There are many reasons why I ride. Sense of achievement, that awesome post ride-endorphin kick, social aspects, the satisfaction after finishing a rcae. I even ride to clear my mid. I ride sometimes to be by myself. All alone. Just me.

And so, when I pass someone like they're standing still, then they accelerate to get onto my wheel...well sometimes it makes me cross (it's one of the top things that piss me off, after all).

Can't you see I am riding by myself?

By myself?

I didn't want a riding buddy or I would have one with me.

My training doesn't include pacing someone for half an hour.

So when I had a leech attached to me the other day on my ride, and after asking him to leave my wheel, there was no response.

I saw he was sitting to the right of my wheel. As I was mad, I engaged in some 'path-rage', going from about 35km/h to a skidded stop, thus making said hubbard freak out and ride off path. But at least he was gone.

Sure, it was not really 'bike-love', and I know it was unacceptable, but I get so MAD!

I love it that heaps of people now cycle—but seriously—personal space, super-noongs!

Bondowoso :)

I’ll introduce you to a place called Bondowoso, my grandma’s house.

Sore-sore dari gang kecil ini, mulai tercium wangi sesuatu yang bikin laper…

...Dan di ujung gang, we’ll found this :D

Meet Pak Tejo, tukang sate langganan gue.

mangkal tiap sore, di depan toko ini. This shop is older than I am! hahah.. dulu jual kamera lomo Diana seharga Rp. 5.000 sajaa... whoaaaa, too bad, gw belum lahir di jaman itu.

Sate & Lontong. Superrrr yummy (biasanya seseorang seperti gw normalnya bisa makan 20 tusuk, dan 30 tusuk kalo lagi laper, karena porsi pertusuknya sungguh amat sangat imut-imut.)

And this is my last day in Bondowoso. Good bye all the yummy foods.. :(

It's time to pat myself on the back...

Why? Because if I don't, who will?

Without further ado...some reasons why I'm a "FUN MOM." (This post could also be called...why I'm a "Sucky Wife."

  • I always make popcorn and hot chocolate
  • We have 3 dogs a cat and a fish
  • We have a trampoline even though it looks butt ugly in our yard
  • We always have friends over
  • I let my daughter shop at "Justice" even though I think most of their clothes are tacky and overpriced. (Only on 40% days.)
  • We have gone on too many family trips to count including, Disney, Land of Make Believe, Storybook Land, countless trips to the boardwalk, arcades, zoos, the list goes on and on and on and on....
  • I let my daughters listen to THEIR music in the car. (There's a special place in heaven for moms who have listened to all the High School Musical soundtracks more than 5oo times)
  • I let them play "beauty shop" with my makeup.
  • I show them funny videos on YouTube
I could go on, but I don't want to brag tooo much, since I'm sure you're all fun moms and dads too.

In my next post I just might explore what I need to work on. If I have time.

Being a "fun mom" is a full time job.


Aiden and I went for a blustery road ride on Sunday and the only advantage to riding in the gusty wind being that there were many magpies we spied, however they were not swooping us but remained precariously perched upon swaying branches.

There was one that went to swoop us near Mt Mee village that actually had to abort his attack mid-bomb, lest he get blown along the pavement. Which would have been funny, but alas I think he made it back into the air somehow.

So...I got thinking about the not-so-humble 'pie and how they affect riding.

In spring, every shadow—a blown leaf, a sparrow, a crow—is potentially a 'pie. I have become much more aware of what's going on in my cycling shadow.

What's more, I have named some of the worst perpetrators of swooping in and around the Brisbane area (feel free to elaborate).

Magar—the f*cker up Kelvin Grove rd. Magar is a right twat, and stronger language cannot grasp how evil and malevolent Magar actually is. More a bull-terrier than bird, Magar has been known to take out eveballs as well as using the 'latch-on' approach when swooping unsuspecting cyclists hauling their arses up the little berg on KG road. To be avoided at all costs.


Nigel—Nigel can be found patrolling Samford Rd at Keperra. He hangs around the service station there. Nigel is a part-time swooper, so you may or may-not be attacked by him when riding this way. Nigel is lazy and can be discouraged by a mere flick of the arm.

