Weekend In Review~Part 1 of III

Here it is the last of the "Weekend in Review" post! It was hard to narrow down the images because there were so many! These photos were taken Sunday 9/26/10 on our Sunday drive just enjoying the awesome Fall Weather! Believe it or not I had never touched Cotton in its natural state before Sunday! I am a Cali girl born and raised we do not have cotton fields where I came from. It took me about a year in a half to finally get to a field. I am settling slowly but surely I guess:/ I am trying to become one with the South, but I will always be a Cali girl who was born to love the ocean breeze and sand between my toes. There is no doubt home will always be home! On our drive we took a side road into an old town. So old it almost seemed deserted! I got some pics of an old grain mill that was just awesome! Oh and of course on our way back into town I couldn't resist taking pics of the old cars piled into one small lot! I love all old things,maybe not the smell so much~ just the look..lol:) Old things have character, a story to tell,they have been places I will never see or experience. I always wonder the journey the owner had with these old things I find beauty in. Sometimes I'm almost 99.9% positive I was born in the wrong era.

So here they are friends! Thanks for stopping by! Would love to see your pics so if you are stopping by and have a photo blog or even any kind of pics let me know! I would love to check them out! I love meeting new people! Everyone has a story to tell!

Weekend in Review~Part 2 of III

Weekend In Review!~Part II

Posting some more pics as my weekend in review! I am busy editing images from yesterday~ The birth of the new addition to our Family! My sister in law gave birth to a baby boy yesterday at 10:43am! I can't wait to share these precious images. But first I must edit and second I have to ask if she doesn't mind me sharing the birth of their baby boy Kyler!

Well until then here are some images to welcome Fall I took this past weekend! It truly did feel like Fall! I wish every weekend felt this good....ahhhhhh...when the weather is just right, doesn't it seem like the world is a better place?!?..lol

These were taken on Saturday 9/25/10 at and around Craighead Forest and the Nature Center!

Weekend In Review!

So Mondays I think I am going to start posting all the pics I took over the weekend as a "Weekend in Review" post. Instead of saying it with words I will show you with pictures what my weekend sorta went like. Well at least tid bits anyway!

I got lots of pics this weekend so this may be a two parter~maybe even a 3 parter! I think I will start with Mikayla's funny face pics! She makes the silliest faces at us and we are still trying to figure out what they all mean!

We welcomed Fall's first weekend by taking the girls to Craighead Forest than taking in the Nature Center. Sunday we just went for a peaceful drive into Sheryl Crows home town Kennett, MO. We know a lil secret...shhhhhh! She will be performing live on Nov.26th in her hometown of Kennett,MO at the Opera House for a Benefit concert. Tickets can be bought HERE if you are in the area! I honestly had no clue she was from around here until today. Go figure!

Oh and I am literally on call as of...NOW! To take pictures of my new nephew being born in the delivery room! I am so nervous. I have been studying my camera all night in hopes to get the right setting in low light without having to use flash to disturb the baby and of course mom and dad. I am so nervous and excited all at the same time.Wish me luck because I really would love to produce some nice pictures for her considering this is their last baby!...eeek!

So here they are friends! Mikayla's~"What was she thinking looks!"

P.S~Stay Tuned! Lots More to Come!!

FAB 5 Friday!!

Yippppeee! It's Friday! We all love Fridays..right?!?!?! If you do not~ please give me 1 good reason why and specify what planet you are from...lol! Friday marks the beginning of the weekend with the family or not, time to create memories or not, time to argue fuss and fight if you have 2 or more teenagers under 1 roof. Well at least that's the way it goes in our house! But I wouldn't change it for anything, they definitely know how to give mama a run for her money! So cheers to another Friday and a wonderful first weekend of Fall! TGIF!!

We shall set the mood with some music first since it is how I get through my daily routines! This song was in my head all week! I don't even know why, it just was! I LOVE IT!

1. Song is Lasso by Phoenix~ I just LOVE this song! I'm always looking for new bands so feel free to share pretty please!

2. I'm not even sure who added who first when it comes to the next on my list?!?! All I know is this blog by Spuds gives a new refreshing spin on the SAHM generation! Not to mention his most recent post which had me in tears last night at midnight "It's Going To Be Okay..Won't It?".This blog is a must follow! Check it out here A Blirred Reality Blog This man is full of Heart and I Love reading his posts!

