in her big city surroundings recently, I had the privilege of seeing her all "dolled-up" for a dance. She was proud to show off her beautiful orange dress and sparkly necklace. Of course I grabbed my camera and captured a few photos.

After spending time watching Miss D twirling in her dress, I was inspired to come home and capture my "redneck" girl, Cheyanne, in her country surroundings. Cheyanne, who is 16, would rather show off her favorite pair of jeans, cowboy boots, plaid button-down shirt and straw hat.

To all you Aunts reading this, go hug your nieces/nephews today or give them a phone call and remind them of how much you love them, especially if they are teenagers. These girls are reminding me just how hard the teen years are.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Little Bit of This...and That.

It's been a while since I have posted. Between working full time, taking three online classes, working a part time job, doing photography and maintaining my household, blogging has fallen through the cracks. I don't have a lot to share tonight but I wanted to update with a few random pictures taken over the past couple of weeks. Here ya go...

My "baby" turned 1 at the end of February. I can't believe how quickly the year has flown by. She's such a big girl now - weighing in at almost 80 pounds! She loves playing in water so much that for her birthday we bought her a "kiddie pool" to play in.

In honor of Springs arrival, my preschoolers and I learned all about rainbows. Each week I try to incorporate a cooking project that introduces new and healthy foods. I was inspired by all the beautiful colors of the fruit in my grocery stores produce section that I decided "Fruit Rainbows" would be a fun activity. The children enjoyed using plastic butter knives to slice their fruit and create their very own rainbows. The highlight of the activity: watching their faces as they tasted fruits like Papaya, Mango, Lemon, and Star fruit.

Photographs, just like paintings, speak to their viewers. I know the circumstances behind his photograph, the true story. You, my viewers, do not. Tell me, and speak honestly, what does this photograph say to you?

Our heating/AC unit died two weeks ago. We have had crazy weather lately, jumping from mid 80's to below freezing. One night my house is too hot, the next night we all freeze. The part has arrived (and it was NOT cheap), the repairman has not. This is what happens when you agree to hire a friend who is a professional but does jobs on the side for less than the company he works for charges. We wanted to save money but I didn't realize it would be at the expense of my SANITY. This photo sums up how I feel about the whole situation. (Okay, I have to admit that I do feel guilty and like a bad person for feeling aggravated about this. I should be thankful that I have a roof over my head and a safe place to sleep. I AM thankful and I do know that I am blessed in this life but if I can't whine in this blog then what's the point in having it? It's supposed to be about my thoughts and feelings right? The good, the bad and the ugly.)

This is my "brother", Sam-bo. He is my Dad's dog. I am forever in debt to this guy - he has been able to provide friendship, support, and love to my father better than any one else during the grieving process after loosing my mother, two of his brothers and one of his best friends all within a period of 5 months. This all took place almost 2 years ago but in many ways the pain is still as sharp as it would be if it had just happened yesterday. "Bo-Bo", as I loving call him, is one of my heroes. I captured these photos one afternoon while Dad was out on a fishing trip. (He is a hobbyist Bass fisherman - and a pretty darn good one too!) I plan to have them printed and framed as a surprise for daddy. I know he will love them. :)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Yet Another Video for My Educational Technologies Class

So, as most of you know, I am a bit of an over achiever. On top of working full time at a preschool, part time at a group home, and starting my own photography business,I am taking 3 college courses this semester. One of those courses is "Educational Technologies". I must admit that this class sounded a lot more fun than it is turning out to be. Unfortunately, it's geared toward the population that has very little or no digital technologies experience. The assignments, thus far, have not challenged me very much but I have been enjoying them none-the-less. Here is a little video I needed to create for class. Seeing as it's St. Patrick's Day - I went with a "Leprechaun" theme.

