Yesterday my husband and I drove to Penmor Lithographs with our book 'When It's All Said and Done'...Penmor is going to print the book. What an impressive facility! Dave and I got the tour. We saw cool machines and met some of the folks who work there. I said to Dave on the way home, they are all "rock stars" at what they do. I cannot thank them enough for treating us to an impressive afternoon. Here's a big shout out to Wayne, Walter, Brian, Steve, Terry and the rest of the staff. You made us feel very welcomed and we are thrilled to leave out project in your capable hands.
Barbie and Dave
Dotting the i's and crossing the t's... with my husband Dave and our two dogs, Stella Rae and Minnie Mae.
Alzheimer's disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States overall and the 5th leading cause of death for those aged 65 and older. It is the only cause of death among the top 10 in America without a way to prevent it, cure it or even slow its progression.
“So you think you can write?” or, “So you think you can take “good” pictures?” Don’t we all? It was not until I jumped in wholeheartedly, out of a genuine love and passion, that I realized the extent of popularity in the self-publishing or photography arena. I was, and am, on such a learning curve…I had no idea of the language, seriousness, commitment and time it would consume. I only knew that I l enjoy both mediums. I find myself unable to walk away. I am obsessed. I don’t know what makes a person a “photographer,” any more than what makes someone a writer. My husband says that we become one, (either of the aforementioned), the moment we begin to write or take a picture. But I am talking about a real photographer or a real writer, according to the lay-person’s standards.
I suppose it’s when you become good at your “craft.” But “good” is in the eye of the beholder. I read incessantly about photography, yet, I cannot retain the information when it comes time to click my camera.
I look at other people’s photos and appreciate the vision that is seen and captured.
I do not edit in Photo Shop, as that is a learning curve too complex for me.
I was watching the Westminster Dog Show and, while I enjoyed seeing the beautiful dogs, I couldn’t help but find myself drawn to the photographers in the background. I said to myself, “I need to practice taking pictures in low light without using a flash” and, “I wonder what kind of a lens they are using.” I kept getting distracted from the dogs as I attentively looked for “real photographers.” After all, they were in the front row at the Westminster Dog Show… they must be “real” photographers.
Once, I was at an event (with my camera, of course, which hardly ever leaves my side), and a gentleman began to “compare” with me. Apparently, he was a photographer. He held in his hands, like myself, his pride and joy…a digital camera. You know the posture we take? Cute… He sort of snubbed me as I only have a Nikon 3100. Only! This baby cost me $500 dollars along with the throw-in package 200 zoom lens. I had in my “bag” another lens which cost me an additional $500. That’s a lot of money for this gal. Although, I guess that if you’re a serious photographer it’s a nothing camera, but this camera has become a part of me. It fits in my hands like a perfect set of gloves.
My goal, at this event, was to take photos and create a memorable music DVD. I do it free, as well as print pictures, to personally hand to people. What fun!
This gentleman asked me “Do you shoot in the R-A-W?”, “Yep” I said, having no idea what he even meant! “Take that,” I thought, “see, I’m a photographer.” (For those who do not know, RAW is a developed photo or actually undeveloped photo. RAW is like the old way: it sits sort of like a negative in storage until you’re ready to process it. It is different than JPEG, which is what most people use. Not understanding the difference makes them…NOT a photographer, I suppose).
The best advice I was ever given concerning shooting pictures in this digital era was to take as many …and even more than you can think of. Never forget, it’s free to delete them and have a blast!
Excerpt from Chapter 6 'When It's All Said and Done'
" That September, I started taking more pictures than ever. I would drive to Bridgton past a farm that gave me comfort. I watched the season’s sunlight transition and waved at the tractor drivers plowing the fields. I looked forward to seeing the cows and sheep, stopping regularly to photograph them. I began to use my photos to make short DVD music videos about 2-5 minutes long. I would sit for hours at night, editing, improving and telling our story through this medium. Eventually I splurged from a small Sony “point and shot” camera to a Nikon 3100. It became my distraction. I have returned to those DVD’s and they truly reveal memories of my sorrow."
We finished editing our book. We are now finishing on the design and format and getting everything completed so that we can print our book! I am saying 'we' because without my husbands devotion and tireless time to this first heartfelt project, I don't know where I'd be. Thank you Dave for your support and wise oversight...
I first met Georgie 17 years ago. She would soon be my mother in law, as her daughter and I married and made our home in Portland, Maine. It was the second marriage for Barbie and me, so I was well familiar with all of the family dynamics which contributed to a marriage. Family gatherings including holidays, birthdays, graduations and barbeques were always attended by Bob and Georgie.
There was never a time where both of my “parents in law” weren’t a joy to be around. I’ve even remarked to Barbie on several occasions that I considered myself lucky and blessed to have such exceptional in-laws.
You’ve no doubt heard, upon occasion, comedic one liners…you know the ones…”mother in law” jokes, which have always been good for a laugh. That’s because we can all relate to the sentiment behind these jokes.
Now, whenever I hear this kind of humor, I just smile to myself…but for different reasons.
You see, none of these dynamics ever existed between me and Georgie. She was a loving, decent, kind, and respectful, woman who exuded all of the qualities you’d hope to see in someone who called themselves a Christian.
I miss her more than words could ever say…
After Donnie's death, Mom never stopped grieving. She missed her sister with a painful longing. As a result, and perhaps in an effort to fill her desperate void, she began to view me less as a daughter and more as a friend. As time progressed, she shared more and more intimate details of her life with me.
All that Donnie had been to her, I now was. How thoroughly cherished were my last years with her. I had become her sisterhood fortress.
(Excerpt from our book 'When It's All Said and Done')