Monday, November 23, 2015

The Adventure Photo Shoot Contest winner!

Way back in May, when I launched Whimsey Photography, I held a contest to celebrate. The contest was for an Adventure photo shoot at Fort Edmonton Park. Winners got free entry into the park and 15 free images of their adventure.

Nelena and Mark were the winners and, as Nelena was expecting a baby, she asked if we could wait until the baby was born before she claimed her prize. After the baby's arrival, a few bad weather reschedules and a long wait for me to get over my bout with shingles, they finally got their photos. 

I'm so glad it all worked out in the end. Fort Edmonton is one of my favorite places which is why I choose it as the place to celebrate my business launch.

I had two assistants that day in Holly and Kim. I knew extra hands would come in handy with the baby and his pamphernalia. We went early to scope things out (and enjoy the Fort as Holly and Kim are both big fans as well.)

It was such a lovely day. The weather cooperated and the kids were awesome. I really do miss spending time with kids now that I've retired from bus driving so I'm always happy when I get a chance to play with some.

I'm not going to write about our adventure, rather, I'm going to share the photos along with the fusion video which tells the story in such a fun way.

Thank you Nelena and Mark for allowing us to enjoy such a great day with you and your kids. They are all adorable. You are blessed with a wonderful family

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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Remembering Spring

We had snow yesterday and I've got a winter illustration on the go but I wanted to remember spring one last time . . .

I took a photo from this spring into Photoshop and did a little digital magic. I love the skills my Photoshop Artistry course is teaching me.

I hop you are all having a lovely week.

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Monday, November 2, 2015

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programing . . .


Some how, even though you've had your birthday party and know in your head just how old you are, you never really believe that you, yes you, really are, middle aged.

I certainly don't feel as though I'm any older than, say, 35 . . .

Which means, even though you had fully intended to get the shingles vaccine when you turned 50, and your 50th birthday came and went . . . in your heart you're still in your 30s and there's lots of time for vaccines . . .

Self delusion has it's price. In my case that price turned out to be a nasty case of shingles.

I'm in week 4 now. The huge stacks of books beside my chair have gotten shorter and shorter over those weeks. Henry has been beyond sweet about my inability to get any thing done. As a matter of fact, he even went so far as to recruit Jesse to help him wash the sink loads of dishes that had been piling up.  Something that disturbed Jesse so much ("Mom, dad did the dishes with me and it was just, so . . . weird . . .") that he resolved to keep the kitchen clean so it never happened again. (To bad that resolve didn't stick . . .)

I'm on new medication that seems to be helping a lot more and the doctor figures this shouldn't last longer another three weeks. (although he made no promises.)

It's been an interesting, albeit painful, time. I'm being told once again to slow down. Once again I wonder why I seem to be such a slow learner in this area of my life . . .

I don't have the answer. I get the lesson, slow right down and then, before I know it, I'm whizzing along at top speed again.

So, as a way to try and let this lesson sink in a little deeper, and to make a concerted effort to take life at a slower pace and savour each small thing that comes my way, I've signed up for another still photography class with Kim Klassen called My Still Sunday. I was inspired to take it after I read her beautiful blog post here.

I love still photography. Everything about it makes me happy and November 8th can't come soon enough.

In the mean time lesson 20 in my Photoshop Artistry Awake class just went live. I love, love, love this class. Our teacher is an awesome, generous and inspiring man and my classmates are as well. My friend and class accountability partner, Sharon, is the loveliest woman. She encourages me, teaches me and reminds me that things happen in God's time and according to His plan. How wonderful is that?!

The lovely digital art card you see at the top of the page was made for me by Sharon. Isn't it beautiful?
And I wonder . . . am I the only one has so much trouble learning these life lessons? (I sure hope not .) Or do you too find yourself learning the same lessons over and over . . .
I'd love to hear your story.

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Monday, September 21, 2015

What getting Henna looks like

I posted a photo on Instagram last week showing the beautiful Henna I had done to celebrate 3 years cancer free.

It occurred to me that some of you might wonder just what it's like to have henna done, so I decided to show you.

We (Holly, Kim and I) were all fascinated by Maaike's work when we walked by her booth at the Thorsby White Barn Farmers Market  a few Saturdays back.

Henna by Maaike (click to get to her Instagram)

 Something I learned the first time I had my hands hennaed, was that henna has been practiced for over 5,000 years and some sources say even as long as 9,000 years! Because henna has a natural cooling property, desert people would make it into a paste and cover their bodies to keep cool. Over time they began to make beautiful patterns with it as well. It has been used by many cultures and the art of it is now available for anyone who loves to wear beautiful things.

I love the idea of celebrating such a special occasion with art I can look at for weeks on end. The best part is, it's not a tattoo. It's not permanent and each year I can have a different, beautiful design.

We sat and chatted with Maaike and her friend and were able to just enjoy spending time together as mom and daughter/in-law. It was a really lovely afternoon.

I made a very short little video showing you the fun we had.


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Friday, September 18, 2015

The Bredenhof Family

I have Martin and Leona and their lovely family up on the Sessions blog over at Whimsey Photography.

Pop over and check them out. We had such fun together . . .

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Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Apple Cupcakes . . . The way to a teacher's heart.

You all know the phrase 'The way to a man's heart is through his stomach . . .' ?

That actually applies to all of us doesn't it? I mean, is there anything better than something delicious and homemade, that's been cooked or baked for us by someone else??? I don't think there is. Or at least, very few things are.

Kim and I wanted to do something fun and tasty that kids could bring to school for their teachers or that moms or dads could make for their kids, to brighten up the long school day.

Kim found some cute ideas on Pinterest which we adapted to our liking and made some really fun, yummy cupcakes.

I used the 'Classic White Cake Recipe' from Rosie Dyakin's 'Butter Baked Goods' cookbook as well as her 'Butter's Famous Butter Cream' icing recipe.
Click to go to Butter's website

I hate to say it (because I love Rosie's recipes) but I think I still like Martha Stewart's 'Italian Cream Wedding Cake' recipe better. (But I love Martha too, so it's all good!)
Click to find cookbook
I love my cake to be soft and moist and Martha's has buttermilk in it so the flavour's a little more complex as well. But, that's all about personal taste.

So, without further ado, I give you my 'Apple cupcakes' . . . video tutorial.

Enjoy! And if you make them, I would love it if you would head over to my Facebook page and post a picture or two or your creations!

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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Something's cooking in the kitchen for back to school week!

Going back to school can be pretty crazy and hectic for everyone, parents and kids alike! All the rushing around making sure lunches are made, back-packs are packed, and kids are ready in time to catch the bus can make even the most efficient and organized super-mom feel a little frazzled. And we can't forget the homework, sports practice, and various other extra curricular activities that happen after school! Who really wants to make a super fancy dinner with all that going on? I know I wouldn't! Which is why we've done a little research and found (and tested!) a quick and easy meal idea!

Scrolling through Pinterest counts as research, right!?

Introducing the Chicken Pot Pie Braid!

What really appealed to me about this recipe is that besides being quick it's also a really good grab-and-go dinner, and it doesn't make a ridiculous amount of dishes dirty so its relatively easy on the clean up! Another added bonus is that there are plenty of short cuts you can take to make it even more hassle free. For example, we used a pre-roasted chicken from the grocery store instead of cooking our own, and we used pre-shredded cheese.

I would add some salt and pepper to the filling when I make this recipe again, but I like my food to be thoroughly seasoned, so that's just my preference!

All in all,  I have to say that the simplicity and tastiness make this Pinterest recipe a winner!

Click the find recipe Here

We'd love to hear what you think of this recipe!

© A Life of Whimsey