Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Larry and Cheryl's Special Day

Last Friday I spent the afternoon into the night with a very special couple and their family. Larry and Cheryl met just 5 months ago when she arrived at a nursing home in Monroe. She'd barely been in town 12 hours to spend xmas with family when she suffered a massive stroke that left her paralyzed on her left side. She's 54. Larry had been at the home nearly 2 years when she arrived. Having been stricken with the rare viral ailment Guillans Barre Syndrome, which starts with a paralysis in the feet that slowly spreads up the body and eventually, with therapy and time works its way back down, he was ready to give up. Deeply depressed, his nurses and he himself say that he simply didn't care anymore....until he met Cheryl. They fell in love and were married last Friday, and it was such a great story, and the family were all incredibly nice and welcoming and let me shoot whatever I wanted. I had a really great time. And I feel especially lucky, because I found out about this totally as a fluke. I had stopped at a gas station to get a pop a couple weeks ago and overhead 2 women talking about a couple at a nursing home that were getting married.....they didn't know their names, but they knew which home, so I called up, and the rest is, as they say, history. Guess it pays to be nosy! Here are a few of my favorites from the day - and I wrote the story (which is running today), which is always I'm anxiously awaiting the paper today!

Hours before the ceremony, Cheryl and her family began the process of getting ready in her room at the nursing home. Her sisters did her hair and make-up, nurse's aides came in to help, as well. Inbetween taking care of other residents, they would come to help with eye liner or mascara or eye shadow - whatever they were best at doing It was the first-ever wedding at the home, so everyone was very excited and happy for the couple.

Larry 's goal was to meet his bride by walking down the courtyard aisle. You could just see the determination on his face, and watching him make that trek, slowly but surely, was very moving.

With the help of family and aides, Larry and Cheryl were able to get into the back seat of his convertible, which he'd gotten just before his illness and has never even driven. Cheryl having been away from Monroe for 30 years, hadn't seen the town since returning. So, Larry and she were driven through the city, the car decorated with balloons, the traditional "Just Married" sign on the bumper. Passing cars and walkers waved, honked and cheered as they made their way through town.

Friday, August 1, 2008

it's the FAIRbaby!!

oh lensBABY i love ya

fair week is wrapping up...really not so bad at all this year - good weather, not so hectic - it almost seemed TOO easy! our photo page theme went along with the fair's - "Dreams Take Shape in 2008" so, i busted out the lens baby and here are a few of my favorites...

the guy working one of the food booths is from Turkey - he's spending the summer working fairs and festivals in the midwest with the family owners - can't think of a better way to get a glimpse of Americana

i love goats!

the Star Family Circus - this is my favorite from the project (well, my part of it, that is)...this was the first time they were at the fair - it was small, but actually really pretty cool...everyday their shows got more and more packed - they do a crazy motorcycle stunt along with other acrobatics - all without a net!

and then, back to normal

i spotted these little girls last night behind the action having a snack
love the hats!