30 April 2008

Wild World if Miley Cyrus is the biggest news

You'd think the media might have more important things to find news worthy. Maybe the economy problems, price of gas maybe? However a teen icon showing her back in a photo seems to be shocking and the signs of a collasping society. Grand Theft Auto releases with a game full of questionable content and Miley's "sexy" pic is getting more attention and ridicule. What a joke. It just goes to show that North Americans get really worked up and angry about "sexual" things and are much more comfortable with violence. Killing people seems okay but not anything with "sex" that is horrid. Look at the super bowl....the violence on the field and hitting is okay and considered "All American" but the slip of some clothes and a milisecond of female nipple and the world is about to end....people are "SHOCKED".

I am proud of the parents not caving in to their kids, it's obvious most parents won't have backbone and many many kids will be exposed to this game. It just shows that our society does not find problems with kids being exposed to countless amounts of death and violence. Show some nudity and wow, people will blow their tops. But go ahead little Timmy and sit on your PS3 or Xbox and kill some more police and civilians and laugh about how funny that is...just don't look at 15 year old Miley Cyrus exposing her back.....what a sinner she is.....(not).....

29 April 2008

Media - Parents

So much media coverage about games like Grand Theft Auto that is being released today. Parent groups, Christian groups are all going to be going after the video game for causing acts of crime, being a bad influence and the downhill run of social morals. Then there are these "risky" photos of "Hannah Montana" about to be published in a magazine of a scantily clad teenage icon. If people stopped to think about things not much has changed. When I was growing up things like Dungeons and Dragons were considered "bad" because it had "magic", "spells" and Christian groups believed involved "devilish" themes. Look at Madonna back when I was a kid, she was using sex just like Britney Spears and the rest of these young female stars that have all these problems. It's nothing new, to me it's the parents that have been changing more then the world around us.

There has been evil in our world for a long time, bad things have happened and will continue to happen. Grand Theft Auto is not the sign of the end of the world. Parents, adults and the rest of society need to start worrying about what we are doing. Protecting children from content that is not meant for them is more important then complaining about them. Too many homes are allowing dangerous thoughts, ideas and content in without caring. Through the internet, games and movies so much is being fed in to young minds without parents paying attention. My money will never be spent for my kid to play a game like that. I'll do my best to make sure my child's brain can develop without having to view garbage like that.

End of Rant, heheheh......keep in mind I still love video games and don't think every game is bad....but there is an intended audience for every game.....

28 April 2008


Well the Mother of all games is released tomorrow. IGN gave it a 10/10 which is shocking because it's so rare to see a perfect 10 for a video game. In case people were wondering the game is Grand Theft Auto now I have rented it before and found it to be not my style of game. However it's "hard" to resist when a game gets a perfect 10. I am VERY curious. However what saddens me is the amount of parents that will cave in to the pressure and buy this game for their children. This game is clearly intended for adults and not for kids. Kids don't need to be exposed to such mature themes and it can be argued most adults too. Our world is so saturated with themes of sex and violence kids don't need to spend hours playing games that were never intended for them. Parents seem famous for placing blame when their kids make mistakes.

Movies, music and games are entertaining yet most parents are not taking a stand and learning to say no to their kids. I am not a parent yet but as an educator I can see what is going on with kids. Parents aren't doing a good job at saying "No" and more and more kids are being raised on heavy doses of media intended for adults. I grew up getting exposed to what I would think was like about 10-20% of sex and violence because my parents really cared about music, movies and other things I was opening my brain up to. Today I think kids are getting more like 50-70% of garbage due to internet, games, television being more risky then it ever was with content and much more. I know I sound like an "old" guy ranting, but wow, it's true, it's so hard to ignore anymore. I'm an adult struggling with all of this garbage....I even have trouble getting my head around some of the stuff out there...I can't even imagine how kids deal with it...

Anyway, I just hope more parents take stands and keep their children as safe as they can from this adult themed material. Ohhh and on a final note...I love my Matrix, hehehehe. Drove it to work and LOVE!!! it. :) Anniversay weekend was AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!

