Recent Faves

posted on: March 25, 2008

No time to write a proper blog post right now, so instead I'll leave you with some recent images I shot to remind you of what I'm doing while I'm not blogging!!! Normally I post lots and lots of photojournalism from weddings, so here's a chance to see some of my posed and artistic work. ;-) Hopefully you can accept this tithe until I can get back to my regularly scheduled blogging...
































I'll have much more time to blog in April... so get ready for many more images!!!

Congratulations Charlie & Richard!!!!

posted on: March 17, 2008

Congratulations Charlie & Richard!! Your video won over the hearts of voters and they voted for me to photograph YOUR wedding!!! Here are the official results:


Thank you so much to everyone who participated by logging in to cast their vote!! I was secretly checking the stats every day and it was such a close race all the way!! Each couple was in the lead at some point, but Charlie & Richard soared ahead by over 100 votes in the very end. ;-) I really look forward to meeting the two of you and to photographing your wedding!!

One more time... here's their winning entry...


HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY!!



Have a green beer or an appletini to celebrate!!!

The Pin-Up Girl Tour

posted on: March 14, 2008



Samantha and I have been working on putting this little project together for about 6 months now! (Please give Sam most of the credit here because she totally deserves it!!) I've received a TON of requests for classic pin-up photography based on the sessions that I've already done, so we'll be taking this show on the road!! Sam and I will be shooting the sessions, vintage make-up and hair styling will be provided by a professional stylist, and we'll have plenty of goodies to show you what you can do with your very own pin-up photos!!

We're scheduled to visit 4 cities -
Chicago, IL - April 6, 7
Indianapolis, IN - April 13
St Louis, MO - April 20, 21
Louisville, KY - April 27th

We have a limit of 10 girls per day, and a minimum of 6 to make it worth our time and resources to travel to another city. We'll provide some props and costumes, but we encourage you to make the session as personal as you can by incorporating some of your own hobbies or your sweetheart's interests. What I love about pin-up photography versus boudoir photography is that pin-up is classic, cheeky, and FUN!! You don't have to be nude at all, and you can still look sexy and cute all at the same time! ;-) Samantha and I spent a lot of time studying the lighting, poses, make-up, hair, and themes from the classic pin-up art of the 1940s, 50s, and 60s created by Alberto Vargas and George Petty, who essentially defined and popularized the genre. I'm not offering pin-up photos outside of this tour, so if you want me to do them with you, this is THE chance girls!!! Visit the website to get more info and to sign up for your session before we sell out!! http://www.theroxygirls.com

My Dog Misses Me

Don't leave me again...
Those are the puppy eyes my dog gives me every time I put my suitcase on the bed and get ready for another trip away from home. You can almost hear her saying "Why are you leaving again? Can't I come with you?" *sigh*

Today I'm packing for two weeks and four cities of traveling. Tonight I'll be landing in Las Vegas for the Wedding & Portrait Photographers International Convention. While I'm there, I'll be shooting an engagement session for one of my brides, co-hosting the Giveaway Gala, mentoring my Thirst Relief Auction winner, and shooting with Leavin' Las Vegas in addition to learning as much as I can from the other photographers that are presenting and attending. ;-)

My next flight will take me to Detroit, MI where I'll be shooting a wedding and spending Easter with my family. Then to Indianapolis for OSP Indy Workshop, where I get to learn from more amazing photographers (I think I'm going to need a new learning journal soon!) Last but not least, I cap off the month with a weekend in Chicago for a wedding and boudoir. So, if you're wondering why I'm not blogging, or why I'm only blogging certain things, I hope that helps explain it all! Oh yes, and I just added a twitter box to my blog page so you can super-stalk me. I'll try to keep it updated as often as possible so you can see what I'm up to!

HAPPY 30TH BIRTHDAY HUBBY!!!!!!!!


cheese!
Alex will barely be able to celebrate his own birthday this year because he'll also be involved in a workshop and meeting with a bunch of different people this weekend! Normally he finds a way to treat himself to a very expensive cheese gift that he wants to try from Zingermann's... hence the cheesy cheese photo. ;-) I love you honey!! I'll miss you!!

