Friday, November 10, 2006

Monday, October 23, 2006

On To The Next


So that was my honeymoon. Not too shabby, huh?

Some big changes around here the last few weeks -- Things I thought would give me much more time to blog, but this is my first chance. I've been busy working on editing photos and baking with this pretty machine.

At the end of last month, I left my office job to devote myself full time to our photography business. I don't have words, truly, for what a big deal this has been for me. I told G. the other night that being able to work from home doing something I love feels the same way to me that I felt when we first started dating -- like I was finally where I was supposed to be.

Naturally, there's a somewhat scary downside to this developement in that it puts considerable financial strain on G. and I. But it's so, so worth it (so far). It's already improved my life, and it hasn't even been a month. I hope we can pull it off.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Fly Me To The Moon, Part Four: Paris

I was wild about Paris.

The morning we arrived, bleary eyed from traveling overnight from Venice, we rode in a cab through the still quiet streets of the city to our hotel. At one point Gym nudged me and pointed out the window. There, oh so tiny, peeking through a gap in the skyline, was the top of the Eiffel tower. I cried.

Paris is a city I plan to go to again and again. It was different in some ways than I expected (Bigger! More modern!) but still somehow exactly as I'd hoped it would be.

Certain places can make your heart pound in a way that feels just like love. This was one of those places for me.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Fly Me To The 'Moon, Part Three: Venezia

So many amazing things about Venice:

The little bar run by two women near our hotel that we found within an hour of arriving and went back to a few times because they had the best panini and the friendliest smiles (which is saying something as most everyone we met in Venice was nice).

The Californian couple we met while getting gelato on our last evening who were celebrating their 53rd anniversary. They had more energy than we did!

Eating at a restaurant right on the Grand Canal. Spectacular location and one of our cheapest meals on the trip. Can't beat that.

Napping in the afternoons because it was so! So! SO! Hot! Out! Side!

Getting lost. Truly. Several times.

Buying a painting from an artist in St. Marks square that I am absolutely in love with. I get butterflies in my stomach when I look at it. It's hanging over my dresser in our bedroom now.

That being there feels like a fairy tale because only in a story would an entire city be built on water.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Fly Me To The 'Moon, Part Two: Firenze

Amazing things about Florence:

Our hotel. I could write pages singing its praises. But I'll stick with saying that there was breakfast in bed every morning, champagne when we arrived, and a welcome package with spaghetti and sauce!

Walking through the quiet backstreets and stumbling upon a wonderful little art shop selling beautiful dainty etchings that were being made as we browsed around. We bought two.

The food. Oh goodness, the food.

The fact that I was a little in awe of the place, and therefore didn't take all that many photos. Most of the time, I wanted to see it with my eyes rather than the lens.

To see a few Florence photos:

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Fly Me To The 'Moon, Part One: Roma

Wonderful things about Rome:

The narrow cobblestone streets



The businessmen in suits on scooters

Eating in restaurants where there are no other tourists

Learning a handful of words in Italian and actually using them

The quiet, sprawling green park above the Piazza del Popolo

To see a few of my photos from Rome:

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Just for the record:

Hunt's does not count as ketchup.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Toasting an onion bagel in the workplace has got to be near the height of rudeness.

Monday, August 07, 2006

my writerly self is buried beneath so many things right now. house stuff, day job, photo work.

every once in a while, a good sentence will pop into my head, but when it does it's like seeing an old friend across a busy street. the traffic is too full and fast to even try to wave.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

one soft small lesson to learn

When I moved into my last apartment, G. and I had just started dating. For the first time in the history of my moving life, I let the boxes sit unopened for weeks. I couldn't be bothered with my customary rush to get everything situated as quickly as possible, so busy was I with the task of falling in L.U.V. It was months before that place was completely assembled, and those months were some of the best I've ever had.

I didn't learn my lesson from it though. Since we've moved in to this new place, my almost desperate instinct has been to UNPACKRIGHTAWAYORELSE, despite my outward insistence that I am going to take time to set our home up properly, even if it takes a while. I've lost sleep the past few weeks over the state of the office and living room. I've had small waves of panic while thinking about the inside of our kitchen cupboards.

But I've been forced, in spite of myself, to take this homemaking process slowly. I haven't been able to rush it, haven't even had time to shove things into closets so that the place looks shiny on the outside. And yet, somehow, slowly...

Just now, sitting on the couch with G., talking about what to order from the Thai restaurant down the street, looking over his shoulder into the dining room at the evening sun streaming through the window on our two plants in their brightly colored pots, at the green glass knobs I bought to replace the old ones on the dark wood cabinet, at our stark white wedding china mixed with my red latte bowls, I realized the pace is perfect.

