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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My Life as a Navy Wife

Among the Navy Wife community it is asked many times where all have you been stationed.. So I figured I would tell you!

When Kris joined the Navy, we lived in Pensacola, pretty close to the naval base over there.. After he finished boot camp our first duty station was shore duty in Annapolis, Maryland at the Naval Academy. I can tell you this about Maryland, it is really beautiful.. The flowering trees and beautiful scenery make from some really relaxing back road driving.. I really wouldn't mind going back there again. We were supposed to be stationed there for two years but since Kris was undesignated we were there for about 1 1/2... We had arrived there in April 2005.. and left in Oct. 2006.

I tried to find some of my pictures from Maryland, but apparently I didn't upload much then.. but here is a picture of my gorgeous husband from when we were living there.
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We arrived next in Great Lakes, Illinois for Kris to go to A school and get his rate. We were there for 9 months during the fall and winter and I loved it there also.. it was beautiful.. the peacefulness of watching the snow fall at night through my window cannot be matched. Not only was watching the snow fall wonderful, but having impromptu snowball fights with Kris made for fun times! When there wasn't snow, the landscape was so green and lush, just absolutely beautiful! Also, driving on snow, not so bad.. After all .. people I think learn how to drive better up there because they have to be more careful..lol..
The beautiful scene that is Illinois
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Once Kris finished with his school it was once again time to move.. this time though he had to make a stop beforehand.. So Kris left for Virginia and his C school, while the kids and I went down to Florida to live there for a month. Kris and I made a visit to each other once during the time he was in Virginia .. we met sort of half way in upper South Carolina and spent a night or two together.. :)
Once he finished with his month long school he drove down to Florida and we prepared for our trip to our current duty station, San Diego.

Kris & I and our at the time two kids.. Made the cross country drive from Florida to California. What is good about San Diego.. hmm... I have a great nail place here! I have met some wonderful Navy Wives... and.. um...yeah that's about it..

Before Kris left on his last deployment he had to go to Pensacola for another C school that was 2 months long.. to make a long story short.. we ended up moving there for the 7 1/2 months he was gone.. one of the best decisions we ever made.. of course it should have been made a little sooner.. but hind sight is 20/20.. During that deployment I got to mend old wounds with my family and foster relationships with my sister, dad, and nieces, that I have been wanting for years!

These were taken on my last days in Florida, before I made my trip back to San Diego.
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March of this year I moved back to San Diego with all 3 kids and myself in one van making the 2000 mile journey to be here in time for Kris to return from deployment.. now that was a happy day! It was the longest amount of time that we have spent apart to date! That was a stressful deployment! but back to the point of this particular blog. ...

Although I am not fond of San Diego, I have taken quite a few pictures here.. so here are a few.

This is the neighborhood that I live in on a beautifully gloomy day.. I love it.. those days don't happen often here.
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This one was taken when my dad and I went to seaport village
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And lastly, this one was taken at Balboa Park
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It is now that time again, time to add another move to our roster of moves.. We are going to be moving this coming November to Washington, which I am sure if you read my blog you already know..lol.. We will only be in WA for a short time before it is time to move once again. Where to? I do not yet know.. but I will let you know when I do.. We will start to look at orders this coming March.. and I have been told that he could choose and we could move as early as next October.. but we shall see... either way, we will only be in WA for about a year.. then it is off to who knows where.. but I am sure wherever we go, I will meet some wonderful Navy Wives..

30 days of me- Day 15

Day 15 - a fanfic

Ok, honestly, I didn't even know what the heck this was until I read about it in "One guy in a house of girls" blog.. So the answer is.. I don't have one.. nope. There is no Fan Fiction that I like or even know about.. So.. I guess this blog is going to be very short... since I have nothing to write on the topic.. However, I will write another blog later today.. not sure what the topic will be at this point.. but.. I will try to think of something interesting..lol

Monday, August 30, 2010

30 days of me- Day 14

Day 14 - a non-fictional book

Hmm... I do read non-fictional books but most of them are biographies.. I don't know that I have a favorite as far as that goes.. but there are a few books that I would like to suggest. .. Actually come to think of it.. I do have a favorite.. This book changed me .. inside and out.. It made me rethink who I am and become a better person. When I began college the second time I had to take a class called Human service Ethics.. since I am a psychology major. This book helps you to look within yourself and determine why you are the way you are.. what things you are holding on to that are hurting you .. and how to let go of those things. I have to say it really worked on me.. helping me to work through some major issues I have dealt with throughout my life with my family. If you have anger issues or problems making friends.. you need to read this book.. it will change your life, if you let it.

