Saturday, September 28, 2013



I drove to  Leonis Adobe out in Calabasas today for several reasons. 
For one, I have my first photo Clickin walk
 out in Laguna. 
 I'm going to be with other woman photographers & I want to look like I know what I'm doing! Another reason is I'm committed to really understanding shooting technical & with purpose. Frankie can a test that I am so NOT technical. My mind just doesn't work that way. The words may as well be in Chinese if I have to read a manual!
 But, once I put my mind to something, well, there's no telling what great things I can do! 
Noon time shooting is the scariest, most apprehensive,  most challenging time of day for me. We don't have a lot of cloudy days so lighting is harsh-to say the least. Now that puts limits to when I can shoot-who wants to be limited?
 Not me...
 I found a sun dial in the garden...pretty close to noon!

I took A LOT of photos and am excited to share them...but slowly!
I'm posting a few of my favorites today.

What can I say? I'm a bokeh floozy!

This is a Percheron, native to France. Known for their poise and grace, were the horses knights in armor used for their mounts.
{happy sigh}

It was really nice museum. It seemed the perfect day to visit, even though it was 93*. I accomplished what I set out to do- NOT USE ANY DUMMY MODES.
 Is there room for improvement? ALWAYS. Will I have fun trying? ABSOLUTELY
Think I'm ready for Laguna!
Happy (find your bliss) snapping!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Hope is...

...necessary in every condition
(partial quote 
 Samuel Johnson)

This is not what I had planned for today's post. Usually Friday is a blogging day I look forward to all week. I'm not a journal writer in a traditional sense, that's what this sacred space is reserved for.
For all that is good and gloomy, lighthearted and heavy.
Last December, my life & the life of my family suffered through unimaginable trials & tribulations.
Our world was rocked~never to be the same again.
We've had a relatively peaceful spell...even though I know it's slight and fragile at best.
Yet, here I am
My mother, who is 1 part of these life events, will find out the results of a liver scan tomorrow.
It could be nothing, an easy fix, OR it could be big and life could once again be interrupted.
Bated breath, long moments of quiet pauses, uneasy notions wash over me...
and in the end
it is a vital part of surviving 
a second, a moment, an hour, a day, a lifetime

I made...

...slutty brownies

You laugh...but google it and see what comes up...i'll wait
Yeah...uh huh...told ya. Would I lie?
 Austin attempted these the other night (I love it that he likes to be in the kitchen). As we were assembling the ingredients, he forced, gently persuaded, used 18 year old psychology on me, that one cookie wasn't going to hurt me. 
(I've been gluten free for 2 years) It WAS good.
 He tried to wing it-but the middle never baked (it might have had something to do with the mini marshmellows he put on top) At any rate, we saved what we could, he took them to his friends, and the  container came back-empty.  I  felt I HAD to redeem the 1st batch so  I went here
but decided to just wing it too. Austin doesn't mind running around (I love that he likes to drive) so I sent him a photo of the boxes of goodies I'd need. He didn't bring back exactly what was in the was more like triple chocolate everything 
( Hmmmmmm I wonder where he gets his love of chocolate?)
So seriously easy to make
 (hmmm maybe that's one reason they're called slutty)

We used: 
*1 box of Betty Crocker  Hershey's Chocolate Chunk Premium Cookie Mix
(just make the dough according to the directions ) 
And even though the box states very clearly 
I did.
* 1 Box Betty Crocker Triple Chunk Premium Brownie Mix with Hershey's
(with chips & chunks) 
(make it according to the directions...I did add a smidge (technical term) more water
and of course

Preheat oven to *350
Line an 11"x 7" pan w/parchment paper (sides hanging over) & spray w/ Pam
Blend the brownie mix, set aside.
Make cookie dough and spread evenly in pan.
Line the dough with single layer of Oreos.
Pour brownie batter evenly over the top, tap to get out air bubbles.
Bake 30-40 minutes (depending on YOUR oven)
until tester comes out a tad crumbly

Let cool...completely...(seriously, I know it's hard)
lift out of pan
cut into slices-
-that I'll leave up to how indulgent and guilty YOU want to feel!

I do want to try these again but trying different combinations of cookies and brownies
There's only ONE Oreo...SO DO NOT SUBSTITUTE 
(it's the little things!)

