Back to School with Digital Photography I

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Some of you may know that I took a photography class at the local community college for the past four months. I really enjoyed learning more about my camera (to be honest a lot of what was covered I learned from blogs and an online course), but what I really enjoyed was having my photos critiqued by the class and professor. It was nice having another set of eyes looking at things subjectively and giving me feedback.

The class consisted of several shooting assignments (example: Depth of Field, Photo Scavenger Hunt, Decisive Moment, etc), six critiques, a test on terms, a paper, and a portfolio of 10 photos. We also had to cut mats for the portfolio and critiques. I'm totally a nerd because cutting mats was one of my favorite parts of the class. I ended up going out and buying a mat cutter :)

Here are some of the images that made it into my portfolio. Some are ones that were critiqued, but I didn't put in my portfolio because they were too similar to another photo.

I ended up with a 98 on my portfolio, so my professor must have liked all my pictures but his favorites were the pear (I really don't know why he loved this picture so much), the picture of fall leaves and the little boy (Josh), and the stop light with the birds.

I'm taking Digital Photography II next semester and I'm totally excited about it. I hear it's a lot harder, but I up for the challenge!

Viva Las Vegas...again

Monday, December 17, 2012

So, I realized that I never posted these pictures. Oh, well!

Jeff and I went to Las Vegas in October for a conference. It was a good time!

We stayed at the Encore, which was amazing (but expensive). Luckily Jeff got a discount because of the conference so it wasn't too bad :) Jeff didn't really care for the decor, but I kind of liked it! It was very red :)  The restaurants were really good too. I had fried chicken and waffles for the first time and I have to admit I still dream about it! It was so amazing!

The Battistuz joined us from California. It was really nice seeing them again. We went to the aquarium at the Mirage and the Stratosphere. Of course we played a game of pinochle in the hotel room. I just love playing pinochle with the Battistuz. I just learn so much.

We went to the Tournament of Kings at Excalibur with the Lomurro's. It my was my first time at a show/dinner like this and I loved it! Jeffrey surprisingly enjoyed it too.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I've been trying to get my parents to send me a picture of Charlie for several months now. Their excuse is that he never sits still enough to get a picture. I was at their house for only a few house and I got several :) This one's my favorite. He's not as cute as Brie, but few dogs are :)

See you in a few weeks Charlie!

Birthday Brunch at Gracie's

Monday, December 10, 2012

We had Kari's Birthday Brunch at Gracie's. I just LOVE brunch! I had the eggs benedict and it was really really good! I actually had eggs benedict agin the next day at Norma's (favorite brunch place in NYC) and I will have to admit Graci'es is better! I can't can't believe I said that! I really hope I get to go back again someday :)

I then took some pictures of the streets around the hotel before heading to my parents house. It was just so beautiful with the leaves changing color. Portland is really charming.

More Service with Mormon Helping Hands

Friday, December 7, 2012

Jeff and I volunteered again last Saturday with Mormon Helping Hands. It was fun working with two of my Young Women (Mary and Rachel). Those girl are really buff! I'm just so impressed.

We spent most of the day clearing out the house of one of the families in the ward. They really have a beautiful house and I'm sure it's really hard for them seeing it gutted like it is. The house has been in the family for years (I think she said it was a century house in the 1970's), so there were so many layers that we had to take down.

There were also four missionaries that came down to help. Basically all the flooring needed to go up in the house and these missionaries so got into it!

Afternoon Tea at the Heathman

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Kari and I went out for afternoon tea after our facials. I just love afternoon tea! We went to the Heathman Hotel which was only a couple blocks from our hotel. While it wasn't as good as the Palm Court at the Langham in London (not surprising...It's LONDON!), it was a really nice treat and Kari's first time having afternoon tea.

Pinkies up!

Birthday Breakfast at Voodoo Doughnut!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

On Saturday, Kari and I got up and went to Voodoo Doughnut for breakfast before getting facials at the Aveda Institute.

These doughnuts are out of control! There were so many choices and we couldn't decide, so we had them give us the Voodoo dozen where they just throw in 12 random doughnuts. I will admit that these doughnuts were a little sweet for my taste, but the were still really good! I so want to go back and get more when I visit for Christmas.

Kari's Birthday Dinner at the Rheinlander

Monday, December 3, 2012

My parents took Kari to the Rheinlander for her birthday dinner the Friday before her birthday. What Kari didn't know was that I would be there too! She was so surprised!

The Rheinlander is kind of an Anderson family tradition. My parents have celebrated many a anniversaries there and I celebrated my 21st birthday there.

They have a man walking around playing the accordion....awesome! When it's your birthday they give you a "Birthday Strudel" and sing to you while feeding you. Classic!

I then surprised Kari by taking her back to her decorated hotel room! Once again, she was surprised :) We then went and saw Breaking Dawn Part 2. All in all it was a good night.

A Trip To Washington.....Happy Birthday Kari

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

This is totally late, but that seems to be my mo these days :)

A couple of weekends ago I flew home to Washington to surprise my sister, Kari, for her birthday! Mom and I had planned this for a several months and were just so excited! The plan was for Kari and I to spend the weekend in Downtown Portland in a nice hotel and live it up! And live it up we did! I'll follow up with some of our adventures later :)

The pictures below are of the hotel and the room that Mom and I decorated for the festivities.