This book is called "I Never Knew I had a Choice.. Explorations in personal growth"

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It is a college book so it can be pricey, but it is so very worth it! There are two things that have made me grow as a person, and allow me to continue to grow.. Those are God, and this book. Honestly this book helped me renew my faith too, among other things. It showed me that I can let go of the anger and move on.. my anger only harms me and those I am angry at.. well they just don't care. Why let someone else have that kind of power over you?

It is the well adjusted person who can forgive and move on.. However, forgiving someone for what they have done to you doesn't mean that you have to be friends with them or even have a relationship with them again. It just means that you are able to let go of the anger inside yourself that can truly eat you alive.

Before I read this book, when I would meet someone for the first time their impression of me was that I was a bitch. I never understood why. It is funny to me now cause most of the time my first impression on people now is completely different.. I have told current friends about former people's impression of me and to my surprise they laughed and said "you". It is good to know that I don't radiate that anger that I held within myself for so long anymore. I have worked hard to be a more friendly outgoing person and I continue to work on that.

I pride myself in being a person that my friends and acquaintances can come to in their time of need. I want to be better than I am, I want to continue to grow as a person and I want to help others in any way I can.

I guarantee you that if you read this book, you will find things out about yourself that you didn't even know were there and you will heal.

Here is the link to it on Amazon if you would like to give it a try.
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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Photography

So, I have been thinking about my photography business for awhile. I have decided that I am going to stop renewing my www.hughensphotography.com website. I feel that I get more traffic on my fb page anyway. So once my time is up with ixweb, I am going to just shut it down.

Also, I have come to the conclusion that offering more specialized photography may be helpful for my business. So, for now I am just going to offer glamour, boudoir, and pinup shoots. I can do others if necessary but these will be my specialty. Which makes sense because I started out with glamour and models anyway.

I of course will still be subjecting my children to photo shoots, much to their dismay..lol..

I am not sure if I will be offering anything while I am in WA, since I will not have my studio up there and it really rains too much to do outdoor shoots very often. We shall see..

Anyways, that is my update.. I just figure I am wasting money on that particular website when it is really unnecessary.. no one actually reads it anyway.. I have a price list up but they still always ask me what my prices up.. even after I point them to the site. Go figure.

30 days of me- Day 13

Day 13 - a fictional book

I don't get a chance to read very often, but when I do I enjoy mystery type books. I used to read much more often, but I also didn't use to have 3 kids..lol.. My interest in a particular series started back in 2003 when I was working as a delivery driver for pizza hut... This is me then...lol

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Kris introduced me to books on tape.. (back when they still had cassette tapes, I know I am showing my age..lol) Anyways, Kris introduced me to The Cat Who... Series, by Lilian Jackson Braun. So I started listening to these books on tape while I drove and I have to say they definitely peaked my interest. I could see everything in my minds eye as the scenes unfolded in the book. I have sense read many more of the books and own A LOT of them! I hope to start reading them again soon. I had to stop reading for a long time due to going to college and just not having the time. However, I may be having a little more time to read after we move, but we shall see. Most of the time I spend reading now is when I am taking a bath after all the kids are in bed. Of course currently with all of the cleaning and packing I am doing, taking time out to read a book isn't really feasible.. but.. I will get back to it soon! Here are a few of the book covers.. don't bother with the click here thing.. that was just part of the picture..lol

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Saturday, August 28, 2010

30 days of Me- Day 12

Day 12 - whatever tickles your fancy

Well today is my whatever day.. So, I will let you in on something I have been working on for awhile... and that is my weight. After I got pregnant with Alora I kinda just went crazy with food.. I gained over 50 pounds... After I had her, I didn't fix that either. I just continued to eat lots and lots of food, dooming myself to an expanding waistline. At 147 pounds I found it hard to get back to the correct eating habits.. I told myself that while Kris was on deployment I would change things.. but I didn't..

