Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Perfect Age?

I haven't posted in what seems like forever. And the last thing I posted I think was to tell you all to go see my photography blog. Well, today I have something to talk about. Yes, I know, shocking, considering that I haven't had too much to say while Josh and I have been here. But, my "sanity" will be restored shortly when Josh and I head back to the motherland we affectionately call Washington. I don't like Idaho, and I have kept that no secret from people who have asked me this question. I've enjoyed my time here, I am by no means miserable. I love the weather, and I love waking up in the morning knowing that today it will be nice, and there is a 99% chance that tomorrow will be nice too. I like being in the middle of everything and I like going out to places to eat, but aside from those three things, I haven't found much else to like. I've met a few people, all josh's friends from school, I like them, but I haven't made the effort to make friends here. I noticed quickly that the majority of the people I've come across here are not friendly, people in the apartments here keep their blinds closed and when you pass them in the parking lot they can't even seem to muster a hello or even a vague smile. But, this is not what I'm here to talk about today. No! Here's what I'm really here to talk about.

On Sunday I turn 21, finally. And while I'm looking forward to this birthday more than I have all the other ones, I'm not overly excited. No, I don't dread getting older, while I look back on my childhood with this overwhelming nostalgia at the same time I welcome each new year with open arms excited to see what new things I can experience and what new things I can learn. I remember as a child telling my mom that I didn't want to get older, I wanted to be five forever. Being five was perfect. I look back on it and realize it really was. But my mom would always find a way to help me segue into my next stage (and age) without being traumatized. Moms are good like that. I do find myself saying goodbye to the 12, 16, 18 and 20 year old with a sort of sadness in my voice. A closing off point that seems like I'm saying goodbye to that part of me, I will never be that age again, and I will never experience things again in that moment, and at that age. But then I say, "Hello!" to my new age and find I'm determined to love where I'm at.

I've always wondered what the perfect age is. At 5 we are still babies and everything is done for us, but we lack the responsibility and the independence that we long for, the same for being 10 and so on. We spend our childhoods longing for that day when we are old enough to go and do things by ourselves but once we get there we find ourselves wanting back the days of simple times and pure untainted and unjaded joy. We are always striving to be older. 10 is huge, you are no longer in the single digits, for some reason 12 is pretty big, you're a tween, right? 13 is enormous! I remember getting a 13 inch tv with a VCR for my thirteenth birthday 14 and 15 pass without too much excitement, but 16 we've been waiting for since we were 5 and we could almost comprehend what driving was. Those comments when you were young about, "Wow! your six now? You should be driving soon!" Are no longer excrutiatingly far away, but right there before you... You can touch it now, those people lied when they said soon.

And so the world goes, next we look forward to 18, then 21. And then we think we've arrived...

But have we? There is so much more to age than just what you can do once you reach them, and there will always be an age that you have yet to reach that will have some advantage that you can't have right now. But then we reach a certain age when getting older, and waiting impatiently for that next stage is no longer a part of us. We turn to dreading the next year. Most dread turning thirty, and of course turning forty is terrible.

With age comes experience and wisdom and I am so excited to attain that. To experience life and enjoy it is something I strive for. Life is such a gift and I am so excited to enjoy this gift God gave me!

So with that said, is there really a perfect age? At anytime in life do we have everything?

Have a wonderful day everyone!!

Little Alyssa

Little Alyssa

Fashion Sense


This is scary


Me at almost 21!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Head On Over

To my photography blog! There is a new picture from last weekends crashcourse. There probably won't be a picture on here today. I want you to check out the other blog... Seriously, go there now! The link is on the right! Have a wonderful day today!

God Bless!


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

More, More, More

So, in continuation with my revamp, I decided to go with a list of new things you will see in the coming months. It's going to take me a bit to get everything done that I want to get done, so bare with me, this is a journey! So, also in continuation with this my photography blog mention yesterday I'm going to post this on there, so at least I have something over there. I haven't blogged since March 24, about my photography. Sad... So, this picture is one of my favorites, I like a little more off beat photos, I like the intimacy of photos like this one. I'm giving Lizzybees the credit for this advertisement idea because she posted it first!

Revamp pic


Monday, July 21, 2008


So I came home from my adventure in Texas this weekend with a new excitement and passion for photography. I came away with more knowledge in my one day spent with Shauna than I ever did while I was in school. My head was full of business and photography, creativity and determination to get my little photography business off the ground. I probably felt almost every emotion I could have felt after being thrown nearly ten years of experience into one day. I felt excited, overwhelmed, full of information, confused as to how to sort it out, happy that I might just be able to pull this whole thing off, nervous that I might not be able to. Pumped at the things I can do, and a little down that I don't have everything that I need, but knowing it just takes time to improve.

I'm a person that wants everything perfect right now, but I realized I can do the best that I can do with what I have, and I do have alot! So, I'm revamping! New business and new art. All improved and different. In the months to come you will see products, and prints, you'll see more of me, lucky you! And hopefully I will get to see more of you. First thing I really need to check off my list, actually writing on my photography blog. So for those of you who check this blog, go check my photography blog. The link is on the page on the right. So I'm working away the rest of this summer and trying to get everything finished so I can be happy and I can make you all happy! Here is a photo from this weekend. Hope you like it.

Crash Course Photo

Friday, July 11, 2008

Yummy Cheesecake Pops!

