2010/11/30

Two-fer Tuesday: Something Different

DaGoddess @ 04:00

Had to try something different this week. I have a lot of great music that doesn’t fit in with a theme or whatever, so it’s kind of nice to just pull it out whenever I get stuck.

I found Jilly Tracy via Scrubs, if you can believe it.

And this one? Well, it sort of explains itself.

Completely unrelated and yet both give me the pause I need in my day.

2010/11/29

Words of the Day

DaGoddess @ 16:58

Fnern. From John Cleese. So, well…there you have it.

Concupiscence. Sexual desire. Lust.

Both interesting words. Both new to me. Neither of which explains the intense onion breath I’m currently sporting. Oh well.

2010/11/25

Happy Thanksgiving!

DaGoddess @ 06:40

Happy Thanksgiving to all! I know have many reasons to be happy and grateful. I’ve been incredibly blessed with a wonderful family and fantastic friends.

This past year has been particularly challenging for me. It’s also been very rewarding. I’ve discovered an inner strength I didn’t know I had, discovered a sense of determination I thought was long gone, and I couldn’t have done it without all of you cheering me on, helping to bring me back to earth when necessary, and yet still encouraging me to spread my wings and fly.

I’ve made some lovely new friends along the way. They have inspired and encouraged me, helped clear the way for me so that I wouldn’t stumble about, and they’ve proven that I have really great taste in friends!

Thank you, everyone. Thank you for believing in me, for having my back, for brightening my life.

To my family, I can only say that I miss you all more than words can say. I wish I could be with you today, but Christmas is closing in and I wouldn’t miss that for the world. Thank you for supporting me on this journey and for the love you give. I love you very much!

I hope each of you are as blessed as I.

2010/11/24

Punkin Chunkin’

DaGoddess @ 09:23

Why not? It’s fun!

Longest Upload Ever. EVER!

DaGoddess @ 07:59

Don’t know what the deal was. But I finally got some photos post from 10-09-10.

Human Nature at Imperial Palace

2010/11/23

Two-Fer Tuesday: Motown Edition

DaGoddess @ 04:00

I refuse to go cold turkey (despite it being Thanksgiving week and all) for an entire month when it comes to Human Nature. I’ve seen their show eight times thus far and, honestly? It’s damn good stuff. I was hoping to get in a couple more shows before the group headed off on their Australian tour, but that didn’t happen. So, for now, I’ll have to make due with their YouTube videos.

Hey, I hear you mumbling over there. Don’t question why I’d need to see the show so many times! I said it was good and I meant it. Let me put it this way: when everything else in this crazy town of Las Vegas relies on huge spectacular acrobatics and contortions and makeup and illusion and sex and explosions, it’s really refreshing to be able to go see a show where music matters to the extent that it does with Human Nature. This isn’t just some tribute show. It’s a celebration of all the great Motown hits. Four guys singing their hearts out, dancing up a storm, and enticing you to remember a time when music was king and we were all prom queens. You walk out of the show feeling young and alive and energized! You’ve spent 90 minutes singing and dancing along with those sweet harmonies and you don’t care who saw. How many times has that happened to you? That’s what I thought. So don’t question me on my tiny addiction. It’s the disease AND the cure.

Music? You wanted music? Okay, here we go!

And lest you think that’s all there is, let’s have a couple bonus songs, shall we?

There. That’ll get me through a couple hours. Only 670 hours or so to go until I get another live fix.

2010/11/22

Wee Update

DaGoddess @ 20:43

I’ve been without reliable internet for far too many days as you may have noticed. Damn neighbor hasn’t paid his cable bill lately, I guess. Sheesh. He has little consideration for freeloaders! But seriously, we had some connectivity issues that have now been resolved as I have a killer portable modem from my friend who is (the bastard) going to Australia for a month. Not fair. Except he will be working the majority of the time. With a band! Man, if only I’d kept up with my music lessons all those years ago…that coulda been me!

/whinge

Anyhow, so I’m back online with consistency and that’s a good thing. As I said, I’m losing my favorite act for a month, my roommate’s gone for at least six weeks, and I’d be totally bored without the internet. And lonely. Sigh.

