Monthly Archives: July 2011

An update FROM Camp fYrefly AB!

Hey folks!

I am actually writing this post while in Edmonton.  Camp fYrefly AB has been wonderful so far.  The campers are amazing, and the team behind the camp as well as the adult volunteers are absolutely fantastic!  It truly is an honor to be surrounded by such incredible people.

Anyway…  I had hoped to be keeping in touch better during my time away, but wifi has been difficult to come by.  I am currently typing while sitting at a volunteer’s home.  I am doing my best to work on a number of things during any down time that I have, but any non-Camp fYrefly email has gone unaddressed, and I do apologize for that.  I will get back on things as soon as I’m back home.  I so appreciate your patience.

Well, I better run.  It’s about time I headed back to camp.  Take care all.  Be safe, and be good to one another!

Not much tonight…

I hope you can all forgive me.  It’s my last night home for a few days.  So I’d like to just be with my family.  No, blog posts don’t have to take a super long time, but I don’t want to be pulled away for more than a few minutes.  Tomorrow I’m off to Edmonton for their Camp fYrefly.  It will be a great experience, and I’m hoping to learn a lot before Camp fYrefly Saskatchewan…  a lot that I can then apply here (so that our camp isn’t quite so “trial by fyre… fly”).

You made me smile!

As many of my clients are aware, I’m quite backed up with edits, adjustments, and enhancements.  I typically prefer to book in three or four sessions a week, which then allows me to get all of my post-shoot work done that same week.  I know what it’s like having to wait on a disc (or on anything else you are excited about) and do my best to cut down wait time as much as possible.  Lately though, it has been taking a month or (as I’m now telling clients) two to get folks their disc of images.

Why the wait?

To get in as many folks who purchased my groupon as possible, before the extended expiry, there are DAYS when I’ve booked in as many sessions as I would normally shoot in a week.  Yep, you read that right.  One week of shooting compressed into one day, with multiple days a week you can only imagine how quickly the stack of “to be edited” shoots can grow.  But, I figure that in this instance, shooting has to take priority, and I SOOOO appreciate your patience.  This is out of the ordinary for me, and I do feel so badly that things are taking this long…  So thank you.  Thank you for understanding.

This backlog of edits, also means I haven’t been sharing previews on my blog very often.  I love doing it, but it takes extra time to upload all the images…  and that’s just time that I haven’t had lately.  This photo though?  This one I had to share.  🙂  This photo BEGGED me to share it.  It got down on it’s knees, clasped it’s hands, gave me puppy dog eyes, and pleaded oh so heart-wrenchingly to be shared.  So what else could I do?  I promised to share it.

Bobby Jo Lardner and Family

I love this picture.  I truly do.  It speaks volumes about this family, about the love they share, about the kinship and camaraderie present in their relationships.  And even beyond what is so obvious to anyone who sees this photo, is the story about the place.  This is where the Lardner family will be building their future home.  The place where they will continue to grow together, building together, creating bonds and memories that will help shape them.

What a fabulous memory in such an awesome place.  I was privileged to be a small part in creating it.

The Girlie’s 4th Birthday Party!

Nothing but photos for you tonight.  I’m just too darn tired to do anything else.  LOL

 

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In the still…

Sometimes  you just need to sit and be.  Still your mind, quiet your body, and just be in the moment.  Let the world wash away.  Take in all that is.  Let things flow.  Be free to feel.  Take it in.

Some days are just too full.

Today, while mostly awesome, was just too full.  And I honestly wish I could have taken today away from work of any kind.  But we are now down to crunch time with Camp fYrefly and I had to work on sending out acceptance packages.  There are still a lot more to go out – but I got a good start on them… and will keep working on them tomorrow.

Why did I want today off?  Well, the wee girlie only turns four once.  And today was the day.

