Archive for 'Personal'

August 24

When I was a little girl I had a next door neighbor whom I was close to.  I would definitely say that at the time she was my best friend.  We  were both the same age and went to the same elementary school and played often together.  We were not neighbors for a very long time.  As we got older, Jen and I sparingly remained in touch and we would both catch up briefly with our lives.  We even at one point dated the same kid, of course not at the same time.  But my story, here, isn’t really about that.

It’s more about when we were little, we would get mad at each other and I can never remember for any reason why.  I do remember when I wanted to play with her she would still be mad and in order for me to convince her to play with me it generally required a bribe or maybe an incentive, such as, I would offer candy like a Snickers bar or Kit Kat or Nestles Crunch so we can be friends again.  This usually did the trick.  However, by the time we would get home from school I would tell her I didn’t really have the candy.   She usually was disappointed but not quite mad at me.  It didn’t work all the time, so I would actually have to give her a real candy bar just to show some truth that I had them.    Nonetheless, I believe I owe it to her that if I say I have something to give I should give it to that person.

So that is what this one photo is all about.  It’s on my List of the things to do and having to stuff this fun-size bag of candy into a Christmas shoebox and sent to her home in Middleville last week which, ironically, arrived in time for her birthday.  That’s not why I sent it.  It just happen to show up on that day.  I still haven’t seen her in many many years but that doesn’t mean that an old friend doesn’t deserve something sweet.

Jen, I am so happy for you and your family and what life has to offer and Happy Belated birthday!!  And I wish I could put a candle on your bag of candy.

00 53 #137 Send Jen C. some candy.

August 22

I am a super huge fan of Howard Schatz. I idolize him. If you are not familiar with his work, as most people may not, he shoots the most amazing, the most stunning, and the most vivid portraits underwater. I love him and I wish he was my mentor and best friend. He’s even on my List to meet in person someday.

Over the summer, I finally had a chance to photograph the neighbor kids underwater at their pool. I love that they were so enthusiastic about it too. I may have had a few technical difficulties, but I have to say I’m pretty happy how they turned out for my first time. And, clearly, I am no Howard Schatz.  I’m far from him, but he’s a huge inspiration to me for my first time shooting underwater.  I dedicate these virgin images to him.

August 20

Hello, my name is Jesamin, and I’m a magazine whore. It’s so bad that I told myself I wouldn’t purchase anymore magazines for the entire month of August. The only magazines I receive are the ones that I’m subscribed to.  To be honest it’s pretty hard…to not buy more magazines that is.  It typically begins at the line at the grocery store where I will pick up a publication and sift through it while waiting to load my groceries on the conveyer belt.  Or sometimes I will just head straight to the books and magazine section at the store and hang out for a few minutes before, during, or at the end of shopping.  What really grabs my attention is a great cover…(Thank you wonderful photographers) and then sometimes there maybe a great cover article that will entice me  as well.  These two things are what gets me in to trouble because some how, some way, this wonderful, flexible booklet filled with amazing images and fun articles ends up in my suitcase, in what I call a purse, onto my dinner table, towards the coffee table, and sometimes next to my bed, to at some point, a pile underneath more magazines.

The magazines that I have accumulated over the years began consuming my workspace and then every other nook and crany in the house.  I’m hoping that my husband hadn’t noticed but if he has, he’s been kind enough to not mention it to me to my face that I have a serious problem.  I’d hate for my addiction to become an episode on Intervention or,  God forbid, Hoarders, where everyone would see me bust out into an ugly cry and I continue to say, “I don’t know how I got here!” and then accept the gift of rehab to get my life back in order.

I’m glad to say that I’ve recognized my problem for quite sometime and that I’ve made the personal decision that I need to take care of my issues…no pun intended.  Therefore #108 on my List is to recycle all my magazines including my Shape subscription to 2003….I know…I know.

August 18

So the other night, I find this little guy hanging out on my door, which took me by surprise since our yard is generally occupied by bull frogs not tree frogs. In my decision to find a better shot, I ran for another lens to swap with. When I came back, my new friend quickly disappeared but not for long. He had moved on to the dining room floor before I grabbed a piece of paper towel, caught him, and moved him back outdoors.

