Into the Wild...

Find it funny that on the road to get to know myself & the world around, I first must walk through a door marked "unknown."

I have learned to embrace butterflies. The ones that fill your stomach before you do something daring. May seem a small act, going without technology/social media, for a handful of days, because I've chosen to cut my self off. (But tell that to the butterflies who have begun to occupy my tummy.)
Finding it a little sad saying goodbye to my friends on Twitter, Facebook for a four day #techblackout. To regroup, to touch the terra firma... for a spell.

aka: Supertramp

Untethering the ties that bind.

In celebration of Independence day I am doing something rare, although not unique. I am stealing a page from a pair of canons in American Literature, Emerson & Thoreau. I am going back to nature, into the wild, heading up for a long weekend with my family at my parents' remote lakeside home. The path up north has been tread hundreds of times. I have visited this land we call 40 Acres with it's cabins, glacier lake, lopsided dock, well water, and abounding wildlife for as many years as it has acres. An heirloom family laden Paradise. But here's the rub:

I am cutting the tether of technology. Pulling the plug! Well...for a handful of days at least. Four to be exact.

Being untethered this weekend (#techblackout) will mean no computer, no BlackBerry, no television (except I plan to cheat and watch Wimbledon!) no email, and this one pains me the most, no social media, no Twitter.

I'm not a real Transcendentalist. I love social media, society and the hustle-bustle of daily life. My way is a busy, electronic playground. But I have found that things we love can also become our undoing if we let them. So, I am declaring my independance from the ties (techstuffs) that bind me. This social experiment is more about FUNdaMENTALism. Skinny-dipping, that is metaphorically, getting down to the skin your in.

Seems a bit silly to say that I'll miss the constant communication with you all. The tweets, the cool bite sized info that fills the voids in the day, keeps my fingers busy, and in many ways warms my soul. But the techy tether is to be severed nonetheless. For these reasons:

I need to draw true warmth from my loved ones around me.
I want to sit and listen to the birds, feel the rift of waves on the side of the oar flanked boat.
I need to catch a large mouthed bass, with my father at my side.
I cannot hear, see, smell and taste as well when I am talking. (ie; tweeting)
I want to pay 100% attention to my husband who puts up with my social habits as best he can.
I plan to take a nap.
I plan to embrace the chatter of nature over the chatter of social society.
I need to plug back in to nature's outlet and feed my little outdoor girl soul.
I will sip wine, play bocce, shower with bottled water so as not to ruin my bought blondness.
I will be present, in the here and now, aware.
And, of course, I will take pictures.

The people I communicate with in social media have become more than robust personalities, they have become part of my daily life, they have become my friends. And it will be wacky to be totally with out that camaraderie. But, I'll be back Tweeting like it's going outta style on Tuesday.

Hope you all have a safe, wonderful, holiday!

(ps. very difficult to not be there for #followfriday, a day that make me smile all day. I'll catch up with you, though)


Ready, Set....

Remember the summer you were seven? Remember your toes hanging over the end of the dock, your heels defiantly holding firm? You hold the hand of your big cousin who has done this before and assures you you'll be fine. Your heart beats harder and you tighten your grip.

What's under the surface? What will it feel like? Will it hurt me?

And then something inside you triggers your body to take the plunge...and JUMP.

I had that same feeling a little while back while I held my finger over the enter button on my computer. My photography business had just begun and my website was about to soon as I pressed enter.

What's under the surface? What will it feel like? Will it hurt me?

And then I jumped! Yes, I was worried people wouldn't like my photographic style, that I would fail, that something would jump up and bite me. But I pressed enter. And emerged smiling and grateful for the challenge.

We, Jen, Ria, Suzanne, Morgan and I, want to share your adult thrills with you. We've been building a grown up clubhouse called Looking Glass Lane. You've seen us tweet about it but perhaps you haven't quite understood the function. We are the girls who will challenge you to stand at the end of the dock, and....JUMP. We are trigger pullers, dock jumpers, mischief makers, buzz generators, and cocktail party hostesses all in one (so hard to label.) Just because you are bigger, you are flanked with little ones of your own, you are running a company, or you're feeling fully "growed" these days doesn't mean you can't take advice from the seven year old inside of you.

For instance, here are a few nuggets of advice from my little self: (Leigh, age 5, shown above flirting with the photographer. I have rocks and snakes in my pocket, I guarantee it.)
  • Don't go places without wearing pockets. Treasures are everywhere and you only have two hands and one mouth.
  • Anything boys can do, you can too. Prolly better.
  • Laughing is THE best. Laughing should be a daily dose thing like water, sugar and food.
  • Shut your eyes 5 times a day, take a deep breath and snap a mental picture. You can replay them at night if you can sleep or if you're grounded.
  • When picking up snakes, don't grab 'em where they can bite you.
  • Oh, and hide candy in your pockets jus in case you do get grounded.
  • Chocolate melted in the sun is the finest chocolate. Just don't step in it! And melted in your pocket isn't good.
  • When grown ups look sad, hugging them helps. Or see if you can offer to fold clothes or get the mail while they happy up.
  • Be nice to your friends. Or they won't be your friends. And it's really hard to play kickball all by yourself.

