Sunday, November 15, 2009


, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Blue October

blueoctober10, originally uploaded by benzismama.

House of Blues in Dallas, TX

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Life is good.

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Time to dust off the cobwebs. Awaken creativity. Learn to say no. Learn to say yes. Breathe. Stretch. Grow.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Photos by Who?

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

I have not forgotten about this blog. Or my camera. My poor camera. It must think I've abandoned it for good. I haven't picked up my Rebel in weeks. Or has it been months already?
I'm busy. Much busier than I like to be, in fact. It's a good busy, though. New job. New routine...or lack thereof. Some things have been pushed to the back burner. Things I love and things I don't housekeeping and cooking, for instance...I am well aware of the areas I have been neglecting and can honestly, whole-heartedly say I am trying. I am doing the best I can. I can't do it all. I can't make everybody happy or even attempt to. I just don't have time right now. So, to my sweet little Rebel, and the other areas of my life that are being neglected, bear with me. I have not forgotten you and greatly appreciate your patience and understanding.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Dorsey Trapp

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Grampy is gone to the other side now. He passed last night. I don't have words, yet.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Monday, April 27, 2009

A dream come true...

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

I wasn't born with sisters. I'm not sure I would have appreciated them so much if I had been. My brother, Brad, brought Jennifer into my life when I was 12 years old. Vanessa is the wife of my husband's brother, Jeff, and lives in New Jersey. They are my sisters now.
They had never met until this weekend. They started cooking up this plan for my 30th birthday weeks ago. Thirty is big to each of us. Jenn jumped out of an airplane. Vanessa had a party in NYC complete with a tiara. All I wanted was to go to the symphony. (and a tattoo!)
Long story short, I knew I was going to the symphony in Dallas with Jenn because Vanessa gave me tickets for my birthday. What I didn't know, was that she also purchased a ticket for herself. She was waiting for us in the lobby of Hotel ZaZa reading Breaking Dawn. The rest is history.
I took lots of pictures with my Rebel and they are all on my Flickr site. Vanessa has the majority of the pictures on her camera. (ELPHs are easier to lug around) I can't wait to see them.
How I will ever repay these two girls, I will never know. I am still kind of absorbing the enormity of their combined generosity. It is overwhelming.

Friday, April 24, 2009


grateful, originally uploaded by benzismama.

for the love I've been given. for being forgiven. for always having food to eat and a place to lay my head. for every single little gift.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I read this somewhere today:

“When you look closely people are so strange & so complicated that they're actually beautiful.”

I like it. I haven't met too many people who aren't beautiful in their own way. And who isn't strange & complicated?

Monday, April 13, 2009

my sister

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Better days ahead.....

Saturday, March 28, 2009

my daughter

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

every little thing

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

is gonna be alright.......

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


, originally uploaded by benzismama.

my favorite color

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

feeling sketchy

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

My dad, the artist.

My little brother, Cody
My grandmother

I haven't been taking pictures. I don't know what's wrong with me. I have been drawing some. My dad uploaded a bunch of his work on his myspace page (the fact that he has a myspace page cracks me up!). I wish I had an ounce of his natural talent. I think he's brilliant. These are a few of my favorites.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


What a compliment to have Brene Brown comment on my blog and listening to my playlist! This woman is amazing and if you don't know who she is, check her out over at It is always incredibly inspiring to see strong, intelligent women helping other women reach their full potential. This is what Brene does. She teaches, inspires, and lives & loves with her WholeHeart.

I had half a mind to write about Authenticity and my turning 30 next month and how those two things are taking up more than their fair share of space in my brain at the moment, but you know, it's all just a little too personal for a public forum. I think I'd rather not give it all away. Read Brene's site. It's really good.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

