April 19, 2021

4/19/2021: This Weekend in Pictures

It was a great weekend to go for a walk on the beach/outdoors since the days are getting longer and the weather is nice. I really like my new sling; it makes it much easier to drag my camera everywhere to take pictures of stuff.

March 29, 2021

My Travel/Photography EDC

This is what I carry with me when I am out taking pictures of stuff and/or out all day. I have finally found a bag that will hold my normal everyday carry as well as my camera, while also not being gigantic.

Codeofbell X-Pod: When I am out taking pictures, I have my camera slung around my body but I like it tucked away in a bag when doing non-photography things (I also refuse to leave my camera in the car). I specifically wanted a sling bag that was roughly the same shape and size as my other sling, but also able to function as a bum bag for biking and just large enough to hold my camera. There were a lot of bags that fit all of my stuff but they were either too big and boxy or were missing things that I really wanted. The X-pod was the only bag I looked into that was able to expand to hold quite a bit of stuff but collapse down to a fairly small size.

The shoulder strap is from another bag; It prevents sling slippage and shoulder fatigue (straps can dig into your shoulder when dragging around a chunky camera all day). The carabiner is a medium sized hero clip: Great for keeping your bag off of the ground when at a restaurant (whenever we can go to those again), hanging off of the back of airplane seats, hanging on trees, and so forth. I find that most tables and desks are too thick for anything smaller than the medium sized clip.

Camera stuff (on the blue square):

  • Sony a6400 with 18-135mm lens: I had considered getting a full frame camera, but they were either out of my price point or too large. Anything larger than a mirrorless camera is just too much of a pain in the ass to drag around.
  • Peak Design Leash: Quality of life item. I should have purchased a better camera sling a long time ago. It is easy to adjust, easy to remove, and easy to stash when not in use. I hate carrying my camera around my neck and prefer to carry it like a sling bag if that makes any sense. Carrying my camera like this however, requires constant strap length adjustment (when not in use, I like having my camera snug against my body).
  • Tenba 12” Protective Wrap: This padded wrap was like, $10 and can make any bag a camera bag. I am pretty careful, but I feel better having some layer of protective padding just in case.

Contents from top to bottom left to right:

  • Prescription sunglasses: If you wear glasses and enjoy going outside, prescription sunglasses are pretty great and also covered by vision insurance.
  • Wallet: I like men’s wallets because women’s wallets are generally too big. I don’t always carry a purse/bag and will sometimes run out for short errands/walks with just the essentials. As such, any wallet that I use must fit in the front pocket of chick jeans.
  • Pen: I always have a pen with me. There is never a functional pen whenever you really need a pen. Also, other people’s pens are gross.
  • Fenix E12 v2.0 Flashlight: For whatever reason, it’s kind of hard to find a small flashlight that doesn’t have a strobe. Great for finding cat toys under the couch and digging shit out between car seats.
  • Hand Sanitizer: Because COVID and because I like having clean hands.
  • Face Mask: Comfortable mask that folds flat. I honestly don’t see this leaving my EDC even post-COVID.
  • Anker PowerCore Fusion Power bank and random lightning cable: 5000 mAh battery that can charge two USB-A devices simultaneously and is also one of the few power banks that I have seen with foldable wall charger prongs.
  • Hygiene wipes: This is basically a larger and sturdier wet wipe. They are great for feeling less gross after all day hiking/airsoft or after using a portapotty.
  • Bandaids: You know that feeling when a new pair of shoes or socks end up rubbing the back of your ankles raw? I do and ever since then I always carry two small bandaids just in case. I also want to add a small antiseptic pad to compliment the bandaids as an emergency boo boo kit.
  • Chapstick: Dry lips sink ships.
  • Hand lotion: I absolutely loathe dry hands and must always carry hand lotion.
  • Emery board: I dislike uneven nails (not as much as dry hands though).
  • Kleenex: Because allergies.
  • Emergency hair tie: Because long hair. When not in use it’s either used as a cable tie or to keep all of the flat items together.
  • Lens cleaner wipes: Disposable alcohol pads for glasses and camera lenses. Great for removing greasy smudgy fingerprints and what not.
  • Emergency toilet paper: Cute-ass small roll of toilet paper that came in an MRE. I have this stuffed into one of the side zipper pockets.
  • Microfiber cloth: For cleaning glasses and camera lenses.
  • Emergency tampons: Better to have and not need than to need and not have.
  • Pill case: Just large enough to hold emergency migraine strength excedrine and allergy pills.
  • Emergency pad: Also better to have and not need than to need and not have.

Not pictured:

  • Apple Watch: 6th generation Apple Watch with a black sports loop band (the sweatpants of watch bands).
  • Phone: The same iPhone 11 Pro as pictured in the previous EDC post.
  • Keys: The same set of keys as pictured in the previous EDC post.
  • Folded plastic bag: I keep a folded plastic bag stuffed into one of the side zipper pockets. Useful whenever a trash bag is needed or whenever there’s something wet, etc.