My project didn't turn into a disaster! These are cheesecake pops. Yes, there is cheesecake inside, covered in chocolate and then sprinkles. Good for a party. The whole recipe makes 30-40 pops, but there was no way I could fit that all into my freezer. I think I ended up cutting the recipe in half and then left some cheesecake just to eat. It is so nice to accomplish something I didn't think I could do. I don't know if it's quite a masterpiece, yet, but I'm sure I will be giving it another try! They are so yummy, but eating more than one could probably kill a person! Here are a couple pictures! Hope you like them=)

Aren't they pretty?! I just love the colors.

Yes, I did do this on purpose. I wanted all the colors to blur together.

K, I should be done blogging for the day! Have a great day!

Another Sneak Peek For The Toyra Women!

So, I know how much torture people go through while waiting to see photos. I waited 6 or 7 weeks for our wedding photos, but knew what kind of work goes into post processing... That wasa little compensation:) So, I thought I would let the girls see a little more proof of their beauty! Girls, I hope you like them as much as I do. There are so so many! I'm at 110 so far! Enjoy!

I love that her hair is all messy, and her eyes look so beautiful!

This is classic. I love this...

I want to let you girls know that I'm working hard to get these done and have them be perfect! Hope you like them.

And later: pictures of my "project"

God Bless!


Thursday, July 10, 2008

The makings of a Masterpiece... Or a disaster?

So right now I'm taking a break from editing photos, so I thought I would post a photo of what I'm doing today. Now, I've taken up a little project I found on a few random blogs because I loved what I saw. So like the title of this post, this little project will either be a masterpiece or a disaster. I'm leaning more toward the disaster area. I'm using the lollipop sticks that you see here, and if you took the time to look, I'm sure you didn't but just in case you did, they were listed on the list of things to do the other day. Endless excitement right? I figured, nothing was frusturating me today, why not try this out?! We'll see if I should just stick with editing photos or become a triple threat... I have to be good at three things, though, for that... Right? Anyway, this is scary old me. Josh was kind enough to take a picture... I think I will stay behind the camera from now on!

So, what do you think I'm making, I'd like to hear all about it!

Have a great day!


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

I actually do, do things...

So, I'm the first to admit that I have a little bit of a "Type A" personality, and I love organization,feeling productive, and I love working. I know that there are always days where going to work seems like the worst thing in the world, but I never feel more myself when I'm hard at work actually feeling like I'm doing something and being a part of something bigger. So, while I've been her I've been super bored, and a little depressed that I haven't done anything. I know, I should probably get a job, but that's coming, and I have been keeping busy, it's just not the busy that I'm used to... work... If I'm not being productive, I'm completely wasting the day, and my dad thought the same way. If I'm not up before a certain time, I might as well just forget it...
I remember getting up early in the morning on the weekends to chop firewood with dad. We would roll out of bed, decide against brushing our teeth and crawl into jackets and boots. We would stash away that idea to put on clothes and just throw everything on over our pajamas in hopes of getting to jump back into bed. No such luck. I find myself judging my self worth on how much I am doing, and how much I am getting in return, this is probably unhealthy, but I thrive on productivity. It's so invigorating.

So, I decided to take a few minutes to write down the things that I needed to do today, and check them off as I went along. Since I took this picture, a couple more things are in progress. I still feel blah today for not doing much, probably because it took me so long to do these things. Have you ever felt this way?!
I made dinner and I'm editing photos too. I need some cuddle
time too! I'm not sure I'm up for laundry, though.

This is what we had for dinner. Clean Tostadas. My friend
Shauna put this on her cooking blog. We had this a couple weeks
ago, but inhaled it before I could get a picture. SOOO good.

This was a recipe for Grilled Cheese and Cherries. It is alot
prettier than it tastes... I didn't like it:( Won't make it again.

So I'm working on a little something with the lollipop sticks mentioned on my list. I'm really excited, I just need the talent to do it! Hopefully, this week I will be able to accomplish my goal of creating the masterpiece!

I hope you have a blessed Tuesday


Monday, July 7, 2008


I had the wonderful opportunity of photographing my cousins this weekend while Josh and I were home for the fourth of July. Like most Fourth of July weekends in Washington it was rainy off and on. Our session was scheduled for Saturday, and when we all woke up on Saturday morning to rain not only at the lake where Josh and I were staying, but in town too, we decided around 1:00 that is just wasn't going to happen. So, we squeezed in the session yesterday morning before Josh and I made our eight and a half hour drive back to Boise. It was worth it, though. I'm loving the photos, there are just so many to choose from! So I took pictures of these wonderful ladies because Billie, the older sister, is heading off to Washington D.C. in August to attend American University. Can you believe that?! One day people could be voting "Billie Toyra" for office. The sky is the limit with this girl, I am so proud and so amazed at not only her excitement for it, but determination as well. I am so proud of her. I probably won't get to see her until Thanksgiving if not later... Depending on where Josh and I end up living.

Little sister Josie is carefree and loves the camera, she keeps everyone laughing. And mom Roni Sue is the super talented, super creative magician wedding coordinator, who just happened to do the Josh and Alyssa Lillegard wedding back in November.

These ladies are all so beautiful and so much fun. My family is my life! Thank you girls for giving me the opportunity to take your photos! Here are a few favorites!

Aren't they all so beautiful!? Anyway, I hope you enjoy the photos! Have a wonderful Monday. God Bless.


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