Saturday, July 30, 2011

Camera Block --- Otherwise Known as "CB"

I don't know why, but as I look back over the week I see that I quit taking pics around dinnertime.  Maybe part of that is due to the fact that we haven't done a whole lot after dinner this week, but chill.
Part of that is I get "camera block".  Yes, I said it, I have CB.  While I am home alone all day or even with a certain friend at the beach, I am not shy about getting the camera out & taking gazillions of pictures.  I'm usually not that way around Dream Boy, but maybe it's due this week to having a "new" son in the house.
Yes, we are the proud "foster" home of a 22 year old giant man/boy.  He has been living with us this past week & will be here until next weekend when he can move into his new apartment.
He is a recent graduate of Hope College & was in Son #2's fraternity.  He recently secured a new job close to our home - in Battle Creek.  The job started this past Monday.
Being a recent unemployed graduate, his financial means are very limited.  To drive 1 1/2 hours one way to a job every day for 2 weeks could quickly deplete his cash flow.  So Son #2 thought of us & our big, old empty house......all 1200 square feet of it!  We have that newly remodeled "family room" after all.  So last Sunday night foster Son #3 came to live with us.  It has been so nice having him around, but I hate to say this, I think it's part of the reason.....okay a lot of the reason for my newly diagnosed "CB".  
Everyone else in my life knows that the camera is an extension of my appendages, but foster Son #3 doesn't.  Yes, he's seen the camera sitting on this table & that.  We even had this long discussion about Food Photography after he came home from work Tuesday.  He's working in marketing at a very well known cereal company close to my home, that may or may not have 3 little people by the names of "Snap, Crackle & Pop" working for them.  
So my goal before foster son #3 moves out is to overcome this form of "CB" and face it head on.  To let him know truly what a camera geek I am.  The worst that can happen is that he moves out, right?
Phew - I feel better now that I've gotten that off my chest.  Thanks for being part of my "CB Support Group."
Yesterday I spent the day at the beach - - - you know that is one of my Happy Places.  Here are some shots & words from my Friday.
 Sorry, I don't have one word for this shot.  Libbi saw my swimsuit & knew she wasn't going on this lake trip, so she tried to stop me from going by staging a protest in the tub so I couldn't take my morning shower.
Oh - that's it, the one word for this shot....
This girl.
Beach Buddy.
Makes me smile.
Child of God.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Thursday Pics & Words

Thursday pics and words.....
Seriously - how often do you get money BACK from your doctor's office because you overpaid????
Yes I am in the water with Libbi.  I did not photoshop myself in there, I just hadn't gotten my hair wet yet!  I put the camera on the end of the dock (brave) and set the self timer.  Then I threw Libbi's pooch tube in & quickly swam back for the shot!
I can't believe what I've done this week to get self shots!  It's been kind of fun though.
Today - even though right now it's cloudy & dreary, I'm heading to the beach.  Hopefully by the time I get there it will have all burned off & be a beautiful day!
Happy Friday!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

P::52 Fresh......& Wednesday Pics

The prompt for this last week was "Fresh" - so when Dream Boy came home Tuesday night with a bag of fresh pickles from some farmers garden, I just had to make up some "fresh" refrigerator pickles.......right?
Mmmm-MMMM!  Slice em up, add some onion slices, some vinegar, some water, a little sugar and a little dill & refrigerate!  One of my summertime favorites - & it brings back memories of my childhood & how my mom used to make these up too!
Now yesterday's pics & words.....
 I had just woke up, reached over & set my camera on auto timer & then fell back to sleep.  I look so mad!!  
 Look who's laying on the other side of me not wanting to get up either!
 Big Yucky Bug.....Shell.........on my garage!
 Coffee cup burped on me when I got out of the car at school.  :(
 It was actually cool enough to turn on the oven & bake brownies!
Much needed rain - about 1 1/2 inches fell yesterday afternoon.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Week In My Life