00 1 Say hello to my little friend.

Copyright of Emery & Company Photography

00 2 Say hello to my little friend.

Copyright of Emery & Company Photography


Last Friday afternoon was spent with my good friends, Sam and Jenn, at Sam’s house completing one of my things to do on my List and going out to lunch.  While we were together, I talked them into just letting me photograph them in the front yard.

These girls just make me laugh, smile, and pee my pants…all at the same time.  They, for the most part, were troopers about the idea and seem to have really gotten into it in a very non-serious way.  That’s what makes it so great because I make a point to not take everything too seriously, and I am one of those people who will laugh first and apologize later because that’s just how I naturally react to things.

To really sum it all up, Friday afternoon was filled with silliness and laughter, which is how afternoons spent with friends should be.

In the meantime, Sam’s cat, Hamilet, showed us how it’s really supposed to be done and when I got home, Cider left me a wonderful present.  Don’t worry.  It didn’t come in the gross, lumpy form.


I took my boys to the dog park for the first time and both of them could not be any happier.  It was such a wonderful day and spending the few hours watching my boys run around and play with other dogs was so entertaining, especially since Cider never likes to give anyone any privacy but he had the biggest smile of the day.

The List


Going back to my List of things to accomplish through out my lifetime, eating steel cut oats made my list.  I have heard of this food staple and always wanted to try it, so I was happy to have made my first bowl.  It took much longer to prepare compared to the wonderful instant oatmeal that you just pop in the microwave.  But I knew my colon would be thanking me later for the lengthy wait and the fantastic consumption of fiber that my insides so desperately needed.  Plus, as I waited for my oatmeal to stew, I made myself a healthy breakfast scramble in case the 30 minutes it took for the oats to cook tasted horrible.

In all honesty, I didn’t know what to expect which is pretty common if you’ve never done something before.  To my surprise, steel cut oats really didn’t taste much different then instant oatmeal.  It was  a little hardier but nothing that a little bit of brown sugar couldn’t cure.  Really the only difference for me was the length of time it took to make it.  Steel cut oats certainly is not something I should be making when I’m on the go, but I know my insides were thanking me of treating myself so good that morning.

Thank you Hodgson Mill for your quality Steel Cut Oats.


About a month ago, I met with my photog friends for some lunch at my favorite, Electric Cheetah, where I enjoyed an amazing meal and of course some great laughs.  We later headed down to East Grand Rapids where we walked around, took pictures of random things including ourselves,  and enjoyed some ice cream in the sun.  Of course, ice cream only had us rolling with more laughs.  For anyone who doesn’t know Sam, she is hilarious.  There is something juvenile about her sense of humor that makes me fall in love with this girl and I think it would be safe to say that I speak for Jill and Jenn, who was with us that afternoon.

I love ice cream and I love my friends.


Well if you can’t tell by now, I am playing some massive catch-up.  Over a month ago, my good friends from Holland had put together a little photo scavenger hunt around downtown Grand Rapids.  It was really nice to see some old classmates of mine and do some catching up.  Anyhow, everyone was given a list of a subject and we needed to interpret it one way or the other.  It was a great opportunity to think outside the box and get creative with each idea.

Originally, I began in at John Ball Park, but moved my way towards downtown where my friends were wondering around. I didn’t get everything on my list but it was definitely a great way to get my mind to warm up to some creative ideas.

I had fun, Sunday Shoot Group!

By the way I added my little haikus as I had mentioned before.

April 11

Inspiration has hit me again.  I love feeling inspired.  It always gets my gears turning and smoke coming out of my ears.  It makes my heart beat and at the very least, get me off the couch.  I’ve always have made to-do lists at least once a year but have kept them in my journal.  In the past couple years, I’ve narrowed down to five, but it was a really big five.  Five things to do that required many little things to accomplish those 5 major things.  They had to be done in five years and the interesting thing is that I’m half way through all of them, like buying a car.  My husband and I have managed to save plenty of money to buy a new car and within a couple more weeks it will be sitting in our garage.  I have to say it makes me feel pretty good knowing that my husband and I have worked very hard in the past few years to even get to this point and paying for a vehicle in cash deserves a big pat on the back for that one….but not yet because the car isn’t quite here.  Back in the end of 2001 the 5th thing on my list was to become a photographer.  Well what do you know?  That’s a big check off the list.  Number  26  was to get a dog.  Well, I can put a check and another check because I have two canine buddies in my household.

