Saturday, August 30, 2008

Thursday, August 28, 2008

I'm now selling incredible make-up, and you can get points for buying!

In this economy (which I don't have to explain to anyone), it seems that finally some of the big companies are figuring out that what we want is something we can afford . . . we want discounts, we want money back, we want rewards programs that actually mean something - such as, giving us points for things we actually plan to buy, therefore, getting something for free that we would have spent money on anyway.

I became a Market America Distributor last March, and I love the company. The products and systems have helped me lose 40 pounds and keep it off, have helped me GAIN BACK HEALTH in so many ways (more on all this later), and now they've energized their rewards program across the board so that when you go online to buy ANYTHING through my web portal you get points that you can turn into real merchandise. The stores you can purchase from to get these points run from Best Buy to Barnes and Noble to baby clothing stores, Travelocity, and much, much much much more. I love it! They've introduced a price comparison feature, customer reviews, and coming soon is the "unicart," a single shopping cart and one-time check-out that will handle your stuff from over 1,000 stores in ONE CART with one payment - and you can ship it to multiple addresses.

As of this posting, the products you can get for free for shopping in a variety of stores all come from the FEATURED BRANDS section of this page. Over the next few months, the products you can get will also come from the 1000+ Partner Stores, which are linked from the same page. The featured brands include some totally awesome health products that really work, such as the world-class OPC-3, an incredibly effective antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. I'll be talking about more supplements and products later, because they've helped me and people close to me so much. Since taking OPC-3, I no longer have the symptoms of fibromyalgia that plagued my life for maybe 20 years. If you think that doesn't make a huge difference in my life, just ask me! There are also anti-aging products, car care, pet care, and the wonderful high-quality Motives brand of make-up linked at the top of this page on my Motives Mini Web Site. Or you can see the Motives makeup display on my regular web portal.

If you find all of this intriguing and want a bigger piece of the action, just give me a call. Or if I've been obtuse and you'd like a better explanation of how to use the web site, I'd love to talk to you! I'm in Oregon: (503) 338-8646.

~ Sheryl

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Amazing . . .

I took the photo from the back deck. Anyone reading this blog will recognize the scene by now . . . except for the colors. Amazing! I was at the computer and looked out the window. Wham! Sometimes nature is just unbelievable. Some permutations of light and color remain for only a second, or a minute or two at most. Then everything changes. If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you can see the two white pinpoints of light against the hull of the ship. They're the lights of the pilot boat. I love that time of day when the intensity of small lights such as traffic lights or the lights of this boat find a match somewhere in the scene and the "big light" of the landscape is fading to black. It's hard to explain.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Sun on the Laurel Island

There was sun on the river for just a few moments when I woke up this morning, and sun on the ship named Laurel Island. I like the name because my "sort of" daughter is named Laurel. We've had winter-storm-like squalls for the past couple of days, so the sun was nice. I love the morning colors when it strikes the ships. I talk a lot about the weather on this blog. I guess everyone here notices when you have several days of squalls during August. But they talk about it even more when the sun comes out. When it rains, it's more like, "What do you expect? This is Astoria." On the other hand . . . winter squalls in August? That's unusual, even for here. I'll go back and post a couple of pix showing what I mean.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

New field equipment company - headquarters, Bogota!

If you're looking for field equipment in Bogota, check out this web site. It's actually a blog. Marcela and Milton Sandoval did a beautiful job of turning it into a web site to sell products for anyone who works in the field. Check it out. They both live in Bogota, and yes, you can contact them in Spanish or English!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Another interesting ship on the river

Here we are. Another interesting ship on the Columbia River as seen from just outside my office. I never get tired of looking at the variety of the ships, the colors, the lighting and weather on the river. The photos aren't spectacular, they're just snaps of what goes by out there. If you want to, yo can click on an image for a bigger view. As usual, the green and white pilot boat is taking pilots to and from the ship.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

What is it about taking photos?

What is it about taking photos that I love so much? I've thought about it, and I can't tell you for sure. I went to a convention in Greensboro, North Carolina, last Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. I'd left my camera at the hotel on Day 1, and that was fine. I was absorbing the scene and a headful of information. On Friday I brought my camera. I'd been taking photos all morning from my bleacher seat, and had gone out for a bit. On the way back in, I passed Lisa, who said, "You look HAPPY!" I realized I was grinning from ear to ear and feeling almost ecstatic. I don't think it was simply the up mood of the convention, because I was clearly feeling different than I had on Thursday. I was holding the camera. I'd been taking photos. What is it?

I LOVE it. I love writing, I love art, I love a lot of things, but taking pictures simply makes me happy. Some people say that when you're taking pictures, you're avoiding the experience of the moment or avoiding connection with people around you. Maybe. And I realize I'm more visual than social. When I look at something with a camera in hand, I see more. And I see differently. Even when I don't have a camera in hand, I'm usually looking for the invisible frame. The frozen moment of shape and color. Again, I see more, not less, I think.