If you know me you know that I love to scrapbook and I love to make altered books.
I follow many different types of blogs----
---interior design

One of the blogs I read daily though is Ali Edwards.  She is an avid scrapbooker and always has some sort of inspiration, along with life stories on her blog.
This week I am trying to follow along with her on
"A Week In The Life"
Right now I'm just documenting a lot of it & taking pictures along the way.  Here are some shots from my day today...
8:34 a.m.
leaving for summer school.
Taking attendance.
leaving school & heading to lunch
ordering McD's because I had a rough morning at school.
 My Angel Kitty after I rescued her from trying to eat this.....
which was still on the spool attached to my sewing machine and made whirring sound as she ran across the basement with it stuck in her throat and the string halfway to her belly.....
 Phew - I'm tired!  But it's a good tired.........
until tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

2 Miler.....

So I've been putting it off long enough and now is as good a time as any.......I started my run/walk program again tonite.
I did a 2 miler......good place to start and it's never too late, right?
Like the blue shoes?  They were a bit dusty, hangin around on the shelf for the last oh, I don't know how many years, but they got their work out tonite.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Come Fly With Me

My mom is busy right now so I though I'd steal her computer & blog about me today.
I know she does, or tries, Monday Morning let's talk about me.
If we were to be sitting around my water bowl this morning I'd be sharing this....

1.  Let's go swimming.
2.  Can we go swimming now?
3.  I need to go swimming.
4.  I haven't been swimming in FORever!
5.  I like swimming.
6.  Have you seen my blue pooch tube?
7.  Swimming is fun!
8.  Are you hot?  Let's go swimming.......
9.  I'm waiting for mom to get home from school so we can go SWIMMING!!
10.  I hope you have a swimmingly good day!

Friday, July 22, 2011


Always proud to be an American.
Always thankful for my freedom.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

P::52 Summer..........and a cool drink...

Our photo challenge for this past week was "summer".
How do you pick ONE picture to depict summer?  I've been working hard this summer to document through photos and a little "slap book" that I've been making to remember my summer days...
So for this week's challenge I put together a collage of a few of my lazy, 
hazy "summer" days.
Also, I think my brain is fried, literally.  I totally forgot my Monday morning coffee = so let's chat a little now with a cool drink...
 If we were meeting today for a cool summer drink I would share with you:
1.  They are saying 2/3 of the United States is in a Heat Warning mode.
2.  Michigan is one of the states.  Since Monday we have been in the 90 degree + temps with heat index readings approaching 110 degrees.
3.  It's hot.  I've spent many days in the cool basement as our house doesn't have central air conditioning.
4.  I am thankful I have air conditioning in my bedroom for sleeping at night and quick cool downs.
5.  It was tooooooooo hot in my classroom today.  I keep the shades pulled, set the fan in the doorway to try & pull the cool air from the hall in, but with 8 bodies and 8 computers, it gets hot quick!
6.  The superintendent's offices and the primary school building have air conditioning, but I don't.  I've gotten over trying to figure out their reasoning.
7.  I will remember these hot days come next winter when we are freezing due to sub zero temps & wind chills.
8.  Libbi & I have spent many an afternoon this week on the dock of a friend to cool off.
9.  I've read 3 books in the last 1 1/2 weeks.
10.  Dream Boy has tomorrow off from work - he deserves it!
11.  I'm going to go see if I can fry an egg on the sidewalk.
Toodles all - try & stay cool!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

In The Summertime......

....when the weather is hot.
It's very hot here in Michigan.  But it's typical July weather for us, but some people tend to forget that.  They complain & whine........yes, I agree it's hot, but its supposed to be!
Now in the winter these same people will complain that it's too's Michigan people!
We are in for some really, really warm temps this week.  It's supposed to reach 98 on Thursday, that's not including the heat index.  Today it is already 89 with a heat index of 97 degrees.
So I have escaped to my creative corner in the basement to stay cool.  After a little playing around, Miss Liberty Bell & I will be heading over the friends' dock for some swim time to cool down.
It'll look something like this....
"Can I go yet mom?  It's been over an hour since I last ate."
" know the rules."
"But moOOoo-om........."
"Okay, you can go now, but no showing off."
"Thanks mom!"

