It’s okay, you can laugh, chuckle, or chort. I have. I had many vibrant images. Many eyes framed perfectly to pop, but did I use them? No.
I’m just a total rebel little rusty at this photo stuff.
But if you fail fall, get back up, right?!?
So, I am joining in a new photo challenge on iheartfaces. I added the entry to my pages at the top.
This was very hard to choose. I was going back and forth on several different ones of my daughters Sydney, Bridget, and Molly. In the end, I picked this one from my family of faith shoot. It’s my friend Kristin’s daughter. It is the real deal. Unedited. Just simply a great shot with gorgeous colors and natural expression. She is an adorable girl and terrific model.
My submitted entry:
Here are the photo entries considered (that are my favorite too).
I think I went the safer route on this challenge. I chose the best photo that fit what most everyone else submitted.
Will it win?
Well, here is where you come in……..you can vote to help me win! Yay!
I don’t ask you subscribe by email (do you?). I don’t ask you to read (okay, I do ask that). I don’t ask you to comment (much). And I don’t ask you to Like my posts (which is a really simple click). But can I ask you to please vote? For me? This one little thing. I think you can vote once a day.
CLICK HERE TO VOTE #816 Look for the photo as this number could change (and has) due to links being deleted that did not qualify.
As Pomp And Circumstance began to play. The girls and I scour the bobbing hats and streaming tassels looking for the one we want to see. Dad. The one we have been waiting to watch walk down the aisle. The one Molly asked if his graduation was starting every three minutes for the last half hour (I’m not kidding).
There he is, the other aisle past our section, if you squint, you can see the happy grad giving us a wave. He saw us!
I think the girls felt assured that you were in fact there after they saw you. How you saw us in that crowd from across the room – I have no idea.
I have not graduated from college, nor been to college. I don’t know the sacrifice involved. I don’t know the deadlines, the reports, or the group projects. I’ve never taken a college exam, nor studied for a final. I haven’t experienced it. I just don’t know. But…..
I do know for over a year, I watched a single dad working full-time and attending class from 6p-10pm two nights a week in an accelerated masters program. He gave up nights of movie dates, dinners, watching his favorite TV shows, and sleep to study. He spent evenings on conference calls with classmates to complete group projects. He took weekends to burrow in his office and study for the final exam after a fast paced six-week class. He made almost straight A’s.
I couldn’t have done it. Not with the pressure of life. Not with the craziness of kids, an ex, and visitation schedules that don’t take into consideration study time, due dates, and exams. But he did. He made it look easy. And although I can’t fully understand the experience, I can be in awe of his dedication and determination.
Master of Science in Information Systems from the College of Business at UTA…..I don’t even have words to express the magnitude of your success. An achievement most people only think about attaining (but never do).
Your daughters and I, after catching your smiling wave, watched with pride as the rest of the grads filed in one by one and the speeches began. Glancing at the sea of hats and tassels, feeling the resolving strength it took to wear those gowns, knowing each person had a story – a sacrifice – to get there. I got a little teary. Bridget rubbed and patted my arm snuggled next to me. I felt so lucky to be there witnessing that moment with your children, your brother, your step-dad, and your miraculous mother – all watching – all proud.
We listened to the encouragement from speakers alternating girls between laps and chairs. Every few minutes I would assure them Daddy was right there (pointing to all the grads in the direction you sat) and you would be crossing that big stage real soon.
I watched them closely for any sign of returning illness they had that morning (the throwing up kind). If they had still been sick, they would not have been able to attend. You would have been crushed. I would have shrugged it off as they are too little anyway, but my heart would have hurt for you. So praise God, they were well for your special event. Praise God, they spotted you headed for the stage and despite clapping for EVERY name called Jason. They did finally get the “right” Jason. They were so happy to see you on stage. We cheered our hearts out.
I watched you on that stage through a 200mm lens lit up with the triumph and victory of a masters degree.
You did it. You, and no one else.
Congratulations Jason; my super smart hero who uses bigger words than this Oklahoma (schooled) non-edumacated girl knows (wink).
I truly thought you were crazy to take this on with two young children. I think I said, “Are you mad?”
Now I know, you are not crazy. You are not mad as a hatter. Just super intelligent, driven, and proficient at what you do. Driven by a want to go above and beyond, not just for yourself, but for your children’s future.
I love you dad grad.
I cherish my life with you. I cherish your desire to always be the best.
A year when our family hit the puree button and blended well. We are ready for our FIRST holidays together. Almost.
Since, I met Jason I have wanted to do Christmas cards. But it seemed weird, not being married, and not being a “real” part of the family. So I didn’t, even though this picture would have made a great Christmas card last year.