Monday, July 24, 2006

I'm having a hard time believing it's been over a month since the wedding. In ways it feels like it's been that long and then some, and in other ways I feel like it was a (really good!) dream and the real thing is still lingering in the future.

I thought for sure I'd have had time to write about all of it by now, and I'm a little sad that I haven't. I keep thinking one of these days I'll get around to looking at our honeymoon photos or finishing up the journal we wrote while in Europe. In the journal, we are suspended in our first full day in Paris. Not such a bad place to be stuck...

I'm still hopeful that I'll be able to get some of my thoughts down here at some point because I love reading other people's wedding stories and would like to contribute my own. But for now, it's back to working on photos for clients, trying to get started on thank you notes (yikes!) and unpacking our still cluttered apartment. Please forgive my temporarily horrid blogging habits, with the promise that there will be better things to read soon...

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Newlywed Bliss in Full Effect

Hi everyone! We're back and we're married! And all the stuff people say about their weddings is true. It really was the best day our our lives. We're still on a high from it.

I can't wait to write the details of the day (too jet lagged right now!) and share honeymoon photos (no hard drive space on the computer yet!).

But for now, I wanted to take a second to thank everyone who left or sent a sweet comment around the wedding day. They all made me smile!

For anyone who'd like a sneak peek of our wedding photos, check our our photographer's blog. We are so, so happy that we hired Jessica to photograph the wedding. She and Nathan did an amazing job. And, seeing Jessica work made me excited to get back out and shoot another wedding myself this weekend!

You'll have to scroll down a bit since she's had other weddings since ours. Once you get to us (Lindsey & Gym, for those few of you who may not know our actual names), be sure to click on the slideshow.

More soon.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

One Week

I'm off to get married!

(If we can do it as well as these guys did, then I'll consider it a perfect day.)

Friday, June 09, 2006

8 Days: Oh, the sappiness begins!

piano fingers

I don't have my ring on today (it's at the jeweler's getting a special polish), and I keep catching a glimpse of my bare fingers and panicking. It's strange how in just a matter of months that ring has become part of my hand. Today is the first day I haven't worn it since G. proposed, and it will probably be the last day in a very long time that I won't be wearing either it or my wedding ring. I feel like I'm just now starting to understand the full significance of wedding rings, of why when H. lost his, he and A. combed an entire soccer field until they found it. It's not just that wearing a ring says "I'm taken," it's that it says "We're joined."

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

10 Days: Glutton

I wish someone could make me stop looking at the weather forecast for next week. It's getting worse and worse, and I keep looking and looking. I know (I KNOW, PEOPLE!) that even if it rains the wedding will be a success in the sense that G. and I will be married when it's over, but I've spent months and months planning this thing based on a rain-free day. In the past week alone I've spent no less than ten hours assembling placecards that will look utterly ridiculous if it's too rainy to hang them on a clothesline as planned. Not to mention my darling lemonade table that won't be anywhere near as charming if it's stuck inside the barn. These details mean a lot to me. And don't even get me started on the fact that I know from first hand experience how difficult it is for a photographer to get good photos at a ceremony under a dark ol' tent.

I'm freaking out here, kids.

Monday, June 05, 2006

12 Days: Other Honeymooners

When my grandparents were newlyweds, and only 19 years old, their house burnt to the ground. They lost everything, including their wedding and honeymoon photos. Several years ago, another couple who they spent part of their honeymoon with gave them some film negatives from that trip. The type of film used is no longer readily processed, so my grandma was unable to do anything with the negative. Recently she passed them along to me, and I've been working on getting prints made. The negs are in pretty bad shape, but I'm totally smitten by the photos nonetheless. Time has worn down the celluloid and given the images a surreal, romantic quality. Some of them give me chills. My grandparents look young but confident, and in the photographs I can see little fragments of the rest of their lives already etched on their faces.

Friday, June 02, 2006

15 Days: Home Stretch

For some reason, every time I've ever been anticipating something exciting, I always thought that if I could make it to the two week mark, I could survive the rest of the wait. Tomorrow is the two week mark!

P.S. If you want to read about someone's deepest prayer and biggest dream coming true, click on the Superhero Journal link on the side of my blog. It made my day today.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

16 Days: Dreaming of Venice

One thing I've found sort of funny about this whole wedding thing is that it involves months and months devoted to the careful arrangement of one day, while the honeymoon, at least in our case, goes largely unplanned. G. and I are going on what is truly my dream honeymoon, a trip to places I've wanted to visit my whole life (Rome! Florence! Venice! PARIS!),and I've probably spent a total of two hours thinking about this trip. We're wildly underprepared to spend two weeks in countries where we don't speak the languages beyond G.'s spotty French from a class he took last year, and my thin grasp on the first two lessons of an Italian language CD I've been listening to in my car every few days.