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Good Morning Muffin

Good morning!
I'm enjoying a quiet Saturday morning all to myself.  Dream Boy & his riding buddy went up to Holland last night & are riding in a big bike tour today....67 miles!  
I'm quite proud of myself that I rode 8 miles yesterday morning.....
I know 8 miles doesn't seem like much - but for me it felt like a WHOLE bunch!  I woke up this past Tuesday with a pinched nerve in my neck - must have slept wrong, so by Thursday I couldn't stand it anymore so I went to the chirocracker chiropractor and had him readjust me neck.  I love when they snap it & you are lying there & you wince a little and he says, "man, that was perfect!"  I'm laying thinking, "ow" and then he chuckles and says, "just a little chiropractic humor when something "snaps" into place so well."
While I am feeling better every day since, riding my bike yesterday was a test to that.  Plus I enjoyed riding with a friend on a local bike path....
 Don't you just LOVE her pink bike?
So today, like I said earlier....I'm enjoying my quiet Saturday morning.  I brewed a STRONG pot of coffee for myself....and I baked mini blueberry muffins....
Delish......don't worry, I won't eat all of them by myself.  I will save some for Dream Boy.
Well - off to find the maid.  She must be sleeping in today.  Gotta tell her to get the kitchen floor mopped before it gets too hot & sticky for it to dry.
Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


This past week's assignment.
I was doing dishes one night & as I looked up on the hill at the sprinkler, I saw this.  I quickly grabbed my camera & headed outside.
Then on Thursday I was doing a senior shoot.  In our downtown area there is a
 park which is surrounded by 6 or 7 very stately churches.  It is one of my most favorite places to do pictures.
Hannah wanted to explore behind the big Methodist church as I had told her about the stately stone & arches in the back.  So off we went.  While checking out the arches, a gentlemen came out from the church.  I asked him if it was alright to take some pictures and he said, 
"Certainly.  Would you like to come inside for some shots too?"
Oh boy!  This church is beautiful inside with it's historic stain glass windows, tall ceilings & ornate carved wood.
We wandered around experimenting with different shots and angles.  I must say, this is my favorite by far.
We found ourselves in the balcony and fell in love with this spot.
And God said, "let there be light."

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


The season is once again upon me.......seniors!
I had to sessions last week and promises of many more in the weeks & months to come.
Last Wednesday I went out with this beautiful girl, Elie.
My car never left her driveway.  Their backyard was beautifully landscaped and they backed up to a land preserve, so we went a walkin in the the woods...
 A tree climber - a girl after my own heart.  
I LOVED climbing trees when I was little.
I enjoyed my afternoon in the woods with Elie - next session up is Hannah!
We went to the park downtown and ended up in the church!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Morning Coffee

I'm so sorry, I missed coffee with you yesterday.  I slept in until the last possible moment before I had to get up & get a shower & leave for school.  
While at school we had terrible, terrible thunderstorms roll through - it was as dark as night out at 9am.  Then again at 11am another one rolled through - or should I say blew through?
When I left school at 12:30 it was sprinkling and it finally cleared up late in the afternoon.  When I got home, this is what I did.....
I curled up in my rocking chair and read.  I bought this book last Thursday afternoon & I finished it last night.  I read & I read & I read.  
Dream Boy was laughing at me several times through out the night.  He'd look over and was just amazed at how far I had gotten and how much I enjoy reading.
So....if we were meeting for coffee today....this is what I'd share:
1.  Read, "The Help" -- it will make you think of how you treat others.
2.  Big storms yesterday, but thankfully our little part of the world is good.  No damage, no power outages........other areas close by can't say the same.
3.  I'm in the last week of session 1 of summer school.  Three of my 7 students have completed their courses early.
4.  I did 2 senior photo shoots last Wednesday & Thursday.  I have over 400 pictures to edit.  I'm only 1/2 done with one of the shoots. 
5.  Guess what I'll be doing today?
6.  The sun is shining this morning and they are promising the humidity will be pretty much gone by the middle of the afternoon.
I hope you have a wonderful day - enjoy it to the fullest!!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Happiness On Ice