Wedding Photography Giveaway Finalists!

posted on: March 11, 2008

Thank you to everyone who entered for the Indie, Offbeat, Green, DIY Wedding Photography Giveaway!! I loved reading your stories and getting to know more about you! You were all so gracious in opening your hearts to me and I sincerely appreciate that! Choosing finalists wasn't easy because it's not like any couple is better or more of something than another, it's just that I had to narrow it down to three and at some point I just had to make a decision! Everyone deserves to win, but I can only afford to do one. Now that I've narrowed down the selection - the rest is up to you!! Please get to know more about these couples and then vote for the winner!! The winner will be revealed on lucky ol' green St. Patty's Day!!

MARLENA & NATHANIEL




Wedding Location: 3 contenders. Bentonsport, Iowa. Beverley Shores,
Indiana. Garden of the Gods, Southern Illinois.

What about your wedding do you consider to be:
Independent? We took everything we associated with the word "wedding"
and tossed it out the window... and then came up with a new word!

Offbeat? Rockets.

DIY? Invites, flowers, music, food, everything.

Green? We will limit waste with no decorations, buying clothes at a
thrift store, buying food in bulk (or local, depending on location),
and have a small amount of guests.

A few bits from their wedelope site:
Nathaniel and I already had a date set wayyy back in 2007. Labor Day. And then we talked about it and talked about it until we came to the conclusion that a big, giant wedding with 500+ people at a church just ain't our thing, ya know? So now we've talked and talked and talked and have come to one conclusion: we don't want the big church wedding, but we don't want to get eloped, either. And so, wedelope was born!!

our wedelope will be:

• An extremely small amount of people. Right now we're going to shoot for 20. Not only does it make it a nice, intimate event, it also limits consumption & waste!

• No gifts. This is easy for Nathaniel & I because we've been living together for over two years and we already have a bunch of stuff we don't need! We're thinking about finding a good charity we both love to have people donate to, or let them pick a charity they love and donate to it.

• Location. We are planning to have it somewhere outside, where the decorations are natural.

• Gown/Suit: Nathaniel and I have 2 places in Des Moines that are second-hand shops that carry cool vintage stuff. He wants a brown three-piece suit. I just want a simple dress, doesn't matter what color. Just so I'm comfortable in it and it's pretty...

• Ceremony: We have asked one of our good friends, Patrick, to be our ordained minister. He wants to go online and get a certificate for "Church of the Dude." (We'll keep you posted about that one...!) We will be saying our own vows, and Nathaniel wants to somehow include rockets shooting off with planes buzzing overhead. (We'll keep you posted on that idea as well...)

• Afterwards: If we're in Bentonsport, they have a spring festival that features a dance, local vendors with crafts and food and stuff like that, which could be fun. If we're in Indiana or Southern Illinois, we have been toying with the idea of having the people that want to stay camp out and make a bonfire and cook fake hot dogs and s'mores and dance around. Oh, and drink a lot.

in conclusion:
When I went to a bridal expo with my mom about a year ago, I kept asking myself, "What's the point in all this? This just doesn't seem like us." Nathaniel and I just want one low-key day where our closest friends and family get together, peek into our lives and celebrate us being lucky enough to have found each other, forever. For us, we don't need cake, djs, second generation great uncles, etc. etc. etc. for that. It's just us!

Visit Marlena & Nathaniel's Wedelope Website to read more about their story and wedding:
http://www.welcomehomedesmoines.com/wedelope/index.html

CHARLIE & RICHARD




Wedding Location: Venus De Milo in Swansea, MA

I feel as though I am truly the luckiest girl alive. I have been so fortunate to find someone who loves me for who I am and to spoil me with his love and affection. Over the past five years we have been through so much together and grown not only as individuals but as one. Richard has taught me so much and at the end of the day I know I am a better person because of him.

