Thankful November 27th: Technology

When I look at my current phone (Samsung Galaxy S9), I find it amazing that a little over 20 years ago it would have been fantasy to have so much power in the palm of your hand. Our phones are really mini computers that we can use to make phone calls. And making phone calls on a device that doesn’t have to be connected to a wire was miraculous 40 years ago. I was born in the 1960s, and the technology advances made since then have felt like a 500- to 1,000- year leap. I remember wondering why anyone would need more than 46 mega bites of space on a hard drive. I just added an 8TB external hard drive to my home computer to store photos and music projects. And that’s on top of the 2TB and 4TB drives that are already full. Crazy times. But also amazing times.

Thankful November 26th: Love

There are many things that we can live without: extra money, going to movies, a house as big as the Jones. There are some things we can’t live without: food, water, air, and love. Studies have shown that without love, newborn babies stop thriving. There are so many different ways to show love: spouses and partners, friends, family, even complete strangers. The Beatles said all we need is love, and to some extent, they were right.

Thankful November 24th: My Faith

You are getting two post today because yesterday was too full to do a post (gone from 8 in the morning until 11 in the evening). And the first one today was for fun (see Thankful November 24th: Chocolate for reference.) This post will be much more serious. I’m sure that many people who follow this blog and read my posts are aware that I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes known as the Mormon Church). I haven’t tried to make it a secret. I have also tried to not be overbearing about it. I was born and raised in Utah in a family that is very actively involved in this religion. When I was 22 years old, I served as a volunteer missionary to Wisconsin. I married my husband in the beautiful Mount Timpanogos Temple in American Fork, Utah. I have been living my religion as best as I can for almost 53-1/2 years. Having faith has grounded me, given me hope as I see things happening in the world around me, and provided me with a community wherever I have moved. I am a firm believer in Jesus Christ. I have faith in a Heavenly Father, who loves and knows me. I’m grateful for scriptures I can turn to for comfort and guidance during difficult times in my life.

Whatever your religious (or non-religious) life may be, I hope that you find love, happiness, and joy in the Christmas season this year. I love celebrating the birth of my Savior with the entire world.

Thankful November 22nd: The Moon

“Art thou pale for weariness
Of climbing Heaven, and gazing on the earth,
Wandering companionless
Among the stars that have a different birth,—
And ever changing, like a joyless eye
That finds no object worth its constancy?”

To The Moon (fragment)
Percy Bysshe Shelley

I love taking pictures of the moon. It took me a while to figure out how to do it well, and I have to admit that on the really cool I cheated. That photo was taken with a camera telescope at an observatory, but I did take it.

The moon is an amazing heavenly object. without it, you earth would probably not be inhabitable. It regulates our tides and keeps the earth from spinning faster than it should. It’s also beautiful in the night sky.

Thankful November 16th: Food

I always like to joke that without food, I would die. I suppose for me, the real truth is that I would die a little inside if I couldn’t cook and bake. I love making good food for people I love. And I love watching them enjoy what I’ve made. My mother and both of my grandmothers were very good cooks, and I learned some fun recipes and technics from each of them. Now I get to bake and cook for my husband, who isn’t a finicky eater, but always goes out of his way to praise whatever I make for him.

Thankful November 15th: Murphy

We have a dog. His name is Murphy. He is a mutt, with some shar pei in there (his forehead wrinkles when he is nervous or interested and his tongue is black). My husband adopted him from the local shelter when he was a puppy. He was one when we started dating and two when we got married. He is now nearing thirteen, and while he still sometimes thinks he is still a puppy, his energy lasts only about ten minutes. He is loving, loyal, and very forgiving. He gets excited whenever we come home, even after two-week-long trips. I love you, Murph. Thanks for letting me into the family.

A Photo a Week Challenge: Stylish

We are a Converse shoe family. My husband and I wore Converse high tops for our wedding (his were black, mine were white). If there is an unusual color, we buy it. If you have a difficult color to match, we dye them. If we need a flare on them, we paint it on. We love the style.

IN A NEW POST CREATED FOR THIS CHALLENGE, SHARE A PHOTO (OR TWO OR THREE) THAT SHOWS OFF YOUR (OR SOMEONE ELSE’S) STYLE.

Everyone is welcome to participate, even if your blog isn’t about photography.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Each week, I’ll come up with a theme and post a photo that I think fits. You take photographs based on your interpretation of the theme, and post them on your blog (a new post!) anytime before the following Thursday, when the next photo theme will be announced.
  2. To make it easy for others to check out your photos, title your blog post “A Photo a Week Challenge: (theme of the week)” and be sure to use the “postaday″ tag.
  3. Come back here and post a link to your image in the comments for this challenge.
  4. Follow nancy merrill photography so that you don’t miss out on weekly challenge announcements.

Thankful November 12th: Work

Four years ago, my husband left the structural engineering firm he was working at so that we could open a firm of our own, Realize Structural Engineering, Inc. A year and half later, I left my full-time job as a technical writer to work part-time as our office manager and HR department. It’s been a crazy ride, but it has also been so worth it. These photos are some of our recent projects.

I’m grateful for the opportunity to build our own company with our own standards and mission statement.

Thankful November 10th: Family

I know that I’ve already mentioned my parents and my siblings in individual posts, but I have a lot more family. My husband’s family is very large (he is the youngest of eight kids). I have a wonderful group of aunts, uncles, and cousins. I inherited four wonderful children when I married my husband. And then there are people who aren’t blood relation, but are still family. Family is very important to me, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Thankful November 9th: Music

There has never been a time in my life that hasn’t included music. I grew up in a family of seven (including parents), and all of us played at least two instruments (including parents). My dad’s mother was a piano teacher. She taught me for 11 years, and she was my biggest supporter when I chose to study music in college. I play the piano, and violin. In college, I studied singing and choral conducting. I started teaching piano when I was 18, and I currently have 15 students who do two to three recitals a year. I met my husband because I was the music director for a show at a local community theater. The show we were doing was written by a friend who asked my younger sister and me to arrange the music. I have written a little original music, but I mostly do choir arrangements (makes sense, see previously mentioned college path). I love music. I don’t know what life would be like without music infusing pretty much every aspect of it.