Category Archives: Challenges

Some Recent Pics


The babies and I took a long hike this morning because when woke up all the trees were covered in ice.  It was a real-life Winter Wonderland.  This is only about 200 yards from my house.  It is strange to me, but the sky in Colorado is so much bluer than the skies back East.  It is delightful.

( This was taken mid-morning so the sun was very bright.  I had the sun almost directly behind me and used my 50mm at f/5 and ISO 100.  I can’t take credit for the pretty tree and blue sky…cause even my fun camera can’t make that up.)



Jackson  simply HAD to have this Grinch ornament, and it has become a favorite.  I admit to needing help with maintaining the Christmas spirit for the whole holiday season.  Between buying presents and the crowds and tempting foods, I can grow weary.  But this little ornament makes me smile.  Partly because I have always loved the Grinch’s outfit, it cracks me up.  And partly because listening to J explain the plot of the story is the cutest thing in the world.



and then, she {snapped}



My mother is pretty much the best Grammy around.  She loves her grandbabies “more than cupcakes” as J says, and spends a good deal of time making sure they have everything they want/need/desire.  My little ones adore her and ask me daily if she can come visit in CO.  A only sleeps on the right side of her bed, because she is “saving some room” in case Grammy comes over.

Hanna Anderson is a Swedish clothing store for children and adults and is home to some of the most adorable clothes.  Their clothes are simple and colorful and last forever.

The combination of these two make pictures like these possible. 🙂

My kids always act like this, don’t yours?  I do really love how peaceful they both look.  J has always been his sister’s biggest snuggler.

He loves her so very much.  It really is amazing to me sometimes.  Because you can’t really teach that, he just loves her.

I love this picture.  I think I will call it “Joy and Sadness”.   A is in a mothering stage, and Frances is the baby.  Frances does not want to be the baby, or be on a hike.  She wants to be asleep on a comfy blanket.  Poor doggie staring off with her defeated gaze.

So, again, thanks to Grammy for being you and for being awesome.

I have more from this group, trying to have some self-control until they are all edited.  🙂

Sweet Shot DayPhotobucket

Reason for the Season

Well it has been awhile since I have been blogging.  The move kept us busy for a while, and with Christmas upon us I have been pretty occupied!

I am not really inclined to do a big review of what has been going on — because that would bore you all to tears.  We have been unpacking, exploring Colorado Springs and getting ready for the man in the red suit.   The children are very excited, and ask almost hourly when Santa will be here. Does he know our new address?   Do I think they will make the nice list?

I have attempted to train, guide, persuade them that Christmas ( or any holiday) is not a time of reckless greed and mile-long manifestos.  That we should think of others and their wants, desires and mile-long manifestos and be thoughtful.  They enjoy my allegories, and listen intently.  Then tell me  they need to go on and look at stuff.  That’s right.  They say w w w . amazon . com  — and they are 4 and 3.   And while I try to model behavior that is productive, I can not claim to succeed with consistency.  Because I starting seeing things, too.  Wonderful things.  Like new computers and camera lenses.  Oh the lenses!  And camera bags that look like purses!  And then we all sort of lose focus and head to the kitchen and bake something.

And while baking today, I was thinking about what really makes this season “most wonderful.”   And the thing that really occurred to me, speaking on a very basic level, is gingerbread man shaped waffles.


That’s right.  Waffles.

What other time of year do you cut waffles into shapes?  What other time of year do you sit your two pre-school age children down and make homemade wrapping paper?  With paints!

It is all these things.  The waffles, the baking and even the time sitting on together that make this season so special.

And I really do think that this magical time is being spoiled by stores putting stuff out in October… because the stamina required to

create this magic can not be maintained over 12 weeks!

Like cutting sponges into stars and trees.

And then practicing the painting.

And doing the painting.

And cleaning up  the painting…which is why there is no actual photos of completed homemade wrapping paper.

And even shopping in long lines to buy a gift for someone who may get overlooked at times.  I am glad we settled enough in the house to do these fun extras.

And even if the children don’t remember them or can’t stop fixating on the toys, I know I will.


