Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Project 365 Day 31 - January 31st

I was so excited to finally get outside today.  My wound had healed up enough that I was able to cover it with a bandage and go out with my hubby.  I needed to go to Michael's to pick up some yarn for a hat order.  YAY... my first one!

On the way toward the Eastern Shore, the part of Baldwin County where Michael's is located, I saw this water tower off in the distance.  My hubby thought I was nuts that I got so excited over it since we'd lived in Loxley for a couple of years before moving to our current home and it had been there all along.  Funny.. I've never noticed it.

On our way back home, we stopped at a local grocery store in Loxley that has great prices on meat.  While Tony was inside shopping, Keiran and I went outside to enjoy the beautiful weather.  It was then that I noticed the water tower I'd seen earlier was just across the street.  I had my camera on me, as I almost always do, so I pulled it out and started snapping away.  I love the way the tower, unlike most, has a bluish silver color to it, which glistened in the sunlight.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Project 365 Day 30 - January 30th

I am OBSESSED with notebooks!  Whenever I take my daughter shopping for school supplies every year, I always get at least a case of spiral notebooks, if not more.  Over the last couple of years, I've been adding composition notebooks to that list as well.  It drives my husband absolutely nuts!

Notebooks are my go-to office supply for almost everything:  lists, thoughts, doodling, notes, etc.  I have them all over the place and each notebook has its own specific purpose.  Every now and then I'll go through and "clean" them out - this means I review what's in them to determine the importance of the contents.  Random notes will normally get pulled out and trashed; notes on research or project ideas are kept.  I've made several attempts to convert my notebooks to digital files on the computer, but somehow they don't have the same feel.  LOL

The sad part about this photo... this is the notebooks that haven't been started yet.  They are all totally blank and in a stack just waiting to be used for something creative.

Yes, you can say that I'm slightly OCD, anal retentive, or whatever you want to call it.  I'll agree with you 100%!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Project 365 Day 29 - January 29th

After 3 days of being layed up in bed and having limited movement due to my toe, I have started to go slightly stir crazy.  In an attempt to pull me out of the funk I was starting to fall into, I opened the blinds and let some sunlight into our room.  My bamboo plant was loving me for it!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Project 365 Day 28 - January 28th


Actually, it's my birthday, but it has definitely not been a happy one.  On top of yesterday's injury and another bandage sticking (no more bandages... just leaving it open to heal now), I woke up with some kind of stomach virus.  UGH!  I feel like I can't win.

I'm so fortunate to have 2 children who are so well-behaved most of the time.  My daughter, who's almost 8, has been playing nurse and mama today, trying to take care of me and help with her little brother.

My hubby, trying to make my day better, brought me home a piece of chocolate cheesecake from the restaurant at work.  He drizzled it with chocolate syrup and raspberry sauce, then topped it with whipped cream and a candle.  He felt awful because on his way out the door to come home, he dropped the box.  :(  The cake didn't fall out, but it wasn't quite as pretty anymore.  LOL  I told him it was the thought that counted - and I could still eat it and it tasted great!

My neighbor, Kathy, also made me a cake for my birthday.  Homemade chocolate cake with her infamous cream cheese frosting is rarely turned down, even as rich as it is.  All in all, despite all of the bad, I felt loved to have so many people trying to make my day better!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Project 365 Day 27 - January 27th

To most of you, this may look like a simple remote control truck.  To me, it is a weapon of demise - my demise.  

Earlier today I was in the process of cleaning my son's room.  While moving a large storage container out of his room, I tripped over this truck.  I ended up breaking the back piece (the one that sticks up out of the bed of the truck) with the pad of my middle toe.  In the process, I took an entire layer of skin off the bottom of my toe and have been laid up in bed all day.  I had to bandage it up to get the bleeding stopped.  Unfortunately, the bandage stuck to the wound and had to be ripped back off.  Needless to say, this is no longer one  of my son's favorite toys to have around.  LOL

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Project 365 Day 26 - January 26th

When today started, I had an idea of what I wanted to shoot for my photo.  Our apartment complex had the first weigh-in for the Annual Biggest Loser Contest.  Since I'm helping lead the challenge this year as last year's winner, I was walking to the office through the back entrance, which is near the pool.  That was when I saw the surrounding fenceline covered in honey suckles.

We have lived here since August 2010 and this was the first time that I could remember ever seeing the honey suckles.  I was blasted back to my childhood when my sister and I would pick the honey suckles and try to get the nectar from them.  Tony was even commenting on doing the same when he was child.

