Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Back in Business, Baby!

Although I usually steer clear of Boxing Day sales and their ridiculously rowdy shoppers (not to be confused with the ridiculously INSANE Black Friday shoppers) I had an important mission this year: REPLACE MY CAMERA!
As some of you know, my camera and all my gear ( and my laptop) had been stolen during a break in at my house back in the summer and while Telus had replaced my laptop, I still had no camera. So after months of trying to scrape together whatever I could possibly set aside (and a generous donation from my family to my "camera fund") I braved the crowds to hunt for a good Boxing Day deal on a new camera and YAY! I found one!
So my camera and I are safe and sound back at home, and I am ready to start the new year out with a new camera and some great new adventures! And yes, this pic that I posted here is hopefully the last one taken from my cellphone for awhile, hehe =)
Happy New Adventures,
-J

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

LOOK WHAT I GOT FOR MY BIRTHDAY!


Besides the oodles of homemade gifts my sons showered me with today ( I love them!) I wanted to share with you a particular item I got for my birthday this year - a pair of beautiful feather earrings, made for me by a girl in a local coffee shop! I admired the one she was wearing and when she said she made it herself I immediately placed a request! These handmade beauties are each one-of-a-kind originals ( she never makes the exact same pair twice) and just so you know, THERE WAS NO HARMING OF BIRDS IN THE MAKING OF THESE EARRINGS! They are made of 100% moulted feathers from bird sanctuaries. (She has a gorgeous orange parrot feather earring I have my eye on still, haha)
Besides being beautiful and unique, there is another reason these earrings are special to me. Do you know why birds moult their feathers? Becuause once a feather is matured (come to end of its life cycle) it is a dead structure. It becomes worn down and needs to be replaced. Healthy feathers grown in their place, necessary not only for controlling body temperature and keeping out moisture, but for proper flight.

People carry around dead feathers too, it's called "baggage." You all know what I'm talking about! And we walk around hanging on to all these dead feathers, and wonder why we can't ever seem to get off the ground! It can be extremely difficult letting go of the dead weight that is holding you down - believe me when I say I've been there! - but eventually you have to come to realize that's exactly what it is: dead weight holding you back from soaring the way you were meant to. It may have been a part of you in the past, but it's purpose has been fulfilled, it's life-cycle is over. And in order for healthy feathers to grow, the old ones MUST GO!
Feathers are meant to lift you OFF the ground, not drag you down in it!

As we are nearing the end of 2010, I encourage you to please, [PLEASE don't bring any "old feathers" into the new year with you! Let the new year bring new feathers, new opportunities and new people, and may your hearts finally get back to soaring freely the way they were meant to!

If you find you need a reminder to keep you moulting all those old "feathers", buy yourself a pair of earrings like I did, I'll let you know who to contact!

Happy Christmas, Happy New Year, and HAPPY FLYING!!!! =)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

FREEDOM TO CELEBRATE

Christmas holidays are a time to celebrate, a time for reunions with loved ones, family and friends. It astounds me then, that even though christmas comes just a month and a half after Remembrance day, so many people forget the REASON we have the freedom to celebrate with our loved ones, or celebrate anything at all for that matter, is because of the men and women in service overseas who fight to give us that very freedom. Please take a minute or two to click on the link below. (I haven't found one for our Canadian troops yet so if you know of one PLEASE let me know!) As you are celebrating this season with your loved ones, please remember those who do not have that same luxury, those who are placing their lives on the line every day so that people like you and I have the freedoms we have. These selfless individuals all have families whose only Christmas wish is to have them come home safe and sound. Please keep them in mind. To see their stories, and watch the most inspiring real-life reunions that are certain to warm your heart right to your very soul, go to:
http://www.operationfamilyconnect.com/

Friday, December 3, 2010

OH, CHRISTMAS TREE ...

Last night the kids and I decorated our tree!



It took us all week to decorate it due to a shortage of ribbon ) we had to make a run to the store to get more) and busy schedules (homework and music lessons, and my office at work had a decorating party too). But here she is, all ready for the holidays. At least that makes one of us, hehe.
My dearly loved cellphone, whom I lovingly named "Buttons" suddenly realized the other day that her warranty had expired not long ago, so she randomly threw a hissy fit and went all psycho on me! Luckily I managed to talk my providers into a brand new cell phone for FREE! I also tweaked my plan, and I have a much better deal than I had before. (the trick is simply to not take no for an answer with these guys) . So "Buttons 2.0" and I are going to continue our Cellphone Photography adventures together, and I thought I'd start with the first one of my tree!
May your trees be fancy and your cellphones be sturdy, hehehe
-J =)

Monday, November 29, 2010

OH! I MISS MY CAMERA!!!!

Well it's true what they say, "you don't know what you got 'til it's gone." Although in my case I knew exactly what I had, I just miss it so much more now! I'm referring to my camera, of course, haha. Ever since it was stolen during a break in at my residence a few months ago, I have watched SO MANY photo opportunities pass me by and IT SUCKS! I don't even have a simple little "point and shoot" camera to get by with anymore! See this photo below here? I took this while on a bus tour in London, U.K. almost 11 years ago. All I had was a 35mm point and shoot camera - and I shot this out the bus window as we were driving by. I get a kick out of the fact that it won first prize in the first photo competition I ever entered. Who would have ever guessed?!



But it got me thinking, why let photo ops just pass me by like this? The earth is still turning, life is not going to come to a halt until I can get my hands on a new camera! At least my cellphone has a camera on it! Here are some I took with it earlier this year ( in the spring):





So while I am saving up every available nickel and dime - which is a challange when my kids' birthdays and christmas all happen to be around the same time, hehe - I am going to be taking on a second, new challenge: Cellphone Photography!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

My Favorite Things ....

