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October 2007
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December 2007

November 2007

In Between...

Being a mom of 3, wife to the military, the hubby is getting ready to head back to Shift Work, (not fun, not fun at all), Manager of More Than A Memory Scrapbook Store, Owner of R Barut Photography, a Basketball CHEERleader, teacher to all 3 kids, (did I tell you my Little Izzy can add? It's so cute, she adds her fingers and her toes to combine the two numbers! I am so impressed, I smiled so hard, my cheeks hurt!), my oldest on the other hand is having a challenging time in 7th grade, all of his core classes are in Enrichment Programs and there came a point where I expected him to take this as a breeze like he has always done.  But I see now he needs us to help him a little more after schools, the classes are indeed tougher, and there seems to be no room for error. A chef at the Barut Household, a Boo-Boo kisser, a Tickle Monster, a Scrapbooker.. the list goes on and on.. I'm not sure how I get through my days sometimes. 

Today was just one of those days, where it IS my day OFF, but WORK was on my brain!  It was a quiet day, from 6am-7am then it was filled with phone calls and emails. My mind is constantly planning, creating, and envisioning.. it stems anywhere from dinner till the next week, to hanging up more pictures on my wall, to putting up snowflakes window cling ons, to wondering how my mom is enjoying Las Vegas, to going back home to Hawaii, where all is sunshine surrounded by family.  But somehow, I got this balancing act under control for now.  I did take last week off, I finished nearly 3 albums plus a gift as one of them.. so it's all good:)

Well, here's a little reminder that Life is All Good.. Each day is truly a blessing.  No matter how busy this life takes us, you can count on me knowing where to stand my ground. 

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Thanksgiving Re-Cap...

Is everyone STUFFED?  Most of all, are we all grateful for life's blessings, both big and small? I know I am!  Just a little recap from a very relaxing week and weekend.  Now that Monday is rolling around, it's back to the real world. 

Thursday... Gobble, Gobble, and Crash!

What a day, Turkey Day that is, exhausted from a late night of cooking... Let's back track a bit, Wednesday night, I worked till 10 pm, came home and started cooking.. Turkey #1, that's right there are TWO turkeys and TWO hams.. little did I realize, I only have ONE oven!  One thing at a time, huh?  There goes planning anything.  So I got a late start to my Turkey, say 11 pm late.. that stayed in for several hours. By 3am, the ham is ready to go in.  In between the Turkey and Ham, I am cooking up the Stuffing, the Pumpkin pie (which I burnt), and all the other sides.. We finally get done cooking at 5 am.   That's right guys, we rolled into bed at 5am only to get up 7am to cook the Bigger Turkey!  While that is cooking, the house is quiet, I finish scrapbooking.  So that's good! 

Well, I needed to make a pit-stop at the nearest Carrs along with the rest of Anchorage!  Geesh! I guess I'm not the only one.  I just needed whip cream for a new batch of Pumpkin Pie, some pineapples for the ham, and more coffee creamers.  Then came the CRASH!  That's right, I backed into another car!  A car that seemed like it came out of nowhere!  I didn't see it! All I kept thinking... is Thanksgiving is suppose to be stress-free, fun, relaxing.. and now this!  30 minutes later, we got squared away.  And I won't even add the details here, cause I'd upset myself all over again.  (Like a flashback, I don't want to go back to)

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Needless to say, dinner with our good friends, The Smiths is always a joy.  It was unseasonably WARM for a Thanksgiving Day, well into the 40's!  The snow melted and we could see "grass" again!

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We ate a bit to much and relaxed to the point, I nodded off for a few minutes :) But I did manage to see Grey's.. ooh that was a cliff hanger!

Friday.. Shopping Vs. Scrappin

No contest.  I opted for some good Croppin time from 8am-8pm at the store!  Not only was it filled with food and new stuff!  But I completed a few projects (which are mostly gifts for others) but I did it!!!  It's always nice to get away from the home and Scrap your heart away! 

Saturday.. Searching High and Lowes for my tree...

Saturday was the day to put up our decorations, for us, we needed to find a tree.  This is the first Christmas in 3 years we will be home in Alaska.  I wasn't gonna get a cheesy $50 tree like last year!  Oh no, this year I was gonna buy something good. Yes, we got a fake tree, a pre-lit fake tree that is, I find it easier!  We searched high and Lowes for this "baby" and it was well worth it!

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Sunday.. A shoot and catching up...

I had a great shoot this afternoon with one of my favorite clients, I did their wedding, her maternity, and now some family ones with her "grammie" in town, I tried to squeeze her in today, and it worked out!  Now I'm catching up on all the things I ignored over the weekend! Until then, take care!

