This photograph was taken at The Davenport Hotel where we met up with my brother and his family after Christmas. I've never been to this hotel but watched a special program on how they renovated it back to its historical glory after years of neglect and modernizing and have always wanted to see it in person.
What I liked about this day was the fact that I learned something new about my sister-in-law. As we were walking around looking at the Christmas decorations and gingerbread houses, we came across pictures of the past hanging along the walls. As we looked at theses photos we both expressed a desire to experience the past. To see the hotel as it was when it first opened.
I love old photographs that gives me a glimpse of what was before me. I wanted to touch the big bulky keys that once opened the hotel room doors. I wanted to be there when Emelia Earhart and Bing Crosby stayed there. I even wanted to be at the wedding reception in one photograph. I wanted to go back in time for just one day to wear large hats with feathers in them, long skirts and long gloves. I want to experience a slower time where the pace was not so fast and people were probably a little more courteous towards each other.
But for now, I am here in the present of a society that is faster paced. Yet, for the short time we were in the hotel I could feel things slowing down just a bit. It was breath-taking and beautiful.
This photograph was taken on Thanksgiving Day. I took this photograph of our table because it represented family. We had to extend it by adding another table which means our house is filled with loved one.
Roses Have Thorns
This month's Photo Heart Connect photo was taken on a day that tested my strength and faith. It was the day that I had to endure another visit with the oncologist. I do this every year but for some reason this year was a bit more difficult on me emotional.
You would think that after 12 years of dealing with cancer that I'd be an expert on how to handle my fears and emotions. But that isn't the case. I have been cancer free since treatment ended in 2001 but that doesn't mean that I will stay cancer free. The nature of the beast is that it still could come back even after all theses yeas.
Most years I can handle my yearly visits without too much internal fuss. But this year I was hit with the reminder that things can change in an instant. Two of my friends were diagnosed with cancer recently and listening to them share their story brought back memories that I try to keep in the back file of my brain's filing cabinet.
I was also hit the same week by a chapter on fear in my Bible study. Fear is something that has always had its hold on me. I don't know why but I consider it a thorn I must endure. Thankfully, it is something that has lost its grip upon me but every once in a while it hits me full in the face and I am thrown for a loop.
This beautiful rose reminded me of this bittersweet moment. Roses are beautiful to look at, touch and smell. It is through my cancer ordeal that I have learned to smell the roses more than I use to. On the other hand, roses have thorns that can prick you if you aren't careful. This rose reminds me of the blessings the Lord has given to me through the gift of cancer. It also reminds me that I cannot move forward without the Lord. The tiny pricks of fear remind me to run to the Lord and continue to be reliant upon His strength.
I chose the below photo for two reasons.
First reason: My family. I love my family. We don't always get to be together very often but I cherish the times that we do. Our weekend is just fun and crazy as we hang out and enjoy each other's company. This photo was taking in Plane, WA next to the little one room school house where the three older cousins hung out. It looked so beautiful bending over me that I couldn't help but feel blessed to be able to photograph such a bright beautiful sunny flower.
Second reason: I love sunflowers. They are so bright and cheery and make me smile every time I see them. In fact, when I was looking for flowers to give to my best friend on her birthday I was instantly drawn to the sunflowers. I could literally hear them singing, "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine." When I gave them to her that is the first thing she told me. Two great minds think a like. :-)
Haystack Rock at Sunset
I chose this photo for many reasons.
1. I met the love of my life here.
2. I have two wonderful daughters because I met the love of my life here.
3. My soul feels most at peace here.
4. Every time we take family vacations here they turn out to be the BEST vacations.
5. I just think it is beautiful.
This month I chose an image from time spent with my brother and his family. We don't get to see them often so spending time with them is always a treat. The past two years while we have been in Spokane we have spent the day with them at Riverfront Park.
It is always fun to hang out getting caught up on what has gone on in our lives since the last time we saw each other. I am always amazed at how fast my nieces are growing up and enjoy seeing them run around with my girls.
I took this image while walking behind Lee and the girls as they ran from one ride to another. I can't ride the rides because of my motion sickness issue but I enjoy doing the Mamarazzi thing as I trail behind the gang. I absolutely love being at the pavilion at Riverfront Park. This structure has always fascinated me and I take a picture of it every time we are under it. I love how the clouds look with the sun shining behind them. I also know if this was a play structure at a park that my oldest would climb to the top and just sit there enjoying the view from her lofty perch.
I don't have much to say as to how the below image connects to my heart. I did take it during a photography class I took my best friend Dani. That in itself is a heart connect because I got to hang with my best friend all afternoon. My goal that day was to learn how to take pictures of the buildings. If you haven't been to the University of Washington you should. It is a beautiful campus rich in history and full of beautiful old buildings. I could have stayed there all day because I don't think we were able to see all of the campus. But that day I chose to get away from the flowers and nature and focus on the lines of the buildings we walked past.
This is a picture of one of the archways of an older building. I was fascinated with the entrances of all the buildings. Each entrance was unique and different from the other. This one had the most beautiful lines out of all he buildings I saw. The curve of the bricks and the different layers added to its elegant beauty. It was the one building that captured my attention and helped me start to focus on the lines of each building rather than the building as a whole.
Running in the Rain
My heart goes pitter-patter when I look at the image I chose for this month's Heart Connect Project. It was taken on a day that the weather was being bipolar. When you live in the Pacific Northwest you come to expect the bipolar weather and don't think much of it. This day the sun was shinning all day until around 5 p.m. when the clouds rolled in, flashes of lightning lit up the sky and a clash of thunder could be heard for miles.
