Friday, October 31, 2008

Traffiic sucks!!

Jenn,Morgan, Filer and I are on our way to Jacksonville and it has taken us 50 mins to go 20 miles!!!! Somehow we actually got right behind Jenn even though she left from a different part of town at a different time. What are the odds??? I hate this part of 75! We are in Jonesboro where it always backs up. Poor Morgan is trying to read law school stuff but it has to be hard with all the stop and go!

Pictures!!

Here are some of the pictures from my trip...just the film ones have been uploaded with the exception of a few (they are the rectangle ones). None of the ones that have been uploaded were altered in any way. I am going to weed through them and take down some of the ones I don't like but I just put them all up there to start with. I am not very pleased with most of the black and white ones, much to my disappointment. I still have one roll that isn't finished so we will see what that turns out. As always, I would love to hear what any of you have to say about them (you can leave comments on the actual pictures on the site if you want). I am going to post some of my favorites on my actual website once I have a chance to finish looking at them all very carefully.

Here is the link. Hope you enjoy!

And to counteract my last post...

Here is a little video for you....
video

Sorry, but this makes me mad!

I know I said I wouldn't continue the politic stuff but since this is both sides' fault and it isn't partisan and since this is crazy, I felt that I could vent really quick! I understand that in THEORY it is better for my neighbor not to foreclose but at the same time, telling me that it will be a blip on their credit report doesn't make me feel any better at a time when they are predicting 1 million people who will have "blips", it makes it less of a big deal if a lot of people have it because eventually they will have to start giving loans to be people who have "blips" in the future. Talk about not having the government involved in your life...I have paid every single mortgage payment that I have ever had and I am now up to the 7th mortgage that I have had in my lifetime (currently have 5 if you count my Dad's place and my rental property)...these assholes bought a house they couldn't afford and then (more importantly) pulled money out of it and now I have to pay for their mortgage so they could keep up with the Jones'...this is such bullshit! It is not fair to assume that these people didn't know what they were getting into.....how do you know that? The terms of an ARM loan are not that complicated and if they were smart enough to know they could pull money out of their mortgage then they probably understood that the interest rate could go up and they should have to pay it. You can't really blame anyone but the free market for this problem....the market let deregulation happen (since we all elect the people who decided we didn't need regulation of derivatives), the market let loan companies make these loans (by not regulating), and people (the market) wanting to own houses and willing to drive up prices in order get in one (by increasing demand) are the ones who bought the houses. But once again, when the freemarket fails, we all pay....I didn't buy a house that was $100K more than I could afford...I was approved to, but I didn't. Since when do you get punished for being an honest and responsible citizen...what happen to the work hard and get rewarded? Looks like you can be an idiot, buy a house you can't afford, pull money out for vacations and boats and whatever, and then still get rewarded by getting to keep your house AND pay less for it....YAY democracy, it is the best and worst sometimes!! I agree the bailout had to happen but this pisses me off beyond belief that they are just going to give people a break. I don't know what the answer is but I just know that redoing people's loans who abused the system doesn't make me happy one bit! I feel like now regular people are going to suffer because of speculators or some people who shouldn't have ever owned a house.

Ok, on to more fun things! I got my film pictures back so I am going to work on uploading them and then I will let you guys know. Sorry to vent....

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Gravy Recipe

Ok, you can tell that I am trying to not do any work today (not on purpose, I just don't like what I am doing so I am procrastinating...what I should do it get it done so I can move on to the project I like).

So, last Thanksgiving I cooked the meal for Craig and I and I did a good job on everything but the gravy...this stuff baffles me and I couldn't get it right AT ALL. So, all you fine cooks out there...what are your gravy secrets? I don't eat the stuff so I don't know how to do it and I can honestly say that it is the only thing that I have ever tried to make that didn't turn out...we ended up with what I termed "gravy jelly" ew! It was working for a little while in the pan as I was stirring but then something went terribly wrong. Please help!

West Wing

Don't worry, I am not going to keep posting a ton on politics or anything. This show is one of Craig's favorites so we have been watching it when I visit him and we are now currently in the last season (started at the beginning). As I was watching it for the first time, I kept saying exactly what this article says (though I didn't know who won the election, thanks NYT) and I just thought that it was sort of funny....

Grrr...film update

Geez, now I know why people have switched to digital ....it takes forever to get film back! I dropped it off on Monday, went through that whole scare of whether I ruined it or not and then she called yesterday to say that she needed until noon today to have them...it was supposed to be 9 and while this doesn't seem like that big of a difference, I can only pick them up in the morning so now I have to wait a whole other day to get my pics back!! I want to see them!

