Archive for the 'Photos' Category
My inbox is bursting with inquiries about the big “Proposal Day”. Yes, it’s true…I’m engaged. I proposed to Kristin wednesday morning with guitar in hand, 35,000 ft above the earth on a flight to Las Vegas. I promised many of you some details so here they are.
Please forgive me as I skip some of the background for now. There are at least three blog entries I’m missing but just haven’t had time to write:
1) How we knew we were going to get married before we started dating
2) How we knew our wedding date before we were even engaged
3) How the heck to date as Christian adults in 2010 (still figuring this one out, but trying really hard)
I do intend to write these in the near future…but for now, let’s stick to the events of Wednesday.
It all started with a slightly over-the-top birthday gift for Kristin. She has some Bette Midler music that she really loves so I figured tickets to see her would be a dream gift. The only place Bette Midler is playing, however, is Las Vegas. So…like any good boyfriend, I figured a day trip to Vegas was the only way to really take care of this problem, right? Now, I know many of you think I’m crazy doing this in a day, but I felt it was wise to avoid the whole overnight/hotel issue since we aren’t married (more on this in “Coming Soon Blog #3″). Now, we had no idea what Bette’s show would be like, but that’s for later in the story. Anyway, the birthday extravaganza turned out to be the perfect cover for my secret proposal plans.
So, Wednesday morning we head out for the airport around 5am. I arranged for our friends Rob and Vanessa Adams to get there early and board the flight before us. Rob and Vanessa (who happen to be a recently married professional Wedding Videography / Photography team) found there seats in the very last row of the 757 and immediately coordinated with the Flight Attendants to allow for the proposal to happen as planned. Kristin and I board and take our seats just 6 or 7 rows up from them. Amazingly, we had the whole back of the plane to ourselves. Shortly after reaching our cruising altitude, the seat belt signs turn off and and I sneak away toward the back of the plane. Rob had carried on my new martin backpacker guitar (purchased for this day..haha) and had it all tuned up for me. A quick check and a clearing of my throat and I was walking up the aisle playing one of our favorite songs: Better Together, by Jack Johnson.
I get to our row and Kristin buries her face in the magazine she was reading. I was thrilled that she was actually surprised. I had written new lyrics to the song; lyrics that captured a bit of what my heart is feeling lately. Rob and Vanessa captured it in video and photos. After the song, there were only a few words and she nodded her head in agreement. I didn’t really get a “yes” but the head shake and the hug basically said it :)
The rest of the flight was great. The four of us were treated like first class by the Flight staff and the conversation seemed to get better and better. My cute lady couldn’t stop looking at her ring…neither could the flight attendants. Oh, and the plane has a HUGE symbolic significance here…you will just have to wait untill “Coming Soon Blog #2″ (sorry) to find out why I did this on a plane.
We hit the ground around 10am in lovely Las Vegas. I had arranged for one of Kristin’s best friends from San Diego (Kristi) to fly in and meet us. Kristi showed up at baggage claim delivering major surprise #2 of the day.
Lunch at Serendipity 3 was great and we were off to hair appointments in one of Vegas’s best salons; Color. We had to get all done up for our engagements pictures, which we spent the majority of the afternoon and early evening doing. I thought it would be fun to do engagement pictures on the actual day we get engaged…and it turned out to be perfect. The idea was to dress as glamorously as the finely appointed hotels we’d be posing in – so Kristin got a new dress out of the deal as well (which she thought was just for a “nice dinner” before the show).
We spent hours a few hours with Rob and Vanessa telling us “ok, look at each other, now kiss, now nose to nose” as we toured incredible hotels and local sites. They are are really masters at pulling great images together and the backdrop was incredible. Outside of the proposal on the plane, perhaps our favorite moment was standing outside the bellagio as it started to drizzle and Kristin and I were dacing to “This Kiss” by Faith Hill. We danced and laughed as the iconic fountains blew off behind us. It was truly an incredible moment.
A quick dinner at Bobby Flay’s Mesa Grill and we were off to see Bette Midler. Unfortunately, the only thing I knew of Bette was her song “God is watching us” and neither of us had any clue what her show would be like. I kinda feel silly having told people I was going to see her, because it turns out that the content of her show wasn’t really something that either Kristin or I enjoyed very much. But regardless, it was a perfect day. We rushed from the show back to the airport to catch an 11pm flight back to east coast.
