Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 In Review

It's hard to believe 2011 is coming to an end tonight. What a difference 12 months make. It is hard to believe how much my life has changed since last year. Last year at this time I was living alone now I share my home with 2 monsters, a big yellow beast, and my new fiance. Luckily I have a nice new bigger kitchen to accommodate the new additions.

I did a little bit of travel in 52 weeks I took photos in 20 different locations. Can you tell I love to travel? I have 2 travel goals 1 is to visit all 7 continents and the other is to visit all 50 states. I made progress towards both goals this year. A trip to Argentina in December (it was also supposed to include Antarctica but circumstances beyond my control prevented that from happening). I also knocked 2 states off my list Kansas and Missouri. Part of my travels this year allowed me to spend time with friends which is always a treat - I caught up with my cousin in NYC, a trip to Disney in August with a friend I have known forever and during September I managed to celebrate my birthday in 2 countries and on both coasts not an easy feat.

Some of you may be wondering if I have a favorite photo out of all the pictures I've taken this year. I can say that I actually do. This is it.

2011 has been an amazing year full of surprises and fun. I look forward to 2012.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Week 52: Portland

Wow what a sense of accomplishment writing that blog title. Week 52 yup that's right I did it. I managed to take at least 1 photo every week. I'm not sure whether my photography got any better along the way but I did challenge myself. I am going to try and keep this going next year. There's already a lot planned for the year trips to NYC in January, Russian River Valley in February, Boston in March, there's something going on in August I'll remember what that is eventually, and a trip to Yellowstone and the Tetons in September. All great locations for photography.

Week 52 brought a trip to Portland to visit with a friend from high school that I hadn't seen in 20 years. It was great catching up and I definitely want to go back to Portland and explore more. This trip was a quick visit to VooDoo Dougnnuts and then off to do some hiking at Multnomah Falls. While only a little over a mile it isn't the easiest of hikes but we did it and the view along the way was worth it.

See that tiny spot to the left of the falls - that's where we are headed.

The view from the top - it was worth it.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Week 51:Merry Christmas

I apologize for not sending Christmas cards out this year. I had every intention to take this photo before I went on vacation but I didn't get around to it. Once I got back I had other things on my mind. While I wasn't able to go home this year for Christmas I am very lucky to be spending the holidays with people that I love. Merry Christmas from me, Dave, Paddy, Koda & Tag (the cats were smart and hid from the costumes).

Paddy is a good sport although she really doesn't like the costumes all that much.

We do reward her with attention and bones.

She devoured this one.

Location: Seattle, WA
Camera: Canon 7D

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Week 50: A Special Post

This week's photo was supposed to be of Antarctica but as some of you probably know I didn't quite make it there. Mechanical difficulties with the boat prevented me from reaching my 7th continent. It was a bit of a stressful week not knowing whether the cruise was going to leave and then trying to figure out what to do instead. After looking at all my options I decided just to come home early. It was disappointing that I didn't make it to Antarctica but it is better to go with a ship that works than a broken one.

Dave's been trying to cheer me up since I returned. He got a penguin costume for Paddy she was very unhappy with that but it made me laugh. I got a blu-ray copy of Happy Feet - haven't watched that yet but I'm sure I will like it. And to top it off today we went for a stroll at gas works park and he proposed. I have to say that this worked to cheer me up.

I've been trying to decide if I will do a 52 week project again next year. Not sure I can do that and plan a wedding at the same time.

I didn't take this one so officially it should not be on the blog but I figured I can cheat this once.

Afterwards what better way to celebrate our engagement than to go on a Santa themed pub crawl with friends.

Location: Seattle, WA

Camera: Canon 7D

Week 49: Don't Cry for Me Argentina

The trip I've been planning for a year finally arrived this week. A week in Argentina - Buenos Aires and Tierra del Fuego. I did a catamaran tour around penguin island and saw all sorts of wildlife. Such an amazing place with the mountains surrounding the boat. I did remember to put the camera down and just enjoy the scenery at times. So many pictures you just can't capture. I will definitely go back at some time.

I took so many photos I couldn't narrow it down to just one so I am cheating and posting 2 photos.

Location: Ushuaia, Argentina
Camera: Canon 7D

Week 48: Are You Ready For Some Football

Second yearly tradition of going to a Seahawks game the Sunday after Thanksgiving with my dad.

