Thursday, July 14, 2011

Nothing Really New

I have been working on my photography so I haven't added much to my Creations yet. I have been working at my school assignments and seem to put my digital scrapbooking on hold...for the past 2 years. I have to catch up on some of the images I've collected though. I think I'll do that in the near future. Probably after this school term is over in September. I have 4 photography heavy classes for this summer so I'm going to be ridiculously busy. It's all good though.

So that's it for now. I did do a few projects, which you can view on my other blog,


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

First Time Homebuyer Woes

So I've been looking online at all the information out there regarding buying a home. And there's A LOT of information out there. I mean A LOT. So I've done lots of research and looked at tons of listings and have determined what we can safely afford. I've learned a lot about making offers and negotiating and all the details about buying a home. I also know that I can't expect EVERYTHING on my wishlist unless I get a job; something I can't do until the girls are in school. Unfortunately that's a few years down the road. Hopefully after I graduate from college in a few years I will be able to get a good job or start up my photography business. Ideally, moving to an area that has weddings year round would be best because the income is more steady, but we're not prepared to move to another location. Especially since Christian is doing so well at his current job. I'm sure he'd like to get a better paying job and be able to afford a house that runs anywhere between $250K and $500K, but I can't see that happening for a while.

Honestly, I'm so tired of renting. I don't know how much more I can take. I need my own space that I can feel free to decorate. I haven't decorated my own space in A LONG TIME. Oh, I painted Alethea's room when we lived in that sorry excuse for an apartment community a couple years back. Alethea had her first birthday there. But that was the only room in the house that we decorated. I'm just ready for a change. Something to call my own. Unfortunately, any changes we make in any rental place benefits the landlords only, if you even manage to get their permission. No thank you. I want our money to go somewhere that will benefit us. Renting doesn't. Not a very good investment. I also want a dog. A golden retriever. I love them, they're my favorite breed of dog.

So the more I research and watch HGTV, the more I want my own place. I'm determined to get one! It's just taking a bit more to convince Christian that it would be a good idea. LOL.

Well, I'm over at my mom's house and I gotta go keep the kids from destroying her place.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Michael Jackson Memorial

It's been a bit since the death of Michael Jackson, but it's still too fresh and sudden for me to really believe it. I watched the news coverage. Then I watched some video on youtube of his songs. Then I watched some more news coverage. Still can't believe it. I just finished watching Michael Jackson's memorial service live on CNN. How absolutely touching, beautiful and amazing it was. The most amazing part for me, the most touching part was when his little 11 year old daughter, Paris Jackson, took the mike, addressed the audience.

She said, very tearfully, "I just want to say [that] ever since I was born Daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine. And I just want to say I love him so much."

That was the MOST touching part of the memorial. I cried like a baby. My eyes were all puffy and my face red and tear-streaked. My heart hurt for her. But not just for her, for all of Michael's family and close friends. And for the fans. I also loved Rev. Al Sharpton's speech. But then, he always gives great speeches. This one, though, was above and beyond. Especially when he addressed Michael's children and said, "There was nothing strange about your daddy. It was strange what your daddy had to deal with." That got a standing ovation. That touched everyone that supported Michael and loved him.

I loved Michael Jackson when I was growing up. Man, that man could move. My favorite songs were "Smooth Criminal," "Remember The Time," "Man In The Mirror," "Black and White," and "Will You Be There" to name a few.

I never believed that Michael Jackson could have ever done anything that he was accused of doing. The accusations were so wrong and so vindictive and so obviously a ploy for some very greedy people to syphone a lot of money out of this amazing and trusting man.

Yes, his appearance did do a drastic change in the last however many years, but that's due to his skin disease and his personal insecurities. People seem to find it hard to believe that someone so famous, so well known, so great as Michael Jackson could have any insecurities about his appearance. It's aways amazing to me. He was a person, just like we are. He felt things just like we do.

I just hope that now, finally now, Michael Jackson can be at peace. That he can rest and be free of the burden of the constant negative media attention that plagued him in his life. And I further hope that the media will allow the family to finally grieve in peace and in private.

And I look forward to the future releases of the many unreleased recorded treasures that Michael had in his vault. I only wish that we had his performances to accompany the songs. The man was GENIUS.

Be at peace, Michael Jackson. I hope you are in a better place now.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Some News

CS4 For Photographer's Seminar with Ben Willmore

Ok. So I went to this seminar on Friday. I just have to say. What a fantastic wealth of information! I mean, I really learned a lot. And I love it. There were some interesting things with Photoshop that I just didn't know was possible. The retouching portion was my favorite. Here are the course topics given during the seminar:

Shooting For Photoshop (didn't attend)
High Dynamic Range Imaging (started attendance here)
Adjustment Essentials
Controlling the Viewer's Experience
Start to Finish

I had no idea what high dynamic range was. But now I have more than enough knowledge to understand what it is, and want to increase my knowledge on it. Fantastic information. The Adjustment Essentials portion and the Controlling the Viewer's Experience were awesome as well. I learned some things about some of the Photoshop tools I didn't realize I could do. Some keyboard shortcuts and icon definitions I didn't know about. And the Start to Finish pretty much walked us through the beginning of an image, after it's been taken off the camera, to the end product. Pretty cool. I was very impressed and satisfied with the seminar and will attend another one if they have it local again. It was THAT GOOD!!!

