If you have visited here before, you can probably see that I have changed the name of the blog again. I started blogging at 4URuthie to tell the story of our journey to adopt our 1st daughter. I changed it to Mountains for Maggie when we were praying for God to move mountains on behalf of our 2nd daughter. Well now it is no longer just Ruthie’s or Maggie’s stories. It is now our family's story, and the stories of those we share life with, as we Conquer Mountains together. Both ConqueringMountains.net and 4URuthie.blogspot will lead here.

About Me

My photo
I am a pastor's wife, mother of 4 kids (2 adopted and 3 with special needs), physical therapist, and photography junky. This is where it all comes together for me. Feel free to join along as I process life out loud.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Next Surgery Update and A Trip to the Zoo


Hello Everyone! This week I took Ruthie and Jack to Dallas for a trip to the zoo and a 6 month check up at Scottish Rite for Ruthie. We saw Dr. Ezaki who is the hand specialist and very impressive. I have been reading some of her research lately and lets just say that she is "the stuff", "the bomb", "the shizzle for rizzle" or whatever phrase your teenager has taught you to say that she knows her stuff.

Anyway, I went in ready to tell her that I thought we should just leave everything alone because Ruthie is compensating so well to do whatever she wants, but Dr Ezaki made a great point that with Ruthie's left hand turned out (ulnar deviated) it will be real hard for her to use a keyboard someday and it is best to correct that now and let her learn to use it in neutral. So we are most likely having surgery in October to reposition her left wrist. There is a small chance they could call us if someone cancels before then like they did last time, but we will plan for October.

Here are a few pictures from our trip to the zoo



Yes that is my children petting a camel. Did I mention that they rode that camel too?





That is our Yaya. She met us at the zoo. Lauren (Yaya) was our first adopted child. :)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Steps of A Karate Champion



Step 1: Talk about "the big tournament" non-stop for a week in advance.

Step 2: Look really cute when you get there so dad can get some good pictures since mom and the other 2 couldn't go.

Step 3: Stretch while figuring out your equipment and that mouth piece

Step 4: Get your game face on

Step 5: Throw the first punch

Step 6: Block well so it can be a shut out 3-0

Step 7: Smile big for the 1st place medal!!!


Monday, July 26, 2010

The Big Reveal!



OK so it isn't THAT big of a deal, but I am excited to tell you about it.
For several weeks now I have been thinking and praying about how to use my love of photography to bless others. I am not wanting to change professions. I love being a PT, but I also love to take pictures and frankly my kids are getting a little tired of it. :)

So I decided to use my passion for photography to make a difference in the places where I would love to give financially. I am going to be offering portrait sessions in exchange for a donation to whatever cause I am raising money for at that time.

The first thing I will be raising money for is called Homes of Hope. Did you know that for $3000, we can build a home in Haiti and move a family out of a tent and back into their very own home. Here are some cool benefits of having a home:

Economic Impact

A debt-free home helps leverage families out of poverty. Funds previously needed to treat sick children and keep them warm can now be used to purchase school supplies and other necessities.
Educational Impact
A stable environment encourages learning. A child who lives in a home is three times more likely to attend school, plus they continue their education for an average of two more years.
Health Impact
Eliminating dirt floors and exposure to the elements improves their overall quality of life and reduces sickness. Having a concrete floor alone reduces incidence of recurring diarrhea by more than 40%.
Social & Emotional Impact
The emotional well-being of family members stabilizes as basic issues of survival are eliminated. The marriage and the family’s home life is strengthened, and they can start thinking about the future.
Spiritual Impact
Your practical demonstration of God’s love for them inspires a desire to want to give back.

SO THERE YOU HAVE IT!

You can check out my website at www.ginnyhendersonphotograph.shutterfly.com

The way it works easy:
1. Contact me to set up a session
2. Make a donation of your choice to Heritage Park Baptist Church and designate Haiti Missions
3. ALL the money raised will go to pay for a home for a family in Haiti
4. I give you a disc of your pictures to print wherever you want and post them to the website if you approve












Sunday, July 25, 2010

Obsession

I was sitting in church this morning and worshiping when I realized (after a song or 2) that while I was singing the words, my mind was somewhere else completely. I was editing pictures in my head while mouthing words to Jesus. Shortly after that revelation, this thought came to mind:

If Jesus is my obsession then everything else will fall under His authority and be used for His glory.

