Monday, January 20, 2014

Sea Shells and a Snow Storm

 After a cancelled  play date, 


due to a snow storm,

Whereby we literally got stuck, in the car,  in a white out,

 With one crying and very disappointed  five year old sitting in the back seat, 

Creativity came a calling.

What better way to clear the mind of the arctic blast that was taking place outside, then to bring the sights  and feel of the sandy beach inside..

Enter:  sea shells and paint.

Mission Accomplished:  One happy camper.

(Make that two happy campers, as in between painting, this enthusiastic mama was thrilled to try out one of the new lenses with her toy camera.)

And what might my trooper of a husband, sporting shorts in 20 degree weather, be doing here?

Indulging his wife, by putting Lucy's gingerbread house out for the birds.   Do you see it?

I was told it was a great way to "recycle."   All I can think about is, birds?  squirrels?  in my back yard?  eating the gingerbread house?  Sounds like a chance for some great photo opps, dont'cha think?

So far, no luck, though.  See the tracks below?  That's all I've gotten so far.

But I'm still watching!  Camera in hand!

So, moral of the story:  When house bound by mother nature, bring out the beach.   A sure win every time!

Monday, January 13, 2014

What's New Around Here?

Can you tell?  Do you know?  What is new?  What is different?

Maybe you will guess that it is Lindsay? I guess I could technically take that as an answer, since yes, she is typically not here with us and could be construed as "new."    But that is a stretch... and you would be wrong.  She was just here this past weekend for a quick visit; we took her for a college tour at Xavier.


Lucy sticking her tongue out?   New?  No way...been doing it for awhile---against the constant redirection of her parents, mind you.  (And no, she has not been watching Miley Cyrus.  No way.  No how.)

Yes, that building behind Lindsay, on XU's campus: new.  And amazing, might I add.  It is the new dining hall for students.  (Voted #1 dining among middle sized schools in the country.)  

Lindsay's shoes are new....Her mama got them for her for Christmas.   But still not the answer I am looking for.

Lindsay looking scholarly and like she belongs on a college campus?  Not new.  She not only looks scholarly, but is. (Did I mention her current 3.8 gpa?)

Okay Okay.....a clue:  candid shots like this didn't used to take.

this is one of my fave pics
and so is this one...

Another clue:  anyone is my subject.  Even clueless little Greyson, who is our neighbor's friendly cat (and likes our deck more than we do, I think).....and,

including Brian, who is going to be so sick of me by the time it is all said and done.

Okay, if you haven't figured it out by now...well, I don't know what to say.   Yes, Santa finally delivered and brought me my new camera.

Moments like these-- this sunrise--used to only be appreciated in my mind...never by my camera.  I raced home from the gym this morning with great anticipation to try out my new toy...Breathtaking.

What I can now say --with 100% certainty --(it was at about 90% before) is how amazing and impressive skilled photographers are.   There is so much that goes into capturing a good photo.  I have only begun, and these pictures are just my baseline...I know there is sooo much more and these photos aren't great.  For the 10-15 photos that are here and are sharable, there were about 200 that I deleted.  But subjects like her...

...they are just going to make the journey to learning that much more enjoyable and rewarding.  

A side note:  Thanks to two fellow bloggers, Beth (at "be yourself eveyone else is taken") and Summer (at "running chatter") who helped me tremendously in choosing the right camera.  And for their inspiration.  If you want to see some fantastic photography, as well as creative, humorous and real writing, check out their blogs. 

And thank you to my first victims subjects, for indulging me this weekend with my "photo shoot": Lindsay and Lucy Lou, and Brian.

For now:  beware.  If you are in my presence, you will be victim subject to my new obsession.   Be patient please!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Dear December,

Dear December,

Thank you for all you blessed us with this year.   There were so many special occasions to celebrate.  There was a worry that each would not get their due, simply because of the busyness of this time of year.  But you did not disappoint.   I believe in spite of all the occasions, well, somehow you helped us to honor and enjoy each of them in their own special way.   And Lucy....well, suffice it to say I think she was happy (and maybe a bit spoiled) for all of your 31 days....So, thank  you.  We will not forget you-dear last month of 2013-and all the special moments that you allowed us to share with friends and family.

Good bye for now...see you in 11 months!

To the mall to celebrate our Forever Family Day.  We met Lucy exactly 4 years ago today, December 6th.

She requested her favorite:  Auntie Annes.   If only we were all so easily pleased....

Lucy's pre-school play/ recital.

Lucy--in the back row--as one of the angels.

Santa came to school to visit!

Our annual trip to Irons Fruit Farm, with friends,  to make gingerbread houses.

Off to Aronoff Center (downtown) to see The Nutcracker.

Lunch with two of the 'stars' of The Nutcracker, my friend Molly's kids Abby and Charlie. (Charlie was Fritz!)

To Carmel to be with family for Christmas.  (Lindsay and her boyfriend Lukeeeee...Lucy loves him!)

Lots of love and attention from cousin Lindsay...Thank you Lindsay Lou!

Cousins Maddie, Lindsay and Lucy on Christmas Eve.

Christmas Eve with Aunt Lisa

awhhh...Papa and Lindsay

Cousins Josh, Lindsay and Lucy with their Papa.

Carrying on Mom's tradition of new pj's on Christmas eve.  Thanks Aunt Lisa!

Cousins Lindsay, Lucy and Vincent

There was a place at the table on Christmas day for Mom.

Lucy's 5th Birthday--- morning before the party.

Cousins here to celebrate on Lucy's special day.

In case you didn't notice, Lucy chose a Cowgirl theme for her birthday party!

We all tried to get into the spirit!

loove this pic!

Dad busy on his new i-phone!

Lucy and her friend Abby, at her bithrday party.

Our dear friends, Howie, Tammy and Abby, helping to honor Lucy's special day.

More partying!  New Year's Eve at our house with college friends and family.  (Ross and Johanna)

New Year's eve (Ella and Abby).  We went outside and banged our pots and pans at midnight again!  Anyone else?

Good Bye to 2013!  Hello to 2014!   It has already been quite a wintry season so far.   We are hoping the trend slows down a bit!   Happy New Year to all!!!

Lucy helping to dig our way out of the house.