Monday, December 31, 2012

Christmas 2012

Somehow, I captured almost all of our Texas Christmas in video and compiled all the footage into a single video for our 2012 scrapbook.  Taking 7 days and consolidating down to 6 minutes is no easy task, though finding a 6 min Christmas song for the background music proved more challenging.  I had a song to use already in mind but its time was shorter than my video.  I had to tag on another song.  This is the issue I wrestled the longest with - Not compiling the video footage!  I'm much to obstinate (read anal-retentive)  and hated tagging on another song and half a song, at that.  In the end, I just had to let it go.  Besides, it was 3:30am when my resolve was weakest.. :-)

Enjoy. Oh and happy new year tomorrow. :-)

Music: You're Here and Heaven Everywhere by Francesca Battistelli

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Hull-idays Family Pictures Behind the Scenes Video

Since I've discovered integrating pictures with audio & video to fully document life events, I have so enjoyed the end-results.  So why wouldn't I infuse our 2012 family pictures with behind the scenes video?  Exactly.

So here it is:

This will be one of the last videos that will make it into our 2012 family scrapbook.
Of which, I am thrilled to be wrapping up very soon! Woot, woot!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

My Best Day. Ever.

We just returned from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico where Greg was in a friends wedding.  The wedding was so special in its own right, it's impossible to describe the depth of heartfelt sentiment that was shared by all who attended.

In conjunction with such a special event, I just happened to experience the Best Day. Ever. Of my life. (so far). I unashamedly admit this day surpassed the day I married my husband and the day I gave birth to my son, both of whom I equally love with all my heart.  The heart of the matter though is that the events of this day connected to my soul and spirit in a way I rarely get to enjoy. Simply because...I'm a responsible adult. A wife.  A mom. An employee. A homemaker, etc.  I am not to often the Adventurist but the Adventurists heart always, always beats beneath my surface, which Greg knows all to well. hahaha! The only redeeming point I can make is that I shared this experience with Greg, my Best Friend of all time. : )

Without further ado, here is a video I made of  My Best Day. Ever.:

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pictures, Videos & Audio = Together FINALLY!

I could not be more EXCITED or HAPPY! Over the moon-Squeal like a kid-Pee my pants EXCITED. I'm not even kidding.

I have finally found a way to pull my pictures, videos and even music all together in one unified approach to scrapbooking. This has been a goal of mine for at least 15 years and finally, the technology has arrived to make it all possible. Here is how it works.

In this example, I have designed a layout of two, 12 x 12, facing pages. The subject matter; my favorite pictures of Nathan playing Fall T-ball.

 Left Page:

 Right Page:

As you can see in my right page, I have a QRC (Quick Response Code) image included in my page.  Later, when I am looking back at my 2012 scrapbook, I can use a QRC reader to play the accompanying video included in my page.  Watch below to see how it works:

Revolutionary, right?  I know.  It's so exciting to be able to incorporate pictures, videos and even music all together for scrapbooking purposes. YAYYYYY!!!

If your interested in watching the Tball video in it's entirety, here ya go. :-)

By the way, the background music to my video was not random by any means.  It's the Forest Gump theme which we played at our wedding.  So even that detail in this page will bring back good memories. :-)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Every Day Life

I am mildly obsessed about documenting life.  I am adamant about capturing and recording the details of life.  Real life.  Not just the vacations, not just the grand moments but the good, bad and ordinary.  Because that's what real life is about. Good moments.  Bad moments.  And every ordinary moment in between.

That being said, back in January, I made a series of videos to capture just a regular day in my life.  I just finished working on this video because I want to incorporate into our 2012 family scrapbook by means of a Quick Response video Code (more on this at another time).

So I'm just sharing the video, that's all. :-)

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Missing Months. Hello again.

July. August. September.  Those are the missing months for 2012. Hello again.
Where were we, you ask?
Did we go on a voyage around the world?  Hardly.
Did we enter the witness protection program?  Nope.
Did we win the lottery?  Definitely not.
Nothing so dramatic, we just went through a lot of changes.  At once, it seemed.
Pretty much our pattern, right?  Hello Hulls.

