Monday, October 30, 2006

First Assignment

There were two parts to my first assignment for photography class.

Part of it was to answer some questions on the model, specs, and capabilities of my camera. It was more of less things I had to read through my manual to find. This was a good thing. Reading directions/instructions/manuals really can be beneficial afterall. (LOL)

The other, was to take some photographs in Auto mode, have them printed, and then to jot down the EXIF data from each shot.

Here are the photos I snapped for this week's assignment:

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Things Kids Say...

This is part of the conversation that took place when the kids were acting up, not eating dinner, and I was needing to reprimand them. My folks had just walked in and were in the middle of the battle.

My Mom: "I'm going to run away!!"

Braeden: "Grandma ..... you can't run away. You don't have a driver's license."

Classic, I tell ya.

Friday, October 27, 2006

First Class

My first class was great.

Let me start off by saying I haven't read a page of the instruction manual to my camera. Shame on me, I know. So, there things I didn't know how to do, and there were buttons and dials with letters and things I had no idea what they were.

Last night's class opened a whole new world of understanding for me. Trust me, we didn't even touch on how to go about shooting photos, but instead just how a camera works, what it can do, etc, etc.

I'm anxious to start shooting some pictures to bring into class, but I'm also very nervous about what others will say. I guess it's all about learning, and I doubt someone is going to walk in and say "That's the WORST picture I've ever seen!!!".

This is going to be a wonderful way to spend Thursday nights (and stopping for ice cream at Colonial Cafe afterwards isn't so bad either!).

Thursday, October 26, 2006

School, here I come

I start my digital photography class tonight. It was supposed to meet on Wednesday nights, but I got a call on Tuesday that it was changed to Thursday.

So, it officially starts tonight and runs for 6 weeks. I'm very anxious to start learning, and hope that I come away with the knowledge to take wonderful photos everyday, and actually know what I'm doing when I take them.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Now what was I going to say?!?

The other evening, I attempted to sign into blogger, but apparently it was down.

I had something to say. Now I can't remember what it was.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Lost Ring

I was informed last night that my husband no longer has a wedding ring.

Apparently since he lost weight, it is loose on his finger and slides around. He took it off at work while he was stretching dough, because it kept sliding off. He placed it aside - and next thing he knew, it was gone.

Last time I checked, rings don't have legs, so it didn't just walk away. It seems that the pathetic people that work there felt the need to take it - probably to try to pawn for money. Little do they know that they probably won't get much. Sure, it's gold, but it doesn't weigh much and there are no stones, etc. They'd probably be lucky to even get $100 for it for the weight in gold. Not to mention, I don't know that a pawn shop would even buy it ... there is an inscription inside that says He Joined These 2 Hearts 9/8/00. That's not very meaningful to someone else, now is it??

I'm extremely irritated and mad beyond belief because in the last 2-3 weeks, money has turned up missing from the store. The first time, they found the bag stashed by a dumpster behind the building. The most recent time (just this past weekend), the money was not recovered. I'm finding it hard to believe this is all just coincidence. I think a little further look needs to be taken, comparing schedules and who was in the store each time a situation occurred.

This is bullshit. Of all things, you don't steal someone's wedding rings.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

My son, the MackDaddy

We are going to be in big trouble when this boy is a teenager. He now has not 1, not 2 .... but THREE girlfriends. Two from school, and a girl a few houses down from us.

He's starting to rattle off his guest list for his birthday party this year, and most are girls. So far I've got a list with 11 kids names, and only 4 are boys (and that's including him). I'm sure as he gets to know more of the kids at school, he's going to want to invite more of them.

It's hard to believe that in less than 2 months he's going to be 5. Time flies! So, now we're starting to plan his birthday party, which is a bit scary. This will be the first party where there are other kids invited that aren't just very close family friends or relatives.

But I'm sure he'll have an absolute ball with all his friends!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Cars, Money .... I better start hookin'!

Really. I'm beginning to think I'm going to need to get a second job.

The light that went on in the car ended up going off, and since I wasn't noticing any problems with the way it was driving/handling, we decided to hold off on taking it in to the shop.

A bit later, I did notice it acting a bit funny, like it was "choking" a little bit. It didn't do it all the time .... I only noticed it a couple times, very briefly, but we were planning on getting it in to the shop. Before we could, the light came on again, and we took it in as soon as we could.

Thankfully, the cost of the repair wasn't as brutal as it could have been. It was the oxygen sensor; so with that fixed, an oil change and air filter .... we walked out nearly $300 lighter.

And now, the crack in the windshield is getting longer and longer and it's going to have to be replaced. It started spreading a little bit, and we knew that replacing it would be inevitable, but we tried to hold off as long as possible. So, it looks like we're going to be another $250-$300 lighter sooner than we'd hoped.

