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.

mynewbaby_3-28-2016_zpsvzbnxmjy
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.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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”.

Advertisements

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

homemade20pico20de20gallo_zpsgrdgwwes

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!!

Forgive & Love

“Out of suffering come the strongest souls. God’s wounded often make his best soldiers.”
-Unknown

 

There may be times in our lives when we face undesirable circumstances, tragic events, or maybe a bully or two.
Our first reaction is usually to get angry, especially if it involves getting hurt by other people. We may be angry for a long time, but we can’t let that anger turn into bitterness or worse, hatred.

Below is a link to an amazing story about a woman who faced horrendous things in her life. Even though she faced life threatening circumstances and was mistreated by those around her, she still found a way to love people anyway.
Talk about grace and a great example of how we all should live.

Always Forgive and choose to Walk in Love

 

God’s Wounded

”Elfriede “Marie” Jakob and I crossed paths over three years ago, when I spent a few weeks in Berlin…”

Blogger Beware: You CAN Get Sued For Using Photos You Don’t Own on Your Blog | BlogHer

With so many bloggers out there who like to use photos, this is an IMPORTANT read. Please reblog to share with others.

I have been quite copyright conscious for the better part of the past decade when I started learning about signature tags. Back when MSN had groups, I joined one group to learn how to make them, and joined a few others along the way.

After awhile, groups were starting to get into trouble for using graphics by various artists and a big controversy started in the Signature Tag community. Some artists were willing to work with groups and individuals as long as they followed the artists TOUs. But more groups were found (especially on Yahoo) that didn’t care to follow any copyright rules.

Many artists banded together and came up with a way to allow us to use their graphics; some free of charge, others you had to pay. I thought it was a fair deal, but was saddened that a few of my favorite artists were pay to use; prices were probably fair but I couldn’t afford it. And there were still many groups/individuals who continued using copyright images with disregard to the Artists.

It’s been several years since MSN dropped groups; some moved to forums. I’m not sure whatever became of the people or groups that disregarded Artists copyrights. But I’m guessing there might have been some that were fined or had legal issues.

Anyway… I think bloggers need to be more cautious when using photos. Either use your own or contact the owner and get permission. Otherwise you’re taking a chance of having legal issues like the writer below had.


Blogger Beware: You CAN Get Sued For Using
 Photos You Don’t Own on Your Blog | BlogHer.
Excerpt from the blog post-

Here’s what I learned about Fair Use:

It doesn’t matter…

  • if you link back to the source and list the photographer’s name
  • if the picture is not full-sized
  • if you did it innocently
  • if your site is non-commercial and you made no money from the use of the photo
  • if you didn’t claim the photo was yours
  • if you’ve added commentary in addition to having the pic in the post
  • if the picture is embedded and not saved on your server
  • if you have a disclaimer on your site
  • if you immediately take down a pic if someone sends you a DMCA notice (you do have to take it down, but it doesn’t absolve you.)

NONE OF THAT releases you from liability. You are violating copyright if you have not gotten express PERMISSION from the copyright holder OR are using pics that are public domain, creative commons, etc. (more

A Fish Tale

I’m not feeling the greatest today, but I’m posting anyway.

Hubby went boat fishing with two other guys yesterday. One of them was the friend he went fishing with the other day.
They went out by the bathing beaches of Island Beach State Park (IBSP).

It was 21°F (-6°C) in the early am. The high for the day was 39°F (3.8°C).
It was mostly sunny and windy.
Waves were choppy.

While they were out, my beloved took a short video, which was difficult to do in the rough seas. But he has some proof of seeing a Humpback Whale.
They also saw a large Striper chasing another one near the surface. Both were caught by the guys fishing with him.

They were chasing bunker pods while fishing.
They snagged them and let them drop to the bottom to fish. (Snag & Drop)

My husband told me, “There were many boats that were following us around because we were catching more fish…” (I wonder why?)
“The people in the other boats kept snagging bunker and putting them in their live well instead of fishing.”

Long story short: 8 fish were caught, 3 by my beloved.
They measured between 32″ and 36″
and weighed between 7 lbs. 6 oz. to 13 lbs. 4 oz.

PFsFish_11-15-14

PFsFish2_11-15-14

PFs34inchFish_11-15-14

Menagerie — An Animal Story

Do you have animals in your life? If yes, what do they mean to you? If no, why have you opted not to?

We have always had animals since I can remember.
We had several dogs and cats when I was growing up.
Not all at once. Usually a dog and cat.
Yes together, and they got along fine.
I also had a few goldfish and hamsters.

Some of our fur-babies passed away from old age, others had been ill, or were wounded by other [outdoor] animals; two such required surgery. One recovered, the other died from a blood clot.
One fur-baby had been struck and killed by a car.

Hubby and I have had mostly cats since getting married.
We had a box turtle once, too.

We’ve suffered a few losses and it’s never easy.
No loss is easy.
It may seem like we’re gluttons for punishment…
So why do we do it?

We love animals.
They’re a part of our lives.
A companion. A friend. A member of the family.
They bring love, comfort, joy in laughter.
They can even bring healing.
I can’t fathom going through life without an animal friend of some sort.

[NaBloPoMo 2014] Growing Old

Do you enjoy growing old or do you fight against it?

I was just thinking about something similar a couple of days ago:
When does middle age begin?

Google says: “According to one study, the average person believes youth ends at 35 and old age begins at 58. Therefore, the years in between–all 23 of them–constitute middle age.”

According to Wikipedia: “The US Census lists middle age as including both the age categories 35 to 44 and 45 to 54, while prominent psychologist Erik Erikson saw it ending a little later and defines middle adulthood as between 40 and 65.”

Being 39 years old I might or might not fit in said category, according to the above sources.

Since the age of 35, I have been finding a few silver hairs,
mostly towards the top/front of my head.
I have found just recently a few on the sides of my head.
I am caught between combating it (dyeing) and just not caring.
I think I’m leaning more towards not caring.
After all, the Bible calls grey hair a crowning glory.

My memory isn’t as good as it used to be. It’s been that way for a few years; however, I think that is due to stressful life circumstances.
I am concerned though, that it could be something more. At my age that’s a scary thing.

Growing old is something most will endure.
There’s really no way to fight it. It’s inevitable.
You can change your perspective of it;
choose to stay young at heart, instead of being bitter.