Monday, August 7, 2017

Best Shot Monday: The End of Summer

Home

Yes, the end of summer is quickly approaching ... not in a regular calendar sense, maybe, but most definitely in a school calendar sense. I caught this shot of Benny and Olivia sitting on the dock with the dogs not long before we had to head back over to Tallahassee for the start of band camp. Yep, band camp. (I know those of you of a certain age and movie generation might now be saying in your head, "This one time... at band camp..." My husband says it all the time now!) As the redheads head into high school, they will both be participating in marching band, Sarah with her clarinet and Olivia on drill team. Because they are incoming freshmen, that meant THREE WEEKS of band camp. The first week was freshmen only, 8am-noon; last week we finished up full band, 8a-5pm; and this week they have afternoon rehearsals 3pm-5pm. School starts on the 14th!  Hard to believe my girls are heading into high school.  It may be cliche, but it's so true. Time surely passes quickly!  

Friday, August 4, 2017

Getting Back to the Jewelry Bench

Cristhel necklace

While we were Home in Jacksonville for a good part of the summer, I brought some really basic jewelry supplies home with me, REALLY basic. I brought my tools and some brass wire and chain, along with a bin of beads that I've been meaning to destash on Etsy. I never got around to photographing the beads I wanted to destash, but I did spend some time at my workbench playing around with some random beads I had there at Home. I spent a couple nights working with sweet Denver at my feet, and this was one of the pieces I made then. I sent this one to my fellow shelter volunteer friend, and now volunteer coordinator, at our Jacksonville shelter as a little surprise to thank her for all she does for our shelter staff, volunteers and, of course, all the animals! Once I get my workshop cleaned up and reorganized in Tallahassee now that we are back over here, I plan to get better at spending a little more time at the jewelry bench again. Great thing to do while my art journal pages are drying!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

2017 Documented Life Project: January

Jan-1

Hello! Now that we've finally hit August, it's time to share my January edition of my 2017 Documented Life Project (snort...!). I have been chugging along in my 2017 journal on a fairly timely basis... just have a little backlog in sharing it! The Art to the 5th gals did not continue with DLP in 2017, but I decided to do another year on my own since I really liked the documenting part of it, particularly adding in pictures from the week to my journal. It really is a great reason to actually get those pictures out of my phone and into real life. I started the year out with a little booklet I received from Brave Girls Club, perfect way to start the year.

Jan-2

The first week of January was a big one for us. The Daily Dose of Awesomeness got BRACES! :-)

Jan-3

For the second week's spread, I used this stamp I got from Donna Downey Studios. Since we try to be all sorts awesome around here, it's perfect for our family. I cut that pink light out an HGTV magazine.

Jan-4

Jan-5

The inspiration for the next week came from a Sherry Canino video tutorial. So much juicy goodness out there on YouTube; I discovered Sherry through Roben-Marie Smith. The excitement this week included my turning-50-right-of-passage: a colonoscopy! Whoo hoo! All good! (and it's really true what you hear...the procedure itself is a breeze; it's the prep that makes you miserable. Be sure to get your screenings!!!)

Jan-6

Jan-7

In my goal of "using up what I have," one of the things I've been trying to do here is include more of my photographs in my journals. This little heart leaf has been in my stash for a while. I captured it in the parking lot on campus a couple years back. I'm always on the lookout for hearts in nature. This week took me back on the road for our FCSAA Winter Music Symposium. Lucky for me, it was in Jacksonville, so I got to spend a fews days at Home. Looks like I also got two shelters day in that week, one in Tallahassee and one in Jacksonville. Bonus!

Jan-8

Jan-9

Another thing I've been practicing with these past two DLP journals, in addition to using up what I have, is that some weeks I just need to embrace simplicity. That may mean using a page from a magazine that really speaks to me or, as in this case, using a fun little postcard size message. I do a lot of juggling in my life, and I'm a chronic over-scheduler (I don't think I know how to live any other way...), so one way I do try to manage that is by being okay with a really simple page on occasion. After all, I don't think art journaling would be fun if it became a chore, right?

