favorite things

My favorite color (or shades of that color) has always been turquoise.  Maybe because it reminds me of the ocean, which is my favorite place to be.  By luck that color is in my logo. Subconsciously, it’s probably the reason why I choose my logo.  I wore a teal colored dress to my junior prom.  My husband makes fun of me that I liked such a “90’s” color.  Guess what, If I had to do it over again, I’d still pick that color, maybe not that particular style, but for sure the color. Today as I was searching the Internet for turquoise living room accents and chairs, I came across a blog devoted to the color turquoise and was tickled pink.  (hahha pun intended)  I immediately added it to my google reader.  If you happen to like turquoise too, here’s the link 

My birthday is coming up, and I found a piece of jewelry I would love to have.  It’s only $5400
hahaha  a girl can dream can’t she?

Fitness Fridays

I’ve been wanting to do a weekly blog post for some time now.  I decided that since I have been on this fitness journey for a while now, that I would write weekly posts on some aspect of fitness.  Now when I say “fitness” I don’t mean starving yourself to be a size 2 or trying the latest greatest diet fad.   I mean changing your lifestyle to making healthy food choices a majority of the time and exercising your body.  I have not reached my fitness goals yet, but I am working at it daily.  

I think the best decision I have made when it comes to fitness is having a personal trainer.  Someone who can help me figure out realistic fitness goals, hold me accountable to them and giving me the tools (exercise and food choices) to reach those goals.  

Now I don’t want you to think a personal trainer is going to be like your fairy godmother, who will wave her magic wand and poof, you’re in shape.  It took you more than a week to put on the weight, and it’s going to take more than a week to get it off.  You have to be patient, and not give up when you don’t drop 13lbs in a week like they do on “biggest loser”  That doesn’t happen here in the real world.   You may not lose any weight the first few weeks, but that doesn’t mean your body isn’t changing.  You may find your clothes are fitting better instead.  You may find yourself not getting winded after going up two flights of stairs.  Things are changing, stick with it.  

You also have to remember a personal trainer can’t be with you 24/7 (unless you’re very wealthy) to monitor what food you are putting into your body.  You have to make the food choices, but if you write down what you eat every day in a journal, and bring it to your trainer, she can help guide you in the right direction.  She may tell you that after seeing what you’ve eaten for a week, you may be eating way too many carbs and not enough protein, or vice versa.  She may tell you that you have not been eating enough calories and your body is going into starvation mode and holding on to the weight, or maybe you’re eating a few too many.  

You still have to show up for your workouts, she can’t be a puppet master and move your body for you.  She is not there to be your friend during a workout.  My personal trainer really is my friend in my everyday life, but when I’m there to workout, she’s not my friend for that hour.  Sometimes I don’t like her during that hour.  She doesn’t pat me on the back and say “it’s ok honey, that’s good enough, you did your best, you can be done now.” when I want to quit.  Oh no, after 60 seconds of doing a wall squat and my legs are shaking and burning and I want to quit, she says “You got another 30 seconds to go, if you drop and quit, I’m going to add even more time!”  “You can do this, focus!”  Believe me, she will add more time.  That is just what I need, someone to motivate me and push me further than I would push myself, not someone who will enable me to give up when I think it’s too hard.  I do get a “you did good, I’m proud of you.” after I’m drenched in sweat and completely spent.

With the help of my trainer, Heather,  I have lost 27 lbs, 12% body fat and 3 pants/dress sizes.  How long did that take me?  Well most of it I achieved in the last 6 months.  The first year I trained with Heather, I worked out with her about twice a week, maybe once or twice a week on my own.  I lost about 7 lbs and a pants size and dropped a bit in body fat.   Now had I been making healthy food choices consistently  I would have reached my goals last year.  I would eat pretty good during the weekdays, and then on the weekends I would completely blow it and eat whatever I wanted.  Now you’re not going to reach your goals very quickly by only working out twice a week and not eating consistently. I also had to stop my training during the late spring and summer because of my kids’ sports schedule.  I tried to workout on my own at home, but I certainly did not push myself.  I did maintain my loss during that time, so that was good.  