Finally about a month or so ago I decided that enough was enough! It is time for me to be happy in my skin again! So I started changing the way I eat.. (No, I do not diet!) I began counting calories again and slowly the weight has started coming off.. I started at 147 pounds.. and am now down to 136! It is amazing how big of a difference 10 pounds can make on someone.. I am still working to get back down to the comfortable 125 that I was before I got pregnant, and I WILL MAKE IT THERE. For now though, I am taking the correct steps to move towards my goal and although the movement is slow, it is movement. From what I hear a slow loss is better anyways because it makes it more likely that the weight will stay off in the future. I can tell you one thing, that is definitely true, because before I got pregnant with Alora I had stayed slender for years. Even through my pregnancy with Tristan I stayed slender! It can be done!

One thing that has always bothered me is when people claim they cannot lose weight, they can't do it! I am here to tell you that you can! All you have to do is retrain yourself how to eat! Don't cut out certain foods! That will only lead to disaster! Once in awhile you need a cheat day but just because you "cheat" and eat more calories than you should on one day does not need to be a reason to do it everyday! Here are some of my progression pictures.. I need to take a new one.. but you get the idea anyway.

So here I am at 147-145
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And this is me at 139-140.. about 5-7 pounds lost..
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I will add my most current picture in a few days..

Friday, August 27, 2010

30 days of Me- Day 11

Day 11 - a photo of you taken recently


Ok,so I have actually already posted a bunch of recent pictures of myself, but, since this is the challenge for today, I will post again...

These are some of my pictures from the pinup shoot that I did... I don't think they came out half bad.. gotta love corsets.. they make everyone skinny..lol

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And here are the recent pictures of me, mostly hanging out with Nicole, since Kris has been gone a lot lately.. I will be getting some more pictures with him very soon though! :)Photobucket

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And one by myself.. right after I dyed my bangs red... I am still not sure how much I like the red.. but I am going to keep it for a bit.. not sure when I am going to change my hair again.. I am trying to decide whether to go back to blonde or my natural color with some highlights.. who knows... i am sure i will do both at some point or another..lol
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fireproof

I just finished reading this book and I have to say it is one of the best books on marriage that I have ever read. I think everyone should work that hard to keep their marriage from falling apart. (there are always exceptions, like adultery & violence) Too many people give up on their marriage because "we just grew apart". I don't believe that excuse personally, I think that we have to choose to be with our spouse on a daily basis, choose to love them, choose to show them how much we care.

Don't get me wrong, I am no where near perfect and there are definitely things I am working on, but the thing is.. I am trying. People expect the other person to do all the work in the relationship and take no responsibility for the things that go wrong. Before you blame everything on your spouse, take a look at yourself.. If you work on you, then chances are your spouse will want to do the same. I know I have said this before but so many people ignore it.. communication is one of the keys! Tell the one you love how you feel, tell them about your day, no matter how stupid you might think it is. Share yourself with them, how will they know something is wrong, if you don't tell them?

Take responsibility, apologize (this one has always been hard for me, but i am getting better) when you are wrong, sometimes you need to apologize even when you aren't wrong! An apology doesn't necessarily mean saying you are wrong, it could mean saying "I'm sorry for the way you are feeling, or I am sorry that I hurt you".

A simple touch can go a long way. You know that crazy urge you sometimes get in the middle of an argument to just reach out and hug your spouse.. DO IT! They want you to! It really can melt away a lot of the stress and anger between you .. it can give you a renewed sense of the situation. It can replace the intimacy between you that arguments can steal. If you can't manage a hug, reach out and touch their hand, grasp it in yours, let your partner know that you care and that just because you disagree does not change your love or devotion. Trust me when a fight occurs it can chip away at those feelings.

Sit down, side by side, and talk, just talk, about everything. Go for a walk and share your insights, hopes, dreams, your love with one another. Renew your relationship daily through small gestures, don't let your love get lazy. I know I have been guilty of just sitting there when my husband comes home. Instead, get up and go hug your spouse! Let them know that they were missed! That can melt away some of the stress from their day and make them happy to be home!

