Friday, February 29, 2008

2008 Edition of Getting to Know Your Friends

Have you gotten this forward that is going around? It always brings a smile to my face when I read my friends' and family's responses to these forwards. It amazes me that I can learn something new about someone I thought I knew everything about.

1. What time did you get up this morning? 7:30AM
2. Diamonds or pearls? Both
3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?"The Holiday" (Cameron Diaz & Jude Law) with my mom and Court...yes, that is about a year and a half ago.
4. Favorite TV show? What Not To Wear, Project Runway
5. What do you usually have for breakfast? Cereal...I love all kinds.
6. What kind of soap do you use? Dove Liquid Body Wash
7. What is your middle name? O'Reilly (used to be Lynn)
8. What food do you dislike? not many - sausage, pepperoni, ewww
9. What is your favorite CD? All time favorite is Tom Petty Greatest Hits, but current favorite is Kenny Chesney "The Road and the Radio"
10. What kind of car do you drive? Jeep Grand Cherokee
11. Favorite sandwich? Chicken Frontega Panini from Panera
12. What characteristic do you despise? ignorance
13. Favorite item of clothing? My Seven jeans
14. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation? Tahiti
15. What color is your bathroom? mine is mint green, the guest one is sunshine yellow, and the powder room is a deep dark red
16. Favorite brand of clothing? Gap
17. Where would you retire to? Somewhere on Lake Michigan
18. What was your most recent memorable birthday? Nothing really stands out...maybe my 30th next month will be fun :)
19. Furthest place you are sending this? Chicago
20. Who do you least expect to send this back to you? Chad
21. Person you expect to send it back first? Court
22. What is your favorite scent? Mint massage oil at a spa.....ahhhhh. Or coconut tanning oil.
23. Are you a morning person or a night person? I don't know. Neither?
24. What is your shoe size? 6
25. Pets? Berkeley, my lovebug black lab
26. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share with us? I'm not pregnant
27. What did you want to be when you were little? a lawyer
28. How are you today? busier than a one-legged man in a butt kicking contest
30. What is your favorite candy? Ever since I was pregnant I love anything chocolate...mmm.
31. What is your favorite flower? gerbera daisies
32. What is a day on the calendar you are loooking forward to? Going to Park City to ski/snowboard next month
33. What church do you attend? First Baptist Church of Geneva
34. What is your full name? Kelly Lynn O'Reilly Vanderploeg
35. What are you listening to right now? "Life in the Fast Lane" by the Eagles
36. What was the last thing you ate? Whopper Jr. with cheese for lunch, man was it good
37. Do you wish on stars? Sure, why not?
38. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? pink or yellow
39. How is the weather right now? more SNOW! Will winter ever end??
40. Last person you spoke to on the phone? my sister, Court
41. Do you like the person who sent this to you? She's alright -- ha ha j/k, I love her!!
42. Favorite restaurant? PF Chang's, Mongolian BBQ or Villa Verone (in Geneva)
43. Hair Color? Blondish
44. Siblings? younger sisters Courtney & Lisa, younger brother Eric ("E")
45. Favorite day of the year? Christmas Eve
46. What was your favorite toy as a child? Cabbage Patch Kid? I don't know.
47. Summer or winter? Summer
48. Hugs or kisses? kisses
49. Chocolate or Vanilla? Chocolate
50. Do you want your friends to email you back? uh, yea
51. When was the last time you cried? not has been good lately
52. What is under your bed? dust and dog hair
53. What friend have you had the longest? Romi, since 1st grade. Michelle, since 2nd grade.
54. What did you do last night? Played with Brynn, Chad & Berks, did a wedding consultation, and then stayed up until 1:30am working on my images for print competition
55. Favorite room in your house? Brynn's room is my happy place
56. What are you afraid of? Something happening to someone I love
57. Plain, buttered, or salted Popcorn? Smart Food Cheese Popcorn, it's the best.

Holla back and let me get to know you :)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

I'm Sick :(

I have been down and out for more than a full week now. Thank you to everyone for your well wishes and your patience while Brynn and I recuperate. I have never been this sick before in my entire life -- either has Brynn. We're hanging in there and should be back on our feet soon. If I have to watch one more episode of "Barney" I might freak out.
Stay well everyone.

Monday, February 18, 2008

The Great Northwest Photo Safari - Part III

For the third, and final, installment of the Great Northwest Photo Safari, we find ourselves driving in Oregon. We left from Portland (which is a very cool little city) and took the winding trail west through the mountains in search of the coast.
We made several stops along the way to shoot along side the road. You just don't see this kind of thing while driving down the road in Chicago.

We had fun being goofy in the middle of the road in between cars whizzing past us. Here is Chad doing his best Van Halen jump move.

We finally made it to the coast and were greeted by a very eery warning...but that didn't deter us from checking out the sights.

Cape Meares, Oregon has some of the most beautiful scenery I have ever seen. Can you find the house on the rock?

The walking man (Chad) on Cannon Beach. It was raining and frigid, but still breathtaking. The beach was vast and the sand was flat. This is a little granola tourist town with lots of little shops and B&B's. It also happens to be where one of my favorite movies was filmed: "Goonies."

Lots of eclectic artisan shops were scattered along the main drag through town. We stumbled upon this glass blower storefront that had the most amazing display and we could watch the artists as they worked.

This shop was our favorite and we enjoyed talking to the surfer working behing the counter. Learning to surf is on my list of things to do before I die, so when I get a chance to come back here, I am taking surfing lessons (preferably during a warmer month).

