Wednesday, December 31, 2008


I guess things are slowing down for me a bit after the holidays- I've seen yet another movie that I LOVED.

I rented this one last night- and it was so good! I will warn you- there is not a single man in the movie. Not even in the background- it is 100% women! I watched it with Zach, who was a good sport about it, but I kind of wished I had seen it with one of my girlfriends. Seriously, ladies- go rent it!
Next, anyone who knows me well knows there are few things I love as much as being cuddled up under a blanket. In fact, I have often wished that it would not be socially awkward to keep blankets in your offices and work places. If I had it my way- I would be under a blanket all day long. It doesn't matter what time of year it is- I LOVE them.

So- when I saw this infomercial, I got SO excited. When it came on, I grabbed the remote and turned up the volume.. and I must have had a look of excitement in my eyes- because Zach just looked at me and simply said, "No, Liz... No."

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Marley and Me

I think it was good that Zach and I went to see Bolt last weekend- it geared us up for this movie...

If you have a dog, have ever had a dog, want a dog, or have ever loved a dog- you MUST see this movie.

You Can Take the Girls Out of 7th Grade...

... But you can't take the 7th grade out of the girls!

A few months ago, I posted a blog post on my relationship with these two girls. At least once a year, Laurie comes in town from Seattle and we all try to get together to catch up and talk. It's always so interesting to see how far we've come and where life has brought us individually. It's pretty cool how we all know that no matter how different we may become or how far we may end up- the three of us will always share something so uniquely special. I believe these are the kind of friendships that don't come along often enough; the kind that defy location or circumstance. This year, Laurie couldn't make it to Memphis, so Joanna and I took a short roadtrip down to Grenada, MS.

It was INSANELY windy all day long and Jo and I had to weather through tornado watches and thunderstorms on our way home- but it was worth every second. Of course, it didn't take much to get in touch with our inner 13-year-old selves... as can be seen from the pictures below.

These pictures crack me up! We found the most hideous, painted wall in Grenada and set the tripod up in front of it. We REALLY wanted a jumping picture. I don't know if you've ever tried to jump to a 10-second timer- but it is apparently NOT easy. Here are 3 of our 10-million attempts.

"I think we jumped a little too early that time, guys"
"Oh, Liz- you had it, but we were too slow. Let's do it one more time"
"Ok, that's just going to have to work."A few more pictures of our dorkiness..

Friday, December 26, 2008

Shackelford Family Christmas

Some pictures from the Shackelford Family Christmas...

I LOVE this picture of Tori and Lee- opening their Christmas present from Tami and Dan. A date on the Memphis Riverboat!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Better World

So, my friend, JR, posted this on his blog earlier and it was news to me- so I thought I would pass it along to my network of people.

If you're consistently spending time on Amazon, or buying books online (like me), check out this website.

A Better World provides you with most of the books you'll find on Amazon- but will also send a portion of your money to address literacy problems around the world.

The following part is from their website...

"Better World Books collects and sells books online to fund literacy initiatives worldwide. With more than two million new and used titles in stock, we’re a self-sustaining, triple-bottom-line company that creates social, economic and environmental value for all our stakeholders. "

Monday, December 22, 2008

My new favorite movie

Sydney really, really, really, really wanted to go see the Movie "Bolt" this weekend. I'm not much of a cartoon movie kind of person. I generally tend to lean more towards the Hannah Montana and High School Musical scene (I'm not kidding), so I, of course, did not have my hopes up high.

But, this movie was SOOOOO good I haven't been able to stop talking about it. If you have a dog, want a dog, or have ever loved a dog- you need to see this movie.

Oh, and if you do see this movie and then you start to think you're completely lame because you actually tear up at the movie- don't worry- you're not alone.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas in Cape: Part 2

Some pictures from our weekend trip...

