travel life: A Breathless Local Beauty

Gull Lake, CA
Saturday, July 20, 2014

“Peaceful Reflection”

I remember stepping onto the small fishing boat with a warm cup of coffee and my sweetheart in tow. He was taking me fishing for the first time. We moved slowly on the lake and as we left the dock and made our way to the other side, this sight took my breath away. Peace overcame me. And I looked at this mountain ridge and her matching reflection and thought, life is good.

New Year Resolutions Update

So I know I’m two months late giving my half-year update on these resolutions that I do my damned-est to stick by. And now that the new school has started, I’m more
determined that ever to stay with them.

1. Getting my kids to school on time REALLY means get Mr. Nathan to school on time. We now “leave” at 8am. A full 15 minutes before we have to at the bell. THIS WAS A GAME CHANGER! He hasn’t been late since January and I don’t receive any more calls. This is what we call a modern day miracle.

2. Photograph kids, family, travels, once a month without using my iphone. Cough. Cough. I’ve photographed my recent trip to Croatia, Montenegro and Ireland which included family, but not my kids. Sigh. Halloween is just around the corner though and I do that EVERY year. Maybe I should stick with a once of year resolution?

3. Take a video editing class. Done. Now if I could just practice what I’ve learned and actually add it to my skill set…

4. Swim 2-3 times per week during Spring and Summer. Mission accomplished. Although, now that school has started for Mr. Nathan, summer finished sooner that I would have liked. I REALLY need to figure out how to swim before work because it’s the perfect start to my day.

5. Save at least $1500 a month. Bah ha ha. Well, I did try for the first couple of months and simply was stretched too thinly financially. So I adjusted to something a bit more reasonable like $500 and I haven’t felt it yet. So…that’s something right?


life: a daily photo

Redondo Beach, Ca
November 28, 2013
Mr. Nathan, Miss Emma and Ms. Connoisseur

Mr. Nathan, Miss Emma, Ms. Connoisseur of Life

Mr. Nathan, Miss Emma, Ms. Connoisseur of Life

Surrounded by works of amazing photographers, I refuse to go to the mall to take posed family portraits. I also refuse to pay hundreds of dollars to have a family portraits taken, posed or otherwise by any of these amazing photographers. I am what I call, an idiot for being so stubborn. My result is that I don’t have any good photos with me and my children.

This is my first posed family portrait, on Thanksgiving Day no less, so I become a sentimental fool when I look at it. I couldn’t be more thrilled to have something I love.

Lesson learned?–Date a photographer.

Photo credit: Mr. Film Photographer

dating life: meet Mr. Film Photographer

Los Angeles, CA
Mr. Film Photographer and Ms. Connoisseur
Thursday, November 28, 2013

Mr. Film Photographer and Ms. Connoisseur

Mr. Film at Heart Photographer and Ms. Connoisseur—Don’t I look uncomfortable?

It’s been six months with this lovely fella. He is a good man with a sexy edge. Romantic, sweet, gentlemanly with tattoos, earrings and a leather jacket.

He always opens my door.


His smile melts my heart, but he’s a photographer.

I swore I would never date a photographer. Ever. Many of the photographers I know have egos and a sleaziness about them because they are always hustling for their next gig. Do they REALLY want to know how you’re doing? No. Do they really care about how my kids are? No.

There is a lack of genuine interest in most photographers’conversations. And in my industry, I’ve seen some pretty shady stuff.

But Mr. Film Photographer’s freckles won me over and because he’s such an artist at heart, he’s hard to dismiss.

He’s old school and learned his craft by shooting film. And like many photographers, the move to digital is frustrating, upsetting, and some (like him) consider blasphemy. I too, learned shooting film, but my career as a photo editor at a movie studio is 99% digital. So, technology and photography for me go hand-in-hand.

So, like his aversion to change in his professional life, dating someone like him is out of my comfort zone in my personal life. There is comfort in what we know as human beings and I am no exception. It’s taken this long to get used to the notion of a drama-free relationship and believe-it-or not, it’s been challenge not dating an asshole or a damaged man.

I was ready to catch-and-release after a month-and-a-half of dating, like usual. A man who lives on his own, works for himself and cooks and cleans without help, oh my! I was an idiot.

Regardless of what happens between us, I’m really embracing a idea of a normal and healthy relationship and Mr. Film Photographer is really embracing digital photography, and together, we are both better people than we were six months ago.

Photo credit: Ms. Connoisseur’s Sister

Cue the Applause


Los Angeles, Ca —— Mr. Nathan Reading During Christmas Break

Yes, I know it’s not the first of the year.  But my first resolution didn’t need to start until today! Honest.

1. Get the kids to school on time

2. Photograph kids, family, travels once a month without using my iphone

3. Take a video editing class

4. Swim 2-3 times per week during Spring and Summer

5. Save at least $1500 a month

Today is the first day of school of second quarter, after a LONG three weeks off for the holidays.  I’m thrilled to be back to the routine.  But I was notoriously late 2-5 minutes nearly everyday last quarter and I refuse to let that happen anymore.  I am tired of receiving the daily automated phone call “Your child was tardy for one or more periods today…please send a letter explaining…” yada, yada.

Dear Mr. Nathan’s school, um, that would be because my tired ass is T.I.R.E.D.  Who doesn’t like sleeping!??  And why can’t his teacher just look away when she sees Mr. Nathan running to get in line outside his classroom? It’s not like he’s walking in during a lesson.  They haven’t even sat down for instruction yet. For heaven’s sake, there could have been a traffic jam or maybe he had to tie his shoe laces (they’re velcro, you say?–hmmm) or maybe he leads the secret life of a superhero and flew in from saving a cat in a tree!

I have no one to blame but myself.  There is no reason that my children should be late and if I really want Mr. Nathan to start making life-long friendships, he’s got to get there earlier enough to socialize and get the jitters out before he sits down to take over the world with his mind.

Day one down; only 249 more school days to go.  And no phone call today. Cue the applause.

Photo credit: Ms. Connoisseur of Life