One of my favorite parts of the photo is the water drops you can still see on the flowers from all of the rain we had earlier in the day.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Project 365 Day 25 - January 25th

I was near the local Post Office this evening when I decided I wanted to try to get a photo of one of the free standing mailboxes.  It had been on my mind all afternoon just how much we are in danger of losing our US Postal Services and the conveniences they offer.  So much of what used to be sent via "snail mail" is now sent electronically, that Post Offices all across the country have been shut down.

As my husband has seen what I'm capable of producing my crochet work, he has agreed that me setting up an Etsy store would be a great idea.  It would be an affordable way that I could help bring some money in without the high cost of overhead or start-up.  My trip to the Post Office this evening made me decide that while so many others are shipping packages through UPS and FedEx, I'm making the choice to send through our USPS.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Project 365 Day 24 - January 24th

I spent the majority of the day laying around fighting a massive headache.  Unfortunately, I wasn't willing to take a nap and allow my 3-year old to run wild.  That meant I had plenty of time to work on a new crochet project.  Unlike those I have done recently, this one was intended as a gift for a very special young lady.

My neighbor and close friend, Kathy, has two adorable grandkids that our family has grown close too.  Addison, the 5-year old, is a HUGE Hello Kitty fanatic.  It's no surprise, that if I was going to make her a special gift, it had to pertain to the cat.  I came across a cute pattern for an earflap hat, which I modified to fit her.  The one request she had for the hat was that it have tassles... wish granted!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Project 365 Day 23 - January 23rd

A couple of days ago, I posted a sneak peak of my latest crochet project as my photo of the day.  Last night, I finally finished that project.  I shot some photos of it today for my photography blog, which I'd love for you to follow here.  One of the photos didn't make that blog, but it was too fun not to use for today's photo.

I have a family photo shoot on the 11th and we're planning to test it out then on one adorable little girl with big blue eyes.  I can't wait!!!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Project 365 Day 22 - January 22nd

It was tricky to get the focus on something as small as a drop of water.  I had no choice but to pull out my tripod.  LOL  In the end, I think this is one of my favorite photos so far this year!

Camera Give-Away!!

MCP Actions is currently hosting a killer giveaway.  The winner will get to choose between a Nikon D700 (body only) and a Canon 5D MKII + 85 1.8 lens.  If you are a photography lover and want to sign up for a chance to win this giveaway, go here.

Good luck and I hope one of my friends (or I) win!!!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Project 365 Day 21 - January 21st

Why is it that the shortest weeks as far as the "business" week goes (you know, Monday through Friday) always seem to be the longest.  My daughter was out of school on Monday for MLK, Jr. Day, then home yesterday with a stomach virus.  Needless to say my 3-year old son has been in a mood having had his sister around more than she's "supposed to be" this week.  LOL

It is because of my kids' moods that today was an "I don't care!" day.  That's what I call those days when just about anything that needs to be done will be put off for another day.  I have procrastinated in just about every way possible today.  Unfortunately, that included shooting my photo of the day.  With two kids who were both in terror-mode, I refused to take them out of the house to go out into a world full of mud and puddles from the overnight showers we had.  And with a hubby who wasn't feeling well after work, I had no choice but to wait until the kids were wound down to take some time outside to find a shot for today.

After about 30 minutes of walking around aimlessly and taking several mindless photos, I decided it would have to be one of those days where I stage a shot.  As I walked up the stairs to our second floor apartment, I felt like I was seeing a light at the end of the tunnel - literally!

This is the area at the top of our stairway that separates the upstairs apartments in our building.  Now do you see why I said it was like I'd seen a light at the end of the tunnel?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Project 365 Day 20 - January 20th

As a few of you know, I recently learned how to crochet.  I have been seeing all of these photos with cute kids wearing the most adorable crocheted accessories and figured I could save myself some money by making my own.

This morning I started a prop I have been wanting to make for several weeks but wasn't yet comfortable enough to try.  I started this morning and finished more than half of it.  I won't tell you what it is... you'll have to keep your eyes peeled for another photo in the near future where it is featured.  I'm hoping to use it in a photo shoot I have booked in a couple of weeks.  For now, here is a sneak peek:

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Project 365 Day 19 - January 19th

After 2 days of trying to get everything in our bedroom rearranged (and cleaned up as I went), I finally got the new desk in place, organized, and most everything transferred from the old one.  I had a chance this afternoon to sit down and relax at my new-to-me desk.  I lit a candle then suddenly a photo op struck... I stuck the candle in one of the corners and picked up my camera.  I played around with the settings some and this is what I got when all was said and done.

