Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Part 2: So There's This Guy...

My Voice has been on full alert lately. I wish I could contribute this to some profound spiritual awakening (and maybe on some level it is), but the reality of it had me frozen in my bed the other night, as if I had seen a ghost.

And I use that comparison, because when I was a teenager, I swear with every fiber of my being that I saw a ghost.

[I know I'm getting off subject, but follow me on my sidetrack. I promise it's relevant.]

In the house we grew up in, our bedrooms were downstairs with the kitchen, 1 & 1/2 baths, and a small entry hall. Our parents' room, bathroom, and den were up.

The den was shaped like a rectangle, the tv opposite the couch on the two longer walls, with a fireplace on the left wall and three large sliding glass doors opening to a large balcony on the right. Either side of the tv was lined with built in shelves, home to books, movies, and other randomness. My stepdad's computer setup came to rest in front of the shelves on the right - your back to the glass wall, if you were sitting there.

For some reason I had fallen asleep on the couch... In the middle of the night I just awoke. I don't know if there was a sound or something, but I just woke up in the darkness, and when I looked over in the direction of my stepdad's computer, I saw one of his friends (one I never particularly liked) leaned over the desk/computer.

Being the redhead that I am, I defensively muttered, "What are you doing?"
And that's when he looked up at me, and I realized it wasn't my stepdad's friend.

I completely froze, paralized, unable to speak or even think. I was now wide awake, trying to register what I was looking at: A glowing form of a man. Standing there. Staring back at me. I can only compare it to running a neon glow filter on a picture in photoshop. It's just eerie and creepy...

Tell me he wouldn't creep you out in the dark...??

All of that is what came rushing over me the other night - and not because I saw another ghost. But because there's this guy... [Why do all the stories start off this way??] A neighbor of mine.

When the kiddos & I moved into our new house (not new new, but new for us), I wanted to be friendly so I said "hi" to my neighbors, introduced myself, etc. You know, just being neighborly.

But this one guy just gives me the creeps. That feeling I ended with here.

He's older than I, and I think I met his girlfriend when I met him. And then I met his daughter (who is probably my age or a bit younger) another time. I don't think either of the women live there. Just him.

One day when I was running late taking the kids to school, he stopped me and starting asking what I do for work, etc. I was in a rush, so I tried to answer quickly (but politely) and brushed him off.

Then I got a friend request on Facebook (I know. I know. Why does nothing go on without Facebook these days). I didn't recognize the name, but he was kind enough to include a message with his request: "Hi, neighbor!"

My initial response [My Voice. My Intuition. God & Jiminy - all] said, "Okay... That's creepy. Did he search out every 'Camille' til he found me??" We don't have any mutual friends... and "WHY was he trying to find me on Facebook anyway?" [creepy]

But then something else chimmed in, "Now, Camille. What if he's like you: just kinda new here, doesn't know many people, just trying to make some friends."

So I accepted the friend request.

After all, it was from an actual person I had met in person - not some random cyber person, right?

Then he started sending me private messges. "Hello neighbor... Just thought I'd say hi." Granted, this doesn't sound very threatening... but why send it in a private message?? Why not post it on my wall like all my other friends? There was nothing too personal in that to put out there in the land of Facebook.

I think I responded with a short, "wud up" - to send the message, "Yes, I'm too young for you, and I have nothing to say."

I thought he got the hint, b/c he didn't reply to my childish lingo.

Then, two days later, "How are you? Ready for Christmas?"

This time I just ignored it and him all together.

[Now, I know what you're thinking... Still not freezing in your boots scary stuff here. But bare with me.]

So I ignored the second private message that was just too personal to post on my wall...

Then one day (I think on a Sunday or maybe on Christmas day or something) I went outside to start my car to let it warm up. I sat there waiting for it to warm up, but it wasn't two seconds after my car cranked that *Creepy* (as he will now be known) opened his door and walked outside - in pajamas, mind you - to go "check the mail". Did I mention that it was a day the mail hadn't run??

Another day after I had just returned home, Creepy walked his "trash" (which consisted of maybe a piece of paper) to the dump - which you have to walk past the length of my house to get to. Who takes a piece of scrap paper to the dump?

[The chilling part's coming. I promise. You are reading this for a purpose.]

I started to just avoid him in general: ignore his random comments on my status updates, not look in the direction of his abode, etc.

Then one night, as soon as I turned the upstairs light on to retire to my bed [Let me throw in: The light & window is directly in Creepy's line of vision from his apartment, behind my house], I got yet another private message. "Hi. How are you? How was your Christmas?"

Yes, this is what made me freeze in my bed two nights ago.
The timing between me turning on the light and his sending the message just couldn't be a coincidence. Now I really felt as if I was being watched. He knew I was home, and the fact that I was alone made me wonder if he knew that, too.

Last night I decided to test my theory out, to be sure I wasn't just being paranoid.

I got home late, prepared to watch my latest redbox: locked the door, put the dvd in, went upstairs (turned on the "signal" light), went to the restroom, sat down on the couch, and checked my phone.


There it was.

Another message from Creepy in 308C.

Only this time, he sent seven messages in a row.


"how are you"

That's it! As they started flowing in, I was on the phone with my brother, telling him to get to my house stat - and bring a weapon!

When he got there, the messages continued til 12AM:

"how are you"


"having a good night?"


"maybe we should talk sometime"

Feeling - and knowing - you're being watched is such an unnerving experience. I can finally relate to the stupid blondes in the horror movies - only I'm not running around half naked to ease the terror. I'm also not sure if I have an ending to my story yet...

Bro spent the night to protect me, and Creepy's truck was gone before I left for work this morn. I'm hoping the over-night "manly looking" truck gave him a less subtle hint to back the f*ck off.

I also promptly deleted Creepy as a "friend" on Facebook - and have shared my story with not only you people... but several people in real life, who know where Creepy lives and have seen his picture.

I'm hoping there isn't going to be a Part 3 to this.
I don't want to be scared to go home.

Part 1: Call it Intuition, God or Jiminy Cricket.

I've come to learn that I should have listened to that Voice inside me more in the past. It's strange and miraculous how it works, if you think about it - but it does work (which I guess is the miraculous part).

You know that Voice. I know you do. It's the silent screams that tell you, "You shouldn't be here" when you've gotten yourself into a bad situation. Or maybe it encourages and urges you on when you start to doubt yourself: "You got this! Just go for it!"

My poor Voice has been neglected and silenced more times than I care to remember... or admit... maybe, especially admit.

