wandering eye wednesday: week eleven/3

So I’m posting from my phone this week, hope it works out! If you follow my Instagram, you know we went camping over the weekend. It had a very soothing effect – aside from the freezing cold! I snapped a few pictures with my camera, but due to the extreme temps, I used my phone more than anything. This was taken with my iPhone, edited with the magic wand in Snapseed. You know by now how much I love that app ūüôā

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wandering eye wednesday: week thirty/2

Wandering Eye Wednesday paintedposies.com

Oh, Wednesday. ¬†I’m not gonna lie, it’s getting harder and harder to find pictures to share since I’m hibernating until cooler weather hits. ¬†It’s too dang hot to get outside and shoot anything! Plus, I’m grumpy, remember? That sort of stifles the creative juices a bit…

I took this photo with a point and click a couple years ago at a playground. ¬†Yeah, it’s playground equipment for children. ¬†Nothing like a little rust to toughen the kids¬†up, right? ¬†I straightened, cropped, rotated 90 degrees. ¬†I adjusted the exposure in PS Elements, and then added the Orton overlay in PicMonkey at 60%. I like it. ¬†Thoughts?

Here’s the original for reference:

Wandering Eye Wednesday paintedposies.com

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end of summer grumpies

YO. ¬†How YOU doin’? Me? Yea. I’m grumpy. ¬†End-of-summer-in-Phoenix-tired-of-100-plus-degree-heat-and-not-the-dry-kind sort of grumpy. ¬†Over. It. Traffic makes me grumpy. ¬†Seeing trash on the side of the road? Super grumpy. ¬†Social media rants + totally uninformative news broadcasts + political propaganda = lose my mind kind of grumpy right now. Work makes me grumpy. ¬†My 108th phone call of the day? Beyond grumpy. ¬†Having to do chores? g-r-r-r-r-u-m-p-y. Walking the dog and seeing other people not clean up after their pet? Twitch-worthy grumpy. Husband’s TV show is too loud grumpy. ¬†Sweating at 7:30 in the morning grumpy. Being grumpy makes me grumpy. ¬†It’s beyond¬†ridiculous.

Unsplash.com photo

It’s not just me. ¬†I saw a legitimate road-rage incident today on the way home from work. Dude got out of his car, swaggered over¬†to the car behind him, leaned into the driver’s side window and wagged his finger, stomped his foot, said a few choice words, flipped the other driver¬†off and walked away all Billy Bad Ass back to his car. ¬†Yeah, surely¬†that helped matters, right? I can’t blame him. He’s grumpy, too. ¬†(I don’t excuse him, though – cause really, let’s keep the grumpy under control, OK?)


Did you know that higher temperatures directly correspond to inflamed tempers? Don’t believe me? Check it here. It’s true, you guys.

I read an article today about a place in the Middle East that has a high of 130 degrees with 100% humidity. ¬†Are you freaking kidding me?¬†I’d self-destruct in those conditions.

unsplash.com picture

I know I’m blessed. ¬†I’m grateful for all that I have to make my life comfortable (air conditioning, running water, refrigerators, etc). ¬†I get how absurd I must sound to other people around the world. ¬†And knowing I’m absurd makes me grumpy, too.

unsplash.com pictureI hope you’re having a better time than me. ¬†My comfort is knowing that the days of summer are numbered. ¬†I’ll try to contain my grumpy until cooler weather hits. Wish me luck.

<all photos courtesy of Unsplash, which shares totally free high resolution photos with no strings attached. ¬†check them out, it’s pretty fantastic. ¬†they DON’T¬†make me grumpy.>

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-nine/2

Skydive Arizona Eloy paintedposies.com

Hey there! How’s the week treating you? Hope all is well in your world! Life¬†is chugging along great ’round here.

A couple weeks back, our friends from Lake Havasu came down so their daughter could experience her first skydive. ¬†It was sort of a trip to be back at the drop zone, since we hadn’t been in years. ¬†When Joe and I first met, we’d go every weekend so he could jump. ¬†I’d hang out with all the other skydivers waiting to load the next plane, talking about everything and anything, watching the sky, listening for parachutes to deploy, marveling at all of the dots in the sky turning into people¬†who would swoop and land right before my eyes. ¬†It’s really a magical experience, for both the jumper and the spectator. ¬†The energy at a drop zone is like nothing else, and being back for the morning to witness a young girl’s first skydive was something I felt lucky to be a part of.

