Saturday, June 30, 2012

Relay for Life: 3

I stopped and interrupted these two women as they walked quietly and chatted.  They were here for Ira.

Meet Holly:

Meet Deb:

They are both school employees and Ira was their school social worker.   While he lost his battle with cancer, they were amazed at how he taught faculty and students about grace, laughter, and kindness through his illness.

The support teams were wonderful, cheering on their teammates. 

And, each luminary told a story.  Too many stories.

Thanks Holly and Deb!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Relay for Life: 2

With such an important event going on as raising funds to help fight cancer, it is no surprise that Super Hero's turn out.

Meet Batman and .....well....Batman!  (Actually, they did reveal their secret identities to me: meet Emily and Jackie).

And, meet the representative of Jacob with Butterfly Kisses.  This team had 20 people.   They obviously needed a shy, quiet type of guy to lead them.   I tried to get some additional information about this team, but they were on a mission to walk. 

As the evening went on, I realized that there are way too many bags here.

My sincere thanks to all the Super Hero's!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Relay for Life: 1

Throughout the US, people rally to support worthwhile causes...causes that have often impacted and affected them in their own lives.

About a week ago, I visited the local Relay for Life.  This event is put on by the American Cancer Society.  This entails individuals or teams of people who walk from 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM in a fund raising event.  The walking path is lined with luminaries...paper bags with a candle and sand to hold them down.  The various teams decorate the bags in support of, or in memory of, a person near to them.

This does NOT get done without tremendous volunteer efforts. 

Meet Mike!  He is from the local Jaycee's.  He had worked from about mid afternoon getting the chips, soda's, water, and hot dogs ready to go. This photo was taken about 11:30 PM.  If he looks tired, he has a reason to look that way!

It was also nice to see families supporting the walkers and ensuring everyone had enough water and food.  

Meet mom Jenny and baby Aubrey!  They were here with co-workers walking to remember Margit. 

Thanks Mike and Jenny (and Aubrey!)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Summer Food

Len and Jan are wonderful hosts.   They always take good care of my tummy!

I always eat SO healthy.

OK...I didn't include photos of the chips and salsa!

We even lit a few backyard torches

The only disappointment of the evening was that they have a doe and two fawns that come out and play at dusk in the back yard.  I was prepared with the longer lens.  But, no luck this time.

Thanks again, Len and Jan!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Adopting and Loving

This little lady was kept in a puppy mill for the first 4-5 years of her life.  There is some speculation that she was never out of her cage over those years.  Fortunately, she was rescued, given food, and care.  But, she needed love and a home.

Meet Lilly

And, meet Lenny and Jan. 

They had to say goodbye to a beloved pet recently. And, they were lucky enough to run into Lilly as they were going through the healing process.   It seems like a perfect match.  They have a large home and yard.  Len and Jan are kind, gentle, caring and loving people. Heck, they even occasionally feed me, so they must be!

Lilly is doing OK. While her physical wounds have long ago healed, she still needs time to get over some of the psychological/behavioral damage.  She cowers and jumps at any sudden movements or sounds. While I was visiting, she layed quietly in Len's arms while he petted her.   But, she wouldn't let me near her.  And, I hardly have a mean bone in my body!   Really!

Maybe Lilly is like all of us.  It takes a while to recover from some things.  Hopefully, we emerge stronger on the other side.

Good luck, Lilly. 

Thanks Len and Jan!

Monday, June 25, 2012

End of the School Year

As with any point in life, the end of the school year can bring changes.  Some are happy (witness the previous post with Jen).  Some, are sad.

Meet Laura.

I really like this pic.  She is smiling.  She is happy.  She is celebrating.  But, she is also saying goodbye to some friends.  The tears and the laughter were a wonderful mix.

Thanks Laura!  I think you look awesome.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

End of the School Year

The end of the school year certainly brings relief, not only for students, but for teachers.  

Meet Jen.   You can sense the relaxation and unmitigated JOY~ This photo was taken BEFORE any beverages were consumed.

Jen's mother also works for the school district and her team happened to be meeting at the same location to celebrate the end of the year.  So, I got the chance to meet them both!

Meet Jen again, and her mom!

Thanks Jen...and Mom!

Finally, stuck sitting next to me was Sarah.  She was having a wonderful time listening to the others at the table and showing me photos of her new baby!  She was enjoying the night out!

Thanks Sarah!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

End of the School Year

I was asked to join a number of teacher friends to celebrate the end of the school year.  My job:  get there early, get seating arranged for about 12 with the flexibility to add more, and order a few appetizers in preparation for the onslaught.

This young lady was a wonderful.  When I arrived, the bar was almost empty.  She was very helpful in setting up the tables and chairs and taking the preliminary orders.  I even managed some office work on the local wireless connection as she prepared things.

Meet Heather!

Heather was just getting started with her shift but was a bit of a camera enthusiast.  So, she was more than willing to let me take her portrait before it got too busy.

Heather continued to worked hard once the bar filled up.  The 12 people around my table kept her running.  By the time I left, the bar was packed and she was quite busy!

Well done, Heather.  And, thank you for letting me take your photograph!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Work Conferences can be Fun: 4

I first met Martha at a conference in Washington state.  In fact, it was the same conference where I met Dave!  We ended up at a bar with a lot of other people eating bar food and getting acquainted.