NKOTB and Ghosts

I went to the NKOTB last night with Morgan, E-liz, Rebecca, and Hope and it was a BLAST!! We got a little lost trying to find something to eat but once we finally got somewhere we had a good time. It was one of those nights that just makes you think back to the carefree days. As some of you might know, Morgan, E-liz, Hope, Leigh Anne, and I went to almost every football game in 2002....including away games and we had so much fun! We always took Hope's yellow Extera and would see some of the same fans at away games and were even affectionally called "the yellow car girls" Morgan has been posting some of the pictures on her facebook page lately so I guess it was on all of our minds and it was just fun to think about and share stories from it...then we went to see NKOTB and it reminds you of 5th or 6th grade when you were so in love with them...just another carefree time in your life! They still looked good, Joey is still my favorite and I was shocked at how many of the words I still knew! My ears were ringing and my throat hurt by the time I left but it was all worth it! It was so funny because it was about 98% girls our age there...they even turned the boy's bathroom into a girl's bathroom (which didn't really help that much because there were only two stalls in there compared to the 30 in the girl's bathroom but it was a nice thought). There were also several girls that wore side ponytails and legwarmers and stuff...nice.

Ghosts...do you guys believe in ghosts or do you think that it is all in people's mind? I was listening to my radio station this morning and they were talking to a ghost hunter in Atlanta and were playing some audio. I just wonder how much of the audio is true and how much is made up...have any of you ever encountered any ghosts? I never have. Just curious!

Tomorrow I am leaving to go to GA/FL....hopefully it will be fun and we will have a Bulldog win!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

film is safe!!

I just called because I couldn't stand it anymore and she looked at it while on the phone with me. She said it all looked good except one roll had some overlaps (you manually crank the film so I must have loaded it wrong or something. I seem to remember that happening once. Ah, I feel better. Hope they turned out well!

Taboo Subject...dare I?

Ok, so the Pres race is getting pretty close to coming to an end and I am sure that you are all sad. I also noticed that no one really wants to talk about it on their blogs, but I am truly interested. So, if you dare, (and you don't have to, this is why we have a secret ballot in the US), tell us who you will be voting for and more importantly, WHY? The rules are simple...this is a civilized conversation...we all love each other so there will be no name calling and no rude comments. If you can't express your opinion nicely, then don't express it. I want this to be a way for us to talk about it and understand other points of view without being rude or condescending. I am one of the most middle of the road people you will ever meet when it comes to politics and I just like to hear other opinions (inspired by Terah :-))

Here I go:

I will be voting for Obama, and here are my reasons.

Abortion: While this is something that I find morally wrong, and something that I could never do, I don't feel like it is right to tell other people that they can't do it. They are the ones who will have to live with it, not me. I do think that it is sad that babies will die because of it and I do wish that they would seek alternatives but I don't think that I should be able to tell them what to do. I do find it odd that for the Republican party they are very big on staying out of people's lives except when it comes to this, but I imagine that is because of the moral side of this. I also believe that it would be bad to make abortion illegal because I think that people would do it anyway and in an unsafe way, harming both themselves and killing the baby. I also read in Freakonomics that the crime rate dropped approximately 18 years after Roe vs Wade because the majority of parents who abort babies are parents who didn't want them (so they didn't raise them wall) or couldn't afford them (so they didn't raise them well). Once these parents were able to legally abort the babies the crime rate dropped because there were less unwanted kids roaming the streets committing crimes. Another good point for this is rape and incest cases. I do not in any way agree with partial birth abortions! Again, wouldn't do it personally so please don't call me a baby killer (read rules above), just don't think that I should tell others they can't.

Healthcare:
I don't think that either candidate has a good healthcare plan so let me just say that upfront. But, I am not sure which one is worse. They both rely on trusting people to make good decisions...something that I don't think will happen as often as us educated people would assume. McCain's plan (from what I understand and if it is wrong, blame the media and remember that I have heard what the average voter has heard so if this is what I think then it is probably what a lot of other voters think, right or wrong) is to give a $2500 credit to Americans to help pay for healthcare in form of a tax credit but would make the amount you pay each paycheck taxable. If you didn't get it through an employer then you could get it otherwise. That would be a great plan if healthcare cost around that much and if people actually bought it. Here is my concern, how do you ensure that people buy healthcare? They lose nothing by just going to the doctor and not paying (public hospitals can't refuse them) so why would the voluntarily buy healthcare? Why wouldn't they use that credit (which might in turn give them a refund) for something like a car or a trip? Why would they elect to get healthcare from their employer when it is now taxable to them...are you relying on them to understand tax law and the fact that just because it is taxable now doesn't mean that it will be taxable after the credit is applied?

Obama's plan is to have people who don't have healthcare buy into a universal "pool" of healthcare at lower rates then they could get on there own. Again, how do you make sure that they buy into it? Same point as above. Ok, both these plans suck!

