10 on 10 || october

Sweet, wonderful October. Positively one of my favorite months. The leaves are changing, the air is crisper, I can actually wear my jackets and not just tote them around in the trunk of the car hoping against hope to need them. October is the entryway to the holiday season. The appetizer. The warm and toasty apple cider that you drink while walking through a field of freshly fallen leaves.

Fall and university always go hand in hand for me. There is no better setting for autumn than the corridors of a college town. As such, it seemed rather essential that the October 10-on-10 feature my alma mater — the University of Colorado Boulder.

Before we dive in, I have to give a shout out to my fellow 10-on-10ers. This crew is top notch, so please give them a tip of your wool cap (to fight the cold, you know), and visit their own posts welcoming October:

 

I found while wandering around campus that I needed way more than just 10 photos to give you a true tour of the place. It’s a very big school, a gorgeous campus, and has all sorts of memories and stories associated with it. So perhaps this post will serve as merely an introduction to the place, to be revisited in the future. I pulled my sisters along with me last week on our jaunt around CU. I also made them be my models. They were thrilled.

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10 on 10 || september

San Francisco wasn’t all seagull versus crab sashimi fests. The glorious sights there beg to be seen each time you visit. They practically demand it. And you can’t ignore the glorious sights. Not on my watch, pal!

We spent our first full day in the city exploring the Golden Gate Bridge, and other waterfront walkways on the perimeter of the city. Followed by walking all over the hills of San Francisco. Well, not all of the hills because I only have one pair of legs to my person, but rather, one specific hill upon which my family has nourished its roots for decades. I’m a Colorado girl through and through, but you can’t deny the kind of heritage my clan has left us in that fabulous city by the bay. I may be a Colorado girl, but as my grandmother says, I’m an honorary Californian, too.

Be sure to also check out these fantastic 10-on-10 photogs and see how they spent the last few weeks of their summer:

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the crab that was || san francisco

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We returned, rested after a week spent in San Francisco under the ever-kind care of my grandparents. We erred on the side of relaxation, seeing several sights, but certainly not hitting the pavement at dawn and staying out until all hours to fill every last moment with activity.

Over the weekend we took to the beach. A quiet beach, empty of crowds. Miraculously, given the holiday nature of this past weekend. This is why it pays to know the locals (many thanks to my aunt for the directions!).

It being the ocean of northern California, the water felt frozen, the breeze frigid, and the sun — though shining brightly — didn’t give one the sense of much warmth. Yes, you guessed it, I got sunburned. Which never happens to me. No truly. I have such a small amount of personal experience with sunburn, that when my legs started getting red and tender later that evening I turned to Dan with a healthy amount of concern and said, “I think I’m having an allergic reaction to something.”

Yeah. An allergic reaction…to the sun.

Merciful heavens.

Despite that, we also bore witness to a small historical moment. For all the many years I’ve been visiting my family in San Francisco and enjoying trips to the beach, I have never before seen a live crab skittering around the sand. Only dead ones. Or remnants of dead ones. How’s that for foreshadowing.

We sat in our little beach chairs, reading and staring at the waves, and quite suddenly there appeared a crab, perched on a mini dune right before us. Uncertain if he was alive, we waited until he made a small circuit around his dune, then Dan cautiously approached him to get a closer look. (The photo at the top of this post was taken by Dan.) I — being the wimp pragmatic girl that I am and always wary of carnivorous creatures sporting too many legs who may be looking for a human toe snack — kept watch from the security of my chair. I mean, someone had to keep an eye on things, there could have been more of them. It could have been an ambush.

I have never been one to bear much affection in my heart for many-legged creatures. They are freaky, and I will stand by that very scientific conclusion until the end of my days. There was a spider who set up shop in the outdoor nook of one of our cottage house windows recently and I wanted to spray the thing right out of there with the lawn hose. Dan said I shouldn’t as that wouldn’t be very neighborly behavior. The point is, while I was interested to come across my first living beach crab, I wasn’t going to be inviting him over for afternoon tea any time soon.

But, he continued to sit there. Now and then the tide would reach him and he’d get a little salt bath. He might scuttle in response, but mostly he just sat. I began to imagine a little life for him. Perhaps he was shipwrecked and waiting here for his long lost love. Perhaps he was on the run from the law. Perhaps he really doesn’t like afternoon tea either, and is more of a coffee drinker like myself.

Perhaps I could find a little modicum of friendly tidings for this fellow.

