July 27, 2010

this is my town

These photos represent my hometown, well two towns that I consider my hometown. I grew up in the country equally between two small towns, Winnebago and Huntley. The 'larger' of the two has a population of 1,000 and the other town has around probably 350 give or take a few. I love coming from a smaller town, even though my family moved from there in the 5th grade, I still consider it home. I love old, small towns they have a history that speaks from each building and road. When visiting this summer the towns were more isolated then before, buildings were in worse shape, you could feel the pain of the economy, you could see first hand what is happening in America. It breaks your heart but at the same time you look at the residents of these towns and they are surviving. They are strong, hopeful, committed, they do what they need to get by and to support their families...they are who America is built on and who we all need to thank.

July 25, 2010

big city big beauty

This is a picture of Great Falls, VA. It is located less than 3 miles from Washington D.C., can you believe it!!! It's amazing, this world of ours. You could be in the busy, hustle and bustle of the Nation's Capital embedded in city life and not being able to slow down.  Then POOF you end up being embedded in nature, able to slow down, breathe in the fresh air and let it slowly calm your body, embracing the new, relaxed you. A place like Great Falls is great because it enables you to take part of both worlds, something I believe people struggle with. You are able to have the city, the culture, the history and then you are able to have the relaxation, the nature, the power. If I discovered this is my backyard, well within 15 miles, then who knows what you will discover when you got out and explore your own backyard.

March 22, 2010

Everyday Should Be Laundry Day

When I lived in a middle sized town in Southern Minnesota I had to do my laundry at one of the local laundry mats. Laudry is one of my favorite chores to do, I find it relaxing to seperate the clothes, move them from the washer to dryer and lastly folding them. It's a chore that when at a laundry mat, can take a whole day..and I'm fine with that. Cause it gives you the time to slow things down for a while while the clothes are doing their thing in the great inventions of washers and dryers. Dave and I would always bring a book to read, he would walk over to Jimmy Johns get us something to eat, I would start the laundry, we would eat and then we would kick up our feet and indulge in reading. There aren't many other chores that give us this opportunity to get some accomplished while relaxing and enjoying our time. I was drawn to the old seventys decor in the laundry mat, I loved it! It became my favorite place because of the old wallpaper, the feeling of lonelines and despair, yet it was a place that was almost occupied by at least on person. When at the laundry mat you never knew what you might encounter. I met many different people in the laundry mat, from the college couple who instead of reading a book thought it would be better to make out in the corner to the Sundanese girl named Akelah, but everyone called her Saturday...she had a cousin named Friday or to the older man on business who offers you $10 to fold his laundry when its dry..and when finished you sneak the $10 bill back into his laundry because your mom taught you to help others in need. I only used the laundry mat for a year, but it was where I spent almost every other Saturday or Sunday and for some strange reason it will always be one of my favorite things in town. I loved it so much, from the feeling to the decorations, that we took some of our engagement pictures there!

February 10, 2010

Nothing comes between me and my vans

Do you have that one pair of shoes that represent you, that you love soooo much that you wear them even when they have holes in them and should be thrown away? That is what my vans are for me, the one pair of shoes that I buy over and over again once over thirty people have told me I need new shoes. I don't buy a new pair of vans until my old pair has big enough holes that either my heel falls out the back or my big toe is sticking out the front. They are like old friends, they are always tried and true always ready for what is ahead and never leave your side. They are there when you need a little pick up and remember who you are, you never have to pretend to be anyone else when wearing your favorite shoes. The vans pictures above are my wedding shoes, and this picture was actually taken the day before my one year annivesary. They have holes in the heels, so when it rains my feet get wet...but I will never get rid of them. They are the shoes that I married my soul mate in, I feel lucky to have been able to wear shoes that represented me during my wedding day cause not all brides take that opportunity. I will always wear black and white checkered vans until I have loved them more then they can handle and I know they will always love me back.