But no matter how stubborn and defiant I've been - or how many times I've glossed over the signs because they weren't as I had planned - It's still with me.

And one fun feature Our Voice has is a radar for people. I'm not talking about your Gaydar (which I think must have a few kinks in, because there are a few exes I swear need to come out of the closet.... but that's another post entirely).

I'm talking about that split-second decision of an impression you get when you meet someone for the first time. Not the overwhelmingly interested one, where you feel drawn to someone (though that one's pretty cool, too). I'm talkin about the other one: The immediate repulsion you can taste with all your senses just being around someone. And it comes over you for no real reason at all. You just know that you don't like someone, and you don't necessarily know why.

I love that feeling.

Well, not the actual feeling itself - I generally feel a little guilty for being so judgemental prior even having anything to judge - but the notion that it's there to begin with. I believe it to be there for a reason... to protect us... and I love that.

Which leads me to: Part 2.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Movies That Did NOT Make the Cut

Step Up 3(D)

I love dance movies more than any 29 year old should admit (you know, cause they're usually centered around teens... for some reason - I swear we can still move like *that* at *our age*). But, Step Up 3(D), you have failed me.

Forego the fact that the movie just didn't "flow" and the story line was "eh" .... Even the dancing was hard to watch on its own. I think it was too "choreographed for 3D" to be impressive at home. Sure, there was some good stuff in there - but I look for AMAZING! I want to be WOW'd. I want to feel it in my soul, just watching them dance. And that just didn't happen. :(

Also, can I just add: The main hottie, Rick Malambri, just does NOT "fit" - I'm sorry, but he just doesn't look *right* with his hat kicked to the side. I'm not buying it. Maybe it's his acting - I don't know - but he just looked awkward/uncomfortable.

Love & Distrust


Painful is the word I'd use to describe watching this movie. I admit, I didn't even make it all the way through to see all the "stories" - yes, it was that bad. I kept hoping the lives of the 8 strangers would somehow be entangled in some 6 Degrees kinda way (and maybe I didn't make it far enough into the movie to find out).

I think I originally rented it b/c Rob was in it, but I'm not even sure he spoke in this movie. I think he just looked at the ground and whenced and smiled here and there - which I guess is sort of his definition of "acting" anyway.... I'm sorry to say, but I prefer him as a 100-something year old vampire lusting after what could be his great granddaughter.


Just Painful.

Ready to Eat Pray Love

I hit up the RedBox & finally watched Eat Pray Love last night. I was told it was horrible, so I avoided it for a while, thinking it was going to be boring.

But can I just tell you: Loved it! My kinda movie. My kinda life.

I'm not a huge Julia Roberts fan (something about her mouth just bugs me... but I almost didn't notice in this movie).

Watching it, I guess I felt a connection to Liz and saw myself somewhere in her character. I've always longed for some guy and thought my perfect relationship would make it all... well, perfect. Why couldn't we "find ourselves" together? And that's exactly what I think happened in all my past relationships: We found ourselves right on out of there.

Sure, there were moments when I'd rid myself of my latest knight in shining facade and have an epiphany... But the time in between was always brief before I'd lose myself in someone else yet again. I never took the time to just be happy being and finding *me*.

Of course, now "me" consists of three, so I can't very well delve into the same kind of self-discovery travel as EPL.... but all our journeys are different anyway, right? We all have our own lessons in this life. And I am finally excited and thrilled to be experiencing mine, in this very moment. (But I could sure go for some Italian!)

And, yes, sometimes I still get hopeless romantic-y and envision what it will be like when I meet THE ONE - wondering when/how it'll be, etc... [According to a psychic I talked to once, I'll be "in my thirties" - so somewhere within the next 10 years] But it's not in a desperate, Veruca Salt "I Want It Now!" kinda way. Instead, I send out light & love as I ponder the thought, and then I let it go. ;)

Then I smile with gratitude for all the soul mates I have already.

"People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that's what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.

"A true soul mate is probably the most important person you'll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. But to live with a soul mate forever? Nah. Too painful. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then leave.

"A soul mate's purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life, then introduce you to your spiritual master..."

- Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat Pray Love)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

His. Mine. & The Truth

I have been cheated on by every boyfriend I've ever had.

Yes... every boyfriend.

It goes without saying, I'm sure, that I'm the common denominator.

So it must be "me" or something I did.

But, still, THEY cheated on ME... Not the other way around. I am the naive little twit who has yet to experience the form of guilt that comes from being unfaithful. I've always been more of a battered dog who sticks around after the fact, hoping I can put the pieces back together. Because I'm a fixer, and I can fix anything. Right??

This is why my blood boils when I hear family members and/or friends of theirs rave about what a saint these unfortunate gentlemen who have dated me are. I can literally feel the anger to my core.

"I'm glad you think my brother deserves some happiness for all the hurt you put him through! Since you obviously can't take a hint let me spell it out for you... My brother has forgiven you because he's got a big heart like that, and I love him for it. But me? You hurt my brother to the diabolical extreme, the way YOU did. You're on my shit list for life. Keep your name OFF my family members' pages. I don't wanna see your name or your stupid comments."


Words cannot describe the mixture of rage and pain building inside right now as I reread that blow. A part of me wants to comment back on the irony of her defending her brother's honor and bringing up words like "faithful" in the same breath, when there was a time I was forgiving him for his indiscretions with, not only his ex-fiancé at the time, but some other chick whose name I didn't even know, as well.

[And those are just the ones he told me about.]

Yes, I see... I'm the bitch who ended the relationship. My fault. Completely. It's so big of him to have given me his forgiveness.


I really despise when people open their mouths without knowing the whole story. But most people don't choose to dispel their own fault in things, do they? No, most people play the martyr and caress their violin for their friends and family - which is odd, being as these are the people who are supposed to be the most accepting of us, right? We can't tell them the truth... What will they think of us?!.

So here I am, The Devil Incarnate, blogging about it... instead of tearing the wings and halo from this girl's faux perception of her brother for the world to view. But I imagine her devotion to her brother is much like mine to my family: nothing and no one can shake it. So let her have him cloaked in gold, wearing a robe. What good would it really do to point out that he is a mere mortal and actually made mistakes in this life?

Sure, my ego would boast with pride and a "we showed her" - but only temporarily.

Then what?

Then I've dished out the diabolical cruelty I've been labeled with.

Besides, as one of my grandmothers once told me... There are three sides to every story:

His. Mine. & The Truth.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Maybe it's just me, but....

