Why I am here

This blog was started to connect with and keep family and friends up to date on life in Texas as I know it. A place to share my love for this area through photography, history, and stories of this adventure Shaun and I call life.... and what an adventure it is!
Warning: Some or all of this blog may contain nuts or stories of nuts, proceed with caution
Love to y'all

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Christmas treats

Today was spent making Christmas treats for our furry family members. Riker, Annie and Molly love these treats! The breeder that we got Riker and Annie from sent us the recipe a couple of years ago. The dogs line up in the kitchen for these when they are cooking. I will say these are not an amazing aroma like baking cookies but it's not a bad smell.

Peanut Butter Pooch Cookies
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cup white flour
1/4 cup oatmeal
1 1/4 TBSP Baking Powder
1 TBSP honey
1 cup peanut butter
1 1/4 cup milk

Combine flours, oatmeal, baking powder. Combine milk, peanut butter and honey in a separate bowl and mix well. Stir peanut butter mixture into the flour/oatmeal mixture. Knead dough and roll out on floured surface to 1/4" thickness. Cut into treats using a cookie cutter. Place on a non stick cookie sheet and bake at 400 degree oven for approximately 15 minutes. 10 for small cookies.
I have found that these last longer in an air tight container.

I found these cute bone shaped cookie cutters at Bed Bath and Beyond. There are 3 sizes in a cute little tin.
I hope your fur babies enjoy these treats like mine do.
Merry furry Christmas!

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Silver Bells

Hi all!
The Christmas decorations are out of the attic and the decorating has begun. It has been two years since I have seen those boxes. Last year we were building and our Christmas decor consisted of 3 PEZ dispensers, Santa, a reindeer and a snowman, and a bad attitude. *wink*

After living in Colorado for so many years my primary concern when storing the Christmas boxes, was never putting anything in them that would get ruined if it froze. Snow globes are a really good example, trust me.
I have learned over the last three years of storing things in Texas, the heat can be just as damaging. I have also come to realize that the humidity is VERY hard on silver. It took years for silver to tarnish in Colorado. Here, I swear it happens overnight!
When I opened the Christmas box that contained the 38 silver bells "silver" isn't exactly how I would have described them. They were pretty ugly.
Why do I have 38 bells? We started buying the bells when the boys were tiny. We bought two dated bells, one for each boy, every year at christmas until they turned 21. One day I will pass them on to them......one day...

In years past we used a silver polish cloth, and with everyone's help had them shined in an evening. Yesterday, it was just me and 38 nasty black bells.
Typically I would call my mom and if that didn't work I would Google it, however decided the easy way (lazy way) out was to post something on FaceBook, certainly THAT would get me my easy quick answer. What it got me was a suggestion from a friend to Google it. Ha! Big bonus, she had already googled it and told me exactly what to search and viola! the quick fix was right before my eyes. Thank you Sheri!!
I read through the directions and ignored the little voice that said "what if this ruins the bells" and ultimately decided they either went back into storage black, or I tried it. IT. WAS. AMAZING!
This is what I did~
First you line a deep container with tin foil and then you put in the silver items, making sure they touch the foil.

Then you bring a gallon of water to a boil, remove the pan from the stove and set it in the sink. Add 1 cup of baking soda. This foams and gurgles, which is why you need the pan with the hot water in the sink, or you will have a much bigger mess than some tarnished silver.

Anyway.... Next you pour the hot water/soda mix over the silver, making sure everything is covered with water. Plug your nose! The sulphur smell is kind of nasty. My bells required about a 5 minute soak, then a wipe down with a soft cloth and they are prettier than they have been in years. It even got the tarnish out of the engraving lines! Bonus! 38 clean and shiny bells in under an hour WAHOO!

Here is a link to the complete instructions

The webpage contains some very cool scientific info on why things tarnish and why that polish cloth isn't always the best choice. Did you know that when you wipe away that black tarnish you are actually wiping away some of the silver? Yikes!

I am happy to report my bells are on the tree and looking rather shiny! Christmas memory preserved.

Enjoy your Christmas preparations. Treasure all of the memories and if you are not sure what to do........GOOGLE IT!