Anyway, the new One Republic disc just finished playing and my green tea has lost all it’s warmth so it’s time for bed; church starts in a few hours. Goodnight friends. Here is the link to the photo gallery.
(Thanks to Vanessa and Rob, Kristi, Michael, Rachel and Leah, Sarah from Jared in Eatontown, the impressive guys at James Allen, my parents, Jackie and Grandma Lucy for helping pull everything together)
Exactly 3 years ago, today, this picture was taken. It’s one of my favorites.
This is me and Steve Moss, coming out of a katrina-destroyed house that we were gutting. (No, I don’t have long sleeves on…that was the stuff that was on the walls.) I had the privilege of leading a group of students and young adults to New Orleans to tackle the $10,000+ task for a lovely family who needed some help. Politically, it was a tough time there as it had been a year since Katrina hit, but many (MANY) home owners didn’t have the finances to rebuild. The government was telling people they needed to begin rebuilding or the homes would be torn down. We met up with an organization that plugged us in with this family, and we basically tore the place down to the studs to same them the cost of having that done.
You can ready our daily account of the trip written by me and other members of the team:
(NOTE: the link that says pictures, will NOT take you to pictures of the new orleans trip. I’m in process of fixing that now. Also, start at the bottom post if you want to read chronilogically:)
I have a fond memory that didn’t seem to make it into the daily updates. This is what I remember. First, you need to remember that this house had not been touched in over a year since the storm hit and drove everyone out. Subsequently, there was 8-10ft of water flooding for weeks following…so things weren’t in good shape. Well, as we were tearing out the kitchen, we obviously found the fridge. It had food in it that had been air tight for the whole time…you get the idea. Well, as I began to pull it out from the wall, the door cracked a little. Whew…there is no word to describe the smell that came out of there. The entire house cleared from the smell that came from this thing in the literally 2-3 seconds that it was cracked open. It was unreal.
As we were moving the fridge out to the trash, the door slipped open again and some black sludge oozed out the bottom onto the leg of my pants. This is where it gets funny. Well, as I was walking through a group of students, one of the girls got a whiff of my new found odor and without missing a beat, she turned, bent at the waist and threw up on the grass. I smelled so bad that I was making people around me puke. I covered my leg so the kids could get in the van with me for the ride home. I’m pretty sure I bagged those clothes for the garbage that night. Ah, good memories.
New Orleans marked the last event that I led in the Boat14 Youth Ministry. And last saturday 45 people from that era showed up at my house to remember those days in which we grew, served, loved, laughed and lived life together. Some of the students wanted to get together for a bit of a reunion party…and I was totally on board. One thing I firmly believe in is making memories and visiting them often. Relationships are built on memories, and outside our relationship with God, as a Christian I believe my relationship with others is paramount. I work really hard on my relationships with others. Anyway, click the image below (of my backyard during the party) to see the gallery. And thanks to everyone who came…you all made me feel loved and valued. And as a point of reference, for those of you following me on twitter or facebook, you may have noticed my comment about experiencing such amazing joys, but also such devastating lows. This was one of the recent highs that played into that.
Boat14 Reunion Pics: HERE
Olivia and I have had a great couple days.
FRIDAY: We spent the night in Red Bank at the fabulous fireworks they do there every year. Saw a gazillion people we know, and had the pleasure of sharing a blanket in a beautiful location (thanks to the folks who got there at 11am to save the location for all of us!!)
SATURDAY: We joined up with pretty big group of folks and took a boat out of Point Pleasant. A 30 minute ride up the coast and we were in perfect location for the Long Branch fireworks.
I posted the gallery HERE.
If you have a few minutes, click through each image and read the captions. I told much of the story of the trip just through the words written under each picture. I will however, blog about the trip…hopefully this week.
My favorite: the view from my deck at Shumba Shaba Lodge. We stayed in thatched huts build into the cliffs.
So I’m home. Got home yesterday actually, but did nothing other than hang out with Olivia and go to bed. Tonight I’m a little more up to staying up to chat with all of you. It’s 8am in Zimbabwe, so I am getting a bit tired, but I decided to grab a couple pictures as a preview. I spent 90% of my time behind the video camera so I didn’t get as many pictures as I’d have liked. I only took about 2000 :)
Here is the star of our show, her name is Neatness:
Here is her home:
And here is the chapel that is part of her school (which by the way, is one of the best schools in the country):
I sorted the rest of the pictures and I’m down to about 300. I’ll get them up soon and tell you all about it.