27 April 2008

Anniversary Weekend

Well the weekend was amazing. Jenn and I stayed at the Four Points in Edmonton. The same place we spent our first wedding night. We had a fantastic weekend, picked up the Matrix and had to wait a long time due to power outage issues. However it was worth the wait. We love our new car and look forward to the summer now. We also attended a great concert, the band LIVE was in Edmonton and rocking at River Cree. We had a good time listening to some LIVE classics. I got myself a tshirt and CD to rock in the Matrix with. Jenn said a goodbye to the Tercel but seems HAPPY with her new ride. We also got ourselves matching bibles, well, not exactly the same, hers is hot pink and lime and mine is blues and browns. They are pretty modern looking bibles, I plan to get some pics of them soon. Church was great too, Pastor Dan was great as always and we had a good time seeing Trevor and Tracy.
Today we head out to the Scrabble Tournament in Sherwood Park. Jenn is my secret weapon, I hope Lamont Elementary can kick butt. Lindsay and her man are coming too....so the Flames and Oiler fans will need to unite for a common cause. :) I'm going to go wash my Matrix and take pics today as it got a little "dirty" this weekend due to the meltdown. A big truck sprayed our poor car with dirty water. I am also an airhead....lost a 40D battery this weekend somewhere, hope it turns up as they only cost an arm and a leg. Ohhhhh and last but not least, Jenn and I found a used Petrof piano in St.Albert at Don's Piano Warehouse. Don is an awesome dude and we feel lucky to find this piano. We slapped down some money....errrr....plastic and it is ours...hehehhehe. :) Jenn's gonna be a solid piano teacher with that baby, it sounds amazing!!! :)
That's a weekend update. :) I ate WAY too much!!!! We had lots of great meals on our weekend together. :) Now here are some pics.......

24 April 2008

Halo 3 - Legendary Map Pack Video Doc

sweet maps

Last Day of the Week for Work

Tomorrow is a day off....so today will be spent finishing up some work and then a much welcome long weekend will arrive. I am excited and really can't wait to do some relaxing and enjoying the new car. :) I think a lot of mini "road" trips will be in order once we have the car.

Well, not much is going on so I'll just post a daily bible verse and off I go to work.....

Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint. Proverbs 23:4 NIV
I decided to extend todays blog...adding a good little rant for Thursday. Today as I drove in to work I am passed by an SUV with a female driver talking on her cellphone. Now this is not shocking news for this day in age. Almost everyone has cellphones and SUV's are almost the norm for vehicles on the roads. Driving a small car makes me feel like an oddball, so many vehicles in Alberta are full size 4x4's of some sort. I found today's bible verse hitting close to home for me. So many people are working for money. I heard on the radio that higher income couples get less sleep.
Todays world is getting more and more fast paced. People are ignoring the beautiful things around them. Talking on cellphones, multitasking in almost everything we do. It's hard to even go out with friends anymore, people are constantly texting and being over stimulated with media, ipods, portable games and more. When people come home there is television, now with PVR, people never miss their fave shows. The internet keeps people addicted with myspace, facebook and MSN messenger, yahoo messenger and millions of ways to connect with other people. Video games like xbox live keeping people connected and stimulated with video games. So much is out there to keep people wanting more and sucking them away from their relationships and families. I don't say this to judge others as I've fallen in to this trap myself. I have been told by more then one person that "I've fallen off the face of the earth" for quitting facebook. A girl at work commented that "you don't exsist if you're not on facebook" and she is an early 20's student teacher.
As I drove in to work today I also saw a coyote running full speed across the busy highway. The car that almost hit him also had a driver on a cellphone who didn't even seem to notice the beautiful animal that had ran in front of him. The coyote ran quickly over the road and on to the golf course being developed on the other side. With "humans" working and working to make more and succeed, we're missing out on the world around us. The impact we're having on the earth for these "wants" and the quest for entertainment and riches.
I really think there is a need to unplug "Matrix" style and for people to realize where their lives are going. I am not a parent but I see how children are being raised, ipods and video games and the internet play a major role in childrens development. Parents are feeding children content that is not appropriate for children. Kids are watching more violence and adult themed material. I find the the children of today have more "adult" wants. Kids want the same stuff adults want, ipods, cellphones, computers, video games. I don't see many kids just enjoying being a kid anymore. Playing outside, using imagination and just liking simple kid stuff. It's all expensive adult wants that kids are wanting. Anyway, that's my big old rant for today....hehehhehe.......just unplug people - I have been trying it on a minor level and LOVE it....if I were on facebook my status line would read ---> Randy wants you all to quit facebook too. :)

