Here are the photos i was gonna put in the last post

Thursday, December 28, 2006

{southerland's roaring fire and picture-perfect stockings... mmmm!}
{this makes me laugh and laugh.... we are GROWN-UPS, and we still like the Christmas eve sleepover thing. Look at them! Snug as bugs in rugs, they are.}
Funky Lady:
{the hat, earrings, and necklace are from Mary. The authentic Korean robe is from Mom and Dad Southerland, and the German pancakes are compliments of Joe, who is carrying on his mom's Christmas morning tradition for her while she is overseas with Dad.}

{yeah, my family wears him out. hee-hee...Besides, who DOESN'T love a Christmas midmorning nap??}

Family Photos

{I kinda feel like I'm being unfaithful to Joe with him not in it. Weird. He was stuck in St. Louis working this morning, however... and this was the day I was leaving to go back, so Mom jumped at the opportunity. Sorry, Joe!}

{beckie's and kyle's super-hip Christmas tree. I LOVED it. Took a million photos. It practically glowed. Thanks for letting me crash at your place last night, guys! It was fun!}

Hope you all had a merry holiday!

i wanted to give you some pictures... but Blogger is not so functional at the moment.

We'll try tomorrow.

I love you, my friends and family.

It was great!

Ahhhh... Finally. A break. I can find ME again.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

It is finally Christmas break in my world... After teaching straight up 'til Friday afternoon. I have to say, while it is going to be TOTALLY worth it when I get to stay home a week after New Years, it is really AWFUL to have school go right up to the last munute before christmas. There has just been NO rest for my weary bones... creating final exams, grading projects, essays, reports, last-minute make-up quizzes, entertaining family and friends, wrapping presents, making presents, cleaning the house, paying bills, getting grades in for first semester, trying not to cry or scream or both.....
Man. I am ready for this two weeks.

I have been sitting here in my p.j.'s, up since 7:45 (weird! my body woke me up after 5 1/2 hours of sleep. It must be getting used to the crazy routine i was putting it through for the past two weeks), enjoying a luxurious span of time in front of the computer, reading my favorite blogs, editing photos, drinking hot chocolate and eating cream o' wheat... Listening to Manhattan Transfer and Carpenters' Christmas albums. It's been lovely!

And i've got some photos to post... just a few of the many i've taken recently.

{paul and melody came to hang out and spend the night on Monday. Joe took them to the airport on Tuesday morning for their Christmas Break in the West. We had so much fun!}

{melody juts gets cuter with age and motherhood.... we always have so much fun hanging out. We bounce creative ideas off of each other, envy each other's talents, and goof off like you wouldn't believe. (Well, if you know us, maybe you WOULD believe).}

{we had every intention of taking a "surprise face" photo together... and I was READY. But at the last minute, she popped into HER surprise face, very suddenly, and with an unexpected loud "PAH" noise, which TOTALLY ruined it for me. Granted, it was late, i was tired and a bit punchy, but nonetheless... i thought i had more control than this!}

{um.... this is what the boys do when they get together. We girls are productive and lively...
The boys? Turn into computer gamer nerds. *LOSERS*}

{this is Eirick, their amazingly cute kiddo. He slept through most of our visit. }


These photos were taken Wednesday afternoon with on eof the best, coolest classes I have ever gotten to teach. I gave them their final, then we spent the rest of the exte
nded period having fun with photos, music, and farewells. *sigh* I don't think I'll get another class quite like them.

{as promised: the famous banjo playing... }

{laura peeks out at me, wondering why I have a camera trained on her.}

{Ryan and Reba. Two very feisty, free spirit types.}

{Sonni peers out at me. She is NOT as irritated as she looks here.
In fact, she is ALWAY good for a smile and a joke.}
{Who reads LATIN during a party? Well.... actually, Jon does.}

{Chris, the swimmer with the goofy laugh,
and Ryan , second-runner-up for the Mr. WHS Pageant with
a killer "Dance Dance Evolution" routine ham it up. They are never serious. Really.(see original Dance Dance guy doing it here}

{Some of the smartest, hardest-working, sweetest girls I have ever taught.
(There are about 6 more I have taught this semester that are this great, but sadly not in the photo).
These guys (and many of my other students) are so so great to have in class.
Sometimes I wish I was 16 so we could all be best friends.
Is that weird? They teach me so much back.}

{Ah. Truly one-of-a-kind. They were the perfect blend of kids,
at the perfect age, at the perfect time of day, with the perfect mix of personalities...
perfectly ready to learn and grow, but be totally , absurdly hilarious at the same time.}

FINALLY: A Few More Happy Thoughts to Start My Holiday With
{Joe. Isn't he so handsome??
I love that i get so much free time with him over the next two weeks.
We are going to see so many movies, take lots of naps,
go to Chicago to have breakfast in bed,
watch cartoons, and just BE.
He is my favorite person in the world. (Sorry, everybody else.)}

{I have been feeling really frazzled and frumpy lately.
But MAN, i still have some hot, sexy, gorgeous brown eyes, don't i??
Not that I'm bragging or anything.
All I have to do is look at my body to deflate THAT balloon a bit.
But I DO have the eyes. :) }


Go to this website. And see how excited I am to make a coffee-table book of my Europe photos. I am in a WHOLE NEW BALLGAME with this. I am going to totally stop doing photo albums. I swear I am. I will jujst make these books instead ( but yes, I will keep scrapbooking. It's my artistic expression these days). It only makes sense with the digital photo age. Why print individual photos and put them in your own little album, when this site can do so much more? Why NOT have a shelf full of professional photo books with your own work in them, and text added? Needless to say, I am SO excited for this. My Europe book is coming along nicely, and I am sort of addicted to getting it done. I am TOTALLY rewarding myself this break by doing just that. I dare you to do a Blurb book, too.