Marvin—Marvin is further up Samford rd, at the base of the climb over to Samford in Ferny Hills. Because of the high-traffic of cars and cyclists in this area, Marvin can be avoided by making sure there is another cyclist coming in the other direction. A little more persistent than Nigel, Marvin may require several arm-wiggles.

Jose—Jose reckons he is the king of the Magpies, and indeed on Samford rd he probably is (though he hasn't met Magar). Persistent with his swooping, Jose is not afraid to get close and ruffle some feathers. A tricky one to deal with down the descent into Ferny Grove, more exuberant arm-waving is required here.

And that is all for today.

Sick Day...(and Momma's gonna pay.)

I've passed on some of my words of wisdom in previous posts, and today I'm going to share with you another little pearl that I've discovered in my 10 years as a mom.


If you do, then expect to be called a faker.

Don't expect anyone to bring you a glass of orange juice or an extra blanket.

Expect to emerge from your cocoon of fever and sweats to face a house that looks like it should be condemned.

If that isn't enough motivation to stay healthy, than I don't know what is.

Now please pass the Echinacea.

I used to be sort of like one of these people....

...but then I stopped listening to Simon & Garfunkel.

All I Need Is The Air That I Breathe...

Remember that song by The Hollies? I love that song, but I digress.

In my last post, I listed a few things that I WANT. This of course was my short list, but I threw out a few things that I would love to have.

Now I'm going to talk about what we all NEED to have.

Take a look at the pyramid above. This is Mazlow's Hierarchy of Needs. At the bottom are our basic needs: breathing, food, water, sex, sleep, homeostasis (the body's ability to regulate it's body to the outside environment) and excretion.

That's it. That's all we breath, sleep, eat and do poo poo and pee pee. But let's face it, we all WANT much more, which leads us up the pyramid. (Take note that this pyramid doesn't include nice jeans, an iPod, an Apple MacBook or a trip to Florida for Spring Break.)

It's human nature to want things, and to strive to get them. It is also human nature (for most people) to have empathy for our fellow humans and to want to help those in need.

What I question is the government's assertion that they have a say in how much we make, or who we choose to assist.

Rush Limbaugh was a guest on "The Jay Leno Show" last night. He and Jay got into a political discussion (of course). Jay said he feels that it's CRAZY how much money some people make. "It's NUTS," Jay said, "these people are making MILLIONS of dollars. Do they really NEED to make that much?"

According to my research, Jay Leno makes about 16 million a year. Who is he to say some people make TOO MUCH? Who is anyone to say it?

Rush made the same point. As long as someone is making there money legally, who is anyone to say it's too much!? If Jay REALLY feels this way, maybe he can keep a million a year and give the other 15 million to the government and let them decide where to spend it. Great idea right?

Rush stressed the importance of allowing the marketplace to work out problems and to exclude the government from over regulation. He criticized Leno for caring about the salaries of CEOs. Limbaugh stated that it was no one's business what anyone else makes. I agree.

In the same vein, Limbaugh mentioned that one of his primary fears with the national health care system is that it would give the federal government justification to control the lives of American citizens. Limbaugh explained that under the guise of fiscal responsibility to the taxpayers, the government could dictate some very personal freedoms.

I love Rush's philosophy on government. Less regulation, less taxes. The government does not need to step in to solve all our problems. It's not their job. This isn't about political affiliation. For me, it's all about freedom.

In my next post I'll discuss communism and capitalism. (And no, I'm not calling anyone a chill, will ya?!)

I leave you with this video:

That's what I want...

We all have wants. Some are really important, and some completely trivial and shallow. Here are some of mine...(in no particular order.)

  • To have a muscular toned body with no cellulite whatsoever.
  • To have a president in the White House that I think is doing a good job.
  • To never feel jealous or resentful of another person's good fortune
  • To have always have a good relationship with my family
  • To go to Europe
  • To have financial security
  • To have a cleaning lady twice a week
  • To manage my time wisely and make the most of each day

There you have it. That's the short list, of course there are many other things that I want, but that's a jumping off point.

Maybe tomorrow I'll do a little post on what I NEED.