In August, I decided to get more focused on my goals and be consistent in my training and eating.  It has paid off.  I was part of a “biggest loser” challenge with some other girls, and that helped motivate me as well.  Our last weigh in was in February, and I’m sorry to say I was not the biggest loser.  I lost by less than 1%.  So close!  I am hoping to reach my goal by summer.  What exactly is my goal…..well it’s not a number on the scale.  It’s a realistic size, and body fat percentage along with a few physical goals of being able to run a 5k and being able to do pull ups.  That pull up goal may take a while, but I will achieve it!  On Monday, Heather intensified my training and added some more to it. 
Here is my training schedule as of now: don’t be jealous :0P
Monday-1 hour of circuit training and 90 mins. of Muay Thai 
Tuesday- couch to 5k program 30 min.
Wednesday- off
Thursday- 1 hour of circuit training
Friday- couch to 5k program 30 min. and 90 mins. of Muay Thai
Saturday-couch to 5k program 30 min. 1 hour of circuit training
Sunday-off

And because a blog post is always better with picutures, here’s my before and after pictures from the last 6 months.  Don’t make fun of my workout look, or I may have to show you some of my Muay Thai moves. :0P 
Looking at these photos motivate me to keep going, hopefully these posts will help motivate you to reach your goals as well.

I’m back…….

OK, so I got through Christmas and New Years, and the sessions I meant to blog before Christmas never got blogged.  SO…….I’m just going to start with something recent (like last weekend) and then move backwards in my posts.  
 Last weekend was the ladies’ conference at River City Church.  It was a blast; with great speakers, worship, music, terrific food, and getting to hang out with the girls.  Guess what my job was……you are correct….photos! 
  I set up a photo-booth for the ladies to get some fun pictures with their friends. 

And yes, there were some men at the conference working behind the scenes in child care, food service and music… Way to go guys!

Pastor Jessi Gibson speaking, with her baby on her hip.  It was an illustrated sermon during which she got a pedicure.  Can your pastor carry a baby, get a pedicure and preach a life changing message all at the same time?  Mine can!  :0)

  Pastor Sarah Wehrli speaking.  Pastor Sarah and her husband Caleb are the founders of Inspire International.  They have been missionaries to several countries in Asia.

Pastor Brian Gibson also spoke at the conference.  Good sermon as always.

We even had a few special guests.  If you live around Owensboro then you may have heard the hilarious Kizzy on the radio every now and then.  She did not let us down and had us laughing all the time.

The musical guest was Lacey Brown, who was on American Idol last season.  Lacey sang during the worship time and closed out the conference Friday night with a few of her new songs she has coming out.   Fabulous!  You can check out Lacey’s new website here.

Check out the decor of the conference……
Several people worked hard decorating the church, they did a tremendous  job.   Meagan Williams created all the shoes displayed.  She’s a talented artist by the way, you can check out her site here.
The worship music was excellent as usual.

 Of course you have to have chocolate at a womens’ conference,
And shopping! A silent auction was going on with proceeds going to Life Impact International. A bizarre was also set up for women to display their talents; sewing, knitting, crocheting, art, etc. I put up a display of some of the new portrait products I had gotten in recently.  Many thanks to my good friend Sarah Wellmeier for helping me put up my display. 
I have to give a shout out to Robin Jones for assisting me with the photo-booth and to Carrie Colbert for taking some great candid shots during the party.  Thanks ladies!  It took many people to make the conference a success, and I think they all did a wonderful job.  I’m looking forward to next year’s conference!
Click here to see a slideshow of more photos from the conference.

50 years!