I took a look at the scarce number of pictures taken over this time period, they tell the story best...

We decided to move and put our house on the market, hello house showings...

 We bought another home.  A short-sale.  It was a four month process, hello patience... 

Greg was offered an IT job and it was to good to pass up. Hello commute...

My job announced management and team changes, hello stress...

We got the house keys at the same time Greg started his new job and  we had to immediately begin house renovations in order for the carpet installation, hello time crunch...

 This floor also had to come out in order for carpet to be installed, hello last minute changes...

While Greg ripped out walls and cabinets.  I cleaned. And cleaned. And cleaned. The new house.  For six days. Hello germ-a-phobe...

Though we didn't actually 'plan' to move this particular Saturday, it happened, hello manpower...

We made trips back and forth. A lot. Hello gas station...

While we were tearing out, cleaning up, and moving started.  Kindergarten. Half day. Hello schedule changes....

And then there are the hundred little details that go alongside a move, like forwarding the mail,  hello small but important details...

And so much more.  To much to go into.  For a while it felt like we were drowning in a sea of change and conflict, all crashing towards us at once. Hello overwhelmed.
But the waves have finally calmed, our heads are above water now, we are still afloat, gently rocking back and forth.  Hello peace.  I've missed you.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Our June Date: Breakfast & Batting

Six months after Christmas, it's the gift that keeps on giving. :) Greg opened June's date from our date book and discovered we would be going on another day date and participating in 2 of his favorite activities!

Greg loves to eat. I love to eat breakfast, so this was my favorite part of our date.  Check out the awesome Cafe Au Lait that "The Farmhouse" serves and I drank it all, hehehe! We found the same size portions in the breakfast dishes we ordered, needless to say we were miserably full but it was so worth it!

The second half of our date took place at the batting cages, captured in the video below.  Someone (male) once said Greg has a sexy swing and as you'll see in the video, he really has this beautiful natural swing.  Now what about my swing?  Let's just say I'm the equivalent in a batting cage to Charles Barkley on the golf course.  Hahaha!!
(Soundtrack "Centerfield" John Fogerty)

July's date is just around the corner, I can't wait!! :-)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

My 12 yr old keychain broke today.

I’ve been carrying this keychain for 12 years.
I know this because I bought this shortly after the Columbine school shootings.   
The inscription reads “Yes, I believe in God.”  
Cassie Bernall’s final words before she was shot to death.

This has been my one and only keychain for the last 12 years

A regular reminder of a young girls courage in the face of life or death. 
 She was only 17 years old. 
Cassie's story has remained with me all these years because of this keychain.

Now it's broken and my keychain feels strange.
It's missing a piece and all I have left is the word "Yes".

12 years after Columbine, after Cassie's brave stand.
I suppose it's time to move on.
"Yes" its time to get a new keychain. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Our May Date - Frisbee Golf & Lunch!

Today Greg and I took time off from work for our date in May which was a round of Frisbee Golf followed by lunch.  Greg had mentioned a few times in the past that he would like to try this, so I figured one of our dates would be a perfect time! :-)

We played in Fountain Hills, Scottsdale, at a very beautiful course surrounding a community lake and one of the largest fountains in the world which sprays up to 500 ft high.

We found the 'tee' (landing pad) for the first 'hole' (basket).  I went first doing my best to throw towards the 'hole' - notice the athletically poised stance as I throw, buwahh!

And I threw my frisbee in the lake.  On the FIRST hole.  And that was it.  That was my experience at playing Frisbee Golf.

Meanwhile, Greg continued playing.  He offered to let me throw his frisbee but I wanted him to have the full experience so I just walked with him and enjoyed the day and our time together.  THEN halfway through the course, Greg was attacked!  By a bird.  This bird dive-bombed Greg about 3 different times and actually grazed the back of his neck!  As the attack went down, I had just a split second to catch this picture of the bird turning back around for his final attack!

