Wednesday, April 30, 2008

i shall not live in vain

I recently found my little composition book that I used to keep in my purse to write down quotes that I heard or saw or read wherever I happened to be. I had some pretty cool poems and song lyrics & such in there and I am now going to share them with you. . .bit by bit:
I used texture no. 5 for this one...I really love the textures Sarah Smith has created

if i can stop one heart from breaking,

i shall not live in vain.

if i can ease one life the aching,

or cool one pain,

or help one fainting robin

unto his nest again,

i shall not live in vain.

{{immortal words of emily dickinson}}
I found this picture of Liam on an old memory card the other day. It was right before I got his first "big boy" haircut.

So my sister and I were in somewhat of the same melancholy spirits yesterday. Liam and I visited the “big boy” school to register him for kindergarten. I had to fill out Liam’s whole life story while he went to get his vision and hearing checked. It took quite a while to explain to him that he wouldn’t be going there until he was 5 and that although JJ was already 5 he wouldn’t be going there yet either.

The biggest stinky thing is that I am going to have to get Liam immunized. I have been able to avoid it for a while now and wish that I had never succumbed in ignorance to getting him inundated with shots when he was an infant. As I was telling my sister yesterday, being more educated about certain things health wise is not only a blessing but a curse. I wish I could ignorantly get my child immunized without knowing deep down that shots are just the scared school system’s way of covering their butt with a security blanket and that shots are not all that they say they are. . . so there. {{poking out bottom lip}} If I had lied and said that wasn’t getting his shots for religious reasons then I would have been home free. Instead I put down medical and now they want a release from his doctor’s office saying it’s okay for him not to have his shots. {{grrrr}} That won’t happen because it’s the same office that will give him a shot to keep him from throwing up EVEN THOUGH they admitted they didn’t know what was wrong with him. Sorry got off on a rant here.

ONWARD to happier thoughts. It was nice to have the rest of the day off with Liam though. I had passed some pretty country spots on the way to pick Liam up so after the school stuff, Liam and I went on a photo taking excursion. I hated to leave him in the car but seeing how I was traversing along the highway I didn’t want to risk him wandering along the road (the fruits of those labors to be posted soon). Afterward we hit up the mad cow home and got Liam a McHappy Meal and then on to Big Lots to buy a flower pot. . .and a few other treats. . .{ahem} NECESSARY things. ;)

Monday, April 28, 2008

Electricity Photo Challenge

So as my dear sister does her card making challenges I am going to attempt to do photo challenges. The one that I read about today was for electricity. While I am wracking my brain for how I could take this picture, it dawns on me…I already have the perfect picture:
This also allows me to introduce a new “series” of pictures that I have been experimenting. I purchased a set of photoshop layers from this amazing artist and am having SO much fun. I purchased the {light n' lofty} Texture Pack {no. 2} and I can't wait until I can splurge on some more. I will be putting this one in my shop soon.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Lessons From My Mother

Fun times with beer bottles & underage children! :O
Growing up in a small "going nowhere fast" town was not much fun for my sister and I. Having the tendency to remain in my own little bubble world so I never realized or gave much thought how living there affected my parents’ or thought about their take on the matter. Later in life, I remember my mom telling me that there were times that she had declined to think about moving away so as not to leave her friends. However, as time wore on, one by one they moved away and left her instead. Through my mother’s experience, I learned a valuable lesson: Don’t let your friends prevent you from making a needed move in your life otherwise you will end up getting left yourself. Unfortunately, in this modern world, people don’t stay in the same place and it is a fact of life.

Bringing me to these reflections is the happy occasion that a couple that Spencer and I are very close to came over for dinner a couple of Saturdays ago. We helped them move about an hour and a half away back in September. The fact that we had such a short time to build our friendship saddens me. Long story short, we lived in the same apartment complex for almost a full year before I had the courage to start befriending Jenny. I was intimidated by her and her amazing beauty. Even though Spencer had grown up with Jenny they weren’t very close anymore. Oh the days of living in the same apartment complex when we would just walk to each other’s place for movie nights. We technically left them first when we moved to a house. At least we stayed in the same city.

We had a great time that Saturday, grilling out and watching a movie and just hanging out. Jenny fell asleep on the couch as usual, although she has the best reason to now that she is growing a little human being. YAY!! By the way, she has her own little Etsy shop here so check her out and help support her and her little growing lima bean. The photographs of her artwork are a work in progress as she herself will admit but I can attest to the fact that she is incredibly talented. I did not get any pictures that weekend but above are some shots of past revelries.