Ok, so I know that Syd will probably KILL me in a few years for this picture, but I couldn't resist. When Zach put her to bed on Friday night, she asked if she could wake up with a present next to her. We laid this Hannah Montana outfit next to her early that morning. This was her as she woke up to her new gift from Tori! One thing we learned this weekend- Syd is most definitely NOT a morning person.

Our big gift to Syd this year was a guitar. Syd rocked out for us all weekend.

Zach took this picture this afternoon with his new Blackberry Storm. I was actually really impressed with the quality of the picture. I loved the light coming through the window.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Syd's Design Her Girls

So, Syd and I stayed up late last night, plaing around on the design her girls website, designing people on the computer. Sydney wanted me to blog about her images, so here they are!

This is Sydney with her Dad. Syd thought it would be funny to put a blonde beard on her dad!

This is Liz and Dad. Syd picked out our outfits. She said we were going out, and that Daddy wanted to dress up and Liz wanted to stay casual.

Sounds about right. This is Syd's teacher, Mrs. Seavers. Zach and I have never met Mrs. Seavers, but Syd says this looks exactly like her.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas in Cape

I have officially started counting down. Ok, well technically, I started counting down two months ago when we set the date for our Christmas with Syd. But right now, we are 27 hours and 53 minutes from the beginning of our Christmas Slumber Party Weekend with Sydney!

Zach and I are leaving immediately after work tomorrow night and will spend Friday-Sunday in a hotel in Cape Girardeau (with Sydney) to celebrate Christmas. This trip is MONUMENTAL in so many ways.

This is the first time Syd will be sleeping over with Zach since she was a baby. This trip is one of two weekend trips that we will be taking before Syd starts spending periodic weekends with us here in Memphis!!! This is something that Zach and I have been praying for, and praying for, and praying for, and praying for FOR YEARS now! Her first weekend visit to Memphis will be in April.

It's been a long journey to get to this point, with plenty of ups and downs- but Zach and I know now, more than ever, that God answers prayers.

Ready or not, Syd... it's going to be a FANTASTIC weekend!!
A lot of people have been asking about the weather in Cape, ever since the miniature ice storm earlier this week. I've attached the forecast for all the mothers and grandmothers out there who have expressed concerns. It looks like we don't have much to worry about.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Love Dare

Zach and I went with a group of friends to see "Fireproof" on Saturday. My thoughts on the movie:

It was a little cheezy and the acting was pretty bad. I also thought it was a tad one-sided, indicating that it is mostly the husband's responsibility to change the tone of a marriage. However, that may have just been because of this specific plot.

BUT- once you get past that, the wisdom that is offered to married couples is much-needed in today's society. It serves as a reminder that marriages are often idealized into someting that was never intended by God. It's a reminder that marriages can't be successful without patience and selflessness... two things I need to work on badly.

All that to say, Zach and I have decided to embark on this 40-day journey... The Love Dare.

Here's is what is on the back of the book...

"Unconditional love is eagerly promised at weddings, but rarely practiced in real life. As a result, romantic hopes are often replaced with disappointment in the home. But it doesn't have to stay that way.

The Love Dare is a 40-day challenge for husbands and wives to understand and practice unconditional love. Whether your marriage is hanging on by a thread or healthy and strong, The Love Dare is a journey you need to take. It's time to learn the keys to finding true intimacy and developing a dynamic marriage. Take the dare!"

Well, Zach and I are FAR from "hanging on by a thread," but we are also far from perfect. So, today- we're on Day 1. Our challenge today is avoiding saying anything negative to your spouse. So far, so good. :)
I'm eager to see what the next 39 days bring!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

This is my my first Holiday Season as a photographer- and I'm definitely feeling what all my photographer friends have been talking about! I am swamped with tons of last-minute sessions, editing, Christmas Card Designing, CDs-- Aghh!! It's a little overwhelming, but I actually am LOVING it!

I'm doing my best to keep up and PROMISE that all of my clients will have their stuff on time, but unfortunately- my blogging is taking a little hit.

