Like a Sponge

First off, I would like to say sorry to all of you that I usually comment on. I’ve been crazy busy lately, and really just havent wanted to be near the computer. I hope I caught up with some of you though! Hopefully more tomorrow. The weather is horrible right now and supposedly for the remainder of the week, so I’ll have plenty of time. The past week or so has been full of getting ready for taxes, finals, and Roman’s birthday. Super busy! I’m currently done with one final (ugh Western Civ II) and working on the paper for the next one.

Anyways, on to the title of the post! I have been thirsty for more EVERYTHING about photography lately. I found a couple of great tutorial sites about LR and natural light and….well everything that when I am on the computer and not doing homework at night I’m reading everything I can. I even put the photo of Roman’s crazy eyes in a Flickr critique group. And guess what!? It got ripped to shreds! Lol! But I’m happy about it! I was at a point for a couple of weeks where I was stuck. I know and knew that there is a ton more to learn, but I was stumped on what was next. Its like I saw all of these paths leading to a light, but wasnt sure what path I should take. So I think I’ve figured it out. Composition. I’ve learned the rule of thirds, now I need to pay attention to everything else in the photo too! Haha! Who woulduve thunk it? Ohh and I’m going to look into ISO. I hate going above 400 on my camera because they come out so grainy, and that’s usually not the effect I’m going for. I know you can get a good pic above this, but I havent figured out how to yet.  So much to learn!

Boy’s are always dirty at this age aren’t they? He was laughing so hard that I actually caught a smile! Oh and the garden pic…yeah those are toys at the end. So far this garden (there are two) has had a bike ride over it like it’s a freakin BMX track or something, a dog jump all over it, and dog poop on it. Oh and its supposed to freeze tomorrow night. After our 90 degree weather last week I was sure we were on to spring! Ugh!!! So far all I have got to grow IN the garden are cucumbers strawberries and radishes. Not sure they will be here after tomorrow night though. UGH! Oh well, to tell you the truth I really enjoy my time in the garden. Even if nothing grows. Okay…that’s a lie 🙂 I better get one cucumber, one strawberry and one radish at this point!

Sunday Funday

Has a whole new meaning when you have kids. Spending time with family is what makes the day perfect! This whole weekend was pretty great if I do say so myself. We spent last night with my parents and celebrated his birthday.

Roman loves blowing out the candles :). 

The card that we got Grandpa :)! Happy Birthday! We love you!

Sal’s sister came into town too. She brought her adorable family! The kids played. Tata (Roman’s Grandpa on Sal’s side) BBQ’d. Love it!

I thought this photo lent itself well to a cool preset called Bitchin Camaro.

Doesnt he have the most beautiful eyes? Lucky boy. I didn’t do anything to them except for adjust the normal things like blacks, lights, highlights, etc. He’s just handsome on his own. 🙂

I asked him to pose sit for me so I could take his picture and this is what I got. Such a model. 🙂

I also learned something new tonight. You shouldnt edit when your laptops not plugged in. Haha. Hope they look okay on everyone’s computer!

Trona Sunrise

I got up unbelievably early today to head down the road about 20 minutes to Trona, CA. I wanted to catch the sunrise, but without someone counting on me I wouldnt have gotten up. So I called my Dad and asked him to go with me. It was his birthday yesterday, so I thought while we were in Trona we would have breakfast with his granddaughter and my niece Lexi.

For those who don’t know what type of town Trona is I’ll break it down really quick. If you blink you miss it. It smells like rotten eggs because it’s home to a Borax mine. The highschool football team plays on a dirt field. It used to have a HUGE salt water public pool. The roads are red.  A lot of movies were filmed here including but not limited to The Planet of the Apes; that desert scene…ya that’s Trona.  The people are close-knit and are very protective of each other and the town. 

While I hate mornings, Trona did not disappoint. The clouds colored the sky with blues an pinks and oranges. Beautiful. 

Trona has a lot of abandoned houses and for lack of a better word…junk, laying everywhere. That’s not a bad thing though! It makes for some cool photo’s. This was my first time shooting a sunrise, and I learned a couple of things. You need a tri-pod. My dad bought me one, but my brain didn’t wake up and remember this morning :). And you need a coffee. Got one of those a little later in the day.

I plan on going back and trying again soon. The scenery would lend itself to HDR so easily. I’m excited to see how that works out! BTW that’s really teal you see through the window. That wasnt me.

