Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!

Yay! I hope everyone has a great 2008 full of adventure and health...


Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Sparrow

My latest read is The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell. What an excellent book! I can't say enough good things about the talent and intelligence of the author. She brings to life a lovable bunch of charactors that partake on a mission to find out who the 'Singers' are that they discovered through various sound waves that come from beyond our universe. This story challenges every person's faith as you read chapters of what happened after their mission. I don't want to spoil the book... you just have to check it out. :)

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Free Photography Session

*ONLY for those in WA*

This offer is only for friends/family in WA state. The offer is good for this year and only one session. I hope by 2009 to start making decent money from my passion (if all that practicing pays off!!) :)

(if you need to see this bigger, click on this link...)

Friday, December 28, 2007

January's Poll

I try to be practical with resolutions because lets face it, I don't keep them very often. But my persistence in blogging everyday has surprised me. Hey, maybe I CAN keep them? I've been looking at my 100 goals and was thinking about attempting another one for January. I just don't know which one yet. Maybe I'll let you guys decide... pick your choice in the poll I created to the right of this posting. The poll closes January 8th (yeah, my birthday >.<). I selected choices that I can easily do this month. They're not necessarily for the entire year...

Anyway, have fun. I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone picks!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

My side of the family Christmas Photos

Photos of Christmas at my family:

Jamie and Daddy
Daniel doing his best Home Alone impression...
Tom thinks he's rich...
Tom posing with someone else's gift.
Mom & Rob
Tom's got a weird glow on his face because of the stained glass next to him...
The boys
Piano boy
Everyone thought this one was hilarious!
They thought this was hilarious
...I need a haircut... lol
Mom and Jamie
Please excuse his ego...
and lastly, my parents :)

The Winter Blues

I know... I have nothing to complain about. I just chalk it up to the winter blues. I sincerely hate winter. It's dark, cold, boring, cold and dark. I mentioned cold, right?

It's usually around this time of year that I start to seriously consider moving to San Diego, California- where weather is fairly consistent all year 'round (currently 55 degrees, I checked). I love sunshine. While it's true, sunshine doesn't love me... but *sigh* I like being warm and toasty with lots of light to surround me. This is starting to sound more and more like an ungrateful posting! Yikes!

I like Washington too... The weather changes keep us on our toes and tests our agility and endurance (and our cars' agility and endurance >.<). It doesn't get too hot in the summertime and it's always green. Most folks around here look similiar to me, fair skinned so there isn't the longing for a tan (not that I could even if I wanted to). I like being near the sparkling water and surrounded by lush evergreen trees. Maybe I should consider real estate near Des Moines or Gig Harbor... hmmmm...

Nah... I couldn't make Mike commute even futher than he already does. I'm thankful we don't live in Spokane or Idaho (yuck! sorry if that offended you...). One needs to force herself to look for the positive.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Boo Hoo!

Canker sores suck! I spend the entire day at work completely silent because it brought tears to my eyes to talk ...or even smile. It stunk! Of course, it might've benefited some of my fellow employees but I hope for the most part, that they enjoy all the wonderful things I have to say.


We're off to grocery shop and find canker sore remedies... have a great Wednesday night everyone :)

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

Getting ready to go to Ranchito for our Christmas Eve dinner with my parents and my brothers. We're doing a gift exchange this year and I just know I'm going to end up with a gift meant for a guy! lol That's how it is when you're the only daughter out of 4 kids.

I'm lugging my camera along and if there's time tonight, I'll post pictures of our adventures.

We hope everyone has a great Christmas!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

It's almost over

One more day until Christmas!

My feet definitely hurt from walking around, helping customers at work. But it's still fun to do...especially love those desperate customers who will buy whatever you recommend to them. I got one person to buy ALL of my suggestions! Pretty impressive!

Now that I'm home and Jamie's spending the night at grandma and grandpa's house, I think I'll clean the house up really good while I can. Yay for cleaning.

I'm almost done with this blogging everyday for a month deal! I need to decide on my next goal to tackle and if anyone has suggestions, let me know!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Future Cub Scout of America & Free Offer

Future Cub Scout of America

So I had this idea the other day of making little coupons to pass out at work for one free family portrait session in exchange for word of mouth advertising (and permission to use photos for my own portfolio and advertising). There are about 40+ employees at work and I've already taken shots of most of the single gals... I want to practice more with families of various ages/stages. I'm offering on location of their choice, free CD with pictures, 2-5 family members (I don't think anyone has a family at work bigger than that...) and their choice of photo style (black & white, color, urban or their own ideas). The freebie is only for the folks at work...

