Monday, May 30, 2011


Quick update from good ol' Classic Corner in Madison because they have free wireless AND food! (Turned ours off on Friday and no food left in the apartment.) Woo!

We've got the truck almost all packed up. Only a few boxes left. And I like how we picked THE hottest day to move. Ugh! It's sunny and hot and windy and humid and we're dying! But it's ok. Almost done.

Hopefully we can get the internet hooked up pretty quickly when we get to RC.

Also...Ashley's wedding was SO MUCH FUN!! I was actually dancing and having fun, which is something I don't do well (dance, not have fun. ha) It was great having my buddy Kim there, too. And some awesome other wedding party people! Everyone was so much fun to be around. Can't wait to see the pictures. Haha!

That's all for now. Hopefully I'll be able to keep you all updated throughout the week. =)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Five Things

My hands are extremely tired and my skin is rough and dried out from soap and cleaning chemicals. Since yesterday morning, Brian and I have been scrubbing this apartment clean. I'm not sure how thoroughly spick-n-span this place has to be in order to be acceptable, but I think we're going to the max. Or perhaps it just feels that way....

I am SO GLAD we were able to wait until June to start working. This process would have been impossible with only 4 days to do it. Moving out of one apartment would have been doable. Moving out of two apartments really makes a ton of extra work.

Anywho...Today is Thursday so it's time for the first official "Think Big! Thursday"

Here's a question for you to ponder and, if you feel like sharing, comment on:

What are the five things you value most in life?

(PS - Nobody's guessed on Tuesday's shot. Go check it out!!)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Too Close Tuesday

Look at me, being all on top of things today!

Since it's Tuesday, here's our close-up shot. Leave your guesses in the comments and I'll announce the winner later this week.

Brian thinks this one is too easy. I say that's okay. =)
Earlier last week we made a deal that we would NOT buy any more groceries until we are in Rapid City. Sadly, we had to break that deal because neither of us can live without milk for an entire week. Can anyone? I mean milk is like, essential, isn't it?

And, yesterday's photo:

What did you guys think about the Think Big project? Should I continue, or no? I know lots of people read it, but no one left comments. Come on, guys, I need feedback!! =)

Monday, May 23, 2011

Think Big!

My brother and his wife got Brian and me two very thought-provoking books for graduation. And Brian, while reading through them, suggested I put some of these questions up on my blog. So, today I'm going to do a test post of what will soon become "Think Big! Thursdays." (Again, Brian's title. I think he should start his own blog, with all his great ideas.)

Here's how it works: I will post one of the thoughtful questions here, along with a photo which may or may not relate, and you can ponder and comment as you see fit. This will only work out wonderfully if we get some good conversation/comments going, so if you have something to say - Please join in! And some of the questions don't have answers. They're just there to make you think. Inspire, if you will.

Hopefully this works out. Hopefully I'll stay on track. Hopefully you'll check back on Thursdays and leave with a good question on your mind.

Here's the first Think Big! post. (Yes, I know it's Monday and not Thursday. But we can pretend.)

"What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?"

Sunday, May 22, 2011

It's just UGH...

I took this picture literally like 3 minutes ago. The state of our apartment is ...I don't even know what word to use there. It's just UGH...

Brian likes being a dork. And we've been using that desk chair as a coffee table for the time being. Yes.
We've got all of Brian's stuff boxed up and moved into my place. That way, when we get the moving truck here, we can just move out of one location instead of two. It has its pros and cons. I mean it seemed like an excellent idea before we started. But then, after moving his boxes from his basement apartment and up to my 2nd floor apartment, I really began questioning our sanity.

But now that it's mostly all finished, I'm seeing what we were originally thinking. Plus, we got my ginormously heavy TV cabinet out of here and down to my parents' house while only breaking one door off in the process, so it's pretty much all downhill from here.

Have some fun photos from the weekend!

Ok, so I know I said weekend, but this one is from Wednesday night. We were invited to a Sioux Falls Canaries  Fighting Pheasants game by Amanda and Kyle so we attended the game and watched the Pheasants kick butt lose miserably. Regardless, it was still a fun time. And we got ice cream in cute little SF hats.