This photo is of a few skydivers landing, and while it’s not the best skydiving picture in the world, it brings a smile to my face remembering the magic of that day. ¬†I adjusted the exposure to brighten the picture, sharpened it just a tad and cropped it. ¬†If¬†only I’d had a telephoto lens to shoot this! Oh, but soon… We’re hoping to go back to snap some cool pictures for Nationals in October. ¬†Fingers crossed!

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inexpensive, homemade housewarming gifts

Homemade Housewarming Gifts

Happy Monday! Is there such a thing? Bleck.  Freaking hate Mondays.  But you know that by now, right?

So do you remember how crazy busy our May was? I had two housewarming parties, a niece’s birth, birthday parties, chaos and disarray. ¬†And a hellofalota fun. ¬†To add to the madness, I decided the best thing to do was craft homemade housewarming gifts. ¬†Because I’m me. ¬†Hello, welcome to Crazy Town, buckle your belt and enjoy the ride, right?

They turned out great, they were super easy and cheap and the new homeowners loved them! Here is gift #1:

Housewarming Gift Handmade Towels with Food Puns

I Googled “food puns” and got a couple super fun ones (“A Salt With A Deadly Weapon” and a pine tree and apple telling a pineapple “You’re Adopted”). ¬†I printed those out on transfer paper, bought some cheap tea towels and went to town with the iron to create one-of-a-kind gifts for some fun friends. ¬†I gathered those in a bucket with their favorite cheap bottle of booze, threw in a Home Depot gift card for good measure and WA-BAM! They loved it. ¬†You could skip all the hoopla and just do the tea towels and your new homeowners would still think they were pretty fantastic, I promise!

Housewarming Gift 2 May 2-15

For our second party, I got a little more creative and put together a wreath, cause those are my favorite anyway.  SO easy and super inexpensive, I promise! The wreath supplies were less than $15 and the succulents were like, $6? I think.  Probably depends how available those dudes are where you live.

Wreath Housewarming Gift

I wrote “Welcome to our Home” on the terra-cotta pots. ¬†I almost wanted to keep this sucker for myself.

Wreath Housewarming Gift

It’s easy to make something thoughtful and worth keeping when you put a little thought into it! Let me know if you have any questions or need directions!

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jonesin’ for a puppy: one year later

Hi guys! How’s your weekend starting out? We’re taking it nice and easy for once. Just one birthday party planned and then, RELAX! Pretty stoked about it.

Today, we are talking PUPPIES!! A particular puppy named Jones, to be specific.  This guy right here:

Jones Puppy July 2014 Those eyes, though!!! 

Last year around this time, I had effectively begged Joe to the very edge of his patience to get a puppy. ¬†After years – yes, YEARS – he finally caved and muttered something that sounded like “yes.” I mean, if you tilted your head, cupped your hand to your ear and squinted your left eye, it was a very clear “yes.” So there was no denying me in my puppy craving after that. And make no mistake: I was seriously obsessed. Researching breeds, studying animal behavior, memorizing training techniques. ¬†I was more than ready. I had a Pinterest board named “I want a PUPPY” for crying out loud! Once Joe was on board, the search began. And the rest is history. ¬†We met Jones on July 19th of last year and it has been everything I hoped for + so much more than I could have expected.

Puppy Jones Cattle Dog Mix July 2014

Jones Monday Face

Jones Playful Puppy 2014

Jones Tongue

Jones Sleeping

Jones is the first dog I’ve raised. ¬†I’ve never spent a whole lot of time with canines, but I knew what kind of dog I didn’t want. So I was determined that we would train him to be obedient, considerate and sweet. ¬†I’m pretty impressed with this little dude. ¬†He can totally be embarrassingly obnoxious out of the blue, don’t get me wrong. But for the most part, especially considering his age, Jones is on top of his game. He makes me pretty damn proud on a daily basis. It’s something else to see your hard work demonstrated. Like when Jones is in a flurry of excitement but stops in his tracks to follow a command, all the while with his happy doggy smile and hyper tail going 100 miles per hour. We’re still working on a few tricky things, and more so me and Joe are working on agreeing to a routine for certain behaviors, but I have no fear that Jones will continue to impress and amaze.

