Looking Back at 2014


Last year was a big year for many different reasons. It was not necessarily a great year for this photography blog, but it was a year full of many big changes for me and my family. Like most years, nothing typically happens the first few months of the year. Those are the months that I hibernate indoors. So I will just skip over those boring details and start with our vacation to Sarasota.




Regretfully it was still during tax season, so my dad was not present. But the rest of the family, and one of Alex’s friends headed down to Florida for an amazing week. I probably was going to enjoy it no matter the weather since going to Sarasota meant going to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. If you do not know me, you probably would not know about my obsession with the Harry Potter books, music, movies, and all things connected. My car is named Lily after all, and I might have a Hogwarts puzzle hanging in my room. Sorry, I got distracted, back to the beach photos.


I had two new books, my camera, and nothing to do for a week. It was a great time to relax and was just the start of all the changes this year would bring.



The next big event was not for me, but for my little sister. In May she graduated from THE University of Tennessee. It was a good moment since that moved up the Vol Alumni count in our family. I am sure it was a time full of mixed feelings for her. It is exciting graduating college, but it is also a stressful time since so many people do not know what their next step is.





Two pictures of Sorority Row  on campus. The first is the summer before her Junior year right before they opened. The second is two years later after she graduated. Amazing what two years and some landscaping will do. (not quite at the same angle)


Then in June I got a new job. I had been at Kroger as a Transportation Planner for almost 3 years, and it was starting to show. I enjoyed some aspects of the job, but it was finally time to move on. I now work as a Transportation Analyst for OHL. It has been a great 6 months so far. It was hard at the beginning since I was not an Excel guru, but each day I leave feeling like I have provided value to the company.

The new job meant moving to a new side of the city. I was not going to deal with the stresses of i440 every day. So for the first few months I lived with my Aunt and Uncle. It was a great time, and I am extremely grateful that they took me in for so long. Also, it was nice getting to spend some time with some other dogs.






My cousin had two new additions to their family over the summer. It was a crazy time for all of them due to some of the health problems with Hudson. Seeing the twins today you would never think that Hudson was the one with all of the heart surgeries.




Being on the Brentwood side of town meant changing where I rode my bike. I spent probably 3-4 days a week riding Percy Warner. It was a challenge at the beginning since I was not used to so many hills. However, after a few weeks ofsome mental/physical pushing, I was going around the loop faster and faster each ride.  The one bad thing was I could not ride my recent single speed converted bike as much.


Moving to the other side of town also meant not seeing a few dogs as much.



September easily was the craziest month of the year. After months of searching with my amazing real estate agents Tammy and Mark Edwards I found my home. It was a VERY stressful first few weeks of being a homeowner, but it did not take long for the place to feel like home. All it needed was some paint, cleaning, and money haha. I am just a few miles from work, near lots of pizza restaurants, and within running distance of a small greenway. But the big focus of September was my older sister getting married. It was an incredible event, and I guess my dad would say “it should be” haha. Typically I do not enjoy events with lots of people, but that was a day I will always remember.





After the wedding is when the Fall season started to kick in. Now I won’t say I hate the Fall, but this is when my Winter blues start to kick in. I can’t seem to enjoy riding my bike in the cold, and with it getting dark so early I had to stop riding after work. Thankfully over the fall I was able to take some pictures around town, and at Gatlinburg for a weekend getaway with my family.DSC_2949a






Enter December and the first Christmas at my new home. It was overall a very relaxing month since I had some vacation days to use. It is a weird feeling sitting on you own couch and in your own home. I guess I finally grew up. Well somewhat, I still spend lots of nights watching Harry Potter movies with the three kids, aka my bikes.


Part of my Grandmother’s Snow Village.


Rachel has even started her own. I love the Griswold house.


It was a great Christmas. I spent a few days at my parents house. So it meant lots of bonding time with Copper. And those other people that live there.



2014 was a great year, and 2015 looks to be as well. I mean it did start with Alabama losing and the Vols winning in their bowl games.

Outside of photos, here are two videos I made this year.


Christmas at My Home


This holiday season is the first at my new home. It is a weird feeling trying to start my own “traditions” or whatever you want to call them around Christmas time. It is different spending most of the holidays by myself at home. Most of the time I enjoy it, but some other times I miss how it was as a kid. Always having Christmas music playing, movies on tv, and desserts everywhere was something I was used to growing up. I have tried my best to make the place feel like “home”, or at least the home I grew up in.

Matthew 2:10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.


I know I have succeeded, mostly, when I find myself just laying on the couch drinking some hot chocolate admiring the tree. I am sure lots of people would not enjoy that, but there is something I love about just laying under a blanket staring into the lights. It is peaceful, and something I rarely get to enjoy. I have found myself embracing the things my mom did as I grew up. Playing Christmas songs nonstop, hanging cards in the kitchen. (even if they are from past years)


I ended up buying all of the classic movies I grew up with. Sure I am 28, but that evidently hasn’t stopped me from watching Frosty, Rudolph, etc.


I feel like most people spend time counting down the days till Christmas, instead of sitting back to enjoy the time. As I get older there is less time to really enjoy the Christmas season. The majority is spent working, and what little spare time we all have is then spent stressing over shopping. It is not what Christmas is about.





This will be a different year. Since I have a different job, it will be my first Christmas in 3 years that I will actually get to enjoy. I thankfully will be able to spend most of the next two weeks with the people I care about. It is an odd feeling knowing I will have time to truly relax and enjoy this time. I hope you will be able to also.

DSC_3253aMerry Christmas!

Luke 2:11 ‘And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not: ‘Behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people, Unto you is born this day a Savior which is Christ the Lord.’