Taxes: This seems to be the hot button issue for a lot of people. McCain wants to keep the lower tax rates that Bush enacted, cut the capital gains rate in half, give Corporations deductions for capital equipment investments, and allow businesses to deduct up to $15K in losses instead of $3K. Obama wants to give an income tax cut ($500 for individuals, $1000 married) to people making under $250K, eliminate capital gains taxes for small businesses and start-ups, give a $3K credit to businesses for every employee they hire in addition to their current staff, and raise the taxes on people making over $250K. Not sure what to say about this one since they both have some good ideas, but I think that I just agree with Obama more on the immediate tax cuts and taxing people who make over $250K. I know it is not a popular opinion (especially in the south) but I don't mind paying more if I make more. I grew up without much and I am proud of where I am but I don't mind some of my dollars going to help someone else if I were to make over $250K. You can comfortbly live off of that a year and if someone told you that you could give $2,500 a year and completely change someone's life forever, would you do it (assuming you made $250K a year)? I would. I am also going on the assumption that the new taxes would be used for the types of government programs that help people. I know that our welfare system and a lot of the government programs are really abused by a lot of people. In my life I have met more than a couple that abused the system but there are people out there who truly do need that help to get themselves back on the right track. Those are the people that I want to help and they are out there. I do wish that we could get a better system in place and my personal favorite idea is to have the people who are on welfare to work in other parts of the government (at medicare or something). It trains them with skills, gives them jobs, pride, and it reduces the costs of the administrative aspect of those programs. A lot of people don't get off of welfare because they never really learn how to do a skilled job because they aren't forced to and the road to that skilled job is scary because once you start making money you are kicked off of welfare, so why not have a program that will accomplish that and get people into jobs? Maybe I am silly in thinking that it would work but that is why I don't run for public office.

Housing: This one annoys me, and here is the basics that I got out of the plans. McCain wants to buy the mortgages and then renegotiate the terms based on the fact that he is assuming that if my neighbor is not paying his mortgage and his house gets foreclosed on then my house will be less valuable. Ok, I sort of see his point here, but at the same time, I don't feel like people who made shady deals should be completely bailed out while the rest of us who paid every month like we were supposed to get nothing but the potential for our market value not to fall on the house we own in an economy where all housing prices are falling. There should be some sort of consequence for buying more than you could afford and then defaulting on it and that consequence should not be for the government (which Republicans typically hate to have involved in anything) to bail you out.
Obama wants to give lienency to homeowners who are actually paying their mortgages even if it isn't the whole amount. While this still seems like crap that I could pay you $200 when I owe $2K, I think that it makes me feel a little better that they are still being held accountable and still have to make some sort of effort to keep their house. Maybe it is just me, but I like to see people making an effort. He also wants to give bankruptcy courts the ability to change mortgages and I still don't like that but I guess I like the part about trying to let people dig themselves out...I guess because I am the type of person who couldn't sleep at night if I couldn't pay my mortgage so I like to see people give a chance. His long term plan is to give a tax credit to people who can't itemize for their mortgage interest...this would be people who live in areas where the housing prices are so cheap that they don't throw them above the standardized deduction. Part of owning a house is for the deduction and chances are that if these people live in an area where housing prices are that low, they probably don't make a lot. I am all for giving them a tax credit to help them out.

Iraq: I sincerely apologize to those of you that have served and to those of you who have loved ones that have served, but this whole Iraq war confuses the bejesus out of me. I don't know whether we are helping over, wasting our money over there, or if we even should be over there. I have not used this as a basis for deciding my candidate because I don't know enough about it. It sounds bad when I hear that there have been trillions of dollars spent over there and now we are in a financial crisis, but I know statistics are misleading and I am not up on it all enough so I bow out.

Ok, it is almost time for me to leave work, this is long and I didn't even get to half of the issues. As you can see, I see good qualities in some plans from both side and I truly believe that working together will be best. I will admit that while looking up a couple things for this I realized that some of their plans (on both sides) were not what I thought they were. It didn't change my mind on who I was going to vote for but it was sort of a fun thing to do. I would love for you guys to do the same. I will never critize anyone for who they vote for because we need all kinds of ideas in order to have the best ones, but I do want everyone to know why they are voting the way they are. So, counter opinions to mine? Issues I didn't have time to type? Do you feel strongly about one thing or another? Do you have another point of view that I should consider? Did you agree with anything I said? Was anything new to you? Let's discuss (please don't let this be one of those 0 comment entries). I genuinely want to hear your opinions!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Seven Things- I was tagged

Since Rebecca (and Drena) tagged me, here are my seven things:

1. When I was little I used to worry that people in China and other parts of the world had learned the wrong religion and they might not get to go to heaven. It would get me really upset but my mom assured me that they would be ok.

2. I am a VERY sentimental person when it comes to days. I can remember the days of most things that have happened of significances to me in my life, the trouble is that they are not always significant to anyone else. I like to use this memory to mark anniversaries...except that no one else ever remembers the event that I am talkng about so it doesn't really work very well and I usually end up hearing "how do you remember that?"

