Wednesday, November 30, 2011



We had a wonderful Thanksgiving up in Seattle with my parents. It was great to spend it at home again. I miss that every year. I brought my "big girl" camera and didn't take a single photo. So bad, I know...
As November draws to a close I've been thinking a lot about all the things I am thankful for. The list is very long, I realize. Which, of course, I am quite thankful for. My original plan was to take a photo a day of something I was thankful for and do a collage at the end of the month. But I slacked-off after about five days. Again, so bad, I know.

I am thankful...
for my wonderful, beautiful, sassy, imaginative, silly, lovey-dovey, little Max. I  may only have one little person in my life, but I got the best one. And for that I will be eternally grateful.
for my husband - who works lots of long hours to provide for us; who has the patience between the two of us; who is the calm one in our family. He is a funny guy, whose laughter is contagious.
my college girlfriends who I have had the great pleasure of knowing for almost 20 years. Being with any one of them feels a bit like home. And as a group - WOW! We know how to have a lot of fun.
being able to stay home with Max. It's by far the hardest job I've ever had. And the most rewarding.
for photography, which is something I can call my own; which has put me in touch with my old self; which allows me a creative outlet.
for my wonderful, new photography/blogging friends! They inspire me every. single. day.  They have left sweet comments on my blog and have been a great resource of photography information. They have prayed for me and they have sent me words of wisdom that I think of every day. I wish I could give you all a big huge hug and sit and chat with you over coffee. Someday.
for this great country we live in and the people who have fought for my freedom, past and present.
for my amazing parents who do so many wonderful things for me all the time! I could write volumes about all they have done for me...many volumes...
for my brother who always makes me laugh and who is such a wonderful Uncle to Max. And for his girlfriend who has so much energy and loves to play with Max.
I was able to do IVF. Now I will never wonder, what if we had tried IVF?...And for all of the friends and family who kept me in their prayers before, during and after that journey.
for anti-epileptic medications. Because of them I don't live my life in fear every waking moment.
for my health and the health of those I love.
for Pinterest. Yes, I know this sounds shallow. But at the end of a bad day I love getting lost in the eye candy that is Pinterest. I love how "just 5 more minutes" turns into and hour later.
for the ten years I got to spend with my sweet Maggie Lou. She brought so much joy to my life. Thinking of her just makes me smile.
for vanilla lattes.
for my great C-Town girlfriends! I have met a lot of really great, caring people here in Camas. Friends who listen and are ready to help at a moments notice. Friends to chat with for hours while having a few cocktails. Friends who will share Truffle Fries with you. ;)
for an abundance of good books to read!
for the world of possiblity that is my future.
for forgiveness and His grace.

Just a sampling of the many, many things for which I am thankful. I am so very blessed.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

holding on & letting go.

I noticed these little helicopters were about the only thing left on the tree after a big wind and rain storm Thursday night. They seemed to be holding-on with all their might as the breeze tossed them around. The tree is pretty much bare except for a few leaves and helicopters still holding-on. I wonder why they hold-on so long? How do they know when it's time to let-go?

a couple

a few

holding on

Anyone who's known me for any length of time knows that I hold on to things. My office is a perfect, literal example. Books, CDs, cards from years ago, photos, trinkets and treasures from my childhood on up to my college years and first few jobs. In fact, while up in my office looking for a CD for Max, I came across an email I had printed out from May of 2004, before leaving that job to move down here and start my new, married life. It was from a co-worker, thanking me for doing such a great job at my job. And today, as I read it seven years later, it made me smile. It made me feel really good. And I briefly thought, I can't throw this away! You don't get that kind of praise as a stay at home mom. Not even close.

letting go

Life is a lot about holding-on and letting-go. Holding-on to hurts feelings, expectations of myself and others. Holding-on to disappointments and sadness and worry. Holding-on to anxieties about the my future, my son's future, my parents' future. Holding-on to "stuff" - we all have so much "stuff" in our lives. Do we really need it all? All those books we've read and we know we will never read again. All those CDs we've put on our iPod. All those cards from loved ones. Why do we keep it? What are we really holding-on to by holding-on to all of that "stuff" - the "stuff" we can touch and the "stuff" that touches our heart and soul. Unfulfilled dreams? Pieces of our younger days? Memories of when times seemed simpler? All of this holding-on wears me so far down, that you'd think I'd just fall to the ground in pieces. And some days I do - or at least I feel like I'd like to, but I can't. I'm a mom. I have a small child. I have to be the responsible one now.

And so I guess I'll let-go of what I can. The things that feel safe to let-go of. And at the same time I'll likely hold-on to a lot of things. The things that keep me sane. The things that remind me of that happy-go-lucky girl I used to be.
And that note from that co-worker? I pinned it up on the cork board in my office. It made me smile; it was just as if he was standing before me telling me what a great job I'm doing now.
{Some things really are worth holding on to.}

Monday, November 14, 2011

a little more fall.

A little more fall for your viewing pleasure. Most of the leaves are off the trees now, but I captured these on a sunny day last week. Our pretty Japanese maple.



Lovely, huh?... :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

a first.

A dear friend of mine asked me to take photos of her family awhile ago. Like, months ago. I kept saying, "Maybe..." I had all sorts of excuses - I had never done family photos before, I wasn't familiar with editing with Elements... I warned her that they might not turn out that good. She asked me once and I thought maybe she'd forget. But she kept asking. So I decided to dive in and take-on my first family photo session. And thank goodness my first session was with a good friend. They made it so easy for me.


tossing leaves

I love this one.

Picture 069cbwweb


Cute little smile.

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Another favorite. (You gotta love those mossy rocks.)
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I learned a lot from this first photo session. From the photo shoot to the editing. (I learned that being a perfectionist makes for lengthy editing. lol.) Perhaps the biggest lesson learned is that I need to trust myself and my skills and talent, just as my friend did. She saw it in me long before I wanted to believe it was in me. Thank you, Anna.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


We've had a gorgeous fall here in Southwest Washington, with quite a few sunny days. I captured a few photos of the leaves on the huge maple trees in our backyard. Well, actually in the greenbelt that is our backyard. (I'm spoiled, I tell ya. I can never have backyard neighbors again.)

Tracey, these are for you! :)
this little light


Future maples. (And my black Nikes.)
fromwhereistand helicopters


My buddies, Stacey, Michelle and Tracey posted their own fabulous photos of fall. Go check them out! (And thanks for inviting others to link-up with you, gals!)

Friday, November 4, 2011

gratitude: peace


Fluffy fog, a little sunlight, a road that seems to slowly disappear...

Life is a little like that road in the fog. We know the road is there for us to take, but we can only see a few steps in front of us at any given time. A little frightening at times? You bet. Will the road suddenly veer off to the right? Take a nose dive downhill? Or will we be faced with a gigantic hill to climb?... Maybe it's better that we don't see to much of the road ahead after all.

"Walk peacefully with Me through this day. You are wondering how you will cope with all that is expected of you. You must traverse this day like any other: one step at a time. ...When you don't know what to do, wait while I open the way before you. Trust that I know what I'm doing, and be ready to follow My lead. I will give strength to you, and I will bless you with Peace."

As I drove up the hill into the fog, alone in the car in complete silence, I felt a moment of Peace. I knew that I just had to keep on driving. Just keep moving. Just keep looking ahead, even if the way isn't always clear. Just keep taking one step after another. Just trust that the journey will lead you to just where you were meant to be. And enjoy the moments of Peace along the way.