Saturday, December 31, 2011

Merry Christmas {Bokeh Style}!

I had a lot of fun this year with Christmas lights bokeh!!!

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And then I had to try my hand at starburst lights....



Sunday, December 4, 2011

Book Report: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Two words.... THRILL RIDE!!!! This book is better than any amusement park ride or haunted house you will ever find!! I promise... it’s THAT GOOD!!! So if you are an adrenaline junkie, hurry and read this book ASAP!! Seriously... do not hesitate like I did!!!!!! I’ve started reading this book numerous times in the past year or so but never got past the first chapter. And then so many times in the past couple months, I’ve heard “you have got to read these books”! So after my sister, Sheena, read them... I thought it was about time I got started. SO “thrilled” I did! In all honesty, it’s a pretty morbid storyline, especially for a YA (young adult) series, and I wasn’t quite sure I wanted to indulge in this kind of adventure.... I'm so glad I didn't not read it based on that reason.

The story takes place in a futuristic North America now called Panem, where the country is in ruins after a war of sorts and is now separated into 12 poverty-stricken districts plus the lush capitol. As part of a punishment and agreement for the 12 district’s survival, the capitol requires one teen boy and one teen girl to fight in the annual Hunger Games. Twenty-four participate in these games and fight to their death ultimately leaving only one survivor and winner of The Hunger Games. (For a fabulous review and synopsis of the book, please visit my sweet friend and fellow blogger, Susan’s blog.)

And if reading this book wasn't exciting enough.... the book has been made into a movie and will be released March 23, 2012! EXCITED doesn't even begin to explain how I feel about this!!!!! Oh to see the action......

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Weight Watchers Chocolate Muffins!

A girl at my office made these delicious muffins..... and I couldn't believe they were only 2ish WW points! These yummy things only require purchasing two ingredients!! A devil's food cake mix and a 15 ounce can of pumpkin... and getting generic brands, it was under $2! I had an almost empty bag of chocolate chips laying around, so I threw them in too. Add 1/2 cup of water and you are good to go! Bake them on 350 for 35 minutes and they come out perfectly moist!!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

11.11.11 @ 11:11

Just had to do it.... a post on November 11, 2011 at 11:11. Of course I had to set the entry to post at that time since I am working, but it's my blog so I can set the rules! :) Ha! And because I miss her and love her sweet little dirty face, you get a picture of my niece, Alivia (taken last Memorial weekend)!


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Kippen & Bennett Family (Grand Rapids Family Photographer)

I was so excited when Kari asked me to photograph her family! Kari is the very first person Jeff and I met in Michigan!  She was our real estate agent who helped us find our home!  Then for a couple years, I babysat her youngest children (now 15 and 12).  So it was a special experience for me to do their session!  Kari's two precious grandson's were so cute!!!!  They are typical busy little boys who had me chasing them around the park!  It was a blast!!!

I think one of my favorite images is of the entire family sitting on the bank of the creek!  My friend Amy told me about a great free action on The CoffeeShop Blog that worked absolutely perfectly for it.  The action is called "Denim" and changes the image to all black & white except for anything blue (such as blue jeans).  In the case of this image, the family all wore some form of a blue shirt!  I adore how it turned out and Kari is actually contemplating getting this made into a large canvas print.  I think it would look fabulous on the wall!  Very decorative and artsy!

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And a slide show of all their images. Enjoy!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Insta-Friday - 11/4

I can't believe it's already Friday again! Makes me happy!  And I am so addicted to Hipstamatic.... what a fun little app!  Here's to another week of Insta-Friday!

So Grace and I were sitting in the church lobby last Sunday and there was a kids wooden block sitting there - one side had an S and one side had a G - so we had to take pics with it!

LOL.... Grace posing with a ginormous gourd at Walmart the day before Halloween.

She's cute.

My shadow.... I look like a major bag lady!

View from the parking ramp at work...

Still some beautiful colors in Heritage Hill

Her favorite place to lay in the fall.... the front porch!

Get that thing out of my face!

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.... Starbucks and Walmart style!

life rearranged

Friday, October 28, 2011

Insta-Friday - 10/28

The last couple of week have been..... well..... "crazy" is putting it mildly.  So I didn't have a chance to do anything for last week's InstaFriday, but I have been having a ton of fun playing with Hipstamatic this week!!  It's probably the best app ever!!!!  I've had it on my iPhone for a long time but finally just started playing with it.... and oh how fun all the little add-on packs are!!  Make sure you stop by Angela's blog... she has a TON of fabulous photos this week!