In the meantime, tell me...what do YOU want?

How many pedal-strokes...?

It's been a while, and in that while a lot has happened. The downfall of working in two places of employment, plus self-employed freelancing work, is that you never seem to have very much time to do anything. Mind you, when you can still manage to it in 16 hours a week on the bike one can't complain too much...

Anyway, I have a great idea (or maybe a very stupid one, considering my mathematical aptitude...) to find out how many pedal strokes I have pedalled. I thought it must be, like, 11 million or something, but then on my ride home from Gap this morning I figured out that even a good solid three-hour MTB would be lucky to have 15 000 pedal strokes. And a million is a lot more than that. However, I have ridden a lot longer than three hours in my life, too.

Anyway, look out for that crazy equation sometime in the near future when I have more time. Right this second it is very hectic...

Following a mini-break in Sydney (which consisted of two solid days of driving, and two solid days of catching up with EVERYBODY who lives in Sydney. It was crazy), I have decided that Brisbane trails really are a bit like wheelchair paths. Trying to hit the rocks as hard as you can hit the wheelchair paths results in crazy, out-of-control hardtail. But I suppose that's why duallies are so popular down there.

Likes and Dislikes...

Hmmm...seems giving advice might be my calling. So here's another helpful suggestion...

If you have a website that sells sex toys, don't try to advertise it in the comment section of my blog. Jilly doesn't like it. Capisce?

Okay, onto some things I DO like...

Lucky Brand "Angel" boots in brandy

Tall Hunter "Huntress" Wellies in black

The plaid trend...

I like this trend so much that I want to wear plaid all the time!! I even found a cute plaid dress that I might wear to my brother in law's Vermont wedding in November...

This is the best view I have of it...if you want a better look, go here and let me know what you think.

Sooo, do you like what I like? Do you want to learn more about sex toys in the comment section of my blog? What trends are you into this season?

I will be anxiously sitting by my BlackBerry, waiting to hear from you!

Try to Remember

Try to remember the kind of September
When life was slow and oh, so mellow.
Try to remember the kind of September
When grass was green and grain was yellow.
Try to remember the kind of September
When you were a tender and callow fellow.
Try to remember, and if you remember,
Then follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Try to remember when life was so tender
That no one wept except the willow.
Try to remember when life was so tender
That dreams were kept beside your pillow.
Try to remember when life was so tender
That love was an ember about to billow.
Try to remember, and if you remember,
Then follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow, follow.

Deep in December, it's nice to remember,
Although you know the snow will follow.
Deep in December, it's nice to remember,
Without a hurt the heart is hollow.
Deep in December, it's nice to remember,
The fire of September that made us mellow.
Deep in December, our hearts should remember
And follow.

Wishful thinking

I wish I had my camera when we went to Princess Auto the other day. They had some garden spikes that they were clearing out for around a dollar each. But the sign said something like "Works great in defeating Zombies and Vampires". Great marketing, made me want to buy a few.

And why is it called Princess Auto? It's so clearly a man's store.

5 things I've learned in my 44 years on this Earth...

1. Never EVER ask someone when they're due, unless you are absolutely positively sure they're pregnant.

2. Living above your means and/or trying to keep up with the Joneses will eventually lead to disaster.

3. Drinking to overcome social anxiety is another recipe for disaster.

4. If someone talks about other people to you, you can be damn sure they'll gossip about you.

5. Nobody likes a bragger, but if you meet one, try to understand that they're probably insecure, so give them some attention. (Consider it your good deed for the day.)

More to come...

Happy Sunday!

Because I HAVE TO question everything I do....

Do you ever think what your life would be like if you took all the time you spend blogging, Twittering and Facebooking and did something PRODUCTIVE?

I do.

We all get 24 hours in a day, and those hours are precious. So why do I choose to sit staring at my laptop or BlackBerry when I could be cooking gourmet meals for my family, or running, or decorating the house?

Maybe I could work at a soup kitchen or plant 500 daffodil bulbs in my backyard. I could learn how to paint watercolors, or even, dare I say...get a job. The possibilities are endless.

Sometimes I think I should log my time spent at wasteful computer related activities. Maybe that would bitch slap me into reality.