Marriage is hard, it is work, and it is a commitment.

I implore everyone to read Fireproof and try The Love Dare! I know that it will change the way you look at things.

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30 days of Me- Day 10

Day 10 - a photo of you taken over ten years ago

I have lots of photos of myself, mainly because I like to see how I change over the years.. I don't actually have a picture on my computer from EXACTLY 10 years ago.. but.. I have them from other periods of time.. so this is it..

Here is me at age 15, in 10th grade. Which would be about 15 years ago..

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This one is a senior portrait taken the summer before my senior year at age 17. Which would make it about 13 years ago...
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Next we have the closest to ten years ago, which is a little over ten years ago..lol.. This one is me at age 22 with Mcleod at age 2, so about 8 years ago..

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And here I am now with my FF Nicole.. this was on 8/22/10 so only a few days ago.. so now we are right up to my current age which is 30 (31 in a few months)..:)

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I would like to think that I have aged fairly well..lol.. Of course now I am working on getting back down to my "fighting weight" lol.. it is taking some time, but I am getting there. I think it is very interesting to look back at the changes that have happened over the years and I plan to continue doing so. I challenge everyone to do this and post pictures of themselves over the years.. take a look at how much you have changed... Not only physically but changed as a person, grown and developed new views on life and the world. Keep an open mind, cause you never know when that next life changing revelation can happen, or who will be the one to give it to you! :)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Marriage

It is amazing how marriage changes over the years..

In the beginning of our marriage things were rough.. and honestly I didn't know if we would stand the test of time, but things changed and we worked it out as we continue to do. Everyday isn't all peaches and cream (good thing to cause i don't like peaches :p) but we are happy.

We have learned that our marriage is the most important thing and putting each other before all else is what makes a great one. We are committed to each other and to making things work. I see so many marriages fall apart for one reason or another and it saddens me. I think most of the time people just take the easy way out.. they abuse their relationship to the point of no return.

I can tell you this, my past relationships definitely were not ideal. However, I did learn something from them although not everything I learned was good. I learned that trust is hard to come by and once that is gone, it is hard to get back. I learned that people will "forget" about their loved one in order to fulfill their primal desires. I learned that if you want to be with someone else you should leave the person your with rather than hurting them. I learned that communication is important and if you cannot talk to your spouse about everything then you will ache inside. I learned that most importantly, you cannot be happy in a relationship if you do not know who you are and depend solely on the other person to entertain, chauffeur you, guide you, or give you friends. You have to be a whole person with them or without them.

I think that one of the things that makes my marriage strong is that my husband and I choose to be together. We both know that we could make it in life without the other, but we choose each other instead. We have a love that I never knew could exist. We were drawn together in an amazing set of circumstances. Our love has grown by leaps and bounds over the years and I am enjoying the growth. Instead of growing apart, we are growing together. We share our likes, dislikes, fantasies, and random thoughts that come to us. We make each other laugh.. and I think that is very important. Laughter in my mind bonds people.. true laughter sets the heart free.

With all the trials and tribulations that Kris & I have faced in the past and will continue to face in the future, I believe that I can safely say we will see you 50 years from now, and we will still be holding hands as we hold each others hearts.

This was our very first picture together... December 2002

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This was March 2010 over 7 years later... after his 3rd deployment. :)
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So much ....

So much stuff has been going through my mind lately, friends, packing, moving, my commencement ceremony, Mcleod going back to school only to get taken out soon to go to Wa., Dad coming to help me move just in case Kris can't get the leave that he hasn't even applied for yet! Soooo much stuff.. I have half a garage full of things we are going to get rid of and honestly I am so ready for the stuff to be gone I almost want to just throw it away rather than trying to sell it just so it will be gone!

I have started organizing our pictures again, I have one tote full of photo albums and many other photo albums and pictures that were just floating around the house.. so I consolidated and grabbed a new tote to put the albums and pictures I find in. That was yesterday and now it is almost full.. lol.. I may need another tote for this..lol.. What can I say, I love pictures.

While going through our things yesterday I found a giant trash bag full of what I though was blankets.. but no, it was pillows.. what looked like new pillows.. about 6 or 7 of them.. crazy huh.. so those will be going in the for sale pile.. and after thinking about it (just now) I realize that I should probably have a garage sale before Kris gets home, because I have Alora's bday party scheduled on the 25th and I would really like to have all that junk gone by then.

