Category Archives: inspiration

Recent Events…

HOLY COW… another month GONE! 

Facebook has definitely taken my attention away from my blogging.  I don’t even know where to begin to catch up. I still have so many pix from my trip home to NY this summer that I want to share, but haven’t managed to make time for it.

The past month in a nutshell…

Being photographed by Hanson Fong was a lot of fun. I haven’t received portraits from him yet, but then again, I haven’t asked him for them either! I keep “meaning to.”  I wrote to him on Facebook right after the convention, but then never followed up.  For those of you who aren’t on Facebook, here’s a couple pix…

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Here’s one of my favorite images that I shot of Ryley while everything was going on during Hanson’s workshop…I just couldn’t stand watching everyone else photograph her and not get to myself! SOOOO glad I did, because this image inspired me to update my look… this is something I’ve been playing around with.         Whatcha think?   I’ll use these for my children’s portraiture business card. This is the front and back of the card, plus a new logo I’m considering. Feel free to give feedback

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Ryley turned THREE on August 25th, the day after Hanson photographed us. What a blessing to have Hanson Fong create her 3 year portraits!  The image I saw on the back of his camera was phenominal…competition quality.  He’s such a great person & teacher.   Jerry said, “Now I know why you like to attend these photography classes so much!”

The school year has gotten off to a GREAT start. I’m busier than ever… working solely with 4th grade this year. I thought I’d be less busy, but it hasn’t quite worked out that way. It takes A LOT of planning time and extra hours outside the school day to make our inclusion program work successfully. On a lighter note, Jerry & I are now both official business partners for my school John N.C. Stockton Elementary. We’ve been helping out through our businesses by volunteering our talents over the past 2 years, so this year we made it an official commitment.

Finally, this past weekend, I walked in the Inaugural Stop Child Trafficking Now Walk. I never knew that Human Trafficking is the SECOND largest criminal industry in the world, second only to drugs! The number of children trapped in sexual slavery is staggering. Florida is the 3rd ranked state in the nation for it’s number of child sexual slavery cases.  To learn more go to http://www.SCTNow.org .   Also, check out my pix from the event on FACEBOOK!

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I’ve never done any kind of fundraising before that I can remember…and I signed up only 5 days before the event. So I set my goal at $100. I met my goal and have continued to receive contributions this week! I’ve almost doubled my goal!!!  That’s pretty exciting.  I believe in this cause because when I was young, my mom taught me about ‘bad people’ who do this sort of thing to children. It’s stuck with me my whole life…every single day children are sold and forced into prostitution and VERY YOUNG CHILDREN are raped to create pornography.  This organization is the first of its kind, because its focus is AWARENESS of the problem and CONVICTION OF CRIMINALS through Special Operative Teams. Other organizations focus on rescuing children only, which does nothing to DETER and PREVENT this from continuing.  “The efforts of a single operative team will do more to save children than millions of dollars put toward rescuing victims!” 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6uMbE5bvV2c Link to a good, short video explaining exactly what the Special Operative Teams do & how:

http://www.sctnow.org/contentpages.aspx?parentnavigationid=5813&viewcontentpageguid=503caffe-d8d0-498b-996a-9a01134b898c

In the picture I have a SCTNow.org sticker on my shirt, because they only printed 400 registration signs for participants to wear.  There were a BUNCH of people wearing a sticker instead, so that shows how good the turnout was for this inaugural walk! Next year, I imagine it’ll be at least twice as big. Go to this link to view my donor page &/or make a donation

Please help me in praying that this organization will continue to grow and succeed!

Love & blessings, my-signature-75dpiweb

PS…I have lots more photos from the walk in my  Facebook photo album 🙂

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The Motions

Hey Everyone,

It’s been a reeeeeeeally long time since I’ve written on this blog. We’re already over halfway through April… life just whizzes by in one big blur sometimes. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I’m just going through the motions… just trying to get through another day.  

