Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Senior Photo Books

 A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of doing senior pictures for these two lovely young ladies.  I was finally able to sit down 2 nightsago & complete their custom albums!
I was really pleased with how they turned out & judging by the girls' reactions to their books, so were they!
I love making these albums because when I do their pictures I get to know them even better than I did before.  I try to take from our time together & use it to my advantage when I select the colors & papers I use for their albums.
These were 2 of my favorite albums so far.....

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Who Says Soccer Is For Sissy's?

Do you see contact like this without equipment in football?
Or this????
I tell ya, soccer is a rough sport and anyone who plays it will vouch for the physical contact and spirit on that field.
Last Saturday night was a prime example of the physical side of soccer......
Having gotten his nose split in the 1st half & being bandaged up, he went back out & played.  Then during the 2nd half he again got hit in the nose & went off for another nose plug & more bandaging.
Nothing broken, but a prouder soccer player there never was!!!  He refused to get stitches - one Athletic Trainer said he needed them, the other said the butterfly bandage would do the trick.
He's just proud of this picture and taking one ...... or two, for the team!
Oh yeah, and we won the game and play again tonite for 1st place in our conference!!
Hopefully the gale force winds that are blowing into Michigan today aren't going to affect our playing tonite.
Got go batten down the hatches......

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Finally..........The Maid Showed Up!

 Seriously!  Who cares that she showed up in her jammies & fuzzy blue slippers - SHE.SHOWED.UP!
Amazing what happens when it's cold & rainy outside, the soccer game isn't until 7pm tonite & Frank Sinatra is crooning away on the stereo!
I've been telling Dream Boy that he needs to fire the maid - it's been forever since she's been here, but he wouldn't listen to me!  So after she showed up today, it's been oh-so-long, I believe she deserves a raise!
 For 3 glorious hours, she vacuumed, swept away the copwebs, scrubbed the sinks & toilets and dusted the bunnies!
I'm sure there's more that can be done around here, but let's not get greedy!
 I couldn't believe it when she went to the storage room in the basement & pulled up the glass window for the front door!  Sad, yes, it means that fall is here & winter will be soon, but she replaced the summer screen & even washed the window down inside & out!
Amazing!
 She even went as far as to prepare a favorite of her dad's for the homecoming tailgate tonite!
Calico Beans - yummo!  She added a few extra special touches to the original recipe.....mmmmmm.......it smells so yummy in my kitchen.

Now if I can just get the Crafty Queen to show up to my Creative Corner and work on the idea that has been stuck in my head ever since I took a picture of this heart ...er....leaf.
And then she can get busy & finish up those summer mini albums & start & complete the 2 senior portrait albums that are awaiting the pictures she printed.
Well, tomorrow is promising to be a rainy day as well - so maybe the maid will let the Crafty Queen know that there is work to do & what better kind of day than a rainy one is there to work in the Creative Corner?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Just A Little Busy....

A week ago today Hope College Men's Soccer Team hosted it's 1st annual Purple Game to kick cancer.  Each player wore a purple jersey that was dedicated to someone in their life that has battled cancer.  They had the name of that person personalized on the back of their jersey.
 I got to spend a gorgeous fall Sunday afternoon with the girl above and the girl below a little over a week ago. 
Senior pictures - Ashley (above) wanted more rustic, woodsy pics.
Sara (below) wanted water & color.
The Sunday we chose was definitely a beautiful day and the color was popping all over.
I had such a great time with both girls!
For the last 6 months or so I've had this little "noise" in my brain.  It has continued to get louder as time passed until about 3 weeks ago I could no longer ignore it.
I've decided to start training now to run for a 5K next summer.  I found a program online that has you running a full 30 minutes by the end of 9 weeks.  I'm not sure that I'll make that, so that is why I'm starting now to give myself plenty of time to get to that point.
I've been walking/running almost every other day for about 3 weeks now.  It's getting better, but the knees protest every time.  Another reason to take my time training.
This past Sunday was again another beautiful fall day in Michigan, so instead of my walk/run, Dream Boy & I went for a bike ride.  We rode 10 miles, starting in downtown Kalamazoo & riding a new trail through town & out to the west side.  Five miles later we reached the trail head that goes to South Haven, about 40 miles further west.  We didn't go that far, just took a short break and road the 5 miles back to downtown where we had left our car.
So I leave you with this look down the bike trail and the beauty of Michigan in the fall. Isn't it just gorgeous??

