photographer. artist. author. singer. songwriter. musician. teacher. student. humanitarian. visionary.

Posts tagged “photos

Forgiven

 

Wow. 
So my school had penalized me for dropping my two classes (College Algebra and Public Speaking) due to the car accident that I was involved in on October the 1st. Although it wasn’t my fault, they put $1,380 back onto my balance (meaning that’s what I now owe them) as well as a transcript and registration hold. Without help, I could practically kiss college goodbye. 

But I’m a fighter and I simply refuse to go down like that. I wrote a compelling letter simultaneously to the Dean, the bursar, and the director of financial aid, begging them to help me, and asking them to not allow me to fall through the cracks of society and become a statistic of “what could have been”.  Two days later I received a letter from my adviser stating that the balance would remain, but they lifted the registration hold, allowing me to return for the spring semester. (!) I know a handful of people who have had to drop out altogether for similar holds and situations- this is nothing short of a miracle. 

So, I’ll get to return in several weeks to finish up my degree. I’m ecstatic. 🙂 
I’m not crazy about math, but I’m going to give it my best shot. This will be my fourth semester of college algebra; the first three were developmental and I didn’t receive credit, so this will be somewhat gratifying.

I have three weeks to play in the snow before the madness begins!

Let it snow…  

 [Taken today, on my snow walk.]

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steps


Chocolate and Brandy. Chocolate and Brandy.

 

 

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Bullfrog Creek- Day Camping with J / 5 picture Panorama

 

 

“I’m sorry Birgy,” Josh says. “I will not play any more ‘Hotel California’ on your guitar.”

“That’s alright,” says I. (I’m lying.)

He switches over to Cold Play and I give him an approving sound. Until, that is, he starts speaking in a pseudo-British accent, and badly. He’s not even drinking, and so that makes it even weirder.

“How do you spell weird?” I ask nobody in particular.
My son, Brian (“Bob”, he says with a stern look), says, “Mom…it’s w-e-i-r-d…” adding a slight roll of the eyes.

There’s clearly a celabratory vibe in the air. 

Josh switches over to “Rolling on the River” -careful to curl his R’s for words like “turning” and “burning”.

Something peculiar happened the other day. 
My daughter, Brianna, took J and I out to Ihop. Naturally, I felt really awful because she was paying for it and adamant that we accept, so, we reluctantly obliged. Now I’m not one to go around making trouble with waiters- I swear it. But ask those that know me best and they’ll say otherwise. It’s not that I’m looking for it, it’s just that I appreciate attention to detail and good customer service.

The last time we were at Ihop, we were turned away. They said their machines were down and so we were unable to order, but were “more than welcome to have a seat anyway”. (Isn’t that nice.) Naturally, I said to my posse, “Let’s blow this joint.” 

We left.

Upon our return, we settled in (weeks later) lusting over the idea that we would be served a hot cup of cocoa with marshmallows. I asked our server to bring us a round. 

“Um, we’re out of hot chocolate,” she said.

“Hmm…,” says I. “Do you think you could bring me a cup of coffee on the house in that case?” 

She laughed a nervous laugh, and realizing I was serious, gave me an even quicker laugh with a muffled “Um, I can ask…” (etc.) 

I asked for water also to which I was given, “I always bring water,” abruptly. 

Oh boy- here we go.

(Josh switches over to “System of a Down”.)

She rushed off saying, “It is what it is…” -my daughter agreeing.

“It is not “what it is” – what it is is unprofessional because they should have been on top of this! Regardless, they should compensate their customers when the person is inconvenienced twice in a row in an establishnment. It’s just “good business.”

I receive “the look” from the family.

The waitress had said that she would see what she could do before racing off. I doubted that highly.

When she returned, I wasn’t surprised that she said, “Um, about the free coffee…yeah, I’m just not able to do that.” 

No doubt. She’s not. But I doubted that she’d even tried. And that’s what pissed me off. I figured she went into the back room, moved a few cups around, and came back with the news. No, I don’t have proof, but I could tell by her demeanor that she was not liking me. At all. 

I asked to be excused and went to “the bathroom”. 
(Actually, I went to the front desk to ask for a manager.)

The manager came out and was very polite and such. I explained the situation to him, mentioning that this was the second time we were put off by his establishment. 

Now you may think at this point that I’m a complete nag. But no. It’s the principal of the matter- and I’m driven by principal and integrity in life. I just want people to give a damn.

He said that free coffee was no problem and absolutely he could understand what I meant. 

THAT is my kind of service. 🙂

I went back to my table to find a pitcher of coffee sitting there. The waitress came to the table and I said, “By the way, the coffee IS on the house. I talked to your manager.” 