3. If I care about someone then I will get really upset if I feel like I hurt them or they are mad at me. I don't really care if everyone likes me because I know my personality is not for everyone, but if it is someone I care about then it drives me nuts if I hurt their feelings (even accidentally) and I will do everything I can to get them to not be upset with me anymore.

4. My dream job would be to travel the world and do travel photography. That one might not be as big of a shock but it is still a fact.

5. I am probably the biggest saver that any of you know! I can't believe when I hear statistics like I did this morning on the Today Show...that in 1980 people saved $10 out of every $100 they made and now they only save $.60 out of every $100. Material things are just not that important to me so I am more likely to splurge on travel then I am on a car or designer clothes. I am in it for the experience, but mostly I save.

6. I think that one of the most important things in a marriage (and I am not married so this is only through observation), is to have your girls/guys time. The most successful marriages that I have witnessed are when it is a true partnership and when both parties have their time "away" to just be with the girls/guys. I think that it is important to have that sense of identity (you guys can tell me if I am wrong).

7. I am, in a way, a hopeless romantic. I always feel that people end up with who they are supposed to be with and I like those sort of happy endings in movies. Movies like "My Best Friend's Wedding" where she doesn't get the man, are not for me. I also believe that sometimes (most of the time) it takes kissing some frogs before you get your Prince. I also truly believe that none of those awful divorce statistics will ever apply to any of my friends (and you can thank my sister's friends who are almost all on their second marriage :-))

As for tagging:
1. Beth (high school friend with a blog)
2. Terah (just leave a comment since you don't have a blog....)
3. Alyson (my sister)
4. Morgan (has a blog but doesn't really use it :-))
5. Chelsea Himes Wall (cause I know you visit sometimes)
6. Lidia (wherever you might be in the world, would love to hear from you if you still check in)
7. Someone who I don't know that might read this...just leave a comment or link to your blog.

very sad about my film!

So I just realized today that I made a HUGE mistake on my trip...I put my film in my checked bag. In my defense, it has been 7 years since I have traveled with film....7 years!! and I just totally didn't even think about it. I even have one of those lead bags that you use to protect it...got it out and was going to use it but then after I put all that camera equipment in my carry-on, it was so heavy that I decided to leave the lead (and heavy) bag at home. That would have saved it all! It also didn't fit all the film so I didn't want to use it. UGH, I could kick myself now. I knew that I had seen signs in the airport a 1,000 (literally) times that said that the x-rays would not ruin your film if it was under ISO800 (which all mine was) so I just assumed that it was the same for the checked baggage...wrong...apparently for those bags they use some high powered explosive detection x-ray that is horrible for film. I am so mad at myself that I can't even put into words how disappointed I am. First off, I didn't even take any digital photos at some places and secondly, I taught Craig how to use the camera and now I might have ruined his pictures too...of course he only took like 13 and took digital ones of the same things but still...I feel horrible. My only hope is that somehow the cellophane wrapper and the fact that it was deep in my suitcase and not hit directly will save it and it will be ok. Unfortunately, everywhere I look online has mixed stories but Kodak and TSA both say that it will pretty much ruin it.....all their examples are at a higher ISO than what I used so I will hold onto hope. I dropped them off at the lab this morning and the girl said they would call if the film looked funny....and nothing yet, but who knows if they have even gotten to it yet. Everyone please say a little prayer for my film and for those of you who might have made this stupid mistake recently (which could only be a few of you) and had your film turn out ok, please let me know.....no negative stories! I already know that Craig had all his Australia film ruined a few years back so I know my chances aren't good :-( (though he has tried to convince me that I will be one of the lucky ones).

Sunday, October 26, 2008

I am back!

And it is certainly bittersweet. I said a tearful goodbye to Craig at the airport as I left for home and he got on his connecting flight and then I came home only to have a little time to catch up on photography emails and then to get ready to go a shoot that I have in about 40 mins. I haven't even been able to catch up on my blogs yet and read what you guys have been up to :-( Our flight left at 7:20 this morning so I have been up since 4:45am...yikes. I am hoping that this newborn shoot goes well and I can get it done and get back here to go through some of my pictures from the trip..I also have several rolls of film from my medium format camera to develop and I am going to drop those off tomorrow. I promise to catch you guys all up on what I was doing for the last week...thinking that one of Drena's number entries (stolen from someone else) might be the best way to go about it.....