If you have sat through a church service in which I was doing the music (what many Christians call “worship”), you have likely heard something by Jeff Deyo. He has been someone I have looked up to in the worship arena for half a dozen years now. I saw Jeff and his great band this past week down at Calvary Lighthouse in Lakewood. I just wanted to share some of the pictures with you. Click the picture below for the full gallery:
It’s 3:30am and I’m sitting down to blog. What does this mean for you? Well…it means that I’m not typing the “missing blog” entry tonight. I need a few hours for that one. Soon…
But I had a lovely adventure with my girl today. After church we went to Sandy Hook and visit the Fort Hancock area as well as some of the beaches. Check out the gallery.
Congrats to Elena and Justin Dunn. Liv and I just got back from their wedding today (ceremony #2), it was lovely. Olivia kept trying to steal the show on the dance floor, but my peruvian friend was going to give up easy.
Congrats guys. So happy for you!
Here is the gallery:
PS…I’m planning on finishing the “missing blog” for monday morning.
I have two congrats to give today…and both of them come with galleries….and both of them are my sisters :)
Congrats to Shannon for winning the first place rank in the division with her softball team. Shannon is the only freshman playing on varsity right now! Here is a shot of her getting a double in a game this week. Click the image for the full gallery.
Congrats also to my sister-in-law, Genevieve. Genevieve graduated from TCNJ today with a degree in English. Here is one from her ceremony. Again, click the picture for the full gallery.
I took a break. It was in some ways, the first break I have had in quite a while. It was nice.
Olivia and I went out to San Francisco to visit my cousin Chad and his wife Shawna. I turned off the blackberry, ignored email and basically left my phone in the bag. Despite some pretty bad weather (especially for May in San Francisco) we had an incredible time. Here are a few anecdotes:
The flight out was Olivia’s first flight. She did great for the whole first 5 hours and 35 minutes. The last 20 minutes had her a little upset with the normal ear pressure issues. “Daddy, I have to get out of here before my ears pop!”
It rained everyday we were there, which from what I’m told is very unlikely for this time of year. Strangely enough though, it seemed that the rain just worked out perfectly, we did mostly everything we would have wanted to do….EXCEPT, take great pictures of the city (i occasionally moonlight as a photographer…haha). And to be honest, that was probably a blessing as well. Instead of my incessant shooting, I actually did a bit of relaxing. We also got to visit some great places, like the Bay Area Discovery Museum and the new Academy of Sciences. The rain broke long enough each day for aus to visit a park, or take a nice hike as well.
Olivia’s first friend of the trip was definitely baxter (the dog). She is in love with animals and took to him pretty quickly since he is markedly less moody than our dear marmalade (the cat). The highlight of most days was getting to walk “baxtah”.
JAPANESE TEA GARDEN
The rain broke just long enough for us to walk through the Japanese Tea Gardens in Golden Gate Park. We had Jasmine tea and hot chocolate together. Well, my little girl decides to pick up the tea pot and pour a glass of tea while I was taking this first picture. Then as I was cleaning it up, she managed to spill the hot chocolate all over herself. After the delectable cocoa when down her front we actually just looked at each other and laughed.
After the tea incident, we got in the car and just drove. She napped in her car seat while I toured the american wine county….or at least drove its roads. Here is one I snapped from the car while my little lady was snoring (she does that often in car seats).
When we got to the airport we were greeted with a lovely 3 hour delay. Well, thank God that we ran into this lovely family from CT that was on our flight. Their little 4 year old and Olivia became best friends and played for hours in the airport. Then they couldn’t stop visiting each other on the plan. It was quite cute.
Anyway, I’m back now….but kinda wishing I could “vacate” for a little longer. You could tell my brain was still on vacation today… I’m not sure I have ever had such an unproductive day at work :)
Thanks so much to my cousins, Chad and Shawna!
Chad works for Apple by day, and is a time lapse photographer and a wine maker by night. Shawna is a respected Life coach and a beautiful expectant mother!
By the way, you can visit the full gallery HERE. I added captions so it all makes sense. But in case you don’t feel like loading another page, here are a couple more pictures…