Photo Hunt Week 19: Trees

Reaching for sun.

I realized last night that I hadn’t actually posted the current week’s photo hunt theme… but the week before. So, to make good what I said, I’ve not only posted a photo for week 10 (Books), but I’m now posting this week’s photo, for the theme Trees.

I’ve always had a love of trees. I think part of it comes from just a general love of the outdoors and nature. As a kid, I always loved camping, climbing trees, and generally just getting outside. Which is kind of odd, considering the standard image of a computer geek being all cloistered away and not seeing the light of day. I’ve become more like that as the years have passed, but not to my satisfaction. In fact, I’ve promised myself an extended camping trip sometime this summer, hopefully up to one of my old favorites, Cooper Lake. You can bet my camera will be going along with me.

As will my love of trees.

These trees, in particular, are just outside of where I work. They were originally planted in a set spacing and pattern, which you can probably tell a little from the picture. The shade they provide during the summer months is fantastic, and they always turn a truly gorgeous shade of burnt orange and fiery red in the autumn. I like how these, in particular, have all grown at a slight slant.. towards where the sun typically rises. This has quite a bit to do with the lay of the land in the vicinity… but makes a good photo nonetheless, I think.

Photo Hunt Week 18: Shadow

Me and a Tree

Wow… it seems like I’ve blinked and two months have gone by. I can’t believe how long its been since I’ve updated this blog… and yet it still seems like hardly any time has passed. A lot has happened though… the week after my last update, my good friend Shawn had a death in his family… and since I’m fairly close to them, it affected me quite a bit too. It was a bit of a downhill slide from there. I haven’t been really active… and have let a lot of the things I love doing slide.

So I’ve recently declared May as the month of catching up. Not only in blog, but in other things as well. Today I waged a full scale assault on my living space. Spring has sprung and it’s time to clean up, shape up, and get things together. My little living area is actually presentable at the moment, and though its taken me most of the day, there’s nothing like the sense of accomplishment that comes with getting your shit together. This was not only a spring cleaning though, but preparations for my summer move. I’m slowly getting things organized for moving out and living on my own again. I’ve come to realize that I need some personal space once more… and a place I can truly call my own. I haven’t made full plans to what I’m going to do in that respect, but my goal is to be moved out before the summer months have passed into autumn. Things are looking good in that respect, though I need to buckle down and actually start looking for a place. Details, details.

I am going to post a photo for this weeks photo hunt, though… as you can see. This was taken really quick today, just as the sun was setting and I headed for home from work. I’ve always loved the carnival-mirror look shadows have just as the sun is setting. My shadow looks a little odd in this shot… but I blame having to hold the camera. It makes me look like I only have one arm.

I’ve got updates lined up for tomorrow… I’ll be posting the missing week 10 and week 11 shots… and will slowly be posting back dated entries for the other missing photos as well.

With a little luck, I’ll actually get around to putting in some of what I’ve been up to lately too.

For now, it’s just good to be back.

Photo Hunt Week 12: Lines


I originally had a tough time coming up with something for this week’s theme. I just wasn’t seeing a lot of things around me at the time that really made me think “lines”. That was until I took a recent week off to do some general adventuring and framed this beauty of a shot. It’s simple, but effective, I think.

And I’ve always had a thing for trains.

Photo Hunt Week 11: Technology

Mmmm... Apple

I had a lot of choices for this week’s photo hunt picture, considering the field I work in. This photo is the one that caught my eye, however. It was taken several months ago, during our December of installing lots of stuff in the attic (you can find the blog post about it here), and echoes back to my comment about Apple hardware being damn pretty in a rack. Pictured, on top, is an Intel Xeon Xserve paired with an Apple Xraid below it. Part of our summer project this year is transitioning fully to them after their testing period these past few months.

Now if I could only convince them to buy a few more.

Photo Hunt Week 10: Books

Slice of heaven.

Ahh… something I truly love. Books.

This is only a sample of my collection… though at the moment, it’s truly not the impressive looking, since it’s confined to two bookshelves due to space. In truth, I don’t have that large of a collection… but I have a good sampling of Fiction and Epic Fantasy (my genres of choice), and I’ve tried, over the years, to collect most of it in hardcover. You can see on the top shelf my rows of paperback stacked on top of each other. Most of these books are from my days working at Hastings, and, unfortunately, have the tell-tale sign of free books from an employer: their covers have been removed.

You can see here that I use my bookshelf for more than just books, however, and have a few bits and pieces that I’ve been given and collected over the years, all of which are dear to my heart.

Just like books, really.

Photo Hunt Week 9: Flame

Flame on!

I’m terribly late again this week. Though I do have a somewhat legitimate excuse this time. Aside from work and the usual bits that occupy my time… I’ve gotten terribly ill the past few days. I was doing good recovering from my last bout of flu related illness, when this second wave has pretty much shut me down again.

But it can’t keep me from this blog forever. Sickness, away! I have a photo hunt to do, after all.