Not to mention, I'm itchin' to use my 85mm again!! :)

Let me know if there's anything else I might've forgotten to mention...

Here's a rough draft of my coupon:

Friday, December 21, 2007

85mm f/1.8 Canon lens!


I totally got my gift early last night! Many of you know I lack patience... Christmas is no exception lol I told Mike that I would give him his if he gave me mine... So at least it worked out :)

Hopefully when Jamie is back from preschool he's up for doing some modeling for me :D We'll see... If I get some pictures, I'll post them later :)


Here's my favorite from today... to view the rest, click on my flickr link:

Sweet Smiling Boy

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Looking Glass Wars

'Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?''
"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,"
''I don’t know where. . .''
"Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,"' ~Alice in Wonderland

*Sigh* The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor is a GREAT book! It's so cleverly written and I highly recommend it to all fantasy lovers ages 10 and over :) I'm excited to get to the second book called Seeing Redd soon... maybe if I'm lucky, I'll get a copy from Santa... ^.~

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

so sad

Sorry, nothing very exciting to post for today =( ...except I'm nearly done with Christmas shopping.


Monday, December 17, 2007

A Woman Should Have~ QUOTE

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE old love she can imagine going back to...and one who reminds her how far she has come...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....enough money within her control to move out and rent a place of her own even if she never wants to or needs to...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....something perfect to wear if the employer or date of her dreams wants to see her in an hour...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ...a youth she's content to leave behind....

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....a past juicy enough that she's looking forward to retelling it in her old age....

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE .....a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE friend who always makes her laugh...and one who lets her cry...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....a good piece of furniture not previouslyowned by anyone else in her family...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems, and a recipe for a meal that will make her guests feel honored...

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE ....a feeling of control over her destiny...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD to fall in love without losing herself..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD to quit a job, break up with a lover, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...when to try harder...and when to walk away...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...that she can't change the length of her calves, the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...that her childhood may not have been perfect...but it's over...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...what she would and wouldn't do for love or more...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD to live alone...even if she doesn't like it...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...whom she can trust, whom she can't, and why she shouldn't take it personally...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...where to it to her best friend's kitchen table...or a charming inn in the woods...when her soul needs soothing...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...what she can and can't accomplish in a day...a month...and a year...

~ Every Woman, Maya Angelou

Just a quote I saw posted with someone's flickr image and I loved it so much :)

Going back to college

Oh ho-ho... y'all thought I forgot to blog for today, eh?? Not so. I had to work all day but I'm finally home!

Today's topic shall be about going back to school. (Can you tell I'm education obsessed lately?) This morning I got a mini-rant from mom explaining all the great reasons to try to go back to school and get an AA degree or major in Photography. To tell the truth, I'm kind of excited to try for it! I borrowed a few books from work about applying for scholorships and I'm going to see what's out there. While waiting, I'm thinking of taking a few non-credit classes in digital photography to clear up a few questions and get some proper instruction. I've got some Christmas money to burn... :)

So... if anyone is out there offering scholorships and wants to reward me... please email me at immediately. I'm interested! :P

PS As for waiting a year to enroll Jamie in Kindergarten, I'm still undecided. I'm going to attempt to find a professional opinion but I kind of like mom's reasoning: Kindergarten is free... if he needs to repeat it, at least it's still free. lol Amen, right?

Sunday, December 16, 2007

It's all about the kid

Believe it or not, I don't always have something to say... This blogging everyday is getting harder! lol
Anyway... So I think today's topic will be... tah-dah: Jamie and Kindergarten! The biggest topic on my mind for the last few days. I've been considering waiting another year before enrolling him in Kindergarten. Here are a few reasons why:
1. He'll be one of the youngest kids since he will have only been 5 for 2 months before school starts. If I wait, he'll be closer in age to the others and won't feel 'little' (not that he does).
2. Loses focus easily in preschool during lessons. He's not forced to participate if he does get distracted which worries me that he may think he can do this in regular school because trust me... give him an inch and he'll take a mile. lol
3. Will give me more time to work with him one on one if I can (hopefully) go part-time next year (or if I can get another job that works with me more flexibly).
4. It's about what Jamie needs... not what other kids are doing.