When she woke up (extra early, after a restless night, of course) I checked her over thoroughly.  Inspected each and every inch, looking to see if there were possibly any three year old parts left.  She giggled like mad as I peered at her armpits, checked between each toe, pinched her cheeks, wiggled her nose, and peeked into her belly button.  But no.  It appears that every single part is now a four year old part.  There are no three year old parts left.

Before afternoon had a chance to commence, we hit the mall.  Now… this particular mall is one we usually avoid.  It’s just too crowded, too teen frenzy, and just too full of memories for me (not bad memories, just lots of them, around every corner).  But on special occasions, we venture through the underground parking and emerge into it’s well lit crazitude (as I’ve mentioned before, making up words has a long, grand, history behind it… all the brightest, most awesome writers do it).  Today was one of those special occasions.

While the wee girlie was turning four, her hot pink stuffed flamingo, most appropriately named Mingo, was turning one.  So it was off to Build-a-Bear we went.  Mingo needed a new birthday outfit, and the wee girlie had $21 worth of coupons to spend.

After our mall trip, it was off to my parent’s place.  Where I sat at the kitchen table, Macbook Pro, iPad, and external hard drive all connected with various wires, and all connected to me – via the keyboard and trackpad.  Thus the acceptance packages began to roll out.

Once Mom needed the table, I moved into the sewing room to begin working on the girlie’s costume pieces for her party on Saturday.  This year she requested a Jungle party.  A surprisingly easy thing to deliver.

Normally I spend a week (or even two) frantically preparing for the girlie’s birthdays.  I don’t do this because I have to, but because I love doing it.  I harvest berries, bake, cook, sew, craft…  Work like mad.  And then sit back and take in the joy of Strawberry Day (as her birthday has become known as).  This year, I knew that was not happening.  And I’ll admit, this particular Strawberry Day kinda feels like cheating.

We are going to The Fun Factory.  That’s right.  We’re heading somewhere, where I don’t have to do a darn thing but sit back and enjoy the air conditioning as the kids run around and play.  Then, for 45 minutes, we’ll head into their jungle themed room (one of four party rooms) for cake and presents before heading back out to the general play area.

I am not making a cake.  We’ve ordered a Monkey Jungle cake from Co-op.  I am not baking, cooking, or crafting.  I did minimal sewing today (about 1.5 hours worth) to create a Monkey costume for the girlie, as it’s a costume party.  And that’s it.  Come Saturday we’ll pick up the cake, and head on over to party with anyone who shows up.  LMAO  Yep.  Feels like cheating.  No cleaning, no mess.  Show up, party, leave.  LOL

In honor of this very different type of party, we are calling it Jungleberry Day.  Because, well…  it’s not really a Strawberry day if I’m not preparing a whack load of strawberries and strawberry dishes for my little Strawberry, now is it?  😉

So, after a bit of sewing, it was time for supper (and I so appreciate Mom providing the meal for us, I felt bad not pitching in at all, but I so desperately needed that time – so THANKS MOM!).  Mom made up salad and pizza.  Then, it was onto cake and presents.

The wee girlie was so wound up and exhausted by the time we were done, that she took a few laps around the yard with her new rockets/arrows (they are these air propelled nerf-like rocket/arrow things that you can shoot at each other) and it was time to come home and hit the hay.  BTW, thanks for those Mom and Dad.  When I first saw them I was thinking “Are you nuts?!?!?” but you can get out a lot of frustrations shooting (safely) at your kid.  LMAO

Now we are home and in bed.  The girlie, fast asleep.  She’s four.  Just like that.

They may take our lives, but they can’t take our Threedom!

Tonight, as my wee girlie lay beside me, falling asleep, she said to me “Mommy, what if I miss being three?”.  So we had a quiet talk about aging, and how when you leave one time behind there is always something new and exciting on the horizon.  You may sometimes look back and miss something you used to do, but there is always so much joy to be had that it makes sense to keep looking forward.

