I must be nuts

To have said yes. I love my nieces and nephews- all 13 and 1/9th of them (yes there is a new one on the way- not surprising with the 13 brother and sister in laws I have plus 2 brothers, 2 step-brothers, and a step sister)- love them dearly and I really enjoy spending time with them as long as I can set my limits and have a place to escape when their parent’s parenting differs enough from my own philosophies that I need a break. So when my step-mom called me to ask if we could take two of my nieces with us on our whirlwind trip to Michigan tomorrow (5 days round trip- driving all day tomorrow to get there, driving all day Sunday to get home with no possibility of extending my trip because my husband wanted me to take someone along… and someone turned into 4 but I’m not frustrated at all… not about being forced to relive my worst memories from childhood- the cramped sweaty uncomfortable drives with 7 of us in whatever car we were driving that summer, not about feeling obligated to either take it slow or drive straight through- no choices about where and when I want to stop to take pictures or a break or keep moving because no one can coordinate pee breaks) GAAAHHHHH

Where was I? Oh yes… I was saying something in my brain that has been well trained to be polite, always say yes, never argue with my parents, etc. said yes when she asked if we could take them along. And the moment I hung up the phone I started cursing my inability to deal with the issues from my past (and the countless ridiculous guilt trips from childhood) that make it impossible to tell that woman no, no matter how much I want to.

I should have called her back and told her I’d had a momentary lapse of sanity, or that my evil twin had answered the phone, maybe a different personality? but I didn’t. I did tell my dad the next day that I had reconsidered my initial answer and asked him to see if he could talk her out of it (since he never let me fight back as a kid, that was also a knee-jerk reaction and I’m going to have to stop that too) but it was to no avail.

So tomorrow I’m setting out unpleasantly early to make the 800 mile drive to Michigan with 4 other people in my tiny Hyundai Santa Fe. The A/C is fixed, but not the strongest so people are going to be uncomfortable. It seats 5 but my nieces don’t get along so well so one of the adults will be riding in the back, most likely between them. It won’t be me because I will be driving. No if’s, and’s, or but’s. Its my car after all and my trip, despite the fact that my vacation has been taken over by everyone else and I can barely recognize in it my fun plan to surprise my grampa for his 90th birthday with his only out of state granddaughter and his younger son in tow. I’m trying desperately to put a positive spin on this and that involves this verbal outpouring- I need to get all the angry out now so I can leave tomorrow at peace.

I’m planning on mapping out a couple of stops that can be quick, but hopefully get some energy out- I remember the agony of being stuck too close together for way to long and the rest stops never seemed long enough. The girls will both have portable DVD players and I have almost 14 hours worth of music burned to CD’s for my own amusement. My phone has GPS and I bought an atlas, plus I have Google Maps on my phone as well. I should be set for directions, redirections, and any summer traffic we might encounter. I’m just not ready for the arguments that are sure to happen between the girls. I don’t have kids of my own yet and I don’t like the way a lot of parent’s raise their kids to be rude, spoiled brats (says the children’s photographer). I can handle short periods of togetherness in large areas where they can run around, but in a car for 10-16 hours? not so much. (and I’m not calling my nieces rude spoiled brats btw- I just don’t like most kids these days in general or at least today I don’t *sigh*)


Another picture post

I haven’t been around much on the internets lately- the weather has either been great and I’ve been outside, or its been terrible and I’ve been hiding in the basement. Add that to me not being a shut-in any more since I got my own car again (finally!) and keeping busy with school and its no wonder I’m hardly around any more.

This business also explains why I haven’t gotten around to getting to meet one of my fellow bloggers for the first time in person last week. We got together and did a photo session and I must say it was a lot of fun meeting Miss Toi. She’s every bit as sweet and funny in person as she seems online and I had so much fun hanging out with her and her dog Lucy while we explored the area around my home and did some picture taking.

Back tracking a little more, I had an interesting assignment for my final for the last photography class I took. We chose a word at the beginning of the class and then we were supposed to illustrate the feeling of that word. My word was ‘discarded’. I’m very literal and this assignment was therefore pretty tough for me. I want to take artistic photos but I’m not sure I get the psychology of it all and that is honestly a little daunting for me. In the end I halfway figured it out tho and the professor gave me some good pointers to get me closer to where I need to be. With that in mind, I think I’ll be doing some self-imposed assignments along the lines of this assignment to broaden my base of experience.

Discarding the trappings of society (no models were naked or harmed in these pictures- she had shorts and a tank top on but it sure looks fun, huh?)

Discarded life, discarded prom queen, discarded love, you pick the discard

Childhood discarded and growing up. J12 was great at riding off on his bike over and over for me until I got just the right angle for this one.

Left behind (this one wasn’t used in my final, but I love the feel of the picture) J14 with her little dog, Dirty Dan, was so helpful and she’s the model in the other shots as well 😉


I have a couple of freebies for you today (and two posts in one week is crazy, right?)

So first I have for you a free GSD file. Now. For those of you not familiar with the GSD format, its a file used for Silhouette craft cutters. Yep I finally broke down and bought one and I L-O-V-E love it!! It makes such pretty pretty things for me 🙂

This file creates pretty lacy cutout petals in a rolled flower shape. Simple and you can use it to make one big one or several littler ones depending on your fancy.

When you’re finished, it would look like this

Second freebie?

I saw a poster today on Pinterest that said “Pick your battles” and my brain reversed it. You know how brains are…. always turning things upside down and inside out. Anywho… it turned into “Bat your pickles” and I started giggling picturing a batter hitting a pickle.

Enter this poster

Clicking on the picture should take you to a page to download the pdf but if it doesn’t, you can get it here.