DSLR Photo Tip, Give Time Lapse Photography A Shot!

Continuing with our series of DSLR photo tips on features your camera has but you probably aren’t aware of, or using… Today’s photo tip involves time lapse photography.This one will make a TERRIFIC weekend project – and will create something few if any of your photo friends have ever done. Many may not have even seen it done!But, I’ve got some bad news for you Canon owners. You probably don’t have this feature built into your camera. (In a minute, I’ll show you how to do it anyway!)You Nikon owners are golden!In a Nikon DSLR, the time lapse photography feature is built in. You can find it in the menu – it is called “interval timer shooting”.In case you don’t know, time lapse photography is a series of photographs – of the same subject – taken over a period of time and then put together in a video series.You create the shots by setting up your camera on a tripod and shooting a frame every second, two seconds, every minute… whatever you decide is the best interval.It can create some pretty interesting little 25 or 30 second videos!Of course you want subjects that will change in some way over the course of the shooting, but can still be photographed from one location.

For example, shooting a flower as it opens up, or a sunset, sunrise, fast moving clouds – you name it. Here is your chance to do something truly creative and learn more about how your camera works – all at the same time!You will most likely want to set your camera on manual so that the exposure settings remain constant throughout the interval.With a Nikon, just find the “interval timer shooting” menu. Then first you can decide to delay the start of the shots or start immediately. Next you will enter how many hours minutes and seconds between shots. An example would be 01:05:15. This example is telling the camera to take a shot once every hour, five minutes and fifteen seconds.If you wanted a shot every 10 seconds, the setting would be: 00:00:10.Then enter the total number of shots you want in total. A good tip here is to set this as high as possible because you can always stop it later, but you can’t add.Finally the third number is how many shots you want the camera to take between intervals. Since you most likely set the timer in the first set of numbers to correspond with each shot you want, this number will be set to one.Then you are done and can start shooting!If you have a Canon camera system, as of this writing, they haven’t yet added this functionality. (As far as I know.) But all is not lost.There is a way!There is a cable release system built for Canon that has a timer and can be set to shoot the time lapse photos. They only cost a few bucks and may be worth having. In addition to time lapse photos, they can be used as a normal single shot timed shutter release to avoid camera shake in your landscapes.Here is a really ugly link to check them out, just copy and paste it in your browser:http://www.amazon.com/mn/search/?_encoding=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&field-keywords=Aputure%20Timer%20Camera%20Remote%20Control%20Shutter%20Cable&linkCode=ur2&tag=parttimephot-20&url=search-alias%3Delectronics

Once you have your photos, you can edit them if necessary – in Photoshop or Gimp ( Gimp is free) then save them all in one folder which you will then upload to Picassa (Picassa is free too!)Make sure all the photos are selected and click the “Create Movie Presentation” icon.The photos are immediately made into a movie! Then in the editing options select “Transition Style” and finally from the drop down select “Time Lapse.” Select the frame rate and video size you want. Click the create movie button and Picassa will compile the images into a movie that you can then save.For a fun weekend project, use today’s DSLR photo tip and try doing some time lapse photography! ANY project you do that can teach you more about your camera will eventually show in your other work, so it is worth while even if you aren’t particularly interested in time lapse photography.


Lenox Disney Showcase Mickey’s Teacup Twirl

Lenox Disney Showcase Mickey’s Teacup Twirl. Tea for two… Mickey and Minnie’s courtship continues as they take a spin on the Mad Tea Party ride at Disneyland. This ivory china collectible is artfully hand painted and lavished with 24 karat gold and pearlescent accents.
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Retreez Tartan Plaid Styles Woven Microfiber Pre-tied Boy’s Bow Tie – Navy Blue – 6 – 18 months

Retreez promises to deliver quality products at a truly affordable price. Spruce up your child’s look with this stylish bow tie, suitable for both casual & formal wear. • 100% Polyester Microfiber, soft and smooth handfeel. • Premium Quality • Boy’s Bow Tie • Care Guide: Dry Clean Only
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Top 5 Must-Have Girl’s Fashions For Summer

