We lost our little Jackie yesterday. It stings terribly to even type that.
This cat could not be contained inside this house and every time he would bolt out the door to explore I was afraid he would cross the road and be hit. It happened. As inevitable as it seemed I still find it hard to believe he is gone.
I'd like to think Tyson hasn't even noticed he is gone but I know that can't be true. He has been calling for Jack. Breaks my heart.
I never met anyone that didn't instantly love Jack. And I know a lot of anti-cat people. A lot. He was truly a sweetheart. Not to mention the best mole catcher and bird destroyer in the state. Even though he had no claws he still managed to leave us some pretty grotesque stuff on our back patio. We appreciated it when it was pesky moles but the poor little songbirds, they didn't stand a chance.
His favorite place to sleep at Christmas time was right under the tree. If there were presents he'd just remove all bows and make himself a nice little bed.
We have so much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. Yesterday Dale came home from Iraq! Yay! He flew into Indianapolis where he will spend the next 4 or 5 days in demobilization. We are ecstatic to have him home safely. Thanks to everyone for their prayers and well wishes.
I know, I know - I'm a horrible blogger as of late. To be honest I got nothin'. I've just been dealing with fatigue, fatigue and more fatigue. You're probably already sick of hearing me whine about being tired but really, it's nutso. Imagine walking around all day feeling like you've just drank a gallon of NyQuil and all you want is a nice warm bed and your favorite pillow. That's my life. My doctor says I'm about to turn a corner is a week or so since I'll be going into my second trimester and I will have more energy. Man, I hope so - I've become a hermit that works, sleeps, eats, sleeps, eats some more, sleeps... repeat.
At my doctors appointment on Friday my doctor also told me that we would be able to find out the sex of the baby after Christmas, right around my 20th week - I cannot wait!!! I want to shop for everything baby but I'm resisting until we know what it is. Probably a good idea right now since I have no patience for the holiday shopping crowds and lack of parking spaces at the malls.
On the other hand I do have some serious Christmas cheer this year. Last year I was such a grinch. I wanted nothing to do with Christmas, I didn't want a tree, I hated all Christmas music and barely decorated our house. This year it's all I can do to wait until after Thanksgiving to get out all the decorations and start putting them up. Yay Christmas! And don't even get me started on Thanksgiving - oh boy!!!
Anyway, that's all I have for now, sorry it's not more exciting. I'll try and update a little more often :-)
I'm about 8-1/2 weeks now and I feel pretty darn good. I will say I'm really REALLY tired most of the time. Not having any morning sickness so far has been a blessing so I can't complain too much about the sleepiness. Also the pain I experienced in the first two weeks is completely gone (thank goodness). I guess the little poppy seed just thought it needed to stretch out my stomach muscles really far! I'm getting used to what I can and can't have but it's pretty frustrating when reading about the do's and don'ts. My BIG thing is Diet Coke. I miss it more than anything! I read on some sites it's ok in moderation but some say it's not ok at all - and I just want someone to tell me my child will not be hurt if I stop for the McDonald's Diet Coke once or twice a week. Why can't someone just say it's ok? I get that caffeine is ok in moderation but then there's the aspartame, so many reports about artificial sweeteners - arg!!! It's enough to make me crazy. Don't even get me started on being told I couldn't have a steak cooked medium. Wha? Really? I know I sound whiney and it really is a small price to pay but I just wish the "rules" were more black and white.
But every day that goes by I get more and more excited about our little boy or girl. And yes, we will be finding out what it will be - I don't think I could wait until the birth. We're waiting to even discuss names until we find out the gender too. So that's basically it for now, just still getting used to the idea that there's a little bean hanging out in my stomach - still a crazy reality and I don't think it's completely sunk in :-)
I had the pleasure of photographing my friend Paula's beautiful family Sunday.
Here is a small sample.
I had a lot of fun but again, looking at my finished images I realize I still have so much to learn. I think most of the time I over think it - all the settings on the camera, lighting and posing - it can be overwhelming. But I still love it and I think it's only going to get better with practice.
Our first stop in St. Louis on Saturday was the Budweiser Brewery. I love the Clydesdales. At the end of the tour we got a couple free samples. The glasses were specially designed so the bubbles rise up from the bottom. Pretty neat. Later that night we went to a Cardinals game. We hadn't been to the new Busch stadium yet and wanted to check it out. It was a gorgeous stadium.
Sunday morning we walked to the Gateway Arch - I had been before but I was excited to try out my new wide angle lens. Sunday afternoon it was game time. The undefeated Buffalo Bills we playing the winless St. Louis Rams. And we had awesome seats! They beat the Rams 31 to 14. Marshawn Lynch and J.P. Losman. George Wilson. Our QB - Trent Edwards. My favorite player, Brian Moorman. He's the punter. Todd caught two gloves from the players - I'm pretty sure it made his year. The Rams fans were not pleased. We had a really good trip - St. Louis is a fun city. I wish the Rams fans weren't such jerks during the game - they really were some sore losers. Their coach was fired this morning maybe that'll cheer them up a bit.
I had my first official portrait session yesterday. I actually had a really good time.
My weak point right now is posing - it seems easy but really it's not, I promise. This was a great learning experience for sure. I've edited about half the photos and I've seen so many things I did wrong and some thing I did right too. So much goes into it that you have to be conscious of - lighting, composition, pose, everyone in focus, random dog walkers in the background... it's enough to make you go crazy. But that's what practice is all about.
Here are just a couple of pictures (I should actually be editing right now).
Nicole & Kurtis. Nicole was great with helping me come up with cute poses for the girls.
This is Kristin. I love this girl! She was such a great little model and was very energetic. If every child I ever photograph is like her I will have it made.
This is Kourtney, she was also fabulous - she also had some great suggestions for poses which I appreciated.
This was my last shot of the day - Kristen wanted her picture swinging on the branch. What a cutie.
Hopefully I'll have all the shots on my website by the end of the week. I'm my biggest critic so editing has been a challenge, especially since I don't start my photoshop classes for a few weeks. But I'm slowly but surely figuring it out.
I tell you 48 hours without power seems like an eternity. After the electric company told me it would be up to 7 days I was prepared but a little annoyed. But when the power came back on today I was delighted. We got very lucky and had very little damage. Just a few shingles loose. We were stranded on Sunday at a restaurant because of numerous trees down on every possible route home. This is what remained when we finally made it home. This is right in front of our house. This is a tree on the powerline about 100 feet down the road from our house. Our neighbors yard. I've driven by so many houses that had gigantic trees down in their yards or on their houses - I feel very lucky. I'm so grateful everyone made it through this freaky storm ok and I hope everybody gets their power back real soon.