*All students involved are displayed with parental permission.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Under Construction

Due to several issues with my template, my blog is all "outta whack". I promise to have these issues cleared up within a couple of days. Until them, just ignore the chaos and keep on reading. :)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Ten on Ten: Photo Project

I am a fan of blogs. There are several I follow on a daily and weekly basis. One of my absolute favorites is Ashley Ann Photography: Under The Sycamore. I check it on a daily basis and have gained inspiration, knowledge and personal strength from her posts. This week she posted about a fellow bloggers photo project titled "Ten on Ten". (A Bit Of Sunshine) I was intrigued by the challenge and decided that this was something I couldn't pass up. The idea is that on the tenth of each month you take one photo every hour for ten hours. So here is my first "Ten on Ten" post. Enjoy - and feel free to comment. I love hearing from my friends and readers.

Friday, March 4, 2011

My Big Sis is 40!

I know she doesn't look it, but I promise you she really is 40. (I have no idea how she manages to look younger with each passing year. I guess she just lucked out in the gene pool.) In honor of her big day, she threw a slumber party that was better than any you have ever been to. We had tons of food, great cocktails, a Wii dance-off, Playstation 2 Karaoke, board games and lots and lots of silliness. The house was filled with girlish giggling and fits of laughter. A great time was had by all and it was an honor to be a part of her special day. I love you sis!

Here are a few pictures of our fun-filled evening...

Remember that post about our trip to Gatlinburg, TN and the Moonshine distillery we visited? Well, we put that Moonshine to good use.

The birthday girl singing along to some random 80's song.

"Girls just want to have fu-un!"

On a whole other topic: I stopped by my Mother and Grandmother's graves before heading to Charlotte for my sister's big day. I wanted to check on the state of their floral arrangments. Imagine my surprise when I discovered this little beauty. Thanks Mom and Nanny, I hear you loud and clear. (And to think that this was on February 25th!)

Yet Another Post for Educational Technologies Class

Hi friends! It's 7:20am on Friday March 4th and I had to do yet another post for my educational technologies class. Please don't feel like any of you have to watch this video - it's nothing interesting (unless you think seeing me fresh faced, wet hair, with a stuffy nose and rough voice is interesting...but trust me, it's not).

Here you go Mr. Hipps.

Click Here

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Mother Nature has been kind to us lately.

Let's hear a round of applause for Mother Nature! She provided us with a much needed break from the cold weather with sunny days where we reached record highs in the low 70's. I could hardly believe it was still February.

Today we were back down in the 50's but that didn't keep me and my preschool class indoors. We decided to soak up some more sunshine since it's supposed to start raining tomorrow.

Here are a few pictures from my life over the past couple of weeks...

(Preschool pix......)

(Personal Pix...A Weekend In Gatlinburg, TN)

(That's my big sister up there. I started to do the ropes course, totally chickened out. I am a wimp. LOL)

Entertaining Video

So this is part (b) of my posts for my "Educational Technologies" class.

In honor of my renewed self-esteem and drive for life, I am posting my new "theme song". (Yes I have a theme song just like "Ally McBeal" did. Do you guys remember that show?)

My theme song for 2011: Katy Perry's "FireWork"

This particular video has the lyrics posted. Read them. Learn them. Feel them. We are ALL fireworks!

Educational Video

So this post is actually for my "Educational Technologies" college class. The assignment was to find a) an educational video and b) an entertaining video on YouTube, Google Video or elsewhere and post it to your blog under two seperate posts titled as follows a)"Educational Video" and b) "Entertaining Video".

Since I actually use this blog to promote my business and to keep my friends and family informed on the many events in my life, I decided to upload a video I created last year for my graduating preschoolers.

My preschool class (AKA: Classroom Four) is in the middle of a fundraiser right now. We are selling re-usable snack bags (Email me for details) in an effort to raise funds to purchase a Flip Video (which is a digital video recorder). This will enable me to capture some of our priceless moments together during our time in Classroom Four. This will allow me to include them on their end of the year DVD and enable me to share them on our class website and (with permission of course) on FaceBook as a way to spread those precious (and in high demand) "Quotes of the day from Classroom Four".

Click here to see the video (All images and names have been used with permission).

Hope all my friends, family and teacher enjoy this fun little creation of mine. :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

A non-Valentine related post on Valentine's Day

This weekend was a monumental one - my best friend turned 30!

