The Notebook – Winter Edition

MIA. That was me throughout this winter, at least in this little spot. Between winter sickness, full participation in a 4 week photography workshop and a big house move, my little world here was put on hold. We are still settling into the house and found out we have a big plumbing project to take on immediately, but I’m here, have a lot to share, and will slowly take on my house to make it home!



Like I said, I submersed myself in a full participation 4 week workshop over at Clickin’ Moms. This one was on creative processing in Lightroom, and it blew me away! I learned so much about each panel. I also learned so many little tricks to enhance my photos, I am still going back, rereading and playing with parts of the course. This class was not for a beginner photographer and previous knowledge of Lightroom was really helpful. We took our best photographs (composition, white balance, exposure all taken into account) and worked on creatively manipulating them to help tell a story. I’ll have a follow-up post to let you in on all I learned, and why that class changed my processing.  Here is one of my results:

creative processing with Lightroom led to this photo of my daughter spinning in her tutu


There is also this little breakout session entitled Art and Authenticity over in the Clickin’ Moms store.  The photographer, Jessica Thomason’s describes her realization that in pursuing technically and artistically perfect photos she got great looking shots, however the memories she wanted to keep weren’t there.  Those first few pages had me hooked, and introspectively I’ve begun to look for the memories and moments even without the right light and with all the clutter.  She teaches how to capture the moments that are real while keeping them interesting and beautiful.

I got a Lensbaby – the Sweet 35 and Composer Pro– and I love it!  I’m totally learning how to use it right now, but it is so much fun!  If I’m getting bored with my shots I put this little thing on and I’m inspired!  It takes a lot of practice and patience but the effects are what I love! If you are even considering it, I would rent it first for one week and play with it everyday while reading tutorials on it, to see if you like it.  I’ve also heard the Lensbaby Spark is easier to learn. Here is a taste 🙂

Photo of my daughter in a red dress taken with a Lensbaby


There is another preschool number tracing calendar for March on the blog that you can find here!

I finally made a bunny softie for Taryn, who never got one until now. I’ve made many others for other people, including her sister.  She did get to pick out her fabric – purple of course – and watch me go through the process.

Sourdough bread is one of my favorites, so I made a starter. I’m now on my way to baking some loaves and biscuits! It is the perfect winter bread!

On the Web

**  I don’t list every article I loved – but I do tweet out all of the articles I read and love – and you can follow me on twitter @breadcrumbsmary to get those. Still, there are a lot in this list because I’ve been ‘away’ for so long. **

So, I entitled this little monthly series, The Notebook because I’ve always kept a little ongoing notebook of stuff – everything basically from deals at stores, stuff I have to do, stuff I learned, books to read, quotes, etc.  Then, I found this little gem – The Bullet Journal – which seems to fit perfectly with my notebook.  I’ve been using it and I love it because my notebook is now organized!  

A new way to appreciate Shel Silverstein – an article on his allegory for relationships:  The Missing Piece.

If there is any article that clearly explains why arts education is important this is it:  7 Leadership Skills Fostered in Arts Education.  Its not a boring academic article either.

I’m not sure why this article got to me, maybe because it is time we grew up and integrated our own style in our home.  Seriously motivating and inspirational.  All about changing your style in your home!

Besides loving her gorgeous photography, this article – The Truth Can Hurt by Lacey Meyers – touched home – a little truth in what we say to our kids may be just as meaningful to ourselves.  Her breakout, Photographing Your Everday, was the first I took over at Clickin’ Moms and it really helped me find how to capture my days with my girls and how to cleanly edit those shots.  Her blog is beautiful, inspiring, and thoughtful. And if you want another inspiring article from her, read this:  Why I’m Content, Blogging From the Bathroom Floor.


Thorn by Intisar Khanani – beautiful and good storyline.

The Sword of the Banshee – If you like historical fiction, especially those around the American Revolution this is an easy read to check out.

Others include The Glass Kitchen: A Novel of Sisters by Linda Francis Hughes, Division of the Marked (The Marked Series Book 1) by March McCarron (only 99 cents on Kindle at the time of publishing this) and Lizzy and Jane by Katherine Reay.  

Most of these books I’ve been getting through Bookburb recommendations in my email and if it catches my eye, I get it and read.  The bad part is it keeps me from reading other books on my to be read list.

Photography Projects

My 365 project is almost over 150 days now!  You can see my project in a grid layout at The Albums.  If you are interested in starting a 365 project, they have a great little email course on it and so much more over there, including their #instaprompt project – check out The Albums here. Don’t think you have to start on January 1 even though so many people do.  I started on October 1.

I did finish my p52 project from last year and tried to pick it up again this year but I’m feeling blah about it so I let it go. I still skip over to the group I was in and  lurk look at what they are creating each week.  

You can still find me over at instagram completing the #cmglimpse prompts each week!  Or trying to. I wish I did it everyday, but I don’t.  The group there is so supportive and I’ve found some great instagram friends.  I also found #instaprompt and love it because their prompts make you stop and think about your life and what is important.  Then you have to try and capture that meaning.  I love reading through what others post over there as well.

My favorite photos this winter:

(There are lots but it has been 3 months)

Winter Favorites-19

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Winter Favorites-7

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 Thanks for taking a peek inside my winter!

I’m joining Leigh Kramer again for What I’m Into this month.

Stick around for a little while and consider subscribing (on the right or below) because I’ve got some good stuff coming up including my thoughts on using a Lensbaby, 365 projects, and how to love your phone’s camera (and the pics you take with it)!  See ya soon!