When one is looking up the definition of a word, shouldn't the words within said definition be simple and easy to understand, so as to make it easier for the layman to grasp a better understanding of the initial word's meaning??

Take "grovel" for instance:


1. Lie or move abjectly on the ground with one's face downward.
2. Act in an obsequious manner in order to obtain someone's forgiveness or favor.

"Abjectly" isn't your every day average word, and neither is "obsequious" for sure! Now I have to look up these words, as well.

Which brings me to:

Obedient or attentive to an excessive or servile degree.

followed by:


1. Having or showing an excessive willingness to serve or please others.
2. Of or characteristic of a slave or slaves.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . You see my point here, right??

All I wanted to do was check my spelling to be sure that *even though it looked funny, "grovel" was in fact spelled correctly* - and now I've forgotten my original intent and have become sidetracked with a vocabulary lesson.

and a blog post.

Perhaps this is the definition of ADHD.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Lunch With My Boy

Just thought I'd post a couple pics from lunch today with my boy:

I can't expect him to be serious for too long...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Kids... Need I Say More?

So I just got back from lunch with my Gooby... I tell ya, you can learn all kinds of things at lunch with a 2nd grader!

For starters, Ethan has five girlfriends. Yes, FIVE. {They start young, don't they??} And two of his girlfriends are 1st graders; one of which is apparently named "French Jessica".

Me: "I think you mean Francesca."
Gabi: "No. It's French Jessica."
Me: "But, Gabi... That's not a name. I'm sure it's Francesca."
Gabi: [half sighing & blushing] "Whatever."

[mental note: Gabi needs to stay away from Ethan]

Gabi also pointed out the little boy... I mean, 2nd grader... that her Kindergarten brother beat up at after school care one day. [sigh... My son's a bully]

Then she showed me who Garrett is.

Apparently, Garrett is my daughter's boyfriend.

Me: "So... What makes him your boyfriend?"
Gabi: "Because he asked me." [duh, mom] "He's funny... and sweet... and he said I can do whatever I want."
Me: "What do you mean?"
Gabi: "He asked me to be his girlfriend... I asked if I can do whatever I want... and he said 'yes'."

I guess my daughter's got it like that.

I didn't get to meet this intelligent young lad, as we were leaving when his class was entering the cafeteria, but I do have this picture that Gabi drew of the new couple:

Gabi & Garrett

I gotta be honest, I thought my child was a little vain when I first saw her masterpiece.

Me: "Oh... Y'all are 'hott' huh?"

But then she explained to me (fanning herself and panting), "No, we're hot - like HOT."

I see the sweat dripping now...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Oh, And It Gets Better...

When I picked the kids up from Father of the Year on Sunday, Gabi practically leaped from the car in excitement to tell me their new motivation for "staying on green" that their father had come up with.

"Oh. Yeah, I guess I need to tell you, since it involves you," he says.

FOTY promised the kids I {Yes, I} would dish out $5 a week for each child if they would stay on green, keep their room clean, brush their teeth, shower, etc.... an allowance, basically.

Let me interject: I don't mind doing for my kids. They are my children. I love them. I want to everything I can for them.

But Seriously?!.

FOTY promised them that I would give them money??

Without consulting me first.

What is going on up there??

And by "there" I mean the spot where most individuals house a brain.

FOTY owes me two months worth of child support... and he promises my kids I will give them money.

Where does he presume this money is going to come from exactly??

And, of course, I didn't want to belittle him in front of them and his wife and stepson...

I found myself almost glad that Gabi came home on yellow yesterday (not the good color), because I don't know how I'm going to keep this promise that was made for me to my children.

Find the good, Camille.

Find the good.

The only positive thing that came from this is that Christian finally came home on green yesterday. But, honestly, I think that has more to do with his teacher, because we had a phone conference about a new method she's going to try implementing for his behavior.

That's all I have to say.

moo humbug.

The "Hows" & "Whys"

How is it that Husband#1 is allowed to live beyond his means (in a house that he couldn't afford when we were married - that he also was supposed to either sell or refinance within two years of our divorce in '06/'07), taking care of his second wife and stepson... but he can't pay his measly $300 child support he fought so hard to eradicate for our two kids?

- and I use "our" loosely -

And why can't anyone at DHS do anything about it when he gets behind? I never received child support for September, and when I call to get help from them, what do they tell me? "We don't view it as a missed month. It goes in his arrears."

So..... I'm just out that money, and there are no consequences for him?? - or at least the "consequences" don't kick in until he is $2,000 or so behind.


It will take half a year (plus) for him to get that far behind, with only $300/month for two children as his child support.

I know I don't have it as bad off as some.

It could always be worse. [knock on wood]

And I am grateful for everything I have.

But it's just not fair.

I requested that the amount be reviewed.... And of course he up and quits his job as soon as DHS sends him a letter notifying him it's going to happen.


They basically handed him a "get out of child support" card.

Not that it matters... My case is in line to be reviewed at some unknown time in the future.

I can't afford to take him back to court on my own, and no one at DHS can tell me anything.

This just sucks.

How can someone have no conscience?

How can a man just not care about his children?

Why do men look at it like they are doing their ex / the woman a "favor" by helping support their own kids?

How can a man be okay with seeing his children four days a month (if even that sometimes)?

There are so many questions I have; so many "Hows" and "Whys" I just can't comprehend. And complaining how unfair it is isn't going to solve anything... I realize this. But I don't know what will either.

I guess this is part of my karma - just something I'm meant to go through in this life.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Career Day

So Christian wanted to be "the donut guy" for Career Day at school...

I thought it was just about the cutest thing he could ever request. It's one of those moments that remind you how innocent and pure a child's mind is, ya know? [like when our little brother said he wanted "a car like PawPaw's" when he grows up (an old station wagon) - for which we have teased him relentlessly.] Cause Christian didn't request to be someone with a high paying job, or even something that would put him in the spotlight as the hero (like a cop or a fireman). Instead, he went with his heart... and probably stomach.

And sweeter still: When we went by Dunkin Donuts to see if they had any paper hats (like the ones at Krispy Kreme), the manager hooked us up with an official Dunkin Donuts visor and name tag - which totally made Christian's costume!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Why Is It...

When I'm in my car (or out and about), I have all these thoughts in my head - "spilt milk" to complain about - and when I sit down at the ole laptop: nuthin.

I mean, I write the best stuff when I'm not actually in front of the computer to write it. Readable stuff, I tell you.

And coming back to it in my mind later... It just isn't the same. It's like old news to me, and I don't want to revisit.

I need to not think during the day (or whenever I'm sans laptop).


