Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Mackinac or Bust

Just a couple short weeks ago, my Allie and I took a 'mommy-daughter' trip to Mackinac. I was so excited to get so much one on one time with her - she is such a charming, FUNNY little girl and I had her all to myself. :-) Allie wasn't quite prepared for the length of the car ride, but on the way there we broke it up with a couple of fun stops. First on the itinerary was Deer Acres Amusement park in Pinconning, Michigan. I had never been there before, so I wasn't quite sure what to expect. Allie was excited about the story book scenes all through the park, like the three little pigs - a few of which she could become part of the scene like the one for Little Miss Muffet. I had a hard time getting her to sit there on the "tuffet" though, because she was afraid of the spider LOL. We rode the antique cars together, and Allie rode the carousel while I took pics. She really enjoyed the "jungle walk", complete with life size animal statues that she petted and hugged. We had lunch there at Deer Acres, then continued on to our next stop - Sea Shell City in Cheboygan, Michigan. Sea Shell City is really just a gift shop in the middle of nowhere, but you'd have thought that I'd brough Alex to Disney she was so excited. She picked out some shells for herself, and a Dolphin statue for her "Wiwey" (Riley). This was a shorter stop, and when Allie finished her shopping we headed to the St. Ignace Mystery Spot. Alex was a little young for most of their demonstrations, but participated anyway (with nervous mommy standing by!). Allie was ready for more touring, but mommy was tired so after we finished the Mystery Spot tour, we headed for the Grand View Resort in Mackinaw City, which would be our "home" for a few days. We crashed early, to get ready for our first "real" day of vacation. On our first day we ferried over to Mackinac Island for a whirlwind day of a carriage tour (Alex's highlight was when the horse pooped and "tooted" - we were in the front seat LOL), the butterfly house, multiple museums and SHOPPING. Allie and I got matching sweatshirts - I know, cheesy, but Allie thought it was cool and I took our picture with them on. :-) She was really excited to go see the butterflies, but once we got in there she was scared and wouldn't get near any of them. You should have seen her face...oh wait, I got a picture, check it out LOL. We ferried back over to Mackinaw City around dinner time and toured some of the historical spots on the mainland...then stayed up hoping for a grand sunset pic of the bridge, but it wasn't meant to be...I mean, the sun set of course, but it was not spectacular. Darn. Beach time, pool time, miniature golf, play time and relaxing time rounded out our last full day of vacation, and in some ways I think Allie may have enjoyed that most of all. She was so incredibly cute playing in the sand, and running up and down the beach....I think my favorite part of this trip was getting to know my little girl for the individual that she is, and seeing glimpses of the "grown up" she will become. It was a reminder that I need to make the effort to spend one on one time like this with each one of my beautiful blessings...

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Robby's Birthday

Wow, I can hardly believe that my littlest baby is TWO - where did the time go? We celebrated his birthday at Nana's house yesterday...lunch, birthday cake and PRESENTS. It was just the immediate family and Nana - Grandma had come over on his actual birthday last week (the 21st) to celebrate but Alex and I were still in Mackinac, so I don't have pics of that. A bit of bad scheduling on my part for yesterday -Robby was a bit crabby. I'm showing the happy pics though, and leaving the meltdown photos for his highschool graduation party LOL. Happy Birthday Robby!!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Hand in Hand

Digital Image Cafe Black and White Photo of the Day 6/25/2009

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Winning Images

Recent Wins:

Better Photo (www.betterphoto.com) Finalist People category May 2009: "Bliss"

Shutterbugs (www.shutterbugs.biz) Black and White Photo of the day 6/24/09 "Summer Days"

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

More for Brig

So my visit with Brigitte wasn't all spent doing formal portraits, our kiddos got to play a bit too. Brigitte had her three with her, and I had my two youngest. Allie was very excited that Brigitte's DH kept pulling coins out of her ears. Even now she is still telling me "Mommy, I'm full of money" LOL. A big thank you to Brigitte's DH for taking a pic of the two of us together - here are a handful of fun shots...

