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Posts Tagged ‘photos’

Exciting and Scary

I made a big decision today. Like, a life-changing, this-could-be-really-stupid decision. Ultimately, I think it’s going to end up being the best for me mentally, emotionally and even physically, but it still seems crazy.

In a nutshell? Well, I quit my day job.

Actually, I resigned, so I still have a couple of weeks left. And I know, I know, it makes no sense whatsoever. While I *am* looking for part-time work to have a little bit of a supplemental income, I’m also going to be focusing the majority of my energy and efforts to something really spectacular. Honestly, I can’t wait to share it even here, because even though it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with writing, it does have to do with creativity. Basically, I’m taking the plunge and starting my own business.

I’ve had a love of photography and graphic design for a long time now, and I’ve finally decided that now is the time. This season is a golden opportunity for me, because I’m at a point where I have no other obligations and I finally have a main idea of what I want to focus on photography-wise.

I’ve always enjoyed nature and landscape photography, but never thought to pursue it as a career until recently. However, there is a TON of competition in my gorgeous state. That’s fantastic on the one hand, because it means a lot of people to glean information from, but it also means that it’s difficult to get started. Once I realized that my real passion was home decor, suddenly a whole new level of photography was opened up to me. I’m keeping most of the details more on the secretive side of things for now, but once the site is up and running, I will most definitely be sharing it here.

Keep an eye out! (And expect a lot more random posts from me. Since I’ll actually have time to do so.)

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Okay, here it is. THE BIG POST. Yes, it’s probably going to be a little on the longer side, but it’s been a month and I’m still so flippin’ excited I can’t hardly stand it. I’m already planning for next year.

So as I mentioned before, this was my first ever comic con. I had always wanted to attend one and just never had before. Well, my very sweet friend Tracy decided to treat me to this particular con, because she wanted to me to experience the greatness firsthand. It was a wonderful and amazing gift, let me tell you. I decided to go as Black Widow from The Avengers, and I think it’s safe to say that I made a few fanboys pretty happy. 😉 (Total side note, but I absolutely LOVED how my costume turned out. Buying from Amazon is never a guarantee, but in this case it was very well-made.)

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Not the best picture, but meh lighting will do that.

 

The only thing my grandma and I had to adjust was the shoulders of the costume, but I blame that entirely on my inability to measure correctly. I’m no seamstress, so I’m sure that I just sent in the wrong measurements. Everything else fit perfectly, and the accessories were just as good.

 

 

Tracy and I attended both days, and while I didn’t get a chance to listen to any of the panels, it was still a worthwhile experience in my opinion. It was a flurry of costumes and people, even a few service dogs. I glomped on right away to some of my favorite characters.

 

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And naturally, I had to pose with just about any character from the Marvel universe. Because Marvel. (And yes, I realize that Black Widow wouldn’t be grinning from ear to ear for all these photos, but I was excited and couldn’t help myself. Pretty much anyone who came and asked to have their picture with me got a huge smile because that was totally flattering.)

 

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This guy’s costume was INSANELY realistic. His voice sounded all electronic and everything. It was probably one of the most impressive costumes there, in my opinion. (And yes, it was even better than naked fish guy in the background.)

 

My personal favorite picture was when I found Captain America, Bucky AND the Black Panther altogether. I had seen the Captain and Bucky from a distance, and their costumes were probably the most detailed of all of the different Marvel characters I saw there. I had hoped that I would get a chance to take a picture with them and, low and behold, as we descended down the escalator, I spotted them with Black Panther and posing for a few people. I immediately dashed over and said, “I have GOT to take a picture with you guys.”

 

The second they saw my costume, they got all excited and motioned me over. Tracy was the primary one taking pictures for the weekend, so she snapped a couple of photos. Unbeknownst to her, a group of people immediately crowded behind her with their cell phones, getting shots of the four of us together. I tell ya, I felt a little like a celebrity for a few seconds. It was kinda cool.

 

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Not a bad looking bunch, eh? Team Captain FTW, baby. (And is that a handsome Captain America or what?) 😉

 

I even managed to find some Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

 

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Of course, then I found out they were actually working for HYDRA.

 

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So that was the majority of Saturday. Oohing and aahing over costumes, checking out all of the vendors (I got a GORGEOUS Doctor Who print that I love) and getting some autographs from pretty famous celebrities. Sunday was reserved more for photo ops and more perusing of the vendors.

 

Which brings me to perhaps my favorite moments and my celebrity reveal: I GOT TO MEET BILLY BOYD!!!

 

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Okay, this man is one of the nicest people you could ever want to meet. Seriously. He has such a sweet, gentle spirit about him, and he made every single person who came up to him feel special. I got majorly tongue-tied around him, but he was still nice despite my stuttering.

