I love that song by Matthew West, "Motions." The writer appeals to his self and cries,
I don't want to go through the motions,
I don't want to spend one more day
Without your all consuming passion inside of me
I don't want to spend my whole life asking,
What if I had given everything,
Instead of going through the motions?
Yesterday morning I was sitting in my usual illustrious position in church (behind the sound board) and listening to my daddy Pastor speak and he touched on a topic relatively close to the words of the song. But, he said one thing that was so poignant and resonated with me. We often go through life and get to a point in our lives that begs the question, "What do we do when life becomes a struggle day in and day out? Or our faith becomes a dull experience?" And the question that he followed up with was a reaction I have decided to have also. It's not just a reaction, its a lifestyle question and it is: What can I do to PREVENT my life my becoming a struggle day in and day out? What steps can I take to proactively make sure my faith experience stays fresh?
I needed to hear this. I am not going to sit back and let my life happen to me. I have GOT to happen to my life and I have GOT to happen to my faith. I don't grow stronger or go deeper in my life, faith...or business for that matter, if I don't take the time, make the effort or do everything in me to HAPPEN to my life.
Any pain or struggle, let it be growing paints. Growth happens outside of my comfort zone. So, what can you do today to happen to your life? Take that approach instead.

Because every post is better with a picture:

And CONGRATULATIONS to Jen for having the most romantic moments in the giveaway from the last post! Make sure ya'all read it!!


Celebrating Love (with iTunes)

I was 15 and a sophomore in high school. I still wore jumpers, worked in food service and was headed out of class to go to work when he stopped me. He asked if I worked with that one girl Jamie. Feeling my walls come up I told him I did. Actually it was more along the lines of, "Yeah...why?!" He told me to tell her she had a cute...well that she was cute. Disgusted, I stomped out of class, walked quickly to work and told Jamie what he said and that he was "disgusting." This disgust elevated when the teacher moved his seat two away from mine and his liquid science experiment were remnants of saliva and soda. EEEEEWWWWWWWW. Who was this guy?!! It wasn't long before this guy started hanging around us. And except for the whole playing drums to his own beat with headphones in his ears habit, he was kind of cool. But not on the cool level that were were at wearing our aprons and jumpers, a whole other kind of cool. He skated, wasn't afraid to talk to anybody and had a youthful boyhood about him.

And now. Now he's all grown up. He's still just as cool (well he may be a little less cool but he's WAY cuter) and still drumming to his own music, except that now he tries to sing and no matter how hard I try to convince him to go back to skating because that's what he's good at, he just won't. I may just have to start dancing to his singing so he'll stop.

With all the weddings going on in this fall season I am reminded of my own love story. And all the romantic moments. The one that stands out the most? I was working at Berean and was closing late. It was Valentine's and we couldn't go out that night. So while I worked, Mat showed up at closing in the parking lot. And when I walked out he handed me a dozen roses and turned on the boom box he had surrounded by tealight candles, and we danced. Just one dance. Our only "real" dance. But I'll never forget it.

And I love that we each have romantic moments like this. So here's the deal--in celebrating Denice getting married and the launch of my new site and blog I'm doing a giveaway. Submit your most memorable moment with your loved one. The best story (chosen by yours truly) gets a $10 iTunes gift card. Leave it in the comment section below but be SURE to include your name and e-mail address! Make 'em your best ones! Giveaway ends at 10pm (Pacific Time) August 25th.

We're Ready for Take-Off!

It's done! It's after 2 in the morning, but its done! Ladies and gentlemen: the new site! Also, please hang around a while and browse the updated blog. Leave a comment, send to a friend and become a friend.




Halfway through the week and still soooo much to do. I am so excited about revamping my website. My apologies for the lack of attention its getting right now. Because I can't manipulate individual pages I have not been able to do a thing with it until the upgrade. But the upgrade is going to be so worth it.

A while ago Mat asked me a very deep and personal question: When you hear the word irresistible what do you think of. My answer? Chocolate. Hands down. I don't think that was quite the answer he was looking for. Fine then. Don't ask a woman. It has been such a crazy busy couple of weeks around our household that a piece of chocolate would just make everything all better. Apparently I forgot when school started and have to do all sit-in registrations. Which totally bites. How could I have forgotten?!? **sigh** They act like I don't come back every semester. On the upside maybe I can finally look forward to being done.