I'm reading over the workbook we received, which essentially covers everything the seminar covered. I only wish the workbooks had the images in color so you could see what you saw live any time. But I guess there are copyright issues involved which prevents such a thing. Oh well.

National Association of Photoshop Professionals (Click on title to go to site)

Oh my goodness! I love my membership!!!! The wealth of information alone is enough to pay for itself! I was like, WOW! I paid for a year of membership, which is normally $99, but since I'm a student I got it for $10 off. No big deal....unless you're a student! Then, on top of that, I got the current issue of Photoshop User Magazine and some other little bits of information. I get this subscription for the length of my membership. This is standard to the membership. Then there's the free gift I got. I got to pick any one of a dozen training DVD's to have for FREE!!! Wow! I was happy about that. For a 2 year subscription, you got to pick out a DVD and a book. I didn't have the dineros for that. Anyway. So I chose the Lightroom 2 In Depth DVD that sells for $150. FREE!!!! That's freakin' awesome! Since I have Lightroom, it'd be a great learning tool for me.

So if you haven't checked out NAPP, go check it out already! It's a MUST HAVE. And sometimes it's best to register for membershig AT AN EVENT/SEMINAR as you get the additional options that you don't get when you registar online, such as choosing from a dozen different books or training DVD's.


I saw a Nikon D5000 that I'm just DYING to own. Really. I should write up my equipment wish list one day. LOL. But this is just one cool camera. Click on Nikon D5000 to read more about it.

Eventually, I want to get a D3 or D300, but those are just a bit out of my price range. LOL. Maybe one day.

What The Heck!!!!!

So I purchased my textbook for my next class, which starts in July. And I just cracked it open today. I've had it for about a week. OMG! The smell was horrendious. I hate the smell of cigarettes. The previous owner I guess was a smoker because the smell of cigarette smoke is intense. Infused within the pages! I looked online for a solution to remove the smell. I came up with dryer sheets between the pages and placed in a bag for some time. Also, baking soda. So I asked Christian to pick up some dryer sheets for me and I've put baking sodak throught the pages and sealed up the book. I hope a couple days will fix this. I just can't deal with the smell. I would if I weren't planning on keeping this book. I will be asking future sellers on Amazon if they smoke when buying used books from now on. I've learned my lesson. Though I've purchased used books before on Amazon and never had this problem. Oh well.

Ok. So that's all the news I have for now. Thanks for reading!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

A Little Of This, A Little Of That

Photoshop Technique Conquered
Ok, so I finally figured out how to do Text On A Path in Photoshop CS4. I know it's not hard, but it was taking me forever to figure it out. I finally did. So it's a great feat for me. I have created yet another template which I'll create a page from soon and post it.

Potty Time
So Alethea went poopoo in the potty for the first time this morning. Progress is great! Soon there will be no need for diapers and Alethea can join the world of potty trained toddlers and wear her panties! This will make life so much better...and less in her pants to lug around. Diapers are so lumpy.

New Joy
Rayah has decided that she loves this little horse we bought for Alethea's birthday. It's called a Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Bounce and Spin Pony.

Isn't she cute?! And with the little Pebbles hairdo! So cute. (No, no special effects for this photo. I save those for my scrapbook pages or my photography blog.

Seminar Tomorrow
Tomorrow I'm going to the Photoshop seminar at the Seattle Center. Should be loads of fun. And of course the bonus is being away from the girls for 5 hours. How nice. I'm looking forward to it. I'm rarely away from the girls, so any opportunity is great for me. Christian took the day off to take care of the girls. So it's also a great opportunity for them to spend some one on one time together. Which reminds me, I need to see about borrowing my sister's make up for the morning... I'll have to go by and pick it up for the morning. We have the same complexion and I don't normally wear make up...well, not anymore anyway. I'm trying to undo years of damage caused by wearing make up ALL THE TIME.

Anyway. That's about it for now. Talk to you all later!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Trip to the doctor

I got up and took the girls to the doctors for their check ups and shots. They each got 3. I hate it when they have to get their shots. I postponed them for 6 months, because I had done my research and decided that they weren't necessary until after then. So what if it inconveniences the doctors and they have to figure out which shots are needed instead of going on autopilot! This way I know they're paying attention!