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It's Coming...

The Holiday Season, that is!

Are you like me?  If I don't think about it too much, maybe it won't come as quick?  Wrong?  Evey year I say, I will do that Turkey Day Grocery shopping a little earlier, NOT!  So guess who was stuck in long lines at the grocery store, not to mention I still have to go to Costco, today (the day before Thanksgiving)  Am I crazy?  I think so! But my dear hubby took the day off, I'd like to think he did that for me, to help me prep for our Holiday Dinner with some friends. ;)

So yesterday I spent all day having Internet Withdrawals!  (Cable guys are fixing and upgrading)  But it did leave me some good scrapbooking time, finished 2 albums :)  I tell you when I start, it's hard for me to stop! I also hung out with my little Izzy for her Thanksgiving Pudding Party :) We ate and danced! She thought I was hilarious, dancing around like a 4 year old with her:)  At first I thought, why am I the only mom dancing here?  Then I thought, Why Not? 

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I love giving Izzy the camera!  She has a knack for it and most importantly she enjoys it.  So this little camera is officially hers, I have to ask to borrow it :) 
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From her little roll of 100+ photos (just like her mama)  there are always a few that catch my eye and think, wow, she's good:)  This was one of them. Nothing spectacular, but the idea that she looked down to take a photo of her feet against the gym green floors in an off center kind of way.. that was cool, so I guess it is Pretty Spectacular!

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This is my latest Holiday Banner on my Photography Website.

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Off to listen to that station that plays Holiday Music all day/night long! It's been a nice and relaxing week, spending some time with my family, friends, scrapbooking, and more scrapbooking, it's all good. (Awaiting busy times next week)


Friendship.

Ecclesiastes 4:8-10, “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”

I came across this wonderful scripture, don't you love it when you read something and you know it's God talking to you? :) I've been meaning to spend more quality time with my friend Keri, to listen, to be there, to let her know that she is not alone.  She's going through a lot, struggles surround her every thought.  Then there are days I become so self absorbed in the world around me, that I can't see the needs others have, much less take the time to lend an encouraging word. It felt so good to take the time out of our busy lives to help change our focus and redirect our thoughts.  God designed this need in us, and friendships offer more than companionship, they also offer protection. None of us expect a difficult time to come – but we live in a fallen world and bad things happen. To a person without godly friends, a time of turmoil can kill them emotionally. However, when a person is surrounded by friends, they are more likely to survive.

Today or perhaps tomorrow someone might need some encouragement. It will only take a few minutes of your time.As we enter a busy time of year, take time to be with friends. Plan a holiday gathering and share the things you are thankful for. Look for opportunities to include friends in your planning and preparation for the big events in the next months. While you are getting things done, take time to share what’s going on in your life. Our time invested in friendships is time well spent. It’s in our God-designed make-up to need each other and it accomplishes God’s desire for our protection when the hard times come.

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A Relaxing Weekend.

It was such a nice and relaxing weekend.  I celebrated a few birthdays.  Friday we celebrated Keri's birthday at Damis (my favorite Sushi spot!)  Then we headed to Barnes and Noble for some lattes and I had their Red Velvet cake (again, oh so good!)  Then we celebrated our son's 12th birthday with his friends (aka the entire Mathies Court).

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Sunday, Keri and I went to a Fragrance Show hosted by Nordstrom at the Hilton.  We got to dress up a bit, put on some make up and spend some quality time.  We got to "smell" some of the exclusive perfumes and colognes that are out.  I'm not a big perfume person, but there was one I fell "in love" with.  The Blvgari  Omnia Crystalline! Ladies, ooh this is good stuff! (And guys, go get your lady this, she will thank you for it.

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Of course I had to get my better half one too:

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Oooh, it's good stuff!

I guess we've opened our Christmas gifts already :)  Speaking of Christmas shopping, every year, after Christmas, I always say I will start early next year.. well, it's already next year, and I'm the same slacker:) But needless to say, this will be our FIRST Christmas in our home.  We've spent it in Hawaii every single year.  So I am really excited!

Now hubby and I are sitting in our "office" and listening to some Praise and Worship, this is on repeat for us tonight. Quite fitting on our walk with God right now.  "Turn me around, Pick me up, Undo what I've become, Bring me back to the place of Forgiveness and Grace..."

A few more days till Thanksgiving.. I will have to really map out my week!


New Song, New Album

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I am a big spender on iTunes.. this is like my third album in a week :)  Only if I could claim it as a business expense, cause I need a variety of music to help past time being on the computer editing photos till the wee hours of the morning. 