I slacked off on the blogging.  I’ve been busy with school work with the kids, and quite honestly figuring out if I should continue blogging.  It seems I have more communication through facebook than with my blog.  I still have not made my decision……. so for now the blog will continue. I have made some changes as far as when images get blogged and tagged on facebook.  Tagging and blogging of images will occur after clients have placed their orders.  So if you haven’t seen your images tagged on facebook yet, get your orders in. :0)

Anyways….on with today’s post.  I can’t believe I took this long to blog this.  My apologies to the in-laws.  In May, we traveled to MN to celebrate my Mother & Father in-law’s 50th wedding anniversary.  Quite the accomplishment, 50 years of marriage.  They had a wonderful party with family and friends celebrating their marriage.  Al and Bev gave me about 2 minutes to take some portraits of them.  Really! 2 minutes is all I got, but I still got the shots I was after.   They have a picture of them on their wedding day, on the front steps of this church, so we had to re-create that…50 years later.

Here’s a few more of my favorite…….

awwww 50 years and still in love!

The youngest grandchildren put on a little skit of Bev and Al’s years together.  The skit was written by Bev’s cousin, Fuzz, who always has everybody laughing.  It highlighted Bev’s love for shopping and Al’s love for hunting, fishing, wild rice harvesting, wine making, and of course, baseball.  Al is quite the baseball legend.  I think he played the “old timers” league up until just a few years ago.  He still plays ball with all his grand-kids.  My son Sawyer, enjoys getting pitching advice from Grandpa when ever he can.

Bev and Al have 4 children of which my husband Sam, is the baby by 8 years.  He was their “bonus” as they call it.  They are also the proud grandparents of 14 almost 15 grandchildren.  #15 will be born sometime in February. 

 Here’s a few shots with some of their closest friends.

 and of course I had to get some details…..beautiful flowers.

I think it’s awesome to be able to celebrate 50 years of marriage.  Sam and I have 13 down, only 37 years to go until we hit that milestone.  I say we celebrate our 50th somewhere warm and tropical; Hawaii sounds good to me!

bad kitten

I walked into the bathroom yesterday and caught this kitten in this act of mischief.  I turned around and went and got my camera.  I had to take a picture, because really how can I be mad at him when he’s so darn cute.  This little stinker had unrolled the entire roll of toilet paper after I had just put it in the bathroom.

 If you’re looking for a kitten, I have 3 for you…..yes once again. No wait, 4. The momma cat needs a home too. Another momma cat showed up on our doorstep pregnant.  I think it has something to do with my daughter the cat whisperer.  The cats seem to flock to her, she can tame the wildest of cats.  They must know she wants to be a vet when she grows up.  The kittens will be ready to go home with you in 2 weeks.

healthy (trying to be) update

So it’s been awhile on the health update.  I think the last time I blogged about getting in shape, I was going to try some supplements.  I tried them for a month, which I don’t think I gave them enough time to work.  I think you need to try something like that for at least 3 months.  Anyways, I kind of fell off the exercise wagon so to speak.  Two of my kids were in baseball/softball this summer, which pretty much took up 4 nights a week… So I had to stop going to my workout classes in the evening to take them to ball.  I still tried to exercise at home, I did some P90X until my joints started to hurt from it.  The good news is I maintained my weight, I did not gain any weight, but I didn’t lose anymore either.  I  found out the 8% body fat I had lost, helped lower my cholesterol.  It went from 209 to 196.  Whoohoo!  I plan on getting that number even lower!  Baseball is coming to an end this week and I will finally be able to go back to my workout classes on a regular basis.  It is so much easier to exercise when I have other girls there doing it with me, and a trainer to push me harder than I would push myself.

I also have a bit of new motivation……some girls I know have put together a “biggest loser” challenge, we are getting together on a weekly basis, to encourage and support each other, and of course “weigh in”.  We are putting some money into it on a monthly basis, and the person with the most percentage of weight loss wins it all.  I’m planning on being the winner…….I’m gonna need some newer smaller clothes. :0P  The challenge ends in January…..I’ll let you know how it goes.

Kittens…….again

Our mama cat had kittens……again.  I just didn’t around to getting her to the vet to get spayed, I know, I know, bad pet owner.  I will this time though…..promise!    On the bright side, the kittens give my kids several weeks of enjoyment until we find homes for them.  Shelby was inspired by all the new mommas at our church carrying their babies in slings, so she came up with her own invention…..The Kitten Sling.  (patent pending….lol)
Here she is modeling her invention.