Just like everything in life, our relationship has not always come easy. We have worked hard to reach the point we are at today. One of the toughest times in our relationship was when Richard had to go away for basic training. Being away from each other was absolute torture for both of us. Although this was one of the most difficult times for us, it also made us truly appreciate one another more. It tested our love, devotion, and loyalty to each other. When Richard finally returned home we decided that there was nothing more we wanted than to spend the rest of our lives together. Nine months later, our love child, Alina Pembroke Sann was born.

So by now, you're probably asking yourself why do we deserve this?

We're good people! Richard and I try our hardest to make the best decisions that will allow us to sleep good at night. We give everything we do our all so that at the end of the day we know that we won't have any regrets because we tried our best.

We follow our dreams! I am a girlfriend, a mother, a student, a waitress, an actress, an educator, a friend to the environment, and so much more. I haven't let anything hold me back from pursuing my dreams; instead I strive to encompass all the things that I love most in my life. I love working with kids and performing which is why I'm pursuing a degree in teaching. One of my goals is to graduate and continue working with children and help mold the minds of tomorrow's youth. Art and theater are a passion of mine so I hope to instill my love of those with the children I teach. I am so thankful to have found my calling at such a young age and each day I strive to be able to make a living doing what I love.

We plan on using recycled paper for the save-the-date cards, wedding invitations, and place cards. We also want to print a list of ways that our guests can help the environment on the back of the place cards. I'm still searching for a place that we can get organically-farmed cut flowers or flowers that were grown without using any pesticides. For wedding favors we plan on giving out seeds that represent seeds of love where our guests can plant their own plant or tree. Recently I've been researching where I can purchase a wedding gown made of organic materials because I'd really like to wear a dress made of something completely eco-friendly. Lastly, we plan on creating a registry filled with eco-friendly items such as organic cotton sheets, recycled glass vases, and bamboo dishes.


SARAH & JEFF




Wedding Location: The Mississippi Gulf Coast

What about your wedding do you consider to be …
Independent?
I feel like 'independent' could be interpreted in a few different ways but to me it means an idea or action independent of popular culture. So here's how our wedding falls outside the lines of contemporary thought:

First, we've decided to have a very intimate celebration (35-40 guests) in a town we still have yet to visit. To briefly explain, Jeff just recently accepted a job along the Mississippi Gulf Coast and we'll be relocating there in mid-April and planning a local wedding for October.

My second point stems from my first so I'll continue … While we were both ecstatic about our new opportunity we both knew absolutely nothing about the Gulf Coast so we started researching like mad. In the last two months alone, we've learned how much the devastation of Hurricane Katrina continues to haunt the coast and its residents. How FEMA trailers are still a constant sight in the area and how relief groups continue to pour in and out of the area, helping to build temporary and permanent housing for those who are still without homes. I can't even begin to fathom the trauma so many have felt personally because of this fierce storm. After learning about this continuing struggle, Jeff and I decided we'd like to take our wedding day and share the spotlight with these persevering residents, who, in our minds, are much more deserving. Rather than accept wedding gifts, we will be asking our guests to make a contribution to their choice of a few different charities benefiting displaced residents still afflicted by the storm.

Jeff and I will also be looking at pet rescue shelters when we move down to the coast for a new addition (or two!) to our family. We're hoping to give a dog a new and loving home and we'd love to have him included in our big day. More than anything, we'd like our wedding to center around the celebration of life and we felt the best way to achieve that would be to open our hearts up to our new community and share our special day. We're looking forward to our fast-approaching move and we can't wait to join the passion of the many people who remain committed to helping those still in need along the Gulf. We want to do whatever we can to contribute to the rebuilding and healing process and we hope that our friends and family will join us and leave inspired to do the same back home.