February 8, 2010

Snowmageddon 2010

I moved to Northern Virginia a year and a half ago from Southern Minnesota. I thought by moving a little more south, that the winters would be warmer with less snow. The first winter was just that and what a nice break it was from the below zero, windy, cold winters in MN. This year though, it feels like we are back in MN! This weekend we got 3 feet of snow in 36 hours, it was crazy. I didn't leave the house for over 48 hours, until I decided that it was to beautiful outside with the snow covering the trees and I couldn't let it go by. I love snow, I do..I just hate having to live with it, the driving, the shoveling, the me being cold..that I don't like. I do believe snow is one of the beautiful things that comes from the sky. Who doesn't love looking at trees that once were bare and ugly over night be transformed to beautiful, magical trees covered with glistening white snow. Snow can make anything look breathe taking. When I was young my mom told me that snow was God's dandruff...I laughed when she told me that. This weekend I giggled again thinking about how much dandruff God must have, maybe he needs some Head and Shoulders! Kids LOOOOVEEEE snow and living in VA they don't get to see it that much. This weekend it was great to hear their giggles when climbing upon little plow piles thinking they are kings of the world, sliding down the little mountain, to climb up and do it again. Think about how you were a little kid and a snow day was the best news you could receive on a winter morning. I loved playing in the snow, I have a permenant reminder with how I would play and play not caring if I was cold and needed to warm up. On the tip of one of my fingers I have a red spot from when my finger got frostbite from playing out to long in the snow with my wild imagination. Now as an adult I have to shovel the 3 ft and more away from my car and pray that the streets are plowed enough..but I still make sure to run around in the snow a bit, throw a few snowballs at an unexpecting husband or roommate, and make sure I never forget the joy it brought me as a child.

February 3, 2010

Bright Pink Houses Bring Warmth

This weekend Northern Virginia I have heard is estimated to get 12-20 inches of snow...that is a lot of snow for us east coasters. We have already had about 25 inches this winter..I would say that is 20 inches more than last year and its going to continue! AARRGGHHH!!! But when it's snowy and cold outside, I like to look at pictures that bring me warmth and happiness. When looking at this picture of the bright pink house with contrasting bright green shutters I immediatly feel the warmth of the Bermuda sun on my face. All the houses in Bermuda are painted brightly, which is one of the things I love about the country. The houses could also be one of the reasons why all the people in Bermuda were happy and friendly while I was there or it could be my great personality! Maybe when I own a home I will paint it a bright cheery color and bring warmth to my neighbors, or on the other hand maybe I will just paint a little dog house in a cheery color!

January 30, 2010

music = love

Music is theraphy, music is love. Music can take you away from it all, it can inspire you, it can move you, it can be all the things you are searching for and looking for...it is the way we communicate..it is everything and can mean different things to different people. For me personally music is life. Concerts are therapy, for two hours you are taken to a different place, moved, inspired, or able to dance and let go! My favorite thing at a concert is when in crowd to shut my eyes, listen to the music, and truly feel the music. The crowd disappears and its just me and the music..its the perfect feeling. This picture reminds me of the music. This picture comes from Bradley Hathaway's performance at MSU, Mankato. This is the accodian, cello, guitar playing band member..I found him cute during the performance..oh and he played keyboard too! The photo being in black and white with a grainy texture makes the picture feel more personable and bringing you back to the moment it was taken.  

January 25, 2010

trees trees trees

Trees..I LOVE them! You can find probably over a hunderd photos of trees alone on my computer. I feel like trees say and mean so many things..it's really up to the viewer how they interpert them. I love fall, cause the leaves start to change colors and slowly fall to the ground leaving the branches bare. It's like the trees are shedding the part of them that is thought as beautiful, and exposing themselves for what really is beneath. I think when a tree has lost all it's leaves, it is the most beautiful. For me it represents mystery, strength, sadness, and sometimes it leaves me with an erie feeling that stays with me. I think my love for bare trees is due to Ansel Adams. Ansel Adams is one of the best black and white nature photographers of all time, for me nothing compares to his earlier shots. The first thingI ever got professionaly framed (which started an addiction for me..an expensive one at that!) was Ansel Adams Flat Lux. Its a photo of an Oaktree during the sunrise in Northern California. The tree is the main focus, it is large and strong, reaching outwards with the light sunrays lighting it up. In the distance you can see the cows eating the dewy grass in the pasture. I will never be able to take photos like Ansel Adams, but I will continue to try. At least while trying to do so, I will be taking photos of things that I truly admire and love.

January 22, 2010

Connections decades apart

I didn't take this picture...the picture was taken many many years before I was born, before I was even a thought. The girl in this picture is my mother and I assume that it was taken outside on the lawn of the family farm. I love looking at old pictures of my family and my mother. Pictures of our past help guide is and tell us stories that others haven't shared yet, while at the same time letting us daydream about how it used to be. My mother is no longer with us, therefore I can't ask her questions about the pictures and the experiecnces they caputured. Since I can't do that, I like to make up my own stories about the pictures, tying in stories I have heard in the past and placing them in the pictures. The reason I love this picture is becasue it is so simple and beatiful, plus I love the shoes that my mom was wearing. I never knew she used to wear converse like shoes, I love my converses! When I look at this picture, I think of my mom being in her teens spending a lazy sunny summer day. On the farm, there isn't much to do at times, so she decided to play with the farm cat's kittens. This is something I also did when I was younger and living on the farm. When looking at pictures of my mom when she is growing up and before I knew her as "mom",  I realize how much we have in common and how she grew into the person whom I knew as one of the strongest, nuturing, mother and woman.

