Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Today I braved the Laundromat once again and got all my laundry done. I had also planned to clean up my whole room now that my bed has fresh clean sheets and all my clothes are clean but instead I threw out my back lugging the laundry cart up some steps and now I can't move. Nice. So tonight I'm laying on my heating pad and watching TV with Laura.

Speaking of TV, my friend Rachel lives on the Upper West Side of Manhattan and showed me some pictures she took of Tom's Diner when she first moved in. You know, Tom's Diner, that 'restaurant' neon place from Seinfeld and also the inspiration for the Suzanne Vega song? I was excited to see it and planned immediately to eat there with Rachel as soon as possible. It also inspired me to start recording Seinfeld episodes. Seinfeld reruns have been on since before the show even went off the air but I pretty much only watched the show in its original airing. I thought watching them now that I'm a bit older and also living in New York would be interesting. Anyway tonight Elaine threw out her back and took some muscle relaxants, reminding me that I have some muscle relaxants so I just took them. Hope it works soon and also hope I don't embarrass anyone by yelling STELLA like Elaine did because she took too many.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Olympics and Baby Portraits - My Life in a Nutshell

Were you aware that I am crazy about the Olympics? If not then let me fill you in. I am crazy, absolutely mad for Olympics. All of them. Summer or Winter, team sports, individual sports, races, 'athalons', whatever. Seriously. Someone who didn't know this until last night was Rachel. She learned quick while we were watching movies at the theatre and the new Coke Vancouver Olympics ad came on before the previews. I gasped and grabbed her arm and when she said 'What the...?' I told her to look at my shirt. Only 18 days from now and I have full Olympics fever. Can't wait.

Otherwise I've been back at work after my illness. I've been doing lots of shoots, some great, some less good. Not all babies want to smile and there's just nothing my boss, the parents, the grandparents, the other people at work or I can do about it. No amount of A-CHOO!ing, BOOPBOOPBOOPing, or telephone ring/raspberry noises will change their little minds. Its rough at times and I feel a lot of pressure to get perfect breathtaking photos every time. That's why we don't charge for a sitting. Kids are unpredictable. All the same I've been selling plenty pictures too, some I absolutely loved and some I was sure the parents would hate. And no, I do not make a comission, but it doesn't bother me. There's a good deal of satisfaction in selling hundreds of dollars of your work, even if you only see your regular hourly wage at the end of the month. Somewhere in Manhattan right now a family has a picture I took framed on their wall. I know because I sold it and framed it myself. More than one time too.

I've been writing a lot in the studios blog so if you want to know more about where I work and what we do there feel free to read it. And if you know anybody in NYC or nearby with kids please send them our way.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

More Fun With Asian Food

I had a tremendous visit with Jake while he was here, as expected. What a sweetheart my boyfriend is.

Yesterday, unfortunately I felt very sick to my stomach and he doted on me all day and made me a ton of soup to help me feel better. I had to come home from work early because my stomach was so cramped. I was feeling a little better last night so I agreed to go with Jake to the Upper West Side to meet Rachel, whom he hadn't seen in way too long. We went out for Thai food at a restaurant Rachel had researched on yelp.com called Land. It was pretty tasty and Jake also bought me a present and a rose. After that we headed home and my stomach started to loosen up a bit. This morning the cramps were back and so I called into work again. I HATE missing work, I really do. But at times I have been doubled over from the cramping etc.

This evening Jake had to catch the bus and it was very sad for me. I miss him so much when he's not here and hate hate HATE to see that bus leave but he will be back very soon for the Olympics, or rather, Valentines day. The Olympics is two days before and he's going to watch the opening ceremonies with me here and that is super exciting. He loved the scrapbook I made him and his new Olympic team t shirt! Now I have to think of a valentines day present.

One last thing is that my studio put a picture that I took up on one of the blog posts talking about our new backdrops. I'm so so tickled that a portrait I took is up on the studios website!!!! Hopefully I will make it back to work tomorrow to take more!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Yum! Sushi!