What do you think?

Should we all do it? Can we admit publicly the time we "waste" on our dirty little habit?

What do you think about undertaking a computer logging experiment? We could log the time we spend glancing at our BlackBerrys, or sitting on our butts blogging or Facebooking and then choose kind of alternative that might make our lives better.

Then we could all report on our progress.

Yeah, I know, that idea kind of sucks....

Or does it?

A Garage!

In some parts of Kelowna, this would be considered a finsished garage! But here, it's just half way to a dream, one where there is no snow on my van, one where a bike doesn't have to come in the house, a compressor has a home, and a guy has some tool space.

NYFW Favorites


Proenza Schouler

Proenza Schouler

Proenza Schouler



Herve Leger by Max Azria

Erin Wasson x RVCA

All photos are from

One of those days!

I'm trying to be positive, I know that negative energy breeds more negativity, I'm really trying...

1. It seems most of my Stamper's group is out of town, but I will still go ahead for the 2 that are coming tonight. It will be nice with a smaller group.
2. I can't order cheques over the phone anymore, I must go to the bank. I need to mail a letter anyways and thank goodness I'm not mailing a 2.01 lb. parcel to Japan, like the guy infront of me, it cost him $80 to mail $20 in clothes that will take 1 week to get there, as opposed to the only other option, cheaper but will take 2 months! I actually thought he was sending it to the moon for that price!
3. I start the van to go to the bank only to have the van sputter and plumes of smoke come from under the hood. Guy across the street gives me the 'look' and I make like I know something and look under the hood, but it's really to make sure there isn't a fire under the hood, and sure enough there wasn't. No biggie, I take Kerry's truck to the bank. I like it better than the van anyways.
4. A lady grabbed the James Patterson book I wanted, after I finished pummelling her, I realized she's my aunt. I don't see her often enough.
5. She tells me to start reading Janet Evanovich, that it's a series, but of course, the library only had #14 and #15, she says "That's okay, read #14", so I take it, it better be good and not confusing. I have to get it, because they didn't have the third No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency.
6. I order my cheques, I get my big wads of cash to pay for the fence, only to realize a dozen people just saw me stick it in my purse and now they may mug me. And I'm sweating like crazy because I'm NOT getting sick, so they'd probably win.
7. My aunt leaves the library, I run, really run, to catch her so I don't get mugged. She's probably my toughest aunt. Between her scrappiness and my hammer fist, we'd do okay. I also didn't tell her that I'm not feeling well and have my life savings in my purse, you never know...
8. I'm getting kits ready for the baby album class, I cut my palm of my hand. I can't handle my own blood, but if I run outside and say to the guys making my garage "Can you tell me if I need stitches, because I can't look at my hand?" I will probably never hear the end of it. And with me feeling sick already, I was very leery to look at my hand. I did it quickly, it's a gash and it's bleeding, but I already knew that because I got blood on that piece of chipboard for your kit! I doubt it needs stitches but I'm not looking, I put the last of 2 bandages on it. Good thing I have bandages.
9. I know I will need a nap. I won't fight it.
10. I have Stamper's group tonight and I think at least one new show starts tonight. I will get Kerry to tape if I remember. If not, I know it's not the end of the world.
11. The mailman is a dork. He won't put the mail in the box because of the construction. He's been known to put it under a 2x4, which is the stupidest thing I've seen. Oh, well, his wife can deal with him.
12. This list makes it look even worse than it is.


My hardworking husband has decided to take a few days of rest before heading out on a business trip, so we have been having a little "staycation!"

Yesterday, we hit the beaches of Bay Head NJ, had a lovely lunch and got back home in time to pick the girls up from school.

Today, we chilled at home and then went to see a movie (We saw "Extract" with Jason Bateman and Ben Affleck-loved it...)

Tomorrow, we drop the girls at school and head into NYC for a little day trip.

I feel like I'm playing hooky from school, only I don't have to worry about the forging a note or having a truant officer show up at my house. (Which did indeed happen when I was in high school, but that's a whole 'nother post.)