Jones November 2014

Jones Cattle Dog Pit Bull Mix

Cattle Dog Mix

Cattle Dog Mix

I won’t deny it, I spoil the crap out of this dog. I spoil everyone that I love and Jones is kinda the kid I’ll never have. So this fur-baby of mine gets a stuffed Kong toy every morning to gnaw on while his humans work, he has bones (so many damn bones), inside toys, blankets, beds, collars, leashes, a special brush, a pool, outside toys, treats galore. He eats more nutritiously than most people I know. He gets twice daily walks, off-leash hiking, camping, dog parks and most recently, a beach house right off Dog Beach for vacation. Yeah, yeah, I’m a sucker. And I love my puppy. There are worse things! In return, this little nut loses his mind in excitement when he sees me, makes me laugh daily, keeps me on my toes and loves me unconditionally. Fair deal in my eyes.

Cattle Dog mix, Jones, Sleeping Puppy

Jones Cattle Dog Pit Bull Mix

Jones First Christmas December 2014

Jones Christmas Eve December 2014

I didn’t realize how dynamic having a dog really is. ¬†Like, if you are paying attention, you can see how much dogs are paying attention. I never would have known! And now, loving this little guy like I do, I have a compassion for dogs in a way that I never did before. ¬†I know all dogs are unique, but seeing how much Jones wants to make us happy, silently communicating with him to make sure he goes out to potty or has what he needs, watching him obey when you can tell the very last thing in the world he wants to do in that second is relax and go lay down. ¬†I never knew the dedication, respect and love a dog could have for his humans.

Jones and Joe Thanksgiving Camping 2 November 2014

Jones Hiking August 2014


I consider us blessed to have found such an amazing dog to share our lives with. If Jones could speak English, I hope he’d say the same about his humans. One year in, and he’s got me wrapped around his paw. And I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Cattle dog pit bull mix

Read more about bringing Jones home here. Camping with him here. What toys are good for dogs with a need for chewing here. And for just a little more puppy love, click here and here!

If you’re in the Phoenix area, and want to rescue a pup, we got Jones from Arizona Small Dog Rescue. ¬†I can definitely recommend them!

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-eight/2

Happy Wednesday, yo. ¬†How’s your week going? Anything fun and exciting happening? I’ve been taking an online photography course through Shaw Academy (thanks, Groupon!) and working on my new website a LOT. ¬†I’m hoping to launch that at the beginning of August, but we’ll see how that goes. ¬†I’ve made a lot of progress, though, so there’s promise… Here’s to not changing¬†my mind on everything I’ve created so far!

Wandering Eye Wednesday paintedposies.com Ocean Beach July 2015

I wanted to play with this photo a little bit, so it’s definitely been manipulated. ¬†I cropped, sharpened, exposure adjusted and then applied the black and white color focal overlay in PicMonkey. ¬†Had I more time, I’d have put it through PS and adjusted the background color saturation instead, but this is cool, too. ¬†I sort of needed something quick so I could get back to figuring out the new site. ¬†Hope you don’t mind. ¬†Let me know what you think!

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ocean beach 2015

Happy weekend, people! Hope you have some lovely things happening. ¬†We are busy, busy, busy, as always. ¬†All good things, though, so I’m not about to complain. I’m looking forward to seeing my new chunk of a niece this afternoon, she’s two months old now and I’ve hardly had a moment to get to know her!

So our trip to Ocean Beach did not disappoint this year! We brought Jones for his first beach experience, and boy, was it.  It was good, bad, ugly, and mostly just good.  He really impressed us with his skills under pressure, surprised us with his fears while overstimulated, shocked us with his bravery in the water and definitely got more love and belly rubs that he ever imagined possible.  His first time swimming was incredible, and I had no clue it was possible to drink/vomit so much saltwater in one hour.  So many things learned by all.

When we weren’t working our butts off with the pup, we had a great time under cloudy skies the whole weekend. ¬†It was wonderful to not be frying in Phoenix for the 4th, and we really enjoyed showing off the town we love to newbies. ¬†Our beach house this year was perfect for what we needed. ¬†It was a much needed break, and we were so relieved to get away for a little bit.¬†So, here she is – OCEAN¬†BEACH!!!