I love this. I can't wait to stumble around these cities with my husband G., and be sappy newlyweds together.

(I also can't wait to have some photos to post that aren't of weddings!)

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

17 Days

I've got such tunnel vision right now. I would say 90% of the thoughts going through my brain are related to wedding tasks. My eyes are glued to my to-do list.

This does not make for good blogging.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

18 days: dumbest thing i've done in a while.


just checked the long range forecast for traverse city. not smart. looks like it's going to be a rainy june. i've got a huge pit in my stomach now. will be hugely sad if it rains on the wedding day. strange, since rain is one of my favorite things. but i don't want to get married under a tent, and i don't want to miss out on the photo opportunities that i've sort of built our wedding around.


Thursday, May 25, 2006

23 Days

This isn't wedding related at all, but something I've been thinking about today is the realization that I've recently gotten over certain things about myself that I've been hung up on for years, namely that I have enormous feet, and am very pale. I guess you could say that I've finally reached a point of self acceptance where these things are concerned, except it's much less warm and fuzzy than that. I've just stopped caring. Today I'm wearing a skirt that comes to my knees and a pair of bright green shoes. This outfit showcases both the shocking whiteness of my legs and the bony monstrosity of my feet (also splendidly pale) in a way that would have been absolutely terrifying to my fourteen year old self. But now it gives me no pause.

I see that my little sisters are rushing quickly (if they aren't already there) toward the age where certain things they don't like about the way they look will cause them trauma, and I wish I could tell them not to worry, that one day they will, seemingly out of nowhere, not be bothered by those things anymore.

I'm curious: What stuff have you gotten over about yourself?

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

24 Days

We've shot quite a few weddings now for friends of friends, but this weekend will be the first one for actual, no degrees of separation friends. They hired A. & I when they first got engaged, when we'd only shot one or two other weddings. I'm always so honored when someone chooses us as their photographer, even more so now that I've planned by own wedding. I know not everyone cares as much about photography as I do, but I do think that everyone cares about their wedding as much as I care about mine, and it makes me really happy to get to record that day for people, to capture an important part of their history.

I wish I had the brain power to write about this (or anything!) more eloquently right now, but my mind has already switched over to photographer mode, an entirely different kind of poetry.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

25 Days: Bridesmaids Bite The Dust


I had two of my seven bridesmaids drop out of the wedding last night. I saw both coming. The first one I knew may happen because she'd been kind enough to give me the heads up months ago that her new, exciting, top secret job might be calling her away for training sometime around the beginning of June, and they have. The other I knew about in the same way you know a guy you've just started dating isn't really interested -- vague, non-committal, distant behaviour. Except she's not a guy I just started dating, she's a friend of over a dozen years, so I'm sort of... irked.

It's interesting to me how weddings tend to bring certain things to a head. You'd think planning a wedding would really only have an effect on the couple getting married. But this whole experience has given me far greater insight into the people in my life than it has englightened me about myself. I already knew I was a stress case.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Count Down

Now that I'm entering the final stages of my own wedding planning, I thought it would be fun to try to post something every day, at least until June 11th when G. and I leave for Michigan. I realize this stuff may truly only be interesting to me, but I'm okay with that. In July I will turn into an interesting person again. I hope.

The last couple of nights have been the first where I truly couldn't sleep because of all the wedding related discussions the voices in my head were having. Must they be so chatty? I may need to start hitting myself over the head every night so I can get some rest.

I had my final dress fitting the other day. The seamstress couldn't get it zipped. Not even close. Not to be immodest, but I was proud of myself for not crying or screaming. Instead, April and I went to McDonalds while she let it out a bit. As I sat eating a cheeseburger, I swore to April that I hadn't gained any weight since the last fitting (which is actually true!). Mmmm... cheeseburgers. Won't be having any more of those, though, between now and June 17th, as even after having been let out, the dress is still a very snug fit. There will also be no lifting my arms above my head on the day wedding day, lest the dress should suddenly become terribly indecent.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Lemon with Vanilla Frosting

To the person who found this blog by googling "cupcakes with feelings," I welcome you.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Like London

I'm a little foggy in the brain this week.

There's a baggy with a hamburger bun in it on my desk, a discarded element of my lunch. Every time I catch a glimpse of it out of the corner of my eye, a small part of my brain yells "SUGAR COOKIE!" and my heart leaps with joy, even though the rest of my brain knows that it's actually just a bland, squishy hunk of white bread.

