Life is crazy. Just plain crazy. I honestly feel like I have anxiety. I'm barely on the edge of holding it together. Why? Cause I just have too much on my plate. I can't relax. 90% of the time, if you ask me what I'm thinking the answer would be "what I have to to next and what I have to do after that". I feel like it's never ending.
So where to start with the updates?
Last August my Sophie girl got sick with heart failure. She's hanging tough and gets a *lot* of medicine daily. She has to get one of her meds three times a day. That puts a crimp in our lifestyle at times. It's hard to take a day and go do something. Who will give Sophie her medicine? Not only is it hard to be gone for a day, but what about a weekend? We use to like to take weekend trips. Pilling a cat is not something the average person knows how to do. It's not something some people, like my mom, are willing to learn. When we are lucky enough to go away, my Dad takes care of Sophie. He has so much on his plate that I feel guilty adding to it. So we do less than we normally would and that sort of puts some stress on our relationship. But I love my Sophie girl and am hoping to give her a good life no matter how long she hangs tough.
Eli is. . . getting old. Eli and are are. . . not getting along. My riding is just so out of sync. I want to retire him but I don't really want to give up riding. I can't imagine my life without riding. I'm sure I'd get use to it. I've been window shopping for a 2nd horse, but holy crap! Horse prices are out of control. I will not, never ever, even if I win the lottery, pay more than maybe 10K for a horse. Never. Forget that. Currently, in this market, it seems like it doesn't take much to price a horse at 20-30K with out any decent reason for that pricing. Yikes. I don't know that I can afford the care for 2 horses, but right now I'm fed up with the pricing. So Eli and I just keep doing what we do. Riding aspect aside, Eli deserves a nice green pasture. He doesn't deserve a dry lot that is one big hill full of gullies. He just doesn't. And I struggle with what to do about that. It's hard to find a green pasture sometimes, but maybe even something flat, safe and with supplemental hay? Is that too much to ask? Cause I feel like he's just not happy. But I like the location. I like that access to my trainer. I love the arena. . . . blah blah blah.
Just over 2 years ago I decided to pursue a "side job" in photography. What was I thinking?! Well I like to take photos. I thought it was fun to take photos of kids and babies rather than horses. It was fun. Key word there is "was". Now it's a second job that doesn't pay shit. Oh sure, people pay me $100 for photos. People pay me $150 for newborn photos. I buy props, backdrops, better camera equipment, I rent to studio . . . I spend TIME. Lots of time on editing. I think half the time I should just pay people to let me take their photos. I mean geesh. Let's take that newborn session. I have to load my car with all my crap (a lot of crap) the night before. I drive to the studio (20 mins). I unload the car. I've rented the studio and that cost me $60. It's 2 hours of rental but you can creatively schedule it to give you three. A newborn takes 2-3 hours to shoot. There's feeding time, time to try to get them to sleep, time to clean up poop. . . etc etc. After that I then load the car, sweep the studio and drive home. Are you counting hours? My $150 is down to $90 after studio rental. Did you get that? Gas not factored in. Then I have to edit. Newborns take the longest and I haven't mastered them. 10-12 hours is a safe bet. Then I burn the disc, put it in a sleeve then in a cardboard envelope, then I mail it. At the post office I argue with the clerk about the cheapest way to mail it so that I can save $1. Nice. So how much am I making? NADDA! And people think that $150 is expensive. Yet they get digitals with that! Have you priced a "professional" photographer? Really? Are you wondering about that $100 session? That is an hour. If it's in studio that's $30 to rent the studio. And I suspect I spend 6-ish hours editing. I've never really tracked those sessions. It would only stress me out more. You may remember I have a full time job. It pays me pretty well too. So when do I fit in all this editing? Every spare moment at home. Often times I can spend 8 hours on Saturdays editing. There went one of my days off! When I start to look forward to Monday so I can go back to work, that's pretty sad. My hubby says "you are always on the computer". I use to struggle with doing fun stuff if I had photos to edit. I couldn't say, go to a ball game, if I had photos to edit. Those people paid me. I owe them photos. I can't have fun till that is done. I've got better with that thank god. But still I don't relax when I have photos to edit. I limited myself to a max of 5 sessions a month most of this year. But still that means I have a shoot almost every weekend and if not I have photos to edit. It's starting to affect my relationship. I use to look forward to sessions. They were fun. I had fun interacting with kids. I like taking the photos. I like delivering the end product. I hate the editing. So now I resent the sessions because that equals more editing. Not cool. So what's the solution? Raise prices? Make money! If I raise prices, I could shoot less and walk away with the same $ right? I probably would shoot less cause some clients would leave. The problem with that logic is that the photography market is so over saturated. People will not pay more for photos. Photos are seriously getting devalued. Clients will go to the newest $50 photographer and get a disc full of photos that are likely crappy: dark, bad skin tones and no light in the eyes. Many photographers I know don't get bookings cause they are too expensive. They are in the same price range as me. So there's no room to raise the prices. I just don't see how. So I'm done. At the end of this year I'm done. At the least I'm taking a long hiatus. But I really think I'm just done. I need to focus on other things in my life. Including my relationship, but I also want to like picking up my camera again. I'm a little sad about this, but I realize I can't keep stressing like this. And photos cause me a lot of stress!
I guess the final blurb is that we still don't have a house. And I'm getting a bit resentful about that. If hubby were to read this I think he'd be mad at me, but he knows. He knows I'm resentful about it. I'm going to be 35 next month and there's nothing more I want in life than a house. I want it before I'm too old to enjoy it. Before that 30 year loan will last longer than I will live. Know what I mean? And I will be the first to say that this is causing me a lot of stress. I'm almost willing to give a lot of things up in order to have a house. A lot of things. I just don't know what the solution is. I'm ready for the commitment and my husband is not. I don't know if he ever will be and that breaks my heart.
What's a blog without a photo? Everyone has seen this as this is from July, but oh well. And looking at this photo you'll see that I've gained weight. Fatty McFatters. But that's for another blog. Maybe I'll start blogging more often eh? It seems like with FB what's the point?