She seemed slightly embarrassed and I was taken aback by her response.

“Well, in that case, ALL of the coffees are on the house.”

We had ordered some fancy coffees (cappucinos with cream, etc.) totalling about $11. 
I was caught off guard by her grace and devotion. She totally didn’t have to do that and I was perplexed.

When we were preparing to go, I got my checkbook, and wrote out a personal post-dated check for $15. I wanted her to know that I thought she was absolutely awesome for what she did. Handing it to her I said,

“I want you to have this, for going above and beyond your job and doing this for us. We think you’re awesome.” 

The look on her face said everything. 

“Come here,” she said, grabbing me into a full bear hug, tears in her eyes.

She hugged my daughter too, and myself again. We smiled at each other and gave each other another hug before we left.

I was so humbled by this experience.
Life is funny. 

It has a way of kicking your butt and making you realize that you’re not the big hotshot you think you are.

And thank God for that…

 

 

 

 


Messages

I received this message at one of my photo sites I hang out at:

Hello Birgitta,
I stumbled across your profile – and what a great find. I was first quite impressed with your photography, but after looking more thoroughly, I have found that you have included a lot of “Christian Imagery” I would imagine this to be the case because you are indeed a Believer/Christian yourself. My wife and I are also believers and I was just thinking yesterday – how can I use photography to glorify God, to be a witness. I believe you have done that on some level in your photography, including Bibles, Scripture Passages, Crosses etc. Thank you for sharing your faith regardless of the outcome…. I’m encouraged.
PS. Keep Shooting for God, for Art, for Creativity

Romans 1:16

Caleb

 
 
And my reply to him was:
 
Hi Caleb! So sorry it’s taken me so long to get back to you. First of all, thanks so much for dropping me a line. 🙂 I appreciate you taking the time to do that. Secondly, thanks for letting me know that my photography has inspired you, particularly, where God and the Scriptures are concerned. No matter what I’m shooting, or when or how, I have this tugging at my heart for mankind- I have a little secret that I want to share, ya know? We know the truth- as believers, we’re so blessed with a bountiful banquet before us. Spiritually, we’re like Kings! When I look out at the dying world- it breaks my heart, truly. So many people though, have built walls so high. They won’t hear a drop of the truth about Jesus- they reject Him- just as He said they would. This is where “art” comes in. 🙂 We already share a common bond with unbelievers and many athiests in the art world- we all like to create and express ourselves. my work tends to have a dark undertone to it- it’s edgy. This isn’t intentional. I’m forever bound in my heart to the Crucified Christ- and His agony at Calvary. Ya know? It’s not like we’re “just passing through” that pain and death, and then we’re riding on a glory cloud every day. No- like Paul said, “I die daily”. We need to be nailed to the Cross every day, and crucify our own flesh. Well, this kind of seeps out in my work. But the bright side, is that it attracts people who are into dark things, and strangely enough, many athiests. They’re attracted to the gritty side of things. So when they see my work, it speaks to them. When they see the Scriptures- they more readily receive the Word because they feel a connection. I’m able to use my art to minister to people who don’t know God. I’m always mindful of this! I want to “tell stories” with my photography. I always ask myself: “Why am I doing this?” “What are my motives right now?” “What message am I sharing here?” And so on. I want to encourage you and your wife to do the same things. I’ve been able to reach many hungry hearts over the past 10 years or so. I think of this Scripture always: “Let your light so shine before men, so they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matt: 5:13 &16) And also this one: Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.” These are the two Scriptures that drive me in my work. Sure, I upload lots of trivial photos too, but I’m careful to integrate “messages” in the mix. I want it to means something, and ultimately, touch peoples’ hearts. Thanks again so much for writing me, and I’ll pop in later and check out some of your work. I’m a full-time behavioral Sciences major also working on my Substance Abuse certification- almost no time right now, as you know how that goes. I wish you all the best! And take good care of yourself. -B
 
 
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I later discovered that he and his wife are living in Korea and are English teachers.
I would absolutely love to be in Korea with a Lensbaby!
 
 
I received an anonymous email also the other day from “Mel”:
 
The song you wrote is so beautiful (“Hallelujah”) – the lyrics and the singing are so heartfelt….
Can you send me a link to the song so that I can download it?

God bless

 
 
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It’s a good feeling knowing that I inspire people here and there, and not “me” per se, but the message I carry with me. I’m driven by it continually, and it’s my driving force in life. I think about it every day of my life, and my persistent question that I ask myself is, “What are you doing for others in your life?”
 
If I have a hard time answering that question, something is seriously wrong.
I not only enjoy doing good things for others- I’m compelled to.
 
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