This has happened no fewer than six times this afternoon.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Gary Mode

Back when G. and I worked at the same company, I would often get my feelings hurt when he had his work face on around me. We called his work face "Gary Mode." (Apologies to the Garys of the world, but I just don't dig that name.) I knew it was necessary at times, but I still got overly sensitive about him not acting like MY G. from the hours of 8 to 8.

Right now, I myself am constantly in Gary Mode, constantly just the slightest bit chilly and annoyed. I think I'm even in Gary Mode when I sleep because I haven't been having any memorable dreams, as if I can't be bothered to let my mind wander even then. There was a brief snip of time, at dinner on Saturday with G, A & H where I think I snapped out of it for a second, but other than that, I seem to have lost my ability to relax and be normal. This week it hit me that the wedding is suddenly getting CLOSE. But it's not the wedding that's causing my stifled emotions. It's all the other stuff. But I'm fearful of not being able to get into a more relaxed, more "feeling" state of mind before the wedding day actually arrives. I'm worried I'll wake up on June 17th with my to do list running through my head rather than my wedding vows.

I wish I were doing a better job of soaking this up right now. Any suggestions on how to chill the heck out?

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Too Busy To Even Have A Song Stuck In My Head


On certain days, for swift, fleeting moments, I'll get a little cocky about the pace I'm managing to move at right now. The full time day job, the equally full time photography work, the getting the new apartment ready to move into, the planning of the wedding. But the reality is that in all the other many, many moments, I'm not dealing with it all that well. I'm tired, and feel like I'm loosing my mind, and about eighty times a day I think to myself that I can't keep up this pace. I'm not good at being stretched this thin. It leaves me feeling like a child, caught between wanting to stomp my foot on the ground or burst into tears. Recently, on a walk home from the market with G., I did both.

But underneath the layer of exhaustion and annoyance, I'm happy, not depressed, and that's such a wonderous new turn for me that I'm trying to stay focused on that, whenever I can catch a quiet moment to do so.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

I have some fabulous women in my life!

Thank you Girls, especially April, for Saturday night! I had a wonderful time.

And thanks to the gals who were there in spirit as well. You were missed!

(Cake by Mandy, Cake photo by April, Group photo by Hosea)

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Weeks Disappearing

I'm absolutely baffled by how much time has passed since I last posted. Days are going by at warp speed right now. So many things I'm excited to talk about here, but the writing seems to go on mostly in my head and never makes it to paper or screen.

Speaking of which, the past couple weeks, for the first time in months, I've honestly missed writing my book. Since I stopped working on it (temporarily) back in November in order to focus on the wedding and the photography business stuff, the moments when I've thought about it have made me feel more guilt than longing. But the desire is back, a little sprout pushing up through the dirt. I miss my characters and am eager to check in and see what they are up to. Hopefully they don't mind waiting around a couple more months for me to (perhaps somewhat timidly) show my face.

I had a dress fitting yesterday. Dress fittings aren't what they are cracked up to be (at least if your idea of what they are cracked up to be is the same as mine was, which was that they'd make me feel Glamorous and Tended To). Pins got stuck in my arm. And I discovered I have armpit fat that likes to make itself known only when I'm sporting the fanciest thing I've ever owned. And I think I know now why corsets used to make girls "swoon."

Dang thing better look good on the big day, that's all I'm saying.

This photo is of a bride I photographed recently who appeared to actually be able to breathe in her gown. Lucky little thing.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

If you build it...

Last year, April and I set a goal of booking ten weddings for 2006. We recently reached that goal. Doing so didn't come with as much fanfare as I expected (in fact, it was closely followed by our most challenging wedding shoot to date), which I am learning is often the case. Instead of toasting the accomplishment with pretty pink champagne glasses, we clanked together our cups of coffee and diet coke at Denny's on a nasty rainy night, somewhere between here and Arizona. We were both bleary eyed, and still had hours more to drive that night. It still felt great.

Friday, March 17, 2006

A Few Things


The time has come for me to accept that nothing which can be described as "mini" should be part of my wardrobe. I'm too old, too tall and too pale for it. That won't stop me from occasionally still trying on such mini things, and standing utterly shocked at myself under the harsh spray of dressing room lighting.

I would not call myself a fan of trail mix, but if I am given some, I will eat it with a ferocious love, a love that says "FINALLY, GEEZ, WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN, TRAIL MIX?" And then hours later promptly go back to forgetting that I like it at all.

Outside of my family, there is no one I know better than April, but I didn't know until a couple of weeks ago that she gets a pain between her pinky and ring finger on one hand when she is nervous. This has been happening to her for years.

