Thursday, February 24, 2011

Project 365 - Day 55

Took this as part of a 'Depth of Field' exercise for my photo class.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Current Events... as if.

It's been awhile since I mused or actually informed anyone of anything... so here's what's new and potentially interesting for me as of late.

Still unemployed.  I typically play the part of devil's advocate in terms of interviews and job searching - i.e. if it's a job I really want, or the interview went exceptionally well, I will tell myself that I won't get it.  It works out, believe it or not.  Most of the positions I've gotten in the past were obtained by this bit of mental trickery.  Last week, I went in to a company nearby for a series of interviews.  Interviews went (seemingly) well.  It was a job that I really did want to land.  However, I did not play the mental mind-trip card this time around... and as a result, I didn't get the job.  I'm certain of it.  So, now it's back to the drawing board yet again... and the career boards... and the employment agencies.  I'm going on 5 months off... it's agonizing.

In my endless amount of downtime, I've delved into this photography thing.  I think it's one of the few things that keep me on my rocker, and maintains at least a small part of my sanity.  Those of you that follow know that I've been running my 365 Project religiously.  I post it here and elsewhere on the interwebz.  My photo class is going quite well.  I am taking the class at just the right time, I think.  Meaning, the class poses a challenge without being overwhelming.  I haven't gotten accustomed to doing the homework though - I find that I wait until the day before, or the day of class to finish everything.  A nod to you procrastinators out there.

The Flat Stanley (or, as I lovingly call them, The Stanley Brothers) Project is coming to an end.  I've taken them everywhere that I can think to take them... places that the Boy and I frequent.  I have all the photos from the project printed and still have yet to add descriptions and other info to the pictures.  I hope to get that finished and have them back on their way home to New Orleans tomorrow.  Once they are gone, I will share their adventures.  It was fun having them visit, and I hope the kids they belong to enjoy seeing their photos and hearing about their visit to Chicago.  

I have about 90 days left before the Moab/Pastafari trip at the end of May... and I've got a laundry list of things that still need to be done to the Jeep, and needed supplies still to buy.  The Jeep repairs/upgrades are mostly weather-dependent as we don't have an accessible garage on the premises, and Mother Nature hasn't been real cooperative in providing warm, dry weather in which to play grease monkey.  So the list grows longer, and the time gets shorter.  But we'll make it happen.  We always do.

That's all for now.  Hope everyone is well.

Much love!

Project 365 - Day 54

Reflections

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Project 365 - Day 50

Day 50
Mardi Gras beads at Jambalaya
(restaurant at Phesant Run - St. Charles, IL)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Price check: Life?

There's a guy that I know, albeit not closely, through one of the forums in which I belong.  I met him in person back in the summer of '09 during one of the group Jeep outings we attended in Colorado.  He's one of those real personable, funny, and all-around-good-guy types.  One of those people that you wish you, and everyone else, could be.

I don't know much about him other than he seems to be an extreme outdoor guy (hiking/climbing/mountain biking), and that he's in the Paramedic/EMT type field somewhere in the Four-Corners area of the States.

The Jeep gang has another outing coming up at the end of May this year (Pastafari in Moab, UT), in which the Boy and I plan to attend... and this fella was also to be in attendance.

Until just recently.

He announced to the group that he accepted a job that would take him to the Middle East for a year.  Although he's not military, he has a significant amount of medical training and background.  He didn't publicly say what it was he'd be doing while there (not sure if this is something deemed 'classified')... only that the salary would be significant and that he would probably be putting his life in danger. 

Of course, this has me bummed for a couple of reasons:  (1) We're going to miss out on spending more time with him in Moab this summer - he knows the terrain well, and his company is always more than welcome.  (2) We worry for his safety - not quite knowing what he's getting into.  I hope we get to see him again.

I was told tonight of another friend I know that got the same kind of offer... to go to somewhere into the Middle East, in a war-riddled area, because of his trade... and get "paid well" for his time.

Which leads me to this thought:   What is the value of your life?

Yeah, I realize that money talks... screams... especially in these economic times.  But how do you weigh the value of your life versus a seemingly large sum of money?  What happens to your family?  Is the chance of not returning home alive worth... say $125,000?

Something else to ponder...

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Project 365 - Day 44

Mischief

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Photo class, part one: Completed

So, in the past I was concerned that this photo class I enrolled in at the local community college would be a bit "beneath me," and I feared that it would not be money well-spent.

I am here to report that this will not be the case.

I went in last night with an open mind, but became a little concerned when I started to hear terminology and concepts that I was already familiar with.  Oh, crap.  But... as the evening progressed, we got into some deeper and more technical stuff.  They spun out a little bit of "the math in photography," and I was like "Whoa!  Excellent!  I think I'll get something out of this after all."

I even have homework to do!



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Project 365 - Day 43

Face from the Fridge

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Project 365 - Day 41

Light Reading

More to amuse you!

I've become an avid reader of 'everyday life' type blogs that people are writing... probably because I'm still unemployed, and have that kind of time on my hands. *cries*

There's one blog of note that I'd like to point out, to give a shout out, simply because the author has started what she calls the "Battle of the Blogs."  I am not one of the battle-ees, but the reading is rather fun as the topics tend to be obscure.  The giggle factor is way up there.  I'm sharing with you:  It's an Average Life by AverageGirl

In other news, I'm fighting a cold - kicking and screaming, to be more honest.  If I could get around this light-headedness, I might be functional.  It's not a good time to question my stability and equilibrium each and every time I stand up.  And I'm not even on any drugs.  Ugh.

Oh, and I slept 12 hours last night.

And, lastly, the (Flat) Stanley brothers are ready to go!  I hope to start adventuring with them tomorrow!

Hope you're all well!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Updates...

I've been working on the Project 365 religiously, as you can see.  Some days it's really therapeutic.  Other days it's maddening to find something that I deem acceptable.

I hate being a perfectionist.

I took another step in my photography growth today.  I bought into www.FineArtAmerica.com, and actually forked over the funds for a premium account.  I'd been a member there for a long time, but was continually using the free account.  The downside was that they only let you list up to 30 photos for sale at any given time.  So I would have to pick and choose which ones I thought people would be the most interested in.  That's hard to decide sometimes.  I paid my dues (quite literally), and now everything I have uploaded can be purchased.   It would be ideal if I could sell enough to break even on my membership fee... I'll be ecstatic with anything above and beyond that.

My direct artist website:  http://jayme-spoolstra.artistwebsites.com

I start my class at ECC this Friday.  I'm ready.  Yeah, it's going to eat up a good portion of my Friday nights, but I hope it'll be worth it in the long run.

Still nothing in the job search... *sigh*

Project 365 - Day 39

Lone Icicle