Saturday, February 6, 2010

Let's try this again

My last post was in July of last year? Too long. As I looked back on my posts, it basically became a blog about me and my photography. Not fitting with the title. So I'm starting another blog dedicated to photography and this one will reflect more on what it originally was intended to do.

When the photography blog is up and running I'll post the site.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Here I Am

From almost daily posts a year ago to nothing for the last 4 months. Geesh. I'm a slacker. So I'm not even sure if anyone will read this now but here it goes.

I had quite the busy school year. Going back to the classroom really kicked me in the tail. It was hard yet quite rewarding. I had a great group of kids that really challenged me to challenge them. I'm not just saying that because I know some of them found my blog and read this. So between being a classroom teacher again and trying to get the photography business off the ground, blogging suffered. As I told a friend of mine, my creative output is through photography so I didn't really miss writing that much. I have missed reading the blogs of my blogging friends though. Facebook has been good for keeping in touch with some though.

Seeing as how this blog is called Thoughts of a Father, I'd like to write in that direction. We just passed the 2 year mark since we got Lily. TWO YEARS! I can hardly believe it. I look back at those pictures and marvel. It has flown by and yet it seems she's always been with us. She amazes Julianne and I constantly. We just sit there and listen to her talk and talk. And talk. And talk. It's our own fault. We talk to her too much and we don't use baby talk. She has incredible vocabulary. And when she runs out of words she knows, she makes them up as she goes. She made up one at lunch yesterday. Well, she thought she was making it up. We were having lunch with my mom and out came the F bomb in the midst of a sentence. We all kind of stared at each other and said, "WHAT" to her. So of course she repeated it in a sentence that made no sense at all. I looked at my mom and said, "We leave her alone with you for a few hours and we come back and my daughter is talking like a truck driver! What did you do to her?" Yes, our Lily keeps us in stitches.

And what would my blog be without pictures. Here are a few I took just a few days past. We had fun.

If anyone is still here reading, thanks for coming back. :)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

My March Post

I missed all of February. From blogging almost everyday back in the summer to almost nothing. So instead of saying I'll try to post more and visit all the blogs I've been missing, I'll just put up a post and see what happens from here.

Life remains busy. Do you ever get the feeling that rather than doing a few things well, you are doing a whole bunch of things not so well? Being back in the classroom continues to challenge me but I feel I'm meeting the those challenges. My photography business is slowly growing. I have had one paid assignment and have been doing numerous "trade" jobs. Models wanting to build their portfolios contract with me so I can do the same. No money changes hands but we both end up with images for our portfolios. This has been great experience but the whole point (well a big part of it) of this is to build income.

Julianne and Lily are wonderful. Lily is completely off the prednisone (since January) and is doing great. Julianne is doing wonders with her. I come home and am amazed at Lily's vocabulary. I've always said it's amazing what kids can do when you talk to them. She had us crying with laughter tonight at dinner. She loves to change the words to songs to make them silly because she knows she get a rise out of us. I'll leave you with some recent pictures of Lily and some of my recent photography work.

Lily and my mom

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Catching Up

For starters, thank you so much to all of you that commented on my last post. You gave some great suggestions which I'll implement soon. I think for the time being the music is staying though and people can use the button on the bottom to turn it off. Many of the other suggestions were great and I'm looking forward to implementing them soon.

I've had the pleasure of continuing to do some photo shoots. Instead of posting those pictures here I'll just have you click this link to see them. Instead, I'll post some pictures of what we've been up to lately.

We recently took another trip to the Reagan Library. Each year they have Christmas trees from around the world and Lily just LOVES Christmas trees. She enjoyed the trees but mostly had a good time running around like a crazy child.

Move over Obama, make way for President Lily

Outside the Reagan Library, Lily needed to ruuuunnnnn some more!

A gorgeous sunset from the Reagan Library

We also had the opportunity to go to the snow. Well actually the snow came to us. A park in Calabasas imported 35 tons of snow for sledding and playing. They picked one of the warmest days to do this. It must have been in the 80s that day. Anyhow, Lily had fun and even built a mini snowman with Mommy. She was quite uncooperative when it came time for pictures though. When we looked at the pictures later I asked her why she didn't look at Daddy. She replied, "I was being a Grumpy Grace." So cute!

Fun in the snow

Lily and her snowman

I think I'll go put this on Daddy's face


Saturday, December 6, 2008

I'm still here

It has been a while, I know. I've hardly visited any blogs and obviously have not posted much lately. I just got through parent conferences/ report cards this week which, in other words means, I've been swamped. I did have the opportunity to set up my studio equipment in the living room last weekend to shoot the picture that will accompany our Christmas card this year. I won't disclose that one yet but here are a few others from that session. Assuming I have not lost all my readers, I hope you all are well and getting ready for the holiday season.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Deck the Halls (a bit early, I know)

Lily has been so excited about Christmas this year. More specifically, Christmas trees. When we go to the stores, she always wants to see Christmas trees. And since they've been in the stores since what, August, she's seen LOTS of Christmas trees. We usually decorate after Thanksgiving but since it's late this year, we decided to get things going early this year. Here are some pictures of the event.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Melt My Heart

To say the last couple of weeks have been hard would be an understatement. Assuming most of you also read Julianne's blog, I had not mentioned Lily's diagnosis of Nephrotic Syndrome. She is doing much much better. Unfortunately, the treatment is for her to be on the steroid Prednisolone. One of the side effects is mood swings. Mood swings is a rather mild term for what we've seen. Lily can go from laughing hysterically to crying fits and borderline tantrums at the drop of a hat. When these mood swings hit, without warning, I'm the last person Lily usually wants to see. Let me correct that. During such times, Mommy is the only person Lily wants to see; even though the crying doesn't always cease right away.

