Sunday, May 31, 2009

Kate and the Goats

Recently I photographed a family reunion for my friends David and Linda. They wanted portraits of themselves with ALL of their granchildren, who were all present at the reunion.

After the portrait session I stayed to take some candid shots of people. While I was wondering around I saw the youngest grandchild, Kate, feeding the neighbor's goats.

Uncle Brad and Kate's brother Bryce joined Kate with the goats.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Photostory Friday-Muscle

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

My friend Kendra and her husband John own some sweet cars. John is due back from an overseas military assignment this week. Last week their teenage daughter was driving one of the Camaros while her Camaro was in the shop. She couldn't get it started. Heather and I happened to be over for dinner that evening and I told them I'd see if my husband Marty could take a look at it the next evening. I try not to volunteer my husband for tasks without speaking to him first, but knew he'd have a soft spot for a family whose father is serving our country...and he has a love of muscle cars...especially Camaros...that would make him enjoy such a task.

Kendra cooked another wonderful dinner for us while Marty checked out the car. I of course had my camera along and decided to snap some photos. Yes, they may very well be ordinary photos of my husband tinkering with a car...I sight I see often enough....but knew he'd be in Heaven with this particular car.

The first car we owned was a 1967 Firebird with a Camaro front end. We sold the car years later when it became a money pit and we were having difficulty getting a car seat in and out of the back of it. We both still miss that car dearly. One of these days....

Marty worked on the car as Kendra's daughter Erica watched.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Tubes+Sunny Day+River+Friends & Family=FABULOUS Day!

If you've been reading here long you know I'm a "Texas transplant" and that I was raised in Missouri, and in fact have only lived in Texas for 8 years. In those 8 years I hear every summer stories of floating on the Guadalupe or the Comal, but had never been myself. My friend Kendra, also raised in West Plains, MO, also lives here. Kendra will be moving away very soon and wanted to take us floating before she leaves. We hoped for a warm sunny day for Memorial Day so we could do that. Today was perfect and we met in New Braunfels to float the Comal River.

I have never seen so many tubers on one river before. I've seen it in pictures so knew what to expect, but seeing that many in person and actually getting in the water with all of them was another matter.

Myself, Marty and Kendra ready to get in the river!

The kids anxious to get wet!

My daughter Heather, and Kendra's kids Ashton, and Erica

As we headed out I passed out 4 disposable waterproof cameras and told everyone to just keep passing them around as we floated. It's been so much fun to see what pictures we all captured of our afternoon!

Me and Kendra. I'm going to miss you Kendra!!!!

The section of the river we floated has 3 Tube Chutes, where the water runs fast and you get "spit out" farther down river and are told to "hold on to your tube!" After the first tube chute our group became separated and had to wait downstream for all of us to catch up with one another. We all managed to stay on our tubes though and did manage to get together and stay together after that. The next tube chute was an entirely different scenario. I entered that tube chute expecting to sail through it much as the first, but instead of floating around a large rock I went right over it. And unfortunately for me, I did not hear Kendra yell lift your bottoms on this one....and scraped my bottom on said rock, sailed right off my tube and landed on very slippery rocks. I did manage to grab my tube as I flew off so I had it in my hand, but wasn't sure whether to attempt to walk off the slippery rocks into the deeper water...or if I could manage to keep my tube under me in the fast flowing water if I attempted to just get back on it. Everyone in my group was out of reach. A man was standing nearby and before I could take a step, held out his arm and said "here, let me help you." He helped me get off the slippery rocks and back into the deeper water where Marty was able to reach and help hold my tube so I could get back on. Whew! Tragedy of further embarassment averted!

Me, and Marty's not far behind.

My "oh so cool" daughter Heather

Marty just chillin' and relaxin'

Me, Erica and Kendra floating lazily along.

Ashton, Kendra, Me, Marty

Me and Kendra

This one's for Kendra's husband John! :0)

We continued on floating lazily down the river at a slow, relaxed pace. In the 3rd and final tube chute, I did go around the rocks this time AND stayed on my tube...but somehow began spinning in the churning waters of this chute and could not stop turning circles. I managed to avoid knocking my knees against the rock walls...but will have a nice size bruise on my back from one impact.

We had such and enjoyable time I'd do it all again! I've found that no matter the activity, whether off on a fun adventure, or chilling at one of our homes, whenever we are with Kendra's family, there are many laughs all around.

I LOVE this photo of Ashton as we were walking back to the cars.

Of course what float trip would be complete without a stop for snow cones???
Heather and me waiting for ours.

Although Marty and I have been tubing before (in Missouri), this was Heather's first trip and she had a blast!

The kids walking back to the cars:
Erica, Heather and Ashton (who was the perfect gentleman carrying many tubes!)

Friday, May 22, 2009

PhotoStory Friday-Grease

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Last weekend we attended the high school production of Grease with our friends. Many of my daughter Heather's friends performed in the musical. It was a fantastic production and several of the kids really wowed me! Although all the kids did a marvelous job, two in particular really stood out to me. I thought the part of Rizzo was nailed to a "T" and Heather's buddy Ryan played a very memorable Eugene. Great job guys!

Ryan played a FABULOUS Eugene! Definitely a star of "Rydel High!"

Heather and Ryan after the show.