So what does that look like? I am glad you asked!
1. We have to get rid of the things in our life that don't glorify God
2. We have to align our priorities and our passions with His purposes

#1 is pretty self explanatory, but I think #2 could use some explaining. I will divide it up into the 3 main areas of our practical lives.

WORK - When trying to align my work with God's purposes, I pray "Lord use me today to advance Your kingdom. Don't let this be just another 5 hours at work, but open my eyes to see where You are moving so I can join You there." On the days that I remember to pray that prayer, God is always faithful to give me a divine opportunity to either encourage someone in their struggle or to speak the truth. The book Courage and Calling talks about the misconception that the only people with a "Call" on their lives are those in ministry. That is simply not true. As believers in Christ we are all "called" to ministry wherever we are. See Colossians 3.23 - "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as for the Lord and not for men."

FAMILY- This one can be hard as we find ourselves running from thing to thing. The secret is, we have to be intentional about it. That intentionality takes the form of praying as a family, memorizing scripture together, going to church together, serving together, and studying the Bible together. There are a lot of other things you can do, but those are the basics.

HOBBIES- I have been thinking about this a lot lately when evaluating my love of photography. I think you have to pray, "Lord, how can I use my love for _____________ (football, photography, reading, kids, etc) to honor and glorify You?" God has recently shown me how I can use photography to help others and I can't wait to tell you about it very soon.

"Whether you eat, drink, or whatever you do - do it all for the glory of God" (1 Cor. 10.31).






A few recent picture of my gang:





Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ear Candles- Busted!

When I was at work on Tuesday, some people got to talking about ear candles. You buy them at the nutrition store and their claim is that they remove all the excess wax from your ears. One lady even claimed that it is better than when she has her ears flushed at the doctor's office.

Well that got me curious so I bought some on the way home and finally got a chance to try them out last night.


After seeing that they really aren't candles but more of a hollow tube, I began wondering how that really works anyway. Sure, when I was done there was a small amount of golden wax in the bottom of each tube, but I wasn't convinced yet.

After doing one candle in each ear, the scientist in me came out and I decided to do the 3rd one in my hand and see what I got.



Guess What?!? I have ear wax in my hand!!! Or maybe the Ear Candle people have a golden waxy substance in the bottom of each candle that loosens up with the heat of the candle and makes you think it is ear wax.

Don't waste your $16 on Ear Candles. They are BUSTED!


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday- Whatever! Let's Talk Photography

I asked my wonderful facebook friends to share their favorite photography tips. Some of them were so good that I wanted to share them with you. Enjoy! Oh and I will post mine at the end with some pictures I took lately.

Here is what my facebook friends said:
1. Be patient and wait for the right light outdoors. Sunrise and sunset are good time to shoot
2.Take lots of pictures and get up close
3.Focus on the eyes. It helps highlight the emotion and really draws in the viewers eye
4.I agree, need nice sunset (or sunrise) light...editing-not too much
5. Learn to use CS5 for editing. Layers, layer masks, & working with levels can make a world of difference.
6. I've used Photoshop for the past 22 years. My Advice when Using Photoshop - for quick color correction. I use the curves adjustments. Always make a duplicate layer of your original. Use the history palette - with that you can go back to where you liked your photo adjustments before you went beyond the best
7.Take lots of pictures...the more you take, the more likely there will be what I call "ahhh" pictures! You know, when your scrolling through the pics and you get to one that makes you pause because it's magic~just the right light, just the right expressions, just the right exposure, just the right picture....oh, and like others have said, get close
8. Head to the solid shade when outside. and look into your subjects eyes and walk around them see where the "catchlights" come out to play. that spark in their eyes that makes them look lively.
9. Rule of 1/3s when shooting pics! Play, play, play! Everyone has their own techniques in Photoshop.


Now for my part:
1. Know Your Camera! I have had an SLR for 7 years and I am just now really learning how to use it right. Over the past few weeks I ventured out and turned the little dial from automatic mode to aperature priority and I have loved the results. Everything from color to resolution has been better. I want a new camera, but I refuse to let myself get one until I have exhausted my understanding of this one

2. Move Move Move! I try and move around a lot so I can catch different angles or views. That seems to be helping me lately

3. MckMama Tutorials! My neighbor tipped me off to a photography blog with good tutorials and she just happens to use my camera and my new lens. You can link to her stuff at http://mycharmingkids.net/category/photography-lessons/


NOW FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO COULD CARE LESS WHAT I HAVE TO SAY AND JUST STOPPED BY TO SEE THE CUTE CHINESE KID, HERE YOU GO! HOW DID I KNOW THAT ABOUT YOU? I HAVE SO BEEN THERE!







