Archive for ‘travel’

September 9, 2010

the search continues…

STILL haven’t found a new  place to live.  the search is all-consuming.  if i’m not on my computer looking at properties, than i am thinking about them, or going to see them (mostly thinking about them).  i haven’t been distracted easily from this, and it’s getting annoying.  i’m sure my kids are sick of seeing me on the computer.  had a photo session this morning and soccer tonight and it was SUPER nice to blow off some steam and forget about life for a little while.

i owe the four of you a catch-up post.  this past weekend was my annual girls’ weekend in ponce inlet.  we do it every year… sadly this year was the first without our dear sarah who had the nerve to move to south africa and pursue justice and kindness and other junk like that.  (braggis, if you’re reading this, we did notice you weren’t there but we all know you’re not a regular.  and we know you too pursue justice and kindness, only from the wilds of northern california.)

if you don't already know, don't ask about the matching shirts.

about two hours before we (maitland and i) left on friday, i got the news that the sweet rental house we were crossing our fingers for had gone to someone else.  i was super upset about it…so much so that I FORGOT MY SUITCASE.  i didn’t even realize it until i was in the room getting baby’s bed set-up and thought, “now where is the sheet for the pack-n-play?”  luckily a total stranger picked up my bag and brought it to me thanks to the incredible power of Facebook (amy knew a girl who had a fiance making the drive that day).  i also had a stomach virus all day on saturday so i missed out on alot of incredible food.  however, i made up for it on sunday and was fortunate to get to know these pillow cookies (one of the richest things i’ve ever put in my mouth…amy once again adding to the quality of my life/weekend):

yes, that is a BROWNIE in the middle of an already amazing choc chip cookie.

in other news, we’ve started a new reward system with the kids.  well, we started it a few weeks ago.  anytime an adult catches the girls doing anything they (the adult) deem “bean-worthy”, the child gets to take a bean from the bowl and put it into the jar.  when the jar is full, we go to chuck e. cheese.  no idea how harper knows what chuck e. cheese’s is, but she does.  and the motivation is doing it’s job.  this week they passed the small line at the bottom of the jar so they got a small reward: family trip to Annie’s (italian ice) after dinner.

i wish i got a bean for every rental property ad i read.

August 5, 2010

what’s up

this is, photographically speaking, a sad post.  however, i maintain that even though i’m a photographer, i’m a busy mom and i have the right to use a point and shoot when i feel like it.  i also have the right to leave pictures sideways when wordpress is being retarded instead of using up more time by opening other programs, blah blah blah.  it won’t hurt your neck, i promise.

harper is at my parents’ grandkids camp and we’re headed to the sebastian beach house on saturday.  lots to do, but it’s been a pretty productive week so far (did i mention harper was gone?).  still have some cleaning to do…i always leave that until the last day because i hate it love to come home to a clean house.

this is a little “teaser” of something i’ve been working on…i’ll do a post when i’m totally done (which probably won’t be for a few weeks due to our vacation/company schedule).

layne totally agrees about it being a busy week.  i kept her in wal-mart way too long today (i swear i’ll never go back.  that place makes me feel like a complete idiot.) and she ended up falling asleep on the way home while eating her lunch of doritos that i grabbed at the check-out.  i’ll give her a sandwich when she wakes up.  and some brussel sprouts to make up for the doritos.

SO excited about the beach house!!  i’ll try to post at least once while we’re there, but i’m not giving any guarantees.

June 16, 2010

flexing my muscles

i’m trying to get back into shape physically and have decided that i also need to start flexing my photography muscles a little bit.  woke up this morning and decided to do sort-of a “day in the life” kind of thing.  last day in tallahassee…here goes:

woke up around 8:30…4 used diapers next to the clock (the number of diapers in the pile always indicates how many times i’d been up the night before with my Little Buddy).  me in my p.j.’s…honestly bothers me alot that they don’t match.

my Little Buddy watching the ceiling fan…he’s about to outgrow that binky.  i’ll miss it.

staying at nana’s means dessert after breakfast…always popsicles on the front porch.

if you hadn’t figured it out already (red mouths, yellow popsicles), this morning they each had 2!

i noticed this week how TALL all the trees have gotten.  love this sweetgum.

this house holds many many memories for me.  besides the 400 pictures of me, here’s one other piece of evidence that i grew up here:  a height chart on my former-bedroom door.  if my parents’ ever move, they’d better take our doors with them.  i need to get something like this going for my kids before they’re as tall as we are. 

