Falling in Love with Spider Monkeys

On a recent trip to Dominican Republic, I had the experience of visiting The Monkey Jungle.

This incredible tour lasted about an hour.  We were in a big group, and everyone loved this part of our day!  I was there as Carmen Buck and since I don't go anywhere much without my camera, Carmen Buck Photography was in the house.  😀 

The income raised with our admission tickets goes directly to the free medical and dental clinic on the grounds of The Monkey Jungle.  It was an amazing visit in many ways.  Our timing was perfect because the babies were still riding along their mother's backs and nursing periodically.  These beautiful animals hugged, kissed and played with one another. They landed on our heads and our shoulders as if they had known us for years. It was a surreal experience!  

Located in an ancient grotto is a botanical park with 30+ free roaming squirrel monkeys.  These monkeys love visitors and love to sit on shoulders, heads and feed from special plates.  At the bottom of the grotto is an enclosure for our rescue capuchin monkeys who have been physically or nutritionally abused.  There are 100’s of other free roaming animal throughout the park. 

Thanks for visiting Carmen Buck Photography blog. I thought it was time for something a little different!  Please share the love and leave a comment!

Raising Awareness, Funds and Sharing Love for Those with Dementia

Westminster hosted a 2nd Annual fund raiser for Alzheimer's Texas at Kendra Scott! It's an honor to photograph such a wonderful event for all 3 of these groups. Westminster, AlzTX and Kendra Scott Gives Back. Westminster, Kendra Scott Gives Back and Carmen Buck Photography all helping raise funds for Alzheimer's TX to help those impacted by dementia. 

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The Legacies We Leave

The Legacy We Leave- Billie is an amazing woman who taught her daughter the power of loyalty in both health and illness. You'll be drawn to the love in this story about Billie and her daughter Laura. Their story is highlighted in my upcoming book Love Still Lives Here (Fall 2017) and the topic of this blog post. Craving more: Tuesday Tell All-Facebook Live 4-18-17 on Carmen Buck Photography at 12N CST tells the story behind the image. 

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Light Shadow and Love

Light, Shadow and Love!  James meets his baby brother Jackson for the 1st time, and it's an exciting time.  This blog is about Selina, Clay, James and Jackson and about capturing love and emotion in photos.  Learn ways to capture the beauty of emotion in your own photographs.

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Gracetta Recognizes Love

The delivery of portraits is always special for me, but today was even more special. Gracetta has dementia, but knows LOVE when she sees it. Pictures of her daughters and her beloved caregiver Sara lit her up from within. Yes, it was a very special day!

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A Great Project, A Great Idea and a Beautiful Smile

Bethany is a melanoma survivor who has important messages for all of us. We met at a photo shoot for The Shade Project's Down and Derby which is 5/6/17. The Down and Derby is about awareness, celebration and fund raising to help prevent skin cancer.

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Tuesday Tell All-3-14-17 David and Joan

Living well when someone we love has dementia:  David and Joan contributed their story about living well with dementia to my book Love Still Lives Here about a year ago.  Yesterday, nearly one year after my original blog about them (3/14/17!) I spent the afternoon visiting with Joan and their son Kristan who had very interesting insight from the adult child's perspective.  Enjoy!

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Tuesday Tell All- 2/21/17 Jude and Beth

Tuesday Tell All

Every Tuesday, I’ll be hosting a FaceBook Live at 12N to talk about the stories behind the images.  

This week, I’m going to talk about Beth and Jude. They are contributors to my upcoming book, Love Still Lives Here.  This is a book about the families who love and care for those with dementia.  I’m slowly working on it with an editor and hope it’ll be out by the Fall of 2017.  It’s a celebration of love and devotion.  I met with each of the families, we talked and I recorded our interviews.  I also photographed some beautiful portraits for them and for the book.  I’m writing  their stories now and preparing to get them to the publisher.  


The Bigger the Love, The Bigger the Hurt-BUT, but the Bigger the Love- Beth Wick


Have you ever thought about what goes on behind the scenes of a photo session?  Maybe you’ve looked at photos, and wondered about the people in the photos-maybe their story or what was going on at the time.  Beth's quote is beautiful in so many ways.  

Love was going on at the time of this photo- deep and devoted love.  She and Jude have a love that is deep and devoted and enviable.  It's the kind of love we all yearn for, and it always has been. It's the love that defines their relationship- not Jude's dementia.

 

Jude and Beth

I want to tell you about Jude and Beth today- 12N on Facebook Live-Carmen Buck Photography page. 

They contributed to Love Still Lives Here.  I recently listened to our interview and was once again amazed by the deep love and true devotion Beth has for Jude. They met later in life and have a beautiful, deep love.  Jude developed dementia, and Beth continues in her devotion to her husband, but dementia does not define their relationship- LOVE defines their relationship.

What Defines Your Relationship?

What defines your Relationship?  Is it how you met or what challenges you've overcome?  For Beth W., Jude's wife, it is NOT dementia.  We met to talk about their love story and how the disease has impacted his life.  I'm compiling stories in a soon to be published book, Love Still Lives Here to honor the beautiful love stories that exist in spite of and in some cases, because of the dementia.

The Love of Jude and Beth

  • His face lights up when he sees Beth.  Like many with dementia, he may not be able to tell us who she is to him, but it is clear she is important to him.  

