Tuesday, January 31, 2012

How can anyone get along without a wood fire?

Hey Everyone!
So my father said the other day a quote that got me thinking haha.

"How can anyone get along without a wood fire" -My daddy

He said this as mom, him and I was sitting down stairs at night watching T.V. with our fireplace lit with some oak that we cut down a few months back. I can see where he is coming from because it is toasty and makes a relaxing experience for anyone to sit by it. I know that there is those gas fire places that you can start up with a switch and it has look-alike logs in it and there is those portable fireplaces that shows an image of a burning log but it is not the same. You get the heat but there is something about burning real logs. I am not saying yeah go cut some trees down to do it, I hate cutting trees down and we ONLY cut down trees that are dead and has causes concern for a hazard in the woods or what not.
Anyways, the smell of a wood fire, the look of it, just relaxing and a warm feeling. I enjoy it and I would love to have a wood fire place in my house one day. Yeah, you have to get wood and do work for it but it is worth it XD. As long as you are careful.
Bottom line, everyone should get together and get around a wood fire and just watch it and enjoy each others company. People would get along just fine, I know it!


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Monday, January 30, 2012

It has been 2 years!

Hey Everyone!
So today marks the second anniversary of this blog and also my hobby one as well.
Its been a while since I started and I am still going! I have enjoyed posting and sharing my photography and my life.
Some biggest changes for the past year might be the more posts about my life rather then news articles and such. Also I believe I have posted more photography and also the new domain name as well.
I really have enjoyed every minute that I have updated here.
I have also started to do a little video as well and I have a Youtube page for my blog; TheSamShio. That's the name of the channel and of course you can always look for me on FaceBook which is linked on the side.
I'm excited for the next year on the blog as many big things will be happening!
I will finish up my last semester in college and graduate in May. This will be the end of my schooling career (unless I decide to get a Masters) when I have been going to school every year since I was 5, that is 16 years worth. It will be a relief in someways to finish school as I get tired of the varied schedule of school with night classes/morning classes and work in between and my crazy commute of course. I will be looking for my next job, my career job. this is in some ways exciting although I know that it will be difficult since jobs and the economy is tough for anyone right now in America. I know that in some ways that it will be tough to leave home and dive into a new world; the "real world" as my parents call it. I guess I have a leg up since I am acquainted with people in my field at various companies.
Besides finishing up school, I have a huge plan in my life will happen too right after graduation. My huge trip that I have planned to the detail to Japan. I am so excited for this and can't wait to go. I can't guarantee that I will be able to blog everyday while I am there or at least post photography from my trip until I get back. It really depends but I will by documenting the entire thing and can't wait to share my experiences with anyone who wants to here. I am wondering if I will enjoy it so much that I hate to leave and wish to stay for a longer period of time. The only way to do this is of course finding a job and getting a visa or go to school and get a visa for that. I can stay up to 90 days without a visa but that is a long time to stay and a huge budget and I would need to work. Of course to do that I need the visa haha. Also because I need medication, and Japan is strict about drugs, I can only bring a max of a 30 day supply of a prescription drug in with me. I wouldn't know how much it would cost to get it filled there.
I am going to be there for more then 3 weeks though and there is a possibility that I might get home sick as well and that will be all that I can stand. I wont know till I go so yeah.
After that trip it all depends what happens and if I get into a job right away. I'm not sure you know.
Also by the end of the year I could be moving out either still around town or maybe even out of town.
Also there is 12-21-12 a.k.a. the End of the World....hmmm yeah not sure if this will actually happen haha.


Well anyway who, the photos below are from Maymont on Wednesday! I took a ton of photos like 200 + BUT for some reason the memory didn't save the photos. They were on the card but didn't completely save therefor empty files that couldn't be read. I was pissed because the day was great.
Well These are some that managed to come out good, so enjoy!
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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Garden Fest of Lights - Lewis Ginter 2011

Hey Everyone!
So a few weeks ago I guess my girl friend and I attended The Festival of Lights at Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens that is in Glen Allen, VA. It is a great gardens but I wasn't as impressed this time around as I have been to places now that are larger and more lights haha. It is really nice to go to if you have children as they will enjoy it a lot. This is a gardens but don't expect a lot of flowering plants at the time of lights and the indoor green house isn't that large either. I also took these photos with my Fine Pix S1800 and didn't really work well in low light so that is why the photos are not that great, ops!
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More Images below...

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Out to Maymont on a Chilly day!

Hey Everyone!
I went out last Friday after my class in the morning to take some photos with the T3i but boy it was was chilly! Out of the time I was there I saw two other couples and that was all the people I saw, it was around 36 degrees out with some wind so I didn't stay to long since holding a camera in the wind without gloves was getting a little cold!
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I really love Ivy, especially if it crawls up an old building which you see sometimes around the city.

