Choosing Open Water Over the Harbor

Nacogdoches photographer image of boats in San Diego Harbor at sunset with a quote by William G.T. Shedd

Here’s to Monday, y’all. And here’s to taking our ships out of the harbor… whether that means letting something go, or starting something new. I hope this week we can all find the courage to believe in ourselves enough to pull up the anchor, loosen our lines and set out into the open water.

Get your crew ready – whether that’s your spouse, your best friends, or your family. Get their support – whether they fully understand the need for the change or not – and set sail. Take the risk.

It may take you hours to leave the harbor, or it may take you years. But today, in this moment, make that first move. Make the choice.

Let’s stop letting fear of the unknown keep us from what we’re meant for. Get out there and do what you’re meant to do, and do it with those you love by your side. And once you’re out there – embrace whatever happens. Because at some point, there’ll be a beautiful sunset to warm your heart and remind you of the moment you decided to leave the harbor.

Pushing Myself – and a Fun Time-stealer!

So I have some goals this year, and within those main goals I’ve got action items I want to accomplish to push me toward achieving those goals. One of those action items was to actually submit some of my photos to a photo contest of some sort.

Check it off the list!

Y’all, I am so excited about the Shoot & Share 2015 Photo Contest.

Now let me clarify – I am not excited because I expect to win anything. In fact, it’s the opposite. I’m excited that I simply submitted images at all. I cleared the hurdle of all of the negative self-talk (“Why spend the time pulling/submitting images? You’ll never win anything anyway…”). I took the leap anyway. Despite of the fact that so many of the full-time, established photographers I look up to submit their images to the contest as well.

For me, it’s not about winning. It’s about being brave enough to put my work out there to be “judged” by fellow photographers. So that’s a win already.


Another reason I’m excited about the contest is the way it is formatted: free to submit up to 40 images, and no identifying information is tied to the photos in any way. It’s anonymous. In the voting process, 4 images within 1 of the 21 categories will pop up on the screen – you click the one you like the best, and that’s it. The next set of four images pops up. It’s simple.

At the end of voting, each person who submitted photos will get to see how their photo stacked up votes wise – which is valuable information, even if it’s not exactly specific feedback. A way to ease myself into getting constructive criticism on my work.


You don’t have to be a photographer to vote, so feel free to click on over and check it out! Warning though – it’s addicting. You may want to set a timer for yourself so you don’t look up 3 hours later and think it’s only been 30 minutes!

Let me know if you have as much fun voting as I have been so far! 

Web Gems – Round 7

Web Gems


Time for Round 7!!! Lots of things to move you & inspire you today… and one that just really made me laugh.


  • These images… the love and strength they perfectly captured… I just can’t get over them. Such a beautiful reminder that beauty is in the love you have, the laughter you share, and the light in your eyes. Gorgeous. Just gorgeous. Andrea Jacobson did a stellar job with these photographs.

SMP Courageous Bride



  • This is just too beautiful! The work, and the way that this mama is bringing her daughter’s work come to life at a time where so many would just dismiss that work as scribbles. I truly hope I can be that uplifting and empowering to others – especially Peanut!



  • So…. wow. These 22 things were most definitely a blast from the past… minus #18. Never never never did that one. Ever.
  • Y’all. This had me in tears. What an amazing little girl. And Miranda Lambert? Love her even more now.

Today Show Miranda Lambert Brooke Hester


  • And one more powerful video to round out today…. This is such a great idea!