Personal

A Sunday in London (from an iPhone)

Hi there!

I’m behind on blog posts (story of my life), but wanted to check in from my visit in the UK.  Woohoo for Fall Break and a sister who lives in London!  I’ve been out a few times without my fancy camera and haven’t had much editing time, so this post won’t have the highest quality of photos, but I figured you all won’t care about that as much as I do.

So here you have my first day in London, as seen from my iPhone.  Fancy pics will be coming soon!

I arrived to a wall of welcome signs!

I arrived to a wall of welcome signs!

I got to meet my two-week-old niece Sunday morning!

I got to meet my two-week-old niece Sunday morning!

We went to my brother-in-law and sister's church near St. Paul's Cathedral Sunday morning.

We went to my brother-in-law and sister’s church near St. Paul’s Cathedral Sunday morning.

Apparently this place holds some history to it. :)

Apparently this place holds some history to it. 🙂

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Church Building

Postman's Park is right next to the church. I had to get a photo of this squirrel. Last spring, my Dad randomly announced

Postman’s Park is right next to the church. I had to get a photo of this squirrel. Last spring, my Dad randomly announced “England squirrels have pointy ears” after the topic of England came up. It cracked me up, so I had to document whether or not English squirrels’ ears are different than American squirrels. I like to imagine that these ears are a bit more pointy, even if they aren’t. 🙂

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This memorial display is in Postman's Park and I found it to be such a beautiful, tragic glimpse into the past.

This memorial display is in Postman’s Park and I found it to be such a beautiful, tragic glimpse into the past.

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Here are some samples of the tiles displayed at the memorial. I was struck by the ages of the people who passed away, as well as the graphic descriptions of their passing.

Here are some samples of the tiles displayed at the memorial. I was struck by the ages of the people who passed away, as well as the graphic descriptions of their passing.

Here are some samples of the tiles displayed at the memorial. I was struck by the ages of the people who passed away, as well as the graphic descriptions of their passing.

Here are some samples of the tiles displayed at the memorial. I was struck by the ages of the people who passed away, as well as the graphic descriptions of their passing.

Here are some samples of the tiles displayed at the memorial. I was struck by the ages of the people who passed away, as well as the graphic descriptions of their passing.

Here are some samples of the tiles displayed at the memorial. I was struck by the ages of the people who passed away, as well as the graphic descriptions of their passing.

After church, we explored a bit before catching the tube back home.

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Nearby is this awesome park created from an old church building's walls. The garden part is based on where the pews and columns were in the original church building.

Nearby is this awesome park created from an old church building’s walls. The garden part is based on where the pews and columns were in the original church building.

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Time to visit St. Paul's Cathedral!

Time to visit St. Paul’s Cathedral!

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My nephews set this shot up all by themselves!

My nephews set this shot up all by themselves!

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Mom and I with St. Paul's behind us. We may or may not have sung a bit of

Mom and I with St. Paul’s behind us. We may or may not have sung a bit of “Feed the Birds” from Mary Poppins as we watched the pigeons on the steps. 🙂

Love the reflection of St. Paul's in a nearby building.

Love the reflection of St. Paul’s in a nearby building.

Of course we had to get a phone booth photo! Many thanks to my mom for capturing the photo of the photo-taking. :)

Of course we had to get a phone booth photo! Many thanks to my mom for capturing the photo of the photo-taking. 🙂


Throwback Thursday: Malacca at Night

In continuing some of my recent posts, I’m still going through old photos from my Southeast Asia adventure in the summer of 2012.  During my quick solo trip to Malacca (aka Melaka) City, in Malaysia I had a great time walking around photographing to my heart’s content.  It was great eating at a delicious Indian restaurant (where I’m sure I looked quite foolish, not knowing for sure how to properly eat what I ordered) and taking in the sight of the canal from the back patio of the hotel where I stayed. Here are a few of my favorite shots from that time.

Right before the sun started to set, as I was searching for a good dinner spot in Little India.

Right before the sun started to set, as I was searching for a good dinner spot in Little India.

Outside where I ate dinner.  The trees were filled with birds, making it one of the noisiest parks I've seen.

Outside where I ate dinner. The trees were filled with birds, making it one of the noisiest parks I’ve been to.

My dinner in Little India

My dinner in Little India

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A pretty great way to spend the evening on my hotel's back patio!

A pretty great way to spend the evening on my hotel’s back patio!