 

I got Billy’s autograph on one of my Lord of the Rings movie guides, which is officially the crowning achievement to my collection. (Yes, I have an LotR collection. It’s pretty awesome, though I have yet to be able to properly display it. I’m hoping to fix that one day.)

 

We also got to meet Dante Basco, who played Rufio from the iconic Hook. That movie is one of my absolute favorites of all time. Talk about a piece of my childhood. (And tell me, what girl growing up didn’t have a crush on Rufio when this movie came out? I’m guilty as charged on that one.)

 

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Dante was super cool in a more casual way. He was laid-back and easygoing but still very nice. He even told me I looked sexy in my Black Widow costume. That gives him major bonus points in my book. (This was taken with Tracy, the friend who invited me. She made her own costume and based it on a character of her own creation. Pretty darn cool.)

 

As we were standing in line to get pictures with Dante, there was this absolutely adorable little girl in front of us with her dad. She was maybe three or four, and she kept showing me her toys that she’d found at the conference. How was I supposed to resist such a cutie-pie wanting to play airplanes with me? The best part was when they went up for their photo with Dante, however. The dad had cut out a picture of his wife’s face and put it on a stick, so that she could be in the picture too. It cracked me up to no end. He looked rather sheepish when I asked him about it.

 

“She doesn’t actually know that I did that yet,” he said. “And she hasn’t seen the pictures.”

 

That made me laugh all the more, just picturing her reaction when she saw her smiling face in the photos as well.

 

I also got to (briefly) meet Stan Lee, Marvel creator and super-writer. There were so many people in line for the photo ops that our encounter was very short, but it was pretty overwhelming to be standing right next to a living legend.

 

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Naturally I had to wear my costume for part of Sunday, just long enough to get a shot with Stan Lee.

 

So yeah, I think that’s about it. It was an amazing time and really fun. I was very impressed with how respectful and considerate everyone was. All of us were there for the same reason, which was to have a good time and meet cool people. No one shoved in line to meet celebrities or got impatient. They were all willing to wait their turn and were super nice whenever someone asked to get a picture with them.

I highly recommend attending a smaller Comic Con like this one to anyone who wants to meet other geeks and have a great time. As I said, I’m already planning for next year!

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Boy. *dusts off blog* It’s been a little while, eh? Sadly, my lungs succumbed to the steaming pile of poo that is known as bronchitis the last few weeks. It’s stupid, quite frankly. I’ve never touched a cigarette in my life, don’t have asthma, don’t have major allergies, and yet it pounced upon me like a lion on a decrepit wildebeest. I was actually sick enough that I couldn’t even write, which just about KILLED me. I had at least four days of nothing but time, and no energy or creative juices whatsoever. SUCK.

(On a slightly side note, I haven’t forgotten book two of the Prince of Light series. I have a standalone book that I’m desperately working to finish because it looks like the market is sort of swinging in that direction. I don’t want to miss out on a potential trend with an agent, so I’m finishing that book up first, then coming back to book two. Sorry to be lame…)

In other news, being sick meant I got to spend lots of time with my cats. Diddy (short for Sir Didymus) was my bodyguard for most of it, though Ludo got his fair share in as well. Diddy is a spastic dork most of the time, yet he can be quite loving when he chooses. He’s kind of like a dog in many ways. I mean, he even sleeps with the dogs:

See?

See?

People can’t seem to tell the different between Ludo and Diddy right away because they look really similar. They have slightly different colors, but until you actually see them next to each other and know them, it’s easy to get confused. Thus I’ve provided three handy ways to know how to tell the difference between Ludo and Diddy! So helpful, I know.

-Number One-

Ludo is super cute when he sleeps, usually curled up beneath a sunbeam:

Soft sunlight make for a happy kitteh.

Soft sunbeams make for a happy kitteh.

Then there’s Diddy:

Weirdo.

Weirdo.

-Number Two-

Ludo is inquisitive and sweet, even when a camera is shoved in his face.

What's that, Mom?

What’s that, Mom?

Diddy lacks a certain sophistication when it comes to his close-ups:

Classy.

Classy.

-Number Three-

Ludo is laid-back and easy-going:

How do you not love this cat?

How do you not love this cat?

Diddy is…well, Diddy:

"What?"

“What?”

*sigh* He may be a cute moron, but he’s a moron nonetheless. His cuteness has saved him on more than one occasion, particularly after he’s torn up yet ANOTHER roll of paper towels. But at least now if you ever get a chance to meet Ludo and Sir Didymus, you will be able to tell them apart. (Take notes, people, there will be a quiz.)

To make up for my complete lack of posting for the last month, I leave you with an adorable photo of a sleeping boxer/bulldog puppy.

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You’re welcome.