Ironically, my frisbee was recovered from the lake by a park employee immediately after Greg finished the 18th hole...

Despite losing my frisbee on the FIRST hole and Greg getting attacked by a bird, it was a great date! ;-)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Monster Truck Mayhem!!!

I'm hesitant to admit, we actually went to a Monster Truck show.  Uh, to take Nathan of course and needless to say, it was a spectacle to be seen!  Despite the car crunching and the fire-breathing-dragon-robot it was one of the most family friendly events I think I've ever been.  More family friendly than a baseball game - seriously!

Here's a video of our night with the Monster Trucks:

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Look who is coaching now!

This post isn't about Justin Bieber. It's about Greg Hull.. I've heard Greg repeatedly say that he "never wants to coach".
Not adult softball.  He just wants to play.
Not kids t-ball. He just wants Nathan to play.

So it was a complete surprise when Greg reluctantly agreed to coach Nathan's soccer team. And I mean reluctantly!  He agreed only because there was a need for someone to do it not because he had a burning desire to do so.

So turns out, Greg is an  amazing soccer coach!  That's not just my biased feedback, it's also the parents feedback as well!  He has shown incredible patience with the kids, his practices are purposeful and much to my surprise, the kids absolutely love him!  He just may have sealed his fate. :o)

Coach Greg with a captive audience during practice:

Coach Greg and his team during a game:

I love this next picture. Greg is smiling up at one of his players who casually threw his arm around Greg's neck.  They totally love him!

My hero husband.  He's awesome.  And that's that. ;)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Greg at Band Practice

About a month ago, Greg took Nathan to band practice while I was at a business dinner.  I packed Nathan's to-go backpack with snacks and activities to occupy his time during practice.  Later, Greg told me Nathan was taking pictures with his little point and shoot camera.  He said he wanted  to show 'mommy pictures of band practice'. 

Here's the bonus though, Nathan even made some brief videos of Greg at band practice - click play:

It appears Nathan got bored at some point because I also found these pictures from the same night.  How cute is this little booger? :)

How completely wonderful of Nathan to think of doing this for mommy...I totally love him. : )

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

It's a March Date!


For our March Date, I bought Spring Training tickets THE day they went on sale for the AZ Diamondbacks vs. Texas Rangers.  When the tickets arrived, I had to sneak them in the 'Date Book', I was so stealth, I coulda been in the special forces!  The date of the game dictated the day of our date so I let Greg know in advance that he would need to take a 1/2 day off from work.  He obliged but he's really struggling with not knowing what these pre-arranged monthly dates are,  haha!


The game was at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale and it was a perfect Arizona day.

Our seats were AH-mazing!

I got some fantastic pictures...



Saw body contortion by this Ranger pitcher, look at that back leg - that's just not natural.

Lastly, we saw the best last name for a ball player ever.

Greg said this date was pretty awesome - I definitely scored on this one! :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Totally Nailed It! The Balloon Wreath.

To celebrate the Hull's birthday week this year, I created a balloon wreath. Since the Hull's birthdays are each 3 days apart, it only seemed fitting to celebrate in style by decorating the door!

I loved this one, found on...wait for it...Pinterest. Of course. ;)  Try as I might though, I could not find any more pictures of this one, so I found a balloon wreath tutorial and trudged forward.

I didn't take any pictures of the process but it was simple to create and as you can see, I totally nailed it!



This donned our door the entire week but the Hull's birthday celebration week has come to end, so the balloon wreath is now put away - until next year! :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Grand Canyon by Helicopter!


Greg's carefully constructed birthday surprise this year was 'helicoptering through the Grand Canyon'.  Uh, yeah-not to shabby.  In fact, quite the opposite, incredible!!  There are not enough words, nor are there adequate words to describe the experience.  To say it was epic is really understatement.  To say it was spectacular or awesome or incredible or amazing....well even these words fail to measure this event up.

I created this brief video clip, hoping to capture on film our experience but as with many things of this nature, it's just something you gotta experience for yourself to really appreciate.  But click play anyway! :)

That's it. Words fail me on this one!