Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Jan 27th/338

Girls night & a bit of an early birthday celebration for my oldest daughter who will be 21 Friday. She is planning to leave town to visit some of her college friends at the U of I where she went to school for a year and a half so she will not be celebrating with me!

My middle daughter was too busy celebrating the end of Jan Term with her college friends so it was just my oldest, my youngest and myself for the night since my husband is out of town and honestly, he is not the pedicure type. We got pedicures and went to Azteca for a dinner of nachos although we mostly filled up on chips and salsa. Yum! My youngest decided she didn't want Mexican at the last minute so she opted for chicken strips for the 4th time in the last 5 days.
Pentax Optio Z10, automatic

Jan 26th/339

My middle daughter answers the main switchboard where I work and where she goes to school. It isn't a job that she wants to do for life as she has learned over the last eight months. Good thing her career goal is really to be a physician's assistant. Switchboard operator is a good college job though as she gets to study, play on the internet, watch movies on slow days and gets paid. It is just a bit boring and somewhat isolated I have to admit. Everyone needs that job sometime in their lives that helps them figure out what they never ever want to do as life career. The college job I had that made me decide that I needed to finish college was at a mushroom farm picking mushrooms. Manual labor-YUCK!
Pentax Optio10, automatic

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Jan 25th/340

49 Degrees North Resort from the parking lot at 5:30 pm as we were pulling out of our makeshift campsite. All I can say is that FAST Blast was finally over and we were happy to leave before 8pm or later. The Slalom Race ended with a few timing mishaps, but results were done, awards were presented and we were going to be able to go home and take a real shower! Allowing us to close the chapter on what is probably our last FAST Blast.
Pentax Optio10, night mode

Jan 24th/341

Day 2 of FAST Blast which includes a GS and a Super G race always ends with and an amazing dinner with friends. A very good friend of ours who doesn't ski always cooks dinner for us while we are running the race on the mountain. He takes over another friends cabin and cooks all day. Dinner usually includes an mouth watering marinated brisket, parmesan rice, salad, and fruit cobbler. It is amazing and something we all look forward to at the end of a cold and busy day. It seems that the crowd gets larger and larger every year. I think the count this year was around 40 which included the TD and a couple of the coaches. The evening ended with us celebrating friendship and Chinese New Year by launching Chinese Lanterns that another friend brought over.
Pentax Optio10, automatic

Jan 23rd/342

Friday was the start of FAST Blast weekend at 49 Degrees North. I spend most of my weekend in front of the computer working on race registration and results. This is a photo of the registration table where about 150 racers picked up their race packets that included schedules, start lists, lift tickets and a race bib. An envelope filled with everything a racer needs for the weekend.
Pentax Optio10, automatic

Friday, January 23, 2009

Jan 22nd/343

Here is a picture of what I call "My Ski Chalet on Wheels." In the fall, it magically transforms into a hunting shack and in the summer it is our lake cabin, but on this day it has become our ski chalet for a very long three day weekend. My daughter, my husband and I have loaded the Nomad up with Race timing equipment, junk food and of course the necessities for any good ski family: Ski equipment, beer and wine. It is small at 23 feet, but it is ours and it's portable. We have been known to have had five people staying it at a time during ski trips. My youngest daughter calls it the pup tent next to the huge 5th wheels and motorhomes at the mountain. At least we don't have much space we have to heat!
Pentax Optio10, automatic

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Jan 21st/344

Today was just plain cold! The only great part is that we had freezing fog which creates beautiful frost tips on the pine trees around campus. I took this picture as I was walking across campus with my middle daughter after sharing some sad news with her. My oldest daughter calls it the Narnia photo. The photo not only represents the cold spell we are having but the beauty that can be found in nature, even on a bad day. It is very serene. As one would guess this far in reading this blog, today is not exactly a good day for our family as we lost a member dear to our hearts. My brother-in-law's mother passed away this morning between 5 and 7. She was very close to my children and took care of them often. My kids actually called her grandma. She lived a long life and she died peacefully, but she will be missed. Today made me think of this passage from Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 which is one of my favorites.

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:..."

Pentax Optio10

Jan 20th/345

Jan 20th of this year was a huge day in the history of the United States of America for a number of reasons:

  1. 1. Our new president, Barack Obama was sworn in.
  2. 2. He drew the largest inaugural crowd in history.
  3. 3. His swearing in and inaugural speech drew a huge online streaming crowd from those who could not be in Washington DC making it the most watched live event in our history.
  4. 4. He is our first president with known African ancestry.

