Friday, May 30, 2008
  Some practical advice (for a change)
With Chris so busy and me off of school, I'm helping him out with his condo, acting as a little project manager. I've so far learned one very important lesson.

The last tenants didn't pay their rent or valet bills, so after some verbal and legal scuffling with them, they moved out while we were in the Galapagos. We already have new tenants, who are actually the old ones, that rented for a year before these non-payers.

These new tenants are nice, but whoa(!) the woman is high maintenance. We told them we'd have the place painted, which is pretty standard in between tenants. She wanted her own colors. We said that was fine. When she pulled swatches out of her purse and started in with what colors she wanted, for the ceilings and all. What we figured out we would do is Chris would pay for however much a NORMAL paint job would be, and they would be responsible for anything over that. I broke the news to the woman, thinking it was a really fair offer, and she went crazy. (She apologized later, blaming it on being Italian.) She was going on about a few little spots of blue on the ceiling, as evidence that the whole ceiling needed to be repainted. I'm just like, omg, that's what touching up is for. I had to sit there and think to myself, "How would Chris handle this?" because Chris is always so tactful and nice, whereas my instincts here were to tell the lady she needed a reality check. Then I said, chill, let's wait to see how much of a price difference we're talking about.

So the paint guy came and did an estimate. He told me that the place was in good shape and just needed some touching up. So what the condo needed to be ready for new tenants would cost, oh, $2,000. What this woman wanted would cost between $5-6,000. When Chris called to see if he could get the price down, the guy said the price may actually run close to $7,000. We were so not paying an extra $5,000 for a paint job.

Long story short(ish), these tenants know a painter down here who said he could easily do it for $4,500. Anything over that, the tenants will be responsible for the cost.

So we told the painter who came in to do the estimate that we found someone else to do it for $4,500. He matched the price. Yes, his estimate went from $5-7k down to $4,500 when it became a matter of not getting the job. Insane, right?

I knew it was ideal to get multiple bids for jobs like this, but I didn't realize how much of a difference it would make. We have guys coming in to do the marble on Monday, but that will be the last job we have scheduled without getting 2-3 bids for the job.
  I like this pic Chris shot

That's me at Wolf, originally uploaded by estacey.

I look so tiny in the picture, in the shadow of Wolf. And that thing is looks deceptively not-huge, but in reality it was monstrous. You'll note trees at the top, although they look so tiny you wouldn't believe it. The dots in the sky are birds.

Thursday, May 29, 2008
  Aaaaand... pics are going up.

Marine iguana, originally uploaded by estacey.

Slowly but surely. Most of my pics were taken with the 50mm lens, which is incredible for nature photography... The fact they would let me get so close was thrilling. Sadly, I'm noticing lots of my pics are overexposed... I am so not used to this camera yet. With the D70, I learned how to compensate for the underexposure, but it seems that the D300 may go the other way. I was so sick for most of the vacation that I didn't even care... I could've gotten some great landscapes at that one hike, but I just didn't have the energy. I'd shoot and not pay attention to what I got. I'm hoping my pics from the last couple of days turn out, but I haven't uploaded them yet so I don't know. If they don't, ahh well - there's always next time.

Random: This evening I was walking across the street. A white Cadillac entered the neighborhood and turned. I looked at the driver and noted it was an old man, somewhere around 60-70. (I'm not so good with ages.) Then I heard the music coming from his car: 50 Cent's P.I.M.P. You know, "I ain't that nigga tryin' to holla 'cause I want some head / I'm that nigga tryin' to holla cos I want some bread." Just before he drove out of view and I was trying to digest this scene, I noticed the veterans' license plate on his car. An old veteran, listening to 50 Cent. Altogether very strange, and amusing.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I put the pics from the point & shoot on Flickr.

As for the ones on the D300, I don't even want to THINK about them. So much work!

  I'm home!
Blue-footed boobies

And oh my god, what a trip.

I think this scene will sum up much of my trip:

We were at Wolf (or was it Darwin?), a very remote island of the Galapagos. Unless you are on a dedicated dive boat, you typically do not visit Wolf or Darwin as they are located far, far away from the central islands. Wolf has been called the best dive site in the whole world, which is why it's worth the trip for divers. It's also where we would see them if we were going to see whale sharks at all on the trip.