Surfboards Ocean Beach 2015

Ocean Beach July 4th 2015

Ocean Beach Sunset Cliffs July 2015

Ocean Beach Keyhole Sunset Cliffs July 2015

Sand Dog Ocean Beach July 2015

Jones Cattle Dog Mix Ocean Beach July 2015

California Poppies Ocean Beach July 2015

Flowered Tree Ocean Beach July 2015

Pineapple Plant Ocean Beach July 2015

Succulents Ocean Beach July 2015

Sea Bird Ocean Beach July 2015

Seagull Ocean Beach July 2015

Glow in the Dark Ocean Beach July 2015

Fireworks Ocean Beach July 2015

Street Art Ocean Beach July 2015

Thank you again, Ocean Beach! Check out our 2014 visit here, here, and here.  And here for 2013.

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-seven/2

Wandering Eye Wednesday

Hello, hello! Isn’t this plant awesome? It’s a bird of paradise, and it totally looks like a bird to me. ¬†Do you see it? I kept seeing them everywhere in California recently. ¬†How cool, right?

I used PS Elements to bring out the color, brightened it, and dulled the saturation of the background a bit.  I then straightened it in PicMonkey and added the watermark.  What do you think?

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summertime grilled stuffed zucchini

Summertime Grilled Stuffed Zucchini paintedposies.com

Oh, hey! So it’s been a while since I’ve shared a yummy veggie recipe with you, and I promised to share the only zucchini recipe Joe has ever liked with you in this post, so here we go. ¬†It was delicious! Joe typically doesn’t like zucchini, but this was gone in a flash. ¬†He even let out a moan while inhaling it, I swear. ¬†And the best thing about this recipe, is it includes protein with the quinoa, so it’s a full meal in itself. ¬†For less than 30 minutes of work. ¬†This is how I roll, people!

Unfortunately, I just sort of¬†put all the ingredients together until the right texture was achieved without measuring anything. ¬†I’m going to attempt to create an actual “recipe” for you here, but just keep in mind, my zucchini was ginormous. ¬†Like, bigger than my forearm big. ¬†Please modify the ingredients to suit the size of your zucchini! ¬†The consistency¬†you’re going for is wet, but not runny, like a chunky pasta sauce of sorts.

what you need:

1 large zucchini

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

3-5 cloves of garlic, minced, to taste

1/2 Cup shredded kale

1/2 Cup shredded cauliflower

1 1/2 Cups shredded mozzarella divided in half

1/2 Cup cornbread crumbs (more or less based on consistency)

1/2 Cup cooked quinoa

1/2 – 1 Cup tomato sauce

handful of fresh basil, chopped

olive oil

salt & pepper

what you’ll do:

Preheat grill to medium-high. ¬†Cut zucchini in half lengthwise, creating two “logs.” ¬†Scrape zucchini to remove the insides, leaving about 1/4 inch of skin. ¬†Place in large bowl and set aside. ¬†Heat a skillet to medium with olive oil coating the bottom. ¬†When hot, put zucchini meat, onion, garlic, kale and cauliflower in pan, salt to taste. ¬†Saute until onion becomes translucent. ¬†Remove from heat. ¬†Add quinoa, 1 Cup of mozzarella, tomato sauce and basil. Combine with¬†cornbread crumbs until the desired consistency is achieved: not too dry, not too wet – more like a damp sponge (appetizing, right?). ¬†Stir to combine.

Stuff the zucchini with filling, and sprinkle with salt and pepper and the remainder of mozzarella. Grill for 7-9 minutes, until the cheese browns and bubbles.

I hope you enjoy ūüôā

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-six/2

Happy Day to you! How was your weekend? We went to Ocean Beach for the 4th of July, and had an AMAZING time – I can’t wait to share the pictures and stories with you! In the meantime, it’s back to the routine around here, and it’s hotter than a motha’. ¬†So gross. ¬†You can’t even imagine, unless you know what it’s like. But I’ll save the¬†whiney baby session for another day. ¬†Today, it’s a picture from our trip:

Wandering Eye Wednesday Bar July 2015

I snapped this shot while enjoying a shot, haha! I messed with the exposure, making it lighter, darker, converting it back to the original. ¬†I kept going back to the beginning, preferring the moodiness. ¬†I like all the greens, the label colors, and the reflections, too. ¬†I sharpened it a bit (it’s an iPhone pic, and was a little dark for details). ¬†Otherwise, it’s pretty much what was snapped at the time. Whaddaya think?

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-five/2

Yeesh. ¬†Already almost halfway through the year. ¬†Kinda crazy, huh? I took this photo on Father’s Day at Joe’s mom and step-dad’s place. ¬†His mom has a wicked green thumb, and her yard has always impressed and awed me. ¬†It’s always changing and through the years, I’ve seen many renditions. ¬†It’s always beautiful.

