Monday, June 28, 2010

Tomato Soap

Please vote!!!   My tomato soap is in a contest!!!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Our new family picture

I'm so excited to see this picture.  Thanks to my niece Kelly Warren for taking this one. 
In the back: Hannah, Mark, Katie, Jason, Emily, Me, Angela
In the front: Ethan, Jacque, Olivia, Heather, Preston, Aimee and Karlie

This is how I take pictures of product

     With over 150 different listings, I take lots of pictures.  Many people don't see most and the best ones I use in my listings.  It was suggested last fall that I purchase a light box or some refer to it as a table top studio.  With having little kids around that would take soap from my pictures as I'm taking them, I thought it would be more of a controlled environment.  This is what my light box looks like ...I like to bounce the light off the top to reduce shadows.  I figured that out after watching my daughter in law take graduation pictures. 


I am no way an expert and I keep learning everyday. This article  really helped me learn more about my cameras that I use.  I struggle with the white balance many times.  The article showed me what the possibilities are that I can get from my camera. 

Friday, June 25, 2010

Memories of Rocky

     We lost a dear friend today.  He loved to be included in our family, played Frisbee with the kids, went to get our Christmas tree with us and never minded a good practical joke.
     He came to us via some friends of my mom's, Linda and Jim, who allowed us to spend the last 8 1/2 years with the best dog God ever created.  You hear the saying, Gentle Giant and Rocky was just that.  At 125 pounds this yellow lab was crawled upon, visitors had to step over...he would never hurt anyone that came to our farm.
    Rocky would have turned 13 in July this year, which is old for a large farm dog.  In January of 2010 he got very sick and we almost lost him then but with determination our kids would have him stand and they'd massage his legs.  After laying flat out for 3 weeks he came around.  His eye sight and hearing were failing terribly and he never saw our daughter backing out of the garage 10 days ago and he walked right behind the car.  She never saw him either.   Since then, he's been in the barn resting with the cats.  He started sitting up again and we thought he was going to recover.  Today after dinner Mark made the announcement that Rocky passed away.
    When Rocky first came to us the kids quickly discovered that he could play Frisbee.  Every morning and night they'd play with him.  In his younger days he'd jump in the air to catch it, as he got older he'd let it fall and lay next to it.   Even when he lived in the house with us he knew the best place at the dinner table was next to one of the little kids...they always drop food.  So he never needed to beg.  Jason would tease him with treats and balance them on his nose and Rocky had to wait for Jason to say "OK" Then he'd snap it up into the air and grab it with his mouth. 
     He gave our kids some of the best memories anyone could have asked will be missed. 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

You Call this R&R?

This morning I got thinking of things coming up and decided to ask the family if they'd like to go hiking over at Devil's Lake, Baraboo WI?  We figured that it had been about 10 years since we've ventured over there.  During our drive over we picked up munchies and drinks, at this time the mood was upbeat and full of laughter.  Little did any of us know what was in store for us.

The day was beautiful, a little humid but under the coolness of the trees it felt perfect.  So on our hike we went.  Climbing up and up and up.  Mom, Dad and 8 kids in tow.  

We kept climbing up until we saw this...

To the right you can see the brown building where we started out.  After sitting there a while we noticed a pair of bald eagles flying cool was that?  That was something none of us have ever seen before.  Then it was onto the rest of the trail.  We wanted to circle around the whole lake.  So we moved on...right on off the path and into a patch of poison ivy.  Luckily no one was affected.  We were standing right out in the middle of no where.  Mark walked away and found that we were 300' off the path.  That's what happens when everyone just follows the front person.  As the old saying goes "what goes up must come down"...down happen to be a path straight down some tumbled rocks and a waterfall. 

We gingerly made our way down this...every step was thought out.  Then we hear the lead person yell, "I see the bottom"...that was music to our ears.  We never felt so good about walking on flat land.  We climbed up 334' and had to come down 334'...all in this one path. 

This is what we see at the bottom. Beautiful, flat marked out paths!!! At this point we aren't half way yet...but the rest of the hike is FLAT!!!

So we continued on our way. 

This was the rest of the hike, in and around boulders.  All in all...great day.  Hiked over 3 miles and it took 3 hours and 15 minutes.  By the end it was more like 8 kids with mom and dad in tow.  LOL  Now we are talking about taking grandma and grandpa along and spend 2 days.