Monday, March 06, 2006


Feeling blue today. One of those Mondays where the grey sky is making me sad, the news stories I've been reading are making me sad (just finished reading something horrible about a woman dying of an embolism while giving birth to her fifth child), work is making me sad.

I sometimes (often) hate whatever it is that makes me overly aware of how scary life is.

I'm longing for a nap underneath my bright red goosedown quilt.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

A Tuesday

In the elevator just now, a fellow passenger smelled like hospital. Interesting how that scent can cause such a pit in my stomach even though I haven't spent much time in hospitals at all.

I bought a new blush today. Pink and shiny, smells of sun tan oil and sand. I rubbed some of it on the back of my hand. It looks like a twelve year old's blush, a little too cheerful for its own good, but I guess in at least that one small way, I'm still like the little girl I was then, eager for pretty, optimistic things.

Though it's sunny now, it was rainy this morning and I wore my pink rain boots to work, and thought maybe it would be a good day.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Just After

The bride this weekend was somewhat uncomfortable having her photo taken, so I was thrilled to catch this moment when she was happy and a little distracted!

Friday, February 17, 2006

Wedding Season

Originally uploaded by sweetmondaygirl.

Though I sometimes find it hard to believe I could possibly think about flowers, cakes and dresses with any greater frequency than I already do, starting tomorrow my life will revolve around weddings more than ever before. Besides the fact that my own wedding is exactly four months away, A & I will be photographing two weddings a month leading up June 17th.

For the most part, I am thrilled about this. Admittedly, it makes me a bit weary knowing that there will be thousands upon thousands of images of new marital bliss to sort through, all while piecing together the details of my own nuptuals. But this is an exciting time for our little company, and by the time June rolls around, we will have more than doubled our portfolio.

I'm terribly curious to see how it all turns out.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

File Under: Corny But True

Originally uploaded by sweetmondaygirl.

It's nice that when you've got a guy who is good every day of the year, Valentine's is just another one of those days.

Friday, February 03, 2006

I believe that pretty dresses have magical powers.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006


I've been frustrated lately by how much I lack the time to learn new things. If I made a list of all the stuff I want to be better at, for the sake of creativity and for my business, it would stretch from my dismal office cube across the miles to my house, which is where I would need to be in order for anything real to get done.

I get fearful that this is what being an adult is, and that I'll never have the time again. My old creative writing teacher in college used to say if you don't make time to write right now, you'll never make time. He was right, and I took his advice. But

I've gotten worse at manufacturing time since then.

Monday, January 23, 2006

the quick creep of monday

i'm sometimes absolutely floored by the fact that my depression can still sneak up on me with such swiftness. these days, when it does, it's fleeting. it stomps around on my shoulders for a short while, and then departs with such a pathetic whimper that i barely notice it's gone until it's been gone a while. that part is expected, known. but for as much as i know how it will leave, it's surprising that its onset can be so, well, surprising.

"what are you doing here?" i almost always have to ask it, startled. and it cackles back at me while it drinks its coffee, a batty, mean old woman, an unexpected guest in the living room of my head. "i live here!" the depression, the old woman, says. and for as long as she stays, we both believe it, she and i.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Stage Four, In which I become a housewife before my time.

guest towels

I bought guest towels the other night. You know. For when the In-Laws (his or mine) come to visit. When we're married people.

When I bought them, I got giddy.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

New Year

new year

I haven't been much in favor of resolutions the last couple of years. I think, for the most part, that it's not good to start a new year already feeling guilty and weighed down. But I LOVE thinking about goals for what lies ahead. In some ways, I already know this is going to be a good year. I'm going to photograph a bunch of weddings. I'm going to have a wedding of my own, something that still sometimes shocks me. After that, I'll be married to the coolest guy I know, and together we'll go see two countries I've wanted to see for as long as I can remember. 2006 is going to glow.

But I do have some ways in which I want to push myself. I want to learn to take better photographs, so that I impress myself more often. I want to finish the draft of my novel, which has taken a back seat to wedding planning and wedding shooting. I want to exercise more, not just so I'll have Bride Arms (although, I gotta have Bride Arms!) but also so I'll know I'm being as healthy as I can be going into this next part of my life. I want to cook more complicated recipes. I want to learn to bake a cake from scratch. And French, I want to learn some French. I want to find a way to make this blog meaningful to myself again, or drop it altogether. I want to write letters to my little sisters more often. I want to be a better friend and a better cat mom. I want to find the perfect umbrella for the wedding, in case it rains.

I'm so excited for each of these things that I feel lucky to even get to try them.

How will you push yourself this year?