Heather and I, along with friends, also went to see Ryan perform in the fall play. We can always count on a colorful character in Ryan!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Officially a Debutante

The nomination has occurred, the meeting attended, the necessary forms signed....and yesterday the pin attached and the sash placed....Heather is officially a debutante for the next year. Debutantes are more than just the senior girls all beautifully dressed in all white, very full formal gowns attending a formal ball and presented by their fathers....They are the ambassadors for the Mid Texas Symphony and have a full year of events ahead of them.

Just imagining that ball coming next January where her daddy will present her: he in a tux and she in that fabulous white gown brings tears to my eyes. Until that day, there will be parties to plan and attend, etiquette and poise classes to attend, bonding events, Symphony concerts to usher, waltz lessons to take, etc. It sounds like it will be a very busy year...on top of Heather's already full schedule of band, dance and various other activities.

Yesterday was the first debutante event, and the kickoff for the new season. It was a mother/daughter tea and last year's debutantes were in attendance to offically pin the sashes on the new debutantes. It was a fun afternoon of meeting all the other girls and their moms.

Because I have been hired to create a memorable photo presentation for this year's debutantes, I will be at most, if not all of, the upcoming events, to forever record unforgettable moments of the year.

Heather and I at the Mother/Daughter Debutante Tea

Last year's debutantes were allowed to choose to pin sashes on the new debutantes that are friends of theirs. This is Heather and her friend Megan who pinned her sash.

Megan and Heather

All of last year's debs posed on the stairs with all of the new debs.

All these beautiful young ladies will be graduating this year and officially handed off their debutante pins to next year's senior girls.

The new debutantes. (A few girls were unable to attend the tea so there are about 4 more girls not pictured here)


Megan, Heather, and her friend Tiffany

Before the end of the tea party, the new debs were divided into groups to plan the upcoming year's parties. This is Heather's group: Jessica, Lizzie, Heather, Tiffany, and Meredith. They are hard at work planning their December party together.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

In Memory of Chris

There was once a little girl who absolutely adored playing with dolls. Her parents and grandparents lavished her with dolls to play with, and although she often played with many of them, she always had a favorite which was never ever neglected. That particular doll beared the name of Chris and was a Christmas gift when she was a year old. Although she doesn't ever remember that doll being pink in color, she could see by the picture she saw when she was older that Chris was indeed pink at one time. She only had fond memories of a doll she thought had always been brown. Chris' color attested to the deep love the child had for the doll, and with how often the child played with Chris. Many toys would always be remembered fondly by this child, but Chris held a special place in her heart.

This little girl also adored playing with her siblings (when they weren't fighting of course!) and her many many cousins. Most of her cousins lived nearby and she'd see them often. A few even lived across the field and they'd play daily. Some cousins lived far away and only occasionally visited. Such is the case with the child's cousin Brandon. Branon was much younger than the little girl and although she adored playing with his sister Shelly, who was closer to her age, an incident occured on one such visit that caused much disdain in the little girl's heart for Brandon. For some reason never understood by the little girl, Brandon destroyed the girl's beloved Chris. Chris was literally ripped to pieces. The girl, who just knew her mommy could fix everything, was sure Mommy could fix Chris too and Chris was handed over to Mommy. The girl assumed Chris was lying on a shelf awaiting her day of repairs, when one day she found Chris' face in the trash. Oh the devastation that followed! Even more in anguish than the day Brandon tore the doll to shreds, the girl cried and cried that her Mommy would dare throw away her beloved Chris.

Although the little girl went on to play with other toys and yes, even other dolls, she NEVER forgot Chris...or her anger at Brandon for taking her away.

As the children grew to be adults the distance between them and busy high school, college, and adult lives moved them farther and farther apart. They lost touch completely until one day....the girl found Cousin Brandon in a place on her computer called facebook. More and more family was found and reunited. The little girl's mommy and Brandon's sister Melanie attended a funeral and somehow began discussing the long ago incident with Chris. Melanie must have said something to Brandon for not to long ago Brandon messaged the little girl, now an adult, and asked for her mailing address. The next week, the woman received a lovely card in the mail. The face of the card contained a pretty spanish doll, adorned in sequins and lace and on the back a sweet note from Brandon. The woman was all smiles that Cousin Brandon thought of her from so far away in Spain, and she in the big ol' state of Texas...both so far from their home state of Missouri. Although the childhood grudge had long ago been forgiven...the woman was so touched to have been thought of in this way. Thank you for your thoughtfulness, Cousin Brandon!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

My family

Before leaving for church this morning Heather presented me with a beautiful card and my very own chocolate cake!

After church Heather's friend Hunter joined us for the afternoon so I roped him into playing photographer for me.

Me, Marty & Heather

Hunter and Heather

Happy Mother's Day to my mom, to my Nana (my favorite aunt!), my mother in law, and all the other mothers in my life! These are for you:

“A mother’s heart is always with her children.” ~ Proverb

“It is not until you become a mother that your judgment slowly turns to compassion and understanding.” ~ Erma Bombeck

“All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother.” ~ Abraham Lincoln

“The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.” ~ William Ross Wallace

“Making the decision to have a child – it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.” ~ Elizabeth Stone

“Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs in my field, since the payment is pure love” ~ Mildred B. Vermont

“God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers.” ~ Jewish Proverb

“A mother is she who can take the place of all others but whose place no one else can take”. ~ Cardinal Mermillod


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