Offbeat?
When I first hear the word offbeat, I get one image in my mind: The character of Ana Pascal (played by Maggie Gyllenhaal) in Stranger than Fiction. Well, not really her in particular, but her essence. The essence of someone so confident in their beliefs and passions that they are not bothered by another's disapproving judgment but instead, proudly marches to the beat of their own drum. More than anything, it's important to Jeff and I to stay true to who we are at all times and that includes the day of our wedding. So many people I know seem to just swallow the mainstream images handed to them in movies and magazines – the notion that every bride should look the same on their wedding day … that you're not a bride until you're behind a veil. That the proper favor to give guests is a handful of Jordan almonds and that your invitations must be engraved on heavy white parchment paper. While these things can be perfectly fitting for some brides, I knew it wasn't a mold I was willing to fill.

Jeff and I have always shared a fondness for vintage styles -- the romantic music, the classic movies, the iconic stars. Nothing compares to the smooth crooning of Frank Sinatra, the elegance of Grace Kelly or the poise of Jacqueline Kennedy for us. So rather than succumb to the myriad of modern bridal marketing, I decided to embrace our shared love of vintage and be true to ourselves and our styles.

To stay in line with this vision …

My Mom and I have collected various antique milk-glass vases to combine with family pieces to hold flowers during the reception. I'm so excited about the beautiful milk glass I've acquired – some family heirlooms and some from antiquing with my Mom – and I plan on keeping many of the pieces after the wedding as a reminder of the fun of both the day and the planning that went into it.

I'll also be using my mother's cake stand (which happened to be my grandmother's as well) and cake server. And I'll be using my grandmother's locket to hold a photo of Jeff when he was a little boy and attach it to my bouquet. We will be compiling a list of music to be played during the reception which will only include our favorites, ranging from Ella Fitzgerald to Dean Martin to Frank Sinatra to keep a consistent feel to the celebration.

I've also been going through old family photo albums to find favorites to include in vintage frames surrounding our guestbook. I also found a wonderful vintage book of sheet music I plan on using to create the cones for petal-tossing after the ceremony. And I plan on saving them for use in future holiday parties.

While my love for the old and timeless runs deep, I do have a little spunky, contemporary side I have to let loose so there will be a few details to show that. While I plan on wearing an ivory wedding gown, I'm looking forward to having fun with my shoes and coloring the soles a vibrant pink for a bright, bold and unexpected splash of color. And Jeff has already picked out a fun pair of colorful argyle socks to wear with his wedding day suit.

DIY?
I adoooooore DIY projects and have a lengthy list of my own to accomplish for the wedding. While I've already mentioned a few (and a few more are mentioned under the Green category), here's several more that will be included:

I'm working on putting together Out-of-Town baskets for our guests. I'm re-using old galvanized pails that we had around the house as the baskets and am planning on stuffing them with local spring water, organic juices as well as regional maps, information and locally-made treats.

We wanted our favors to be something meaningful to both Jeff and I and to our guests. Because Jeff is a huge Ohio State fan and Ohio is the state we met and fell in love, we felt candy buckeyes would be a fun (and yummy!) way to celebrate our shared heritage. I'm going to make the candies myself and package them in personalized containers inspired by Martha Stewart (which can be seen here: http://classicbride.blogspot.com/2007/12/edible-regional-favor.html)

My Mom has graciously offered to hand-embroider the ringbearer's pillow with our shared monogram, which I can't wait to see finished! She will also be helping to hand-embroider handkerchiefs with our monogram as gifts to those at the rehearsal party.

I just bought some amaryllis bulbs to test-grow and possibly use as my bouquet. Whether they work or not, I plan on creating my bouquet and the floral centerpieces for the reception with my Mom (who has some serious experience with floral arrangements).

Jeff and I are writing our own vows – They may come off a little quirky to some but they'll be us and they'll be from the heart. We will also be ringing an antique family bell directly after the ceremony to honor and include those family members who have passed away but are with us in spirit.

Green?
We will be having a very small wedding, inviting only 35-40 of our closest family and friends, to keep the celebration intimate and to cut down on flight and car travel. To also cut down on fuel consumption, we are planning on having the ceremony and reception in the same location or at least within walking distance of each other. We also plan on having an outdoor wedding during the afternoon to utilize as much natural light as we can. We chose the month of October to avoid the need for any type of air-conditioning and the energy behind it. Our ultimate dream is to say our vows under a huge, old oak tree – representing the history and longevity we wish our marriage to endure. I love that decorations can really be kept to a minimum in such a naturally dramatic space – no need for ribbons and flowers and aisle runners, etc. when you have a majestic old oak front and center.

