Tuesday, April 25, 2006

a perfect match

This weekend Tim and I went to a Family Life marriage conference on a scholarship from the Morton parents. (Thanks so much m&d!) It was our second conference this year but we are gladly packing them in before the baby comes.
We've noticed some couples have difficulty during these conferences, poking each other in anger once in a while, but we usually just laugh and cry about how perfect we are for each other.
For example: This is a section of our work book. You listen to a speaker for an hour session and fill in the blanks on the page. (On the side we'd often try to guess what the next blank contained) Once in a while he tells you to write something extra in. This session was on threats to our marriage. You can tell from the page (click it to be able to read it better) that the main point is that trials come and they are not necessarily bad. He then tells us to write down something like, "Difficulties will take place in every relationship." But Tim and I, being the rebels we are, decide at the same time to take a stance against redundancy and just underline the word inevitable in the section title. I'm usually a bit quicker and as I turn my head when my line is finish he is starting his. We crack up in the silent church way...what two people would do that - what one person would do that?
Still not convinced of this perfect match? Let me give another example: It's also the speakers birthday. His name is Greg. We begin to sing. It comes to the insert the name part. "Happy Birthday Dear Greg..........ory". Yep, at the last possible second we both have to add in our two cents of what we think is funny and it happens to be the exact same thing. The great thing is that doing something dumb with someone else makes it almost seem cool. Only God would have known such opposites would make a perfect match.

Friday, April 21, 2006

When I grow up

When I grow up I want to be a graphic designer. That's a person who plays with pictures and makes cool images of all sorts with them right? That's what I want to do. Right now I don't know anything and I'm working with a $50 program. Photoshop must be freaking fun. Someday maybe, if I ever really do grow up I'm gonna grab me a piece of that action.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

framed awesomeness

I love how you can have a pretty nice picture but then you put it in a frame and it looks completely awesome. I think that's all professionals do - frame semi-good pictures and sell them like they're the coolest thing ever. We have this one in our bedroom now. I framed it for you so that you could get the full awesomeness...are you gettin it?

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Best Easter Present Ever

This afternoon at the in-laws' I received my Easter present from Abby.
I was downstairs on this computer working on my Downieville re-post when she and her parents came down, dragged me from my seat and down the hall to the spare bathroom, which looked a little different than usual. It never used to have an enlarger on the counter..... or boxes full of developing trays.... or a safelight, timer, grain focuser, and.... big chocolate Easter bunny? I guess they wanted to Easter-ize the presentation, but I barely noticed the fake green grass and plastic eggs among all the beautiful black metal and white plastic of all my new darkrooom equipment. Brilliant!
Abby, after searching all week on the internet, located the equipment in Napa, bought it yesterday and sent her father on the three-hour drive to pick it up this morning. I never had a clue.
Now I've got a lot of work to do before our first show a month from now....
I love my wife.

Downieville: Version 2.0

For those of you who, like me, were disappointed with the quality of the first Downieville post, I offer this retelling of the story:

Downieville rocks.
Downieville, California, in the heart of the Sierra, population 325. At the confluence of the Downie and Yuba rivers, Downieville is the smallest town on the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour, and the scene of our latest adventure.

We left work early on Friday and headed out of Reno, up into the mountains, into the area of California known as Jefferson State, where life is slower, people are independent but friendly, and the trees are green with moss even when covered in snow. We crossed the Little Truckee River, the plains of Sierraville, and Yuba Pass at 6700 feet, by which time Abby was feeling thoroughly nauseated. Ah, the beauty of twisting mountain roads. Descending then through a dense and snowy pine forest, we passed through Bassets, Sierra City, and Loganville - none of which have populations over 200 - and arrived at Sierra Shangri-La, a bed and breakfast/resort on the banks of the Yuba River, where we had reservations for the night.
Our cabin, complete with a full kitchen, wood stove, and deck overlooking the river, was the coziest place I've ever stayed for 80 bucks a night. For pictures, click the link above, then click 'Cottages', then 'Jim Crow.'

After moving in, we ventured into 'downtown' Downieville for dinner at the Grubstake Saloon, where Abby had made reservations and the staff called her by name from the moment we walked in the door.
After dinner we walked the half-block down Main Street to the Yuba Theatre, which seats about 150 and was completely packed for the Banff Mountain Film Festival. We were early and sat in our seats for thirty minutes while half the town filtered in and greeted each other. A gray-bearded man of about 70 sat next to me and began telling another local about his recent grueling hike down a rocky river gorge. A Girl Scout ran up to the man sitting in front of me and said 'Dan, do you know how to work the popcorn machine?' Eventually the rep from Banff stood up and began by saying how she and her colleagues always fight to be the one who brings the festival to Downieville.

That night as we crawled into bed with a fire in the wood stove there were images in my head of rocks, rivers, and lofty mountain crags, and I felt enriched and strangely closer to the wide and wild world we live in.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

We Did It!

Today we were officially accepted into the Arts in Bloom Craft Festival in downtown Sparks, NV. Don't be fooled by the dumb name and the industrial plants scattered through out it -Sparks is a major western art metropolis. A special thanks goes out to the City of Sparks Art Department for telling us we were accepted at the last possible moment. We have one month to bust a move and print some pictures. Any of our friends in Reno are invited to come down and say hi May 14th from 10am to 5pm. That's Mother's day so bring your mom and buy her a picture or a hotdog (from another vendor, we only have so much talent).

Monday, April 10, 2006

Downieville, CA

Much more news to report on the adventure side of things then the art these days...Friday night we headed into the Sierras for another weekend outing. We made the two hour drive to Downieville, CA. checked into our cabin at Sierra Shangri-la, had dinner at the Grubstake, and went to the Banff Mountain Film Festival at the Yuba Theatre. Downieville has the distinction of being the smallest town on the BMFF circuit: population 325. The 150 seat theatre was packed out for the event, which, contrary to the website listed time of two hours lasted three and a half. There were films about base jumping, mountain biking, fly fishing, rock climbing, and ice hockey in Tibet. A brilliant and enriching experience, as always.
The next day we explored the town and met some of the locals. Of course everyone knew we didn't belong there but in a town that size, business owners are friendly and have plenty of time to talk. We had a nice conversation with Ingrid, owner of Downieville Grocery, about photography, the film festival, and life in a small town, before getting back in the Jeep and heading out to do some picture hunting.
We had directions to a waterfall just outside Sierra City off the Pacific crest Trail. But after strapping on our snowshoes and heading into the woods, we discovered that the trail wasn't very well marked and quite unused in the winter. After wondering around for a while looking for a sign we had to give up. Gutted.
The forests in the area were amazing. I've never seen trees covered with moss and snow before. We made a few more stops to venture into the snow on our drive home and arrived back in Reno with just enough energy to make pizza and watch March of the Penguins. Unpack? Not a chance.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Railway Crossing

This picture could symbolize the crossroads Tim and I have run into this week. What church should we go to? What ministry should we be involved with? What future career should we shoot for? Where will we live when the baby is born? What will we make for dinner AGAIN? And we only barely figured out dinner before we starved to death.
But actually, I just wanted to put a few of our past random pictures in front of you and ask you what you thought. Could we sell this one? It's plain but... look at the symbolism possibilities.