Saturday, March 26, 2011

My Favorite Places

Yay!!! I made another page!

Ok, so I added another page. If you look up at the top of this blog, you will notice some new tabs, off to the right side. I am going to start adding some of my favorite places on the net! Woohoo!! And also, as you can tell, I had to design the blog too. There were a lot of HTML issues with the old design, so I decided to give the blog a little facelift. :) Now, under each post it says "0 comments"..... if you click on that, you can start leaving comments. With this layout, I can not add the comment boxes, so this will do for now. :) So, have a look, and leave me some comments!! :) Comments make me happy! lol. And keep checking back, as I will be adding some more of my favorite places over the next week. Happy blogging!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Good Week So Far......

Hello everyone!! So, I finally decided to sit down for a few minutes. lol. I love when I can lay Haley down for a nap, Jay is at school, Drew is at work, and it's just me, my computer, and some music. :) Lovin it!! Haha

So far, this has been a really good week. Nothing dramatic happening, and descent weather. Of course, it's only the middle of March, which means tornado season, but so far everything is nice here. We had some rain last night, but it's been around 70* and sunny most of the week. And with everything that has happened in the family over the last 2 months, this week is almost too good to be true. But hopefully everything is looking up for us. :)
Sunday, we had a big day!! :) Drew's aunt got married!! Yay!! She and her now husband have been together for 8 years! And they are the sweetest people. We love them so much! So, needless to say, I was SUPER excited when she asked me to do all of her photos, and for Haley to be her flower girl! We had so much fun! We had to drive 2 hours to the location, (they live in a different city than us) , but it was a gorgeous day! Perfect for a Spring wedding! The church was an old, rock church, 1 room, maybe 20 rows of seats, stained glass windows, old stone floors, gorgeous!!! And P looked GORGEOUS in her dress! She is an amazing woman, and has been through so much in her life, and I was so happy to see her so excited and in love. :) Here is a photo from the wedding.....

Aren't they just adorable!!?!!!?! This was one of my favorite shots of them.... of course all of them were adorable! :) We love you guys!!!!

So, then after the wedding, we headed back, and stopped by my Mom's to pick up my sister. We hadn't seen her in a few weeks, and she is currently out of school for Spring break, so it was the perfect time to have her come stay with us for a few days. So, on Tuesday, the weather was yet again PERFECT for photos! Haley's Nana ended up wanting to keep her for a few hours, so Liv and I headed out for a few photos. :) If you know me..... you know that perfect sunny day+beautiful sister= PHOTOS!!! lol We had so much fun! We ended up taking some angel wings I had bought a couple of years ago, and just went driving around. Stopped at a couple of places, and here are a couple of shots I got of her......

Isn't she gorgeous!?!! I love taking photos of her, because she is so natural, and isn't afraid to try new things for photos. We had so much fun! And we just got to spend some "sister time" out together.

Also, on another note, about 2 weeks ago.... My Brother graduated from Navy bootcamp!!! Yay!!! We are SOOOO proud of him! My Mom, Sister, Grandma, and Grandpa drove up to Illinois to attend his graduation (only 4 people were allowed to go, but there's no way my kids could have rode in a car for 9+ hours, AND sit quietly through a graduation anyways.... lol) They had a wonderful time, and I think my Mom needed to get away for a few days anyways, and spend some time with my brother. After his graduation, he got to spend an entire day with them, and here is a photo my Mom took while they were there......

This is my brother, and my Grandpa. We are so proud of you Kevin!
He will be spending another 8 months in Illinois for training, and then we don't know from there, but we miss him greatly... and can't wait to see him again. We love you Kev!!

Oh! And as you can tell, I re-designed the blog site. I spent some time looking through things last night to kind of give it a more "me" feel.... and I am going to be adding to it a little more this weekend. So be on the lookout for some new things. :) Cause you all know me... I won't stop until it's perfect! lol


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

What a crappy month.....

Ok, so it's been well over a week since my last blog post. Everything seems to be happening all at once at this point, with no end in sight. Oh, what a crappy month February was.