My own aha! moment

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Since I started putting pressure on myself to become a professional photographer, I've shut down creatively. I haven't even picked up my camera in days. I've gotten so stuck on my lack of technical skill and knowledge and profit, that I've just stopped taking pictures. I've stopped wanting to take pictures because what's the point? My photography is amateur and flawed and I don't have money to invest in better lenses and and and.......
I realize now what's going on here. Somewhere along the way, I decided that I'm not good enough, nobody looks at my work anyway, and I'm losing money on this, so why bother.
This isn't good. Not good at all.
I love photography. I'm an artist at heart. When it comes from my heart, it's good. When I do it for the pure joy of it, it's good. When I stop putting pressure on myself to make money, it comes to me. It finds me.
My sister said something to me a few weeks ago when I was really struggling with my future. She said "You are a photographer, Tracie. It doesn't matter if you decide to become a nurse or a teacher or whatever, you will always be a photographer. It will always come bubbling up to the surface because it's who you are. You can have both."
I never thought of it that way. I've always seen Success or Failure.
The thing about photography is that anybody can take a good picture. Anybody can buy a D-SLR and the best lenses and other equipment available. Anybody can learn everything there is to know about white balance and aperture and shutter speed and make great pictures and make money doing it.
It's about so much more than those things to me. It always has been and that's really why I was never in any hurry to learn the technical stuff. I'm an artist. I don't have to color in the lines. I can make money with other parts of my brain.
This is for me. If it touches other people, that's nice, too.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


, originally uploaded by benzismama.

I'm running low on inspiration these days. The sun is coming, though. Spring will soon be here.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Lost Puppy (updated)

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

I'm happy to announce that Snoopy found her way home! I'm hoping she also found her way into a bathtub. She was stinky. (and sweet.)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A boy and his dog

A boy and his dog, originally uploaded by benzismama.

This is from last year. I just went back and tweaked it a bit in Picnik.

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

time's up

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Sometimes doing the right thing is easy. Sometimes it's really really hard.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

What I learned in photography class....

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Thanks to my dear sister, Jenn, I've had the pleasure of taking my first photography class. Now, I've been taking pictures consistently for about 4 years now with no training, so this was a lot of filling in the blanks for me. What I learned from the class, above all else, is that I have so much to learn. Relying on my eye and kit lens will get me exactly where I've gotten, stuck on Go.
Today, the road has split and I have to make a choice. This minute, I have no idea which way to go and pray for guidance and wisdom.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Birthday, Ben!

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

My baby boy is 4 today. He is such a good kid and keeps us cracking up. He's the funniest.

This year in Ben's life was full of huge changes. He dealt with each one like a champ. He is still in love with Spiderman and his daddy. He loves pb&j, green smoothies, hard boiled eggs, and "BcDonald's". (he refuses to accept that it's McDonald's) (that's Ben) He learned to write his name this year, and ride his bike with training wheels. He prefers to ride his scooter up and down the hall. He does not like the merry-go-round or swinging too high. He is the quintessential little brother to his tween drama queen sister. They adore each other and fight a lot. He loves play-doh, pajamas, and Wal-mart. This year, he will go to Pre-K and I will cease to be a SAHM. (stay at home mom) He's ready. I'm having a little harder time letting go of his babyhood. It went by so fast.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Yesterday was one of those days filled with one disappointment after another until I opened the mailbox and saw these babies! They took their sweet time getting here, but they turned out so great. They make me happy!
Just think how happy they would make someone with a heartfelt note from you written inside! (or from me, I'm keeping some!)

Each 4x5 card is printed on thick 100-lb card stock and blank on the inside.
Envelopes are included. All prices include shipping and packaging.

Love Rocks- pack of 10 ($16) `sold

Baby Love - pack of 5 ($8)

includes floral, animals, love rocks, baby love & more
pack of 10 ($16) ' sold

Floral - 2 packs of 10 or 1 pack of 7 available ($16 or $12) 'sold

Monday, February 9, 2009

Life happens.

barbara4, originally uploaded by benzismama.

She was the best part of the last three days, I think. She isn't very comfortable having her picture taken, but let me take a few. I think she's beautiful.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


, originally uploaded by benzismama.

My thoughts exactly.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Day something or other....

, originally uploaded by benzismama.

Not holding up to my 40 days of Goodness project very well, huh? Life's been busy and there are too many days I don't even pick up my camera. Other days, like today, I take lots of pictures.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Where I am from...

I am from the trampoline, the U-Haul, and a country music song.

I am from the park.

I am from red dirt and mesquite trees.

I am from shoot from the hip and sarcasm, from Mom Morris and Mommer and Mama Nita.

I am from the honky tonk and Sunday school.

From the gypsies and gars in the water.

I am from Amazing Grace and wooden pews. From the One who is, and was, and is to come.

I'm from Archer,Young, and Wichita, Memaw's chocolate pie and fried potatoes.

From the twister in the rear view mirror, beer and football Sundays, deer stands and trot lines.

I am from the polaroids in the stacks of albums in my mother's closet.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Day 17

, originally uploaded by benzismama.