Got great seats for the game. Too bad the weather wasn't better, a teeny bit cold but that's what you get for football in November in Seattle.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Week 47: Thanksgiving

I am hosting my second Thanksgiving in Seattle in a few hours. What started out as a meal for about 12 has grown to 20 people over the last few days. I think there is plenty of food and if not I'll make PB & J sandwiches. This is what the place looks like now. In a little while it will be filled with friends and food.

I have a lot to be thankful for below is just a small sampling of what I am thankful for this year.

My Family. I love the fact that my sisters and I get along so well. I have an amazing niece and nephew. I wish didn't live so far away from them but it just makes the time that we spend together all the better.

This guy. He has definitely been a nice addition to the year. Funny how things happen when you least expect it.

Friends. I have an incredible set of friends that span the globe. Some I only see once a year some fewer than that but I know I can count on them if I need anything.

Monsters. They're both staring at me as I write this. I'm not sure they are very thankful at the moment they still are getting used to the big yellow beast.

The big yellow beast. Even though she torments the cats I think I will let her stay.

A job that enables me to travel. Hard to believe I've been with the company for 6 years and I still enjoy going to work every day. The travel I do for work earns me frequent flier miles and hotel points that I then use for me, my friends and my family.

I hope you all enjoy your Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Week 46: Introducing P-Doggy

Earlier this month a big yellow beast and her owner moved into the condo. The monsters have been slowly getting adjusted to the big yellow beast. There has been a great deal of progress and Tag has been feeling rather adventurous this week and spending more and more time around the beast. I would like to take this opportunity to introducing my readership to P-Doggy AKA "the big yellow beast" or "Paddy."

Camera: Canon 7D
Location: Seattle

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Week 45: Ours Goes to 11

On Friday 11/11/11 I had the honor of attending the wedding of my friends Clint & Leigh. I also had the honor of photographing the wedding. I don't normally photograph people and I've never photographed a wedding so I was very worried. The ceremony was great and I was happy to be a part of their day. I am thankful that some of the shots I took came out well. I will post more after I have a chance to show them to the bride and groom.

Camera: Canon 7D

Location: San Marcos, CA

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Week 44: Battle Time

Sunday was an important day in Football the New England Patriots faced the Pittsburgh Steelers. Normally this game means nothing to me, what changed it this year is Dave is a die hard Steelers fan and he really dislikes the Patriots. The intense dislike comes from the fact that the Patriots typically beat the Steelers. I wanted to wager on the game but Dave was too afraid to place an actual bet as he wasn't 100% confident the Steelers would win. Also we could not agree on terms. In the end it is probably better that the Steelers won as Dave would have been miserable if they had lost and I really didn't care. After all it's only a game.

Location: Seattle, WA

Camera: Android

Week 43: What a View

If you're not already jealous of me you will be now. This is the view I have from my cube. I know poor me having to look out over the Space Needle every day.

Location: Seattle, WA

Camera: Android

Week 42: Bye Bye Viaduct

For those of you that know Seattle may be familiar with the viaduct. A double decker road through town. There is currently a large construction project under way to tear down the viaduct and replace it with a tunnel. On October 22 the viaduct was closed and pedestrian traffic was allowed on the bridge. I was very excited at the opportunity to walk the bridge. I was prepared for the worse in terms of crowds, having experienced the big dig in Boston and the crowds for the bridge and tunnel walks there. Luckily the weather was miserable on Saturday and there were not a lot of crowds. For more photos of the day click here

Location: Seattle

Camera: Canon 7D

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Week 41: Mmm Tasty

Fall is pumpkin season, so my photo club went out to Jubilee Farms in Carnation for some seasonal shooting. Saw a catapult throw a pumpkin, fell down a hill and took some photos. My favorite though was this sign. I found it funny that pigs think fingers are food because I think pigs are food. BACON! More photos from this day are on my Flickr phot stream

Camera: Canon 7D

Location: Seattle, WA

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Week 40: I Ate Where?

I agreed to go to Kansas City even though I had knocked Missouri off my list of states in June for 2 reasons. 1) I was promised a trip to Kansas so I could cross that off the list and 2) While in Kansas I would indulge in some of the best BBQ in the states. Imagine my surprise when I was taken to a gas station in Kansas for lunch!

To be honest I was told ahead of time that Oklahoma Joe's is in a gas station. And the BBQ was very good. We got there shortly after the place opens at 11. By 11:30 the line was out the door. If ever in Kansas City I highly recommend stopping at this gas station for lunch.