Monday, July 19, 2010

"I Do It ALL By Myself"

Oh if I had a dollar for each time I hear that from Ruthie these days!

She is so funny lately because no matter what it is, she wants to do it by herself. Most of the time I let her unless it is going to make a complete mess or is dangerous. We went swimming with some friends the other night and she wanted to jump in "All by myself" which was her way of saying "don't catch me". We were laughing at her complete lack of fear and crazy notion that she did not need me in the pool. I have to keep a close eye on that girl.

Here are some jumping pictures from last weekend.





Saturday, July 17, 2010

Confessions of a Photo Editing Addict

My name is Ginny and I am addicted to photo editing!

Seriously, I have spent more time over the last few weeks playing with Photoshop Elements and I can't stop! I just love trying different things and seeing what I get. I also love how the internet is full of tutorials on things like "how to make yourself skinnier in photoshop". My sister-in-law, Kelley, helped me find that one and we were pretty excited. ;)

You know one of the great things about photo editing? Your colors or your angles can be off because you don't see it very well and the next person will call it artistic and brilliant. In other words, it is safe to be "off". Where else, other than being a weatherman, can you say that?

Here are some of the things I have played with over the last few weeks:

1. Overlays (or at least I think that is what it is called)

Here is a BEFORE pic of Ruthie



I added a layer of sand paper, decreased the opacity and then used a light eraser to thin out the center and VOILA!



2. Lighting - Here is a BEFORE picture that I took of my kids at night sitting on some rocks at a pool. I thought it was too dark and that the detail of the rocks took away from the kids. Maybe I was wrong, but that is where we call it art, right?




So I went under Filters, then to Render and then Lighting Effects. There you can add all kinds of spotlights. Who needs fancy lighting when you have photoshop? Here is the end product

3. OK final one that I am not sure what to call. I have a little project going (I will tell you about it later this week) and it required me to take a few pics of my friends' kids. Here is my BEFORE. (I had already done a little color enhancement on this in iPhoto)


So I dropped it into Photoshop, used my smart brush tool to yellow the picture, decreased the opacity of that layer and then used the sponge to re-intensify some of the colors. I love how this turned out.


So there you have it. I will be sure and share more as I figure it out. :) Happy Editing

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Character Challenge

OK so I have a challenge for you!

Trent and I have been so blessed by the challenge to pray for a specific character trait for each member of your family for a year. I have talked about this before. We start over each June right after family camp and I have already been amazed this year at how God is showing me the ways He is shaping the character of my kids. Because I am actively praying for those specific traits, I am more aware of this and can participate more directly.

For example, Sam got in trouble last week in Karate for talking in the ring. He left upset and determined that Karate is stupid and he wanted to quit. My first thought was that I don't care if he takes Karate and I only signed him up because he wanted to do it. Then God quickly reminded me that I have been praying for DISCIPLINE for Sam and this is an opportunity to teach it. Instead of letting him quit, I shifted my position to taking the week to talk to him about why focusing in Karate is important and why it is important to stay with things even when they get tough. He went back to Karate last night, didn't talk in the ring, and won all three of his matches (including one against an older kid). He was so excited. We were able to talk again before bed about the rewards of discipline.

We have the same kinds of things happen with Ruthie and Jack weekly and I have no doubt that it is because God is faithful to answer our prayers for character and to open our eyes to how He is moving in that area.

So the Challenge:
1. Take a few days and pray about what character traits you think God would want to develop in you and your family this year. We pick one per person. I would encourage you to look and see where God is moving more than what you want for that child.

2. Share those with your family and then write them down somewhere that you will see them daily and remember to pray.

3. Pray and look for God to move.

I hope you will share with me how it goes!


This is what we do in Texas for physical activity since it is 100 degrees outside. I walked out of my bedroom and found the kids like this yesterday.




A Few Good Pics

We went to Galveston last Sunday night to celebrate Gotcha. Of course I took my camera and was lucky enough to get some fun pictures. Here are a few of my Been A Henderson For 1 Year Girl.




I have a feeling that I am going to see a lot more of this "you have got to be kidding me" or "Oh no you didn't" face as she gets closer to being a teenager.


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