Thursday, August 30, 2007

Total Eclipse Of The Heart

I loved that song by Bonnie Tyler. Nothing says the 80's like a good old fashioned rock-love song. But I digress. This past Monday, there was a total lunar eclipse. The husband and I had originally planned on watching it since we're both astronomy buffs but that was before we realized that optimal viewing was between 3-4 am.

Kiss of Moon viewing death. Some of my neighbors did stay up and took some photos - so I can't take any credit for these great shots. I'm dismayed that I missed it. One of those rare, clear, cloudless nights in Portland too. *sigh*.

I can't believe how reflective the moon is. It looks like a giant light bulb.

And voila. I knew that it went red but I didn't realize it would be such a vivid red. Hmmm. Isn't this supposed to be a harbinger of death and destruction?

Thanks Ryan for these great photos!
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I went to another one of the boy's soccer games last night. I was all excited about taking some action shots and forgot how smelly this building is. As soon as I walked in, a tidal wave of gym socks, sweaty men and body odor assailed my senses. Grooooosss. It didn't help that it was unseasonably warm here yesterday.

To add insult to injury, despite the bright overhead lights, it was too dark to take freeze frame action shots. I'll need to get some serious flash wattage next time. I was able to salvage one photo: here's the boy sitting on the bench! He's to the right of the guy in the orange. Doesn't he ooze power and flexibility? Watch out Beckham!

Oh, the score was kinda one sided. I think they stopped keeping track after the yellow team scored their 10th goal. *whistles*.

On the ride home, I decided to see what long shutter speeds could do at night. This is a brightly lit office building.

And this is the boy's favorite dining establishment: Taco Bell. Can you see the signature colors of purple and blue? The red blurry lights are the dashboard of the car.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Return O The Bucket

So much for not eating any donuts for 10 weeks. The bucket beckoned. Once again, our kitchen was covered with these healthy doughballs.

Thanks to Rasa Malaysia for her post-processing tips - it made a world of difference! Look at the difference in the donut photos the last time we had the bucket.

[Ed. This picture of the Memphis Mafia (a banana fritter with peanut butter, chocolate and chocolate chips) was uploaded on 8/29]. I ate it for breakfast this morning. Well, a good 30% of it. The thing is massive - it's sitting on a dinner plate!

The rest of these photos were taken at night with regular kitchen pot lights. Still not too bad - not my lightbox but it works!

Mmmm. Fruitloop donuts. It was very, very hard not to eat all the Fruitloops off these in between pictures.

And my favorite (looking) donut, the sprinkle.

Here's a side by side comparison of what my old camera can do versus the new beauty. Just a world of difference, I think.

Monday, August 27, 2007

After 3 Days...

I am still not a world-class photographer. Hmmpfh. Imagine that. *insert angry frustration here*. Still learning about exposures and white balance. CURSE YOU WHITE BALANCE! I even made myself a lightbox for macro shots but the damn white balance has the background coming out faintly pink.

So, out of 500 or so shots over the weekend, here are three that I'm somewhat happy with. [ed. I added this red flower picture on 8/28]

This is the wittle teacup that the boy made for me during our Weekend of Fun! Hard to gauge the size in this shot.

I have a handful of very colorful crochet needles that a friend gave me. Aren't they pretty?

I was trying to isolate the center of this picture and blur out the rest of the image. It makes for an interesting shot. Actually, I kinda get a headache if I stare at it too long. I won't bore everyone with the details of my new hobby in mindless future posts but suffice it to say, I suck at this so far.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Red is Red?

Some preliminary comparison shots. In retrospect, I should have turned off the TV in the background. That's a little distracting - doh!

I chose a bright red pincushion as my first subject. Both pictures were taken on a tripod (although height and angle differ slightly because the cameras are different sizes). Neither picture has been photo shopped.

Picture 1: Panasonic DMX FX-01 6.0 megapixel (regular point and click digital camera). Click on the photos for a larger version. Even though I wanted the pincushion to be the main focus, the background objects are clearly visible. Blah! Also, the red came out almost an orangey-red and the fabric of the pincushion looks almost fuzzy and felt-like.

Picture 2: Canon Digital Rebel XT 8.0 megapixel. Because I was able to change the aperture setting, the background is nice and blurry. This is a truer shade of red and you can actually see the grain of the fabric.