Ok my sisters...
Happy (slutty) snapping! (snort)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Hang in there...

Remember these posters?

Well...I've got a new era poster!

hee hee this just makes me smile.

Hair clips...not JUST for hair anymore

Never even saw this chrysalis until Saturday morning, minutes before the butterfly was going to emerge. I noticed it pupated on a dead leaf, the Santa Ana winds kicked up and this poor creature wouldn't have had a chance had I not run and grabbed a hair clip and secured the leaf to the lavender stalk. 
This is not the first time I've had to secure chrysalis to something more stable. I actually have clips in different sizes. Thread and tape are my friends too! Just FYI, butterflies need to hang until their wings fill with fluid. If they fall (which I've caught more than a few) and not hung right back up, their wings will never fill and they'll never fly. Nature can be cruel, I make sure they have 1/2 a chance. 
Right or wrong, I do it anyway.

Everyone east of us is enjoying Fall...{heavy sigh} 
I have to live vicariously through a lot of you out there in Blogging land. I lick my chops at your cooler weather, your harvests and yummy homegrown fruit and vegetables. The calendar officially says Fall-but we don't get the memo till much later. 
So thank you-Thank you for your medley of fall photos...someone out there (like me) truly savors them.

Happy (almost Fall) snapping

Sharing over at:

Sunday, September 22, 2013

"Pink is...

...the love you discover."

Crazy song-just crazy
but I'm game... shame!

I'm always looking for a reason to play dress up & sport a wig~especially a pink one! Ohhhh and this weeks meme over at Kathy's is the perfect song choice.
"Pink is the love you discover"
describes my attitude towards pink...and it IS an attitude.
 Pink was never a favorite color of mine~It screamed "girly-girl" and I was  everything BUT girlie growing up. It wasn't until uhmmmm, recently that I took a liking to it.  Maybe it's because I don't play with the boys anymore-
Happy (music feeds your soul) snapping!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Hello my name is...

and I'm a Critter/Monarch snap-a-holic

I'm pretty sure I have reached an illegal and obscene amount of photos on caterpillars...

(affectionally referred to as "critters") 


...and butterflies.

It's not my fault...really. 
How can you not marvel and wonder and want to take photos of these creatures? They're here for such a fleeting moment-But sometimes I get lucky and few will stick around.
I feel as though I have to capture their story.

I can definitely notice the fall lighting happening around 4p.m. 

 It's pure magic.

Happy (fall capture) snapping!

Camera Critters

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Friday's letter's...

...finds & randomness

Dear week,
You brought much cooler weather and that makes me happy. I love being able to turn off the AC. Frankie and I sleep so much better with night air caressing our skin.

Dear Brain,
You need to shut down after that 4 a.m. potty run. 
does anyone have any self help suggestions for this girl? Trying to talk  soothe myself back into dreamland  & telling myself that nothing is important about the shopping list, or the bank or anything else but SLEEP isn't working{sigh}

Dear Screech Owls,
You are very loud at 3 a.m. You don't know this, but I'll be up 4 a.m. emptying my bladder and then trying to get back to sleep. 

Dear Green Thumb,
THANK YOU! You are THE ONLY nursery in town that carries milkweed that hasn't been sprayed with pesticides for the aphids. As much as I hate those buggers, I was never so happy to see a few on the plants. Then I knew my hungry critters would not die a painful death~ 
(yes that happened this week from poisoned milkweed from another nursery)

We find this kitty eating the food we put out for the Ravens. So we bought kitty treats thinking maybe we can woo him/her. So far no luck.  Like we need one more critter to feed around here. Hey...I guess we kinda have an Urban Farm... 

...or is that a stretch? I mean we've this kitty, we've got Ravens, Scrubs and Critters. Not to mention skunks, possums and raccoons that visit
~just sayin~

Kim Klassen dot Com

Hi Nancy over at

1. I'm going on my first Clickinmoms Walk  at the end of the month out in Laguna Beach. I'm really excited to meet other women photographers from So. Cal. 