I love how our friends are comfortable enough to fall asleep at our home.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Beatiful Mother

Of course SHE doesn't think so. We all know better though.

I remember sitting at the Kingdom Hall once when my mom had a talk on stage and my dad leaned over to me and said, "Isn't she beautiful?" {{BIG smile}}

Thursday, April 24, 2008

New Beginnings

One of my newest prints that I have in my little shop

I am totally nervous and queasy at the thought of change. Change scares me. I actually don’t know which scares me more, change or confrontation. I avoid both at most all costs.

Spencer and I are about to enter into a period of change and within the next 3 months I am going to have to face confrontation. Both of these situations are not necessarily bad but they scare the pants of me.

Spencer turned in his two weeks notice today to the company he has been working for for two years now. He loves the company but drives an hour back and forth every day and makes less than I do. He ran across an ad in the paper about a month ago for a drafting job in Conyers and applied. They initially were not offering as much as he wanted to change jobs but he put the amount out there and they met his demands. SCARY stuff. It will save us SO much money in gas AND it is more money than he makes now. I just hope and pray he will be happy.

That was the change part. . .

Confrontation is going to come on my end. After flirting with the idea of finding a job closer to home myself (I even applied for a position as an Education Reporter for the local newspaper…no call back) I have re-evaluated things. One of the big reasons I took this job was because my sister who has a more extensive knowledge of my boss and his personality said that she was pretty sure that he would allow me to go part time after a year. If I took on a brand new job closer to home then I would have to wait longer to even dream of asking to go part time.

SO when the beginning of August rolls around I am going to ask my boss to go part time so that I can further pursue my spiritual goals. Just thinking about it now ties my stomach in knots. This will mean a lot of pinching pennies but I strongly believe and know that I, and my family, will be happier and better off spiritually and emotionally.

{{big smile}}

My New Toy!!

I am so excited. My wonderful husband just got me my 2 year anniversary present early….because he knows that I get SO impatient when I get my mind set on something that I really want (I am an instant gratification whore…so to speak). I gave my sister my Fuji Finepix S7000 to my sister some time ago. It was painful for me as I LOVED that camera but I felt it was only fair since she really had no camera at that time, her Canon having crapped out on her, and I had my big macdaddy Canon 30D. Since that time I have missed having a no-brainer point and shoot. It is a “slip in your pocket and go” camera (although the Fuji was NOT a pocket camera by far). The Fuji was great because it had oh so many features of a digital SLR without the price tag or quite as much bulk…it even had the ability to manual focus. OK, I need to stop remembering it because it was AWESOME!! Anyway, I have been shopping around and comparing price and quality and finally settled on this.

It is an Olympus Stylus FE340. Olympus was a forerunner in the digital field and I trust that this little thing will be great and perform up to Olympus standards. I find it humorous that my point & shoot has as many megapixels as my Canon 30D. I am greatly looking forward to playing with it and finding an adorable “handmade with love” sleeve on Etsy to protect it in the black hole of my purse.

Monday, April 21, 2008


One of the talks on the assembly program Sunday was about the example parents should set for their children in the truth. One interviewee mentioned how his parents always talked fondly of their time spent in the full time ministry and that helped spur him on. My parents were always like that also. The brightest best times in their married lives were when they were serving in Bethel or special pioneering in North Carolina right after they got married. My mom always recalls fondly the time when she worked unassigned territory in Kentucky. I always complain that my dad is impossible to get gifts for because his only hobby is the Truth. :D I think all of this is the basis for my (so far) unfulfilled desire to pioneer and I thank them for that.
I love how they are attempting to interlace their fingers but not quite succeeding. My mom has the tiniest little hands that it is impossible for her to interlace her little fingers with my dad’s big paws.

That is why I love this picture of my parents holding hands at the assembly with my dad’s personal bound Bible in the foreground. They have stuck through the hard times with the help of Jehovah and they have been such a wonderful example for me. They have handed down to me a priceless spiritual heritage.

Tears of Joy

This is my first true best friend, Lesley, and I. I love her dearly.