And on Thursday we went to Dustin's region track meet. The boys got 2nd place, which is pretty superb, in my opinion, but they seemed really bummed about it. Maybe it's because the girls got 1st place and probably rubbed it in their faces...Who knows?

Dustin got 1st place in the pole vaulting. He and his teammate (the kid on the left) had a "jump off" because they had the exact same misses and heights (it makes sense, trust me.) It was pretty humorous to watch. the I-W boys swept the competition and took 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places in the event.

Hurdles. I hide behind my camera during this event because I'm too scared to watch it. I've seen far too many kids fall and it's not something I want to continue seeing, especially when my baby brother is involved. =P
Dustin is competing in the state track meet on Friday in pole vaulting, 400 meter relay, and the 110 hurdles (what he's running in the above photo, obviously.) I am SUPER DUPER AWESOMELY EXCITED that I'll get to be there Friday to watch the prelims. Originally I thought I would miss it due to Ashley's rehearsal and dinner, but his events are all early so I get to go! I could not be more excited. =D

Speaking of Ashley's rehearsal and dinner...She's getting married in, like, *counts* 6 days! Holy cow...We've been counting down for hundreds of days now. Only 6 left! I also tried on my bridesmaid dress again, and it still fits. I wasn't sure, due to all the junk food and laziness I've been partaking in lately, so I had to give it a test before the big day. Ha!

Yesterday my cousin Tyler graduated from high school. And today my cousin Charissa graduates from high school. So yesterday they had a party at Tyler's house and we got a pretty wicked cool thunderstorm while we were there.

Yep, that happened.

This was after/during the rain. This image is straight out of the camera. I can't believe how vivid that green is. Sooo pretty!

DOUBLE RAINBOW!!! This was amazing. My camera got nice and wet in the process of getting this, but it was worth it. I wish I had a super wide angle lens so I could have captured the whole thing (things?) but this will do for now.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Here are some quick pics from our weekend in Rapid City. We drove around the hills for a while and saw some cool things. Check it out...

Look closely. =)

Brian almost set off his airbag while honking through one of these tunnels. Ha...

Tree stump....?

Look closely AGAIN!

Once again, photo doesn't do this place justice. I wish I had a panorama of all this. So incredible. Like....Seriously breathtaking in real life.

Black & white, anyone?

Here's Brian, standing on a cliff.

Here is said cliff. I think someone threw a microwave down it. There was a shiny silver demolished square shaped thing on the ground...

Took us forever to get this. I have like 12 shot that are similar, but something was always wrong with it. This is about the best of them. Ha.

Here's me standing on the cliff.

Holding up the bridge thing. Yep, I'm pretty strong. And I need a tan.

Pretty clouds....

Brian's first buffalo sighting! This guy crossed the road in front of us. He was SO BIG, we couldn't see the car on the other side of him. Love the buffalo. They're pretty awesome.
Fingers crossed that our application to the apartment is accepted. Brian's already mostly packed up and ready to move. I haven't even started. =S Hoping for the best...Cuz if we don't get the place in RC, we're homeless! Ha...*nervous laugh*

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Strawberry Blonde

Ahhhh...I forgot to reveal last week's Too Close Tuesday!

Here's the photo once more:

Any final guesses before the answer?

Last chance.

Ok, here goes...

Melissa Jean came EXTREMELY close!! So I'll say it's a win! And Amanda's guess was half correct, as well! Two winners! (Kind of. But Melissa wins more. Ha!) She guessed a Strawberry Cheesecake Jelly Belly Jelly Bean. And it is ACTUALLY a Jelly Belly Jelly Bean! But it's a Coldstone Ice Cream flavored one, in the "Our Strawberry Blonde" flavor. So, Amanda gets half points because she said ice cream.