There's nothing symbolic to this photo - I just love how it turned out!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Project 365 Day 18 - January 18th

A couple of weeks ago I came across an old, rustic-looking fire hydrant that I was determined to make the focus of my daily photo.  Unfortunately, I wasn't a fan of the photos I shot that day, or over several others days since when I have made additional attempts.  Today, however, I finally managed to get a shot I was content with using.

I tried to get the shot using a variety of angles at once, turning the camera slightly while shooting at a downward angle.  Finally, I'm good with how the shot turned out - funny how we tend to be our own biggest critics!  

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Project 365 Day 17 - January 17th

One of my biggest goals for 2012 is to get my muscles toned up.  Last year, over the course of 6 months, I worked hard to lose 40 lbs.  I maintained that weightloss up until the holiday season.  I can proudly say that I only gained 5 lbs back in those last two months and that's mostly because I wasn't doing any kind of exercise.

My motivation last year was joining the Biggest Loser Contest that our apartment contest hosts every year from January through May.  I was determined to win and that was what kept me going.  Now that it's time for the contest again, I got kind of bummed that I didn't really need to join in since I don't have much left to lose - only about 10 lbs.  I was asked instead to help run the challenge.  It has been just the motivation I've needed to get my butt moving again.

Since I'm focusing mostly on toning, I know that the weights, both in the fitness room and those I have at home, are going to be greatly needed.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Project 365 Day 16 - January 16th

Today's photo was done first thing this morning... but that was until I went outside before sunset.  For some unknown reason, even though there was no school and I could have slept in, I was up before the sun came up today.  I walked out onto our balcony to see what the weather was like.  After looking up at the sky and all of the clouds, I knew that I wanted to try to get a sunrise shot.  The sky looked so cool with the dark clouds and the sun rising slowly below them.

Then I went outside to watch for my hubby to get home from work - and wouldn't you know that the dark clouds were back as the sun was starting to set.  I ran back inside to get my camera and got the second part of my photo of the day.  LOL

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Project 365 Day 15 - January 15th

Today's photo isn't anything exciting, but there is a story behind it.  Back in May 2011, my husband called me on his way to work because he had 3 deer jump out in front of him and he hit 2 of them with the car.  That resulted in us having to go from no car payment, to making a monthly payment.  We were fortunate to be able to get a car loan for only 15 months and still be something we can afford.

Well, this morning, with less than 8 months left until the car is paid off, he called me while on his way to work.  He had a doe jump out in front of him and he hit it.  My first thought, after making sure he was alright, was "How in the hell are we going to pay a deductible to get the car fixed?"  Thankfully the car has minimal damage, and none of the damage is bad enough to prevent the car from being driven.  The socket for the front passenger turn signal got busted (though the bulb and the outside cover itself are completely unscathed - still not sure how that happened),with a crack in the front fender above the turn signal.  There is also a dent, some missing paint, and a crack in the front passenger quarterpanel.  Needless to say that I am super relieved that none of the damage will cost much, and can all wait to be fixed until we have the extra money.

Now, those of you who know me all know that I try to find humor in a bad situation.  This is the second time my husband has hit a deer with the car, which isn't what makes it funny.  What makes it funny is that both times it's happened, it has been within a couple months of him going deer hunting and not killing anything.  LOL  I swear I have the only husband in the world who has no luck out at the hunting camps but has no problem behind the wheel of a car.

Here's one photo of the crack in the quarterpanel:

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Project 365 Day 14 - January 14th

Last week I told you about a bird nest my daughter found while scouting photo opportunities with my around our complex.  I had promised her we would go back to reshoot it for a photo one day soon - today was that day.  The weather, although cool, was sunny and clear so we jumped at the opportunity.

I have to say that trying to get more outdoor shots this time around is definitely making me open my eyes up more to the beauty of the things around me.  And I love that my daughter is doing the same - she has loved going out with me looking for something to shoot.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Project 365 Day 13 - January 13th

Happy Friday the 13th!  For many people I know, this is typically a day of bad luck - for me it's usually the opposite.  This time, however, it hasn't been anything other than uneventful.  My husband, on the other hand, has had one hell of a Friday the 13th and is ready for it to be over.

Breaking things is only one of the many things that will normally go wrong for my husband on days like this.  Since he didn't break anything accidentally today, but had a stressful day otherwise, I decided to give him some glass to break.  That glass (along with a little superfine glitter thrown in) became my photo today.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Project 365 Day 12 - January 12th

Today's photo was inspired by the unexpected sunlight we had.  It had been overcast all day, with a pretty decent chance for rain off and on throughout the day.  I went to the gym and decided to do my photo shoot while I was there (those photos will get shot again for another day), but then I walked outside.  The sun had come out of nowhere.  I took advantage of the situation and grabbed this shot of the light shining through the decorative grasses near the office of our apartment complex.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Project 365 Day 11 - January 11th

Today was my first official day to get off my butt and get my workouts back on track.  Since I've done minimal excercising over the last 2 months, I knew that I needed to start easy again and build back up.  After a 25 minute brisk walk with the couple that lives next door, I went home to grab my camera and go searching for a night shoot.