Camera: Canon 7D
Location: Kansas City, KS

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Week 38-39: Lo-Fi Weekend

Last weekend I went non-digital. Took out my polaroid and fisheye and enjoyed a beautiful fall day with friends.

Week 38: UFOs at Discovery Park

Saturday I got together with the Flickr Peeps for a lo-fi stroll in Discovery Park. The sun was shining so it was a good day to take the polaroid out. I do love the impossible project the film always produces some interesting artifacts. This one there appears to be a UFO floating over Puget Sound.

Location: Seattle, WA

Camera: Polaroid

Week 39: Deception Pass

Sunday I drove up to deception pass to take an hour boat ride with a friend. Saw some wildlife and got to view the bridge from underneath. Very cool

Location: Deception Pass, WA
Camera: Lomography Fisheye

Monday, September 26, 2011

Weeks 35-37 Happy Birthday to Me

I'm a little behind on my blog posts. That's because I've been busy celebrating my birthday this month. I decided instead of only having a single day or a birthday week I was going to celebrate all month. If I was going to celebrate all month it couldn't just be in Seattle there had to be multiple cities and not just cities but countries.

Week 35: A Room With a View

I kicked off the birthday celebrations with a weekend trip to Puerto Vallarta with my friend Helen. A few days at the beach, a few drinks (ok maybe more than a few), and some sleep. This is a view from the balcony at our resort.

Camera: Canon 7D
Location: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Week 36: Soaring

We spent a day sailing in Puerto Vallarta saw dolphins, birds and I swam with the fishies.

Camera: Canon 7D

Location: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Week 37: Lobstah Roll

After Mexico the next logical stop for me was Boston. It has been years since I celebrated in Boston. When I first moved to Boston my first birthday dinner was at Legal Seafoods it seemed only fitting to have my Boston birthday celebration at the new Legal's Harborside. It was great to catch up with friends from both Boston and London and of course enjoy a lobster roll.

Camera: Android

Location: Boston, MA

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Week 34: Musical Sunset

Wednesday evening I went to the Brandi Carlile concert at the zoo. It was a great show and an amazing sunset occurred during the encore which made it even better. As the sun was going down Brandi Carlile was singing Johnny Cash, maybe I should have shot video instead of a photo so you could hear the soundtrack to this beautiful sunset.

Camera: Android

Location: Woodland Park Zoo, Seattle

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Week 33: Triday

I just love getting up at 5 AM on a Sunday followed by strenuous exercise. Today was the triathlon I've been training for. This year I decided to do a longer distance tri but still a sprint the total distances were 1/2 mile swim, 12 mile bike and a 5K run. That's a lot of exercise for early in the morning. The weather was perfect today about 60 degrees the water was about the same temperature so it wasn't all that cold. I always find the biggest challenge of the swim dealing with all the other swimmers. I've gotten much better at getting around people and getting my own space. Overall I was very pleased with my times, I actually did much better than I thought I would. I was expecting to be a little over 2 hours I had assumed 20-25 minutes for the swim, 55-60 minutes for the bike and 45 minutes for the run plus time for transition. I was quite surprised when I ended in under 2 hours. Here are all the pertinent stats:

Clock time: 1:53:28
Overall place: 976/2036
Division place: 120/207
Swim: 19:00
Swim rank: 444
Transition 1: 6:59
Bike: 45:53
Bike rank: 799
MPH: 15.6
Transition 2: 2:22
Run rank: 1455
Run: 39:12
Pace 12:38

And now onto the picture. This is what I treated myself to after the race. My body was so sore and was in need of grease and sugar. Dork burger (duck and pork), banana cream ice cream sundae and sweet potato fries.

That concludes all of the photos that I took today. But I'm sure some of you are interested in seeing pictures of the race so now onto some of the photos that Dave took of me.

Wondering if I still have time to change my mind here.

I'm somewhere in the water can you spot me. I'm not sure where I am so if you can spot me you're better than I am.

Returning from a nice ride across I-90

The end is in sight.

Thankfully I didn't actually need the first aid tent.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Week 32: Gasworks

One of my goals of this 52 week project was to get over to gasworks park to take some photos. I've been there a couple of times but never have taken my camera. This week provided me just the opportunity I needed, a friend from the UK office was over and wanted to go on a photo stroll. Luckily the weather co-operated for us.