I watched across our campus as people gathered to watch the "changing of the guard" at the White House. People were gathered at computers as well around TVs to watch the historical event. Most of all, I enjoyed watching our English Language students as they learned how our government works and saw it in action. All day, I wondered, "What image would sum up my day and this event?" So when I walked into my local Borders that night, I saw this display and knew that I had to take this photo to represent this day in history. I pray that the Obama family will find fun, laughter, & great memories while living in the White House and that President Obama is guided by the Lord, makes good choices and that our country will be in a better state in four years.

Pentax Optio10, no flash

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Jan 19th Photo/346

Jan 19th was the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Holiday. President-Elect Obama deemed it a national day of service. My daughter did her service at home. She was cleaning up our very nasty rental house so she and two of her college friends can move into it ASAP. This is a picture of her priming the bathroom so she can paint it. She was able to wash the floors, all of the walls and prime the basement and part of the upstairs. She really made headway over the weekend!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Jan 18th Photo/347

Yesterday was a blue bird day but we needed to stay home from the mountain and get some work done around home, unfortunately. At least we could look at Mt Spokane from our yard. This is the view from my yard. Lucky me! Not eveyone is so fortunate to get up in the morning and have such a beautiful view.
Pentax Optio Z10, sand and snow mode

Jan 17th Photo/348

The 17th was race picture day which is always crazy. Nothing like trying to get 40 kids to stand still. I remember what it was like when I was teaching full-time and we had to line up wild kindergarteners. I decided to snap this great picture of the cousins who ski together while they were waiting for the rest of their team.
Pentax Optio Z10, auto

Jan 16th Photo/349

The 16th was a frosty morning. The trees were beautiful so I decided to take a picture of th pods left over pods that wer hanging on our trees. The ice crystals were beautiful!
Pentax Optio Z10, macro, digital zoom

Friday, January 16, 2009

Jan 15th 2009 Photo/350

Two things that make me happy other than my family: Facebook & Starbucks Coffee! All can be quite addicting!

I like Facebook because it allows me to stay in touch with my college-aged daughters who although they go to the same university where I work, I don't get to see everyday. FB is great as I can see pictures the girls have posted and we can write little notes to one another. I can also stay in touch with some of my past students, employees and friends. It has been great to catch up with people I haven't seen in ages. It truly is replacing the emails I used to get from friends and family.

I like Starbucks Coffee because it just makes me feel good inside. My favorite drink is a Non-fat Sugar-free Vanilla Caramel Macchiato. It is ultimate comfort for me. Nothing like a warm cup of coffee with milk and caramel that is infused into the drink which sinks to the bottom of the cup so that the very last sip gives one an amazing burst of warm caramel.

Today I posted my status on my Facebook as the follows: "Judy wants to go shopping and have a Starbucks!" With that, the most amazing thing happened. My middle daughter called me on her way to SBs and asked me what kind of coffee I wanted and then brought one to me at work. It was such a nice surprise and a great middle of the day pick me up. I really needed it! I am truly blessed to have such thoughtful kidos.
Pentax Optio Z10, without flash

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Jan 14th Photo/351

We own two dogs, mother and daughter who happen to be named Rugar and Remington (Remmie). Imagine that hunting dogs in a hunting family named after guns!

Most of the time, the dogs are outside dogs but at night, the dogs sleep on the floor of our bedroom. Around 7pm in the evening, they start trying to get us to go to bed. They stare at us with their big brown eyes and move between us and the stairs trying to to get us to open the door so they can get up to our bedroom. When we finally decide it is time to go to bed, all we have to do is say is "Bed" and the dogs get excited, run toward our stairs and wait impatiently by the door leading up the stairs so they can be the first one to pick out the floor space in which they will sleep. Like it's a limited commodity or something.

Pentax Optio Z10, automatic

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Jan 13th Photo/352

We love Didier's Tuesday at our house. Well, the girls and I do. My husband isn't exactly the biggest fan as he isn't all that thrilled about frozen yogurt. Didier's Yogurt & More is a Tuesday night treat for the girls and myself as well as many Whitworth University students who live close by. $1.69 is quite affordable for a medium dish of frozen yogurt and for just a little more you can get a topping. When we first moved here in 1993, it was $.99 for a medium and that was the price for years, but slowly with inflation, the price crept up to $1.09 and then $1.29 and now it is up to the $1.69 you see on the sign. It is still a great buy and it truly is the place to be on Tuesday nights! The lunches are great too. Nothing like a bread bowl full of Didier soup or chili on a cold afternoon to warm you up!
Pentax Optio Z10, automatic

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Jan 12th Photo/353

Our family is made up of a bunch of readers. Everyone has at least one book going at any time, but sometimes reading actually becomes work with deadlines. Personally, I belong to a local neighborhood book club that meets once a month. It is a really fun social time where I get to share a meal and an evening with a great group of ladies. It truly is more about the social time than about the reading. Most of the members have known each other for years so I'm kind of the "new kid on the block." The joke in my family as well as in the group is that I always read the book. They can count on it. My husband says that I finish the books because I'm afraid that I'll be thrown out if I don't complete them by the time we meet.

