Saturday, March 31, 2012


Ohhhhh, I had so much fun with this one!  :)  I did this shot for my portraiture class.  My very wonderful model was so patient as it took nearly an hour to get the lighting just right!  (New strobes, new gels, new soft boxes to set up...yadda yadda yadda and you have this!)  I'm digging my Anchorman. YEAH BABY!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Half Staff

When I see an American Flag at half staff I feel a pit in my stomach wondering who is mourning who and why.  It's usually for someone who died while in service of the country.  In this case, I took this shot at a memorial for the Las Vegas police officers who died on the line of duty.  I was touched to see a wall of names of those who died and that included the police dogs as well.  One of the bricks in the wall read "Duke, K-9" isn't that amazing?  Coincidentally, the Air Force lost a pilot this week in Afghanistan and this flag made me think of him and his family.  The next time you see a flag at half-staff, please take a moment to consider those left behind and wish them peace.

Thursday, March 29, 2012


This is a picture of my sweet friend, Julia...and 3 of her 4 crazy girls!  She has more patience, faith, and grace than most women and if you asked her, she'd laugh at that statement.  She generously posed for this image for me (another homework assignment) to show how calm she can be among the chaos that surrounds her.  I used a slow shutter speed (creating extrusive time) to try to capture her girls running circles around her (like they do).  It was a fun shoot (they all are) but I am going nuts over the blown out highlights in the top left corner from my new strobe.  (I obviously don't know how to use it yet!)  ARGH!  Do ya think she'll sit for me again?  :o  Maybe I can figure out how to PS that spot out...I hope I hope...either way, thanks, Julia!  

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Art Rocks

This picture means different things to different people.  My husband would look at it and think, ugh, what a mess!  I look at it and say, someone had some fffffuuuuunnn!  I LOVE art.  I have been in denial of this love for so many years and have really enjoyed exploring this side of myself the past 4 years.  It touches me down to my toes.  My undergrad is in Political Science (insert HUGE yawn here), I longed to study humanities but it didn't seem like the responsible thing to do, so I studied history (which I love) and majored in poli-sci (which I hate).  On my 40th birthday I committed to living from my soul first.  I experienced liberation and joy and have never been happier.  Ok, I'd be a little bit happier if I didn't have to work my "real" job still but that's a choice...I like saving money.  Aside from that, I have found my happy place in the art world and among artists and I'll never deny that part of my soul again.  Art rocks!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Happy Dreams

Do you have happy dreams?  My daughter and I have always had nightmares.  When I first realized she had nightmares, I was so miserable for her because all my life they have haunted my sleep. So many nights I have awoken to the sounds of her sobbing in her room from night terrors, just as my husband has with mine.  Last year we took a fabulous vacation to Maui where I bought her this feathery craft.  I am embarrassed to say I have no idea what it's called but a friend who lived there once told me it was sort of an Hawaiian version of a dream catcher.  So, I bought this one in her favorite color, purple.  I told her he would take away her nightmares and protect her from bad thoughts while she slept.  Do you know that she has not had one nightmare since we hung him in her room last July?  The mind is a very powerful thing but I am happy just believing in the power of the dream catcher.  Happy dreams, my sweet.

Monday, March 26, 2012

The Jesus Toy

Well, once again I have underestimated a child.  Yesterday, I had my daughter clean her play room and I told her to make a pile of all the things she wanted to donate to charity.  She did and Jesus was at the top of the pile.  I said, "Honey, you can't give away Jesus, that's just bad luck."  She responded, "Mom, but I already have the spirit of Jesus inside me now, so it is really a good thing to give him to another person who needs his spirit."  My jaw dropped and my heart floated.  It was so obvious but I didn't think of it...of course she has the spirit of God inside her and that silly doll was no longer necessary.  So, in case you ever wondered if a 5 year old could really grasp the concept of faith, my answer to you is YES!  Did it start with a Jesus toy?  Maybe not but it was defined through one.  Amazing...

P.S. I am totally keeping that bouncy ball!

Sunday, March 25, 2012


Ok, I have a confession to make...I'm a HUGE Austin Powers fan.  I love working the word "groovy" into conversations, I also like saying "yeah, Baby" and "oh behave!" whenever possible.  This image just makes me want to say all those's fun, it's summery and it's a bit of alright!  Very psychedelic colors with a butterfly shirt and a colorful popsicle makes any girl smile.  Yeah Baby!