3. I came across this post after Googling....uhhhhh...ya know I don't even remember, but it must of had something to do with Time Management because that is what this blog post by Jack Cheng is about. I just think he did an excellent job at driving the point home and it makes PERFECT sense!
Check Blog Post here "30 Minutes a Day"by Jack Cheng

4. Here is an AWESOME site for you photographer newbies like myself that you can join and is well worth the money and very affordable Love That Shot they have done an amazing job here bringing together a forum where you can learn, share, and grow together with other photographers in your photography journey. Check it out!

5. Another WONDERFUL website you NEED to check out is I Heart Faces this site is full of information for newbies and professional photographers alike. It wouldn't be what it was if it weren't for the variety of skill levels of wonderful photographers who have joined hands in efforts of helping and learning from one another.This site offers weekly photo challenges, photography tutorials, and Fix-It-Fridays! This is another must check out site. Love...love...LoVe IT!

So there you have it! My Fab 5 of the week! I hope you are able to find something here you enjoy! Maybe you have something to share that you would like me to check out...PLEASE SHARE! I love finding new things and sharing them with the world! Cheers to another Beautiful Weekend! What is everyone doing to kick off the first Fall weekend right? I will be picture taking and waiting the arrival of my new Baby Nephew Kyler! He should be here any day! We can't wait!

Whateva Wednesday!

It's Whateva(yes I meant to spell it that way) Wednesday! I'm just gonna ramble on about whateva comes to mind! It may or may not be about Photography. I am going to use Wednesday howeva I wish from now on whether it be pouring out my heart or just sharing a simple story or pic. So please stick with me here! Ready, set, GO!

So this weekend I had the honor of doing a mini shoot with my sassy niece, her loving brother and my baby girl! See mini photo shoot slide show HERE! But I realized when going through my countless folders of pics yesterday my oldest girls are missing in LOTS of pics resulting in almost zero pictures of them! YIKES! This must be fixed ASAP! But let me just add, it has nothing to do with me. I try and try to take pics but they always know how to ditch me at just the right moment! I guess this is my fault because I love to be behind the camera but I DESPISE being in front of it. My girls always use this against me when I tell them, NO BEG THEM to just stand still!

So I have many candid shots. But in going through this past weekends shots I was able to capture a few of my middle child~the hardest one to capture these days. She is always pointing out her flaws even when I tell her she is a beauty. She was my helper this weekend at the mini photo shoot. It gave her something to do and pulled her away from the social media masses for a few. Plus when I called her "MY HELPER" she was like "heck yeah!", she had a role to play and she was loving it! I'm gonna use them more often:) So here is my favorite! She demanded me not to post and share! She warned me last night if I tagged her in any pics on FB she would just delete them. Well here was the compromise. I calmly stated through all her demands I would only post it on my blog. Her response, "Well, uhhhh...that's fine just don't post it on FB!" I love how my kids think they can tell me what to do:) Sometimes I will respect their wishes when they give me good enough reason. So I will kindly oblige, though I still may post to FB and just not tag her! She forgot to cover that part. I need to teach them to be more thorough in their demands. Kids..when will they learn!

Here she is the helper of the weekend! The munchkin rounder upper! The slurpee suckin, rollin my eyes, social media Diva...Drum roll please....TAAAADAAAAA! Cassie!

Ok I posted 3! Someone shoot me for loving my child!...lol. I broke the rules, I know~ but I am keeping my fingers crossed she never reads this and this post will go unknown in her oblivious state of mind!

My Two Cents Tuesday!

I stated I would do a Tutorial Tuesday in a previous post some where! But than I got to thinking, what do I have to give on tutorials? I Better "Keep It Real!" I am not a pro, I am not semi-pro, I am not even semi of a semi-pro. I am still learning the ropes! So I thought what else could I call it since Tutorial is a little bit of a stretch! So TADAAAA! Here you have it folks~"My Two Cents Tuesday" It's obvious this will come from a beginners perspective. Hoping in time I will be able to upgrade to Tutorial status, take on at least a Semi-pro stature and give back to all the newbies like myself. So here we go my first Two Cents Post!