A few years ago, I needed a volunteer who would be willing to listen to the first draft of a presentation I was going to make.  I asked Martha to meet me for a lunch and I went through it.  She loved it.  Well, she SAID she loved it!  I got enough positive feedback to move forward with the idea.

She was also kind enough to give me a few pointers and suggestions.

Meet Martha!

I haven't had the chance to cross paths with Martha for a couple of years.  Meeting her again at the conference was great fun! 

Thanks Martha!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Work Conferences can be Fun: 3

Conferences don't just happen.  They take a lot of planning, coordinating, and communicating.  The point person for this years conference was Mitch.

Meet Mitch!

He traveled to tropical Minnesota with a small team to ensure the conference went smoothly.  It did.  It is, in fact, one of the best conferences I attend. 

The only problem is Mitch stuck me with a bar bill. 
I distinctly recall asking, "Mitch, are you buying?" 
Mitch, "ah...hahahahahaha.". 
Me, "Good!  See you there."

I will be tracking him down next year!

Thanks Mitch!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Work Conferences can be Fun: 2

I first met Dave five or six years ago at a conference in Washington state.  We connected a few times over the years. But, with busy schedules, we never really chatted much beyond the occasional conference.

About a year ago, we had the chance to just sit and chat about life issues that go beyond our vocations.  I was delighted to find out we shared many of the same interests and some similar history!

Meet Dave!

I sincerely wished he didn't live so far from me.  I could thoroughly enjoy crossing paths with him on a regular basis. 

Thanks Dave!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Work Conferences can be Fun: 1

Now and then, I get to attend a conference as part of my work.  One of the best parts of these conferences is the comraderie with those in the same field.  I get to meet old friends and new friends!

Meet Jim!

I had spoken at this particular conference a few years ago and Jim remembered me.  Clearly his memory is better than mine.  I was very glad he introduced himself to me and we managed to share a glass of wine after the days activities.  The pic above is in the vendor display area.  We were still officially "on duty".  Note to self, remember to use fill flash.  The ceiling lighting throws shadows that a fill flash would reduce!

The pic above is in the hotel bar and Jim is having a GREAT time with some very nice, intelligent, and fun people.  Not me, of course.  Other people!

Thanks Jim!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Out for the Day with the Kids

On one of my Saturday excursions, I crossed paths with Kelly and her children.  I had been looking for fun and interesting people to photograph.  But, the people I passed were busy, chatting with others, intense with other things.  I could just tell the chemistry wasn't right to intrude. 

I turned to head back to the car and wanted to take a shot of something.  Kelly and the kids walked into the frame.   She was so apologetic and kind!   I had found my portrait!

I explained the blog, gave her a card and she let me take her photograph.  I am sure the kids thought I was nuts.  But, she was most gracious.

Meet Kelly!

I really liked the sun glasses that matched her shirt.  And, the very light hair color was pretty cool!  She was out with her kids giving them a science lesson.  She is, after all, a science teacher!

Thanks Kelly!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Wall: Part 2

There is nothing to say.  It was silent.  It was, at least as long as the Wall was here, Holy Ground.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Wall: Part 1

A replica of the Wall was near me recently.  I almost always ask people whether I can take their photos.  But, I didn't disturb these folks.  They needed the time to themselves. 

This was my era.  I know it well.

Friday, June 15, 2012

More Fans of the Band

This couple walked in and sat down next to me as I was about to leave.  I had the nicest chat with them. 

Meet Ron!

He was trying to figure out how I make money taking photos for the blog.  Once he got the idea that I do it for fun, he was quite willing to let me take his photo.  He stated he never looks good in a photo.  But, I beg to disagree!  I really like this image. 

Meet Peggy!

She was a little hesitant.  But, she was encouraging Ron to have his photo taken.  Ron, in turn, encouraged her.  I think it's a great image!

Finally, I think Judy and Peggy are friends.  Judy came over and chatted a bit.  And, Peggy and Ron gently encouraged her to let me take one shot.  I think this is a great image!

My sincere thanks to Ron and Peggy, and to Judy.  You all look fantastic!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Fans of the Band

Then and Now has been together for a long time.  You can tell by the blend in their voices and how well they get along.  The sets are comfortable, relaxed, and together.

It helps that they see regular friends at the gigs!

The two women below were sitting across from me at the bar.  I finally approached them asked whether I could take their photos.  They were most gracious!

Meet Rebecca!

Meet Jean!

My thanks to you both!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Then and Now: Redux, Redux

Time to focus on the guitar!

Scott was in his element.  He is REALLY good.   I taught him all I know.

Chuck handles percussion, guitar, and a few other things.

If you get the chance, check out their schedule!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Then and Now: Redux

My guitar teacher called and let me know the band Then and Now would be playing at their regular spot a while back.  They were kind enough to let me do a few photos the last time I saw them; so I decided to see if I could do a few more!

I am actually very concerned about being too much of a distraction for them.  They are, after all, busy doing their job and don't need someone getting to close and interrupting them. 

Meet Then and Now...again! 

I have a few photos for tomorrow's post, as well!

Thanks Then and Now!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Heck's Angels: 2

If I remember correctly, this was Shannon's first ride.  Her friend, and neighbor, enticed her!

Meet Shannon and Richard!

And, the eye candy!

Thanks Shannon and Richard!