I am a Geek... No really, you don't need to try to deny it, I know it... In fact, I kind of like it. But, in all of my Geekiness, I am also a little bit of a tightwad. I have been looking at MP3 players now for almost a year. G even tried to buy me one for my birthday in June, but I hadn't found exactly what I wanted yet, so I waited... I looked... I waited... I looked. Finally this week we were in town and I spotted this cute little number.
It had most of what I was looking for. It is almost exactly the size of a shuffle (which I find adorable), but had the things that I wanted that the shuffle didn't. It has 2GB of storage, a clip (like the shuffle), an FM tuner, and a screen so that you can see what is playing and choose something else. That (and the no FM tuner) was the biggest drawback to the shuffle. With the Shuffle, you load it up, and then you listen to it. Your only option being to skip to the next song. Uh No! I have eclectic tastes. Today I want to listen to Country, tomorrow Rock, and the next day some Mannheim Steamroller! But, this little Cutie had a screen, AND the price was right ($20 less than a 1GB Shuffle)... AND it had a screen... AND it had an FM tuner...... AND I wasn't tied to buying my music from ITunes! Not that I have anything against ITunes, I just like options!
The minute I said, "I think this is the one I am going to get" G had it in his hands and headed for the cashier LOL! He even got me the armband and silicone case to go with it so I could walk/jog/exercise while wearing it (Yeah, THAT's going to happen). His only thing was that it only had a small screen that shows the options/what's playing. He wanted me to get one of the players that had the color screen that you could show people pictures with and you could see album art, etc. But, I don't plan to waste any of my song room with picture files, and the biggest draw to this player was the size. It is actually smaller than the picture on the website! A display big enough to show a picture decently would defeat the whole "Look how tiny it is" thing! It is almost exactly the size of a Shuffle if you have seen one of those.
I got it on Tuesday, and I spent the next 2 days ripping all of our CDs to the laptop so I would have music to put on it. I was actually dreading ripping the CDs because I hadn't ripped any music in a couple of years, but I was really pleased with the Windows Media Player. It's come a loooong way since the last time I used it. What you say, the ultimate Geek didn't have all of her music ripped to her laptop?!? Nope, I have a really nice 5 CD player that we've always used to play music with, so I don't usually play music off of the laptop, and if I did I just played it straight from the CD, so I just had no reason to rip any of the CD's. And, I am lazy.... If I don't need to do something... well, you know, I'm lazy!
I'm really happy with my little player, can you tell?? Now I'll have a reason to go out and buy some new music ;p
Let's see if I can dig up a picture to end this entry with. I took this picture during the trip to the zoo that was new to me. I thought he was really handsome. The only touch up work I did was tiny bit of gaussian blur because the background wasn't quite as out of focus as I had planned when I took the picture, a tweek to the levels, and then a quick unsharp mask.
Someone asked how I do the frames, and the answer is... several different ways LOL! This particular frame was done by selecting the edge of the picture and doing a stroke command in black, then making my selection smaller, again doing the stroke command, this time using the eyedropper to choose a little bit of green from the background. One more time of making the selection smaller and one more time with the stroke command, this time with black again. If anyone is really interested, I could do a tutorial here one day on how to do it. I use Photoshop Elements usually, but I find that most of the different programs have similar things, you just sometimes have to look for them.
O.K.... Here he is, Enjoy!
Posted by Astaryth at 10:21 PM
Love your country and live with pride
And don't forget those who died America can't you see
All gave some and some gave all
And some stood through for the red, white and blue
And some had to fall
And if you ever think of me
Think of all your liberties and recall
Some gave all
And if you ever think of me
Think of all your liberties and recall, yes recall
Some gave all
-- Lyrics from "Some Gave All" by Billy Ray Cyrus
The graphic above is this years official poster from the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs. Go here to see not only this years offering, but also the posters from previous years.
Doesn't that picture just radiate peacefulness? Aaaaaaaaah!
This is my Boo, his buddy Ten and the two yearlings. Aren't the youngsters getting big? They are sweet, kind and funny. I'm really pleased with how they are developing both physically and mentally.
I had a couple of questions on the Wordless Wednesday entry, so let me see if I can answer them....
The frog was a funny little decoration on a tree at the botanical garden we visited. The way I got the picture was setting the shot up and then turning off the auto-focus and manually focusing in on the frog. This caused the blades on the plant in front of it take on a 'fuzzy' or out of focus aspect. This is the same as idea as when you take a picture of an animal in a wire fence or cage. You set the focal distance for the main subject. You have to turn off the auto-focus though, or the camera wants to focus on what is closest. I have a couple of pics of the frog taken from a different angles, but I thought the out of focus grass added to the 'feeling' of the picture. I then cropped the picture with an oval, put a bevel on that to give the under glass feel, filled the background with a gradient fill that started with a light gray and ended with black. A quick selection and red stroke fill for interest and Viola!
What kind of art is it? Ummm.. I really don't know. I just thought it was cool. I think they have some similar pieces for sale in the gift shop. Next time I am there I will have to see if they have a name for it.
I took a bunch of pictures of flowers and decorations both at the Gardens and at the zoo, so you will probably be seeing quite a few of them over the next several entries. It is fun to see what you can do with them with some cropping and framing.
And, one more flower picture!
Posted by Astaryth at 3:23 PM
Wow, it's a little dusty in here. Anyone still around?? Hello?!? ;p
O.K. First the Obligatory Picture (Sorry Pat, it's not an animal this time)
Now, with that out of the way, let me take a quick peek at what my last post was..... Eek! It has been a while since I posted anything hasn't it? No real reason why. I would see things, or think about things, or see Photo assignments/Weekend assignments that I would enjoy doing a post about, but they just never seemed to make it to fruition. It's not that we haven't been doing things this summer, but it just seems like I didn't have enough hours in the day, or at least I couldn't seem to find the energy to post.
I didn't feel like I was more busy than usual, but besides the 10 horses I normally care for, Morgan's Agility classes, the new barn that is being built for the horses (the owner is out of town and I've been being the go-between for her and the builders), Zoo Tycoon2, several book series that I have recently discovered, and well, just life... I guess I was a little busy. Add to that the fact that I'm the only one taking care of the horses and therefore don't get 'days off' often. Well, I guess I was busier than I thought! LOL!
During the couple of weeks that the lady who owns the horses was home, we managed to visit both my very favorite zoo, and a new zoo I had never been to. Both are about a two hour trip from here, so I don't have the access I was used to when I lived nearby the favorite zoo, but both made a nice day trip.
We also found a very dog friendly botanical garden near-by that Morgan really enjoyed. The above 'obligatory picture' is from there. We just found it recently and it is a nice size and beautiful. They have lovely winding paths and are so dog friendly! Morgan got a treat at the desk when we paid admission, a 'doody' bag (just in case we didn't have some--we, being responsible doggy parents, had brought our own also!), and a very friendly petting from the greeter. There were also several bowls with fresh water spaced out on the paths for any thirsty dogs! We had brought some bottled water along for her just in case, but this was a very nice feature and now we know we don't have to do that next time. I'm really looking forward to visiting again this spring when all of the flowers are in bloom. If we were up north I would probably go back and enjoy the fall colors, but we really don't get much of that here.
Posted by Astaryth at 6:55 PM