Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Road Trip

I am driving to Roswell tomorrow. Depending on who you are it is either the site of where Aliens landed (and possibly still hang with the locals) or the dairy capital of the Southwest. (The governing body of Roswell doesn't care for the Alien thing... think they are in denial?)

Either way it is a long drive with little to see between. I am on my way to pick up my cousin and childhood playmate, Nicky. She lives there with her husband and his family, and is coming home to Albuquerque to be with family here during the holiday. Instead of her hopping a Greyhound I opted to have some one on one time with her.

I am taking my camera. I am not sure why. Perhaps I am hoping I will see some lone tumbleweed which has some characteristic that might make me famous. Or better yet... an alien. (Though the only type of alien I think I might find is the kind that comes from Mexico.)

No radio between here anbd there, so I will have plenty of time to ponder and create stuff in my head. That in itself is scary.



Not that Cold Yet

Nope. It hasn't snowed here yet. This was last year, and at the time I loved it.
This year propane is ridiculously high and I can't afford to get the tank filled, so I worry. We certainly won't freeze, but that doesn't mean that comfort is in my future.
I had a friend once who would have griped at me that comfort is way too high a priority in my life. But ya know, I am forty now, and my bones already complain when it is warm. Imagining getting out of bed in a room that is below 30 degrees makes me wanna cry.
Call me a baby, but I am not repenting.


Photo by Dawn Allynn

I just realized something. I thought I was bothered by this whole AOL thing, but I am not. Not for myself anyway.

My concern about what is going on with the ads bothers me because it is effecting the people I care about who journal in AOL, I know some people who are really bummed and dragged down by this whole thing. I know there was a time it would have floored me as well, so I can understand the reaction. As a loyal AOL Member for ... dang ... eleven years, I had a lot of emotional stuff vested in AOL for a long time. So I empathize with my friends, and hate to see the impact it is having on some of my buddies.

But for myself, I cannot say that this is a bad thing.

When I first came to AOL I was into Chat rooms, and role playing. After awhile the chat rooms became crude and the people in them were immature. AOL had decided to get rid of the chat room moderators, so people who like to start trouble had nothing to fear. Role playing was also invaded by the immature crude crowd who liked to jump in and start arguments for the sake of it. (Called flamers... it is best to ignore these guys, but not always easy to do.)
Later I belonged to "lists" where I traded graphics and tutorials and poetry and recipes with like minded people. Made lotsa fun friends. That was great for awhile, but like everything else, gets old after awhile. I only have so much room on my computer for all the cool stuff people can send me, and four hundred emails a day can grow tiresome.
Then I began participating in Forums... mostly the short story and poetry contests. That was a real highlight for awhile. But again, AOL decided to cut back and get rid of moderators, so the whole thing kinda went away.
I discovered journals about three years ago, and though I considered outside blogs, I decided to stick with AOL and go that route. I have been bothered by the fact that I am a paying customer, yet non-AOL customers could have journals for free. Now they are advertising on my journal.
At the prices I have paid for AOL it just isn't worth all of this frustration. Besides the constant cut backs and changes, I am always having posting issues, email that won't send or save, graphics that won't save in the right format. Billing issues, nasty customer service guys I can't understand on the phone, and software that frankly screws my computer up more with each upgrade.
I like these journals. I like the ability to manipulate HTML, and add photos easier, and have more of a say so about what goes in it and how it will look and sound and feel. I like that I have a wider group of people I can meet and who can visit and post. It's a challenge and an opportunity, and I am excited about it.
I am concerned I will end up here alone.
Yeah, that's true. Maybe I'll write here day after day and nobody will come visit, and that would be sad. But I have to think maybe I have made enough friends that this won't happen. And Lord knows there's lots of great new people out there I am looking forward to meeting.
In any case, I have never been the kind of girl to settle, and I was settling at AOL.
This will be good for me, I believe. Moving into any new home and neighborhood is scary.... but it always involves new doorways and new opportunities.
::grins:: I think maybe I'll have a housewarming after the holidays...lol. Anyone wanna come?

Monday, November 21, 2005

Busy Week

Photo by Dawn Allynn

I have been working on so much this week... wow... is it a wonder I have time to breathe?

I just got finished updating my new home for the Poetry Dance Hall, and I am still trying to move my other journals over to here. The money I will save leaving AOL will be nice. It's been a move that's been a long time coming, my journals were the last string holding me there.

I have been a member of AOL since 1994. Very odd to think of leaving now. But so much has changed. It's like living in the house you grew up in, except now there's a Mall and a Highway in your front yard, half of your friends moved away, and the property taxes went through the roof. Hard to keep investing in the same real estate when there's better looking housing just down the road.

::sigh:: Ah, everything changes, eh?
Other than the blogs, I have also been trying to catch up at work (not likely if I keep up this blogging) because I only work two days this week.
I also have a sick kiddo with me today. Poor little guy.
Getting ready to do Christmas Portraits for Customers this weekend and am trying to finish up the Gingerbread house backdrop I am creating for the photos.
Driving to Roswell Wednesday to pick up my cousin and bring her to town for the holiday.
Cleaning the disaster my house has become while I lay in bed off and on in the past two weeks with the flu.
Finishing up two websites I am creating for two customers which need to be done by the first of January.
And there's more... but I am just making myself anxious now...lol!
I am hoping to get this done and catch up with all my other journaling and blogging buddies out there. If one is you... drop me a line and lemme know where you're at so I can keep up with who I am supposed to visit where!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Insanity and heartache

I have been very low today.