The temperature has risen to the 40s a couple times this week and it feels like spring to me. One thing about living in New York city that has changed about me is I have gotten some major perspective on what cold really is. My definition used to include all temperatures lower than, oh lets say 75 degrees. Now 40 feels warm to me. Also, by the way, writing about the weather in my blog about big city adventures totally reminds me of my grandmother.

Sunday night I went to Floyd, the bar that has the boccie court, to meet Sarah and Sam and Rachel came down from the upper west side to meet us too. We sat on the couches and talked and then Rachel and I got fish and chips from the chip shop next door that were extraordinary. I came home and went to bed around 2 but set 3 alarms because I had to get up early to meet Jake at the bus stop at 7. It didn't work. My alarms woke Laura up who wondered what was going on but I slept on, blissfully unaware even that Jake called my phone fourteen times to tell me he had arrived. Whoops. When he finally got here he was too tired and happy to see me to be mad.

Last night Laura and Pete got all the things we'd need to make sushi and then Pete taught Jake how to make rolls. The boys worked for hours preparing the rice, slicing the vegetables and meat and rolling the sushi while Laura and I drank beers, played video games and gossipped. Then we all got to eat the delicious sushi. Mmmm. It was amazing. After that we played Catchphrase and Laura and I kicked ass as the apartment dream team. Sorry boys, maybe another time!

I have today off from work so hopefully Jake and I will do something fun once he is awake. He is still recovering from that bus ride.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Little Bored

I have been plugging away at work. I've gotten camera time at least one time each day which is great. Can't wait until I feel more comfortable with families and shoots. As you may know I've taken tons of pictures of people and especially of babies but the pace at the studio is much much different. The shoot is usually about 30 minutes and although we're casual at my studio about 'poses' its not quite like photographing babies I am very familiar with doing exactly what they want to do. Plus my kids were totally used to Miss Katy having a camera in their faces half the time and were really natural for me while these kids are in a studio, a completely new environment, with lights bigger than they've ever seen before and some weird lady with a huge camera lens calling their name over and over. Its not bad at all, just a much different pace. More pressure for certain.

This week funds are low so I'm a little bit home bound which is not ideal. Its very crowded here lately. To top it off Jake still hasn't come to see me this month because things keep cropping up for him that are keeping him. I miss him terribly lately and can't wait to see him again.

I sure feel like I'm counting down a lot these days. Counting down til payday, counting the days until I get to see Jake. That's a count that keeps getting bumped. Counting until Valentines and also springtime. I hate to wish my life away. If anyone ever comes up here to visit me by car maybe they will bring my scrapbooking things for me. Maybe having projects will make me feel better. I think I've organized my photos a dozen times by now. Looking at my pictures from the summer make me so happy. I sure had fun with all my great friends and Jake this past summer. Thanks to all of you! Come and visit me in NY soon so I can take some new pictures of us!

Until then here I'll sit. Hope I get to do something cool soon.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Not Fired!

Today the temperature reached 30 and while walking to the subway I remarked to myself that it felt kind of warm since it didn't hurt where the air was touching my skin. This is insane. 30 is below freezing. Am I becoming a northerner?

I had a wonderful and surprising day. I went in to work for a meeting with my boss and manager and was certain I was going to lose my job. A handful of people were hired before Christmas and it looks like not everyone will get to stay on after the holiday rush. I wasn't exactly indispensable as I don't get to take pictures very often and don't have much camera experience. I was basically prepping myself for bad news and telling myself it wasn't that bad and I would be ok. I even had long talks with Jake and my mom about it. What a shock. They want to give me more camera time and training and keep me! Unbelievable! Such good news and I immediately got about forty-five minutes of lighting training.

After that I headed back to Brooklyn. Along the way I got a text from Laura DeWitt asking if I wanted to have a happy hour. She works in Brooklyn and was getting off at 3:30 so I got off at the Atlantic Terminal mall to wait for her. We went to Buffalo Wild Wings and had some appetizers and beers and really really great conversation. Its been a while since I sat down with a good old friend and talked. It felt great!