Whether you have a point and shoot or DSLR all these tips will apply when it comes to taking pictures of the little ones. I started out on a point and shoot and was able to apply some things I learned using my point and shoot to get some frame-able images. I read somewhere on a photography site I can't remember quote for quote or source so please forgive me but it went something like this, "It's not the camera that takes the picture, it's the person behind the lens." The writer was referring to many who run out to buy expensive equipment and camera thinking the camera will make them a better photographer. In fact in the end they find out it just became one expensive hobby! That is if you are thinking of making a profession out of it. This stuck with me because I didn't want this to be the case in my situation. So before I ran out and purchased the expensive Semi-pro DSLR, I made sure my point and shoot and I became best of friends! I will post a few images I took from my point and shoot following this post. So here we go!

#1 Practice,practice...did I mention PRACTICE! Practice does lead to better images by far! In fact I would recommend starting out on a point and shoot to get the artistic part down. I can honestly say in the past year my images have improved just by doing this very thing PRACTICE! Shoot to your hearts content!

#2 Who did I practice on? My brand new baby girl because my older girls never wanted to be photographed! I was lucky a few times, it is however how I got the face shots posted on my Blog~~~~~> see side column! Not to forget to mention these too were taken with a point and shoot! Before my DSLR days, which was what a week ago?!? I tend to gravitate towards people especially children. It is what brought me to my love of photography, my very own children!

#3 How did I photograph her? Well I chased her around the house day after day literally 365 days for her 1st year! Then I got bored of my own picture taking and started looking up Children's photography and that's when the bug hit me! I remember the first thing I read, "GET DOWN TO THEIR LEVEL!" get on the floor on your knees whatever it takes~ just get to their level! Engage yourself in their activity with your camera in hand. I would sing her favorite songs and capture her smiling, or catch her at the back door on a rainy day trying to touch the rain drops through the window. I started seeing life through the eyes of my child instead of my own. Doing this did wonders for my images!

#4 Don't worry about perfection! Just shoot and keep shooting. Taking just a few shots and calling it quits is a no no! I was so happy when a photographer revealed they have to take at least 10 to get a handful of usable shots. Thats the beauty of the digital age of photography! We can snap away and delete the imperfect ones. Though sometimes those we see imperfect are actually just right! It's all one's individual point of view.

So get out that point and shoot and start Snap, Snap....Snapping away! Create those images that will last a lifetime!

Happy Picture taking!

These were taken with a Canon point and shoot!
This was Mikayla's First Day of Spring in her life exploring outside after a long winter. She was very content.

Below is Mikayla pointing to her eye. She was learning eyes, ears, nose and mouth. She thinks poking us in the eye is hilarious! Whatever makes her laugh right..lol:)

Sweet Shot Tuesday~ K.I.S.S.

Sweet Shot Day

I took this photo this past weekend in hopes to catch the last weekend of summer! I called up my expecting Sister in Law and asked to borrow her Beautiful babies for a mini shoot! She happily agreed!

Kateleigh is a doll! Full of energy, sass, and very quick witted for a 3 year old. She has me laughing every time I see her. She is a character! She loves her Big Brother Caleb so much and is so excited to be expecting another baby brother who will be here any day!

This was my favorite photo! In the middle of silly faces I said,"Give Brother Kisses!" She happily gave him showers but brother was giving me the alright already look! This photo is definitely Sweet and Full of Sugar!

Last Days of Summer...

It was another beautiful summer day and also the last weekend of Summer! My camera was begging me to take her on a test run and I was begging her to be good to me and throw me a few great images! I was prepared to photograph my lovely niece, nephew and my very own baby girl. I wanted to catch the last days of summer! I called up my sister in law and asked if I could borrow her beautiful babies for a bit and she was game! YES! I was pumped!

After we got warmed up and I told the kids to just well "Be themselves" the pictures seemed effortless! Tip #1 Don't try to pose kids just let them be! It comes natural trust me! The pics you will see in the slide show were not posed. Only thing I did was "Oooohhh and Ahhhh" behind the lens and say things like, "Give big Brother Kiss!" it was as simple and as easy as that. I literally chased them around the yard and landed where they did, shooting pics every step of the way! Tip #2 Make it fun~Talk to them as you walk around! Ask them silly questions! Ask them to show you their silliest face! All kids love to do that! That's why I love kids! They definitely know how to keep it sweet and full of sugar.

So here it is! I Hope you enjoy just as much as I enjoyed taking them!

FAB 5 Friday!!

It's Friday Where's the Party At?!?! Not really we all know this mama's not partying much at all lately. But I am learning great things, being inspired left and right. There is so much to LOVE this week! Keeping it down to 5 is getting harder as the weeks pass. But here my friends are some Beautiful FABULOUS People, Places and EVERYTHING that really Rocked My World this week.