Thanksgiving is over?!

Friday, November 23, 2012

I just can't believe how fast this year is going. Thanksgiving is over and the Christmas season is in full swing. Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas season, but I just can't believe how fast this year has gone. Sigh. Oh, well. It's been a good year and I'm sure next year will be just as wonderful.

We had Thanksgiving Dinner at our house this year! Jeff cooked a lovely dinner. I helped a little, but let's face it, Jeff cooked most of it. I was on dish and table setting duty. It's not a noble job, but someone has to do it. The Buhl's joined us for our first Thanksgiving at home and I'm sure glad they did. They are such a great time!

Well, I know I'm late with this, but HAPPY THANKSGIVING! I hope you all had a smashing good time yesterday!

Mormon Helping Hands: Keansburg, NJ

Friday, November 16, 2012

Jeff and I joined a few members of our ward on Saturday and served with Mormon Helping Hands cleaning out some of the houses that were effected by Sandy. We went to Keansburg, NJ which had significant flooding despite being almost a mile from the ocean. We went in and removed sheetrock, insulation, flooring, and kitchen cabinets. It's amazing the damage that water can do!

I walked around the neighborhood to take pictures and couldn't believe all of the possessions that people had to throw out due to water damage. There were several houses that had notices on them stating that they were not safe for occupation and had to be inspected before people could return.

There is just so much work to be done! Our Stake is volunteering with Mormon Helping Hands every Saturday until Christmas and I don't think that will be enough.

While enjoying pizza that the owner of the house we were clearing out gave us for lunch, two guys from the Baptist Association drove up with a big truck. They were from Indiana and were offering the same services we were. They joined us for a slice of pizza and shared a little bit about themselves. They both took off two weeks from work to come out to NJ to help clean up. 

I took the train into NYC on Monday for the first time since the storm. Since the New Jersey Transit Coastline is down and will be for a long time, the train going up central Jersey was packed! I had to stand the whole time (about an hour) in a hot, crowded train. I was totally annoyed and complaining with the other disgruntled passengers, but then realized how lucky I am that my biggest problem is that I have to stand on the train to go to work. There are people that lost their homes and possessions. I can spend the next couple of months standing on the train.

Central Park, Serendipity, and Wicked

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Also old news.

While the fam was here we spent some quality time in NYC. We saw a couple of shows, visited Central Park, and did the traditional touristy things.

One of the days we went to Serendipity3. Dad had never been so we thought it was a must. He loved the frozen hot chocolate, but was a little disappointed that he had to share with mom. I knew better...I ordered my own! I don't mess around when it comes to Serendipity's frozen hot chocolate.

One of my favorite things to do in NYC is to people watch in Time Square. It's totally entertianing. The lady in the pictures below was ranting and raving about something. I think it was religious, but I totally couldn't understand her.

Of course we had to take pictures in Time Square

While walking up to Wicked (after eating at Virgil's BBQ) Jeff decided he wanted a treat. He wanted to walk over to Pink Berry, but totally got vetoed by the rest of the group. He spotted Scoops "R" Us in the Toys "R" Us and decided that was a suitable option. I will say that they had a nice array of treats, but it was totally overpriced for what it was. Sounds like NYC :)


Monday, November 12, 2012

....we made it two years!

I can't believe Jeff and I have been married for two years. It feels like so much longer! hahaha.

Tonight we will be celebrating at the Modern in New York City. 
Not as exciting as a trip to London, but we will be going some place cool next year!

Let's Go Yankees!

Friday, November 9, 2012

This is totally old news...I'm just so behind on my blog!

While my family was here (BACK IN SEPTEMBER) we went to a Yankee game! I just LOVE Yankee games and wish that I got to go more often. I'm not a huge baseball fan, but the games are totally relaxing and there is seriously nothing like it when they start playing "New York ,New York" at the end of a Yankee game. It's just such a great atmosphere! Maybe I will be able to convince Jeff to take me next year :)

What to do the weekend before the storm of the century? Part 2

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Did I go back home and start preparing the house for the storm (after my lovely hike with the Buhls)?

NO way!

I jumped in the car and picked up Ashley for our annual pumpkin picking outing. Usually we have the lovely Karen and Jen with us, but they left us for Texas and Utah. Why did they leave us? I have no idea...Ashley and I are a good time! 

Well, Ashley and I decided we would still go and enjoy our annual fall outing.

We went to DePiero's Farm in Montvale, New Jersey. Honestly, I didn't like it as much as the charming little place we visit in Connecticut in years past, but it was still fun trying the treats from the bakery and walking around with Ashley checking out the animals and festivities.

Of course we had to do a Target run after...It's tradition! It was totally packed due to the upcoming storm, but it didn't seem to phase us!

We then went out to PF Changs for dinner. It was a great night with Ashley!

Then did I go home and prepare the house? No. It wasn't until I was sitting in church the next day with Jeff that I leaned over and said, "Maybe we should go home and move in all our lawn furniture." Jeff said, "Oh, yeah...that might be a good idea."

What to do the weekend before the storm of the century?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Go hiking!

Yep, that's right...the Saturday before the storm hit Jeff and I went hiking with our good friends the Buhls. While others were at home"battening down the hatches,"we were outside enjoying the beautiful fall colors before the winds came and blew them all away!