31 May 2010

151~365: the disappearing photo

I wish I could show you the photo that I took today.  Unfortunately you are going to just have to take my word for it that there were photos taken today.  I used my iPhone and since we are traveling I don't always have time to transfer them to my Flickr account right away.  The phone started having problems and Apple decided to replace it.  So I lost all the photos from the 31st.

Imagine a goodbye to Dan's family and driving about two hours to the airport as Dan had to go back to work rather than hang out with us in Pennsylvania all week.  Then imagine driving about 30 minutes to my sister's house where the sky went from blue, to light rain, to pouring/blinding rain, to pelting you with hail so you had to park your car under an overpass along with about 6 other cars.

Throw in a little Mexican food and that was pretty much our Monday.

30 May 2010

150~365: on the farm


AV Mode, ISO 100, f/1.8, 1/125sec
5.30.2010 @ 1:03pm

We weren't the only siblings who came back to visit Dan's family for the weekend.  His brother Zach came up from DC as well.  With Zach came his gun, which of course Dan wanted to take out to the gun range.  Zach was only too happy to go.  I was asked to come along to document.

The above photo was of the old wooden box where you are supposed to put your used brass.

Later in the afternoon we went some place that was more my speed...

Dan's sister recently moved onto a farm.  Talk about a dream house.  I loved everything about the place from the cedar lined closets to the old windows that bubbled and distorted as you looked out over the farm. The old trees, chicks, cows, and gardens were awesome!

Mabry enjoyed the old swing and playing with Aunt Lindsay...

The chicks were so soft to pet...

I don't know if she knew what to do with the cows, Slim Jim and Fillet.  I am not sure they knew what to make of her either.

Someday Dan promised we would get our own little piece of Heaven too.  For now, the military life is the way for us.


Thanks for letting us come and visit Lindsay and Matt!

29 May 2010

149~365: the surprise


AV Mode, ISO 200, f/5.6, 0.3 sec
5.29.2010 @ 11:06am

I have been working and planning for this day for months now.  Our friends, Nicole and Paul, are expecting a baby next month.  Another friend, Dana, who lives up in New England and I planned since the beginning of the year to throw her a surprise shower in Pennsylvania.

Talk about a multi-person, multi-state endeavor.  This is also a part of the reason I have been so busy lately and have had a bit of a hard time staying current on my posting.

The great news is Nicole (and Paul) was totally taken by surprise, everyone had lots of fun and the baby will be here soon!

28 May 2010

148~365: sleeping beauty rides again or the post when i ask a bunch of questions

iPhone Best Camera app

Is it just me or did Mabry just grow up over night?  When did her hair start getting so long?  When did she start looking more like a little girl than a baby??  Where is this time going?

27 May 2010

147~365: around and around and around she goes

iPhone TiltShiftGen App

It was nice to take a few minutes out of the day to ride the merry go round.

25 May 2010

145~365: hello cupcake


AV Mode, ISO 3200, f/5, 1/50sec
5.25.2010 @ 10:35pm

Another quick project I worked on yesterday was making a new pin cushion. Apparently the literal list of at least twenty important-must-be-done-this-week things just didn't compare to the need for the little felt cupcake pin cushion. Don't you just love the "sprinkles" I sewed on top? They are my favorite part.

24 May 2010

144~365: pay no attention to the little boy in the mirror, he's having a bad day

AV Mode, ISO 3200, f/5.6, 1/13 sec
5.24.2010 @ 11:50 PM

Today was a horrible, terrible rotten, no good, very bad day. The kind that makes you wish you could crawl back under the covers and demand a do over. Or better yet, wish that you never stepped one foot out of bed at all.

I have a rather long list of things that I need to accomplish this week. One thing I wanted to do was get my haircut. My hair has sort of been in a holding pattern in terms of style for awhile now. I was sick of it. I wanted a change.

When I decide to cut my hair, I want it cut then. Aren't most women like that?

So I went to the mall and marched into a salon and told the girl what I was looking for:

1. I want an actual hair style.
2. I don't want it to be too short, I like being able to pull back my hair.
3. I want something cute and fun. I don't want a "mom" haircut.

This was then internalized by the beautician and interpreted to mean butcher this lady's hair like you have never butchered before. I had my back to the mirror so I had no idea what was going on. I just felt a lot of cutting. When she finally spun me around, I wanted to throw up. It was bad. Really, really bad.

