Monday, July 29, 2013

Look a little closer...

A flight through the clouds...

There are moments with photography that I truly think are simply about being in the right place at the right time.

Recently, I stood in my backyard and took a few pictures when I suddenly looked up at the sky and saw an incredibly beautiful cloud scene. There were thunderstorms rolling in and the clouds were creating stunning imagery. So, I adjusted my camera settings and turned the lens to the sky to try to capture a slight glimpse of how beautiful it was. I knew I could never fully capture the breathtaking beauty of that moment, but I thought I could capture a glimpse.

After my time of taking pictures I went back inside and put my camera away. I went about my other tasks for the day and later went to view the pictures I took so that I could post at least one. What I saw in one of the pictures took my breath away. In one of the pictures I had unintentionally captured a bird riding the air currents and appearing to venture out into the incredible clouds. I hadn't even seen the bird when I was taking the pictures, yet there it was, floating, flying off into the distance with such grace. The photo above is truly one of my favorite photos I've taken in months. It still inspires and grabs my attention each time I look at it.

Sometimes it simply takes being in the right place at the right time to capture something such as this. This photo has taught me to take a closer look at pictures as I am looking at them before I post or delete them. I could have easily deleted this photo since I had many cloud pictures. But, thankfully, I took the time to look at each one before I deleted anything. This photo taught me that you never know what you might miss if you don't take the time to look a little closer.

In life, this is also true. We can easily miss incredible things because we didn't take the time to look a little closer.

Thoughts to ponder-

When was the last time you slowed down and looked a little closer at life?
Have you ever taken a photo that was the product of being in the right place at the right time?

May your Mondays be Magnificent!


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Hubbub and quieter times...


Morning Sheet

Juni Blur



Life has been busier lately. The hubbub of preparations for the fall semester, the training for my new job at the school, and work have begun to pick up. This week I've also been photographing/documenting a Space Camp VBS which has been a busy event in itself. I've registered for classes, purchased school supplies, ordered some of my required textbooks, and begun feeling the excitement of returning to school. There is a blue backpack with a pink rose print ready to be carried on the first day of the fall semester. And, there are two sweet pups I am looking forward to pet sitting soon. Life is getting busier.

I am looking forward to returning to courses and excited about this semester. I am also looking forward to beginning the new rhythm of my on campus job and learning and growing. This summer has been a needed time of rest. It has been needed to grieve, needed to begin letting go of my relationship with Luke, needed to be with my family while my mom was away, and needed for my physical health so that my body could rest after my first full year of college. But, now I am ready to begin a more structured schedule and academic learning once again. I am ready to begin.

You might be wondering- "That is great, Sarah! But, what does this post have to do with all those pictures of your cat?"

Well, that is a reasonable question I will now write about. You see, as I think about all of the hubbub that is picking up, the excitement and expectations for the fall, and my readiness to begin a new work adventure, I can't help but be thankful for the quieter times I've enjoyed this summer.

The quieter times such as barefooted car rides with my mom where I watched the sky fade to different color shades until the sky was navy hued. Times such as resting on the back porch with my dog Annie and watching the contrast of the green leaves against a blue summer sky. And, last but not least, the quieter times are mornings waking up to see my Juni cat in the soft sunshine, when the sheet he rests upon ripples like a sea, and when he looks at me and meows about the bird shadows he sees. Though I am looking forward to this busier time of the fall semester, I am so very grateful for the quieter times and a handsome cat in the morning sunshine.

Thoughts to ponder-
Is the hubbub of life picking up for you too?
What are some quieter times you have fond memories of from this summer?


Thursday, July 18, 2013

Shopping Finds: July...

Shopping Finds- July

Recently I found a few nice items on sale at Michaels. The first find were two storage tins. These were a fun find and have a vintage 1960s feel to them.

The second find was the lovely blue-bird figure. It is such a sweet shade of blue and makes me smile each time I see it. It is nestled onto my shelf with with a few other figurines and books.

Lastly, I found four lovely dessert bowls. They are a fun pattern and prefect for ice-cream or other dessert treats. The bowls will be stored away for when I move out and have my own space some day.

I'm gathering a nice kitchen collection these days. I continue to keep an eye out for dishes at thrift stores and on sale at other retail stores. I like mixing and matching different kinds of dishes to create my own unique collection. It is much more interesting than having a perfectly matched collection. Now to find some nice cereal bowls to add to my collection!

Thoughts to ponder-

Have you had any great shopping finds lately?
Do you have a favorite dish or dish collection?


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Lollipop and lion lad...

Lollipop Lad

Lion Look

Lion's Eye1

Lion's Eye2

My youngest brother has a lot of energy. Sometimes this energy can drive me crazy and try my patience, but sometimes it can make me laugh and smile. Sometimes his exuberance even inspires me. Tonight we channeled some of his energy into a circus inspired photo session. The way he posed with the lollipop put a great big goofy grin on my face.

I love my little brother. I love making memories like this with him. The memories where we laugh, smile, have fun, and be a little extra silly.

So, tonight I am thankful for my lollipop and lion lad and the fun memories we make together.


Monday, July 15, 2013

The little lost bird...

Weary Rain

I love my pets. I have two cats and one beautifully brown eyed dog. Most days (and moments) my pets have the ability to cheer me up, make me smile a little more, and are wonderful to snuggle up with on cooler days. But, today my dog made me cry. She didn't mean to, she simply has an instinct that is so strong inside of her. You see, my dog Annie has herding in her veins. She has to herd things that are smaller than her. (This is why she lives in a separate part of the house the cats.) Today I went outside with Annie to enjoy an unusually cool morning, to sit with her like we usually do, and to take a few pictures of the lovely time. It didn't turn out quite so lovely.