Unfortunately, I was sick. I had been since basically the second day of the trip. I managed the first-day checkout dive and a dive on the second day after taking FOREVER to descend because my ears wouldn't clear. After that, my ears wouldn't clear at all. Although I wasn't congested, my ears apparently were.

I left the cabin at Wolf and Darwin only to eat, and sometimes not even that. I felt horrible physically and emotionally was incredibly depressed. But I had to leave long enough to let the guy clean our cabin at least, so as the other people suited up for a dive, I took some tea up to the sundeck.

There were dolphins everywhere in the water. Everywhere. It was honestly as if someone had yelled, "Cue the dolphins!" It seemed that there were hundreds, jumping out of the water, making their little half-circles.

Both Wolf and Darwin are just ALIVE with birds. The only way I can compare it to you is that there are so many birds overhead that it looks like you're at a landfill. Only they are boobies and frigatebirds and tropicbids and terns, not just turkey vultures.

So that day, with birds flying overhead and the water before me alive with dolphins, the day just starting, I stood and I cried. Sobbed. The prettier the scene got, the more it overwhelmed me, the harder I cried. I was there, at this magically beautiful place, and I was too sick to enjoy it. As the divers made their way out to the water in their dinghies, I hobbled back to my cabin and spent the day watching movies (four that day) while everyone else swam with dolphins and turtles and hammerheads. Day slater, I saw a video of one of the dives, of a pod of dolphins swimming, and asked Chris, "Did you see that?" "Umm, yeah," he answered. I started crying all over again.

That pretty much sums up most of my trip.

I felt well enough to snorkel one of the days, so I saw some turtles and paired-up bigeye jacks and hammerheads from far above, and a funny pair of flounders. By Friday my ears were better, so actually got to dive, coughing furiously underwater while watching the fish and turtles. I did a night dive and saw lots of big jawfish and tiny scorpionfish. Saturday I dove Gordon's Rocks, where the current is so strong that it carries you away the second you let go of the rocks. There I saw some hammerheads.

Friday and Saturday we actually left the boat a little, which was good. The land stuff was awesome.

To get me to stop crying, Chris told me that we could come back again next year. It didn't get me to stop crying, but it did make me feel better; at least although this trip was a disaster, I have something to look forward to. So next year we'll go back and stay on an island and do some land tours. Being on land there made me so happy.

Now I'm sick again. Chris started to get sick on Sunday, and I started feeling bad yesterday. What a joke!

Hey, at least Maggie was happy to see us when we got home - video here.
Friday, May 16, 2008
while driving to the airport, we received word that our flight was cancelled. not delayed, cancelled.

we could try tomorrow night again, but that's pushing it... if something happened with that flight, we'd be screwed trying to get from guayaquil to galapagos.

so instead we're flying to lima, peru tonight. staying in the airport for 6 hours, then flying out to guayaquil to arrive at noon.

what a wonderful, wonderful development. (please note sarcasm.)

Bye!, originally uploaded by estacey.

Thursday, May 15, 2008
  Look what came in the mail yesterday.

Yay! A housing for the point & shoot!

I have one for my old camera, too, but that camera is pretty much out of commission. Gotta get it fixed someday if the cost isn't ridiculous.

So anyway, yay for this! Now I'll hopefully be able to get SOME pictures underwater. Baby sea lions! YAY!!!

  ruh roh
chris is sick. quite sick. when he talks, you can't really hear him.

and we're leaving for galapagos tomorrow! :( poor guy.

also, this probably means that i'll be getting sick too. my throat felt a bit funny today. eeeh. i'm sucking on cold-eez. let's hope it does SOMETHING.
  Fotos del black tie
I didn't get many, but here are a few.

