Sunday, November 29, 2009

Seasonal Whiplash

Just yesterday I was celebrating Thanksgiving with the family and today we were singing Christmas carols in church and starting the season of Advent. What happened?!

In case you can't tell, I am not a person who puts up their Christmas tree in November. My method is to completely deny any knowledge of the impending holiday until at least the second week into December. Yes, yes, it is a bit hard with all of the Christmas music playing everywhere and the store decorations going up but still, somehow, I manage.

It doesn't help that the kids are actively counting down the number of days until Christmas. Every morning they seem to take great delight in vexing me announcing it.

(puts fingers in ears)
I can't hear you....

La la la...
Fa la la la la
la la la la

Saturday, November 28, 2009

It's That Time Again

Ack! How could it have snuck up on me so soon?

I've been busy taking pictures of families for their annual Christmas card and I have yet to even think about ours! It's a sunny day today and the sky is blue - I need to wrangle up the Munchkins and get a photo or two. Wish me luck!

Here are some rejects from our Christmas Card Photoshoot last year. :)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Don't Try This at Home

Our martial arts instructors are creative and cruel most inventive when it comes to thinking of giving us a workout in class. For example, last week we were asked to:

1. Sit in a tight circle. Lift up your legs and place your right ankle over the person next to you. While trying to balance and keep your legs off of the ground, lean back and do a sit up. Oh, and throw a jab-cross at the end of each sit up. Let's do 10. Ready? Go!

2. Grab a partner and one of you get into the Push-Up Position. You are going to do 10 push-ups. Between pushups, your partner is going to jump over your legs then crawl under you, army style. Arms aching yet? Good! Now switch.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Fruit of the Earth, originally uploaded by MrsMama.


For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Aching In and Out

Ouch. I'm feeling a little tender this Thanksgiving.

I'm sad because this is my first Thanksgiving without my parents and my Favorite Sister. They moved out of state a few months ago and I really wish that we could be together.

I'm also sad because this family close to my heart is hurting this holiday.

I'm hurting on the outside because I attended 2 kickboxing classes and 1 martial arts class back-to-back over the last few days. I am so sore! Abs, pecs, quads, those muscles in my upper back (whatever they are), triceps, and gluts. And I've one more class tonight. I'm trying to work off that cheesecake I snarfed down over the weekend. I believe I ate 8 pieces! OK, it might have been 9. (blush)

My Mouth Will Never Be the Same

There is a burger bar tucked away in a corner of a local Irish pub that is rumored to serve the best hamburgers in the city, perhaps in the entire state. Yesterday I ate their Kobe burger and my mouth will never be the same. It was made from a combination of ground tenderloin, ribeye and American Kobe beef and was served on a toasted brioche bun with pickled red onions and truffle butter. Oh. My.

My tastes have been forever tainted. I will never be able to eat McDonalds again.

Monday, November 23, 2009

In Which the Munchkins Compete

A few weeks ago the Munchkins competed in their first martial arts tournament. Master Munchkin entered Board Breaking and Flag Sparring. He set up 5 boards then struck each one, in order, quickly. The judges looked at technique and the degree of difficulty of each strike. He and another boy tied for first place so it came down to a "sudden death" contest. Only there was no death. The Master came in second but he was still pretty happy. I was just happy about the lack-of-death part.

Flag Sparring involves trying to remove the "flags" from your opponent's belt before they remove yours. The kids had a lot of fun with this one.

Miss Munchkin entered Point Sparring. This involves landing a kick or punch to certain areas of the body. Since there weren't any other participants in her belt rank, she had to spar Black Belt guys. Gulp!

Here she is, in the red belt, throwing a kick at her opponent. Of course she didn't win, but she held her own and had a pretty good attitude about the whole thing.

One of the highlights of the event was when the Master's teacher jumped over several children and broke a board. Very impressive!

They tried to get me to compete, but I insisted that they needed a photographer. So I hid behind my camera volunteered my services. I'm nice like that.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The (Temporary) End of the Wolfman

Our school had their fundraising auction last night. I can't wait to tell you what I came home with!

My van needs new tires so I bid on 4 new tires (installed) from a local donor. And won them for 1/2 the price I would have paid at the store! I am so thrilled. And, with the money I "saved", I came home with a 3 month's woman's gym membership (Wolfman, you know I'll miss you!), a beautiful Kichler lamp, guitar lessons for Miss Munchkin, a personal training session with a professional fitness guy and an entire chocolate chip pumpkin cheesecake.

Ok, so I realize that the cheesecake totally cancels out the gym membership. But still.

And my favorite part: all the money goes to the school.

My least favorite part: April made me get in in front of over 400 people and expected me to touch my, well, my bottom. But that's another story.

Heavy Heart

Our dear friends from church are going through the hardest of times this weekend. My heart is so sad. If you could, would you pray for them today?

The Huffmans

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I Had a Dream

Last night I dreamed (drempt?) that I went to the grocery store and all the checkers had on black UFC fight gloves.

It's better than the dream I had where I met Ree with the back of my skirt tucked into my underwear. What am I, 16?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

PW in KC

Last night the fabulous PW was in town and April and I hoofed it down to the Plaza to attend her cookbook signing event. It was a Girl's Night Out and we were very excited!

Stop taking pictures and come ON already!

First of all, the cookbook is wonderful - full of real food and fun photography.

Then there was the socializing. April is a bit famous herself in the blogging world and she had several admirers come up to her throughout the evening.

Oh, I love your blog! I'm so glad to meet you.
(See that lady in the back taking a picture? She's taking a picture of April. Look at how high she has to aim the camera :)

So when's Clay going to write again?

You are so funny! I love your sense of humor.

How are you so tall!?