Saturday, March 24, 2012


"Dad, you have to say 'Pawn Power' when you move your pawn!"  "Oh, sorry, I forgot."  Who is teaching who?  I'm not sure but what an image of love.  When I go to weddings I love to look at the face of the groom while everyone else is watching the bride walk down the's a picture of bliss (hopefully).  This is the same look I see in my husband's eyes as he smiles at our daughter...and my heart sings.  It's not about chess, it's about love, time and sharing both together.  I hope you engage in a game today! 

Friday, March 23, 2012

A Ladybug Named Chocolate

Meet Chocolate, my daughter's new pet ladybug.  She was found at the park and lovingly carried home to find a new residence in our garden.  I don't get the name either but she's a girl, she can't help herself...chocolate is always on her mind!  Coincidentally, the dog was renamed (again) to Marshmallow last night.  I wonder if she'll call her friends "salty french fries" when she is a teenager (that's what I crave anyway)!  Don't you remember how much you loved finding ladybugs and feeling their feet tickle your skin as you carried them around?  We used to count the spots and say that's how many babies you'd have someday.  Well, I can tell you now that myth is debunked.  :)  The neighbor said it's how many months old they are (she's 11 and quite sure of herself--but my 5 year old told her to research it on the internet, yesssssss!).  It doesn't matter what the spots mean, they are just part of the beauty of nature and Spring!  (But if they do mean something, please tell me!)

Thursday, March 22, 2012


This is my long-time friend, Zoe.  We have a special connection that can only be compared to the relationship between Elliot and E.T. in that old flick.  It's crazy, I know, but true.  She feels my pain and I feel hers, literally. When she gets a cold, I get a cold, when she has tummy issues, so do I. Today, she was feeling me as I slept all afternoon after my "procedure" at the doc.  She didn't ask me for a walk or pick up a toy to play, she knew.  I love my sweet friend, what a gift a pet can be.  

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Crappy Day

If you know what this understand the title, if you don't then BE HAPPY!  There's really not much more to say than, "it's been a crappy day."  :(

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Happy Spring

Happy Spring!  What a beautiful time of year...the winter chill is slowly leaving and the warm air is gently rolling in.  I wrote a little Spring Haiku in celebration of the season:

Flowers are blooming
The birds sing sweet harmony
I smile at Spring

Lavender is among my favorite things.  I love it's gorgeous purple hue and heady scented petals.  I love the way it is farmed in rows upon rows in Southern France.  I love lavender ice cream, cake and scented's one of my happy things.  What's yours?

Monday, March 19, 2012


I really wish time would stop going by so fast.  It is mid-term season in school and I have been burning the midnight oil (that suddenly sounds so cheesy, sorry) trying meet all of my deadlines.  I'm tired.  There's a cute, warm, snuggly, little girl in my bed (sleeping in Daddy's spot while he's out of town) and I'd much rather be there than in front of my computer.  However, my homework is officially done and my evening is capped off with a glass of merlot and a post.  :)

Here's one of the shots I turned in tonight for my "I'd Rather Be..." series.  Enjoy!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Self-Portrait Take Deux

For my portraiture class we were asked to create a mini-series of self-portraits for our mid-term and  this is what I came up with...The Modern Day Wonder Woman.  Women today are busy, we wear a multitude of "hats" (or shoes) and play many different roles to many people...we are daughters, sisters, wives, mothers, friends, coworkers, pet owners, get my point.  It's a mixture of fun and insane in the same day sometimes!  Here is an illustration of the many roles I can play in any one day.  My dog was very confused as I ran in and out of my home studio wearing a shirt and different pants and shoes, pushing the shutter and hitting the floor and posing before my 10 second timer ended!  My daughter just rolls her eyes at me and ignores me and my silliness.  Think about it, how many different shoes do you fill each day?  Pretty crazy, huh?!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Shamrock Baby

Isn't Lexy just the cutest Shamrock Baby ever?!  I just couldn't get enough of this sweet face as she held her shamrock plant today.  Happy Birthday to all of you Shamrock Babies...I know at least two of you, Jake from Salem and Sarah C. from all over but lives here in Vegas.  I hope your day was as extra special as you. I'm going to drink a Belgian beer (because I don't have a Guiness) and call it a's to you!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Leprechaun Trap

That sneaky Leprechaun doesn't stand a chance with this trap!  I certainly don't remember making one when I was a kid but our 10 year old neighbor did and off the girls went...on a mission to catch a REAL Leprechaun!  The white "pot" is full of "gold" and they believe this is a sure fire way to catch him.  I asked, "What are you going to do with him if you catch him?" they replied, "Show the world that he is real!" Interesting...I think the whole world of people 10 and under believe it already so what's the point?  I really wish I could put a green rabbit or something crazy in there so my 5yr old would freak out when she opened it in the morning.  Any suggestions?  :)  I think I'll just replace their gold with real coins and she'll be just as tickled.  One of the most rewarding things in life is delighting a child and seeing the look of pure joy on their face.  I love that and I love the Leprechaun Trap for giving me the opportunity.  

