I’m Back!

[10 min read]

  • [Vacation Complete] As most of you know, I got married this past August 15th, and so I took a break from photography for the month of August to give my attention to that.  I did take care of a few e-mails here and there, but that was about it.  I must say, it felt great to just let go of it all for 1 month, but I’m so excited to jump back in!  I start shooting again this coming weekend, and still have some shoots to edit/post and albums to design.  So clients, I’m back and ready to go!  I also finally have internet at my new place, so I’ll be much better at responding to inquiries and e-mails now, so keep ’em coming. :)  I skipped a Monday Night Recap for the past few weeks, but this will be a long “Tuesday Morning Recap” instead.
  • [Wedding] The wedding was great, but definitely flew by.  Massive amounts of props to Kenny Kim and his team for covering the event- he was up at around 4am with an early start at my wife’s place since we had a morning wedding, then pushed straight through the afternoon reception.  We’re so excited to see the images that he was able to capture that day, but now it’s just a waiting game.  He did post a quick teaser for us the day after the wedding, so here’s a pic of my beautiful bride during the ceremony:

    My wife told my I was not allowed to have my iPhone on me throughout the wedding, so once we were waiting at the church I gave it to my best man.  Prior to that, though, I was on twitter and fb all morning :)  Kenny actually tortured me a bit by twitpic’ing Nithya at her house, but specifically told me not to click the link- took a lot of self-control but I avoided it.
    We had a guest list of about 700 people, and to our surprise there were little to no issues!  Double props go to all our friends who coordinated the ceremony and reception without a hitch- we’ve been getting great feedback with how everything went that day, and it truly was because of all the help we got.  Thanks guys!  (you all know who you are)

  • [Honeymoon] After a few days of family obligations and attempting to get settled, we headed out to Sandals in Montego Bay, Jamaica.  We got there right when tropical storm Bill left, so the first evening was a little dreary/cloudy, but everyday after that was beautiful!  We had a few cons with this location:  (1) being about 15 minutes from the airport, throughout the day you hear the planes taking off right over the resort- totally a mood killer when you’re trying to relax on the beach.  (2) a lot of the resort was constantly under construction; a main pool was never open, workers were always painting/cleaning different areas- just didn’t feel “finished”.  (3)  The room/beach was smaller than what we expected [but still great].  The internet just made it look so much bigger!  (4)  Some of the restaurants had meals on their menus that weren’t available.  Kind of a sad.
    Outside of those small things, it was great.  The service was amazing, we had our room cleaned like 3 times a day, the food was satisfying, beaches were nice, activities were a blast…what more could you ask for?!  The two main excursions we did were zip lining and riding the dune buggies through Jamaica. Both were amazing experiences. We also went tubing and (attempted) kayaking in the ocean. If you want more details on it, hit me up! Here’s a short glimpse at some of the images we captured from our 5 days there.  You can see more on my facebook page (personal, not fan page). Oh, and all images are taken on my new Canon G10- definitely my new favorite piece of gear!

    They also had a live cultural show every night, and this one group blew us away! They were steel drums group, and they just played pop covers songs throughout the night. They had so much energy and were amazing, I was surprised with how many songs they did! Here’s a video of them doing Rhianna’s Disturbia on the steel drums…a bit long, but they start dancing at the end…

  • [Getting Settled] Since coming back, we’ve been in a constant state of ‘getting settled’.  Many errands to run, a lot of details to set up at the condo, and responsibilities of meals with relatives now that we are married are taking up our time a lot, so things have been very busy.  In total, we’ve got almost all the major things we need taken care of to finally have a comfortable place to live.  The main thing now is I need to get an office desk and a comfortable office table- that’s the one unfinished room.  So if you are still thinking of getting us a wedding gift, something along those lines would be great! :)
  • [Internet] One of the toughest things for us was not having internet at our place immediately.  It was one of those tasks that never got accomplished pre-wedding, so it was delayed until after the honeymoon.  After thinking long and hard, we decided that we would only get internet service, as my wife isn’t much of a TV watcher to begin with.  It was a tough call for me, as there some staple shows for me (sports on ESPN, CSN, TNT, America’s Best Dance Crew, Lie To Me…) that I won’t be able to catch anymore, but I figured I’d give it a shot.  Instead, I’ve set up a boxee/hulu/mediacenter box connected to the TV, so we’ll see how this works out.
  • [Repurposing] First, I took a really old HP desktop (late 90’s) I had, completely wiped it clean, then just put an OS on it and connected my printer/scanner to it in the office.  I set this one up as a print server so we can run any print jobs through it from wherever we are at (my wife appreciates it).  I also set up a network drive for all scan jobs so they are available on all computers.  Little things like this make life so much more efficient.
    Then I took my old Vaio desktop (early 00’s), put Hulu and Boxee on it, and connected it to my TV.  I still have quite a few files/folders on there I need to backup, but this will soon become our media center.  I need to transfer all our audio files to it, and then it will be the hub for all audio/video.  If I start hosting clients over, I’ll have a direct link for client images for easy viewing on the big screen as well!  The hulu/boxee setup allows us to now catch up on cable shows, just a day or so after it airs.  This definitely will make not having cable internet easier.  So far, so good.  The only main issue now, is that I only get live sports on CBS, NBC, ABC, WGN, FOX…I get most bears games, but now only a handful of Cubs/Bulls games.  And no more World Series of Poker.  I digress, I think I’ll be able can handle it.
    Oh, I also brought along my old NES.  That’s right, the original Nintendo Entertainment System.  I went vintage with my entertainment.  I need to buy another controller and maybe pick up a few games here and there, but you can never get enough of the classics!
  • [ABDC] Last night, the wife and I caught up on America’s Best Dance Crew (through MTV.com, as it’s not on Hulu).  I haven’t been as vocal about this season as in years past for 2 reasons: (1) I was too busy with wedding planning/marriage/honeymoon that I never really had time and (2) the crews this year are terrible.  Terrible might be a gross overstatement, but compared to the last 3 seasons, none of these crews jump out at me as being extremely creative and on point.  The two that I like the most are Rhythm City and Massive Monkees- but again, I haven’t been blown away by them.  Hopefully in future episodes, these crews will step up their game.
  • [Fantasy Football] It’s that time of the year again!  This past Thursday, my friends held our Fantasy Football draft- 12 teams, 1 winner. I didn’t fair too well last year, but I’m feeling better about my squad now, as I was actually able to be at the draft.  What do you think of my current squad?
    QB:  Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers, Mark Sanchez
    RB:  Pierre Thomas, Ronnie Brown, Tim Hightower, Leon Washington
    WR: Calvin Johnson, Bernard Berrian, Chris Chambers, Justin Gage, Jabar Gaffney
    TE:  Visanthe Shiancoe
    K: Adam Vinatieri
    Def:  Baltimore Ravens
  • [Cici’s] Ever heard of Cici’s Pizza?  They do $4.99 pizza buffet- all you can eat pizza, pasta, salad, soup, dessert.  Drinks are an additional $1.79.  They just opened one up about 10 minutes from my place, so I dragged my wife with me to stand in line for the grand opening!  we got there about 30 minutes early, and the line was already huge (first 100 people got a free lunch buffet once a month for a year).  I started to lose heart but we did stay in line until the end…

    And for a $5 buffet, it’s good food!  I’ll definitely be there once a month (not sure if the wife likes it as much as I do, though…)