 

  • Their love has crossed many BIG hurdles and the commitment is clear.  Dementia has altered their 'retirement' plans but Beth is committed to her daily visits, caring for as much personal care as possible, helping him eat, sharing his favorite music with him, walking about and cuddling.

 

  • Dementia has not taken the core of who he is.  He has remained kind, loving, genuine, open hearted with a beautiful sense of humor.  

 

  • Beth wishes to define their love by these characteristics rather than using the dementia symptoms to describe her loving husband.  She admits to needing to honor what is rather than mourn what isn't and to look at their life with a wide angle lens.  That's photog talk for looking at the big picture but you get it.  

What Defines Their Love?

Patience -certainly in the beginning of their love story and now

Kindness- he is helpful to the other residents in the memory care facility where he lives- Poet’s Walk in Round Rock.

He is a gentle man

He is a spiritual man.  He had things happen that could have lead him away from his spiritual beliefs, but they did not.  He is who he is in spite of what happened.  

 


Love Still Lives Here

Our elderly deserve our respect and love. We sometimes forget how important it is to memorialize every time of our lives-even our later years. These beautiful families contributed to my book Love Still Lives Here. I honor them.

Teaser ALERT!

There is so much more I could say about this sweet man, but you'll have to wait for Love Still Lives Here to come out in the Fall of 2017.  You'll see many more pictures, too.  I fell in love with the animation of is face and his sneaky smiles, but again, you'll have to wait a few more months.   You know this blog post is just a super short version, right?  His wife shared beautiful stories about Jude before he had dementia, once he was diagnosed and now that he is in a memory care facility.  The love is so evident in the images, but you know I can't show those until the book is out!  Love Still Lives Here will be published by the Fall of, 2017.  At it's core, Love Still Lives Here is a book about the love in families and people with dementia.  After years of being in reverence of families caring for loved ones with dementia, I realized these stories of LOVE and DEVOTION need to be shared with the world.  These are the stories so rarely heard.  Love Still Lives Here is about the many expressions of love and will certainly entertain, inspire and open your heart.

Tune in to Facebook Live on Carmen Buck Photography page at 12N Tuesday 2/21/17!  Comment and let me know you are there- it'll help me so much!  I'll post it below when I'm all done!

Love Still Lives Here-My Kickstarter Campaign

Love Still Lives Here- My Kickstarter Campaign

I'm getting ready to launch my Kickstarter Campaign called Love Still Lives Here.  Last week, my friend and colleague Alice with Forever Lola Photography videotaped my interview which will be part of the trailer for my Kickstarter Campaign.  You may have seen some posts about this project, Love Still Lives Here.  

That means I'll have a video taped trailer to share my message and ask for donations to help fund my project.  Love Still Lives Here is a book about people impacted by dementia.  It's a POSITIVE, BEAUTIFUL project about love and devotion.  

LOVE STILL LIVES HERE-HOW IT CAME ABOUT

After 37 years as a nurse and 16 of those as a nurse practitioner, I heard the most beautiful stories and thought to myself- these ARE the stories that MUST be told.  So, I left a great career to tell those stories in a book and share the messages with the world.  I'm a storyteller- photographer, author and speaker.  Once I knew what I wanted to do, I fine tuned my photography and interviewed, and learned about business and....   Love Still Lives Here will have 8-12 interviews with several beautiful images of each family.  

Why Kickstarter for Me?

I'm looking to Kickstarter to help me finish the book, purchase assistance with editing and gift photos and copies of the book to the families.  I'm also building a platform to get the word out about this project.

What is Kickstarter?

What is Kickstarter you ask?  

According to Kickstarter.com:  'Kickstarter is an enormous global community built around creativity and creative projects. Over 10 million people, from every continent on earth, have backed a Kickstarter project.

Some of those projects come from influential artists like De La Soul or Marina Abramović. Most come from amazing creative people you probably haven’t heard of.

Every artist, filmmaker, designer, developer, and creator on Kickstarter has complete creative control over their work — and the opportunity to share it with a vibrant community of backers.'

What Does Kickstarter Do for Creatives?

According to Kickstarter website:    Kickstarter helps artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers, and other creators find the resources and support they need to make their ideas a reality.  To date, tens of thousands of creative projects-big and small- have come to life with the support of the Kickstarter community.  

 Kickstarter was built to help bring creative projects to life.  They measure their success as a company by how well the mission is achieved and not by the size of their profits. That’s why, in 2015, they became a Benefit Corporation.  A benefit Corporations are for-profit companies that are obligated to consider the impact of their decisions on society, not only shareholders. Radically, positive impact on society becomes part of a Benefit Corporation’s legally defined goals. 

What Now?

Watch for MY KICKSTARTER  CAMPAIGN  and consider donating to my project. There will be options to donate as little as 5$ on up.  You'll get something in return (other than knowing you've done something wonderful!), so please watch and donate.  It will open for 3 weeks and I must reach my goal to receive any of the funds.  It's all or nothing with Kickstarter.

Love Still Lives Here-Patience, Patience

I’m honored to tell you a little about Juanita.  Her story will be a chapter in the book, Love Still Lives Here with an expected publication date January 2017.  There has been a truth, a theme that has evolved for each family.  This truth has ranged from hope, prayer, loyalty, healing environment and more.  Juanita’s daughter’s truth is Patience.  

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