23 April 2008

Wednesday - Day 2 of No Buses

Well, the Alberta storm may be finally over. This is day 2 of having no buses running and the school is basically a ghost school. The poor Echo was shaking like mad on the drive in, all the snow and ice caked inside the wheels and wheel wells were likely causing the problems. The roads were a bit tricky to navigate due to patches of clear road and then surprise a nice long strip of death ice. I REALLY look forward to a long weekend. Tomorrow should be a nicer day weatherwise. Friday is going to be awesome, picking up the MATRIX!!! Heading to Edmonton with my lovely wife Jenn and enjoying a day together. :) Sounds like heaven to me. :)

I hope everyone survived the week of horrid weather and lets all pray for warm weather and a real spring.....enough of this WINTER.....bleh! :)

22 April 2008

Snow Day

Today was a day two of some VERY nasty cold and blowing snow day. The buses were finally called off today and still 3 of my students managed to come. Parents must have felt cabin fever and needed a break. I feel kind of silly as all the Edmonton teachers stayed home and didn't come out. I could of been in my warm home with my kitty cats. Oh well, I hope the drive home goes okay. I thought today was the best day weatherwise....Monday was the worst for my drive. Just goes to show in Alberta you don't have to drive very far to encounter different weather. I think the Edmonton weather must be worse then what I am dealing in the Vegreville area. Well, only a few days left in this week, just Wed. and then Thur. and we've got Friday off....and it's my 6th Anniversary! :) We're going to be probably picking up the new car and having a fun day on Friday! :) Anyway....I am stuck at work with an empty school and a handful of kids...I should of stayed home....lol....my bad....:P Go SHARKS tonight, hoping they eliminate the Shames in game 7....also cheering for the Caps to take out the Flyers......

21 April 2008

April Winter Storm 2008

This morning was a very tense drive in to work. I heard a school bus had flipped over off the Anthony Henday road in Edmonton. My roads were snow covered, ice covered and very dangerous. There was a warning from the AMA and RCMP that people should avoid using the roads in the Edmonton radius due to the dangerous conditions. However my little Echo and me slipped along the icy roads and made it to work by 8:20am.

I'll try and get a few pictures from today to show what it looks like. It's crazy weather.

20 April 2008


Jenn and I are trading the old Tercel in and getting a 2009 Matrix. We're going with the orange colour shown in the pictures. :) I love this car, it's going to be a great car to drive around in this summer. I can't wait to get some nice pictures of it. We're going with the XR package with tinted windows and a front deflector. I can't wait, we'll pick it up on Friday! :) April 25th is a day off for me so I will be spending the day in Edmonton. :)

This weather has BEEN HORRID.....so much snow in such a short period of time. Talk about being snowed in....we shovelled a lot today just to get out of the driveway. Been busy doing organizing and cleaning today. Trying hard to get the house in order. Anyway, hope everyone had a good weekend. :)


18 April 2008

Weekend and Blizzard Approach

Well...snow is on the way, maybe not a blizzard but snow is coming. Such strange Alberta weather, I guess not strange because it's kind of normal for Alberta. Anywhere else it might be considered strange. Last weekend was so nice and warm and now the cold is moving in.
Last night was an AWESOME hockey game. I love how watching the Flames lose is almost better then seeing the Oilers win. The great part was seeing those last few seconds ticking off the clock and seeing Calgary struggle to get the puck out of their zone. Hopefully Sunday night will be the end of this playoff run for Cowtown.
I am happy to survive until the weekend, it's been a busy week. Threw in a PD day this week and it's been a bit busy. :) I am done Linda's wedding photos and mailed them out. No current photography sessions are booked...(hint, hint).....so if anyone wants some pictures (hint, hint) they can contact me via my website. :)
Hopefully I'll get out this weekend even if it's cold and do some pictures...I miss photography. My Canon 40D is collecting dust.
Have a good weekend everyone! :)

16 April 2008


Well, not a lot going on other then work. :) Just trying to finish up wedding photos for Linda and Yves and get them mailed out today. I have been really thinking about my photography and where I want to go with it. The website has been fun and I am really proud of it, however I do want to start generating some shoots and getting busy with my camera soon. As the weather gets warm I really want to get out there and do photography. I am VERY happy San Jose won last night in the hockey world. Things were starting to worry me and flashbacks to when the Shames almost won another cup started to come back. I hope they are golfing in 2 games.
I have a professional development day tomorrow in Sherwood Park, going to go to Costco to get some prints done for our office wall.