So Alethea got a bunch of shots (some were combined) and so did Rayah. These were Rayah's first shots. They both did pretty well, though there was a lot of crying. Rayah got over it more quickly than Alethea did. But Alethea has always been a drama queen. Alethea kept calling all the older women she saw "grandma." So funny. And the younger ones were all mommy's and the men were daddys. She's got the genders down. Rayah just kept smiling at the nurses and doctor. So cute. I wish I had brought my camera to capture the smile. It was too cute. She was all smiles for the doctor. Until the shots anyway. They were playing with blown up latex gloves and dixie cups and a few books that they had in the exam room. Alethea kept on peeling off the labels they had on the drawers in the exam room. She loves taking stickers off of ANYTHING! Can be frustrating. But the threat of a spanking stopped all that!

But it's over now and we're home and relaxing. Girls will go down in an hour for their naps. Until then, they're playing happily together. Their trip to the doctor's office and the subsequent shots a distant memory. We'll have to do it again in 4 weeks until they are all caught up. But this time I"ll be taking some adult reinforcements. That was 2 hours of frustration I don't want to deal with by myself ever again!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Another Layout

Just another layout that I created today.

Wonderful Day
Apple Paradise and Moments Like This by Cucciola Designs
Template by me

Friday, June 5, 2009

A Few Pages I Created

Ok, so I need to finally post a few pages of what I've done...well, more than a few. I have a bunch to show you. So bear with me!

The Duomo-For my MIL's album
Apple Paradise by Cucciola Designs and Textures Briques by Karine Designs

Impromptu Photoshoot
Hannah kit and Blissful Moments kit by Creations by Rachael at Pretty Scrappy

Blissful Moments by Creations by Rachael and Armina Designs at Pretty Scrappy

Believe In Your Dreams
I created this template myself. Word art by Elodie

Seaside by Natali Designs at Scrapbook Graphics
Feel the Lines template by Dido Designs at After 5 Designs

Tender Moments
My Secret Garden from Creations by Rachael at Pretty Scrapy and Feel the Lines template by Dido Designs from After 5 Designs

Like Mother Like Daughter
Bisou Bisou by Catherine Designs and Feel the Lines template(modified) by Dido Designs

Free Spirit
Meadow Story by Kimla Designs and Feel The Line Template by Dido Designs

Life's Joy
(forgot the name of the product)by Lily Designs and Beautiful 4 Word art by Glam Fairy Designs

That's it for now. I have more but I don't feel like adding them today.

Happy Scrapping!

Potty Time!!!!

So Alethea finally decided it was time to take matters into her own hands. I've been procrastinating the potty training responsibilities and just saying that I'll wait for her to come up to me, inform me that she needs to go and holds it until I get her on the potty. Up until yesterday she was telling me AFTER she had finished her business. Sometimes after she'd gone a few times in her pull ups. But recently she's been telling us after each and EVERY time she goes. Then she'd want to be changed. I knew it was going to be soon. Then yesterday it happened.

"Mommy, you pee-pee in the potty?" says Alethea.

"What? You gotta go pee-pee?" says Mommy.

"Yeah, I pee-pee big girl potty." says Alethea.

"Ok, let's go! Hurry, hurry!!" says Mommy as she rushes Alethea to the bathroom. Once inside, pull ups come down, potty seat is placed on toilet, and Alethea's tush is placed on it.

After a bit of waiting and smiles, Alethea remarks that it's coming.

"It's coming. It's coming. IT'S COMING!!!" As she squeaks and shrieks with delight we hear the telltale sounds of liquid hitting liquid. She screams every time she lets some out. A little at a time at first, since the sensation of going where there seems to be no "protection" such as her diaper is so new and unfamiliar. We're in there for about 5 minutes before she's done. She takes a little while to get accustomed to the feeling, which is understandable. In those 5 minutes I manage to take a few photos (no, not as a voyeur. Just gotta capture the milestone). I also record her for a couple minutes, because her shrieks and excitement must be remembered. Hey, if she doesn't want it when she's older, I'll delete it. No biggie.

Each time Alethea lets go, you can see the pride and excitement in her face, which is full of smiles. I'm proud of her, to be sure. She's growing up. But I secretly think to myself, "my litte baby's growing up".

I have a moment of nostalgia, thinking of how she's no longer my little baby. I remember when she was born. Her cute little button nose and trusting eyes. That precious new baby smell. The way she felt in my arms. When she wrapped her little fingers around mine for that first baby hand shake, as if to say, "I trust you completely, Mommy." Her first smile. Her first laugh. And when she got her first teeth at 3 months, and started crawling at 6 months. Watching her little tush as she glided across the floor. Then when she pulled herself to stand and was soon walking at 9 months. Watching her first timid steps to her more confident saunters. Then running. Running away from me. Running to explore new things. A tug at my heart. My heart whispers, "my baby" with longing. She's growing up so fast.

Soon she'll be school age and speaking much clearer, asserting her independence as a tween and later wanting to date as a teen, then before I know it, she'll be all grown up and out there in the world. I hope the world will treat her kindly. I hope I will have taught her well; done the best that I could do for her. I hope that throught all that may come, she will still remain my little girl.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Ok. My first of many freebies.

Here is a template I created just for you!!

And here's what I did with it!

Download here:

At MediaFire
At RapidShare

Enjoy! Thanks for downloading!