Blog Archives

Nature

Today’s challenge was to photograph “nature”. Now, I know a daily blog is all about instant gratification… But I’m going to ask you to wait just the same. Because I took a ton of “nature” shots at the Animal Kingdom park. The problem? They’re all on my good camera and my external hard drive. I barely touched my phone today. LOL. It was pretty amazing, even if we completely missed dinoland (kid kid was just way too scared to see dinosaurs up close and personal). We did go on safari though, which was pretty cool… And Jewles conquered her roller coaster fear on expedition Everest! All in all, an amazing day!

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We’re here!!!

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Our last flight of the day, having the wings de-iced before take off. I figured this worked pretty darn well for the “light” challenge.

Now, I’ve been up for almost two days and as excited as I am to share all the details of our trip this far, I am beat and must sleep. Night!

One More Sleep!!!

Crazy day today.  And it’s not over yet.  We’re slowly nearing the finish line though, only another hour or two of stuff left to do before we’ll be all set for our trip.

The challenge for today was “lunch”, and we grabbed it on the go while getting some running around done:

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So, like I said.  Another couple hours and we’ll be all set.  Likely in bed sleeping by 1:00 for a 4:30 pick up in the morning.  Oy!  It’s gonna be a LONG day.  Thankfully culminating at our arrival in DISNEY WORLD at about 9:30 tomorrow night.  Exciting!

photo a day challenge for january

Our Little DIY Art Center

The challenge for the 25th was “something you made” and for the 26th it’s “colour”.  Again hitting two birds with one stone, here’s a photograph that covers both topics:

Our little DIY art center, created from an old corner TV stand.

 

For my fellow DIYers out there, I know you’ve seen the “play kitchens” made from old TV cabinets.  Well, we created kid kid’s art center from a corner TV stand.  We pulled out the dvd storage, added storage for her art supplies (they are bamboo kitchen utensil caddies), put up some of her finished art projects, and in a few hours we went from an unused, unwanted, fast-becoming-archaic piece of furniture into a desk/hutch that gets used daily.

Lots of colour, and lots of things we’ve made.  🙂

photo a day challenge for january

My Little Pony – Applejack

I had a hard time coming up with a guilty pleasure to photograph.  I live so wide open, and I don’t guilt myself over life’s little pleasures.  If there’s something that makes me happy, even if it’s something that other people may not really understand, I’m totally okay with that.  So I went to Damon, and he gave me this ‘you really have to ask’ look, and said “Your ponies!”  LOL

So here are a few members of my Applejack collection:

My Little Pony Blindbags - Metallic, Sparkle, and Regular Applejack

MLP Blind Bags Applejack Three blind bag MLP's

Applejack was my most loved pony when I was a little girl.  I thought she was the loveliest of all the My Little Ponies.  And while she was portrayed as a bit of a klutz on My Little Pony and Friends (the 80’s tv show), she was always “Princess Applejack” to me – she ruled over all my herd with a sweet and gentle hoof.  😉  So it’s with relish that I continue collecting Applejack, and even though she’s not my favourite of the new G4, Friendship is Magic, ponies she’ll always have a special place in my heart.

Well, we are almost through January, and I’ll admit… the last few photos may pose an additional challenge – seeing as how we leave for Disney World before dawn on Monday.  But I’ll get’r done (as Applejack would say).

photo a day challenge for january

Thora, my ultimate dog.

Having one senior dog is tough, having three?  It really is a lot to deal with…  but I wouldn’t part with even one of our oldies.  Today’s challenge was to photograph something old.  I jokingly asked my husband to pose for me after telling him what my challenge for today was, obviously he turned me down.  😉  I thought about snagging a snapshot of one of our antiques…  in the end though, Lily-Ann’s idea won out.  Sweets wanted his supper, Brandibuck wouldn’t sit still, so Thora it was.  I’ll admit, I don’t like photographing her with my iPhone.  It just doesn’t do her justice.  She really is a gorgeous, gorgeous dog.  I have a hard time believing she’s twelve.  I remember the first time I saw her in person – after her trek with the underground railroad (traveling to us relay style driven bit by bit by volunteers like ourselves) – I broke down in tears.  She really was the most beautiful puppy I’d ever seen, and to this day I’ve never met her equal…  not in brains, drive, beauty, or spirit.  She is a dog who is unmatched in every way, and I have been so blessed to have her as part of my life.

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The light seems crazily yellow here…  but that’s a camera phone for you.  😉

photo a day challenge for january

Reflection

We are now one week away from our trip to WDW.  Time to get all the detail work done in preparation for TEN DAYS away.  Time to pack, and see if there’s anything else we need to pick up before going.  Time to write up info sheets on each member of our animal family for Riki and Kate (who will be staying here, and watching over them all).  Time to buy food and meds, enough to last all the dogs/cat/parrot.  Time to prepare games, and activities, and toys for two days of sitting around in airports.  Time to decide on our budget, and to get some American money.  Time to decide what things will have priority and what will be an “if we can work it out” thing.  Time to get everything in order.  Time to finish sewing, time to put away other projects, time to admit I didn’t get everything done that I’d hoped to…  time to start getting excited as our trip is really just around the corner.