I left with the hope that coming home and flat ironing it myself might make things better. It only made the situation worse. I had a layer that was maybe 3 inches long (WHEN DID I ASK FOR LAYERS?!) but only on ONE SIDE OF MY HEAD. The other side that didn't have the tiny layer, that was a good inch or two longer everywhere compared to the other side.

Again, I didn't know if I should cry, throw up, or pull a G.I. Jane and just buzz it all off. Honestly, I came about thisclose to buzzing it.

In the end I went back to the salon where I met the manager who attempted to fix the sad situation which was and still is my hair. She apologized a lot.

More length had to be cut off just to even things up. While it looks much better than it did, I am still miserable. Going to the salon is a once in a while treat for me. One that usually makes me come out feeling like a million bucks. Even though I don't think of myself as a vain person, my self-esteem with this haircut is circling the drain. Poor Dan didn't know what to do when I sat on the couch and just cried tonight apologizing over and over to him that he has to look at this mess.

On the plus side I am in the market for some really cute hats. Anyone know of a good place to look? I have tons of wool ones, but I doubt that they will work for summer time in North Carolina.

23 May 2010

143~365: mirror mirror


AV Mode, ISO 800, f/4.5, 1/8 sec
5.23.2010 @ 5:45PM

Mabry and I spent the better part of today at A and L's. Dan has a major test in the morning he needed to study for. So I thought taking the kiddo and leaving the house for him to have some peace and quiet was the best thing to do.

A and I kept busy making coupon organizers and aprons.

Mabry and L n kept themselves busy by staring at themselves in a mirror. This is by far one of the more popular pastimes with these two.


22 May 2010

142~365: the egg and i

AV Mode, ISO 3200, f/5.6, 1/100 sec
5.22.2010 @ 2:12 PM

I wanted to try and experiment with the different ways shadows and light change the look of a photograph. One way I did this was by photographing an egg on a white piece of paper. The goal was to make the egg stand out with more depth than something like this:


Amazing what a little change in perspective can do.

21 May 2010

it feels so good

Guess who finally got off her bottom and downloaded all the photos from the camera onto the computer?

That's right, you can now find:
and the most anticipated of all Day 130 (my office transformation photos) here on the blog.

It feels so good to be caught up!

141~365: like a baby

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/5, 1/25sec
5.21.2010 @ 4:45 pm

Mabry can be quite the little Mama when she wants to be. Just look at how she is holding her Sheebus while she watches a movie.

20 May 2010

140~365: far away there

Taken with my iPhone using the Best Camera App

Far away
there in the sunshine
are my highest aspirations.
I may not reach them,
but I can look up
and
see their beauty,
believe in them,
and
try to follow where they lead.
~Louisa May Alcott

19 May 2010

hello, stranger.

I am sure by now you have noticed a total lack in my ability to post my 365 photos in a timely manner.

The truth is right now I am just trying to keep my head above water and quite frankly about 99% of the time I feel like am failing miserably. I have very seriously considered stopping this 365 project in an effort to give myself breathing room. You have no idea the amount of pressure I put on myself to take a photo and then post it every single day or just how bad I feel when I can't seem to find that extra time in the day I need to upload the photo and type up the post.

I want to see it through. This is a project that I started for myself. So yes, days 135-139 (and also day 130---I have a lot to type for that one) have all had photos done on those days. They are just sitting on my camera card until time is found.

The good news is in a few weeks it won't feel quite this stressful any more, or at least I keep telling myself that. In the meantime I am going to just keep paddling for dear life. I do hope you will stick around with me.

Hoping to get caught up on my uploading and posting after tomorrow night's Grey's Anatomy.

139~365: thinking outside the box

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/1.8, 1/60 sec
5.19.2010 @ 7:13pm

I finally settled on a color scheme I am happy with for our bedroom. It only took me over a year to do! This quilt is one of the prettiest, softest ones I have ever seen/touched. I love it.

Oh and those frames above the bed, I found them for $5 each on clearance at Michaels. A little spray paint and creative thinking and I came up with this.

18 May 2010

138~365: whale spout

Taken with the iPhone Best Camera app

Mabry's hair has taken a turn for the worse. It is totally crazy and usually sticking up in a billion different directions. The result for the last few days has been the whale spout themed pigtail.

Rock that look Mabry.

17 May 2010

137~365: corks

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/1.8, 1/50 sec
5.17.2010 @ 12:25 pm

This is one of my favorite photos I have taken this year. Just thought I would share that with you.

