Thursday, July 21, 2011

One for the grandparents

What do you do when it's 104 degrees outside WITHOUT the humidity heat index? When the pool feels like warm bath water and you've already been to see two movies?

Answer? You clean up your three babies, make promises of ice cream, head to your favorite greenhouse, and snap a few pictures. That's what you do.

Then you sit down to edit and cry when you realize they are just not babies any more.






Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The power of prayer

Image via

This week, some friends and I threw a bridal shower for the daughter of another friend. Monday night, we got together at my house to make the party favors.

We laughed, we talked, we got it done.

The next morning, I received a call from one of my friends asking if she had left her rings behind. I hadn't noticed them, but searched the kitchen and living rooms to no avail. A few hours went by, a few more frantic calls, and I searched again.

What she was missing was her gorgeous diamond wedding ring (in and of itself a hugely valuable treasure), and a diamond ring that had been her grandmother's. One, mind you, that she had just been given at her mother's death a few weeks before.

I was sick. She was sick. I gladly went through disgusting trash bags and looked in every nook and cranny I could think of. Still no rings.

All day yesterday, I worried and fretted about them. I was devastated at the possibility that these beautiful treasures would be lost. The monetary value alone was enough to make one weep, but the sentimental value was irreplaceable.

And last night as I slept, I had a dream. In this dream, something came to my mind and I knew exactly where the rings were. I sat bolt upright in bed and instantly knew that she had slipped them off while we were working and put them in the pocket of the apron she had been wearing.

Baffled, I laid back down and went to sleep. After all, there were no pockets on that apron that I knew of. I figured my mind was reaching for any solution to this problem.

But when I woke up this morning, I felt compelled to at least check. I rifled through the laundry basket in the mud room where I had tossed our dirty aprons Monday night.

And lo and behold, tucked safely in the pocket of the apron, were the rings.

I immediately called my friend and felt her relief and joy reach out through the phone. She had spent the last few days tearing her own house apart, searching her yard, retracing every step. Heartsick, she prayed fervently to find them. She hoped that her sweet mother would whisper from heaven and help lead her to the rings.

I truly believe that her prayers came true.

I am in awe at the turn of events. It was not simply a matter of our continued searching that led us to the rings. It was not even dumb luck. I was told specifically in a dream where to find the rings, and they were in a place I didn't even know existed.

It was a tender mercy from our Heavenly Father, I have no doubt about that.

It reinforces to me that our prayers, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, are heard and answered.

And I just wanted to share this story in the event that you, like me, sometimes need a reminder of that.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Note to self

Dear Self:

Next year, on the Fourth of July, when you get giddy and excited about taking pictures of the fireworks, remember this: NO ONE NEEDS 387 PHOTOS OF FIREWORKS.

[Especially someone who already has four times that number of fireworks photos taking up space on the server from the last few years anyway.]

Oh well. They still look wicked awesome though, don't they?





And for your 387 fireworks photos next year:
ISO 100
2 second exposure on the bulb setting

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Realizing fully how annoying this post will be to everyone but me

I am desperately trying to get caught up around here. Step one in that process has been uploading the nine million photos I took on our little trip to the west coast. Step two (which seems to take hours) is editing, narrowing down, and posting them here for your my viewing pleasure.

The Husband works for a consulting firm which has a family retreat every year. Though I joke with him that it is ofttimes like The Firm, it truly is a great place to work. The family conferences are held in a different city each year, and the amenities are always ridiculously lavish. This year, the San Diego conference was no different.

Internet, feel very sorry for me.


We stayed in a two-bedroom, two-bath suite that quite literally was on the beach. I fell asleep every night to the sound of the waves lapping up on the sand. I sat on a beach chair every day and watched my babies exhaust themselves with sunshine, laughter, and togetherness.

It was heaven.

And for the sake of grandparents and posterity, I leave you with a few photos of our time there. Keep in mind, that I could have taken these same photos every single day, as our life was on a recurring loop of wake up, play at the beach, fall asleep, repeat.

With maybe a few meals and a sea kayak expedition thrown in between for good measure.






It pained my heart more than a little bit to board the plane and return home to my beach-less existence here in Missouri.

It seems totally unfair to get a taste of paradise, only to have to leave it again.

Probably almost as unfair as, say, posting obnoxiously about your beach vacation to the internet?

(Touche, Stie. Touche.)