Monday, February 28, 2011

Up and Coming

Things to look forward to in the week ahead...

  • Woody turned 3, we had a little family party
  • More soccer, featuring some new kicks and some great photo challenge entries
  • Spring is here, I have proof

I haven't had the chance to sit with photoshop yet to work on the photos from this weekend. Hopefully tonight I will get the chance. I have a lot to show, stay tuned!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Flashback Friday

My e-friend Jen is starting a new friday photo challenge. I don't know if its really a challenge, or more of a showcase. Its just a way for you to take the time to look back on all your old, fond memories, and share them with others.

Since, its soccer season, I thought I would show you some of JJ when he was just a wee little thing playing 6 and under soccer.

Here he is getting his trophy, he's just 4 here


Here he is at 5, I can see that he's always done weird things with he face when he plays


This one is only from 2 years ago, but its one of the first photos I took when my brand new camera!


They grow up so fast. I can't believe really, how quickly it goes by. I'm so thankful for photos so we can remember these moments.

Head on over to 526,000 minutes to see more of Flashback Friday

Flashback Friday

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Red is JJ's favorite color. Always has been. Bright Red. He wanted us to paint his room red, but we compromised with red stripes on blue walls. (And then we painted the kitchen red).

Anyway, this week's theme over that the Paper Mama is Red. I conveniently left a photo out of the Brevard trip revue, because I wanted to unveil it here, for this topic.

What's more precious than a boy and his dog....

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check out more Red photos over at the Paper Mama

The Paper Mama

Its my favorite time again

Its soccer time! Sports season is among us. I think I get just as excited as JJ does. JJ plays on two different soccer teams. One travels into Greenville for Saturday games, and one plays weeknights with the local rec department. The "Greenville" team is by far his favorite. Its an All-Stars of sorts.

Its time consuming because its an hour each way for us. But, if we plan accordingly we can usually find time to do other things while we are over that way.

First, let me remind you about the new jerseys they have, design courtesy of Gene.
Never mind what JJ is doing with his tongue.


JJ was called to be goalie for the third quarter. JJ HATES being goalie.
See sad face


I like when JJ is goalie, because I can get closer to the action and I pretty much know where he is going to be. When he's offense/defense, he's all over the place. It provides me with great action shots.

See many photos below


I LOVE this one. This might be my all time favorite soccer shot. I need to compile bog post with all his funny faces. IMG_9417


His teammate caused a penalty kick, so JJ got stuck defending a penalty shot. It didn't go so well. But, according to JJ, they never go well, so he wasn't that upset.

He got back into the action in the fourth quarter, but they couldn't pull it together enough to pull out a win.




We have two more months of this. I'm excited. I took almost 300 photos during that game. I can't really tell you much about the game though. Its hard to follow along when you've got all your focus looking through your lens.

Rec ball starts next week, so there will be red jersey shots to share as well. Those are night games, but I'm hoping with DST that I can get a couple of good ones.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Time Away

I promised I would post the rest of the photos from our trip to Brevard. I sat down with the computer this weekend and made myself work in Photoshop. I learned that it comes with a companion program, Adobe Camera Raw, that is a little more user friendly for basic photo editing.

It was a breeze to use, and then I just needed to import my photos into photoshop for little tweaks (mostly to watermark). I also figured out how to create and action, so I don't have to type in my watermark every time. That felt awesome to accomplish. Making a brush watermark is my next step. I also downloaded some free actions, but haven't had the chance to try them out on anything yet.

Overall I'm pleased with the photos from this trip. Most were taken with my Tamron. That seems to be my go to lens. I really like being able to zoom. I've said it before, I'm a wallflower and I hate being all up in the biz-nass, so being able to step back its great. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the 50mm, mostly the 1.4 and I for see many portraits with this lens. But, for family activities the Tamron is my companion.

Ok, so you made it through all my mumble jumble here are some photos....

JJ was ready and eager to try out fly fishing. He was up at 6am, dressed and waiting for Gene to get up.

This was one of the beautiful lakes, the weather couldn't have been more perfect.

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Trying to untangle the line...

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You gotta watch out for the rebound

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Gene really enjoyed getting back to a long lost hobby. I enjoyed watching him and seeing the pleasure on his face.

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No fish were caught and Woody refused to sit nice for the photo

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There was a canoe available and JJ asked if they could go out. Gene thought it might be a good idea since he's looking into buying one. I also tried out being at a fixed focal long lenghth. I stuck the 55-250 on and locked it at 100mm. I'm not sure that 100 is long enough for me. I wasn't super impressed. I tried that trick again at soccer (eekk... those photos coming later!!!) and I didn't like it at all.

Here is what I got at 100mm

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I couldn't take it and I zoomed in

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Look how happy they are!

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Ok, just a few more. After fishing, we went into Brevard and walked around. Its a quaint little town. We stopped at the soda shop for lunch and a snack.

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On the way home we stopped at Ceasar's Head State Park. Gene and I had never been to the look out. The landscape of our state is amazing. Its impressive that you can have so much so close.

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I really encourage you, if you feel you need to get away for the weekend, just do it. Don't hesitate. Its the boost you need to make it through those long, boring, repetitive weeks. We hemmed and hawed about when and where to go. We finally decided and just did it and I don't regret a bit of it.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Love Letters

Its February, the month of love. My friend Ashley, is doing a photo contest over at Ramblings and Photos this month involving a love letter to her precious cat, Kitty Paw. The contest is open to interpretation, and I took some liberty with it.