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hello from Mammoth Lakes

I haven't really been able to blog but I have catchy little titles for each day for when I get a chance to actually write about it all. We are having fun and at about halfway through I am pretty sad that we are on the downward slope! It is beautiful out here and hopefully my pictures will look as good when I upload them as they did on the camera screen. I have been using the medium format a bit too....it is so hard not to be able to see the photos right away to know if they turned out. Early day tomorrow so I am going to relax. Talk to you guys soon!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

lost luggage

Oh yeah, that is right! Ugh! All flights were on time. Craig even got in early (which I usually worry about cause the first time we were going to CO to meet his parents he almost missed the connection in Atlanta). We had tvs on the plane, which to a college football girl is a dream come true (though I only got to watch Tech beat Clemson, my brother in law was at the game for his b-day so I can deal) I did getregular updates on the UGA game and Stafford's interceptions!

We land and go to get our luggage and mine isn't coming, isn't coming and then I go to make sure no one snatched it and when I come back Craig says it stopped. Great. I forgot to mention that I got another medium format camera and that thing is haevy as hell so I packed the extra lenses and some other parts in my checked bag. My bag weighed 61 pounds so she put a weight tag and "elite" on it since I am gold medallion now. So gald she did that cause my goodness what would have happened if I was regular? They probably would have lost the bag...oh yeah, they did! I go to the Delta counter, she looks it up and says "yeah, it didn't make the flight". Great, I am leaving at 7am so when will it be here? She replies she doesn't know...great. As we fill out the form she askes me again what time I am leaving (like I would lie). Then tells me 6 at the latest. Craig and I go on our merry way (more later) and luckily I had luggage waiting for me at the hotel! Need to dig back out that letter to Delta.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Touchdown


Oh, and Ariyana says that she wants Georgia to get lots of touchdowns this weekend :-)

Getting wet and ready for vacation

Today I got annoyed with Delta again...they oversold my flight and since I am just coming home to Atlanta and they were oversold by a lot, I offered to give up my seat. The thing that annoyed me is that they waited until every last person boarded the flight to let me get on. By that time there was no room in the overhead and I had a backpack, plus a bag with two computers in it, wasn't sure what to do. They had me take out my computer and carry them (literally) on and then gate check the computer bag. I didn't think about it when I did it but that bag had all the vouchers for Craig and I for our trip....cause normally it is with me. I just got annoyed because I was trying to be nice and then I get screwed...oh well.

Then I get back to Atlanta and it is raining. I had a later flight than normal on Monday and by the time I got to the airport they had closed the first 3 levels of the parking deck so I had to park on the top and far away. I just knew then that when I came back it would be raining and I was right! Luckily for everyone around me I was wearing a light pink t-shirt and looked like I had been in a wet t-shirt contest.

YAY, the countdown to vacation tomorrow begins...only 16 hours to go until I get on the plane to Vegas. I feel like I have repeated where I was going about 300 times but here it is one more time :-) We are flying into Vegas tomorrow and will get there around lunch time, then we are going to Hoover Dam (yes, we are dorks) and to see the Vegas strip all lit up (I have seen it Craig has not....I spent 3 lonely weeks in Vegas one January). On Sunday we are going to drive to Death Valley National Park while going through Rhyolite Ghosttown to get there. We are spending the night Sunday and Monday in Lone Pine and seeing Mount Whitney while we are there. After our two day there we are going to drive up to Mammoth Lakes (where it was 26 degrees this morning!!) to stay the night on Tuesday after spending some of the day in Yosemite then on Wednesday night we are going to stay at the lodge in Yosemite. After the lodge we are going to drive down to Big Sur and then work our way up the coast to San Francisco on Thursday. Friday and Saturday are going to be in San Francisco and then we fly out of there on Sunday. I am looking forward to it and hope to get a lot of pictures and a lot of rest :-) I probably won't have email or cell or internet for several days while I am in the parks (their websites say no cell service) so I will try to keep track of everything and blog about it all when I get back!

Hope everyone has a great week!!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My Picture Show

I all the craziness of the weekend, I forgot to post about my picture being in the Showcase exhibit. I wasn't really sure how this would go down but my mom wanted to go to the reception and Terah Kinser Defore was in town (also very into photography) so we were all going to go to the show. I wasn't sure how many people would be there because it was the first time they have done it. I know it sounds weird but I felt a little embarassed or something...not of having a picture there but of being there. I don't know. Anyway, my mom and I went to dinner with Terah, her mom, her mom's friend Nina and little John :-) Afterwards my mom and went to the show and Terah was going to meet us there. They were supposed to give out ribbons and awards at 8 and I thought that would sort of be neat to see. We got there a few minutes before 8 and there were a ton of people there. There was also no formal awards ceremony of any sort. All the pictures just had numbers underneath them and when you came in you got a piece of paper that had the name of the picture, artist name, and price. That was cool for that night but then no one else who ever goes there will know that it was my picture (or anyone else's). On the sheet of paper they had highlighted the winners and hung ribbons on the picture itself. They also had nametags for the photographers to wear. My mom handed me mine and then I just sort of held onto it for a while. Finally I saw that a lot of the other photographers were wearing theirs so I put mine on. Abou 2 mins later we were looking near my picture and this guy came up to me and wanted to know where my picture was taken. He wanted to guess so he was saying places like Kansas and Oklahoma and surrounding states. I finally said "nope, South Dakota in the Badlands" then he asked if that was the Rockies in the background...I didn't think so because I didn't remember seeing those when we were out there but I was so thrown by the fact that I am not good at geography sometimes that I wasn't sure. Then I looked closer and realized that it was just the Badlands as I was leaving the park. It is funny to me how they analyze it. A little while later he was with a friend and asking the friend to guess where it was and then we went through the whole thing all over again :-) We didn't stay that long because there wasn't that much to do other than snack (we had just eaten) or look at the pictures but that didn't take that long. Terah brought her camera and since this was the first time I had a picture displayed anywhere, we did take a picture with the name of the show..only after we had seen about 10 other people do it...here it is.



