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Monday, December 14, 2009

SIGH...... there's just nothing else I can do but, *SIGH*


Does this need any explanation? Any definition of what's going on here? Any complete and total divulging of what's occuring not only in the photo, but in my heart?!?!?!?



Too bad the pic is digital ~ you're missing the reaction of tears with photographic paper. Well, not all of them are sad tears- we're blessed that she is healthy enough and intelligent enough and mature enough to be sitting in that seat..... not to mention that she just looks plain cute.

Permit this week..... ya'll better be praying that this mama doesn't just go into some sort of denial-fit right in the DMV office.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

What's up in my neck of the woods? Well, actually just that!!!!! I HAVE WOODS!!!!! Yay!

We found out rather abruptly that we had to move in lightning-speed-fashion. I mean to say that we found out on a Thursday that we had to move. And on the following Thursday, we were MOVING. Imagine it: a family of SIX with no family near and a husband who works 2 jobs, moving ALL their stuff. Yeah, gets me winded just thinking about it. But, God blessed us with a phenomenal home-and I do mean HOME, not just a house. Something is different about this place than the previous 2 places we have lived in the last 16 months (yep-right again: We've moved THREE times in the last 16 months!!!). It feels like home. Now, don't get me wrong, I think I'm a mountain girl through and through, but for the last 16 months, it felt as if we had been on an incredibly long vacation with obligations and duties. We still have those obligations and duties, but there is something cozy, sweet, and just downright likable about our new place. It has four bedrooms--that's definitely a plus. Joe and Ben are still sharing a room (and Bar and I, but I figured that was a given) but the girls each have their own room. They were elated. It has a nice living room complete with fireplace (not that we need it down here....), a nice kitchen, a dining room that fits our gargantuan table, a HUGE schoolroom that houses ALL our books (AAAAAHHHHH! The sweet reality of knowing you don't have to eat spaghetti on top of that algebra book for lack of room!!!!), a Taylor outside furnace that burns wood and heats the house (in other words, there is basically NO heating bill!!!) and...... are you ready for this, my mountain friends.....?????

A POOL!


Yep, not just any ol' pool either- in INGROUND pool! There are woods behind the house complete with deer and lots of beavers, who just happen to build all kinds of dams in the creek that leads to a POND!!!!! So, yeah, it's great. It's unbelievable. The rent is cheaper (Barry is on cloud 9) and we have a monster of an attic in which to store our various array of stuff and junk.


But, all that aside, that's not what makes this house feel like home. There was just a different feel about this home. Like it was safe. Full of goodness. Honest. And that's where the HOME part fits in. The owners of the home had prayed and prayed and prayed in this home. It was worshipped in. It was the place their children learned of the goodness of my Lord. And you can feel it.


So, back to what's been going on. The move-obviously. Two birthdays--Katie is now 15 and Joe is now 11. A gazillion photo shoots (although I can certainly use more--keep 'em coming!!!), a crash where I lost much of my digital photo apparatus. Christmas parties. Organizing a Christmas Coffee House at our church. Practicing with about five different groups to minister at the Coffee House. And.... silly me. I added in making homemade Christmas cards to that list this year. My children have been making Christmas cards like maniacs. I try to be frugal, but in my efforts, have had a tendency to add expense to my sanity while exuding expense from my pocketbook.


Alas, it's a joyful season and I'm enjoying every moment with my sweet little ones. I can still say that, right? They aren't so little anymore, but they'll always be mine and they'll always need a tenderness that only I can give them.... so, in my book that makes them my sweet little ones. Yeah, feeling a little sappy tonight~~ Jackie found the big box of home videos during the move, and as most of you know, she is a sucker for a good home video. So, we've been watching and remembering good times with our mountain friends and family. Times when KT was 2 and already swimming in the deep end of the pool by herself. Times when Jackie was 6 and praying for God to "heal all the sick people, except the ones who are mean" (yes, that's what she said). Times when my big boy Joseph could crawl up in my then-tiny lap and say prayers. Times before Benjamin graced our family with his presence. Times when my Mama was alive, laughing, making silly faces, and loving my kids (yeah-I know she's alive now, laughing, making silly faces, and loving someone's kids..... but I can't SEE her doing it). Add that to seeing your big 15 year old daughter (the one who was aforementioned as the 2 year old swimming prodigy) drive right by you in the student driver car in an intersection (she never even saw me!), listening to Christmas carols, spending sweet card-making time with my kids, and having a warm, sleepy 4-year old blessing crawl up in my lap after his afternoon nap just cause "he wanted to"...... and well, you just have a very sappy, very sentimental mother on your hands.



Anyway, I digress. Check below for some of what's been going on at the NEW Galyean Battalion Barrack......
(hey, speaking of which--- email me privately for our new address. I'm needing some Christmas cards to show up in that mailbox at the end of the driveway!)





Having a good time dodging the stunt pilot while photographing his family at the local airport (yep, these are CHRISTmas card designs)......