This was a wonderful weekend. I got to spend all day Saturday with my sister as we got lost in Woodstock, GA trying to find this stamping swap we were going to. Funny how one wrong turn off of the interstate can get you all kinds of lost.
Sunday was the best though. We were going to the Special Day Circuit Assembly in Conyers to see the husband of one of our childhood best friend’s get baptized.
My buddy Rob getting baptized.
Little did we know that one of our other childhood friends (also my first crush) was also getting baptized. And his sister from California whom I hadn’t seen in six years (since her wedding) was also here. I was ecstatic to say the least. Tears welled up on more than one occasion. Not very often one gets to cry actual tears of joy.
My first childhood crush, Daniel, getting baptized.
Anyway, the events of my weekend left me emotionally exhausted (and, funnily enough, left my voice strained and I feel like Phoebe on "Friends" when she was raspily singing "smelly cat") from so much laughing and good time having thus Monday morning came too soon. Back to the workday drudgery. :P I have a lot of pictures to catch up on so you will soon be inundated with those.

Much love to all my friends (and strangers) who actually read of my goings on.

Inspiring Words for Your Monday "You'll Be Alright"

There is a song by Joni Mitchell that I listen to on my internet radio station and the beginning lyrics sounded familiar so I looked up the lyrics and background of the song. Turns out that her song is based on her favorite poem by Rudyard Kipling as found here. I love how she has transformed it into her own and it is inspiring and beautiful.


by Joni Mitchell

If you can keep your head
While all about you
People are losing theirs and blaming you
If you can trust yourself
When everybody doubts you
And make allowance for their doubting too.

If you can wait
And not get tired of waiting
And when lied about
Stand tall
Don't deal in lies
And when hated
Don't give in to hating back
Don't need to look so good
Don't need to talk too wise.

If you can dream
And not make dreams your master
If you can think
And not make intellect your game
If you can meet
With triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same

If you can force your heart
And nerve and sinew
To serve you
After all of them are gone
And so hold on
When there is nothing in you
Nothing but the will
That's telling you to hold on!
Hold on!

If you can bear to hear
The truth you've spoken
Twisted and misconstrued
By some smug fool
Or watch your life''s work
Torn apart and broken down
And still stoop to build again
With worn out tools.

If you can draw a crowd
And keep your virtue
Or walk with Kings
And keep the common touch
If neither enemies nor loving friends
Can hurt you
If everybody counts with you
But none too much.

If you can fill the journey
Of a minute
With sixty seconds worth of wonder and delight
The Earth is yours
And Everything that's in it
But more than that
I know
You'll be alright
You'll be alright.

Cause you've got the fight
You've got the insight.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


This is a new photograph that I just listed for sale on my Etsy shop
• Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
• Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog, we all want to know them.
• Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to theirblogs.
• Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

I love my son’s belly button. It is just the cutest thing ever. It used to be an innie and then one day when I was holding him as an infant, it suddenly became an outie. I know!! I am a freak for loving his belly button.

I am addicted to blogs of people I do not know. I obsessively read
this one like it is a book and am waiting for the next chapter.

I have a bad habit of picking my toenails when I have access to my feet…weird, annoying, AND disgusting.

I am slowly and yet not so slowly turning into my mother. Scratch that…I AM my mother. :) :P

I wish I had a better communicative relationship with my father. I love him to death but we just don't talk much.

I am sadly prone to road rage. It doesn't help that it has been fueled by my hour long commute to work in HORRENDOUS Atlanta traffic. Sadly I believe it is rubbing off on my son. :(

I have always wanted dancing lessons. I love to dance and just wish I knew what I was doing so that I would be more confident.

My sister is right. . .WHO to tag is definitely the hardest part. Fortunately enough, I am talking to my sister on the phone right now and she is relieving me of that obligation.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Dinosaur Protectors!!

I was at Wal-Mart last week and I found these awesome wall appliques. Removable and reusable!! How Awesome is that for my little man who had been so sick last week that I thought this was the perfect little pick-me-up for him. Came with all kinds of dinosaurs and they look non-cheesy too.
I didn't get the clearest shots of Liam's reaction to the room because I still had my macro/fisheye lens on the camera. . .but they are good enough to show that he was excited.
Now I was very careful how I put them up in his room. I made sure to put all the carnivores across the room from his bed and all the herbivores near his bed. This is because the little love of my life is a bit easily scared. We are constantly reminding him that Jehovah is there to protect him. After I had them up Spencer voiced his concern that Liam would still be scared of the "sharp tooths". To prevent this:
"Liam isn't it awesome how you have ALL these dinosaurs to protect you at night now?" {{wink, wink, nudge, nudge}}

"These are friendly carnivores?" (yes he does know the word carnivores...he is a dinosaur aficionado for the age of 4)

"Yes, they like you and will protect you. So now you have dinosaurs to protect you along with Jehovah."

