Tilt shift lenses and effects can make some of the coolest photos. This is my first time trying, so I was a little nervous, but I think they turned out decent. But I've been avoiding photoshop for a while so I might be a little rusty. But I'm telling you, Ecuador has some of the most beautiful landscapes. I really had a difficult time photographing it in a way that gave it justice because it's such a...panoramic city. That's the only way I can think to describe it. It's a place that needs to be seen with physical eyes to really absorb all of the beauty that's there. So I thought some tilt edits might be a fun and different way to present it. Anywho, here are some pictures from a few areas around town. Some parts were pretty primitive, others were great, little metropolitans. All of it is fantastic.


The last shot is my favorite from the group. It's a sun temple from the Ingapircan (Incan) ruins.
Another great thing about Ecuador is how diverse it is. I lived and visited three large cities during my time and they were all so different from each other. The differences between the clean mountain atmosphere in Cuenca and the humid coast line in Guayaquil were so vast, I almost couldn't believe that they were in the same country (and such a little one, too!). Weather wise, I always thought it was so ironic that the country I was living in was on the Equator, yes, but I was so high up in the mountains (9,000 ft. +) that I was never really hot where I lived. The hottest it got was probably 85 or 90 degrees and the coldest was 50 or 55. PRIME weather, people. PRIME. It's a fantastic thing.
Well, there's my little taste of Ecuador for you. It's purty. You should go there.

And for some really well done tilt shifts, lookie here. I'm booking my flight to Iceland tonight, whataboutyou?


comida parte dos

I'm going to get some city posts of Cuenca up here because it is such a beautiful little city filled with some really great people. To start, more food! It was all ridiculously delicious. And it looked pretty (to me, at least).

Whilst in Ecuador, we volunteers had the unbelievably awesome blessing of having an in house cook who made lunch for us everyday. It was DELICIOUS. Rice. All the time. And yogurt and bananas and mozzarella cheese and caterpillar bread and a giant glass of juice EVERYDAY. We also had a fruit market about 3 minutes away from our house. It was a rad place filled with rad people who grew some delicious foods. These pictures don't even show the half of it. 



Thank you for taking my appointment today, cyber-therapist. I know it's been a while.

I don't deal with the present well. Usually not at all. And I say this because I think I'm really starting to realize how much it effects me. Well, not really realized because I've known I've done it for a while, but I think I'm finally coming to terms with it/realizing that I might need to figure out a different way to cope with things. Whether it's in a situation like my time in Ecuador, or graduating from high school, friends leaving on missions or any sort of moment that deals with a lot of high intensity emotion (you know, love & other junk), I don't do it. I can't tell you how many times I've been in a situation where the full attention of my brain is quite necessary, but I just seem to check out. And I deal with it, sure, but always later.

I was looking at a friend from Ecuador's pictures on facebook and it just hit me that that's not my life anymore. Just barely. And it's giving me a pit in my stomach. Since I've been home, I haven't been dealing with the anxiety of being away by not looking at pictures or by ignoring that I went like I kind of thought I would. In fact, I've been surrounding myself with Ecuador paraphernalia to try and help me adjust better, but my adjusting just seemed so natural, until now. So I'm just going to go ahead and whine. You'll listen, right? That's what my corner of the cyber-world is for, right?

I miss Ecuador for completely selfish reasons. I miss being around children. I miss the feeling of holding a new baby. I miss hearing 2 year olds say my name. I miss wrestling with 3 year olds. I miss talking with curious 5 year olds. I miss just being in the presence of a special needs child. I miss having purpose. I miss knowing that I was doing something worthwhile. I could go into this a million times over and list every aspect of everything in relation to Cuenca, but I have a tendency of getting carried away when I do these list things. What I miss the most about Ecuador is how simple my life was. I played with kids all day and dreamed in Spanish at night. My biggest stressors were what kind of activity can I do with a 2 year old that won't be destructive or harmful and the fact that the bananas were plantains, again. I had a few belongings and a few clothes, but nothing extraordinary. I had these kids. I didn't need much else.

Mostly, I'm just really overwhelmed right now. I'm feeling really sad. Really sad. It's about time it really sunk in.
Thanks for letting me have a little pity party. I need to get it out of the way. That's what cyber-therapists are for, right? I'll be chipper soon, I promise.


Paul is cool. And he's a Valedictorian. Three cheers for brains!



One of my favorite engagements that I've done.

No, really though. I love it. We were lightly (baha) inspired by the great couple that is HEARBLACK.

CONGRATS JAYRAY AND KELLBELL. I can't wait for the wedding! 


guess what

It's snowing. And I hate it. At least it's pretty, right?

And it's pretty pathetic I'm making a whole post about the weather, right? 

Don't answer that. 



I don't like anything I'm posting at the present moment. It's really starting to bug me, too. Just like everything else about real life is starting to bug me. Some real candid thoughts are boiling in me and I'm not quite sure how I want to voice them, so I'll let them formulate in my brain for a bit and we'll see if I'm willing to spill with you, dear cyber-therapist. In the mean time, here's one of my most treasured souvenirs that I acquired from a very talented woman named Laura.

I need to get it framed. But it is one of the most beautiful things I have ever possessed. And it reminds me of A Little Princess. And we all know that movie is the best.

The details are really the best parts. It has everything good about Cuenca in it: mountains, banana trees, rain, a windmill, llamas, and orphans.

Needless to say, I tear up a little every time I look at this now. I'm tearing up about everything, though (I cried when Michael proposed to Holly on The Office). I'm a little oversensitive right now.



The first three days before Ash Wednesday (March 6-8th) were probably some of the most fear-ridden and fun filled days I had in Cuenca. It's a giant, free for all water fight among the entire city and no one is exempt from it. No one. An extra set of clothes was necessary for any and all shifts and bus rides created a moving target for water bombs.

Never fear, I did get my fair share of cheap hits, but in the end, I got killed.

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del parson

Back to sundee stuffs, right?

I'm watching a documentary about Del Parson called "Del Parson: Portraits of Love". I think this man is truly incredible for his marvelous paintings of Christ. And also because he painted a painting with some of my favorite people from Ecuador.

I'm getting back into the swing of things. Or trying to at least. And a teaser of sorts for my photo site of Ecuador that is being constructed AS WE SPEAK. Yeah.