Alicia Keys, the minute I heard that first song, No One, I knew I wouldn't even pass up buying her entire album :)  I heard this song, Superwoman.. and I instantly thought of my good friend, Keri.  Girl, you are my Superwoman!  Keep your head up, I admire your strength, determination, your ability to get through your toughest of days... You are a SuperWOMAN, and don't let anyONE tell you otherwise.

(And yes, it makes me feel like holding up that lighter in a dark room singing, I am Superwoman, Yes I am..)  Happy Early Birthday girl!  

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Yes!

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(Yes!)  This still EXCITES me every time.  I can't help but to ambush a stack of magazines and place them in the front row of every book store and the BX.  I actually found my first copy while in Seattle, while desperately calling home to find out if Alaska had gotten their copy.. Unfortunately, we get things a tad bit later than everyone else. 

(Yes)  That's my Lil Izzy on the cover, (yes thanks to our good friends back in MD, Thomas and Rochelle, I've started calling her Izzy.  I remember she was just a few days old, and Thomas called her Izzy, and I thought, eww, I would never call her that. but much to my surprise, she is Izzy now).

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(Yes)  And here is another photo from me :)  This was even more exciting, check out how big that photo is:)

(Yes) The holiday season is a big one for me as a photographer.  I am overwhelmed but excited about gearing up for Holiday photos. Then Creative Cafe has finally arrived at our Local Scrapbook Store and I can't wait to start teaching classes.

(Yes)  I've been downloading country music like crazy! :)  I just bought Kenny Chesney's latest album.  And this song has been on my mind and my heart.

"Best start putting first things first.
Cause when your hourglass runs out of sand
You can't flip it over and start again
Take every breathe God gives you for what it's worth"


Monday Is...

One of the best nights for Television!  It starts off with Chuck, very funny and entertaining!  Then, my all time favorite, Heroes... and ooh it was good! We top off the night with Journeyman. Now that's what we call entertainment. And I just added to my list of shows, Samantha Who.  Another one worth the DVR space!

The hubby and I had a great relaxing day today. We left the house, left our cell phones, well just mine, it seems the world tries to track me down on my one day off :), we abandoned the internet and just enjoyed being out.  We ate at one of our favorite Greek restaurants, The Greek Corner.  I enjoyed the Soulvalki and the hubby had the usual, a Gyro.  We found ourselves in Lowes stocking up on new shovels, more hooks for coats, and I just daydreamed about Christmas.  I loved looking at Christmas decorations!  For dinner, we felt like eating pancakes with sausages.  Nothing like breakfast for dinner:)

Off to finish Journeyman.

Until then HERE are my favorites from Friday's shoot!


Winter Wonderland.

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It's about time.. the SNOW is finally here!  For a moment I thought it was odd that it was already November and we have not had any snow yet. But it came today and it looks like it's here to stay.  There is nothing like the first snowfall of the season that makes you long for some snuggling time.  Unfortunately, I worked today, on a Sunday.  I scheduled several photo shoots, which I am anxious too look through. 

But I just have to share this one from a on location shoot on Friday.  You may recognize this family as my banner for family photos, and I think they keep claiming that spot. They are a gorgeous family and I am tickled pink that they wanted me to photograph them again. I have to say it was the most gorgeous house I have ever seen!  It was like we were walking through a Pottery Barn catalog:)  The lighting was perfect and not to mention her scraproom as well!

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A Grateful Heart.

"Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NAS)

My hubby has been really supportive, kind, and very patient, especially these past few weeks.  From the minute I stepped off that plane from Seattle, I have been everywhere but home.  He even took a few days off so that I can catch up on work.  He's watched the kids, he's been the "mom" these past few weeks, and lately I've been the one coming home late from work, tired, laying flat on the sofa asleep before the kids have headed to bed.  And I am such a Thankful Wife.  Monday, will be the day I will try and make up for lost time, by being home, not on the computer editing photographs, just us.  So as we sit up on the sofa catching up on tv shows, maybe enjoy a nice Greek lunch, and plan for the week ahead, I hope you all have a great week!


Outlet.

Lately it's been all work and no fun.  The Scrapbook Store has been booming and opening all kinds of possibilities for me and I'm pretty much there most of my time just trying to understand the business side of it all, but trying not to stunt my creativity.  Then there's my photography business which grew from a small list of clientèle to several hundred. Trying to place orders and keep in touch with them has been time consuming.

So when these new Hambly and Love Elsie stuff came, I went to town.  A few hours later, I created a little acrylic album with these AWESOME HEAVY OVERLAYS!  Oh what fun!  Not to mention I stocked up on every rub on, overlay, and more of this acrylic stuff!

Oh what fun to work on acrylic, taking art to a whole new level of dimension :)

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