I did get a chance to go and take some photos of Stef and one of the cute visitors we have in our home right now. When she learned that Stef was going out to take pictures she quickly decided that that day was suddenly the "boringest day in her WHOLE life." Never mind that she's 7. Hilarious. Kids are so funny. Stef is one of my favorite models, one because she's beautiful and two because she's a natural in front of the camera. Love 'er!! =)


Jen and Nathaniel::Day After Shoot

His eyes fill with laughter whenever he looks at her and you know down in your soul that he loves her. If you were to hear of their whirlwind love story you would think they were crazy, but everybody else knew...they'd both found the one they were meant to be with for the rest of their lives. And I feel so privileged to be able to call them friends. Nathaniel and I go WAAAAAYYYYY back. Okay so we're both in our 20's but hey, our dads were once roommates--and that totally qualifies as way back. He was my first neighbor, the first one I could tattle on and the first one of our friends to move far away. When he met Jen, I can remember sitting at Round Table and hearing all about her. She's just as fabulous as he made her out to be and she suits him perfectly. Her serene presence is so calming to be around and she creates a beautiful home for her family.

When I told Jen I was looking to build my wedding portfolio she volunteered them for the job. She was looking to get some photos of their daughter for her 3rd birthday and you know me, I'm down (sidenote::I told my mom I was down to do something one day and she text me back asking "What's that?" Moms.). So up to Lodi Mat and I trekked. They both looked so great in their wedding garb and were even greater for letting me shoot them for my site which I'm revamping (soooooo excited!!--stay tuned because its going to be fabulous). And of all days--it was hot. Not like 80 degree hot, but 103 degree hot. Such troopers. L Family~thanks sooo much! Love you all!!

Isn't Jen beautiful?!?


Need I say anything?

What would their family be without Mo?


Un Geek-o Suave-o

I remember one Adventures in Odyssey episode when Connie had two girlfriends who pressured her into calling one of the boys at their school a geek. And he heard her. Oops. Moral? Don't let him hear you...Okay for everyone 12 and under who reads this, that wasn't the moral. HOWEVER, you can call this guy a geek and he wouldn't care. Meet Josh. Part of the fabulous Geek Squad. The guys who fix our computers when us real techies actually don't have a clue. According to him, he's their number 1. I don't doubt it. You know how many girls would break their computers JUST so they could go have him look it at? I'm sure there are millions...overseas. And I'm sure that's how they get their sales.

Josh agreed to help me out with an engagement session for a portfolio build but of all the fiances we had lined up for him, not a one showed. Poor Joshy. So he took his photos solo. Eh, its better anyhow. We spent a couple hours in Pismo shooting downtown before calling it a day. He's quite charming, so enjoy!

His unsuspecting victim:


I'll Take the Amateur

French, from Latin amātor, lover, from amāre, to love.

Anytime I thought of the word amateur I thought of a beginner, novice or someone who just does something as a hobby. But another root word, as I learned from the great Dane Sanders, is love. And for that lesson I am grateful. I love what I do and love everything I'm learning. I'm determined to always keep a passion for what I do, love the process and the people. And darnit--I will. =) So here's to the rest of my life, where I will always take the amateur route.

And just cause a post is always better with a pic and I love her: My little animal.


788,923,149 Seconds

788,923,149 seconds
13,148,719 minutes
9,131 days
1,304 weeks
300 months
25 years

Bring it year 25!! I seriously can't wait for this year. I am soooo excited! Feeling like this year is going to be my year. I was sitting in church on Sunday [and I'm a woman so I can think, listen, write AND run the sound board at the same time] and began to think about what this year was going to be like. And...well I have a lot of work to do. =)

I had a fabulous weekend thanks in part to my family and a set of very good friends. Mat did what he knew how to do to organize a birthday party for me and I loved him so much for his effort. I wanted to go to the beach, play volleyball and have a bonfire. We had everything for it! Except the pit for the fire, the pole to make the volleball higher than a badminton net and all the people we invited. lol. BUT...we did have two very good friends show up. And so the time did not go to waste. My family came out. Hung for a couple hours, played a little volleyball and after that (because we didn't have a fire to cook our hotdogs [or my veggie dogs]) six of us and one little one headed to Denny's. Where we proceeded to wait for an hour and a half to be seated, have our order taken and get served. Nathaniel was convinced that our waiter was a convict in hiding--I think he was bipolar on top of it.

Anyhow, it was fabulous weekend. The beach, good friends, PF Changs, a new wallet. I think I'll go out and buy myself a purse. Fabulous should always end with a purse. My new motto. =)

Happy new year everyone! lol. Okay okay. So happy birthday to me and may this year be prosperous!

This is Jen and Nathaniel's little one. Is she not adorable?!?