This just isn't the best time to have unexpected expenses come up. It's a good thing I start Christmas shopping so early. That way I can spread the cost out over a few months rather than just in a 4-5 week span. And I can't complain, because I've been doing pretty well with making a few extra bucks through ebay.

Sometimes I just get down, thinking about the debt we have, the bills that need to be paid, and a brand new house with property taxes that aren't fully what they'll be in the next year or two. But then I realize that things aren't that bad (yet), and that our debt is not nearly what it is for some. It's one credit card, and it's under $4K, so it's almost not even enough to call it a debt. The cars are paid off, there are no student loans to pay off .... the only thing is the house, and well ..... does anyone consider that part of their debt since it appreciates in value and in a-round-about way reduces that 'debt'?

It just seems that no matter what, there is always a concern about money.

Friday, October 06, 2006

So very sad

The service for Mike's grandfather was last night. Being a veteran, a member of Amvets, the Honor Guard was there to pay their respects. I tried to be strong, but let's face it .... when it comes to death, the loss can be felt on so many levels by family members, friends and complete strangers.

Once they started to play TAPS, that was all I needed for the tears to start rolling. I listened to the service, the prayers read, and a fellow Amvet/friend's voice crack as he said goodbye to his fallen comrade. It was heartbreaking, seeing this grown man, weep for the loss of his good friend. And then they fired the rifles to salute ......

It was a beautiful moment, it made me proud to be an American, proud of our soldiers; each and every one that has served and continues to serve our country.

So, with that still fresh in my mind, I check in on my other blogger buddies, reading their new entries. I go to Liam's .... checking on how he's doing with his fight, and learn that one of his little buddies from St. Jude's passed away yesterday. I sit here now, my cheeks damp with tears, praying silently to God for the health of my children.

My prayers to the families that are saying goodbye to their loved ones.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Dressing for Death

So, I'm looking in my closest and realizing that I don't really have a whole lot of funeral/wake/services appropriate clothes. At this point, I almost feel like I need to go invest in a few items of clothing to specifically wear for times such as this.

Since September of 2004, I've been to 3 services for family members that have passed on. This will be #4 in just 25 months.

I'm already beginning to dislike getting older. I can imagine some of my readers, rolling their eyes, grumbling "She's not even 30 yet!!".

And that's right. I'm in my mid-late 20's, but have already lost all of my grandparents. My husband is now on the verge of losing a parent. On my dad's side of the family - he, his siblings & cousins are now the oldest in the family.

As I was reading the obituary for Mike's grandfather, I browsed through all the others, noting the ages of the deceased. So many were in their 80's, many in their 90's as well. Our families only seem to make it til their 70's max. My paternal grandparents died in their 60's.

I was 11 when they died. And at that age, they seemed old to me. Now, looking back ..... my folks aren't far off from turning 60. And they just don't seem as old to me as my grandparents did back then.

Why do I feel that soon I won't have much of a family left? The numbers are decreasing and generations are disappearing.

It's all very, very, very depressing.

And with that, I must go finalize my clothing plans for the services tomorrow evening.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

My son the sponge

Braeden is really enjoying preschool, and learning so much! I'm so glad we decided to send him.

The first day was tough, but my how he's changed! Now he runs off to his classroom and barely looks back! Sometimes he even forgets to give a hug & kiss before he heads off towards his new friends.

He has homework a night or two each week. It's normally just a page where he needs to practice writing that week's letter, or he has to find something of a certain color for the guessing game they do (something like show & tell, except they have to find an item of a certain color that will fit inside of a brown paper lunchbag and they give clues to the class so that they can try to guess what it is).

Every school day, I'm anxious to get home from work to take a peek inside his backpack to see what kind of project he's brought home.

They are learning the alphabet and making animals out of the letters. Here's his very first project he brought home from school .... his "A" Aligator:

And his "B" Bumblebee:

This is just his 4th week in school, and he's already writing his name, singing the alphabet song, and can do some subtraction! He knows his birthdate, and he even recognizes the first letter of his friends' names and will tell us that the particular letter is what so-and-so's name starts with.

It truly amazes me at how quickly they pick things up and how eager they are to learn in an actual school setting. He was never interested at home; it was like pulling teeth to try to get him to sit down and try to write any letters. Now he's sucking it all up like a little sponge!

He even has his very first girlfriend. :) And it just so happens that she lives in the subdivision next to ours, right on the same street as Braeden's Uncle John!

Sunday, October 01, 2006


A day or two ago we learned that Mike's mother had been doing a bit better. Instead, his Grandfather took a turn for the worst and was not doing well at all.

Mike got a call this morning - his Grandfather passed away.

We have been preparing ourselves for the loss of Mike's mom, and instead have suffered another loss. And in all this, we still know what the outcome will be for Mike's mom as well; the question is just 'when'?

Plans were being finalized, so at this time I'm not sure when any services will be, but I'm assuming within the next couple of days.