Who knows what Friday will bring...a trip shoe shopping? A ride on the roller coaster at Six Flags Great Adventure? Holding hands and running through a field of wild flowers?

I guess I'll just have to wait.

You just never know what will happen when you're on STAYCATION.


Bloooodddd. Not Funny!
Sorry kid, but it is!

Justin Timberlake Plasticville

This is my favourite SNL skit, it was on again on the weekend. I think SNL is the best when JT is hosting. He's hilarious.

Hump Day Again

Not much to blog about.
I might be getting that ear thing again, or the "stomach flu" as the walk-in doctor diagnosed it. My ear is filled with fluff and my sinuses are starting to act up, I've also had a headache since last night.
I'm working on classes, but it's slow going. This week I have 4 nights of classes so I have to clean up every afternoon to get ready for the class in the evening. Kind of puts a damper on productivity. And it's wreaking havoc on my tv shows. Good thing most of them start in the next 2 weeks.
I did some sewing yesterday and got quite a bit done. 17 key fobs in 2.5 hours. Then I ran out of cute ribbon.
And that's about it.

In Addition...

I'd also like to mention that Taylor Swift looked like the ultimate lady in her VMA gowns.

100 posts of awesomeness

Today's post marks the 100th post of Caffeine Fuelled Cyclemania, and has prompted me to reminisce about the year-or-so that has passed between the blogs creation and the present day.

Here are a few things that have happened:

•I quit work at my Sydney company;
•I moved to Brisbane;
•After a few arduous months looking for a house while living with my parents (arrrrgh!), we moved out into our own house;
•We (collective meaning Aiden and I) had new years eve, and were in bed at 11pm (soft!);
•We raced National Champs and both felt like we sucked;
•We remained hopeful for the year of racing to come...;
•Work in publishing seems empty and unethical, I soon look for alternate employment options;
•Aiden gots hit by car—is okay, but bike written off;

Pre-crash, the black lightning looks sweet...


•Aido rides in ambulance, I get to sit in the front! Whee!;
•Is okay—insurance (after paid out...a looong time later) lessens the initial devastating blow of bike-loss;
•Start doing more Cyclinic's in Brisbane;

Oops...missed that one!

•Racing the Sunshine Series, become little Miss, and Mr Sunshine;
•Andy, our friend from far yonder, the 'deep south', gets rear-ended by a car and has to be nursed by the angelic Kelsey;
•Some dirty twatcrust scratches my bike;
•Face near-eviction for having dog in our house, turns out okay;

Who could argue with a dog like Mondog?

And that, my friends, is the blog to date, excluding some frequent angry-cyclist rants.

Okay, I've Milked This Story Long Enough!

I can't leave any of you thinking that I got wasted and flashed my boobs at the Open. So without further ado, here's what happened.

The actual ending to the story is a combination of options B. and C. from my previous post.

When I saw that my friend was freaked out that we had 8 extra guests in the box I called Donald's right hand man in the hall. He was stunned that I thought having all the extra people was a problem!! He insisted that everyone stay.

We then continued to party hearty. There was Lance Bass look-alike tennis pro from one of Trump's clubs in the box with us, and he was like a camp counselor. In an attempt to get us on the JumboTron, he led us all in a rowdy version on YMCA. He poured massive amounts of Trump Vodka in my Diet Coke, which I promptly dumped out when he wasn't looking.

We took turns peeking a Johnny Mac in the broadcast booth, and we waved at Will Ferrell, who was seated directly below us (drinking a pina colada!!!).

It was a wonderful night and a good time was had by all.

And that concludes my coverage of the 2009 U.S. Open.

I can't wait to go back next year. Wanna come with me?

Weekend Wanderings

I took my new lens and went for hike with Kerry. It's going to take a bit of getting used to, but it's great for close quarters and low light. And I can get up close and personal to my subjects and still maintain focus. As you can see with this fuzz plant.

Crawford is great for taking shots but only because the fire took all the shade bearing trees and now it's pretty wide open, the downside being that I got lots of lens flare, even though I like the look, sometimes I don't want it. It makes for 'fuzzy' photos.
Action shot of Kerry getting air.
See, bright, wide open, with lots of charred trees in the background.