First off, let me start off on the topic of photography. Well, there has been no photography on my end for about 2 weeks now. Between the weather, kids, and family situations, there hasn't been enough time. I started, about 2 weeks ago, to try to catch some lightening shots. Apparently, my camera does NOT take pictures in the dark, pointed at a dark sky, and nothing but a street light to focus on. It won't even TRY to take a picture. So I sat there, in the cold, huddled between my back door, and the door frame, trying to get my camera to quit acting up. Granted, this wasn't the best night for lightning shots anyways, because there were only about 4 lightning strikes that night. And they were about 20 minutes apart from one another. But I still tried. I tried every setting, changed my ISO settings, changed flash settings, everything. And I could sit there and hold down the button to take the picture, and the camera would just try to focus (on absolutely nothing I remind you) and would never do anything else. And before you start wondering.... no, I have not yet read the book that came with my camera, but it is starting to sound like a good idea at this point. BUT I did however come across a great website called a while back, and decided to check it out again. Amanda and Kevin are a married couple, and are absolutely adorable! Amanda is always posting blogs about cool designing ideas, photos, and food. So I went back to their website last night, and stumbled upon a blog she posted about photography. ( <~~~there is the link straight to the blog I am talking about. And I learned SOOOO much about settings in different environments! If your a new photographer like myself, I highly suggest this site for tips and tricks. AND she posts a lot of blogs about food ideas, and travel. It's awesome!! And, I put a widget from their site on the top right corner of this page. :)

So anyways. I am hoping to get out this weekend and get some new pictures. Of course, I also need to "figure" out how to get some people together and help me get a laptop, and a new lens for my camera. I am currently working with the basic lens for my camera, and it is only a 3.5-5.6/18-55 SAM lens. So.... not very professional. Basically, I have to get no more than 10 feet or so away from the subject I am photographing, or it gets pixelated when printed. :P ok.... I have ranted about photography long enough.... now onto a not so fun topic.....

Last Monday, as I was taking my son to school, little did I know, that something horrible had happened the night before. My husband called me on my cell phone, and told me that his Grandfather had passed away in his sleep. And of course, driving in the car with a 7 year old, Jay wanted to know what Drew was saying, because the immediate look on my face was that of complete loss, and sadness. So I had to tell Jay what was going on. And the first thing out of his mouth was "What!? Why does God keep taking everyone's Grandpas away!" (just 3 weeks earlier, he had lost his Nanu.... letter to Steve was also posted on here) But in this case, he was 84, and had lived a long and healthy life, and we kind of knew it wouldn't be much longer for him, although, we weren't expecting it this soon. He never said anything about feeling bad (except the complaints about arthritis, but that's to be expected at 84!), he wasn't sick, he had went to church that morning, and came home with his wife, and they had their typical day. But after going to bed that night, he had passed away in his sleep. (details will not be posted on here, because the family wouldn't want that, and neither do I) We rushed to the hospital, after I dropped Jay off at school, and saw his wife, and 2 children. His wife looked lost. We got to see him, and then left with the family, and headed back to their house to try to figure out what to do next. And planning a funeral is something I have NEVER done.... so it was strange for me to be there, and help get everyone through it. By the time the funeral came around.... I was there every step of the way. I felt like I had to be there to support my husband more than anything, and of course the rest of the family. Pa loved life, loved his kids, grandkids, and even got to spend time with his 3 great-grandkids, Jaylin, Haley, and Kaidon. And he loved those great-grandkids more than anything!! He and his wife would take Haley 1 time a week, and keep her for the day. And the first thing he would say as we walked into the house is "Haley, you ready to go get a frosty!?!" (They always took her to Wendy's every week to get her chicken nuggets, french fries, and a chocolate frosty) And as soon as he said that.... she was ready for me to leave! lol. And when the funeral came around, we thought it was important to let Haley see her Pa, and we told her "Pa is sleeping. He needs to sleep for a while" And she seemed to understand, but the sight of her Pa in a casket scared the crap out of her. She kept saying "I scared of Pa in his box!" and wouldn't let me get to close to the casket while I held her. It was one of the hardest things I had to do.... show my daughter her Grandpa, and try to tell her that he can't wake up. It completely tore me up. Here is a picture of Tom and Haley when Haley was only a few months old:

Tom and Haley

We will miss him dearly, but we know he's watching over us and the kids. :)

On another note.... along with the funeral, we had to worry about other family stresses. And the funeral was the LAST place that dirty looks, whispers around the room, and ignorance were needed or expected. I was there for my family, but obviously other "people" there weren't. It is quite sad really, how far things have gone with certain people in the family, but I honestly tried my hardest to make things better. But my efforts have always been quickly shot down, and stepped on. We have been mistreated, called out, called names, ignored at times, banned from seeing children, made fun of, talked very rudely to and about, my children have been abandoned by these people, disrespected, ignored, and more. At times, I have told Drew that I just give up. And quite honestly, I feel like that alot when it comes to these people. I have a panic attack everytime I even think about them, let alone see them. That's even worse. My heart just aches. And everyone tells me to just let it go, and ignore it all.... but I can't do that. It's not in me, and I won't let it go as long as my children are the ones being hurt the worst. I just hope they are happy that they broke such a wonderful family in two. Karma.