15 April 2008

Sean Avery screens/battles Martin Brodeur - Game 3; 13/04/08

Avery being a goof. Hockey sure has changed from when I was a kid. Dave Semenko wouldn't allow for this kind of behavior. :) What a meathead.


Just a review of the 70-200mm 2.8 IS lens I am dreaming of....I love this lens already and it's not yet in my bag. :) Maybe some kind person will donate money to my buy my dream lens fund. :)
Review Sample Pictures ISO 12233 Crops Vignetting
Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM Lens Review
The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM Lens is my favorite and most-used lens. Combining a very popular and very useful focal length range with excellent image quality, professional build quality, superb autofocus performance, a fast aperture and one of my favorite features - Canon's valuable 3-stop Image Stabilization - makes the 70-200 IS one of Canon's most desired lenses. When I really need to make every shot count, the 70-200 IS is one of the first lenses I will include in my bag. It is one of the most-professionally-used lenses available and finds a home in the kit of many, many serious amateurs as well.

14 April 2008

Lens Lust

Today I checked out the net to check the prices on the canon 70-200mm 2.8 IS and I found a great price in Toronto at Samy's. That is the best price I've seen on it in Canada yet. Only small problem I have is I don't have that money anywhere to buy it....hehehe. I might need to sell a few xbox games and my xbox to afford it. That is VERY tempting considering I'd get more enjoyment out of that lens then I would playing vids.

The weekend ended on a sour note, Sharks losing to the Shames and letting Cowtown go up 2-1 on them. They NEED to win the next one and not let the Shamers get confidence. Kipper and got the yank in that game. Go Sharkies Go!!! :)

Well, I didn't get any pictures taken this weekend which makes me sad. Maybe someday soon my camera will get some use. I'll try and take it today to work with me and maybe see some inspiration on my drive in to work.

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.
Revelation 3:20 (Read all of
Revelation 3)New International Version

13 April 2008

Beautiful Weather

The weather has been amazing this weekend. Church was great in Red Willow. There was a visiting Pastor there and he had a great message. He talked about SDA's and basically how it's dangerous to just be a Christian by following a routine and not having Christ in your heart. It's not enough just to go through the "actions".

I am sad I haven't really taken many pictures lately. Maybe with the warm weather I'll get out and take some pictures. I miss it....I've been busy with life and just haven't had time to do anything with the 40D. Maybe soon.


11 April 2008


Good hockey news today. All is well again, as Calgary got shut out by the Mighty Sharks. :) I laughed when Iron Mike had a melt down on the bench when the Shames took penalty after penalty. Hehehehheheh, poor Shames....playing like typical goons in the playoffs. They forget that skill play is where the league wants to go and beyong Iggy they are just not skilled. If they didn't have Kipper they'd be down 2-0 already.

The weather is also turning WARM this weekend. Hope to get out there and take some nice shots of some spring meltdown. I need some new images to throw on to the website. :)

I am confused again by my friend Tammy, I thought she bought the 70-200 2.8IS canon lens I crave....hehehe. I am sure she'll have it soon, I need to start saving those dollars. Here are some shots from the lastest wedding I shot....congrats to Linda and Yves. I was able to shoot some pictures of them at the beautiful location of Fort Edmonton, at the Selkirk Hotel. Linda was a beautiful bride and I wish them both a happy life together.

10 April 2008

Best Halo Suicide Ever!

This is funny if u have ever played HALO 3 u'll respect this creative idea. :)

Sukhoi Su-30 MK

This is one amazing jet, I'm part russian so I can take pride in something this cool. :) Wish Canada had this jet. :)
If Maverick was flying this in Top Gun Goose would of lived...heheheh....go Top Gun!!! :)

HDR Photography

HDR Images are amazing. They really fascinate me and I think I am REALLY going to try and capture some images and play around with HDR in the near future more. It allows for some really interesting images that a camera just can't do with one image. However taking multiple exposures and blending them together is interesting and can lead to some pretty cool results.