First, here are the contents of Chris's wallet out to dry. On the recount of the disastrous dinghy ride, I forgot to mention that Chris forgot his wallet in his back pocket when we got in the dinghy. With the amount of water we took on, it's no surprise the wallet got soaked. Chris's wallet that evening was a ziploc bag. Classy! :)

Ellie sniffing the purse I take to these formal events. He's inside all the time now! Sadly, if he's not under the bed, he's typically on this spot... ON THE KITCHEN COUNTER! Ah well...
Ellie sniffs my black-tie purse.

At the black tie, I tried like five times to get a nice picture of us, but every time it came out blurry. They would've been nice pictures, too...
I tried, like, five times to get a picture.

This is the only one that wasn't blurry. Good thing it's a keeper! Seriously, how cute is Chris?

A lady at our table (who was bidding $25,000 for a dinner!) saw me struggling so took our picture for us. :)
Me & my bebeh

The one pic I have left to take is of the program/auction paddle. It says "STACIE C***" (Chris's last name) on it. They got both my names wrong!

Oh! We won something! In the silent auction... A group of three toys. One I'm keeping here for whoever (and Idalia's kid; the lady who cleans brings her 3-year-old) to play with; one I'm giving to Kyle, and one I'm giving to Macy for her birthday. Macy's toy was the big draw - a huge lego-type playset with DORA AND DIEGO!

Unrelated: The dogs ripped apart the cats' toy, so I stitched it up (this happens all the time). But before I did that, I stuffed it full of catnip. LOTS of catnip. The cats very much approve. You can tell by the way they try to disembowel it, as demonstrated here by Kitten.
I stuffed this thing with catnip.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
  well, i'll be...
i got the good news that my friend bethy and her husband are coming to south florida in july - and they'll be staying here! i haven't seen bethy since they were here in 2005, and that was just briefly, so this will be awesome.

Daintily drinking our 46 oz. of alcohol
we'll have to try to repeat this scene at some point :)

hopefully the water will be calm at least one of the weekends that they are here and we can take the boat over to the bahamas. failing that, we can tow the boat down to key west and visit some of the islands off of there. should be cool. :)

i'm really glad to be living somewhere that i can comfortably have guests.

and then on top of this news, today i get an email from my sister saying my niece does want to come visit. it won't be during my have-nothing-to-do time since she would like to come after her birthday, but my one-class schedule for the summer won't be so bad. i am trying to find prices for her now, and if i can am going to arrange it so amanda can fly back with chris & i when we go to visit. yaaaaay! :)

omg, is that a genuine-ish smile i see?
look! a real smile! i think her mom took this picture last year on her birthday.

so anyway, good news all-around.

AND, these folks who are going to rent the condo don't want the furniture in it... so i'm getting a new bedroom set! chris bought a new one when he moved out of there, for whoever was renting it, and it's nice. i've been wanting a new one - the one in there now is very uhh.. well, his friend got rid of it because his girlfriend didn't like it, if that tells you anything. we started looking at new ones online, but this solves that problem. AND, we get a whole big-empty-room full of furniture (couch, loveseat, chair, rug, TV, etc.) so now we'll have TWO living rooms, which is kinda funny. i'll have to take before & afters, because the place is going to look a lot different. we're switching out the dining room furniture, since chris likes the condo stuff better, etc.

whee! :)
Monday, May 12, 2008
  Getting a little excited now...
Here is the boat we are going off of -- link.

And this is an account of a trip aboard, by photographer Stephen Frink -- link. Seems to be the same stops, although not in the same order; I don't think we're waiting until the end to do Wolf & Darwin. I could look at the intinerary, but then I'd have to reach over and turn on the light, and that's just too much trouble.

Wheeeeee! :) :) :)
  who knew?
i've had to stop by chris's condo a number of times in the past week. i have the security swipe and i have the PIN code to give to the security guard so they'll let me through the gate and all, but i am so shell-shocked from my old condo building -- they are such militants, i tell you -- that i am nervous they're going to question and hassle me. so, before i go driving through the gate, i switch a little band i wear around my right-hand ring finger over to my left. chris suggested it before -- "just tell 'em you're my wife." so if they give me a hard time and question why i am going in, i would just say, "i'm dr. XXXX's wife" and they would let me through.