16 May 2010

136~365: tiny spectacles

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/1.8, 1/160sec
5.16.2010 @ 6:12PM

I found this cute necklace right around my birthday this year. I wore them last night when I went to see Wicked. As you could see in my previous photo, the seats we had were close to the ceiling of the place. Upper, upper balcony is no joke. I kept putting these glasses up to my face during the play. As though they would some how morph into the real deal and help me see the stage better.

15 May 2010

135~365: wicked

Taken with my iPhone camera

Yesterday I went on a girls night out up in Durham. Myself and three of my friends all got dressed up and went to Tobacco Road for dinner. The food was excellent. Everything is made fresh right there in the kitchen and they tried to use as much local produce/meat as they can. I had a turkey cucumber sandwich that was delicious. Oh and their fresh salsa...heaven.

After dinner we went to Wicked. This has been a night that has been on the calendar since the very beginning of the year. All I am going to say is that it was well worth the wait and if you ever get the chance, go. In the meantime, purchase the soundtrack the songs are nothing short of addictive.

Photography wasn't allowed. So I have just a few photos I took of the stage before everything started. Since we were up in the balcony it made it a little harder to get a good shot.

14 May 2010

134~365:the golden rule

iPhone Camera

Today was an exceptionally frustrating day.

Rather than rant and rave about the specifics, lets just boil it down to the root of the problem. No one cares about the golden rule anymore. Seriously, whats up with that? Is it that hard to treat another fellow human being with respect? Is it that hard to take pride in your job? Surely if you went into a business you would except a certain level of respect, service and consideration? Is it really that much to expect that from others in return?

Anyhow, it was a bad day that was made much better by a Hubs who wanted to cheer us all up. He did this with Mexican food and a trip to Gander Mountain where the kids played in cages and wore animals on their heads making us all laugh.

Maybe today wasn't so bad after all.

13 May 2010

133~365:half baked

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/1.8, 1/50sec
5.13.2010 @ 5:00 PM

While walking three miles this morning in an effort to lose some of the extra winter fat I apparently started to store around my midsection:

Amber: I am going to make some blueberry muffins to send to [her deployed husband.]

Me: Oh you know what, I have some chocolate chip whole grain ones I bought awhile ago to bake. Maybe we could make those too?

From there it was just a downward spiral that resulted in:

Blueberry muffins
Whole grain chocolate chocolate chip muffins
A double batch of spritz cookies
Pizzelles
Peanut butter cookies

Oh and we also tried to make a triple batch of Forgotten cookies, only you don't want to triple the batch with meringues. That was just a big baking fail.

12 May 2010

132~365: lando commando



Somebody needed his two-year-old photos taken. I was more than happy to help out.

Not to mention, what a cute subject!

He makes a sweet Prince Charming too:

11 May 2010

131~365: a tale of two sheep

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/4, 1/6 sec
5.11.2010 @ 11:21 PM

Mabry's beloved Sheebus was banished to the laundry today. This was fine in the morning when she was busy playing and catching up on the latest Disney movie. When nap time came around the fact that Sheebus was still in the laundry basket waiting for the washer to take him for a spin Mabry became very upset refusing to go to bed.

We tried bribing her with different stuffed animals. We tried explaining that Sheebus was dirty and really just needed a good bath. Nothing was working. So in an act of sheer desperation we pulled out "Stella" Sheebus's cousin from the big city who was just visiting for the day.

Mabry took one look at Stella and said skeptically, "This isn't Sheebus." This was followed with stuffing her fingers in her mouth, laying back on the pillow and tapping her face with Stella. (All normal parts of her going to sleep routine.) So Dan and I left the room and went about our nap time routine. Which is to say I ran around like a lunatic trying to accomplish as much as possible without having a screaming toddler demanding my full attention and Dan played video games.

In the end Stella didn't cut it. Which was very clear when Mabry chucked her out in the hall and starting screaming for Sheebus.

So our daughter took a nap with a very smelly-and-gross-just-been-pulled-straight-out-of-the-bottom-of-the-dirty-clothes-basket stuffed animal.

10 May 2010

130~365:the office

I finally caved in and painted the office walls. I had been holding off since we bought this house, choosing to live with the horrible builder's beige instead. The main reason was because initially this room was a toy room and therefore at the very bottom of my decorating priorities. When we changed things around and made this the office, I was still hesitant to paint. What if some day we needed it for a nursery? Would I really want to paint the room a second time?