Because I work with (and love!) print design, I feel comfortable and excited tackling all of the wedding stationary myself – the Save the Dates, the invitations, the RSVP postcard, the custom map, and the programs. I will be doing them all in a very modern-style calligraphy form in freehand with india ink (although I'm looking for soy ink) and a quill pen (You can check out a rough draft I posted here: http://classicbride.blogspot.com/2007/10/work-in-progress.html) All of the stationary will be printed on recycled paper. And I am currently working on creating a wedding Web site with extra information for the guests to avoid wasting paper.

We will both be wearing socially responsible rings, as they are both antique family heirlooms from both sides of our families. I also love how the shared history symbolizes the merging of our families.

I'm working on assembling two monograms (a 'J' and a 'S') made of natural moss to use as decoration during the ceremony and reception. I'm planning on re-using these after the wedding in our home around the holidays.

I will be researching around to see if it's possible to donate our leftover food from the reception to those still in FEMA trailers or to a local homeless shelter.

Link to your wedding details online:
http://classicbride.blogspot.com
After becoming frustrated with my organizational skills, I turned to a paperless platform to easily archive all my wedding-related ideas. The amount of encouragement, tips and advice that I've received have been so amazingly helpful in the planning process.


Please use the poll below to cast your vote BEFORE Monday March 17th!!

Note: Results will NOT be shown until the poll is closed!

Sara's Senior Portraits

Sara_Senior_Portrait-12.jpg

Sara is one of the funnest models I've ever photographed!! (Although, if you were to ask Sara, she might argue with the label of "model".) When she originally contacted me, she said something like, "You're the only one I want to take my senior pictures. If you don't take them, I'm not getting them done." Talk about pressure!!! But it was also really cool that she valued my vision and trusted me to capture her spirit. She had so many ideas and so much inspiration to draw from!! She wanted her senior pictures to be totally original, unique, and creative. I don't think I took a single "traditional" photo the entire time... and it's nice to know that she's totally cool with that!

Sara_Senior_Portrait-1.jpg

When I asked Sara what some of her favorite places were, she mentioned that her room was her favorite place to hang out, so it was fun to get a chance to see her personal space and be inspired by the things that she surrounds herself with. ;-)

Sara_Senior_Portrait-5.jpg

Sara loves to read... and I love that it looks like her teddy bear is peeking out at me from behind the book...
Sara_Senior_Portrait-4.jpg

This is an elephant. Sewn by one of her best friends. Made from old t-shirts. Love it.
Sara_Senior_Portrait-3.jpg

She had an entire wall that was painted with chalkboard paint and when I came in the wall was covered with music! I was a little sad when she started erasing it all, but then we came up with this idea together... (if you don't get it, ask a musician ;-)
Sara_Senior_Portrait-2.jpg

The day was very cold, very windy, and since we could only get together in the middle of the day, it was also full midday sun. Not my favorite conditions for shooting outdoor portraits, but Sara was incredibly brave and wanted to make this work no matter what- so I made the most of the conditions we had to work in! It really gave me a chance to use light in a different way, and I think the results are pretty damn cool if I say so myself!

Sara_Senior_Portrait-13.jpg

Sara_Senior_Portrait-7.jpg

Sara_Senior_Portrait-8.jpg

Why do we love railroad tracks, as cliché as they are? Because they have cool lines and interesting backgrounds. ;-)
Sara_Senior_Portrait-9.jpg

She loves these rainboots, and I love her bumper stickers. ;-)
Sara_Senior_Portrait-6.jpg

I liked these boots the most... and they were vegan friendly. Sara - what was the name of the company?? By the way, this is a totally random porch in downtown Royal Oak, MI... which is also where we created the very first image at the top of this post. It's amazing what little things can look really cool. ;-)
Sara_Senior_Portrait-11.jpg