Oh and we were there when the winner "best in show" got there and she was later I guess than she thought and knew a lot of people there...and when she saw her picture with the ribbon she SCREAMED "oh my gosh, I got best in show" Everyone turned around and looked and it was sort of funny because it was nice to see that she wasn't someone who expected to win but was genuinely happy to get a prize.



Here is the picture of Terah and I:

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

LA Part two...

They are definitely not winning my vote here. I finally found the Starbucks this morning and they were out of Chai Latte mix...what? You can get that stuff at any grocery store...oh well. I had a Pumpkin Spice Latte but it must have more caffeint than my normal latte cause I felt jittery all day.

Today it was hard to work because I am in the old AGM's office and there was a dealer who was in here all day using it as his office...it was hard to work with dealers in and out all day. (today was their sale day so it is when all the dealers come to buy/sell cars). Tonight I am supposed to go to dinner and happy hour with them but I don't really feel like it..not because I don't like them but because I have a few more sessions I want to get edited before I head out on vacation with no computer access for the most part!

I have a confession...I think that this place is just NASTY..all of New Orleans. I don't know if it was like this before Katrina but it just all seems like sub-par living to me. Other than Baton Rouge and the area my friend lives in, I have not been impressed with this state at all. It is rundown, and everything seems like it is falling apart. It might have to do with Katrina so if it does, sorry but I wasn't ever here before Katrina so I have nothing to compare it to. I feel like you can tell the difference between the houses/structures/signs that are down because of the storm and what isn't...plus, where I am was not really hit by the storm. The auction here actually stored cars for people who didn't want theirs damaged so I am thinking that it should look pretty decent around here...or at least you would think. Hmmm...

Tomorrow I am going to visit my friend Rachel that I worked with at Deloitte...she has a new baby (her third and she is only a year older than me) named Georgia...funny since those of you who know Rachel Martin Walters know that she also has a baby named Georgia. What are the chances that I would have two friends named Rachel who both had a baby within a year of each other named Georgia?

The work here is not going that great...I am not sure they were doing stuff right before I got here so there is a chance that December's stuff is messed up (I started in February) which means I might have to come back here..I was sort of looking forward to being at home a little bit...we will see how tomorrow goes.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

ER (the show)

Does anyone watch this show anymore? Why is every week an "ER Event"?

Gross!

My hotel is kind of nasty, not so bad that I want to move to one of the Motel 6 or 8s around but here are a couple things:

--I don't think that my toilet had been cleaned or flushed in quite a while...there was a ring around it like when water sits..I know this because my toilet does it every time I go out of town. I didn't discover this until I was getting ready for bed and didn't feel like moving. I told myself that if they didn't clean it today that I would request to move. They cleaned it and it looks good now.
--The lady at the front desk is missing teeth...and she must smoke at least 3 packs a day. I asked her if she had a menu for the Chinese restaurant that is just next door and she barked no at me. YUCK! She didn't even have a uniform on or any sort of professional clothes.
--I was upset about the weird lighting in my room...I am on the first floor right next to the gym so at least I have done that the last two days but I also thought the light was a little off..sort of flurescent looking. Then I noticed that they used the "green" light bulbs. I forgive them for the nasty lighting...it sure isn't flattering. I keep saying I am going to get them at home but I honestly haven't bought/replaced a light bulb in 2.5 years. Actually I did replace one but it was from a pack that I already had

By the way, I am at a Hampton Inn...Hilton chain, should be nice.

Other fun LA facts:
--NOWHERE here takes Amex....what is wrong with this place? I mean, I know the charge is a little higher but really...this is like RaceTrac and other normal chain places.
--Gas here is $2.77....yes, you read that right!
--I never visited before Hurricane Katrina and I am about 45 mins from NO, but it looks really run down here..both in land people. The people at the auction are normal and really nice but the rest of the people I see around are very suspect. It makes me a little sad.