I really like over saturated processing right now. Or desaturating to get a B&W. Maybe it’s because I’m a beginner :).

One of the coolest murals I’ve seen in a long time.

One of the mines.

Enjoy your weekend!

Versatile!!!!

That is the name of the award that was bestowed to me a couple of days ago by an amazing blogger/photographer/mommy and the list goes on. Her name is Holly and she writes Photo By Holly here at WordPress.  Everyone and anyone should definitely check out her page. She is a courageous person that is always positive, even in the face of adversity.  Thank you tons Holly!!!

The rules are simple.

1) Thank the person who honored you and give a link to their blog.

2) Tell 7 random facts about yourself.

3) Pass the award to 15 new found bloggers.

4) Contact each blogger onto whom you pass the award and let them know.

5) Let the giver of the award know you accept it or not.

Well let’s get to it! I have done #1 with no problem! 2 is much harder… Ummm…yeah…here we go.

1.  I always said I never wanted kids. Bahaha! Look at me now! I would have a bunch if I could.

2.  I eat at least one bag of gummy bears a night.

3.   My favorite movies are Disney Movies.

4.  I have only recently begun to enjoy shopping, but I hate spending money.

5.  I was in the Air Force, and have fired an M-16, Saw, 50 cal, as well as a bunch of other guns. I have a Berretta Tom Cat.

6.  I research and plan everything to death!

7.  I would rather drive a stick shift than an automatic car any day. And make it FAST!

Wow…now that that’s over J.

I would like to pass this on to 15 other bloggers but honestly, I do not have time to keep up with that many and half of the people I do follow have already been given this award. So here are some that to my knowledge haven’t got it yet and totally deserve it. I have heard that people don’t appreciate this in the blogging world though, so if you’re one of those people…sorry.

1.  David Williams. He takes amazing photo’s, has been nothing but supportive, has a beautiful family, and always keeps me coming back to see what he’s doing, every day.

2.  My 3rd Eye.  Sasi always has helpful tips and I love looking at his photos!

3.  Emily’s Photography Blog.  This lady can take amazing photo’s, paint, and has the cutest “kids”.

4.  Jolene’s Life in Focus.  She takes amazing photos, as well as puts a lot of thought and SOUL into what she writes.

5. greysqrl.  He takes great photo’s, has an adorable family,

6. M. Cooley Photography.  Michelle is a lawyer by day a photography lover for life.  She is always helpful, even when in the middle of getting married and enjoying her honeymoon. 

7.  Amanda Pfeifer’s Blog.  Crafty for sure. She has two beautiful babies, and documents their life beautifully!

8.  Wesley’s Photoblog. Have just recently found his site, and I’m glad I did. He has a great eye and is doing great portrait work.

9.  the 365 project.  This lovely lady just started her 365 photo project in January and has done better than I have!

10.  Journey Photographic. Traveling the world and taking amazing photo’s along the way. Lucky!

Well, I think that’s all I’m going to do for now.  15 is a lot!

If you are one of the recipients – you can either save the Versatile Blogger image, and then post to your own page, or you can copy the image location, and put in the html code.

A big thank you to anyone who stops by my little blog! I appreciate it!

Sal noticed these flowers when we were on our way to the V.A. today. I have never seen them and they were only on the side of the road, not in the desert, and only for a couple of miles. Does anyone know what they are? They were so pretty and they smelled so good!

Milestones

How freaking awesome is the processing on this picture? I love it! Thanks to presets :)!  What a beautiful day in sunny Southern California! I’m not even sure how hot it was! It was definitely hot enough to go swimming in the blow up dragon/volcano pool we have. 🙂 So the title of todays post has multiple meanings. One of them have to do with the rug rat you see above.  The pool that was previously mentioned has a dragon on it. You have to go through his legs to go down the little slide. Roman for some reason is terrified of it. He has never let us blow it up, let alone get near it. For the last year he asks “what is dragon doing” when we go in the garage, which is quiet a bit.  So weird because he loves the movie How to Train Your Dragon but he’s not having any of this one! But…today he actually let us blow up the pool and the majority of the dragon (not the head). He even went through the legs, as long as we were standing right there :). Growing up so fast, but still so little. I love it!!!

Another preset that I’m in love with! On to the remaining milestones.  One and a half were reached today! First…I got a promotion! Freakin soooooo excited! I have the best boss ever, and am so thankful to have had him! Its great when the big guy takes care of his employee’s! I officially feel like I’m a big kid at Journeyman Level! Thank you!!!