Nice work, ladies! Tuesday will bring another photo, so be ready.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Hello from Rapid City, SD! We've been here since Thursday, getting things lined up for the summer. Today we went to the museum where I'll be working and I trailed alongside the fill-in photographer so I could learn what I'm supposed to do. I think it's going to be an interesting and fun summer!

Yesterday we checked out some apartments and cheap-o houses for our living situation. Found a really nice apartment in our price range so we're pretty happy. We left the place wanting to move in the next day! So that's a good sign.

We've hit some pretty good restaurants in the area, too. Looks like RC will be good to us. =)

Here are some catch-up photos!

225/365: Yesteday's photo. Brian.
224/365: We finally had lunch at Wall Drug and received our free ice water! (PS - If you want a GOOD hot beef sammich, this is the place. BUT...If you want a GREAT hot beef sammich, go to Emily's in Beresford, right off I-29. I've yet to find a better one. Do it. Now.)
223/365: Wednesday's photo. Strawberry milk after a run. Can't go wrong. Mmmm!
222/365: One of the shots for a friend's engagement photos that I did on Tuesday. Still working on editing a few of them. They're almost done! I'm excited for her to see them all. This is one of my favorites, though.  =)
We've got two days left here in town. Still have some stuff to sort out with the apartment. Then it's back to Madison to get our current places cleaned and packed up. Then Ashley's wedding on the 28th. Then we're moving out here for good. May is really moving fast!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Busy day today! This morning we took Brian's car in to get his brakes fixed and slap some new tires on. Should be getting done any time now. He's all excited to drive on new tires and have increased gas mileage. =)

Now I'm doing some laundry and enjoying the fresh warm air. It is glorious outside!

Then we're heading to Sioux Falls for my first attempt at shooting some engagement photos. Not sure how that's going to turn out, but I'm excited to at least TRY. Hopefully it's not a complete failure. I guess we'll have to wait and see what happens. Wish me luck!

And then I'm going to pick up the brand new album from one of my most favorite bands - Manchester Orchestra. I've already listened to it a gazillion times online, but to physically have it is what really makes things special. I can't wait for that. After that, we might catch a movie or something, since we'll be in SF. It's gonna be a good day, I think. =)

AND AND AND....Here's today's Too Close Tuesday photo!! I did not forget!

Take a guess in the comments!

Have fun and good luck!

(And to quote former DSU faculty and FNL advisor...)

Have a Disney day!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Familiar Territory

I received an interesting phone call today. Apparently I paid for my beloved piece-of-crap Gateway so I get to keep it. Huh...I don't remember paying for it or giving permission to charge me for it, but whatever. Brian thinks maybe they just don't want to have to deal with it so they pawned it back on me. Either way, I'm not complaining. So I picked it up from the school today and I now have my familiar territory back. Not that I wasn't enjoying every second I spent on Brian's MacBook...But when something so familiar is taken away, it does feel good to get it back. (Also, the kids will be excited that they can continue coloring on my computer. Yay!) However, I am excited to buy my OWN MacBook or iMac someday, once I get some monies. (Which, of course, could be years and years from now...But oh well. Someday....)

So...I spent some time today getting back on track with my 365 Project. Here are some recent shots:

220/365: Taken yesterday morning on my drive home. I had just driven through this MASSIVE rainstorm. I really thought I wasn't gonna make it. The clouds looked awesome once I broke through them into the more clear skies. Cell phone photo doesn't do it justice, sadly.
219/365: Saturday's photo. I think it speaks for itself.
218/365: Friday's photo. We took Rob & Lindsay to Falls Park. It was a gorgeous day and I can't resist long-exposure falls! (More photos from that day to come...Keep your eyes peeled!)
217/365: Thursday's photo. Before we met up with Brian's family, we stopped by Falls Park so I could get a photo for a commenter's project. Here I was testing my settings. This is the only photo I took that day. And it makes me laugh. Poor Brian, always doing lame photographic stuff for me...
216/365: Wednesday's Photo. We're gonna have one heck of a library someday. One thing we have in common is that we love buying new books. (Mine, of course, always come from the bargain tables at B&N. Can't pass up a $5 book once in a while!) These are already boxed up, ready to be moved out to RC. =)
And, just for fun, here's another photo of the falls. Sooo pretty that day!
See? What did I tell ya? "Once I'm finished up with school and have some REAL free time, I'll post more." And here I am...Post #2 in the same day! I'm pretty proud of this. Ha!