It’s nice to keep to-do lists because it’s a reminder of even the little things you accomplish.  One of my favorite things to ask people is to list at least 5 things that they have accomplished in the past 10 years.  With that being said getting married and having children are not included.  However,  if you have at least stayed married passed 5 years then it can count.  I will share with you my five things.  I finished college…twice.  I bought a house.  I have participated in 2 triathlons.  I started a business.  I’ve paid off an XXXX amount of dollars in debt.  I can easily say I am proud of myself.

Recently, I stumbled across my girlfriend’s blog where she listed 200 things she wanted to do in her life and it had my heart pumping again.  She had so many things that I wanted to do and some things I had already done, such as, Go skinny dipping.  Ha!!  I might as well be an ambassador for that one.  And then this evening, I was watching my wonderful Oprah, and she had 4 boys from the show called The Buried Life.  Apparently the show was based on a list of the things these 20 something year old boys wanted to do and they did it.  Along the way they help strangers accomplish at least one thing they wanted to do during their life time.  It was such a beautiful and profound way of paying it forward and I’m inspired by those kinds of things.

So here it goes.  I’m making my list of all of the ridiculous and non-ridiculous things I am going to do.  I AM GOING TO DO! (And I’m doing 201 and so I have a longer list than my girlfriend’s list of 200.)

1.  At the end of 2010 2011, have my student loan paid off.  7-2-11
2. Go to church at least twice a month.
3. Back pack the Philippines.
4. Pay for a vehicle in cash.  4-16-10
5. Ride my bike through the White Pine trail tour, which is two days long.
6. Swim in open water for 2 miles.
7. Go scuba diving.
8. Attend a Buddhist Temple.
9. Attend a Muslim Temple.
10. Attend a Jewish Temple.
11. Speak fluent French.
12. Volunteer with inner city children or under privileged children.
13. Volunteer in a Deaf/Hard of Hearing Community Center.
14. Participate in a hip-hop dance battle.
15. Swing dance.
16. Have my work up in a gallery.
17. Travel to 10 different foreign countries in 10 years.
18. Have my work published.
19. Rock climb the Grand Canyon.
20. Camp in the Grand Canyon.
21. Go on a girlfriend getaway on an Alaskan cruise.
22. Renew my wedding vows in Hawaii.
23. Go to a legit Fairy Forest Park in Maine.
24. Go snow shoeing.
25. Try cross-country skiing.
26. Visit the country of Japan.
27. Island hop to 30 islands around the world.
28. Try out exotic dancing on amateur night.
29. Go to a topless/nude beach.
30. Ride a burro.
31. Protest for dolphin rights/safety.
32. Backpack Europe.
33. Go deep-sea fishing.
34. Shoot a gun.
35. Feed homeless people while I’m hungover.
36. Work on a farm.
37. Work at Pier 1.  (Love that store)
38. Eliminate eating any foods containing refined corn product.
39. Participate in a figure or bikini competition.
40. Adopt a child in the Philippines.
41. Help an under privileged child finish school and go to college.
42. Go to Annapolis.