Having said that let me fast forward to today. When I got home from work Lily was in a wonderful mood. We played and played together. Then she ran to Julianne and told her, "I love Daddy." Gulp. She later repeated it again. Bigger gulp. But when she came up to me unprovoked and looked up at me and said, "I love you, Daddy" she melted my heart. She put her cheek against my hand as I asked her for a hug. She contemplated my request and stated, matter of factly, "Sure. Why not." as she proceeded to give me a hug AND a kiss. Big big big gulp.

I know the mood swings will return, but I'm loving today.

Five minutes later: Lily attempts to take a swipe at Daddy at the onset of another meltdown. She is currently balling in the corner on a time out while I await my apology.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Our Lilybug has Big News

All dressed up for Halloween, our little Lilybug had some big news today. She announced to Mommy that she had to go pee pee. We have been telling her for weeks that if she goes pee pee in the potty that she'll get some M&M's (which have been waiting in a bowl in the bathroom for just such an occasion). Well, today was the big day. She was so proud of herself. And sooooo excited to get her M&M's! Our little girl is growing up!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Saying Goodbye

I got an email from a friend of mine earlier this week that a childhood friend of ours, Stuart, had died a few days prior. In the email was a copy of the very brief obituary. But the part I kept reading over and over, was that Stuart was dead at age 42. We were friends since elementary school. We got to be very good friends in jr. high and high school. He had a charisma about him that drew people to him. After high school we took very different paths and we eventually lost regular contact. He had a very tough time in his late teens and early 20's. After some serious setbacks in his life, he seemed to really turn things around for the better. We last talked about 8 years ago. He was the proudest of fathers. I was very happy for him. We soon lost contact again. Although it is still speculative, it seems he may have continued struggling with some of his previous demons. I recently talked to an old friend about him and regret not asking for his contact information. He's someone I figured I'd always catch up with from time to time. I'm sad at his loss and will miss my old friend.

Stuart (on the left) with Mike and Darrel on the day of our 6th grade culmination. June 1978

A friend forwarded me a more recent picture of Stuart from his myspace page.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Go Dodgers

Unfortunately the Dodgers couldn't hear Lily rooting them on. Otherwise I'm sure they would have won tonight.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Around the Breakfast Table

Just a few minutes ago:

Me: Lily, can you count to ten for Daddy?

Lily: One, two, three, four, seven, eight, nine, ten.

(Background info - Lily usually says all the numbers except seven)

Mommy: You skipped five and six this time. Try again.

Lily: One, two, three, four, five, six, eight, nine, ten.

Mommy: What happened to seven, Lily?

Lily: I don't know!!!

Us: hysterical laughing

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Another Great Day Off

School was closed today so we had a great family day together. I got to go to Lily's gymnastics class for the first time. For day's now she's been saying, "Daddy come 'nastics." She had lots of fun running and jumping and swinging. We then visited the public library. From there we went to a park out in the Thousand Oaks/Oak Park area. There Lily got to go down the slide, ride a see-saw, and go on the swings. I think the swing was her favorite because she did not want to get off when it was time to leave. The picture above confirms how much she enjoyed the swing. Doesn't she look cool in her shades?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Calm in Chaos

Perhaps a bit dramatic of a title but I'm finding images like this to be relaxing during a stressful transition. When I was a kid I had no idea teachers worked as hard as we do. I still enjoy it, but my gosh is it busy.

Monday, October 6, 2008

The Wonders of Editing

I had some free time on Sunday and decided to run out to shoot some pictures. I know, surprise surprise. I had no idea what to shoot and just drove around hoping to feel inspired somehow. It never happened and I ended up in a spot I've been several times on the same mission. I came home feeling like I got nothing good and was tempted to delete my memory card without loading a single image into the computer. The first image below looked dull, flat, and blown out on the camera back. Loaded into the computer it looked the same, only bigger. So I tried pushing the colors a bit which helped. Then I wondered how the sunflare would look in black and white. I really like how it came out. I'm glad I didn't dump it after all. Following are a few others I felt came out at least half-way decently.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Rainy Day

It's raining today. I had originally planned on getting out and shooting some pictures. Julianne is over a friends house and I'm home with Lily. In my last post I asked for suggestions for what I should shoot next. Robin suggested the neighborhood so she could see where I live. Christy suggested macro shots. Since it's raining, I did go outside but not into the neighborhood. I figured showing things in the backyard qualifies for showing where I live. And I did have my macro lens on.

I immediately headed for the morning glories which were delicately sprinkled with water.

Then I noticed the leaves and the detail inside the reflection of the droplets.

How I didn't walk into this I don't know. I barely caught a glimpse of it spread out completely across the new section of lawn in our side yard. You really should click on the image below to see it larger.

It's creator was not readily in sight until I saw her escaping toward the patio cover.

Not too bad for a rainy day at home. :)

Friday, October 3, 2008

Final "Day Off" Pictures

Have I dragged these pictures out far enough? This is what happens when one doesn't get as many opportunities to shoot. I'm saving the best (in my opinion) Lily picture for Julianne to post on her blog. Hopefully I'll get a little time tomorrow to replenish the empty vault of unposted images. I have no idea what I'll go shoot. Any suggestions?