Happy rest of your week

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Make A Wish

In my last blog post "Strength"  I talked about an incredible family that had touched my life.  Yesterday they were featured on Texas Living on  KTXD TV Dallas, with Macy's and Make A Wish. 
Thought you might enjoy the interview
Way to go guys!  You did a great job.
Be sure to get those letters to Santa written and delivered to your local Macy's store.
If you are considering making holiday donations, please consider The Make a Wish Foundation.


Monday, November 12, 2012


This blog post has been rolling around in my head, and my heart, for the past couple of days.  What I want to convey seems simple enough, but as most of you know I speak through pictures not words. Hope my message gets through.

Last weekend I attended a Sweet Sixteen birthday party with 6 giggling 14-16 year old girls.  Junk food, games, silliness, more junk food, silly pictures, boy talk, all the slumber party stuff with one major difference....  The majority of the girls at this party are or have been fighting serious life threatening illness.  I am not sure what I expected, but as I listened to them talk giggle I realized that what we see as pain and illness they take with a grain of salt.  In between the junk food and the games, they casually mentioned their blood levels, temperatures, Doctors etc. Everyone stepped over and around the oxygen lines strung on the floor as if they weren't there.   No panic, no drama, just nonchalant life as they know it.   
I was so touched by their strength and their commitment to each other and their families.  There were friends there from out of town they had met at camp, someone they had met at therapy, all bound by the same thing, illness.  They showed concern for other people who couldn't be there.  There was no poor me, no petty mean girl stuff, no judgement, just compassion and caring for one another. Teenage girls wise beyond their years, with a value and priority system we should all take note of... very touching 
One of the girls FB page has a memoriam section for friends she has lost.  This hurts my heart for her in a way I cannot describe.
We could all take a lesson from these girls.  We need to start LIVING each day, be more accepting, loving, I mean REALLY loving the people around us and making sure they know they are loved.  Living genuinely, honestly

Everyone of us could take a lesson from this family on how to deal with adversity and life in general.  Three teenagers all effected by mitochondrial disease in some way.  They almost lost their dad this summer when he was hit by a car on his bicycle and was critically injured.  At some point during his recovery there was concern he may not survive, then concern he would never ride a bike a again (his passion)....This week, less than 6 months later against all odds,  he will be riding his bike for the first time since the accident.  This is a family of fighters,  of survivors! 
Standing behind all of them is an amazing woman.  Amidst all of this she has a quiet strength that amazes me, she holds things together, she is kind and caring, an advocate for all.  I stand in awe of the woman who runs his household.    

The remainder of this verse reads:

"When she speaks,
her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness.

She carefully
watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness.

Her children stand
and bless her.  Her husband praises her"

I am very humbled to have had the chance to get to know this family and see them in action. An amazing reminder of how thankful I should be for my health and the health of my family. As well as how ashamed I should be for complaining about aches and pains, when so many people struggle with so much daily.

Be thankful today....for everything
"The most beautiful people are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” unknown
This incredible family is a very large part of The Make A Wish Foundation and are continually raising funds for Mito Family and other camps. If you would like to make a difference for them please contact me privately at notmpoppins@yahoo.com
Educate yourself and others about Mitochondrial Disease


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

East Texas Fall

Fall is finally trying to make an appearance in East Texas. Hallelujah! After a long, nasty, hot humid summer the 70s are feeling pretty amazing.
Our pond is a little low so we are hoping for some rain soon. This time last year we lived in our little guest house in a construction zone of mud. What a difference a year makes. This was taken from across our pond looking at the back of the house.

Standing on the dam, looking across the pond

Lovely fall sky

As fall progresses I am looking forward to the vivid red sweet gum trees and more amazing blue skies. I do miss fall in the mountains but I love fall in East Texas! Looking forward to a long one!
Love and miss y'all

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com
Location:Happy Fall!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Roasted peanuts

Hi y'all!! I bet you thought I was never coming back didn't you? No excuses, just a crazy month plus a poor attitude equals NO blog posts.