By the way, I googled "Leprechaun Trap" and I was shocked at the number of You Tube videos with instructions on how to build one, wow.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Once again, the shiny city greets me and welcomes me home...too jet-lagged to write much more, loooong day.  Even if it's not your cup of tea, home is home and it's always nice to be back.  Good night.  :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Simpler Times

I'm still in the North East and today my friend took me to this fabulous, old home to photograph.  It appeared abandon although there was mail in the new mailbox (yes, I looked)...then I started to get spooked (as I walked around) thinking some ghost would peek out of a window as if I were in some Scooby Doo episode...crazy, I know!  But, when you see a place like this, you can't help but imagine simpler times.  A time when kids played on tire swings instead of being carted from piano lessons to soccer practice, where people sat outside in the yard and sipped freshly made lemonade (mine would be spiked with moonshine, especially if there were a bunch of kids out there, I'm just saying), and you knew your neighbors.  There's so much to be said about simplifying your life, it's important to enjoy coming home and to enjoy your neighbors.  I hope our lives come full circle and we learn to simplify things before we are too old or it's too late.  In this busy, insane life I often dream of simpler times.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Joe the Cat

 Meet Joe!  He's an adorable hairball who loves to drink his water with ice, thank you very much.  I'm near Boston for work but staying with a friend while I'm here and Joe is one of her brood.  He's a cool cat who just wanders in and out of your space, depends on his mood but if you have some ice water sitting around (anywhere) he'll find it.  :)  I just love the color of his pink tongue against his awesome gray fur.  I desaturated the colors a lot so the background didn't swallow him up but didn't want to go pure b/w because then you couldn't see that PINK tongue!  I also dig Joe's expression here (below) because he appears quite possessive of his (formerly mine) water.  Cats are fun...Joe is just cool.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Today I had the privilege of running into a man who believes in kindness, Bob and his dog, Bogart.  I had never heard of this magic bus before (or Bob and Bogart) but as soon as I saw this bus, I felt the goodness oozing from it.  It was a vibe I can only describe as sweet, like a cupcake out of the oven.  I took a few shots with my phone (didn't have the camera handy, dang) and drove home.  When I went back to pick my daughter up from school I was delighted to see the kindness-mobile still parked near her school (at the police station) so I looked for Bob (didn't see him that morning).  There he was, riding his bike for vets, police and firefighters who died while  He's not a freak, he's not out for anything, he seems to really want to promote kindness.  Is that so hard to imagine anymore? My daughter and I saw Bob riding his bike so we unrolled the windows and waved and he smiled so sincerely back and waved and said thank you with such a heavy heart.  I feel you, Bob!  I will keep you in my heart and try (very hard) to spread kindness.  Check out his website:

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Me and a Tree

I'm still working on self-portraits in class and was inspired to connect with nature in a different way this week.  I loved the way my legs looked like trees in the long shadow so I thought it would be fun to play off that and be a little tree too.  This concept needs some fine tuning but it's a start and now I'm inspired to create some more shadow portraits that perhaps blend a bit more into the environment (and hopefully there will be grass instead of a parking lot-yucky).  For today, it's just me and a tree.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

1912 to 2012

In 1912 Juliette Gordon Low founded the Girl Scouts of America, Yay Jules!  What a woman of vision and courage.  It was smack in the middle of the Women's Suffrage Movement too...we were still fighting for the right to vote while Juliette was busy empowering young girls for their bright future.  Today we celebrated 100 years of Girl Scouts in Nevada in a ceremonious crossing of the Hoover Dam (another American icon).  The girls dug it, they sang songs, ate pancakes, swapped little pins and things to wear on their laniards but what struck me the most was how far women have come.  I recently told my 22 year old hairdresser to vote in the upcoming presidential election simply because "SHE CAN" and to do it out of respect for the women who fought for that right.  She never thought of it that way and I really hope she does vote.   It's very humbling to look back...and also very inspiring.  Women rock...still today, in 2012!