Then I got my Nikon D3000 DSLR and laid my point and shoot to rest. THIS year without a doubt we are doing Christmas cards. I have the photo shoot all planned out and even have outfits for the dogs. Oh yes, I did!
I have chosen Shutterfly as my place to go for all things picture related. Some of you know I love photo books. It’s a great way to preserve, and album the precious pictures taken throughout the year. I created one for Molly’s birthday and the girls still love to read their special book. I hope to create Easter, Halloween, and Christmas books as well. These photo books will last long after their childhood, and well into their grown up years. It’s easier than you can imagine, they do all the work for you with pre-set templets for the books. So don’t be afraid to try, it’s a simple upload and a lot fun. Plus, you create a timeless gift for your children, parents, and grandparents.
Another thing I love? Calendars. My favorite gift to give (and the most useful). Normally, I would just buy from the store. But today, it’s very easy to create one for the people you love by clicking away with your mouse. Can you imagine the joy of a grandchild wall calendar to a grandparent? Especially one that lives far away. It’s an easy, meaningful gift that can be enjoyed every month of the year.
The 2010 Holiday cards are my absolute favorite and that is why I am so happy about this year. I can’t believe all the choices. I have picked out a few and hope to have the photographs to match perfectly into one these designs.
I have NO idea which one I will choose. There are a plethora of choices. Click on any card to go to the other designs Shutterfly offers.
I know I am bragging on Shutterfly. It’s not just because I am so excited about Christmas cards this year (I totally am!). There is another reason too. They are behind the blogging community. They support bloggers and appreciate the words we write and they understand it can be a powerful marketing tool for a company that deserves the recognition. I am not a reviewer. I am not a giveaway blog. I am just me, just like you, but I can appreciate big companies reaching out to the little people. If you are a blogger click here. You’re welcome.
This year, at the end of my TEN year, I am NOT running to the store frantic on Christmas Eve. I am going to use what I love to do. Browse my photographs and find some great gifts. And if you want to know what Christmas card I pick? Makes sure I have your address.
Should you find yourself at a loss, wondering what life is all about and what your purpose is, be thankful. There are those who didn’t live long enough to get the opportunity to wonder.
Taking inventory of your gifts and blessings
You’ll probably spend some time this weekend thinking about the good things in your life and your loved ones. Before you do that, take a moment to just consider how lucky you are to be here in the first place. In the 21st century, we can experience more in a month than most people throughout history did in a lifetime. Instead of appreciating that fact, we usually just end up wanting to do and have more. We look at what’s wrong rather than what’s right. This is a perfect time to take a look at your life and priorities again. Can you make some extra time every day to just enjoy the moment and your loved ones? You’ve been given the gift of a lifetime of moments. Accept the gift and prove yourself worthy.
‘You’ve been given the gift of a lifetime of moments.’
I haven’t been online the last few days. Spottily from my iPhone is all. What I have seen is a lot of either, New Year’s resolutions, or non-lutions, or even just goals. It is that time of year to think, reflect, and assert what you want out of 2010.
And that is great. I’m not saying any of those things are bad. I quit smoking January 1, 2006. I also lost 50lbs. Resolutions are inspiring and they can work if you have the resolve to do it. Of course they can also be done any time of the year.
What I have noticed is there less focus on living in the moment, cherishing our family, and finding more time with them. I have seen less focus on the priority of “lifetime moments”. And maybe what I am trying to say is….can we resolve to just partake in the wonder – the sheer wonder – of life all around us?
We live in an amazing world, an amazing time. My goal this year is to see – really see – what I am missing in my rush through it. I have a wedding to look forward to. The details to be incredibly poignant and meaningful. A new family to blend and grow with. My daughter turns 16. She will never be 16 again.
One of my goals, along this line of this thinking, is to get a new camera. A DSLR for a beginner. I would like to take a class at the local continuing education building (where I took Italian language). I’ve been playing around with my camera recently and I think my writing this year has increased my “eye”. I would like to expand on that in my blog and in life. I think it will be such a treasure to embark upon a lifelong sight journey.
This is an exciting time and year for me. I refuse to miss it. I want to remember and take part of every miracle that happens. I know there will be struggles. I know there will be complications. My life motto is to live as though everything is a blessing no matter what it is.
I have been through some tough stuff in my life – an abusive past relationship and drug addiction – yet, those experiences are a blessing in that it grew my compassion, strength, and knowledge. I wouldn’t be who I am without them. And that is what I hope for this year, to be AMAZED. To be present and accept the gift.
2010 – Hi there, so glad to meet you. I look forward to knowing you better.
Life is a garden, dig it.
Please note some language in this video (bleeped out), but it is so funny with a great message.