I am ready to pack up my studio too, but I have a few more pictures that need to be taken first. I need to do our family portrait for our Christmas card.. Alora's bday photo shoot, and I have one more pinup shoot to do with Victoria. Then I will be done and pack all of that away.. that will clear up A LOT of space in the garage so we can just get everything moved to the side and packed.. It will be quicker and easier when the movers get here if we have that stuff already in totes so they don't have to pack it.

If it weren't for the fact that we do have some good stuff we are getting rid of, I would just throw it all away, but I know that we should be able to make some money off this stuff and that makes me want to try to sell it. Some friends and I are going to get together at Kristina's house on the 4th to have a big group yard sale.. I am hoping that it turns out well so we can really declutter.. plus we could definitely use the money right now!

I still haven't gotten my hotel room in Arizona for the commencement ceremony.. guess I need to schedule that.. I am looking forward to walking and have picked out my dress already.. now if I could only lose these last 11 pounds I would be a happy girl.. I am starting to actually see a difference in my body.. but I am definitely ready for it to be a bigger difference.

I am staying on track with my eating habits and it gets easier everyday to do it. I have found myself back to where I started with not wanting to just sit and eat... I have also found it easier to push the food away once I am full and control the urge to go back for seconds.. Sometimes my body doesn't get the signal that I am full right away.. for instance, we had chicken cacciatore last night and after I ate I didn't feel full until about an hour and a half later... I don't know why. It really annoys me though, because it is moments like that one that make me want to continue eating when I don't need to, but I have been eating better, and even when I snack it is on something better for me that chips on most days. Don't get me wrong I still snack on my chips, but I don't eat nearly as much as I used to.

Ok, so I have rambled on long enough on this one.. I will probably write more later so that I can break up the blogging a little bit since I was all over the place with this one..lol

30 days of Me- Day 9

Day 09 - a photo you took

Well, as anyone who knows me or reads my blog knows, I am a photographer.. so I take A LOT of pictures.. So this will be another long one..lol..

I will start with this one, not a great picture as it was taken with my phone, but, it was taken of something I made. I have always had crazy dreams so I made myself this dream catcher in the hopes that it would filter out the bad ones, so far it is working.

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Next is a picture I took of Alora at a friends, daughters, birthday party.. I just love her expression here.. And the fact that the birthday girl is peaking out behind her..:)
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I like this one because it is of all my boys having fun on the carosel .. man they got that thing going so fast that Mcleod's glasses flew off his face! lol

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This is a picture of my beautiful niece Kami.. I miss her so much.. and I really like this picture..
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So those are some of the pictures I have taken just for me.. on my non-professional side, just of life and the people I love.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

30 days of Me- Day 8

Day 08 - a photo that makes you angry/sad

Ok, so I had been thinking about this one for awhile.. and there are probably lots of photos floating around that make me either angry or sad, or both..However, yesterday when I was going through our things thinning stuff out I came across a very old picture.. One of me when I was with my ex. This picture garnered a lot of emotion, mostly anger.

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You can see that in the picture I am holding my face, that is because my ex had just hit me and thought it was funny so he took a picture of me. Yep, you read that right. He thought it was funny to hurt me, and btw, I was big because I was pregnant at the time. So this picture definitely makes me angry... but... it also makes me happy because that is no longer my life.. It is a past so distant that I don't much think of it anymore. I have a loving wonderful husband now that makes my life complete and I am very thankful for that.


As for a picture that makes me sad...well.. Most of the pictures that make me sad are a mixture of happy and sad... and most are of my children.. I am sooo happy to have them and look at their pictures.. but at the same time, they are growing up all too quickly before my eyes.

So here are just a few of my beautiful children, in no particular order.

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These two pictures were taken on Easter 2008 .. the day Alora started standing on her own.

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Ok, so there are soooo many more, so at this point I will stop..lol..

