November 21, 2010

Was Hiding...Decided to Return

For those of you who know a little about me, you know that my life has been in the fast lane for a while.  For example, two weeks ago, I raised $1000 for the Alzheimer's Association and participated in the Memory Walk as a team captain, I closed the musical production of The Pajama Game, Mom came to visit, I prepped for my Images of a Cure photo session marathon to raise money for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, I interviewed for a new job and applied for another, I learned from my advertising agency that I will be the face of a brand new car dealership in Vermont, and I shot about 20 commercials in Atlanta for this and other potential new dealerships/clients.  All in the span of one week.  Whew.

But then something strange...atypical...surprising happened: I went on vacation.  No, not one of those vacations where you are so busy that when you come home, you need a vacation from vacationing.  (I have been on plenty of those.)  Jason and I had planned a vacation in the Northern Georgia mountains for a few months, and while I loved everything I was doing that kept me busy and active in my community, I desperately longed for some uninterrupted time with my family, 4-legged children included.  During all the craziness of the past few months, I held close the thought that the mountains were waiting for me at the finish line.

And so, we went.  And. I. Loved. Every. Minute.  The cabin we rented was INCREDIBLE.  Sitting high on the mountain, we had breath-taking views from the main balcony and the private balcony from our room.  We enjoyed the hot tub several times a day, every day.  Every night was warmed with a fire in either the indoor or outdoor fireplace.  We watched movies, listened to jazz music, took long walks with the 4-legged children, and explored the fall-colored mountain terrain through the lenses of our cameras.  We ate entirely too much homemade soups/chowders/stews and bread and drank entirely too much wine.  We took naps on the reclining couch.  And it was PERFECT.

After a week, we reluctantly returned home, even though home is pretty darn good.  And I've just put in a 5-hour day photographing some amazing families on Jekyll Island for my Images for a Cure photo session event.  But I vow for the next however long I can manage it to take it slow and enjoy the little things in life.  Thank you, mountains, for reminding me of some simple pleasures.

I'll get around to editing my vacation pics one of these days.  In the meantime, I'll leave you with these: images from our final morning in the mountains.  Spectacular.


Oh, I love you.

November 4, 2010

The Elusive Egret

One incredibly beautiful morning on my drive to work - you know, the kind of morning where the sun softly bleeds through the trees, producing a thousand tiny rays of enchanting golden light and you feel as if something magical is taking place - something caught my eye on the passenger's side of the road.  It was an egret standing in a still pond of water, the color of his plumage starkly contrasting the dark hue of his surroundings and a delicate decaying tree served as his backdrop.  In short, my photographer's eye immediately decided it was a perfect sight to photograph.  This was also a morning - of course - that I chose to leave my camera at home.  Don't you just hate that?!

For 6 months, I have carried with me a mental photograph of that egret, and for 6 months, the egret has stubbornly refused to recreate my mental photograph...until this morning.  This particular morning was incredibly hazy, and while I had half given up on the egret's return, I halfheartedly looked over at the pond and decaying tree, expecting to be disappointed yet again.  And there he was!  While he wasn't standing in the pond, he was handsomely perched in the tree.  I didn't complain.  I took several images of him with his reflection, but the pond was rippling in the gentle breeze, so I opted to crop out the reflection.  Isn't he beautiful?  This is just a quick edit - I'm definitely not through with him.

Thank you, Mr. Egret, for some peace of mind.  Now to capture you again, but in that beautiful morning light...