Today Shaun and I went to First Monday Trade Days in Canton, TX. It only takes us about 30 minutes to get to one of the largest open air markets in the United States. How lucky are we?? It is an amazing place to wander, eat fried snickers and shop the treasurers. Today was crazy! I have never seen so many people there. WOW! Shoulder to shoulder.
We wandered a little off the beaten path today to escape some of the people. We ended up WAY out in a field full of "antique" vendors. As we were standing amongst the junk a very familiar scent came floating by. (Not to worry, it was a good scent.). Scent is the most amazing memory trigger. It took me a minute, but I suddenly realized it was peanuts roasting!! I haven't smelled that since I was young. My grandparents lived in Oklahoma in and around peanut and watermelon fields. I remember staying with them in the summers and my grandpa and dad bringing in fresh peanuts and roasting them. That smell almost brought a tear to my eye. It brought back great memories of two great men. Strong quiet men who I miss very much.
I did find that smell and bought some peanuts from the sweetest little man. He was roasting the nuts in two big black belt driven roasters powered by a John Deere motor. Very nostalgic

I mentioned how wonderful the smell was and he offered to "set me up, little girl" in the peanut roasting business. What a sweetie. I thought of hugging him for the sweet memory, but couldn't choke back the tears long enough to explain why a stranger was hugging him over the smell of peanuts.

I did however manage to take a few pics of the "antiques" that lingered in the back corner of Trade Days. Question....what do bubble gum and milkshake machines, a walker, and mailbox have in common? Canton, TX !

It was a great day. I got to spend a beautiful fall day with my favorite guy and relive a memory of two very special men with the smell of peanuts.

It's the simple things that make life perfect


~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Sunday, September 30, 2012

MSA The Gate to the Beach

The Gate to the Beach is located in Plymouth, MA. The iron work is everywhere here and I LOVE it!

I can't help but wonder what the pilgrims would have thought if they had seen "The Gate to the Beach", or the sign to clean up after our dogs, or not swim at night....

Or the parking lot and parking meters....

Things change, places change, people change, pictures don't change
Get out there and capture a moment today. It may not be the same tomorrow.

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Thursday, September 27, 2012

MSA Mineola, Texas

My Metal Street Art entry today comes from downtown Mineola, TX. LOVE this water meter cover. In Mineola you take a pretty good step up from the roadway to the sidewalk. This cover is in the sidewalk and looks like it has been extended to meet the sidewalk level and then "patched" into the concrete OR maybe the road was lowered and new sidewalk poured around the meter cover and bricks that surrounded it. Either way...very cool... Mineola has great history

By MSA standards it's a good one! Great character

Look up, look down, look all around, treasures live on the ground

Keep snappin'
~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Sunday, September 23, 2012

By The Sea B and B

While we were in Plymouth, MA we stayed in the cutest B and B. The attention to detail and charm were truly over the top. I felt as if I was staying at Grandmas house. SO very quaint and comfortable.

We had the Governor Bradford Suite. A bedroom, our own little kitchen, living area and bath complete with claw foot tub. This is the entry to our home away from home and private deck that looks out to the Mayflower and beautiful ocean.

SO very welcoming

A beautiful hand quilted quilt on the bed to make us feel at home.

How sweet is this little pantry, the collection of china and hand crocheted pot holders?

Or this cute little kitchen, complete with Kincaid painting and collection of depression glass in the cabinet?

The enclosed porch and meeting place for morning coffee and cake.

The Mayflower Suite. Look at that 180 degree view of the ocean! And YES you CAN see The Mayflower from this room!

The owner is a tole painter. She has left sweet little touch's everywhere

I am so thrilled that Colleen found this B and B at the last minute for us. We were very lucky they had a cancelation the day before. What a wonderful experience.

Colleen relaxing in the front garden of By The Sea B and B. She deserves it! She works so hard to make special times like this happen. Thank you so much for all you do Colleen! Love you more than you know

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Pilgrim Memorial

The Pilgrims Memorial building, in Provincetown, Cape Cod, MA
Its purpose is to commemorate the Mayflower Pilgrims’ first landing in the New World in Provincetown, in November 1620. Here the Pilgrims spent 5 weeks exploring the tip of Cape Cod, before they sailed on to Plymouth. They also drew up and signed the Mayflower Compact. VERY COOL to know that one of Shaun's direct ancestors was one of the thirteen who signed the compact. More to come about that soon.

President Theodore Roosevelt laid the cornerstone in 1907. In 1910, President William Howard Taft dedicated the finished 252-foot tower. It is the tallest all-granite structure in the United States and is 350 feet above sea level.

