Old and young

Jemma

Recently my sister’s dog had a short stay at our house. She’s not even one year old yet and our Monty is an old girl. I knew it would be an interesting time. Sure enough, when Jemma arrived, Monty barked at her for the first hour.

Barking

Jemma being the young and energetic one wanted to play with Monty but Monty’s a bit too old and grumpy for that now. She just wants to lie down and/or follow her humans around, not be annoyed by the young pup.

Jemma hassling Monty

There were a few growls, but overall they managed with each other. Apparently Jemma slept for the whole day after my sister picked her up and I’ll bet Monty did too.

Friday’s child

I started this blog post in my head tonight when I was reading Dr Seuss’s ‘The Big Brag’ to my son tonight. I realised that I was thinking about what I could write here, and reading at the same time. Once I found I was doing this I turned my attention back to the story – which I love – and reading Dr Seuss is a pleasure because it so easily rolls off the tongue.

I could have gone to my work Christmas lunch today but chose not to for various reasons. The main one is that I would have only been able to stay for a couple of hours before I had to leave to do the school pickup. The other one is that my Friday’s are very precious and I don’t want to have to think about work if I can help it.

Because there’s only a couple more Fridays before the school holidays start and then I won’t have a Friday to myself until school goes back in January, I made a date with a girlfriend and we went into town to have lunch – which was really breakfast – at the cafe we chose. They don’t do lunch till midday and we were early!

After lunch we saw a movie (can’t remember the last time I went to a movie without my child) called ‘Burn after Reading‘. I’ve never seen Brad Pitt like it. He wouldn’t have been out of place in our Australian Kath and Kim. Also George Clooney was really convincing as a manic Casanova and Frances McDormand and John Malkovitch were excellent in their characters. I loved Linda’s (McDormand’s) determination to get her surgeries, and it costs her dearly, but it’s funny along the way.

Today, after talking with my girlfriend at lunch, I’m starting to convince myself that my own business might not be such a bad idea after all. Am thinking I need some serious advice about this, but if it ever happens I wouldn’t leave the day job at first – maybe never. I’m also thinking if I write about it it won’t escape out of my mind so easily.

Oh, and the course I was doing, I finished and I came top of the class with my marks. It was like studying a subject at uni with the timeframe and the amount of assignments we had to do which included group work and a presentation – my two most favourite things! That got us 88% and I did a good assignment apparently and there was even an exam. Bloody hell I’m glad it’s finished and it’s made me realise that any longer term study is not for me at the moment. It’s also made me realise that if I do put a couple of hours aside each week to concentrate on something – like my own business – then I can find this time to do something else.

So after I publish this I’m going to sit back and give Crocodile Dundee a big miss on television, but watch some more of Mad Men Season 2. If you ever get to see this show do it. If nothing else, the outfits are fabulous and you’ll see how far women in the workplace, and society, have come.

Oh, and I am Friday’s child and hard luck is not my brother.

How to add your Flickr photos to your blog

I’ve had a Flickr account now for around two years and I love it as a place to keep my photos. Keeping that site and this one separate doesn’t work because photography is part of what I do, therefore part of what I write about.

On that note, I saw an old school friend the other night. It was the first time I’d seen her since I left school over 20 years ago. She found me through Facebook. Facebook is another place I share my Flickr photos which she sees. She told me that she really likes my photos and was even able to tell me which ones she likes, like the one below.

Getting my photos from Flickr showing up on my blog has been a bit cumbersome, but doable.

Manually adding photos to blog from Flickr

In Flickr, I select the photo I want from my collection, click on All sizes and choose the medium size (500 pixels wide).

I then copy the HTML code that will link back to that particular photo.

Back to my blog, I go to the HTML view and paste the code into the blog.

I then change back to the visual view and select the image, hold the shift key down and drag the picture into a size I want, in my case 450 pixels. Holding the shift key down keeps the photos proportions correct. If your blog’s main window is 500 wide then you don’t need to fluff around resizing images.

Here’s the result.

