Friday, May 30, 2008

Thank you!!! Thank you all!!!!!

Editorial note...AAAACK! I wrote this post a couple weeks ago--I *swear* I did...but it ended up as a draft. Yeah, right, you're thinking...the 21st century version of "The dog ate my homework!!!" Whatever. But here it is...

Boys and girls I got an award today!!!

My good pal Sue gave me this award...she was, in turn, given it by our mutual blog friend Penelope. Wow, I'm touched and honored! In the immortal words of Sally Field..."You love me! You really love me!"
So who do I "love this much?" Hm, let's see...Snowelf, Rick, Sue (back), Penelope (looping back), Christine, Daniel, and, of course, "my" Kathleenybeany. :-)
You are all entertain me, make me laugh, and give me something to look forward to. Thanks.
More later...

Thursday, May 29, 2008

I'm in!

Yesterday, I posted about finally pulling the trigger and getting into the world of stock photography. After lots of research and reading, I picked as the service to go with. I checked email this morning, and what do I find? A message that tells me this:

Congratulations, the iStockphoto administrators have determined that your files are commercially and technically ready for Please begin uploading at your convenience.

WHOOHOO! This means I can finally quit my day job! OK, not really...being as how I haven't yet uploaded any pictures (other than the sample shots I sent up). Oh, and there's the whole thing of "How do I distinguish my photos from the other 3.1 million really good photos that are already out there???" Uh, I guess I'll worry about that later.

Interestingly enough, I listened to the Digital Photography Show podcast this morning on the way into work, and they talked about a couple listeners who'd moved from amateur photographers to "working" photographers (making money selling stock photos). Now, very few people are making a living at this, but they said the same thing I was's more about validation of one's artistic skills and ability than the money.

As soon as I get this whole thing figured out and upload some shots, I'll see if I can link to them from here.

More later...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I decided I'm doing it...

Wow, two days in a row with something interesting to say. Look at me.

Ever had an experience like're thinking about something, mulling it over in your mind--maybe for months. Playing the "should I or shouldn't I?" game. Trying to consider all the risks and benefits but realizing you don't know what you don't know. Wanting the upside, but being scared of failure or, worse, rejection. But have a conversation with someone, they lay out a couple obvious questions ("What could it hurt?" "What's the worst thing that could happen?") and then you decide...HECK YEA, I'm gonna jump in.

Well, that's what I'm doing. I am breaking into the :deep inhale: stock photography market. Or at least trying to.

I had an email conversation with a bloggosphere pal yesterday (they know who they are!!!) and we touched on this subject. I've done occasional poking around for months. The service I picked (won't name it until I know they accepted me!) is one I heard about on a podcast a few months ago and have checked them out now and again. It's like looking at the inside of a fancy restaurant, then walking all the way in to where the maitre d' acknowledges you, but then backing out the way you came in. You look at *those people* in *that place*, you just don't think you fit it.

Well, dag-nabbit, maybe I do.

If I pass the 'artistic test' (they like the sample pix I submit), then I'll post more details later. For now--wish me luck.

More later...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Post-race report

Finally, something semi-interesting to write about...lately I feel like my life has been work, school, sleep, repeat same. I don't want to bore y'all with that--heck it's hard enough for ME to stay awake through it...

Anyway, this past Saturday was the Soldier Field 10 mile run. It's a race I've done for the past 3 years, and I really enjoy it. It starts and ends (not surprisingly!) at Soldier Field in Chicago. It goes south on Lakeshore Drive for about 5 miles, then comes back north on a bike/running path that's right along the shoreline of Lake Michigan. The last quarter mile or so curves around the west side of Soldier Field, through one of the north entrances, into the interior area, and out the player's entrance to the field. You run up the sidelines and finish on the 50 yard line, watching yourself on the Jumbotron.

I'd set a goal for myself to beat my time from last year (my personal record, or PR in runner lingo). I also had another goal of breaking 1:40:00, which is a 10:00 per mile pace. About halfway through I was pretty sure I'd beat my previous time. In the last couple miles, I thought maybe...just maybe...I could break the 1:40:00 mark, as long as I didn't poop out. Well, this year--drumroll, please...I set a new PR. I finished in 1:38:51. That's a 9:53 per mile pace, and is almost 3:30 better than my finish time last year of 1:42:14.