Woody decided he needed to send one to Kitty Paw. Woody loves cats. He used to like to chase them. He's since discovered they are harmless. They are just little cuddly furballs, like him.

Dear Kitty Paw....


Love, Woody.

Speaking of love letters... JJ got a very cute valentine this year. A sweet little girl in his grade made him the most precious card. They say they were boyfriend and girlfriend last year, but she broke it off at the end of the year. I guess she still has feelings for him. She was too shy to give it to him herself, so her friend did. Its made out of construction paper, with hearts. It has a cute little poem on the inside. Oh.... melts my heart.

I asked JJ if he said anything to her. He kinda hesitated. I asked him if he at least said thank you. And he said he did, and she said you're welcome! Ahh... young love!

I remember my first love letter. I was WAY to shy to ever write one myself, but I got one from a boy in the sixth grade. He wanted to "go" with me. I avoided him like the plague after that. He was a bad boy and I knew my parents would never approve. Oh the guilt that ate me up for being so cruel. Shame...

Do you remember your first love letter?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Sneak Peek: we went fishing

This past weekend, we decided we needed to get out of town. We rented a house in Brevard, NC, packed the car and took off. It was only an hour and a half from our house, so it was a quick drive, straight north. Although the map says its a straight line, the winding roads told my stomach otherwise.

I haven't had much time this week to sit with photoshop and work on the photos. I've been trying to cut back on my picnik use. I follow a bunch of blogs of women who just participated in an adobe lightroom workshop weekend. All expenses paid to San Fran. I wonder if Picnik does something like that?

I took a ton and I'm pleased with how they look, just needs a little tweaking here and there. I hope yo get sometime soon to clean them up.

But, I wanted to particpate in Black and White wednesdays, so I thought I would share a little sneak peek. The house we stayed at was on a small lake. There were 5 lakes in the neighborhood. JJ got the chance to try out fly fishing for real. You can tell by the expression on his face, he's not in love yet.

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They didn't catch anything. We weren't sure the lakes were stocked yet. But, they enjoyed themselves. They even got to go out in a canoe! (can't wait to share those photos!) Woody was fascinated with the fishing rods. You could watch his ears perk up everytime they would cast. He desperately wanted to chase the rod. But, I was mean mama and made him stay on the dock with me.

It was a much needed get away. Soccer season starts this Saturday and goes until late April. It felt good to get away from the ruts of everyday life.

More photos coming soon. Promise. But probably not tonight because I've got a mound of laundry to fold.


Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Just another Wednesday

Here we are, the middle of the week. Hump Day. Its a cold one in February. They are predicting a little dusting of snow tonight. (1-2", which before the mega-snow in January, this would have been a lot). Just when things are starting to unthaw, here comes another winter blast.

Woody was excited this weekend that the weather was little nicer. He got to go outside and play for a while. But, however, he was not amused that I took the camera with me. (Soccer starts soon Woody, so I promise to give you my full attention soon.)

He managed to sit still long enough for me to practice shooting something other than wide open. Just because the lens says it can go to 1.4 doesn't mean I have to keep it there! I needed a reminder that I can get photos I like at a narrower aperture.

Woody was bribed with treats and toys, so we both got what we wanted. I can't believe he will be three at the end of the month. I'm already thinking of a montage post!

He blends into the grass right now, I can't wait for greener things!


He's not real happy with me.

And lastly, for Black and White Wednesday over at The Long Road to China (and Back!)

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Looking daper, almost like a Polo ad for dogs.

Hop on over to Lisa's blog and check out more for B&W Wednesday.


Wednesday, February 02, 2011


Gene has always had a love of fishing. Him and his granddad (Big Daddy) went a lot, as did Gene and his mom. Gene has enjoyed taking JJ fishing since he was old enough to hold a rod. Its mostly been pond fishing with Gene doing most of the work and JJ looking for tadpoles. I tag along every once in a while.

After college, Gene moved to Colorado for a while and fell in love with fly fishing. Its a hobby he's enjoyed, but hasn't been able to do much because its too hard with a small child. JJ is finally old enough to try it out. He received a fly rod kit for christmas. This weekend they took it out in the yard for some lessons.





I'm dabbling here in some black and white. I'll be honest and admit that I haven't used photoshop as much as I should. By the time I get home, I'm too tired to sit in front of the computer and edit and the weekends are about the same. I'm still becoming the master of picnik!

This was share for Black and White Wednesdays over at The Long Road to China (and Back!)


Check out more Black and Whites, including a great self portrait of Lisa!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

6 more weeks of winter

So the theme this week at Trendy treehouse is shadows. How funny that Sunday when I was out in the yard, I saw my shadow and thought how fun it would be to photograph it!

Gene probably thought I was a moron for standing there for so long snapping away. I used the on camera timer, so I had time to pose myself. I had fun. They definitely aren't perfect, but it was fun trying!

So, I just want to say Hi! And I hope that winter is almost over.

TT shadow

If you want to see more shadows, pop on over to Trendy Treehouse, Shutter Love Tuesdays to see some more!