after i left today, i was thinking how weird the ring felt on my left-hand finger. i don't even notice it on my right, but it was uncomfortable over on the other hand. and i realized why -- my whole life, i have never worn a ring on that finger. i hadn't yet switched it back over, and i was thinking, "well, what's the big deal? it's just a ring," and thought i'd switch it back over at my leisure. mind you, one of my unmarried teachers would wear different rings, on different fingers, all the time -- including her "wedding" finger.

that mindset lasted about 10 seconds, at which point it felt really wrong to be wearing a ring on that finger, considering i'm not married, and while driving i switched it back over.

i guess it's not all that surprising that the idea of a wedding ring is a powerful one. i guess i'm just a little surprised at how powerful.

this will SO be my kids' favorite!

  Oh. My. God.

Baby marmoset , originally uploaded by floridapfe.


Sunday, May 11, 2008
  We tried to go diving off the dinghy on Saturday

So yesterday we tried to go diving for the first time since the Caymans. Chris has this dinghy and we wanted to see if we could dive off it, so yesterday was our first try.

It was a disaster.

It took FOREVER to get our stuff together. Of course there were no parking spots, which we expected, so after we brought everything down to the beach, Chris drove home to drop the truck off and ride back on his bike.

While at home, he got sidetracked by the guy keeping his sailboat in the back, since he needed help with HIS dinghy. Then he finally got on the road to come back to the beach and partway there, he got a flat tire on his bike. So then he walked home and got MY bike and rode back. I passed the time quite nicely, watching the pelicans fish and talking to people that were approaching me about what we were doing with this dinghy on the beach.

We finally got out in the water. The dive gear took up the whole dinghy, so we had to ride basically sitting ON TOP OF IT, legs off to the side. Water splashed in the dinghy every time a wave hit us, and we had no space to move to bail it out. We got to where we decided we would go down, we spent five frustrating minutes trying to find our masks under all that stuff, then finally were ready so threw our inflated BCs overboard, and then Chris said, "Oh my God, I don't have my weights." I had loaded everything from the trunk we keep our dive gear in, and taken everything we needed, but apparently his weights were on the boat, not in the trunk.

We talked about what we could do - I could share my weights with him and we could probably both stay down, although it may be a little hard. Someone had taken my weights out of my BC in Costa Rica after our first dive, so on the second I was just diving with the 6 lbs on my tank weight. I didn't know why it was so damn hard to stay down, but eventually I just grabbed a rock and carried it around and it worked out fine. We decided that would be our game plan, but then around this time that we realized that one side of the dinghy was getting very smooshy - it was deflating. Obviously, at this point we called the dive and motored back to shore.

As we loaded the stuff back onto the truck, Chris declared: "Stacey, today we lost. There is no way we can declare this one a win, in any way." It had, by that time, become so bad that it was actually funny. I think had we just not had weights, it would've remained just frustrating and bad. But once we started to sink? Then it became laughable. A good four-hour time investment with no return. Chris said we could just shore dive, without the boat, but by that point, I was just ready to go home and start getting ready for our evening.

Oh, also, Chris got a big gash on his thumb from putting the engine back on the truck. Disaster.

Chris figured out later that thankfully we had not RUINED the dinghy, but knocked into the valve with our stuff - with the dinghy so full, we had no way to determine that out there. From now on, I think maybe we'll just use the dinghy for sight-seeing and snorkeling. :D

Friday, May 09, 2008
  Whee, the fun of the black tie
I think there's something wrong with this picture.

Tomorrow night we got a black tie to go to. Wheeee. I should think that I would enjoy going out and buying a pretty new dress, but dress shopping has become, like, my absolute least favorite thing to do. So I crossed my fingers and hoped that the dress I wore last year to a different one would still fit and look fit for public consumption. It zipped, I didn't look too horrible, so I am excusing myself from the dress shopping. Now I just gotta go buy some shoes since I left one-half of my most fabulous dressy shoes in our San Francisco hotel room. Grr.