Monday, August 23, 2010

Thinning things out

We have been carrying around so much stuff for so long that we had totes, upon totes, upon totes, in our garage and storage room. Well, we finally decided it was time to start thinning out all this "stuff" we have been carrying around. There is just no reason for us to have all of these "things" when we don't use them and they don't really serve a purpose.. Some things were easy to get rid of, while others, well, they had a sentimental value attached that made letting go pretty hard. So since we knew we needed to let go we decided to take pictures of the things that we are getting rid of so we can keep a memory of that item without taking up the space with the actual item. I think it was a nice trade off. Now comes the part where I will actually try to sell some of the stuff.. and throw away the rest. Kris & I will have a garage sale sometime in Sept. but I will also be taking some of the stuff to a garage sale at a friends house on the 4th. Any little bit of money I could make would definitely be helpful in our move. We still have several more totes to go through, but we have definitely put a big dent in things and that makes me very happy. Even if letting go is a little sad, the weight being lifted off of us by getting rid of this stuff is even better. :)

30 days of Me- Day 7

Day 07 - a photo that makes you happy


Well, since photos are pretty much my life, there are a lot of them that make me happy, but I will share a few.

This one of Kris & I after he came back from the last deployment makes me very happy, you can see clearly how much we love each other. This picture really says it all about us.

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This one makes me happy because it is with my FF and we are being silly.. It is so great to have such a close friend.

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This one makes me extremely happy because after so many years of not having a relationship with my sister or nieces I finally do.. It was long overdue and having this picture reminds me of how much I love them and missed them.

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My dad & I .. I love having pictures of us together.. he has always been my best friend, but our relationship has truly grown in the past years and I don't know what I would do without him.

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I love this picture because this is my family, My in laws who are great people, my wonderful husband and all our kids.. It is really hard to get a picture of all our kids together..lol..

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So although there are many many other pictures that make me happy this is a small sampling of what I love.. :)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

30 days of Me- Day 6

Day 06 - whatever tickles your fancy

Well, I guess I will go with shopping on this one.lol. My favorite store is Ross I go there frequently for no in particular reason just because I love to browse through their things in the hopes of finding something awesome. I have purchased many, many, dresses from there.. a few of them have been evening gowns, and never cost more than twenty bucks if I buy it. :) I can say this, if I had more money, I would probably have more stuff from Ross.. lol.. Actually since Kris is mostly interested in sleeping today, I will be taking a trip over to Ross as soon as I get up.. which will probably very soon.. I want to find some Red Heels.. Mostly for photo shoots, but hey every girl needs a pair of red heels.. right?

This is one of my under $20 dresses that I found.. (I will post a picture when I find the red heels..lol)
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So onto other things, back when we were in Florida, Alora decided it would be a good idea to pull my wonderful new camera off of the kitchen counter onto the ceramic tile floor.. :( It hasn't been the same since.. so, I will be selling it to a camera place and buying a new one with income tax return.. This time however, I will be getting an extended warranty!! I am thoroughly irritated with my pictures as of late.. because of my messed up camera.. and will definitely be glad to remedy this situation quickly. Ok, so that is enough of the rambling..lol..

Saturday, August 21, 2010

30 days of Me- Day 5

Day 05 - your favorite quote

There are many quotes I have grown fond of over the years.. but none I can really think of currently. However, I do have a couple that I came up with myself (as far as I know anyway, lol) that I really like.

1. "When you stop learning, you stop living." I love this one, mainly because everyday we learn something new, if you stop being a part of anything and stop learning, then how can you truly live?

2. "There is no elevator to success, take the stairs." People always want to achieve success the easy way, but it is something you have to work for. Take it one step at a time and you can make it anywhere!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Pinup Shoot 8/19/10

Yesterday was the pinup shoot, I ended up with 6 girls here, it was a lot of fun and we got some good pictures.. The whole shoot took about 7 1/2 hours. Today, I am EXHAUSTED! I feel like I am catching a cold now but I think that is because I was allergic (nasal allergies) to the hair spray. Once my allergies start, it is really easy to catch a cold. So anyways, had lots of fun, got lots of pictures, and without further ado.. here are a few of them. I took over 800 pictures.. so this is only a very small sampling..lol

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And finally, all the ladies together.. :)
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I am hoping to do another of these parties in the future. It was very enjoyable for everyone involved. :)