I was in the girl's bedrooms preparing them to be painted when my husband called me to the kitchen to look out the window to see what the girls were up. As I looked outside I saw them frolicking in the backyard in the rain. Mind you, the girls are teenagers and are normally embarrassed by doing anything that may seem childish. But this afternoon they didn't seem to care. You could hear their laughter and see the joy in their faces as they skipped around in the rain. I immediately grabbed the camera and snapping pictures of them. Oddly, they didn't seem to care that I was doing my Mamarazzi thing which is again, something that is forbidden in the teenage world.
I was having trouble with getting the camera to focus on them and not the rain and I decided to just set the camera on an automatic mode so I didn't have to worry about it. At first I was a bit disappointed that they were not in focus. I couldn't blame the camera because I couldn't set it properly and the rain was so heavy that I understood that the automatic setting couldn't figure out what I wanted it to focus on - the falling rain or the running kids. But in the end, it didn't matter. What mattered is that I captured probably one of the last remaining childhood moments in my 15-year-old's life. I love how carefree she is while she runs through the rain.
I chose this image because it reminded me of the wonderful time I had with my best friend at Thornewood Castle. It was a very special weekend where best friends were able to get away from the land of Mommy and relax without an ounce of responsibility.
This is the picture of the front door of the castle. It is massive, heavy and hard to open and close. It is hard to imagine what the castle looks like on the inside when you get the first glimpse of it from the driveway. These doors represent the unknown. What will be discovered once we walk through them? It is with excited anticipation that you feel when you walk up to the doors and are greeted by your host. She invites you to this wonderful home and walks you through these doors and into a time long past.
Once inside you are bombarded with detailed dark woodwork, the large fireplace in the great room, the patterned ceilings, old light fixtures and sculptures. Beyond the great room you get a glimpse of the massive dining room. In front of you is a large staircase leading to another part of the house. This is where you are taken by your host as she gives you a brief history of the home and what to expect.
It was hard to take it all in at once and I was grateful that we finally got to our room at the end of a long hallway. It is where we were able to put down roots for at least 24 hours. A place where we could relax, talk and just be quiet. But outside of this room was a whole new world to explore. Room upon room to run through, halls with mirror, angels, paintings and family portraits. Each room had a different theme and unique nooks and crannies.
Besides the castle, these doors represented the unknown in a friendship. A friendship that has been built slowly through time. A friendship that started out one Easter morning and has led to a best friend soul sister status. When I say the unknown in our friendship I mean that there is still much to learn about this best friend of mine. There is always something new to discover about her and about our friendship. We don't always get to spend a lot of face to face time and often rely upon the internet to stay connected. Eric will ask me who I'm e-mailing and will instantly answer his own question, "Dani".
The one thing I learned about our friendship that weekend is that Dani is the one friend I don't have to fill the silence with nervous chatter. We didn't have women's retreat responsibilities, family responsibilities and a time limit. We didn't have to constantly chat to get it all in before our time was up. I believe this was the first time we've hung out where we could honestly relax. I discovered that behind those large doors that I am truly unbelievably blessed that God brought Dani into my life.
I chose this picture of downtown Seattle because it was taken on a day that my family had been looking forward to for a year. It was the day we went to the Emerald City Comicon. I loved that day because we were together as a family and having a lot of fun seeing the different Cosplayers, artists and whatnot. I had so much fun watching the girls have a good time having their picture taken and being Rock Stars for the day.
Normally I have to bribe them to let me take their picture and I get gripped at and they give me these cheesy smiles that are fake. But on this day their smiles were genuine, their eyes light up and you could tell they were in their element. I could have stayed in the sky bridge atrium all day just to watch them enjoy themselves and other enjoy their costumes.
This was taken from the skybridge atrium of the Washington State Convention Center. I needed a bit of a break from the crowds, Cosplayers and the constant bombardment of people asking me if they could take my girl's picture. There was no place to sit and rest so I just turned around from the crowds and looked out the window. I loved how the Pike Place Market was straight ahead and I loved the lines of the building and the busy street. I quickly snapped the picture and took a relaxing breath before I turned back to the business of Comicon.
I will always remember this day with fond memories.
I didn't have to wait till the end of the month to choose a photograph for the Heart Connect Project. As soon as I downloaded this image off the camera I knew it was the one.
This is a Valentine's Day card Eric made for me. The front of the card says, "Will you". It was a perfect card because this is the question Eric asked of me 20 year ago on Valentine's Day. It was a special day and one that I wasn't expecting. I knew he was going to propose because we had my ring on hold and were paying it off. We wanted to get it paid off before we got engaged and had a few more months to go which is why I wasn't expecting it.
At this time Eric was living in Spokane and I in Seattle. He was going to school and I was working at a local newspaper. Time together was rare so we took every opportunity we had to be together. One of those visits came on Valentine's Day. I took the Greyhound bus to Spokane and spent the weekend with him. The day started out a bit chilly but clear as we headed to college where I would sit in on his classes with him. We had plans for that evening to go to the Sweetheart's Dance put on by the local Christian radio station but in the meantime Eric still had to go to school.
On the way there his car died and wouldn't start. We got it pulled into a parking lot and start hoofing it back to his house. I can honestly say I wasn't too excited about this turn of events because it was cold and we had a long walk that went mostly uphill. Thankfully one of his friends saw us and stopped to ask if we needed a ride. I can't tell you how thankful I was to be rescued and back in a warm house. :-)
While I was feeling content lounging around on lawn furniture (Matt and Eric didn't have furniture at the time), Eric was bouncing around acting disappointed we were stuck inside. Hello! You're not just stuck inside. You're stuck inside with me whom you haven't seen for a few months!
