Archive for July, 2010

I met Penny a long time ago.  Well, it seems like a long time to me anyway.  Probably about 8 years I think.  She moved to NC to be with her family and I saw her at church the first time.  I didn’t notice her personality, or her pretty eyes, and not even her quiet but strong demeanor.  What I saw when I looked at Penny for the first time was her hair.  It was and is so stunningly beautiful.  I was so glad to see that she wore it down for her Portraits.  It is so her!

We did Penny’s Portraits right after we got finished with the Watts Family Portraits.  You see, Penny is one of Paula Watts’s sisters.  Yeah, I know,  shocked me too!  I thought if one sibling had such red hair that they all should, you know what I mean?  But no, not these girls!  Penny is so unique and so wonderful to be around.  I was able to get to know Penny better in the hour I spent photographing her than I ever had before.  I am sorry I never took the time in the past to get to know her better.  She is an amazing woman, strong, smart, witty, demure, and SO classy!

During Penny’s session I wanted to capture that strongness in her.  To be able to grasp the past and the future in her eyes.  To be able to look back at these images and wonder what brought her to where she is in life.  Penny is an enigma, one that I know is blatantly full of surprises, and when you least expect it attitude.  I also wanted to capture her self assurance…one that I know has come to be because of her deep faith and commitment to a life serving God over serving self.  Her holiness shines forth brighter than any star that shines in the night.

Have you ever wondered about red haired people…I always have.  I find a fascination in them…I mean…why did God give THEM this awesome head of hair that is the color of Georgia Clay?  It bespeaks a specialness that must have a reason for being such as it is.  Hmmmm, just something else to ponder during my coming hours.

Penny being Beautiful

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The day started out like any other would.  Beautiful skies, warm temperatures, plenty of rest.  Actually, we slept until about 8:00am.  Pretty much unheard of for us, except we were on a mini working vacation.  I was privileged to be asked to travel to Charlotte to photograph the Watts Family Portraits.  The drive to Matthews, NC had been a nightmare with traffic on I-95.  As usual, there were the wrecks that brought traffic to a stand still for a lot longer than we cared to be sitting in one spot.  But we were finally there!  It was so good to see Brent and Paul, Ashley and Allison, Euell and Kay Watts, Penny, the hole bunch of them!

The reason this was such a privilege to me was because Brent, who was previously my pastor, baptised me in the wonderful name of Jesus, then he went about being VERY patient with me as I grew in the grace and knowledge of my Saviour.  And I can tell you, he had a lot to be patient with!  Then there was Paula…the most gracious lady I had ever met, so sweet, hospitable, kind, and she quickly became my role model.  I can say that I am still far from the woman that she is, but I am still trying!  To make it even more a privilege…Brent and his father Euell performed mine and Johnny’s wedding ceremony!  Now I was being called upon to capture these people for a moment in time.  All I could think about was how was I going to do that in a way that would show what they meant to me.  You see, when I photograph someone I want it to show more than a pretty face and a big ol’ smile.  I want it to show who they are.  I want them to be able to look at their images and say something like…’wow’ or not be able to say anything at all.  I want to be able to give them something that they would be proud to hang on a wall and when the grandchildren are grown, that they would give the portrait to them to hang on their wall.

I can only hope that I have been able to do that for these most wonderful people, my original church family.

Family Portraiture - Watts Family

Holiness is definitely beautiful.Family Portraiture - The Watts Women


Meet the parents

Family Portraiture - Brent & Paula

Meet Ashley and Allison

Family Portraiture - The Watts Girls

The Reading of the WordFamily Portraiture - Reading of the Word


Sunday FineryFamily Portraiture - The Watts

Family Portraiture - Brent & Paul

Portrait Painting – ‘The Sisters”Family Portraiture Painting - The Sisters

Well hello their my long lost friend!  I have missed you my dear sweet blog.  I know I left you in the dust for my other BFF…but Facebook seemed to be more interesting at the time.  Well, still is actually, but I just can’t share all of my thoughts with her the way I can with you.  So, I am back and so ready to tell you all that has been going on.

Have you ever gone to stay somewhere that had a full length mirror in front of the bathtub or right smack dab in front of the shower?  One that you CAN”T possibly avoid when you pull the shower curtain back?  Well, I did this past week.  OH MY GOODNESS…I have to say that I was quite ashamed of what I look like at 43 years old.  Now…I don’t want you to try and picture that…it would be just too much…and it would be sorta creepy too to think of you all thinking of THAT!  But let me tell you…this has really got me to doing some really hard thinking on the matter of me and full length bathroom mirrors!