The large zipper pocket in my sling is large enough to also hold my water bottle and camera if expanded all the way. I don’t ever see myself doing so as I am not into tempting fate that much. If I really feel like spending unnecessary money, I may look into purchasing a camera clip for the sling strap (placed right below the shoulder pad). I like the idea of docking my camera to the strap so that it doesn’t swing around loosely when not being held, but at the moment I don’t like the idea enough to want to spend $70 on a fancy clip…

March 13, 2021

New Camera = New Cat Pictures

In lieu of certain computer parts being virtually impossible to buy (and also in lieu of me not having any AAA PC exclusive title that I am interested in playing at the moment), I have decided to put the new PC build on hold. The ‘fun fund’ has instead, been allocated towards a new camera.

Roosting in the cat tree
It was cold so I made her a blanket nest
it’s the, “sun hour”
He can’t decide which room to nap in…
Guess which one fucked up the blinds?
March 7, 2021

2020 Year in Summary

Hello and happy belated 2021. Totally had this post sitting in my drafts and had forgotten to publish it in early January. Whoops. Here is a video compilation of clips from 2020. For obvious reasons, not a whole lot happened and the video as a whole turned into a complication of cat clip and socially distant hiking/walking places. Perhaps we will get to travel soon. Who knows!

December 6, 2020

New Damn Computer Time

Specifically, it’s new damn computer time for both my husband and I. The last time I had upgraded my system, was with a new video card in 2014; Which, for the past couple of years, hasn’t mattered too much as most games that I have played are either on the iPad, console games, optimized old-system friendly Blizzard games (WoW, Overwatch, and friends), or indie titles that will run on literally anything with a screen.

Unsurprisingly, the game that we are building a PC for is Cyberpunk 2077. Unfortunately, literally everyone on the planet is also trying to build a computer for Cyberpunk 2077 with the exact same parts. We managed to snag one R5 5600x and one RTX 3070 for my husband’s computer, but mine will have to wait until more parts are in stock (his machine no longer boots, so his rig has priority). Until then, I am satisfied with being a console peasant and enjoying Cyberpunk from the comforts out our couch. This also gives me more time I guess to look into a decent KVM Switch to switch between my work machines and gaming machine.

Here is the build. Parts are subject to change depending on availability and when I actually build the damn thing. I haven’t 100% decided on the case that I want:

ComponentCurrentNew
CPUIntel Core i7-2600AMD Ryzen R5 5600X
MotherboardAsus P8Z68-V/GEN3 ATX LGA1155MSI MAG X570 Tomahawk
Video CardRadeon R9 280Nvidia RTX 3070
MemorySamsung 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-13332x G.Skill Ripjaws V 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4-3600
StorageOS is on an SSD, data is on a large ass HDDSamsung 970 Evo Plus 1TB M2.-2280 SSD
PSUCorsair 850W ATX12VCorsair HXi 850W
CaseAntec P280Fractal Design Define R6 USB-C
CoolingCooler Master Hyper 212Noctua NH-U12S
November 27, 2020

2020 Analog System

I figured that now would be a good time to post about the various notebooks that I have used this year and why they did or did not work for me.

Traveler’s Notebook Passport

My Traveler’s Notebook Passport setup hasn’t changed much since I had made this post. This notebook is used as my daily planner. I have 3 inserts: A weekly planner insert, a monthly planner insert, and a blank notebook. I had considered moving over to a TN regular or A5 sized planner, but the passport size really works for me because it is modular and is the perfect size for my bags and purses.

Traveler’s NoteBook Regular

This notebook is mostly a creative outlet. The layout is almost the same as I had posted, with the exception that the dot grid Notebook has been swapped out with a Baum-Kuchen GRID notebook. I like the idea of having a notebook dedicated to entries that are neatly penned with one of my fountain pens. I do take this notebook along when I travel as it is actually used as a traveler’s notebook. When I do so, I will only take one insert and the canvas organizer so that it is not overly thick. When in “travel mode” it fit perfectly into the sling that I use so long as I don’t have it overloaded with stuff.

Kokuhodo Black Notebook

This journal came in one of The Stationery Selection boxes last year. I really like matte black so naturally, I chose this as my journal for 2020. I really like the paper quality, but it is a little frustrating that this notebook doesn’t fold flat. This notebook started off as a fairly traditional journal and has turned into somewhat of a hybrid between a brain dump and a bullet journal. Basically, if I need to get something random off of my mind I’ll write in this notebook. If I feel like writing but can’t think of anything to write about because it was a boring day, I will just write about the cats or literally anything and everything that comes to mind.

At the beginning or end of the day I will try to write down literally every single thing that I need to do. Anything that doesn’t get done gets migrated over to the next day and so forth. I find that the physical act of writing something down helps me to remember and process things; That is why, despite being a very technology oriented person, I use an analog planner instead of my phone.

