Monday, December 31, 2012

Road Tripping Day Five

Yesterday was a mixed day. One full of incredible beauty, cold crisp air, red dirt and some sad news.

I want to start by thanking everyone for their prayers and let you know we felt them, thank you.
We got the call while visiting the famous Holy Cross Church here in Sedona. While walking up to the chapel, it began to snow (snow was not in the forecast for today). I'd like to believe this was sign and that she is okay. My great aunt was 89 years of age, independent and active until just the other day.

Though we all miss you already... I have comfort knowing you are now you are at peace, pain free and in heaven with the Him. I lit a candle for you while at the chapel and know we will meet again, until then know we love you. RIP

Today we are back on the road headed for Phoenix for the Music Man's gig. I'll post more about this amazing place we are leaving later as i have a ton of photos. For now a little quiet reflection and thankfulness for our drive.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Road Tripping Day Four

This morning we left Wahweap where we've stayed the last couple nights and drove south to Sedona.
            our campsite, does it look cold? It was, but beautiful.
This was our shortest drive times thus far and we made it to town and able to set up our campsite before dark. I heard that hwy 179 is one of the most beautiful drives in America and it think i heard right. Sedona is gorgeous and the red rocks are incredible. I'm really looking forward to tomorrow and hiking with my camera. The weather is warmer here and day time temps are expected to be in the high 40's summer like compared to Lake Powell lol.  Here are a few photos from our drive south.
Driving through the Navajo Nation's incredible view over the pass.
Flagstaff area
The day we left on our road trip my great aunt was rushed to the hospital. I am feeling incredibly thankful for her and the time we are able to share.  We spent Christmas and attended church together with family and friends. I just received a call from my mama that she has taken a turn for the worse. She is now resting quietly but they are not sure she is strong enough for medications to work. Please include her in your prayers...

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Road Tripping Day Three

WOW today was an awesome day! I can cross off Slot Canyon and Horseshoe bend from my bucket list as we did both today. The weather here in Lake Powell area is freezing cold but the sky is blue and clear.

After breakfast the music man and i went on a photography tour of the Upper Antelope Canyon (slot). I didn't realize when we left our RV this morning we would be off roading in the back of a dilapidated pick up truck and holding on for dear life.  A strange flash back to a familiar bad day. You know you really put your life in the hands of others when out exploring sometimes. Thank God we made it back safely.  Here are a couple photos of our time in the slot canyons.
I took a truck load of them and will share a few more after cleaning them up a bit. For sunset we took the brown dog and hiked out to Horseshoe bend. Holy Freaking Moly!!! This was an amazing area. Its only a short hike (less than a mile) to a 1200 foot shear cliff, no railing where people get close to the edge hoping for a good photo. By the way several people every year get to close and fall to their death. Scary right... I am very afraid of heights so this was a major challenge for me but determined to get my photo i was up for it.
I belly crawled in and up to the edge on a large rock shelf where i stretched my arms as far as i could extending my camera past the edge. I know crazy right but not as crazy as some other people that were there... including the music man who has no fear of heights what so ever.

Tomorrow we are back on the road and heading south for warmer weather.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Road Trippin Day Two

Goodbye Vegas. We're outta here, gotta go friend the Slot canyons are calling us.  Today was another really long day. Our drive was to be 4 hours but was more like 6 ugh. My back is not happy with all sitting time but we made the best of it and had fun anyways. The scenery was beautiful and we sang to the oldie moldie songs the radio was offering. Here are a few photos of yesterday drive.

Did i mention it's cold?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Road Trippin Day One

Our Christmas celebration was wonderful. We enjoyed time with family, stuffed our bellies with delicious food, open gifts and got home super late Christmas eve. In the morning we enjoyed relaxing in our comfies, our gift exchange and had a surprise visit from our Bug.

I am so thankful for my life and those who share it with me. Family and friends. Everyday is such a gift. My sweet helpful husband who busted out several moves getting our camper winterized and packed up for our trip. A Bug who knows how to make his mama smile and Monkey who is such an incredible human being. I am truly blessed to have them all in my life.
As planned we hit the road on the first leg of our trip. I didn't realize the day after Christmas was such a huge travel day and it was instantly apparent we weren't the only ones on vacation! A drive that normally would take maybe 5 hours took over 7 1/2 hours. We laughed half way in as we both though of the movie Swingers when they drove. With a couple quick stops to stretch out and move our bodies it was a loooong drive but we finally made it to Vegas baby! Woot Woot.
We set up the trailer, grabbed my camera to swap lenses and noticed i forgot my transfer cord, oops.  At least i have everything else. The above pics are from my iphone.  I hope i can pick up a cord if not I'll grab another memory card just in case.

