Monday, June 29, 2009

A Step Back in Time

This past weekend I moseyed (is that how you spell it??) my way on over to Lancaster county in Pennsylvania to visit my old friends the Bairds. This past December we were reunited (thank you Facebook - ultimate people connector!) while I was shooting a film for Hampton. Chris and I were best friends from my freshman year and had lost touch about 13 years ago.

I can't even express my joy at being reunited with the entire family. I also knew Chris' brother Dave pretty well, and his sister Brooke, and had spent a week with the Baird family at the end of our freshman year when we (Merrilee and I) went to send Chris off on his mission.

Merrilee recently reminded me of a funny story from that trip. Chris is infamous for having no concept of time or concerns about punctuality. He's an artist folks - you know how THEY are. Anyway, he took Merr and I to explore some local waterfalls, and let it be said we had a great time. However, when we returned to his house, looking like drowned rats, we discovered his farewell party had kicked off an hour before we arrived. You can imagine his mom's pleasure at our arrival.

The funny part of the story was that his mom blamed poor, hapless Merrilee for our lateness. She told everyone, "Chris had to take them to the waterfall because Merr is from Arizona and so she doesn't ever get to see water." Talk about thinking on your feet!

Some of my favorite moments on this trip to the Baird clan:

1. I stayed in the Ephrata Hampton Inn & Suites where we had filmed in December and was THRILLED to reconnect with this team. (You can see the documentary we did on them here.) It is unequivocally, the BEST hotel you can ever stay in. Amazing service, amazing people - LOVE them. I was pleasantly surprised to arrive to a sign welcoming me as "Guest of the Day." That's no joke people.

2. On Saturday night, I told the Bairds (Chris' parents) that I wanted to meet them to go to church because Chris had no ability to be on time. There was a lot of chatter about this and how he was late and I was punctual. So the next day, when I suddenly found myself a mile or two from their house and the center of an Amish parade you can imagine my chagrin at realizing I would arrive 10 minutes late. I took these pictures to prove to them that the only thing that could keep me from arriving on time was 5 buggies in front and two in back and no passing lane.

3. Loved just sharing stories about the old days and the new days and feeling like no time had passed. Chris' dad shared some stories about his current wrestle with cancer and how it really changes your focus and where you place importance. He shared a story about the power of prayer in one man's battle with cancer and everyone in the family seemed to be appreciating each moment a little more. I came to town to take some photos of the family and capture some of these moments and felt inspired and touched when I left.

I feel pretty blessed to have come in contact with so many wonderful people over all the years of my life. I'm not great at staying in touch, but maybe that's cause I love all the "reunited and it feels so nice" moments. Whatever the case, I'm excited to finally be reunited with my own folks who come home on Monday--AT LAST.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Some favorite Pics from the Weekend

Today I shot a few pics of my Niece Keely, and nephew, Ben before we went to church. Neither was what I would call "cooperative", but there were a few smiles when candy was fished out of pockets. I love summer. I'm by-passing Silent Spinster for these.

Respectable Wait Time

A Question:

How long should you wait to date a guy after he gets out of a relationship? A year? Two years? 2 weeks? The next day?

I ask because I seem to always stumble on the ones who are fresh out. Or sometimes even a year out and it just seems like they're still fresh out. And I have to believe they are NOT really available to me. That I'm clearly being set up for rebound.

And I don't mind hearing their stories about the past relationship, cause frankly I'm curious too, BUT I DO mind hearing the stories twice and three times, or ONLY hearing their stories. Yes, this I mind.

BUT, if you wait too long, well someone else can slide right in when they're good to go and you miss your window. OR you hear the stories about the couple that met right after the breakup and got married 4 months later. Seriously.

So I ask, how long do you wait?

A Nephew in Need

I am a sucker for my nieces and nephews. Friday night I was planning to go with Kristin and Abram to the movies. Lisa and Shawn were watching their kids for 24 hours, and I had just left the house where Max was in a terrible state of distress. I had offered to hold him and had promptly been hissed and screamed at. Apparently the devil in side had full possession at that moment.

