Photography is a passion of mine but I do have a life and other interests. I am also passionate about my family, animals, and life in general and yes, sometimes that means some quirky stuff. I wrote a column on Examiner.com for seven years and with their recent closure I've been transferring many of my old article's into the blog.
So here you'll find a little business, a little personal, and a little bit of everything in between. It's all just a bit of a mish-mash here but I hope that you'll enjoy the images I share, what you read, and will return often.
To view my professional work, please visit www.gilasplace.com
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A family gathering
Had a great holiday weekend with my family. July 3rd, every year, we have a neighborhood party, and that's my one day-of-year that my whole family tries to make it down for the day. My whole neighborhood is full of dozens of BBQ's, all day, simultaneously. Fun stuff!
It wasn't long before he finally started warming up to me and opening those wings. It was strange to see how plain he was folded up and so colorful when relaxed with wings splayed open.
Ally was running all over the front deck wanting to get the party started. She's always on the go and ready to roll. Bless her heart, she's so precious.
Last year we waited too long to head down the beach for a swim. We got there just before sunset and other than splashing around along the waterfront no one got much playtime in the water. Elly was bummed. Well, all the kids were bummed, but Elly was the one child most heartbroken over it. So this year I planned to make it a point to get the kids to the beach so they could get waterlogged and worn out. But Missouri nature has a mind of it's own and thunderstorms were predicted for the entire weekend. Niece Zoey had recently had surgery and wasn't going to be able to swim even if the rain didn't spoil the scene. The beach visit was going to be tricky.
This however, is most of what I saw of Garrett. It kind of made me nervous that I saw his feet more than his head, in a lake.
Well, I did see his sweet face occasionally. :-) He gave me his well-rehearsed-best smile for the camera.
But the rest of the time it was all feet, or watching him from a distance, enjoying time with his cousins. Good times :-)
Claire had been camera elusive all day, and the only shots I got of her were in the lake. It wasn't just fun at the beach. Well, it was all fun, but some of it was educational fun. Garrett has gown up seeing and messing with the mussels in the lake, but our Illinois family was infatuated with them. Even Roger, whose seen a lot in his young life, was totally amazed. At any rate, they were all enthralled, and it was great stuff.
Ally was all over the place. That's Ally. She is fearless, curious, and easily intrigued. She keeps Lacey hopping at a regular pace and it's sure that when her new sister arrives this fall, Lacey is going to really have her hands full. She's a wonderful mommy, so I am sure she will pull two little ones off like a breeze.
She's so stinkin' cute she's going to get by with everything she comes up with too. Meanwhile, relaxing in a chair beyond the beach, is niece Zoey. Poor Zoe. Tore her Meniscus, had to have surgery, and is now down for the count, for the entire summer. She loves to swim. It's got to be killing her to hang back with all that frolicking and laughter that's happening just a few dozen feet away. She's hanging tough but it's certain she would have rather have been swimming than sitting in that chair watching.
I turn to see a conversation taking place between two of my sisters. They are standing on the waterfront, watching the kids, and there is no telling what kind of snarky chat is going on here. These two are priceless. I love them both endlessly. It's like Marcy is saying, "You know it's true", and Amanda is looking at me like, "Are you hearing this?" No "Manda, I didn't hear, but I could only imagine.
A quick catch of Zoe tells me how she really feels about sitting out the summer with a bummed up leg. Poor kid. Can't feel bad enough for her. In pain, restricted, and missing out. Just caption these two shots. I think they should both be memes.
Amanda says she sees these looks all the time. Ah, the joys of having a preteen girl, an active one that's confined for the summer, at that.
Hayley and Hudson are just hanging out, watching Claire and the other kids in the water. Hudson's just a little too small it the britches for the lake already. But next year it's sure we'll have him digging sand and splashing like the rest of them.
I keep telling my oldest here, we need to put pony tails in that beard so he can get some air. He's intent on looking like ZZ Top's twin and he's pulling it off quite well too, I'd say.
After seeing my sister suffer one of the most horrendous losses in life, it's certainly good to finally see her somewhat at ease and getting the love and comfort she deserves. Roger has been a pleasant addition to our lives and I am grateful for the warmth he's brought to the lives of my sister and nieces.
Caught Marcy looking all serious and deep in thought. Loosen up sista. It's a holiday. Time to have fun. Stop all that serious contemplating.
All in all it was a great day. Zoey, while bummed I'm sure, was still full of smiles for me.
Amanda was having a relaxing day. She's got a smile that will light up a room.
And Hudson's day was fairly laid back. Hayley is just busy doing what she does. She's such a good mom. She takes a little time to give me a look.
And Elly, well, she was more than a little happy that she got to play at the beach this year. She was so excited and played so hard. So I asked her, "Elly, how much fun did you have today?" And this is the smile I got. A picture's worth a thousand words, right?
When it started getting dark, we could see the neighbors getting ready to unload the fireworks and float them to the island to prep the show.
For the first time in almost two decades I spent the rest of the evening, even during the fireworks display, without a camera in my hand. It's the first time in more years than I can remember, that I don't have any fireworks shots other than the couple of failures on my cell phone.
Enjoyed sharing your experience. Lovely family.
What a beautiful family. Thank you for sharing!
1.'Manda'....your favorite little sister.(non-registered)
Great blog. Great day with family. Missing pics of you though. Love you so much Gila. I love the way you love me and my bunch. ♥️
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