Nathan Elson has some cool examples of buildings he shot in Calgary on his blog. He did some amazing shots there and I am hoping to get some good results as well. I'll maybe post some examples here or on my website should I get some worthy shots worth sharing. :)

Well, Calgary won last night, grrrrrrrrrr, so much for the sweep. Just hoping it's over in 5 or 6 and the Sharks win! :) This picture is of Cory Cardinal (best bud) and Chris Jericho (WWE Superstar) and moi (tall goofy guy) - Cory won tickets to a WWE PPV in Edmonton from the Edmonton Sun. We got to meet Chris Jericho and Victoria (women's champ) and get pics and autographs. It was right after Wrestlemania when Chris Bennoit (RIP) won.

09 April 2008

The Camera

There is so much talk about "The Camera" in the photography world. Canon and Nikon the 2 big camera companies want the photographers to believe that their images depend on having the latest and greatest camera. Now I am a believer in getting good lenses, however just look at the history of photography. The picture in this post is of my Grandpa Pond, I am not even sure what camera he used, but it was taken up in the mountains of BC, he set the camera down and took the pic himself. Camera technology will always get better but it still remains the job of the user to have complete control over what image is being captured.

I hear Tammy has got herself a sweet new lens, 70-200 2.8 IS lens I have been dreaming about. Hope one day she'll let me take some pics with it. :) Here is for hoping, hehehe. Well, I am going to start putting away my pennies, dimes, nickels and maybe a few quarters in hopes of landing one of these lenses. :)

As I prepare for the day I was just thinking about my Grandpa and his love of nature and how he must have enjoyed taking pictures. This image speaks to me and just looking back at my Grandpa's life I can say I sure miss him. He had a good life left a great example for his grandkids to follow. Thanks Grandpa for the inspiration, the gifts and love that you left for me. I hope with my photography I can find what you did, beauty in nature and that connection with God.

Now hopefully Calgary loses to the Shark tank tonight. :) GO SHARKS GO!! :)


08 April 2008


When I started digital photography I had only a slight idea about aperature. I knew I loved shooting subjects with blurred backgrounds but did not always know how to achieve this. I learned a lot about ISO and how I can use it with aperature to create beautiful pictures with blurred backgrounds. I started buying lenses that will support my craving for short dof (depth of field) images. My fave lens and cheapest buy is the canon 50mm 1.8 lens. I HIGHLY recommend this lens if you're interested in SLR photography and have a tight budget like me. It delivers PRO level images for a SMALL price. I got mine for just under $100. It's made cheaply and is a bit noisey. It's mostly plastic and my cat Nahla knocked if off a desk and it broke which made me quite sad. The good news it wasn't a 70-200 2.8 lens and replacing it didn't break the bank. Now I keep my lenses on safer places from kitty cats.

The 1.8 lens is a perfect way to deal with indoor natural light without using a flash. You can adjust the ISO to allow for shutter speeds that allow for amazing portraits. I suggest not going below a shutter speed of 60, or use a tripod I guess if you want to go slower then 60. The tough part about shooting at 1.8 is I have trouble focusing on the subject. Auto focus at that short of depth of field is tough, I recommend manual focus if the auto doesn't cooperate. I tend to be lazy and shoot auto. I take a LOT of pictures so I usually have quite a few out of focus shors that get dumped. But the moment you lock in the eyes and get a perfect shot with a nice blurry background it's priceless. I get knocked a lot by other photographers for not shooting crisp and 100% sharp pictures. However I think too many photographers get sucked in to thinking every lens needs to be an "L" lens and spending thousands of dollars will make their photos better. I disagree and I've seen many of these photographers take really "boring" images with their expensive lenses. I suggest breaking the rules...doing shots that seem to go against what the masses agree makes a perfect shot.

Photography is fun, it can be very creative and understanding the way your camera works opens doors to creativity and fun. Allow yourself time to learn and shoot as much as possible to open up yourself to how your camera works. It took me a long time to learn it....so don't expect to learn in an instant, some people can....hehehhe, but it's a skill and just develop it as best you can.

