Sunday, January 6, 2013

Best of Year Album - 2012

I've got to admit that Windows 8 really saved my bucket this year. I like to organize all of the year's pictures into one folder (2012) with a subfolder for each month. Each month contains all pics taken during that month with a standard naming convention: "Label YYYY-MM-DD ##". We have nine different cameras and only recently moved to one central storage location so getting everything in its place can prove quite challenging. But Win8 was incredible for moving all 6,132 files around. Hands down, the best organization OS yet. Anyway, enough gushing.

So, below is the hand-picked collection of our best photos of 2012. Normally these annual albums are about 75 pics long. But 2012 was HUGE so there are 158 pics this year. I could probably eliminate up to ten from that tally, but anymore would be difficult. There are just too many stories from the past year.

Our definition of 'best' is admittedly vague; the album contains our best shots, stories we want to tell, events to remember, pictures that strike an emotional chord, etc. You are left to guess for what reason the pic is included! As far as I can tell each image is chronological so the album is like watching our year in fast forward.

Mosaic Madness

You know all those end-of-year things you have to do before you feel ready to tackle a new year? I'm finally getting through that list. I still have about 15 "Christmas" cards left to send out (now in danger of not even being New Year's cards), I have to organize our photos for 2012, settle the budget, etc. As tedious as that list can be, I always enjoy this next item: the creation of our family photo mosaic.

I've done this for five or six years now and four of those images are on the blog. I take all of the pictures from our family's history (now up to 29,913 images since 2002) and use them as a tile library for a photomosaic of our family photo. This particular image has 10,296 images, 1200 dpi, 5000 x 4000 pixels, and a 20% recolor. The final file is 19.8 megs!

Call me a family photo junkie, but I could spend hours zooming in and out of the image to see what it's made of. A few fun facts:

  1. The shape of TLC's nose is created by multiple images of rainbows. Her beauty is such that only rainbows and unicorns can compare. tee hee.
  2. Davis' vest is mostly made of photos that we've taken since moving to Oregon. I guess Oregon is greener than WI and UT. 
  3. We like knowing what our eyes are made of, so here's a list (one eye for each of us):
    • Dad - ducks at the WWII memorial
    • TLC - a car from a 1942 road trip
    • Jordan - a newborn Davis
    • Carter - Grand Canyon
    • Davis - Bryce Canyon

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Family Pics or Bust

Family pictures were an absolute bust this year. Note to self: if your photographer starts off the session by saying how badly she wants to go home...make a beeline for the door. Do not pass go, do not spend $200. alright...I didn't spend that much.

We usually get our annual pic taken at JCP or Sears because it's cheap, but I think next year I'll take out a second mortgage and go to a better photographer. Plus, the major reason we get a picture taken is to get Christmas cards which were about $2 per this year, so something's gotta change.

So! The shots of the boys didn't turn out too bad, but the family pictures did. In the end we had to agree on the lesser of two evils and voila...the annual family picture was done.

Halloween Roundup

I just found this post as a draft. A bit late to be sharing Halloween pics, but I've never been very punctual about these sorts of things, have I?

Jordan and Carter were Lego Knights, and li'l Davis was Wicket the Ewok. Given that Davis was Yoda last year, I think this makes me an official geek. Our friends round out the group as Superman, a princess, and Princess Leia. The boys gathered a combined 11 lbs 12 oz of loot, woot!

No costumes for Cyn and I...hopefully next year.

I love autumn! This is the view on our driveway every time we open the car door.

Jordan decided to make his own template this year and this is the result. He calls it a Zombie Pumpkin.

I convinced Carter and Cynthia to carve themed pumpkins with me and here are the results. Count Chocula was hands-down the most difficult pumpkin I've ever carved, but it also came out as the best result ever. Had to order a special carving knife set to make it work...I guess that's further evidence that I'm a geek.

This was our first Halloween in a house! We had 29 trick-or-treaters, a paltry sum, but that is more than  we've had visit our apartments in the last 6 years combined.

The New Rules

Three full months without a post. Three whole months.

My old mantra was to post every other week at a minimum, but times have changed...

  • Readership has drastically decreased on this blog. Facebook has completely taken over. I never expected many views so I thank you for reading in the first place. But it does decrease my motivation to come up with great posts if nobody's here to notice.
  • My career has taken off in 2012 decreasing my free time and possibly the therapeutic effect of blogging.
  • Q4 is my busiest time of the year at work and December is definitely the busiest month at home (and I know I'm not alone in that one).
Still, I have no desire to kill off my major form of journaling. I'm here on this blog to stay, or at least until Google destroys Blogspot. I made it past the Mayan apocalypse, I might as well continue forever now!

So, my new when you can...but only after you: Experience life, enjoy being with your boys and wife, make up for the eight years of studying by doing what I truly want to do, eat hearty servings of toast and marmalade, and live after the manner of happiness.