I need to do more research on kindergarten & the cut off dates for enrollment (birthdays and such) and what he 'should' know before he goes. Hey, at least he's potty trained! :D Here's what I know already here. There's also an optional school in the area called School of Discovery that supposedly lets children learn at their own pace. I've already checked them out online and read mixed reviews. I like that the average classroom size is around 13 kids per class. It's like a private school except that it's free. I plan to do more investigating and find out if it's right for Jamie.

Anyway, we did have a sit down tonight at the table so he could practicing writing letters. It was defininately a test of patience on my end. I had to keep reminding myself not to be too nitpicky on his 'order' of writing. We're going to practice spelling his name and writing the letters in the correct order :)

PS He's been doing GOOD with his chores! Whoo!

Saturday, December 15, 2007


For all those fans of My So-Called Life comes a new type of show viewed on the internet only... Introducing Quarterlife. From what I understand (I've only watched one episode so far) they're only 8-10 minutes long per episode and they're testing to see if it can gain viewership before broadcasting on regular television.
So far, I immediately like the main charactor... the other cast members, not so much lol. If you know me you know I like to watch my shows with closed caption to get a better grasp on the story so as you can imagine, I was somewhat lost between much MUCH mumbling. I'll have to see about finding a script to read along with or wait until the show airs on TV (if it does).
Speaking of closed captioning... Mike and I watched a freebie movie I got awhile back called A Little Trip to Heaven With Forest Whitaker and Julia Stiles. Generally when I get a freebie I can expect to have my viewing occasionally interupted by "Not for Sale or Rental" script all over the screen. Anyway, another downfall is lack of CC. Even Mike had a hard time following the story. Anyway, our final verdict was the movie was short and kind of... unsatisfactory. Meh.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Santa Claus!

Last night Jamie finally got his picture taken with Santa! He was pretty excited and as soon as his turn came, he immediately got shy. It was pretty cute :P
This picture was NOT taken by me. Taken by Rozday Photography:
santa 07
I also want to say...the orginal photo looks a lot better than my scanned version lol. And he was laughing at a 'flying monkey' which is why he's making the expression he is :P

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Confessions of an imperfect mother

Sleeping soundly has been a thing of the past for me apparently. Maybe it's my cold keeping me awake but somehow, I have a inkling that it isn't. Last night I sent myself to bed around 10:30. At first my nose was bothering me, then I couldn't stop my thoughts from running. People always ask me "What are YOU worried about?!" when I tell them of my sudden insomnia over the last few weeks. I'm just worried about everything I guess? My main worry is always Jamie. I fear that I haven't been a good mother or role model. I'm always so busy or I have something else I'd rather do. When it comes to discipline, I'm so undecided! I spank for the dumbest reasons (I usually don't get this until after it's been dealt with). And honestly, I probably don't give him the respect he deserves as my child and a 4 year old. I felt absolutely racked with guilt last night that I ended up crawling into bed with him and I finally fell asleep.
There are some changes I'd like to start implementing and of course, to keep consistency, we should start small (otherwise, I'll lose track and dig myself even further into a hole of despair). I wanted to try to give Jamie small chores to do around the house. The first being that he's in charge of feeding Timber twice a day. It's pretty easy, a cup in the morning and a cup at night. The next chore I was thinking was making him dress himself. I know he capable, I've seen him do it out of desperation in the middle of the night (I have yet to figure out why he does this since he's not wet when he does). And lastly, clean up all of his toys before we go out or before he goes to bed. Three chores aren't bad for a 4 year old, right?
Secondly, I need to go back to time-outs. The preschool does this so I should keep up with it at home. While both my husband and I have been spanked as children and we turned out just fine, I don't necessarily feel it's the right way to go with Jamie. We tend to resort to spanking to get his attention to the severity of the situation. It's hard to ask him 'why' he did something because he doesn't seem to understand or he thinks it's funny (that's the hardest to deal with!). But I think because he's been in time-out in preschool, he probably understands that a bit more. He's seen other children given time-outs too. I have an old white chair that I think I'll designate the time-out chair and we'll give it a try. I understand that it's a minute per year of the child and if they keep misbehaving, keep adding a minute to the timer. But geez, it's frustrating when he thinks the whole ordeal is funny. =/
Anyway, those are my thoughts for Thursday. I welcome any suggestions/ideas. I wish Mike and I had time for parenting classes that we can bring Jamie to without it costing a lot of money. Speaking of counseling... isn't it silly that they charge for financial counseling?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The final product

I swear, once I'm over this cold (and being cranky) I'll write something more interesting.... lol But I wanted to post a picture of the gift I got for Emily...