Out of the blue Eric called Matt and told him about our situation. For some reason Matt agreed to come get us and take us to Eric's car on his lunch break. I thought it was a nice gesture but he really didn't need to do it. We could wait till after he gets home from work. Being the good friend that he is he picked us up and drove us to Eric's car and waited till we got it started. While Matt went back to work Eric surprised me by telling me he wanted to take me to Riverside State Park. I was a bit nervous that the car would die again but was game. We had time to kill so might as well go on an adventure.
Once at the park Eric opened the trunk of his car and pulled out a large garbage bag, blanket and picnic basket. Humm, this is odd, a picnic in February in Spokane? Okay, I'll bite and go along with it. We walked over the bridge and found a grassy plateau for our picnic. We had a nice view, good food and sparkling cider. After lunch Eric got on his knee and asked me to marry him.
It was one of the many happiest days of my life and I didn't hesitate to say, "yes." 20 years, a few ups and downs, two kids, two cats, and one fish later I can honestly say, "yes" all over again.
I'm excited about starting out with this new project. Unfortunately, I don't have anything deep to say about this image. I just love it. I love how soft everything looks and the water drops that are frozen on the ends of these tiny branches. What I do like about this image is who was with me when I took it. This was taken on the first day of our week long snow storm. Our family took a walk around the neighborhood and through the trails enjoying time together and exploring in the snow. Afterwards my husband and oldest daughter decided to head back home to build a Snow Dalek while my youngest and I chose to head back out on a longer photo walk. It was nice being able to take our time meandering through the trails with our cameras.
If I have to make a heart connection it is that I was out with my little shutterbug who is one of three people close to my heart. Watching her explore through the lens of her camera fascinates me and I often find myself standing around watching her set up her shots. I also love that we have photography in common. She is a beautiful photographer and I enjoyed spending the day with her.
I decided to do my own thing for Week 51 of the One Photo A Week project. I chose to pick a special image from being up at the Cabin.
I chose this image because it reminds me of what visiting the Cabin is all about. It is part of an old fence that I'm sure Grandpa Alan helped build many years ago. It surrounds the cabin and separates it from the rest of the homestead. Within this fence is where the family action takes place. It is where we spend our summers sitting in lawn chairs, eating Grandma Hazel's delicious food, listening to Grandpa Alan's stories, laughing and watching the cousins hang out now that they are older. It is where love and security can be found and given. It is where memories are made and cherished forever.
Outside the fence is where nature takes place. It is wild and unkept. It is where the wild deer and turkey roam. Where wild flowers grow in the summer and deep snow lays in the winter. I find the outside to be a little less secure because my city girl instincts kick in and I wonder what wild creature is lurking beneath the tall grass. But I love to photograph it from the safety of the yard where I can lean against the old fence and find security.
This old fence has seen more than we can imagine. It once stood as a tree in the mountains overlooking those that walked beneath it. Now it resides on the homestead where it has overlooked countless gatherings of a family that has love to share with anyone who sees their way to walk through the gate and into the yard that is surrounded by the old fence.
This week's theme is "Festive Colors".
I'm sure when you think of festive colors you think of an image with lots of color. I agree but for me I love when I see gold as a Christmas color. This gold colored pine cone is one of many on a huge wreath that hangs over my in-laws fireplace. I loved how the gold color sparkled off of the Christmas lights.
This week I am playing catch up with my One Photo A Week project. I fell behind with all the Christmas and traveling preparations, my youngest getting sick and then getting sick myself. This week's theme is "Twinkle Twinkle". I'm not going to get deep with this one because this image has no story behind it other than the fact I took it just because it matched the theme.
This week's them is "Traditions".
I chose to photograph the angel that sits on top of our Christmas tree. My husband made it for our first Christmas when we were too poor to go out and purchase the fancy angel I wanted. I had it in my mind that our tree had to look like a designer tree in a fancy magazine. When my husband made this angel out of cardboard, leftover fabric from the gifts I made for my bridesmaids, and whatever else he could find, I was a bit snobbish about not wanting it on our tree. It only took a year or two before I found one of those fancy angles at Costco and replaced the handmade one.
A few years ago I started to get real sentimental and decided I didn't want the fancy angel any more. I wanted the angel that my husband made because it reminded me of that first Christmas. It also went better with how we decorated the tree. Our tree is not fancy but filled with a mishmash of ornaments from our childhood, from ornaments given to us the first year we were married and ornaments given to the girls every year. I love our tree and I love the fact that our girls can put their ornaments anywhere they want.
Each year my husband puts the angel on top of the tree. When the girls were little they'd take turns each year putting the angel on the tree. But now that they're older and can't be picked up like when they were little, the job has gone back to my husband. I'm glad I gave that fancy angel away because this one is far more special than that one ever was.
This week's theme is "Water."
I chose this image because I love waterfalls. Waterfalls are so beautiful yet so powerful. I like the fact that water can take on different looks from calm smooth to raging whitecaps. Water can also come in different forms like rain, snow, mist and clouds. I also like the fact that our bodies are make up mostly of water and how important it is for the survival.
This week's theme is, "Over the Top!"
I have had no time to think about taking pictures. I've been busy and the weather has either been too cold, snowy, rainy or the wind has been blowing 45 mph. I have no deep thoughts as to why I chose this image other than it's on top of the picnic bench.
This week's theme is "Book Title". I chose this image because the bench reminded me of the book, "Forrest Gump," by Winston Groom. You know the familiar scenes of Forrest sitting on a bench with a box of chocolates. I read the book after I saw the movie and was greatly disappointed in the fact that the Forrest Gump character was nothing like the enduring Forrest Gump character in the movie. But, with that said, I enjoyed the movie, own it and own the sound track.