We finally got to see the salmon running, and because it's so early in their travels, there aren't any dead fish on the creek edges yet. We took Linus back to the creek because I had seen this rock formation from the road on the way home from mountain biking.
From above.
Linus is in the middle of the heart. It was super bright out hence the blown out areas on his face and the rocks.

We went down to the swimming hole and saw dozens more salmon, the numbers are down apparently. We also saw lots of osprey looking for an easy dinner. I wonder if Mother Nature thought out the whole turning salmon red thing, I mean, they are trying to repopulate the earth. But being bright red when everything else is green, brown or grey makes you stand out, makes you easy prey for meat eaters!

You can kind of see the salmon in the top left of the creek, I was trying to get the duck more than anything, but should have had my 50mm lens on.
Framing starts this week and so do classes! Actually, this week is super busy with classes and Stamper's group! Can't wait to hear how everyone's summer went.

The U.S. Open Moment You've All Been Waiting For...

On the last episode of Caffeine Court, I left you in the Trump Box at the U.S. Open, in a very tense moment.

There I was, sitting in the lap of luxury with my very generous friend and I can see that she is very, VERY annoyed at me.

I feel panic and confusion. I know I have to do something, ANYTHING to make things okay.

What do you think I do next?

A. Get really pissed off and pull a Serena. I threaten to shove a tennis ball down my friend's throat if she doesn't take a chill pill and allow my 8 guests to stay. She tells me I'm a low class, pushy broad and dumps a glass of Pinot Noir all over my cute white Anthropologie blouse. Security escorts us out of the stadium and into our waiting limo. Our friendship is over.

B. Pull Larry (Donald's right hand man) into the hall. Apologize profusely for inviting my friends to stop in without asking. He looks at me like I have two heads and insists that they stay and enjoy themselves. We all enjoy the rest of the night and bask in our good fortune.

C. Feel extremely uncomfortable and don't know what to do, so I go into the bar and do a few shots of Trump Brand Vodka. Next thing I know, I'm completely trashed. I start peeking my head around the broadcast booth to get a picture of John McEnroe. He gets annoyed and I'm told to keep away from the booth. I then decide our entire box needs to get on the JumboTron, so I start dancing around doing the "YMCA" and then flash my boobs at the camera. I spend the rest of the night on the bathroom floor puking.

If you've been reading this blog long enough, you know me well enough to guess the outcome.

So, tell me. What did I do? Do I need anger management counseling? Did I bow and scrape? Or should I head to an AA meeting?


What do you think these would go well with?


These pieces of music would be perfect for after you've found out that you're heir to a foreign throne, and you're entering the royal palace.

Verdi, Aida, "Grand March." The Khedive of Egypt commissioned Verdi to compose the opera. My mom once saw a broadcast of it performed near the pyramids; she says it was a magical, majestic event.

Handel's Keyboard Suite in D Minor, 4th Movement, Sarabande. It was heavily influenced by "La Follia," one of the oldest pieces of European music.

Gilbert and Sullivan, The Mikado, "Behold the Lord High Executioner" & "As Someday It May Happen." The Mikado is one of my favorite operettas (topped only by The Pirates of Penzance!). You definitely want to sing the second song as you start dealing with your new subjects.

Ravel, "Boléro." Ravel thought of a factory when the music was played; I personally think of a grand procession taking place at the Alhambra. I love the bursts of flame in the video; André Rieu's performances are always so much fun to watch. His concert in Atlanta back in 2004 (?) was particularly fabulous.

Beethoven, 7th Symphony, 2nd Movement. This symphony premiered in 1813 for wounded soldiers; doesn't it just zing with the power and energy of the Napoleonic era? On a side note, it was used for the intro scene in "The Fall," a beautiful movie that everyone should see.

Handel, "Music for the Royal Fireworks." It celebrated the end of the War of the Austrian Succession, and was meant to be performed in conjunction with a display of fireworks in London.

"The Black Adder" theme. A must for all ne'er-do-well aspiring despots.

And of course -Arne, "Rule Britannia." The singer's coat is heinous, but the music exudes stateliness.

Crappy crits and cool Cyclinics...

