Sunday, May 23, 2010


All we've had for a week is rain, rain, rain. So happens we have a yellow rain coat and a very willing subject when it comes to mud, rain boots and flopping about in the clover field! As we walked hand in hand through the field, getting ready to take some pictures, he said, "I like being alone with you, mama." Oh, me too. Me too. . . 

Friday, May 21, 2010

Lazy Rainy Day

I'm sitting at the kitchen table listening to Little Sis tell herself stories and play contentedly in the other room. There is a light rain and a chill in the air. Dramatic shift from the sun and warmth this past weekend. Spring in the Northwest. It has been a long couple of weeks with sick kiddos, prep to give a two-day training and general upkeep and maintenance. I'm plum tuckered out and am having a heck of a time motivating to do the Friday chores. Perhaps I won't fight it. Perhaps I'll sit down with the stack of magazines that have accumulated over the last few weeks, a cozy blanket and drift in and out of a lazy afternoon. This assumes, of course, that the wee one will cooperate and that I can tolerate the dust bunnies! In all likelihood, it'll be the dust bunnies and empty fridge that will motivate me out of this chair. 

Monday, May 17, 2010

Faces and Flowers

This week's challenge at I Heart Faces is Faces and Flowers. This a photo of my daughter celebrating her 4th Birthday. Everything was pink and fluffy and very fancy!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Color and Creativity

Life has been full and busy. Work has crept into the edges, taking the bits and pieces left over after a long day . . . next week a coworker and I will give a 2 day training for our colleagues. It is a lot of work to pull together the materials and what-not for such an event! I'll be relieved when it is done and I can spend my spare time on more creative and rewarding activities. Well, that's not entirely true. I am a teacher at heart and I have enjoyed creating the presentation. Its the age-old dilemma: Choosing one thing means deferring another.
Yesterday the family and I basked the in the sun, playing at the park, walking and taking pictures. It could be true that I mostly appreciated that last activity! Little Sis had been sick this week with croup. Sunday night found Hubby with her at the ER while I stayed with brother at home. She hasn't slept well all week and of course, neither have we. My father in-law came down from Seattle on Wednesday night so that he could watch us on Thursday. So grateful. 
Yesterday we laid low. Played at the park. Walked. Took pictures. We had warm, sunny weather and all of Portland seemed to be outdoors. I kept up with my training and ran 6.5 miles at pretty good clip. Funny how my legs are feeling a little wobbly today!
Clouds are expected today but not before some yard work and planting. Sundays are such a hodge podge of activities. Laundry, yard work, errands, prep for the work and school week. 

Friday, May 14, 2010

I can't stop!!!

Apparently my inspiration comes in bursts, unevenly scattered throughout the day. I think this, finally, is my favorite!! Added some interest around the edges -- not exactly burning the edges. Used a neutral gray fill layer on overlay mode than painted with black with a really big brush around the edges.

Fix it Friday #54

Yea, for I Heart Faces and Fix it Friday! This Christina is the proud mama of this blue-eyed boy. So here's edit #1. . . 
And here's edit #2. Only difference with #2 is that I changed one of the texture (a gold bokeh) from "screen" to overlay to deep the contrast rather than lighten it. I think I like the second better. You?

Hoping to have some time this weekend to take and play with pictures. It has been a crazy couple of weeks. Today it is warm and bright. I have flowers to plant, a warm spot on the couch waiting for me to nap and a promise to fulfill to make a "treat" with the kids.
Oh, man just had to add another edit (few hours later . . . ). Added a blue fill layer and masked his skin excepting his eyes. Soft light and adjusted opacity. I think I like this one . . .

Friday, May 7, 2010

Fix it Friday #53

Leticia from Blessed with Five Boys contributed a sweet picture for today's Fix it Friday. I'm so grateful I'm tired of my own pictures and haven't been able to pick up my camera in days!! 

So here's what I did in Photoshop:
1. curves adjustment first to find neutral for the highlight and low-light then for the skin tone
2. hue and saturation to again adjust skin to remove pink/red -- mask to add back in pretty lip color
3. Gaussian blur filter on overlay -- adjust highlights and shadows
4. Adding vignette effect by using a black layer on overlay and painting in neutral gray on baby's face. I think that's an accurate description?

The kids are squabbling, the house is a mess and its "preparation day" around here, meaning time to clean, launder and shop for Sabbath. I wish I had the motivation to get cracking!! We're supposed to have beautiful weather today and I'm itching to be outside. How are you spending your Friday?
Ok, was inspired and went back for another looksie. Crop, addition of a texture, paint on the skin, brightened eyes . . . ah, like so much more than Take 1!!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sun Breaks

Yesterday was full of dramatic shifts in light with passing clouds of various density. We decided to explore a new nature park and boy did we find some wonderful things! As an aside, we finally identified what Poison Oak looks like . . . still waiting to see if evidence will show up on our skin!
The first find was hummingbird perched atop a tree, fluttering his wings in the breeze. I attempted to capture his fleeting beauty but was too far away and not quick enough . . . I do so much better with stationary objects!
We saw a wonderful profusion of wildflowers and creeping vines . . . didn't too close once we heeded the warnings about the Poison Oak. In fact, once I got home, I examined my photos with the kids to see if they were sitting in it! Fortunately, looks like they missed it. 
It was a lovely afternoon with tremendous views. Rolling hills, dramatic cloud banks, bursts of sun . . . bird songs and children's gibberish and laughter. 
It is Sunday again. How well did I meet my goals from last week? Its a work in progress. It's about the little steps moving in the self-appointed direction. Always balancing the priorities against each other. I did meet my training goals, some of my meditation goals and missed by a bit my goal to continue reducing TV. But it is Sunday again. The start of another week. Another opportunity to play this game and move closer to the goal!