Wandering Eye Wednesday Pottery

These cute little pots were resting, probably drying out, along the house while we were there. ¬†Their color caught my eye. ¬†So pretty, right? I adjusted the exposure and straightened the picture in PicMonkey. ¬†Not much else to fix. ¬†Sometimes, the small things that catch your eye, those things that maybe someone else wouldn’t capture, are the best moments. Don’t you think?

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let’s play catch up

Hey hey! How’s everything? Sunday night, weekend winding down, maybe work tomorrow morning? Guh. ¬†Just going to pretend it’s the weekend for a little while longer, OK?

So I know I’ve been away a lot more lately, and it’s probably no surprise that 2015 is kicking my ass. ¬†In so many good ways, and recently, not good ones. ¬†But I know how lucky I am and there’s not a moment when I’m ungrateful for it. ¬†Every morning, I do child’s pose before getting out of bed, and whisper to myself, “I’m so grateful for this life.” No lie. ¬†Because good or bad, I have this time to live. ¬†And I will¬†breath every moment of it in, enjoy the sun on my face, the comfort of my bed, the embrace of someone I love. ¬†My heart is full right now.

I thought I should catch you up on all that’s been happening, since I’ll be able to *hopefully* blog more now with less going on. ¬†This is a long post, be prepared! Here’s the rundown of our Spring:

The Garden

Cinder Block Garden Seedlings Desert Garden

Lavender Spring 2015

Carrot Garden Spring 2015

Lily Phoenix Spring 2015

Zucchini Spring 2015

Bell Pepper Spring 2015 Don Juan Roses Spring 2015

Garden Harvest Spring 2015

Tomatoes Spring 2015

Tomato Harvest Spring 2015

First of all: SO.MANY.TOMATOES. ¬†Holy tomato. ¬†I made 3 gallons of pasta sauce, 2 gallons of salsa, gave away countless bags and still have 2 bowls sitting on our counter. ¬†I was hit with the lucky stick for tomatoes this year. ¬†Zucchini had a great turnout, too. ¬†I gave away a few, made stuffed zucchini, grilled a bunch, and currently have a zuke sitting in the fridge that is bigger than my forearm. ¬†Zucchini bread, maybe? Ugh, it’s too hot to bake!

Stuffed Zucchini Spring 2015

I intend to share the stuffed zucchini recipe I came up with, since Joe devoured it and doesn’t even like zucchini. ¬†Add that to the list of blog posts I have backed up, OK?

Carrots came out decent this year, although, Jones ate most of them. ¬†That dog loves him some carrots. ¬†He would steal from my harvest pile as I was digging for more. ¬†And I couldn’t even be mad, because, come on now. ¬†How cute is that?!? I planted in the cells of our cinder block garden while it was still cool, and the growth is slow and sad. ¬†They’re still going so I’ll see how long I can torture those poor seedlings before I let them go. ¬†Lavender bloomed for the first time ever, even though Joe begs to differ. ¬†And the roses loved how I pruned/trained them horizontally along their new trellis system. ¬†They put on a good show until the heat set in. ¬†I’ve stopped fertilizing since it’s over 110 degrees most days now. Overall, a great garden this year!

Our Life

May and June are CRAZY. ¬†Birthdays, graduations. ¬†This year it was housewarmings, too. ¬†A few people in our family bought houses all at the same time, and I’m excited to share the homemade gifts I came up with!

Graduation May 2015

Painting Pottery May 2015

C Baby Toes

Graduation 2

Seriously, Joe’s beard is like my favorite thing ever. ¬†One niece graduated from high school in May, another was born, and yet another celebrated her 4th birthday. ¬†So happy for our family right now!


This little rat will be celebrating his first year with us come the end of the month. He has been such a good addition to our family, and loves his human cousins like crazy!


Jones Pool June 2015

We are looking forward to bringing Jones¬†to Ocean Beach this year for the 4th of July. ¬†(our annual trips are here,¬†here¬†and here) I’m curious about how he’ll react to the sand, the ocean, and all the other dogs in such a fur-friendly place. ¬†One of his favorite cousins is coming with, so he’s in for a treat!