As I walked past the pool here at our apartment complex, I started longing for warm weather again.  I got my best workouts done in the pool last spring and summer and was yearning for that opportunity again.  Not to mention that the pool was always the best way to cool off after a workout on a cool spring night.  I decided to see what kind of picture I could get for today while sitting beside the pool... good thing I had my tripod with me.

The bar going down the middle of the photo was the rail on the steps that leads down into the water.  I decided to use that as my focal point and to make the water in the background secondary.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Project 365 Day 10 - January 10th

It was another gloomy day outside, though the temps were pretty good for January.  I had a shot in mind that I've attempted 3 times already this month and hasn't worked out yet.  LOL  I'll get it sooner or later.

Instead, a little while after my daughter got home, I figured I'd let her go outside with her umbrella so we could see what kind of shots we could get.  I went outside onto our balcony and she went downstairs to the grassy area in front of our apartment.  The rain had died down but everything was still wet.  I was originally just shooting for a shot of the umbrella itself, but she peaked over the edge and I couldn't resist snapping this shot!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Project 365 Day 9 - January 9th

When you grow up in the south, it's almost as if you're born with football in your blood.  And not just any kind of football - college football more specifically.  Having been raised in Florida and lived there most of my life, I always cheered for FSU and the Seminoles.  Because we lived so close to Alabama, you also learned to pick a team between the Alabama schools.  Well, for me it was never a question that I'd cheer for Alabama before Auburn.  

After we moved to Alabama a few years ago, there was never any doubt that I'd be continuing on as a fan of the Roll Tide.  That meant that tonight was THE game of the year.  It was #1 ranked LSU versus the #2 ranked Alabama Roll Tide.  When the two teams met up earlier in the season, there wasn't a single touchdown scored and LSU, after playing a dirty game, won in overtime.  That all changed tonight!!!

Alabama ended the game 21-0 against the Tigers in the first shut-out bowl game since the inception of the BCS. It was also the first shut-out in a bowl game in 49 years, with the last being back in 1963. It was in the hopes that we would win tonight that I shot several photos today all pertaining to the #1 Alabama Roll Tide.  In the end, I decided to use one specific shot over all of the others...

There's nothing technically great about this photo.  It's just the t-shirt my hubby was wearing to show support to our favorite team... and "Department of Defense" says it all.  It was because of the Alabama Defensive Line that they were able to win the game with a shut-out.  The majority of the 21 points were scored by our kicker, with only one touchdown during the entire game.

And for all you LSU fans out there - the Tigers only crossed the mid-field line one time during the entire game!  :P  There's always next year!!!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Project 365 Day 8 - January 8th

I've been determined to not stage any photos unnecessarily.  Those are going to be the shots that I save for rainy days when getting outdoors isn't quite as easy today.  Needless to say when I woke up and looked out the windows to an overcast sky and a prediction of rain, I started brainstorming.

To my surprise, the rain didn't last but a few minutes and still managed to produce some great puddles.  This was my chance to work on some reflection photos.  I've tried before but the photos haven't normally been successful.  I managed to get several pretty good ones today.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Project 365 Day 7 - January 7th

My goal for today's photo was to focus on depth of field.  Those who have followed my photography for awhile know that when I'm shooting random things, I love to shoot in macro.  There's something about close-ups that I love and enjoy.

My weakness, however, when shooting in macro, is to focus on the objects closest to the camera.  I'm trying to break out of that habit - I did pretty good today!

Rather than focusing on the berries closest to the camera, I focused on a couple of the berries in the middle.  I love how it threw the berries in the front and in the back slightly out of focus.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Project 365 Day 6 - January 6th

I have been shooting photos off and on all day.  I wasn't totally sure what I wanted today's photo to be so I figured I'd give myself several options.  By the time I'd spent some time outside with my family, I figured I'd have at least one photo to choose from.  