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I enjoy some of the creative uses of the T3i like intense effect with a blurred background which made this photo seam more "intense" haha

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I used the Vivid creative selection for this  one and it seamed to really draw more green out on that cloudy sad looking day 

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Beech trees have lots of great roots sometimes but they are a tree that are notorious for having people carve names and other symbols into...

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I came across a bird's nest that fell out of a tree right onto the path in the Japanese garden, could not resist a quick photo...

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Lion statue taking a nap under some bamboo...

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the Bamboo roots were interesting and demanded me to take a photograph...

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Some flowers are budding out a little early on this tree. I'm in a class called Economic Botany this semester and we are currently learning details about flowers, leaves and other parts of the plant. I'm quite enjoying it :D 

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This shrub had a gorgeous color of flowers on it couldn't resist 

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One other tree had some flowers on it as well!

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The vines are all cut back and volunteers are cutting the grass at the Italian Gardens

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Thought this was interesting and took it in black and white...

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Hope you enjoyed them everyone!
If you like you can follow me/add me on Facebook as well here

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Taking the EOS T3i around the yard

Hey everyone!
So I got my new camera the other day and I posted a video for you guys to see when I took it out. The EOS T3i/EOS 600D from Canon.
So far I have been enjoying it a lot because my low light room is terrible to take photos in with my other camera the Finepix S1800 but this thing does great and is not grainy. I really do love this!
Anyways some photos down below of me taking it out on that gloomy looking day.
By the way I enjoy some of the creative features like Vivid and Intense photo settings. Used it on the creek and truck.
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Some moss back behind the house

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Censorship, Not Cool

Hey everyone!
So today I am going to talk quickly about censorship on the Internets!
If you have noticed, Google is blocked out with a black box just showing a point about censorship the internet. Many other sites are also doing it in protest.
So what does this mean?
Well basically the United States government wants to fight piracy and regulate the internet but using censorship. Much like China. So basically the government would regulate the web by using methods that are being used in China and what might come up as possible copyright infringement they will block the site all together for anyone to see in the States.The government might force search engines as well to delete certain sites from their search results as well.
Oh yeah the bills, yeah that's right 2 bills, that are trying to be passed in congress are Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP ACT (PIPA).
So yeah, this effects a LOT.
So if there is a web site that constantly has things uploaded like content or photos that might be copyrighted then the site could be block and or face allegations of criminal activity. Think about that, what site handles tons of uploads and such? FACEBOOK! They going to block Facebook? Perhaps Google or any community site that expresses ideas and such?
This is an attack on our right of speech and press. Blocking content like this is to much especially for our economy that has lots of business online. All companies would have to analyze everything that is uploaded to their sites! That is a TON of work for certain sites and companies! Heck I'm not sure I'd be fine even though I give credit at the end of my posts to those that deserve the credit!
Another thing is that this might not stop actually Pirate sites from stopping those illegal downloading either.
This way might change the address for certain sites but it wont stop the actually illegal problems and just cause problems for ever other site that us American's find pleasure in going to.
So yeah, this isn't cool and cause tons of problems for a lot of companies, bloggers news sites and such. Not liking this at all.
I feel like my rights as a United States citizen is being put on hold >_>
So yeah, what you can do since congress is voting on January 24th, is sign a petition over at Google HERE, or give your congress representation a call and let him know or his office know how you feel about this!

All info that I used was from Google's page on Censorship and there is the petition that you can sign!
Also you can go to americancensorship.org here to sign their petition as well.

Also going to add a app to my site that shows some censorship! Edit: Didn't work haha

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Start of the Final Semester

Hey everyone!
So I have tried to do make a video post (multiple times) but the video never saved correctly to the cars in the camera. Weird. So I hope I will be able to do a video post one day for you guys!
So any who I haven't posted a update in a while since I have been getting a few things together and such these last two weeks. Today was the first day of my last semester of College. Exciting times! Graduation is in May and it sounds so nice to be able to finish and concentrate on a career and more of my interest and not home work haha.
So I wanted to go over what happened over my break and things that I wanted to do and that actually happened and things that are about to happen! Was that a run on sentence? Probably.
So my list that I made on the blog I think on December 10th was that;
1) post photo of my Christmas tree and I did in the Merry Christmas post!
2) Go to the illumination down town by the James Centers. I did with my girl friend and my family on Christmas night and I shared some photos in the Grand Illumination post here.
3) More Christmas lights in the city. I didn't really see anymore lights around the city/area other then the ones noted above. I didn't even go into the Jefferson Hotel to admire the huge tree that they have.
4) Go to Carry town, this really didn't happen either. My girlfriend doesn't have school till the 30th so I might be able to during her break haha
5) Maymont! I said that I would go to Maymont during break! I went on the 15th but posted the photos in January, click here.
6) Go to Capital building, this didn't happen but I passed it when I was downtown for the lights haha
7) Snow. I can't help this one but I really wished that there was some snow fall and there wasn't any. At all.
8) do more updates and photos and I think I did, just slacked the past two weeks I guess, my b!
9) Find another job. this didn't happen but I don't mind it really. I have an internship with work and I want to focus on school being that it is the last semester. I also want to get more involved with photography on the weekends and such and blogging. Also school activities like clubs!
10) this on the list was do what ever, and I guess I did do this haha
So things that I did do over break was go the Christmas town on December 30th in Bush Gardens in Williamsburg. this was awesome and if you get a discount it is worth the $20 a person. they also have a few rides open and such! Read about it in this post here.
Last week I went to Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens for the Fest of Lights with my girlfriend and we had a really good time together. Not as many lights as I use to remember but it was still nice. I hope to make that post soon since I edited the photos that other day.
So that is a sum up of what happened over break. Nothing to crazy really.
I finally ordered a camera the other day and that should be coming in soon...I hope. I will do a video on that if I can help it.
I finally got my tickets for my flight to Japan for May-June. Really excited about that and I hope to update my Japan Plans page more accurate of things that I have planed to do.
Well that is all I have for now!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Who's fault is it