This week brings a subject close to my heart. Flame. I’m a bit of a pyromaniac… though possibly not quite as much as my close friend, Vicky. The lantern pictured in this shot is an old family heirloom that I inherited when my folks moved away a few years ago now. It was always something I was fascinated with as a kid, because of that whole brass “shiny” factor, and, well, it produced really gorgeous flames when the power went out. It’s one of the few things I’m glad I’ve been able to hold on to… a little happier slice of my childhood.

Be sure to check out Vicky’s very cool picture of smoldering goodness.

And Nic has joined the ranks as well! Her quite sexy photo can be found here.

Photo Hunt Week 8: Keys

Keys in an unmarked door.

This is just an everyday door at work… with my work keys in them. I had some grand ideas for this shot… but the image in my head was much harder to achieve than I first expected. I do like the look of this shot though… taken from an angle most of us don’t see anymore. Kind of a kid’s eye view.

I love what Vicky has done for this week’s update, as she has some really sexy keys in her collection. Yes, keys can be sexy. Like spoons.

I have to apologize for the lateness of this photo hunt entry, as well. Domestic bits have beaten me down lately it seems. I have yet to get those floss bundles together as well, and have at least made the solemn vow to get my ass in gear this weekend.

You hear me, ass?

Bridge to Dear Lord This Is A Depressing Movie

So, after my successful completion of yet another floss fairy mission today, Shawn and Danie asked if I wanted to go see a movie. When I queried as to what movie we could possibly go see, they suggested the recent release, Bridge to Terabithia.

Now I know I read this book as a child. I distinctly remember the name, and I vaguely remember it being about two friends and a magical fairy tale kingdom they create with their imagination. I remember it being good, as well. But that’s about all I remember.

What I had completely forgotten is how truly sad the story is.

I did like the movie for the most part. It’s mainly aimed at a younger audience, so don’t expect something too terribly deep and engrossing. There are also a few places, early on, where they try to hard. Growing up and adolescence is awkward enough as it is. They didn’t need to make it even more awkward by throwing in poorly done caricatures of bullies and typical teen social angst. It does get it’s point across, but there are still parts of the movie where I couldn’t help but cringe.

But this story is still mainly about those two friends, and something special that they share. Even if they do seem completely schizophrenic and insane at times. They are acted beautifully by the two starlets that portray them, and was one of the main saving graces of the film.

I’d recommend giving it a view, if only because I have always had a great love for tragedies.

If anything, it makes me want to read the book again.

I, Floss Fairy.

Today I shed the frail, common exterior I usually haul around during the doldrums of everyday life, and became my alter-ego.

Today… I was a floss fairy.

So I thought I would let those interested have just a little peek into a day in the life of a floss fairy. Complete with pictures!

Your mission, should you choose to accept it...My day starts with waking at about 11am or so. Because fairies need their sleep, you see. After performing all the proper morning rituals, I finally get around to printing out my mission dossier. This has all the targets I need to acquire for a successful floss fairy mission, and, as you can see, there are usually quite a few. But I am a professional. No list will phase this fairy, no matter how long. And, of course, coupons always help. ¡Viva la frugality!

A certified Fairy Transportational Vehicle.After perusing the mission objectives, it’s time to head to the Floss-mobile. Which is currently the fine vehicle you see pictured here. Transportation is key for a floss fairy, especially when the craft stores are several miles away. But you know what they say… neither snow nor rain stays this fairy from the swift completion of my appointed stashing.

Raindrops keep falling on my... windshield.And it did rain.

I'm makin' mashed potatoes!But thankfully my trusty companion Gir kept the gloom away.

And then he baked a cake.

Joann's FabricsAt any rate, eventually I found my way to my first stake-out location… Joann’s Fabrics. At the risk of life and limb, I now bring you a picture that my scare some of you…

How do you hunt floss?  Track it to it's lair!Floss in it’s natural habitat.

It takes about an hour or so to get all the floss collected and tucked away in a shopping basket, checked out, and paid for. Now, for the most part, floss fairies have no natural enemies and can live in harmony with most other craft-minded people. There are, however, one subset of individuals that look on floss-fairies with true fear and dread.


When you walk up to a check out aisle with a basket of over 200 individual skeins of floss, you can see that look of doom in the cashier’s eyes. A cold sweat breaks out over their brow, and they frantically begin worrying about things such as if there’s enough tape in the machine for the huge receipt that it will have to print out, or if they accidently drop a skein of floss into the waiting bag without scanning it, robbing the store of another precious 20 cents. And, of course, calling down the wrath of the inventory manager.

The outgoing signs of all this worry is, of course, inane chatter.

Although, granted, there’s not much else to do when scanning in 200 items for over 10 minutes.

One of these days I will just completely break a cashier and they will run, screaming in terror from my waiting basket of floss. Mwhahahah!