/really ending whinge now

Went to see the doc today for pain clinic and my BP was 152/95. Lack of sleep and pain much? Yeah. I drove all the way down there, sat there waiting, only to be told that we’ll schedule my injections for the future. Sometime. He did tell, however, that there were areas on my last scan that were worse than what I’d been led to believe. He pointed out the one section in my lower back that’s out of whack and then the area in my upper back…and showed me where he’d go for the injections. They’re not quite steroid epis I’ll have, but they’re something and that’s good enough for me. He’ll also do some trigger point injections. Now those I like a lot. The relief is always incredible. And according to the doc, because he’s going to do them while I’m under (5 minute sedation), he’ll be able to get the spots while I’m a bit more relaxed and that helps the absorption of meds or something, providing extended relief. I was all, “I’m in! Let’s do this!” and then he said, “no, we have to wait for the insurance company to approve it.” At that point, I do believe I was feeling…oh, shall we say…crestfallen. I went off to check out and get scheduled and the doc calls out after me, “wanna Toradol injection today?” I had to laugh. That was pretty funny. (My chart has big red letters with allergies all over it now.)

I posted something about my visit on FB and my dear friend sends me this email: “I simply demand you get well and not die on me before this site [we're working on a new website] gets going. Have some consideration. I’m counting on you and your writing output will be decidedly less if you’re dead. Think of me. Think of the children! Get well, friend. This chronic pain/no sleep thing sounds completely dreadful. Let me know if there is anything I can do.” My response was thus: “For one thing, you can send me a hot Australian man [though I asked my friend to bring one back with him, I'm not holding out any hope]. Eye color, hair color are unimportant. I prefer him to be at least 5’10″ though. However, if an Aussie is unavailable, I will gladly accept a Scotsman or even an American. Indeed, any of the above would be fine. An Englishman with good teeth works, too.” I don’t really need a man, but heck, it never hurts to share your wishlist, right?

But mostly, “Writing output decidedly less if I’m dead…lol! Best get well I’ve ever heard!”

Okay, no. I’ll take the guy.

Since I had a lot to get done today, I’ve been having myself a little tea party. Four kinds of tea, baby! Organic Earl Gray was a little peppery and good. Lipton tea? Classic. Never goes out of style. Jasmine green tea? An absolute delight! And then there was this lovely little organic oolong… I’m switching to decaf shortly. Gotta sleep tonight. I’ve been absolute toast of late.

What else is going on? Hmm, we have snow up on Mt. Charleston. That’s not too far from the ol’ homestead. It’s been chilly here, too. I have the heat on, I’m wearing sweats and a sweatshirt, and I’m considering dumping the next cup of tea directly down my shirt to see if that helps warm me.

Not going home for Thanksgiving. Talked with both kids about it and they understand. Talked with my sister today, too.

Other than that, it’s been relatively quiet around here.

2010/11/18

Oh Lord

DaGoddess @ 03:36

My lungs exploded yesterday. I couldn’t sleep for more than an hour at a time, which was really a pain in the ass because I had to go deliver photos to the chapel but couldn’t because I was one raw, jangly nerve of unslept, unkept horridness. Couldn’t even find anyone to drop off discs for me.

Oh, and yeah. The photos. I HAVE to learn how to build action sets for Paint Shop Pro and I have to learn how to put those actions into batch editing so that I can pull files and run them through the program and let it all run the basics at once instead of me having to do each step every single time, which only causes me to slow down and burn out during editing.

A run on sentence. That’s what I’m reduced to.

I’m a glimmer in the air. A wisp of nothing floating by.

Until I get some sleep!

Which I’m going to do shortly.

But, in case you’re curious about what some of the wedding stuff looked like, I uploaded five…might add more later. Right now, all I want is to not look at anything involving lace or flowers or vows or ministers for the next two weeks. Not unless it’s me getting married. And no…no one has asked.

I have a long way to go before I’m happy with these photos. I need lenses that work (my 50mm can only be used in manual focus for portraits and my 35-135mm works only sporadically) and I need to find consistency with my flash work as it pretty much challenges every fiber of my being right now.

Gotta get a handle on this. all of it. quickly.

sigh

2010/11/16

RETIRED CHIEF TWOFER TUESDAY

Musical Guest @ 09:32

Good morning. I am extremely honored to be able to post for today’s twofer. One of my favorite bands is Pink Floyd. This is a band that has not gone without its share of ups and downs. They’ve had two major changes in the bands lifetime; the first being the rumored breakdown of Syd Barrett that eventually led to his leaving the band. At that time David Guilmour joined as one of the lead singers and guitarist. Then in 1985 Roger Waters left. There was a law suit and he lost giving the name to the remaining band members. They published two original albums and one compilation minus Waters with relative success. Guilmour and Waters have very distinct sounds and it is very prevalent listening to “The Final Cut” with Rogers and “A Momentary Lapse of Reason without Waters. So here’s today’s songs, one with Waters and one without.

One with….