Today was a good day.  We enjoyed every last bit of the wee girlie’s threedom.  Three really was awesome, but four?  I know it’s going to be all that and more.  She’s grown and changed so much, and while she drives me absolutely batty at times, she really is my everything.  She’s my inspiration, and my driving force.  It is for her that I do all these crazy, time consuming things.  It is for her that I need to believe.  People can make a difference, and for her I do my very best.

Lily-Ann, enjoying her threedom:

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Thank you Yolanda!

The wee girlie loves her new pool, and here she is to say “Thanks”.  😀

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=10150248628527353

And the pool has water!

Yep…  you heard me.  The pool has water.  😀  And it was WAY too dark out to take a picture to share my triumph.  LOL

I’ll admit, spending a few hours out in the yard getting the space prepped, putting the pool together, and erecting the screen house was time I could have spent editing photos or working on Camp fYrefly stuff…  BUT…  this was all part of the plan.  Mwahahaha.

Okay, so it’s not an evil take-over-the-world-pinky-and-the-brain-type-scheme-of-a-plan.  But it’s my plan.

See:

girlie home with mommy all day = mommy having no time to actually work all day

Our friend Yolanda upgraded to a larger model of this particular above ground pool, so offered us her old one.  YES!  Definitely an offer we couldn’t possible even consider turning down.  So, today (while the girlie is at the lake with my mom) after a couple of photo shoots and after eating a bit of supper, the hubby and I set to work.  And yes, there is still some work to be done (it is just WAY too black out there to keep mucking about) but we are a large part of the way there.

For a long while now, when I give someone our address I say “You can’t miss the place.  It’s the tiny, ugly, square, white house with all the kids stuff in the front yard.”  Well, that’s about to change too.  Okay, well… we’ll still be the tiny ugly square white house,  (and don’t belittle my tiny ugly square white house, I happen to love my tiny crappy house) but the kid stuff will be hitting the back yard.

When the girlie was tiny we made the decision to keep her play stuff to the front yard.  Wee kiddies put everything in their mouths, and, well…  the back yard was dog domain.  And there are certain things that you don’t want to make it into your baby.  The girlie is past that stage now though, and is looking for more freedom.  She doesn’t always want Mom or Dad right on top of her, supervising every move, as she plays in the yard.  Sooo…  it’s time to move her play equipment and toys into the back.  That way she can have a little freedom (the yard is fenced, and we can just sit in the corner on the patio furniture), AND I can get some work done while she plays.  Okay, so that’s the plan anyway.  Don’t knock it.  It might work.  It NEEDS to work.  LMAO  Wish me luck.

And I SOOOOO can’t wait to see the girlie’s face when she sees the pool set up and all of her toys in the back yard.  She’s just going to light up like a little old fire bugs butt.  (if that isn’t the prettiest imagery ever)

For now, it’s off to feed puppies, get some Chihuahua kisses, and hit the hay.

8 Week Puppy Pictures!

Can you believe it???  The puppies are already eight weeks old.  Kinda blows my mind a little.  I have to admit, I’m already looking forward to their show careers.  I love seeing their different traits (both personality and physical), and imagining how they’ll end up.  Both are promising.

Here are a few photos from some of our stacking practice and post-stacking play session:

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Deedee isn’t a fan of the table.  She’ll stand on it, but doesn’t want to be stacked.  Same on the floor…  she has no trouble walking into a stack, but doesn’t want you to mess with her beyond just delivering a treat.  She’s definitely got the most confidence and attitude – and even when she isn’t happy about something her tail just keeps going.

Alice does really well allowing you to hand stack her.  She’ll stay wherever you put her (even if you totally overextend her, just to see if she’ll hold it).  LOL  She will stand on the table without issue, she doesn’t like it, but she behaves really nicely.  She gets her confidence from her sister on the floor though.  The difference in her self stacks when she’s alone and when Deedee is with her, is crazy-huge.

Both girls are super cute (though I may be a little biased).  And while they are quite different they are both nice.  I really am looking forward to watching them growing up.  It’s been such a privilege so far.  🙂

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