First thing i wanted to do here is Vegas was to visit Peter Lik Gallery at the Venetian.  I am a huge fan and watched his show. I am always blown away by his work and to the extremes he goes to get 'his' shots. OMGosh i knew it wouldn't disappoint. His photos are amazing and both the music man and i are excited to get to slot canyons. If you enjoy landscape photos check him out you wont be disappointed either. 

After the gallery we drove downtown to the Freemont district where i took a couple photos of the lights before hitting a black jack table. Nope we didn't win but thats okay we didnt take much and had fun anyway's and after a long day we came back and crashed.

Today we're off to find a camera cord and heading out to the Utah Arizona border.

Life is SO good!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

 by way of the letter E by A view from a brown dog
I enjoy visiting your space's and am totally blown away with the all the talent and creativity you all have. I am thankful for your time, kind words and friendships in blog land.

Wishing you a happy and healthy holiday from our home to yours.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Making Merry Progress

Usually by this time in December i am totally ready for the holiday. For some reason I haven't been able to get myself in gear this year until recently. I'm spending more time at work and haven't really felt the crafty shopping mojo in my free time but rather sneaking out to spend time with Chance. 

Oh boy am I'm in gear now! I'm checking my list and busting out serious moves. My studio slash office has been a flurry of activity from flying fabrics pieces to yarn scraps not to mention a few Ho Ho's, both in overtime the last few days and i am feeling a whole lot better about how much is left.... Thankfully not much.

Knitting gifts all done
sewing gifts 85% done
shopping oh soooo close 80% done

I'm hoping to have most everything finished up by tonight as the rest of the days before Christmas are full of parties, family gatherings and packing for our upcoming trip.   I'm breathing a sigh of relief and feeling thankful to have found my mojo and that I'm close to checking the last items off my list. Phew!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Big Truth Photo's

Here are a couple shot of the band shoot i did for the music man. I love the tractor one. I't's silly, a bit different and definitely show their fun side. They change up their get ups depending on the song. Sometimes its a hat that blinks or crazy sun glasses and sometimes it's both.
This photo is from their gig Saturday night where there played to a packed house, several hundred people came by to have fun with them. 

This weekend we celebrated the music man's birthday and my parents wedding anniversary. We got to spend time with family and a surprise visit from our best friends. I didn't get any further on completing my shopping or crafting for Christmas so i guess i better get going. Lots to do this week, how was your weekend? Are you ready for the holiday?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A storm that originated from Alaska

is visiting us and it cold outside! I'm feeling very thankful for our warm fireplace, that all of our animals are inside their dry comfy spots and for the water that is visiting my garden.

Life is SO good!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

A Map, highlighter and me

A few months ago we found out that the music man and his band will be playing in Phoenix AZ for New Years. It didn't take me long to spin this gig of his into a photo op adventure for he and I and began planning our trip. With days to explore the slot canyons of Page,  a winters view of the Grand Canyon and the warm weather and red rocks of  Sedona.  I haven't been to any of these places but the photos I've seen online are amazing and I am so excited!
So I've spent some time with my highlighter pen and a map. I've mapped it several times over and included a different route in case of storms so we have a good plan B if needed. A few reservations have been made the rest,  we decided to wing. The trailer is winterized in case we hit snow and/or freezing temps that we expect to.

Of course these areas require certain lenses to capture them.  The slot canyons are very narrow and we have to hike into them. Due the small spaces I'll be using my awesome wide angle 10 -24 that i picked up last summer and hopefully a brand new lens. I have been saving FOREVER well not really but it feels like... for a 24 70 mm so i can hone in on details and swap in and out with my wide angle. I'm planning on using both lenses at horseshoe bend and the grand canyon as well and am now super close to being able to pick it up.

Since the music man always drives I'll a have tons of knitting time too. Right now I'm working on Christmas gifts but plan to make significant progress on my winters blanket as well. So with just a few weeks left before we head out i am so excited!

This weekend i stepped away from the map and shot an original artist showcase and band photos for the music man. I hope to have post production done on both of these this week and will share some once done.

How is your Christmas shopping coming along, are you ready? I'm not even close but have big plans of making progress on it this week, fingers crossed...

