My New Baby

If you’re one of my usual readers you’ve probably noticed that I haven’t written a blog post in quite some time. I was taking some time off from things trying to get my life to calm down. I had been having a rough time and my mind just wouldn’t shut up. Yeah, Mr. Negative was rearing his ugly head again. That happens sometimes, but never usually for as long as this was. Usually I’m back to my normal self within a few days, but this time I just couldn’t shake it off. And the holidays only added on to the stress. It wasn’t until January when I finally snapped out of it.

Depression is no stranger to me. After all I was diagnosed with Clinical Depression during my previous marriage. I haven’t been on medication for it in years, as symptoms were few and far between shortly after I ended the relationship. I wonder, occasionally, if I should still be on them…

Anyway, enough about that. Onto something more enjoyable…

I used to own a (SLR) Pentax K-1000 with an f2/55mm lens and a 200mm zoom, but after so many years of use something was messed up inside the viewfinder. It looked like it might have had a crack or something, or maybe needed a cleaning, but I couldn’t afford it. A few other things happened and I ended up getting rid of it. (June 1993 to April 2012) That was a sad day for me. I had participated and won competitions and taken hundreds, if not thousands, of pictures with it.

Ever since getting rid of my camera I have wanted to replace it, we just never had the money. Or when we did have the money, something else came up. I had nearly given up the hope of ever getting another camera. But then… Comes the Light*.

For the past few months I have really been enjoying seeing and reading about all-things photography. It had been a passion of mine during my last couple years of high school.
I follow several Photography pages on social media, including blogs here on WP. I had started my own Photography page back in 2014.  At the time I only had use of the camera on my smartphone and a Point-and-Shoot digital camera. And after having owned a 35mm (film) camera, I was just not happy with the results. With that said, I got better results with my cell phone than the Kodak point-and-shoot, which I have now passed on to my kids.

Why am I passing down my digital?

First, my kids have wanted a camera ever since the first time they saw me use a camera. Second, I am hoping that they will enjoy and maybe want to learn more about photography, even if only as a hobby.
And last, but certainly not least, I was finally able to replace my beloved camera… and upgraded to boot.

I am now the proud owner of a Digital SLR! There is a lot to learn. There are many buttons and features on it, but I will get the hang of it.

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Pentax K-50 kit, camera bag, remote, & memory card.

Please excuse the quality and the background. The photo was taken with my LG G Stylo phone.

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Here are a few photos I’ve taken recently while learning about my new baby.

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Photos taken with Pentax K-50

Animals, Nature, Landscapes, and Still Life are my favorite subjects to photograph.

*Comes the Light–is a nickname given me by my late grandfather S.A.M. It goes well with my first name: Dawn.
Photography — the “art of light”.

Homemade Pico de Gallo

My family and I LOVE Mexican food, especially tacos; homemade tacos. There are so many varieties and toppings to put on them. They are so delicious, that we enjoy them at least once or twice a month.

Back while I was in college, I used to work at a Mexican fast food restaurant. (I’m not naming names, but I’m sure you’ll figure it out). At least one of their items had pico de gallo in it, and I loved it! I had never eaten cilantro or green chilies before, until I started working (and eating) there.

Several weeks ago we ordered out from the local restaurant, as I was craving that yummy, spicy sauce. Unfortunately the restaurant failed my expectations. Our order was a mess. Food was not wrapped correctly and was spilling out, lids were not completely locked on containers, etc. It looked like it was just thrown together in the bag. I was very disappointed. I decided, after sending a review to the corporate office, that we would not be ordering out from this restaurant again.

Yesterday I was writing out the grocery list and included everything we needed to make tacos. I got to thinking about that tasty Pico de Gallo sauce and my mouth began to water. I had an idea of what went in it from when I had made it during my work days back in college, however, I decided to do a little investigating just to be sure.

Last night we made tacos, and they were, undoubtedly, the best tacos we’ve ever made. My daughter & I were the only ones to use my new recipe since dear hubby and son don’t like some of the ingredients. My daughter said, “It tastes better than **********’s!” (She’s 8 years old by the way).

Ok, I guess I’ve held you in suspense long enough… ENJOY!

CraftyChick’s Homemade Pico de Gallo
makes about 4 cups

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2 large (firm) tomatoes, diced small
1 medium white onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped (use to your taste)
2 Tbsp lime juice (half a fresh lime)
2-3 Tbsp Green Chile Sauce
salt & pepper to taste

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients, mixing well.
Store in air-tight container in the refrigerator.
It may become a bit juicy over-night, so stir and use as normal.

Last night we used it right away, but I recommend making it at least a day ahead so flavors can blend together. I used some again today in my salad at lunchtime. All I can say is… YUM!!