1. Mumford and Sons~ Oh My! What can I say about this band except one word~SPECTACULAR! This doesn't happen much in my world that a band can grab me from the very first few strings of a song. I only had to hear a few songs before I ran out and grabbed this new CD from this UK band. If you dig Dave Matthews Band than you WILL LOVE these guys! I can't say enough! Here is a track I am in love with~"White Blank Page"! I can't forget to mention the camera work on their videos~I love their style as well! They are all that! ENJOY!

2. Chase Jarvis does it again in this short video he made with the new Nikon D7000! He is one talented man always creating, teaching and inspiring the world around him. If you do not know who this man is, you are missing out! Check out the whole making of the video on his blog Chase Jarvis.

3.FAB Blog of the week goes to June Cleaver Nirvana~ written by Holly! A Smart, Witty fellow SAHM who had me at, "Hello! I'm giving away an Epiphane Bag!" #4 on my list~see below:) I can't wait to read more on Mrs. Holly's adventures! I am sure you will ENJOY too! Head on over to enter for a chance to win one of the FABULOUS Epiphanie Bags #4 on my list!

4.FAB Find of the week! Epiphanie Camera Bags So I was searching and searching AND SEARCHING some more for a place to rest my new Canon's body, lens, etc. I must research before I buy because I hate just buying on a whim. I want to see reviews, is it the best, will it work for me. Let's just say I gave in and Googled "Coolest Camera Bags" yeah I said cool cause after looking at all the manly bags I decided I wanted stylish. But to my delight I found Epiphanie and maker Maile hit all points when making these bags. Functionality, Style, VERY Well Made bag! These GORGEOUS~FABULOUS~FIERCE bags are calling my name! The hardest part will be picking which one!

5.FAB Group of the week! Shutter Sisters~ I love everything about this group of ladies! They have created so much inspiring imagery and encourage women from all over to dive in and show what inspires them through their camera lens. They also have some AWESOME Groups on Shutter Sisters on Flikr and Shutter Sisters One Word Project I have been Inspired by these ladies and I can't wait to start adding pictures of my own. I will admit I am intimidated. Head on over and check these ladies out they are doing great things!

So there you have it Folks! My FAB 5 list of the week! I hope you were able to find some great things here you also will fall in love with! What are some of your favorite things of the week?!?! Please share! I love finding new things and sharing them with the world! TGIF! Make it a FABULOUS day!

Day 3~ Oy Vey!

Practice makes perfect! That's what they say but it's also what I believe. It has been 3 days since I started shooting with my new camera. I have been studying, learning techniques, wishing I had a brain of steel~ but I don't. Instead I have a slight case of ADD:/

I am literally a visionary. Show me how it works when it comes to speaking in technical terms otherwise I end up in lala land staring at my camera wishing she would speak to me already...pretty please! So don't expect anything artistic just yet,right now I am focusing on the technique. Once I get that down...WATCH OUT!...lol

But none the less I am in love! So through my love for life and my new camera I plan on using the two to create one BIG BEAUTIFUL MESS!...lol...not to forget to mention my Beautiful Muse, my sweet baby girl who will think it's weird if I wake up one day and forget to take her picture. We have since the day she was born taken a picture a day and created a slide show. It's not quite complete as my hubby and I argue over song choice(it's what we do best-argue) but once it is I promise to share her first 365 days of life.

Here is day 3 pic...Mikayla my Muse!

P.S...I am also having to learn Photoshop! So if I have the same image in different edits often. It's because I couldn't decide which one I liked more, so I just added both! Also I think next week I will give simple tutorials as I learn. Tips and tricks I have picked up along the way which helped me even in my point and shoot phase. I will call it Tutorial Tuesday! So look out for those posts! Hoping I can give back just a little what has been shared by awesome,selfless gracious photographers trying to help out the newbies like me. When all is said and done I will have a long list of talented people to thank. Until than keep shooting what you love! Own it! Make it Your Own!

Testing...Testing...Bedhead Alert!

The doorbell rang! I jumped out of the shower because I was expecting "HER"..yeah so shoot me I am referring to my new DSLR camera as a person. Actually I AM treating her like one! Like a newborn I am in awe,in love! I want to know all there is to know about this baby..if only it could talk and walk me through step by step how to take the perfect images! Like a newborn though it will take time to understand, to get the hang of her newness, to feel comfortable and at ease carrying her and not feel like I am going to drop her. I am afraid to handle her because lets face it I am now an amateur holding a Semi-Pro camera and I can feel it's power. This camera definitely owns me right now. But like a wild horse I will tame her and she will eventually be under my control and demand. I am in Heaven!