And one without…..

Randomosities and Three Thank Yous

DaGoddess @ 03:18

I’m so far behind reading Go Fug Yourself that I need about six months to catch up.

I’m not quite so far behind on CakeWrecks.com, but that’s still 3 months of steady reading.

The major project on my plate at the moment is the editing of three weddings I shot on Saturday. Now, these aren’t big ticket jobs or anything and I don’t want them to be. But I still take a great deal of pride in the work I turn in. Ceremonies are about 7 minutes long. Then we spend 45 minutes getting photos. You know, that sort of thing. I can take longer if I want. Or I can snap a lot of mediocre images and turn those in. The thing is, whenever I shoot, I want a decent number of images that I’m proud to show someone. So, today, I grabbed MOBD and hauled his ass down to the chapel with me while I turned in the wedding images I shot Thursday. I wanted his input on how I can light areas better, how to achieve better results, etc. And also to have him talk me out of a couple crazy ideas I had…for a job…that pays me less than $100 every gig. For the time being. Cuz, you see…part of me thinks if I can really find a way to create beautiful images that will sell above and beyond the few images included in the package the couple buys (I get commission on any extra purchased photos)…If I can conceive of something new and gorgeous and inspiring, 1) I am sort of branding myself as the creative who can increase the quality of the images and increase the bonus sales, thus, hopefully guaranteeing I work there regularly, and/or 2) I’m making more work for myself on jobs that go very quickly and require nothing spectacular from me. Sometimes creative is just more work. Sometimes creative is genius. I fall somewhere in between on that wide spectrum. I want to keep doing…keep trying…keep…on…going…

I lean more toward #1. I wanna be that kind of photographer. I want to keep working with this lovely group of people. How did it even happen? Music community connection. The videographer is someone I know through music. Took us months to meet after we became FB friends (we have a lot of the same friends in our musical gang), but when we did meet, it was very cool and easy and we fit. He lost a photog at this chapel where he works and thought to call me and now I just want to show him he can count on me 1) to be there, 2) to do the job that needs to be done, 3) get my work back to him on time, and finally 4) want to raise my worth as a photographer in his eyes where I’m the first person he wants to book, pay more, and help me create better images that will profit the chapel and me. Pretty reasonable goal, I think. The rest of the team, the coordinators, are lovely women who are just so sweet and funny and incredibly good at their jobs. I truly enjoy the time I’ve spent with them. So, to my musician friend who hired me for this gig, THANK YOU!

To my dear friend of a musical young lady, THANK YOU! for your kind and generous support, and for sharing some music that is always on my playlist. (Working on something visual to go with the written portion of my lovefest…you’ll see.)

And really, truly, mega THANK YOU to my bff, CWW. You have officially pulled my ass out of the most depressing fire to which the world would have ever born witness. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! You made me go back to the bathroom three times to reapply makeup before I could head out and take care of business. I love you, girlfriend! THANK YOU! Check your email.

Back to randomosities:

I need to get a new lens to replace the one that has died. DIED. And I need to get my own flash unit(s) since I’m shooting a lot of events where I need to use flash. I still also need to get my 7D, but that’s a biggy and I’m not near ready to even put one on layaway. I will get there though. Once I repay bff CWWW.

Did I blog about Little Dude’s miracle report card? I know I posted to facebook, but….4 As and 2 Bs. Yep, for a young man who was sinking last year, he’s done a magnificent job of pulling his ass out of the fire and getting back on track. Can’t wait to see him and give him a big hug for that! Just as I can’t wait to get back and give Mojo a big hug for completing all her community service and taking care of business after her little Labor Day weekend problem. I am so proud of her for facing this head on and making things right. That takes guts and she has ‘em.

I’m desperately in need of some family time. I miss them. Don’t know how I’m going to pull it off since this “check engine” light went on. I popped open the hood, checked the engine, saw it was still there, and yet the light continues to insist I check it again. I think a good oil change and maybe new plugs will take care of everything. It hit 92,000 miles when the light came on. It should be a simple fix. Again, my check from the four weddings, the rebate on my phone that I had to get when the other day, the rebates on my gallons and gallons of anti-freeze, and the check I get from the record label for my photos and minimal design work…whatever’s not spent repaying bff CWWWW…goes into the car. Hoping it all happens within the next week. I like to maintain forward momentum.

I love y’all.

2010/11/15

40.2336 Kilometers

DaGoddess @ 03:02

One of my top five songs at the moment…and yeah, I’m workin’ the metric system, baby!