Sunday, December 2, 2012

morning movement

I strapped on my tennies with purpose this morning and hit the road. The smell of a neighbors fireplace, the sound of birds chirping and the cool crisp air against my face was perfect. I forgot how much i love and need this time,  to pray, clear my head and burn a few calories, yep just what i needed. 
Over summer time our weather here is so hot that i stopped my daily walks.  You know that saying once you stop working out its hard to get going again? Well no doubt that's me and now I'm paying the price big time.

I have been pushing myself for the last few months and working more in hopes of achieving some financial goals for myself and my family. Unfortunately, my back is paying for this and i haven't felt well since.  The longer days sitting down at the computer have left me in a lot of pain and unmotivated to work out rendering a few extra pounds.

I'd like to think this morning was day one in getting myself back to a healthy balance. A nice reminder that my body and mind must come before other things otherwise it just gets messy and todays walk was exactly the reminder i needed to motivate myself and push forward.

I sat down and typed this post a few days ago so fast forwarding to today...
I made it four days in and at lunch Friday Chancie stepped on my foot and broke my little toe.... I'm super bummed and disapointed that there will be no walking for a few days or monday dancing this week.  Fingers crossed that I'll be able to get my tennies back on soon and pick back up this new little morning groove I've started.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

getting in the spirit

Thanksgiving was awesome, we have so so much to be thankful for. We're back home now and the Fall decorations are put away. Thanks to the music man and J bug my Christmas decorations are down from the attic and beginning to roll their way into the house.  Ohhhhh i love this time of year! I have decided again this year to scale back my decorations as my life's plate is still overflowing and i haven't been feeling all that good. I need to keep it simple and remember what this time of year is about for me so I've picked out a few of my fav's. The tree is up and the stockings are out.
With gingerbread scent in the air and my morning cup of Joe I've been working on my gift list. 
Hobo's not impressed with my list
Jacks isn't either
But i think Honey might be and i definitely am.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Our Thankgiving adventure

J Bug helped me make a video with my photos from our mini vacation to the coast. Technology ain't got nothin on me, at least when there's a young adult around hehe. Please note video does have music.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Hair cut day!

Yesterday Chancie got his winter hair cut. I'm guessing this is the first time he has every had anything like this done. He did wonderfully well too. The idea of shaving off his furry winter coat is to help him dry faster and keep clean while the days are cooler and shorter. He has a roof over him and nice warm blanket to snuggle in and stay warm at night.
Ready. Set. Go... This is Michelle and she's just got started, first pass with the clipper. Chancie is doing so good thanks to Sue for giving him a little Ace to take the edge off.
Look at all that hair! He is still standing very well, i think he likes the clippers sort of like a message. At one point he was so relaxed that his halter was holding his head up.
I super love this little heart on his butt. Isn't is awesome! So cute! A horse tattoo except made with hair instead of ink.
Cutie Patootie
Cuteoliscious (perhaps a new word?)
Okay i know, I'll move on.
All done. Rinsed, drying and getting some more love from the music man while waiting for me to get his blanket on.
What a couple of handsome guys!
Today we are off to spend the afternoon at my parents to celebrate Thanksgiving and enjoy our meal with family.  This year, we get to enjoy two Turkey days. We have so much to be thankful for. Today with family and for us, later this week we'll be heading out with the trailer to the beach. The plan is to smoke a turkey, eat lot of lasagna, then work some of it off by paddle boarding and bike riding so we can make room for more of course. There will be lots of time to relax and walk around with my camera too.  
I've gotta get going but before i do, i wanted to wish you a happy thanksgiving and thank you for visiting my space,  i really do love that you swing by.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

What to do

What do you do when the transmission in a Monkey's Rodeo is slipping and the thing wont pass smog...  Call a salvage yard and wait to send it off to the junk yard for a long rest. In the meantime the music man found a super great "new to her" car that they picked up last night.  An 06' Kia Sorento that gets 30 miles to the gallon. That should help save her a few bucks on gas while driving to school and work so thas's good. I believe it will be a much more reliable car for too which makes me super happy, nothing worse than worrying about her out on the roads.

What do you do when the kids are gone, the music man is busy and you have some time... Play in the dirt of course.  My freshly weeded garden just received a couple yards of beautiful composted clean soil ready for transplants and winter seeds. The weather is drizzly, cold and i love it! Perfect planting weather and i was able to get everything on my list in the ground.

lettuce, both arugula, bibb and romaine

rainbow chard ~  i just pulled out last years plants at the end of summer. This was by far the most single plant harvest i have ever had. This thing kept producing for almost a year, even made it through the HOT summer!

brussels sprouts
sweet peas
onion, both red and sweet walla walla
spinach ~ tons of spinach yum!

