Monday, March 31, 2008


I got a new toy this weekend--total impulse buy! I've been growing more and more unhappy with my current digital camera. It was advertised as having motion stabilizer, but I've continually had problems with a lot of shake in my pictures. It's very frustrating when I'm trying to photograph school activities or action shots around the house. For close up work or still life type things, this camera is just fine, but my life is more active than those kinds of things. So....we took a little trip to Wolf Camera just to look. An hour later, I walked out the door with this and this. This is on order, and I should have it Wednesday.

I absolutely love my new camera. I've been looking at Nikons for the longest time, especially when they did that Picture Town promotion with Georgetown, SC a couple of years ago for the Nikon D40 model (my camera is a D60, the next model up and new release for 2008). I tested out the camera Saturday night on closing night of daughter's high school musical. Of about 150 pictures I took, only 1 or 2 were out of focus. I was shooting under less than optimal conditions, too--funky lighting, fog machines, strobe lights, fast moving dancing teenagers. I'd attended the show Thursday night (opening night) and about 1/3 of my photos were crap.

I am planning to take some classes at the local Wolf--they gave me "tickets" for 18 classes, so I should be able to get in some good training. If that doesn't meet my needs, the local art institute also offers digital photography classes.

Here's a sample photo of some azaleas in our yard. More pictures to come now that I have a jam up camera!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Whew. Saturday!

I took half a day off yesterday (only worked until noon) and it felt like Saturday. Today really is Saturday, so BONUS!!

In the very near future, there will actually be knitting content on this...ahem...knitting blog. I finally finished my Taupe Gable (aka Green Gable). I ended up lengthening it by 1 inch before working the ribbing but did not change the sleeves at all. The fit is great on the sweater, and I love the color. I'm planning to wash and block it tonight, so perhaps there will be FO photos soon.

In gaming news, I've snagged a copy of the out of print Tetris for Nintendo DS. Tetris has been one of my favorite video games for years, and I'm really excited to get it for the DS. I got my copy through a vendor from e-bay.

Monday, March 17, 2008

My Own Taxi Service

My days and nights are spent playing taxi driver to a 15 year old. I'm getting tired, people! Thankfully, the play opens in 17 days and then it will be DONE and we'll be just a week away from Spring Break. I am living for Spring Break. So, here's the run down on what we've been doing, besides living in the car.

I've become so addicted to the Nintendo DS Lite that I had to buy my own. Mine is cobalt blue and black. I gave Daughter the pink one because she was enjoying it so much. Pink is more her color than mine anyway. We've added several games to the collection. My favorite is Super Mario Brothers. We figured out how to link our machines so that the two of us can play it at the same time--that was some fun!

Daughter and I, a friend of mine and her daughter, and a couple of other girls from school are going to a concert next month. The band we are seeing is Switchfoot. I could not pick them out off the radio, but it's been ages since I've been to a concert. Also, Daughter loves this group. I think she's excited. This is her first concert, and we have fifth row center seats!

Knitting? What's that? Spinning? Never heard of it. Given my progress on either activity, it would seem that way, wouldn't it? I haven't touched knitting in over a week, and spinning, well, the wheels are gathering dust. Maybe one of these days....maybe tonight for the knitting.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Fabulous Monday

Yes, like most people, I typically do not like Mondays. Today should have been especially horrible what with that whole springing forward thing this weekend. I hate time changes, especially the springing forward bit....but I digress.

So...the first great Monday thing is that my boss phoned me today. I work remotely from home as do the majority of people in my department, and the boss just doesn't usually call to shoot the breeze. Her news was that I'm receiving a big bonus at work for the past year and that the bonus will be deposited this week. Hot diggity! I'm earmarking a certain amount of it for daughter to go to the SCAD summer program if she's accepted. The rest will go to bills and such because I truly do not need anything right now.

The second great Monday thing is that I weighed today and am down 3 pounds since last week. That is with all the eating out Mom and I did this weekend and the bottle of wine I drank almost all by myself. All that walking around the outlet malls on Saturday must have helped!! My total weight loss since mid-January is 12 pounds. Just 5 pounds more to personal goal number 1!!!

