doing something about it

It should be pretty clear from this post and this post that the past few months have been some of the toughest of my life. And part of what has made this so challenging for me is the lack of control I've felt in all of this... we moved for Jared's job, for Emma's future - and what I wanted sort of got lost in the shuffle. I was okay with that because what I want most in life is for my family to be happy. But I'm no martyr mama. And it was high time I get back to doing what nurtures me as an individual, not just as a wife and mother. So I've been making an effort to get out more and explore our new city. Emma and I had a girls day last Saturday and went downtown to check out the shops, walk along the creek, and grab some dinner. We even happened upon a crazy bike race with those old fashioned tall bikes with the big front wheels (they're apparently called Penny Farthings.)

Another big part of nurturing myself has been getting back to blogging. It's such a simple thing, but it really helps me to feel grounded, focused, and connected. And despite my hiatuses during the move and after Emma's birth, my intention has always been to keep growing and improving my little corner of the Internet. So... I'm very excited to announce that I've signed up for not one, but TWO classes this fall that will undoubtedly help me do just that! I've been wanting to take both for at least a year now, and in the past few days I finally bit the bullet and signed up.

The first is Clickin' Moms Shooting 101: The Best Darn Beginners Course Ever. You may have noticed that my photography has only slightly improved since starting this blog, due to my meager attempts at teaching myself how to operate our camera in AV (and sometimes Manual) mode. And now that Emma's running circles around us, I find myself missing all the perfect shots because I'm still fumbling with the settings. This class is supposed to be one of the best online courses out there, and from the reviews I'm optimistic that it will be money well spent. From everything that we have going on this Fall, to projects I have in the works, I really want to get my photography skills (or lack thereof) in better shape so I can feel more confident sharing photos with you. It's also #53 on my Life List, so yay!

The second class is one I'm still pinching myself about, and I'm pretty sure I won't be able to sleep the night before considering how excited I already am... I signed up for BLOGSHOP!! It's the amazingly fabulous Photoshop for bloggers class taught by Bri from DESIGNLOVEFEST and photographer Angela Kohler. I missed it when they came to Portland, so when I saw that they were coming to DC I knew I had to jump on it. I'm a self-taught Photoshopper so I'm bound to have about a million a-ha moments during those two days learning all the tips and tricks that will make my blogging life a whole lot easier. And I get to learn all those cool graphic-y things I see on other people's blogs and wonder how the heck they did them. I'm super intimidated and have nothing to wear, but I'm hoping everyone else feels that way too and I won't stand out like a sore thumb among my classmates' supreme hipness.

So that's that! My photography class starts in a few weeks, and Blogshop is at the end of October. On top of the hiking, camping, and beach trips we're excited to take as a family this Fall, it feels really good to have a couple of things on the calendar that are just for me. :-)