100 Happy Days ♥ Days 11 through 20

2014 started off with quite the slap in the face. I struggled with being happy and positive because of it. Although with warmer weather now that Spring is amongst us, I wanted to take part in the 100 Happy Days Photo Challenge to remind myself of the good in each and every single day. This is apart of my healing process. (See days 1 through 10 here)

Friday, April 11th 2014

I received my Beauty Box 5 in the mail that day. I’ll be posting my review of everything tomorrow!
(I added the text with the A Beautiful Mess App!)

Saturday, April 12th 2014

Packing, packing, & more packing! This once belonged to my grandma.

Sunday, April 13th 2014

Lazy Sunday! My phone was going off all day with severe storm warnings & watches and so we stayed in our pajamas because of it! Teavana tea, Netflix marathon, and minimal makeup kind of day!

Monday, April 14th 2014

I had earned enough stars through Starbucks Rewards to get a free drink! That may be the only time I ever order a frappuccino THAT big!

Tuesday, April 15th 2014

& That day I got my Ipsy bag in the mail! I did not get the Lollitint sample from Benefit Cosmetics like I had hoped but I did get an Urban Decay eyeliner! I’ll post my review of the bag probably next week!

Wednesday, April 16th 2014

I’m usually the cookie maker of the household, but that day my husband did all the work!

Thursday, April 17th 2014

I received a letter from my baby cousin who is not a baby anymore!

Friday, April 18th 2014

My husband and I went for some retail therapy and my homesickness was showing.

Saturday, April 19th 2014

Since we’re packing, and going through things, I came across some of my contact sheets from a college film photography class. The 19th was that lil guy’s 9th birthday! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Sunday, April 20th 2014

Hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! I started my day with a cup of coffee in one of my favorite mugs! I’m not a big Disney fanatic, but I DO love me some Donald and Daisy!

If you would like to see my daily posts as it goes along, follow me @CameraKristen on Instagram! If you are taking part in the challenge or are thinking about it, let me know! Let’s be happy together! ♥

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Remembering 2005 ♥ blogs of the past

Over the past month I’ve been investigating myself on the internet (I say “investigate” because my user name for things changed as much as my clothes did at the time). I’ve been an internet addict since the days of dial-up AOL. I’ve tried to claim my corner of the internet ever since then. I had an e-mail zine (that’s an AOL thing), I had a “diary” on a similarly named website, I even had a LiveJournal (or three or four). My first “blog” post ever was on November 10th 2001. The first few year’s were rarely accompanied with photos, and if they were, they were hosted on websites that no longer exist. Thanks to Photobucket, I was able to go through pictures from 2004 on.

As much as I have gotten tired of the whole “throwback Thursday” trend, it is Thursday, and I have photos from the past to share. I was doing the whole Instagram thing before it was a thing! These are from 2005 and I was 18 and 19 when these were taken. I cannot believe it’s been SO long ago. I’m still the same girl, but I’ve learned a lot since these were taken.


I went to the snow for the very first time on New Year’s Day in 2005. I was 18.


Selfie! I remember thinking this was so clever.


This may be from 2004. I saw Fall Out Boy then, and again in 2005.


“Don’t you worry IT’S FRIDAY and you’re awesome”
I would bake cookies, cakes, and cupcakes and bring them into work JUST because.


Yes, this was on Myspace.


Tayte and the cone.


My favorite location on campus. This is the film developing room in the photography lab.
I was OBSESSED with that orange hoodie. I only got it in orange because it reminded me
of Clementine from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind


One of my favorite photos taken for that class. My nephew, age 7 (he’s now 16!)


Empty film canisters.


I use to make my own bookmarks. I’m pretty sure I still have this one.


California State Fair ♥


Second favorite place on campus. The Library, 3rd floor.


These people were my best friends. Life can be unnecessarily complicated sometimes.


I got on an airplane for the first time in 2005 too!