I know I have mentioned/shown/linked to this nursery several times now. What can I say, I just big-fat-sloppy-wet-kiss love it. So I used it as inspiration for my office. Plus, if the room ever needed to be used as a nursery in the future, it wouldn't involve any repainting.

After painting the pale grey on the walls, it seemed everything was in need of a face lift. (I apologize now for the total lack of before photos.)

The first thing I did was say goodbye to my big green desk. A good sanding, a coat of primer and two coats of paint turned it into my sunny yellow desk:

The Office 5.10.2010

The handles on the desk were changed out too. I found them in the dollar bin at Michaels. Talk about perfect!

Then I took down the sheer drapes in the master bedroom and moved them both to this window. I like how full it looks having both of the drapes hanging up there:

The Office #4

The curtain tie back was a 50% off find in the knob section at Hobby Lobby. I think I paid maybe $3 for it.

The chair for my sewing machine was an old one Dan's cousin had given me. The back on it was pretty damaged. So Dan and I took our jigsaw to it and cut it out (I still need to buy a few pieces of wood to make a new back). Then it was sanded and spray painted black. I took the seat off and bought new foam and material and made a new cushion.

The French board hanging above the sewing machine was recovered in the fabric that had been covering the seat originally. (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle peeps!)

The Office #5

My current favorite part of the room has to be the new bookshelves. My old shelves were fine, but not really what I wanted for the office. My original plan had been to find some old solid wood bookshelves in various sizes that I could paint. Then I thought about taking some old school lockers and turning them into storage/shelves instead. I was having a hard time finding anything and had been looking for several months.

A few weekends back I went to a church yard sale. This sale was HUGE and there were people everywhere. Across the lawn I spotted two very old, very dirty sets of metal and glass shelves that had been used on Fort Bragg (or so said the labels on some of them). The price tag said $50. So I asked a worker if he would be willing to split the shelves up and only sell me one set for $20. He agreed and then paused and said, "I'll tell you what, if you want it you can have it all for $20." SOLD.

An afternoon spent cleaning and painting these cabinets made a world of difference. The color is Valspar Mediterranean and can be found in the spray paint section at Lowes. I also bought some fabric from Hobby Lobby and cut it to line the backs of the shelves for a little more color. (Please excuse the wires under the one cabinet. This is where Dan keeps the laptop to charge and they are usually a lot better hidden. Whoops!)

The Office #1

The last step was to decorate the walls. I am in love with walls covered in photos. I confessed my love for all things photo wall to Amber who suggested I do it in my office. So we pulled out every single frame and other hang-able item I had in my house and went to work. A little scrapbook paper, some spray paint and voila a photo collage wall:

The Office #2

The blue clip thing hanging near the desk (how technical am I?) was actually a leftover piece of beadboard from when we put that up in our dining area last year and some gorilla glue and clothes pins. Then I just spray painted it. It works great for keeping things organized and it beats the $18 asking price for the exact same thing I saw at Hobby Lobby.

I also hung up a shelf that had been in our bedroom to display even more photographs next to my desk. For a little something extra I picked up a candelabra vinyl that was on sale for $8 at Target and put that up too:

The Office #3

So, what do you think of the office transformation?

**Edited 5.21.2010: I changed the photo wall photo from what it had originally been to show a few more updated changes and additions.

09 May 2010

129~365: mother's day

iPhone Shake It App

I tried to take a photo of my girlie and me on Mother's Day. Someone was more interested in making silly faces at the camera and laughing hysterically than anything else.

Wouldn't change a thing.

Happy Mother's Day!

Ps. I posted days 125 and 126 finally!

08 May 2010

128~365: guess where

iPhone Hipstamatic App

Can anyone guess where we spent most of our evening??

07 May 2010

127~365: miss purple

Taken with my iPhone using the TiltShiftGen App

I know that I am currently missing two days of this 365 project (#125 and #126). Technically the photos aren't missing. They are just still sitting on the camera card in my camera. I promise to get them uploaded to the computer and on here tomorrow. I also have a few other fun posts I am planning. So be watching for them.

Today I thought I would just spend a few minutes listing some of the funny things Mabry has been saying/doing lately. I know it won't be all that interesting to most of you, but someday I will be glad I have a record of these sorts of things.