07 April 2008

Verse of the Day

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”- Galatians 2:20

Taken from the: http://www.biblegateway.com/ website... also check out: http://www.redwillow.org/ it's a great church in St.Albert with an excellent Pastor. :)

06 April 2008

Sunday - Last Day of Spring Break

Woke up and made some blueberry pancakes for my Mom and Dad before they packed up their van and left. I pray they have a safe trip home to WA State. Having them here was a real personal and spiritual boast. More then I could of asked for, having Dad to talk with and working with him was great. He really was a HUGE help installing floors and just being here for me. I couldn't of asked for more. I really hope to see them more maybe this summer some time.

Jenn and I went to Wal-mart and Canadian Tire and picked out some drapes for the office. We also started putting together a computer desk we got from costco. It's pretty complex but hopefully it'll be done before the week is over...hehehhe. The new office space is going to be awesome. I am looking forward to having it up and going soon. It'll be in our laundry room where we painted a new colour and installed laminate. It'll look great once it all comes together. That will mean my "green" room in the basement will still be a room for storing my photography gear and be a good spot to do art and hold my art supplies as well. I can't wait to do more artwork this summer if I can motivate myself to start painting again. I sure miss it.

Well, I am hoping to head to Subway for some supper.....Jenn's just finishing a phonecall with her Mom and we'll be going. Hope everyone had a good weekend.

05 April 2008

Snow in April

It's a snowy morning in Vegreville. I will be driving in to Red Willow this morning with my Mom and Dad to take in Pastor Dan's next sermon on being FEARLESS. Hope to see the famous Trevor Boller there as well. :) I hear he got a new lens that I am most likely going to be VERY jealous of. :) I need to find some funds so I can buy my 2.8 70-200 baby that is faithfully waiting for me in the store.

I hope the roads will be safe for us today as we travel in to church. It's not a very nice day, we were planning to have a picnic in Edmonton and I think that plan is not gonna float today. Hopefully I'll get some pretty pictures in the snow today. I think pics with snow are beautiful. I'll see what I can capture...might be the last snow of the year.....(hoping)......


03 April 2008

Olive Garden and Floors

Today we went to Edmonton and picked up supplies for the floors and had a HUGE meal at Olive Garden with the folks. It was great but wow did I ever want to sleep and when we got home had a nice nap. Now I am awake and about to get back to flooring again. :) Not much else to say for today. Yay that Edmonton won vs Vancouver and knocked them out...kind of wish they had knocked out the Shames more. I have a MAJOR dislike of the Calgary team. I hope they get booted in the 1st round......will be understress if they make a run like they did before....that'll make me cry. :) hehehhe


02 April 2008

Laminate Floor Fun

I am exhausted and sore. Laminate floors are not a lot of fun. Dad and I were able to lay down most of the laundry room floor. I made a few mistakes and I am VERY sore from all this crawling around and physical work. It's good to do though, I am feeling pretty good about the progress. We also put together our table saw and did a few cuts on it. Nice to see it works good. So much for a relaxing spring break....but the hard work is good for the soul. It's also good to have Mom and Dad here, Dad's been a BIG help and is helping me work though a lot of stuff. :) I'm off to read a bit from my new bible. Goodnight world.


01 April 2008


Mom and Dad have arrived and today we made some damage on the floors. We stripped carpet out of the laundry room and started laying laminate floor down. It's a challenge as I've never done this kind of work before and I am learning by mistakes. Our saw we bought from Sears is doing a sweet job of cutting. It has a laser built in to make correct cuts in the boards.

Tomorrow I hope we'll be 99% done as most of the prep work has been done. The laundry room is tricky just cuz of all the stuff in it. Dad and I watched as sadly the Oilers lost to the Shames and now have the freedom to polish the golf clubs and hit the links. Calgary won't be far behind them as I am HOPING they get bounced out asap.

So far spring break has been fun, not working too hard and just enjoying the support and LOVE of my Mom and Dad. They gave me a gift of a bible today and I am VERY impressed with it. I hope to get some use of it in the next year. I am tired so I'm going to end this blog here. Time to go visit a bit with my folks and head to bed. Need energy for finishing the work tomorrow. :)