I am excited and hoping for better results this year now that I'm working on top of the stripped decomposed granite that is common in our hood.  Fingers crossed that the feeding and composting I've done for a year now and adding the new soil will do the trick.

What else to do when the weather is cool, knit knit and knit. I have been making up for lost time with my needles and am feeling so thankful for the much needed quieting of my mind that it brings.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

a few thankful thoughts of the week

This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave. Elmer Davis

Last Sunday was Orphan Sunday at church were we sponsor several orphanages in Africa.  The week before,  hurricane Sandy and Benghazi a few weeks before that has has me thinking about where i live.

I am thankful for God's grace and good fortune of being born here in this country. Finding some peace in knowing that no matter who is president it's all part of a bigger picture. This country, the land of the free and of endless opportunities. The land with amazing people who give money and their able hands to help neighbors in need.

Fall is my favorite season of the year, the weather, colorful leaves, sweaters, boots of course... winter veggies but mostly because it's the time of year when giving thanks to the blessing in life are first on most peoples mind.

Today, I'm most thankful to the men and women in the armed forces.  I am so thankful for all of those who fought to give us freedom in the past and for all those who continue the fight to keep us free in a growing world of mayhem.
We're enjoying a nice weekend, the music man and i. The kids are gone and the house is quiet. I was able to spend some much needed time in the garden yesterday.  I hope to finish planting my onions today after a short  ride with Chance. I'll be dropping off the wedding photo's before plopping my butt on the couch for some football later this afternoon with knitting needles in hand. Perhaps with a warm bowl of Pasta Fagoli too.  It's cold here, as i type this morning it's 30 out.  I'll be doing all this with thankful thoughts and much appreciation for our soldiers who protect us in the awesome land we live in.

Happy Veterans day

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Got Mojo.... back

Life over here is busy and full of goodness. The evenings are down right cool and the days have cooled enough that i have once again found my mojo and am ready to bust a move. This week I've weeded my garden.The girls have been enjoying their days hanging out in there before i begin planting our winter seeds and transplants next week. 

I've been back to my pre summertime lunches with Chance. He is super furry and looks like a stuffed animal with his winters coat already. He'll be getting a shave a in the next couple weeks when it gets a bit cooler and needs his blanket.
 Monkey and i went line dancing (photo by monkey) and i finished the wedding edits. I am so happy with how they turned out and proud of myself.  Today i went to an International Equestrian Cross Country Event that included some Olympian riders and had a great time. I was totally blown away by the talent of the horses and their riders.

Aren't they beautiful! I love the expressions of the riders. We also have a new addition to our family.....
Meet Miss Honey... Monkey adopted this cute little girl from friends of ours who were fostering her.  I'll be back with pics from her lil photo shoot soon haha. 

I'm feeling so thankful to be living here in our hood and all for the people we've met over the last year.  Life is SO good, thank you God.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

capturing an "I Do"

I had my first wedding shoot yesterday and I was so nervous going in. Knowing if it wasn't perfect we couldn't have a re do so every shot counted and to top it off i met the bride and groom an hour before the ceremony, yikes!

You're probably wondering how the heck i got this gig if i didn't even know the people, right. The groom is friend of a friend of mine who's in one of the music man's bands.

Jerry and Louise were incredibly nice and so very appreciative that i felt at ease immeditaly after meeting them which made for a super fun and beautiful day. I definitely enjoy landscape, concert and rough stock photography...Weddings are A LOT of work that make for long days (flash back to cupcake days and a broken back) but if i'm being honest it felt pretty awesome knowing i was able to capture pieces of their special day forever. A lot of work yep but a privilage for sure.

The view included a neighboring winery.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Our Julian Adventure

The music man, kids and i took off this weekend to break in our "new to us" camping trailer. We went with some friends to the town of Julian in the mountains of San Diego County. This was the first time we've visited here and what a neat town it is.
I really love the twinkle lights. I 've had them for a while, just waiting in their boxes and have to say it was pretty great being able to finally break them out.
Julian is known for their apples and lucky us this month is their harvest season
 so we grabbed some apples before heading into town to do a little wine tasting and pick up a pie from the famous Julian Pie Company. Holy cow i have no words to describe how amazing the pumpkin apple caramel pie was since amazing doesn't even begin......
We did a little exploring, i taught a buddy to knit, sat and knit a few rows on my winters throw and
enjoyed a beautiful Fall drive. We had a really great time and are looking forward to all the adventures to come!