This weekend has been, rather, a non-weekend.

That is because I worked yesterday, and we had a small girls-only Cyclinic today. Mix that in with a crit, and some pre-Cyclinic k's this morning and I am the proverbial sashed crab.

But that's okay, it has been a good weekend nonetheless.

Evening Reading

I borrowed from Marg the first 2 "No. 1 Woman's Detective Agency" books. I finished them in about 3 days. I really enjoyed them, I haven't been reading much. But now I plan to read my manuals and my lessons.

A group from the Photographers' Workshop decided to start the class again on Facebook so that the lessons are ingrained in our brains. This works perfectly for me, I will do it again with my new camera and lens. I am so impressed with it already. Amazingly fast! But it weighs more than 2 lbs. I'm sure. My poor kitten arms.

So what exactly did I get? I got what I feel was about the best camera deal ever. A Canon 50D that looks brand new, a battery grip, 2 batteries, a charger, and a 28mm f/1.8 lens, all in original boxes, all with manuals. Sweet deal! I didn't even know what the battery grip was for, it adds extra power to your camera, extra gripping for larger hands, looks professional, and when you rotate your camera to take portrait photos it has a shutter button on the side so that you don't have to bend your wrist at an awkward angle. Who thinks of these things? I love it!

Me and my favourite mountain biker will be going out for a test shoot tomorrow. Can't wait to see what I can or can't do!
The dogs were more than willing to pose for some shots in the living room. I have the ISO bumped up, I was playing with how high it could go. I did not make Sally pose like this, but you can see her tiny paws now. She's such a good poser.
Okay, so not all dogs were thrilled to pose for me. This one's big 2 tonne head was breaking my ankles. He's such a plum eating baby jerk.

And the beauty of my new lens is in the details, like the dog hair and dust on the couch. Nice.

The cement is all poured, I could not bring myself to adding our initials to the wet cement. It's so perfectly perfect as it is. Framing starts Monday.

The More the Merrier? Aka: Never Invite Jill Anywhere Nice

I promised I'd tell you a story which illustrates how immature I am, and here it is:

What a difference a week makes! Last Friday afternoon, I was sitting in traffic (in a limo which helps soften the blow) sweating my butt off, on my way to watch the U.S. Open. This week it's freezing cold, high winds, torrential rain, and play is suspended. I guess I should be glad I got tickets for the early rounds.

As I've probably mentioned, a good friend of mine belongs to Trump National Golf Club in Colts Neck, NJ. Her husband got us seats in Trump's box for last week's matches.

To say I was thrilled would be an understatement.

The Trump box is right next to the broadcast booth for ESPN so we could peek around and see Mary Jo Fernandez, and John and Patrick McEnroe as they did commentary. Will Ferrell was sitting right below us and we had first class food, and booze. We were giddy.

Anyway, another of my friends has a son who sings the National Anthem every year at the Open. I completely spaced in my excitement and forgot that he was singing THE SAME NIGHT WE WERE THERE.

As they announced his name we got all excited and told everyone in the booth "that's our friend's son!!!" Everyone smiled politely.

At that point my excitement and wine consumption got the best of me. I picked up my phone and called my friend who I could see exiting Center Court with her son.

"Hey!!! It's Jill! We're up in Trump's box, #247!!!! Come on up!!!"

I ran over to Trump's right hand man and told him I had just invited my friend and her family up to say hi. No, I didn't ask. I told.

The family shows up. 2 parents, 4 kids and 2 of their friends. Our waiter offers them brownies, sandwiches, wine and juice boxes. They then proceed to watch the match and make themselves at home.

Finally, I notice my friend who invited me is looking a bit tense.

Oops. I guess I should have asked her before I asked my friend to drop over to the box to say hi. Damn.