Glad I can entertain everyone with my travel stories :-) I have been a little MIA lately but not sure why. I hate to think that the only thing interesting I do is sit delayed somewhere, but I guess that is when I like to vent.

Oh, and whoever is referring perverts to my Melissa's Camera site....STOP :-) Just kidding, I know it isn't you guys but luckily I put the control on there where I see comments before they are left because I have had very inappropriate comments lately!!

Monday, October 13, 2008

More delays and the worst roads in the US

I am back on the road....it gets to routine when I do it all the time, then I have a little break and I forget how much fun it can be! Today I was reminded. This time it was not Delta's fault but it was most definitely Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International Airport's fault! So, they started that new "Clear" line there this week....which replaced the old medallion line....whatver, that is cool. They moved the medallion line down to the T gate area...and the only reason I go through this line is because on Monday mornings it is much shorter usually. Well, today they screwed up. I walked by the Clear line and no one was in it...Medallion line was backup forever. I was getting emails updating me on the lines (I had a later flight and wasn't sure how that would go so I got the updates sent to me) and they kept saying 10-15 mins for the main line. Had I been able to get out of the Medallion line then I would have gotten in the other line...it took me over 30 mins to get through the line. I think that might be the longest I have waited in line at the Atlanta airport other than the time I had to stand in line when it was backed up to baggage claim. Once I got through security it didn't get any better...there was a line for the escalator!!!!!! What the heck? Then these idiots in front of me were taking their time and all but stopped at the bottom where you had to make a 180 turn to get on the next one down....in case you guys don't know how an escalator works, it KEEPS MOVING, so if you stop the people behind you can't get off...not good. Sidenote: What the HELL is that puke smell in the T terminal? It was there months ago and is still there..seriously?? end sidenote.

I rush to get to my plane right as it is boarding (with no Starbucks so no caffeine). I had time to get a little fruit/cheese pack they were selling at a little cart and when I got on the flight attendant commented that it looked healthy...I said "yeah, but no caffeine"....bless that woman, she brought me coffee a little while later while we were waiting to take off....too bad she didn't know that I HATE black coffee and that airplane coffee is gross anyway, but since she was so nice, I drank it all :-) Then we sat and sat and sat. I hate the rule about if you pull away from the gate then you "leave on time" I sat on the plane for a good hour and 30 mins...I could have had my latte! First we couldn't get out of the little middle part where the planes park, then we had to get all the way to runway 10..no idea where that is, but judging by how long it took, I would say Alpharetta. Then we were like 10 for departure...ugh. Oh well, got in and then drove an hour to the auction. I am in Slidell, Louisiana.....this state has the worst roads ever, made even better by my awesome Chevy Cobalt, and has anyone ever been on I-10 when they were not doing construction? I haven't...including all the treks to GA/FL!

Monday, October 6, 2008

One of Ariyana and I .....


Raising Ariyana Right!

Here are a couple of pictures from my little busy bee's party yesterday. Robb took these with his new camera (same camera I have) and he did a great job! As you might not be able to tell, I gave Ariyana a little UGA cheerleading outfit (will post pictures of her in it after this coming weekend) for her birthday (along with some books and foam toys). When she opened it she smiled and Robb, Zach's mom and I (the only UGA fans) said "YAY, Ariyana" and she started clapping. A couple of gifts later she got the same thing in GA Tech (Zach and his dad's side are all Tech fans) and she just gave this deadpan look like "what the heck is this ugly thing" It was so classic. Robb didn't get a picture cause we were laughing so hard but hopefully I did. I am going to go through my pictures tonight and will hopefully be able to post it tomorrow.

Here she is holding the outfit (so you can't see it that well but look how happy she is).

I also gave her a little UGA picture book to put the cute pictures of her in her outfit in :-) She liked that too and you can see from the picture below.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

So tired....

Oh my gosh! I got up at 8 yesterday to take pictures and then went to help with the wedding at 11:30....I didn't get back home until 2:30am...and that whole time was pretty much spent on my feet or carrying/holding stuff. Oh, and I didn't get to eat until 11pm!

Today I got up at 8 again and did pictures this morning then went to Ariyana's birthday party and just got home about two hours ago. I will elaborate on it all later but right now I am so tired!!

Friday, October 3, 2008

My big wedding debut...

Tomorrow I will actually get to shoot some pictures at the wedding I am helping with tomorrow. I am really nervous about it but I hope that I will do well and pull it off. Luckily I don't think that I will be shooting anything that is super important, just shots of people at the cocktail hour or something similar. It still makes me nervous though. I also don't know what time I am supposed to be there or where I am supposed to be. I have emailed the photographer and called him twice with no response. Pretty sure it is like an 11am-midnight thing so I would like to know for sure. UGH. Hopefully he will let me know soon. In order to protect the innocent I will post the details on my private blog after tomorrow. If you don't have access and want it, just let me know. I just don't want random people to find it....too easy with google these days and I like to vent on that one..though not too much venting lately!