Beach life

Adding your Flickr photos to blog using WordPress plug-in

This was how I used to do, but I found a plug-in over the weekend that takes away having to visit the Flickr website. It’s the WordPress Media Flickr plug-in and so far works a treat.

Once it’s installed and setup to talk to your Flickr account, just select the Flickr icon in your post window. Note, you can also view everyone’s photos but because of copyright reasons I plan to avoid this. Here’s how to add others’ photos to your blog under the Creative Commons licence.

Then select the size options and where you want the photo to sit within your post. I choose 500 wide and the default alignment because I add my own style to it. I still have to resize down to 450 wide but this is really easy as shown above.

If there’s an even easier way to do what I’ve described above, please let me know. I’m all for shortcuts.

Christmas Flickr meet

Last weekend JJ and I went up to Mt Lofty Botanic Gardens for the annual SA Central Christmas Flickr meet. I haven’t met up with the group since about March because of other commitments. The Mt Lofty Botanic Gardens are a beautiful spot for a picnic which we had first before we strolled around taking more photos.

Flickr Christmas meet

This little girl was the photographic star of the show.

Like this dad?

Working the camera

JJ and I lost the rest of the group when this happened but met up with them at the end before we all left.

Lone flower

Through the leaves

Even thought it was mostly an overcast and cool day I still got a bit sunburned which was silly as I’d packed my sunscreen.

See the rest of the photos here.

Six by six

I’ve been tagged to do a 6 x 6 meme by Shai Coggins. You need to:

1. Find your 6th photo folder (hard drive or online)
2. Find the 6th photo in that folder.
3. Share the photo on your blog and give the details of the photo.
4. Tag 5 folks to do the same.

So using Flickr I went six sets back from the beginning and counted six photos in from the beginning of that set. This was it.

It’s JJ at Christmas 2005 when he was four and he got a little piano with a microphone. For some reason I don’t mind noisy toys like this to a point. The point being that they’re used away from me after the noise becomes too grating.

The hands gotta move too!

So, the meme said to find your 6th photo folder and I didn’t know whether it was from the earliest or latest. Therefore I did both and it came up with yet another photo of JJ. What a coincidence, but then my Flickr account consists of a lot of photos of my boy. As I said to a colleague who was looking through my photos the other day it’s a document of his life, just like this blog.

Here he is at the beginning of this year after we’d been to the Martime Museum at Port Adelaide on the top of the nearby lighthouse.

Top of the lighthouse

Now I’m supposed to pass this onto five more people to do with what they will. So, Tiff, Trish, Jeanie, Kikolani and Cellobella, over to you.

Time

Things just move too quickly and I just want things to slow down.

Just when I think things are settled at work, things change – some good and some not so good.

It’s mid-November and before I know it Christmas will be here and it freaks me out every year about what to get people for presents. I’ve organised my son’s, but that’s it.

I’ve been doing a course for the last ten weeks or so which has taken up much more of my time than I ever envisaged. At least it’s shown me that there’s no way I want to go and do further university study at this stage. I have an exam for this course early next week and then that’s over and I can concentrate more on this website again. There’s a few things I want to do with it and I know I’ve been neglecting it.

I don’t know if the time flying by thing is just because I’m getting older and that’s what happens? How is it that I’m doing much much more now than I was in my 20s and this isn’t including being a mum. How can I not do the things I’m doing?

I sometimes think about what I can cut out of my life. Work’s gotta stay. House maintenance has gotta stay. My son’s gotta stay. I’ve got to spend some time with my friends. I’ve got to spend time with my hobbies, like this blog, ukulele playing and the odd bit of photography. It’s hard to find time for those extra projects, like doing extra stuff around the house, and washing the car etc.

I find that when things have been frantic for a while that if I don’t take some time just to sit back and relax that I get sick which then forces me to relax, but I feel crap so what’s the point of that?

So I’ve established that time’s going too quickly and that I don’t want to cut things out of my life so I guess all that’s left is managing what time I have better. That sounds like hard work.

Maybe I should look at websites like Time Management from Mind Tools or this from Personal time management guide, but I haven’t got the time just yet.

What’s your best time management tip/s?