Hmmm. James has a soccer game tomorrow. Maybe I should test out the continuous shooting mode! Freeze frame his moment of glory! Ooooh!

My New Toy

My sweet and wonderful husband (isn't he the best?!?!) bought me a new toy: the Canon Digital Rebel XT. This is my first DSLR camera so I wanted something that was user friendly, dependable and affordable. Although I think this entry level price is somewhat of a bait and switch scam since the lenses for these babies are the real money makers. Anyways, isn't it purty?!

I haven't taken any pictures with it yet since the battery is still charging but I'm going to do some comparison shots with my point and click digital camera. The boy did make me promise not to barge in on him while he's taking a shower so alas, no nudie pics.

Also, I've noted that people seemed to be a little... repulsed by my spam adventure! Don't be h8'in the spam, folks. It's a perfectly acceptable meat and food alternative!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Spam Spam Spamity Spam!

For some odd reason, I had a craving for Spam a few days ago.

And no, Koi. I am NOT pregnant. I actually grew up with Spam because Koreans (freaks that we are), enjoy the canned "delicacy". In fact, there are spam restaurants and spam gift sets. Crazy eh? Spam and on line games. That's what the country is built on.

Anyways, my mom's old tried and true recipe for spam sandwiches was pretty simple. Get out the can of Spam.


Note: Even though it says 25% less sodium... that's 25% less from 1,000,000 grams of sodium. So still pretty damn salty. I forgot how salty spam was. Or how gelatinous.

Next step, remove the Spam from the can. This involved a lot of shaking and then PLOP! out gushed the Spam. MMmmmm... mouth-watering goodness. If you like the look of pink, jellied, mushy goop. Look at that neato wrinkle of stuff on the bottom.

Afterward, I sliced the Spam and dipped it into an egg batter for frying. Spam, eggs and Spam.

Since I didn't have sandwich fixings, I just ate it with a side of rice. Spam, eggs, Spam, rice and Spam.

So, now that I've satisfied my Spam craving, I can go another 20 years before indulging again.


Monday, August 13, 2007

Bucket Of Donuts

Yesterday the boy was promised some donuts but due to some city-wide event, downtown was gridlock. So, he went to bed ... without any of his favorite treats.

And he was a miserable bastard all day today, grumbling about donuts. Enough was enough. When he got home, we went to Voodoo to get him some of his favorite treats. With a bag of donuts in hand, we were about to exit the donut shop when we saw a bucket of donuts for $5.

A bucket of donuts?! Did we buy it? What do you think?

James was chittering with excitement and happiness the whole way home. He was so eager getting out of the car, he dropped the bucket on his foot. The irony was not lost on either of us.

For $5, this bucket was PACKED. And these donuts were probably only 12 hours old. You couldn't even see the bottom.

We started taking the donuts out - to examine our loot - and soon filled a plate.

And another plate...

It seemed this bucket was bottomless. At this point, he might have passed out from sheer joy. After two full plates of donuts, you STILL couldn't see the bottom. Donuts, donuts everywhere.

I ate one and then stole the cocopuffs from another. I expect the boy to pass out in a sugar induced coma in about 30 minutes. When he does, I'm covering him in donuts.

I uploaded this last picture in its original size.


My oral surgeon gave my jaw a clean bill of health today. Bones are healing nicely, most of the feeling in my lip and palate have come back and I don't need to see him again for 6 months.

We got to look at some spiffy before and after x-rays.

BEFORE: All that white around my teeth are my braces. Metal comes up very shiny on these x-rays. Note that my lower jaw is more forward than my upper jaw. In a normal jaw alignment, the lower jaw is supposed to be slightly behind the upper jaw.

I am not normal.

AFTER: You can see the brackets and the titanium screws that are holding my face together. Without these puppies, my face would have collapsed right onto my chin.

They moved my upper jaw forward by a few millimeters. It's amazing how painful and expensive it was to do that. Just a few millimeters.

Now this is what you call a face full of metal. You can see where they cut through the bone. It's that line that's perpendicular to the brackets.

Hey! Look at my impacted wisdom tooth at the far upper left. He decided to leave that in because it wasn't necessary and that I had undergone enough facial trauma for one day. What a nice man.

2 months post op. Was it worth it? I guess so. It's hard to say right now because my braces are still on, things are still being moved around and it's a general pain in the ass. But, no more headaches. Which is a very, very good thing.