At the end of each day, I usually feel a defeated emptiness, because yet another day went by that I didn’t sit down with the Lord. Just me & Him. Not even a measly 5 minutes.  I give my time to everyone and everything else. Even though I want to, I never MAKE time to spend that 1:1 time with Jesus. He’s in my heart, but I constantly fall short of spending time in His word.  I’m really good at beating myself up over it too, huh?

Then a couple days ago I heard a song on the radio that was exactly how I was feeling! I love it when that happens 🙂  I’m hoping this song will help me break out of that rut…

Check out the video!  Here’s the link: The Motions by Matthew West

 

Feel free to ask my how I’m doing on that … it’s always good to have an accountability partner!

Love & Blessings, 

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Happy Birthday Dad & Blessings to Meg

Hey Everyone and Happy Birthday Dad!

My Dad, Fred Preisch:

 

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This is my friend Meg Young. She left yesterday for a missions trip to Africa! Her mom hired me to create a family portrait just before Christmas, so she could have it done before Meg left. After the family went inside, Meg and I created a bunch of portraits of her to surprise her Mom & Dad.  This is one of their favorites. She won’t be back until December of this year, so the portraits were a very nice surprise.

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Inspired by the Lord, Meg has recently created a new non-profit ministry for abandoned babies & children in Africa. Check out Meg’s blog for They Are Not Forgotten Ministries, Inc. !  You’ll love her banner at the top of her blog. Since it’s brand new, it’ll be fun to read all her posts of her experiences in Africa and watch her ministry grow. Please keep her  and this awesome new ministry in your prayers. Add one in for her family too please. I know they’ll miss her tremendously.

You can subscribe to her blog while you’re there, or just click on the link to it on the right side of my blog.

Love & Blessings,my-signature-75dpiweb

 

CERTIFIED!

Our annual Professional Photographers Society of North Florida Christmas Party was the other night … a night full of surprises.  First, I was given this beautiful basket full of home-made chocolate goodies made by several of the women from our guild.  Deeeeeee licious ! ! !

 

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Next, I was awarded the Jim and Adrienne Abrisch Scholarship, which is a paid Florida School tuition for May 31st-June 4, 2009 at Daytona Beach Community College. Since only new members are eligible to apply, it was a one time opportunity for me.  Applicants had to submit a written application answering multiple questions, such as what photography means to you. I couldn’t believe my ears when part of MY essay  was read by our president just before announcing the winner of the scholarship! The scholarship program was begun in honor of Professional Photographers Society of North Florida members Jim and Adrienne Abrisch after they were killed in a plane crash on December 12, 2001.  They were dear people who were greatly loved and respected.

Chris from Desktop Darkroom was on hand to photograph us again this year and did a fabulous job.  He took this photo of me and Mike Permenter.  Mike had a large influence in my next surprise.

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When I got home and opened my mail, I found out that I passed the image submission phase of my certification process! In August I passed the written exam. Then I had to submit 20 images to a panel of Certified Professional Photographer judges.  Thanks to Mike, I passed BOTH the exam and the image submission on my first try. Mike is not only an awesome photographer, he is also our local PhotoShop guru. He helped me study for the exam, critiques my work, and gives me advice whenever I need it.   I have to thank Rick Ferro also, who gave me some valuable constructive criticism on several portraits I was considering to submit.

 

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Thanks for reading and sharing my excitement!  I probably wouldn’t have been able to attend Florida School if I hadn’t won the scholarship. You have no idea how grateful I am to have won. I thank  God for these blessings!

Don’t forget…. JESUS is the reason for this season!!!  Let Him shine through you during this crazy, busy holiday season.  Much easier said than done, I know, but really…. we’re too blessed to be stressed, right!? 😉  

 

Lots of Love & Blessings,

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Marriage, and the Slow Fade

Sunday was our 6 year anniversary…

We started the day by going to church where Ryley learned that Jesus lives in her heart. Since we conceived Ryley on our 3rd anniversary, we decided to celebrate her this year and took her to Chuck E Cheeses for the first time. We had a ton of fun….