Here are some first shots I took after immediately charging the battery upon ripping open the box. Mikayla waking from her nap with G~L~O~R~I~O~U~S Bedhead...I love bedhead on babies, on me~not so cute:)

Now my hubby is going to either love me or hate me for this because I get these visions in my head that I feel "NEED" to be done. I won't say yet just what they are. I will in time show you, but that all depends if hubby will agree to my artistic endeavors cause let's face it people. It takes money to make money. I learned this with my last business endeavor. Except this time I learned from the errors and now know the do's and don't's a tad bit more than say 3 yrs ago.

So I am off! Learn..learn...learn it's the only way to get it right!


When Mama Hurts.....

It was a Friday afternoon, I was off to a good start. House cleaned, baby bathed, laundry done, read my blogs, talked to Bela my friend back from Cali, things were going great! I was having what I considered a TGIF day!

Then during my quiet time while baby was napping I decided to call my wonderful Mother who I miss terribly. She just had surgery and I wanted to see how she was doing day 2. Dialed number...great....phone rings...great. A woman on the other end in a muffled voice says, "hello" almost unrecognizable. "Mom" I question..."Yes Mija, it's me"...my heart fell to the floor it was then I knew I WANTED...NEEDED to be home. I heard her pain the kind you want to take on yourself so the one you love doesn't have to feel this way. I felt so helpless thousands of miles away. My mother the strong woman I know who I rarely ever see cry or ask for help seemed to be needing relief at this very moment and I could only offer words. Wishing..no PRAYING her pain would stop! I tried my hardest not to let my mother hear my sobbing. I was trying to be the strong one like I do for my baby girls. I realized at this moment the roles were reversed. I was wanting to play mommy to "MY MOMMY". I wanted to take her in my arms, hold her, kiss her boo boo and sing a lullabye in her ear. I wanted to BE THERE to comfort her to stroke her hand, her face, to hold her hand. I NEEDED to be there but instead I AM HERE!

We hung up the phone and I let it all out! I felt so guilty missing these important times. Then it hit me! There will be more times like these to come! What am I going to do when the going gets tough. I WANT...NEED to be there. This is "THE WOMAN" who struggled to raise all 5 of us girls solo. Who worked her tail off to put food on the table, to make ends meet, had to keep tabs on the wild child(me), had to do it all. She is a ROCK! I know my mom to be "THE ROCK!" the one that gets us all through the bad times. So here I am realizing times will be coming and she will NEED me more and I WILL NEED HER! I miss her more than words can say...I wonder if she truly knows or understands just how much!

Day 3 the phone rings! It is my oldest sister Sandra. She is calling to reassure me mom is feeling better. She states, "Mom wanted me to call you and let you know she is feeling better, she didn't mean to scare you." WOW! I didn't even know she could sense my fear and worry I thought I was hiding it well. How awesome is my Mother, through all her pain she still thought, "I better call Mari and tell her I am fine" she was comforting me even in her extreme moments of pain.

There are no words to describe the awesome woman my mother is. She is strong, smart, full of heart, laughter, love. She has managed to love all her daughters equally with as much heart and passion and taken our faults and somehow even embraced those. She has let us be who we are. Guiding us only when it seemed urgent. Giving us words of wisdom at just the right times. She is My Mother and I feel blessed to call myself her daughter!
I Love You Mom!!

My Love of the Classic Cars~51 Chevy Delux~

So Saturday we went into town to get a baby shower gift for my sister-in-law. My hubby and I always stop at this dealership who sells classic cars on the drive into town. We circle the cars not once but twice! But Saturday we found "HER"! "THE CAR" that made us get out of ours that brought us to a state of aweness...yes I said "AWENESS"! We were drooling like kids at a candy store. So since we can't have it, I took pics to hang on our wall so we can drool everyday...SWEEEEEEETNESS! 
P.S...Pictures have been watermarked in case you are wondering what that is:)

Fab Friday~Dedicated to Ali My First Born!

It's that time again! Seriously where does the time go? My favorite things of the week! Having to limit it down to 5 is getting harder and harder. Cheers to another FAB Friday~TGIF!