And then the seagull attacked. It was like a scene out of a Hitchcock movie, except there was only one bird (at first) and it wasn’t even remotely interested in attacking me, Dan or the general population of San Francisco. As far as we could tell.

The gull grabbed our shipwrecked friend, flipped him over — the sight of those many legs flailing proving both terribly unsettling (why are there so many of them?) and more than a little sad — and pecked him. Several times. Definitively. The legs slowly stopped moving, the pinchers no longer pinching, and he perished. Then the seagull, now unhappily accompanied by a fellow gull or two trying to get in on this very fresh snack, started eating the crab. Right in front of us.

Within no more than 10 minutes, the crab was quite dead. Which is putting it mildly, but we don’t really need more details do we? As we related the tale later, we likened it to having a live version of the Discovery Channel play out in front of us. And though I, for a brief moment, thought about springing forward and defending the crab when the seagull first attacked, that’s not really how nature works. Sometimes you just have to let life run its course without interference.

So….good talk. I’m failing to come up with any really graceful exit strategy to this post. Also sort of wondering why this is the particular anecdote I chose to open the recap of our week-long vacation to San Francisco.

But there it is.

Seagulls, take us out!

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wedding dresses and the county fair || yourhub photojournalism

Summer in Colorado takes us outside quite a bit. You can’t ignore 300(-plus!) days of sunshine and not fully embrace it in the super-sunny summer. Also, summer is the season for county fairs. And as YourHub is the community/county department at the Denver Post, we can’t very well not go visit with some county-fair-bound animals and their handlers.

Because cows trying to be escape artists. And little baby goats getting their first baths. What more can you want in the summer?

It’s been a little (OK, long) while since I’ve pulled together a good sampling of what I’ve been shooting on the editorial side, so this crew of photos is pulled from the past month or so of assignments.

August is already threatening to wind down, school is kicking back into gear, we’re dreaming more and more of our autumn days and the cooler temperatures that accompany them. But it’s been a good season. Perhaps too much work and not enough play in our summer, but we’re heading to San Francisco — for a whole blessed week of vacation — next week. And that will be pretty darn divine.

Peyton Huss prepares for the Jefferson County Fair at Church Ranch on July 22 in Westminster, Colorado.

The Evergreen Parks and Recreation District offers junior mountain biking lessons for kids age 8-13 at Alderfer/Three Sisters Open Space Park in Evergreen, Colorado.

Austin Anguilm and Preston Anguilm, 15 and 10 respectively, started Fly Guy Brand in January 2012.

The Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory hosts a series of summer camps fro kids to learn about ecology in Brighton, Colorado.

Kyle Walpole -- whose service dog, Matilda, assists him with his hearing impairment -- is attempting to educate the public about the rise in fake and non-certified service animals.

The Park People is leading a community-based effort to restore the Cranmer Park sundial and surrounding plaza, in Denver, Colorado.

Taylor Rae, 13, rehearses at Creekside Bible Church on July 30, for her performance at the Douglas County Fair, which will take place on Friday, August, 8.

The Wedding Seamstress, bridal alterations and wedding shop, located in Arvada, Colorado.

Alley Cat Beads in Northglenn, Colorado.

Children enjoy Art in the Park activities, an event which kicks off the 10-day Arts Alive festival, hosted in part by the Center for the Arts Evergreen.

Jabo's Bar-Be-Q in Greenwood Village, Colorado

Marjorie Anderson is an artist based in Lakewood, Colorado, who is part of the Metro State University Denver "Adopt an ARTrepreneur" program.

Maddie and Lakayla Vincent will participate in the Arapahoe County Fair, which starts on July 24.

High fives to the lot of you!  –a.e.

Andrea & Dave || engagement photography

It is possible to tumble head over heels for a photo shoot. Let me tell you. We met up with Andrea and Dave last month for an engagement session in preparation for their November wedding. We hit up the theater district in Denver (yes, Denver is totally hip enough to have a theater district) and then wandered around the LoDo area (“lower downtown” for those in the know) for the second half of their session. Let me tell you, guys, Andrea and Dave were an absolute dream to work with. Genuine, relaxed, full of laughter, excitement, and willingness to wander down the “least scary alleyway in Denver” with us. (Or so Dan dubbed it.) (I’m all about the parentheticals today.) (That’s not even a word.) We couldn’t have asked for a better couple to hang out with.

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 Can’t wait to celebrate your wedding, Andrea and Dave!