Weberlife Instafeed

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Bench Family Pics 2010

Mike Bench Family & Grand-dogs

Mike & Sammi & Henessy

Tom & Les & Ruby

Doug & Mickelle & Cleo

This has been a hard year for my family in so many ways.  My dad was in a very serious car wreck about a week after these were taken.  I processed them and brought them to the hospital and hung them everywhere so that not only would he not forget that we love him, but that the Dr's and nurses would see just how many people love my daddy so they would do their very best to help him.  After a month in the hospital I am convinced they did.   I'd have to say, our family made it through a year that would have torn at the seams of most other families but we made it through--stronger than ever. 
Le's hope for an uneventful 2011 everyone!

THE "holidays"

Where to start.

My work, as is customary for my work, has been non-stop for the past month and a half or so.  I have been working on commercials and really meeting and working with some great people. The downside?
Doug is left to fend for himself with Cleo.  Those of you that have kids are rolling your eyes right now because
you think taking care of a dog is cake, but I am here to tell you-she takes more time that you might think!
And when deadlines are looming large Cleo knows just how to be needy at the wrong times!

I knew that I had failed as a wife when Doug asked me a few weeks ago if we should start Christmas shopping--DOUG: the grinch himself, the ANTI Christmas guy--his heart really does get 3 sizes smaller every year just for the month of December(luckily he has a big heart so he has some to spare)
 I was horrified at his question because Christmas was the FURTHEST thing from my mind and would be for another 2 weeks.

So this year I am making it easy on myself in every way including but not limited to forgoing putting up a tree.  I am a little sad, but mostly grateful because no one is disappointed.  Getting into "the spirit" takes a lot of time and energy that I just simply could not muster this year.  Being a wife is hard work! 

Doug's work has been insane and promises to just keep getting more busy--we are lucky to love what we do, but it doesn't leave a lot of room for much else(like a vacation!)
New Years Resolution? Work less, play more--

Happy Holidays everyone!


Monday, September 27, 2010

7 Years and Counting

This year we decided to I forced Doug to agree to a photoshoot for our anniversary.  The fact that we have very few photos of us and Gigs and GIGS of other people that we hardly know finally got to me.

Luckily we had a great time(hopefully it shows) I decided to copy pacing the panic room and make a montage instead of selecting single photos--for a quick and dirty project, it turned out ok.

Keep in mind while watching that Cleo is a stage dog who works for kisses.  By the end of our 3 hour photo taking extravaganza she wanted to speak with her manager---
Needless to say, it took us all that time and all those photos to get a few to hang--

You have no idea the amount of strength it took to NOT process all 300 of those video images

We did have an amazing weekend.  A-MA-Zing. Happy Anniversary My Love--Thank you.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Thursday, September 9, 2010

To my In-Laws: Spoiler Alert!

I can't help it, I had to post these and brag about just how adorable all of my
nieces and nephews are--I get to photograph them every other year and it is so fun!
Also Miss and Wayd and Alice--they are pretty cute too ;)
Sis-in laws and Alice--they are on their way to you very soon!!!

Seeing Stars

Today is a rainy day in SLC so naturally I turn my
playlist to my comfort music: Dave Matthews Band--

In the middle though, this song came on and it made
me smile. To Doug: I love you more every day my dear-
"your my favorite book"

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

As Of Late

This Summer has been an interesting one for sure--
The pic above is from our Weber Family Reunion in
Ogden Canyon--we stayed in a beautiful home overlooking
the valley--more pics from the rest of the families to come

Additionally I was invited to be at the birth of my lifelong
friend Jen's baby girl Gwendolyn Claire--
Jen had a beautiful home birth sans pain relief(WOWZA!)
to a 9.8LB 22.5 IN baby

And on a slightly irreverent note considering the beauty of
birth I bought my first sewing machine, and, after careful consideration
I have decided to make my own drapes(yes, sometimes I boarder on dillusion)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

127 Hours trailer released!


"My" movie, as my mom calls it, has just released a trailer and it is so fun to see!
I feel like I got to see all of the fun behind the camera, the logistics of everything that was going on and all of that. What I mostly took away is that movies are made by people who are VERY hard workers. People who do the majority of the crappiest work ever and receive very little credit.
Luckily everyone at the top on this movie were gracious and very open to everyone on the crew feeling a part of the magic, but I can tell you: there was no shortage of insane work weeks, dangerous and grueling jobs and crazy drama :)

I am so excited to see it and hope it does well during awards season!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

4 Weddings and a Funeral Summer.

Doug's Grandpa Hawkins passed away a few weeks ago. We had the memorial service this past weekend which, as you may expect, caused me to reflect on my time with him the past8 years or so.