43. Educate foreign families to end sex trafficking.
44. Help small businesses flourish.
45. Repaint my computer room. 10-26-10
46. Attend a second level of anasara yoga. 1-3-11
47. Photograph a live UFC event
48. Be a guest on the Oprah show for something good.
49. Go to a college frat party and do a keg stand.
50. Have my mortgage paid off by the time I’m 40.
51. Photograph a wedding in New York City. 6-1-10
52. Revamp my blog.
53. Get organized around the house…. Starting the computer room. 11-3-10
54. Get a new computer. 9-13-10
55. Finish the P90x program.
56. Do 50 pull-ups.
57. Do 100 push-ups.
58. Run a 7-minute mile.
59. Participate in the 5/3 River Bank run. 5-14-11
60. Own water front property.
61. Take my husband to Vegas.
62. Grow a vegetable garden.   5-1-12
63. Kiss my husband every day for a full month.
64. Hug at least one person every day that is not my husband for a full month.
65. Put a garden around my mailbox. 4-10-10
66. Finish reading 5 books by the end of 2010.  6-3-10
67. Become a viral video that is of either good nature or extremely funny.  Preferably extremely funny.
68. Touch Leonardo DiCaprio.
69. Kiss Hugh Jackman…on the mouth  :))
70. Frame my painting that Cut gave me.
71. Teach photography at a college level.
72. Tour the Upper Peninsula.
73. Write to Ventron.
74. Send my uncle a calendar.
75. Meet Howard Schatz.
76. Photograph meals I make for a week.
77. Take boxing classes.
78. Learn to properly sew.
79. Write a random letter/card to people I know once a month.
80. Organize both desks.
81. Spend only time after 5pm each evening on the Internet.
82. Ride a motorcycle.
83. Go to the Ben and Jerry’s Creamery in Vermont.
84. Go polar bear swimming.
85. Eat steal cut oats for breakfast. 4-12-10
86. Do a colon cleanse.
87. Try surfing.
88. Go inside a Hedonism resort.
89. Visit my girlfriend in Boston 5-31-10
90. Learn to make Cuban meatballs
91. Touch up my tattoo.
92. Go on a trip with my cousins.
93. Update all my software.  9-13-11
94. Go on dates by myself.
95. Redecorate my shelves in the living room.  9-17-10
96. Attend an Indian wedding.
97. Become vegetarian for one month.
98. Get a Brazilian wax.
99. Climb the tree in my front yard.
100. Every place I visit watch the sun come up.
101. Get to know my clients more.
102. Shoot commercially.
103. Photograph using film once a year.
104. Pray more.
105. Beat Jay in a weight loss competition.
106. Be in bed by 1opm every night for 3 months.
107. Get a brand new printer.  9-3-10
108. Recycle my magazines. 7-26-10
109. Read the Twilight series.
110. Read the Harry Potter series.
111. Rescue an adult dog in a real rescue situation. a.k.a. owners who have neglected the animal
112. Put up new window treatments in my bedroom. 8-6-10
113. Send a box of chocolates to a dentist.
114. Make homemade vegetable juice.  5-14-10
115. Enter in ArtPrize.
116. Eventually return my friend’s plastic camera.
117. Shop at the Mall of America.
118. Fix my mother’s dollhouse.
119. Take the dogs to the Dog Park. 4-26-10
120. Have pictures done with my girls.
121. Run the naked mile.
122. Meet a Victoria’s Secret model.
123. Ride a helicopter.
124. Sing for deaf people.
125. Drink strawberry wine in Chile with Carolina.
126. Eat food in Cuba with Brenda.
127. Photograph a wedding in Puerto Rico.
128. Read the Bible from cover to cover.
129. Compete in a rap battle.
130. Meet Kimbo Slice.
131. Do a back flip.
132. Successfully rescue a wild animal.
133. Have my DNA tested.
134. Sing in the Swiss Alps.
135. Plant an Asian garden.
136. Plant a water garden.
137. Send Jenn C.  some candy. 8-12-10
138. Make my uncle a dinner.
139. Have a formal dinner party with my closest friends using  dinner china and all.  12-4-10
140. Get one more tattoo.
141. Have dinner with Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.
142. Re-do my final project.
143. Accomplish 90% of this list.
144. Buy a new home in cash.
145. Own a pair of Baby Phat shoes.  1-15-11
146. Own a medium-format digital camera.
147. Visit the outback of Australia.
148. Volunteer at a hospital in Africa.
149. Wear my gardening hat when I garden.
150. Play all X-Box Splinter Cell games.
151. Finish Mini Ninja.
152. Put up canvas pictures of my dogs.
153. Would like to try Hang Gliding.
154. Make a wedding cake.
155. Learn how to make sushi.
156. Put a huge slip in slide in my yard.
157. Dress up in old golfing attire and go golfing.
158. Would like to attend a huge water balloon fight.
159. Get in a food fight.
160. Trash my wedding dress.
161. Go to a spa resort for a week.
162. Watch a Lord of the Rings marathon in one day.
163. Go to an independent film festival.
164. See the Northern lights.
165. Learn how to work on cars.
166. Have the ends of my hair dipped in orange.  9-5-12
167. Dress up in 50’s clothes and go grocery shopping.
168. I want to wear matching t-shirts with my husband that say “I’m with Stupid” and have the arrows point at each other.
169. Eat crab legs in Boston with Toni.  5-28-10
170. Learn to do one trick on a skateboard.
171. Have sex on a beach.
172. Have my ducts cleaned in my house.
173. Make an outdoor living room.
174. Meet a professional prostitute.
175. See Jack Johnson in concert.
176. Be in a real Hollywood movie.
177. Act in a local play production.
178. Build a tree house… a cool tree house.
179. Plant over-sized sunflowers on the side of my house.
180. Do a pub-crawl with a bike in Ireland.
181. Learn how to Hula dance.
182. Learn to be a Ninja.
183. Build my own hot lights.
184. Try water skiing with one ski.
185. Own a motorcycle.
186. Buy a brand new truck with cash.
187. Build a X-mas light sign that says “We House Foreigners.”
188. Make wine in Italy.
189. Buy a bigger juicer. 3-10-11
190. Plant a fairy garden.
191. Go on a family trip with my dogs.
192. Go fishing with my uncle one more time.
193. Write a letter to Chapel Hill cemetery.
194. Zip line in Costa Rica.
195. Build a raft made of plastic milk jugs.
196. Go White water rafting.
197. Learn a new craft.
198. Renew my contacts.  3-28-11
199. Write a poem once a month.
200. Try tantric yoga.
201. Have my work on a cover of at least 5 magazines.