I really wanted to make this my photo of the week as I do love signs but I resisted.

Oh wait no I didn't I just posted it.

For additional photos from gasworks see my photostream

Location: Seattle
Camera: Canon 7D

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Week 31 Stuck in the Middle

I dedicate this blog post to my sisters Amy & Melissa. While we have had our shares of fights and drama it always works out in the end. I consider myself very lucky to be your middle sister. I would like to say I will save this wine until we are all together to drink it but who knows when that will be so instead just know that I will be thinking of you as I drink this.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Weeks 29 & 30 On The Road Again

Things have been quite hectic lately so my apologies for not updating the blog. I've been on the road the past week a mix of both pleasure and business. We'll start with the pleasure. I went back to where I grew up for my high school reunion. It's amazing that it has been 20 years since I graduated, it doesn't seem like it at all. It was great to catch up and reconnect with friends I hadn't seen since graduation. I am totally cheating with my photo for week 29. I didn't actually take it I had a friend take it but I did configure the settings so I am counting it.

Location: Rome, NY

Camera: Canon 7D

After the reunion I was off to Chicago for my company's customer and partner conference. On Monday evening I got to enjoy dinner and drinks at a roof top deck overlooking the city.

Location: Chicago, IL

Camera: Canon 7D

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Week 28: Food Porn

Saturday night decided to try something completely different for dinner. Original intention was to go to Dahlia Lounge but unfortunately we didn't have reservations it was an hour and half wait for a table and there were no seats at the bar, as a result Dave & I ended up at Lola right across the street. A quick glance at the menu and I noticed the tangine section, I immediately knew what I was getting - Kid Tangine. Yup that's right this dish is made with real kids - goat kids. Goat, turnips and peas absolutely delish. Eating this dish brought back memories of my old tangine, I must buy a new one to use in my new kitchen.

Location: Seattle, WA
Camera: Android

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Week 27: Celebration

Cooking for 50 people isn't easy. Cooking for 50 people without a functional kitchen is even harder. I agreed to help a friend with a BBQ on the 4th of July, he has an amazing rooftop deck that looks out over Lake Union and the fireworks. Luckily I was able to borrow a kitchen on Sunday night to cook the pulled pork, went the easy route with the pulled chicken (bought rotissere chicken and pulled it), and used the grill for the rest of the menu. It was a wonderful day and from the looks of it people enjoyed the food.
Camera: Android
Location: Seattle, WA

Monday, June 27, 2011

Weeks 24-26: Three weeks in one

Wow, first off I can't believe that I am halfway through my 52 week project. While I admit I haven't been prompt about getting the photos posted I am thoroughly impressed with myself that I haven't missed a single week yet. The last three weeks have been rather busy for me two road trips and the start of my kitchen remodel. More details in the photos below..

Week 24: Sekiu at Night
June 17-18 I participated in the Photo Center Northwest's Longshot fundraiser. 24 hours where you go out and shoot, one photo from the 24 hours will be selected by the center to be auctioned off in their annual fundraiser. Some friends and I decided this would be a good opportunity to drive out to the coast. There is no way we could manage 24 hours non-stop so we booked a hotel in Sekiu. Where is Sekiu you ask - it's here. This photo was shot at night shortly after we arrived at our hotel.
Week 24: Sekiu at Night

Camera: Canon 7D
Location: Sekiu, WA

Week 25: What the *$%& was I thinking
As you may recall I decided this summer to remodel my kitchen. The project kicked off on Monday, June 20th. The week was mostly about demolition, a little more destruction that I would have hoped for but I survived and the kitchen is now being reassembled. Here is a before photo as well as a few of the work. You will most likely see an after picture after the project has completed. Daily photos are also being posted to Facebook.


Week 25: Before

Week 25: Before


Week 25: What the *$%& was I thinking

Camera: Canon 7D
Location: Seattle, WA

Week 26: R&R
With all the demolition and chaos at my place I was in need of some rest & relaxation. Luckily I had booked a weekend out at Lake Chelan with some friends. Amazing how 3 hours from Seattle the weather is so completely different -blue skies & warm - almost like summer. The majority of the weekend was spent doing very little. You may surprised to hear that I only took 16 photographs over the 2 days compared to 100 the weekend before. Sitting on the beach I noticed some parasailers.

Week 26: R & R

Camera: Canon 7D
Location: Lake Chelan, WA