Never look down...... Our view from part way up, looking down

It's a long way to the top! I held my camera out into the center and snapped. Terrible picture, but gives you an idea how far we had left to go to get to the top. 116 steps and 60 ramps are all it takes to get there. Can you say burning thighs?
Great piece of history

Location:Provincetown, MA

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Cape Cod Light

Truro, MA is the site of the Cape Cod Highland Lighthouse (also known as the Cape Cod Light), the first lighthouse on Cape Cod.

The Cape Cod light was moved inland. Quite an undertaking! The coast was eroding and there was a fear of losing the lighthouse into the ocean. The Preservation Society, Coast Gaurd and National Park Service worked together to save this beauty. I am so glad they did.

Going up anyone?
More of our Boston trip to follow

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com
- Posted by Jeanne from my iPad

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Boston, Still Day 2

I am still on day 2 of Boston.  Sorry it is taking me so long to get through a travel day.  I would tell you I will be faster in the future, but there is no reason to start anything, even a blog post, with a lie *wink*
SO, Day 2 (part 2) starts off with us getting off of The Bean Town Trolley (such a cute name) in Copley Square.  Copley Square is surrounded by a remarkable number of important Boston educational and cultural institutions.  Beautiful! Here are a few of the things you can see while standing in the center of Copley Square.
The Trinity Church is Stunning! It is the only church in the United States and the only building in Boston that has been honored as one of the "Ten Most Significant Buildings in the United States" by the American Institute of Architects   It was built from 1872-1877  This is a picture of the street facing (back) side of it.

The stained glass in the church is beyond description. I will save that for a blog post in itself. 
Okay... Okay just a little sneak peak    Amazing!

 I love that the church reflection was so clean and clear in the new glass high rise building across the street!   

 The Boston Public Library. The inscription on the building says "The Library of the City of Boston Built by the People and Dedicated to the Advancement of Learning" It is one of the few remaining large free libraries.

Copley square is also where the Boston Marathon ends. These statues were erected in honor of the participants of the oldest American Foot Race, The Boston Marathon. Very Cool.  It is called "The Hare and The Tortoise"

What a beautiful place! So many historical buildings all perfectly kept and preserved.
Of course on our sightseeing tour we also saw "the Green Monster" aka Fenway Parks green wall, The Massachusetts State House, MIT, Paul Revere Park and SO much more.

While there, I developed an obsession with all of the metal utility covers in the streets.  Seriously I have never seen so many different types of manhole and utility covers. Many of them are laid into BRICK ROADS....be still my heart....TWO of my favorite things, bricks AND cool rusting metal things.     If you would like to see all of them  (I promise it's not as crazy as it sounds) you can see them on my blog posts on http://brickroadphoto.blogspot.com/2012/09/bricks-in-boston.html
I will NEVER forget where I took this one.  LOVE it!

Didn't I warn you that I don't take traditional vacation/tourist pictures? Ha! 
Our next stop will be Salem.  Hold onto your hats....just kidding that was a really poor witch joke.
Thanks for looking
Love and miss y'all
~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property
of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without
permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Good morning Boston, Day 2

Day two in Boston,
This is the Custom House Tower in McKinley square. The building was completed in 1849 and the tower was added in 1910. Cost to build then $1,076,000 It was built near the docks to collect maritime duties in the days of The Boston Clipperships. In other words today's "customs"

It is shown next to Faneuil Hall (the gold dome) and the marketplace Center. Great history, beautiful architecture.
Next we took The Bean Town Trolley (what else would it be called) on a city tour. We drove past several beautiful church's and very old graveyards. This monument caught my attention. Not so much the monument but the people. I suppose I should have pre-warned you, my vacay pictures aren't always typical tourist pictures. In all of my photography I believe in capturing what is real, happening in that moment, not just the pretty pictures, the real pictures. That being said.

This touched my heart. There is an inscription on the stone above her that says "He preached with spiritual power and led a great advance towards the Christian ideals" It is on the William Ellery Channing Historic Landmark at the Federal Street Church in Boston. Christian ideals? What do you suppose he would think of this scene?