** G is busy at work designing my new blog!! I want to put the link up so badly, because he did great.  But alas, he says it will ruin the presentation.  But soon!!!!**





SOOC…. I love this one, and when my computer resuscitates I will do some processing.

When I get overwhelmed, and my brain feels full, there is only one good solution.

Writing in list-form, and here it goes.

1.  The Blog-frey’s have landed in Colorado Springs, and are loving our new home.

2.  No… it hasn’t snowed.  It has, however, snowed at Fort Gordon where we just left in GEORGIA.  Whatever, let’s keep this positive.

3.  It is BEAUTIFUL here.  My backyard looks over the golf course, and we get to watch the sunset out my living room window.

4.  We would get to do that if we could sit down for 12 seconds.  Which we don’t get to do just yet.

5.  All that running around and activity has oddly placed 6 lbs on my body, I don’t get it either.

6.  Unintentional animal spottings are numerous and very exciting.  Coyotes live near the post hospital, and wander freely.   They are mange coyotes, which I learned is more of a disease than a criticism.  I also saw a ton of girl deer, and a large boy deer.  Still waiting on elk, moose and maybe a bear.  Luckily, there is a zoo up the road to fill in the gaps. 🙂

7.  Moving is a large task.  Moving with children is an even larger task.  Moving with children during Christmas is a monumentally large task.  Moving with children during Christmas when you are painfully neurotic about producing holiday magic is a near death experience.

8.  I love Chipotle.  I have heard the rumors of greatness, and it delivered.

9.  My husband has become an incredible asset in moves and home-creating.

10.  My children always have cuter rooms than I do, which according to some marriage book is not good.  Regardless, I am very pleased.

11.  I love Trees for Troops and the fabulous tree they donated to us, tied to our car and freshly cut.  We are very grateful for the money savings and convenience this year!

12.  Our home here  really feels like home, which is odd seeing as though we have lived here 10 days.

13.  The schools in town ( or lack of good options) caused a panic attack, but I have come back down and have some hope.




** Updated once I stole G’s computer.**

I stole G’s computer to reassure myself that it was my aging computer, and not my memory card.  This did not allow for any editing…but I feel better, anyway.

15.  I will be back to blogging more when my computer submits to my will and allows me to get my pictures. So until then…  the Blog-frey’s are happy, healthy and ready for Santa!




Touch Up Tuesday's at the Paper Mama

A brief break from chaos….

I am literally being swallowed alive by boxes.

(Well not boxes, G is the world’s biggest fan on Rubbermaid bins.  So we have about a million.)

And worse than that, I am being overcome by the 500 or so spare pieces of stuff that has no box to call itself home.

G is still in the field.  So I am working solo, which is actually my preference in such matters.

But I was happy to stop to link up with Faith at Simplicity…because “Daydream” is a perfect thing to think of on such days. It is rather inspiring always to see such pretty things, but even more so when you are surrounded by such a mess.

And I also wanted to mention, that my picture of my little nephew Coleman was chosen as a favorite over at Trendy Treehouse.  Woot!


I have about a zillion pictures from 3 recent photo shoots, but can not allow myself to get started on this!

I will be loaded up and out of here Monday, so next week I hope to put them up.

This week at Trendy Treehouse it’s “birthdays”…

That little turkey naturally encourages me to want to go out and find the BEST present ever.

Because if a Sleeping Beauty coloring pack earned this face, imagine what something really awesome would produce.

This is a good time to mention the little ones just left on a surprise trip to the Magic Kingdom with my parents.

The kids don’t know yet… can you imagine her face when they pull up?!?!!?



Wee Bit/ Completely adorable little girls

**** We are 4 days away from our move, and I just returned from 2 days visiting my dearest friend Christina and her 3 little girls!!**

yes, her children are ridiculously cute.

And I am sorry if you have emailed me recently, I am sort of in and out until Monday.

{one} what time do you normally wake up?

I would say the kiddos give me a 7:30am average.  With an occasional 8 or 6:30.

{two} do you have a go-to song for karaoke?

I do not sing in public. Period.

{three} if you could only see black and white except for one color, what color would you choose to see?

When I was around 12 or 13, I was “acting out” at school.  I was made to go see Dana Goldfarb the school counselor.

I answered black to all her color questions.

Sorry Dana, I really thought I was funny.