We have been best friends since we were in Elementary school. (That's a little over 20 years - something we are very proud of.) She and her boyfriend planned a night of fajitas and dancing - it was a huge success and a good time was had by all who attended. This makes me even more excited for my 30th. :)

In other news...

My husband has been spending even more time in the garage. This time the project was taking a dump bed off of one truck and putting in another. A task most said was impossible. This is not the thing to tell him - it just makes him even more determined. After several nights of dealing with a mess like this.....

....the truck is finished and works great. (He loves proving people wrong and I love bragging about what a mechanical genius he is.)

I had a visitor at work today. Amanda Metcalf of Little White House Designs dropped off my new sign. I am in love with it - it matches my office perfectly. I haven't decided exactly where to hang it yet, and since my office still isn't entirely done, I just propped it up on a shelf to take the photo. I really need a week off of work to get this room finished! I am so inspired by the new sign that I have a new blog and website design idea. I can't wait to get to work on it. Thanks again Amanda, I really do love it!

We are supposed to have beautiful weather all week. Hopefully this will inspire me to get the camera out and capture more moments. I have been in such a "funk" lately. It's totally time to break out of it....

Friday, February 11, 2011

My Portrait Session with Boudoir Allure Photography

I really am NOT a vain person but I had to share these with you guys.

One of my dearest friends is a phenomenal photographer. She is inspiration and I admire her work very much. (You can check out her work at Kaelee Denise Photography). She recently ventured out of the world of family and wedding portraiture and into the world of Boudoir. She approached me about scheduling a session with her and allowing her to use some of my images in her advertising. I reluctantly agreed - being a plus sized girl, I don't really enjoy showing off my assets.

I am so glad that I allowed her to talk me into it! We had a blast at the session (loud music, dancing and laughter are apparently all it takes to get my courage up). She made me feel beautiful and the images are stunning!I honestly can't stop looking at them and showing them off. This has been such an eye opener for me. I have never seen myself as beautiful, until now.

Thanks Kaelee - my new found confidence is sure to take me great places. :)

I encourage all of you phenomenal women to step up and schedule a session with Boudoir Photography (Click here for her website).

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Garrett Family Sneak Peek

I had so much fun photographing this family. It was a gorgeous day with beautiful surroundings and we were able to capture some truly amazing shots. I photographed "little man" last fall at a local Summer camp. I was glad to see that his personality hasn't changed much, he is still determined and adventurous - two of the qualities that make me love working with boys and hope to someday have one of my own. This was my first time meeting "Dad" and it was an honor to be in his presence as he has been over seas fighting for freedom and justice with the US Military. "Mom" and I have known each other since our High School days and I think she gets more gorgeous with each passing year. I look forward to photographing this family again in the future and watching as little man grows and changes over time.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Blowing the Winter Blue's Away...

There's no better way to overcome a case of the Winter Blue's than to get outside and blow some bubbles....

My class is studying "Animals of the Arctic" this week. For our 3-D art project, I planned for them to build sculptures out of miniature marshmallows and tooth picks. The kids had a blast creating (and eating) with these materials. We ended up with Scooters, Snowflakes, Bear's Caves, RailRoad Tracks, a Playground for Penguins and an Arctic Hare. (What scooters and railroad tracks have to do with the arctic is beyond me but they seemed to think it all related...)
As much as I love their creativity and their beautiful projects, I loved the process even more. While trying to squish as many marshmallows as possible on a toothpick, one little guy found out what happens why you lick your fingers before touching a marshmallow....

I love my office... I am so glad I decided to focus on redecorating and organizing it. It's still not finished but I am at a point where I have more work to do than time to do it in and the finishing touches have taken a back-burner for a few weeks. The only downfall to loving it so much - I never want to leave (okay so that's not entirely true, I am actually in here for hours at a time during the evening because I am swamped with homework and preschool related work but I really am enjoying having a space to be productive in).

I took a break to get myself a little snack....

While I was enjoying my Mint Hot Chocolate I took a look around me and realized that Roxy and Duchess (my dogs) had brought in not one, not two, not three but 17 toys and laid them all around my desk and chair. Think they are trying to tell me something?

I am off to play fetch... :)