Yesterday, my husband was reading the local newspaper and shared this 6 CHIX comic with me by Bannerman. He thought it fit me perfectly. I don't know if you can read the comic in the photo, but it says, "Why does Louisa have to spoil things by actually reading the book!" After my husband showed it to me, I decided to photograph the comic with our current book of the month, Julia's Chocolates by Cathy Lamb for my photo of the day. It was perfect.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jan 11th Photo/354

On Jan 11th, we decided not to go skiing. We all had a lot of other things to do so we took the day off. My husband worked on the camp trailer, readying it for a ski race in a couple of weeks while the girls and I went shopping for snow boots and supplies.

Overall, shopping in general proved to be quite difficult considering all of the snow we have had in the last few weeks. Not only were snow boots next to impossible to find, but Costco was a mad house. People were everywhere and acted like they were stocking up for the next snowstorm. Apparently it was the first good weekend out and people were out of supplies and going to get what they could while they could. Some people had more than one cart. The lines were all open and the lines were a couple aisles back in the store. Maybe it was a ploy to get me into the candy aisles so I would buy more. Who knows, but it was busy so my daughter and I thought a picture of the Costco parking lot would be the best picture to represent the day.

Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Jan 10th Photo/355

Yesterday was a practice day for my daughter at the 49 Degrees North. My husband and I had to work on timing for the TeleDaze race so it was a busy day. I did get to ski with my little niece, well actually she is a cousin by marriage but she calls me her aunt. We skiied the "animal" trails on Chair 3. She was so funny. I do miss five year olds. We were skiing along when I saw deer tracks and pointed them out to her. She said she thought they were bear tracks and I told her I didn't think so. I continued to try to persuade her and she that they were deer tracks. Finally, after she continued to argue with me so I finally said, "Well, maybe they are bear." She looked at me and said, "No, you're wrong, it can't be. Bears are hypnotized right now." To make the day just that much better, I also ran into a lady I went to high school with who I hadn't see for a number of years. It was great to run into her up there and now we are talking about planning a girls night out for the old MLHS girls. All and all, a great day!

Choosing a picture for today proved to be a very difficult task, but finally I decided to post our ski boots by the fireplace as it was very wet on the mountain and on days like that, we have to dry our gear out by the fire. The white boots were also my Christmas present from my husband. My first pair of new boots. Note: You can also see the knee brace that I wear when I'm skiing too. It is the black thing tucked into my boot.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, manual, no flash

Friday, January 9, 2009

Jan 9th Photo/356

Jan 8th and 9th brought a visit from the man in brown. The UPS man delivered two packages from Creative Keepsakes over the last two days! Yesterday, he delivered the December kit which has been in route for over a week and a half, but wasn't delivered due to poor weather conditions. The Dec kit is called "Little Stories" and comes with 12 little board books. I ordered it to do a little book once a month to cover our lives in '09. In fact, I was going to call the set that, "Our Lives in '09". After I ordered it, I found out about "Project 365" through an email newsletter which sounded like a lot of fun and I wanted to do it instead so I ordered it on Jan 1st. Today the 365 kit was delivered! It is pretty cool! I couldn't wait to open the box. Becky Higgin's this is a great idea and will be very simple to follow as long I continue to follow my photo routine. See Becky's blog entry about understanding the concept of Project 365 and how scrapbookers and non-scrapbookers can succeed in documenting 2009m using this kit:

Now that I have both kits so I'm going to do theme albums for each month with the "Little Stories" kit as follows:

  • All about albums for the months of Jan, March, April, September, and October because those are the birth months for the people in our family.

  • Feb: Skiing

  • May: Livestock Shows

  • June: Camping

  • July: The Pool

  • Aug: Back to School

  • Nov: Thanksgiving

  • Dec: Christmas
Then I'm going to work on the "Project 365" Album daily. I'm very excited! Here is a picture of both of the kits I've received in the last two days. Plus, I even tried the manual settings for the first time on my Cannon SLR when I took the photo. Thank you UPS man and Becky Higgins!
Canon Rebel EOS XT, manual, no flash

Jan 8th 2009 Photo/357

Jan 8th led us to "The Great Thaw". Water was everywhere. We were fortunate as we haven't experienced any real flooding from the creek, but Western Washington is under water. I chose this photo in contrast to a week ago when we were buried with snow. Easy come-Easy go!