I just had to pause for a brief minute to show a little love to my hubbie who has been SO wonderful these past few days. He's been cooking all week long, cleaning the house, washing and folding clothes, grocery shopping, and even breaking to give me an occasional footrub (ok that happened after massive amounts of whining and begging on my part- but hey, I'll take what I can get).
I love you baby! I know this picture is old- so I'm thinking we should get out our Christmas decorations this weekend after Bama beats up on Florida.
All I want for Christmas is YOU! :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Gas Prices

I'm always on a hunt to save money, so I was extremely happy when I found this website. If you live in the Memphis area, this may come in handy.

Monday, November 24, 2008

I've mentioned this several times before. My siblings and I were much cooler than your average kids. In fact, we redefined the word "cool" as children. There's really no way to define the coolness that encompassed our home. It was a combination of the clothes, the hair, the wit, and just the plain "coolness." See here for more examples.

My sister tells me that I conveniently put "cute" pictures of myself online when posting old pictures of the family. I tend to argue with her, and I think today will prove that. I came across this picture while digging for some old files this week.

Yes, that's right. Complete coolness. This is the result of a 10-year-old makeover birthday party at a salon. And if you're asking yourself, "Is that arm hair?"

Yes, my friends... it is.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Zach and Sydney

A couple of weekends, ago, Zach went to Missouri to see Sydney. I had a couple of appointments I couldn't get out of, so I wasn't able to go with him. Selfishly, I was disappointed I couldn't be there- but I think it was nice for them to have some quality daddy/daughter time.

The only requirement I had before Zach left was to take the camera and get some GOOD pictures of their day together. Not too shabby if I say so myself. You make me proud, honey. :)

I think this is my favorite picture of the day!!

Sydney wanted to go Christmas Shopping for Bear and Bryant, so here are some of the things she picked up for them.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Random Things

I've been a terrible blogger lately- mainly because I've been too busy to think straight.

But, here are a few brief, random things I thought I'd share.

1. I purchased my first Christmas gift this week AND I bought my first half gallon of egg nog last night- so I guess that means I'm officially in the Christmas spirit.
2. I stopped by this random hole-in-the-wall convenience store today, to find the most wonderful, Memphis-spirited store I've ever been to. It's called Gary's market (near the intersection of Holmes and Getwell). They sell authentic, freshly made soul food (jumbo turkey legs, roasted chicken, fresh cabbage... the list goes on...) AND have a marketplace- similar to that of Charlie's Meat Market. They sell fresh vegetables and produce, along with all kinds of meat. While I was walking around, the store manager (Marvin) came over and introduced himself saying "I have never seen you in here before. Please, make yourself at home." SO NICE. Oh yeah- and I filled my car up at Gary's for $1.75 a gallon.
3. I'm having a coffee date with my husband in about an hour before heading to small group tonight. VERY EXCITED about that!
4. I had a nice, long talk with my sister this week about life and love- a HUGE highlight of my week. I'm so happy God decided to give me her 24 years ago!
5. I threw away an old bowl of chili in my office garbage can, and now all I can smell is some sort of sour, moldy concoction (I know that's disgusting and completely inappropriate, but it's sort of all I can think about right now).
6. We went Downtown to Rio Loco on Friday night to celebrate Katie's birthday. Here are a few pictures from the night.

Monday, November 17, 2008

My list...

SO- I saw this on someone elses blog today and thought it looked like fun. The idea is to put in bold everything you've done. It looks like I still have quite a bit left!

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band school
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland /world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo

11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelos David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma- I've tried SEVERAL times- but they won't ever let me due to my iron count.
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt-a "VERY" small quilt- when my greatgrandmother was trying to teach me when I was about 10 years old.
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London (**Dan- Did we actually see this??)
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone's life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Countdown is On...

ONLY 90 DAYS left until we get to see these crazy kids!!

Our tickets are booked and we're in the process of getting our passports.

We love you guys and can't wait to see you!!!!