Monday, October 18, 2010

Sometimes You Just Gotta Blog It Out

"Seriously?" she says??


to my MOTHER??!!

I consider myself a fairly tolerant person - to a fault even. But when it comes to my family... I'm sorry. Just NO. One word is straw, and I'm done. I'm beyond over egotistical lumps of being who are not self aware - who must have been placed on this earth to test my patience (which I am severely lacking anyway). I know I should be saying, "thank you," for this lesson - and perhaps I will one day... But right now, I need to vent.

{{interject flashback scene}}

When I made the decision to partake in lesson # (I lost count) and remarry for the second time & up and move to Atlanta, I placed myself in a spiralling state of depression. [see how I took ownership there? be proud.]

I had moved away from all my family, friends, job... and ended up being dumped (for the most part) alone in a huge city with only my children (which is added responsibility and stress, considering I had zero help in raising them while there). Don't worry, I'm not going to get into the details of the failing marriage, but all of this didn't help the deteriorating friendship this post is about.

{{flashback within a flashback}}

My Former Friend was an amazing one... friend, that is. At one point. We were mutual friends of Husband#2, and we both happened to work at the hospital. It was a travesty if we missed our daily lunches together - that's how tight we were. She was just getting into her photography at the time, and I, being an artistic junkie, jumped right in as her daring model. We definitely had a time!

If I had to pin-point a starting point of our decline, I would say it was when I got my own "good" camera - which my Former Friend was quick to point out was an "amateur camera with Just a kit lens". [Gee... I have no idea why we didn't remain friends]

I remember pushing Former Friend to quit her "real" job and follow her passion. I recall the conversations as if they were yesterday: I raved about her work, recommended her to everyone that asked, and encouraged her all the way. And clearly, in doing so, heaved her onto that pedestal she so pompously sits upon now.

{{flashforward, back to Atlanta}}

The distance eroded the thread that was left binding our friendship. In an attempt to salvage it, I sent Former Friend a message via The Book. I told her how I felt we were becoming more and more like "FaceBook Friends" instead of actual friends. I explained how hurt I felt when I could see that she was commenting on everyone else's photos but never mine (cause The Book lets you do that, ya know). And, being a fellow photographer (and friend?), her opinion was one of the ones I wanted to hear the most. I told her I was trying to address the issue head on, instead of letting it fester inside, building resentment for something that perhaps she didn't even realize was happening.

All the while, in the back of my mind was playing, "How is it I am still encouraging her, yet she can't find the time or consideration to do the same for me??"

What was Former Friend's response to my message??

She turned it on ME! She snapped back how appauled she was that I would say such a thing; how hurt she was that I felt that way. Former Friend was just way too busy to comment on anyone's photos, not just mine. Lie. I pointed out that I could SEE her commenting on other friends' photos [Remember that whole "FaceBook lets you see others' activity"?? yeah... Just checking...] I got a "Maybe you should just tell me when you post something and you want me to comment on it."



some friend.


I got myself out of the spiral and moved back to MS. The awkwardness was still an elephant, but I tried to play it off as merely being in my head. I got in touch with Former Friend, hoping to find our way back to where we were before. I lent her a lot of my crochet hats etc. for a baby shoot she was getting ready to do as a sort of peace offering. [mistake / lesson]


Soon after I took some photos of my mother, who is a true artist, in every sense of the word. I used an idea I had told Former Friend over a year ago - something I wanted her to shoot of ME for my headshot on my art website. I notified Former Friend (as instructed) to take a look at my photography. She made a simple "I like." comment on one of the shots in the album.

And then one of her friends she actually likes commented, accusing me of stealing the idea from Former Friend. <----and, yes, she referred to her by her full name.

Well, my family is like me: You can do what you want to me, but don't treat my family wrong. And so started the battle of words and wit between Former Friend's friend, my brother, me, and my mother. Former Friend didn't comment further on the photo, except to defend her other friend from my brother's comments. She did, however, text me in private about it - to which I pointed out she obviously agreed that I stole my own idea from her, since she didn't defend her other friend, you know: ME.

I ended up deleting the whole mess, as I hated that a picture that was supposed to be a showcase of my work and my mother was being turned into a battlefield.

---- and that's where the friendship ended ----

{{present day}}

My mother took it upon herself to get the loaned crochet items back from Former Friend. She sent her a message or text requesting she drop them off at her house. It was back and forth about how Former Friend was too busy being above everyone else to come by and give back the items she borrowed - with a hint of my mother explaining, usually you are responsible for the return when you borrow something.

Finally Former Friend wrote to my mother:

"Seriously? Isn't it also the responsibility of the person they belong to answer emails and messages when the person who borrowed them tries to give them back? Instead of her mother contacting the person? Why don't you just have Camille contact me. We'll work it out."

Honestly, I thought with the current state of our un-friendship, a neutral party was more kosher than dredging up old laundry.... So much for that idea.

And, for the record, I had already tried to get my belongings back on my own. Former Friend was way to busy to meet me or return them. I was continually instructed to call and see when it was convenient for Former Friend to be at her house so I could go out of my way to come by there and collect them.


All that being said, I leave you with this:

"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are."

- John Wooden

Granted, my character isn't crystal at this very moment, but I freely admit I'm constantly workin on that. Besides, sometimes you just gotta blog it out... and then let it go.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

It's official...

I'm old.

My lil' man starts.... KINDERGARTEN tomorrow!! I can't believe how quickly time flies by these days. I swear I just posted something in here yesterday, but alas... It was in July! So I definitely need an update - as per one of my two readers' request.

So back to my youth slipping away and into my youngins...

Yesterday was Meet the Teacher night. I warned Gabi before we got there that we would be visiting Christian's classes first, as this was his VERY FIRST experience with the whole thing. Gabi, like the big 2nd grader she now is, smiled and said, "okay."

Christian was very excited - but soon realized there wasn't much to Meet the Teacher night. He said a quick, "hey," to his new teachers and promptly asked if he could play with the toys. [sigh. boys.]

A few kids started to trickle in, and I tried to get Christian interested in meeting his classmates, but you know how absorbing dinosaurs are...... he threw them the same, "hey," he gave the teachers (still with no eye contact), never skipping a beat - or a dino bite.

I've noticed Christian's the type that can hang with anyone. He'll just walk right up and say, "Hey! Can I play with you?" He doesn't seem intimidated at all; he'll ask a 10 year old to play.

My Gabi, on the other hand....