I cannot remember what all of these were. But I can spot
Phantom Planet Phantom Planet is Missing,
Modest Mouse Good News for People Who Love Bad News
Head Automatica Decadence
& Spitalfield Remember Right Now
STILL some of my favorite albums ever.


That phone. That iPod. The button that says “I’m no longer with stupid” 🙂


California: where it only rains in the fall & winter.

I know I have been sharing more photo posts than anything, and I apologize. We are in the process of moving and I am a little scatterbrained right now. However, I called this Camera Kristen for a reason! 🙂 Hope you are all having a wonderful week thus far! ❤

Meet My Family ♥ Aunt Carolen & Uncle Al

Back in January I read Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs and it made my love and appreciation for photography grow even more! Ransom Riggs integrated old photographs that had been found in flea markets, garage sales, etc, into his story to bring their stories back to life (more or less, give them a completely new one). So, I started this “Meet My Family through Old Photographs” series (You can see the collection here), telling my own family’s story and sharing with you old photographs I adore, and with that, the people I love.

Today, I want to share with you photographs of my Aunt Carolen and Uncle Al. I do not know where to begin, to tell you how much they meant to me. I gave both of their eulogy’s, and I can honestly say it was not an easy feat. They lived such incredible lives, did so many things, went so many places, touched the lives of so many people. To me, these two people were MAGIC. I do not know how to sum it up in any other way. They loved each other and everyone around them in such a unique and wonderful way. They were fun loving, adventurous, caring, and jacks of all trades. From baseball teams to traveling around the globe to building a fun business of their own; they did it all, and they did it all together. They are very missed, very loved, and forever hold a special place in many hearts.


Aunt Carolen at 14 months old


Years later, possibly in the same photobooth?


Uncle Al served in the Navy


One of my favorite photos ever simply because on the back, my Uncle Al wrote “Just me & my beard”


They met through Aunt Carolen’s roommate and friend


They got married in 1963


They LOVED to travel & they always brought back the coolest souvenirs for EVERYONE


They loved Halloween, but Christmas was Aunt Carolen’s favorite


Uncle Al had quite the collection of bolo ties


Nothing went unphotographed or not videotaped, they had one or the other (or both) always!


Their backyard was home to many family get togethers, pool parties, and BBQs (all one in the same)


This is how I will always remember them. (That weird faced kid in the middle is me – surprised?)


“Moon River” was their song & it fit perfectly – “Two drifters off to see the world”


Taken at their 40th Wedding Anniversary party

I never really know how to end these posts. I will let you know that they passed in a matter of months of each other. They were lovely people, and I hope more than anything they are together again, laughing and traveling about.

100 Happy Days ♥ Days 1 through 10

This year has been emotionally challenging for me. It went from being excited and worried about becoming a mother and our family finally growing like we have wanted for so long, to total heartbreak when we lost the pregnancy. It’s been rough, and I have expressed that plenty, here on my blog. The past month I’ve been feeling much better, blame it on the warmer weather or the avoidance and dismissal of all negativity. I get my moments of grief and sadness, but I’ve learned not to bask in it. I have to keep on keeping on. So, to remind myself to look for the good in everyday, I decided to take part in the 100 Happy Days Photo Challenge on Instagram!

Tuesday, April 1st 2014

I was really excited to start this project. As day one, I chose myself. Being happy has not been as simple as simply choosing to be happy. So, by starting this challenge, wanting to look and find happiness again, has made me happy all in itself.

Wednesday, April 2nd 2014

We’re in the process of moving! Although it’s still on the premature side, we have been packing up the house like crazy! Slowly putting things into boxes is much easier than stressing about having to do it, and having to do it all at once! I went to take a break from packing, the kitty came to snuggle with me, and together we watched a little bit of Netflix before my husband came home!

Thursday, April 3rd 2014

I’ve always been one for colder weather, but not too cold! It has been warming up, but this day it was gloomy and rainy. It was very appreciated for a number of reasons! Mainly, it got rid of the smoke in the air from the crop burning in the nearby hills. Also, I love the smell of rain and the pretty clouds!