I love photography benches. They are basically the same shape but come in many different styles, textures and locations. Benches have a way of bringing people together but seem so lonely when they are sitting alone just waiting for someone to use them.
This week's theme is "Muted Tones."
I enjoyed this week's theme because I could take pictures of anything I wanted just as long as I processed it to match the muted tones theme.
I love Fall because it's a season of change. Most people may see it as a season of things dying but not me. I see that the plants that are dying down and the leaves turning colors as a sign of preparing for life.
A few weeks ago I looked out my window and saw the tree across the street bathed in sunlight. The leaves were a mixture of bright orange, yellows and reds. I ran and got my camera to capture the moment because I knew in a short time that the leaves would become the same brown color and fall to the ground. Sure enough the next week the tree was almost completely bare.
There comes a point during the Fall season that the leaves have all fallen off the trees and cease to be those bright colors I saw a few weeks ago. Instead they are all the same brownish or muted color. I have fond memories of my Dad and I piling up leaves at the Seattle Center and running through them. But it also makes me sad to see these beautiful colored leaves lay on the ground ready to be raked up never to be seen again.
This image reminds me of Fall. The leaf is in the process of turning brown and dying but the water that lies on top of it represents life. Water is the life source of all that we find in nature. This leaf may not find nutrient from the water any longer but eventually this water will give life one way or another and eventually Spring will come and new life will begin to appear.
This week's theme is, "Shadows."
This week's theme is, "Shadows." I LOVE this theme because I've been fascinated with shadows lately. I know I've been relying on older images but this week I knew I'd be able to work on my photography because my daughter and I would be taking a photo walk at Jennings Memorial Park in Marysville, WA. I had never been to this park before and was excited to see what treasures it had for us to photograph. I was not disappointed. I could have stayed there for hours but as it was we were getting cold and didn't want to get stuck in rush hour going home.
I took this image as we were walking to the van to go home. My daughter was the one who spotted the bicycle and started taking pictures of it. I snapped a few quick pictures but didn't think much of it until I got home and processed them. I just love the way the late afternoon sun looks and how the bike is a bit unfocused but the shadow isn't.
This week's theme is "True Beauty."
I was excited to see Dahlias at the pumpkin patch when we visited last weekend. I love Dahlias and can get lost in picture taking heaven when I'm around them. I like how they come in different colors. Some are solid while other vary like this one. Even the petals come in different shapes. Some come out to a point while others are curved. When it comes to the flower world nothing says True Beauty to me like Dahlias.
This week's theme is "Architecture".
I dug back into the archives for this week's photo. These are the arches you walk under when you visit the Pacific Science Center in Seattle, WA. I love the curve of each arch and how they light up at night. I can't think of the Seattle Center without thinking about the Space Needle and these arches. I took this image the day we had our marathon Geek Day at the Pacific Science Center. We saw the movie, "Tron: Legacy" at the IMAX and followed it up with going through the Harry Potter Exhibit. By the time we got out of the exhibit it was dark out and my attention was drawn to the lit up arches. I chose this particular image out of all the others because I liked how the arches reflected off of the water.
This week's theme is "Vintage".
I got behind on my photo assignment last week. I knew exactly where I wanted to go to take pictures of something vintage but I just didn't have the time to get down there when it wasn't raining or I wasn't busy. The where is Snohomish, WA. It's a cute little down sitting right on the banks of the Snohomish River. The buildings are old and most of them are filled with antiques. A few years ago I headed down there on a photo walk and ran across an old building with antique looking signs and other objects sitting on or in front of it. The building was at the very end of the main street and hardly anyone was around which gave me the freedom to do my Mamarazzi thing. This time I will admit that I was a bit shy about taking pictures because right as I was walking up to the building the owner came outside and started getting it ready to open. I should have asked him up front if I could take pictures of his stuff but I didn't. I used my telephoto lens and took pictures from a distance. Not what I call the best situation I was looking for.
I chose this old stove to represent my something, "Vintage." I have always liked old stoves. They have so many different levers, doors and slots to explore and open. Imagine using this to cook on every day?
Man vs Nature
This week's theme is "Man vs Nature".
When I saw what the theme was this week I knew exactly which image I was going to use. I took this photo on March 27, 2008 while Eric and I were celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary (which happens to be March 27th). My husband surprised me and arranged for his mother and grandmother to come and watch the girls for an extended weekend so we could celebrate our special day where we first met in Cannon Beach, OR. The weather was crazy that weekend. It would be sunny and warm one minute and the next it would rain or even snow. The day this image was taken we were down on Indian Beach watching the storm roll in.
It's in the Eyes
This week's theme is "It's in the Eyes."
I took this picture last year while Emily and I were on a photo walk at Flower World. Flower World has a bunch of chickens and roosters and Emily was fascinated with taking pictures of them that day. I didn't care to take pictures of these fine feathered friends but I snapped a few shots before we moved on to flowers. Mr. Rooster here took exception to our presence and flew up onto a stump and glared at us. His glare says it all.
This week's theme is "Momentous Moments."
This image was taken on our visit to Cusick last year. The day happened to be the 4th of July and we were at the tail end of our visit with the Jones clan. Grandpa Alan was preaching that day and many of the family was in church together for the first time in years. Eric said the prayer before the sermon that brought everyone to tears. After the sermon the family did what they do best - hugged each other. That started the tears flowing once again because they were reminded of how special and rare it is to have us all together at church.
I took this picture as Grandpa Alan was leaving the church. His hat was hanging on a nail above the door where I'm assuming it always hangs. I'm also assuming this is a weekly ritual and if so I'm glad I was able to capture the moment.
Thirst for Knowledge
This week's theme is "A Thirst for Knowledge."
