Salem Dixie Elizabeth

I can finally talk about it.

This dog I loved so much.

Loved with all my heart.

Every single piece of it.

My dear, sweet companion who loved to eat. Who always knew exactly what time dinner was served. Even when daylight savings time tried to trip her up.

Who moved with me from house to house, roommate to roommate, and never complained.

Not one single time.

Her tireless devotion astounded me.

Her soulful eyes moved me.

And time and time again, no matter what happened over the years, she rooted me in goodness.

They just don’t live long enough. No matter how badly I wished she did.

So I said good-bye…

And I know I waited too long…

It’s so very hard to let them go.

Fly high with the Angels, my precious girl, Salem.
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Be free to roam.
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Be free of pain.
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Be free of old hips that don’t move like they are supposed to.
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Be free of tired legs and itchy spots you can’t reach anymore.
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Run, run, run…over the rainbow bridge.
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Back to your youth and fun puppy days.
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Heavenly Father, Creator of all things, thank you for having entrusted us with a loyal pet. Thank you for letting her teach us unselfish love. Thank you for the memories that we can recall to brighten our days for the rest of our lives. Finally, in gratitude, we return our pet to you. Amen.

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After a Dark and Snowy Week…

The sun comes out to blind me to brighten our days.  But the snow, and ice (which is still snow to Texans) was a fun and dramatic change from our sunny 60’s (sometimes 80’s!) winter.

The Dallas metroplex is one of those areas when the weatherman says, “Snow.”

We say, “Yeah, right!”

And when he still says, “SNOW!”

We say, “I’ll believe it when I see it.”

Well, we believed! We believed last week and we believed this week. The magical ice and snow and allllll the blustery cold things happened. We broke out the gloves and scarves. We made chili (well, my sweet hubby made super, yummy, delicious chili). And most of the household had many wonderful snow days away from the office and school.

Except for me…because…I work for a travel agency. Even better, I supervise the EMERGENCY SERVICE Department of said travel agency. And what do you know? Snow storms and flight cancellations seem to top the #1 EMERGENCY of travelers. Huh.

But you know, with the skidding and sliding of planes off runways and such. Yeah, that. It’s kind of important that they CANCEL these precarious flights, lest you end up crashing into a ditch, screaming as you plunge down a blow-up slide while highly flammable jet fuel LEAKS nearby. So not the winter vacation you were hoping for. This is why I am happy to work snow days and keep you extra safe. You’re welcome.

But fingers crossed, someone has snuffed out that darn ground-hog and it WILL FORtheloveofGODplease be Spring real, real soon.

In the meantime, enjoy my lovely (and rare) SNOW photos. It happened. It really did.

On a Dark and Starry Night

On a dark and starry night…

The night of the black supermoon (which we can’t see from here).
© 2015 Angelia's Photography
The night of the Chinese New Year.
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On this black night, we trekked to the country to see the stars.
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I wish I could say we camped or built a fire, roasted a marshmallow or two. Slept in a tent and had a nice hike the next day. Preferably around a lake where we could watch the birds catch their breakfast.
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But no, we just took photos. I took photos. My husband checked my skymap app for planets and maybe hacked a few portals on Ingress. Heh.
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We drove an hour. We stayed an hour. We drove an hour home.

This is the life of a city dweller and the lengths we have to go to look at more than one or two stars in the sky.

Was it worth it? Was it ever!
© 2015 Angelia's Photography

Leaving behind the city glare. Immersing into the deep dark under the brilliant twinkle of lights.

It was pure bliss.

And I learned that letting go of a normal night schedule. Getting out and being free to roam and adventure. To bask in the glory of the heavenly skies…it is wonderous and magical.

It is a glow I missed seeing. A midnight blanket I needed to snuggle under. A tremendously soothing space for my soul.
© 2015 Angelia's Photography

Night, the beloved. Night, when words fade and things come alive. When the destructive analysis of day is done, and all that is truly important becomes whole and sound again. When man reassembles his fragmentary self and grows with the calm of a tree. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

What Love is…

When I started this post – What Love is. I planned to write about what love means to me. How special certain people truly are. How it’s not always the outpouring of words, but the small everyday things we take for granted.

When he brings home a box of chocolate. Just because…
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And it means there is sweetness beyond any kind you can buy. It represents a gesture of thought. Of being on his mind. Being on his heart. He thinks just to see you smile.

When he programs the new remote with your favorite channels.

© 2015 Angelia's Photography

I have the hardest time finding channels on our 400+ channel Uverse program. I end up watching the GUIDE for an hour. And for him, to always think of me, to set up my shows in a way I can access quickly. To record my favorite shows (without my asking), and to program in my channels (and knowing what they are). It may not seem like much, but the meaning isn’t lost on me. Little things done in a big way.

When a cute Valentine plant sits on the counter after he takes a trip to the store. For me? Oh that? Yeah. It’s just a little thing.
© 2015 Angelia's Photography
Just a little thing, but full of beauty. And not the beauty of flowers, but the beauty that love creates. One that will continue to grow.

When a person will help you launch burning lanterns into the sky in the dark of night. All for the love of your photo project when he could be in the recliner watching TV. Well, that is something special indeed. In fact, we almost lit the whole place up with the fiery glow of lanterns. Eek! Click on the gallery to read the story.

Love is simple.
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We make it complex. We put conditions on it. We decide when to give it and when to take it away.

But in the end, regardless of gifts, of deeds, of misunderstandings, of the good, and even the bad – love is complete acceptance. Complete and total acceptance of a person no matter what they do or say. No matter when or where. No matter how or why.

And then, I realized. Love is so much more than that. It encompasses family and generations. It is a kaleidoscope of moments so pure and precious they take your breath away.

I saw it so clearly this week as I did my photo shoots, for my projects, and for my family.

These wonderful people in my life that go above and beyond for my joy. How incredible is that?
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To go above and beyond even at the risk of embarrassing photos.

And real love? Well, it’s family, fun, and beautiful girls (big and small).


It’s fuzzy mustaches and a heart that says hug me.

It’s very special eight-year old.

And a very mysterious debonair almost eleven-year-old.

And it’s a precious baby that is growing too fast. And a hundred times harder for Grammy to photograph.

And sometimes Grammy has to put her in a windowsill with heart gels to paste and smear on the window. So I can love every fingerprint…every smile…and every second of joy on her face as she discovers this “new” thing.
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I know the moment is fleeting. I have watched too many little girls grow up. And I hang on to this with all my heart.
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It hurts how much I love them all. This tenderness fills my soul. A tremendous blessing bestowed by having love this sweet and unconditional.

My family.

My life.

My acceptance to be who I am.

And who is that? Well….

© 2015 Angelia's Photography

Part of this family for sure.

Happy Valentine’s Day!