 

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 the Thinker…

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 Haven’t you always wanted to do that?

 

 

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Ryley talked about Chuck E “Cheeses” all the way home. When we were getting her ready for bed and talking about her day, I asked her to tell her daddy who lives in her heart. She said “Chuck E CHEESES!!!”… turns out ‘Cheeses’ sounds an awful lot like ‘Jesus’ when coming out of the mouth of a toddler. Isn’t that a good one!?

Being a parent is an amazing experience!

Since I’m on the topic of anniversaries/marriage, I want to encourage everyone to see the movie FIREPROOF. It’s an awesome movie about love & marriage, and how easily we fall into the destructive cycles that all too often lead to divorce. Please take a few minutes to watch this short video about the inspiration behind the song Slow Fade from Fireproof. You will be glad you did! Then watch and listen to the music video SLOW FADE by Casting Crowns (click on the underlined words above to their links).

Jerry and I are about half way through a marriage class at our church with several other couples using the video series Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs and his wife Sarah.  It is by far the BEST information available on marriage and the needs of men & women. He explains in a humorous way how God designed us to be DIFFERENT. It is absolutely amazing and eye opening.  It’s SO GOOD that I want to stand on a mountain top and tell the world about it. When you hear it, it makes SO MUCH SENSE. AND it’s the way God made us to be, so you don’t feel like such a lousy person/spouse after you realize why the differences lead to conflict.

The divorce rate is so high because it’s so easy for husbands and wives to get trapped in the “Crazy Cycle” of miscommunication, misunderstanding, hurt, anger, and bitterness. This is information that our sons and daughters, nieces, nephews, grandchildren, friends, etc. etc. need to know so they don’t go through all the pain and heartache that we’ve experienced in our own relationships.  You can see all kinds of stuff for FREE just by going to the website (www.loveandrespect.com)… like this little snippet on the “Crazy Cycle” or check out these FREE video segments… like the one called “Pink & Blue”

You can get the entire Love and Respsect video series through download for only $40, and I promise, it’s worth it!!! Click here. OR you can purchase each segment separately for $10. So if you’re skeptical, you can just watch the 1st segment to see if you like it. 

God’s timing is perfect. I am a child of a bitter divorce and years of resentment between my parents. I know the scars this can leave in people. We need to help others not put our children and ourselves through that!

It’s no accident that I saw the movie Fireproof, found the video & inspiration for Slow Fade, AND am in this awesome marriage class all in the same time frame. PLEASE take some time and check out the links above!

I love you all,

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an awesome article about angie…

I forgot to include this article in The St. Augustine Record (or click here) that Angie had hanging on the wall in her exhibit (see previous blog entry).

The trip to Niagara Falls she refers to was with me. When Ryley was only 4 weeks old, Angie went with me to help me on the plane trip so my family could meet Ryley for the first time. She was a huge blessing, because I had no idea what I was doing!  I remember her taking that photograph while we were there! I thought that was pretty neat. Also, the little angel she refers to was my niece Makaila who is also the image on my blog banner & business card that you all are so familiar with. It’s fun when you get to see how your life can have an impact on someone else!! God is good 🙂 

Love & blessings,

Angie Bechanan-My “Featured Artist” Friend…

Finally!  A chance to write an October post.  Time sure flies.

Last month I blogged about Angie’s upcoming exhibit at the Energy Lab Art Gallery in St. Augustine.  It was awesome! She had a great turn out and people raved about her work. She also sold several of her pieces. Congratulations Angie!  You deserve it 😉

We managed to get her alone for a few minutes and captured some images for her ….

Here are a couple of them…

 

 Isn’t Angie gorgeous!?  Her beauty is form the inside out.  You can see some of her awesome artwork in the background.  Most of them are from her missions trips.

Ryley’s thinking, how can I get loose so I can run around this place!?

Love & blessings,