The Blog

You may have noticed a slower picture load time, although I’m not sure you would. ¬†I’ve been busy building my new site this weekend after letting it slide the last few months. ¬†The new site can handle larger picture files, and so from here on out, that’s what I’ll be uploading in an effort to streamline. ¬†You might have also noticed that I ditched the watermark on all these pictures: I won’t be watermarking anything¬†but portfolio shots anymore. ¬†Speaking of portfolio, I’ve been working really hard to get mine together with lots of photo shoots recently:

Country Girl Tutus Family Photography

Notice the new watermark? I really struggled¬†with this. ¬†I was definitely overthinking it, getting overwhelmed with the possibilities and what felt like the finality of it. ¬†I eventually¬†realized that choosing my logo doesn’t have to be permanent, and that shook me out of my paralysis.

Here is an example, with the final decision imprinted.  Changed quite a bit over time, eh?

Logo Decision 2015

Obviously, I was going for something hand-drawn.  That was the only thing I could decide on for sure.  I drew a LOT of logos.  I took many, many votes.  I hope my final decision works out!

There you go, that’s the very, very, very streamlined wrap-up. ¬†Every day of May had something on the calendar, with the exception of two days. 2! It’s been busy, chaotic, lovely, lively, fun, frustrating. ¬†I wouldn’t trade it for anything. ¬†I am so grateful for this life, you guys. ¬†I hope you find reasons to be grateful, too.

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-four/2

Wandering Eye Wednesday Horse at Pasture June 2015

Aaaaand… another Wednesday. ¬†Weeks are flying by, but at this point, with the¬†heat, it’s better that way. ¬†We are getting ready for our annual Ocean Beach trip, with Jones in tow to make his maiden voyage to the shore. And salt water. ¬†And sand fleas. Yay!¬†Pretty stoked. ūüėõ

I took this photo on Father’s Day Sunday, and edited it in¬†PicMonkey with the filter I like. ¬†It’s alright. ¬†I don’t¬†love it. ¬†So I took it over to PS Elements to see what I could do real quick.

Wandering Eye Wednesday Horse at Pasture June 2015

I selected the background and applied a Gaussian¬†blur at a low percentage and adjusted the exposure in the foreground to make the flowers more defined. ¬†I don’t like editing my pictures to look totally different – I like them to be realistic and true to life and true to my talent level. ¬†If I take a crappy picture, well. ¬†Then, it’s just crappy and so be it. ¬†But I think this one is decent-ish, no?¬† I’m dying for better gear! In the meantime, I’m trying to master what I have and I’m slooooowly getting there. Let me know what you think!

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spring break in LA – 2015 style 4.0

shitzu mix

Happy weekend, people! So this is cliche, but where has all the time gone? We’ve been crazy busy and I’ll update you soon on what’s been going on, but in the meantime, it’s the final¬†day of spring and I wanted to share these last spring break photos with you. ¬†There are only a handful, but they’re a great reminder of the lovely time we had in LA and Catalina Island this year. ¬†It’s especially nice to reminisce on the beautiful weather we enjoyed then, now that Phoenix has warmed up to the temperature of char broil. ¬†This is Miss Daphne, my favorite little doggie. ¬†She really lives it up when I come to visit, and I miss her sweet puppy snuggles!

Cafe Gratitude Green Tea and Shot

There are so many things I look forward to when I visit LA, and food is at the top of the list. ¬†We’ve eaten at Cafe Gratitude a couple times now, and it’s probably my favorite. ¬†Their menu is expansive, they have AMAZING vegan food, they present everything so beautifully, the atmosphere is like a meditation and it’s just everything wonderful about food that Phoenix hasn’t caught on to yet. ¬†It’s tough finding vegan food here, but in California, they’ve perfected it. ¬†This was part of a super relaxing breakfast one morning. ¬†If I remember correctly, it’s a green tea latte and a detox shot (which both have really fantastic names on the menu that escape me right now!)

The Morrison LA California

Speaking of food, this really bad picture was taken at The Morrison in LA.  We spent a great night here, sipping drinks and munching on appetizers while Daphne enjoyed a selection off their doggy menu:

The Morrison Doggy Menu LA

Another not great picture! I love that LA is so dog friendly. ¬†And due to that, Daphne has an amazing set of dog manners in restaurants. ¬†She can go almost everywhere with us, and I’m jealous for Jones, who doesn’t get to enjoy belly rubs from as many strangers as he’d like living in Phoenix!

With that, I have shared all the highlights (finally!) from spring break in LA this year. ¬†Cue the celebratory music, right? Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to avoid the 111 degree heat¬†that is currently our temperature here. ¬†Wish me luck!