Most chicks like to shop, don't they? :) I will still enjoy finding a sparkly pair of earrings, I hope.
Thursday, May 08, 2008
  blah blah blah blah
school - i'm frustrated. i have a whole bunch of classes left to take, but for summer i can only get 1 class in. for fall, i would like to take 5, but only 3 work out with a schedule. i tried to get into a 4th and it restricted me from signing up. an advisor lifted the restriction for me, but by that time that class had filled up. VERY FRUSTRATING. going to meet with an advisor next week to see if they can get me into 1-2 closed classes.

grades - they came in! A, A, A-, B+, B. not bad, eh? it ain't the straight A's that i became accustomed to at bcc, but i'll take it. :)

drugs - i ran out of topamax. long story, involving insurance company f-ups and the fact that will cost me over $300 to fill it. i shouldn't have stopped taking it, but now that i did... i haven't had any headaches anyhow. i even took the dogs for a run today, a long one, and it was HOT, and i'm fine. even on topamax, that used to give me a headache sometimes. so now... do i get a refill? or just hope this continues? after i forgot my topamax last year when we went to the bahamas, i was able to figure out that it stays in your system for about a week, so by now it should be out... i like the idea of staying off it, but i also don't want headaches in the galapagos, so it's a gamble. what to do?

elliot cat - this is the cat i adopted when he was 6 months old. he was a feral until they caught him at 2 months old. he's a real love, but has a tendency to regress into his semi-feral state when i move him. for months here, i would have to CATCH ellie to get him to come in. he was fine after i started petting him, but getting that first pet in was always a challenge. now, for the past month or so, he's been coming in A LOT. in the past couple of weeks, he's hardly gone out at all. once in a while, when he did, i just have to wait a little whole then open the garage door and there he is, waiting to come back in. he hasn't left the house today or yesterday at all. he's just happy to sleep under the bed all day and then come sit out on the kitchen countertop at night. he's sitting on the bed right now with me and gretchen. it's a relief, but it's funny that he has become such an inside cat, just like kitten. and he's better with the dogs already! :)

poop - my niece macy got the bucket o' goodies. i know this because i got a message the other evening on my voicemail that said: "I POOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOPED!" then a pause, then a, "I GOING TO TAKE OUT OF THE BOX!" alrighty then! enjoy, girly. :)

movies - i've actually watched 2 this week! i usually go months in between movies... i saw baby mama and thought it was adorable. i LOVE tina fey. she's smart, funny, cute, and inspirational - i saw her acting an extra on an old episode of SNL, before she lost something like 40 lbs. big difference, and now she's hot! and last night, on PPV, that dan in real life movie with steve carell. it was sweet! the weirdest thing was that most of the cast members had been on law & order episodes. i kept recognizing them. "hey, that was that dude who played the bad actor with the bad english accent on criminal intent! ... hey, that was the rich lady who killed her mom!" i think i watch too much law & order. and dian weist was actually a regular cast member! it's really weird.

o-kay, enough babbling for now. :)
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
  whoa, cute dogs

Jack Exhausted, originally uploaded by eastick_east.

they're called "goldendoodles"
goofy, yes, but oh so cute...

Tuesday, May 06, 2008
  Poor Buddy
We let Patty take Gretchen or Sebastian home with her for a week, every other week. That means, we have both dogs for 2 weeks of the month, and the other 2 we just have one or the other.

But the times when there is no Gretchey and no Sebastian at Patty's house, Buddy is the only dog in the house. And since Patty doesn't yet have the place doggy-friendly, like our place is, and Buddy is totally not trustworthy in the house alone, he has to be crated all day.

I stop by when I can to bust Buddy out of his little jail, and when I do, Buddy goes APESHIT. Seriously. He barks and howls and always gets a little doggy hard-on. Every time. Even after I let him out of the crate, he keeps howling and barking at me. I have to bring the PowerShot sometime so I can get a little video of it.

At around 3 today, I picked Buddy up to bring him home for the night. He went CRAZY. Even after I PICKED HIM UP, he kept howling and barking. He was flailing around in my arms, arching his back, howling... I reported the scene to Chris as, "He looked like he was having a seizure." Seriously.

Now tonight, for whatever reason, Gretchey keeps barking at him when he comes in the crate from outside, so he turns right around and goes back outside and stares at me. When I realized what happened, I ran over and opened the door and discovered he had been crying. Big ol' wet tears all over his face. So now he's sleeping on my lap.