Summer is here and so are the long beautiful days and fun nights that go with it. That means that there is even more opportunity for your little girl to go out and have fun and strut her stuff. With all of the events that will be on your daughter’s summer itinerary, it might start to look like you will have to take out a loan to pay for all of the clothes that she will need to attend these events. This is not the case if you get her the 5 must-have girl’s wardrobe fashions for summer.Tank TopsTank tops in all sorts of colors and patterns are one of the hottest summer items for girls this year. They can be in basic cotton or even in dressier fabrics like linen and silk. The key is to buy tank tops that can be mixed and matched with a lot of different outfits to make the most out of the ones that you do buy.SundressesIt wouldn’t be summer with out the parade of sundresses on little girls that you will see out everywhere. Sundresses are one of the best ways for little girls to stay cool and look their best no matter where they go this summer. A perfect sundress can take your daughter from the beach to the neighbor’s party without anything else needed.Bermuda shortsOne of the best trends for little girls this summer is Bermuda shorts. These shorts are longer than what has been worn in fashion in the past. They come down to the knee and help to keep your little girl stylish and more protected from the sun.Sun HatsIt is important to make sure that your child always wears a hat on sunny days to keep the harmful rays of the sun off of them. This does not mean that they need to ignore fashion to do it. There are a great number of sun hats that you can put in your daughter’s wardrobe to keep her sun safe and looking her best as she plays the day away.Flip flopFlip flops go with summer, like ketchup goes with French fries. It just makes sense. A basic pair of solid color flip flops will be the “fall back” shoe for your daughter for the entire summer. You will see her wearing around the pool and on her way to go shopping. There are even flip flops that are dressier if you feel that the basic version is not right for the family get-together.With the 5 must-have summer fashion needs for your daughter in her closet, you will know that your daughter will always look her best whenever she steps out of the house this summer. She can easily mix and match the pieces that she has from her must-have wardrobe to create different outfits and looks for all the places that she will need or want to go. Not only will she look great, but your wallet will too.

