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Nik
Popping into LJ just to keep a tick-mark record of happenings in my life. I imagine most people on my flist have either moved to fb/twit/tumb and/or don't read my posts at all anymore. But if you actually do, yes I am very much alive and well. Thanks for caring. /partial sarcasm

-So first, work has paid off in unexpected ways. I have slowly moved on from wedding photographer to a bit of product photography as well as some stay-at-home sales. While of course I'll continue to shoot events and families, I'm enjoying being a little lazy and making money at home. I'm also planning to finish my bachelor's in either business (tourism emphasis) or something related to drama/film production. Or maybe I'll do both; who knows.

-My boyfriend and I are still together. We have no plans to get married, nor are hurrying ourselves to. We continue to grow and learn together as best friends, which is what matters. We're putting together a trip to London and Paris in the fall...very excited about this despite all the research involved.

-I finally visited the Grand Canyon (in February). emi45 flew in for a week, and I took her on my first official roadtrip. Earlier that month, I was reunited with my parents for yet another Disney World/cruise vacation. I think it's becoming a biennial family tradition.

-Cats are doing fantastic. They bring such joy to our lives. I cannot believe I'd never had cats or dogs before....just what kind of life was I living? Aristotle has even learned how to fetch. Also bought a fish and named it Gloin (yes, dwarf).

-In consequence of fandom, I have opened a tumblr. Over the past month, I've become infatuated with actor Benedict Cumberbatch and wanted a place to squee away from rl family and friends. I'm absolutely mesmerized by his voice and acting talent. Followers are welcome if you can tolerate.

-Oh, yeah! I finally got up to San Francisco. What a gorgeous area. I have several half-cousins up there who are very lovely and accommodating, so I will certainly be back.

I think that's the best of it. Until next time :)
 
 
Nik
04 December 2011 @ 09:12 pm
I am basically ignoring LJ nowadays...so so sorry about that. Facebook is the social network I'm on about 3 or so times a week, and really only because everyone else is. Yeah, I must be honest here and say that I don't care for Facebook.

Many great things have come to pass since the summer, though: Joe's been converted to a full-time Amazon employee (higher pay and no more temp work), we bought a car (!!!), I was asked to photograph two weddings next year which led me to purchase a new camera (the Canon t3i), and then my best friend just filed for divorce from a guy I loathed since the day I met him back in high school. So yeah, good stuff.

I'm mainly posting, however, to remind LJ friends about Xmas cards. If you'd like one and think that I may not have you on the list (or you may have a new addy this year), please comment. They are screened, of course.

Hope everyone's not too overwhelmed this year by the holidays. Personally I feel that it's all arrived espcially quickly this season; heck, I haven't even put up the tree yet! But I think with two warm kitties and a good night sleep tonight, I will finally find myself with enough energy to catch up on the things that matter. :)
 
 
Nik
31 July 2011 @ 11:10 pm
Wow, I'm rather scarily behind on internet updates. All I seem to do online nowadays is look for coupons or freebies. I won tickets to see Cowboys and Aliens this week, for instance.

Since last post, a heck of a lot has gone on. Including that we bought a new HDTV and Blu-ray player. I love them, being as I'd never had either back at my parents' house. The tv can be turned on by waving my hand over the power light, which is way nifty; this stuff is getting too advanced even for me, to be honest. Then Joe had promised he'd give the Lost tv series a try, and so we watched the whole thing from May to early July. He loved it so much that he even wanted us to make Dharma fish biscuit cookies after I told him I'd found a recipe online!

Ah, what else happened? Oh, Joe lost his job, and then found a new one. He was hired by Amazon.com's new set of shipping warehouses in the Phoenix area. He has 3 days off, 40+ hours a week, and great hourly pay. The only downside is that the warehouse he's at is far from home, so hopefully he can get a used motorcycle in a few months. Also, the bff graduated from pharmacy tech school and officially works at a Wal-mart (a bit different than what she had expected as a Bachelor's in English grad).

I did end up being the sole photographer at Joe's brother's wedding. It was very scary for me at first because I'd said yes without truly realizing what that would mean. Their friend backed out a month early, and I was literally the one to save them. I think I did a decent job for a first-timer, however; it was a small backyard wedding with low expectations. The newlyweds are easy-going and were happy with what I got.

Here are some long-awaited Disney Cruise pics!Collapse )
 
 
Current Mood: calmcalm
 
 
Nik
06 March 2011 @ 09:19 pm
I'm about a month late, but I wanted to share thoughts on my vacation I took last month with my parents, and later, Joseph.

