Monday, March 31, 2008

Silent laughter...

How funny is this card?
Holy Crap Pete...is that you? When my Nana saw this, she started crying she was laughing so hard. It's one of my favorite things in life...seriously!
Nana's laugh starts with a burst of laughter, her nose wrinkles up (it's in the family), eyes squinting and she's giggling endlessly. The tears start to shed and she is now into the throws of 'silent laughter'...giggling so hard with no sound...until she comes up for a gasp of air that she needs before she continues on for more. Because of her asthma, she finally ends in a laughing coughing fit and she's got mascara running down both sides of her face. Anyone around her has already joined her in her fit of laughter. Absolutely LOVE IT!

This card got her going too... we even reinacted the poor bunny scene.


Easter is one of my favorite holidays. I love the 'rebirth' of the season and the true meaning behind Easter. The spring colors, flowers in bloom and of course ...coloring Easter Eggs! John and I spent the evening decorating with all sorts of techniques and this was our masterpiece for the year.

John, indeed, is a 'special egg' and extremely talented in the easter egg coloring dept.




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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Prayers for Jill...Bye Bye Boobies

Their love for the outdoors goes far beyond one's imagination. Rock climbing, hiking, camping on the top of 14,ooo foot mountains, building ice caves and photographing every minute http://www.davidsvilar.com/. (all photos by David Svilar photography)They lived a modest life in WA and CO and just ventured on a move of a lifetime...New Zealand...to be teachers and explore the vast beauty of the countryside. Jill (a dear friend of mine) and her husband Dave had only arrived two months ago and their move was suddenly changed. One day, after a hard upper body workout, Jill felt her muscles ache and massaged her arms and pecs...only to discover something unbelivable...a lump in her breast.This was only TWO weeks ago. Immediately going to the doctor, she was told the lump in her breast was cancerous and other tests showed Jill had a very abnormal looking masses in her other breast. Without a second wasted, Jill and Dave packed up and said goodbye to their new home in NZ and came back to the US.

Jill's mom is a nurse and knows the best-of-the-best at the Mayo Clinic in MN. She went in last week and after a multitude of tests...they came back with a diagnosis of Bilateral Breast Cancer! WHAT?! Jill's attitude remained positive and after hearing her options, she said 'take them off 'with barely a second thought.



Today (3/27/08) at this very moment, Jill is in surgery getting a double mastectomy with reconstructive surgery. Not something one would think of going through at the young age of 33. My prayers go out to Jill, her medical staff, her family, Dave and her friends by her side.
Jill, I pray for you a safe surgery, a speedy recovery and most important, a beautiful new set of "B-cups" (there is a brightside to all of this).
Please keep Jill and her loved ones in your thoughts and prayers. I will update as soon as I hear more...but for now, bye bye boobies!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Baby Talk

Everyone loves a baby shower...or at least I do! Who can resist the yummy food, getting to pick out those ever-so-cute, little, itty-bitty clothes, (check out these crocs)soft fuzzy animals and blankets, books that bring us back to our childhood memories and the toys that squeek, rattle and sing sweet lullaby's? My gift I gave to my friend and mother-to-be, Lauren, was a cute little stuffed sheep and a book titled, 'How To Con Your Kid'. I absolutely love this book and want one for myself when the day comes. My favorite 'con' for the kids is how to get them to take medicine....why, just call it 'superhero juice' and it will give them the magical power of their choice...like Wondertwin Powers...activate! Make me INVISIBLE. Lauren and her husband, Ian, will be welcoming baby Jacob in the next week or so. I can't wait to meet him and take his newborn photos...what a treat!

March Birthdays

Last weekend I was invited to 3 birthday parties and I celebrated my own as well. I guess us March babies are all a product of our parent's summer lovin'. My birthday (the 16th) was spent with my honey. John and I woke up and enjoyed the sunshine with a walk around Greenlake, having my favorite dish at Elliot Bay Brewery (ahi tacos) and spending a bit of time at the mall picking out my birthday present...some clothes and jewelry. I got lots of phone calls and birthday songs...all off-key. It's my tradition of how I sing 'happy birthday' to everyone...I mean, who remembers a song sung correctly? No one? But, people remember the 'worst birthday song ever'! Dinner was special treat... Corned Beef and Cabbage at my grandma's house. It was a lovely family family with my aunt and uncle joining us as well. Simply, a great way to spend a birthday. THANK YOU!