Probably green.

{four} what color best matches your personality?

For the sake of not answering with green again… I will say orange.

Because I am spicy enough to not to yellow, but haven’t quite earned red yet.

{five} if you could choose one meal to cook better than anyone else, what would it be?

Oh dear.  I don’t really care to cook anything better than anyone else.

And it’s really impossible to even claim that, seeing as though we all have different tastes.

{six} how many keys do you have on your key ring?

I believe 3.  Car, house and some mysterious mini key.

{seven} do you give your pets birthday/christmas gifts?

Absolutely not.

{eight} when your plate has different foods on it, do you mix or not?

Absolutely.  Getting through some veggies would be impossible without some fusion.

{nine} if you could hire someone to do one thing for you all the time, what would it be?

COOK!!!  wait no…CLEAN…wait..I don’t know.  I think organize.

{ten} when flying, do you prefer the window or aisle seat?

Aisle… my legs are a bit on the long side. And it gives me a bit more room, and easy access to potty.

Some Challenges on a Challenging Day


This is from my nephew’s newborn pictures, but has just been finished in editing.  He is almost 3 months old.  Yikes.

If he is not exactly this little when we get to Florida in a few days, I will be upset.

And then there is little Miss Charlie.

Who is one part of the foursome(well five with their Momma!) of girls that our time in Augusta has gifted us with, the kiddos and I are all sad to be leaving them.

And just so you don’t think I am bragging about editing skills(which I could not actually do), the original is below.  Her eyes are naturally that amazing. And so are every single one of the sisters.



Touch Up Tuesday's at the Paper Mama


And last, but certainly not least, I will be using A’s picture for the “Innocence of a Child” challenge at Pixel Perfect.

Because I love this shot of her so much, I think it needs to be a wall mural when we get to Colorado.

It is her, with cute boots and a frog lunch box.

She is so very officious and sweetly confident.


And I hope in 20 years, she is marching confidently down whatever path she chooses.

Preferably one that heads towards my house. 🙂

So if taking a photograph is meant to capture a person, or a moment, then this will be ( in my mind) the best I have ever taken.

(My husband doesn’t agree.)

I Heart Faces: Orange

I Heart Faces: Orange

Orange you glad Grammy likes to send boxes full of Gymboree?!

Ha! It’s Monday, don’t hate. 🙂

These little guys are minutes away from swimming in a sea of cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar.


Macro Monday


He Smiles

He smiles.

Not much today, especially this morning, but he does in fact smile.

His list of complaints today ranged from not getting a Happy Meal  to not wanting to rest.

There were many, and all were made plenty loud.

But, with a superhero cape and some time on the swing all is well.

Mommy gets a smile.

And he gets to practice what he aspires to be most… a superhero flying in the air.

I can’t decide if my favorite part of this is her expression, or the fact her fancy bejangled shoes are on the wrong foot.

Both my children NEVER wear there shoes on the correct feet.

And when we fix them, they say it “feels funny”.

She is learning how to swing on the big girl swing, which is adorable.

But, if you ask me, she is still too little. 🙂

SOOC Sunday



Ni Hao Y'all


The Sunday Creative

** for those waiting to hear about countdown Day 16 and 15…know this…I have not inhaled through my nose in 4 days.  Which means I haven’t slept, or tasted food.  All this to say…. packing is halted until such time as I can breathe again.  **

Camera…I have missed you


Before and After

G made good use of his time spent soldiering in the field the other day, and brought home a hat full of fresh pecans.  And these little guys put Fresh Market to shame with their freshness.

And tomorrow, I shall spend my day roasting, sugaring and maybe even pie-ing these little guys up.  Do you guys like pecan pie? Despite my hubby’s Southern heritage, he claims to have never eaten it, and I definitely have not.

This is submitted to Simplicity’s “Fall” theme…because what is more Fall than pecans?!?!


No this is not the costume he threw a tantrum in Target over for 20 minutes.

No I did not cave in less than 72 hours.


Not me.  I am an oak.

And after I didn’t cave ( even if he did have strep and a fever), I most certainly did not spend an hour glueing up a Captain America shield from scratch.

Discipline is my middle name folks.

the long road