Monday, February 28, 2011

Photo of the Week 6: Crater Lake

This was taken during the Adams Family reunion in Oregon.  We spent a day exploring Crater Lake.  I had just recently gotten my RebelT2i and was having fun trying out the AV (aperture) mode.  I love this shot for the bold colors and the three different perspectives, especially the nameless guy in the back.  I was working on the concept of thirds in composition.  

Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday Flashback: Life on the Farm

So I didn't clear these pictures with my mom and dad, so hopefully they enjoy the walk down memory lane!  I just have to say that I LOVE how quickly fashion changes through the years.  I mean back then, Dad was really stylin' in his mustard plaid suit!
I figured for the second Friday Flashback I would show some pics from my childhood.  I truly believe that I have the most amazing family.  I'm sure several people probably feel that way, but I look back at how and where I was raised and I feel so incredibly lucky.  I grew up on a tree nursery in the middle of Central Washington and am the middle child with five brothers.  It is interesting to see how kids are raised these days (TV, computers, Blue Ray DVDs, iPads, iPhones, Wii, Nintendo DS, Apple TV) and how different it was for us on the farm.  We didn't even have internet til I had graduated from high school.  Contrast that with how my brothers, cousins, and I were all raised; spending hours on end creating imaginary games in the orchards and shipping piles, swimming in the canals, riding four wheels, and anything else we could possibly think of.  I wouldn't have had it any other way!
Hope you enjoy just a glimpse of our crazy Adams family...

Oddly enough, this is a very common sight...sweats and shorts hiked up to belly buttons while dancing around.  Dad started this trademarked dance when we were just kids, now the grandkids have caught on as well.  My three younger brothers surprised us as being Dad's backup dancers on night...priceless!

When I think back to my childhood, it is full of memories of laughter and craziness.  Of course I could be looking through rose colored glasses and only remembering the good times :)
Whatever the case, I'm so grateful for the life I've had.

I'm also grateful I have pictures to prove what a rockstar my daddy was!
Lookin' fly, dad!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Photo of the Week 5

This was taken at the Whitt Family Reunion in August at Bear Lake, right after a massive rainstorm.  The colors were so defined.  It turned out to be one of our favorite shots.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Friday Flashback "Cayman Islands"

One of my friends started "Friday Flashbacks" on her blog and I loved the idea.  I thought I would try it out today since there hasn't been too much worth reporting as of late.  Busy season has begun so work schedules are insane and we haven't been able to get out as much as usual, so I figured this would be as good a time as ever to remember some fun adventures we've had.  (I've also been missing my girl, Maren, a lot lately.  We were planning on spending President's Day weekend together, but family stuff came up and it didn't work out, so this post is dedicated to her :)

The summer of 2007 a couple of friends, Maren and Abby, and I decided to spend a week in the Cayman Islands.  It turned out to be a jammed pack week of fun adventures and gorgeous weather.  Abby and I drove from Provo down to Vegas where we met up with Maren.  We flew out of Vegas on an overnight flight to Miami, had a crazy lay over sleeping on public benches, and then flew from Miami to Cayman...all on the worst airline known to man...SPIRIT AIR.  If you have a choice NEVER fly Spirit air, it was the worst experience ever, but I'm sure Abby and Maren could tell you more about that!

When we got to the airport our first item of business was renting a car.  We lucked out with a bright yellow "fisher price" car, just barely fitting the three of us and our luggage.  It was pretty priceless driving around in that thing, but at least we had a CD player where we could blast Kelly Clarkson!
(Make sure to click on the picture to enlarge the image!  They're GREAT)

We stayed at the Morritt's Tortuga Resort.  It was on the south east side of the island, right on the beach and it literally felt like we had stepped into a scene from a dirty dancing movie where the resort is full of activities and family adventures!  We were assigned our own entertainment coordinator named Jim who turned out to be one of the most fun people we ever met!!  He quickly scheduled daily activities for us that would help us see the island and have the most jammed pack itinerary of fun.  He pretty much rocked our world!

On our first night, the resort threw a "Welcome Home" party with a live band, dancing, lizards, and an audience participation fire dancing...yes I was pulled from the audience to help.  After dancing the night away in hot humidity while watching a gorgeous sunset on the beach, we were considered the crazy Mormon girls who don't drink alcohol, but act like they're drunk.

