January 11th

I’m trying my best today to finish Hina’s Mehdni session. The people over at Feng Long have already finished. I don’t know why I decided I wanted to look at them and wonder if I am as good or worthy to call myself a professional photographer. It’s an insecurity that constantly drives me to be better. But then again, it’s an insecurity.

My parents come back from India today. Their flight is delayed a couple of hours and is now only going to arrive at 7pm. I guess we will be seeing them late tonight. My brother has apparently taken good care of the house this time so I am glad we aren’t going to some sort of disaster. 🙂 I am sure Manny will be thrilled my dad will be back in the house. He did okay this time without them, it seems. At least, he doesn’t smell like trash.

I feel like it has been a while since I have had a truly free weekend to myself. Business has taken quite a lot of time since it takes several hours of work per event. I would say 2-3 hours for every one hour of shooting is spent editing. The truth is, though, that my laptop isn’t powerful enough to churn out photo edits as quickly as I would like it to. In fact, the great majority of the time spent on editing is just waiting for the photo to load in lightroom, to transfer to photoshop, to run the actions, then I actually edit the details and layers etc, then it takes a bit to flatten and send back to lightroom, and then to move to the next amount of photos. I configured some awesome PCs on Dell, HP and Cyberpower. I considered a macbook, and in fact I’m still saving for one, but I think at the end of the day the most useful system to me will be a Windows Desktop. To buy a similar amount of power in a Macbook Pro would cost me close to 4500. It’s not worth it to me yet to move to Mac as my workhorse. I think that’s fine. Having a mac is kind of a status thing right now for most people. Some developers, designers and productivity fellas really like the Mac and I am still curious. I will be buying a base level MacBook Pro this year and if I like it I may decide that it’s worth it to switch. We’ll see. Performance, especially batch performance, is everything for me.

That and not having to wait to play the best video games on the market right away. 😛

I think I am going to have to edit all of the photos for Hina and Hammad’s wedding. The photos for Saadi and Rini’s wedding had a little bit too much editorial flux in them for me. I don’t think Jeremy particularly enjoys editing either. I can tell. I think he may just have to be the guy that takes the 2nd set of photos and I will edit them all. It’s a lot of work for me but it’s okay. It’s my passion, not his. I love that he wants to do this with me, but I’m not blind. I can see that it’s not his thing. He’d be happier throwing kettle bells around and watching Colombo. Nothing wrong with that, but I think we’d both be happier that way.

I need a break. But I need to finish this set of photos tonight.

Ah. Double Job. I think you caught up to me a little. :}

Pam’s Bachelorette was this weekend and wow was it a trip! We started Friday off with a lingirie shower and pam got some really cute stuff! I showed up 45 minutes late on purpose so that Josee and Vanessa would have some time to get some drink in their system. It worked! By the time i showed up Josee was a few shots in and by the time I was anywhere close to tipsy she was g-o-n-e. We opened gifts, got pam drunk, ate a bunch of snacks and went to bed. Well, after we gave Bee the trashcan to take with her. 😛 I had a little trouble falling asleep but for some reason Josee has endless energy. She was so wasted and still got up and called us at 8:30 in the morning. EIGHT THIRTY. And then nobody would actually leave their house for brunch so Pam and I went to the Another Broken Egg Cafe in Vinings. It was a little nostalgic for me, since 10 years ago I was working around there. I even got to see the building. It’s just as beautiful as it was before. We went to a spa afterwards where we got our feet massaged. I really enjoy time at a spa, even if it’s just for a foot massage. I think I may want to start going there regularly. The day after a wedding would be perfect. I don’t take good enough care of myself. I certainly look and feel better when I do the following things:

 Eat home cooked, paleo-style food.
Sleep at least 9 hours a day.
Frequently get out for social activity.
Exercise at least 3 times a week.
Look forward to going to Work.
 Have one photography gig lined up for the future.
Go in for spa services, especially long deep tissue massages, monthly.
Don’t have to do the dusty cleaning in the house. 

