Wednesday, June 03, 2009

I've moved!

The blog I've had for nearly 3 years is moving to a new online home! You can now follow my life's adventures on So update your bookmarks & blog link lists and join me over there. There is even a new post about about recent visitors. I look forward to seeing you over there!

PS. My photography also has a new blog home at Kelly Ry Photo so come visit there too! I'll be (re)posting old shoots and new ones as they occur.

Monday, June 01, 2009

BAM still here.

In case you're wondering where I've been and whether you should notify the police, rest assured I am still alive! Family has been in town since last Tuesday and depart back to sunny Portland tomorrow. Until then we're running in between raindrops and heading out soon to see UP! and have dinner.

Happy Monday!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Up late. Should be asleep. Much to do.

Got home from work about an hour ago but although 11:30pm is much later than I ever used to go to bed (10 was typical, 9 a lovely treat!), I always seem to be both exhausted and yet wired from such mentally and emotionally taxing work. And after 5 days straight I am especially taxed. But there are emails to check and farms to harvest and plant again and now posts to write.

Tomorrow I get to see this face (doing "Blue Steel") and these toes.
And with her she brings her delightful parents. (All of them doing "Blue Steel")
I can't wait!

So now I'm headed to bed so that I can wake up at a decent hour to complete my long list of To-Do's. Nighty night!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Google is so cool.

In honor of Mary Cassatt's birthday

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Happy Birthday, Abby!

Abby, dear friend, wishing I was there to celebrate you on your special day, sharing a piece of Ina's coconut cake (even though I don't like coconut cake, but I'd do it just for you!) and a cup of tea. What great conversation we'd have.

Have a wonderful day. You deserve it!

(Image here)

Random things

I woke up groggy this morning. Not sure why. I know I slept deeply and dreamed vividly, so perhaps that has something to do with it. I dreamed that I was at work having to yell at different students to stop whatever wrong thing they were doing.

As I lay in bed I remembered I was unable to get on Facebook last night and couldn't replant at my virtual Farm Town farm - 8+ hours went by without earning me money! A travesty in the farm world. When I was plowing my fields just a few minutes ago the screen went white and a message popped up saying I had spy & adware on my computer and it offered to find and delete it for me. Um, no thanks. So now I'm using Norton to scan for viruses just in case whatever happened in those moments brought the plague to my computer. That wouldn't be good.

After a few days off I have to work today. The few days off weren't enough and I'd like a lifetime more of them pretty please. I'm especially loathe to work this evening because tonight is the season premiere of So You Think You Can Dance (known hereafter as SYTYCD), my absolute favorite reality show ever, and it's doubtful that Fox will have episodes online for me to watch later.

My home is a disaster. You'd think having the month off from school would leave me with plenty of extra time to either clean or keep things clean. It hasn't. Unfortunately. But on the plus side, I'm expecting visitors of the family variety next Tuesday so it has to be clean by the time they arrive. Too bad I have to work every day until they get here. Wasn't very smart of me to use my time so inefficiently.

A friend from school had some folks over for dinner last night and as a result I have apartment envy. She lives in a more industrial part of town in a former factory building converted into cool lofts with high ceilings and great floor plans. And the rooftop deck, oh don't get me started on the view she has. Amazing. My place is charming (and tiny) and all but sometimes I sure do long for more space and a rooftop deck with a fabulous view.

As I look over what I've written, if it were Christmas time the appropriate finishing words would be, "Bah Humbug." It's one of those days.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Another sponataneous adventure: Michigan

I had the opportunity to go on another spontaneous road trip adventure, this time to visit Julia in Michigan. I arrived just in time for an afternoon snack of a Michigan specialty, Schuler's cheese dip.
While Julia was in class I saw a movie (Earth - Breathtaking!) and wandered around downtown Kalamazoo's train tracks.
On the drive back I wandered around Michigan farmland and came across several small vineyards and orchards. I wished I had a blanket and a picnic basket, but then that might have been trespassing.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Sometimes for fun I'll go back through old pictures. Much of the time I w ish I could retake many (ok, most) of the pictures with my current photography equipment & knowledge. But sometimes I am reminded of shots I love that I took with a simple point-and-shoot camera and I remember why I love photography. I realize more and more it's about getting an image of a moment with meaning. This one below, taken at Audrey's baptism almost a year before I picked up a DSLR, will always remain one of my favorites.
AudBaptism 093

Take me out to the ball game!

I'm off to my first Cubs game of the season!

(Quite honestly it will probably also be my last of the season considering I generally think watching baseball is like watching paint dry, but when in Rome and all.)

Liz got us hooked up with great seats just 10 rows or so behind the Cubs dugout so we're off to consume hotdogs, nachos and whatever other junk food is to be had at Wrigley Field.