I’ve never been to Disney World, but I did go to Disneyland when I was nine – with Gramma, Grampa Bear, and Devan.  And I’ll be honest, with my memory issues I don’t remember hardly any of it.  I wish I did.  I was old enough that I should remember it…  but there really are so few moments that made it into my emotional memory that it’s barely a blip.  That makes me sad.  This trip though?  Even with my terrible memory, I’m sure will be one I keep with me for the rest of my days.

While the girl was at school this afternoon, Damon and I headed out to visit with Karla – our travel agent.  We talked over a few things.  And she put my mind at ease over a couple things I was unsure of.  After hanging out in her office for about an hour and a half I really do feel set to go.  Now it’s just a matter of getting all the little details arranged, then we’ll be off.

So, with that on my mind, here’s my challenge shot for today:

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With the challenge being “reflection” I could have gone a few different directions… I thought about taking another snapshot of Kid Kid – and talking about how our children reflect what we put into them.  But then I thought about the huge number of photos I already have on this blog of her.  LOL  So it occurred to me (after changing into my pjs) that I could go completely literal.  So I grabbed the mirror that belonged to my paternal Grandmother, who passed when I was too young to really know her, and photographed the reflection of it’s reflection.  I love this little mirror.  It feels like I’ve always had it, and I always feel beautiful when I look into it – even with pjs, chipped nail polish, and damp hair.  😉

photo a day challenge for january

A sweet story and a building project!

I had three completely unrelated things to share seeing how I needed to post a photo for challenge days 18, 19, and 20…  but then I realized I could very honestly share a project the three of us worked on today and have it fit for all three topics.  Yeah, it may be a bit of a cheat – but it’s not a huge one, especially considering I did grab snapshots on both Friday and Saturday, even if I’ve decided to only share a series of images from today.  LOL

But first?  First I have to share a really quick little story that is super cute and totally warmed my heart.  😀

On Friday I was over at my parents place – watching everyone so Mom could go with Dad to an out of town gig.  When Marie, my sister (whom Lily-Ann is named after), got home she came upstairs as usual then asked for my attention.  I stopped working on supper and looked over at her:  “Yes Marie?”

“Moby.”

“Yes.”

“Moby, look.”

And with that she held up the index finger on her right hand as if to say just one second.  Then she bent WAY down to where little Thor (one of my puppies from the Avenger litter whom is now my Dad’s puppy) was standing, and gave him a little pat.  She then stood back up.  “Moby.”

“Yes Marie?”

My sister, who has never been much of a pet person and who does her best to just ignore the other two dogs in the household, gave me a great big grin and an enthusiastic thumbs up.  To which I replied “Awwww….  Marie!  I’m so glad you like him.  He’s a cute little guy, isn’t he?”  She nodded in approval, which made me feel awfully wonderful.  😀

Okay…  now onto my challenge photos.  😉

So, I need to share for something I bought, sweet, and someone I love.  Well…  here are the girl and her Dad working together to put up the last couple of shelves in her room (which he and I started putting up while she was out with my sister Riki earlier today).  I think this series of pictures covers all three challenge topics pretty darn well.

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photo a day challenge for january

TJ Bown, Summerset Abbey, and Water.

In the brief teaser I tacked onto yesterdays blog post I let you know there would be a special interview today, and I’m not going to disappoint!  I had the chance to ask author TJ Brown a few questions in regards to her new release Summerset Abbey and the series it kicks off.  So, let’s jump right in!

TD:  Was there a certain event or idea that inspired the book?

TJ:  I have always loved the Edwardian period, but after Downton Abbey aired, I really wanted to write something in that period. I told my agent, we should pitch an Edwardian and she asked me what I had in mind. 5 weeks later I had a contract for a three book Edwardian series!

TD:  I know this is your first foray into historical fiction, did this pose any particular challenges or did you find it was a natural fit for you?

TJ:  It actually isn’t my first foray into historical fiction. Six months prior to getting the Summerset Abbey contract, I got a contract for a young adult series set in the 1920’s. So even though it won’t be out until June (Born of Illusion, June 15th!), I wrote it before the Summerset Series.

I honestly never thought I would be a historical writer, even though I love history and reading historicals. I just thought I had a more modern voice and the research intimidated me. But I had this idea that wouldn’t go away and once I wrote Born of Illusion I was hooked. Of course, Summerset is in a different time period, but before I started writing it, I figured that I had done so much research for the twenties, surely ten years prior couldn’t be that big of a difference could it? Was I ever wrong. 1914 England was a whole different world than 1924 New York. I had to start the research all over again! And I love it!