Throwback Tuesday (Is that a thing?): Walking Around Malacca City

As mentioned in my previous post, some photos from my Southeast Asia adventure in July 2012 got lost in the shuffle of life and I’m finally getting back to editing them.  Here are some photos from my quick trip to Malacca City (aka Melaka) in the Malaysian state of Malacca, northwest of Singapore.  I concentrated my exploration in the touristy areas of Little India and Chinatown. I feel like this post contains a bit of sensory overload, but then I remember that’s kind of what my first day was like there.  I don’t have my travel journal or travel book with me right now, so I apologize for not having more details about what these sights are, but I do hope you enjoy these photo highlights!

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My delicious lunch- their well-known chicken rice ball dish

My delicious lunch- their well-known chicken rice ball dish

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I loved the picturesque canal

I loved the picturesque canal

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The town center where I had a few people ask to have their picture taken with me…

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Decorated Trishaws are quite a sight to behold!

Decorated Trishaws are quite a sight to behold!

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And here's some proof that I was present in all of this... a couple selfies and a random fake giraffe feeding from a museum I visited.  :)

And here’s some proof that I was present in all of this… including a selfie with Mr. Universe and a random fake giraffe feeding from a museum I visited. 🙂


Mira Jane

I’m home in Pennsylvania for my spring break this week and had a wonderful time visiting my niece and her husband on Saturday and meeting their new daughter, Mira, who is just over two weeks old.  You may remember Mira’s parents from their wedding photos a few years back.  I couldn’t resist the chance to take some photos of this family of three during my visit.  Here are some of my favorites.  Enjoy!

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Since this is a more personal post, I get to include a personal pic. Here I am with my newest great-niece! 🙂


Flashback Friday: St. Peter’s Church in Malacca, Malaysia

Hi there!  Welcome to my very random Friday blog post.  I’m currently on spring break from teaching and I’ve had a chance to revisit some photos that I never got around to editing a while back.  I just can’t bear the thought of having gone on such a fun adventure and not sharing the photos, so thanks for indulging me by checking out this throwback post…

Here’s some background:  In June and July 2012, I had the awesome opportunity to travel to Southeast Asia as a recipient of a Lily Endowment Teacher Creativity Grant.  You can learn more about the photography club I started and the great things I saw happening in Cambodia on the blog with much gratitude for the experiences the grant allowed me to have.  One bonus of my trip was the time to travel to Singapore, visiting my cousin and her family.  While there, I took a quick side trip to Malaysia, visiting the city of Malacca (also known as Melaka).  When I returned from my southeast Asia adventure, my life got a little crazy, as did my photography business.  I continued to teach, travel, and photograph, and found that time got away from me and I didn’t get to edit and share photos from my many adventures.  So I’ve decided to revisit those photos and share some over the next few months.  I hope you enjoy these somewhat outdated photos!

When I got off the bus in Malacca, I started to explore and was immediately drawn to this church, St. Peter’s.  I think that after spending a couple weeks in Cambodia where Christian churches are uncommon, I found this church to be a novelty and enjoyed checking it out.  While the date is somewhat in question, most believe that St. Peter’s was erected in 1710.  I loved capturing the light pouring into the sanctuary and appreciated the more modern installation in front of the church remembering Jesus walking on water.  I hope you enjoy these photos.  More Malaysia photos will be coming soon!

 

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Making Memories in February: 34 Highlights

In keeping with my birthday month tradition, here are some of my favorite memories made throughout February.  This is my seventh go at documenting the fun parts of February (because, let’s face it, it’s a pretty depressing month weather-wise!) as I force others to celebrate along with me.  🙂  The last couple years are here and here on the blog.  As you’ll see, the focus wasn’t on fancy photography, but on capturing the memories.  Thanks to all who helped make it a great month!

 

#1- Watching the Super Bowl with my community group from church  (All fun, except for the ending!)

#1- Watching the Super Bowl with my community group from church (All fun, except for the ending!)

#2- Meeting my great friends' (Jenny and Peter​) baby girl!

#2- Meeting my great friends’ (Jenny and Peter​) baby girl!

#3- Coming out of work to this sky

#3- Coming out of work to this sky

#4- First Friday at Harrison Center for the Arts

#4- First Friday at Harrison Center for the Arts

 

#5- Fun times with my silly nieces and nephew

#5- Fun times with my silly nieces and nephew

#6- A great afternoon spent with my Indy mom, Sheilah  :)

#6- A great afternoon spent with my Indy mom, Sheilah 🙂

#7- Indiana's winter skies

#7- Indiana’s winter skies

#8- Making myself go for a run after a prolonged break.

#8- Making myself go for a run after a prolonged break.

#9- Hosting a small version of our community group at my place!

#9- Hosting a small version of our community group at my place!

#10- Laughs with friends in my apartment and the clean-up afterward.

#10- Laughs with friends in my apartment and the clean-up afterward.