Next up Copley square, The Trinity Church, Boston library and a noteworthy rabbit and turtle. Until then.... Remember all it takes is a smile to make someone's day, to let them know someone cares in what can be an uncaring world at times.
More to follow

~~All of the photos on this blog are protected by copyright and are the property of Jeanne May and Brick Road Photo. Thank you for not reproducing them without permission.~~ www.brickroadphoto.com
Posted by Jeanne from my iPad

Cow Paths and Cameras in Boston Day1

Our trip to Boston was fabulous! Here is a recap of Day 1.
After surviving security (see blogpost Surviving Security) at DFW I arrived in Boston late afternoon. I picked up my rental car and headed into the city. At this point I was feeling pretty smart. The night before, I had downloaded a Map Quest app for my iPad and preprogrammed in the hotel address. All that was left was to turn it on and listen my way to the hotel. Long story short.... my 15 minute trip to the hotel took 45 minutes. The directionally challenged MQ voice just could not comprehend Boston's street system. Boston streets are not laid out in "grids". They seem to just meander and change names and directions at will. ~~Side note....While I was finding my way around I was amazed at how friendly the Boston drivers were, they frequently honked and waved at me, as if to welcome me to Boston, how nice. *wink*~~
I would find out later that the street system in Boston was created by using the old cow paths, they just paved them, aaahhhh it all makes sense now. Technology has met it's match! The MQ app has been deleted.

This is one of the first things you see when you come out of the tunnel from the airport. I took this with my cell out the car window while sitting in traffic...sorry

It is the Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge, and is one of the widest cable-stayed bridges in the world. The Bridge serves as the northern entrance to and exit from Boston. The Bridge is named after civil rights activist Lenny Zakim and the American colonists who fought the British in the Battle of Bunker Hill. Very cool!
Here is a better picture

It was taken by Andy Ryan Photography of Boston
Colleen was still in business meetings when I got to the hotel so I decided to take a walk in Boston's beautiful Beacon Hill area.
I anxiously unpacked my camera. That's when I discovered my lens had been crunched in transit (panic) my camera didn't work with it on (PANIC)!!! Tomorrow we would be touring Boston and doing it with no camera made me....well....panic. I immediately started searching online for camera shops in Boston. Did I mention panic??
( I am very happy to say we found a great camera store the next day, bought a new lens and to my relief the camera wasn't damaged, hallelujah!)

Colleen soon arrived at the hotel and we went back to the airport to pick up Pat. With Colleen as the navigator and the help of "Babbs" the voice on her phones VZNavigator we made it back to the hotel in record time! Thank you Babbs! BOO MQ!

Beautiful Beacon Hill

I can't wait to share the rest of our trip. I have decided to break it up in days and locations or it would be a HUGE boring blog post.

Day 2 we will tour Boston and Salem. Then we head down to Plymouth to our beautiful Bed and Breakfast for the remainder of our stay.
Can't wait to share
Posted by Jeanne from my iPad

Friday, September 7, 2012

Surviving security

The adventure to Boston has begun. I don't fly very much, in fact hardly at all. It's not that I don't like to fly......I hate to fly. I like the concept....getting somewhere fast, saving time yada yada. It's the hangover I get from the intravenous Dramamine that gets me. Ok so maybe intravenous is an exaggeration, but I am sure I exceed the "daily recommended dosage".

I don't even mind the security checks. Actually if I had my way everyone would fly naked with no carry ons. Ok maybe not totally naked but you get the point. A bomb in your underwear hmmmm really? That is not suicide, that is just iiicky. Of course one of the answers to post 9/11 security concerns was to put all liquids in a ziplock bag. Now I know that I am kind of scattered sometimes but I just don't get it. How does a ziplock bag make things safer? Don't get me wrong I love and use a lot of ziplock bags, but I have never felt like they were strong enough to protect me from a terrorist threat or a bomb. Please feel free to enlighten me. Wow I got way off track there.... One word...Dramamine

Today shaun dropped me at the airport, I made my way to security. I put the purse, the phone, the ipad, the sweater, the watch and the bracelet as well as my shoes in the little gray (germy) basket and proceeded in line to the new and improved metal detector. I haven't flown in a while so was quiet impressed that this was a full body scanner. You stood on two yellow feet prints, obviously made for someone with longer legs than mine, held your arms above your head and viola it scanned you. WELL I made the mistake of wearing a blouse that has a large silver decorative ring sewn INTO the front of it. Hello?? What was I thinking? Carl the security guy, (yes we are on a first name basis now) took one look and said "well let's try it". I stepped in and the bells went off. After stepping to the side to be "wanded" it was in fact determined that yes they thought it was my shirt. At that very moment I had this overwhelming fear of being escorted into "the back" and strip searched by the very big very mean looking woman in the uniform next to me, we will call her Helga. I took one look at Carl and said "I will just take it off". His response "excuse me?". I explained to him I had a camisole underneath. Now before you panic, my shirt was cut a little low so I decided to wear something underneath, it is really more like a t-shirt with straps. SO Carl said he thought that was ok as long as I was ok with it and it didn't really matter because by then I about had it pulled over my head.