TD:  Can you tell me a little about your process?

TJ:  Usually, I start with a concept for a plot. Just a sketchy idea. Then the characters’ come. It’s rather like putting together a puzzle. And then my plot constantly changes and develops as I write. I’m not quite a seat of my pants writer, but the Summerset books have been unusually organic for me.

TD:  How many books do you foresee in this series?

TJ:  I am contracted for three but I have an idea for a fourth that my editor likes. Nothing is set in stone yet, and it may not happen, but I do have a fourth Summerset book in mind. We’ll see! But four for sure.

TD:  Do you have a favourite character or is there one who resonates more with you than the others?

TJ:  Victoria. In all of my books I have at least one over the top character and in Summerset Abbey, Victoria is the one. She is smart and imaginative and she says almost everything that comes into her mind. I adore her. Even though all girls are featured, Bloom in Winter is her book, and I had such an awesome time working on it!

So there you have it folks!  TJ Brown on her new book, Summerset Abbey, her process, and on writing historical fiction.  Now all that’s left is to drop a few details.  😉

Summerset Abbey is available at:

Book Blurb:

  • Summerset Abbey
    1913: In a sprawling manor on the outskirts of London, three young women
    seek to fulfill their destinies and desires amidst the unspoken rules of
    society and the distant rumblings of war. . . .
    Rowena Buxton
    Sir Philip Buxton raised three girls into beautiful and capable young women
    in a bohemian household that defied Edwardian tradition. Eldest sister
    Rowena was taught to value people, not wealth or status. But everything she
    believes will be tested when Sir Philip dies, and the girls must live under
    their uncle's guardianship at the vast family estate, Summerset Abbey.
    Standing up for a beloved family member sequestered to the "under class" in
    this privileged new world, and drawn into the Cunning Coterie, an exclusive
    social circle of aristocratic "rebels," Rowena must decide where her true
    passions-and loyalties-lie.
    Victoria Buxton
    Frail in body but filled with an audacious spirit, Victoria secretly dreams
    of attending university to become a botanist like her father. But this most
    unladylike wish is not her only secret. Now, Victoria has stumbled upon a
    family scandal that, if revealed, has the potential to change lives forever.
    Prudence Tate
    Prudence was lovingly brought up alongside Victoria and Rowena, and their
    bond is as strong as blood. But by birth she is a governess's daughter, and
    to the lord of Summerset Abbey, that makes her a commoner who must take her
    true place in society-as ladies maid to her beloved "sisters." But Pru
    doesn't belong in the downstairs world of the household staff any more than
    she belongs upstairs with the Buxton girls.  And when a young lord catches
    her eye, she begins to wonder if she'll ever truly carve out a place for
    herself at Summerset Abbey.

For more check out TJ at http://tjbrownbooks.com/

TJ Brown, author headshot

Author TJ Brown – Hooray for MomWriters!


Now, as if that alone doesn’t make one heck of a blog post, I still have more for you!  That’s right… we’re still in the middle of the January Photo Challenge – and I’m not one to give up on a challenge.  So here we are.  😉

The challenge today was to photograph water.  Easy peasy, right?  Yep.  Here’s the girl, immersed in the stuff:

kid in the bathtub

My little bathing beauty.

Let’s hope tomorrow is a LITTLE more of an actual challenge…

photo a day challenge for january

Something I’ve bought?  Well…  I guess there’s at least a little bit of thought to go into that one.  😉

 

Good Morning!

This morning I got in some puppy snuggles before even getting out of bed.  Thankfully I keep my phone on my nightstand so snapped a quick “good morning” photo of little Bruce.  I do have to admit, I’ll really miss this boy when he goes.  He’s such a snugglebug – and I’ve always been one who loves an itty bitty little snugly baby.

Little Baby Bruce, Our Tiny Hulk.

Little Baby Bruce, Our Tiny Hulk.

 

It’s strangely quiet in our house tonight as suddenly there were just two.  With Rogers in Regina with his new family, and Thor having a trial sleepover with my Dad we only have Bruce and Tony home.  It’s an odd feeling.  I’d kinda gotten used to the chaos four three and a half month old puppies can create.  😉

I really do hope things work out with my Dad and Thor.  With Thor being Lily-Ann’s favourite, it would be really nice to keep him in the family.  And my Dad hasn’t had a dog that was really HIS in such a long long time… and Thor might actually get to accompany my Dad on his many out of town gigs.  With Thor staying, I’d also get to show him – which would be fun too.  I do have other options for him if it doesn’t work, but it would just be really nice for all of us if things panned out.

photo a day challenge for january

 

In addition to the challenge, tomorrow I’ll be sharing a very special author interview.  So make sure you pop in to check it out.  Her newest book is hitting stores and she’s shared a little with me about herself and what you can expect!

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