A few of our neighbors keep chickens and one of the hens recently had chicks. As I gazed out on the yard with a smile on my face my smile quickly turned to horror as I saw that two of the chicks were in our yard. I saw them a split second before Annie and I didn't have time to grab her collar. She ran, she chased those poor little birds. One flew and escaped over the fence, but the other didn't make it and Annie got it. It was too small for Annie to pin, so she grabbed it with her mouth and hurt it. By the time I got out there and got Annie away the bird was dying. I will spare you the grim visual description, but it wasn't pretty.

I cried. I cry even now as I write this post. I've always had a sensitive heart. I cry at the loss of life, especially young life. I cried when a baby bird fell from its nest and died a few months ago, I cried when I saw the chick die today, and I cry even more when I hear of precious human life being cut short in the womb or outside of it. Loss of little lives makes my heart ache.

Sometimes, Mondays don't start off quite as Magnificent, but there are still things to be thankful for. Today I am thankful for the cool rain that continues to drip down and even thought it hurts, I am thankful that I feel heart ache when little lives are gone. By feeling this ache I am reminded of how precious of a gift life is.


Saturday, July 13, 2013

My Momma is home...

Goodness, me!
I can't believe the last time I posted was July 5th!

I missed writing in this blog space, but I have been very busy. You see, my beautiful Momma was away for two weeks visiting her family in Alaska. This meant that I was quite busy helping "hold down the fort" while she was away. I missed her very much. When she takes trips like this I always have a greater appreciation for how much she does as the incredible mom that she is.

The above photos were Instagram pictures from her welcome home today. I selected a few lovely red roses for her, made her a heart out of Dove chocolates, and helped my Dad and siblings get the house extra tidy for her return. And, do you see the center photo of me smiling? Well, that is the smile of a gal very joyous to have her Momma back home.

Now that I will be able to get into a more normal routine with my family I look forward to getting back to a more normal blog routine as well.

Thoughts to ponder-

Do you have any welcome home memories?
If you were to welcome home someone you love, what welcome home gifts would you give?


Friday, July 5, 2013

Postcard: July...

4th Post Card

My dog Annie and I took a little time to create a postcard from our Independence Day celebrations.

We hope those of you in the U.S. had a safe and happy Independence Day!

It was a low key day here. I spent it with some of my family at home. I enjoyed little things such as quickly crocheting a simple red, white, and blue headband and eating ice-cream. My family and I watched fireworks on TV this year and we watched a video of the Pledge of Allegiance.

I am thankful for the little blessings of the day. But, most of all, I am thankful for the blessing of our freedom and the impact of our country's foundation.

Thoughts to ponder-

What did you enjoy about yesterday?
What are some of your favorite Independence Day memories?


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Contrasting elements...

Water Weed

Rose Among Stones

Recently I've been inspired to combine elements to create images with interesting contrasts. The first image I titled Water Weed and the second I titled Rose Among Stones. Each were created by taking one original photo and texturing another photo over it.

Contrasting two very different textures is really inspiring to me lately. There is something so interesting about it and it is fun to think about photos differently. When I take photos now I don't just think about the individual image for each frame. Instead, lately I capture some individual images that I view as a stand alone and others that I have in mind specifically for combining with other photos. Texturing is such fun!

Thoughts to ponder-

What two things do you think would make for interesting an contrast of elements?


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Trinket treasure...

Trinket Treasures

I've always been a collector of interesting and whimsical things. As a child this enjoyment was manifested by collecting trinkets, feeling a thrill at the prospect of going through a jar of mixed buttons, and by collecting interesting words in journals.

Last week I was cleaning and de-cluttering my room (an ongoing project) when I discovered a little box filled with old trinkets. Finding a treasure trove of childhood trinkets is such a splendid thing! Each of the little trinkets have so many memories. It also got me thinking about the ways I am a collector today of interesting and whimsical things. These days I collect interesting books, photos, and articles of clothing. It makes me smile when I think about the ways some of the childhood trinkets parallel some of my clothing today. For instance, there is a tiny white bunny trinket wearing a bow and I currently have a printed blouse with bow wearing bunnies. In some ways I am still very much a child at heart and partaker in simple joys.

Thoughts to ponder-

Do you have any childhood trinkets?
Are you a collector of something?


Monday, July 1, 2013

Little gifts and walking into flowers...

A little gift...

There are so many little gifts in life. Sometimes they surprise you and take your breath away. These fresh flower blossoms were a precious gift this weekend.

Lately all of the Crepe Myrtles in the area are in full bloom. I always enjoy Crepe Myrtles.

In fact, I was recently walking past a row of white Crepe Myrtles when I decided to close my eyes and walk right into a large bunch of low hanging blossoms. It was wonderful. So often I simply enjoy seeing Crepe Myrtles that experiencing the feel of the blossoms against my face was grand. Once I had walked inside the building after going past the rest of the trees one of my family members looked at me and commented that I had something yellow on my nose. I was able to wipe some of it off, but it struck me as odd that I had yellow on my nose. A little later I realized that it must have been pollen from the blossoms! I laughed to myself and I almost wished I had left it there longer. I could have gone on the rest of my errands and each time someone mentioned that I had something on my nose I could have smiled and said, "Oh! That is just pollen! I walked into a large bunch of low hanging Crepe Myrtle blossoms. You should try it sometime." There you have the story of the time I walked into flowers.

Thoughts to ponder-
When was the last time you did something seemingly silly to enjoy something lovely?
What are some of the little gifts you've noticed lately?