Heehee...gotta love kids.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

i do. . .i don't

i do love being healthy
i don’t like having to pay so much to be healthy

i do love movies
i don’t like 3D movies that are becoming the rage

i do love style
i don’t love fashion

i do love travel
i don’t love not being able to do so

i do adore Spring and Fall
i don’t care so much for Summer and Winter

i do love chiropractic care
i don’t love doctors who think they know it all…even chiropractors

i do love sugar
i don’t like my addiction to it

i do love MUSIC
i don’t like teeny bopper music

i do watch American Idol
i don’t like most reality shows

i do love photography
i don’t get the chance to play with it as much as I’d like

i do love the beach
i don’t like that it’s so far away from me

i do love to create schedules and budgets
i don’t find it easy to stick to them

i do cuss
i don’t like to

i do miss my family
i don’t want to live in Macon again

i do have regrets in life
i don’t think I would change anything

I am going to tag my gorjuss sister with this but that means I have to actually obligate myself to finish a tag she sent me some time ago. Stay tuned for that.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

A Face ANYONE Could Love

Spencer decided he wanted to play with my new fisheye/macro lens the other night and what better subject could he find?

At first, Liam was bound and determined not to smile. The second picture shows the after effects of me reaching in to tickle him (please ignore the bathroom floor and its slight disarray). I would also like to note that Liam is NOT naked. . .just topless. :)

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Beginnings of Life

So I got this really inexpensive macro/fisheye lens for my Canon D30 about a month ago and have been so busy that I have not been able to test it out. Poor lens has been sitting neglected in my camera bag. Well…when is the best time to test out a macro lens?!?! SPRINGTIME!!! My mother-in-law is a flower enthusiast so she has many beautiful flowers and flowering trees in her yard. PERFECT for me to experiment on.
IRISES!!! So intricate and SO beautiful. The detail is amazing. You can even see the pollen.

Tulips are one of my favorite flowers. They are so much less showy & ostentacious than roses yet they are just as beautiful in their slender simplicity. It is the smooth lines and the simplicity I think that make them so beautiful

I actually loved being able to get to many of the flowers before full bloom. I think it is amazing how a tree can look dead but, as you get closer, you see these amazing little green shoots and leaves beginning to slowly find their way out of the limbs showing that, despite appearances, life has been lying dormant inside for so long...just waiting. What a wonderful illustration to the fact that Jehovah has us always alive in his memory, even when we die, so that he can resurrect us in paradise as we always were, just without sin and imperfection.

A Glimpse Into the Past

Up until a certain age, which I am so glad Liam has not reached yet, your children stop looking like your little baby when they sleep and start looking like kids. I just had to post this picture of my little baby sleeping with his stuffed dog Bailey (named after one of his many little doggie friends that have died in his short 4 years of life). He has never been one to have ONE toy that he can’t be without but he does have to have his stuffed animals surrounding him in bed but he rotates which he wants. I don’t really object because Mom has a picture of me with all of my dolls lined up on my pillow while I slept on the itty bitty doll pillow.

In addition to his cuteness factor when sleeping is the fact that he is the biggest wiggleworm and he maneuvers himself into the oddest positions. As a special treat, we let him fall asleep on the couch while we watched a movie and folded laundry the other night. When I got up, this is how he was laying.
And here is daddy asleep right next to him.

So much for having help with the laundry. :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Death Does Not Become Me

JJ, Carson, and Liam

I am so sick and tired of driving to work scared to death that I am going to end up dead at worse or in a horrible accident at least. Why might this happen? That would be because the muscles around my eyes at times refuse to help me keep my eyes open. It is excruciating. I will have the music blaring and I will be shaking my head back and forth and sitting up straight and I will still be closing my eyes. It is scary as the dickens and today is bringing me to the point of tears. The sleep study I had 6 months ago showed nothing out of the ordinary with my sleep. The wonderful doctor I had before the sleep study is no longer working there since she had her baby and she was the one I loved because she seemed to really want to get to the root of my problem. Since my sleep study I have not been back because I started a new job after that and my amounts of sleep have dwindled. I try to get in bed by 10:00, 10:20 at the latest and I know even that is not good enough but it is impossible to get to bed any earlier. I would never get anything done. If I could just sleep until 6:30 I would be great. 6:30 is not that late. But I need to have been on the road for 30 minutes by that time and I can’t get to work later than 7:00 or I will not be able to get off at 4:00 to be with my beautiful son by 5:00. Even then I am only with him in body and not playing with him as I should because I am exhausted and trying to get things done around the house.