These two little dudes are my absolute FAVORITE things in the world. No, they are not "things" persay, but I HAVE been known to refer to them as Thing One and Thing Two from time to time, hehe, Hey, these two aren't always as angelic as they look in this picture, but they are still my Heaven on Earth =)

Some of my other favorite things.....








Mountain climbing. This photo is actually Phase 2 of 3. It was exhausting but AMAZING. Can't wait to climb some more!





The City skyline. Can you guess what city this is? My next photo should give you your answer. But go ahead and guess first, I'll wait...

Fireworks. Yes I admit I'm a bit of a pyro, hehe. This pic was a quick shot I stopped to snap as we ran through the City streets to catch a skytrain after the Closing Ceremonies of the 2010 OLYMPICS. (You guessed the city right by now I'm sure, yes it's Vancouver, BC)



Sunsets. My favorite time of day. (I'm a night owl not a morning person, so sunrises didn't make it on the favorites list!)


The Beach. I am 100% beach bum, hehe. A beach is also my favorite place to run because it's a harder workout and the sand is easier on the joints than asphalt


FOOD!!!!!! I LOVE FOOD. Aaaaand now you see why I have to run all the time ..... =P



Wine tours. And good friends =) Especially wine tours WITH good friends! (Check out the slightly dilapidated umbrella,  haha , courtesy of the winery becaue it started to pour when we arrived.  It looks like we had an unfortunate Marty Poppins incident, haha)


Halloween - and Halloween costumes! Dressing up as a mobster for a night was a riot!


Christmas. I love decorating my house for christmas. Don"t worry, I'm not one of those crazy people who puts their tree up in the middle of November, hehe I'm a firm beleiver that Christmas Decorating Shall Commence on the 1st of December and Not a Day Before! I also follow the tradition of taking down the tree on New Years Day. Hey, it's a new year. Ar that point I'm already making plans for the upcoming summer =)
Well, I have alot of other favorite things, but I didnt have photos for them on my computer, such as my regular Thursday Night BBQ's with friends.
I'm off to bed now, 'cause tomorrow starts a long day, ending hopefully with me and a friend sipping drinks at the Cactus Club! Have a good night everyone, and watch for details of my Christmas in November giveaway contest starting MONDAY.
Sweet dreams, sunsets and fireworks
-J

Monday, November 15, 2010

How Not To Have a Bad Day



How NOT to Have a Bad Day:

1) Get up with your alarm and don't accidently fall back to sleep. (oops, )

2) Rememeber to set the coffeemaker on "auto" the night before so it's already brewed by the time you're ready to splash some into a travel mug as you're dashing out the door.

3) Triple-check the fridge to make sure the kids remembered to grab their lunches so you don't spend your lunch break bringing them their lunches, hehe

4) G'rocery-shop on your lunch hour sans-kids so you're not doing it after work when they ask you for EVERYTHING in the store (note: this only works if you accomplish #3)

5) Start dinner as soon as you get home from work (this only works if you accomplish #4)

6) Snuggle with the kids and read them a story before hed. ( this works no matter how your day went already!)

And THAT my friends, is how to NOT have a bad day, heehee. Mine obviously didnt go that smoothly, The only thing I DID do was #6.... and honestly it really didnt matter after that how the rest of my day had been going up until then. The rain is coming down hard on the roof, and I`m typing this as I sit at my coffee table in front of a roaring fire (which is in my fireplace, don`t worry) While today was a relatively mundane and easy-to-recover-from day in the grand scheme of things, sometimes it feels like life really does sucker-punch ya, right in the kisser! And hey, sometimes you could swear all the computerized equipment in your office are conspiring against you ( the ones in my office seem to on a regular basis anyways, just ask my boss!) But NO MATTER WHAT, whether it was nothing more than a bad hair day ( hey come on, we ALL have those!) or you`ve spent a night crying tears of heartbreak, please know that you are not alone out there. I`ve had my fair share of heartbreaks in the not-so-distant past, and I also know what an uphill battle it is to pick yourself up time and time again and keep going. But after the darkest hour has passed (and the darkest hour WILL pass) the sun WILL rise again, A new day means the chance to make new choices. For those of you out there whose hearts are breaking right now, I wish I could give you the world`s BIGGEST hug. (And, in some cases, the world's biggest KLEENEX, hehe) For those of you whose hearts are still intact, PLEASE, take time to notice all the hurting hearts around you, as you go about your day. You were there once too, remember., maybe even not too long ago. You have a chance to make someone else`s day a better day today. So here`s a sunrise just for you. in case its cloudy outside your windows when you wake up, to remind you that "this too, shall pass".

awesome-sized kleenex's and even more awesome sunrises,
-J



Saturday, November 13, 2010

View From the Top...


... from a lookout point at the lovely Tinhorn Creek Winery. I was there for a Bedouin Soundclash concert not too long ago (they rocked, by the way!) I would post the video I took of them, but the camcorder on my cellphone is REALLY crappy so I'm afraid you'll just have to take my word for it! This pic was taken with my phone on a hike in Tinhorn's 'Golden Mile' trail WARNING: the trail name is deceiving! It's actually almost 10 km from start to finish! GAH! But the scariest part was that when we got to the trail, there were warning signs EVERYWHERE about bear sightings in the area.
*gulp*
Ummm, ya I was scared the whole time, hahaha, even though my friend assured me that she had pepper spray. I wasn't about to get close enough to a bear to use that stuff! Thankfully we made it through our hike without ever seeing one.We did see some incredible views, hence the pic I had to catch on my phone. It was probably a good thing I didn't have a heavy camera hanging around my neck, just in case I had to make a break for it! hee hee