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How Bored Are You?

Jury duty was a nightmare yesterday.

I brought my laptop so I would have stuff to do while I was there.

The Superior Court in Orange County (Santa Ana) brings in HUNDREDS of prospective jurors ….

Most of whom sit in a giant waiting room all day and are never called.

Yesterday was worse than normal because the court’s computer system went down.

That Internet I was counting on?

Well, it wasn’t up and running.

The court couldn’t function either.

They didn’t send us home because they thought they might be able to fix it.

Eight hours later …. we were sent home.

Boredom can actually physically hurt for people like me.

(You know, the Type A people who have to always be doing something.)

There were a few moments, now and again, when the Internet would work for a fleeting second before going down again.

I made a game of trying to track my new phone – which I had recently received a shipment notification on.

First check … it was in China.

Second check … it was in Korea.

Third check … it had arrived in Alaska.

Fourth check … it had departed Alaska.

I imagine it will arrive here in Orange County later this week?

Yes, I was THAT bored.

Apparently, my exasperation was humorous to the people seated around me.

I felt the need to keep up an ongoing commentary regarding various characters in the waiting area … like Loud Talker.

After one particularly long stretch of nothingness, I informed my new prospecitve juror friends it was quite possible I had just bought a dog.

They found this hilarious.

Who buys a dog while sitting in court waiting to be called to a jury?

And okay, I might not have actually BOUGHT a dog.

But …?

Two different people have brought two different, adorable, Newfie puppies to my attention recently.

Pretty soon it might start raining Newfies?

(That’s what happens when thousands of people are aware of The Puppy Who Almost Was.)

There are so many great people out there trying to help me find the perfect service pup.

I’m almost afraid I’ll come home one day and find twenty baskets of puppies waiting on my front door.

To be honest, I’d love to have lots and lots of puppies.

The rest of my family?

Well, they might not want TWENTY (150 pound) dogs.

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Jury Duty

I’m at jury duty today.

I wish I could be virtuous and say I don’t mind, but I do.

I’ve got a super busy week and I’m SO hoping I get excused.

If I get assigned to a trial ….

I might just flip out in the juror box????

I’ve got appointments with clients  this week  tomorrow, I’m supposed to be flying to Texas for a big shoot later this week, and, and, and!!

Also, my sister has developed complications from her horrible bicycle accident.

I’m trying to figure out if I can get to Colorado before or after the Texas shoot.

Stress!

I’m sure everything will be FINE if I can just get through the next ten, very hectic, days.

In the meantime, I’m wondering what I’m allowed to do while waiting around at the courthouse all day today?

The last time I was called for jury duty I was there the entire day and never got called.

I people-watched in the giant waiting area.

(There are very interesting characters at courthouses!)

I was bored out of my mind

Apparently, prospective jurors are now allowed to bring in laptops.

I doubt if they’d let me bring in my photography gear.

It’s too bad … it would be fun to do portrait shots of all the people hanging out in the giant juror waiting room.

I suppose I’ll have to settle for editing photos instead.

If you have time today, check out my Twitter stream.

I’m sure I’ll be providing an ongoing  rant  commentary on my experience.

(No, I can’t tweet trial stuff if I get assigned … but if I’m just sitting in the waiting area I’m sure I’ll have lots to say!)

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Waiting For You

I titled this photo Waiting For You.

Click on photo to purchase, or to view larger, in 24atHeart gallery.

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Happy Weekend!

Woo hoo!

It’s going to be a beautiful weekend in Orange County.

I’m going to be out and about enjoying the sunshine.

And yes, I’ll probably be doing a little work on a few current photo projects also.

Click on photo to purchase, or to view larger, in 24atHeart gallery

Happy weekend!

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Things You Should Probably Know ….

There are several things you should know if you’re going to be a part of my life …

“Virtually” or otherwise.

Click on photo to purchase, or to view larger, in 24atHeart gallery.

•  I live in a place that can be 92F/33C on November 5th … and nobody thinks twice about it.

•  My swimming pool is open for swimming!

•  I (really) dislike dirty computer and/or phone screens.  I like Monster Screen Clean better than any other product I’ve tried.  (My keyboard, however, is always dirty.)

•  I hate it when the days are short and it gets dark by 5 p.m.  Absolutely hate it!  (There are 45 days until December 22nd when the days begin getting longer again!)

•  When the Santa Ana winds blow in Orange County, you feel like you can touch the mountains while standing on the beach … the air is sparkling clear.

•  I’m a smart ass.  It’s genetic.

•  I have lost several pounds in the last week.  That’s a good thing.  My method of dieting?  Sore throat!  (I don’t recommend it.)

•  I’ve been gradually filling up my new List Book with … lists.  (I’ve been throwing away a lot of post-it notes too!)

•  My daughter has fallen in love with Gorjana jewelry.  It’s made locally.  I’ve been trying to track down a piece or two for her as a gift.  Apparently, it’s become quite popular because some items are hard to find.

•  I can’t talk about my upcoming, out of state, shoot except to say it’s in Texas.  (Unfortunately, it’s not near my son who lives in Texas.)  Texas is a very big state.  I hope Texas weather will cooperate.  And, I hope jury duty doesn’t interfere.

•  If I skip even one PT visit with Paul Newman (for whatever reason), my arm loses function quickly and my pain level increases.

•  Can you tell I recently missed a visit just by the very fact I wrote the above sentence?