[did you notice that in 1988 i grew 2 inches and gained TEN pounds?!]

this afternoon mom and i took the kids to this place.  zoinks.  it’s a huge room filled with inflateables (slides, obstacle courses, etc) and arcade games.  unbeknownst to us, wednesdays are free afternoon days.  it was total chaos.  i am not a paranoid mom, and i was…well…paranoid.  the place was absolutely packed and it was driving me crazy that at no time did i have all 3 of my kids in my view at once, much less my kids AND my niece and nephew.  mom and i kept looking at each other like, “is this for real?”  i set maitland’s carseat up against one of the toddler inflateables and it was bouncing him around enough that he fell asleep.  this tempted me to just leave him there and walk around with the other two kids, but i kept thinking, “it’s chaos in here.  someone could pick him up and walk out with him and i would never know it.” 

my one consolation was that i’d fed maitland right before we left the house, so i didn’t have to walk around like this poor woman was (however, i should point out that that is about the most modest job of breastfeeding i have ever seen…without someone using a cover):

when we got home it had just been pouring rain.  the kids played in the driveway with the umbrella and jumped in the puddles and rode thier scooters through the water while they waited for thier dinner.  i took alot of fun pictures, but i’m tired, so i’m only posting this one.

my grandma was here for dinner tonight.  she lives in an assisted-living facility here and my dad goes and picks her up all the time.  she is 94 and is sometimes annoyed by loud kids and noise, but tonight she seemed not to mind at all when her great-grandson was a little fussy.  as long as i can remember she has had painted fingernails and lots of jewelry.

headed home tomorrow.  stopping at my sister’s for lunch, so hopefully the drive won’t be bad.

January 27, 2010

some disney pics…

i uploaded most of these to Facebook, so that makes me lazy to put them on my blog, but i know there could be someone out there (Dad) who wants to see them but isn’t on FB.  here goes:

January 26, 2010

pork sundae

i have seriously got to get back on the ball with this blog thing. just remember always to check here, because if there’s not a new post on this blog, alot of times there is one on the other.

the title of this post is what i had for lunch on sunday.  i can’t stop thinking about it.  it was so so good.  looked like the picture except it wasn’t in a cute mason jar and the layers were in a different order…mine had the coleslaw on top and the pork on the bottom.  i usually hate my food to even touch on my plate, but for some reason when i saw this thing on the specials board, i HAD to have it.  so glad i did.

layne has been watching tv for like 45 minutes while i waste time on the computer.  i had my glucose test this morning so ryan watched the kids.  when i got home from taking harper to school i noticed that the computer was conveniently already turned on.  an hour later, with the dishwasher still full of clean dishes, the bed still unmade, and laundry calling my name, i’m remembering why i try really hard not to turn the computer on until much later in the day.  i could’ve at least spent the time working on some of the “work” i have on my plate right now (editing, design, etc)…

we did disney this weekend and it was a total blast.  later tonight or tomorrow i want to post some pictures.  i insisted on bringing the 50D because i wanted “to get some really amazing pictures”, but i’m actually a little disappointed in the shots i did get. 

gotta go make a grocery list.  oh, and “pay the babysitter” (turn off the tv).

January 1, 2010

happy new year!

so, it’s 11:15 and i should really be in bed or unpacking the suitcase, but i really didn’t want the first day of the year to go by without sitting down to do a post.  i continue to look at blogging as a journal and well, a web LOG of my life, so i want to make it a priority.  first, i’ll answer my handy questionnaire to fill in a few of the gaps of what we did on our 10 days away.  then, a few pictures to honor the fun that was had.

