Uncover Your Hidden Talents

Here is an article that I came across and thought I needed to share it.  No matter how old we are or what stage of our lives we are in,  I strongly believe that we all have special gifts, skills, and talents that we're meant to discover and share with others.

By Loral Langemeier

How many times have you said this? “I don’t have any gifts.” “I am not a gifted person.”
If you have been thinking that, you should definitely think again. Just because they didn’t put you in the “gifted and talented” program during grade school doesn’t mean you don’t have gifts and talents you can use immediately to create positive change and wealth in your life. You may not think you know what your gifts are, but it’s more likely that you’re denying them. We are all blessed with gifts as a part of our nature. We are born with them! It’s our responsibility to uncover them, develop them and then share them with others.
We are given everything we need to have the lives we want.
It is within you, in your make-up, to be whoever you want to be. Maybe your mindset is driving you in such a way that you are repressing those wonderful gifts given to you as part of your creation. But I am here with GREAT news. They are there, and they are yours! All you have to do is unearth them and build something spectacular.
Our talents and skills are part of our being.  In fact, each of us has a distinct set of tools that are our own.  And that’s why we were put on this planet – to share those talents and skills with the world!
Turn off any self-talk that tells you that you are destined to live a small life. You’re not. You have internal gifts (resourcefulness, energy, attitude, all sorts of positive attributes) and external gifts (food, water, nature, people and other helpful resources). If you are thinking, “My only gift is that I can get up every morning and get through it all again,” turn it off right now. That’s a damaging mindset! It will do nothing but hold you back and you deserve so much more!
Your gifts can make great things happen in your life!
The issue you face, when you don’t realize all of the wonderful gifts you have, is that it can be incredibly overwhelming! When you focus far too much on your problems, perceived shortcomings or other obstacles you get yourself STUCK. If all you see is growing debt, lack of money, fleeting dreams or a dismal future, you are stopping your momentum before it even has a chance to start.  If you’re one of those telling yourself you can’t afford a bigger life, or that you don’t have enough time to do everything you need to do, or you’re too tired, overworked, and have a lackluster life – stop! It’s time to shift your mindset and take action to create positive results!
Focus on the good things you do have, not on what you don’t have. Change the conversation in your head. Be good to yourself when you talk to yourself!  Change the people you associate with, if you need to. Get positive support. Reach out for what you want. Bring together those you need to help you succeed in creating a bigger life.  You have the potential, the capability. It is within you. Once you tap into it, you will see immediate results and great rewards come to you. When we use, share, and value our gifts properly, we receive rewards in the form of positive, regenerating energy and optimism.  If we give away our value, even literally, by extending our skills and talents without getting paid or recognized, it depletes energy and creates a negative attitude.
Gifts can make you feel like you have superpowers!
Your inner strengths, your natural abilities and everyday skills are the gateway to a brighter future. Here’s an exercise which will help you reset your mindset and help you access all of the wonderful gifts you have.
Sit down and write out everything you’re grateful for, everything you’re able to do and everything you even wish you could do. Get in the habit of thinking positively about yourself and what you’re capable of.  When you change that conversation with yourself, something miraculous happens! You are filled with Yes! Energy and before long, it will seem like anything you can dream of or want to do in your life will be possible.
By eliminating that negativity, you will crush small thoughts, small actions and a small life.  Living small is a crime against you!  A positive attitude opens doors and invites opportunity.
Open those doors and let the opportunity flood in and fill your life with success.

Think Bigger

Funky Upcycled Tie Patches for Kids Jeans

I have no idea what my 3 boys are doing to blow out the knees in their jeans all the time.  I swear they only last a few months.  I started to panic a bit when I looked at how large the pile of "jeans to be patched" was getting.  The thought of patching all these did not excite me, nor did spending more $$$ on more jeans.  Then, a wonderful idea hit me and I felt compelled to attack that growing pile of tattered jeans.

Here's What You Do

1.  Go into your husband's closet and grab some of his most favorite colorful and funky ties.  You can  also find very cheap ones at a thrift store if you don't want any trouble.

3.  Cut out a square patch on the tie large enough to cover the hole on the jean.
4.  Stitch-rip about 1 foot of the inner seem on jean near the hole.
5.  Pin patch on the inside of the jean to cover the hole.
6.  Stitch here...stitch there...zig here...zag there.
7.  Restitch side seem and there you have it.

 Cool Pants For Cool Kids

4 down and 6 more to go.

Thanks for helping Mom!


A New Beginning | About The Pink Antler Cafe

 It's a fitting day to officially launch The Pink Antler Cafe.  It's an extension/blog of Pink Antler Photography, and it shares all of the things, people, and places that inspire and uplift me.  My hope is that it will do the same for you.  So follow this happy, uplifting, and artful blog.  It will be fun!


Yay!  Today is the first day of spring!!! This day makes me very giddy as it means that summer is just around the corner.  The rain is about to fall, flowers and trees are about to bloom, the sun shines gloriously with warmth and happiness, and love is in the air .  It represents new beginnings.  New life, renewed love, goals, ideas, and activities.