Okay. I'm done. PHEW!! Long blog! I'm off to go get a haircut, get some fun last-minute gifties for my sis-in-law, and wrap some presents. I feel so GOOD. I feel so FREE.

Love you all!

Going CRAZY!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

crazy LIKE A FOX...

or just crazy like a teacher with too much stuff to grade, an artist with too many christmas projects to complete.... just TOO MUCH.

I am worn OUT.

(and i took that cross-eye picture because i have never seen what i look like cross-eyed.
I think i look like a Disney character.
I hope i never see myself cross-eyed again.)

So. I put on Michael MacClean's "Forgotten Carols" while i was sewing tonite, and MAN, is it LAME.

Lame lame lame lame lame. LAME.

I can't believe i listened to it. No offense to anyone who reads this who loves it. But WOW. It is AWFUL. I think i might destroy the CD as a stress-reliever, which i really really need this week.

Tomorrow, my fam comes to town to go to Historic St. cHarles, one of my favorite christmas traditions, and i just hope i get enough stuff done at school during the day to be able to relax and enjoy it.

It's all about the attitude adjustment. And i'm working on mine. Really, I am.

Here. Fun photos from this past weekend.okay. I REALLY have to go to bed. I'm getting a bit WACKY, and that's NEVER good.

Wish me luck on NOT feeling stressed tomorrow.


I am glad Katie is alive. Seriously.

I AM going to call Sarah back and hear about that SNL thing.

I wish Dan P. was going to be in my 1st or 6th next semester.

I think Melody left some plants here in my house. Otherwise, I have NO idea how they materialized. Which is a surreal concept.

ok. I'm making myself laugh here at home alone 2 hours past my bedtime. I am REALLY going to bed now.

Genny, do you read this? Ever?

I love projects!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

i love using my sewing machine Mom gave me for my wedding.
I love coming up with a new idea and trying it out and it working.

I love getting inspiration from other people.
I love colors and textures and mastering skills.
I love taking pictures of the things i love.

My current favorite song is "The First Noel" by the MoTab choir with the Orchestra At Temple Square accompanying... arranged by my hero Mack Wilberg.
It swells and swells and builds and tugs and aches and feels so RIGHT.

and my lovely little iPod was kind enough to put it on just now, out of 337 songs, so i am a lucky duck.

I love my life. Most of the time, I love this little life.

Yes, I still play.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

but not as often as i'd like.

I've begun a bit of a tradition-- the last day of the semester, I bring the ol' banjo into my classes and play for them. Since my classes completely change each semester, it's a fun farewell, and leaves them with a wacky memory of me. Plus, its crazy how fast word spreads, and old students tell new students to look for that day... and the old ones come back and ask if they can come watch me at the end of the current semester.

It's like i've created a monster.

This photo was taken by joe because an old student who is the yearbook editor this year wanted to do a thingy on me and my banjo for either the school newspaper or the yearbook. Since i like to have creative control over photos of me, ('cause i know how to make myself look better than i really do) i told her i'd take the pic for her and bring it to school.

anyway. just another weird piece of me.

some favorite moments from my thanksgiving weekend

Saturday, December 9, 2006

{mom and her project area;
the classic turquoise sewing machine...
the bevy of green plants...
the joy in making things:

I'm glad I am like her.}

{my mom and dad are the best of friends.
they are perfect together.}

{he's a bit CRAZY, but he's my bro.
Incidentally, I'm always amazed
at what I can get him to do
in front of a camera. You'd think
he'd be conscious of it's publishability.}

{this kid is impossibly, addictively adorable.
Look at that expression!!}

{my sis elise is expressing exuberance for the camera.

{'Cause i like red barns.
And i LOOOOOOVE joe.}

{joe slums it with the sisters.
Well, with three of the five sisters.
Kirsti OBVIOUSLY isn't a fan.}

{kirsti gives us a coy little look before disappearing
into the trees once more,
never to be seen again.}

*i. love. this. new. camera. period.*

Wow. Long time, no blog. Joe's Fault.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

{from the incredible ice storm we had this past weekend. InSANE. but beautiful. Like a fairyland.}
joe left our laptop power cord at Melody and Paul's house in Kirksville, MO, about three hours from here.... One week later, we are back in business.

{melody's son Eirick-SOOOOOO cute}

I hate that I am so attached to the computer, and that it was so HARD to be without it this past week... Lots of easy things to do, like pay bills, edit photos, email folks, look things up, reserve hotel rooms, etc.

Such a critical tool in this home since we finally bit the bullet and signed up for the 'net.

And to think I had lasted over 5 years without it in my home... going to libraries, accessing it from work... and being JUST FINE.


Ok. Here are som random fun photos from my photography binge during Thanksgiving weekend. Enjoy.

{mmmmm.... pumpkin cake.}
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