At that point, I held my chin up, straddled the two little yellow feet prints, sucked in the fat rolls, put my arms above my head and Carl pressed the scan button. BRAVO! I passed, redressed and moved on. (I swear I could hear proper women everywhere gasping) Boston here I come, are you sure you are ready?

I'm sure you have noticed that I have not included a picture in this blog post ....you are welcome! Ha!
I am writing this on the plane under the influence of Dramamine, sorry mom. I am especially thankful that I could give everyone in the security area a story to tell about their trip.
I am looking forward to getting Carl's Christmas card.

Love and miss all of you
More Boston memories to come

Posted by Brick Road Photo, Jeanne May

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Purpose Project

The Purpose Project

Our families have experienced some pretty life changing events in the past two years. Two seperate battles with cancer, both of which I am thankful to say were battles won and are behind us now. Seeing the emotional and physical toll on everyone involved, building and strengthening relationships that we have all taken for granted for many years have made me see things in a way I never did before.
This picture was taken by my sister in law, it made me realize how important capturing the moment is.
This is Shaun and his mom when he went to visit her in Utah during her chemotherapy treatments. What most people see is a mother and son. What I see is the mental and physical exhaustion that goes with the chemotherapy. The worry on Shaun's face not only for his mom but for his sisters who were there every minute of every day making sure things were taken care of. Of course, the teal wrist band that we all wore to show support and honor all cancer patients. That's what I see, that's what touch's my heart.

This is my brother Kirby, his girls and wife Stacey shortly after her diagnosis and before her cancer treatment. To so many people this looks like an ordinary family picture in a beautiful setting. Looking at it now I see the worry on my brothers face, the disbelief and fear on Staceys face, most importantly I see a FAMILY, a family ready to tackle the fight ahead of them. Which they did very well!

Our family photographs are just that.... OURS! WE know what was going at that moment, good or bad. OUR memories, no one elses.
I have had people act shocked by the fact that I feel the need to capture moments like this. "Who would want to remember such a scary and terrible time in life?" We may not want to remember these times in life but we NEED to remember them, to be reminded of how quickly life can change, to treasure every moment.
After having the "C" word in our life for a while, every time I drove past The American Cancer Society Building I felt the overwhelming urge to stop, to offer to help and give back for what they had done for our family members. What kept me from stopping? Well, honestly how does one approach the subject of offering the service of taking cancer patients and their families pictures without sounding kinda creepy? I called my SIL Colleen and ran it past her, she suggested I volunteer in general, not from a photo standpoint, and then see if there is a need. AWESOME idea! (she has always been the pay it forward girl, one of the many things I love about her)
SO the next day I stopped, I volunteered, and I was very promptly told they weren't accepting volunteers but they would add me to a list. Really? I have worked with several volunteer organizations and never once did we ever turn down volunteers. Don't get me wrong they are an amazing organization who have helped so many people including my family and I am thrilled that they have an over abundance of volunteers..... BUT
I do have to admit I felt a little dejected over the whole thing. That night when I couldn't sleep, I was surfing some photo websites when this popped up on my screen, twice I might add....... OK GOD I get it, thanks for the nudge though

I had been so caught up trying to decide what to do with my life and give back at the same time I hadn't seen the obvious!
SO that's how the Purpose Project came to be. It is not just about cancer patients, that was just the catalyst. It is about the senior who can't afford senior portraits because of situations at home. It's about the elderly person who can't leave the care center to greet that new baby or see the new bride. The tender moment shared with a loved one dealing with Alzhiemers. That is why I chose photography, that is my Purpose.....to capture the truly important moment's in daily life.

Thanks for letting me share this with you

If you know of, or are a part of an organization in East Texas that works with people who would benefit from and treasure some captured memories, please send me a private note jeanne@brickroadphoto.com There is NEVER a charge

"It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that you cannot sincerely try to help another without helping yourself" Ralph Waldo Emerson