Here are a few snapshots of the kitten “hanging around”  he did seem to enjoy being carried around in the sling.

By the way, if you are looking for a kitten, these guys are 4 weeks old today and will be ready to go home with you in about 3 weeks.

fitness update

Well it’s been 4 weeks since my last post about health and fitness.  Here’s the update: I’m still working out 5 days a week and in 4 weeks I lost……drum-roll please……………………1 pound.  Yes folks, 1 stinking pound.  But it’s not about weight right?  I also lost 1 inch and 1.5% body fat.  I was disappointed, I thought I’d have better results.  I’m not giving up, I’m going to continue working hard and stick to my plan.  I will be changing some things, I think as I have gotten older my metabolism has slowed down so I need to get that working better.  I’ve started to make sure I eat every 3 hours.  I also have realized I was not eating enough protein for the amount of working out I was doing, and possibly not enough calories.  I’m gonna add some protein shakes and maybe some supplements as well to my diet.  I’ll let you know how that goes.

Kittens

Our cat Lilly had her two little kittens on Feb. 6th.  I’m glad she only had two, I didn’t think she would have that many being she is such a small cat.  

Here’s the little mommma

Here’s her kittens just about 10 hours old

here they are at 10 days old, with their eyes almost completely open

 And here are pics I took yesterday at 15 days old.  They are getting cuter by the day (thank goodness)
We will be keeping one of them and giving one away in about 4-5 weeks.

Lilly seems to be enjoying being a momma, she let’s us hold them but gets a little nervous if they start to whine.
This will be her only litter, I will be getting her spayed.

loss of a family pet

About a month ago we had to make the hard decision to have our cat Annabelle put down.  We had her for almost 7 years,  from the time she was a little puff ball.  

This summer she had pawed at the screen door to get outside and when she ran out, the door slammed on her tail and she kept on going.  We took her to the vet and they said she had pulled a spot in the vertebrae of her tail about 1/2 inch apart.  Her tail would now only drag on the ground and she had no feeling in it.  We waited to see if the problem would heal over time, but it didn’t, it only got worse.  The tail accident also caused her to lose bladder control, so she had to become a permanent outdoor cat.  The bladder problem caused her kidneys to start failing and she was getting to be a hunched over all the time.  She was in pain and miserable, so we made the decision to let her go.

Annabelle was the best cat ever, she was more like a dog.  She followed us everywhere, and had to be apart of everything we did.  Sam would go fishing down at the lake, she would follow him and sit next to him while he fished.  The kids would go outside to play and she would want to be a part of it.  She also loved having her picture taken.  She always knew when I was getting ready for a session, I would pull out the lights and the backgrounds and she would just plop down on the background and wait for me to take her picture. In this photo, I was taking Shelby’s pictures and Annabelle had to follow us and be in at least one of them.

 At Christmas time the kids would be unwrapping presents, she would be there right in the middle of it.  

 Here she is watching Sienna in the right hand corner.

 Anyone that would come over, Annabelle would come and greet them right away, and of course they would always comment on what a beautiful cat she was.  Even people who weren’t fond of cats liked Annabelle.

My oldest daughter, Shelby took it the hardest.  She was 4 years old when we got Annabelle.  Shelby would dress her up in doll clothes and push her in the doll stroller.  

Annabelle was also Shelby’s first patient when she would dress up as a Veterinarian.  Shelby would pretend to give her shots and Annabelle would just lay there, happy to be playing along.  I have a video of Shelby and Sawyer doing a little skit as Mary and Joseph and they wrapped up Annabelle in a blanket as baby Jesus. 
We have lots of good memories of Annabelle as well as photos being she loved the camera.  She will definitely be a cat we will never forget.

We do have another cat.  Her name is Lily, she’s a good cat, but she’s no Annabelle.  A few days after Annabelle died, we found out Lily was pregnant.  That helped to ease the sadness, and the kids were excited about having kittens.  Lily had two kittens a little over a week ago now.  I’ll post some pictures in a day or two.