IMG_0636 copy

I hope she likes it. :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

It's Tuesday everyone!

Last night I convinced the service manager that I'm volunteering to go home early since we were slow... and I was feeling crappy. She let me go at 9:30pm and I drove home in a sleepy haze. But one thing I did accomplish was that I finally decided on what to get my Secret Santa! A few days ago at the craft store, I saw some employees putting together a new display of jewerly items. They were half hearts with names on them. The left half had the female's name and the right half had a male's name. They were cheap enough to be considered for gifts except that I didn't know Emily's husband's name. I had to slyly ask her what her husband's name was last night while getting tea from the cafe. Hopefully the names aren't sold out!

Right now I'm at mom's getting ready to go thrift store shopping. I'll convince her to stop by the craft store later. I'm sure I won't have to twist her arm. :)

I decided to call out sick today and just sleep. ugh, I hope this goes away soon. I've lost energy =/

Monday, December 10, 2007

Long day

I thought I'd write now since I won't get off work until midnight tonight. I'm feeling a bit under the weather with a head cold lately. I'd really love to call out and go back to sleep...

After dropping Jamie off at preschool this morning, Mom met me at home and we headed to the mall for some Christmas shopping. She ended up buying my present early :) I got a cute pink sweater and a necklace! Thanks mom...
Then we had gyros for lunch. Can you believe that was the first gyro I've ever tasted? They're good! I would probably get less feta cheese next time though. Mom had a falafel (how ever it's spelled...). We headed back to pick up Jamie from school and here I am. Still tired as ever. Sorry this particular entry isn't very exciting... lol But I'm sticking to the once a day blogging though!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Raising a reader

If there's one thing I want to teach Jamie, it's a love for reading. Good thing I work at a bookstore, eh? I think Jamie owns more kids books than I ever did when I was little... but then again, I didn't come to love reading until I was a bit older.

Today at work was employee appreciation day in which we can purchase books and other merchandise at 40% off instead of our regular employee discount (varies depending on your FT/PT status). I ended up purchasing only gifts for Jamie since I'm undecided on gifts for the other children in our extended family. Even though he can't read yet, I picked up some boxed sets of Captain Underpants and The Magic Treehouse. Many experts agree that reading advanced books helps their comprehension later on. Comprehension was something I struggled with as a child so I'd like to give Jamie as much help as possible while he's still young and sponge-like :)

Saturday, December 8, 2007

10 Years from now

Exactly a month from today, I'll be 28. I'm not exactly how I imagined myself when I was younger. But then again, is anyone?

Where do I see myself in 10 years? Hopefully by then we'll have a daughter and Jamie a sister (yes, a brother would be fine too but I'll keep trying until I get a girl. be forwarned.). Hopefully living in a bigger house on a more permanant scale. I hope to have progressed in my photography skills enough to get paid nicely without having to work an additional I guess, quitting Borders is on my list of things to do as well. That's as far as I've thought at the moment. I don't want to get too far ahead of myself. :)

Friday, December 7, 2007

Enjoy a ... Starbucks!

I've been wanting to incorporate Mike's Coca Cola print in a photo somehow but was unsure about it until I was drinking my White Mocha. Then it dawned on me... we don't do Coke anymore (haha) we do coffee! I know this post isn't exactly family related but meh, enjoy the photo. :)

Enjoy a ...Starbucks!