Interview with Jan Walker, author of

Prison parent/family educator, Jan Walker, is speaking with us today about her newly published book. Jan is trained in child and family studies and has spent the past 18 years as a correctional educator for adult felons in medium custody prisons. Welcome to Reader Views Jan.Irene: Jan, your book, “An Inmate’s Daughter,” is being launched now. Your book speaks out for children who cope with a parent’s prison term. Tell us the gist of your book.Jan: The protagonist, Jenna MacDonald and her mother and younger brother, have moved into Jenna’s grandparents home in Tacoma, WA, to be near McNeil Island Corrections Center, the prison where her father was transferred. Jenna is the new girl in a middle grade school, and wants to get into the “in group,” a multi-racial group of girls.The girls are curious about her heritage (she’s part Native American Indian) and the reason she lives with her grandparents. They follow her home from school and peek in her bedroom window. She dubs them The Snoops.Jenna’s mother enforces a “Don’t Tell” rule about prison. Jenna loves her dad and would like to talk
about him and his artistic talent. Keeping a secret is difficult in the best of circumstances. It gets
harder when Jenna calls attention to herself and the family when they are family are leaving a visit to
McNeil Island. A small child trips and falls into Puget Sound, and Jenna jumps in to rescue her. It’s an
automatic reaction, borne of many rescues of her younger brother at a trailer park swimming pool
where they used to live.Irene: What inspired you to write it?Jan: During the 18 years I taught incarcerated parents, wrote curriculum and text books, and worked
with women and men to remain involved in positive ways with their children, I invested energy above
and beyond my contract-responsibilities out of concern for my students’ children. They are innocent
victims of their parents choices. The children broke no laws, yet they are often abused or shunned in
their communities, schools, and sometimes in their own extended families.After leaving correctional education to write full time, a friend and writing mentor encouraged to write
a book for children from about age 9 or 10 to about age 15. She said it should be classified as a
middle grade novel. Children who fall in the age group 9 to 15 are often the most hurt and confused
about incarceration. I didn’t know how to write for that age, so I had to learn some parameters as I
went along. My friend listened t o the entire first draft, offered good suggestions, and encouraged me
to get it published. She died before I found a publisher. The book is dedicated to her, but it is in fact
my effort to let children of incarcerated parents know that I understand a bit of their struggle, and that
I value them enough to spend considerable time and energy writing a story about one of them that is
for all of them.Irene: You have been teaching parenting and family relationship classes to adult felons for 18 years.
Tell us how and why to chose this career.Jan: The career chose me. I was teaching similar courses on a community college campus in
Tacoma, WA, when the state legislature mandated prison education would fall under the community
college system. I agreed to set up programs and teach at the women’s prison for one year. The
population and their need for courses tailored to them hooked me.Irene: What types of programs did you set up?Jan: It was a Home and Family Life Program that had been high school level. I taught standard
clothing construction classes in a sewing lab and some food and nutrition courses, but my real
energies went into Positive Parenting, Child Development, and Family Relationships classes. The
prison had a cooperative preschool called Pooh’s Corner inside the education building. Children and
parents came in from the community. A preschool teacher came from a voc-tech school and ran the
preschool program. Inmate students who were in parenting or child development classes and who
were cleared to be around the children, worked as the teacher’s assistant. They interacted with the
children and kept anecdotal information that we discussed in class. That program was in place when I
started teaching there. I started writing new curriculum that fit incarcerated parents needs and
profiles, and “retired” the high school text books. My first published book was named MY
RELATIONSHIPS, MY SELF. It’s out of print. I worked on and taught the PARENTING FROM A
DISTANCE concept prior to that book’s publication. All the courses I taught fell under Home and
Family, and focused on preparing women to return home.When I transferred from the women’s prison to McNeil Island, a medium custody male facility, it
was to coordinate an orientation program called “Project Social Responsibility.” Every man who came
to the island had to spend his first full week in that program. We had 29 facilitators who assisted with
the presentations, but I did 8 hours of the 20 hour week with them men and wrote specific parenting
and family materials for that. The project is discussed in my memoir.Irene: Who were the main participants in your programs?Jan: Most of the women were moms. Many of them were in touch with their children and had
regular visits. Some of them were unable to see their children due to abuse, usually by a man the
mother was involved with, though sometimes the woman was the perpetrator. Most took classes
because they wanted to be positively involved with their children. Some attended because they were
court-ordered to do so. Some faced termination of parental rights. I was often subpoenaed to those
cases. A few lost their children but won the right to receive information or photos through the years.
A few (maybe three where I went to court) lost all rights and contact.When I transferred to McNeil Island, I had similar situations – dad’s who wanted to learn, dad’s who
were court ordered to get parenting classes, and dad’s who came to what I called “Open Door,” a lab
sort of setting where they could create items to send to their children. I named my memoir
DANCING TO THE CONCERTINA’S TUNE, and said I danced as fast as I could. I held discussion
groups during lab time so even men who were educationally low level achievers learned by listening. I
wrote letters to courts and the office of support enforcement (I made and kept templates on my
computer to speed things up) for men who couldn’t read or write, and had never signed a business
letter. I learned to point to where their signature should go, and to praise them when they managed a
“signature” that was really joined printing they were learning in an adult basic education classroom.In addition, at both prisons, I gave parenting and family handouts I created and assorted craft items to
any who asked for them, though the office staff sometimes had to help me run copies because I
overused my copying budget.Irene: You have written “Parenting From a Distance” a number of years ago. How different are the
two books from each other?Jan: I wrote Parenting From A Distance for a class I was teaching at the women’s prison. It is a text
book geared to the needs of incarcerated parents. I revised and reissued that book in December 2005.
It’s a text book focused on the rights and responsibilities of parents who are separated from their