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While I love to travel, I don’t always get a chance to do so as often as I’d like. (You know, that whole “not-having-money-unless-I-go-to-work” thing.) But every once in a blue moon, we get to go on a fun road trip and see something new. We went to a leadership conference put on by the Calvary Chapel in Boise, Idaho last year and it was really good. So when we were offered a chance to go again this year (for free, no less!) we said “Heck, yeah!”

Honestly, it was the first time that I’d ever been to Idaho. I’d never driven that far east before. I’ve traveled all over Oregon, my home state. I’m probably a bit biased since I was born and raised here, but I do happen to think we have one of the most beautiful states out there. (I mention that I’m biased because I’ve only ever visited 5 states here in the U.S. in my entire 27 years of existence. Sad, I know.) Other states have beautiful attributes, but Oregon has something special. It goes from the dry, high desert to the fertile, lush valley. It has a coastline that’s almost always worthy of photographing. There are plains, mountains, valleys, beaches and even large(ish) cities, for those who don’t care for nature. Of course, to see all of this you have to drive several hours, but the views are worth it.

Everything’s so green right now! Fields and grass aplenty! I actually hadn’t traveled through Eastern Oregon hardly at all. North, south, central, west…those I know pretty darn well. But east? Not so much.

We spent two nights there. The hotel was pretty nice, though I have decided that hotels in general don’t regard short people who have to put on makeup in the morning. They are notorious for installing large, obnoxious counters that helpless 5’2″ shorties like myself have a most difficult time reaching across. I can’t see what I’m doing from five feet away, so I have lean over, using all of the muscles in my lower back to hold myself upright whilst I line my eyes, lengthen my lashes, etc. Not to mention the lighting always sucketh. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve put on my makeup in a bathroom not my own and thought that I was looking okay, only to step out into the harsh sunlight and realize the error of my judgment. What was hidden by bad lighting is now horribly exposed in the unforgiving sun.

But I digress. Apart from a slight pain in my lower back from too much counter leaning, the trip was most pleasant and quite fun.

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I love mixed breed dogs. Don’t get me wrong, I love many types of purebreds as well, but I’ll confess that even my two-sizes-too-small heart has a tiny pinprick of a soft spot when it comes to rescue animals. Both of my animals were rescues from our local Humane Society, and I wouldn’t trade them for any pedigree in the world. Ludo is my ever-lovable long-haired cat. He looks just like a Norwegian forest cat, but I doubt he’s actually that fancy. He was named for the character from that classic ‘80’s movie, Labyrinth. (David Bowie in tights. Thaaaaat’s right. I knew I could make you cringe remember.)

In the movie, Ludo is a huge, orange monster who isn’t very bright, but loves Sara all the same and counts her as his best friend after all of five minutes. He might be a big scaredy-pants, but he’s still loyal. My Ludo is a huge, orange cat who isn’t very bright, but loves me all the same and counts just about anyone as his best friend, provided they’re willing to scratch that hard-to-reach area on his chest for a few minutes. And yes, he’s a scaredy-pants, too. As soon as I saw him in that tiny cage at the Petco display, as one of the featured pets from the Humane Society, I knew that he was a Ludo and that he was mine.

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He likes to think that if he just wishes himself to be smaller, it will come true and he can fit into anything. I’ve already mentioned that he isn’t the brightest.

Just for funsies, I tend to find myself wandering the vast corridors of the Internets when I’m really bored, and I happened to come across a site with different dog breeds, including hybrids. Now, I’d heard of some hybrids and thought the names were actually kind of cute. Labradoodles, chiweenies, flandoodles and the like. Sure, some people only have them for their names. Who wouldn’t want to say they have a cockapoo? My dirty mind can’t even begin to come up with just a single one-liner for that, it’s so hilarious. So I browsed through the seemingly infinite types of crossbreeds.

Then it started to get weird.

I started to wonder: who thought up something like the American bull dane? I’d never seen anything like it. I mean, what person honestly wanted a bulldog the size of a great dane? Just when I thought they couldn’t get any weirder, I found a Boston lab (Boston terrier/labrador mix). And a boxador. And a cheagle. (No, really! I only wish I were kidding.)

Now, before I start getting hate mail from the proud owners of these…erm, unique breeds, let me remind you again of my own mixed breed rescue. Only mine’s actually cute. *ducks and runs*

Yes, I happen to be the proud owner of a borador (border collie/labrador) named Samus. And yes, she is named after Samus from Metroid. I am a geek and proud of it.

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See? See how adorable she is? How do you not love that face? I sometimes sit there and think, “Who the heck got rid of you?” I mean, bonus for me, but bummer for whoever had to give her up.

I know when it comes to dogs, breeds don’t always mean anything. I’ve met golden labs meaner than a rattlesnake and pit bulls as mellow and loving as ever. Giving them love is really all that counts in the long run.

Now if only we could all apply the same mindset to people, the world might be a little better place.

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