I enjoyed this week's theme because it coincided with the girls going back to school. I haven't been in school since 1992 and don't think I'll go back until the girls are raised. But it doesn't mean that I sit around like a bump on a log not learning. I chose to photograph these items because they represent what knowledge I'm thirsting for at this moment in life.
The New Gardener book represents my new found love for gardening. My parent's love to work in the yard together and have created a very peaceful beautiful yard since moving into their home in the late '70s. For some reason I did not get bitten by the gardening bug until just recently. My mother has spent countless hours helping me build up my garden and passing along her gardening knowledge.
The photography book represents my thirst for more knowledge about photography. I've combed through that book more than I care to admit. :-) I'd say the Cannon EOS 40D book goes hand in hand with the photography book and helps me learn more about my camera.
The Bible represents my biggest thirst for knowledge. Without it I would be lost. It is a way that God speaks to me and I learn how to become a fully devoted follower of Him. It is THE most used book I own because I search through it many times a day.
The last book by Oswald Chambers is my devotional book that I read every morning. I love the way Oswald Chambers is to the point and doesn't mince words. He gives me food for thought along with my Bible reading each morning. I placed the clock on top of the books because it reminds me how important it is to mange my time so I can have time to thirst for knowledge.
This week's theme: "Lazy."
I am swamped with too much this week to think about taking the time to think about this week's assignment. Call me lazy if you wish but I took the easy route and chose an image from way back when. Way back when meaning 3 years ago the first summer I had my Canon Rebel XTi.
I chose this image because it describes lazy to the core. There is nothing lazier than a cat sunning itself in the sun. This is my kitty Kozmo. He is our resident outdoor kitty because he has a bad habit and no longer allowed in the house. I would say he is anything but lazy because he has to fend for himself 24/7 but one thing he loves is to find a place in my garden to curl up and sleep. I love this image because he is so content and enjoying the warm sunny day.
Connections through 47 years
This week's theme: "Connections".
I love the fact that this week's theme fit into what we were doing as a family. We connected by meeting from different sides of the state at one location. It was my parent's 47th wedding anniversary and they chose to celebrated it with us.
I chose this image because it represents how I view my parent's relationship. One thing you have to know about my parents is that they love God, each other and their family. They would do anything for their children, our spouses and most of all their four granddaughters. I know marriage isn't always easy and there are hard years in-between the good ones. But I know throughout it all that my parents are committed to each other. They've known each other since they were 12-years-old and are high school sweethearts. They've raised my brother and I as best as they could, cared for my grandparents in their twilight years and love to spend time with their grandchildren. I often find one of them sitting with one of my girls just talking. It's very sweet. I am blessed to have parents that have sown me by example how to navigate married life, to preserver through the hard times and to be a sources unconditional love and support.
When I look at this image I feel a sense of deep closeness, familiarity, love and support. Happy 47th wedding anniversary!
This week's theme: "Slow Down & Look Back."
My camera is in the shop and I've been missing it like crazy. I didn't realize how much of an extension it has become of me until I couldn't use it. Therefore, the image I chose for this week is and older one. In fact, it's a year old to the month and was taken with my old camera.
I love this image of my husband and the girls because at the time it reflected where we were in life as a family. One child was growing up and finding who she was apart from her parents while the other one was still hanging on to her parents but continuing to watch her sister move further away and yearning for more independence than her age allowed.
Since this image was taken things have changed. Our oldest is going into High School and our youngest is going into Middle School. I think if I were to take another picture of them at the same spot you would see both girls running ahead and my husband watching them with a bitter sweat feeling in his heart. In many ways the girls are still our babies but in other ways they are becoming young women. Neither really wants to slow down and look back because they have so much to look forward to. As parents we often look back and remember our girls when they were precious babies as we look forward to watching them grow up into beautiful young women.
This week's theme: "My Favorite Time of Day".
Fall is my favorite season. I use to dislike it because it meant that my carefree summer days were over and school was to start soon. It wasn't until I was out of school that I was able to sit back and really observe the season for what it was. I always thought of Fall as being a season when things started dying. But now I see it as things coming to life. Sure the leaves are dying but before the fall to the ground they turn bright oranges, yellows and reds. My Autumn Ferns go from being lush green to a visit autumn/red color. All my plants need to be cut down in preparation for Spring. But they aren't really dead. They are only dormant. This image was taken during my favorite time of day on a crisp cool day in October at around 4 p.m. when the sun was starting to set. I looked outside and saw how the naked branches came to life when the sun shone on them and cast a shadow behind them.
This week's theme: "Sky."
I didn't have time to take Precious out for a photo walk this week because we had company all week. With that said I chose this image because I thought it was interesting. It is a reflection of the sky through my mother-in-law's glass garden bulb.
The Letter K
Theme of the week: "A Letter of the Alphabet"
I admit that I wasn't excited about this week's assignment. Nothing inspired me and I still am not too thrilled with this image. The letter I chose was the letter, "K". Why? Because I didn't come across anything to photograph this week and remembered that I use to have a, "K" pin. I use to wear this in with most of my shirts in the late 80's and 90's. Why this letter? It's simple . . . . because my name starts with the letter, "K".
This week's theme: "Get in Close".
I chose this image because I love flowers and enjoyed my day with the family at Manito Park where this image was taken.
This week's theme: "Sweet Relief".
I didn't have to think hard as to what I was going to photograph this week. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Kit-Kats and always get them for road trips and for chocolate fixes. I love the crisp wafer bar surrounded by delicious chocolate. Kit-Kats also come in dark chocolate which I absolutely die for! My two favorite things wrapped up in one: Kit-Kats and dark chocolate. Whenever I need a chocolate fix I always get it by eating Kit-Kats. They are my "Sweet Relief".
