Tuesday, April 12, 2011


I don't know about any one else out there, but ever since I changed my email address I've had a heck of a time updating my blogger. It links to your google account so since I got a new Google email I constantly have to sign in and back out whenever I want to update. After a while it just gets really frustrating! I've tried to transfer over the blog, but to no avail. This left me with leaving blogger and restarting my own blog on Wordpress.org - please me sure to head on over and check it out!

I have a brand spankin' new blog that needs some love! From now on, I'll be updating my posts over there, so please add our link as a favorite and be sure to visit back for updates!


Friday, April 8, 2011

Leave Me

If you have just 5 minutes to spare, this short film is really touching and so original I just HAD to share it. 

Leave Me from Ryan Dunlap on Vimeo.

It really makes you stop for a moment and appreciate that special someone you have in your life. It is a little sad though, isn't it? Let's use the premise of re-experiencing pictures, without the sad undertone (it was a beautiful film ... but just as heartbreaking as the first few scenes of UP... haven't seen it? It really is a beautiful movie, here's the scene I'm referring to: UP Movie Scene

If I were to jump back through moments that were captured in my photographs here are a few of the ones I'd choose: (These aren't moments that I want to change at all, just ones that I'd be more than happy to enjoy all over again.) Here they are, in no particular order: 

September 25, 2010: 6:30pm
Wedding Day.

This photo isn't anything special. It isn't one that I've framed or that I put in our wedding album, but it's a moment in time when all was right in our little world. The ceremony was over and we had just completed our pictures together, we were on our way back to the wedding party and prepared to kick off the reception. If I could go back, I would remind myself not to rush through it, but to stop for just a minute, close my eyes and take it all in. Even though it seemed to be over in the blink of an eye, I still remember the warmth of the sun, the breeze on the dock during our vows, and the dark ride away from the venue after it was all over with my head resting on Shawn's shoulder. 

October 2, 2010: 1:30pm
Drive from Ennis to Kilmihil, Ireland. Honeymoon. 

We were on our Honeymoon in Ireland, the first time we had ever traveled out of the country together and we were soaking up every minute of it. The trip wasn't all rainbows (although we saw our fair share of those) - we had moments when we weren't sure where we were going, when we misunderstood the customs, when we "lost" half of the money we brought with us (don't worry, we found it in our luggage 2 weeks after getting home). 

I also remember being absolutely and purely happy standing on an open, grassy hill, hours from the nearest city - we were taking a seldom traveled road on the east coast of Ireland on our way to Kilmihil (where my family can be traced back to). It was one of the most beautiful views we came across and it was that much more special because it was the land where my ancestors had lived for generations. The pictures I have in my living room of the McMahons seemed more real standing on the same hills they had seen centuries before. 

It was unequivocally the trip of a lifetime. 

Spring 1998: Early Afternoon
Awards Ceremony for Young Authors Contest

I was in middle school, and along with all of the other self-conscious 11 year olds in the room, I was so caught up in the few seconds it would take me to walk up to the stage and accept my award for a poem I had written earlier that year, I could think about little else. I was so nervous, I just wanted it to be over. After it was concluded, my dad and I went outside, but before we left we stopped for a picture. I don't remember much, or if we even found someone to take a picture of us together, what I do remember is taking this photo.

The fact that I managed to use my mom's 35mm camera at all is a miracle in-and-of itself. What is even more rare, is that I snapped a picture of my dad really smiling (he was more of a rough-and-tough "no-I-won't-smile" type of guy). That's why I love this picture, he was REALLY smiling because he was actually happy, proud of his daughter. LOVE THIS. 

Fort Campbell, Kentucky

The reverse side of this old picture reads:

"Phil & Marcie. Fort Campbell, Kentucky. 1951. Mike & I drove down for a weekend visit - saw you for the first time - also first time we saw Phil as a paratrooper."

This photo was sent to my grandma (Marcie), from my great-aunt Madge. It is VERY small (only 2inx3in), but it shows my adorable grandma in her 20s posing for the camera on the banks of a river [you can click on the picture to make it larger]. It was the first time my grandfather introduced her to the family and she was beautiful. It reminds me of the first time I was really introduced to Shawn's family, standing on the beach on the outer banks of NC. It seems like such a special moment caught in time; I wonder what it would be like to have been on that riverbank with them? 

What are some of the photos that you'd jump back to if you could? Are there any that you would want to stay in? 

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Be still my heart ...

I was enjoying my weekly viewing of "America's Next Top Model" last night when I glance over to the floor on the other side of the living room and see THIS:

My sweet Shawn was lying on the floor with Finnegan and Lexie (does this mean they weren't interested in TYRA?). My little fur family was so adorable I just had to take a picture before Finn started chasing the cat around the house...

Usually, this is all I get to see ... still cute nonetheless. Can you tell that Shawn really wanted a dog??

In the future I'm looking forward to looking over and seeing Finn and Lexie sleeping all snuggled up WITHOUT encouragement from Shawn and I.

In the mean time, I am R.E.A.L.L.Y loving the warmer weather ... and just in time for my birthday! Shawn and I are hoping to head out to the Raleigh Road outdoor theater this weekend.

 Shawn really wants to see Limitless (I think he has a small man-crush on Bradley Cooper) since it's playing there this weekend ...

... but I'm hoping I can convince him to take me again at the end of the month to see a double-feature of Hop and Rio ... too cute!

Seriously ... $6 for TWO movies that you get to enjoy either in your own car or sitting outside on a blanket? That means stretching out your legs, and not having to hear/smell the stranger next to you that also came to see the movie ... summertime here I come! 

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Journey from Kennel to a Forever Home

Last weekend, Shawn and I took hope our sweet bundle of joy - a 64lb bouncing boy who is becoming the perfect addition to our little family. As new parents to our greyhound, we read all the books and prepared ourselves for the possibility of a destructive transition from his old life to the new one in his "forever home." Also like new parents we were EXCITED!!!! Through our excitement we are documenting our experience with our sweet Finnegan, the good, the bad and the stinky. We knew we would probably get little sleep his first night home, and understood there would likely be puddles and piles of little accidents. 

In reality, we came home with an incredibly sweet Finnegan who has had ZERO accidents in the house so far, who sleeps through the night and has only let out the faintest whine when he appears to be bored. Although he has been a little worried about all of the changes, Finn is being the perfect poster-boy for greyhound adoption. 

As a retired racer, Finn isn't familiar with all of the intricacies of living in a house as opposed to a kennel - his entire life has been spent in a kennel or the racetrack ... so we've been helping him through things like: 

Learning How to use the DOG BED! 

Mirrors are not as fun as REAL greyhounds:

Kitties are FRIENDS not FOOD! 

Stuffed toys can become friends faster than kitties can:

Next up.... learning how to climb stairs! Stay tuned ...