It wasn't until we were walking back inside and I turned around to make sure my 2-year old was staying caught up with us that my photo for today caught my eye.  We have very traditional style lamp posts in our apartment complex, but the way the light and the clouds looked in the background looked so pretty.  The sun setting behind the trees silhouetted the lamp post and the trees in a way that made me know I'd found my shot!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Project 365 Day 5 - January 5th

After school today, I decided to take my daughter outside exploring with me to find some inspiration for today's photo.  We found flowers, a bird nest (which we may go back to tomorrow), and several other things.  Right before we went inside, I spotted an above ground water pipe-thing (not totally sure what it is) that peaked my interest.  It had a lot of rounded edges, old chipped paint, and other rustic details that I loved.  My daughter thought I'd lost my mind as I started moving around and snapping from different angles.  It was even better since it was about an hour before sunset and the sun was starting to slowly fade out.  It made for neat shadows and lighting on the photos.  

Yes, I said photos - plural.  Once again, I had too many favorites to narrow it down.  So here is a collage that I narrowed down to 5 of my most favorite shots.

I'm off to a good start as we near the end of Week 1... can't wait to see what Week 2 brings!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Project 365 Day 4 - January 4th

My original plan for my photo today was to snap a photo of something while out on the walking trail tonight.  Unfortunately, reality hit that trying to get a decent photo in the dark (or even spot something that I really wanted to shoot) wasn't likely to happen.

I figured I'd just come home and find a shot somewhere around the house.  I had my camera with me when I went to check the mail just in case - my camera goes pretty much everywhere with me anyway.  You never know when an opportunity may arise.  Out in front of the office of our apartment complex, I came across the flowerbeds in full bloom, despite the crazy weather we've been having.  There was one particular stem that caught my eye:

I was intrigued that coming from the same stalk, there were blooms that were completely dead, partially dead, and just coming to bloom.  It made me think of a phoenix and how something new grows out of the ashes of the old.  

Just a note of something funny I noticed as I was scanning through my photos to choose one - if you look at the dead flower the right way, it almost looks like an evil monkey.  LOL  It reminds me of the evil monkey from Family Guy.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Project 365 Day 3 - January 3rd

I tried to go with just one picture today.  Unfortunately, I was feeling inspired by the trees around our apartments and could not narrow the selection down. Because of that, I chose to do a collage with my favorites.

My goal was to shoot from angles other than those that are typical for outdoor photos.  I also tried to use the sunlight to my advantage, which worked beautifully, especially on the bottom shot.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Project 365 Day 2 - January 2nd

Our family traditionally leaves the Christmas decorations up through New Year's Day.  On January 1st, they come down.  Unfortunately, due to my hubby working and the wedding I shot yesterday, there was little time for taking down anything.  That left the undesirable task for today, despite all of the other things I needed to get done.

I have a love/hate relationship with my holiday decorations.  I love to put them up every year, especially since it signals the start of the holiday season.  However, I absolutely hate the part where I have to take them down.  It's almost bittersweet as I'm reminded that the holidays are over and it's time to get back to reality.

Today, as I packed up the interior decorations (the outside stuff is my hubby's job), I was compelled to pull out my camera and snap a few photos.

The photo on the left is all of the lights and decor from our Christmas tree.  To make things as simple as possible in regards to putting up the tree every year, all of the ornaments, lights, beads, ribbon, and topper go into one storage bin.

The photo on the right is our tree, possibly going in for the last time.  I purchases this tree for Christmas 2003, the year I was pregnant with my daughter.  For three years I've been wanting to purchase a larger tree, but after this year, I may not have a choice.  This one has started to shed small "twigs" of its branches and will likely become a tree for the patio next year rather than being used as our main family tree.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Updates and a New Year

Okay, so I've gotten the tabs up and running for each of my various blogs.  Unfortunately, the best I have been able to come up with thus far is to include a link on each page for the different blogs in each category.  I will be using the main page of this blog to still post random thoughts and things from time to time, as well as some updates on what our family is up to as we start another new year.

Project 365 Day 1 - January 1st

It's time to "ring in" another New Year!  I did just that - literally.  I did the photography for a wedding today so knew without thinking twice that today's photo would include the couple's wedding rings.

Many people think that a New Year's Day wedding would be odd.  I have to admit that at first I thought the same thing.  I also thought, after hearing it was going to be an outdoor wedding, that we were going to freeze. Somehow, regardless of all of the crazy weather we have had lately, Mother Nature provided a beautiful day free of rain and with temperatures in the high 60s.  That kind of weather is so unusual for the Florida Gulf coast that we were all shocked.

The reason the couple chose to have a New Year's Day wedding is because it's a tradition in the Groom's family.  His brother, parents, and several other family members have all gotten married on New Year's Day.  Sidney and Curtis thought it was appropriate to carry on the family tradition by getting married today.  It was neat to hear everyone telling the couple "Congratulations!" and in the same sentence telling other family members "Happy Anniversary!"  It was enough to make me wish my family had a tradition like that.