Jan-10

To see my 2016 Documented Life Project, click here. For 2015, click here. And for 2014, click here. I'll continue posting 2017 by the month until I get caught up posting! Thanks for stopping in today!  I'm excited to be heading up to Donna Downey Studios this weekend to take an art journaling class with Pam Carriker

Monday, July 31, 2017

Best Shot Monday: Meet A Very Special Four-Legged Boy

Denver

As a shelter dog photographer, sometimes you can't help but fall in love (over and over and over again...). Meet Denver.  This boy was filthy, poopy dirty, but so incredibly full of love, so after I finished my photo session the day I met him, I gave him a bath. Such a sweet gentle boy! He loved his bath, probably because it simply felt like someone loving on him. The shelter has been incredibly overcrowded this summer. At one point, Jacksonville's Animal Care and Protective Services was sheltering 739 animals in a shelter designed to hold 364. Dogs were doubled up in kennels, with guillotine doors (usually only closed for cleaning) closed to allow two dogs to be sheltered in one run, essentially giving each one only about 3' by 4' of space, instead of their normal 3' by 8'. Denver was one of the doubled up dogs. So the very next day, guess who came home with me as a foster. Yep, Denver.

Denver smile

We had a week with this special boy, and I won't lie: we all fall hard for him. Taking the fosters back in for adoption is always the hardest part, and this time was the hardest ever. Thankfully, when I took Denver back to get ready for our MEGA Pet Adoption Event, he didn't have to go into a shared kennel, but, boy, was it hard for me to put him back in that run. Tons of tears kind of hard. I usually try to do a short goodbye, but Denver's kennel wasn't ready yet, so I sat with him for nearly 30 minutes waiting for it to be cleaned. We talked about what an awesome boy he is and what a special gift he was to our family for the week he spent with us, tears running down my cheeks the whole time (God bless our shelter staff who never once looked at me like I was crazy.)

Denver ball

If you've never fostered before, please consider it. It is such a blessing to be able to have these experiences, no matter the heartbreak that comes with saying goodbye when it's time. Hopefully we've helped Denver be better prepared to start his new life successfully. I had to go out of town the day after I dropped Denver off for MEGA, but my husband sat at MEGA with him, advocating for him until he was adopted. Thankfully, that didn't take long at all! MEGA started at 10am, and Denver went home with his new forever family at 11:45am! Happy Tails, Denver!  Thank you for sharing your love with us.  

Monday, June 26, 2017

Best Shot Monday: Besties

Three amigos

These three have been best friends since they met in preschool at three years old. When we made the move to Tallahassee but kept our home in Jacksonville, this was part of the reason why: life-long friendships. I shared in this post that I've had a lot of different addresses. (I mentioned in this post that I wouldn't mind NOT finding the right family to rent our home to, and we didn't...so I love that we still have Home with a capital H, as I sit here right now writing this at Home...) 

When I was growing up and moving around, we didn't have the internet, Instagram, Facebook, Facetime, texting, online Minecraft battles, and all those other myriad ways to keep in touch with friends not in the same city as you. It's been fun for me using those avenues (except for the Minecraft battles...) to catch up with old middle school and high school friends that I lost touch with.  Despite all the downsides that all this technology has brought us at times, I'm so happy my girls have that technology now.  Pretty sure this will be one of those life-long friendships. Thank you, Lord, for this blessing.  

Monday, June 19, 2017

Best Shot Monday: Meet Morning Glory

Morning Glory_A1049840

I get to spend a good bit of time working from home in Jacksonville this summer, so that means I'm able to get back into my "home" shelter for photos! I spent this morning with the pups at Jacksonville's Animal Care and Protective Services. It was a bit of a challenging day since they are replacing the air handlers at the shelter. That meant that each back yard enclosure door that exits each run was largely blocked with a large portable a/c unit, with its exhaust vent propping the door open. The dogs and I had quite an adventure making it around that for each exit and entry back into the run!

Morning Glory here was a lot of fun. This girl has been at the shelter since early February, nearly six months. Can you believe it? She can't; that's why she's sticking her tongue out at you. She's a Lab mix, about six years old, chock full of personality. She's available for adoption at ACPS, 2020 Forest Street, Jacksonville.

Friday, June 16, 2017

2016 Documented Life Project: December

December-1

Whoo hoo! I've finally made it to the last month of my 2016 Documented Life Project! And I'm not quite six months late! :-) I'll skip the narrative this time and just share with you how much I've enjoyed this project the past few years. I've done something a little different each year, and while 2017 is proving to be pretty similar to 2016 (with the goal of using up just what I have ... and apparently I have way too much to use up), I'm keeping it up. The only thing I'm finding is that I really don't care for the actual "calendar page" parts. I think I'd just rather just do a simple background with some quick highlights of the week instead of following that restrictive grid format. The second half of 2017 may see that. Thanks for sticking with me through this project! Scroll to the bottom of the post for links to the full project!

December-2

December-3

December-4

December-5


December-6

To see the rest of my 2016 Documented Life Project, click here. For 2015, click here. And for 2014, click here. Up next, 2017!