• 05Dec
    Birthday Bacchanal 2012

    Emil and several of our #childfree friends have late-November through early-December birthdays: Kelly, Jeff, Emil, Judy, and Ryan. So, we made a huge weekend out of it for all of them.

    Friday, Jeff, Judy, Emil, and I went for Thai lunch in Cedar Park on our way to Flat Creek Estate winery. We had the most amazing wine tour ever and nice grounds for gentle “hike”. I definitely recommend the place as well as taking the day off from work to go on a weekday. (Look for it soon on AsYouWishAustin.com, too since they have wonderful wedding pakckages.) On the way back into town, we stopped off for Italian and then played What Were You Thinking? Saturday, a whole mess of people (Pam & Ryan, Kelly, Tim & Sallie, Marvin & Keisha) joined us at Independence Brewing‘s monthly beer party. After a siesta, Pam and I threw a Dr. Who themed party for the birthday kids. Sunday morning, Jeff/Judy/us went to brunch at the new Jack Allen’s kitchen in Round Rock.

    Anyway, here are a few of my favorite shots from the weekend.

    this one will become a water color quite soon!

    I don’t think I’d ever been to a vineyard in the fall. It’s a totally different look!

    It was so nice to enjoy the fall colors in Hill Country!


    This glass (with a category five HURRICANE) is from Independence Brewing’s fifth anniversary party.

    The elusive Maya made a grand appearance at the party.

    And Kitten Pickles did her best to steal the show!


    I’m already looking forward to next year’s Birthday Bacchanal™

    ™ trademarked by the lovely Judy

  • 04Jun

    “oh I’ve got friends in HIGH places”
    YIELDS “I have the most amazing friends.”

    [Yeah, I took the time to try to make a greater paraody of Garth’s lyrics, but I gave up!]

    Today, I emailed some friends in the DFW area to let them know we’d be up there in a couple of weeks. [Emil has one of those 8am-8pm/daily computer certification classes to attend. At the end of it all and with a passing grade on the test, he’ll have a few more letters to add to his credentials. Don’t worry, none of us are supposed to understand what his new letters mean.]

    My main plan is to mostly edit/blog like a mad fiend, but I also hope to host some portrait sessions from friends of friends, if possible.

    Within MINUTES of that email, I had exuberant replies from friends offering places to stay, cultural opportunities, professional development opportunities, referrals to friends, and fun! I literally teared up and jumped up and down with excitement
    …with only moments between those emotions.
    [The current story with our downstairs neighbors is that we won a lottery.]

    It was, literally, the happiest day of my life since the day I found out we were “really and truly” moving to Austin.

    So, my dear friends, thank you ten-fold for your faith in me and my work and your love and devotion to me as a person (who is sometimes on the fringe). I appreciate even the tiniest gesture of “Like”ing As You Wish photography on facebook as well as your legitimate referrals to your friends/colleagues.

    More than anything else, I appreciate that you welcome me into your family/culture/society.

    Each of you has honored me.

  • 22Jan

    Wow. What a week it has been! And it’s just Thursday.

    1. Tuesday was our (mine and Beth’s) little Taste of Dream Dinners party. As You Wish provided updated headshots/avatars to those in attendance. Another friend, Victoria sold her necklaces. It was small, but valuable for each of us involved. I have been too slow at getting those images processed.
    2. Wednesday, I was “it” at my monthly Brainstormers group. I presented a problem: how to market to school-age kids, Tweens, and teens and their parents. Through a process that adheres to the rules of Brainstorming, I was literally bouncing up and down at all the fabulous ideas. I can’t wait to implement some of them. I was also happy to see that my brainstorming topic was one that could apply to a lot of the members of the group.
    3. Thursday morning I had an interview for a great job—-I’ve kept my job search a bit on the down-low, I’ve had enough bad bosses/jobs thankyouverymuch [1]—-as an Education Coordinator…but as it turns out, it has a 75% travel time. I could easily be gone Monday-Friday for three weeks of every month. If I get an offer from them, we will have to consider it very carefully.
    4. Thursday all day, As You Wish was the Groupon.com deal of the day for Austin. As of this writing, I have 90 portrait sessions from new clients for the Austin area! And, my business name has been in front of 44,000+ Austin members today. In addition, I also got a new Senior Ambassador, and I sold a Womb-to-Bloom portrait series that includes a maternity session, newborn session, 3-6-9 month sessions, and a first birthday session complete with balloons and CAKE! (Maybe #3 isn’t so important, after all…?). Whew! Late in the day, I learned that a potential bride and a close friend were on the list of those who purchased Groupons. Thank you, both. You “warm the cockles of my cockles”. [2] Ack! I just checked again and it’s up to 95!!