She's my shy gal. She sat by herself and played with the mini doll house while we did the meet & greet with Christian's class. While it was time to meet her teacher and "friends," she stayed to herself, too. She found a puzzle of the US and quietly worked on it solo.

When I told Gabi there was a girl she actually knew in her class (who had been in the same kindergarten room with her), she finally perked up and actually wanted to speak to her. Unfortunately, though, the little girl and her parents didn't remember us. :(

My poor Gooby....

I'm eager to see if my little ones switch roles as they get older, like my sister & I did.


Thursday, July 22, 2010

TAG! You're it!!

It wasn't until after lunch today that I went to the bathroom. And while checkin the back of my outfit in the mirror (to make sure my tag was tucked in my shirt), I noticed another tag.... I had left the dad-gum price tag on my new skirt! And it had been there ALL MORNING LONG!! Just a hangin' on my butt.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


An acquaintance posted on her facebook status recently, "Who isn't a photographer.... geez.... I mean really.... It means nothing any more." Of course the poster is a photographer, and I admit she has a great eye. I think she has boo-coos of talent. She's also taught me a lot of what I know in Photoshop. But it's this type of mentality that drives me crazy...

So what is it that bothers "professional" photographers so much? Why do they even care if Joe Blow wants to pick up a camera and put his spin on the craft and call himself a photographer? I mean, if they think the amateurs are lacking in talent, then what threat do they really pose? Be glad they suck; it's an up for you if they do!

I'm sure some will say that these "amateurs" are ruining what it means to be a photographer - or something like that. But I just don't get it. I'm an artist - in a vast sense of the word - but who am I to declare that someone else isn't an artist because they don't paint the same style as I? - or because their work isn't as "good" as mine?

Is Picasso less of an artist for the weird style that typically comes to mind when we think of the man? I'm sure the people of his time thought so, but look at his work now...

The irony to me is, this girl's sister is an artist (she paints abstracts). But don't you know she'd defend her sister's gift if anyone called her anything but! Do you think she'd agree her sister is less of an artist because she just does abstracts??

I talked about this with my brother and bro-in-law, and I'm the first to admit I'm probably taking this comment too personally. I mean, look at me: I've already called myself an artist, and I consider myself a photographer, as well. Sure, I don't make my living at it; I don't have the most expensive camera; I don't even have lights and all that fancy equipment. But what I do have is an artist's eye, and I think I produce quality work (and if I don't take a truly amazing picture, I bet I can Photoshop the crap out of it and make it cool! haha). ;)

What I'm saying is:

What makes a photographer (or artist, or graphic designer, or any profession/hobby, for that matter)?? Does it state somewhere in the manual that a gazillion of dollars be spent on equipment to qualify? Because all I see in the dictionary is:

photographer [fəˈtɒgrəfə]
(Business / Professions) a person who takes photographs, either as a hobby or a profession

Saturday, June 12, 2010

There's Always Next Time

After a long day of work in "Put on Your Happy Face" Hell, I made the mistake of trying to take a little cat nap on the couch...

It didn't help that I stayed out at the karaoke bar with a good friend of mine and her crew til 1AM and had to get up at 8AM (princess needs her beauty sleep), but it was so worth it. I didn't actually brave the stage, but I wish I had. It took me so long to decide on a song that I actually knew most of the lyrics to that the KJ never got around to calling me out in front of everyone - er- I mean, calling me up on stage. I really, really didn't want to look like one of those girls. You know the ones: they look like they've had far more than one too many and stumbled up on stage only to create a sound dogs would howl to. Yeah. Those girls. I don't make a habit of singing in front of anyone except my kids, and they know no better (yet).

I also did lots of heavy lifting and cleaning prior to this outing last night, as I was on setup duty at work. And this cleaning/setup process takes a few HOURS to do.

All that is just to let you know the state my body and mind were in today after a long three days of peppiness and some manual labor. My body finally told ME to take a nap. And nap I did.

...or tried.

Sure, I could have gone in my own little room and taken a nap. But the couch was so inviting, and should my mind not let me fall asleep, there's the TV right there to entertain and possibly bore me into slumber land.

I didn't even spell REM before wonderful Husband#2 and his buddy come crashing through the door to the apartment. Clearly a blind man could see I was asleep on the couch, but did Mr. Wonderful make any attempt to keep it down?? Of course not. That would be decent of him. Oh, no, he started banging things around, turning on all the lights (because you know how dark it is at 4 in the afternoon), and talking above a normal volume.

Did he at least apologize?? -you ask.

No. HIS FRIEND, however, felt a twinge of guilt or decency and apologized for him. My sister, upon hearing this, asked if my response to his friend was, "You see why I'm divorcing him, right?" Unfortunately, in my groggy state, I didn't. Dang it.

Next time (and I'm sure there will be a next time) I'll have my ammo ready.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Hazwoper Personnel Needed

In my search for a job in MS I came across this posting on Craigslist.

The title reads "Hazwoper Personnel Needed". I'm always leery about postings: not sure if they're real or some twisted sort of SCAM (Please tell me what kind of kicks people get out of fake Craigslist posts?? I just don't get it).

Anyway, I have never heard of a Hazwoper - and think it's a funny word - so I googled this "Hazwoper" business, and yes... It is an actual word. er. title. Whatever. Let me share my findings:

• HAZWOPER is an acronym for Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response. It refers to five types of hazardous waste operations conducted in the United States under OSHA Standard 1910.120 "Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response. ...

blah blah blah - you learn something new every day.

And, no, I will not be applying for a position as a Hazwoper - in case anyone was curious. But I might use the word as some kind of bad name to call my closest friends/family.

Class ajourned.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Facebook Friends

We all have them... Cause everyone has a Facebook these days. And on there we have our friends, and then we have our Facebook friends. They're easy to tell apart: your real friends are the ones you talk to on a regular basis and even, technology forbid, see them... IN PERSON.

Facebook Friends, however, are the ones you either requested because they have a private page and you couldn't snoop their life without asking to be their "friend" - or maybe you accepted a friend request from them because you think maybe you remember someone with that name going to your high school back in the day. Or perhaps you just accept any ole person as your "friend" to get those numbers up...

But my brother: He has over 900 Facebook friends... NINE HUNDRED, people!! I don't know if I've even met 900 people - let alone have that many friends! But if you know my brother - and if you're breathing, you most likely do - then you know that he probably actually does have that many friends - possibly more.

Everywhere my brother goes he knows someone. Either people recognize him or he recognizes them, and they seem almost excited to be in his presence. And who wouldn't be? He's one of the greatest people I know - and I'm not just saying that because he's my baby bro. Besides being gorgeous and incredibly intelligent, he just has a wonderful soul. He can be friends with anyone.

