Back to business!

New Orleans, like always, was a blast. It was our 4th time there as a couple, Neil's 8th time. We love it there. So much to do, see, and especially eat. You definitely cannot go there if you're on a diet, which is why I love going there pregnant. I can't be on a diet and I can use baby/pregnancy as an excuse to eat everything! :) Golly, the food is so good.

So we got back Sunday at almost midnight. The actual drive back was kinda crazy. We stopped in Marion, Illinois for dinner thinking we could go somewhere good since I am familiar with the town since my mom's family lives there and we went to school there. We were going to go eat at a great Mexican place that we like but when we found it, all the lights were out. Then we noticed that other places were out, and then we saw all the uprooted trees. I called my mom who then called my aunt, and while she was making her phone calls, I talked to my cousin, Abby, and she told me that Friday night they had an "inland hurricane". Some reports say that and others say a tornado. Whatever it was, it was very bad. 3 people were killed, homes destroyed, lives changed. Thankfully my family was okay (we have probably 3 dozen or more relatives down there). Southern Illinois University is just getting back to school today as well as some businesses and the government offices. So needless to say, we drove on up a few miles to Mt. Vernon to eat. The storms have been awful through the midwest. Thankfully we didn't encounter a single drop of rain in New Orleans. We were really lucky.

More about New Orleans with pictures in the coming days!

Yesterday I had a big job. I started as head photographer for a new magazine called "Thrive". Strangely enough I got this job through Facebook. Facebook has been extraordinary for me and my business. I never dreamed it would. Katrina from Showcard Studios saw my work and really liked it. She called me and the rest is history. Check out her design group. It's AWESOME. She is very very talented!

So we are made up of mostly women; the graphic designers, journalist and myself, are all female. It's kinda of empowering and pretty darn awesome. Our first issue comes out in June. My deadline was coming up so yesterday I made my rounds shooting various places around the area. We are showcasing entertainment and businesses that people may not know of. My first stop was The Surf Club, a private pool nestled into a corner of Decatur. I had never been there before. It was in shambles when I was there since they are getting ready to open in a week and a half. They're repainting the 3 pools, getting the lounge areas ready and so forth. So I didn't have much at all to shoot which made it difficult. But I did what I could. I like photography challenges! Here's just a couple. Check out Thrive in June to see the rest.

So this is how it should look during the peak of summer. I found this big photo in the lounge and shot a picture of the picture :) I'm sure this one won't be used in the magazine. I just did it for reference.
Then it was off to "Just a Little Prick" which is a tattoo parlor on West Eldorado. It was the coolest tattoo parlor I've ever set eyes on. It was really neat, very clean, very retro. Loved the design. It totally threw me off thinking "are we really in Decatur?". I had the most fun there. I had the kids with me and at the entrance it said (on more than one sign), "No kids allowed under any circumstance". Well, guess what?! I got to break a rule. So the kids sat on this sparkly silver retro bench and watched in awe. They were so incredibly good. The workers even commented. (I'm so proud of my kiddos.) So a guy was in the middle of getting a really cool army tattoo. We got to see the tattoo artist draw it on and begin tattooing. I also got to see a girl get her tongue pierced but I didn't think that needed to be in any magazine promoting Decatur ;) So here's a few shots...I'm sure Kat will chose some others for the 'zine, so remember to check it out in June. (Sorry for all the plugs, but I'm just very excited about my new job and this new magazine - it's what Decatur needs!)
The kids on their retro bench. They sat there like this the entire time.

Noah mesmerized. He wasn't the only one mesmerized, I was too!

Our last stop was at Michael Scherer's recording studio for DreamVizion Productions. He is part of a jazz trio but also does score for movies, one of which will be showcased at the Sundance Film Festival this year! Isn't that awesome?! He's so young, too. I had a fabulous time meeting him and the kids loved listening to his music.

Have a great rainy day everyone! I love days like this...

Oh, and just for the record, I go to see the Pediatric Cardiologist next Thursday in Peoria, IL. They will do and Echocardiogram on baby's heart. I'm seeing some of the best doctors in the state. I have a feeling everything will be okay, but they have to do this for precaution which is good. I feel like I'm in such good hands with my amazing doctors, not to mention friends with such strengthening prayer. Thank you :) xo


Michelle said...

Glad you all had fun on the photo shoot! How cool!

Corie said...

So glad you had a great time in New Orleans!

And, congrats on the magazine job. That is awesome!!!

We used to go to the Surf Club, when I was in middle school. I haven't been there in years.