I'm a coffee drinker - love my morning coffee.  But this summer, the hot stuff in the morning just isn't what I want because it's, well, it's hot.  So I started making iced coffee.  Crushing up ice cubes and then putting mounds of them in my cup and then pouring hot coffee over it & flavoring it.  The ice cubes would melt, watering down the coffee, but it was cold and it worked.
Then the other day I read this blog post. Go ahead & read it, I know you want to know what it says.  I'll wait.  I'll even wait while you click on her link to Pioneer Woman to get the recipe.  I won't link you to Pioneer Woman, I'll let you get there through Kiki's blog.  Go ahead - you'll be glad you did.
(Insert Jeopardy Time Music here...........)

Well, hello, welcome back!
Did you like what you saw?  I did, so I made this...  Does that not look unbelievably sinful?  It actually looks like a pot of melted rich chocolate, but it's actually the brewed coffee!
Then I did this, very carefully......
I don't have a fine mesh strainer, I have a big green plastic Tupperware one.  I didn't have cheesecloth, I have a roll of paper towel.  So that is what I used and that is what worked.
Now I have this.....
.....and I'm a happy girl!

Friday, July 8, 2011

P::52 Gather

Our prompt this past week was "gather".  
"Easy peasy" I thought to myself.  
"It's the 4th of July weekend, with all the people "gathering" on the lakes and shores for picnics, fireworks, fun, this will be a piece of cake!"
Well, we gathered, but never in one place at one time.  There would be 2 or 3 here and then 2 or 3 there, but we weren't all together in one place until the boys' started their fireworks.  By then, I had my camera set up on my tri-pod ready to experiment with my photography on getting that perfect shot!
Then to top it off, ever since I heard the prompt, "gather", this song has been popping in & out of my head all week.
"Shall we gather at the river?
The beautiful, the beautiful river."
I envisioned a group gathering along the shorelines of the local river for baptism
But since I knew of know river baptisms coming up anywhere and the Kalamazoo River still is not "suitable" to get in since last summer's oil spill, that went by the wayside.
So as I was "gathering" up the bedding from my Family Room after my aunt & uncle left yesterday it hit me.....
I'm "gathering" up the laundry - get your camera!
So I did.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Monday Morning Coffee is Tuesday Afternoon Tea....

....iced tea that is...with a little bit of lemonade.  Sort of a home made version of an Arnold Palmer.
We were busy playing yesterday, so let me fill you in today.
If we were visiting on the back patio with our Arnold Palmer's I would share with you:
1.  My aunt & uncle from Arizona are still staying with us.  They go home this Thursday.
2.  Dream Boy & I have threatened to implement a curfew for them - they are quite the social butterflies.
3.  It is a beautiful day today, warm, sunny and no humidity......lovely, just lovely.
4.  I learned some new things with my camera this weekend...
like this:
..I MUST use a tri-pod when trying to catch Libbi in fast running motion & I'm using a slow shutter speed!
5.  A tri-pod and show shutter speed will get you firework pictures like this:
and this:
..and yes - the background on my blog is this picture.
6.  I also learned that my son #1's passion for fireworks has not changed....he's still a pyromaniac :) - these fireworks were compliment of he & his 2 buddies.
7.  I would tell you that I think I'm going to try & call my friend Wanda this afternoon & go for a bike ride with her.
8.  Or maybe I'll take a nap.
I'll decide sooner or later........have a wonderful afternoon wherever you are!