Pend Oreille River
This week's them: "Nature's Finest."
I was excited when I saw this week's theme because I knew I'd be up in Pend Oreille county where I'd have many opportunities to take pictures of nature's finest. I chose this image because I love the Pend Oreille River. I've had the opportunity to see this magnificent river for the past 20 years and never cease to tire of its beauty. This year the river is the highest I've ever seen it. Many properties along its banks are flooded. Even the boat launch near the cabin where my husband's grandparents live and where we have swam in the past is under water up to the highway. If you've never visited the Pend Oreille area you must. You will not be disappointed in the beauty you'll see.
This week's theme: "Hidden Objects."
I took this photo a few months ago at Flower World. There are many of these statues sitting around the nursery just waiting to be purchased. This one caught my eye because it was hidden amongst the plants like he was hiding from potential buyers. Or maybe he just wanted a quiet place to sit and think. :-)
Days left of School
This week's theme: "Crave"
I could have photographed many things that I crave. I crave chocolate and salty snacks. I crave the Word of God. I crave time with my family and friends. I crave alone time. I crave exercising. I crave ice cream. The list can go on and on.
It wasn't until yesterday that I actually thought about this week's assignment. Everything over the past two weeks has centered around the end of the school year. Each day my youngest has been counting down how many days of school they have left and writing it down on the wipe board. As I looked at the wipe board yesterday I had to chuckle because she wrote that we had ".5 days left of school!" My girls are craving for summer to start. They also crave warm sunny weather so they can be free to be outside and away from being stuck in the house. I pray that we'll get that weather soon because 3 months of rain and cold is not doing anyone of us any good. We're all very excited that the wipe board can now read "0 days left of school!"
This week's Theme: "Make it Tasty"
I am not a baker. I don't enjoy cooking and never enjoyed baking. My poor mother worked hard at teaching me to cook but it never took nor did I have a desire to learn. Needless to say, when I got married my husband had to suffer through many Hamburger Helper meals. :-) Recently my husband gave me a KitchenAid for Mother's Day. I LOVE it! It makes me want to bake just to use it. Even though I haven't enjoyed baking I do make good Snickerdoodle Cookies. This is Snockerdoodle cookie was the first batch of something I made with my new KitchenAid. They were mighty tasty!
This week's theme: "Enchantment"
I chose this image because I am completely and utterly enchanted with nature and in particular flowers. I love how each flower is like a snowflake in that none are alike. These flowers are in my mother's garden. They shoot up on thin long stems from a succulent.
Succulents are another one of my favorite plants and I'm always intrigued by the fact that some succulents bloom. I've got succulents that bloom yellow, pink, red and white flowers. I love this image because everything is not quite in focus. Even the two flowers towards the bottom right hand corner that were intended to be in focus aren't. I can imagine myself laying in an enchanted field of these flowers watching the sway in the breeze.
This week's theme: "Reflection."
I haven't had a lot of time to concentrate on my photography these past few weeks. This week happened to be a busy week and we had something going on every day. I just didn't have the time to think about anything but getting us through this week. Therefore, I pulled another image out of the archives. I took this photo the day before my husband left for NAMOA when my daughter and I were helping him clean his bike. I love how you can see the water drops clinging to the mirror. The reflection is of me doing what I love to do best - taking photos.
This week's theme: "Need for Speed"
I knew on Sunday that this would one of those weeks I would be digging into the photo archives. My husband became very sick Sunday afternoon (rush to the ER by ambulance sick) so I was on wife duty for a few days. I also had to work twice this week and my brother and nieces were visiting for the weekend. Needless to say it wasn't the best time for me to get Precious out and explore the theme. I chose this image because I love how my daughter's hair is whipping around her face. This child has the reddest thickest hair you'll ever see. I'm in love with it!
This week's theme: "Spring Fever."
I was excited to work on this week's assignment because it meant I could go outside and take pictures. I was even more excited when I noticed that the weather forecast indicated that most of this week would be rain free and sunny. We have not had a week like this since the Fall and it has been very hard not to feel cooped up. The first day I could I loaded up my camera bag and headed to the Evergreen Arboretum to see what spring looked like there.
I chose this image because it reminds me of spring and new beginnings. Several ferns were already opened but many were still in the process of unfurling like this one. It seems like to me that the leaves are almost ready to pop out and anxiously awaiting for the vine to unfurl all the way. I kind of feel like these leaves in the fact that I too am looking in anticipation to new beginnings and sunny warmer weather. I've got Spring Fever!
Mother's Day Flowers
This week's Theme:"Window Light."
I enjoyed this week's assignment because everything I photograph for these assignments are usually photographed on the dining room table by the sliding glass door. It is the one area in my house where I can get the best natural light. This image was taken on Mother's Day. I was taking pictures of the flowers Eric gave me and placed the them as close to the sliding glass door as I could get it. I like how the natural light softened the look of the flowers.
This week’s theme is: “First thing in the morning.”
This was the easiest assignment I’ve had so far. I didn’t have to think about what to photograph because the first thing I do is spend time in the Word, memorizing and praying. I chose to photograph my Bible and specifically what I call my Cancer Life Verse.
“For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.’” Jeremiah 29:11 (NASB)
Theme of the Week: "Princess For a Day"
My first thought when I saw this week's assignment was, "You've GOT to be KIDDING!" Really? Princess For a Day? How in the heck am I going to find something to take a picture of? Our house has been anti-princess for years. The girls went through a princess phase when they were younger like every little girl but nowadays they take pride in not being a princess. I knew going into this assignment that I'd have to think outside of the box a little. The more I thought about it the more I decided to think about when I felt like I was a Princess For a Day. The day I felt princess like was on my wedding day.
