Monday, March 28, 2011

{Spring is Here}

The cliche "spring cleaning" is often used this time of year and the term is coined to refer to many types of cleaning.  I have resolved to do a little spring cleaning in my life with the hopes that it will relieve the unnecessary stresses caused by a disorganized room and car (and the rest of my house).  Another part of this cleaning will start with pulling together a few things to donate to a garage sale my friend is putting on for Japan.

On another note, Brandon and I celebrated two years last Friday night! I made him a surprise dinner the night before so that we could spend some time together, and for once it was a total surprise (you don't understand how hard it is to surprise him!).  On the night of our anniversary, we spent the evening with my family, relaxed in the hot tub, and ate delicious steaks followed by watching a couple of episodes of our favorite TV show, House. :) Saturday night we went bowling and some Amy's Ice Cream with some close friends and found out how sore our arms get after playing two games!

On with the fun...

Photography classes have been amazing!  From here on out, we are primarily shooting and editing our work.  I have learned so much and I cannot WAIT to practice all the techniques and editing processes our instructor taught us.  Right now, we are working on our architecture project which is due next week. Some other projects coming up include landscape, pet, flash, portrait, and news photography-- all great opportunities!  I will need to take pictures at two locations with a long, medium, and short focal length for the architecture project.  Last week, I took pictures at the capitol (my first building), though I am still undecided as for what the other location will be.  Either way, I will see what comes to mind when I venture out this weekend... any suggestions?  At the end of the semester, we submit photos for an event called Print Show. For Print Show, we must (by "must," I mean that attendance is required) submit three images- one person, one place, and one thing- that meet the criteria the judges are looking for.  Fortunately, I have some that I hope might make it far in the contest!  Wish me luck!


Wednesday, February 9, 2011


I can still hear my mom singing the Girl Scout song:
"A circle is round, it has no end-- That's how long I will be your friend..."

When you are a girl, nothing beats having friends you can talk with for hours about anything and everything. Today I had the pleasure of spending time with two great friends: Adele and Megan. 

I met Adele 5 or 6 years ago through her boyfriend (husband now), Ian.  Her and I have more reserved personalities and therefore had little to discuss when we first met, but over the years our friendship has turned into one of those relationships I could not live without.  I remember spending the night at her house for her birthday.  We ended up staying awake all night talking, watching movies, and eating an extraordinary amount of sugar.  Her kind and understanding personality makes me comfortable enough to talk to her about anything with no hesitation.  She is like the older sister I never had.  
I love watching her bond with her newborn baby, Ashlyn.  She is, without a doubt, an outstanding mother and I am blessed to be apart of her life.  I definitely enjoy spending time with her and Ashlyn in my free time. 

I first met Megan exactly 19 years and 6 months ago.  From birth, our houses have been across the street from each other.  Up until middle school, we were inseparable!  If I was not at her house, she was at mine.  Summer days were spent playing putt-putt or off on one of our many adventures down at the neighborhood park.  After middle school, we both became busy with school and different activities after school and we slowly stopped hanging out. 
 It is amazing how time changes us, yet at the same time not everything changes. Megan is a cheerleader at UT, and enjoys life at college very much.  I sympathize that she is not totally sure what she wants to study (I have been there and it is NOT fun).  Tonight, we were able to sit down for some coffee at a local Starbucks and catch up.  We visited and laughed for an hour; it was as if time froze and we went back to being 10 years old, playing on the playscape and talking girl talk.  We are both in a really good place in life and I could not be happier for her.  We also promised not to let anymore time pass and to keep in touch!  I definitely cannot wait to catch up with her again.

Friday, February 4, 2011

{Winter Wonder Almost}

What is this white stuff? It is soft and fluffy, cold and wet. Oh that...that is snow! Snow?!? In Austin, Texas? 