  • something i accomplished [while we were gone]:  not a whole lot, thankfully.  if spending time with family is an acoomplishment, than i did well.  i did some laundry, dishes, and cooking, but it never feels like work when i’m not at home.
  • something i screwed up [while we were gone]:  i got a text from a client that the CD she’d gotten from me was blank.  OOPS.
  • something fun i did with the kids [while we were gone]:  we did get out quite a bit, but i think the most fun i had with them was just hanging out at the house[s], playing with new toys, and horsing around.
  • something funny or cute one of my kids did or said [while we were gone]:  my favorite thing from this Christmas was how genuinely harper showed thankfulness for her gifts.  she said several times on different days, very sincerely, how much she loved all her new presents…and it seemed like she really understood that they were GIFTS, not things that she deserved.
  • something yummy i ate [while we were gone]:   to name just a few: 2 great steaks, oreo peppermint pie, crumb coffee cake, sweet potato casserole, rutabaga, black-eyed peas, my mom’s spaghetti (reheated, but still DELICIOUS), roasted marshmallows, ETC… 
  • something i read [while we were gone]:  my sweet sis-in-law gave us several books, but i ended up starting A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, which is actually one she’d bought for herself but has already read several times.  i started it today in the car and i really love it so far.  i’m trying to set a goal for myself to be in bed by 9:00 every night to read for awhile….stuck to it last year for several months…hopefully this year it’ll be at least until baby boy is born.
  • a tv show or movie i watched [while we were gone]:   just watched “Funny People” with ryan on the couch…that’s why this post is so late, but it was worth it for once…actually a pretty good movie.
  • something i did [while we were gone] that i hardly ever do:  bought a pair of skinny jeans.  i’ve actually never done this before, but i was at goodwill and they fit so i went for it.  they’re not maternity jeans and i never sat down in them when i tried them on, so we’ll see if i actually wear them at all this winter…
  • something i did [while we were gone] that i do every day:  thank the Lord for my family
  • something i am thankful for right now:  so very thankful for such a long break from reality…and to be able to spend it with such amazing fun people made it even better.  i am so so blessed.
  • now for a few pictures…first of 3 Christmases for the kids was at our house…just our little family and a few gifts, but the girls loved it.

    ryan took this in orlando when we went to look at a light display.  i just love it.

    same night…we did get several shots where all of us were looking, but i thought this one was a little more…uh…honest.  🙂  please pardon the fact that i look like i’m homeless.  i was very comfortable and warm.

    Christmas tree bow courtesy of amy at Two Florida Girls…

    two shots from New Year’s Eve.  it was good practice for VERY low light…most of my shots turned out blurry, but these two weren’t and they were my favorite…

    i posted this one on my photo blog as well, but i love it so much i thought i would put it here too.  my sweet nephew justin was VERY excited about the fireworks.  he jumps when he’s excited.

    December 8, 2009


    it’s worse than i thought.  i just read my last post and i can’t believe what a slacker i’ve been.  i guess it’s mostly a  lack of motivation (and energy) to keep up with this blog…i’ve posted a little on my other blog.

    anyway, since my last post quite a bit has happened.

    • i had a great time with my girlfriends and the etsy holiday homemade open house was great.  (i need a link to that, but i’m too lazy…if you’re interested, check out amy’s blog.)
    • my grandma died (mom’s mom…lived in atlanta…hadn’t seen her in 5 years, but she  meant alot to me).  she had a stroke or heart attack in her home and because she lived alone, her body was in the house for about 5 days before anyone found her.  wierd situation.
    • we had a great thanksgiving in orlando with ryan’s parents and my awesome sister-in-law.  it was even cool enough for a fire, which was a blessing.  (see photo at the bottom of this post)
    • i left on friday morning and drove (alone) to gainesville, ga to stay with my mom for two days and then attend her funeral.  it was a quick trip (headed home on sunday afternoon), but very well worth the effort.
    • it took me about 4 days to recover and get the house back together after i got home…i still feel very much in a whirlwind…things constantly swirling around in my head, but i started a few lists (camping stuff, christmas gifts, things to do, etc…) and i’m finally feeling a little more organized.
    • biggest news in our family right now: WE’RE HAVING A BOY!!  we found out last week and i am still seriously in shock.  i need to scan an ultrasound photo and post it…  so excited!!!
    • we’re going camping this weekend (thus the aforementioned “camping stuff” list).  i’m so excited!  hopefully i’ll have some cute pictures to post when we get back.