Poor. Thing.
I hope Patty gets him a friend soon.

Honeycreeper baby & mama, originally uploaded by estacey.

Today was my get-outta-the-house-for-at-least-4-hours day since the lady who cleans was coming. Last week I went to the Everglades. Today I had to go get Buddy from Patty's (I'm taking him to the vet tomorrow) anyway, so I decided to go to Butterfly World and take some pictures.

I got there and went to switch out my lens to the 70-300mm and discovered that I HADN'T BROUGHT IT.

So, um, all of my pictures I took there I had to use my 50mm lens. That really sucks. Especially since I saw this adorable honeycreeper baby sitting close to the walkway, his mom coming by to feed him every few minutes. I think I could've gotten some really nice pictures had I something more than my 50mm lens to snap pictures with. Grr. The good thing is that I spotted it and was able to warn the guy who was watering all the bushes, with a very forceful hose spray. He said that this guy must've just left the nest... He can hop around, but can't fly, so it's a good thing he didn't start hosing off the bush the baby was sitting on.

Now I gotta go back. It was $20 to get in... Had I known this would've happened, I would've just bought the annual pass for $40, but too late now.

  I guess it could be worse...
Recently I posted something about my mom. See my last entry (I think).

Anyway, today I was talking to my sister Kamille. She told me that our sister Kelli was at her house this weekend, and Kelli relayed the fact that her husband Chris had to wake her out of a nightmare a few nights before. Kelli tends to talk in her sleep, so I'm guessing she was talking and thrashing about.

Apparently she was having a dream that she was strangling our mother.

I wonder what kind of card Kelli's going to buy for her.
Sunday, May 04, 2008
  It's that time of year again...
The time to pick out a Mother's Day card.

I went over to the grocery store earlier to buy my first copy of the Sunday New York Times in months (I think today I officially entered the realm of "too much free time"), and I figured I should probably get a card since Mother's Day is coming up in a mere week.

Here's the dilemma: None of the cards really apply. There are the "Thank you for being my best friend" variety of cards.. umm, no. There are the "Thank you for being such a great mom" types... uhh, that's a "no" too. "You were always there for me." No. There are the "You were the best when I was growing up" types of cards... uhhhhh, yeah, no. So my task is to find a card that isn't dishonest, but isn't so devoid of feeling that it makes her feel bad. After all, I'm 30. It's been a long time since childhood, so I try to not be angry at what a disinterested mother she was, or how much she yelled. These days, we don't talk much, but when we do, she's nice to me. She hopes good things for me.

I eventually found a card that had Piglet from Pooh on it, and it said to enjoy her day, hoping it was full of little pleasures or something. That works.

The whole time I was browsing through and rejecting cards, I was thinking how I hope my kids don't find it this hard to pick out a Mother's Day card. I hope I'm the kind of mom that inspires the mush.
  Woo! Grades are coming in...
I got two back so far, and both are A's! (Lit Theory and Educational Theory)
Lit Theory kicked my ass. I did really well on the tests and stuff, but some of the material was hard. Look up writing by Lacan and Derrida to see what I mean.

This leaves Shakespeare, Advanced Exposition, and Introduction to TESOL. I'm guessing only one of those will be an A... but hopefully I at least pull B's in the other two.

Anyway, good news! I'd be happy with mostly A's with a couple of other letters mixed in. Let's just wait and see... I was always late to my Shakespeare class (9 a.m.), so hopefully she doesn't kill me for that. And my Exposition teacher was really hard. A lot of people did stuff for that class that he considered so bad he wouldn't even give it a grade. He was tough. I'll see soon enough, I guess...

Today we went to Oleta State Recreational Area (or whatever) to kayak. I took the little point & shoot with and was able to snap just a few pictures.

Chris fiddlin' with the kayak

We paddled over to an island, which was crazy. All these people were anchored there, drinking, playing with their dogs, listening to music. There was a dude playing the guitar and singing who had a mic and speakers and everything. Seems strange, on this island.