I see these traits in my son, too. I used to think he was going to be my shy, quiet child - but now I know better. He's the one that will walk up to any kid and ask if he can play with them. He has such a sweet soul, and if he grows up to be like my baby bro, I will be so proud.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Krystal Chick

What can I say, I'm a Krystal Chick: I love me some Krystal burgers. Give me a #1 with cheese plain, and I'm a happy gal. What I DON'T love are the incompetent people who work there. I mean... How hard can it be to place the mini cheese on the mini meat on the mini bun?? This predicament has ruined many a meal for me. It's one thing to be lazy and just give me the preheated burgers with mustard and onions... It's an entirely different thing to throw cheese around.

I'm one of those (if there even is a those and there's anyone else like me) who has to "fix" my burger before I can even eat it. I have to take each of my 4 minis apart and place the misplaced cheese where it should have gone to begin with. So, basically, I have to do their job for them [hmmmm... I wonder if I can get paid for this??] I realize my OCD is showing here, but COME ON!! When 2/3 of the cheese is still in the box after I pull my burger out, something is wrong. I mean... If I had wanted half of it to be a cheeseburger and the other half to be just a plain ole hamburger, I would have ordered it that way.

But it's okay. I know what they need to do. The Krystal people need to empliment a new step in their hiring process: The Tupperware Shape-O-Toy Examination. In order to work there, this test MUST be passed. You know the one...


And they don't have to use this exact one; It need not even be this fancy. Really, they could use one with just squares - since that's Krystal's thing, ya know. Get it in red, yellow & white with their logo on the shapes or something... Or maybe just give prospective employees boxes to practice with. "Place the square lid on the square box. There you go! You've got it!"

Saturday, May 8, 2010

So I turned a year under 30 yesterday…

And I received so many “Happy Birthday” comments via The Book – which really made my day special. I feel fortunate to have had so many people recognize my birthday. From my sister dedicating her status and a blog post to me, to new friends who also made my big day seem important – I am grateful for it all.

That being said, that’s kinda where it ended.

Husband#2, who travels for work and is never here during the week, wasn’t due home til around 6:30pm on Friday. I told him the kiddos and I would wait for him to eat my birthday dinner so he wouldn’t be excluded (we normally head for dinner around 6). He called when he was about to get on the plane and said it was my birthday, so I could pick where ever I wanted for dinner.

Well, he was late getting back from the airport – which wasn’t a big deal, as my kids had been turned into zombies and were playing games on the computer; and I wasn’t in any danger of starving or anything.

In his defense, when Husband#2 did finally arrive, he was baring 5 red sun flowers – which I thought was pretty cool. He commented that he had just recently discovered that I don’t like roses, reading my ancient myspace account. {{seriously??}}

Anyway, I told Husband#2 I wanted to go to Chow Baby – one of my fav restaurants, but we rarely go. He said he really wasn’t that hungry, as he had eaten a late lunch, and probably wouldn’t be up for the size portions you get at Chow Baby. Um... Okay... So I suggested we find some new restaurant none of us had ever been to – something I love to do. Don’t know why, but I do.

His suggestion?? “I think there’s a Zaxby’s the next exit up.”

I know what you’re thinking: Was he kidding??

The answer is NO.

I made a shocked face like, “How could you possibly suggest ZAXBY’S for my birthday dinner?!?!” – my birthday dinner that would be the only big thing we’d do in honor of My Day.

He just looked back like, “What’d I say?”

I gave him the benefit of being a male and let it go… until he started throwing out Applebee’s and O’Charley’s as more ideas.

Hello – Did anyone else hear me say somewhere NEW? – that none of us had ever been to before!


Well, I finally got that concept through to him, and we got in the car and gps’d it: searching for restaurants near us. I threw out a bunch of names, but HE wasn’t into any of them. He finally said, “How bout hibachi?” Okay… This I can work with. It’s fun, and we never go somewhere like that.

But it was harder than expected to search for via gps. We found a Japanese place right beside our apartment, but they only served sushi – a definite no go for me. The man at the counter suggested Mt. Fuji, so I gps’d that, and off we headed.

All along the way we got our usual dose of negative energy: Husband#2 even cussed out a car whose way he got in… sigh.

Our gps unfortunately gives us a pretty big general area to work with some times, so we ended up not finding Mt. Fuji. :( We did see a small fair that was set up where it led us, though. The kids were excited, and I must say, so was I. I hadn’t been to the fair in a couple of years – and never here in Georgia – so I told Husband#2 to stop there. But... HE didn’t want to go, so we didn’t.

Are we seeing a pattern here???

By this time Husband#2 was STARVING, so we couldn’t look for Mt. Fuji any more. There was an Atlantic Buffet, or something like that, across from the mini-fair. So we settled on that. The food was horrible, the staff not very friendly, and no song or anything for the birthday girl.

Also for my birthday I got to hear how crappy my third child (aka: Husband#2) felt all through dinner.

I guess I’m being selfish or self-centered here, but it all just really bummed me out. Going from my mom’s over-doing EVERYTHING for every holiday and birthday – making sure every one of them felt like something special - to nothing being done at all…. Well, it’s a huge leap.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Decision Time

So I shot a wedding for some friends a couple of weekends ago...

I thought I'd go ahead and post a couple of pics on here - since I'm always saying I need more pictures throughout my blog. Hopefully it will entice some people to keep reading and offer up their advice.

What I need advice on is this: At some point during my trip to shoot said wedding, I not only managed to send a personal invitation to the fire department... I also lost my glasses. And they (in my opinion) were pretty awesome.

I had some red frames that I had gotten as a birthday gift from my whole family a couple of years ago. I'm practically blind without 'em (so if you ever find a typo - I'm blaming my poor vision). I really liked them and even opted to keep my old reds (instead of getting new fancy frames) a few months ago when I updated my lenses. I have a hard time finding frames that I think look good on me. My family will tell ya: I'm pretty much the pickiest person in the world - or maybe 2nd pickiest, with my daughter being 1st place (I think that's evidence of karma in action there).

I finally found some frames that might be runners up. They're pretty nifty, if I do say so myself. They're actually reading glasses, but that isn't going to stop me from transforming them into my new eyes.

So what's the dilemma, already??

They come in this coppery-brown color and purple, and I can't decide!! If the lenses weren't so expensive (I'm blind, remember), I'd just get 'em both.

