Monday, November 10, 2008

Prayer Project Begins

Well, I didn't have to look far for my first test. My willing participant was easy to find and was even willing to go change back to his jammie top after he was already dressed for the day. So what do you think? Also do you like black and white or color better?

So what do you think? Also do you like black and white or color better?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Project Prayer

I have been praying for quite some time about what to do with my photography. I love to take pictures, I really do. When I have tried to work towards building a portfolio so I could start a business I realized that I am too slow at proofing and become overwhelmed and take way too long in getting pictures back to people.  I don't ever want to stop taking pictures for my friends and family. I want them to have a hard copy of today... a photograph of how things are right now at this very moment. I love trying to capture peoples personalities for memory sake. 

Lindsay is very encouraging when it comes to my photography but is a true friend and gives constructive criticism when appropriate. She has often told me that my scenery pictures are her favorites. It is kind of funny to me because I am always telling her she reminds me so much of my mom Millie. Once again she follows my mom's path, because when I was young and drew and painted pictures all the time she always wanted me to do scenery. I take pictures of beauty when I see it. I have taken many trips with Brent with the sole purpose to take pictures of specific areas of nature. We have gone out to the desert in the spring, to Oak Creek in the fall, in the mountains in Utah, and while in Oregon we did a road trip just to see the beauty. When I am trying to channel into my creative side I take my 100mm macro lens out and get an up close look at the world around me... hmmm... that sounds like a fun thing to do tomorrow! 

My kids say I am long winded and pointless sorry I ramble so much...  back to my prayer. I have been praying of how to best use my talents to benefit others. I have been praying for several months about it with no real answers. He always answers my prayers and I haven't felt let down because I haven't felt the answer yet because I assume that I wasn't ready to hear the answer yet. 

The election this fall has impacted me like no other election ever has. I got myself to be ok with the outcome of the presidential race but have been really struggling with the reaction in California of the prop. 8. I am so offended that people are protesting the majority because it wasn't what THEY wanted. They are vowing to get it deemed unconstitutional and have the proposition revoked.  I want desperately to find a way through photography to stand up for family and for what is right. I turned  to prayer of how to do this. 

Also I must mention  after having Brent's big birthday party we created a new project for my sweet husband. We want him to do a concert of his music but didn't feel right about just having a here's my music come see me concert so we have come up with an idea of doing a program that will bring comfort, conversion, and commitment for those that attend... in other words to try to do something that will uplift those that attend and perform. As part of the program he wants a slide show of some of my photography. For weeks I have been praying to know what to do.

So with all of these areas that I have been praying for what to do and  finally getting my self in a place where I can hear my answer... and the ironic part of it is that I am going to do a project of PRAYER. I have other ideas also, like family's working together, family home evenings, reading scriptures, the beauties of the world, temples, and the list goes on. 

My first project will be one of prayer. Family prayer, couples prayers, old couples, young couples, families just starting, families with teens, large families, small families, single moms and dad's with their children. Teaching children to pray, old prayers, young prayers, happy prayers, sad prayers and the list goes on. I am thinking that I would like to go into peoples homes and take pictures of the way THEY pray. To capture the essence of those praying. I am even toying with the idea of getting people of other religions in prayer. I am not sure where this is going or what purpose if any it has but I feel really good inside about doing it. I will probably wait until I get my new camera to go into full swing on this project but would like to start the project sooner than later. I thought I have no idea what I am doing and need to do many practice sessions and figure out lighting in peoples homes and things like release documents for people to sign. I don't know if I feel more excited or more humble by this project but I do know that I don't have to please anyone other than my self and my Heavenly Father which is very liberating to me. 

So why am I blogging about this. Because as with any good project I need help. I need people to be willing to let me come into their homes and take pictures. I need ideas for poses (not really the term I want but I couldn't think of another way to say it). I need ideas of angles to use to be creative. I want to use a diversity of families. A symphony isn't a symphony without lots of different instruments. I need ideas for who to use. If you are interested in you or your family being photographed in my project please feel free to post to this blog or email me at debe at azsong dot com if you would rather be private about it. If you have ideas of other people I can ask please email me. Anyone know anything about writing release forms? 

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A New Day

I love fresh new beginnings. Like the dawn of a new day. A new baby. A first tooth. A hug and a I love you mommy (no matter how many of those I have had in my life, each one is just as precious as the first one) A new job or a new promotion. A new seedling poking it's tiny head through the soil for the first time.

This election has really made a huge impact on me. I think the comment I feel says the most about what happened was that, Obama promised change. He was vague. Change would have come with or without him. He promised what everyone wanted and left it to be so vague that millions of Americans filled in their own minds what that meant to them. I hope not too many of them will be disappointed with the future that this new change will bring. I, for one, want them to get what they want and I want them to have wonderful productive lives. I hope this will be a good change. I hope that this country and our freedom we all take for granted becomes a better place in the coming years.

As Obama promised we will see change. Tomorrow we will wake up and we will make new decisions that will mold our day. As our days become molded our lives become our works of art and who we really are become set in gold. The only control we have is over our decisions today. We control our thoughts, our feelings, our attitudes and our actions.

Today for me is a new day. A new beginning. A bright beautiful day. The birds are chirping, the grass is green, the sky is blue (sometimes we have to look through the smog to see it but it is blue), children will laugh today, they will play and find joy. Today will find humble children kneeling in prayer, singing songs of worship, reading their scriptures, hugging their children. Heavenly Father gave us the day and the night, so we will have a new start every 24 hours because some of us need to start over that often.

