What’s Happening

I realize I’m pretty bad at this blogging thing. I go months between posts and I say that it’s partially because no one reads this blog, but maybe if I wrote more they would. ¬†Anyway, it’s October and fall has arrived, which means I’m busier than ever and yet somehow far more productive than ever too. I don’t really understand the power the weather has over me, but in the exact moment that fall shows it’s face, everything about me changes. There’s a peace hovering around me in everything I do and my creative juices start flowing in excess, making me want to do ALL the things.


I’m not complaining.


I am, however, far busier than I’ve ever been in years past. And it’s strange because I hadn’t even planned to be, it just sort of happened. It started in September with shooting a vow renewal, a wedding, and a sunflower field. I also attended a writing conference (my first ever) and learned quite a bit about querying, finding an agent, and publishing in general. It was hosted by the Harford County Public Library and the classes were taught by published authors, agents, and small publishing houses (so, you know, people who actually know what they’re talking about). There seemed to be a heavy emphasis on self-publishing, which was a bit of a disappointment for me since I don’t intend on going that route, but overall there was a lot to be learned. I would definitely sign up for the event again. I would say, though, that the facts about publishing were a bit discouraging. I’d say it was a good way to weed out the people who are actually interested in putting forth the effort from the people with pipe dreams because the facts about just how many people try to get published vs. how many actually do is alarming. I wish I’d been brave enough to connect with a few local writers, since all of my writer friends live states away, but my introverted self was too nervous by just being there to step further outside of my comfort zone. Maybe next time.


Neff Family || Fall 2014

October’s wasting no time with the busy. Yesterday I did my first fall shoot and there are five more already scheduled. There’s also Abel’s 1st birthday shoot & party on Halloween, new cookies to bake for all my friends with October birthday’s, Halloween gifts to wrap and send out, Trunk or Treat to help with at church, a pumpkin patch to take my nephews to, and meeting Maggie Stiefvater for the second time this year at my local library (I’m far less scared this time)! Somehow, writing has to fit itself into this schedule too, because my characters are louder than usual, begging for some horror fueled attention that I really want to give them!


I have to be honest, I’m the most shocked by how heavy my photography schedule is lately. In addition to all the October shoots on the schedule there are five more scheduled for Christmas Cards already in November and December. When I made a resolution to shoot more in 2013, I was happy with the handful I did that year – with those few Christmas cards hanging on the back of my door, but I had no idea I’d more than double that in 2014 without even trying. Now I go into people’s houses and my work is actually framed on their walls and it’s a form of flattery I never imagined feeling. It amazes me that people trust me with their memories like this.


I’m sure I’ll blink and October will be over already, because that’s the unfortunate thing about my favorite time of the year. It moves too fast. But I’ll try to record the memories and report back before the month’s end. I’m going to have some cool things to share (like custom art my BFF Heather Holden is making me!) and I want to make sure I post it all while it’s still relevant.


What happening around your way these days?



Busy is my middle name…

I lose track of time so much more these days.


I think it’s been about 5-6 weeks now of getting up at 4am and working 11-12 hour days, 5 days a week at work. We got this giant 65 mile gas pipeline survey to complete in a 6 month deadline and it involves all of this research of the land back to the 1930’s to see when the easements for said pipeline were created and figure out how to draft them (in AutoCad) in the real world today. If there wasn’t such an intense deadline, the researching part might actually be fun – learning all about Baltimore County’s history, but reading ancient deeds and plats, that were hand written and then scanned for county documentation is hell on my eyes. I’ve been wearing my glasses every day and using a magnifying glass and I still end up having to guess sometimes whether I’m plotting a northing and easting with a 6 or an 8 in it. It makes the work take so much longer than it should.


That aside, yesterday was rather nice. One of my co-workers supplied Einstein’s Bagels for breakfast, then the company supplied an Italian pasta & salad spread for lunch, and then topped off the day with Rita’s Italian ice as an afternoon snack. It probably says a lot about me (and not good things) that just being treated with food can make my day lovely, but whatever. Yesterday was flat out delicious.


It was also nice, because while I frequently feel like Thursday’s are Friday’s lately (since I technically reach my 40 hours long before Friday actually arrives), yesterday actually was my Friday because our company is closed today for Good Friday! I’m terribly excited about having a three day weekend. I actually got to sleep for 9 hours last night, opposed to the 5 I’m typically getting these days. Boy do I feel alive today!


My weekend plans include: manning the couch with a book in hand (I haven’t read a book since January!), possibly (hopefully) writing the last 1-3K words of my nightmare novel Dreamsters (I’m SO close!!), catching up on the internet (My inbox is flooded and I haven’t even logged into Tumblr in 2 weeks! O_O), and then serving breakfast/brunch to the 400+ people our church is expecting on Easter Sunday. Sunday will be pretty draining, but at least I get two days before it to relax and rejuvenate my creative mind (because work is seriously eating it alive).


This busy life of mine only looks busier in the months to come. With longer, generally warmer days, people have already started asking me to do their spring photo shoots and somehow I’ve got to get back into a decent workout routine too. I had resolved to not stretch myself so thin this year, but we’re only 4 months into 2014 and it’s already happening. I just hope there’s some sort of backup energy reserve in my body that I figure out how to tap in to, because I’ll need it!