    There have been several other happy moments this week: I was selected to serve on two committees for the Nuptial Essentials Association of Wedding Professionals; I’m going to be working with great folks on both of those! And, my new friend, Hilarie, gave me some excellent feedback on a challenging aspect of my website, which I took to heart and applied fully. Just a few days later, I was able to return the favor to her in the form of reviewing her “audition” piece for a graphic design job. She was pleased with the feedback and genuinely considered my thoughts. She and I are on to something, here… There were others, too. It’s been a week of amazing moments.

    When will my world stop spinning? I can only handle this adrenaline rush for a little while longer. At the same time, it sure is a spinning a web of happiness; a web that I know will catch me when I fall.

    “If my friends could see me, now!” Oh wait; you can! You just did!

    Oh, and BTW, adrenaline and/or sheer excitement is an easy fix for a caffeine dependency. I’ve barely had any today and have hardly noticed. How do I get THAT side effect more often

    Happy Weekend, everyone!

    [1] Do’ort’y the Lawsuit, Poopy CapeHard, Kevin Jack-off-some, REEX, and Urinal Guava
    [2] “warms the cockles of my cockles” I’ve been looking for that reference for years. If you can give me the original reference for this quote, I’ll give you a free portrait session of your choosing (for those nearby) and/or a free design for Valentine’s or other holiday cards (for those far-far away).
  • 08Nov


    If you aren’t on Twitter, don’t whine about how you don’t have time for it. It’s the fastest way to share information with friends and colleagues. Furthermore, you have no right to kvetch about that which you have not yet used. Setup can be as easy as a single text message.

    If you have a Twitter account, Tweet once in a while. If all you use your account for is to read other people’s Tweets, then you might be an Internet Stalker.

    Blurring the Line Between Personal and Professional

    Most people have one account. Most people Tweet about their work and their weekends. Most people do a good job of never Tweeting anything that would jeopardize either of these personas. Please do not Tweet anything inappropriate for the audience you have and/or the one you desire.

    Use decent grammar and spelling. It doesn’t have to be perfect; in fact, it’s proven better if it’s not. However, everyone needs to be able to understand you. (Mistakes are endearing. Really. Don’t feel you have to correct every typo in your Tweets.)

    If you want to be more, um, colorful in your Tweets, then consider opening a separate Twitter account (maybe without your name/town on it; locked for privacy). Just be very careful not to send any private or R-rated information out on your public or G-rated account.

    120 not 140

    If you have any hopes that anyone will Re-Tweet your content, then keep your messages down to ~120 characters. You need to leave room for “RT @username ” before your Tweet so the person who sends it out next can give you credit.



    If someone you know, personally, follows you, then you should follow them back.

    If someone you don’t know, but like (who they are, what they have to say, what they represent) follows you, then you should follow them back.


    If your client or potential client or vendor or colleague follows you, then you should follow them back.

    If you can find professional associations and organizations in your field, you should follow them.

    If you are a professional associations/organization, follow your members. How else are you going to know what they need from you?


    If you are a celebrity with thousands of followers, you don’t have to follow back. It would be a good idea since your celebrity status is probably predicated on you having fans, but anyone with that many followers may not have the ability to keep up.


    If someone creeps you out, block them.

    If someone you have blocked on other social media sites (facebook, etc.) tries to follow you, block them, and then also report them as spam. It’s not like they didn’t know.

    If anyone you blocked uses your name or id in their Tweets, report them as spam. Again, they already knew the boundaries.

    Reporting Spam

    Report all spam you receive. Yes, it’s super-time consuming (green italics indicates sarcasm) to click that little spam button or to send their username to @spam. For the love of Twitter, just do it.

    Irony Defined

    As I’m writing this, Twitter is over capacity. I guess that explains why I didn’t get all the stuff @emil285 said today.