Tonight we're going for a run. LOVE this warmer weather. (However, not a fan of the muggy-ness already. Sticky and gross is not fun. Oh well.......)


Here is my first post as a college graduate!

It's been a ridiculously busy weekend for us. Brian's family arrived in Sioux Falls on Thursday night, so we greeted them at the airport and then hung out at the hotel for a while afterward. Then we drove back to Madison and got a few hours of sleep before heading back to Sioux Falls to meet them for breakfast Friday morning. The rest of the weekend is sort of a blur! Lots of late nights and early mornings (I've been up by 7:30 every morning since Wednesday...That's super early for me, especially when I never get to bed before midnight.)

Graduation was on Saturday. It was a great day! We got together with our families and some friends afterward. I was wearing my new shoes, which I'm still struggling to walk in, so walking across the stage was a little stressful to me. Ha! But I did alright and I didn't fall or anything, so that's a good thing! Brian and I were both dressed up all snazzy so you'll have to check back for pictures once I get them on here.

And yesterday we had a little party at my hometown church with my family and Brian's parents. We had some great food, all prepared by my parents. They worked super hard to get everything cooked and ready for the day so I can't thank them enough for putting everything together for us. =)

Now, we're back in Madison, all alone. It feels pretty good to just be able to wear jeans and t-shirts and relax for the first time all week. Today we have to set up some apartment viewing appointments and get Brian's car fixed and start on Thank You notes. Still a busy day, but also relieving.

Oh, and I'm on Brian's Mac these days (I had to return my beloved piece-of-crap Gateway to the school on Friday. Sad, sad day.) so I'm not sure when I'll have photos up. I'll have to ask him if I can store them on here until I can save up some money to buy my own. Hang in there, friends!

Check back soon!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

All Done.

Well, folks, I attended my last two classes at Dakota State University today. As I was leaving Beadle Hall, I realized that I am really going to miss this place. This school has watched me grow and changed me so much for the better. It will definitely be bittersweet to not come back here in September.

I just have a take-home final to finish and then graduation on Saturday and I'm no longer a DSU student. It's been a great ride here, though! I'm glad I stuck with it when most of my friends transferred or dropped out. I couldn't imagine graduating from any other school. I feel that in some way or another, I will always be a Dakota State Trojan. (But I will also be very glad to get away from here and see comedians who will talk about something OTHER than our mascot, our lack of diversity, and our buffalo.)

Anywho...Let's see lots of photos, shall we? I'll just post some of the best from the past couple weeks. I'll have them updated on facebook soon, so check there to see ALL of them.

