Monday, April 25, 2011

Seeing the World in an Entirely New Way

I just purchased a new camera several weeks ago -- one that I've wanted for a few years now.  I'm calling it my 'big girl' camera!  Photography is a hobby of mine - I love to play around with it, but have never taken a class (although I've wanted to for many years, I never make the time).  I enjoy hiking and traveling, so most of my photos come from those trips and escapades.  I'm extremely drawn to the textures and 'architecture' of natural elements, and primarily work in black and white.  I'm going nuts, however, because the weather, and our busy schedule, has not been conducive to playing around with my new camera!  So, I've been stuck indoors with my kitty, Chaucer, as my guinea-pig (she only minds when I use the flash).  However, there are only so many photos one can have of her pet!  I swear I'm not (that much of) a cat-lady!

The weather decided to turn itself over to spring yesterday, so I'm excited to get out there!  If only I had done a little better research -- the stock lense that came with the camera is not the lense I need to do what I want to do with my photography.  I knew that camera equipment was expensive, but had no idea that I would be in want of a lense...that costs more than the camera itself!  For now, I will just have to satisfy myself with learning everything my camera can do, and being 'creative' in testing my current lense to it's limits.  *sigh*  I just can't justify buying that lense right now.  I feel like a little kid saving his/her allowance in anticipation of the 'toy' s/he has been wanting for ages!      

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Ch-Ch-Ch-Cha-Changes!

I've been remiss with my blogging, but for good reason!  Things are happening rather quickly for Sean and myself - he's checking out an opportunity in Philly this week, then I'm in Philly next week regarding an opportunity for myself!  If all goes well, we should be moving sometime in the next couple of months, and that I am definitely excited for!  No more cramped attic apartment dwelling for us.  Sean will be finally be reunited with his two storage units of possessions (basically the contents of a 3 bedroom house and an insanely large vinyl collection), and we will be able to use all of the wedding gifts we received, in addition to those household items we've been itching to purchase.  Simply put, I can not wait for the time when a simple shopping trip doesn't clutter our entire living space!

As much as I've enjoyed living in Maryland these last 5 years, I've wanted to move back to Pennsylvania for some time (not necessarily the Philadelphia area, but hey, that works too!).  Not only is the real estate market less inflated, but the education system is a great deal better -- something very important to factor, as Sean and I would like to start a family in the near future.  In the past, I would have asked people to wish us good luck, but I now realize that luck has nothing to do with it.  If this is the right path for us, then it will be (not without some hard work on our parts, of course).  I'm looking forward to the next couple of weeks...

Monday, April 4, 2011

A Worthy Cause

Upon my engagement, and having worn my hair short for several years, I decided to grow my hair for my wedding 'do'.  The problem with my hair is that it is naturally curly/wavy, and I like to wear it straight.  Well, the longer my hair gets, the more difficult it is to straighten.  I digress.

As my wedding approached, and I had run out of creative ways to style my long hair, I kept telling people that in addition to getting married, I was excited to get rid of all of my hair!  I don't know how it came to mind, but I decided to donate my 'wedding hair' to Locks of Love.  Knowing that my hair would go to such a wonderful cause made me even more excited to cut it all off! 

Around Thanksgiving of last year I had had enough -- I couldn't do ANYTHING with my hair because it was so long!  I went to the salon and was determined to do whatever I could to be able to style/straighten my insanely long head of hair.  Out of sheer frustration,  I had quite a bit of length cut off and tons of layers put in...putting my hair donation in serious jeopardy.  While I felt disappointed that I might not be able to donate, I was now able to do something with my hair :)  (However, I still had months to go before my wedding.)   

My wedding day came much faster than I ever would have imagined (after a year of planning).  On my wedding 'to do' list was scheduling my post-wedding hair appointment.  Eager to get it done (especially before leaving for my honeymoon a week after the wedding), I scheduled an appointment for 3 days after my wedding. 

During my wedding weekend, I found out that a family member of mine had been quietly battling stage 3 ovarian cancer.  While Locks of Love is an organization to help children with hair loss due to any medical condition, I couldn't help but think about my aunt -- my donation became so much more important.  Finally, the day of my hair appointment came.  I sat in the chair and held my breath while my stylist measured my braid...10 INCHES exactly!  I found myself crying in that chair, out of relief that I had met the minimum length for donation, and out of the joy and happiness of being able to donate. 

Thus, I happily sent in my donation with a note, stating that I hoped that my 'wedding hair' helped make a child as happy as I was on that day.  When I think of all of the ways people can help others, I think this one is the easiest.  It doesn't take time from your schedule, if you don't have any to give, and it doesn't cost anything but a haircut and some postage.  If you have the hair to give, I would encourage you to do it -- you'll be helping put a smile on a child's face AND you'll love your new 'do'!  www.locksoflove.org/donate.html
  

Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fools!


Happy April Fools' Day!  A year ago today, Sean and I announced our engagement.  While not planned that way (to my knowledge), the timing couldn't have been more perfect.  One of the many things I love about Sean is his sense of humor -- much of our relationship centers around laughing together.  I'm still amazed when the two of us can encounter a situation, turn to eachother, share a knowing look, and burst into fits of laughter (we both have such warped senses of humor).  So, when Sean proposed to me on March 31st of last year, I was in a love-induced state when I announced our engagement on April 1st -- some people actually did think it was an April Fools' joke!

What I love about us is that we tend not to take things too seriously.  When we do have disagreements, we often use humor to diffuse what could turn into a heated situation.  Then, there are those times when we're just downright silly -- this happened right around the time of our wedding, when we were running on a lack of sleep and were pushed to the limits with stress.  While I can't remember any specific stories relating to our sillyness, I do know that we became scarily goofy together!

So, I encourage you all to take some time to celebrate today with a joke or two, and always remember to add a little laughter to your day...