Friday, December 30, 2011

Week 51 good to WOW Happy New Year

I didn't have a chance to take a picture of it, but IF I was going to post a picture representing our new year it would be a photo of our I-800a approval...our year will be waiting for referral, then I-800 approval, then travel approval, then traveling to China to bring home our child...nothing else represents what we expect to be a HAPPY NEW YEAR for us as well as the latest step in this process.

I do have a collage of some of my edits from this year.  I only joined in March, but since I didn't always limit myself to one photo...this is not all my photos; I promise!
I'm hoping you can click it to make the collage bigger, but I'm having some problems with blogger photos.  Going through the photos I thought it would be more obvious on how far I've come, but I couldn't quite bear to add the really bad edits to the collage.  Just know I have learned a ton by having a challenge each week and a new editing tool to try out.  I cannot believe how much I did not know...and there is still more to learn.  It'll take a lifetime, and I expect to enjoy it immensely!

Thank you, Ashley and Jill, for doing this challenge.  I really loved it!


Friday, December 23, 2011

Week 50 good to WOW Edit Holiday Traditions

I haven't even had a chance to look at the other edits and at this point I imagine every one is enjoying their Holiday time, but it will hang over my head all weekend if I don't just do here are my edits from Monday.  I do love this picture even though the focus is a little softer than I want, but it does capture my Sunflower during the holiday...


I basically took it back to the lightroom import presets, sharpened, and cropped.
Ideally I would take the picture again, but Sunflower now wants to see the picture as soon as I snap, so I only have one chance.  After looking and asking her to go back so I could take another, this is what I got.
Yeah, I know.  The tree isn't in the shot at all, but we do get the head of sleeping dad instead of his feet...

Then for fun...
Converted to BW...the preset I used had split-toning to add a yellow tinge;  I changed it to red in the spirit of the season.

I hope you have a most blessed Holiday Weekend.  As for me and my house we will be celebrating Our Savior's Birth with Joy and Thanksgiving!


Monday, December 19, 2011

Holiday Traditions -- Monday Rewind and Week 50 Good to WOW SOOC

So many Holiday Traditions...

Making an ornament at MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) for 10 years now...
This year I made 5!  That's something for non-crafty me.

Dancing to Christmas Music...
A few new Christmas CD's would be good with such active dancers

Putting the lights on the Christmas tree...
Dad had to do the top few branches

Putting the star on top...
Someday I'll find the perfect tree topper...on clearance
Decorating the tree...
Or playing with the ornaments depending on who you ask.
Eating the traditional Christmas tree decorating spread...
Cheese, Sausage, and crackers and candy, candy, candy.
Taking out the Christmas books...
We never fight over them; no, we don't!
Of course, decorating Gingerbread houses with Cousin L and Aunt J...

And then Sunday we had our family Christmas party on my husband's side.  Sometimes we still see everyone over the holiday too, but not this year, so extra special.  Especially since Huckleberry got to play his saxophone with Cousin J for the first time...

They did a great job!  I'm so proud of my son who first picked up his instrument in September.  Cousin L held the book...a very expensive and beautiful music stand...
Even if Sunflower did block my view.
There was (and will be) lots of fun playing games...
They moved on from spoons, leaving me with some photographic material.
Of course what Holiday Tradition would be complete without the best apple pie in the world...
My husband's sister's husband makes the most amazing pie crust!
And finally, beautiful Christmas dresses (SOOC)...
35mm   1/80 sec   f/2.2   ISO 200 -- zeroed out in LightRoom
May you have a most blessed week before Christmas enjoying your own Holiday Traditions!


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Scavenger Hunt Sunday Snapshot -- Gingerbread Edition

Today we had the joy of going to my sister-in-law's house so the kids could decorate gingerbread houses.

This gave me three hours to play with my camera.

It was a real JOY to take pictures of my sister-in-law's beautiful decorations.

Sunflower put HALF of her gumdrops on her gingerbread people instead of her house.

Aunt J decorated the house...leaving Sunflower free to eat candy and play.

She did take a moment to SLEEP, well for pretend, under the tree for me.

Cousin L's house was the most carefully decorated.

Though I love the WINDOWS on Sunflower/Aunt J's house and on the boys' house.

I'm sure every one will be happy to know that Sunflower is fully recovered from her head staples...if you cannot tell from her photos.

The boys are happy she is all better, too.

Oh, I had to get one last Scavenger Hunt prompt before we headed home, so I pulled a present from under my sister-in-law's tree...assuming it would quite nicely fit the "WHAT IS IT?" theme.
Though it turns out if you look closely you might see what it is.

I hope you have a fantastic week!

Sunday Snapshot


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Week 49 good to WOW Edit Bokeh Lights

So...I am a little bit busy, as are most people during this season, and I should be doing something else, but to not participate in Shoot and Edit this week when we only have a few more weeks left...that would make me sad.  Just looking at the thumbnails over at Ashley's I know there is some gorgeous bokeh light shots out there.  I cannot wait to look at them...though I will.

I have not had much time to experiment with bokeh myself, though we do have our tree up, but as is typical for a Thursday morning I had a half hour at our church while waiting for a meeting to start...kid free and camera in hand.  Only one tree to play with, but still fun.  Oh, and I had a can of coke with me.

1/200  f/1.8   ISO 200   50mm  (Most of the 30 min. I thought I had my 35mm, and was wondering why I couldn't get as close.)
Clean Edit:
Straighten a little, crop, remove pine needle, boost clarity and contrast.
Fun Edit:
A retro preset I got from Adobe Lightroom Share
So the coke in the white cans might not have a reputation for tasting very good (I found the first sip of the first can really did taste and feel different) but they sure are pretty...and still get me the caffeine I crave.  One tip, though, they balance a lot better on cotton batting when they still have something in them.

And I think there should always be an ornament self-portrait:

And then a left over from our Holiday photos a few weeks ago:
I told her I just wanted 5 more photos...and all 5 have her with her hand held up counting down.  She always makes us laugh.  The doctor takes her staples out tomorrow.