Friday, March 30, 2012

mother nature versus my sweet little magnolia...

mother nature has either a strange sense of humor, or she is very confused...
following the 'winter-that-never-was'  . . .

came the 'summer-before-spring'  . . .

and who can forget the 'blizzard-of-halloween'  . . .

this week
- the first week of spring, the last week of March - 
the trees had bloomed with the mid-eighty degree weather in winter,
 the flowers were not only budding, some were blooming,
the grills and flipflops were out of storage and we were thinking - hoping - winter was over...
but by tuesday morning, the cold freeze had turned the blooms to brown,
and instead, it was the summer-before-spring that came to an end :( 

and yet - there was one lone magnolia on our snow-damaged magnolia tree. 
one lone magnolia that had been sheltered by those above it
and who hung on to her sweet beauty for another day...
she made me smile each time i looked out the window,
she made me tear up when i got close and saw her little yellow face

she had withstood every storm that mother nature threw at her...
there is a lesson in here for me and it feels like a big one.
hoping i remember my sweet little magnoli when i need to be brave, be strong and to perservere...

and i hope we both make it through the crazy spring snowstorm that is predicted for tonight...

all images enhanced with kim klassen's textures
and 'fragile beauty' is framed for Beyond Layers frame challenge
thank you Kim!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

pink pony :)

today i was looking for pink which was the theme of kim klassen's texture tuesday challenge. yesterday, before the cold night, all of the blooming trees were beautiful.
today, many of the blooms were limp and brown from the freeze. 
the magnolias were impacted the most.
but the cherry trees were just as pretty today as they were yesterday. 
they looked like the epitome of Spring :)

enhanced with 'the veil' texture from kim klassen

and then there was ponyboy, the cat.
he is a handsome boy, who looks like a pretty girl.
when we first found him, we named him bella before getting him checked out at the vet's.
the vet even thought it was a girl. but turns out bella was a boy.
it took us a while to find a new name for him but his markings look like a pinto horse (or so we thought), so we ultimately settled on ponyboy. 

every time i looked at him today, i saw pink...
pink ears, pink nose, pink toes...
so i am posting a picture of my pretty pony for pink as well :)
enhanced with kim's 'shine' texture

Friday, March 23, 2012

taking pictures...

in march 2010, i started a picture project with my sister where each day i picked a word for us to photograph that day. i thought we'd do it for a few weeks and then move on to something new.  i ended up photographing a word-of-the-day for a year. i posted the word on facebook in the morning, shot the pics throughout the day and posted the images on facebook at the end of the day.

it changed my life.

i've been a photographer since i was a teenager - that's about 40 years now. i started getting paid for it in my twenties, in retail portraiture and have done that for over thirty years. but i don't think i thought of myself as a 'photographer' until i did my photo hunt word of the day.

i always thought of myself as a visual person. but i saw the entire world with new eyes. every day. 
if i drove the same roads day after day,
i saw different things because there was a different word-of-the-day.
i grew as a photographer and it felt like i learned new things daily.

many facebook friends joined in, well over 100 people joined the photo hunt page.
we supported each other, kept ourselves going and had a ball.
then it ended.

i was lost for a while.
i think i wandered for a year, growing, but nowhere near as much as i had with the daily quest to take a good picture. in that wandering year, i followed different blogs and was fascinated by the amount of sharing that was happening online. it was a whole new world and i was addicted.
one blog leads to another and i spent hours following them all.
i was inspired!

but i wasn't shooting as much. i was bored with the same places, tired of photographing birds and squirrels, flowers and sunsets. i didn't know what to do to get back the joy that i'd found in the word-of-the-day.
finally, i signed on for kim klassen's 'beyond layers' online class. 
it has been a blessing.
i am learning so much about photoshop, which has been great fun.
but i'm also learning things photographically and that has been fantastic. 

and this week, the challenge involved a color of the day. 
omg, i felt like me again. 

go green :) on monday

tuesday's mellow yellow...

 pretty in pink on wednesday...

thursday is blue day :)

and coincidentally, the facebook photo hunt group came back to life this week too!
we had a word of the day again. and it was making me see things again. i was actually overwhelmed with it all, and didn't get to post all the assignments.
but i shot them :)
it was great to be inspired AND then to do something with the inspiration!
thank you, kim klassen and xanthe
and all the photo hunt friends! 

tuesday - window

wednesday - peace

thursday - spring

today's word is RED -
both the color of the day and the word of the day.
i am looking forward to a day of SEEING RED...
in a good way :)


Saturday, March 10, 2012

coming undone...

today i am taking back my life. 

i have been running straight out, no let-up, for the last few weeks.   actually its been a few months. i don't like living this way - i wake up in the morning (and in the middle of the night), wondering what i didn't get done. and wondering how to get it all done, how to catch up, so i can stop feeling this way...
i am exhausted.

work has been frenzied and that always turns me into a workaholic.  and the work is never done so the feeling of accomplishment is only a dream.  it hangs in front of me, keeping me striving, but i never reach the finish line.  as soon as i close in on it, it moves.

so at some point on friday afternoon, when i felt myself trying to drive fast enough to go back in time and was oh-so-close to tears, i reached a BIG low point. despite all my efforts, all my multi-tasking, i was still not catching up.  earlier, i had taken a conference call on speaker phone on mute while taking a shower in an effort to get it all done.  i'd worked almost 60 hrs and still missed a deadline.  there just was not enough time in the day to get it all done.

and that was exactly what i needed to remember.  there simply was not enough time to do it all.
i hadn't failed to figure out how to get it all done; there was too much to do.  it didn't mean i had to take a shower while listening to 11 people on the phone.  it meant i need to cut down on my To-Do list. it meant i needed to make different choices.  i needed to run my life instead of letting my life run me...

and i needed to accept that it wasn't all going to get done. 

this morning at 5am i woke up.  i felt the whirlwind starting in my head... ok, what's the list of things to do this morning blahblahblah. 
and all of a sudden, i sat straight up and said bullshit. 
this is not the way TODAY is going to go.
i am going to relax.  i am going to enjoy myself.
the feeling of control likely won't last but for this moment, i am drawing a line right here this saturday morning. 

and for this moment, i am choosing to let go of the endless list and just stop. 
what isn't done is going to stay that way.

today, i am coming U N D O N E ...  :)