Our second day was probably my favorite.  A local fisherman took a group of us from the hotel out to Sting Ray pass to go snorkeling and swim with the rays.  It was such an incredible experience to see literally hundreds of manta rays swarming around you while you fed them squid out of the palm of your hand.  We had to shuffle our feet on the sand bar to make sure we never stepped on any of them.  They have been docile for decades now, since it is such a hot spot for tourists.  The rays know they are going to be fed very well, so they hang out on the sand bar waiting for crazy tourists to hop in the water.  After swimming with the rays, our captain took us to the Cayman reef for snorkeling.  It was there that I freaked everyone out by screaming shark at the top of my lungs!  But to my credit a shark was circling me, so I was only reacting to my environment, right!?  The captain wouldn't let me back in the boat until I had fed the nurse shark squid.  The captain then took me on my own private snorkeling tour (since I was a little freaked out) where he showed me sea turtles, morray eals, and loads of colorful fish.  It was a pretty amazing day to say the least!

The next day we drove into the main city/town for shopping and an underwater submarine ride along the Cayman reef.  Georgetown had some incredible shops where I spent a little too much on cute sundresses and shoes.  The weather was funny since it went from super sunny to massive pouring rain and then back to super sunny.  The submarine ride was ok, nothing too exciting and Maren got pretty sea sick.  It was pretty funny to watch her slowly knock out due to dramamine, though.  After our fun day we ended up finding the Hard Rock Cafe for dinner and then drove back to our hotel and crashed.

The next day was filled with a morning kayak trip through the mangroves, which was pretty amazing, although you would think I would have learned to put sunscreen on by the fourth day of our trip...not so much!  Maren and I had a blast paddling and getting into all sorts of trouble with our tour guide.  We then drove back to our hotel to get freshened up for our evening dinner sunset cruise.  Jim set us up with a fun cruise across the bay and then a "romantic" dinner on the water.  He was hilarious and was a perfect date for all of us.  On the cruise back to the hotel, we ended up having a dance competition on the boat, you can guess that Abby and I had a little too much fun crushing the competition!

Our last couple days were filled with lots of laying out, sunbathing, swimming, and driving around the island.  We spent some time at the turtle farm, running around on the 7 mile beach (where I'm sure Maren and I looked like a total lesbian couple), checking out "Hell" a strange geological island finding, and spending a day at Rum Point drinking out of coconuts.  

Not too bad for a week in the Caymans!  I sure did love it there and loved it even more with my girls Maren and Abby!  Great first flashback :)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Photo of the Week 4

My good friend, Kelsey, took this picture with my camera on our hike to Alamere Falls in Point Reyes State Park.  I'm reading a book at the top of the falls, while looking out to the was gorgeous and totally unforgettable!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Tori Photo Shoot

You really can't beat this weather.  We have had gorgeous blue skies and temps in the high 60's, 70's which has made for  some gorgeous picture opportunities.  On the way driving to my brother's place the other day, I saw a gorgeous patch of yellow wild flowers growing right off the main road.  I immediately thought about how great that would be to take pictures in.  Luckily my good friend was willing to let me borrow her daughter for an hour.  The lighting was harsher than I would have liked, with absolutely no clouds to help filter the shadows, but Tori was such a trooper and we were able to get some great shots.

Make sure to click on the picture to enlarge the image.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Baby Ruby Photo Shoot

I am loving being able to practice photography.  I'm excited to learn and develop this skill and I've found it's such a great way stress reliever as well.  A big thanks goes out to all of you who are letting me practice on either your selves or your children.
I'm always in need of models!

This was my first newborn photo shoot, so it was definitely trial and error.  Ruby was such a sweetheart though, and only cried when we placed her on her stomach.  The lighting wasn't ideal, but we were able to  get a few images that we liked.

Here are some of the highlights...


Fairmont Hotel San Francisco


I'm not sure how I would ever leave the bay area!  
Dallas and I spent the holiday week up with my family in Washington.  And like any good vacation it just never seems long enough.  So we decided to extend our trip one more night.  Instead of driving across the bay bridge, we decided to spend a romantic night at the Fairmont hotel after flying into San Francisco.  

The Fairmont San Francisco is truly a landmark for the city, opening in 1907 it soon became the venue of glittering balls and presidential visits; including the United Nations charter signing.  Personally my favorite frequent guest would be Ella Fitzgerald, the jazz goddess herself.  The halls are lined with chandeliers and pictures of past and present celebrities.  It was incredibly beautiful, with endless shine to attract my sparkle driven eye.