Mostly I heard things that I already knew: he was a very incredible man with a gift for listening and being supportive--even long distance. He was patient, humble. gracious and kind. All qualities that are hard won for most of us, but he possessed them all and had them on display, it seemed, at all times.
One quality that I have always been particularly grateful is his ability to be accepting of Doug and I despite our lack of participation in his chosen faith(and the faith of almost everyone in his family except us) I always admired his approach to the subject. He never once treated us differently or shied away from hearing about our lives as they are--as scandalous as it may have seemed to him, he never flinched.

Please do not misunderstand, this does not mean that no one else in the family is not this way, quite the opposite actually, but Grandpa, as was stated MORE than once during the Memorial celebrating his life, had a truly special way of showing he cared. No prerequisites, no nonsense--he cared deeply and completely.

What a Hero, what a life he lead--he will be missed.

We love you Grandpa!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

My new hobby and Cleo

This has been a weird year, there is no doubt about that.
So I have taken a few months to just breathe. Luckily
Doug is on board(Something that I am grateful for every day)

In my spare time, I have taken to growing a little garden on my
deck. Although it is time consuming, it has been a healing and
very rewarding. Every tomato, every pepper and every breakfast
or dinner I cook with materials from my own garden makes me
grow stronger.
It is fragile, but I am beginning to feel more like
myself every day.

Additionally, how gorgeous is this dog? As Jen witnessed while she
was here, she actually poses for each shot--Just like a pro! She is
also undergoing some pretty dramatic changes as we attempt to
"positive reinforce" our way into her liking new people and dogs.
We have enrolled in a a Fiesty Fidos Class at Calling all Dogs

Monday, July 12, 2010

The after effects of being opinionated.

Let's start with waking up the next morning and thinking: Did I say(write) that out loud? Followed by wondering if everyone you know hates you followed briefly by wondering if that guy at your 10 year reunion was looking at you funny because of your scandalous blog post or because you have something in your teeth and then?

Getting over it, and quickly.

Bottom line: I believe and feel every word I wrote. Does that mean that I hate Mormons or Anti-Mormons? Nope. Does it mean that I want them to hate me back? Nope.
Does it mean that I will be quiet when they try to run my city and enforce
upon me their beliefs? NOPE!

So let's move on everyone, let's agree to disagree: I will stop ranting on the dominant religion and I will try not to kiss a woman on main street and you agree to leave me and politics here alone deal?

Didn't think so--let the ranting continue but maybe later--on to what I have been up to lately--photographing again!

I have to say that after a break I had a good time with these two families--fun to be living in the Right side of my brain again---instead of just making enemies, I have been making family heirlooms people!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Mormons. And those formally known as.

Salt Lake City is a lot of things. Extremely polarized happens to be one
of them. I am fairly positive that in order to live in Rome, you do
not have to be an expert on the Catholic Church. In stark contrast,
in order to live in Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan you DO have to have
a somewhat basic knowledge of Islam or you will be very uncomfortable
there. I have to say, that Salt Lake City is much closer to the latter.

A good friend mine was recounting a very well known phrase that everyone
who has ever set foot in Salt Lake for more than 5 minutes risks hearing:
"Those that leave the church just can't seem to leave it alone"
This is true for so many more reasons than I can cover here(or ever)
but it did bring up a topic that is at the tip of the brain, and gag
reflex at all times as Salt Lake City residents who are not members
of the "dominant religion". This church refuses to be ignored and
if you live here, it is jammed down your throat by the faithful, the
formally faithful, the newspapers, hell even the bums do it AT EVERY TURN. Every dinner party, night out, lunch date and business meeting we have, even if it is
out of the country, when people hear we are from Utah it DOES NOT MATTER with whom or how much we drink it
inevitably turns to the MORMONS(or, the DAMN MORMONS as I like to affectionately refer to them as even while they are present)
Here is the worst part:

It is RUINING my social life, and my city.

You ALWAYS have to pick a side. It isn't one of those things that you can 'other' check box out of either. In Utah, you either mark Yes, Hell NO!, or Marie Osmond(the artist formally known as a real Mormon but now may be classified as Jack)
No but seriously there is no 'normal' box to check. You know, the one that doesn't reflect years of being either in or out. Acceptable or not. mysterious white undies or thong.

Being oblivious is not really possible.

Living here is like a big game of kickball where teams are picked by
whether you know the secret handshake or not. And it is EXHAUSTING and
a little anti-climatic. It's like this: when you meet someone new, whether
socially or in business you are constantly thinking: "are they or aren't
they?" Mostly because you can BET your next paycheck on the direction the
relationship will go based on the answer to that tiny little question and
it sucks(note: also true when dating and yes, the paycheck would have to
be AFTER tithing)

I live in a building where the answer to "are they or aren't they" has become
a game we play. Whenever someone new moves in, a group of us play the game(based
solely on what we can see in their moving boxes and through the windows before
they call the cops.) We do this mostly because we want to know if we should avoid inviting them over for Wine Friday. Mormons, after all, respond to such an invite with a visit from the local missionaries and then, well, let's just say it gets rather
ugly after that.