There isn't much from my wedding I can photograph. My dress and veil are sealed in a box stuck up at the top of my parent's hall closet. My wedding bouquet can only be remembered by through pictures. The delicate flowers didn't dry well. The one item left to photograph is the something old my mother presented to me on my wedding day. The something old was an old delicate necklace that most of the women on my mother's side of the family have worn on their wedding day. It is so delicate that I'm sure no one really saw it and I can only spot it in a few of my wedding pictures.
It was the one thing my mother frantically searched for after my grandmother passed away last year. We had no idea where she had hidden it and I'm sure she wouldn't have remembered herself is she had been alive. :-) I finally found it in one of her dresser drawers hidden in the back under a bunch of stuff. A year later on my 41st birthday I opened my gift from my parents and discovered Grandma Ruthie's necklace. I was beyond emotional at that point because I truly missed and still miss my little Grandmie. I will cherish my Grandmother's necklace and will give it to my girls to wear on their wedding day if they choose to get married.
Theme of the Week: "Furry Friends"
I cheated this week and chose a picture from this past October. I'm not a fan of dogs except for a few we know who are well-trained, don't sniff you in private areas, jump up on and lick you every chance they get. With that said, I love love this image. We met up with this dog on our way to the pumpkin patch. He was sitting in the back of his owner's truck waiting patiently for his family to come back. Although we didn't pet him we did talk to him and got a sense that he was a sweet dog.
Theme of the Week: "What people think about you"
I struggled with this theme all week. I knew right off the bat that I would and avoided thinking about it. My week was crazy busy with my Aunt visiting from Wisconsin and taking kids to their various activities. Being busy gave me an excuse not to think about it.
I know who I am: I am a Christian, wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt and friend. I am a cancer survivor. I am dyslexic. I am a neat freak and suffer a little from OCD. I am a lover of books and enjoy book hunting at thrift stores. I will admit I am a reality trash TV show watcher and always have been. I am opinionated. I am a blogger and a photographer. I know who I am but I'm not sure what others think about me.
I did find something I think describes me and maybe describes me from someone else's point of view. It isn't a picture I spent time setting up but one I took quickly as I walked up the stairs at Snoqualmie Falls.
At the falls there are many different words placed into the cement walkways and stairs that describe the falls. "Current", "Misting", "Backwater" and "Splashing" are just a few. I chose the word "Soaking" to describe me. I hope that I am known as a person who wants to soak up wisdom and truth. To be in a constant state of learning so I can be a better Christian, wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, cancer survivor, blogger and photographer. I never want to stop learning but want to continue to grow. I also want to be able to take what I learn and support others. What is the point of learning via by studying or life experience if you keep it to yourself. Life is too short to shut yourself off form helping others. May I forever be "Soaking".
Theme of the Week: “Fusion”
I didn’t have a clue as to how to interpret this week’s theme until my daughter hauled out Perler Beads to create a gift for her friend. As I looked closely to the container the beads came in I noticed that they were called, “Fusion Beads.” I chose this image because my daughter created this magnet for me for Christmas years ago. It says, “Mump I (heart) U”. Mump is my nickname. I got it one evening when the girls and my husband were trying to bump me while playing the game, “Sorry.” Bump the Mump rhymes and everyone thought it was funny. Needless to say I got bumped many times that evening. But, I came away with a new nickname that I love.
Playing with Babs
Theme of the Week: "Just for Fun."
This week I had no time to take photos. Between planning my daughter's birthday party and having family over this weekend I haven't had time to breathe let alone think about this week's assignment. I did know since Babs was going to be here that we'd have plenty of time to have fun playing with her. I spent 2 days laying on the floor taking photos of her messing with the cat, chasing a string and just bouncing around the house. I chose this image because it shows just how much cute and fun Babs is.
JewelryTheme of the Week: "From the Jewelry Box"
Each item shown in this image has a special meaning to me.
The brightly colored pins in the background were made by my daughters when they were younger. I love the pins because each reflects their personalities to a T.
The fan is a charm that once hung on a neckless. It came from a jewelry box given to me by my friend's brother. My friend was tragically killed in an accident on her honeymoon when I was 15-years-old.
I focused on the TEAM IN TRAINING pin because this is the month that I turn 10-years-old. It was 10 years ago I completed my last stage of treatment and started my new journey to becoming a Lymphoma survivor. I acquired this pin when I walked in a full marathon for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
Theme of the Week: "Darks and Lights"
I had to go back a few weeks to use an image I had taken at a friend's tea party. It isn’t something I wanted to do but my week was busy, the weather down right horrible and I pulled a muscle in my back. Been laid up for the past few days. I’m not sure why I chose this image other than it represents both light and dark with the teacup being light and the background being dark. I know, my reasoning is not very imaginative but I’m a bit sleepy from the muscle relaxers and can't think.
Theme of the week: "Childhood Toys" Our house is going through what I call the "Transition Year". We are transitioning out of childhood and moving into the teen years. Over the past year I've hauled 3 van loads of toys to the Goodwill. Consequently, we don't have too many Childhood toys left around for me to photograph. It wasn't until I walked into my youngest daughter's room to put something away that I saw that I was searching for - her Raggedy Ann doll.
I chose to photograph this doll because it is something that is special to my daughter. It was the first Raggedy Ann doll her Great Nana made many years ago. When my daughter expressed the desire to have a Raggedy Ann doll like her older sister, Great Nana decided to do something about it. Instead of making a new one like she did for my oldest daughter, she decided to give my youngest the first doll she made. The doll resides in a special place on my daughter's bed and sits in this spot day and night.
Teacup & Flower
Theme of the Week: "Express Yourself".