Needless to say I was ecstatic! I was also tired, sore, and a little dehydrated, but what the heck...I'd hit both my goals.

This race was really the high point of the long weekend--the rest was "honey do" stuff, grilling out, doing some non-work reading, and generally relaxing. All that was fun, too, by the way. Unfortunately too short, but whatcha gonna do?

More later...

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I saw it - UPDATE

The picture is crap (Sue none of the fixing in camera or via Photo Shop could clean this up!), but here 'tis. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you--THE WIENERMOBILE!!!

I saw it!

OHMYGOSH I saw it, I saw it, I saw it! I was so excited--I didn't expect it, but I turned my head and there it was! Just like on TV! Like ever since I was a little kid!!! AAAAAAAI was so excited I thought I was gonna pass out.

**breathes deeply**

OK, jtj3, slow down...

Alright y'all, what I saw was...the Oscar-Meyer Wienermobile. I was driving home last night, and I came up to an intersection with a left-hand turn lane. I look over in the lane, and see this giant towering pinkish-reddish....THING...on top of a car. I knew it was the Wienermobile immediately. I mean, come could you *not*? And I bet right now, as you're reading this, you're humming:

"Oh I wish I were an Oscar-Meyer wiener...that is what I truly want to be-e-eeee..."

If you weren't humming it before, I bet you are now!

I happened to have my camera in the front seat with me so I squeezed off a quick picture, but I don't think it came out very well...too dark. Too bad though. I was in the middle of the "go straight" lanes, but for about half a second I considered cutting across traffic and chasing it down.

But what would I have done if I'd caught it? And besides, I had places to be and people to see. So I decided to let it just be one of those fleeting serendipities (which would be a GREAT name for a band, by the way) that come and go, and only live on in my mind. It was kinda cool, though.

Oh, I wish I were an...oh, nevermind. :-D

More later.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

I need a meme fix...

So I'm driving into work this morning, thinking "Wow, it's been a long time since I did a meme. I should do one today." I checked--it's been since April 5th. Anyway, I cruised on over to my pal Snowelf's site and found that not only had she done a meme, but she tagged me!!! Quelle ironic coincidence (the name of Snow's blog is "Ironic Coincidences"). Anyway, I thought it was funny...

So here's my meme. I won't tag anyone, but if any of my pals **cough cough** Sue **cough cough** KathleenyBeany **cough cough** want to do this, then fine...

1.Your name plus “ness”
jtj3ness. Uh, yeah, OK...whatever. Ness.

2. Two feelings at the moment? Satisfied and thankful.

3. What are you listening to right now? Bach's "Sonata for Solo Violin No. 1 in G." Courtesy of my J.S. Bach station on Pandora. Which is like the best website ever, except for Google and Wikipedia.

4. Done anything you regret so far this week? Yes. Two stupid little mistakes that no one but me will think about in 5 minutes, much less 5 days, but I'll agonize and obsess over them until I move onto something else.

5. Describe where you are right now? 9th floor of the building where I work, on the west side of the building, looking out over the west/far west suburbs of Chicago.

6.The highlight of your week? It BETTER BE the fact that I'm going to see "Iron Man" on Friday--cuz if I get bogarted on going to see it, AGAIN, I'm gonna be cranky.

7. What are you craving to have right now? More coffee. Which is odd since I *just* finished a 16-oz cup, and that was my 3rd (or 4th, I forget) of the day.

8. Who were the last people you went out to dinner with? Hm, Mrs. jtj3's mom and dad came over for Mothers Day and we grilled out, does that count? If not, then it would be Mark, Suzanne, Norm, and Heather--we all went to a charity event/fundraiser on Friday.

9. What are you scared of? Lots of things, but mostly of losing the good stuff I have in my life because of dumb mistakes, or fate, or...whatever.