The cruise on the new Disney Dream was so. much. fun. It was great to see my parents again and experience something different (yet still Disney) together, and let me tell you. The ship's interiors were gorgeous, especially the atrium and restaurants. And I couldn't believe how much food is given to you all twenty-four hours of the day! Now I understand why people love cruising; you could gain 20 pounds on one if you didn't limit yourself.

We literally had 24-hr room service, with breakfast, lunch, and late-night snack buffets, and a 4-course dinner each night. After dinner there would be a Broadway-style show starring many Disney characters, and of course there were stops to Bahamian islands, my favorite being Disney's privately owned island, Castaway Cay. We docked there on a beautiful day for early February. I also rode the AquaDuck, which is the very first water coaster on a ship, as well as watched fireworks out at sea, another Disney-only event.

I must admit that it was strange to disembark and head to Disney World only to feel a bit forlorn. The cruise was such a wonderful experience that going to WDW afterward was really like going back (to a second) home. Obviously I love WDW like mad, but I'd never been out to sea before, and I found that I felt comfortable doing it. We were upgraded for free to a verandah room, so I was able to wake up each morning to a new, breathtaking view, and that awoke the little traveler in me. But don't get me wrong, enjoying the World for the first time with my boyfriend was pretty special. He loved how big it was compared to Disneyland, and so green. We resort hopped too, so he could see what I particularly love about it there so much.

The only crazy thing that happened was that Joe and my flights were delayed twice on the way home. For the first delay, we actually received a free night at an Orlando airport hotel as well as free lunch for the next day because of the inconvenience. But what that also meant was more time to head back to WDW with my parents, lol. I couldn't complain.

I will eventually get to photo posting, but I've just been incredibly busy with real life, and RL takes precedence. Joe and I spent a good part of last night putting together a new stand for our upcoming TV purchase, and we are going out early for my birthday tomorrow to Benihana's for some much-needed time together (as I work both jobs on the 17th :\). Hopefully I'll be back here sooner than later!
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Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
Current Music: Wilderness Lodge Area Music
 
 
Nik
02 February 2011 @ 12:00 pm
eee!  
www.MyVacationCountdown.com Ticker
 
 
 
Nik
My back is killing me thanks to my new job, but I absolutely have to go online every night because I'm addicted and yada yada. And besides, I haven't updated here since the beginning of July. Wtf.

After exactly 3 months in Phoenix, I found a job at Olan Mills. Hired on the spot again. The studio is very small and needs some serious updates, but for now I'm just a sales rep. Yet the nice thing about it is that I can pretty much work whenever I want to, at least for now. I have higher pay because of my experience as well as commission, and really all I do is sell to people a cheap package up front. It's just making budget that I'll eventually have to worry about.

On Monday, I bought a new bike. My work is a mile and a half away, so why pay $3.50 everytime I take a bus there? The bike cost less than two months worth of passes. I purchased a lock as well but am a bit scared to lock it up in front of other places. Just sticking with it being a work bike for now.

In other news, my mom's officially retired, so she's been pining to my dad lately about going on a Disney cruise. Of course she misses me like crazy and would love for me to come with when they finally plan a date. They offered to pay for my passport and cruise stay as long as I came up with the flight costs, which will work as I just got approved to a credit card that gives a free roundtrip flight after first purchase! The big issue as of late is whether we're going to do December or February; it's up to my sister and if she will go with us.

meme taken from various lj friendsCollapse )
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Nik
21 March 2010 @ 10:10 pm
Thank you lovelies for the birthday wishes. :) My St. Pats was particularly nice this year. My parents took me out to California Pizza Kitchen as I had asked, and we drank green beer and spooned up sundaes afterwards. I also found the dress I adored from Urban Outfitters months earlier on sale for a third of the retail price (in the Ton of Fun Floral color). No offense to the model, but it looks much better on me. ;)

Here are the photos from Disney that I promised. There are more I need to fix up, but these are good for now. My sister came home for spring break still every bit as selfish and impatient as she was before she left home, so I don't have a lot of time for updating. She has the entire family on a tight leash!

WDW '10Collapse )
 
 
Current Mood: calmcalm
 
 
Nik
15 February 2010 @ 09:24 pm
It's been a really busy month for me; I've in fact avoided writing in my LJ because there's just too many thoughts swirling about in my head lately. But that's why it was a smart thing to plan a few mini vacations.

I spent the past week at the_tim_world's house, which was a much-needed rest and enjoyment period. We visited the city for half the time I was there, and her lovely friend _yiu accompanied and treated us to food throughout each day. The main attraction was the Museum of Science and Industry as I hadn't been there since I was little. I honestly didn't remember anything about it! Besides that Amanda caught a cold, I had a wonderful time (her adorable cat even kept me company on the off days).