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PS. These¬†are the other posts from this year’s spring break (here, here, here), last year’s ¬†visit (here) and the year before (here)!

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-three/2

Wandering Eye Wednesday Bunny in Scottsdale

Hey there again! ¬†Here’s the original:

Bunny in Scottsdale

I used PicMonkey. ¬†Cropped, vignette, sharpened, and then¬†the focus feature. ¬†I liked the yellow color/light halo around the bunny when I caught the image, and knew it could be a decent picture with some editing. ¬†I’m still using the stock lens with my camera and I’m working on getting a telephoto. ¬†Here’s what I’m capturing¬†in the meantime… not half bad, eh?

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-two/2

So, the sun sets later now. ¬†It’s full-on heat wave here. ¬†And I’ve missed you… Did you¬†notice my absence last week? I dunno. ¬†But I know I missed YOU.¬†I felt guilty all week, knowing that last week I completely let Wednesday get away from me. I am going to make it up to you by posting twice today. ¬†Bom Bom Bom. You excited yet?

Hiking with Jones

This little turd is a phenomenal hiker. ¬†And I can say that now, since we’ve officially hiked with other people who think he’s also a great hiker. ¬†We do need to work on his come-back: after he’s run ahead he returns to check on his humans, and it’s sometimes a trip-up. ¬†But aside from that, he stops for other people¬†on the trail, stays close and keeps an eye on his group. ¬†(*side note: got his first pool today, and it was seriously cute)

I’ll be honest, I edited this photo last week for you, and now I’ve forgotten all I did and what I did it with. ¬†I do know I used Photoshop and also¬†the lasso to¬†select Jones to adjust the lighting on him, since he was in shadow in the original. ¬†I vaguely remember trying to get some color back in the sky without success. ¬†It’s kind of¬†lacking color, but I’m a proud fur-mama and I just can’t help but share.

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Wandering eye wednesday: week twenty-one/2

Man. So I was able to just barely upload this picture to my computer before it died on me. Aaaaand of course. I forgot the laptop charger somewhere that isn’t home. Because…. right? It’s the way things are rolling these days. But it worked out, and I’m blessed with a huge family & love-filled life so I’ll get on with it and here! 


BABY TOES!!! I did our newest niece’s first photo shoot today, and these little piggies just totally get me. I cropped, color adjusted and fell in love.  This photo is only hours old, and since the dog is currently attacking my little piggies, I need to go. I hope you guys are having a great week! Until next time…

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wandering eye wednesday: week twenty/2

Hello, hello! Another Wednesday is upon us, and of course you know the routine by now: been really busy, yada yada, here’s a picture! 


Taken with my iPhone, edited with Snapseed. Do you use Snapseed? It’s my absolute favorite editing app on the phone! With quick little swipes, you can totally transform your pictures and make them pretty incredible. I use it for all my phone picture editing. 

I used the brightening, ambiance, transform and vignette features for this photo of Jones beggingn for a little belly rub love the other night.  I know it’s not going to win any contests, but I love this little punk’s face and I almost ran off to bed without today’s post so… Yea. May. It’s almost over guys! Thanks for your patience with my absence around here. I’m working on it! 

Hope everyone is having a great week and a fantastic month. Back atcha soon!

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wandering eye wednesday: week nineteen/2

Wandering Eye Wednesday Peacock Glendale AZ May 2015

You guys! Another Wednesday already? How’s your May going? Are you on summer break yet? Is the weather turning warmer? I hope you are enjoying your days in May – I know I am!

I snapped this shot whilst simultaneously trying to not be attacked during a family photo shoot at Sahuaro Ranch Park recently. ¬†This place is really fantastic, with free-range peacocks, chickens and cats. ¬†They seem to get along easily enough, and the vibe is totally chill. ¬†There’s also a rose garden, a bunch of old farm buildings and equipment, a separate kid play area and a pretty amazing ramada with BBQ grills and tables. ¬†It’s a place we considered for our wedding, in fact! But it turns out, I didn’t really want random chickens in our wedding photos or roosters crowing during our vows. ¬†How finicky of me, right?

I only cropped this photo and brightened it slightly.  And you know, it only took a dozen blurry ones to get this pretty guy!

So be prepared, regularly scheduled blog posts will resume in the next couple of weeks, and then you’ll get tired of hearing from me! HA!

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