*ahem*… Anyway, my purchase completed, I generally find that visiting just one craft store is generally not enough when it comes to floss. The first place you go to is always missing some of the skeins you need… which means that you have to head to the next stake-out location…

Michael'sMichael’s. Thankfully here I was able to fill in most of the gaps in my mission objectives list, save for a few pesky skeins I just couldn’t hunt down. These will be marked as missing when the bundles finally ship, with a heartfelt apology and feeling of sorrow in not being able to be quite as thorough as a floss fairy longs to be.

Floss!At the end of the day, though… I can still take pride in a job well done and several large bags of floss… as well as a receipt a mile long to go with it. This is my calling. My purpose.

I am a floss fairy.

I can only aspire to one day earn my wand and my wings.

Tomorrow… the bundling process!


Chia herb garden!

For Christmas this year, Danie’s mom did something I wasn’t expecting… and bought me something. Evidently she overheard at some point that I wanted to have my own little herb garden. This desire in itself is somewhat strange for me. I’ve always been in denial when it comes to gardening. Growing up, I felt at times like I was used as slave labor in the garden. And my parents had a huge one. No 40 acre farm or anything, but the garden and the produce that came out of it was nearly a daily thing I had to deal with in some form. So for a long time I swore to myself that I would never do any gardening.

I’m finding, though… that I miss it. Having fresh vegetables handy is something I wish I had at times now that I’m starting to cook again. And I figured a good first step in that respect would be to start growing some herbs indoors.

And here is the start to that endeavor! It’s not a lot yet, but I’m hoping to add to the selection of herbs at a later date, after I see how these go. Plus I figure it’s a good start to getting my feet wet with taking care of plants again… before I take on a bonsai like I want to. The kit Danie’s mom bought is pretty simple. It’s four terracotta pots with these funky soil sponge thingies. The only scary part is that it’s a Chia Herb Garden… the same Chia as those really scary Chia pets that get advertised over here.

So here’s to fostering and nurturing a green thumb again. Hopefully I manage not to kill all of them like I’ve done in the past.

Photo Hunt Week 7: Critters

Awww.  Pout.

I love this photo. You must all be getting tired of the household pets by now, but I couldn’t help myself when I came across this older picture. Nakita really is one of the cutest puppies. Ever. She almost makes me want to get an American Eskimo when I get my own dog finally. Though I still think I’m going to stick with my dream of having a German Shepherd.

Isn’t she cute, though? *melts*

You can find Vicky’s way cute photo here. Some day I’ll get a photo of Nakita playing with the squirrels in the yard. And my head will explode from the cuteness overload.

Photo Hunt Week 6: Window

Rain, rain, go away.

I’ve had this image in mind for this shot for a while, though I’m not entirely happy with how it turned out. I had forgotten what a mess the window on the east side of the house is, as its sheltered by the fenced off yard and doesn’t get very much attention. The cat pictured here is Diana, and she gets a bit neglected of late. She perches there and tries to live vicariously through the other animals in the yard. It was a bit misty this morning, as well… so it has that whole dream-like rainy day look.

Photo Hunt Week 5: Autumn

This is Halloween!

This weeks’ photo hunt update was a tough one. Unfortunately I haven’t had my digital camera long enough to get some nice autumn shots of the leaves turning, so I had to dig into my archives and find something a little less recent. And, for me, autumn has always been strongly associated with Halloween.

Shawn’s little nephew is the one hamming it up in this shot. He can be a troublemaker, but he’s a good kid all in all. The jack-o-lanterns are our labor of love for Halloween 2005. On the left, you have Shawn’s mom’s jack-o-lantern, Shawn’s jack-o-lantern in the middle, and mine on the far right. All of them turned out awesome, and the picture of them glowing happily at night is incredibly cute as well.

Vicky has outdone herself this week, and you can find her picture here. It is absolutely stunning, and I wish autumn was here again already.

Photo Hunt Week 4: Furry

The sunbathers.

As most of you probably know by now, it gets cold here this time of year. And when its the middle of January and the sun makes an appearance, it’s generally something to be appreciated.

The animals in the back yard certainly do.

You’ll have to forgive the misfit cat. She’s not very photogenic. Plus I had to snap this through the glass of the back patio door, or the animals would of gone crazy for the attention. These are Shawn’s pets… well… his mother’s really but she’s seldom here at this point. The dog is an American Eskimo named Nikita. The cat was saved after a run in with a car and is appropriately named Bump. She’s the type of cat I’ll actually tolerate. She stays outside and enjoys her place out of doors.

I just love how Nikita has that glazed over, “damn this feels good” look.

Vicky’s awesome, as always, piccie can be found here. Isn’t he cute?

Sugar coated.

Sugar trees.

I know it’s way too soon to be posting another photo-hunt image, but I took this on the way to work this morning and had to share again. This has always been one of my favorite parts of winter, when the frost and snow combine just right to cover everything with that all too pretty sugar frosted covering.

It never fails to make me giggle like a little kid when I get to go outside to a white covered fairy-tale setting.