Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Landslide - Songography

Climbed a mountain and I turned around
And I saw my reflection in a snow covered hill….

Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the oceans changin' tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?

But time makes you bolder,
children get older,
I'm getting older too.

How and when did I reach this age?
This stage in my life where so many years have passed and maybe not as many remain?

Wasn't it just yesterday when my sister and I were fighting over Barbies?  
Or helping mom bake Christmas cookies?
Or having first dates………getting married…….having babies……..our babies getting married……babies moving away……

My child like heart still says I'm very young.  My mind says the same thing most days.

But the reflection in the mirror - the knees that can't bend as well - the few gray hairs that grace my head tell me differently.

Like a landslide, it passes all too quickly.

I've learned and am still learning, to embrace who I am and where I am in my life at this point and time.

I'm living every day as the gift it was meant for me.  Opening my eyes more & more to the beauty that surrounds me in many forms, big & small.

Joining up with Kathy today at You'll Shoot Your Eye Out.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Monday Morning Coffee

Good morning everyone!

I slept in this morning after a busy, busy weekend.  I have 2 children still sleeping as well at this moment and a Wonder Dog rolling around on our bed at this very moment.  Her morning routine.

Dream Boy took the day off Friday and we started it out by picking up Son #2 and D2B2 at the airport mid-morning.  Ahhhhhh --- SO exciting.  Even my nieces made a quick trip in to see their cousin's, whom they haven't seen since last Christmas.

Since they had flown in on the red eye - they were not quite so bright and bushy tailed and we headed home.  But they were wide awake by the time we arrived, so we spent the next few hours just catching up on life.

S#2 was in a wedding on Saturday and he soon had to take off for Holland for the rehearsal festivities and do the "best man" thing, so D2B2 stayed with us.  I took her for an exciting trip to the grocery store!  But we laughed, rather, she laughed at me because I kept forgetting what to get because we were so busy talking.  We made many circles around the store before completing, um - almost completing my list. A quick stop at the local farmer's on the way home to pick up fresh sweet corn, tomatoes and flowers finished out our little excursion.

By the time we got home, we all changed and headed into town for dinner.  D2B2 loves bar-b-que, so we ended up at the new Arcadia Brew Pub for dinner.  We feasted on ribs, pulled pork, brisket and sausage, accompanied by potatoe salad, beet salad and a kale salad.  What D2B2 really wanted was on Oberon from Bell's, but since we were at Bell's main competitor, she tried their version of Oberon.  Dinner was delish!  The beer wasn't half bad either.

After dinner we headed over to Bell's store and picked up some fresh brewed beer to share at our family dinner on Sunday.

We headed over to D1's then to watch a movie - S1 was gone to a bachelor party in Ohio for the weekend.  D1 loved the company, as did FMBM.

Saturday found us all getting ready for the wedding that afternoon and heading up to Holland in the morning.  D2B2 had scheduled a walk through at the venue for their wedding reception next spring.  We arrived right at 11:30 and spent about an hour checking the place out, asking lots of questions & I took some pictures for S2 to see later.  

Oh - the ideas are just a rolling in our heads now that we've really seen the place.  S2 & D2B2 are coming back in a month, along with her parents, and we are going to plan the wedding as much as possible that weekend - so it was great to see the venue now and start our lists of questions to be prepped when we go back.   We will be doing the taste test for the dinner menu then as well.

After our tour - we headed into downtown Holland.  The memories came flooding back to D2B2, as this is their college town.  She hasn't been back there for almost 2 years and she was just filled with emotion and excitement to be there again.

We did some shopping, she bought 2 dresses, I bought my summer special - Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel apple and Dream Boy hung out and patiently waited for us to "do our thing".   D2B2 was laughing because Dream Boy isn't used to this format.  Having raised 2 son's, it was always me waiting on them, as they combed the sports stores for soccer shoes/apparel/boot's and whatever else they could find in the local sporting goods store.