We stayed on the 20th floor with an amazing view looking out over the city and ocean.  
My favorite, though, was the floor to ceiling christmas tree and life size two-story edible gingerbread house.  I wish my pictures could do it all justice.

It was the absolute perfect and romantic way to end a relaxing holiday break.


Yes it's February and I am still blogging about things that happened in December.  I guess it's just one step closer to being current.

There is a small Bavarian themed town located in the mountains of central Washington called Leavenworth.  I've made some incredible memories with both friends and family over the years at this enchanted village, but it wasn't until I wanted to blog about it that I really learned the history.

"Leavenworth’s history does not begin with the alpine tradition of the town today, but with the proud heritage of the Yakama, Chinook and Wenatchi tribes. The Native American tribes lived by hunting the land for deer and elk, as well as fishing Icicle Creek for salmon. Surrounded by some of the most beautiful and bountiful lands in North America, the three tribes co-existed from Lake Wenatchee to the Icicle and beyond.
The area was eventually settled by pioneers in search of gold, furs and fertile farmland. Stakes were claimed, land was parceled out, and the Leavenworth area was soon bustling with settlers. By 1890, the original town was built on the Icicle Flats.
But it wasn’t until the end of the century that the town began to blossom with the arrival of the rail line. The tracks of the Great Northern Railway Company through Leavenworth brought  opportunities for work, commerce and a new economy.
A healthy logging and sawmill industry created a thriving town until the Great Northern Railway Company pulled out of Leavenworth. The re-routing of the railroad and the subsequent closure of the sawmill converted the town from a bustling hub of commerce into a hollow, dying community. For more than thirty years, Leavenworth lived on the brink of extinction.
People in the town knew something had to be done to keep the town alive, so in the early 1960’s, in a last-chance effort to turn their precarious situation around, the leaders of the community decided to change Leavenworth’s appearance, hoping to bring tourism into the area. Using the beautiful backdrop of the surrounding Alpine hills to their advantage, the townspeople agreed to remodel their hamlet into a Bavarian-style village. 
Hoping to create more than a mere facelift, the entire community rallied to create the illusion of Bavaria in the middle of Washington state. Besides completely renovating the downtown area, community members worked to begin a series of festivals. The Autumn Leaf Festival, Maifest and the extremely popular Christmas Lighting Ceremony were the first of many attractions Leavenworth offered to passers-by.
And it worked!! Since the change to a Bavarian motif, Leavenworth has become a pillar of the tourism industry in the Pacific Northwest. Today, more than a million tourists come to Leavenworth each year, with each visitor finding an individual love affair with the community. The story is a landmark case of the human spirit, for not only did the people of Leavenworth survive their most critical hour, but they endured."

While Dallas and I were home for the holidays we were able to make a quick drive up to Leavenworth for a fun day of shopping and dinner.  We had a blast mingling among the millions of other tourists and finally feeling snow under our feet.  If you ever get the chance to make it up to Washington, be sure to plan to visit Leavenworth!

Photo of the Week 3

This was taken on my basic point and shoot cannon digital camera back in 2009.
Dallas and I were visiting Kho Phi Phi, gorgeous islands of the coast of Thailand.
I couldn't help, but feel envious that this little guy gets to call this place home.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Christmas on the farm

This year we spent Christmas in Washington.  Due to Dallas's insane work schedule right before the holidays, I left a week before him.  I flew up to Seattle and spent a fun three days going to my nieces dance recital, celebrating a close friend's wedding, hanging out with my favorite Kelsey, and talking the hours away with my old college roommate, Whitney.
I then drove across the mountains to Ephrata where I spent a couple days playing with little Emma and Nora and Leisha, my little brother's daughters and wife.  Emma was quite the entertainer, singing songs and dancing for her audience.  I have literally never met a more spitfire child, which is probably why I absolutely adore her!  Little Nora is easily one of the cutest girls I have ever laid eyes on.  She is almost a year old and is rolling.  I get so lost in her huge eyes!  She was definitely the perfect model for a doting auntie!

Dallas met up with all of us on the 21st, just in time for his 30th birthday the next day.  The rest of the week was filled with tons of family, chaos, presents, amazing food, loving parents, and lots of SNOW.  Christmas morning was quieter than usual, with only Dallas, Stuart, mom, dad, and I, but things were quickly livened up a few hours later when Richard's family of four and Bryan's family of six all showed up.

We feel so blessed to have such a loving family to spend the holidays with.  Thanks again, mom and dad!  We love you guys so very much and had a blast celebrating!

FEEDJIT Live Traffic Feed