Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Highlights

I don't think of myself as a very active person. I'm a homebody and appreciate quiet, unscheduled evenings and weekends, so it's funny when I look back on the year and it seems eventful. A lot can happen in 12 months.

January was fairly low-key as I prepared for February travels. It snowed just a little.

Then the temps warmed up and there was flooding.

February was one of my busiest months. In mid-February I traveled to Colorado Springs to photograph my friend Holly's wedding.

I flew from Colorado down to New Mexico for a quick visit with my sisters and their families (pictured are most of my nephieces).

Then shortly after getting back home, my mom visited for a weekend!

March was purposely uneventful so I could recuperate after February. The weather was eventful, though--it snowed twice, and in heavier quantities than January's snow.

In April, I had some work-related photo shoots and also went out on my own to enjoy the spring colors. It was a photo-y month. I visited the tulip farm after not having gone for at least a couple of years.

I also went to the Oregon Garden.

In May I did some cooking, photography and I joined Instagram. I went to the wildlife refuge and Deepwood Estate at least once. I had two different portrait sessions with my coworker, Hollie, so I could experiment with some posing and scenery.

Then over Memorial weekend I drove down to visit my parents in Yuba City, CA. We got some new koi for their pond while I was there (and then most of them died later).

June was exciting because my niece came to visit. I had been anticipating her visit for months! We went to Silver Falls, the coast and a few other places. I also started an art journal this month, though I didn't do the full 30 days.

July was one of those months where I had stuff going, but I didn't document much of it in photos. There was a garage sale, some travel plans in the works, times with friends, cooking, etc. I made at least one visit to Deepwood. I made strawberry shortcake on the 4th of July. It was all very summery.

Hm...August wasn't very well documented in my blog, but I did mention it being busy. I had this work-related photo shoot at one point, and we apparently had some hot days that I remember prepping my apartment for. I suppose it was a bit of a dull month. I did go berry-picking, though!

In September I took on a photo-of-the-day project (I completely forgot about that until now when I was looking through old posts!). I also went up to the Seattle area for my friend's birthday and we went to Snoqualmie Falls and Tacoma. I saw/photographed a fun drug dog demonstration and did normal September things. :) Whatever that means.

October! It's one of my favorite months. Mine was fairly busy with a trip to New Mexico, birthday festivities, and a trip to the pumpkin patch. That's also when my laptop broke, and so began about a month of frustration on that front, but it was okay. I watched a lot of Gilmore Girls in place of time I'd usually spend on the computer.

In November, I went to Deepwood (again!) to see what it looked like at the peak of fall.

Then, as you well know, I went to Mexico over Thanksgiving. I still owe you like 2+ days of photos from that!

And now we're in December and I've done the usual Christmasy things (minus flying home for the holidays). It's been a pretty decent month considering it's not one of my favorites.

There were lots of other things that happened to me or people in my life. Friends moved, there were deaths, there were changes at work and church. All the usual things that go on. I feel differently about some things, and have made a few changes in things like photography, this blog, and how I think (or at least I'm trying to make changes). I'd say 2012 was a decent year, overall. There were certainly some hard parts, but not as hard as previous years. How would you rate 2012?

Tonight I'm spending part of the evening with friends, but I may ring in the new year at home. What are your New Year's Eve plans?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Coulon Park Christmas Lights

I had a very nice Christmas up in the Seattle area (Renton). I played lots of games, ate delicious food, and had a lot of quality time with my friend Dan and his family.

Christmas Eve was the highlight for me. I like that day more than Christmas itself. I went to a nearby candlelight service and then afterwards we all had yummy Chinese food at home. Then Dan and I headed out to Coulon Park where I had read they have a lights display. It's sponsored by Ivar's, hence the clam reference. Christmas lights are my favorite decoration, and it seemed like a festive thing to do. We had a break from the rain and though it was a little cold, it was so nice to walk around looking at the lights. There were no crowds--just a few families here and there. I didn't have a tripod but found some spots to set my camera and take a few photos.

Candy canes were made out of the existing lights. Clever!

Coulon Park is right on Lake Washington.

Some people were walking through my photos, but oh well! They barely show.

Afterwards, we headed down to Cheesecake Factory and picked up some dessert! I had been wanting to try their Peppermint Bark Cheesecake since I'd heard of it a few years ago. We ate it while watching a Christmas choir/orchestra on TV and playing games. It was a great night.

What did you do for Christmas Eve?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thankful Thursday

1. Cute birds. There are lots out lately, even though the weather is terrible. I took several photos and will put a handful in this post.

2. Garbage disposals. I remember that when my sister lived in New Hampshire, they didn't have garbage disposals there. Then on our recent Mexico trip, they also didn't have one. Not having one makes me so appreciate having one!

3. Time off. Christmas means a total of five holiday-days off in addition to weekends, so I'm excited about the next couple of short weeks.

4. Having all of my Christmas mailing done. I sent off three packages today and I'm done. I do have one more present to buy, but it doesn't have to be mailed anywhere.

5. Potatoes. They're tasty.

6. Presents! I really like presents--both giving and receiving. Today I had one on my desk when I got to work, and then a friend brought by another in the afternoon!

I'm not sure if I'll be posting again before Christmas. If not, have a merry Christmas, friends!

Monday, December 17, 2012

San Felipe: Day 4

NOTE: This post is acting up and not showing all of the photos. I'm trying to fix it, but if you see a caption that doesn't make sense, that's why. Please check back for all of the photos later. If I haven't just taken the entire post down in frustration by then, of course.

Mom was feeling much better this day (except her lack of appetite), so we took a drive and explored a little. We stopped here and saw this bird on a cactus. Then I scared it away before we could get closer photos (sorry, Dad!).

My mom, desert-style.

By the way, there were tons of these little pokey bur things that would seemingly jump onto your shoes. They're hard to remove, too. My mom was probably acquiring 12 new ones just standing there for 30 seconds.

We stopped back at "home" briefly and I took more hummingbird photos. I know! I'm sparing you, though, and just showing you these tiny ones really quick.

Back out for lunch. It was a Mexican holiday, so there was a parade (we missed it) and people were dressed up.

My parents at lunch.

Then we walked around town a little, so I took some pictures so you can get an idea of it. There are plenty of things to buy.

I couldn't stay in here for long--too cluttery feeling.

Kind of like Rodeo Drive.

In the evening I took another walk around the neighborhood when the light was better for photography.

I liked this gate and tried a lot of photos of it, though I wasn't crazy about any of them.

Just in case I haven't shown you the back yard enough times.

I should warn you that Day 5 includes several hummingbird photos, but they are different birds in a different location. Day 6 will be more interesting if you're sick of the birds. :)


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