I went into this week knowing exactly how to interpret this week's theme. I had been invited to a tea party hosted by a fellow photographer Courtney. I'm not a tea drinker but I wanted to spend time with Courtney and maybe try some tea. Courtney had asked if I would take some photos for her so she could be free to host the party. A few days before the party I decided to practice taking photos of a tea cup. I borrowed my daughter's tea cup she inherited from her Great-Grandmother and had a little photo shoot with it. I choose this image because it reminds me of Courtney. Courtney is a wonderful photographer, beautiful poet/writer, very creative and overall a beautiful person inside and out. She and I share a love for outdoor photography, micro photography and photographing flowers and leaves. She was one of the first photographers that I studied when I first started taking pictures. In fact she was my inspiration in why I started my photography journey. Courtney is into tea and I didn't realize how much she loved tea until I went to the tea party. I have always seen Courtney express herself through photography and written words but she also expresses herself through the love of tea.
Theme of the Week: "The View From Here"
This week I couldn't pick just one image so I went with two of my favorite images. This week my daughters had a day off from school due to snow. As soon as they got outside they starting making snowballs. A minute later they disappeared around the side of the house chasing each other. I just followed them into the back yard and planted myself in a corner of the yard and took pictures of the action. The first image is of my youngest daughter and the one I'd pick if I had to choose just one. I love the look of anticipation on her face as her sister's snowball is flying at her (lower left-hand corner). I like this last image because it shows the girls enjoying themselves and because I love their beautiful red hair!
Theme of the week: "Open your Heart"
I took this image while laying on the my back on the deck looking up to the top of the ladder. The lower step is in focus and makes me feel comfortable. I know it's there and I know what to expect because I can see it clearly. But the top of the ladder is unfocused. I can't see what's at the top and therefore don't know what to expect. This image reminds me of how I live my life. I have always allowed my fear to dictate to me how I live. Over the years I've learned to overcome many of my fears but my first instinct is to fear when it comes to the unknown. Opening my heart means I need to take the next step in anything that causes me discomfort and fear. How am I going to open my heart? Humm . . . I'll have to get back to ya on that one. :-)
Theme of the week: "Words"
Many ideas ran through my head as I looked around the house looking for something that would help me interpret this week's theme. What finally came to mind was my husband's wedding ring. Before our wedding I had an inscription etched onto the inside of Eric's ring. The inscription says: "This is my beloved, and this is my friend." Song of Songs 5:17. The verse describes us perfectly. We became best friends before we started dating and our friendship continues to grow to this day. We are blessed to be celebrating our 18th wedding anniversary next month. I can honestly say that my husband is still my best friend.
Theme of the week: "Muse"
My source of inspiration and what I meditate upon is God's Word. Every morning I wake up before everyone and spend time in the Word, memorizing and praying. I also get my source of inspiration from husband's grandparents, Alan and Hazel Jones. They are the most loving and accepting couple you'll ever meet. I truly feel like I am their grandchild and not just their grandson's wife. I am so blessed to be a part of their family. This photo was taken at The Ruby Church of Christ in Cusick, WA. It is the church Alan helped build in the 1960's and continues to minister to those who call it their home to this day.
Theme of the Week: “Soothing Repetition.”
The subject of this week's theme was my rocking chair. My rocking chair represents different phases in my life. We bought it in 1997 shortly before my daughter was born. I loved being able to put my swollen feet up on the ottoman after a long day of work and rock my heavy pregnant body. I rocked in it when I was in labor with Katelyn before we headed to the hospital. I nursed both babies and rocked them to sleep in it. When I was first diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma I sat in my rocking chair and stared at my fish swimming around their tank in shock and deep thought. I rocked in it when I was too exhausted from the chemotherapy to do anything else. The quilt that always hangs over the back of the rocking chair is also old and worn with use. It was made for me by my friend while I was going through treatment to keep me warm. I used it all the time and I wouldn’t leave for treatment without it. Now the quilt is called the Sick Blanket because everyone likes to be covered with it when they aren’t feeling well. This old rocking chair represents comfort for me because it has rocked and soothed me through many of life’s ups and downs. I’m not sure I’ll ever part with it. In fact, the girls may have to deal with it when I’m gone and wonder why I’ve kept that ratty thing all these years.
Shades of Gray
Theme of the week: "Shades of Gray"
Sometimes during the winter I feel a bit gray, wilted and exposed like the branches in this photo. I feel tired and the weather is always wet and drippy. The Pacific Northwest is mild and rarely goes from one extreme season to another. It's neither hot nor cold but lukewarm. Gray also reminds me of winter because it seems so lifeless. What I realized this week is that there are many shades of gray and the color is anything but lifeless. If you look closely you will see that there is still life within this season just like the flowers in my photo are clinging to the branches not wanting to detach themselves and fall to the ground. Life is lurking beneath the surface. You only have to look for it.
Rain DropsTheme of the Week: "Illustrate a Song"
The song I chose to illustrate my photo is "Mandolin Rain" by Bruce Hornsby. This photo reminds me of a time I visited my grandparents in Wisconsin when I was 19-years-old. Grandma and I would sit on her covered back deck and watch the big mid-west storms blow in. We loved to listen to the rain fall on the roof, on the hot dry ground and on the pool. Grandma was like the rain. Those of us who had the privilege of knowing her would always feel a sense of renewal and life whenever we were around her.
Theme of the week: "Something Around Your House" I chose this picture because these have been my favorite stand-by earrings. My mother made them for me many years ago and they seem to go with just about anything. Maybe I chose this earring because it makes me feel safe especially when I'm asked to get out of my box and photograph objects I probably wouldn't otherwise photograph.