First, you get sweet Max! This is my friend Katy's son and the poor little puddin' fell asleep on this chair and slept just like this!!!! Can you imagine?  I don't know that I could EVER sleep like this, even when I was that young!

View out my back patio door! This tree is gorgeous every fall!

My beautiful baby girl, Lady Isabelle! (Using the VERY cool Cadet Blue Gel flash)

And here are a bunch from Grace's appointment today with the dermatologist. Grace has been suffering from a rash since mid-July. After months of treatments and appointments, she had patch testing done this week. On Monday, she had 70ish different patches put on her back, went back on Wednesday to have them taken off and a preliminary reading done and then today she saw the doctor who went through everything with us. Apparently she is allergic to 8-10 different things - most of which are chemicals or preservatives in personal care products and clothing. The allergy that came back the most severe was an allergy to formaldehyde. At first I was like "Where the heck is she getting formaldehyde from???????" Did you know that formaldehyde in so many things... a big one is cotton-blended clothing!!!! And Aspartame (dang it.... that diet coke is so good! So are all those sugar-free mints and gum!)

I love this aquarium in the lobby of the dermatologist's office. Some day I will have one like this!

My pretty girl waiting for the appointment...

You can totally see her gum in her mouth....

Silly girl with her gown on....


And here, Angela, this one is for you.... I didn't even know I took this image until I got home and downloaded photos!! Shoe shot!  Love my fake plaid Toms.


We got lots of handouts... one on each item she has an allergy to.  These handouts share info on what she should avoid.... and then this week, will get huge stacks of papers that outline things she CAN use! the nurse assured me this will be a ginormous manilla envelope.... fun.  I'll have to photograph that for next week's installment of Insta-Friday.


And our drive home.... still some color here in west Michigan!


And here's my sweet sister, Shantel, pouting because she was trying to tell me a story and I was trying to take her picture! :)

life rearranged

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Poladroid = Fun!

Do you remember the days of taking instant pictures with a Polaroid camera? I have tons of Polaroid pictures in boxes from my childhood!!!! I totally remember the camera spitting the picture out, and waiting for the image to appear very SLOWLY.... and you'd even wave the picture around in the air as if that helps it develop faster!

I found the most perfect thing on Angela's blog.... the Poladroid!!!! It's seriously the funnest thing ever! It's a free download, and if you were shaking your head at any of those sweet Polaroid memories I mentioned above, you MUST get it! All you do is drag and drop photos on the cute camera that shows up on your desktop and sit and watch it develop. Heck, you can even shake it to try to get it to develop faster! And if that isn't enough fun for you.... make sure you have your volume cranked and you get to hear that wonderful click followed by the camera spitting out the picture! Totally fun! As if I needed another obsession. Oh boy.

My favorite is my friend April's daughter, Madeline, with her pet chicken. I love this one most because you would never guess this image was taken in 2011... I think it's the chicken and the lack of anything modern in the image! Totally fun!

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And a couple.... Jeff and I on Mackinac Island and the cute little yellow house on the island that I would die to have.

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Friday, October 14, 2011


I found this weekly photog blogging fun via Angela's blog and just knew I had to particpate! So.... since I found out about it mid-week, I only have a few photos.... but still loads of fun!!! So what is this all about???? As quoted from the Life Rearranged blog- "Share your silly, sweet, and quirky moments of the week using nothing but cell phone pictures! A DSLR is great, but sometimes the sweetest and most telling moments need nothing more than the low resolution cammy on your phone."

Stop! And look at the raindrops on the windshield! Pretty.

Yum. Must eat this soon! Autumn in Michigan is the best!

He watches me work everyday. *sigh*

"Mom, Why are you taking my picture with your phone (as opposed to your DSLR)?"

My Lady Isabelle sleeps so lady-like! Not!

life rearranged

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

30 Day Photography Challenge - Day 30 - Self-portrait

Wow! I did it!! Although I was late on a couple days, I completed this challenge! Thanks to Misti for hosting this super fun challenge. It had me totally thinking outside the box and I got to meet a lot of great photographers and bloggers along the way!! Misti is cooking up her own list and will be hosting another one (I hope real soon!)!!!

I've been totally loving everyone's Instagram images lately, and since my camera is way too heavy to do a self-portrait, and I didn't feel like playing with a timer, I went with an iPhone pic! :) Here is me kissing my beautiful baby!