I realize I'm in trouble and have to think fast.


some things

1. I will be getting a Canon 50D and 28mm f/1.8 lens today. I am spoiled. I know it. I try not to abuse it.
2. I will owe Kerry big time, I have promised no more eating out, no more buying groceries until we eat the wads of stuff we have, no more shoes, no more magazines, no more coffees, no more scrapbooking stuff, and no more fun until Christmas.
3. If you look closely at Linus's eyes in the header, you can see me holding a plum above my head.
4. Linus ate more than an icecream pail of plums yesterday, Sally ate just about as many. No poopy bum yet.
5. Cement gets poored today!
6. Classes start next week, yay, someone has to pay for a camera!
7. I'm waking up before my alarm goes off, way too early and then I need a nap. Why can't I just sleep a bit longer and not have a nap?
8. It's Sept. 11. Say a little prayer.
9. Sally got trimmed and washed Wed. and Emily says she stinks now, and she says her legs are funny. Her paws got trimmed up, no more Grinch paws, but her legs are furry so she has what Emily calls Drumstick Legs and then Emily makes "Nom Nom Nom" noises and says she could eat them up. And then we take Sally out of the room to keep her safe!
10. If Amy get's married next Fall, we will seriously discus going to Disneyland then.
11. Kerry got his new Dirt 2 game, I probably won't see him all weekend.

I Heart New York

Spring 2010 New York Fashion Week starts TODAY!

Manor Born, Manners Bred

Manor Born, Manners Bred

This is the basic ambiance I want to project this fall and winter.

Upgrading {updated}

I might be upgrading my camera.
I might have a 1.5 yr. old Canon Digital Rebel XTI and Sigma 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 DCOS lens for sale. Together, with 2 batteries, a charger, a filter and hood for the lens, and I believe original boxes for both, with manuals.
I might give you more details if you want them.
I might be crazy.

I'm doing it! I'm getting the camera.
I am selling my other one and the lens. You can find it here... Camera for sale!

How Random Can You Get?

I really shouldn't be on the computer right now, but I feel I've been neglecting my blog and I simply can't let that happen!

So far, I've loved my little political experiment. We've discussed some pretty controversial topics and everybody kept their cool. So much fun.

I'll do some more in a few days, I even have a guest blogger who will step in to discuss healthcare reform. I know you all love THAT subject, so try to contain yourselves!!!

Anyway, since there are bills to pay and laundry piles that need tending to, I'll keep this brief.

Here are some thoughts, let's call them:


I believe that people spend way too much time worrying about how they look and what other people think of them. Humans are social animals, so some concern over appearances and behavior are healthy. I just think we go overboard spending too much on cosmetics, clothes and trying to impress. It's hard to pull away from it when everyone else is doing it, but I still think we all waste too much time trying to be perfect.

If your child wants a dog REALLY, REALLY, badly, you should get one. Yes, they are expensive, and messy and they are lots of work, but they are TOTALLY worth it. If you're considering it. DO IT. It'll be one of the best things you can do for your family.

I don't necessarily think, Twitter, Facebook, my blog and my BlackBerry have made my life better. They have CHANGED my life, but I think they can be really bad for my brain.

I am so, so glad my husband has forced me to clean up the clutter in my car and house. I have fought him tooth and nail, but I always feel so much more centered and at peace when there aren't piles of crap everywhere. May god give me the strength to keep it this way!!

Oh, and by the way, the US Open Friday night was one of the best nights of my life. Which means I really need to get out more!

I have a funny story about the night which illustrates how immature I am, but I'll save it for later!

Happy 9/9/09 to all of you.


So the yard is a mess, leaving the house isn't easy. What door do we go out? Do we have keys for the other doors? Whose idea was it to fence the back yard like that and leave the garbage cans and my pots of herbs over there on the other side of the fence? Where do we park? We have to make sure we duck under the railing when going down the temporary stairs or else we get clothes lined. Luckily the dogs seem to have adjusted quite well.

This is the side of the house, and the driveway. It's also the lumber to build the garage. This was this morning, we now have footings. Check out the junk in the background...that's all the stuff we can't easily get to, our bbq, our winter tires, our Little Tykes kitchen set, patio table, chairs, garbage cans, and pots of dying herbs.

We saw the signs and heard that the salmon were spawning, so we decided to go down the first few days before they started dying and smelling up the park. Well, no one told the salmon that they were running, so we only got to see the big freaky salmon on wheels.

We did see a little squirel. He's right in the middle of the photo.

I worked on my kit stuff. Love that Collage Press stuff.