October 31, Sleepy Hollow

oct31Tonight is the scariest night of the year and I’m not all excited about all the hababaloo. I thought about getting a costume, but Halloween is here, and well, I saved a few dollars.

I did however, buy candy about two weeks ago and about half of it is gone. Halloween is not only scary, it’s hard on your diet.

Celebrating on this day used to be all about the kids, and I don’t have any at home anymore. It’s a part of the transition of adapting to the empty nest I suppose.

I’ll cheer up tonight – I will be shooting some ghouls . . .

October 24, Stay A While

oct25I’ve been busy hiding in the bushes all week and when this pretty baby turned and looked right at me – well, I held my breathe and stayed very, very still.

oct27He seemed secure in knowing that I wasn’t a threat, and I took it as an invitation to stay a while.

I feel blessed to have been a part of this family’s world for a while! Happy weekend! I hope it’s full of fun and great shots!

Sunshine & Whiskey

sunshine1My girl loves horses – I’ve said that once or twice before.

For those of you who’s kids are at school for their first year know how important it is to see them at about the six week mark. It’s when homesickness sets in, when they become weary with classes and perhaps roommate issues begin to rear its ugly head. It’s why colleges plan parents’ weekend for about that time, they have the kids’ best interest at heart. In the case of the our girl, well, she’s been home the majority of the weekends since she’s been away so we’ve seen her quite a bit since she left. We love to see her – but we want her to begin to feel more comfortable at school. The social experience at college is almost as important as the academics when it comes to personal growth.

The husband suggested that we give her chores to do and feed her frozen pizzas and perhaps she would come home less. Ha!

Anyway, she is doing well overall and she and her roommate are getting along, classes seem to be going fine, and her homesickness has lessened but we felt that it was important that we see her in her element at school. We went to a football game, but there was not much else the girl wanted to do that weekend. She didn’t want to do the chili cook-off or run the family 5K through the town (we didn’t either). She did however, research a trail ride through the mountains. Which means I had to get on a horse.

Of course.

sunshine2Hmmm, which one shall I pick? The nicest one I hope.

sunshine4As it turns out, I don’t get to choose, I get the horse chosen for me. His name is Whiskey.

sunshine5The girl rode Sunshine – which makes our duo, Sunshine & Whiskey:) I love that song!

Here it is – love that Frankie Ballard!

sunshine3I was a little nervous, I admit it but Whiskey knew exactly what he was doing. What a good horse! The trail leader said to watch out for wildlife so after a period of time I was comfortable enough to actually do that.

sunshine6It’s hard to take photos while you are on a horse don’t cha know.

sunshine9I did see some wildlife. If you look close enough you’ll notice some things called – humans. They blend right into their environment.

sunshine8There are some more of that species.

sunshine7The girl saw this first, a deer in the woods. She was laying down and trying to be inconspicuous.

That my dears, is the extent of our wildlife sightings.

It was a nice weekend and it’s always great to see our girl! I’m leaving you with one more photo from that weekend. It’s God on display.

sunshine91

These Three Things

squinch1First Thing: I shot this photo of my pastor in his office and it turned out quite good if I do say so myself. He’s very photogenic as you can see but he was using a strategy that he says many celebrities use called squinching. I’ve never heard of it but he said that people who make a living in front of the camera know all about it. So I googled it and I found this video by photographer Peter Hurley. Check it out below.

iphone1Second Thing: We purchased the girl a new phone last week when she was home for fall break. She’s been known to to break the screen on her phone once or twice (or three or four) times so I threatened her with my flip phone – as in that’s what she’ll get if she breaks her new one. I’m still using the phone from three years ago, an iPhone 4 – at the time it was cutting edge. When Apple’s highly anticipated roll out of the iPhone 6 didn’t go as planned – as in it was totally unviewable for the first 20 minutes, it occurred to me that even the best tech people in the world have to deal with funky technical issues. It was probably embarrassing for Apple but we all did get a few chuckles out of it with articles like this –

Twitter reactions to Apple’s Livestream

It probably would have been funnier had I done this right after the livestream but – still a good Monday chuckle.

smashcake1Lastly, Third Thing: Little Benedict turned one year old a few weeks ago. His parents are very strict about what they feed this little man. All parents are with their first child. That all changes when the second kid comes around, which will happen in about six months for them. Anyway, Benedict has not eaten any processed sugar – yet – so I made him a healthy smash cake. The recipe is below.

What You Need:
– 5 ripe bananas
– 1/2 cup organic apple sauce
– 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– 1 tsp nutmeg
– 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
– 8 ounces cream cheese
– 1/2 cup concentrated apple juice

smashcake2What You Do:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Smash the bananas together and then mix in the apple sauce and vanilla extract and set aside. In another bowl, mix the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda together. Fold into the banana and apple sauce mix. Place in a loaf pan or in this case, I used individual disposable baking bowls. Bake for 25 minutes or until done.

For the icing, whip together the cream cheese and concentrated apple juice together until creamy.

smashcake5Some of the party guests said it was quite delicious and would be a great breakfast pastry sans the icing. Benedict ate about 1/4 of his piece but he did lick off all the icing.

smashcake3What a cute kid. Happy birthday!