Going in to work tomorrow and Saturday. My apartment is clean and cozy and Laura will be back tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

It Is Really Cold. No, REALLY.

Hello from the frigid north. Well north of a few things at least and definitely frigid. Since the new year I've just been hiding from the cold or working. Laura isn't back from the holidays yet and since Jake is recording with a new artist this week he hasn't made it up to see me yet. They'll both be here in a few days though and the house will be full full of friends and Laura's kids. I can't believe I've been home alone for over a week. I am not crazy about being home alone some of the time but my apartment is so nice and cozy with all my nice things in it, so really it isn't bad at all. Its warm and safe and I have tv and internet and food. I have my phone when I want to hear a voice and I'll even own up to a couple of stuffed animals in my room. I made a point of reaching out to a few people in town this week so I wouldn't just sit watching tv every evening. Last night I had a little happy hour in SoHo with Rachel after she got out of classes at culinary school. Tonight Sam, from funemployment, came out and we went down to 773 for another little happy hour. Hopefully tomorrow I'll have dinner with Laura DeWitt.

I'm nervous about work. We all got e mails that stated we needed to come in and have a private meeting with the owner. I know a lot of people (like me) were hired for the holidays and I'm worried I am going to be let go as a seasonal hire. I am certainly not indispensable as I rarely get camera time yet. At the same time I was at work today and nobody acted like I was a lame duck. We even got instructional e mails tonight about a new program rule and my boss used my name as the example for passwords. Evaluations and meetings always freak me out anyway. I like working there and I hope to get more photo experience but I guess if they let me go it will be ok too. I just hate the anticipation of this moment before my meeting tomorrow.

On a happier note: I got a care package from mom tonight! I had called her to ask her to check local stores for long underwear as I couldn't find any here. I never thought I'd wear long underwear for real. I thought it was reserved for grannies, farmers, lumberjacks and the mailman. Now I wear some every day. Most days the temperature is in the 20s with a 'feels like' wind chill in the single digits and although I do live close to the train I do have to walk some and work is drafty. Anyway mom got me two sets but she also sent three sweaters, hot packs for my back, tuna fish and best of all, metallic leopard leggings with a hand written note from mom that said 'Don't know if these would keep you warm but thought it was worth a try'. I laughed out loud and immediately put on the silver leopard leggings and sent mom a camera phone picture. Hilarious. My mom and my sister are so good to me. I miss them very much.

Friday, January 1, 2010

2010 is here!

Happy New Year! Yes I rang in the new year in New York but I was nowhere near Times Square. Jake didn't make it up but his good friend Rachel called him to tell him she had moved to NYC and was feeling a little lonely. He gave her my number and she called me and planned to come over to watch a bowl game and then maybe go somewhere low-key. She brought a bag along so she could crash here and avoid the crowds late night and we headed over to 773 about nine o'clock. What a great time. The bar was not crowded and everyone was pleasant and friendly as always. A man at the bar bought us Wild Turkey shots and we were put in charge of handing out hats and horns for midnight. We all watched Travis Pastrana make his big rally car jump in California and then did the old countdown as the ball dropped over in Times Square. We stayed at the bar until 3 in the morning dancing and laughing with the owner and regulars. Its such a great place! At one point some boring and lame guys were talking Rachel up. Billy the owner asked me if the guy was bothering us and I rolled my eyes to him and he immediately told the guy we were his nieces and to move along. So nice and for all the time we spent there we were barely charged for drinks. LOVE our bar!!

Jake is starting to feel better and will hopefully get up to spend some post holiday time with me this week. I have plenty shifts at the portrait studio coming up and my apartment is mega clean since I worked on it all day yesterday in preparation for Rachel's visit. Bills are mostly paid and aside from groceries and maybe a second pair of long johns and Jake's company I have all I need here. Happy New Year to everyone and all the best for 2010.