Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I'm a pathetic blogger

I have become a pathetic blogger - not posting anything for 8 days is just plain wrong. I should go to blogger jail...let's see what have I done in the last week....

Our 9th wedding anniversary was last Thursday 2/19...we went to see Dirty Dancing on stage. Pictures were not permitted but I snuck this one in...the dancing was excellent and the guy who played Billy also sang 2 numbers in the show and he was unbelievable!!!

Baby was ok but I don't think anyone could be Johnny Castle except for Patrick Swayze - the dude who played him was a great dancer...he was the 3rd understudy of the regular guy who plays Johnny...we'll just leave it at that.

Last week was February break for the kids but Angelica was sick with the flu; she gave it to Melody and now I have it too. Thankfully, I got it the worst. For the beginning half of the week, I could barely speak (I'm sure a few people were thankful for that too) and then yesterday, I finally went to the doctor who told me to stay home for the rest of the week because I had the flu. (If I can stand up tomorrow, I'll be back at work...which may not be wise, but I'll take my chances.)

I was going through old pictures in my library and found these:

These were taken last August - at the National Night Out Against Crime - that took place at Campanelli Stadium here in Brockton - The Army National Guard brings out a rock wall that they use in training. This is Dylan climbing the wall...with his Mickey Mouse Crocs on.

This picture was taken right before Dylan got yelled at for jumping into our friends' pool (that they are not supposed to jump into).

Both those pictures make me want it to be summer today - I'll take warm and sunny...and for warm, I'll take 55 degrees right now. Spring is coming...just not right now...but it will be here soon.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

What I've been up to

Lately, I've been scrapping for myself - I did all these layouts between Friday and Saturday night. I'm a very slow scrapper...especially when the tv is on and I'm trying to catch up on everything in my DVR.

A while back when I first took a one day photography workshop with Karen Russell, I bought two of her scrapbooking kits...and of course, I'm only breaking them out now. I believe these kits are no longer available (you used to be able to get them on her website but she's all sold out). This kit is called 10 Reasons. It's just an absolutely wonderful introspective idea for a scrapbook.
I apologize right now for not having a 13" scanner/printer (I'd end up a hybrid scrapper, I think, if I had one - I'll put it on my "when I win the lottery" list) - I took these pictures of my layouts on the floor of the kids playroom.

Reason No. 5 - Because Every Moment I have is Blessed (this is Melody).
Reason No. 8 - Because I hope that one day, she'll say that I did it all (this is Angelica).
Reason No. 6 - Because someday he'll be a better man than most (this is Dylan).

Reason No. 3 - Because this family defines me (one of my favoritest pictures of the three of them).

All the materials came from a kit. All the materials (except for the cardstock backing) are from the Narratives line by Karen Russell for Creative Imaginations. I love their stuff!!! You can order directly from the CI website or support your local scrapbook store and get it there. All the photos in my layouts were 8x12 - not your typical size for pictures. I ordered them on - reasonable prices for larger prints and at $2.00 an order for shipping (no matter how big the order) - you really can't beat it!!! I never like putting up my scrapbooking work - I'm overly critical of myself.

Other pictures I took over the holiday weekend...
Little Miss Melody - I can't even remember what she was looking at...but this look on her face is what defines her best - curious and observant (or nosey and spyish...)
I like any picture with the three of them together looking at me - even if their smiles are in the awkward stage...
I love this picture of Adam cuddling with the girls watching tv - while he's not thrilled about me taking candid pictures of him, he'll get over it...and too bad if he doesn't.
Love this picture of Angel - my living room has a very big picture window that faces North - so there is a fair amount of light that comes through that window.
Finally, we had lunch yesterday at the Rainforest Cafe and scored seats right next to a fish tank. I actioned this photo with an action called Sharp Shot Color Pop Pro from I'm not altogether sure how to use that but it made this picture pop! Took this picture with no flash using my Canon 50mm f/1.8...had to crank up my ISO to 800 - making it a little noisy (not so apparent here but would be if I blew this picture up).

Anyway, no school this week but it is the week to catch up on my histology project (don't ask) - it's for A&P I. No news on the city layoffs as of yet...I'd rather not talk about that. It's our anniversary in 2 days and I don't yet have a card or a gift...better get crackin'...
that's all for now...

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Finally fixed it

Yippy - I finally fixed my blog. The black and pink design was super cool but the little ad for (where I got the design for free) was killing me.

Gotta go to work this morning and figure out some kind of family friendly Valentine's Day activity for after work.


Thursday, February 12, 2009

This is just what I needed...

When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you till it seems you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.
-Harriet Beecher Stowe
(copied from Karen Russell's blog - her really cool Valentine's here - it's inspired me to talk about my own Valentine-y story.).

This whole week has been very stressful...talks of layoffs in my city (which would directly affect Adam as a police officer); health concerns; scheduling conflicts; work; homework; Valentine productions...but that quote right there is just what I needed to remind me of how I roll.

My husband and I have been just 2 of the most fortunate people in the world. This marriage has just been full of sheer luck and opportunity. We got married and started this wonderful life and it hasn't really stopped being wonderful....some of you have heard this story before...

