a glimps in my private life

In the arms of my daughter

I found this, while cleaning and organizing my files.


I’m sitting on a steel bench, looking down at a show… but it’s so familiar.  Wait, that’s me.  I’m down there…. We are playing rock band… not the video game version, but with playskool mics, acoustic guitars, and Heman & She-ra castles as drums.  There’s Justin rock’n out on the guitar and the mic.  It seems so real. OOhhh what’s happening?  There Justin and I am on his dirt bike, riding through the old (insert name here) camp grounds, my stomach flips as we jump the hills, I giggle as I hold onto his waist tighter. I haven’t been this happy in a long time, this relieved.   Now I’m walking down a hallway, through steel swinging doors, and there he is, on the autopsy table.   (more…)


Solitude is healthy

I’ve completed another chapter in A Weekend to change your life, all of this is focusing on Solitude.
I remember in HS, our assistant band director, let’s call her Mrs B, would come into my restaurant every Sunday and have lunch by herself.  At the time I thought she had to be the biggest looser in the world.  (please keep in mind I was 17) Who in their right mind would want to go to a restaurant by themselves? 

Fast forward many years, I’m way out of HS, and in the AF having lunch by myself.  Enjoying the solitude.  No one barking orders, no friends dishing gossip, no one complaining about anything.  It was an odd feeling at first, I recall being a bit self conscious of everyone staring (no one was even paying attention) at the poor soul who HAD to have lunch by myself.  It was a conscious decision on my part, I needed a bit of a reprieve.  Then, I did it again.   I enjoy my time to myself, I don’t always make it a priority, but according to Joan, I must, and so should you.

“Seeking solitude each day is a way to stay present, focused and alive to my own individual spirit.”  This is when nothing major is happening in our lives, but honestly, how often does that happen?  Since December of 2013 I have had 3 major life events taking place, one of which is my Aunt’s Murder being suitable for Parole- Life happens.  Needless to say, my Solitude time has increased, allowing me extra time to process, understand, heal & rejuvenate getting ready for the next event.  

I bet you are reading this, thinking, “OK, I haven’t had a major event YET”, as you are looking for the nearest piece of wood furniture – but keep in mind that even little endings we endure leave wounds that must be healed.

The bottom line, take the time for yourself, for solitude & solace.

No more But’s

“When we are stuck, choice is threatening because it implies change. When you accept your power over these choices, you’ll have begun the process of being more open and free.” Joan Anderson

I love that! Everyone is afraid of change, at least in one form or another. It implies the unknown, and I am the first to admit, I am my own biggest enemy. My biggest block from moving forward. (more…)

Needs, Desires & Goals

“Many women drive their relationship to soul as if it were not a very important instrument.  Like any instrument of value, it needs shelter, cleansing, oiling, and repair.  Otherwise, like a car  the relationship sludges up, causes deceleration in a woman’s daily life, causes her to use up enormous energy for the simplest tasks, and finally busts down, out on heart break ridge, away from town and telephone.  Then it is a long, long walk back home.” ~Clarissa Pinkola Estes; Women Who Run With the Wolves.   (more…)


This post is a bit different from my norm.  I love Halloween!   And this year, since we now have plenty of space and trees (yay) we decided to make a Ghost Tree!   It was easy, simple, and my daughter loved it.

First, your supplies.

1 box of white garbarage bags (dollar store for $1)

1 spool of white ribbon (dollar store for $1)

Giant Christmas bulbs (dollar store for $1 each) 

Sharpie & Scissors


Use your scissors to cut a small slit at the top of  the garbage bag.  This is where you slide the bulb string through. 


Slip the thread through, then pull the trash bags over the bulb


Use the string to tie the trash bag tight under the bulb.  If you wish, cut long & short slits in the trash bag to create movement.


Draw your face.  You may need to use the ribbon  to extend the hanging portion so it wraps around the tree branch.




And now you have your spooky Halloween Tree!

BTW, did you notice that yellow tint to the photographs in the step by step?  I shot those with my IPHONE which doesn’t allow you to adjust the white balance (like SLR”s, and even most point and shoots these days).  If you are getting a tint to your photos, you can do two things

1) check your manual and find out how to adjust your white balance

2) turn off the lights, and bring in natural light by going outside or close to a window.

This endth the lesson!

Out of my Box as a Portrait Photographer in Oxford Mi

I am a portrait photographer. I mainly work in my studio in Oxford Mi, where I can control light.

Needless to say I was a bit out of my COMFORT ZONE when I attended my very best friends’ sons’ swim meet. Of course I brought my camera, and I have to say I liked it. More then liked it, and I must say, the sports photographs turned out great. With a few more events under my belt……. Well what do you think? Which version do you like. Standard or a bit Gritty?



My Memory Keeper…..an Oxford Photographer’s Story

Of course as Photographers we communicate, push and even sometimes harp on the importance of getting your family photos taken yearly. And in the back of your mind, I know you are thinking, “Right….. do we really need a family photograph every year, I know you (the photogs) just want the business”

This is not a post like that. This is my story, why Photos are important to me. photo

My Family is dysfunctional. Maybe more then most, maybe not. Though I was born an only child, I was not raised as one. My mother raised my cousin. We had    bunk beds, I don’t remember a single vacation when Justin wasn’t there with me. We walked home from school together, and being 5 yrs my Senior, he  would  help me with my homework, try to black photo(1)mail me after making me say profanity, and was the only one allowed to torture me, as most brothers do.

It was this way for the longest time. I don’t remember when he stopped staying the night, & moved out…. but it happened. Though even in his senior year of HS, he would be at my house waiting for me while I was in 7th grade. If he had work or football practice, he’d leave his calling card, MTV (back when it really was music television) would be on so I’d know he had been there.

I remember his Senior Portrait session in October of ’92. It was a mad house mess to say the least. My Grandmother, Aunt, Mom, myself all had photographs taken with Justin, and then a group photo that included dogs. What were we thinking?!?! With all the nastiness that ensued, my family is very opinionated, arguments happened, then we smiled for the camera. I hated the photos when they came. I didn’t like the outfits they had picked out, but being 12, I didn’t get much say. I never would have guessed that these Senior Portraits would be come so treasured.


Less then 2 Months later, on January 1st, he died.

Lange Photography in Wapakoneta was a blessing. When we had originally ordered the photographs, budget was a concern as it is with most families, I’m not sure how, or when, but I now have the negatives to this shoot. Now that I am older, I have my own Photographs of Justin, and thorough these, my daughter is able to know her Uncle Justin a little bit more.

This is why photography means so much to me. One never knows when tragedy will happen, and you will cling to the photographs, because that is all you have left to remember his crooked smile, & the way his hair would curl up at the back, because even your memory eventually fades.




For this post I had to find the Senior Photos, we recently moved, and my heart sank, panic set in when I couldn’t find them.