Hang ten.

That is the nutshell version of our trip. We had lots of laughs and plenty of time to bond since we spent so much time in the car together. Oh, and the workshops were great too ;) Chad and I did some modeling for the classes so there should be some good shots from Michael and Paul. I will post some as soon as I get the images from them.
The worst part of the trip was how badly I missed my sweet, baby girl, Brynnie. She was an angel for her grandmas, thank goodness, but I could not wait to get home to see her. She gave us the best greeting and the biggest smile when she saw us walk in. She opened her arms and walked towards us really slow. She wouldn't let me put her down. It melted my heart and I even got a little choked up.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Happy V-day

Just wanted to wish everyone a belated Valentine's Day. It is a true "Hallmark" holiday, but I love it and it makes me feel warm and fuzzy.

I got orange roses this year from Chad. I have never received oranges roses before so I looked up what the significance of the color "orange" is: passion and enthusiasm...I thought that was fitting even if Chad had no idea. I was just happy to get something so pretty.

The Great Northwest Photo Safari - Part II

Ok, so I have been back in town since Sunday, but we are having some major internet connection problems so my blogging has suffered big time. I have also been busy this week cramming for a print competition (more about that later).

Back to our adventures....

We started our day by stopping in the cutest little Norweigan town called Poulsbo, WA. It is here that we got doughnuts the size of our heads.

On our roadtrip around the Washington peninsula and Olympic National Park, we stopped at an abandoned Army artillary bunker in Port Townsend. The lighting was good and mysterious and if you climbed to the top of the bunker there was an incredible view of a quaint little lighthouse.

Here is that lighting I was talking about...

Mark in action

I saw this old, weathered boat left to fend for itself in between the edge of the water and the side of the road and just had to get out and shoot it. My persistance paid off because it scored me an 88 at print comp this week. My first merit print :) This is not the actual presentation of the image that I used, I turned it black and white and put a cool texture on it. I will post it separately.

"Dragging the shutter" :D

After our marathon trip around the peninsula we went into downtown Seattle to see the sights. The fish market was closed, so we went to eat at Ivars and then drove over to the Space Needle.

I had heard that there were Starbuck's on every corner in Seattle, but I thought that was an exaggeration...well it's not. It really is true. On that note, have you ever heard of anyone ordering a coffee with a "quad" shot of espresso in it? I saw Mark do it twice! I guess that is what happens when you live by so many Starbuck's. He has even had a coffee with 16 shots of espresso in it before! I would be doing back flips for sure if I drank that. I can't even handle one cup of coffe with a normal dose of caffeine.

We also took the Bremerton car ferry across the Puget Sound to get home. I grabbed this shot off the back of the ferry while freezing my toosh off. Is that how you spell "toosh"? Tush? If anyone takes a photograph of the ferry you can get arrested due to homeland security reasons...I thought that was interesting and decided to keep my camera pointed towards the shore.

Part III coming soon....

***Edited to add these images of me that I stole from Michael's forum:

Did I mention it was really cold??? A different type of cold...a wet, damp cold that will chill you to the bone.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Great Northwest Photo Safari - Part I

So I am out here is Seattle and have seen some pretty amazing things. I have so many images I want to post, but I will just do a couple at a time. Most of these are straight out of the camera.

We went to the beautiful Ruby Beach in the far northwest corner on the coast of Washington yesterday. The air was damp, the breeze was cool, but the views were spectacular.

Michael got this shot of Chad and I as we walked along the beach and tried to avoid the tide coming in. Those are sea stacks in the background which are formed from the surf beating at the land and forming an island just offshore of the headland.

Don't we look so in love? ;)

Paul let Chad use his back up camera so he could get in on the action. He has a natural eye and I may have a new second shooter now :)

Mark Van Huis is our gracious host and one of the sweetest guys I have ever met. He grabbed this shot of Chad and I. He rocks.

Chad and Michael were trying to catch the sunset before the rain came in. We got soaked, but it was worth it.

Good night for now. More to come.....

Happy 18th Birthday Lisa

My sweet baby girl has turned 18!

We celebrated my little sister Lisa's birthday on Sunday with a bowling party at Funway. We all had a lot of fun and I actually bowled a 141. I used to love going to Funway when I was in middle school for skating parties.

I love you Lisa Ashley :)

Monday, February 4, 2008

Going out of town

I will be heading out to Seattle and Portland for "Extreme Portraiture: Great Northwest Edition" workshop with Michael Barton and Paul Rogers. We are going to have two days for a "photo safari" so hopefully I will have a chance to post some images from our adventures. Bear with me if I do not get a chance to answer e-mails or phone calls. I will definitely get back to you next week. I have never been to Seattle, but I am bringing an umbrella. All I have ever heard is that it rains a lot there.

Sara & Ryan

I had the best time on Saturday with Sara & Ryan. Sara was a Delta Zeta with me at Eastern Illinois, however, I am much older ;) This was the first time I had met Ryan and he is such a sweetie. He is a huge Bears fan and he likes country music, so we hit it off right away. We all got along so well that we went out for a drink after we were done shooting.
I can't wait to shoot their wedding in Bloomington, Illinois in October.

We started in the studio...
but they braved the cold to do some fun stuff outside.

Staying warm.

Sara will be a beautiful bride.
They were such troopers when I made them venture into the foot deep snow on the ground.

We were freezing by the time we were done. I promised them it would be worth it.
Thanks you guys for such a fun day and for making the haul up north from Bloomington. I am so looking forward to your big day.