25th Wedding Anniversary!

Today, Natalie and I celebrate 25 years of marriage. In 25 years, we have experienced a great deal as husband and wife, best friends, and parents:

  • 2 lovely and talented daughters
  • 1 house – paid for!
  • 1 dog
  • 2 cats
  • 12 cars (!)
  • 6 wonderful grandparents for our kids
  • Lots of supportive family and friends
  • More musical instruments, dance costumes, computers, Polish Pottery and cameras than you can count!
  • Dozens of dance recitals and competitions, band performances, cheer competitions, proms, homecomings, NHS banquets and many other moments of pride for our daughters
  • Lots of great trips to Maine, California, Florida, North Carolina, backwoods cabins and more
  • Many hours spent cooking together and entertaining for friends and family
  • Thousands of hours volunteering for PTO, Church, Band, Dance, JDRF and more

It is truly amazing to realize we have spent 30 years together – 5 before marriage and 25 since. I hope that this is just the start. As we enter the next stage of our life with grown children, I pray we become even closer and experience even more together.

Though I am not a huge fan of John Lennon, he did write a wonderful lyric/poem, inspired no doubt by Robert Browning:

Grow old along with me
The best is yet to be
When our time has come

We will be as one
God bless our love
God bless our love

Grow old along with me
Two branches of one tree

Face the setting sun
When the day is done
God bless our love
God bless our love

Spending our lives together
Man and wife together
World without end

World without end

Grow old along with me
Whatever fate decrees

We will see it through
For our love is true
God bless our love
God bless our love

Nan, I love you. Happy Anniversary!

The Best of the Wurst

Last week we grilled sausages for the 6 of us for dinner. I had a nice selection of Hot Italian, Bratwurst and Chorizo. It looked so tasty on the grill that I had to grab my casual camera (a Canon DRebel with a kit lens) and shoot a few frames.

I like how the flames are shooting through the back and the glow of the flames below shows through. And I like the close focus on the nearest links.

The meal was wonderful, and we had a few to last us into the next week.

Dance Leaps

Here’s one of my favorite creative shots from the Dance series that I shot this spring. These images were taken to include in the slide shows presented during the dance recitals in June.

I think this shot captures the joy and energy of dance.

Byzantine Catholic Church Rededication

This last weekend we celebrated the rededication of Saints Peter and Paul Byzantine Catholic Church. Two separate religious ceremonies saw the Consecration of the Holy Altar and the Blessing of the Iconostasis (Icon Screen). Both ceremonies were attended by our Metropolitan Basil, the head of our Byzantine Catholic Church, Archeparchy of Pittsburgh.

In the first image, the Holy Altar is stripped of its adornments and baptized with holy water, wine, and rose water. Then it is cleansed and a relic is entombed into the Altar. To complete the ceremony, the Altar is once again adorned. This ceremony was accompanied by holy vespers, sung by members of both Saints Peter and Paul, and Saints Cyril and Methoius Byzantine Catholic Churches.

On Saturday, the Icon Screen and other icons in the church were blessed by the Metropolitan. A full Divine Liturgy was conducted, accompanied by the Archeperchal Choir. This was a standing-room only service, attended by many priests, deacons, nuns and many of our Parish Family.

Following this moving Liturgy, we retired to the social hall where a great banquet was held in celebration of the rededication of the church.

Dance Recital

This weekend saw the successful conclusion of another great dance season at Paula and Judy’s Dance Connection in Erie.

The 2009 Dance Showcase, held on June 12th and 13th, featured dozens of acts, from tiny dancers to adults, and from solo to large group productions. The variety of dance styles included ballet, tap, lyrical, acrobatic, hip hop, jazz and modern.

This image, taken from the sound booth by yours truly, shows the great lighting and mood created in the theater auditorium setting. This move is called an “elbow stand” and requires strength, balance and grace.

For a more technical description of how to capture good images in a dark setting, see my blog post under The New Professional Photographer blog.

Paula and Judy and Jamie: Congratulations on another wonderful dance season and showcase!