Friday, June 19, 2009

For Brigitte

So I'm a little later than I intended in posting this blog, but better late than never... Just over a week ago, I drove to Marshall to see a fellow photographer and her family, who were in Michigan for a brief visit before they returned home to Kansas. Brigitte and I had met originally online, and for the first time in person almost two years ago at a workshop held by Jessica Hughes in Oklahoma. It was awesome to see her again, even if it was just for a few hours. Brigitte is beautiful inside and out, and her family is the same....I sure do wish they lived closer! While we were together, I took lots of pics (go figure) - so many that it's going to be awhile before I finish proofing them all LOL.
Brigitte: I'm so sorry it's taking me so long, I'm working on them I promise! I have not gotten to the "umbrella duckies in the rain" pics yet, but below are a few that I hope you enjoy in the mean time....

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Loretta Mae (Saylor) Wheeler April 8, 1926- June 15, 2009

I will miss you Grandma XOXOXOXOXO

Loretta Mae (Saylor) Wheeler (April 8, 1926 - June 15, 2009)
Loretta Mae Wheeler, age 83, of Marshall died Monday morning, June 15, 2009 at her home in the loving care of her family, after a lengthy battle with Multiple Sclerosis.
Mrs. Wheeler was born on April 8, 1926 in Fredonia Township to Bert Lee and Donna (Banfield) Saylor. She was a life long resident of Fredonia Township and was a 1943 graduate of Marshall High School. Loretta had been employed by the Kellogg Company for twenty five years. For many years, she worked the night shift at Kellogg’s, came home to do her household duties, only to get only 3 hours sleep and then go back to work at Kellogg’s. She loved her job there and would have stayed with the company longer if it wasn’t for her husband, Wayne, convincing her that they should retire together. They retired in 1984.
On October 29, 1945, she married Wayne F. Wheeler at the United Methodist Church in Marshall. He preceded her in death on August 13, 2008.
Loretta enjoyed cooking, baking and canning. She was best known for her delicious cookies. When her sons were young, she was always busy driving them to their many ballgames and other activities. She enjoyed bowling and had bowled in the Marshall leagues.
She is survived by her sons, Robert (Mary Ann) Wheeler of Tekonsha and Gary (Linda Brittian) Wheeler of Jackson, T N; grandchildren, Caleb Wheeler of Tekonsha, Rachel Wheeler of Marshall, Gary Mitchell (Jenny) Wheeler of Jackson and Tressie Lane (Rob) Davis of Chelsea; eight great grandchildren; brothers, Bert (Annie) Saylor Jr. of Marshall and Arthur (Gail) Saylor of Marshall.
The family will receive friends on Wednesday at the Craig K. Kempf Funeral Home from 6 PM to 8 PM. A funeral service to celebrate the gift of her life will be held 3:30 PM Thursday at the funeral home. Interment will follow in Oakridge Cemetery.
Friends who wish may make memorial contributions to the Oaklawn Home Health Care of Oaklawn Hospice. Assistance with memorials is available at the funeral home.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

A Day at the Park

Last week Sunday my friend Stacey and I (Dom took our picture!) decided to have a picnic at the park with our kiddos. It started out as a comedy of errors - cold and rainy, pizza place closed, we forgot plates LOL, but it ended up being a really fun time. I got there first with my kiddos, and I turned them loose to play while we waited for Stace. First thing Robby does is climb to the top of the structure and sit in a giant puddle up there. Then he went down the wet slide. Ack. Well at least it was dry for everyone else!

Dom was cracking up because everytime anyone would walk by (male/female/dogs/geese) Robby would look at them and say "Hi Daddy!". The ducks thought we were going to feed them, the people were mostly confused and would either stare or giggle. :-)

Stacey arrived with her kiddos and we ate lunch (while fending off wild mutant ducks) and chatted while the kids were distracted for a minute. It's easy to lose track of time, and Stace and I hadn't really talked in forever so we had a lot to get caught up on!

The highlight of the afternoon was when we took a walk to the bridge, and the kiddos spent time throwing rocks into the water.

Got some cute pics of Dom and Robby walking hand in hand, then Robby and Allie. I love it when they take care of baby boy. Other than the chance shots, the kids weren't too interested in posing for pics (shocker, right?), but allowed me some time when I took pics of them jumping high in the air. Everyone got a turn but Robby - he was still busy throwing rocks.

So it was only a few hours, but I really enjoyed it - got to chat with Stacey, see our kids be a little crazy, time for some CUTE pics. I need to do this more often!!