Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pumpkin Patch Adventure

A weekend or so back, the family took a trip to a local pumpkin patch. This was the first outing with the NEW CAMERA, so I was totally stoked to try it out. Before even seeing the pictures, I was impressed with how much easier to use the DSLR is than my old digital (which would take several seconds between depressing the button and taking a damn picture). Better still, the pictures look lush and lovely. Happy Karla!!!

So my strategy is to get used to the camera in Auto-mode, and then eventually start branching out into the fancy-dancy settings. There's a while to go yet before I'm fully comfortable with even the automatic mode, but I'm enthusiastic about the process of gradually unveiling my Canon's mysteries. ;-)

In the meantime, as promised, enjoy the pictures! :-D

Will decides to kiss the pumpkins.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Methodology of a Name, Part Three!

Finally, after a ton of reflection and soul-searching, Dave and I have unearthed a select few names for our impending HelgaHume. (Though the list is, as always, still secret.)

As luck would have it, for girls, we both individually gravitated towards the same four names. We each liked a fifth, but after some discussion, Dave decided he liked my fifth better, so now we're fully agreed on these five names. Which to pick? Depends on who we meet in December!

Boy's names, on the other hand, we're having a bit more trouble with. We've centred on four first names that we both like, but each one has a big problem associated with it.

Indeed, no name is perfect; I resisted "William" for the longest time on the grounds of, "No child of MINE is getting a TOP TEN name!!! IN-CON-THEIVABLE!!!!" but the fact is, for a huge number of reasons, the name was a perfect choice. (But that's a whole other blog post.)

Still, though, which of the following issues are dealbreakers? Which are no big deal?
  • One (visually-similar) letter away from a very common name: Meaning, people quickly looking over this name on paper will probably assume it's the common name, not the actual name. Kid will possibly spend his whole life correcting people, which is annoying for him.
  • Stupid meaning: This name has everything going for it -- great sound, great association, unique but not off-the-wall -- except what it means. It has a stupid meaning. Not offensive, not bad, just... meaningless. Can he live with this?
  • Unimpressive counterparts: Another name we're considering has everything going for it (see above), except that when I've met the 2-3 guys with this name, I was not especially impressed. (As opposed to, say, Hugh, where every Hugh I meet is a pretty solid dude.) Will he break free of this company, or am I setting myself up to be unimpressed?
  • Gender-neutrality: Not a bad thing in and of itself, but aside from this one exception, gender-ambiguous names are not usually our taste. I've heard from some that it's inconvenient for two friends discussing you, such as in the following case: "Hey, dude, thanks for the party invite! Mind if I bring along (name)?" "Sure, bro! Is she hawt??!" "Uh, dude, (name)'s a guy." "Oh, that's too bad." Is this an acceptable fate to foist on someone?

Hmm... I've never personally dealt with any of those name woes, so I can't say whether they're problematic or not. Hence, I'm pretty stuck, and would love your input in the comment section. :-)

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Monday, October 17, 2011

New Camera: This time, it's gonna be different!

I am positively ecstatic to announce that I have finally caved and purchased a new camera! As such, you can expect more pictures to start appearing on this blog. I'm so stoked about this.

My tumultuous relationships with cameras goes back to the earliest digital point-and-shoots. My huge, heavy, battery-devouring, SLOW, unreliable Kodak misbehaved at the best of times, despite the best treatment and care. The next camera, a Sony, was marginally better, but then decided to randomly wash my pictures with psychedelia whenever the air was a little damp. After that, the Nikon ground to a halt when exposed to the tiniest quantity of sand, and then the last camera, my Olympus, incrementally embraced senility to the point of not even *taking pictures* when commanded.

Which makes me think, when it comes to digital cameras, I might be cursed.

So, eschewing the perpetually disappointing point-and-shoots, I decided instead to leap over to the digital SLR camp. (For those of you unfamiliar with the SLR term, it basically means a camera that looks old-school, with a big lens, but it's digital. And spiffy.)

Because this time it's gonna be different. Surely, the curse won't follow me over to a totally different type of camera, right? . ...Right??

So after a ton of research, I settled on an entry-level Canon (Rebel XS), and am now setting about learning how to actually *use* it. My dream is to eventually post rich, beautiful pictures on this blog... but hey, one step at a time, right? ;-)

Anyhow, wish me luck! Feel free to leave me your camera tips/stories/woes in the comments, would love to hear em!