Last weeks was…interesting.  As you can see from my blog entry title, I was lonely.  It’s not that I was alone, because I was actually pretty busy and saw plenty of people, but my family was Texas bound for the week and so for the first time since moving to Florida, I was alone in the house for a week.  They collectively left one other time, visiting the Keys with my in-laws, but it was only for three days.  Being that I work from home and the kids home-school, I’m just way too used to seeing them 24/7, so having that quiet, that emptiness in the house was a bit overwhelming.  The wife has visited Texas quite a few times since moving, but at most she’s only taken one of the kids with her (the majority of the time she’s traveled solo, leaving all three kids home with me), so this was a very different experience for me.

I was not very happy about it.

One More Time Before You Leave

It may seem rather ridiculous, but one of the first things I thought when my wife booked their flights was…“What am I going to do about their daily portraits?”  I know, ‘First World Problems’, but it was a real issue with my OCD.  I deliberately waited until January 1st to start their 365 because in my head it had to start and end with the year, so taking a ‘pause’ and picking up when they got home would mean that the 365 would run into 2019.  That wasn’t an option.  Another thought was to Skype them every day and screenshot portraits for a week; but that would get old really, really fast.

And then I decided that I would cheat a little…

Last Monday, the kids and I ventured to the beach where we had a photoshoot.  I’ve worked on some personal projects with the kids before, but this one was especially fun because I had a full concept in mind of how I not only wanted to take the pictures, but how I wanted to edit and display them.  You can see the final pictures here!

Dream a Little Dream

If you follow me over on Instagram, you’ve already seen the aforementioned portfolio, and you may have noticed a barrage of quotes used to caption the pictures.  What many of you don’t know is that Fable’d Studios wasn’t originally conceived to be just a photography studio.  That was only one of the reasons this company was conceived.  The reason that this company was titled a ‘studio’ and not ‘Fable’d Photography’ was because there were other creative ideas we had that we wanted to be able to talk about and eventually produce.

Oh, I’ll just come out and say it; I wrote a book.

So, this is a rather long and drawn out story when I sit down to think about it, and so it really deserves it’s own post (and it’ll get one…or two…or you get the drift), but I know that if I don’t just mention it now I’ll continue to put it off until another year goes by (seriously, I still have a partially written post in drafts from…over a year ago…talking about the book).  This is a story I have been working on for about five years now and it’s nearing completion, at least I think so, and so it’s time to start talking about it.

For now, I’ll merely say that it is currently entitled Salt of the Moon (I say ‘currently’ because this is the fourth title the book has had in the past two years, but I think I can confidently say that this is the settled title) and was inspired by the four things in pictures below:

My three loves, and the magic of Disney.

And now I’m off to compose a post to explain everything; and maybe finish editing this book!

Goodbye for Now

And just like that, they were gone.  For the next five days, this was the only way I saw their faces, and since technology isn’t ever truly reliable, I mostly just spoke to them on the phone and really only saw their faces this once until picking them up at the airport.  I spent the week filling the gaps with friends, eating at all the restaurants I won’t take the kids to and seeing the movies I can’t take them to (believe the hype, A Quiet Place is terrifying and so, so good), and cooking the meals they won’t eat, and having good one-on-one time with friends, heck I even went to Disney two more times (once alone and once with a buddy); but when the day was a wrap, I just wanted them all to be home.

I’m so glad they finally are!

Song of the Week: I Ain’t Ever Loved No One

So, this week saw the release of three albums I was anticipating; the Bishop Briggs debut, the return of Kimbra and the latest from Donovan Woods.  Of the three, the one I was least excited over (still excited, mind you) was Woods‘ latest, and surprisingly it’s my favorite album of the three.  It’s incredibly consistent and so fluid from track to track.  I’ve listened to it on repeat a few times already and still love it through and through.  Of the albums many highlights, I Ain’t Ever Loved No One, his duet with Rose Cousins, is the clear favorite.  So earnest and beautifully rendered, it’s a tear-jerker of a ballad that delivers upon every listen.  Next to Woods, my favorite release this week came from Lykke Li, who dropped two singles; Hard Rain being my favorite.  She creates such texturally complex music, and this is no exception.  Briggs and Kimbra both delivered relatively decent albums with some standout tracks, Kimbra’s Top of the World being a club ready banger for starters.

Briggs album was one of my most anticipated of the year.  I’ve been a fan for over a year now and happened to catch her live last year which sealed the deal for me.  She’s the real thing and her POV is so refreshing; this intriguing mix of rock, country and gospel influences.  Sadly, her album was a letdown for a few reasons.  For starters, there isn’t a lot of new music to be found on it.  Three of the tracks were released over a year ago on her EP, two more have been circulating for the past year on YouTube because she’s performed them at her shows (I heard them myself) and then two more have been out for months (one since last year) since she released them as singles.  That leaves three new songs, and of those three only Water stands out as something reminiscent of why I love Briggs.  Sadly, it appears that the studio wants to ‘Pop’ her up a bit, and so songs like Dream, Temp My Trouble and Lyin’ feel off, like they aren’t really her, and so she seems almost uncomfortable trying to deliver them.  River is one of the best songs to come out this decade, and I want more of that.  That being said, Water is a great song, and the album as a whole is very good, it’s just that all the best bits had found my ears a long time ago.

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