December 12, 2018

Holding On... to Gratitude

Once again my family and I find ourselves in a holding pattern - waiting to hear if Grant will receive another year of CAP-C services (Community Alternatives Program for Children).

It is easy for my mind to drift to the many "what ifs"... What if we don't get approved again - how will we provide all things Grant needs? What if we have to stop all his therapies? What if we aren't able to afford all his medication? What if? What if? WHAT IF?!???


November 19, 2018

Pumpkin Patch 2018 {Film Journey}

The annual visit to the local pumpkin patch is another fall favorite. A wagon ride, petting farm and pumpkin-picking with Grandma and Grandpa Mayes all make for a great family outing.


November 15, 2018

Raising Boys {Film Journey}

Our backyard woods: My boys enjoy exploring, climbing and getting messy while playing in dirt. I love it. What wonderful play!

The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful. - E.E. Cummings

The photos in this post are from my latest set of film scans. I am getting much more comfortable with using my incident light meter and confident in the outcome of my shots. 

My next step is to work more closely with the lab to fine-tune the coloring I am trying to achieve. The whole film process is fascinating. 

SHILOH UPDATE: Shiloh is scheduled to get a set of shots on Friday -- and some more a couple weeks later. Then she can begin the first stage of training. 

I can sometimes resist temptation, but never mischief. - Joyce Rebeta-Burditt

Boy, n.: a noise with dirt on it. - Not Your Average Dictionary

Every puppy should have a boy. - Erma Bombeck 

GRANT UPDATE: In most areas, Grant is thriving. We continue to get very positive reports from school and therapy about how he is more focused and progressing well in each subject. PRAISE THE LORD! Along with completely removing screen time, I know that Shiloh has played a part in this.

Also, Shiloh has helped Grant fall asleep at night. As many of you know, falling asleep and staying asleep has always been a major hurdle for Grant. Medication helps, but doesn't totally fix the sleep obstacle.

But now... Shiloh has been cuddling with Grant as he settles down to bed. Most nights he is comforted that she is near as he drifts off to sleep. Pretty incredible.

PRAYER REQUESTS: We are nearing the time of Grant's yearly assessment with CAP-C.  Each year we have to go through an evaluation process to determine if Grant qualifies for another year in the program. 

It is very nerve-racking. It takes about 4 to 6 weeks to find out the results of the evaluation. 

CAP-C helps provide Grant's therapies (occupational, speech, feeding, and physical therapy), medicines, diapers, foot orthotics and the CNA (certified nursing assistant).

Will you pray? Please pray that Grant will qualify for another year of CAP-C.

by His grace & for His glory,
   Karen Mayes


November 12, 2018

Backyard Fun {Fall 2018}

We have been enjoying the cooler afternoons and spending a lot of time outside. It is common sight on Sundays to see Aaron & Wesley (and now Shiloh) play football in the backyard. 

October 26, 2018

Apple Orchard 2018

Every year my family treks up to SkyTop Apple Orchard with dear friends (Mike & Courtney Schnee and kiddos) for a fun day at the orchard. We pack a picnic and hike to the farthest end of orchard to get the exact kind of apple we like (pink lady). Of course we end the excursion with apple cider doughnuts. 

Normally this trip is prime time for me to take beautiful pictures of my family. But this year I was in charge of Grant AND puppy Shiloh while Aaron and Wesley focused on picking apples. Pictures didn't quite happen as anticipated. Oh well. We have the great memories. :-) 

AND!!! Thanks to my dearest friend, Courtney, I still have some photos because she was thoughtful enough to grab my camera and snap a few pictures. 


October 24, 2018

Summer MISC {Blog Catch-Up}

 Minnesota Landscape

Summer has come and gone, but many of the great memories linger. I didn't take many photos over the summer months ~ however ~ the whole family captured and stored up countless snapshots of memories from our summer of fun.

     Pool time.
     Slowing down.
     Family time.
     Trip to the family farm in Minnesota.
     Family vacation to Joni & Friends Family Retreat.

Here are a few VERY random photos collected from the summer...

October 19, 2018

Life lately through film {Film Journey}

I received my second set of film scans back from the lab. I must say I was extremely disappointed in myself. :-(

It is clear that I need to vastly increase my exposure. Sigh...

My goal for this roll of film was to capture movement while working on my camera settings - and trying out my incident light meter. I shoot with Fuji Film 400 and Fuji film is known for being very "light hungry". 

Film and digital photography are different in many way. One big difference is where the "information" is stored in a photo. 

When shooting digital, I usually err on the side of underexposing - because the info is stored in the shadows/dark areas of the picture.

Shooting film is the opposite. I need to overexpose more because the info is stored in the light areas of the picture. Interesting!

Anyway... moving on to more photos!

 I caption this photo: "Expressed Joy!"

Grant is singing "blue" at the top of his lungs while wildly swinging. Lately Grant will sing a single word - usually about something he really likes. I want to be more like that. Lean my head back and sing loudly about something that brings me joy. 



          "Sleeeeeeeeeep!!!"  :-)

October 12, 2018

Confessions of a... DOG LOVER! {Therapy Dog Saga}

Yup, you read the title correctly. While I have no problem declaring my love for cats (see post: Confessions of a Cat Lover), I have now fallen head-over-heels for our new furry family-member. 

Week One with Shiloh

Unfortunately, the timing of getting the puppy for Grant coincided with a HUGE work deadline. Between family, work and taking care of a new puppy, I have not had time to take pictures. So I decided to take a quick break from work this morning to snap some photos of our beloved labradoodle. 

Here are a few...

October 4, 2018

My New Journey with Photography


October 1, 2018

Meet Shiloh {Therapy Dog Saga}

Great news! The puppy has been selected for Grant!

Introducing Shiloh:

September 24, 2018

Confessions of a Cat Lover {Therapy Dog Saga}

Yes. I admit it. I am an unashamed cat lover. :-)

We lover-of-cats often get a bad rap. Cuddly, soft, independent - what's not to love?!?
(Don't answer that.)
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