As I got about a half mile away from the house, I got a phone call from Shawn. He said Max wanted to talk to me. In a sobbing and heart-rending voice Max said,

"I want you to come back Aunt Shauri. I want special time with you. Please I want special time."

It was much more tragic than I can ever really do justice here and Max has NEVER wanted special time with me. I was torn. I REALLY wanted to see this movie, and had been super excited to go.


My little tiny, helpless nephew needed me to calm his little heart and help make him happy Max again. It's impossible to not go to a crying child. Which is why I'm an aunt and not a parent so I have no discipline responsibilities. Just hugging ones. And reading ones. And feeding candy in a constant stream ones.

I'm glad I gave up the movie for my little sad buddy who snuggled on my lap while I read him books and put his little gulps to rest.

Besides, Shawn let Lisa go with me later that night, so it was really a win/win.

Puppets Are Scary

Yesterday I was riding home from a special cupcake trip with Keely and Max, which it should be noted was not the success I anticipated as they both hated the fluffy frosting, ate them from the bottom up and proceeded to smear the frosting all over clothes, face and hair followed by a full bottle of chocolate milk being spilled on the floor. And yes, we were the only customers in the store, so we were noticed.

Anyway, as I was saying. We were riding home when Keely told me she was excited to see what Grandma and Grandpa brought her from Australia when they came home. She said she hoped it wasn't a puppet. This began a small debate between us as we discussed why she would like dolls then because aren't they the same as a puppet?

Turns out they're not. Puppets are much more boring. Why remains unclear.

In my efforts to convince her that puppets were actually far more entertaining than dolls the conversation continued as follows:

Me: Do you know what a Marionette is?
Keely: No.
Me: It's a puppet with strings so you can move it's hands and legs, and it can wave at you.

Long pause.

Keely: (in monotone) Terrifying.

Upon further reflection I believe she is right. Puppets are scarier. Unless your doll is a clown or looks like Chucky.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Another one bites the dust

I don't know if all of you know this little tidbit, but it rains wherever I go. So if you're looking to stop a drought, your best option is to pitch in some cash for a plane ticket and send me packing.

I have made it rain for days in desert landscapes that have never seen rain. Like Australia in the outback. I'm a walking water miracle. Case in point, I just went to Utah. Also a desert. Forecast? Rain for 4 straight days.

Which made it very difficult to find time between the rain showers to take photos of Travis and his soon to be fiance. You can see some of the shots on

One of my favorite moments during the shoot was when Travis wanted to stage a picture of him jumping off the wall and Jessica holding on to his legs. It was totally staged, but while Jessica was pulling his legs she cried out, "Travis, don't jump!" And she was serious.

Welcome to the family Delsa junior. We love you already.

This is another shot we took. Travis titled it "Guess who's getting married..."

I suppose I should be upset and bitter that there is now only myself and my youngest brother left as the single-tons in the family. Oddly, I'm not. I figure, if Travis can make it happen, anyone can. And after all, aren't I anyone?

Seriously people. It's a moment of rejoicing. A new baby is on the way via Kristin, a new in-law via Travis, and I am ushering in a brand new bushel of wrinkles. I guess we're all contributing!

Happy Engagement little brother. I love my newest in-law.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

A Card For Jessica

First let me say that my spinster status is secure if I never leave Michigan. I have not had a date or spent time alone with an available man in 4 months. Unless you count my trip to Paris with Joel, but since I paid him for his services, it would more appropriately fall under the category of professional escort. And considering that nothing happened, a poor one at that. Good thing I learned some photography skillz. Yeah - no dates.

Since I have no dates, I am always available to babysit for my sister and brother. Lucky them. On Friday I babysat for Shawn and Lisa. Keely (their 5 year old) and I decided to make a card for Jessica - Travis' girlfriend.

After she drew a lovely Bride and groom, I asked her what message she wanted me to write to Jessica on the card. This is what she came up with:

I hope you have a good time being our aunt. I hope you don't feel left out at any time. Ever.
From, Keely"

An interesting and thoughtful message. I wonder if she feels left out a lot or if she just inherently understands the gauntlet we make all potential family run through before acceptance is assured?


free hit counter account login link
Get a hit counter here.