Yes!  I excitedly peered out my window this morning to see a pure white blanket of snow covering everything in sight.  I rolled out of bed and bundled up in as many layers and I could (imagine that kid from the Christmas Story).  As I got ready for the possibility of work, I thought of the best way to safely make it over to Brandon's house.  I exited my home to find most of my car covered by a two-inch layer of snow!  As I wrote in "A Cold Morning, But a Beautiful Day," I do not own an ice scraper.  I searched my garage for anything that could possibly be useful to remove the snow, but  the only thing I found was a box of container lids.  Not exactly my first choice, but they would have to do.  As I walked out to my car my dad popped into the room and asked what I was doing.  After explaining my dilemma, he left momentarily and came back with two long sticks with a brush on one end.  With that, I promptly brushed to snow off and jumped in, more than ready to feel the warmth of the heater!
I began the trek to Brandon's house about fifteen miles away.  Unbelievably, a trip that typically takes between 10-15 minutes took an entire 45-60 minutes going a MAXIMUM of 35 mph on Parmer.  Luckily, I made it safely to his house with only a few minor slips and slides-- nothing abnormal to the people who are used to this weather.  I could barely contain my excitement as I entered Brandon's house  to wake him up so he could see the pretty snow!  After getting up, dressing warm, and finding out we didn't have to work until later, we made our game plan.  A while later, we ventured back over to my house to play in the snow.  As I took pictures and tried to stay warm, Brandon started pilling up the snow in the shade so it would not melt.  To me snow is really pretty to look at but a bit too cold and wet!  I definitely would not want to live somewhere that gets heavy amounts of snow.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

{Baby It's Cold Outside}

18 degrees outside with a wind chill of SEVEN degrees...there is noooo way that is right.  Rubbing my tired eyes, I looked again and sure enough it was.  Reading that made me snuggle down under the covers.  Getting up was just not going to happen,  so I decided to wait for the heat to come on before crawling out into the cold and fell asleep for another hour or so.  Awake again, I peered through my window hoping to see snow or at least some ice but there was no such thing.  The weather was bitterly cold and I resolved to hide in the soft warmth of my down comforter...

Okay okay, I'm up I'm up!  Finally convincing myself it was warm enough to venture out of the covers, I made some hot and delicious oatmeal for breakfast-- exactly what I needed to warm up and get my day started!  After breakfast, it was off to the races (so to speak).  I had some baking to do!  Quickly shifting gears to baking mode, I pulled out the bowls, spoons, and various ingredients.  Nothing makes a house smell better than fresh chocolate chip cookies and blueberry muffins! It was a success indeed.

I had the great pleasure of spending the afternoon with my good friend, Adele, and her sweet little baby, Ashlyn.  Neither of us wanted to be in the cold so bundling up and staying indoors was definitely the way to go.  It is amazing how us girls can talk about anything and everything in just a few hours!  Before long, I held Ashlyn and watched her make all sorts of cute, expressive faces while Adele made some hot tea. Babies are such a wonderful blessing; their soft pure skin and their tiny little hands and feet never cease to amaze me.  Between nestling in the large, exceedingly habitable couch, playing with the baby, and talking girl talk, time flew by.

Now I am back in my cozy bed with the warmth of the heater. Tomorrow we will do it all over again...

Monday, January 31, 2011

{A Little R&R}

This past weekend was exactly what I needed: doing a whole lot of nothing...

On Saturday, Brandon and I made plans to visit with his step-mom, Vick, and her boyfriend, John. While Brandon loaded all the software they could possibly need on their iMac's, I played with and took pictures of their new six-month-old kitten, Baby. I also enjoyed being able to kick back on the couch to watch Valentine's Day while I edited some pictures. There is something about sitting in a room with people you love, with the sun's natural light cascading through the window that makes life so enjoyable. Watching the kitten dance around the room and curiously sticking her head into everything makes me wish that kittens would just stay young and cute (none of that old grumpy cat stuff).

Sunday was an absolutely gorgeous day! You know you are in Texas when it's 78 degrees in January! Brandon and I took our homework outside by the pool. I could not help but have a smile on my face listening to the little voices of the neighborhood kids drifting through the wind. You would think summer decided to come early this year with seeing everyone outside in shorts and tank tops!
After dinner we went to see some friends who had asked for a favor. Miss Mandy competes in the Miss Teen Texas beauty pageant every year and she needed a photo headshot. It was a lot of fun hanging out with her and the family and we took some great pictures. I am also looking forward to taking pictures for her at the pageant.

Friday, January 28, 2011


This whole week has been a blur.  To start off my emotions are out of whack so rationally processing anything is difficult.  The littlest things are huge deals and so on. Yesterday however was not a blur, I remember everything with remarkable distinction.