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Beachy Weekend

Mom and I spent the weekend at HHI to celebrate her birthday. I drove down Friday morning (in the pouring down rain and horrible wind) and picked up some groceries for us so that we wouldn't have to do that once Mom arrived. (She lives much closer to the beach than I do.) I swear the wind blowing in off the ocean was blowing horizontal to the ground while I was unpacking the car. It was terrible!!

Needless to say we stayed in on Friday evening, which we had planned to do anyway. There was no way either of us wanted to venture out into that weather again. I made us a delicious chicken mean from my new Weight Watcher's cookbook. The chicken was delicious and only 4 points per serving. We also had sauteed yellow squash and salads to round out the meal and Slim-a-Bear ice creams for dessert. (Skinny Cow is so much better than Slim-a-Bear!!)

Let me digress a bit and talk about the cook book. It's great! I picked up a copy at Wal Mart without even looking through it--it was shrink wrapped, so I couldn't thumb through it. There are many great recipes in the book, particularly interesting things to do with veggies. I am big into filling my meals with veggies, because they are so low in points, even when you fancy them up a bit. The book also has several recipes with an "international" flare such as Greek and Italian dishes. Mom liked the book so much that she picked up a copy for herself.

OK...back to the beach weekend! We did a traditional girl thing on Saturday--shopping. The weather was sunny, but it was still cool and windy. We made the best of it. We picked up some great bargains, too--some tops and a sun dress for daughter at Hollister and Abercrombie and Fitch outlet stores, three pieces of clothing for about $30. I don't mind buying the name brand clothes if I can get them at a deal like that. My score of the weekend was cashmere sweaters marked down 75% off retail and then another 30% off that price. I got one sweater for $17 and the other for $30, both of them for daughter. I found several in my size, but they just didn't look all that good on me.

We had lunch at Cornerstone Grill in one of the Tanger Outlet Malls (there are two in the HHI area), and it was pretty good. It was packed, and service was slow. That's the problem when you have exactly one eating place in a big outlet mall. Dinner was much more satisfactory. We ate at The Old Oyster Factory and had a beautiful view of the sun setting on Broad Creek. The service was excellent and our food was to die for!! We both had a local game fish (very fresh!) which was one of the specials of the evening, and we shared a spinach salad. Yes, WW went out the window a bit yesterday, but I don't care. It was a special occassion.

Now, I'm back home again and tomorrow the old grind starts over. I'm counting down the days to Spring Break and a week at the beach. It's 26 days away in case you wondered!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Best Swap Ever

I completed the best yarn swap EVER this week. I traded a variety box of yarn (including enough for 2 different sweaters) for a Nintendo DS Lite and 4 game cartridges to go with it--all in nearly brand new condition. I really liked the yarn I sent, but it had marinated in my stash far too many years. It's nice knowing that it now has a new home. I believe the previous owner of the game system feels the same way. Do you think I've had time to enjoy any of the games?? That would be a resounding NO. A certain teenage member of the family has taken it over.

I'm still plodding along on my Taupe Gable aka Green Gable top. I screwed up the waist shaping on one side and ripped back to re-do all of the shaping again. I'd tried dropping just the screwy side, but it came out looking even worse. I'd rather loose a few days by frogging than end up with a sweater that has a mistake in it. I am so close to finishing this thing--maybe 5 more inches in length to go then the sleeves to finish off. The pattern is written with cap-like sleeves, but I'm going to add about 1-2 inches length to mine. I like a little more coverage. I'm also adding length in the body of the sweater for the same reason!

WW is still going great. I've lost 9 pounds so far and am now wearing my "skinny" jeans again! This feels so good!! Just another 8 pounds to go, and I'll have met my first personal goal. No, I do not intend to tell you what that personal goal is because it's PERSONAL! ;-) Ultimately, I want to loose another 50 pounds. I heard an interesting tidbit on TV the other night. For every pound of weight an overweight person looses, that's 4 pounds of pressure off the knees.