10. Last movie you watched? Hm...uh, DVD of Sin City, I guess...

11. Do you have feelings for someone? Yes--for Mrs. jtj3!!!

12. What is your heritage? Welsh, Irish, little bit of French, and I don't know what else.

13. Are you thinking of someone right now? Yes.

14. Britney Spears is a skank. Agree or disagree? Totally agree!

15. Last thing you downloaded on your computer? "Introducing Joss Stone" by Joss Stone (bought off iTunes, so I guess that counts)...

16.Have you changed much this year? Yep...a ton.

17. Say something about the person who posted this before you? She's my firstest and bestest blogging buddy, and a really neat-o person. Who I admire a lot. With the whole graduating school/single mom/getting a new job thing. You're awesome Snow. (C:

18. Do you like moms? In general, yes.

19.Hugs Or Kisses? What, I have to pick? JEEESH...

20. Say one of your friends and an inside joke with them. Mrs. jtj3--SASKATOON.

21. How many homes have you lived in? 11

22. This Q went AWOL. Er, OK...well, send someone out to find it!

23. Who was the last person to text message you? My friend Randy

24. Where was the last place you went besides where you are? Uh, home last night, I guess...

25. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celeb? No.

26. Do you speak any other language other than English? I can make myself understood in French, I know a little bit of Japanese and a little bit of German.

27. Last thing you watched on TV? The Today Show this morning.

28. Do you dress for style or comfort? Both!

29. Name someone with the same b-day as you? Rube Goldberg (who was responsible for the concept of Rube Goldberg machines). Also, Ann Landers and Abigail Van Buren ("Dear Abby").

30. Ever had a drunken night in Mexico? No but it sounds like fun!

31. Whats the craziest thing you’ve done? Skydiving on my 30th? OK not the craziest, but the craziest that I am COMFORTABLE POSTING IN A PUBLIC FORUM...

32. Favorite colour(s)? Blue and green

33. What are your plans for tonight? Woodworking class!

34. What are you looking forward to tomorrow? Hm...catching up on DVR'ed shows, the fact that it's one day closer to when I get to see "Iron Man," the fact that it's hump day...

35. Last time you smiled? When I read this question.

Are my answers boring? Stupid? Did I answer "Mrs. jtj3" too many times? You decide...

More later...

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Blogging is therapy!

Must sleep...eyes droopy...can't concentrate...but (C:

Just a quick one before I hit the hay tonight. I was taking a look at, and ran across an interesting story with the headline "Your blog can be group therapy." Great story, and it led me to a great blog, Snickollet.

The story, and the blog, just reinforce what I already knew--this is good therapy! Ahhhh...I feel better already.

G'nite, all...more later.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Missed you! Air kisses!

Hey party people. Little did I know 2 weeks or more ago that my last post would be...well, my last post for a while. Life has been good--busy, but good.

First, work. Well, work is work. Travelling, meetings, etc., etc., all the regular stuff. Nothing new, other than it's starting to get increasingly more demanding (but also the most fun I've ever had at a job, ever!).

I decided work wasn't keeping me busy enough though (HA!) and so I've started on a 2-year MBA program. I just started last week, and it's really a great program. It's all online which works really well for me. I've thought about doing this off and on for many years, but part of what's held me back is travelling and not being able to commit to a regular class. Now, I have no excuse. In (roughly) 2 years, I'll have my degree--SWEET! Needless to say, though, this program is cutting into my free time. Oh well, short term hit for a long term gain...

Speaking of things cutting into my free time--there's blogging, too. I've had a few things pop up here and there that have reminded me that blogging is (was?) starting to have an unhealthy place in my life. I have a somewhat addictive personality by nature, and when I got up to writing 4 blogs and contributing to a 5th, I realized it was time to dial it back a bit.

My Runs With Perseverance blog is still active but on hiatus. Since I'm not training for anything now, I don't really have that much to say about running other than "ran this far, this pace." Big deal. So I decided to combine my running with this blog ( fact it sprung out of this blog). I wanted to keep my photo blog because it's not much work and it's fun. All the other stuff is either gone, or I'm not participating in any more. Just too much.

Well...I think I've got my priorities straight now, at least I hope so. We'll see how this all goes. Even if I stop blogging completely, though (perish the thought!) I'll still come visit y'all occasionally, and will continue my "private email, off the bloggosphere" friendships.

More later...