The First Snow in Stratford

Snow-dusted

We had our first flurries yesterday. I had been feeling down in the dump with an early case of seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and the sight of snow was just what I needed to perk myself up a little. I’d been having trouble getting myself out of bed but not this morning. I was so excited to see the snow that I practically jumped out of bed as soon as I woke up. I love snow. We had our first snowsquall warning last night and we’re expecting 10 to 15 centimeters of snow today. And it’s not even winter yet. Don’t you just love living in Ontario? ;)

Tomorrow The day after tomorrow is Hallowe’en and this is the first year since we’ve been together that we’re actually expecting trick-or-treaters to knock on our door. We have three boxes of treat-size chocolate bars to give away. I’m kind of hoping that the weather would be crappy tomorrow evening just so that there’d be less trick-or-treaters and we could have most of the chocolate bars for ourselves but it probably wouldn’t be good for our health. We’ve bought ourselves three bags of cheap Hallowe’en decorations, but with this kind of weather, I don’t think we would ever get around to putting them up. Oh well. At least we’ve got two big pumpkins to show off. Troy got them for $1 each from some place in the middle of nowhere! And they are big! At the grocery store across the street, they’re selling those for $4.99 each. Score!

In other news, we now have a cherry tree in the backyard! Friends of ours bought it for us as a housewarming present. We went to a couple of local nurseries together and I got to pick the tree I wanted. They even planted it for us! When I saw the Purpleleaf Sandcherry tree (Prunus cistena), I knew I was in love. Yes, it was love at first sight. The fruits won’t be edible, but since the tree will produce pretty flowers that look like this come spring, I think I can deal with that. A lot of pictures on the Intarweb show the tree looking more like a shrub than a tree but ours definitely looks like a tree. It’s already over 6 feet tall! I’m really looking forward to watching the flowers bloom in the spring next year. I love cherry blossoms.

While we were searching for the tree, I almost got attacked by a big, black dog as we were leaving one of the nurseries. One of our friends called it the racist dog because it was specifically going for me, the only non-white among the five of us. Heh. The dog belonged to one of the neighbouring houses, not the nursery. Anyway, as the dog was running towards me, barking fiercely, the only thought that came to my mind was, “Oh crap. Is this how this day is going to end?” Troy instinctively grabbed me and put me behind his back, ready to take the bite. I don’t know what happened next but the next thing I knew, the dog was already back to where it came from and I saw its owner giving the dog hell for not behaving. I was freaked out for sure, but it wasn’t enough to give me a nightmare about being chomped by a dog that night.

By the way, I’ve got good news for you. I have signed up to participate in the National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) next month. Participants are required to update their blogs at least once a day for a whole month, so in theory, I’ll be updating this wee blog daily! Isn’t it exciting? I know, oh-em-gee indeed! But wait, there’s more! There’ll be a contest!

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Today’s Contemplation

Red Dots

I’ve been thinking about my photography a lot lately. I do want to make it a career but I just don’t know if I have what it takes to be a professional photographer. I know I’m a good photographer, as in I have the eye. What I’m lacking is the people skill. I’m not very good with people. Hell, I’m SCARED of people. That’s why I prefer taking pictures of landscape and animals to taking pictures of people. Unfortunately, there is no money in that. At least not for me since I know there are many other photographers who make a boatload of money from landscape and animal photography. I like to think that I just haven’t got to that stage YET (my sad attempt at positive thinking) but what if I’ll never get to that stage? People seem to like my work but apparently not enough to want to own it and hang it on their walls (except for the few people who do have my work hanging on their walls or have bought my work, you know you’re awesome).

I really need to get over my fear of people. Not really an easy thing to do if you were me. I grew up in a society where people are super judgmental. Growing up, my father seemed to care more about what our neighbours think about us than what WE think about us. I’ve had the idea that people are evil because they judge, because you’ll never know what they say about you behind your back, planted in my head for so long that it’s become almost impossible to pull out.

Now that I’m living in another country and another society, I know I should give people another chance, especially since I need to market my skills to people in order to help the family economy (not that we live in poverty or anything but we do need to travel). I’ve also met some super nice people here whom I know won’t judge me or talk nasty about me behind my back. I know that by fearing people, I’m being judgmental myself, which makes me one of those people I fear, and it’s so screwed up that I don’t know what to think about that. In fact, I’ve never thought about it before. Oh the wonder of stream of consciousness writing!

I guess what I need to do is: (1) stop judging people/seeing them as monsters; (2) figure out what I’d like to focus on in my professional photography (I’m thinking family, maternity, pet, and children, and maybe small weddings); (3) revamp my portfolio site to make it more business-like and put in some new work that I’m proud of; (4) do some marketing; (4a) make some business cards; (4b) maybe put some ads somewhere?; and last but not least (5) practice talking on the phone (I’m telephonophobic — when I’m talking on the phone, my brain shrinks to pea-size).

On an unrelated note, I fell in love with the music of Frances England today (I’m a sucker for sweet, folksy, kiddy songs) and would someone please buy both her CDs for me, kthxbai.