Friday, April 4th 2014

Last Friday was a rough day. Tayte, my cat, had been sick since the day before, throwing up all day and being very tired. We took her to the vet, and on the way home we made a quick stop at the store for medicine for her. When we got home I realized this tiny bottle of The Kracken Rum amoungst the things my husband had purchase while my cat and I waited in the car!

Saturday, April 5th 2014

We wanted to take advantage of the good weather, but did not know how to go about it. We wondered aimlessly around town, and ended up in a couple local thrift stores. At one of them I purchased this old Minolta AutoPak 250 with flash for $2.50! A simple, but cute, addition to my growing camera collection! Oh! AND it still works!

Sunday, April 6th 2014

By night, it seemed that Tayte was feeling MUCH better. We had cleaned the house all day, packed away everything that once hung on the wall, and fixed up a few things. We like to close out the world and read before bed. It does wonderful things for our stress levels. I like character books or magazines, Steven likes news articles and books about sciencey stuff!

Monday, April 7th 2014

These two together melts my heart. Steven likes to say that he’s not a cat person, but he will let her snuggle with him just the same. She still was not feeling her best, and when Steven got home from work and changed, she wanted to be right where he was.

Tuesday, April 8th 2014

Whoever pinned these knife magnets on Pinterest last week, touché! I showed them to Steven and we agreed that we needed them. They came on Tuesday and have been making us giggle ever since!

Wenesday, April 9th 2014

We went to the grocery store and they had a bunch of candy in a discount bin. I grabbed these, not having them since high school. Back in the day, I’m pretty sure I got these EVERY day from the student store at lunch. It was a nice treat to go down memory lane, but at the same time, they make my teeth hurt now!

Thursday, April 10th 2014

THIS girl seems to FINALLY be back to normal. No more upset tummy, sitting and sleeping in the window, talking and yelling at us loud and clear!

Not to have a silly plug, but if you have Instagram and want to follow along with the daily posts, they’ll be there! If you are taking part of the challenge or plan on doing so, let me know! It’s always fun to be happy with others! ♥

Packing Tape, Veterinarians, & Happy Thoughts

It’s been almost two weeks since my last post! For those of you who care, thank you, and my apologies! Life got hectic and by the time I had a moment to sit I could not muster out the words.

As soon as we finally found out that we were going to get to move on post we started packing up our current house. When our renting company found out that we would not be renewing, the owner decided to sell the place. They showed it a few times before it even went on the market, and it sold then too. The house was cute for the showings at least, but after that, everything went into boxes! There’s still two weeks until we get the keys to our new place, but everything is off our walls, taken out of closets, and put into boxes! We’re ready to go!

We’ll have three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and no basement – JUST in time for tornado season! We’ll have more room than we know what to do with and hopefully MUCH better neighbors. Even then, we will not be sharing any walls with our neighbors (unlike most post housing). We will share a driveway area but that is it!

My cat, Tayte, is one of the main reasons why I have not posted recently. Last Thursday she started to get VERY sick. We took her to the vet on Friday, and all her vitals were normal and healthy. However, my kitty was throwing up often and acting very lethargic. On Sunday she started to feel better, but still had symptoms of illness. Today, I think she is finally back to normal. I don’t know if she got stressed out due to all our stuff being in boxes suddenly, or if she ate a bug that just did not set right with her.

I have been good about keeping up with my participation in the FatMumSlim Photo Challenge as well as the 100 Happy Days Challenge on Instagram (follow me here)! I’ve definitely been focusing on going out of my way to feel happy, do things that make me happy, and be around those who make me happy. Life is too short to feel anything but happy, but sometimes life gets in the way doesn’t it? Trying to keep that smile on my face. It’s time to start again, get a new chapter going, and all that good stuff! So, please excuse me for my temporary absence, It’s going to be a crazy few weeks more!