October 30, 2020

Random Drawings

Here are a few random out-of-context items that were quickly drawn on the iPad and then texted over to my husband for one reason or another. As you can all now see, I have posted not just once, but twice in the month of October. Yay!

You should all be aware that among certain peer groups, I am considered a damn traitor for being a Dodgers fan. No hate for any other team other than The Cheaters, it’s a family thing; If you scratch deep enough, we all bleed Dodger blue over here. Also, carne asada fries are the correct thing to eat while watching the World Series. No toilets were actually destroyed.

The Little Cat has a minor ouchie on one of her paws and is thus destined to wear a cone for the next couple of days. Whatever it is that happened to her paw thankfully does not seem to hurt, but irritates her just enough where she wants to picks at it so that it doesn’t heal. Naturally, no animal enjoys the cone so alas, she was sulk napping in a sunny spot in one of the cat trees this morning with her cone-laden head drooped down like a sad sad sunflower.

Here is an obligatory picture of Ms. Sad Sunflower herself. I would like to think that the Big Cat was following her around the house out of loving concern for her wellbeing, but I am pretty certain that was just either trying to satisfy his things licking fetish or well, be a cat.

October 30, 2020

Mt. Misen Hike

I found an app that makes neat videos and visualizations of hikes from GPS data. Here is a video of our hike up Mount Misen when we had visited Miyajima Island during our last visit to Japan.

I have been obsessively playing two games to fill the void between now and the time that Cyberpunk 2077 is released: No Man’s Sky and Hades.

September 12, 2020

September 2020 Things

The picture isn’t related to anything in this post. I made a salad for lunch today and it was really good so I took a picture of it. The tomatoes are from my parents’ garden.

September. Just when you start to think, “Hey the summer is almost over. We should start hitting Fall weather soon” you remember that you live in Southern California and that mid August/September is the beginning of our third season: Fire season (the other two seasons being kinda warm and kinda cold). Honestly though, it’s not really that bad so long as it is a dry heat. Lately however, we have been getting periods of fairly high humidity (or us, we’re desert folk out here) and that is quite unpleasant. Yay for hiding in the AC.

I don’t really have a whole lot that I feel like posting about, but it would be a shame to buck the trend of posting here once a month so. You know. Media that we have been consuming recently:

  • The Boys season 2: Karl Urban is 🔥
  • 約束のネバーランド (Promised Neverland): Decent anime, have been watching this series on Netflix. The problem that I have with watching anime, as someone who is learning Japanese but does not yet fluently understand Japanese is that I feel caught between wanting to read the subtitles to fully understand what I am watching and wanting to watch something without reading the subtitles to both practice listening and see how much I understand.
  • Bill and Ted Face the Music: What an absolutely delightful movie lol. Exactly what I was looking for in Bill and Ted 3. Really fun.
  • Mulan: My best recommendation would be to think of this film as a movie different from well, Disney’s Mulan. I enjoyed it, but it was average at best in my opinion. The chi magic thing basically replacing Mulan’s hard work and effort was a load of shit though.

I’ve jumped back on the fitness train after slothing out for about half of the quarantine period. We are big on walking and hiking and it kind of sucks when all of the places that you usually visit are either closed or unsafe. However, it is what it is. The general goal this month is to complete all of my Apple Watch rings Every day in September. At least 3 days a week have to be some form of fairly strenuous exercise. I used to run every day, but that gets really boring so I ended up getting Ring Fit Adventure for our Switch and alternating between that and running. Pretty fun game.

I would like to get back into biking more whenever a fire isn’t blowing out gross amounts of smoke into the air (thank goodness for air filters). “Smoke” isn’t supposed to be a weather condition. I mean, I guess we can just take the bikes somewhere not-gross and ride but we don’t have a bike rack yet so taking both bikes involves taking two cars which is a mild pain in the ass.

Bonus picture of the cats snuggling up against each other on the window blanket bed that we made them.

August 24, 2020

Petting the Big Cat

When his ears are in neutral, you can pretty much do whatever you want within reason: Scratch his belly, brush him, clip all the nails. He just doesn’t give a fuck, especially if his eyes are in sleepy mode or closed. So in reality, a more accurate chart would be a Cartesian graph with “Ear degree” one one axis and “Eye degree” on the other (“neutral sleepy eyes” being on the origin, “angry slant eyes” being at the end of the negative axis, “wide open eyes” being on the end of the positive access.” I just don’t feel like drawing that now.

The Little Cat only really has one mode: “I’m the Little Cat.” The rule of thumb in our household regarding cat needs and cat emotions is that the Big Cat makes faces and the Little Cat makes noises. The Little cat really only has one face that she makes and that face is:

I promise that this whole thing makes sense if you have met them.

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