Friday, May 15, 2009

In search of an adventure: Utica, IL

When I didn't get called in to work yesterday, the blue skies and beautiful spring weather beckoned for a spontaneous adventure. My friend (and fellow classmate) Cait was up for a little road trip as well so we decided to do some wine tasting out in Utica, in north-central Illinois. We soon discovered that all of the grapes are actually grown in southern Illinois so we ended up at storefronts that do the tastings instead. Despite the lack of vineyard exploration, it was fun to taste some great wines, soak in the beautiful sunshine and get out of the city. Just perfect for an adventure.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Update: Second Shooting

Meeting was successful and I'm hired to officially second shoot for her for a wedding in late September. Unfortunately that was the only wedding left that she needed an official second shooter for but in a few weeks I am going to work as her "assistant" (for less money) for one wedding where I'm mostly there to carry bags, hold equipment, etc, but am allowed to take pictures as well. The possibility is there for additional "assistant" jobs, so I'm hoping more of those opportunities will come my way!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Second Shooting

For several months now I've been playing email tag with a local wedding photographer about the possibility of working for her as a second shooter. Between my crazy work and school schedule and her schedule, we've been unable to meet and discuss this. When it turned out I didn't have to work today I called to see if by chance she was free to meet up tonight and she was. We decided on the meeting time and location and she said to bring my portfolio. And then I remembered.

ACK! I don't have a portfolio!

A quick run to Target for 1-Hour prints, an album, black paper and sticky squares and now I've got a poor-man's portfolio. The hardest part was choosing which photos to include that showed mostly wedding related images, but some versatility as well. Now that I have something I imagine I'm going to re-do it before too long.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Spring, Spring, Come Again!

I survived my first Chicago winter with temps in the negative degrees for days on end. And then spring came. And then it sort of went away again. So now temperatures in the 40's feel downright frigid. Glad to hear spring is due to return tomorrow!


Sometimes it sucks to be an adult.

Anybody with me?

I've been without medical insurance for several months now and I feel as though I'm breaking the law. Relatively healthy, I've had one procedure that I can recall in the past 10 years or so; all those monthly insurance premiums paid essentially going to waste except for annual check-ups and the occasional prescription. And yet I can almost guarantee that if I continue without insurance it would be my luck that I'd come down with a serious illness or require major medical attention, all while living on student loans and my part-time job. So rather than tempt fate as I am currently healthy, this morning I applied for medical insurance and am awaiting approval of my PPO $2500 deductible plan for $155/month.

An extra $155/month expense is not what I was looking to add to my monthly budget.

Sometimes it sucks to be an adult.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Happy Birthday, Bailey!

Oh, my dearest, darling, niece Bailey. How I love you for so many reasons. Seriously, there are a bazillion because you are wonderful, smart, beautiful, a superstar on the soccer field, helpful and kind.

Remember a few years ago when you requested a lemon cake for your birthday and as I share your love of lemon cake I eagerly offered to make it for your mother only I didn't stop to clarify exactly what kind of lemon cake you were wanting and so you didn't really like it but you were so sweet to not saying anything to me.

I hope you have a wonderful day and a spectacular 14th year! I love you bunches.

(Image here)

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Happy Birthday, Kirsten!

To one of the best mothers I know, sister dear, I hope you have a wonderful day just for you, free from playing taxi, PTA savior, baker/cook.



Adoption: I HEART

I don't remember when I first had this thought, but at some point many years ago I thought about adoption and what an amazing gift it is for all involved, and how someday, I'd like to participate in it. Knowing now several couples who have adopted from both near and far, I continue to be an enthusiastic supporter. So when I found out that friends of Liz's (who I have met on several occasions since moving here) were bringing home Ariana, a precious little girl of 9 months, I was eager to offer my congratulations to the new family. My congratulations came in the form of taking some pictures at the Lincoln Park Zoo & Conservatory in honor of Ari's first birthday.

My heart absolutely melted in seeing how bonded Ari already is with her new momma & papa. It's a mutual admiration society between those three!
(Go HERE for a little slideshow with the rest of the images.)

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Visitors: Denise, Matt (& Diane)

Despite the making of new friends in my new hometown, there is just nothing like long-time friends with whom you can relax in an entirely different way. Denise & Matt's visit to my new home town and a weekend spent in the Illinois "countryside" with Denise's mom & extended famil was just what I needed to gear up for my last week of spring semester and finals (which, by the way, are all over and I have off from school for the next few weeks!).

Here is a peek at our time together, which included Chicago sightseeing, piano-playing with Grandpa Fred, a visit to the famous Rochelle, IL train park and family togetherness.
(See more in a slideshow HERE.)