•  I’ve begun work on the crystal ball photography project.  I hope to be able to share some of it with you soon.

•  I get insulted when corporations/cities/resorts use poor quality photography for promotional purposes.  I know everyone wants to save a buck, but an iPhone photo with forty bazillion filters on it is NOT good enough for commercial use.  Ugh!   (I’m talking to you Montage Resort Laguna Beach!)

•  I want a service dog.  So much!  I’m sure it will happen eventually.  I just have to be patient … which is not easy considering all that happened in October.

•  On a positive note, due to The-Service-Dog-Delay I’ve met some really wonderful folks.  A lot of people in the Newfie community have reached out and embraced me.  I think many of those people will be my friends for a long time to come.

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That’s What Friends Are For …

I got together with one of my girlfriends yesterday.

I was shocked to realize we hadn’t seen each other in a year.

A year!

We live fairly close to each other.

There is no reason why we should have gone so long without seeing each other.

(Yes, we’ve talked on the phone and/or texted.)

We had a great time getting caught up.

She’s had a very busy year … with a move to a different house, etc.

Seeing her made me realize, this past year (for me) was a full-speed, whirlwind, BLUR.

I can’t believe all the places I’ve been, and all the things I’ve done, over the last twelve months.

My photography career has been crazy in a wonderful, delightful, way these past couple years.

My friend and I have stayed aware of each other’s daily lives via Facebook, etc.

For instance, she knew about Fred The Puppy and The Puppy Snatcher (as I’ve taken to calling her).

Yes, I have nicknames for almost everyone I’ve ever met ….  Why do you ask??

A Puppy Snatcher will dangle a puppy in front of you, let you hold it, let you cuddle it, send you photos of it, tell you it’s yours, help you name it, make sure you’ve fallen in love with it, and then SNAP!  Snatch it away!

My friend was the first person on the scene of my car accident eight years ago.

She was in a car right behind me … witnessing helplessly, as my life was shattered.

She helped take care of me, and my family, as I went through the worst years post-accident …

Surgery after surgery and horrific pain.

She was called to testify as a witness to the accident.

She knows, probably better than most, how much a service dog would help me.

We talked about all the transitions in both her life and mine over the past few years.

You would think life would slow down a little as your kids leave the nest.

For both of us, however, life is really busy.

She’s made a career change,

And my life has taken on a momentum all of its own.

Sometimes it’s a good thing to stop and take account of where you were a few years back,

And where you are now.

One thing was clear to both of us yesterday.

Friendships are way too important to be put on a back burner.

We will both be pushing The Chaos of Life aside to make more time to get together.

Our next friend date?

It’s later this week.

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And Now It’s November

I had a moment of holiday panic yesterday.

It came out of the blue when I suddenly realized it’s November.

NOVEMBER!

I should be making lists, and ordering turkeys, and thinking about holiday *stuff* I’m absolutely not thinking about.

Adding to my sense of panic, I have to report for jury duty this month.

It’s possible jury duty will only take one day.

But, what if I get assigned to a long trial that eats up days and days or weeks and weeks?

Complicating things further, the call for jury duty is just a couple days prior to an out of state shoot I’ve had scheduled for  years  months.

Aack!

I’m juggling a lot of balls, folks.

(Some of which I can’t talk about publicly yet.)

Let’s hope they don’t all collide.

It’s a good thing my daughter gave me a “list book” for my birthday.

Do you know what a list book is?

It’s basically a hard bound, lined, blank, beautiful journal.

Every list you have gets entered into the book … work, personal, family stuff, house projects.

And no, you never tear out any pages!

(My daughter – The Most Organized Human Being on the Planet Earth – has an organizational system she shared with me.)

Hopefully, my list book will keep me sane.

I admit, I’m having a little trouble transitioning from the 3,000 post-it notes I have all over the house.

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Birthday Weekend

I really liked my birthday weekend.

I didn’t do anything earth-shattering, or even exciting.

(I was told to take it easy for a few days following a minor medical procedure late on Thursday.)

On Friday night (Halloween) it started raining.

I was SO excited!

Not only do we need rain because of California’s terrible drought,

It’s also been HOT for what feels like years.

Having cool weather and rain was awesome.

Of course, the rain put an end to trick-or-treaters so I have a ton of leftover candy.

(I think I’ll ship it back to my son.  He can stick it in the frat house lobby. It will disappear in seconds.)

My daughter came over Friday evening and stayed through Saturday night.

It was nice to have her around even though we mainly hung out at home.

On Sunday, my actual birthday, I talked to lots and lots of family members who called to send birthday wishes.

It was a breathtakingly beautiful day so, of course, I had to get outside and enjoy it.

I went to Laguna Beach.

Click on photo to purchase, or to view larger, in 24atHeart gallery.

The ocean was sparkling, the air was crisp and clear post-rain.

The palm trees were swaying in the breeze.

It couldn’t have been prettier.

I wanted to do MORE …. hiking, shooting, etc., etc.

I knew I needed to keep my activity level low so I can get back to my usual chaotic self this week.

Was it an exciting birthday weekend?

No.

But, it was a NICE weekend.

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A Moment Changes Everything

A moment changes everything …

And today, I’m (once again) twenty four!

Mendocino, California:  Click on photo to purchase, or to view larger, in 24atHeart gallery.

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Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween!

This made me laugh.

(Maybe because I live in Orange County?)

I hope it brings a smile to your face too!

JackOlantern