2. I love to drink Merlot and visit wineries.

3. I've never had surgery.

4. I will ALWAYS pick up a penny. It's like bad karma if I don't.

5. I'm a cheese freak...I eat it all...except Provolone and Limburger.

Happy (weekend) snapping!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Sunday, September 15, 2013



I have never been so excited for a Monday to be here!
 I've been busy shooting and editing ever since Stasha 
 agreed to my suggestion for a Monday Listicle.
~Thank you, my friend!~

This week:
10 things I have a crush on

1. My number one crush...Frankie.
After 20+ years of togetherness...
Oh...the crush gets deeper!

...hee hee

2. I'm crushing hard for this little guy-our 1st grand baby
...My daughter, Jamie and hubby Brian revealed Erik Philip to the family this week! 
Due to arrive in January

3. I've got it bad
Critter Crush...

...that turn into winged beauties crush.

5. Drat ...Traders Joe's
You can't have a crush without chocolate!
(like I need one more chocolate goody in my house)
But these are soooo darn dreamy!
(don't blame me if you start crushing on these!)

6. Heather

 7. My someday trip to Paris

8. My new (old) 1930 circa typewriter

These 2 magazines...
...are you familiar?
Then you know what I'm talkin' about!

10. phone-ography
This is such a huge extension of who I am as a photographer.
 I've surrounded myself with like minded artists over on IG. This amazing community brings photography and art to whole other level. I'm so privileged to be a part of their world. 

I do believe I have the vapors!!!
Now...let's go see what the amazing Stasha and others are crushing on!!

Happy(crushing) snapping!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Friday's letters...

... & randomness

Dear Week,
I blinked & poof the weekend's here already. Before you know it, the holidays will be knocking on our door. (Scary)
 I wasn't very enthusiastic about picking up my camera this week...other than shooting for Monday Listicles
over at Stasha's.

Dear Blogging Friends,
Wednesday was such a weird day~it wasn't that it was bad, it just of those days. You were there for me and I'm so grateful.
~Thank you~

Dear Jamie & Brian,
Do you even know how excited we are for 

Erik Philip

to be here?
 Oh my, that new baby smell, those toes, those lips, that belly...
~I love you three~

I'm sharing over at Nancy's
for Random 5 Friday
I do Random VERY well!

1. I read magazines back to front...but NOT before I tear out those pesky postcards.
2. I do the newspaper's crossword and Sudoko every morning. I'm a firm believer in keeping my synapses firing.
3. I wore white linen after Labor Day...yup...I'm a rebel!
4. Chewbacca is my favorite Stars Wars character-which by the way, I just read today had knee replacement surgery. He's 7' 3'' and suffers from gigantism.
5. I've been wearing glasses since I was 13...I'm working up the nerve to get Lasik.

Happy (find your groove) snapping!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Somedays...'re just late to the party

...some days you wish you were more computer savvy 
...some days you wish you had a "sharpen/defog" action in your brain
...some days you hope to much 
...some days are just a jumble 
...some days are so fun at work you think you're a genius...even for a short time
...some days you gotta crack open a bottle of Merlot
...some days you hold dying critters
...some days you over eat at dinner and feel miserable
...some days you want to blame your camera
...some days you shouldn't pick your camera up
...some days you just need to document
...some days you miss your kids~especially if they are having your 1st grand baby or stationed in Korea 
...some days your wish your dad didn't Alzheimers
...some days you wish your mom didn't have a mental disease
...some days you don't know if "some days" is one word or two


Happy (better tomorrow) snapping

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Life as a...

...critter caretaker
I'm hoping the link to Camera Critters opens up today~it'll be my first time there & I got some critters...

...and how

There are 4 generations of Monarchs-these are 3rd generation as they were born in July/August. 
 These critters eat and poop, eat and poop until my milkweed is depleted:

Everything had just grown back from the 40 Monarchs I released a few weekends ago
I spied an itty bitty critter this morning as I was assessing the milkweed situation & that is already the 4th generation...which lives the longest for the migration back down to Mexico.
had asked if the critters eat just the leaves or the stalks too.
 Well D, I'm here to show you that they eat what ever they can!

These were pretty decimated from the last round of critters but is growing back healthy...

...and fast, but not fast enough. (for me)
So... soon as the seed pods open I plant everything that comes out. I now have 100's of tiny seedlings-
-EVERYWHERE there is soil! 
But it's worth it cause they're so stinkin' cute.

And besides...

...THIS is my reward!
Happy (butterfly) snapping!

Camera Critters