The dissatisfaction I have been feeling with my life came to a peak this weekend at our two day Circuit Assembly of Jehovah’s Witnesses where I found myself brought to tears again and again by the wonderful experiences and examples of people who have made the leap of faith to simplify their lives and work part time in order to serve Jehovah more fully in the ministry. I keep saying my main goal is to be able to finally pioneer one day but I don’t feel my actions in life back up that claim. I would give anything to be able to quit my job and tell my boss that I am sorry, it is nothing personal, I just have better things to do with my life than to help you build structures that will most likely be destroyed when Armageddon comes. I want to help build things that will last. Last night at the Kingdom Hall my mother-in-law said the sweetest thing. She said that if she could work longer hours so that I could pioneer than she would. Dear thing already works long enough hours at that crappy job of hers. At least I think it is crappy.

On to a lighter topic with an apology for venting in a negative way so much recently. I will try to reign it in.

Above is a picture of Liam with two of his bestest friends. JJ was Liam’s best friend before they ever even met. I remember when Liam used to sit in Grandma Morris’s lap and tell her that they were going on a trip through Texas and then on to California to see JJ. :D I will have more pictures on here from the Circuit Assembly tonight.
Liam in Bubbe's Lap Contently Drawing on his Thomas Board.

Here is Liam helping to clean our assigned area of the stage with Peyton and Carson. I absolutely love these two kids. They are such good kids who are both little parents themselves and are very spiritual minded. Peyton's aunt, Wendy, calls her a 35 year old in a 9 year old's body. I am just so glad that they have befriended Liam and hope that they continue to do so as he gets older.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Lost Dreams

I regularly read a blog of this magnificent woman I have never met. Today I was reading over one of her past posts that really resonated with me. So many dreams I have given up in my life without really pressing to make them a realization. The one that sticks out most in my mind is that growing up I always dreamed of going to Bethel. Living in Brooklyn with my full time job being that of furthering the worldwide preaching work in a unique and special way. I could not have asked for anything more. Alas, my life went off course and whereas I could not love my little son more than I do, I grieve for a life that I lost for myself and the leave of my mental senses that caused me to make the decisions that I did. I have since married the most wonderful man that grew from my friend to best friend to soulmate. I then discovered that his brother and sister-in-law are living the life that I always wanted. Serving at Patterson for the past three years. About a year ago we went to visit them and I was surprised and dismayed at the bitterness that rankled within me. To visit Bethel for the first time since the realization that my childhood dreams were futile was a rude awakening. Even now, as I write this, I am all teary.

I have since learned and grown to realize that all is not as rosy as it seems. I love my sister-in-law dearly and am saddened that her first two years at Patterson were not joyful ones because of being sick and not being able to pinpoint what it was that was making her so. I remember once having a conversation with her shortly after I got married and telling her that she was living the life I had always wanted. She was so sweet and talked to me about not envying her life as she looked highly upon mine. :) I am so happy that she has since been able to find out what ails her and is able to work towards making it easier to bear.

My brother and sister in law...don't they make an incredibly attractive couple?

This was right after she had "proposed" to him in sign language in the same spot he had proposed to her so that she could present him with a brand new wedding band to replace the one he had been wearing that was a hand-me-down. Awesome right?

Me and my new sisters...this was the Thanksgiving after I got married when I really got the chance to hang out with and get to know my sisters-in-law...and to love them.

There are so many dreams that we give up on or put on hold in our lives. Sometimes it is for unselfish reasons and sometimes it is out of fear. I also used to dream of becoming a full time photographer and my life choices have steered me further and further from that goal. I used to photograph about 20-30 weddings a year and now I usually photograph one per year. This is mainly my choice due to the fact that my weekends are precious to me. It is my time with my little family and my time to go out and preach to others about God’s Kingdom but I still love photography and mourn that I do not even do as much creatively as I used to. My life is crowded by the mundane: A lifeless job and housework. :P Too many times life ends up a vicious circle of catch 22s. I want to get my little photography and craft business off the ground so that I can quit and become a full time pioneer (full time minister of God’s Kingdom) but I cannot seem to get my shop off the ground without more time which I won’t have until I am able to quit my current full time which I cannot do until my shop gets off the ground….you see where I am going with this?

Anyway, I am not sure why I decided to get this deeply personal on an online blog but I just felt the need to get this out there. I would love to hear if any of the few people who may read this have any personal thoughts to share on dreams they have given up on and what they are trying to do to get them back on track.