My tummy hurts today...not sure why but I hope it goes away soon. Also, the meeting I spent a lot of time preparing for this week got cut REALLY short today..that sucked!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

I did it!

I outlived the great gas crisis of 2008! Today I had to run to Target to get some things and the QT right by it had gas! Since I was down 9 gallon (only had 4-5 left) I decided to get gas. NO LINE! I pulled right up to the pump in the middle with no problems. I laughed a little to myself because people were still "getting in line" on the end pumps but there was really no need to. I think that they were just so used to it that they did it automatically.

Today was a rough day in some aspects for me. I close on my rental property on Monday and this crazy closing coordinator, Piper, was driving me nuts! She needed me to mail her something yesterday so I did and told her 3 times that I did but she kept sending me emails and saying that if she didn't get it then we wouldn't close on time. Then I decided to get someone to drive me to her to bring her the freakin contract that was coming in the mail that day anyway and after that she still sent out an email that she hadn't gotten it. She was sending it to everyone (including Drena on vacation) and finally I sent her an email saying "if you read below, I said that I am bringing it to you in person right now, please stop emailing everyone and telling them that we will not close on time" To which she responded "oh, I replied before I got your response. Really, cause you responded to the email where I said I was bringing it to you ...whatever. My loan lady and I had a good laugh about it, apparently she had been a pain all along. I just felt bad that Drena had to deal with it on her vacation. Oh well, hopefully it will go well.

My sister told me that they took Ariyana to her doctor's appointment today and she was only 5% for weight for her age but her head was like 75%..does that mean she has a big head? Big head=big brain? She was only 25% or so for her height...guess all the other little ones caught up to her cause she used to be tall for her age. Alyson also told me that the doctor discovered today that my little busy bee has a heart murmur :-( She said that it will probably clear up on its own but they will watch it. I hope it is nothing serious. If you check out Ariyana's World then you will see pictures from her birthday cupcake yesterday. Her real cake is on Sunday but isn't she cute?

I went and got Ariyana's birthday present today! I would tell you all what it is but it will be a surprise for my sister too so I have to wait in case she reads this! I will be sure to post pictures though.

Tomorrow night I am getting together with one of my really good friends from high school.....she is going to head this way and we are going to do dinner and a movie (which used to be our staple Friday/Saturday night in high school). She said that she hasn't been to the theatre in forever and she hasn't seen anything that didn't have Mickey or Sesame Street in forever (she has a 3 and 1 year old...I think that oldest is 3). I love hanging out with people like that because they always think that my single, city life is so glamorous...yeah right! I guess the grass is always greener, but it does make me feel cool sometimes.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

One year old cuteness

I saw Ariyana on the camera to night for her birthday. She was cute and started smiling as soon as she saw me and heard my voice. Then she reached for me to pick her up....how cute is that? I have trained her to just lift those little arms and she knows I will get her :-) Probably not the best thing to have trained her to do but she doesn't get to see me that often and I love to hold her when I do see her so I figure it isn't that bad :-)

Gonna try out this boxing that Rebecca raves about in a little while....I will let you know how it goes! edit: I love the boxing...I get way too into it! I think that my arms will be sore tomorrow but I won every time. I still haven't mastered how exactly to work the punches and I am trying to use both arms so that I don't have one strong arm and the other will be weak :-) I actually think that the boxing is a better workout than some of the things in the Wii Fit.

Happy Birthday to Ariyana, my little busy bee!

Today Ariyana turns ONE! I can't believe it! I decided not to drive up there tonight since I will go on Sunday and since I have been swamped at work. I do have a webcam and my brother in law has one too so they are going to call me tonight when it is time to sing happy birthday! I wish I had a recent picture to post but I will get some on Sunday!

Also, didn't mean to offend anyone on the gas crisis thing...I know that none of you are like that and I understand that people have to get places, I am more annoyed with people who have alternatives but don't use them...it would be like if I filled up every day on my way home even though I only drove 20 miles because I wanted to make sure I had gas...that was what I was complaining about.

So, I thought I was going to be in town for a while but it looks like I will be heading to New Orleans in a couple of weeks....actually a little outside of New Orleans but I am hoping to sneak into the city one night. I also have a friend that lives there who just had her third!!! Yikes! She is the same age as me! Anyway, I haven't met the new little one and if I do then I can cross that off my list of 101 things (until someone out of state has another one). I also only have 2 and a half weeks until vacation!! YAY!!

I did spin class today and it was the hardest that it has ever been! My legs were burning but it was also the third day in a row that I worked out so maybe that had to do with it. I wanted to try the Pilates class tomorrow but we will see how I feel. After reading Rebecca's post I want to try out the boxing (haven't played that one yet).

Hope everyone has a good night and finds gas :-)