 

#11- Valentine's Day love from my students.

#11- Valentine’s Day love from my students.

#12- Going home to Pennsylvania and getting snowed in with my parents.

#12- Going home to Pennsylvania and getting snowed in with my parents.

#13- Valentine's Day at home-home, an early birthday celebration, yummy food, and a really nice time with my parents

#13- Valentine’s Day at home-home, an early birthday celebration, yummy food, and a really nice time with my parents

#14- Lots of time with my parents being snowed in all weekend over President's Day.

#14- Lots of time with my parents being snowed in all weekend over President’s Day.

#15- Building and enjoying fires in the fireplace with my Dad

#15- Building and enjoying fires in the fireplace with my Dad

 

 

#16- Pennsylvania snow

#16- Pennsylvania snow

 

 

#17- Ash Wednesday service at my church

#17- Ash Wednesday service at my church

 

 

#18- Going to Shoefly with church friends after the Ash Wednesday service (now I feel like we should've looked more somber for this pic...)

#18- Going to Shoefly with church friends after the Ash Wednesday service (now I feel like we should’ve looked more somber for this pic…)

 

#19- Bazbeaux on 2/19 with some really great friends from various parts of my life in Indy

#19- Bazbeaux on 2/19 with some really great friends from various parts of my life in Indy

 

#20- My first time at Ball & Biscuit and a really nice time with some great girls

#20- My first time at Ball & Biscuit and a really nice time with some great girls

 

#21- A whole lot of randomness that made me happy this month: hilarious bday card, a few musicals I watched with my parents, bubble wrap, a balloon from my friend at work, useful gifts like a stapler and sheets, and Oreos.

#21- A whole lot of randomness that made me happy this month: hilarious bday card, a few musicals I watched with my parents, bubble wrap, a balloon from my friend at work, useful gifts like a stapler and sheets, and Oreos.

 

#22- Gifts and cards from students who were so sweet to think of me

#22- Gifts and cards from students who were so sweet to think of me

 

#23- Pics with my respective reading classes (who actually requested a group photo with me since they saw last year's)

#23- Pics with my respective reading classes (who actually requested a group photo with me since they saw last year’s on my desk)

 

#24- Actual birthday day (2/21) and waking up to this winter wonderland

#24- Actual birthday day (2/21) and waking up to this winter wonderland

 

#25- The real birthday and a yummy birthday lunch with my brother's fam at Bub's

#25- The real birthday and a yummy birthday lunch with my brother’s fam at Bub’s

 

#26- Sled riding on my birthday (2/21) with my brother's family.  And yes, I said sled riding.  That's how we say it in Western PA.  :)

#26- Sled riding on my birthday (2/21) with my brother’s family. And yes, I said sled riding. That’s how we say it in Western PA. 🙂

 

#27- Various facetime chats with my sister and her family across the pond throughout February.

#27- Various facetime chats with my sister and her family across the pond throughout February.

 

#28- My niece sent me on a birthday scavenger hunt, the cutest one ever.  :)

#28- My niece sent me on a birthday scavenger hunt, the cutest one ever. 🙂

 

#29- Cheesecake Factory with my friend Kate.

#29- Cheesecake Factory with my friend Kate.

 

#30- A great Sunday at my church and catching up with my friend Jackie visiting from VA.

#30- A great Sunday at my church and catching up with my friend Jackie visiting from VA.

 

#31- Going out with work friends to RAM on 2/24.

#31- Going out with work friends to RAM on 2/24.

 

#32- My first Indy Fuel game

#32- My first Indy Fuel game

 

#33- Catching up with my friend Sara over some delicious Thai food.

#33- Catching up with my friend Sara over some delicious Thai food.

 

#34- Celebrating this lovely lady's birthday a week after mine with some mani/pedi action.  :) Yay for February birthdays and a great month!

#34- Celebrating this lovely lady Kate’s birthday a week after mine with some mani/pedi action. 🙂
Yay for February birthdays and a great month!

 


Honduran Countryside

In my last post, I showed you some sites from the city of Tegucigalpa from my trip in November.  I had the chance to leave the city a couple times to visit a school and coffee plantation in a cloud forest, as well as going to my friends’ wedding at a beautiful place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia.  I’ve also included a few personal photos at the end since the focus of my trip was more on people than places and I wanted to share a little bit of the great time I had with some of my favorite people who happen to live in Honduras.  🙂

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Breaking photography rules again and posting a photo taken through a car window. I just loved what a classic Honduran scene it is… had to share.

 

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Coffee plants in a cloud forest outside Tegucigalpa

 

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This is a coffee plantation that supports an orphanage and school.