I think I lost my point.

Wait: There it is!

I want a Normal Box. The kind that doesn't inspect my undies or think of
ways to get me to join their team. Sometimes I feel like I am living
in the real life equivalent of a land-grabbing, hostage taking, diet coke
drinking, passive aggression slinging, experiment. Note to those in charge:
This outlier is thinking of relocating. And it is all your fault, although,
sometimes it seems intentional to root normal out and just leave the extremes.
This way, both sides win, at least in their own minds.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Denvering it up-- some point during dinner one night last month Doug
and I were looking over our calendar and decided that if we
didn't get away from all the craziness that is our summer,
and soon, we were going to either end up dead, divorced or
worse: zombies who drain our bank account and leave the country
never to return. And no one but Leslie and maybe our accountant
would know where.
Listen, you may think I am being dramatic but what would you do
if you had 4 weddings, 2 family reunions, 3 bachelor/bachelorette
parties to attend, 3.5 businesses to run, 1 Garden to attend to, 1
neurosis infused puppy to take to a class where she has to learn to
be nice to: that's right, you guessed it: other neurosis infused puppies!
and yet dammit, I forgot to order my navy blue shoes for a wedding
that is next week! And yes, in a fit of control freak overload I ordered the chandelier
that Doug was only somewhat liking on Ebay because it was $200 cheaper!

Needless to say Doug looked at me frothing at the mouth and twitching one
night and said: I have got to get you out of here!

So Denver it was. He was attending a conference there anyway so it seemed to
be a natural fit to just extend the trip. While we were at it(and in a storm
of irrational trip planning major misjudgment) we decided to bend our rule on
never(NEVER) driving further than 6 hours and drive, 8.5-9 hours to Denver.

I cannot even begin to describe HOW misguided driving I won't. Let's
just say that it ended with Doug telling me that I am the only child he can
handleand if, IF we ever were to reproduce we were never going to be traveling
via car ANYWHERE, ever. Mom, Dad, I think he now understands why Benadryl and
loud music were the staples of road trips when I was a kid.

Back to the trip. The day before we left I got a massive sore throat. Being the tenacious traveler that I am(ahem, by plane only) and considering the severity
of our situation we pressed on. Again, misguided but whatever. The place was
paid for and our bags were packed!

ONCE we arrived things began looking up. Our condo was located in the very hip
and very tan and in shape neighborhood of LODO(lower Denver for those of you who
don't speak Denverese) right next to the river and Union Station.

I was still not feeling great, but considering allergy season in the great
SLC has been the worst to date, ever--I was NOT going to let a little hay-
fever ruin my good time! So loaded up on Claritin and we were off!

We started with dinner with Dustin and Mandi at a local brewery, Then the next moring renting bikes
at the park near us in 95 degree weather, and then BAM my "allergies" took a turn
for the worse. We had planned to go and see our friends Jake and Sam in Boulder
the next day so we opted to sleep the rest of the day to try and get back on track
for a day of fun! On the way back I ended up twisting my foot and not being able to
walk. Doug, being raised by a nurse and all, sprung into action. He iced my foot,
loaded me full of antihistamines and decongestant and sent me to bed, for the rest
of the afternoon.

The next day my foot was miraculously healed and the allergies were much improved
so we we headed to meet our good friends Jake and Sam at their spectacular abode
in quaint and exclusive Boulder, CO.
We talked, laughed, and hiked, ate and heard about their upcoming wedding in Kansas and
somewhere between nuptual talk and sushi I started to wilt and fast--we ended the night
quickly( I think they could tell I was not myself) it was very apparent that this was
not allergies--

The next morning I went to the Dr and he told me I had a cold(not surprising since
the poster in his office goes through all the many reasons that your cold is NOT
an infection)

So again, we went home to sleep in hopes of being able to do something fun and exciting
on our last day of vaca.

We woke up, ate and since I was still feeling horrible we decided to spend the afternoon in the park, on a blanket, staring up at the clouds. I haven't done this
for at least 10 years, maybe never. It was so much fun! After a few hours
of talking, really talking, Doug was summoned to work.

It turned out that he only had to work 1 day instead of 3 so we got to play one day
(I was still sick, but on the mend and still limping)

We arrived home in once piece, tired and with a new resolve never to drive more
than 6 hours but for me, a renewed appreciation for my amazing husband, some great
new insight into his life and plans for the future, and caught up on my sleep for
the first time in I cannot even remember how long. So I guess, in the end, while it was not exactly the trip we had planned, it was the trip we needed.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

place holder and pretty funny

I Know the Heart of Life is Good.