And perhaps it's the sense that the moment can be re-lived. Or the image can be re-lived. Maybe the image is, often times, even stronger than the moment. It should go without staying that there are many moments that fall outside this scenario, such as moments between two people, and on and on, but there is something magical about crawling back inside a slide with a loop, or these days, more often inside a bunch of pixels on the hard drive.

I am not a great photographer, although I often think I'd like to learn. But I don't pursue it. It's not about that kind of professional-quality accomplishment. Images conjure atmospheres. And atmospheres, such as immersion in a theatre piece, or stepping into a centuries-old cathedral, connect with deep emotions. I guess we each have ways in which we plug into a well of satisfaction within ourselves, and images are one of the primary things that do this for me. They inform a connection to something desirable and not quite tangible. Maybe it's that simple.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Breakfast at Coffee Girl

This is one of my all-time favorite places for coffee and breakfast, or just for coffee and relaxing. I didn't take any view photos today, but the windows look out on the river. The shop is at the end of Pier 39, so it's entirely over the water. It's the location and the actual counter where the women would get coffee on their breaks at the Bumblebee tuna cannery when it was in operation. More photos of the location and view to come at some other time. Today Lee and I had breakfast with Laurel and James, and just enjoyed the company and enjoyed relaxing. Lee had the beautiful bagel and lox you see here with the artistic mocha. I had a granola, fruit, yogurt parfait with my usual decaf extra wet cappuccino. Mine had a heart on the top.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Working on two new Web sites

Yep! That's what I'm doing today. I'm working on a couple of Web sites, actually. I've put some new items on the animal pin site, which you can read more about on the gift shop blog if you're so inclined. I've also taken this basic format and am just starting to put together something I've been wanting to do for a number of years now - create a site just for our imported hand-crafted arts from Latin America. It's not up yet, but I'll keep you posted. You can see a few of the items on Tapir and Friends. I thought the cultural crafts from Latin America needed their own site for a number of reasons. We get them in small numbers, and it's just not cost-effective to put them on our existing site - i.e., it's so labor-intensive that they don't get posted. The new site makes it so much easier! Also, the crafts are not always easy to find in animal themes. There are so many wonderfully beautiful products made in Latin America that I wanted a place to show them where the theme is not limited. I'm hoping to launch the new site within the next couple of weeks. If you have thoughts about what you'd like to see, please send e-mail! In any event, the new site as well as the site for painted pins will benefit tapirs, because that's what we do here! Thanks for your support. Talk to you soon! ~ Sheryl

Friday, August 01, 2008

Color at the Silver Salmon

Just a bit of color outside the back door of the Silver Salmon restaurant in Astoria.

An afternoon with pigs and sheep: The Clatsop County Fair, Astoria, Oregon

Outside there was the usual stuff. I liked the neon fish in the window. We've been eating healthy food lately, and, sadly, there wasn't much of that around. We went next door and had German sausage (more like a hotdog) and saurkraut. It tasted good, and I threw away most of the bun, so it wasn't so junky after all. I didn't get bloated.

Here's the fish. There are a lot of fish themes locally. I like that about living on the river.

Indoors, there were displays of food, hand-made clothing, art, photography, and some nice quilts. I liked these two especially. There were sooooooooo many blue ribbons around.

And then we went to see the animals. Here's a friendly pig. Lee and I were being nuzzled and licked. Later one nibbled at my knee.

Almost every sheep was shorn already. Some wore colorful get-up, apparently to keep warm.

More colors. I didn't enjoy looking at the rabbits and chickens so much. I like the animals, but it was hard to see them through the narrow wire cages.
Here's nice duck. It's the only one that would hold still enough for me in the low light of the barn.

This has to be one of the stupidest looking animals you'd want to see - a poodle-cut llama (or related animal) with an orange lei around its neck. I'm sure it was a nice llama, but hey. . . .

Here the two winners had just shaken hands. I missed that shot by a second, but they were smiling and happy. I had never noticed before that sheep and goats are handled without bridles, but merely held by the head and they follow. Try that with a tapir. I don't think so!

I've always liked cow faces, and not to mention, they remind me of my Lab-chow mix, wonderful Leila, who I had for awhile in Colorado.

This was another nice pig. Posing. You can see it's sitting like a dog. After I pointed out to Lee that cows and sheep stand up and "sit" down with the front legs going up or down first, and that tapirs, horses, and rhinos are opposite, I couldn't remember how pigs performed this feat, so we went back and looked at the pigs, who were happy to oblige by standing and sitting just as we arrived back at their pens.

We'd been talking about how pigs were supposed to be smart, and this one obliged us by demonstrating why its owners had wired the latch shut. Piggy seems to have figured it out.

This pig, on the left, had no food in its stall and wanted the neighbor's dish.

Don't ask me why, but I have a thing about animal tongues. This pretty horse kept sticking its tongue out, but in 6 or 7 shots, did I ever get one with the tongue extended? No, I didn't. I tried to anticipate, but it didn't work. My camera is pretty fast, but it still has that microsecond of a lag between the shutter button and the click.

Nice horses. The winners are prancing out of line toward the judge.

This is one part of the fair I never bother with, but I took the photo just to complete the theme.