1. Mabry is convinced there is a monster in the kitchen. She is constantly bugging me to check for the monster and isn't satisfied until I have ducked my head under the dining room table and walked all the way around the island checking.

2. Mabry also informed me that the monster stole her nostrils.

3. As of this evening the monster had yet to give them back to her. I have been asking her almost every day for a week now if they have been returned. She usually sighs and then sadly says, "No. No nostrils."

4. Today we attended a dinner celebrating the end of Dan's language class. His teacher and another Tagalog teacher were at the dinner. The one teacher's name is Mrs. Brown. When the teacher introduced herself to us Mabry said, "Hi Brown. I'm Purple."

5. In the mornings she likes to climb in bed with me and take my arm and pretend to pick things off of it and eat. Much like apes do with their mates or their young. This will keep her happy and entertained for at least ten minutes. While weird, I will take any extra sleep time I can get.

6. Instead of saying "I don't know" she says "I g'know." Now we all say it. We also call smoothies "twosies" because of her.

06 May 2010

126~365: just hanging out

TV Mode, ISO 200, f/22, 1/200 sec
5.6.2010 @ 3:43 PM

Dan jumped for the first time since December today. They have been using new parachutes and something about them has made for some very hard landings. Dan said that it is mostly user error because of the way they are braking.

Mabry and I sat and watched as person after person hit the ground a little too hard and then with all the wind were dragged all over the place.

Thankfully Dan seemed to have a fairly easy landing. He told me that was because he didn't brake at all. Which is a great thing to tell your wife. Now all I can picture is him hurtling towards earth and not even trying to stop it. Obviously there wasn't much in the way of hurtling as you can tell from the photo. He spent a bit of time just sort of hanging out up there.

One of these days when he is more comfortable with what he is doing he told me he wants to take his phone or a small camera and take some photos.

04 May 2010

124~365: the house that mabry built

AV Mode, ISO 200, f/1.8, 1/40sec
5.4.2010 @ 10:31 AM

Today I took Mabry to the story time at the local library. While she wasn't too interested in sitting and listening to the story, she was fascinated with these blocks that came with a little wooden train. She kept stacking them up and then telling me she built a house.

This is the first time I have seen her build something with no assistance. Honestly, I don't know if this is a skill she should have developed long ago, if she is ahead of the curve or right on track. It doesn't matter. The fact is she is doing it now.

I am in awe of being able to watch this amazing little person grow up and learn new things and discover the world around her.

Be watching for more photos from our adventures today. Not only did we go to the library, but we also spent time playing in the park and having a picnic lunch.

03 May 2010

123~365: silly girlie


Taken with my iPhone using TiltShiftGen app

iheartfaces is doing the best challenge this week and I can't tell you how sad I am not to be participating. The problem is finding a younger photo of myself that I can easily recreate around here. Not exactly easy. Especially with everything that has been going on for the last week or so.

Which means I am just going to have to sit this one out. I am however, determined to bring this idea to life at some point during this challenge. I am actually hoping to get my sister to maybe join in the fun when I see her later this month. I have loads of photos of the two of us as kids.

My photo of the day is really all about asking myself one question, Why is it two-year-olds can get away with invading your personal space?

Maybe a more important question would be: If given the chance, would I be arrested if I invaded Gerard Butler's space the way Mabry does mine?

02 May 2010

122~365: sneak peek

AV Mode, ISO 1600, f/1.8, 1/250 sec
5.2.2010 @ 2:05 pm

Just a sneak peek at what has been going on around here lately. Can't wait to give you the big reveal later in the week!!

01 May 2010

121~365: quail hollow championship


Taken with my iPhone

This photo was taken pretty late tonight. I think it is safe to say that it was a long day and everyone is incredibly exhausted.

Mabry and I spent a good bit of the day going to garage sales, finding amazing treasures and then working towards recreating them into something even more amazing.

Also we got really high on spray paint fumes.

Not on purpose. It just comes with the territory when you spray paint roughly a dozen or more large items in your garage in an effort to stay out of the blazing hot sun.

More on the amazing finds later in the week.

Dan spent the day in Charlotte following Phil Mickelson and some other golfers around the Quail Hollow Championship. I was able to score him two free tickets through the USO of North Carolina and he was pretty excited. He would have taken Mabry and I with him, but they didn't allow cameras and I would have been bored since I know nothing about golf. Plus I am sure we would have been asked to leave pretty early on as Mabry can only stay quiet for...who am I kidding the girl even talks in her sleep.

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