I want to be a better mother, daughter, sister, neighbor and friend today. I want this new day to be more special than any day before it. This election has taught me to appreciate what I have and it has reminded me that just because I live in this wonderful country doesn't mean I am entitled to everything I want. I have to make the most of what I have. I have to appreciate what has been given to me. I want Heavenly Father to know that I love him, that I am truly grateful for me being born in America. I appreciate the opportunity that I have been born period. That I get to have a body, that I get to have this experience. I appreciate that I have a family. I am grateful for our living prophet and for the technology that makes it so I can instantly hear the things I need to know to be the person I want to be. I am grateful too for the agency that I have to chose good and bad, truth or lies, to be righteous or a sinner. I am grateful that he trusted me to do what it takes to return to him and is giving me a chance to prove myself. I am grateful for the atonement. I am grateful for today, a new day.

Cute Baby Alex

There is no greater miracle than a new baby! He is so loved and we welcome him with all of our hearts into our family!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Lucky Number 13

Our lucky baby arrived today in Alaska.
Alex David Ridgeway
7 pounds 6 ounces
21 inches long.
Born at home at 12:42pm
Monday November 3rd 2008

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Sunday Game

We were being bad and didn't go to the Regional Conference. I know I should have gone. I know I needed to set a good example for Joseph. It just didn't happen.
Sooooo.... I decided that I needed to do something fun and spiritual by nature to replace the time we should have been at our meeting.
We played the game from the new Children's Friend. It the Scripture Picture Game but we had to adapt it to just the two of us and one of us can't read good enough to play this game. What we did was when Joseph landed on a scripture I read it to him and he drew the picture. When I landed on a scripture I drew the picture and had him guess (most of mine I even had to explain to him what the scripture was... it turned out to be a really good learning experience)
Here is the pictures we drew (not everything was scriptures and drawing, some were singing a song or naming an ancestor, etc.

The first one is Joseph's from Jonah 1:17
17 ¶ Now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish athree days and three nights.
Then mine from Ephesians 6:13
13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Then Joseph was asked to draw 2 ways to show reverence.
Then he got D&C 119:4
4 And after that, those who have thus been atithed shall pay one-tenth of all their interest annually; and this shall be a standing law unto them forever, for my holy priesthood, saith the Lord.
Joseph then got to draw 2 ways of being a good friend. He cracks me up. His niece is his best friend... he has glasses and she has pretty eye lashes. The first picture he is sharing and the second he is letting her go first on the slide.
He then got Alma 46:12&13
12 And it came to pass that he rent his coat; and he took a piece thereof, and wrote upon it—aIn memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children—and he fastened it upon the end of a pole.
13 And he fastened on his head-plate, and his abreastplate, and his shields, and girded on his armor about his loins; and he took the pole, which had on the end thereof his rent coat, (and he called it the btitle of liberty) and he cbowed himself to the earth, and he prayed mightily unto his God for the blessings of liberty to rest upon his brethren, so long as there should a band of dChristians remain to possess the land—
I got Exodus 3:2
2 And the aangel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of bfire out of the midst of a cbush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.

We got (in two separate turns) the story of the Wise and Foolish man. I got 3 Nephi 14:24-25 and a couple of turns later Joseph got vrs. 26-27. I love all the pieces of his house just laying around next to each other.
24 Therefore, whoso heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who built his house upon a arock

25 And the arain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it bfell not, for it was founded upon a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them not shall be likened unto a afoolish man, who built his house upon the bsand

27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell, and great was the fall of it.

This is 1 Nephi 4:8-9, this one surprised me to be in there to draw, but they didn't add the scripture where he kills him.... hmmmm
8 And when I came to him I found that it was Laban.

9 And I beheld his asword, and I drew it forth from the sheath thereof; and the hilt thereof was of pure gold, and the workmanship thereof was exceedingly fine, and I saw that the blade thereof was of the most precious steel.

D&C 29:2 (I am not sure I ever got Joseph to understand the concept of this one... he was happy to draw a mommy chicken and her baby)
2 Who will agather his people even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, even as many as will hearken to my voice and bhumble themselves before me, and call upon me in mighty prayer.
this one cracks me up. when there has never been a picture of an object it is subject to interpretation... and this is Joseph's go ahead take a guess of what it is before you read on... LOL
1Nephi 16:10
10 And it came to pass that as my father arose in the morning, and went forth to the tent door, to his great astonishment he beheld upon the ground a round aball of curious workmanship; and it was of fine brass. And within the ball were two spindles; and the one bpointed the way whither we should go into the wilderness.
And what LDS scripture game would be complete without 1Nephi 16:18
18 And it came to pass that as I, Nephi, went forth to slay food, behold, I did break my bow, which was made of fine asteel; and after I did break my bow, behold, my brethren were angry with me because of the loss of my bow, for we did obtain no food.

Joseph thought this was the best game ever and we spent some real quality time together and learned more about the scriptures...
He also memorized the first Articles of Faith during the game...

Joseph THE Recording Star

Yesterday was Joseph's first time to go to a recording studio and record a piece of music. He played the song he did for his dad's birthday party. "The Gospel of Jesus Christ Can Bring Me Peace" is an original song his dad wrote. He played it perfectly! He sang it wonderfully! We were super happy and it only took 2 takes to get it perfect!
He loved playing the grand piano! His dad does too!
He wasn't nervous at all he was just super excited!

My little recording star!

Saturday, November 1, 2008


I am a day late and a dollar short but here are a few of the kids at Halloween.