1. My oldest daughter Ali. All my girls inspire with in their own unique ways but lately my 17 year old Senior who is college bound very soon(eeek) has inspired me. Well lets just say she always has. When she was in grade school I could remember putting her to bed one night her sobbing thinking I did something so bad to make my baby cry. When asking what was wrong her reply, "There is this girl at school that the kids make fun of everyday and they make her cry." my heart dropped. She was crying someone else's tears. She was crying for this little girl she barely knew. It was then I knew my first born child would grow up to be a sensitive, loving, selfless human being and that she is. I remember telling her to befriend the little girl, we all need to feel liked, yet more importantly loved. Her response, "Mom I do, we play on the swings and monkey bars." she was one step ahead of me...sighhh...I wonder if she remembers this night, because mommy will never forget!

She took on band at an early age, 6th grade to be exact. She too had the experience of being teased herself at the bus stop especially for lugging her trumpet to and from school faithfully everyday. I never asked what drove her to play trumpet. Wait maybe I did ask once, "Trumpet are you sure?" I have to admit I questioned her choice of instrument. But she was sure and so we made it happen and she has been in band ever since. I and everyone who knows her would say, "Music is Ali's Life" it is, it truly is what drives her. I am inspired by her for sticking with her goals and never giving up in spite of those mean girls that tormented her in Junior high, who would wait for her to get to the bus stop just so they could try and break her. I am inspired she never let them break her. I am inspired she would take a book with her to the bus stop and act as if she was reading and what they said NEVER affected her emotions(even though mommy knew it did). She kept on being Ali, doing what she loves to do. Sure there was a time I as a parent had enough! Like when my Ali came home crying because they took her book and threw it out of frustration because she was not giving into their tormenting. They hated being ignored these insecure mean girls. I literally had my keys in hand and told her, "Lets go show me where they live!" what was my daughters response, "Mom NO it will only make it worse!" I promised her it wouldn't but she begged me not to. I had to stop, calm myself down and say "Self it is not a good idea to confront any parent in the state of mind you are in, calm..calm." Yes I had to calm myself down and think rationally. I remember telling her, "Fine, but if it happens again and if they ever touch you I am going to their house you hear me!" She nodded her head, "OK Mom!" Now don't get me wrong it took all of me to not go there that day. But my daughter was right, it would not solve anything and most likely if a child acts this way it is not a good sign of what their parent's will be like, after all our kids are a reflection of their upbringing.

I am so proud my daughter stood her ground, I am proud she is so strong and Inspired by her drive to do things her way not the cool way...though I think she's pretty darn cool. She continued to read at the bus stop, and might I say she is quite the avid reader and puts mommy to shame. She continued playing that trumpet and is now in one of the best bands in the state, she will correct me in saying THEY ARE the best band in the state. Actually they are they received many awards, top honors and I am so proud to watch her dedicate herself consistently doing what she loves no matter how uncool those kids thought she was. Ali inspires me continuously. She just decided out of the blue to start a band and learn the Bass. She locked herself in her room all weekend teaching herself. Of course I questioned her asking,"What's going on?!?" her response, "I am learning the Bass!" she yet again dedicated herself and didn't come out until she accomplished what her heart desired. My Ali is full of life, love, sensitivity, and of course music:) I am so inspired and blessed to call her my daughter.

Forget the other 5 things they do not even compare to the Inspiration and joy she brings to my life. To Ali my first born~YOU INSPIRE ME ~I Love You!

Greene County Fair time~

Mikayla's first trip to the Greene County Fair. She wasn't able to ride the cool rides, but daddy made sure to give her first taste of cotton candy and her very own blueberry snow cone. She was one happy camper!

My Brown Eyed Girl~

Actually they are brown around the pupil and green around the brown. But they look quite dark in pics so we are calling them Brown..lol~Mikayla is learning her eyes, ears, mouth and nose. She finds poking herself and us in the eye quite funny!....hmmmmmm...

To Do or Not To Do List...

To do or not to do that is the question? I have been following Chalene Johnson another super woman and inspiration to get my groove on. Everyday she is asking, "Have you written your~TO DO~ list?" My response everyday is a simple, "No." I have never been the type to write out a list and follow it word for word, task for task. Writing my own chore list/demand letter does not go well with my stubborn personality. So in a sense I am rebelling against the "TO DO" list idea. But I am a fan of goal lists which I find much less tedious and much more inspiring.