Friday, March 9, 2012

The Wish

Can you just taste summer looking at this shot?  It was a blissfully perfect day, the wind was still (mercifully) and the temperature was a delicious 75 degrees.  A delightful day for playing in the park and making wishes.  I started wondering, how is a wish (by a child) different than a prayer by an adult?  It really isn't in my mind.  Their hearts are in the same place, they have faith that their wish will come true, just as it does when they wish on a star.  I don't remember when I stopped wishing on stars but I am sure it was too old...then again, when are you too old to wish?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Car Wash

Do you remember the thrill of going through the car wash?  It's easy to recall when you see the look on your child's face.  "Mom, what do you think that is?" "I think it's a huge octopus and it's going to swallow up the car!"  "NO WAY!" To imagine something even when you know it's silly and pretend is part of the beauty of you remember?  Too bad something like the car wash just doesn't have the same thrill it used to, that would be so awesome!  I dare you to smile the next time you go through the car wash, I bet you will...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Farmers Market

I love Wednesdays, that's when the Farmers Market comes to my neighborhood.  My daughter cried (real tears) when she thought she couldn't go to the market after school because she had choir.  That was a moment of pride for glad I've got her addicted as well.  (Ok, full disclosure, she gets an Italian Ice at the market--which is probably why she loves it, but you gotta start somewhere!)  I even fed her a purple cauliflower tonight and with the help of a little ranch dressing--she loved it!  Blood oranges are on the menu tomorrow, fun!  As Martha would say, "it's a good thing."  :)  

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


This is a color photo of a rare scene in Vegas...a dark and windy night is upon us.  The maddening mistral has blown in to make us all crazy!  The garbage cans and their remains litter the neighborhood, the lawn furniture is strewn about, and the allergens are invading our defenseless bodies...we are an eye watering, sneezing lot around here.  Normally, this scene is of a blue sky with the yawning man (that's what I call the mountain in the distance to the left) getting ready to swallow the sun for the night...but not tonight.  In fact, clouds are a rare site, but a dark sky, hardly ever.  You can see the tiny lights from the houses in the distance...they look cozy (not a word we use much around here).  In spite of the "cozy" look, the mistral stays and blows and blows and blows until we all go mad!


Ugh, so much homework!  I am late with this post because of homework...but I figure that it's not midnight in Alaska yet so I'm ok, right?  Today I created another image for my Daydream series.  This woman is escaping her stressful job by reading a funny book.  She is finding her happy place and going there for a moment before jumping back into her reality.  I guess we all need to do that, don't we?  I know I could use a happy break right now...ok, that's bed!  No more homework tonight, yay!

Sunday, March 4, 2012


There are only two kinds of motorized vehicles that truly excite me, the Mini Cooper and the Vespa.  Today, I was walking out of my beloved Arts Factory when I laid eyes on about 10 of these beauties lined up!  Weeeee, I was so giddy!  I was instantly transported to Rome and Florence (the two places I observed more Vespas than cars) and all the beautiful Italians whizzing around on them, yummy!  Apparently, the Vespa-jockies were gathering for a Vegas-themed obstacle course, hilarious.  There were several people setting up the course as I stumbled upon these little gems.  I wish I could have stayed for the show but, alas, I had to go home.  I was just happy to have had that moment of bliss.  Even the name sounds fast and cool...Vessssssspa!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Everyone Needs a Vacation

Ok, so I'm just about to drift off to sleep, when I jump up, look at the clock and read "11:48" and think HOLY CRAP I FORGOT TO POST TODAY!  How can that happen?  I took several pictures today because I rented an Elinchrom strobe kit (for a school assignment) and played with it quite a bit (soooo much power, looked like I was shooting on the surface of the sun).  Sooo, instead of posting some crappy, over exposed shots of the hub sitting in a chair, I decided to post one of my favorite shots from Florida.  I love this one, I took it while hanging out on the beach at the Post Card Inn in St. Pete in December 2010.  I never grew up on the beach so seeing Santa walking across the sand was pretty cool to me.  I guess everyone needs a vacation, eh?

Friday, March 2, 2012

Man and Nature

I noticed this bench across from our church about a year ago and have smiled at it ever since.  I wonder which came first, the bench or the tree?  I am happy to see this relationship and even happier that the evil HOA (aren't they all evil?) hasn't forced the landscapers to cut this lovely tree down.  In the summer I will revisit this tree to show you how she shades the bench so generously.  What a fantastic lesson we can learn from this live in harmony with each other.  It might take a little effort, but the rewards are worth it!  

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Daddy's Spot

Around here, when you have lemons, we make lemonade (with a twist)! So, when Daddy is out of town, even though we miss him, we do special things like eat dessert with dinner, do homework in the morning instead of at night, and sleep in his spot.  It's always extra nice to cuddle up together, read books and lay on Daddy's pillow with Mom whenever he is gone.  These little moments are what makes life sweet...