I had to ponder why I never really noticed this before now…I mean, my weight hasn’t changed in over 4 years.  I am pretty constant with that.  But I never REALLY viewed myself the way the mirror projected me.  How can that be?  I still think of myself as being much smaller than that mirror showed me I am.  There was a moment of stunned silence as I slowly closed my eyes, shook my head to clear it, and then SLOWLY opened them again.  Nope, no change, still the same mirror, still the same projection of ME!  I dried off and dressed.  After that I went back to the same mirror, stood there with clothes on and started thinking…”See, I am not really THAT out of shape.”  Amazing what clothes that fit well can do for you.  I didn’t think about it anymore that day.  Then the morning came again…still the same bathroom and the same BLASTED mirror in the same BLASTED spot IN FRONT OF THE BATHTUB!  Almost the same scenario, but this time I turned around backwards to peer over my shoulder!  NO WAY…ughhhh!  Then I had to do a little hop and wiggle to see if it all REALLY would still continue to move after my feet were stationary.  Then the tears came to my eyes…big ol’ crocodile tears!  Now, I didn’t get depressed because I GOT ME THIS WAY ALL BY MYSELF, and I am not one to wallow in self pity.  Plus you see, I am the DAUGHTER OF A KING and that means that I am loved for who I am no matter what and that I can go to my FATHER IN HEAVEN and ask anything of Him.  And that is what I did.

“Father, (big ol’ crocodile tears rolling down my face) I don’t feel so great about myself right now.  I know I have sinned against you by not taking care of the temple that you reside in.  Please forgive me and help me to do better.  BUT, you know I love meat and potatoes, and pasta and bread, and then there is the butter and cream that is so rich and good on just about EVERYTHING!  You gave me these desires, the need for food.  If you didn’t want me to eat all I want then why did you give me all I want?  Modesty in all things  Yeah, BUT it seems like you set me up There is no temptation given that I haven’t made a way of escape BUT I am week and you know that already  when you are week I AM strong BUT I don’t want to control what I eat, it is just too good and well, I LOVE TO EAT.  I don’t eat sweets, just the things that are good for me…you know, the meat, breads, and yummy butter and cream!  My sisters are all skinny, and so are my brothers.   Can’t you just give me the genetic codes that they have?  you are made in my image BUT YOU aren’t fat!  I have given you self control, you just have to use it BUT don’t you see, I CAN”T do this by myself  resist the Devil and he shall flee  huh? The Devil…what does he have to do with my weight?  He would want me skinny so men would lust after me.  I know this didn’t come from him.  He didn’t give me a desire for good tasting food, seems that comes from somewhere else…like maybe You…you are planning on letting us feast when we get to Heaven…I’m thinking your Word says something like that.  to even be in heaven one day you must first learn to HONOR ME in all things…whatsoever ye eat and drink, do all in honor to ME  but how do I honor YOU in my eating and drinking?  you are losing me with this one  I give you food when you hunger, I ask you to be modest in all things, I ask you to put your desire to please me above ALL things, and then I give you a way to escape the temptation to satisfy your lust for worldly things.   Worldly things…food is considered a worldly thing?  Never thought of food that way, that’s a new concept for me.  So if food is a worldly thing, then I must not eat because You said to stay away from worldly things! That is impossible!  No my child…food is not worldly…it is given by me to sustain you…but your lust for more than you need is worldly…that is the temptation that I will help you escape from…flee the lust of the flesh Help me to leave the table when my hunger is satisfied.  Help me to get up before I eat enough that I have to lay down to take a nap afterwards.  Keep me ever thoughtful of my actions so that I may truly honor you in ALL that I do, even in my nourishment.  Thank you Father for showing me the things you have.

And that is exactly how that morning went for me (well almost).  I am sure there was more words than that, and I am sure I argued with God more than that.  But what really took place was me realizing that I need to Honor my father in Heaven more than I have been.  There is this song and part of the words are;

“Amazing love, how can it be, that You, my King, would die for me?  Amazing love, I know it’s true.  It’s my joy to honor You, in all I do, I Honor You.”

We sing this at church and though i sing it with all my heart I want to actually do it, all the time, not some time…not just when it suits me, but even when it doesn’t.  There is a lot to Honoring God.  It is possible though.

So…with all that said…I have started an exercise program.  Yesterday was day 1.  I just have to get through each day.  Not look to tomorrow, not look at others, but just plunge through each day.

My first goal: run to the dock and back (800 yds) without stopping to walk part of it, do 100 crunches (all different kinds), do 30 lunges, do 30 squats, do all the push ups I can (that made me think of these)

Oh yeah…I am also going to eat with chopsticks instead of a fork.  Along with that I am going to pray at the beginning of each meal that God will keep me and will guide me though the Honoring Him part.  That He will help me be aware of the differences in hunger and lust for food.

I hope you will get some enjoyment out of reading my updates.  They will be titled “Bathroom Mirrors & Honoring God”