We got married in 2000 and while on our honeymoon, Adam got a phone call from the NYPD to join them - the Police Academy started 5 days after we got home to MA so we did what any sensible person would do - we packed our stuff up and headed out to NYC to follow Adam's dream of becoming a police officer. I got pregnant with Dylan 2 minutes after we cut the cake at the wedding reception and had him 9 months later...we were lucky enough to live with my parents so that I could stay home with Dylan. We lived in NYC during 9/11 and endured the sadness with the other 11 million people who lived there with us. One year later, Angelica came along. Adam decided that he wanted to come home to MA (to raise our kids with a chance of seeing real grass). So we came back here in Feb. 2003. I got my old job back; he got a job as a police officer at Beth Israel Deaconess - all before we left NYC. We stayed with his mom and dad for 5 months and then bought our home. We moved in - got the cats we left with my parents and got 2 dogs a week after we moved in. I stayed at my old job for just over a year and then got lucky to land a job at HarborOne Credit Union (where I still am) - just after I got that job, Adam got laid off from the hospital but had a spot on the Brockton Police Department. He went into the Academy just before I had Melody (who was very unexpected - she is the reason why birth control companies don't say that their pills are 100% effective).

Life hasn't slowed down for us in the almost 9 years we've been married. This week, I have felt like it's come to a screeching halt with the possibilities of our country's failing economy finally reaching my front porch. I think the uncertainty of it all is what bothers me most (I've had a headache since Tuesday). Even if my lifelong streak of good fortune continues, surely we will have friends who will be affected by the city's cutbacks. And that part won't feel so good.

But that quote at the beginning of this post is what I needed to get me out of my own skin - out of this feeling of uncertainty and what feels like a downward spiral...holding on for dear life - holding on....and feeling like I'll never let go. (thanks Josh Downs!!!) I'm officially happier than I was 20 minutes ago...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

just so crazy!!!

I've been so busy between work, school, making valentines for the kids and keeping my head on straight that I haven't had time to take a lot of pictures lately. But I did take these:
This is Mittens - we've had her for 10 years. She'll be 11 this year at the end of July - she's trying to look dignified in this photo.
This is Melody in her very favorite shirt - we're a green family - check out her shirt...

Here's Dylan just lounging...after he got a haircut which he desperately needed - he started to look like a used Q-tip because his hair was getting so long.

Finally, here's Cisco, mid-meow...We got him shortly after Mittens. He's going to be 10 this year on Valentine's Day.

Off to school I go - I was lucky enough to sell my 3 day weekend for a 1/2 day off so that I can attend class without interfering with work. (Thanks, Pam!!!!)
Gotta find more time to take photos.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

A quick post

About 5 1/2 months ago, I took pictures of my friends, Michele and Mike's little baby, Ryan Michael....

You just knew that he was gonna be a beautiful baby -
I absolutely melt like butter with this picture - who couldn't love this little guy? I think Michele likes this picture....she's holding him in this photo that I shot with my Canon 50mm f/1.8 in our friend Tracy's hospital room the other day. I love the lights in his eyes from the window - her room had a window the length of the room and it was a nice sunny clear (very crispy cold) day. Ryan was so good for the hour that we hung out with Tracy and the new baby.
This was Ryan looking out the window on Michele's shoulder getting a little thumb action - teething - sigh...I miss my kids' gums but not enough to have another one without teeth. =).

I'm out - gotta go to work and hopefully the car is all warmed up because it's 1 degree outside...getting up to a balmy 43 degrees today - that's like sweatshirt weather!!! YAHOO!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

My day off

Today I had the day off. It's nice to be home but it's never really a day off.

I went to school today to test my dichotomous key - don't ask - google it if you least it works. I took a couple of pictures on campus:
Lens flare: happens when light bounces on your digital sensor. Sometimes it's wanted (for effect) and sometimes it's unwanted (like when you take a picture and it seems hazy) - either way it's very difficult to control. In the picture direcly below, I love my lens flare.

I even like it here but it's not as nice as the picture above.

In the picture below, the sun is nearly directly overhead - there is not a cloud in the sky but that light source has nearly washed out the sky to an overcast day. Check out the little flare at the bottom of the picture.
I took a couple of photos of my friend Tracy who just had a baby girl yesterday - we visited at the hospital this afternoon. I won't post the photos until she gives me the ok - but they were nice. A while back, I posted pictures of my friend Michele when she had her baby, Ryan last August - we visited at night and her lighting was difficult. Tracy's mid afternoon lighting was perfect and little baby and mom were just gorgeous. Hopefully, I can get her ok to post soon.

Other photos I've been taking -
This was Melody at my nephew, Connor's birthday party at Bugaboo Creek Steak House.

This is Melody and Adam dancing in the kitchen when I got up for a drink while I was home sick the other day. I wish that focus was sharper - but an semi-ok picture is better than no picture of this...
One morning while I was getting dressed, the girls decided to sneak in on my side of the bed. Angelica is front and Melody is behind her right next to Adam.
This is Mr. Potato Head that lives in front of the blue morpho butterfly in my boss's office. He's here to remind us that spring training is just a couple of weeks away....can't wait - it's like 9 degrees or something like that outside!!! My feet are freezing!

Speaking of the Red Sox, this is Dylan holding a magnetix in front of his Red Sox shirt - took this one day after school.

Pretty random pictures but it's all for practice - I can use lots of it - I'll take pictures of pretty much all teaches me something. Off to scrap - or read some A&P - I'll decide when I get upstairs.

Monday, February 2, 2009

ok - the new template stays for now....

Today kinda stunk - I went to work in the morning and ended up coming home early because I had a stomach bug that kept me pretty much out of commission the whole day. I didn't do anything but come home and try to sleep it off. My tummy still hurts but at least I'm not as queasy....I hate the feeling of queasiness - I'd rather be tossing my cookies than feeling just on the brink of tossing my cookies.

Went on a mini-caravaning LSS tour with girlfriends over the weekend. Good times....lots of fun to work on them all.

Unfortunately, I will have to cut this posting short - as the porcelain god beckons....I hope this goes away by tomorrow. I don't have time to be sick this week.