Thursday, October 14, 2010

G-A Students Honor Local Fallen Soldier

 At 11:20am our principal came over the P-A system and announced that any student or staff member who wanted to pay honor to a local fallen soldier should report out front of school along the local road.
The funeral processional would be passing our school on it's way to the Fort Custer National Cemetery about 3 1/2 miles away.
Almost our whole school participated.  While waiting for the processional to arrive the kids' were laughing, joking, getting cars & trucks to honk as they drove by.  Typical kid stuff......you can't expect them to stand still for 20 minutes while waiting.
Several took flags from their classrooms or held small flags to wave in honor. 
Time seemed to pass a little slowly and then we saw the flashing lights of the approaching motorcade.  The sheriff led the processional followed by the many veterans of different wars on their motorcycles.  They come from all over to participate in a soldier's funeral.
As they approached, our students became quiet.  So quiet you could have heard a pin drop on that highway.  It moved me to tears, along with many in that processional.
 
As the cars passed the silence continued and several people in their cars nodded and mouthed their "thank you" to me.
I love my job & I love the kids' here at my school.  At times like this they make me feel honored to work at Galesburg-Augusta High School.
The soldier gave his life for our freedom and our students gave their thanks & respect for what he did.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Hope Socker Kicks Cancer Fundraiser!!

It was a beautiful fall evening.  A great night for soccer.  While the score was not what we had hoped for after a double overtime, it was a wonderful evening.
It was the 1st annual "Purple Game" to raise money for cancer research.  Why purple?  Purple is the color for cancer survivors!  Money raised?  ONE HUNDRED PERCENT of money raised for this event is going to the VanAndel Institute Research department.  Not 50, not 60, not even 75...but 100%!  How cool is that.
All the players had 2 jerseys to sell and they wore one in the game with the name of a family member or friend who has lost their battle with cancer or who has beat the battle & is living life!
How many places put 100% of their fundraising proceeds directly into the research for the cause they are working for? 
Job well done Hope College Men's Soccer Team!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Pure Michigan

 The reddest of reds, the brightest of yellows, the bluest of blues.  The evidence of beavers busy preparing for winter, the shedding of the old so that the new may be produced in the spring.
The beauty of Michigan in the fall.
God's total & complete masterpiece.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Ramblings....

"Man cannot discover new oceans
unless he has the courage to
lose sight of the shore"
Andre Gide