On Saturday I got to hang out with Ashley ALL DAY! We had her bridal shower at 9:00 in the morning, and she left my house at around 11:00 that night. It was quite a fun day! We originally wanted to do a little photoshoot for the two of us, but that never really happened. I just wasn't in a photogenic mood. I didn't even feel like shooting anything. Kinda sad. But I did get this beauty when we stopped by her church, where the wedding will be in 24 days!
Friday night we hung out with D&E and they helped me with putting together my board game. Right before we went to sleep, I realized I hadn't taken a photo. I had planned on it being of my game, but this caught my eye instead. Emily puts together dried flowers in old window panes and doors and such and uses them as decor. SO awesome! Anywho...I have a bunch of these that are in focus, but for some reason I like this accidentally blurry one. =)
Thursday was my photo show. Here are my prints all laid out on my apartment floor. It's a good thing I didn't have more photos, or I wouldn't have had room to line them all up! PS - Photo show went great!
I think it's necessary for everyone doing a 365 project to include at least one photo of the inside of their fridge. Sometimes, when there's NOTHING to take a picture of, the inside of your fridge makes a nice backup. Ha! Here, looks like I have some eggs, hot dogs, butter, half & half, berries, half a root beer, some whipped cream and ricotta cheese, jello, crescent rolls, green tea, and milk. Hm....Seems empty until you try to type it all up. Whew!
Oh, this is a kinda funny story. Brian and I LOVE making bets. It's never over anything important, and we never really have terms, but I ALWAYS win. So every time I won, I would point it out and they would just keep adding up. So Brian said that to even things out and start over clean, he would buy me something. And somehow that something ended up being shoes. HEELS, even! (From Payless, because I'm awesomely cheap like that!) I'm supposed to wear them for graduation, but I'm not sure if that will happen. I haven't quite learned how to walk in them and I really don't want all my fellow graduates and their families to witness that. Ha! We will see, though. But they ARE cute!
Oh, and this one, just for fun. The Easter Bunny left a pinata for the kids (which you may know already from a previous post in which baby Tucker was a sad panda) and to explain why there was a pinata instead of baskets, he left this cute little note. (Yes, the word "smashing" was thrown in there, regarding the pinata.) It was signed with some eggs, of course! I may or may not have had a little or a lot to do with this letter.
So, what's the plan for the next couple days/weeks, you ask? Reading, watching movies, doing some fun crafty projects, and staying up late. Gotta take advantage of this time off while I can. Summer is on its way and I'm ready for it, but first it's time to relax a bit!

Tonight...Watching the Lakers game and watching movie and eating candy. Feels good to have an academically clear mind. =D

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Summer Plans

I'm sitting on my balcony in a pair of self-made capris/shorts (they used to be jeans...then I hacked them off from the knee-down. love.) I just semi-finished my final presentation for tomorrow's rhetoric class. Now all I have left is some finishing touches on my board game and then a typography exam and I am FINISHED FOREVER. It's a pretty relaxing feeling, especially combined with my current location. It is a little chilly out here, but I am loving the sunlight. It's been a while, and my blinding white skin needs some color before Saturday. (However, I'm not going to get my hopes up. I haven't been able to get a good tan since junior high.)

I think now it is safe to tell you all the details on my summer plans. I hadn't posted much about it because nothing was official and I didn't want to jinx myself. Ha! So...Here goes.

This is where I'll be working this summer. =)

I received an internship at the Rushmore Borglum Story, which is a museum at Mt. Rushmore. I will be the photographer there, which, from what I understand, consists of meeting with tour groups and lining them up and taking their picture. Then I'll take it back and do some editing and print it and hooray, they have a photo in front of the coolest mountain sculpture ever! I will also be doing some gift shop and museum work. And the best part is...It's a PAID internship! The majority of internships in my field I've come across have been unpaid. So, needless to say, I hopped right on this opportunity. Not to mention the Black Hills are incredible! I am super excited to get to spend the summer out there. Expect TONS of scenery photos throughout the summer! (And Brian is excited to get to see lots of buffalo!)

We've still got some things to sort out (housing, a job for Brian, etc.) but things are slowly falling into place.

So, if anyone is taking a summer trip out to the Hills, let me know! And if you're planning on visiting Mt. Rushmore while you're there, there's a good chance you'll see me! It's going to be awesome working at a national monument. I've spent the past four summers at a small cafe where people who were headed to the Hills would stop and have breakfast. It'll be great to meet the same types of people, only at their destination instead.

Also, after tonight, I will be (mostly) stress-free from projects and homework. Time to do some stuff that I want to do, and not just stuff my school wants me to do. So...Lots of books, puzzles, photos, paintings, drawings, and MOVIES will be on my summer agenda. I would also LOVE to learn how to knit or sew or do something equally granny-ish...We will see how that goes...

Up-to-date photos to come soon. I've been too busy to get them edited and posted. Gah! Sorry!


My name is Denise and this is the home of my Photography 365 Project. Here you will find many photos and lots of words and hopefully something interesting. Feel free to leave comments and kind words whenever you wish. Thanks for stopping by!