    for now, here are two pictures of harper from the past month that i just had to share.  she is getting more and more beautiful every day. 

    first, here she is on a ride at the Italian Festival that was held here in our neighborhood.  it was her first real carnival ride experience and she LOVED every second.

    next, here she is on thanksgiving night…lying in front of the fire snuggled in a blanket, listening intently as her aunt erin tells her a story…ariel, i think.

    September 29, 2009

    not as much of a slacker as you’d think

    yes, it’s been a full week since my last post, but i haven’t been sitting around.

    here’s a list of 10 things that have kept me away from wordpress over the past week:

    1. drove from tallahassee to orlando with harper (layne stayed in tallahassee)
    2. flew from orlando to springfield, MO
    3. took harper to her first hibachi dinner (courtesy of my generous brother and sister-in-law)
    4. took harper (and my nephew owen) to barnes & noble to meet maisy the mouse
    5. photographed a 90 year old’s birthday party
    6. photographed a wedding reception for a couple who got married at the top of the Sears tower in April
    7. photographed a couple and their sweet baby boy
    8. atteneded/photographed an awesome hyms concert  (i took 1131 pictures in 2 days!)
    9. flew back to orlando (where we were reunited with layne)
    10. drove home. 


    September 21, 2009

    i love food.

    and i love to eat.  and i love this “guy” because he loves it just as much as i do.

    i don’t watch alot of cooking shows, but diners, drive-ins, and dives has become a close second to paula deen (formerly the only cooking show i could tolerate).  “triple d” isn’t really about cooking…it’s about eating.  and it’s about eating greasy, fatty, DELICIOUS food in large portions.  i don’t watch every episode, i don’t have it on my dvr list of things to record, but if i’m flipping channels and it’s on, i’ll stop every time.  it’s almost punishment to watch because it just makes ME want to take that huge drippy greasy bite that guy just ate, but i watch it anyway.

    anyone else a fan?

    September 17, 2009

    Cricut Great Escape Contest

    got this from amy‘s blog:  This is contest entry for those crazy folks at TodaysMama and Cricut. Be sure to check out Cricut’s cool new cartridges and the chance at $30,000 in travel for you and your friends at the Great Gypsy Escape site!

    my answers:

     1. If you could escape to anywhere in the world where would it be? australia.  only place that i REALLY want to go that i’ve never been

    2. What song do you play when you are by yourself in the car? honestly, anything sung in an adult’s voice or a song that doesn’t include words like “bop” or “farm” is nice…

    3. If you had a night to yourself, and money was no object, what would you do?  probably go to a nice dinner and a show or sporting event (front-row seats) with my husband, and then stay in a nice hotel

    4. What is your guilty pleasure? a pleasure that i feel guilty about alot is Facebook.  it is a time trashcan

    5. What is the farthest place you have traveled away from your home? this was amy’s answer, but mine is the same because we were together on both trips:  What’s farther from Florida…Prague or Greece?

    6. Last book that you couldn’t put down? The Brothers K by David James Duncan

    7. When you want to escape into another time, what movie do you watch? Back to the Future…haha, just kidding.  i would probably have to say Grease or maybe Far and Away

    8. What is your favorite local escape?  the playground at Chick-fil-A on Northlake

    9. How do you escape on a budget?  don’t escape too far…for me “escape” really just means a break.  i don’t necessarily have to get away from anything…although sometimes it is nice just to go to the grocery store by myself.

    10. Best food you’ve ever had while on vacation.  gelato in Italy, an AMAZING buffet at the bellagio in vegas, all-you-can-eat alaskan king crab on our honeymoon cruise in alaska

    Now it’s your turn! Post and answer the meme questions on your blog and then send a link to your post to with “Cricut Meme” in the subject line.