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Jonathan & Jenny
WHAT: Engagements, Portraits   |   WHEN: May 28, 2013   |   WHERE: Deep Ellum Arts District
I've all but stopped posting session images here on the blog because, well, I just got too far behind at one point and decided it was easier to simply bury my head in the sand than keep thinking about the ever-growing to-do list items I couldn't keep up with.  Things have finally slowed down a bit now; enough for me to remember I have a blog.  And, since Facebook could likely will go away some day (doesn't everything?), I figured I could post a few things over here so I'll have something to look at when all our digital memories disappear with Facebookagheddon.

Soooo.... meet Jonathan and Jenny.  I only worked with Jonathan for about a year, but it was plenty of time to figure out he's a pretty talented user interface designer and just an all-around good guy who's fun to be around.  I only met Jenny for the first time at their photo session, but I'd heard plenty about her before then when Jonathan would talk about what seemingly new place they went to eat at each weekend, how far they were running that week, and of course when and how he was going to propose.  She's a sweet girl and a great fit for him.  

These 2 will be starting a new chapter as Jonathan is headed to KC for a new job, and Jenny will join him in a couple months after they get married this fall.  We spent a little time last Thursday down in Deep Ellum capturing a few images before Jonathan packed up and headed out of town.  Here's some of my favorites.


Saige - Year Two Video Memoir
WHAT: Families, Kids, Personal   |   WHEN: April 16, 2013


Saige - Year One Video Memoir
WHO: Saige   |   WHAT: Kids, Newborns, Personal   |   WHEN: February 11, 2013
There you are, blog.  I lost you for a while... like 3 months.  I've thought about you occasionally, but, well, life gets in the way sometimes these days. All the time, actually.  It took me several tries to even log in to do this post; I couldn't remember what my login username and password was... that's how long it's been.  

Sadly, blog, you've dropped in prority somewhere between cleaning out the gutters and trimming the dogs nails... both of which I can't remember the last time I've done, if at all.

I need to be better about blogging if for no other reason than to have things documented for myself and my family for when I one day get old and can't remember anymore.  I'd like to make sure I have more control over my life record than trusting in a publicly-traded company like Facebook - who could one day close up shop and take all my posted memories with them - to be around forever.

And with that in mind, I finally got around to taking some of the video I had from Saige's first year and stringing it together for a sentimental (if not sappy) memoir.  And here it is.

Now, with her 2nd birthday, right around the corner, it's time to start working on year 2.  This documenting of stuff never seems to end.


Then and Now
WHAT: Personal   |   WHEN: November 14, 2012

Almost 4 months ago I embarked on what has become a life-changing journey when our church did a Hungry For Change campaign.  For 5 days, the challenge was to eat roughly the same quantity and type of food that much of the world lives on daily. So for those days I, and many others at the church,  had a 1/2 cup rolled oats (oat meal) for breakfast, 1 serving of rice and beans for lunch, another serving of rice and beans for dinner, and water. And that's it. You could argue that even the clean drinking water was a luxury. 

Not only did it give me a picture of what much of the world faces where many populations live on less than $2/day and eat very little, it brought to the forefront my own unhealthy eating habits.  I was snacking all the time, eating things I shouldn't be eating, and eating way too much in portion sizes. I was living to eat instead of eating to live. 

I knew I needed to change some things long before the Hungry for Change challenge, but God used that time as a catalyst for change in me.  Once the challenge ended, I made pretty significant changes in the way and things I ate, and although I knew I was losing weight and feeling better, it didn't really hit me until I was going through some images and noticed the difference between the 2 below.

36 lbs so far, which I realized the other morning is about a Saige and a half.  I'd still like to ideally drop another 5-7 lbs and also start working out a bit, but I'm excited about the journey ahead now, one that no longer seems overwhelming.

If you wanna check out Hungry for Change on the Trade As One website, you can do it here.


Home Again in Ohio
WHAT: Families, Kids, Personal   |   WHEN: August 14, 2012   |   WHERE: Marion, Ohio
They, whoever 'they' is, say "Home is where the heart is."  I don't know if I'd go so far as to say Marion, Ohio is where my heart is, but it sure feels comfortable every time I go back.  Things just feel a little more relaxed there.  Where Dallas can often feel busy, congested, competitive, and somewhat materialistic, Marion has a slower, relaxed, community feel to it.  I miss that sometimes.  It could just be that I get all nostalgic when I go back about my childhood and growing up there, not to mention I'm usually on vacation when I'm there. It probably is that, but either way, I always look forward to going 'home' for a bit whenever I get a chance.

This time Kylie and Saige came with me, and as an extra bonus, Kylie's parents made teh 6 hour trek from Indiana to spend 5 days with us while we were there.  I can't say enough about one of my good HS buddis, Michael, and his wife Amanda who let us all crash in their house for the week while they were on a family vacation with their kiddos in Michigan. What a blessing it was for us to have a free place to stay and just hang out with Kylie's mom and dad.  And, like like we planned it or somethin', whenKylie's parents left on a Friday afternoon, the Styers returned home that night from vacation, so we got to spend some R&R time with them, too. Awesome sauce.

Here's a few images from our stay back in O-H... I-O!

First up, playground time with Saige and the in-laws...

"Grammy" helpin' Saige across the rubber bridge.

Saige gettin' ready for her own American Ninja Warrior tryout on the rings...

... but not until "Grandfather Garry" (btw, his self-chosen nickname) gave it a run first.

Oops.  Head-banger.  Oh, and if anyone wants to give it a shot, the wooden support beam to Saige's left (camera right) says "Call 387-6477 and ask for Lee".  Lemme know how that goes.

Kylie's dad... still a big kid at heart.

Columbus Zoo day!  First up, ridin' the stationary baby rhino, of course.

Saige's goin' through a crinkly nose phase right now.  You can see it a little bit here. Love that crinkly nose face.

Saige's chariot came with a driver.

Finally some AC in the aquarium.

Fishies are funny.

I don't have a lot of images like this of me just hangin' out with Saige, unposed. Love these kind of images so much more than any of the posed images of us.

So sweet how she was afraid of the penguins, but Grandfather Garry helped her work it out.

Me with my brother and my dad.  This is the first time we've all 3 been in the same place and in the same photograph together since my wedding in January of '09.

Early morning bed-head reading in the big window bay.

Saige loved Michael & Amanda's daughter's boots.  She woulda worn 'em all day if we hadn't finally pried them off her feet.

This image is such a true vignette of life on this trip;  Kylie's mom playing with Saige, her dad looking on adoringly, and Kylie enjoying the parenting break spending time on her iPhone. [grin]

Future doctor who plays games and wears someone else's fashionable boots in her spare time.

Giving Barbie a check-up to figure out why she's so thin.

There's that crinkly-nosed face again.

Love. This.



Kylie checkin' out some animals at the Wings of an Angel Organization's Angelpalooza event.

Children of the Beans impersonation.

And finally, Michael & Amanda's friends were sweet and invited us to come hang out at their daughter Ava's birthday party along with the Styers. They even gave Saige a little gift bag even though they'd never met us.

Michael and I and a couple guys doin' the guy thing at the party.  It's much more of a workout these days with the extra baggage.  Oh, and the blue t-shirt and khaki shorts?  Yeah... not planned.

Saige & I and Michael and his som Cole.


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