I suppose I should argue for both sides:

* I've had a pair of brown before, so I already know that shade would look good. They were actually brown on the outside and a light blue on the inside. And the coppery ones would match more outifts...

I don't know - maybe I should do something different, though? I love "different".
* I'm not a huge fan of purple - though I have been into it lately (my new swimsuit for this summer is purple). And how fun would some bold color like that be?

Not that you can really tell much of a difference in the picture.... but I thought I'd post it anyway.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Snaps for Panera & The Mini-Van Chick

It's a lovely day outside in Atlanta (Smyrna/Vinings)... And I know this because I'm typing to you from OUTSIDE today. It's sunny and beautiful. The temperature is perfect, with just a kiss of a breeze.

I'm sitting outside at one of my favorite restaurants, Panera Bread. I just finished my usual off the Pick Two menu: Cup o' Broccoli Cheddar soup and Bowl of Caesar Salad. YUMMMM! If you don't know about Panera, you need to.... Google the nearest location to you and drive there - no matter how far. And if it's in Atlanta, I'll meet ya there. ;)

I feel obligated to give another shout out, as a classy lady I just did a button for gave me one today (gotta love blog etiquette): Rocking The Mini-Van - like her blog suggests, she rocks.

Oh, and snaps for my new favorite expression: bloggy love :P heehee thanks Lindsey

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

I Wanna Be a Peacock

I think I'm being stalked... by Husband#2.

Within seconds - SECONDS, people - of updating my status to "Hail!" today, he was on the phone calling me to "check on me".

Maybe it's just me, but it seems rather creepy - even if it's my own husband.

And it isn't just this one instance. If you've read previous posts of mine, you know. He does all kinds of checking up on me, and it's kinda annoying.

I mean, who wants a stalker? Even if it is a loved one... especially if it's a loved one. That isn't love (to be stalked; to be placed in a cage and admired).

Which leads me to my recent fascination with peacocks. I've been contemplating the why of peacocks, and I think I've come up with a new explanation. I used to think it was because one of the symbolic meanings I've found is "spiritual transformation" - which is definitely part of it: I've been very into searching within (and hope to maintain that search and not let it just be a passing fad).

And then there's the more obvious relation to peacocks: vanity. I used to be more vain. I don't think I'm quite on that path any more, though - or at least I hope not. I don't even wear makeup any more, which is a huge leap from where I used to be: never leaving the house without my mask on. It's gotten to the point where I actually think I look "weird" when I do wear it now.

Ever since I decided to use a peacock as the subject for the art auction project I did with my daughter's class, I have seen peacocks EVERYWHERE: pictures, charms, on books... I'm one of those that believes in signs and everything happening for a reason. And how can I not, when I pick up a book at random and just happen to flip it open to a page with a peacock on it?

I also spotted a pillow at Target recently (which I now wish I had taken a picture of so I could post it on here - I think my blog needs more visual aids...), which led me to my latest interpretation. The pillow, of course, had a peacock on it. And also on the pillow was a cage. The peacock wasn't in the cage, naturally - but next to it.

So, an empty cage in the upper left and peacock in the lower right. The meaning suddenly flooded my mind in one of those Ah-ha! moments: The peacock is always free. It's never locked up in a cage. It's the one free to roam about at the zoo.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

You Have 10 Seconds…

Husband#2 & I took the kids to this little Italian place nearby for dinner last night. It’s this place called FIGO, which has the same idea as one of my favorite Atlanta restaurants (Chow Baby), except it’s just pasta. I have to say, the food wasn’t all that great – and I don’t think it was our fault, since (unlike Chow Baby) you don’t get total creative control over the creation of your meal. Basically: you pick your pasta, you pick your sauce, and then you can choose to add chicken or whatever.

Christian’s new favorite color is green, so he went for the green noodles. I just knew he wasn’t going to like it, but I let him pick it anyway. And wouldn’t you know it……..

GABI is the one who ended up hating her pasta!

We told the lady the kids like Fettuccini Alfredo (yes! they finally like pasta with a sauce – instead of just the noodles). We were told, however, they didn’t have Alfredo sauce (that should have been our 1st sign: What Italian restaurant doesn’t have Alfredo sauce??) – but the lady behind the counter assured us they had something similar.

To our surprise, Christian woofed down ALL of his pasta. He had the same sauce as Gabi, and so did I. My opinion: it really was kinda yucky. :/ especially if you’re expecting something similar to Alfredo. I mean, I didn’t even finish all my pasta. And pasta is my FAVORITE.

So, when Gab had only eaten one noodle (even after we had sent her food back to be remade), Husband#2 fired off to her, “You have TEN seconds to get that food on that fork.”

Gabi proceeded to grunt, sit up in her chair, grab her fork, and stab a noodle……. then sink back down to sulk about how nasty her meal was.

I couldn’t help it: I DIED OUT LAUGHING!!

Husband#2 shot me a look, thinking I was defying him, of course.

“You told her she had ten seconds to put the food on the fork… You didn’t tell her to put it in her mouth and eat it.”

It’s just so funny to me how literal kids are sometimes.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

I Know Husband#2 Well Enough to Know…

When he says “this person” that someone is a she. For some reason, though, he never says she or her until I refer to this person as a he.

It’s always, “This person at work sent me an email… They wanted me to do this or that.” Or like just a few minutes ago when he rushed to get off the phone with me because this person had just walked into his office.

Question: How incriminating would it sound if I was the one always referring to men as “this person” ??

I mean, does he work with a bunch of transvestites? And he doesn’t know how to address them – trying to be politically correct and all. Is it a he? Is it a she??

Yeah. That must be it….

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Before anyone sighs, "AGAIN??" No, it wasn't me. I haven't gotten sick of my hair, clothes, or even my blog look... just yet.

But I have revamped my sista's blog! You can find her button in the right hand column under "MILK IT" - I'd paste the link here for ya, but that would defeat the whole purpose of me having my little Milk It section. That's what it's there for, people! Come on!!

Color scheme for Jen

And if you don't have a button yet, you need to get one so I can plug you on my blog, too. ;)

Okay. Now go check out my sister's blog.



My son is almost always doing something to crack me up. I could write a book of the funny things he says and does (hmmm.... that's a thought).

Being me, I decided it would be a good idea to roam all of Michael's. I do this just about every time I shop - especially there. I guess I'm searching for inspiration or something. Or maybe just making quadruple sure I didn't miss/forget anything. I had to have gone down every aisle in the store and ended up not getting anything anyway (GO ME! Yay! for not spending any money). My son, however, managed to snag a souvenir.