 

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I believe this is the blackberry section of the ranch I visited.

 

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This is a coffee plantation that supports an orphanage and school.

 

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A soccer field on the ranch for the students and families.

 

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A soccer field associated with the school and orphanage.

 

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I love this view on the drive back toward the city.

 

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I love this view on the drive back toward the city.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

Here is a photo of a few of my wonderful friends I was able to visit with during my trip.  It was so fun to be present for my friends' wedding!

Here is a photo of a few of my wonderful friends I was able to visit with during my trip. It was so fun to be present for my friends’ wedding!

I can't resist posting a few personal photos here of some of the wonderful people I was able to visit with while I was there.  It's so hard to believe my former first grade students are now in high school!  It was also great to see my friends' expanding families!

I can’t resist posting a few personal photos here of some of the wonderful people I was able to visit with while I was there. It’s so hard to believe my former first grade students are now in high school! It was also great to see my friends’ expanding families!

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One of my favorite views ever- being above the clouds. 🙂

 

 

 


Tegus in November

I spent my Thanksgiving break in Tegucigalpa, Honduras visiting friends and enjoying the country that I consider my second home.  I taught first grade at International School of Tegucigalpa from 2003 to 2006 and love returning every few years to see my friends and former students.  Tegucigalpa often gets dogged as not being a very picturesque city (and also having a really short runway, which makes for very adventurous plane landings), but I have to say that through my time there I’ve learned to love good old “Tegus” and the beauty it possesses.  This post has some of my favorite photos from the time I spent in the city back in November.  I’ll do a separate post soon with some highlights from my time outside the city.  Enjoy!

 

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A beautiful morning in the colonia of Las Hadas

 

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This is the church I attended when I lived there. It was so great to be back.

 

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Tegucigalpa, as seen from the drive down from El Hatillo

 

 

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Tegucigalpa, as seen from the drive down from El Hatillo

 

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Tegucigalpa, as seen from the drive down from El Hatillo

 

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Tegus at night from Lomas de Jacaleapa

 

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A neighborhood park in Lomas de Jacaleapa

 

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Visiting International School, where I taught for three years, and enjoying all the new improvements that have been made there.

 

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The view of local neighborhoods from International School

 

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Visiting International School, where I taught for three years, and enjoying all the new improvements that have been made there.

 

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Visiting International School, where I taught for three years, and enjoying all the new improvements that have been made there.

 

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There’s probably some rule that I’m breaking right now by posting a photo that I took through a car window, but I’m ok with that. It was fun to see new roads and other improvements that have been made to the city since I lived there.

 

 

 

This is taken from the plane about to take off.  The black gate shows where a road used to be... the runway has been lengthened a bit since I first went there in 2003.

This is taken from the plane about to take off. The black gate shows where a road used to be… the runway has been lengthened a bit since I first went there in 2003.

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This is a market near the neighborhood of Satelite that I went to with my friend Ana.

 

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Here is Tegucigalpa from the airplane- the peace statue on the hill and the national stadium at the bottom of the photo. I always try to get a window seat on the right when I fly out because I love this view of the city. 🙂

 

 

 


South Carolina Family Sessions- Sheldon, SC

I had a great privilege a couple weeks ago when I was visiting my brother’s family in South Carolina.  Remember that beautiful plantation I photographed?  I got to do some family photos for my brother’s family and some family friends of theirs at that same plantation a few weeks ago.  Here are some of my favorites!

Here is my new friend with her little girls:

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And here are my newest Honduran friends:

 

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And here we have the family of my brother and sister-in-law (with his eight youngest children.  Unfortunately his two oldest weren’t in town for this photo shoot):

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We love our jumping photos in the Mansell family!

We love our jumping photos in the Mansell family!

 

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This photo was Maddie’s request. 🙂

 

Here is the whole crew together:

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Since this was my family I was shooting, I got in on the fun too!

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Plantation Evening

It’s amazing what I can get done with this blog when I don’t have a full-time job during the day this week!  Here are photos from a couple Sundays ago when I went with my brother’s family to a local plantation in Sheldon, SC.  Needless to say, it was a magical evening.  Enjoy!

 

That dog really wanted to be in my photos.

That dog really wanted to be in my photos.

 

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Can you spot the white horse?

Can you spot the white horse?

 

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My new favorite.

 

This photo feels a big magical to me.

This photo feels a big magical to me.

 

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My nephew with some of the local animals.  :)

My nephew with some of the local animals. 🙂

 

My lovely niece who accompanied me all over the plantation chasing the good light.  :)

My lovely niece who accompanied me all over the plantation chasing the good light. 🙂