“It’s twenty five miles from home
Girl, my feet are hurting mighty bad
Now I’ve been walking a three day, two lonely nights
You know that I’m mighty mad
But I got a woman waiting for me
That’s gonna make this trip worthwhile
You see she’s got the kind of lovin’ and a kissing
A make a man go stone wild
So I got to keep on walkin’
I got to walk on, oh ho ho
I, I, I, I’m so tired
But I just can’t lose my stride”

Tell me this tune doesn’t kick some serious ass.

Come on feet, don’t fail me now!

Did I already blog this? I may have. I don’t care. I love love love this tune. It’s part of my musical therapy. Sure, sure, I love to see Human Nature do their version, which is wonderful, but while I’m here at home, I turn to Edwin Starr. Listen to those horns! And that killer rhythm section.

Excuse me while I go dance. It’s Monday and I need the kick start.

Psst, Hi!

DaGoddess @ 00:17

“Plainness is not necessarily simplicity.” ~ Frank Lloyd Wright

And no posts is not a sign of inactivity.

I’ve been a little busy. But’s it’s all good. Except for whatever update that’s causing ALL my cookies to be wiped out (and not just the bad ones). Not sure why or how this happened, but the last update to the computer, to the browser, and to my anti-virus program seems to have worked in concert to make everything wonky.

Excuse me, but I don’t like it!

Sigh.

What have you been up to?

P.S. We’re so weird here in Vegas that our weather reports include temp listings by intersections. Forget neighborhoods or community names. We use street names! Such a silly place.

P.P.S. Last week I hit my one year mark here in town. Seems both impossible and kind of like it’s been forever.

2010/11/11

Veterans Day

DaGoddess @ 02:03

How do you thank someone you’ve never met? How do you let them know you appreciate their efforts to keep you safe and free?

All I can think is to say, “Thank you!” and to support organizations that help our military and their families. The USO, Soldiers’ Angels, Cooking With The Troops, Tell Them Thanks, Wounded Warrior Project, and many other great service groups out there who share the deep sense of honor and appreciation that we feel. (Some of these groups can be found here.)

In a world where it is increasingly easier for us to shut our doors and turn a deaf ear to the needs of others, it has become even more imperative for us to reach out to the military community and give words of thanks, hugs, buy a vet a cup of coffee, put a smile on a child’s face, say a prayer, plant a flower or tree in someone’s honor, make a donation to an organization, VOLUNTEER with an organization. Do something.

Without our military, our freedom is not guaranteed. Our safety is not guaranteed. Men and women stand at the ready, near to home and far away, always ready to defend us…always ready to defend you, defend your children, your parents, your neighbors, and mine. They make sacrifices so that we remain free.

Go say thank you…some how, some way…you’ll feel something well up within you that you never knew existed.

And it would be remiss if I didn’t remind all that today is the final day of the Soldiers’ Angels Valour-IT fundraiser. A couple dollars donated to providing the wounded with voice-activated laptops while they recover from injuries is a fantastic way to start saying THANK YOU, US MILITARY and FAMILIES!

Special thank yous go out to my father (Navy), my ex-husband, his dad, his uncle and aunt (Marines) and his cousin (Navy and Coast Guard), and to the many friends and their families who have given of themselves. More thanks to the families and organizations with whom I’ve worked over the last several years. Thank you!

Pam also has a list of places offering free or discounted food or services today.

2010/11/09

Two-fer Tuesday: Jan’s “Mellow Me Out” Edition

Musical Guest @ 04:00

Last week was a tough one, so I’m going for maximum relaxation and blood pressure reduction.

“Paulistana #1″ was composed by Claudio Santoro (1919-1989), and is one of my favorite pieces of music. My only complaint about it is that it’s so short.

“The Vanished Gardens of Cordoba” is by Ray Lynch. Most of his music is strange in a New-Agey-hippy-dippy kind of way, but beautiful. This one is a little more accessible I think, and is accompanied by some really gorgeous photography which is as calming as the music.

Plus, a bonus track for those who like a cappella: Steeleye Span.

Jan/CascadeExposures

2010/11/07

Best Movie Lines

DaGoddess @ 14:49

At least this week:

“Howard… have you been reading books about wolves?”

and the more romantic, “…and I thought, if I touched her hand it would be just like stepping into a pool of deep water.”

Both from Visioneers.

Hey, if I can’t be out hangin’ with rock stars, I’m gonna watch movies! And that, my friends, is exactly what I did, and what I’m doing.

(Cough stage, mild congestion, body aches, but no longer wishing a bolt of lightning would strike me dead. We call that improvement around these parts.)

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