Sadly, Kristen's sister's wedding was called off last week, to the disappointment of everyone except maybe the ex-fiance. The save-the-dates were shared, dresses delivered and reception deposit put down as well as my photography priced and planned, but I suppose it's better now rather than later to find out the groom-to-be has changed his mind. Kristen and I also decided on a whim to go to Walt Disney World at the start of next month since it's going to be pretty cheap! I might be risking it a little, but I have park hopper tickets that'd be going to waste in June otherwise. I'm very anxious at the moment, because it's exactly two weeks today from the trip!

Unfortunately, my house still doesn't have high-speed internet. We could never find the jack necessary to connect us up, but that's because we believe we don't have one! We're looking into Clear or Comcast, so possibly there's some hope for us. ;) I hope everyone had a good Valentine's Day, and Happy Presidents' Day as well!
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Nik
21 September 2009 @ 11:13 pm
September's a beautiful month in Chicago, if life works in your favor. But not for me.

I caught a vicious virus a few weeks ago, one that lingered for nearly two weeks. I might've had the swine flu, and then again, I might've just had the flu. Or maybe it was entirely bacterial. What I do know is that I was coughing, sneezing, stuffy, nauseous, had a terrible sore throat, and was unable to walk around from severe bodyaches. One evening, I even had trouble breathing. Yet the worst of all was that my left ear hurt more than my head from the pain. I was afraid to take any painkillers because in August I took a half dose for cramps, and it made me weak. I hate being so fragile.

If you know me well, you know I don't get distressingly sick that often. The real bummer about it was that I missed a possible ft job with Sears Optical. I couldn't even get out of bed, let alone dress up and attend an interview. I called in the day of, yet when I called back in a couple of days to reschedule, the manager didn't answer, and he never replied to the message I left. Sometimes I think I have the worst timing.

Happily, Joseph was promoted to assistant manager at his more recent part-time job. So at least one of us is getting somewhere. ;) He'll receive more hours now, and he's moved in with one of the other managers which will help him out tenfold. Back when he had no job and no place to sleep, I told him we'd look back at all the misery and laugh. I guess it really isn't as humorous as I imagined, but now with him coming here in a few days, I'm looking forward to more tears of joy than those from trial and tribulation.

I'm tempted to go on a trip soon, maybe out of the country. Me alone. My parents recommended it now that they plan to buy a second car in February or March, and it's pretty tempting. I should do it while I have the time, youth, and extra cash, before a job, completing college, and family take over. But until I get another adventure rolling, I'm going to soak in being with my Boy this weekend first. :)
 
 
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Nik
12 August 2009 @ 03:07 am
I visited the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus a couple of weeks ago. My sister plans to attend there next month if she receives decent enough financial aid. She's smart, extracurriculars-oriented, and could've gone somewhere in-state for a great deal, I'm sure, but her heart is set on being a Badger (not like she isn't one already ;). The school so far hasn't been all that generous, but my parents are doing their best to get her in. You can imagine it's been extremely stressful here while waiting for the official yes or no.

I had an interview with a Spa/Teahouse right before the roadtrip, and I'm currently waiting for a callback. The owner said she was going away for a week, and that it would be a total of two weeks in the least before she'd make her decision. So it could be any time now. Even though it's not photography, I'm willing to try it since the hours are good and it seems like an easy job. And if it doesn't happen or fit my situation, it won't dash my dreams or anything.

With the ease of summer, I've thought again deeply about what I want to finish school in. I'm thinking that when I do go back, I'm going to get my bachelor's in graphic design. I'd planned on it years ago, but then I changed it as my artistic interests blossomed and decided on fine arts in general (which is what my associate's is in). Yet what I keep noticing is that I'm constantly drawn back to design, whether it's logos, fashion, typography, simple illustration...I'm confident it can be my passion if I find the proper outlet.

It was Joseph's 21st birthday on Monday. He doesn't drink, so it's not all that remarkable for him, but he made me laugh when he called me to say he was in a bar at the moment and had ordered a Coke. ;) He's a darling. I've decided I'm going to visit him in a month or so unless my parents let him fly here; we'll have to push back the opportunity to move together because of our financial situations.

This week, I'd like to get a haircut and color. Been ages since a professional color job; probably I'll go red again. While we're on superficials, I madly adore this whole outfit, so I'm going to have to find a similar one for about 1% of the cost. Or less.
 
 
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Current Music: Fellowship of the Ring Complete Recordings