I wish I would have played with my light meter a bit more as this was on my way to the work and the white balance is a bit off in the foreground. Oh well.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Jan 7th Photo/358

Jan 7th my daughter hit the wall and asked if she could come to work with me. In my office, I have a little love seat. She cranked up the tunes, crawled behind the love seat and took a little nap. She actually spent most of her day there resting, reading and on the computer. People would come into my office and hear noises and wonder if the roof was starting to fall in as many building in town had been experiencing structural issues due to the weight of the snow. I had to explain to them that it was my daughter. I am blessed that my supervisor allowed her to be here.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Jan 6th Photo/359

Jan 6th was a real challenge to photograph. I was really getting tired of snow and ice so I looked a Becky Higgin's suggestions and still couldn't decide. Finally, as I was reading my email I decided to photograph the email from the school district, once again telling me that my daughter was on extended vacation due to snow. At that rate, I thought she might graduate from the 6th grade when she was 18.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Jan 5th Photo/360

Jan 5th brought me back to work and still the ice had not fallen. This is a photo outside of my office.
Nikon Coolpix 2200, auto

Jan 4th Photos/361

Jan 4th brought us to Schweitzer so my daughter could ski race. It was a miserably cold day that started with snow. This was her last race at Schweitzer as she is planning to hang up her bib this year and retire. I played lodge mom for the day since I tweaked my knee when I slid on the ice while I was shoveling snow one night while my husband helped the coaches. It was a fun day!

Here I go again. I can't decide which racing photo to use so I guess I will wait on the day too. I will probably use the race suit image, but it is vertical and the 365 Kit will only accommodate horizontal images. I may just print the vertical image smaller so it will fit the album and the embellish around the image.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, manual (which didn't work out so well)

Jan 3rd Photo/362

Jan 3rd my daughter had ski racing practice at 49 Degrees North and then we drove to Schweitzer for the first ski race of the year. We drove from 49 to Sandpoint to stay the night at the Super 8 so that we didn't have to get up so early on Sunday morning to drive up the mountain. Later in the evening we had dinner at Panhandler's Pies with friends and then came home and watched a little TV. What was really funny is that we were given a room with three queen beds and there were only three of us in the room.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Jan 2nd Photo/363

January 2nd brought me back to work for the first time since Dec 17th, 2008. When I came back, this photo was the view from my office window.
Nikon Coolpix 2200, auto

Jan 1st 2009 Photos (Happy New Year!)/364

Even though we had a record snowfall in Spokane during the month of December 2008, it continued to snow into January so we welcomed 2009 with additional snow and with the snow the need for snow removal on our farm. Currently, I have chosen three photos for January 1st's entry. I cannot decide which photo to use in my album. One is my husband digging out snow for drainage and to provide space for future snow removal and one is of our house covered in snow. Currently, I am favoring the picture of our house or Larry removing snow. I may wait to decide as we get more snow although today it looks like spring has come.
Canon Rebel EOS XT, auto

Project 365

Well, I ordered my Creating Keepsakes "Project 365" Kit of the Month on Jan 1 at about 9:30 am and it looks like it may be delivered today according the UPS tracking system. Yeah! I would have liked to have it in hand on the 1st, but at least I will have it this week. Unfortunately many other scrapbookers will have to wait as Creating Keepsakes had a lot of issues with their online ordering system and many people couldn't even order the kit and now they are all sold out. Becky Higgins has shared that people should be able to get them at a later date and is encouraging people to take pictures. Other scrappers are skipping the Creating Keepsakes Kit of the Month and just creating their own. Personally, I have been snapping away until I get my kit and then decided that maybe if I blogged about it on a daily basis, I would continue to take pictures so today I will have seven blog postings, one for each day that already passed.

The hardest part of this project so far is trying to figure out what types of things I should put in my album. This is where my perfectionism comes out. I want the perfect shot of the day and what if I take a picture earlier in the day and then something else happens so I have been taking several shots a day, downloading them to my computer, deleting the bad ones, choosing two or three of my favorites, uploading them to my Snapfish account, captioning them and then selecting a favorite of the day using the favorite tool for future printing. So far this is working quite well and is keeping me well organized. I will probably print a week at a time as I can send them from Snapfish to my local Walgreens which is on my way home from work. I have also come up with a captioning system at the site that has helped me. I name the image 365 (the date without characters) an image title and time/place/situation. For example: "365 010109 The Big Thaw" outside of the shop at my house. It is working well.