On Friday my friend, Faith, hosted the Pisces Celebration. This evening was to gather girlfriends and celebrate Faith's, Suzanne's and my birthday. It was a great evening to play catch up and hear what was going on in everyone's lives. Time always seems to fly by so fast and even though a year has gone by since I've seen some of the gals, it was easy to pick up where we left off. We toasted to birthdays and good friend's with lots of bottles of wine and the best red velvet cake, thanks to Amy! (someone else took the photos for the evening)

On Saturday, my great aunt Christina, a brilliant and talented artist, was proudly showing off how good 70 can look. No one would have guessed it...I thought she was turning 60...maybe! Her home was filled with lots of friends, family and the best gourmet food you could imagine...which, mind you, she prepared herself. Just thinking about the vast array of dishes makes me salivate...Crostini wrapped pork, shrimp and portobello paella, oysters on the half shell, gargonzola and hazelnut covered grapes, sangria, prosciutto mozzerella rolls, amazing spring salads and deserts gallore. I got a little of this side of the family's talent...but she shines above us all...and lookin' good while doing so!

After celebrating at my aunt's, John and I joined a surprise 30th celebration for a dear friend, Lisa. We missed the 'surprise' but from what we heard, she was! Her friend's put together a lovely gathering of her closest friends, had dinner and shared in delicious cupcakes. A picture I took of Lisa was plastered all over the place...she simply just glows in the is picture...and in real life. Sweet words of praise, gratitude, and compliments flowed as her sister, dad, mom, fiance and friend's took turns with speeches. Lisa was left a bit teary-eyed but overjoyed with the friend's and family she was surrounded by.

Welcome to the Thirties Girl!

DATE FOR THE CURE- Bachelor and Bachelorette Auction

This year was the 4th Annual DATE FOR THE CURE Auction (http://www.dateforthecure.org/) that Teresa Hambelton, Faith Flugel, Rachel Ford and myself hosted. The event raised $26,650 for Team in Training's Leukemia and Lymphoma Society...to help aid in cancer research! We had amazing date packages donated from the top local restaurants and the best of seattle's bachelors and bachelorettes willingly donated themselves to be 'sold' for a good cause. Over 250 people attended and the revues of the evening were phenomenal. I spent the evening doing what I love most...photographing the emotions, the interactions b/w people (mainly flirting), and all the details of our successful event. Check out all the photos at http://picasaweb.google.com/jennifermacniven/DateForTheCure08 . We raised more money with some amazing raffle items: dinners, hotel stays, snow boards, signed Peal Jam box set and even a FREE photo session with me. The event was a huge success and many thanks go out to my co-chairs for their months of hard work putting this together. THANKS GALS!

Go TEAM!

Team in Training (www.teamintraining.com) has been near and dear to my heart since 2004. This is my 4th time being a participant and I've raised over $18,500. Team in Training is an organization that trains you for an endurance event at a cool destination, and in turn you raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (www.lls.org). I've competed twice in the Lavaman Olympic Distance Triathlon in Kona, HI and once at the Pacific Crest Half Iron Man in Bend, OR. This year I'll be doing my first Marathon in Prague on May 11th. I never thought I'd be a competitor in a Half Iron Man or let alone a Marathon...but I always end up surprising myself with the strength and endurance that I have...that or I'm just a bit nuts ;). No comment from the peanut gallery please! Just look at my pure exhiliration of finishing a 1.2mi swim, a 57 mi. bike ride and 13 mi. run....Nuts? Most participants of TNT have some connection to someone who has had a battle with Leukemia, Myeloma, or other blood related cancers. If you don't have a personal connection, it takes only minutes of meeting your teammates who have beat the odds or hearing stories of others who lost their battle, to make you want to support this cause. I highly recommend becoming a participant...it will change your life for ever. This photo is a list of people who I was running in honor/memory of.I am saddened to have learned of a recent death of someone battling Leukemia. Jennifer, a girl whom I personally didn't know but was drawn to her story through MeRa's Blog (http://www.merakohblog.com/2008/03/21/i-dont-understand/) ,passed away on Friday. My prayers go out to her family and friends. Jennifer, I hope you're rejoicing in the arms of God...you are now a true Angel! http://jennifercuellar.homeip.net/

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

What the February's over?


Time is flying...
and I say that all the time.
But seriously, what the february... it's already over? Geeesh!

I'm sure John is feeling the same way since we just celebrated his 41st Birthday...with a bowling extravaganza...a couple weekends ago. Here are a few of the crazy pics that I got that night.

Here's the Birthday Boy and his first true love...PIZZA!

'Inappropriate Sam' lives on!

Holly got a whopping TWO pins...you go girl!Andee was trying some new moves .Faith was excited about her bowling capabilities.Check out John's bowling techniqueThe all time highlight of the night was when Justin (second in) had to get a spare to beat his previous score. There were three pins standing and oddly enough, there was a pin that was in his gutter for the majority of the evening. As he tosses his bowling ball, it's clear it's going to be a gutterball (typical just throw-the-ball-as-hard-as-possible guy move). As it rolls in the gutter, it hits the pin, bounces it out and it slams into the 3 remaining pins as if he planned it like a pro.

Nice move there Justin!Even though Justin had the best shot of the night...Patrick and I pulled off the best scores. Oh yeah, we're rock stars ;) Fun evening had by all!