We get out to the car, and his tattle-tale sister belts out, "MOMMA! Christian STOLE something!"


I turned around to see my son raise his eyebrows and throw on his cute little smirk as he pulled a tiny bunch of plastic grapes from his pocket.

In my defense, It's hard to be stern when he's so cute... And yes, the first words out of my mouth were, "What are you gonna do with THOSE??"

He made the sound that somewhat resembles "I don't know," and grinned some more.


I marched him right back in the store, telling him all the way that he had to take them back, apologize, and that I hoped they didn't call the police on him and take him to jail. He didn't seem all that phased, so I tried to make it sound worse and worse as we walked.

We got inside, and I asked for the manager. I think she thought I was going to complain about her people, as mad as I (hopefully) looked. "Go on, Christian. Tell her what you did."

He just held his hand full of grapes out and breathed, "Sowy."

The manager was on the same page with me and kept the story about the police going: "Oh... I see... Well, you have to promise me you won't do this again. [Christian nodded] I would hate to have to call the police and have them take you to jail. Your mommy would be very sad -"

And that's when I lost it.......

Our jail threats clearly were no biggie, because Christian chimed in, "Oh, that's okay. It'll only be for one day."

[slap forehead] Doh!

The Culprit

This incident reminded my sister and my mom of when we were younger and had sticky little fingers. Our mom made us take the stuff back and apologize, too. But, really, it wasn't the same... cause what we "stole" was going to be trash anyway!

Our mom was browsing through the purses in a department store, and my sister and I must have been intrigued by the little paper identification inserts in the wallets - cause we snagged a whole bunch of them. Most people chunk those anyway, right? No harm. I wanna say they had fake boxes of cigarettes in the cig pouches, too (you know, just big filters) - yeah, we took those.

Anyway, we were busted and had to be humiliated by returning the "valuables". Lesson learned.

Somehow I doubt my son's experience is going to have the same effect...

Choose Your Words Wisely

I like to take my kids to Barnes & Noble. There are all kinds of birds we can knock out with that stone: Gabi gets to add books to her monthly reading logs, Christian gets in some "boy time" at the train table, I get to thumb through a couple pages of my latest self-help book, and my mocha frap fix is taken care of.

So I took the kiddos to B&N after school yesterday. I think I actually got to read two pages of my book - a silly, but strangely hard to obtain goal when I'm accompanied by two youngins. Gabi added about five more books to her reading log for April; she's says she hates reading, but she's soooo good at it! Her teachers say she's already at a 2.6 (as of a few months ago) reading level - which means she reads as well as 2nd graders in their 6 month... something like that.

And being a proud mom is getting me off track... This post is actually about Christian. Ah, Christian, Christian, Christian... My Boy.

Sometimes I don't think Christian was born with the ability to adjust the volume of his little 5 year old voice. Then I remember I can never hear him in the mornings when he's tired and half-answering my questions under his breath. Okay, he can do it. He just doesn't want to.

This was the case yesterday in B&N. I had to keep getting onto him about using his inside voice. He gets so excited when he finally has some male bonding goin' on, and he's like yelling at whoever is within arms reach. To add to it, he was crawling all over the floor, under the train table.

So, after reminding him to turn it down and get up about five million times, I called him over and asked if he wanted to keep playing with his friends, or if he wanted to sit beside me. Of course he picked his friends (Moms are no fun) - to which I warned him, "Okay. But play on top of the table like your friends... not under."

And, being literal, my son goes over and crawls on TOP of the train table to sit and play.


"No, Christian... I didn't mean SIT on top of the table."

I guess I really need to think before I speak.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Is It Just Me??

Husband#2's mom called my mom while I was in town for the wedding this past weekend and asked that I stopped by to pick up a wedding gift from her cousin that had just been mailed to her - Husband#2 & I were married back in September. But that's not even the weird part...

I opened it today, and inside was one towel set. Just one.

[Let me interject: this reminds me of the Angela Johnson skit where she's talking about Beautiful Nail - "just one"]

But, yeah: One towel, one wash cloth, and one hand towel. This just baffles me. I mean, shouldn't there at least be TWO towels in a WEDDING gift? Maybe it is just me... or maybe it's an omen or something.

This Photographer is on FIYA!!

This weekend was my first time shooting a wedding solo (unless you count the millions of guests armed with cameras - including one who followed me around like a lost puppy, taking notes and handing out a gazillion compliments).

Some friends I met through my sister & bro-in-law asked me to be their photographer, and of course I accepted. They're friends from way back when, and I definitely didn't want to disappoint. Which means I was very nervous - about getting all the shots they wanted, being creative enough, timing, etc. etc. The list goes on and on, but I really want you to read this whole post, so we'll move along:

My sister & I were heading over to the sanctuary to set up tripods and video cameras in the balcony (the only place I was allowed - boo on that), and my equipment decided to help me turn up the heat a little. As we were about to exit the elevator, something must have hit the Emergency button. We heard the buzz, and I waited for it to call someone so I could tell them it was an accident, but we were only greeted by an automated recording. So we thought nothing of it and kept moving. Time is always of the essence at a wedding, you know.

We got everything set up in the balcony, and I did some test shots to see what I would actually be able to get from way up there with my limited supply of lenses... And that's when we heard it: more sirens. But from OUTSIDE the church this time. I looked at my sister and said, "Wouldn't it be funny if they were coming here because I bumped into that button in the elevator?"

We waited.

Everything seemed fine... Then, as we walked back to where the bride was hiding, we heard a convo by some of the men, "Yeah, they said someone must have pulled the fire alarm."

Oh God! Please tell me I did NOT call the fire department to my first solo gig!

Turns out the firemen that had to come check the WHOLE church didn't find it so funny. I tracked them down and explained that my tripod was the culprit - with about 50 "I'm so sorry"(s) thrown in there.

I realize now it would have been a great photo op: the photographer with her fire crew she called to the wedding, but I was so mortified at the time, I didn't ask. Plus, I think it probably would've been adding more fuel to our pseudo fire.

I did, however, get this encouraging pic msg from my bro-in-law when I got to the reception. Thanks, Ron.

And if you're wondering if anyone else knew, the answer is YES. I was teased by the groom when I went to snap some shots of him pre-wedding:

Me: "How's it going? What are y'all doing?"

Groom: "Well, we're not pulling fire alarms..."


He was joking, of course, and if you knew this couple and their wedding party, my little incident only helped me fit right in. {whew!}

A few pics from the wedding