P.S.  Today’s my mother’s birthday so I will celebrate by doing household chores and gardening.

Added 4-27-10

202. Compete in an Ironman
203. Photograph underwater 7-31-10
204. Accomplish at least 10 things off my list per year.
205. Pledge for the Pound for Pound challenge.
206. Set up a workout regimen and complete it.
207. Donate blood.
208. Become a successful Before and After.
209. Run a full marathon.
210. Visit the seven wonders of the world.
211. Try on a real wedding dress.
212. Save a person’s life.
213. Go to a nudist colony and camp there.
214. Sing “Upgrade U” at a wedding.
215. Quit my day job!
216. Do 10 handstand push-ups.
217. Sell my art at Art Festival
218. Do a juicing video with Sam V. 5-14-10
219. Go to a Pistons Game.
220. Go to a Major League baseball game.
221. Write a will.
222. Speak fluent Tagalog.
223. Plan my funeral.
224. Take life-guarding classes.
225. Send a friend flowers each month.
226. Become Chelsea Handler’s new best friend.
227. Find possible living relatives. 2-4-11
228. Ride the Iowa Ragbri.
229. Beat Heather Monroe-Malkin at this list.

Added 6-5-10

230. Eat at the 1913 Room.
231.  Heather M-M licking my butthole.
232.  Build an igloo.
233. ?
234. Be a speaker at a photography workshop.
235. Become a Big Sister.
236. Eat at Charley’s Crab. 10-6-10
237. Read all of Robert Ludlum’s novels.
238. Plan a wedding event.
239. Stand on top of a bridge.
240. Attend a photo workshop.
241. Attend one of Jesh’s workshops.
242. Eat a morel mushroom.
243. Rap a song on one of Cut’s original beats. 5-30-10
244. Swim with dolphins.
245. Dance in the rain with someone I love.
246. Go to an NFL game.
247. Read Immigrants and Citizenship: Process and Policy text book.
248. Read a book once a month…audio books count.
249. Learn how to book bind.
250. Renovate my backyard.
251. Read to the elderly.
252. Work with Special needs kids.
253. Have family over for dinner once a month.
254. ?

256. Run a 10k
257. Visit Jon in the UK.
258. Visit Richie in Australia.
259. Visit Florita, Jay, and Andy in the Philippines.
260. Have family visit me here in MI.
261. ? 12-10-11