Chris was pointing at a dog on an inflatable :)

Chris was pointing out a dog for me that was floating around with its owner. Lots of dogs there, running around, all wet, just happy as hell. Very cute. :)

In the mangroves

We were out for a few hours. On our way back in, we took a detour through the mangroves. Chris saw a manatee - twice! - but I was too busy taking pictures to stay caught up with him, so I missed them. He saw one yesterday off the boat, too, but I didn't go along, so I missed that one too.

The mangroves were gorgeous. I love it. It was just this pretty and peaceful in person, too.

Chris in the kayak

I asked my silly boy to smile for me when I caught the reflection of the kayaks in his glasses. This is the smile I got. :p

I told Chris to smile. This is what I get.  :p

Goofball. So anyway, today was nice. Then we came home to get cleaned up and headed off to Benihana for dinner. It was goooood, and I was kickin' myself for not bringing my camera. I could've gotten some non-puggle pictures!

Okay, now it's late so I'm going to go to sleeeeep.
Saturday, May 03, 2008
  We went kayaking today...

The little plant again..., originally uploaded by estacey.

And what did I get pictures of? Well, about 30 different versions of this little plant. :) Cute though, isn't it?

I did take other pictures, but I just loved this plant, so it was the first thing to go up!

Friday, May 02, 2008
  Going to kill the cat.
Okay, now she has apparently taken to peeing on the living room rug. Twice in two days.

What the hell am I supposed to do about this one? I think the cat is banned from the house, except for when I am in a room where she can lay and snuggle with me and is under my watchful eye so she won't pee on anything. I got home today and SMELLED THE PEE while on the phone with Chris, and it pissed me off (no pun intended) so bad that I could barely talk anymore I was so grumpy. There's just no resolution for this one.

The worst part is that we were teaching the cats to use the doggy doors to get in and out. If she's stuck outside except for when we want her in, we have to put the doors on lockdown. Which means Ellie will probably continue to shred our screens. :~(

I think I'm going to cry.
Thursday, May 01, 2008
  Sunset on the back dock

Sunset on the back dock, originally uploaded by estacey.

Having a sailboat in the back is good for pictures, because sailboats are pretty. :)

  Gretchen & Maggie

Gretchen & Maggie, originally uploaded by estacey.

More dogs! I just thought this picture was cute. Gretch was at Patty's for, like, a week and a half... When we brought Maggie there Sunday, Gretchey growled at her. Maggie attacked. Thankfully, she was wearing her muzzle, so I just went over and plucked her up. Ahh, drama. But they're back to being friends now; Maggie slept with her head on Gretchen last night (until we had to put Gretchey in the crate for chasing the cats!).

Working on Photoshop, which you may or may not be able to tell. The pics from the D300 really aren't any different than the D70... The D300 is easier to work with, but other than that.. But hopefully my pics will start to LOOK better, because I'm really trying!

I'm Stacey. I'm a 31(!)-year-old Wisconsin girl living in sunny South Florida. The highlights in my life are my lovely boyfriend, my aloof cats, my adorable/adoring stepdogs, my two lumbering tortoises, select family members, being outside, being underwater, taking pictures, yadda yadda. Stay tuned for lots of babbling!

Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States


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Making a difference

A small boy lived by the ocean. He loved the creatures of the sea, especially the starfish, and he spent much of his time exploring the seashore.

One day the boy learned there would be a minus tide that would leave the starfish stranded on the sand.

When the tide went out, he went down to the beach, began picking up the stranded starfish, and tossing them back into the ocean.

An elderly man who lived next door came down to the beach to see what the boy was doing. Seeing the man's quizzical expression, the boy paused as he approached. "I'm saving the starfish!" the boy proudly declared.

When the neighbor saw all of the stranded starfish he shook his head and said: "I'm sorry to disappoint you, young man, but if you look down the beach, there are stranded starfish as far as the eye can see. And if you look up the beach the other way, it's the same. One little boy like you isn't going to make much of a difference."

The boy thought about this for a moment. Then he reached his small hand down to the sand, picked up another starfish, tossed it out into the ocean, and said: "Well, I sure made a difference for that one!"

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