I read recently somewhere(forgive me for forgetting the source) to make short term goal lists for 6 month time frames. When that 6 months is up re-visit those goals to access the progress and re-write a goal list for the next 6 months. Repeat this process consistently and see what happens. Join me as I make my goal list~ no matter how big or small, a goal is a goal!

Have you ever been on a job interview and the employer asks, "So where do you see yourself in 5 years?" I hate this question #1~I am always caught off guard, #2~How do I tell them not here and not working for you and if I am working here I'm taking your job..lol! Not really but it is such an unfair question to ask, especially in today's economy when the main goal is to just put food on the table. Ask me at a time when I was given options to pick a job of my liking and not forced into the first job that gave me the time of day. So no one likes to be caught empty handed in the goal department. Make it a priority to always set yourself some goals because it means you are constantly self evolving, pushing yourself, learning and living life to the fullest. Not to mention in the end when the goals have been conquered it is a proud moment for you and for your kids to see what you have accomplished and trust me they are watching. Quick example~I made it a goal to lose my pregnancy weight gain over a 6 month time frame. My girls would come home and comment, "Mom you are doing great!", "Mom, did you work out today?", "Mom I am so proud of you!"..sighh...my girls know how to make my day. They watch me accomplish goals and see the reward and see it can be done through hard work and consistency you are teaching your children to create goals of their own no matter how big or small it's a good thing! Now on to my goals(can I say I am nervous to post these) I've got some major reconstructing to do in my life. It's hard to believe 3 years ago my hubby and I were both living in California making good money~life was good! In that short 3 years things have changed dramatically. But the beauty of it is this~ I was due for a change anyway! I just needed that push that forces me to~YES~ think outside the box(I hate this term for reasons too long to tell) to begin again, to re-invent ourselves. So cheers to the next 3 years ahead of us! I plan on taking the next 3 years and making up for the past 3 bad~it's time to begin again! All aboard!

My goals(remember you read it here first) for the next 6 months #1 To get my darn DSLR camera already~ it drives me nuts I must wait. #2 To become a better photographer which I shall do by practice! practice! practice!~ Chase Jarvis a well known photographer wrote in response to inquiries on how to make it as a photographer, which can be applied to anyone and everyone not just photographers~"Dedicate at least 10,000 hours to whatever it is you’re looking to master." Basically he is telling you it takes time, it doesn't happen over night #3 Become an expert on lighting~Lighting means the world to a photographer! #4 Begin building a portfolio I am proud of~I would like to have at least 3 photo shoots within the next 6 months with live subjects. #5 Work on building a better blog #6 Get a Flickr account it almost seems like a must if you are in the photography world.

So there you have it! I think 6 is a good number to end with. That gives a goal per month and I still have a personal self goal list to conquer alongside, which I will keep to myself. These are goals to make myself a better person, to remind myself to always be self aware of every action and word that comes out of my mouth.

So it's your turn! Make it a priority to make that list! Post it on the fridge for the kids and everyone to see. It will hold you accountable and if they are anything like my girls, if they do not see you striving to complete those goals there will be questions asked. "Mom when was the last time you worked out?"~you get the picture. So Cheers to goal making! It's time to ~Be Inspired, Create, Be the Inspirer!

Labor Day Weekend Recap~

Woke up to the bluest of blue skies, birds were singing, bees were buzzing, the wind was blowing not to hard, not to light, just right~YES! It was going to be one of those days~ NO Weekends! The heavens above called us, in fact demanded we come out and play. My dear hubby wanted to clean out storage, but days like these are rare and I say storage can wait and that it did~ sorta:/

So mama got her way and to the park we went! Minus 3 teens who just refuse to do anything with us these days because it's so not cool. Wow! When did I become uncool? The life of parenting..sighhh. In my defense I am cooler than cool~ I am the bomb...lol:)

The pictures I will be posting are Mikayla's first ride on a swing and really her first trip to the park since she started walking. It was too hot and humid a summer to get out to the park. We spent our summer near any body of water that was cooler than 80 degrees. So you will see she loved it! We wore her out so much you will see she couldn't even make it home without falling asleep. Sighhhh...to be a baby again. At least I am cool in her eyes still~YES!

P.S...I am still shooting with my Canon point and shoot. I am hoping to have that new DSLR soon! Keeping my fingers crossed it is sooner than later:) In case you hadn't noticed I am a HUGE FAN of Black and White photography I add in the color for my hubby so we are both happy in the end. I know B&W doesn't work for everything but when it can be applied I am using it..lol!

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