I bolded the ones I do well now. The social activity has died down since I got married, but life is overall fantastic. There’s always a thing or two to do better.
After the spa, we hit up the nail salon and I got a mani pedi and another massage. Yeah boi. The girls who didn;t show for brunch went out for pho and Pam and I went back to the apartment to chill for a while. Once everyone was over, we made a quick trip to the mall and and dressed up to go out to South City Kitchen! The food there was fabulous and Josee ordered more champagne! SO much champagne. I swear I spent the entire night secret burping.. or sometimes not so secret burping. We didn’t have solid plans to go anywhere else and the sisters had a disagreement about where to go so we went back to the apartment. Once we had a chance to chill, we wound up heading out to Dave and Busters! It was SOOOO much fun! We got so many tickets and I was really happy to see a smile on Pam’s face. Then we went to a dance club with a crazy mix of old and young people, playing all these really popular songs that spanned four decades. I actually had a wonderful time there. Another bottle of champagne was bought for us by one of Josee’s clients that happened to be there. When I was dancing, this really tall football player sized black guy came up, held my arm and told me how beautiful I was. I was like. What.

Then I ran away.

We bought roses from a flower seller and headed home. It was like 4am. I don’t know how Josee does this because she went onto another party and still managed to call us at 9am. NINE AM after we went to bed at like four. Anyway, I got to sleep and cuddle with BJ the dog. He is adorable. Pam made us all a super big breakfast. The boys showed up after and we played the Wii until later. I love the Wii. Everytime we go to their apartment, it’s been super fun. Nintendo Land and Super Mario World have been great. I just put them into my savings goals. Jeremy put the Wii U into his and I put the 4x Wii remotes and the game into mine. Tax day is gonna be nice cause that’s the day we will have everything saved! I hope people spending their tax returns aren’t out buying everything.

It was a good weekend. I’m looking forward to work tomorrow. 🙂

What Movie You Playin?

Last night Mark came over to get the large photo I printed off for Kathy. She was so in love with that photo it blew my mind. I never can really see my work as anything worth being on someone’s wall! That’s for awesome photographers! I’m growing into that confidence slowly though. I am starting to see my work being displayed in places other than my monitor at home. I’m beginning to understand the love and effort I put into my shots deserves a place in real life.

We cleaned like we were crazy before Mark came over though. We are so bad about cleaning! In a way it’s a blessing that Jeremy is as messy as I am because neither of us is very uncomfortable in a mess. When we clean we understand we have let it go too long. I used to see the stark line between my dad’s organization and my mom’s chaos and the strain it put on their relationship. I’m thankful to not have that strain on us.

It’s really hot outside. I am supposed to walk home but I am tired and I don’t want to make the eczema patch on my elbow itch. How annoying. It’s a minor skin condition, and I’m thankful for that. We decided to go to the park tonight instead. I think I’m excited about bringing along my camera. I feel like I missed summer at the park! This may be one of my few chances left to capture summer at the park.

Jeremy and I have been getting our house into shape in the meantime. The 2nd bedroom which I had wanted to be an office and craft room is really shaping up! There’s a sofa, a campaign desk that fits us both, and a drafting table that I can do any sized craft on. There’s also a full sized bed acting as a daybed. It’s awesome. It’s also a cat free zone. Keeping them out of there keeps the place clean. I never realized how much dirt, hair and dander/dust a couple of small animals produce. It’s a lot.

This weekend I’m turning 28! You know, I really only enjoyed the last half of my twenties. I know my thirties are going to be an awesome decade so I don’t have any problems thinking about them positively. I was built for where I’m headed. Where I’m taking myself. Where the winds are taking me. To be at a place where I can finally say I trust my instincts and my decisions more than anyone elses, is a big thing for me. I’ve spent my entire teenagerhood and early twenties questioning whether I was doing the “right” thing and looking everywhere except within myself for the answer. If I had listened to my friends, my parents, and society I would be nowhere. Nowhere. I’d have married someone I didn’t care for, let go of things that define me, followed paths to unhappy dead ends. Once I started caring less about what people thought of me, and more to what I heard come from within myself, the sound was impossible to miss or second guess. It’s one of those “when you know, you know”.