Sara, is also an aspiring photographer- and this picture reminds me so much of Amelie.. and Sara reminds me so much of Amelie... with a beautiful and vibrant imagination. I was so lucky to spend a few hours of my life with her. ;-) Thank you so much Sara- you're an inspiration!! Don't ever stop following your dreams- they can take you anywhere you want to go!
Sara_Senior_Portrait-10.jpg

Reflections Before Bed

posted on: March 10, 2008

At first I thought I should write this in my personal journal, but then something compelled me to write this here, without reservation despite its public format. I ask for forgiveness or compassion for whatever flows from my mind as I share my personal thoughts with you.

I just finished listening to Eat, Pray, Love during my five hour drive back from Chicago. It is most certainly an inspirational book of personal thoughts and journeys toward a woman's quest for self discovery combined with a touch of cultural insight into the worlds of Italy, India, and Indonesia. The audio book is read by the author, Elizabeth Gilbert, with all of her inflections and intentions as well as imitations of her friend's speech patterns and accents- which would most certainly not come across in nearly the same way if I were simply reading the book with my imagination filling in the audio version of it all. I love audio books... especially when they're read by great storytellers, like Elizabeth. ;-)

I just realized that I slipped into writing this post informatively for you and not reflectively for myself... which is what happens when I write a blog instead of a journal. I'll try to continue as if this were my journal...

I feel as though I'm always in a search for a greater understanding of the world and of myself. It's a never ending journey of discovery for peace, balance, and happiness. Some days I feel as though I have achieved it and others I feel as though that goal is so distant and incomprehensible. I have a sense of what it feels like to be free from worry, fear, and doubt, because there are most certainly times in my life when I have been able to appreciate each moment for exactly what it is and how beautiful it is without thinking about the moments that came before or the ones that will follow. I find myself most at peace when I am with other people... giving them my undivided attention and energy. Loving them for who they are, appreciating and acknowledging everything that makes them beautiful, and hopefully helping them see that beauty as well.

The only drawback to this equation is that that my undivided attention, adoration, and energy requires time, which only comes in a limited supply... dosed out into 24 precious hours each day... minus the 3-6 hours my body demands for a recuperative break each night (or whenever it can squeeze it in.) Never before have I felt time to be so physically limiting as I do at this point in my life. Each decision about how I will spend my next hour... minute... second... becomes a reflection of my priorities and progress toward a more meaningful life. Even now, as I write, I am thinking about all of the other things I could be doing in this very minute that would make someone else happy... and I would be doing it simply to make them happy, without regard for my personal growth or happiness. I don't mind being so selfless, it comes pretty easily for me. The greatest joy I receive is in knowing that I've helped someone else.

One of the drawbacks of always wanting to help others and make them happy is the sacrifice of helping myself... which, in turn actually prevents me from helping more people. Confusing, right? I'm still trying to figure it out myself to be honest, but lately I've been experiencing this a lot. Perhaps it is all a lesson in how to set limits and how to prioritize time and how time is very physical, despite its occasionally expandable and collapsable nature. Sometimes a minute feels like an hour and sometimes months feel like a matter of days. I do know that when I am at peace, time does not matter, only moments and experiences. The only problem is, I have a hard time being at peace, when I have so many pressures and deadlines lingering over me, add to that- constant external reminders of those deadlines acting like the sprinkling of salt into an open wound.

If only time weren't so limited. If only that pause button on life really existed. If only I could spend time with my husband, and exercise, and meditate, and answer every email in my inbox, and make progress on every project, and necessary errands, and keep the house clean, and take the time to prepare a healthy meal. Generally speaking, I get so "busy" trying to do all of those things that I feel like I'm not really doing any of them. There have been many days when I have opened my email inbox in the morning and spent an entire day simply responding to the emails that have come in, only to end the day feeling like I didn't make any progress... which generally results in more emails the next day. Yet, experience tells me that if I ignore my email for too long, people would feel as though I don't care, or as though I'm ignoring them. When I don't blog for a certain amount of time, I feel wracked with the same sense of guilt- as though not blogging is somehow neglecting the very people I want to make happy.... yet with the same token, taking the time to blog means that I'm not spending time doing the things that will make other people happy. I'm always making progress on something, always putting out the next fire, or tackling the next project, so why is it that even after making tons of progress, I still have a feeling like none has been made?