Tromping around through the hayfields, finding beautiful things to click on.....
(although some weren't sooo happy about my "clicking" on them!!!)
Setting up beautiful on-location photo sessions with gorgeous families....

Constructing a Christmas setting at one of the local shops and photographing sweet children til my heart's content.......


Designing storyboards for Christmas gifts.





And there you have it.... my life over the past several weeks.

Look out coastal buddies: I'm beginning to get a real feel for the weather and good friendships we've discovered and are now already cherishing....

And mountain peeps: You better look out, cause when we come to visit shortly, I may just tackle each of you and let you know how much you're missed and how grateful I am to have you in my life...




Wednesday, November 18, 2009

GETTING REACQUAINTED WITH A DEAR FRIEND....

In October I had the sweet opportunity to entertain some very special people from my childhood days.
Lynn and her family made the trek from her home 2 hours away for a portrait session and for a little visiting time. What a wonderful treat it was to share together and and to see our children interacting.
Here's a sneak peek at their gorgeous family:


















































































Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Where in the world is Carmen..... uhhh, I mean Michelle Galyean?

RIGHT HERE!!!
Since July, there have been 2 computer crashes, an external hard drive crash, a few weddings, thousands of portrait shots, the beginning of school for a mother of: 1 highschooler, 1 middleschooler, 1 elementary schooler, and 1 preschooler~ALL of whom are homeschooled, and just LIFE in general. So, to get us back on an amiable foothold, I am posting a little slideshow of some recent work.
Meet Molly- quite possibly the world's most adorable little girl:

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

VIRGINIA STATE BAPTIST MUSIC AND ARTS CAMP

This past week was filled with fun, excitement, and hard work.
Our family traveled back to the mountains, specifically Lynchburg, Virginia, for a little quality time with our friends and our Lord.
THE VIRGINIA BAPTIST MISSIONS MUSIC AND ARTS CAMP AT EAGLE EYRIE
Over 375 folks came together to worship our Saviour and learn about making music.
There were strings.


Potential photographers.

Friends.


Incredibly talented musicians.


Band (and a really handsome band director - a.k.a. "my husband")




Breaks from all the practice.



Beautiful worship.



Goals to achieve.



African drumming to master.


Praying.

Babies learning to swim.

Laughing mothers.


Prepared swimmers.


Time to relax.

Undeniable praise.


Fine musicianship.


Best buddies.

And oh, so much more.
As the camp photographer, I got to see much of all those things and each one was so beautiful.
But, I will be the first to admit:
This was the most tiring and demanding photo job I have ever tackled.
Each day we would head back to the lodge and most of the time, I don't even remember how I got there. I would recall falling over into the bed, then not even stirring til the alarm clock said it was time to get back up, help fix food for 25 people, and do it all over again.
Now is the FUN part: editing all 856 photos that were taken.
WHEW!
Thanks for the opportunity, Charlotte!
It was an unforgettable week.


















Monday, July 6, 2009

HEATHER AND JON LIVE AT HILTON HEAD

Formal congratulations are in order for
Jon and Heather.
They made it official last week during an absolutely gorgeous wedding at
Hilton Head Island, SC.
Fortunately, Barry and I were invited to bring the whole gang.
Not only did we get to frolic with many dear friends from the mountains, but we also got to have a fine romp in the surf.
When we finally settled down for some work, a lifetime of waiting for that one special person began unfolding before our eyes.

Heather made one of the most gorgeous brides I have ever seen.
And she has some very sweet little girls following in her footsteps....
I was simply amazed at the amount of detail that Heather and Jon had poured into this moment in their lives. Each small thing meant something and they all worked together to achieve an atmosphere that was almost heavenly.












Yes, those are their real rings and yes, they are in the Atlantic Ocean. Now, before you go all crazy on me (like Katie did), I hung onto them and even had a spotter to help watch for the all-dreaded wave surge.
Aren't they beautiful?



Best wishes, and more importantly, sincere prayers sent your way
Jon and Heather.
May God be the center of your marriage now and forever.
Congratulations.



Thursday, June 25, 2009

MOON OVER WHITE LAKE

I finally got a chance to step out on our porch and freeze some time on digital film for you. This is what we see just about every night as we look over White Lake.


So, when can we expect a visit?


Saturday, May 30, 2009

BEN IS 4!

Ben had a birthday last month, and in all of our activities I'm just now getting some birthday pics up.























What a stinker..........


And yes, he is still sucking that thumb.
We're working on it, but I love the fact that he can soothe himself, so I'm not pushing it too hard.
And the blanket? Well, a certain little guy from the mountains gave that to him (it was his previously) when he came home from Guatemala. I've cut it up a few times, just to make it a little smaller and in hopes of getting him to give it up a little at a time, but I declare it is so darn cute when he sticks that little finger in the hole of one corner and then pops the thumb from the other hand in his mouth.
These are times I'm sure I'll cherish forever.





















Hopefully there will be photos from his beach party to view sometime soon.....