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Hey everyone!
I went to Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Garden Fest. last night with my girl friend. We had a great time an it was her first time to the gardens there. The lights were great although was disappointed that some parts of the gardens were roped off :( oh darn. I had a coupon from the newspaper  where it was $11 for the both of us saving an extra $11! Not bad for a nice little date out. Tonight is actually the last night of Garden fest so if you want to see it get out there!!!
Also  the moon was magnificent the past few evenings, it is awesome!
I'm at work again getting in some more hours! Just a tiny bit of data and such.
I'm still on a hunt for a new camera though, I need a new one or somehow figure things out with the one I have. Problem is no matter what I do the photos come out grainy for low lights.
I have a good question for all people, in fact it has to do with our society as well.
If you are the smarter of the group of people or what not or not necessarily the smartest but know about something more then the others and if it goes wrong you are the one to blame.
It seams that everyone needs something or someone to blame for something, like a scapegoat.
I can understand somethings like people actually being responsible for a certain problem but a good example is just the other day at my home.
I am the only one that is reliable to work on the computers at my house. I set up the router, the WiFi, the internet, I clean the computers to make the run better and such.
Well out of the blue the WiFi started to not work, the internet was fine. Instantly my sister need to do her homework and noticed that it was not up. "Clinton what did you do to the WiFi!" first thing I get. I used it earlier in the morning and had no problems so once again it is my fault since I am the only one that knows how to fix it and the only one that messes with the router. I fix everything over the day resetting stuff and such yet it is me trying to fix the situation that is the inconvenience that my sister can not get her homework done and there for she leaves for a friends house. I really don't understand and I guess I could have also done the same thing to someone at some point. Probably multiple times and not know since it comes nature. I see it often and I wonder if it is something that we can get over.
All things happen as they happen and it isn't always someones fault and can be handled in a positive manor.
One of the many things that I guess I can find really annoying and negative about human beings, but not something that is impossible to overcome as a society. LOTS of clam meditation and being one. Sounds like a cliche.
Have a good day!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Christmas Town at Bush Gardens, Virginia

Hey everyone!
So on December 30th last week I went with my girl friend and her aunt, uncle and cousin to Bush Garden's Christmas Town. I recommend it to anyone in the area to go check it out but I would do it before Christmas and not 5 days after since you already have the "oh Christmas time is over" kind of feeling. Although it was days after the magnificent holiday it was super packed! They were opening over flow parking pretty much!
The price per person is $25 (it was $20 for me since Chik-Fil-A had $5 off coupons). For that price and what you get is a great deal! The Festival of Lights at Lewis Ginter Gardens in Richmond is about $15 per person typically I think and they just have lights and the gardens to see which are not really blooming now except for in the atrium. Now Christmas Town has lights everywhere, I had no idea that there were that many lights and spruce trees that they put up! So many fantastic colors of light! No kidding!
Not only do they have the lights but they have holiday themed shows for the season, buildings decorated in a Christmas town feeling, some artificial snow blown off the roof tops on people below! The restaurants that you can grab a bit to eat have Christmas themed meals like a ham or turkey and such. Prepare to pay a butt load for the food though like you would in the summer haha.
Also their hot chocolate was pretty great. You can get the souvenir cup (her grandmother gave us some cash to get her one but told us to drink the coco) and you can get refills for 99 cents. We did about 2 or 3 refills, stuff was the bomb and the temperatures were dropping.
Also some of the rides are open too like the Alpengeist coaster.
If you get the chance to go next year definitely go after dark!  
Also one last note for those who don't know, Bush Gardens at Williamsburg constantly gets first place for park with the best landscaping and in the top 3 for cleanest park as well.

So Enjoy some of the photos, they had penguins (super long line) on loan from a aquarium and the train is all lit up inside and goes with music too. The Tree in Germany also has a show with music and the lights for about 5 minutes, really awesome!
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