January 18, 2010

You ain't a fool for going to school

Tomorrow I go back to school and work, I've had a great month off. Sometimes it's hard to go back after such a long wonderful break, but it must be done. I will be starting my last semester of graduate school, in May I shall be getting my MAIS in Higher Education. I can't wait to begin my career, but I have loved being in school. During my undergraduate years I wasn't sure I what I wanted to do, but I found the Program Board ans started planning events and becoming a leader. It clicked. I wanted to do this for my career, I wanted to assist students in their leardership abilities and continue to plan events for entire student bodies. That is what I have been able to do thus far in the graduate assistnatship and I am learning a lot about diversity, student services, and finding passion all over again. I will be the first person in my WHOOOLLEEE family to get a Masters degree!! It makes me proud that I have been able to follow my dreams and maybe I will inspire my nieces and nephews to do so too!

January 13, 2010

Watch Over Hati

May angels watch over Hati as they deal with this great disaster.

January 12, 2010

Whose World Is It..It's Mine It's Mine It's Mine

Nas said it best in this song, with the lyrics, Whose World Is It? The World Is Yours..It's Mine It's Mine It's Mine. This is what we all need to sing in our heads, cause we all need to believe that this is our world. You can do anything..if we put our minds to it, because it's your world, it's your life! So, why do we always worry that we aren't good enough, what others think of us, and become afraid of being ourselves. If this is our world, then lets become comfortable with who we are and live in this world like we truly believe its ours. I for one do think that this is my world, I can do almost anything I want...but sometimes I need the help from friends, family, and even strangers to do it. But that's okay, cause nobody can do it themselves. This photo was taken Feburary 2009 overlooking Kathmandu, Nepal. This is my world and I can't wait to travel it to learn, discover, meet new people, and have more adventures.

January 11, 2010

Roses are red...

Roses, some say they fix everything and some say they are a girls best friend (along with diamonds of course). I love getting flowers, but I really stink at keeping them alive. Usually my flowers last between 4-7 days and I think that pretty good. BUUTT I am one of this ladys that leaves the water in the vases until it gets a little stinky...and don't act like you have never done that!! I know that everyone has..so lets not kid ourselves. One thing I encourage everyone to do..men and women a like..is just to buy a beautiful picture of flowers and give it to that special someone..cause then the roses wont die and turn smelly. You could always say that you want the flowers to last as long as your love, forever...ahhh..see isn't that sweet!! (plus you can get a few pictures of flowers from my etsy store..heee heee..photosho.etsy.com). I myself have not recieved any fresh flowers since these roses a year ago, yes I have bought myself some fresh flowers..but have't seen a rose for a while (that's why I always look at the picture!). But I now have some very cool purple and orange fake gerber daisys that I just love..and they wont die and get stinky on me! I think everyone wins then!

January 10, 2010

Wish I Was Here....

With the Artic Breeze effecting most of the U.S....don't we all wish we were someplace warmer? My living her in Virginia, has made me more of a winter wimp then I would like to admit. We have only lived here a year and a half , but when its 30 degrees..I am freeezzing! In MN they get -22 degrees during the winter, I used to be able to handle that..now I can only handle like 35-40 as a cold day! A wimp I may be, but really who wants to deal with -22 degree weather?!?! When it's cold out, I sometimes stop and wish I was back in Bermuda, lying on my own little private part of the beach that was found from exploring. That is where I took these pictures, on a part of Horseshoe Bay in Bermuda. The water is cold and sand is hot and I got a little bit more red then I really wished to. I actually turned into a 'Sho-mato' if you asked Dave! But to have your own private pair beach, nothing beats that on a cold winter day. So next time you feel yourself shivering from the wind and cold temperatures, have no fear, cause I will share my own private Bermuda beach with you. So just relax, feel the sun on your not already sunburnt body and see the beautiful blue sea and waves hitting the rocks, take a deep breathe..and forget that you have another 4 months of this horrible cold weather.