I can't help but think of the old saying, "You can't make everyone happy all of the time, you can only make some people happy, some of the time." So, when you have so many people in your life that you need to make happy, the bigger question becomes... who? Who is most important to make happy RIGHT now? Is it the bride & groom who were married 6 months ago and have seen all of their images but haven't been blogged about yet? Is it the couple whose boudoir images I took 3 months ago and haven't seen anything yet? Is it the wedding coordinator whose email from a month ago is still lingering in my inbox asking me to get images for her website? Is it the photographer asking for some advice about some aspect of photography or business? Is it my blog readers, who visit every day just to see if there's something new? Is it my husband whom I've only spent 6 hours with over the last three weeks and whose birthday is coming up in 4 days? Is it my brother who never calls me but who called recently to update me on the happenings in his life but whose call I still haven't returned? In the grand scheme of things, if I can only make one person happy right now, who should it be, how do you prioritize people when they are all so important? (Notice that no where in that list did I mention making myself happy.)

Frankly, I'm very happy staying busy, being involved in a lot of things, and helping others... I just need to do a better job of finding balance between caring for my clients, caring for my family and friends, and caring for myself. I recently came to the realization that there's no such thing as "multitasking" (thank you David Allen.) We think that by multitasking we're being more efficient, and I loooove being efficient, but really, multitasking can often lead to making things take longer. Take, for example, driving and anything else you could possibly do while being in the car: talking, map reading, eating, or just thinking about something else... if any other thing distracts you from noticing your exit or being in the right lane for your next turn, you have to spend that much more time reorienting yourself and getting back on the right track to make up for not being focused on the road in the first place. How many batches of cookies had to be remade because the first batch was charcoaled when someone went off to do something else and forgot about the oven? How many times have I stayed up all night in the name of productivity only to be so tired the next that I could hardly muster half the amount of productivity out of my body? So, I'm learning how to be more focused and how to divide my time so that I'm making room for the things that are going to matter most in the long run and create the most balance... like wellness and family. Easier said that done, it requires a large re-conceptualization of time and the limitations of time... it also takes a more liberal use of the word no and a more liberal projection of deadlines.

It's now 3:30 am and my body is starting to tell me that it's time to shut down.... obviously I'm not doing such a good job of balancing my time yet. As my body prepares for sleep, my mind fights back, stressing about all the things that still need to be done and all of the people that I still need to take care of, thinking about how much progress I'd make if I could just squeeze one more chunk of productivity into my last minutes of consciousness, which brings me back to the question of what is most important RIGHT now? My body says sleep, my mind says 101 other things.

When I was in grade school, I remember reading a very moving book called Momo which had a strong lesson about the relativity of time and how we think that working harder now will give us more time later, when in fact, it only robs us of the time we have in the present and creates more work to be done in the future. I can't tell you how incredibly true this has been in my life. My husband is leaving for Boston tomorrow and when he gets back we'll have a day or two in the same city before I leave for a conference in Las Vegas for a week. The calendar says we've been married for over 4 years now and yet it seems like we've spent less than a year together. I'm desperately trying to change it so that I don't wake up at 60 and wonder where my life went. If you've been there, if you feel like you've mastered the time balance for a healthy life, I'd love to hear what made the biggest difference for you. I'm eager to learn.

March Desktop Images

posted on: March 1, 2008

Every month I try to post a new image that is suitable for displaying at desktop size and resolution. Click on an image to download a copy for your desktop.





These two images are of the Old Baldy lighthouse on Bald Head Island, North Carolina. These were taken last week while I was at the Love Affair Workshop. The lighthouse picture is for my mom who loves lighthouses, and the window picture is for me... what I really love is the shadow of the stairway off to the left. ;-)

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