While The Lane site is still under construction, we have already conjured up wonderful like-minded adventurers who have become part of the Looking Glass Community. They have written dossiers, demonstrated bravery, have inspired US, and have worn the team colors during our adventures thus far.

We're ready for shenanigans. We envision a site that will have you thinking, sharing and daring. Like Alice in Wonderland, we invite you to jump down the rabbit hole.

We are waiting for you...and we're already sure you CAN.

Morgan's getting hitched tomorrow!!!!!

The looking glass girls have done it my assignment is write a limerick for Morgan's @modernsinglemom 's Bachelorette Party tonight at 10pm which we will be ustreaming live. Yeah. We do weird social media stuff. We bring "haven't seen that done" to new levels. We want you to join us on Morgan's last night of SINGLEMOMHOOD!

Morgan, whom I call GlamRomantic has THE coolest love story to share. It will touch your heart and reel you in. I met her and instantly adore her!

For tomorrow, she #GetsHitched (you can watch the love tweeting happen there. I come on at 10:30!)

The Monster Vegas Photo Shoot!

Only a few more days until I am packing my camera, extra batteries for Las Vegas, Baby, site of the Monster Vegas Tweet Up, June 5th!!

I will be photographing many of the Twitterfolk while I am there and wanted to have the pre-shoot info available for them and any other willing participants :)

You, the Brand
Shoot with @fleurdeleigh

What you can expect
First off, thanks for opting into the fun. This Vegas shoot will be fabulous as it will be sure to provide us with very interesting, robust images. Can’t wait!! Thanks to Hernan Valencia (my cool Vegas local :) I am looking into rocking spaces like the Neon Graveyard (see below) to serve as backdrops for our shoots. What your $150 session fee gets you: me chasing you around with my camera for about 45 minutes, a collection of images post processed in a vibrant variety of color and black & white in a web gallery with a link for you to share, a disc with all the images formatted for print and digital use along with the original files. Additionally, I’ll make any image you want into an avatar, lickety split.

What you need to bring
Your sense of humor and your true self. Easy enough, huh? Those I have photographed had fun, a willing smile and walked away with images that they felt express their personality and individual spirit. That’s my job. Also, my photo sessions are active, lively, busy, power-packed with laughter and fun. WARNING: I have been known to be armed with Nerf balls to catch you off guard. Back to business. Bring that which suits you. Let’s discuss props, outfits, your goals in advance individually. Shoot me a note for my cell phone number. Definitely, bring a “costume” change. Vegas will be hot, so I recommend you bring a towel to dab the face, and make-up just in case.

A few potential shoot sites
And I am I coming in a bit early to get some Urban settings under my belt. Trust me when I say, this is the coolest backdrop I have ever had to work with!! (Not that Dayton, Ohio doesn’t totally rock...) Here are few spots:

Your homework

You heard me! Every shoot begins with three little words...about you. I ask that you provide me with three describers to help me visualize how I am going to capture you. (ie; me: sporty, creative, bubbly) Email your words to the sooner the better. Also, if you refer someone else to join us for the shoot, I’ll take $50 off your session fee. I like new clients and I believe the more fun folks we have the better. JACKPOT!!! (few spots available...)

Can’t wait to meet you all & capture your images. I already feel lucky!

9 Bold Steps to your Ultimate Career Lifestyle

Are you a Poser or the Real Deal? Come see for yourself. A new blog post at Talent Revolution.

Create your dossier

So many of you have wanted to create a dossier of your own so I have provided the nuts & bolts...The rest is up to you!!

(cut and paste into the comment section)

(alias will also do)
Looking Glass Powers: (list a few abilities...think big)
Dress-up Closet: (what are the signature items in your wardrobe)
Disguise: (what do you don to go be noticed go unnoticed)
Go-To Gadget: (what item or device do you arm yourself with at nearly all times)
Vice: (what would you hide from your parents)
Magic Potion: (what is your cannot do without liquid and why)
Battery Recharge Hub (where to you plug in, get energ, re-establish you)
Bratty Spoilers: (when in a fit, what makes you all betta)
Owner's Manual:
(What defines you in print, what illuminates you)

Weapon: (What is your tool, your device, your method)
Nemesis: (What are you up against, what challenges you)
Secret Ambitions: (What would your six- year-old self say you should grow up to be)