I still have to lean so heavily on God for everything though. Which is as it should be. The direction and feeling of self assured direction doesn’t come from me. Every little thing I have is a direct benefit of the influence, kindness, work, and passion that rose from my family’s love for Christ. I can never forget that. It’s impossible. The way I fill with God when I think of Him makes me feel crazy.. and peaceful… and joyful. I never want to displease him. Even when everything’s going to shit. I know his presence in those moments. God is no different no matter who I am. I think that’s the best part. Rock of ages. Foundation for my soul.


Yay it’s time to go home!

This weekend was nuts. I barely slept, but with {tons of} Jeremy’s help, we fixed up the whole house for Kathleen and went to one birthday party, and threw another one for Ami in the middle of crazy cleaning yesterday. We went to bed at nearly 3am and now I’m sitting in Matt and Colette Castleberry’s driveway because I’m 15 minutes early.

I think I might get to relax the remainder of today maybe.

And then I’m actually looking forward to heading back to work. I kept having dreams about work except it was the best place ever (which it kind of is) 🙂

Anyway I better go inside.

Light Leaks

I love going through my iPhone photos and playing with the new apps that seem to come out weekly.

These were all edited entirely with Afterglow, which I use almost exclusively now. I never thought I’d deviate from Snapseed!

I love my phone. Unfortunately while getting ready to hike the craggy trail I dropped my phone and cracked the screen. The damage isn’t over the screen (thankfully) and I’m surprised this phone has lasted more than 8 or 9 months. I am excited for the iPhone 5s or 6 or Lakers or whatever. Here’s hoping for a better camera + awesome processing power so I can edit more quickly on the fly!

Monday Night

We finally went to Home Depot today and bought our new appliances! I am excited. A new fridge, stove and dishwasher, all stainless steel, will grace my kitchen.

I was kind of good today with my diet. I had a frittata for lunch and chicken wings and granola bars for dinner. I did walk the four miles home though! Tomorrow I will try eating even healthier and will try to stick to my calorie limit.

I got bored of my music today on the long walk home and decided to download an audiobook. I wound up buying The Art of War by Sun Tzu. I’ll be honest, part of the reason I bought it was because I didn’t know if I was an audiobook person and it was just $2.75. I really enjoyed it though. I’ve still got a good read but it’s interesting to listen to the observations and tactics for victory that can apply across several human situations. I’ll listen more to it tomorrow.

I’m sleepy! Good night!

Quick Writing


I was considering the fact that I never blog and attribute it to the fact that I don’t have the time I used to, to blog like I used to.  This is partially because I love writing a lot when I blog. I want to flesh out ideas or include every detail in an event that I can remember.  Now though, instead of writing long, detailed entries I’m writing nothing at all.

So, I’m going to try something I’ve read about on many blogs. Just write something. Just starting an activity you don’t think you have time for can lead to finishing more than you thought you could or just finishing exactly what you thought you had time for. Even if I don’t write much, I wrote something and I’m going to consider that a positive thing.

So here’s my entry on a Tuesday where I didn’t have time to write one.

It’s All In Your Mind

archives-01Books. Books. Books.
I have been immersing myself in the act of reading for pleasure again. When I think about it, and I mean really think about it, I haven’t taken my time with books. Since middle school, I only read books quickly. When Harry Potter came out, I would get each book and read it in one night. This is true of most books. I am naturally impatient and I will sacrifice sleep, chores, work and food to satiate my need to come to a satisfactory conclusion.

Things have changed though. I bought a Kindle Paperwhite, which allows me to read at night. So now, pretty much every night I wind up reading for about an hour before going to sleep. I’ve forced myself to stop at the beginning of a chapter and leave the book for the following night. I can do it!

I just finished reading Ready Player One and I am about to start Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg.
Ready Player One was awesome. I haven’t immersed myself into a world like that since Harry Potter, actually. Maybe Hunger Games kind of comes close but Ready Player One really pulled me in. Apparently there’s going to be a Ready Player Two, and I will be first in line for that book!

A side effect of reading regularly again is that my vocabulary has expanded and my diction has improved. I am able to express myself more easily and effectively. I’m glad I picked reading back up. For a while there I thought I was getting stupider because I couldn’t say what I meant succinctly. It’s getting better!

Love. Books. <3

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