Friday, January 30, 2009

Park Stalker

Perhaps the title of the post is a little harsh and of course I'm not labeling myself a stalker of any sort... none-the-less, I sure did feel like that creepy lady at the park. In my quest to improve my photography skills, I find myself in need of practice.. After all, practice makes perfect. Problem comes in when I want to work on my panning skills but don't have a subject that pans quite yet.. Riley's still just chillin where I put him and even when he does start to crawl, it won't be fast enough to make quite the impact I want in pictures. I supposed I could use John, but it would be a challenge to get him to cooperate (ie: swinging, running constant speed for spurts, etc.). Truly, it's just easier snapping strangers and kids are so perfect with their energy! This practice is for the toddler times... but why not get the "trail and error" out now so that when Riley is "toddling" around, I'm poised and ready. So there I sat, lurking on the sidewalk, camera in hand... I may as well have been in the shadows for as creepy as I felt. I tried to extinguish the thoughts by asking permission or chatting with the moms- whatever- it made me feel better. Despite the mildly weird feeling it gave me, I enjoyed my time at the park... Even if I was just taking pictures of other people's kids. Although there is lots of room for improvement, here are the best of my panning shots (enlarging the pictures helps to see the details):

For those interested... I tried the shots using my Tv mode (time value= shutter priority) and I opened up the shutter between the range of 1/15 to 1/30. Anyway- just playing around and figured I'd post on my experience.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Babies Galore

Now that I'm in the Mommy club- I'm knee deep in babies!!! Or it could be that all of my friends are having babies too so it's only natural to get exposure to the lil tykes! My good friend from Utah, Kate (Crazy Kate) decided to run in PF Changs for the 1/2 Marathon. She paid for the race, trained the first week then got sick of running and just held out till race day!! That's my Hypsie pal for ya! [Hypsie: defn- what you get when you combine a Gypsy and Hippie] None-the-less she survived the 13 miles and even mustered up enough energy to hang out with John and I the eve after the race! It was great meeting her little Mr. "T" and her sister's little girl! I wish I could say that Riley was as excited as we were, but he was too busy letting us know his displeasure with the over-stuffed day we had! We left the house at 9am and didn't go home again till 11pm!!!

And how fun is it to have friends who have practically the same age little ones around! I've touched on it before and here's just another quick touch... One of these days I'll have to do a REAL post on my Mommy group that I enjoy so much! But just check out these cuties!!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Olney a week late...

I've been back in Phoenix for over a week now, after the trip to the Texas Ranch. I've been so busy since I have been back that it's been truly difficult to find time to post. These next couple of weeks are going to be just as crazy... Another Crud tournament is in sight and me, being the captain of the team has been planning practices. Anyway- that's got another post written all over it.

But I wanted to do a quick recap via pictures of the visit with my folks. The pets were fun! Sam (dog) would find endless entertainment tossing around a big feed bucket for Eeyore. And the outdoor cat and her kittens were sweet as ever. My parents agreed that they are out door pets, but I will not be surprised when the kittens become indoor/outdoor cats. My mom has already started the process and it's just a matter of time till my dad caves and the process is complete! She is just such a cat lover.. I, on the other hand would be the one letting the dog in at night when he flashes his sad puppy dog eyes through the window.

Here are some pictures of my folks enjoying the visit!

Riley ready to kick the ball!

The sweet boys!
G'pa with his little men
Checkin out the Livestock
Enjoying Rilesaurus time
Brenden kisses

Oops- dropped somethingHi Sam

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Work it!!

It's fun modeling... Why didn't I do that for a career- (joke). Pam and I took turns playing photographer/model in the highly inspirational Texas ranch. Well, truth is.. everything is kinda dead right now and doesn't make for the brilliant backdrop that I was envisioning. We managed to stumble across the wheel barrel which actually framed some pretty cute pictures! Here are a few of my "best of" gallery- courtesy of Pamcakes.

Here are my fav's that I took of Pam and Brenden.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Yee Haw!!

Here we (well, Riley and I) are in little Po-dunk, Texas (in the most endearing terms) visiting my folks on the Ranch. My SIL (sister-in-law) and I planned the trip together so we get to spend time with eachother and the babies too! It's been great so far and we have been taking LOADS of pictures! As if we haven't taken enough already, we have our own little photo shoot scheduled tomorrow! Life on the ranch (at least visiting) is pretty laid back and today got a dose of excitement with the saddling up of Doc, the horse. I was certain that I'd be a natural and be able to galope around the fields, hair blowing in the wind on horseback. Well, Doc had other ideas in mind and he never even broke a walk. In fact, after once or twice around the corral Doc decided that he was done listening to my commands and he decided to stop. My dad had to basically pull him around and lead him to get him to continue with my "ride." Pam got the "Fair ride" too and unfortunately, we both agreed that the anticipation of riding the horse was way more exciting than the actually event. Oh well.. here's some pictures!

"Doc! I said Giddyup!!!"
Follow the leader
Pamcakes taking the reins
The Ol' Man showin us how it's done
After all the horse play, we decided the boys needed a bath.. How could I let an occasion like that pass without posting pictures.. Seriously!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Free Ride!

Luke AFB has really great community relations! Since we've been here we've gotten many free handouts- mostly sporting events! Do you know how expensive sporting events are to go to??? It ranges from maybe $30 for a Pro Hockey game (not bad) to hundreds of dollars for, say.. The Fiesta Bowl with your FAVORITE college football team!

Here's where we've been:

Phoenix Coyotes Hockey Games (a couple times)
This particular picture was actually military appreciation night where they gave us hats and Tshirts too!

Fiesta Bowl of 2008.

I had no vested intrest in either team, but I always enjoy going to games!

We got pretty good seats at the Insight Bowl in Tempe at ASU's Stadium.

The Cardinals Game!! My first and only Pro-Football game I've been to! And lastly, The 2009 Fiesta Bowl! This year I felt much more energy... I don't know if it was because of the teams or if it was just cuz I was excited to watch Ohio State play!

And a couple things not pictured that we got to attend for the Right price- FREE:

  • Dancing with the Stars- the tour (Shhh, John doesn't want people to know he took me to that)
  • Diamondbacks Games
  • Did I mention the Fiesta Bowl with OSU?! Some of those tickets sold for $900+ dollars.

Thank you Uncle Sam!! You take advantage of my husband most of the time, so it's nice to get a hand out once in a while!!!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Mission Oasis: COMPLETE

John's been putting the finishing touches on our backyard! The landscaping has been done for several months, but he's now focused his attention on some carpentry work- building a Barbecue island. He took his time on it, so not to get burnt out and just finished it! It looks AMAZING!! People pay BIG $$$$ for those around here and he was able to do one at probably a quarter of the price!! Maybe less! The fire pit and bench was quick work for my husband! Every time I look outside, it makes me want to grab my favorite book and sit out in our own little tropical paradise and just drift away! Once we get through the cold months ahead, we plan on throwing a killer BBQ!!!



The guys making use of the new fire pit!