Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Austin Open House

Christy and I have worked together for 6 years now! She teaches Utah Studies in the pod above mine and was hired the year after I was. Even though the majority of us get a little tired after managing 200 + kids each day, Christy is truly one of the sweetest people I know and is always asking others how they're doing and giving compliments to uplift our spirits. She had her wedding and main reception down in her hometown of Ephraim and asked me to take a few photographs for her Salt Lake open house.

My trusty assistant.

I got to see a lot of familiar faces from school. It was like a mini Fort Herriman Reunion!

I had to get a picture with Lauren before the night was over!

This was actually the first indoor event I've ever been asked to photograph. I had to rent a Speedlite and some parts were definitely an adventure but John was a helpful assistant and it was nice to be surrounded by friends.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Girls Camp 2014

Girls Camp this summer was probably one of my most favorite years yet! I am so grateful for our wonderful camp director, Heather, who is super organized and enthusiastic and makes everything engaging for the girls. I'm also so happy that we have our camp assistants, priesthood help, and leaders that provide support for this huge event.

This year there were some new things! Bears! Yes, bears! They found claw marks raked in one of the tents in the neighboring camp ground that was less than a mile away. Have you heard of Tim Treadwell (aka the Grizzly Man)? I wish I hadn't.

It also rained this year and our girls and leaders were caught in a downpour while trying to set up camp. Everyone was such a good sport though that these seemed like minor complications. Except for maybe the bear. Just the idea still gives me the shivers!

We went off site this year and did some rock climbing in Heber. Leaders were given a chance to climb too. They call me Sis. Ninja now.

We got to go canoeing in this pretty little lake. They threatened the girls by saying there were leeches in the water so they wouldn't try to tip the canoes. Haha!

Sheldon's masterful rain cover for our tent. Too bad there aren't such things as bear covers!

Of course there was lots of crafting.

But we were also cool and learned about knives and hatchets and blood circles. Blood circle just sounds so hardcore.

The mountains in Woodland were green and there were lots of little chipmunks, rabbit, and deer around the site.

Some spiritual study moments.

And it wouldn't be Girls Camp at Monarch Meadows without manicure time. The girls also include any Prieshood leaders that happen to be in the vicinity in this ritual. 

Our fearless camp director!

I learned a few new songs up at camp and there was lots of Big Booty.

The girls also composed some songs of their own. And lucky Hanni in the middle there gets to also have me as her science teacher this year in school! I hope these kids don't get sick of me!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

CK on Studio 5

My sister-in-law, CK was featured on KSL Studio 5 this week to talk about her company Shabby Apple. You can watch the video here!

We're also really excited for Carl and CK as the new Shabby Apple store is scheduled to open soon in Fashion Place Mall here in Utah. Carl has a real eye for design and put together an amazing look for the storefront!

Life Lately

I just want say that I am very glad that I decided not to take night classes for studio photography this fall. Best decision ever. Even though I loved what I was learning and thought my professor was top notch, I wouldn't have been able to handle it.  Sometimes doing more is not better and focusing on doing a few things well is better for one's sanity.

Those who know me can probably gauge the state of my life by the amount of photography I'm doing. Since I haven't posted pictures or picked up my camera for about a month, that tells you something.

IVF has been in full swing and what was supposed to last 9 days turned into a 25 day ordeal. Yesterday was spent in a Valium torpor eating gummy bears and watching Full Metal Alchemist.  I think adults underestimate the enjoyment that can be had from a well made cartoon or anime. John, in the meantime, headed over to the ward party and ate from the taco truck and played ultimate. I think he was pretty happy there and is probably getting tired of being stuck in the house with me as I recover from various procedures.

School is back in session and this year has honestly been the craziest ever! As one of my fellow teachers has said, I feel like I'm a first year teacher all over again (and this is after 7 years of teaching!).  We're piloting a new one-to-one laptop initiative which means every student on our team gets a Chrome Book to use. They're eventually supposed to do and submit all their assignments online.  It didn't sound so bad at first, in fact we were excited, but then we learned quickly that 7th graders don't know how to use a computer or the internet or even type. They don't know how to refresh a page or restart their computers, or spell the words for their email address to sign into the computer ("district" has an r in it!). Lately I feel like I'm teaching a computer class and not science. Hopefully this all pays off in the end.

And to finish off with a few happy events, John's parents were in town for Avril's blessing. My dad is coming to visit this week. We're off to Denver after that for a cousin's wedding.  Lots of good things to look forward to!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Cap & Gown

I couldn't help but do one more comparison set while I was going through old pictures.

My nephew Thaddeus and my brother Dave at Mt. Carmel's graduation this year.

 My graduation 14 years earlier at the same high school. 

 Jen, Larinna, Rhiannon, and Andre in the background.

John's graduation in Denver at the Red Rocks Amphitheater (what a cool location!). One of his best friends, John Jensen, is on the left. Isn't it weird how John's school colors were the exact same as my high school in San Diego?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Seniors and some funny comparisons

When my nephew Matthew was in town from Denver, he asked me to take some senior pictures for him. I was  more than happy to oblige as that meant more family hang-out time.  Unfortunately it was the day that it started raining that month so we spent the first hour or so at Red Robin downing burgers and fries while waiting for the storm clouds to pass.  Luckily we got a quick hour in before the sunset.  I'm not putting all of Matthew's pictures up yet, but while I was shooting I kept remembering John's seniors in the back of my head and I could not resist posing Matthew similarly for a couple frames. So, for your enjoyment . . .

I love how Matthew looks like he's actually a senior and John looks like he's 12! Hahaha! John completely agrees so I promise I'm not being mean.  Here are a couple more of sweet 17 year old John.

A picture with his dog Nikki. Sadly, Nikki passed away during the first few days when we were dating. I remember I was on an overnight birding field trip down in St. George for one of my college classes and texted John eagerly to see how he was doing (I was so excited that we were dating!) and he replied that his dog had died and how sad he was about it. It was kind of sweet because I realized we were both big animal lovers.

John is a deacon's quorum advisor and a scout assistant right now. I'd bet his scouts would love to see this one!

And for your entertainment, here's my senior picture.  We don't do the fancy, out in the wild type pictures in southern California. There's a studio and all seniors have to go to the same place, so I feel like mine is kind of boring in comparison.  If I had a picture of my hobbies and location it probably would have been in a field surrounded by rabbits! Do you think I look as young as John did at the same age?

Friday, August 8, 2014

35mm film from San Francisco

Since I'm not doing any paid photo gigs right now I'm trying to be economical with my causal 35mm film snapshots, but, darn it, they just told me that Walgreens is going to be shipping their film out to Fuji soon for developing. CVS already does something similar. This is not good for the frugal film enthusiast. I have a feeling that it's going to cost more than the tradition drugstore 1 hr. develop and scan and the price of film has already gone up in the short amount of time that I've been shooting it.

We shot with a digital medium format camera (Mamiya 645 DF) in my PLE class last week and it was nerve wracking handling something that costs as much as a car, but also so awesome!

And, completely unrelated, my hair has been driving me crazy! It's been a bumpy ride growing it out. It wings out all over the place, hits at weird places on my face, and can't really be pulled back but is too long to solve with a headband. Curses!