An acquaintence of mine died yesterday, and his wife is in the hospital. Both shot during a break in by some people, for God knows why. He was a good guy. I mean, a really nice guy. Neither of them deserved this.

My heart is heavy. :(

RJ Schaefer

In the Beginning

This is how it ends.

Photo by Dawn Allynn

And this is how it starts.
Everything before this entry was a post in an AOl journal. I transfered it over here because
I don't like the invasion of advertising AOL did with out asking me as because the blogs I am doing suit me better, and will save me money ( I am leaving AOL entirely in January) if you get a minute have a peek at the first one and leave a comment :) I'd be much obliged.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Making Adobe Photoshop Brushes

I love Adobe Photoshop. I have PSP but am not great with it, because I haven't spent as much time in it. I need to learn more of it because I have so much great stuff for it. I like Photoshop for doing things to photos, and I love it for graphics. I recently learned how to create my own brushes in Photoshop using scanned items and photographs. Here's some of my brushes and why I love them:

These are some of my "Birdstuff" Brushes. The collection isn't done yet... but I am having fun with it so far.

Using Layer options and style in Photoshop I enjoy changing the colors on my "brushes"... sometimes creating stand-alone graphics.

I use the brushes to make tags, sign photographs, put watermarks on photos and graphics, make art projects, and (of course!) to do cool thngs to photos. This is a mix of just brushes:

Anyway.... this is just stuff. :) Exciting to me, but all of my obsessions are.

I am NOT gonna start a new journal right now. But if anyone is interested in learning editing tips and tutorials, and exchanging brushes or anything, let me know and we can do it all here. Because ya know... it's all just Drivel! LOL!

(This next item... btw... is another obesssion. A poem type (Nonets) we're doing the next couple of weeks over at my blog Poetry Dance)

Photoshop is really fun for me.
I make stuff I don't have time for.
Who needs time? I am obsessed.
I dream in Photoshop.
I should see a shrink,
Do you know one
who might be
in J-

Friday, November 11, 2005


Some one sent me this in an email... you have probably seen it. It is worth sharing in case you haven't. :)

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!

Monday, November 07, 2005


I'm nutz. Simply dingy. I have no time to myself. I am constantly overwhelmed and overworked. Yet I always volunteer to do one more thing I don't have time for. Or take up one more project I can't possibly commit to.


I am an over organized individual who likes everyhting in it's own place. I won't get into the borderline OCD issues I have... but they are there.

Proof of it lies in my journals, if you need proof.

I have many journals. Too many. One for photos. One for New Mexico. One for poems. One for my short stories. One for my blathering drivel (yeah, this one). One for a poetry group. One to keep in touch with old friends. And so on and so forth. It's rediculous. Like I can't do it all in one journal. Right?

Except I can't. I have to have it all sorted out nicely and organized. Heh. Fruity.
And if I needed proof it is nutz... then the urge I had today to start a new one should get me committed. Like I have time. Pffft!

I love Adobe Photoshop and Correl Draw and PSP. I love gradients, and styles, and masks and brushes. I like collecting and making and trading all of the above. So I thought...."Hey! I'll make a journal where I can exchange this stuff and have tutorials!" Like I said. Wacko.
No more. I am putting my foot down. I am gonna just have to fit something else into this journal. I amy not have time, but I already have the space. No point in making another journal. Sharing some graphic stuff now and then won't make this journal explode.

This stuff can be classified as drivel too, can't it?

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Good to be back...

Hurrah! My kid is healthy again! (well mostly, but no more pneumonia) and I am almost caght up at work after weeks of missing stuff! Ad I almost have time to have a life again! WhooooHooooo!


Somehow it almost feels like spring. Ahhhhhh.

What a freaking nightmare life has been. There was a highlight to things. I won a $50 gas card at a Festival my little kiddo had last weekend. No need to explain how valuable that puppy is.
Part of me feels exhausted.

Fall is here, which is good cause I like change, but I sure miss the colors of Autunm in other areas I have lived in. New Mexico tends to be brown year around. But if it is possible, it tends to get browner right about now. heh. Ah... but when Christams comes around and the decorating begins... watch out. This is a beautiful place to be!

Speaking of Christmas, is anyone else feeling a little pressure yet? I have five kids and other family members to shop for. I am the poster child for anxiety. It doesn't help that Walmart was already stocking Christmas stuff before Halloween was even a glimmer in my eye.
::sighs:: I guess ya just can't make me happy, can ya. ;)

Life is good. I am not complaining. I am glad to be here. Thanks ful for all the poeple who stopped by my various, neglected journals and left me notes of support and hellos. I haven't forgotten you. :) I'll drop by soon with notes of my own.

Here's a rainbow here in town a couple of weeks ago. I only caught the very end of it before it faded away, but it still makes me smile. Just like you guys do. ;)