January 9, 2010

One Fall Day

This little 'photo shoot', if you could even call it that, was one of my firsts. It was when I first started exploring photography and realized how much I loved it. I went to a state park  to get away from dave..he was annoying me..then he fell asleep..THAT in itself is annoying. How does one whom you are annoyed with just go and fall asleep...grrrrr..men sometimes can be very annoying without even realizing it. BUTT..it turned out to be a blessing, cause I went and discovered a new found passion that brought me joy and peace. My favorite thing to shoot is nature, I find it so beautiful. Trees, leaves, hidden paths, there is so much to explore out there with different angles, colors, shapes, everything is different while being the same. Looking back, I didn't take a lot of great pictures that day,only a few I find to be sellable or at least viewable by the public. But it was the start and everyone has to have a start, everyone needs to find out what they love so they can go forward with passion and endurance.

January 8, 2010

Up High In the Sky

I love clouds, well..actually it's more like an obsession with clouds. Sometimes my friends get annoyed with me cause when walking I'll stop and start taking pictures of the clouds in the sky...making them stop and wait for me. It's so easy to get lost in the clouds, to look at them and start daydreaming and thinking about all the what ifs..and what will the future hold. Clouds are one of God's little gifts to us here on Earth, they come in many shapes and colors. It's rare to see the same cloud each time, cause there is always something special in each cloud. Since my mother's passing three years ago, my passion and obsession of clouds has grown. It's like she is in the clouds smiling down on me, watching me as a grow into who I am. The best type of cloud, the one that trumps all the others, are the ones that have a ray of light peeking through them. These are the clouds where our loved ones are sending down their love.

January 7, 2010

reading is sexy

This photo just might be a picture of heaven on earth...well to us nerds, at least. The good thing is most everyone can find there own piece of heaven on earth, also known as a bookstore, in their town or city. This photo was taken in a bookstore on the corner in the heart of d.c, it was found by accident..but it was love at first sight. They had books outside the store all lined up and when you walked in...books everywhere. Books that are new and books that have been loved and passed on for others to love. When reading a book you get to escape and go to another world, discover new things, expand your mind and learn...and you get to choose your adventure. My grandmother passed her passion of reading on to me when i was a young kid. I would read for hours upon hours, escaping into the world and life of the characters I was reading. Almost fifteen years later my grandmother and I are still talking about the books we love and faning our flame for reading. I look forward to passing this passion on to my future children like me grandmother gave to me.

p.s. dave and i just spent an hour at barnes and noble...its one of our favorite places. Truth be told we are nerds..but hey nerds can be sexy!

January 6, 2010

Merry Go Round and Round and Round

Merry go rounds are sometimes like life. We get on and then go round and round and round not really knowing where we will be when we stop. Some get on and quickly decide they want to get off, to afraid to continue going around and up and down on their horses, they opt to get off early and enjoy the ride from the outside. Some get on the ride and fall in love with it instantly. As they go round and round, they wave and holler at the loved ones watching them and cheering for them. They are happy and never want to get off, when the ride starts they decide to either do it again or run in giggles to their families with open arms.

This photo was taken on July 4th on the National Mall. Watching the kids go round and round reminded me of my childhood. Every year on July 4th my family and I would jump into the car with our packed cooler and clothes and head north for two hours to the only amusement park, Valleyfair, in Minnesota. I would never be able to sleep the night before due to the anticipation. We would arrive right when the gates opened. After the employees took our picutre next to fountain, we walked straight to the first ride of the day. This ride was the merry go round, it was my favorite ride as a kid. I would run to it and get in line, find the perfect horse, and giggle and wave to my family waiting for me on the sideline. Riding that ride made me feel proud, independent, like I could do anything and my family would be there cheering me on and waiting for me.  I haven't been on the Merry Go Round since my junior prom in hs, but maybe next time I see one, I'll get on, find the perfect horse, and go round and round, waving at my wonderful husband cheering me on from the side.

January 5, 2010

Summer Lovin: Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach is in Southern Virginia and a vacation spot many Virginians seek during the summer time. When driving in the non stop traffic for over four hours, one might begin to think....that maybe this really isn't worth the trip. BUUUTT when you arrive and you finally get to relax on the beach..it is worth it all! I have experienced my first full summer in Virginia, and fell in love with Virginia Beach. The sun, the beach, the people, the boardwalk..all of it is great. These pictures inbody Virginia Beach, from the sunset on the boardwalk to the sand castles built by little kids playing in the stand all the way to the remote beaches where boats go to retire. Incase you ever do go to Virginia Beach.....the best deal is found at Pi-zerria..you can get a medium one-topping pizza and a pitcher of sangeria for only $17!!!