The half…I picked up my diploma for my Associates of Business Administration! I finished back in December, but just now got the diploma :). Trying to decide if I’ll “walk”. I wont for my B.S. because it’s all the way in Alabama, so…. Yeah, not sure yet. I’ll figure it out.  What an amazing Monday! I plan on carrying on the momentum for the rest of the week :)).

Is it Nothing or is it Something?

A photo of nothing…ahhh but it is. I got the chance to sit down with Jake for a couple of hours today and learn a lot about everything photo related. I learned so much I wouldn’t even know where to begin. LR3 is starting to become clearer, I know how to properly import and export my photo’s. I understand metering better, I know shortcuts….and the list goes on and on! I needed some photo’s on my card in RAW to practice while I was there, and this is a little of what I took and how they came out after I learned a little about tweaking them. So excited!!!!!!! Its limitless what you can do with the right tools! 

Just Photo’s

The Pressure Is Off

Funny thing….now that I don’t feel like I have to post, I’m looking forward to it again. I’m not so stressed about it. I don’t worry all day about what I’m going to take a picture of. I’m letting it come to me again. I feel like picking up my camera and traipsing about for my own enjoyment. Weird, because I’m that person who does some of my best work under pressure. Or at least I like to think I do. So I went out today and took pictures of nothing…and LOVED it!!! Dont get me wrong, I always love taking pictures, but I felt freedom again. Free to take crappy pictures, free to take no pictures, free to take pictures of stuff only I would probably like. I’m not trying to take pictures for anyone else, just me.

Here’s a fun picture. One day about a month ago, Roman and I were coloring the driveway with chalk. I wasnt paying attention at some point obviously, and when it was time to go inside what did my eyes see???? This amazing contemporary art piece by Roman Dean himself!!! Not sure how to get chalk off of stucco without destroying it, so it stayed. I’m really not to concerned with it to tell you the truth, and when its a bit warmer outside I’ll try to wash it off.

This is a picture of the Nectarine tree we planted in the back yard of my parents house shortly after we lost Gigi. It was dedicated in remembrance of her by our family.  Last year it had an amazing yield of Nectarines, but I think this year is going to be a little slower. It seems that every other year is an off-year for fruit trees here.  We call the fruit Gigi fruit, and the flowers before the fruit are so pretty! My dad trimmed her up this year and replanted all the little branches and they are taking off. We plan on planting a bunch of them in our yard this spring :).

My moms best friend is visiting from Alaska right now and they asked me to take their picture. I have to say this is probably one of the best pictures I have ever seen of my mom, and it’s not because I took it (even though it’s not bad if I do say so myself). It’s because she’s really smiling! She’s not faking it! Love it! Anyways, I’m off to bed! See you all when I see you ;).

Roman’s Photo’s

I’ve been promising to download photo’s from Roman’s camera, and without further ado….

K….so I took a couple of these but he’s so darn cute.

He got my good side 🙂

Nice perspective…

This picture is crazy. Not sure what the floaties are.

Another weird one.

I think that’s Sal. Lol! Well there you have it. Off to do some homework!!!

Juju’s Birthday

It was this little cuties Birthday and Baptism party on Saturday. This is our niece Juju. Full name not to be disclosed ;). I can’t believe that she’s already 1. How time flies!

We baptised Roman when he turned 1, but it was nothing like this party! Nobody ever tells me nothin!!! That’s a George Lopez reference f.y.i. :). They had a pinata, a taco truck, bolo, music, everything! I’m taking notes you guys!!! Next time! 

This is the lil miss with her Nina. So cute! There were so many photo’s to choose from! LR3 is getting a little easier for me. I plan on ordering a book soon to really get the hang of it, but I’ve already cut my basic editing time down drastically. While I think the 365 plan is long gone by now, I do plan on posting at least a couple of times a week. It’s really important for me to chronicle a year of our life, but doing it everyday is stretching me a little thin. And the reality of it is that I’m doing this for Roman, but if its taking away from Roman, or adding another hour to my schedule at night that I don’t get to sleep (making me a grouch in the morning) it’s not worth it everyday. 

I was feeling pretty guilty about it for a while as you guys know, but I think I’m at ease with posting every other day instead of every day.  Priorities right?  Thank you every one for assuring me that whatever I choose is okay! I’m glad I have met you all, and look forward to sticking around and progressing with every one, but being way less stressed! Ill leave you with this lovely little face that makes me smile from ear to ear!

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