My Mom is an avid Neil Diamond Fan. She can't get enough, his music really hits a nerve with her and growing up, we all learned to appreciate "Neil Baby" as we lovingly call him: like it or not. Whether boating, camping, making dinner or in the car his songs(along with the likes of CCR, Buddy Holly and Simon and Garfunkel--thanks Daddy ;))
comprise the soundtrack of my childhood.

Even today, if my mom finds a song that speaks to her, about you, she makes sure to share it with you.
This is something that I learned to appreciate and now relish in as an adult--even though my mom has gone severely to what I consider the dark side of music(Country) I still find it so flattering and overwhelming that she is always thinking of me--something I hope to understand one day when I have my own children.

I have always had an acute awareness of lyrics--In fact, one of my many memories with my Daddy is on a rare occasion, we were on a road trip together, just him and me. We were listening to one of his tapes(yes tapes) and I was singing along. He turned to me suddenly and said: "how do you know every single one of the words to every one of these songs?!" At the time I shrugged it off and we kept on driving--but that moment stuck with me for some reason-funny what we carry with us--
Even today I often will forgive hokey or otherwise untalented musicality for stirring lyrics(much to Doug's dismay)

I realize that using song lyrics to make a point can be
corny but sometimes I just can't help it. I guess along with being a night owl and being flat chested Mom just passed that one right along. When I find a song that
speaks to me I just feel connected to other people.
I feel like I am not alone in being in love, happy, having
a perfectly perfect day or being just plain devastated.
Call it a coping mechanism, and mock it if you must, but it works for me.

While I was working out last week this song came on
and I have to say, it opened my heart and healed it a little.
It felt so good that I paused right in the middle of the sidewalk, closed
my eyes and just basked in it.

I have a feeling that John Mayer is going to be my Neil Diamond
All together now can I hear a "John Baby"? Ah well, maybe in 20
years I will be lucky enough to have Daughters that make fun
of my somewhat questionable taste in music.

Until then: Here is one for Mom, One for Daddy
I like to think that they were passing on wisdom
and courage in the songs that they chose to serenade
me with throughout my childhood. Guys, I listened.

Thanks now and always

Neil Baby:

"The Heart Of Life"

I hate to see you cry
Lying there in that position
There's things you need to hear
So turn off your tears
And listen

Pain throws your heart to the ground
Love turns the whole thing around
No it won't all go the way it should
But I know the heart of life is good

You know, it's nothing new
Bad news never had good timing
Then, circle of your friends
Will defend the silver lining

Pain throws your heart to the ground
Love turns the whole thing around
No it won't all go the way it should
But I know the heart of life is good

Pain throws your heart to the ground
Love turns the whole thing around
Fear is a friend who's misunderstood
But I know the heart of life is good
I know it's good

Monday, May 24, 2010

Snowing today

Today it is snowing and life has been a bit hectic.
I had to cover my flowers and herbs and bring the tomatoes
in. Finding a few locations for a photo shoot, and a few meetings
for neighborhood and city issues.
OH and Doug is back from a LONG business trip to Tokyo--7 days is too
Today I am cooking dinner(a rarity here is our world) and I am trying to talk Doug
into going to see this movie

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Ready to be public again---

So...I disappeared for awhile. It happens :) Since January I have been working on the movie 127 Hours starring James Franco
I learned a lot, worked A LOT(my sister actually said she talked to me more when I was abroad) and met some amazing people.
I did have to quit 3 weeks earlier than planned because I was pregnant--operative word: WAS. This was our second try--the first was in Nov, we found out while we were in Japan. It miscarried at 10 wks, this one at 12. I have put off telling everyone because I feel such a mix of things. All at once I feel ashamed, devastated, discouraged and cheated. Trying again seems so scary( i am sick ALL DAY LONG) and sometimes I wonder how it is that people actually have healthy babies(and in our state MULTIPLE) Let's just say that meeting and working with the amazing Danny Boyle pales in comparison in my memory to the day that the dr told us, again, that there is no heartbeat. Don't worry, this blog won't turn into a pity party YET, but seriously, I never thought that one little thing could have such an effect on my psyche, my work and my outlook on life.
I am back to my old self finally and ready to again return to the land of the living but changed in ways I never thought possible.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


My masterpiece for the day.....and oh yea: I am back among the living--more later

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A little something I put together for a project I am working on

Wanted to make DSLC a little more comfortable for some people I am working with so I quickly drew this up(just a FEW of my fav restaurants!)
Thought it might be helpful to you too!

Friday, January 22, 2010

A former life

Going through old files--MAN this seems like a long time ago when I used to do this for a living:

sigh, sometimes I miss it. THEN I remember: never having a day off, never taking vacations, stressed out brides, stressed out mother of the brides, never seeing my husband, and oh yea having way too much DATA to back up---then I remember why I stopped :)

Monday, January 4, 2010