I compare myself to my favorite perennial, the Peony.  In the spring, it comes alive again, sprouting new shoots, leaves, and buds.   I truly feel like I come ALIVE in the spring.  Who doesn't?

Last winter I made these paper peony flowers to hang in my living room.   I haven't been able to take them down as it's my simple reminder during the winter that spring is just around the corner.
From the garden - Now, I don't have a green thumb by any means.  I've randomly planted all of my favorites in my yard.  I'm sure a horticulturalist would be appalled with my outdoor paradise.  Nonetheless,  I look forward to when the flowers bloom so I can clip them and bring their scent and beauty inside for us to enjoy.


Shake Your Tree

 A great post I came across for photographers.

Shake your tree - LOU MORA BLOG -

This was originally posted on Chase Jarvis Blog. Enjoy.
I'm taking the liberty of suggesting that you do one or more of the following today:

1. Shoot personal work. Call in some favors, get creative with no budget, and shoot something for yourself.

2. Set free that idea you've been holding onto. Write a blog post about it. Ask your friends what they think. Tell the world.

3. Learn about video. Don't have a camera? Buy drip coffee for a month instead of lattes, and buy a Flip Mino video camera with the money you save. Experiment.

4. Connect with your peers. Start a blog, dig into your Facebook. Or, hell, gather your photo friends for beers and a slide show.

5. Walk around with your camera. You don't need sunshine. Interesting weather makes interesting pictures. iPhone or one dSLR body with one lens. There is no "client". Just take pictures.

6. Rent a piece of equipment you've been wanting to learn about. Or try this rental secret: pick it up on Friday after 3pm, pay for Saturday. Sunday's are often free because the camera store is closed. Return Monday by 10am. 3 days for the price of 1.

7. Put together a book of your work. Blurb or Asuka, whatever. Affordable. Even if you don't print 10 or 100, print 1. Put it in your studio for visitors to flip through, or leave on it your coffee table at home.

8. Do the thing on your list that you most dread doing. Call that client who hasn't paid. Sign up for Twitter. Develop a marketing plan. Go to the ASMP meeting.

9. Remind yourself that the gear you can't afford is not the barrier keeping you from success. Gear has very little to do with photography.
10. Read up online about the history of photography and it's masters. Weston. Steichen. Arbus. Mapplethorpe. Adams. Doisneau. Cartier-Bresson. Avedon.

11. Admit to yourself that you don't know about something you've been pretending to know about. Sit down and do the research yourself. Learn it.

12. Go sit in front of the newsstand at some mega book store. Flip through all the magazines that interest you. Go beyond photo magazines. Generally speaking they limit your imagination rather than expand it. Spend at least an hour.

13. Make a list of 5 clients you want in the next 24 months. Shoot for the moon.

14. Rent a medium format film camera and shoot two rolls of 120. Slow down. Places will process your negs and give you scans these days for pretty cheap.

15. Look through the pictures in my portfolio and appropriate an idea. Tweak the concept and go make a better picture. It's okay. We all do it. I'm probably looking at your work right now and am grateful for the inspiration.

16. Take 100 pictures with your iPhone. Or your Samsung phone. Or your point and shoot. Whatever camera is the closest to you right this minute. The best camera is the one that's with you.

17. Refresh your website with at least one new picture. Or dig up an old one, re-process it and make it a new one.

18. Take a picture of something wherever you are when you read this post. Share it somehow, even if it isn't your favorite. Post it to your blog, twitter, or link it in the comments below. Email or MMS it to somebody who will appreciate it.

19. Quit your day job if you hate it and can live without it. People say it's a bad time to start a new business or go in a new direction. On the flipside, I think it's a great time if you've got a clear vision and a little cushion.

20. Concept, shoot, and edit a short film (video) in a single day. Keep it cheap. Keep it short. Use whatever camera you have access to.

21. Show somebody your portfolio or a selection of pictures. Let them tell you which ones they like, but also be sure to ask them which ones they don't like and why. You'll likely learn something.

22. Back up your work. It's not that hard and it'll probably save your arse at some point in the very near future.
Thanks Chase.

The Art of iPhonography

I found this fun little book a while back.  It's called the Art of iPhonography by Stephanie C. Roberts. It really sparked my interest in taking pictures with my iPhone.  When I don't want to lug my SLR around, I'm happy to just mess around with my camera phone.  After all, any camera is better than no camera.  I LOVE taking pictures with my iPhone.   Below are my favorite photography apps.  They are great for basic photo editing, adding texture, borders, and watermarks.  Too fun!

Here are some images I took using these apps. 

Happy snapping!


Handmade Foonies

   Hmmmmmmm......what to do when the snow won't stop falling?  Make Foonies, of course! 

 Don't forget the heart.
All tucked in and glowing with pride.


Lets Go Somewhere

I know just the place!

Dear New York,

You hold a special place in my heart.  You have never disappointed me.  Your hospitality, your energy, your endless hole-in-the-wall restaurants that nourish me with phenomenal tasting cuisine, your hysterical architecture that fills my camera with beautiful pictures, and most importantly the romantic alone time you provide my husband and I.  Please know that I will return to you very soon!