We soon were off to the wedding at Hope College.  This is also where S2 & D2B2 will be getting married.  The church, Dimnent Chapel, is absolutely beautiful.  We were making mental notes of what we could do for their wedding.  The church is, as I said, beautiful, so we won't do much to deter from the natural beauty, but we talked about what we could do up on the stage to decorate. 

Oh the excitement that filled D2B2 as the reality was starting to set in that in just over 7 months she & S2 will finally be getting married!!!

The wedding reception was about a 1/2 hour away and didn't start for another 1 1/2 hours, so we took D2B2 out to the beach to see the monster manson being built by the parents of one of their former classmates & then we headed back downtown for a beer.  I know, I know, lots of beer in this weekend - but ya do what ya gotta do to entertain the kiddies, right?

Soon we were off to the reception, getting slightly lost along the way as my map on my phone had us ending up in the middle of nowhere.   D2 googled the country club and we discovered that the address in the wedding program was missing a 0.  They sent us to 1700 and it should have been 17000 = so we did a little loop & were soon at our destination.

Dream Boy and I hung around til about 9pm, but he wasn't feeling too well and it was almost a 2 hour drive back home.  We left the kids' behind and headed out.  They, on the other hand, arrived home around 3am.  They said the reception ended at 10, so a whole crew of them headed into downtown Holland together and just enjoyed the night!  

Needless to say, Sunday morning I was the only one up and out the door to church.  Dream Boy was still not feeling his greatest - coming down with a summer cold, and the 2 partiers were still in bed.  Between the late night and the jet lag/time change - they were zonked!

After church I came home and we began to prepare dinner, as my family was all coming over to eat with us.  Everyone arrived by 3:30 and by 4 we were feasting on our Low Country Boil.  A favorite of all of ours!

Libbi The Wonder Dog tried to feast on a bee and was promptly stung in the lip.  She had a swollen lip last night, but seems to be fine this morning.  My sister's tried to tell her no - but she ate it, or attempted to, anyways.

S2 & D2B2 had to be to the airport by 6:30, so everyone said their goodbye's shortly after 6 and we all headed off in our different directions.  

But NOT before capturing this...
We dropped them off at the airport, and as usual, I had my cry in the car on the way home.

But, Dream Boy & I were home barely 15 minutes and S2 called us back to the airport to pick them up.  Their flight was delayed and they would never catch their connection in Chicago - so the ticket agent rebooked them on a flight out this morning!

Bonus night!   We headed back in & S2 made plans with S1 to head over to their house for pizza and a movie.  

So this mama had a house full again this weekend and is living on the joy that we were surrounded by with everyone.  I will be heading off to the airport again shortly to drop off my precious cargo, but also know that they will back in about 4 weeks to work on their wedding plans!

I hope this is a great week for all of you - I am cherishing this time as the start of school is fast approaching.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Creative Juices Have Been Flowing.....

Once upon a time, there was a girl who had many creative avenues she liked to explore.

She loved to journal and still does somewhat, including her blog.  

She loved to draw, but doesn't play with that too much anymore.

She loved to play with beads and has recently become once again interested exploring this colorful world.

She loved painting and has also started exploring and playing with this medium.

Time off from school, time to explore and enjoy multiple areas of the creative world that surrounds her.

So for the past 2 days, she has been painting.  She has been checking out tutorials and ideas and techniques and has completed to projects for shower and wedding gifts.
She was recently inspired by a sign she had someone else make for a wedding gift.  After her son saw it, he said, "mom, you SO could make that yourself."

So she did.
Then she became inspired and created another one from her own mind.
 and came up with this......
So now it's time to put the paint brushes away and return to the creativity of editing senior pics and a wedding.

But the painting bug has bit her once again and the brushes aren't too far away.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Monday Morning Coffee

Well, good morning to you!