I saw this quote a few days ago on another blog I read - don't know which one, but I liked it.  I'm going to think out loud today.  I read several blogs every day - I hook them up in my google reader & they magically appear when the blog author writes a new entry.
Did you know if you become a "follower" of my blog it will do the same for you in google reader?
Anyways - I read several types of blogs. Yes, most of them revolve around art in some shape or form.  Scrapbooking, sewing, altering, photography and cooking.  Yes, I consider cooking an art.  When creating a meal or dessert from scratch, the time you put into it & the pride you feel when the food is savored by your friends and family gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling, it's art.
Other blogs I read are sentimental, reflective and some are just plain silly and bring a smile to my face every day!  One of the questions that has appeared on a few blogs lately is, "why do you blog?"
Hmmmm..........I can't actually remember when I started, maybe 3-4 years ago?  Blogging to me is a release.  I love to journal.  I actually have a journal I keep with me at all times as I never know when the thoughts will start pouring out & need to be put in writing.  My "writing" journal has more private thoughts in it, meant only for my eyes at this time.  It's a place to release anger & frustration, yet also a way to record my joys and happiness!
I guess one of the things that amazes me about blogging is the people who read it and those I've come to know through this world of blogging.  The people I can call "friends" - from all over the world.  It reminds me of a modern day form of "pen pals".  A way to stay in touch with others on a daily/weekly/monthly basis.
So through my world of blogs I've been able to reach other shores - to meet people I never would have met before.  To come to know a group of women on the west coast that I admire greatly and am proud to call dear friends.  To come to know them so well that after being "cyber friends" for about 3 years, we all met for a week together.  I flew the farthest and spent the week with them in California.  How crazy is that?  To go stay with people who I only knew through the internet and trust them enough to stay with them in their homes.  Wow - that amazes me.  It took courage to leave my "shores" - my safety here in Michigan to go discover another world - "new oceans".  
I sometimes wonder how many people actually read my blog, or just skip through it?  I know my sister is an avid reader & gets a little cranky with me (wink-wink) when I don't blog on a regular basis.  How many others feel that way or are really interested in what little ol' me has to say?  Do people really care?
Blogging to some is a waste of time, but to me it's a way to step off the shore & wade out into the waters & reach for the world beyond.
So if you are a repeat reader, thank you.  
Thank you for listening and taking an interest in my corner of the world.   

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Afternoon Walk

I got home from school yesterday & my 1st priority after letting Libbi out & feeding her was to clean out our refrigerator!  Yuck!
After that messy job & getting the dishwasher that was loaded to the max running, Libbi & I set out with my camera to capture some more fall foliage.....
I love the majestic oaks that surround our little village cemetary.  There are some very old headstones in it, and the mighty oak trees just seem to be the protector of them.
Libbi hates it when I use the acorn caps as whistles.  I think the high pitch is in that range that hurts dogs ears?
 Remember the picture from yesterday of the maple with the yellow leaves?  Well now the bright, vibrant oranges are starting to appear.
 As we were rounding the corner towards home a cat jumped out from behind a garbage can & attacked - yes attacked! - Libbi.  It was showing it's fangs, hissing and smacking the crap out of her.  We both jumped & then she turned thinking the cat wanted to play.  When it started smacking & hissing some more I tugged on her leash to get the heck out of Dodge!  As we were walking away, the cat started chasing us up the street!
It wasn't until we were in the next yard that I saw her mouth & muzzle bleeding!  By the time we got home it had subsided, but you can still see the blood smears on her fur.
I really think there should be leash laws for some cats!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Signs Of Fall

You've heard the expression, "frost on the pumpkins"?  Well, it certainly was this morning!  A definite sign that fall is settling in.
I left for school at 7am & the temperature reading on my car was 32 degrees.  There was frost on the fields, the windshields & I'm sure all the pumpkins in the patch!
Last week I took a walk with Libby with my camera slung over my shoulder. 
 The colors were definitely starting to change, but only in little bits here & there.  Over this past weekend with much cooler temps & a little rain, they are really starting to pop.  So I'll be out this week taking more.
Here are few more from my walk with Libbi last week..
 ...and then I went & played a little with this pic and came up with this.......
 I took my camera lens into the local photography shop last week.  He was able to make it work.......kinda - sorta.  I can zoom it, but it sticks sometimes.  I took shots with it at a photo shoot Thursday night, but the light isn't coming in the lens very well....so I think there's more going on with it than meets the naked eye.  They told me to send it in would take 5-6 weeks & approximately $120 to fix it.  I have 2 options on a replacement lens, one is $160 for a Sigma & the other is $200 for the Nikon.  I think it's a no brainer to just replace the lens, but it will have to wait a few weeks til I can save up some extra mulah!  I'm going to scour the internet in the mean time to see if I can find the lens cheaper somewhere else.  If you have any suggestions as to where to search - let me know, please?
I have 2 senior sessions coming up in the next 2 weeks, with several others who are interested & waiting for the color change.  They better not wait too long - I think they'll change really quick here in the next few weeks.