She even had some Guy come up to talk with her.
I stood nearby, ready to use my MMA skills in case he tried anything.

Ree did an intimate interview with the audience and charmed us all with her down-to-earth answers, friendly demeanor, and her extensive knowledge of movie quotes.

Then she autographed cookbooks. For hours and hours and hours. She greeted each person with genuine warmth and kind comments, even though she must have been exhausted.

Look how happy she is to see this woman. And this woman's box of cookies. :)

We were number 580 and 581 so we had awhile to wait. Hmmm... time to kill...what to do....

Someone gave Marlboro Man a pair of UFC gloves, which the Punks promptly put to use. It was cute watching them wrasslin'.

(Hey! I thought it sounded like a good idea at the time...)

Ree was delighted to see April again and gave her a huge hug. It was really sweet.

When it was my turn, PW said, wait for it....

She said she loved my photography! (See, here she is saying it. OK, actually, at this point I think she was saying, "April, you do know that that is not a zoom lens, right? So you are very, very close to me right now. Security?")

PW, you know you made my year, don't you?

Monday, November 16, 2009


I had the privilege of taking family photos for this family recently. How cute is Mom?! She is 4 months pregnant and actively teaches Jazzercise. She has the most adorable baby bump and uber long legs!

Dad's pretty neat too. He's a youth leader at our church and a member of ThePoolBoys, a very cool band.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Love This.

Check out this adorable camera stap cover made by Shealyn. I would totally wear this (HINT, HINT Dear). She gave a strap or two to Ree recently. What a perfect gift! (nudge, nudge Dear)

These are my business colors. OK, so I don't actually have a business yet, but if I did, these would be the colors. :)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Once Upon A Prairie

About three years ago, in the land of Oz, there was a Mama who had no life was busy at home. Sometimes she felt lonely and would visit a homeschooling message board. There she was known for the story she shared about the time she trailed sugar over the entire grocery store and for her Peanut Butter Ball recipe. Eventually she found her way to a member's Blog, which she found quite entertaining. (It was also a great way to avoid housework.) The Mama thought it was fun to hear a child mispronounce "juice bag" and cracked up as this woman deleted messages from her answering machine without even listening to them. Oh, and the photos: there were beautiful photos on this blog. The spark was lit.

"I would love to take photos like that," the Mama told herself. If this mother, with no formal photography training, could learn how to do this, then maybe she could too. She emailed the Blogger who wrote back with information about her camera and kind encouragement.

The Mama got a Nikon d80 and started to learn how to use it. During this time she also discovered Flick and became BFFF (Best Flickr Friends Forever) with Miz Booshay. Miz B also had a new d80 and a child about same age as mine the Mama's.

Fast forward a few years. The Mama is still learning how to use her Nikon d80 (she's a bit slow in the technology department). But she has developed a passion for photography and an artistic eye. Friends and friends of friends started to request her photography. The Mama happily obliged. Now she sorta has a life. And virtual friends. And a few friends in real life too.

One of those friends is April, whom the Mama met a long time ago but re-met more recently (but that is another story). April and the Mama are going to go see that nice Blogger, who is now famous and is touring the country. And the Mama will probably take pictures of the famous Blogger who, if you remember, inspired the Mama to learn photography in the first place.

How cool is that?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

For Ann

"There's a special place in Heaven for a mom of all boys."

Fall Family Photoshoot with the S. Family. Yes, they have 5 boys!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

What to Wear

This is a great example of what to wear for a family photoshoot. I love how everything coordinates, but doesn't "match". I especially like the mix of plaids and stripes and solids with mom's flowery skirt thrown in. Very, very cool.

Here are a few more shots from our time together. This was such a fun family to work with!

Saturday, November 07, 2009


Today our martial art's studio held its first in-house tournament. The Munchkins competed and I took photos. A lot of photos. 1,214 photos, to be precise. I think my brain is broken now. I'll post pics and fill you in soon.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Munchkin Math

Master Munchkin came home from school with a math problem that he created. It reads as follows:
Bob has 60 hippos. He bought 19 more hippos.
How many hippos does Bob have now?

Bob has 38 cats. Bob's hippos ate 10 of Bob's cats.
How many cats does Bob have now?
That's my boy! :)

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Some Kansas Love

Frosted Grass-1, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

I had a happy surprise in my inbox today. The official government website of Kansas has chosen one of my photos to publish in their calendar for 2010.

This was taken last December in our front yard after a beautiful frost. I remember running around desperately trying to capture some of the glittering glory before it melted in the sun, and trying to keep the dog out of the picture! :)

Now I need to think of a good name for it. Any ideas? They will publish the title of the photo, where it was taken and who took it in little bitty print.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

The Wolf Man Returns

You may remember my interesting encounter at the gym with the Wolf Man. Yesterday, he was there again, only this time he was shirtless. Ack! I was a bit distracted and made a quick detour into the restroom to plan my course of action. As the door closed behind me I was genuinely puzzled. Apparently they had remodeled over the last few weeks and had added, um, urinals to the women's restroom. Huh. That was...odd. I glanced around, confused. Maybe they put those in for all of those mothers who drag their little boys into the restroom with them. Ah, that must be it. How thoughtful! And convenient.

Waaaait a minute..........

It slowly dawned on me: I wasn't in the women's restroom.

I shot out of there like a bullet. A mortified bullet fleeing from reality.

I don't think anyone saw me. The only one around was the Wolf Man and he seemed focused on staring into space. I just hope he doesn't have a blog.

"There was this really weird woman at the gym the other day...."

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Golden Boy

20091027-DSC_0107, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

This little guy was sooo cute. I couldn't get enough of him! And he couldn't get enough of the apples I brought along. :)