I don't know about you, but weekends need to be a little longer.  Not necessarily adding more days to it, but at least more hours in the days involved!  


As seems to be the norm for me this summer, I packed in a lot over the 3 days I consider my weekend.  

Summer school ended on Thursday and my summer "vacation" officially began at 12:30pm that day!

Friday found me sitting on the beach with a good friend at her home and soaking up some rays and floating in the lake for a good portion of the day.  

I headed home to clean up mid-afternoon and then went to a wedding rehearsal for the wedding I was shooting on Saturday.  If you follow along, you'll remember I've had this scheduled for quite some time and the bride was a former student council member of mine.  She has a twin sister, and the 2 girls have kept in touch throughout the years since they graduated in 2003.

These girls are amazing young women.  Although identical, they definitely are not alike in a lot of ways!  It wasn't long into our time at rehearsal when their usual banter/bickering/twin chatter began and I felt like we had never missed a beat & were back in my classroom.  

Saturday I awoke to an amazing day.  The sun was out, the temps were absolutely perfect and the forecast called for nothing BUT the same all day.  I spent the morning checking my gear, looking over ideas again on line, taking notes and then heading out around 12:30 to get to the church before everyone else so that I could explore even more what and where I might shoot.

The hustle and bustle soon began shortly after my arrival and the fun came along with it!  This wedding party had such chemistry.  They were ALL good friends and just had the most amazing comradery with each other!

The bride and groom live in Baltimore currently and I had never met the groom prior to rehearsal.  I found out immediately why the bride is head over heals in love with this man.  He is so gentle, polite and just beams whenever he is around her!  The love between them was so evident.
The day moved quickly and the ceremony was beautiful.  BUT, the best man floundered a bit when he had to hand the ring over.  I also noticed that the groom and the pastor were a little flustered as well, but they continued on with the ceremony really never missing a beat.

It wasn't until after all was said and done and they were pronounce Mr. & Mrs. and we started pictures, that I found out the best man had a hole in his pants pocket and had lost the bride's wedding band!  Everyone was searching high and low for the ring.  I suggested to the janitor that they might sweep the girls room, checking all the cushions on the couches and chairs as the guys had spent a good amount of time in with the girls prior to the wedding, other than the groom, of course.

A search party was formed and the wedding party moved into the sanctuary so that we could finish pictures.  The bride & groom were so cool about the whole issue, stating it was "just a ring" and that it wasn't what made them married.  They were so honestly not bothered by the situation, just wanting to enjoy their day and the fun they were having with friends and family
 We finished up pics and soon headed off to the reception.  Introductions were made and soon the best man & matron of honor were toasting the couple.  After the matron of honor completed her toast, she handed the mic back to the best man who proceeded to "confess his sin" of losing the ring.  He was more upset than anyone that he had let this happen.  He started to say that he had every intention of replacing the ring, but then he pulled a white box from his pocket and stated that just as he was leaving the church, the janitor approached him and asked, "is this what you're looking for?"  It was the ring!  So the groom promptly took the ring, stood before his bride and formally placed it on her finger. 

Goosebumps!!  Cheers!!  Clinking of glasses!!

I ended my night around 9pm with them and headed home for a much needed soak in the tub and Netflix.

So Sunday was spent at church in the morning and then sitting on the dock with my Wonder Dog and DIL#1.  We just hung out for about 2 hours before heading back home.   

Dream Boy & I then went to the downtown park and listened to a blues band perform.  It was so relaxing to just sit and do nothing but listen and watch the people, of course.

Today - it is predicted to be a stormy day, but I really don't mind.  I will be sitting in a training all day for a new software program we are using this school year.  Yip.pee!  And then tonite I get to present in front of the school board the status' of summer school - the high's & lows.

So my friends, thank you for stopping by and listening to me go on and on and on.  But I do so enjoy sharing my weekend's with you all!

I'll talk with you all soon.  Have an amazing & blessed week!