Monday, February 26, 2007

New Friends, CNY & Photography

Its been a very full week with workshops and planning technique classes. I'm feeling exhausted but strangely excited. Not sure why. Maybe it has something to do with all the new friendships I made at the workshops lately. You ladies are amazing.....get a bunch of you together, sharing our love, or should I say obsession, with stamp products, and hey presto, a friendship has formed!
LOVE that!
It was Chinese New Year last week. I won't even try to say it in Mandarin or Cantonese, so Happy New Year everyone! Hope this golden year of the pig is a good one for everybody. We celebrated CNY this year by joining a couple of friends for a chinese dinner, while watching a Lion Dance being preformed. Lots of noise and colour surrounded us. Here are a few pics I took:
I love the colours at CNY, but I'd never wear them on myself at any time! Christopher's fingers were in his ears quite a bit with the drums only being 10 feet away. And I just had to get one more picture of him in his too small Chinese outfit. The photo with his hand in the lion's mouth is when the kids in the restaurant were giving the lion "li-cee" or small envelopes of $, to bring good luck for the year. The lion surprised Christopher when he closed his mouth on his arm! Lots of fun....we'll do it again next year!

I've been inspired lately by colours and photography in general. I have a few websites that I look at everyday and am awestruck with the creativity of others with their cameras. Check out this blog 3191. These 2 ladies live 3191 miles apart (not sure what that is in kilometres). They each take a picture every morning and post those photos side by side. They don't know what the other is photographing. SO COOL! Love their contrasts, colours and angles. They have a gift in making an everyday moment look beautiful. Make sure you look at their photos from January and February too.

Another is a website that my brother-in-law showed me recently that I'm LOVING! If you know me, you'll know my love of cooking. I love being able to turn an ordinary meal into something special.
Check out 101 Cookbooks! The recipes look so yummy, but what grabbed my attention more was the amazing pictures taken of the food and the stories behind each recipe. For example "My Dad's Garlic Bread". What a Dad! And that photo just makes me want to make some! I can't wait to try the Curried Apple Couscous.

Enough about food. The other site that I'm keeping my eye on is Photogamer. They just started holding a photography challenge each week. I haven't participated as of yet, but I get so inspired by how others have captured the challenge. Espcecially challenge #1. I now go about my day looking for unique reflections, strangers in hats and telephones in a new, refreshing way.

My friend Katrina lives in South Africa, soon to move back to Australia. (Pause...I'm breathing a sigh of relief there) Her photos are beautiful and her writing can take your breath away. Katrina has had to attend a couple funerals as of late, and her description of them and of the people brings tears to my eyes. REALLY looking forward to seeing you again soon!

Monday, February 19, 2007

What a Month!

I'm not sure where the time has gone over this past sorry to those who have emailed me and are STILL waiting to hear from me.
Just after returning from our coast holiday, my Aunt and Uncle from Canada arrived for a week. I haven't seen them since I was 13 years old......about 23 years as you can imagine, there was A LOT of catching up to do. It was lots of fun having them stay with us. Here is a pic of the 3 generations of Christophers in my family (my Uncle Chris, my brother Christopher and my son Christopher) just playing around. These are my favourite kind of, relaxed and natural.
Christopher is back at school, in Year 3 now. He couldn't wait to get back to school, and this year he has a "man teacher". I'm really hoping Christopher will make some good friends this year. Its much harder to get to know people here, compared to the close knit community we had in Discovery Bay in Hong Kong. We both miss our friends in Hong Kong dearly. I have to admit that I was a little sad when the holidays ended. We had a great summer together. Christopher is now just that little bit older, a little taller and a little more independant than he was last year. He's growing up too fast!

I AM very happy to have some time to myself again though. I didn't have much time to create anything over the holidays and I'm SO keen to get into it again. I've been clearing a lot of the stuff that has accumulated over the past year.....check out the mags and idea books that having been growing under my bed. I'm an idea book/magazine addict....although I'm not as bad and SOME of my know who you are!

Just for fun I did a layout about my favourite movie...and now I'm working on a page about why I do what I do. Will post a pic of that when its done. This has been a great way to ingite the creative juices again. I've also got 4 Stampin Up workshops booked this week, so I'm getting lots done on the card front. I'll have to post some of those pics soon too. Speaking of Stampin Up.....its starting up in New Zealand in April! Let me know if you're interested and I'll keep you posted on developments.

Valentines Day is a fun day in my home. Christopher has been buying little gifts over the past month to give to me. Our cards to each other have always been signed with a "?" or "from your secret admirer". This year I received a snowman cookie cutter, a large red beaded bead, a wooden bead that Christopher decorated & coloured, and a friendship pin he made. GORGEOUS! Better than roses and chocolates anyday!
My sister's birthday was just a couple of days ago. Happy Birthday Mary! It was great to celebrate with you this year...after SO MANY years of not being in the same country. My brother-in-law also arrived from the USA, a few days before Valentines day. I can't tell you enough how wonderful it is have family altogether again! Christopher is LOVING having cousins around to play with. Cole and Christopher play so well together and the age difference doesn't bother him.
Another big event that happenned in my family last week is my brother got engaged! CONGRATS to you both Christopher and Carol. (can you hear it now.....Chris-n-Carol.......Christmas Carol...hehehe!) That not as bad and my sister and her husband Joe....Mary-n-Joe......Mary and Joseph!!! Sorry guys! Love it!