First off, Jujube (my new bunny) ran out of food so I emailed the nice breeder we got Juju from, asking her what brand she gave her bunnies (that way I could get the same kind).  She told me that brand is only sold at Tractor Supply or online. I looked it up on Tractor Supply's website, and sure enough they had a 25 lb. bag and a 50 lb. bag.  Much to my demise, the only one they had in stock for the next week was the 50 lb. bag. How is my little 2 1/2 bunny suppose to eat all that food, anyway?! Seeing no other option, I drove to the store where it all went down. Allow me to clearly illustrate the scene for you:
I walked into Tractor Supply in my work clothes (nice pants, a nice shirt, sweater, and high heel boots) and asked to be directed to the rabbit food. The oh-so-kind gentleman pointed me in the direction of the food and noted that he only had a 50 lb. bag available. I walked one aisle over to find exactly what I needed...yet how on this green earth was I going to get that oblong, jumbo-sized bag to the cash register, much less to my car? Being only slightly independent and stubborn (oh yes, only "slightly"), I decided I would haul it myself! Sure enough, I lugged, hobbled, and shuffled that bag over to the lady who stood there, chuckling all the while. Next time I shall send my "muscle head" of a boyfriend to fetch Juju's extravagant 50 lb. bag of gourmet good.

After retrieving Miss Thang's food, I hopped into my car and started for home.  Without skipping a beat, my car kindly reminded me it also needed some food when the empty light meekly flicker on.  Ugh!  Filling up has become increasingly daunting as the prices continue to rise.  Nevertheless, I stopped at a reasonably-priced gas station.  The whole process went smoothly!... until I went inside the convenience store.  Being in a less-familiar area of town, I wanted to make the trip as quick as possible.  With gas-pump hands, I turned my focus to the dingy, stinky restroom.  The door to the bathroom was undoubtedly one of the heaviest doors I have tried to open; I have reason to believe the door was too large for the frame built to support it.  After almost breaking into the bathroom, I washed my hands and proceeded to commit the act that still lingers in my memory (and stride!).  Recalling how difficult the door was to pry open, I planted my feet and wrenched it open as hard as I could.  The next thing I knew, tears streaked down my cheeks and to the cold tile floor.  In my efforts to jerk the door open, I managed to drive the inside edge of the door right into the center of my knee, causing shooting pains throughout my leg.  Thoroughly hurt and embarrassed, I limped back to my car, not caring to look back at the cashier who was probably wondering what happened.
All in all, what felt like a split kneecap showed up as a nice bruise on the middle of my knee.  I guess I cannot complain too much, right?

Later that evening, I was more than happy to arrive at my next destination- as planned- to enjoy a nice, low-key dinner with Brandon.  That place happened to be the delicious restaurant, Olive Garden, where one would have to be crazy not to fall in love with the breadsticks!
I digress.
We returned to his house for some rest and relaxation-- just what the doctor ordered!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

{A cold morning, but a beautiful day}

Breakfast is ready, lunch is made, and bags are packed--off to school on time! Well maybe not...

As I opened the door I was greeted by a cold burst of air that instantly made my eyes water. While approaching my car I noticed a thin layer of glittering ice crystals, not thinking much about it I unlocked the doors and started the car. Much to my dismay there was a layer of ice on my windshield and living in Texas I do not own an ice scraper (guess now I should invest in one) to remove it. Therefore I had to wait while the defrost system in my car worked its magic, all the while watching the clock get later and later. Luckily my teacher was understanding and did not count me late.

In my photography class we went over f/stops, depth of field, shutter speeds, and ISO. I never knew all the steps that went into taking good quality pictures. We have a weekend project to work on depth of field, so I am excited to practice all the different things we have talked about in class. I will admit, I am a little overwhelmed by all the new terms and concepts but at the same time so ready to learn everything there is the know about this new world. My teacher went over the all other classes we will take if we choose photography as our major and I wish I could take them all at once! I can already tell I am going to LOVE every bit of it! My second class is digital imaging which is the editing part of photography (pretty self explanatory).  It also has a lot of new terms and concepts that I heard of but never really thought about. I was happy to find out we are using the same editing software that I already know how to use, which is exciting to a person who does not know much about computers (that is what Brandon is for LOL). I am really excited to see where photography takes me in life, there are so many great opportunities up a head...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I'm new to the blogging world so bare with me as I get things set up and tweaked to perfection. Right now I'm in school majoring in photography and taking some classes for marketing/advertising. Whenever I'm not in classes I'm working part time at an insurance agency for Farmers Insurance. Staying busy is something I've mastered over the last couple years and I wouldn't have it any other way. When I'm not in a class or working I spend time with the loves of my family, Brandon, my friends, and Jujube -- the bunny (the newest addition to my family).  In my free time I enjoy playing with my camera and capturing priceless memories.