Cutting caffeine in the future is going to really really suck.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Gingerbread kids

Heidi and I made plans today to bake Christmas cookies and let our boys decorate them. I packed up a paper bag full of baking goodness and made an unplanned stop at Safeway on the way to their house. After roaming the Baking aisle and finally the Christmas displays up front, I gave up hope finding any cookie cutters. I threw in a small box of pre-made gingerbread men and icing. It's a good thing too...
I think Heidi and I were just too exhausted to even consider baking anything today. But here are a few photos from our little gingerbread workshop.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Secret Santa

Every year someone at work volunteers to host Secret Santa (except the year a woman was severely opposed) and we're doing it yet again, this year :)
Mine is a new girl at work who recently got promoted supervisor (don't worry, she doesn't read my blog lol) and she's super nice. She's 23 and married to a man who is 6 years older than she is. I've had good vibes from her from the very beginning! I'm just having a hard time deciding on what to get her... has to be under 10 bucks... She likes animals, yoga, tea, volunteering... Does anyone have any interesting ideas? I'm thinking unique...

:) Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007


Quickly finishing up A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, I've been thinking alot about how times have changed. Children used to treasure a tangerine at Christmas time or a simply decorated tin. Nowadays, they must have the most expensive, latest toys. I would like to make it more about warm memories that they can share with their families when they get older.
I do my best and have good intentions... but honestly- working gets me worn out. By the time I get home, all I want to do is just sit and be left alone. I'm sincerely hoping that this might be my last retail/or cafe Christmas that I work.
Maybe then, we will actually have time to stop and play in the snow on our way to the mountains or take a leisurely drive to see Christmas lights or take in a Christmas play. Hopefully this week we'll have time to put up our Christmas tree :)

Monday, December 3, 2007

My little one

Jamie never ceases to amaze me. On Saturday, we all headed to IHOP for breakfast and as we were waiting for our food to show up, I tried to entertain Jamie by coloring with him. Curiosity struck and I asked him to draw the letter "J". I wanted to see if he's picking up on writing letters in PreSchool yet. Little red crayon in hand, he draws the letter "J"-backwards lol. I ask him to draw the letter "A" and he quickly wrote it on the paper! He's getting so big!

I'm definitely happy that I put him back in preschool. I think it was for both of our sanities. hehe

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Day Two!

I got about 6 six hours between shifts from last night to this morning but I feel pretty good so far. :) When I got home, Mike and Jamie had a delicious spaghetti meal all made up for me! After dinner, Jamie and I attempted to do a darkly lit photo session in his room with Christmas lights... here's how it turned out: (this was 1 of at least 40 pictures lol)

He thought this would be clever :P

I need to dig around for brighter Christmas lights in the garage...

Saturday, December 1, 2007

The Family Wish List

I've had a few requests for wish lists from family members so I thought it would make it easier to post it on the blog :)

Jamie: (believe it or not, he knows what he wants lol)
Toy Telescope (or something space related) he's been very into stars and planets lately.
Hot Wheels
Hooked on Phonics for Pre-K
Digital Camera for play Nothing too expensive since he just wants to be like mama sometimes :)
Interstar Links
Scooby Doo Music
Matchbox/Hotwheels carwash set... if you can find one! :)
Instruments Or any kind :)
Shrek 3 DVD
A Light in the Attic, Poetry Coll. by Shel Silverstein
Pt.Defiance Zoo pass :)
Scooby Doo Haunted House 3D board game
Scooby Doo Lunch box
Scooby Doo Action Figures
Deluxe Canyon Train & Track Road table

Any of the following movies:"Blade" series, "Die Hard" series/boxed, Demolition Man,"Rambo" Boxed set, "Bruce Lee" Boxed set, Return of the Dragon, Enter the Dragon, Fist of Fury, Chinese Connection, Blackhawk Down
Games: Orange Box {For PC}, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune {PS3}, Heavenly Sword {PS3}, Assassins Creed {PS3}, Motor Storm {PS3}, Giftcard for GameStop, PS3 Paddle... Oh and he wanted me to mention: LCD Flat screen TV haha ^.~

Within the Fairy Castle book (It's out-of-print...but here's a cheap copy!lol)
"READ" necklace from
Anything in Modern Mama's Etsy shop :)
Also, Jewels of Luxury
2 dvds "Refuse to say Cheese" & "Beyond the Green Box" By Merakoh Photography
Old Navy Cardigan Small size or Cable Knit Toggle Sweater
Gift card to Fuego
"My So-Called Life" Boxed set
Anything to help organize my desk :)
And for fun, here's something expensive lol Canon 50mm f1.4 Lens or Canon 85mm f1.8