children. An Inmate’s Daughter is fiction written from the view point of the child. The incarcerated
dad in An Inmate’s Daughter is a man who has taken parenting classes while inside, and who
understands the difficulties children of incarcerated parents face.Irene: Have any of the inmates that you teach read any of your books? If they did, what were their
reactions?Jan: MY RELATIONSHIPS, MY SELF was a text for a family class at the women’s prison so all
who enrolled read it and completed the worksheets. Far more read PARENTING FROM A
DISTANCE. Many many students read snippets of other things I wrote since I created scenarios for
“Writing to Clarify Thinking” assignments. I used writing in every class I taught, and even taught
Creative Writing classes as McNeil.Let me say this about the parenting book especially: My students, men more so than women, were
surprised, amazed, awed that someone cared enough about inmates to write such a book for their use.
The reason I went out on a limb, financially, to reissue the parenting book is because I know it makes
a difference. There are no formal measures to demonstrate that. It’s just something I know. I hope
AN INMATE’S DAUGHTER, helps some of the general population stop for a moment to think about
men and women inside prison and their reality.Irene: Keeping family secrets has been a script that has been passed down for generations. You are
encouraging to break this script. Tell us the benefits of “talking” about family issues.Jan: It’s simply this: When children are not told the truth, they make up stories that they believe are
the truth and substitute them. Secrets are destructive to all. When incarcerated parents keep the truth
of prison from their children, they close all doors to communication. When children are forced to
keep a secret, it festers inside. I use that analogy in An Inmate’s Daughter with Zeke, Jenna’s younger
brother, picking up on a comment from Grandpa who says, “Peel off the scab, let out the pus,” and
Zeke answers, “Pussss. Oooooze,” in typical 9 year old fashion.Irene: Quite often children of felons are ostracized by society, especially their peers. How do you
encourage children to cope?Jan: They need to remember their parents’ choices are not their fault, their parents still love them
(this is questioned in cases of child abuse; therefore, individual situations must be considered), and
they can make healthier choices themselves. They need permission to love the adults who are caring
form them, to talk about their worries and concerns, to go on with their lives while their parents are
away, and to find strength to ignore meanness in others. They need teachers in their schools who help
all the students understand some of the realities of incarceration.Irene: What are your method’s of facing these difficulties?Jan: When I talk with children, I make eye contact and ask them how they feel about their parents
being in prison. I help them state and restate their feelings. I talk about feelings at the very basic “Five
Feelings” level – mad, sad, glad, lonely and afraid. I like to use “You” statements. “You look sad.” “I
think you’re mad at your mom for doing something that took her away from you.” There are signs
you can read in children … nail biting, leg jiggling, looking down or away, shrugging, pulling hoods of
sweatshirts down over their eyes. Good teachers know how to read the signs and talk with the
children one to one. However, we have overloaded our teachers with requirements that leave them
little time for such interaction. How can one teacher be everything for 30 or 35 students? There’s a
reason such a large percentage of children with a parent in prison will end up doing time, too.Irene: You spend much time teaching adults in prisons on effective parenting. How receptive are
your students?Jan: Of the hundreds I met, two or three who were angry (possibly emotionally disturbed) wanted to
discount my teaching. The rest were appreciative, very receptive, and worked hard to regain or
maintain contact with their children. I wrote about some of the special work I did and the successes
and struggles in my memoir, Dancing to the Concertina’s Tune. (Concertina is the razor wire that
tops prison fences.)Irene: It’s very difficult to change. Many of your students learned from their parents on how to
parent. When they go back into their own family surroundings, how hard is it for them to adjust to
the new parenting styles?Jan: It’s never easy to change. It’s never easy to return to a family that has learned to go on without
you. In Parenting From A Distance, I wrote a good bit about “Contracts for Forgiveness” and urged
students to use them with their parents, spouses and children. That concept should be adapted by all
of us when we are in relationship struggles.Irene: What are some of those “contracts”?Jan: We made them simple and practiced before students left prison. It could be reading a book to a
child every night for a specified length of time, trips to a park, playing catch, helping with homework,
going out for an ice cream cone. It could be more complicated with older children … delving into
personal and family history, telling the truth about past behavior (only appropriate for the child’s age),
assisting with coaching a team or just attending sports, saving enough money for extracurricular
activities.One woman had to contract with her mom, where she would live for a time, to clean all the paneled
walls with Liquid Gold once a week (a little obsessive?), limit her use of hot water in the shower to
her mother’s specified time, and other similar behaviors. At the end of a set contracted time, the
woman was to be forgiven and the mother wasn’t to bring up past mistakes again. We practiced how
to communicate, how to use reminders.Irene: What percentage are successful in the changes?Jan: Recidivism rates remain high all for all felons. There are no statistics that relate to specific
classes or educational programs, though generally the higher the education level, the less likely
recidivism. Students who worked on personal and social responsibility, and who learned both life and
job skills while inside are generally known to have higher chances of staying out of prison. Age is also
a factor. Maturity helps.Irene: Thank you Jan. Is there anything else you would like to add about your or your book?Jan: Please see my website, [http://www.janwalker-writer.com] I have posted some downloadable
curriculum in Parenting, Family History and Patterns, and Child Development on the site. It is set up
for instructors to use with students, with easy to read information and work sheets.For more information on my unusual teaching, read my book, DANCING TO THE CONCERTINA’S
TUNE: A PRISON TEACHER’S MEMOIR. Ordering information is on my website.When I look back now at how I worked with incarcerated students to try to get them prepared to
reenter their families and communities, I feel tired. It was hard work. Students who succeeded were
the ones willing to work just as hard. They would have an easier time coming out of prison if they
didn’t have to encounter societal and cultural roadblocks at every turn. That’s their reality: they need
to do their part to earn their way back into their families and communities.

Buy Your First Canon Digital SLR Lens – 4 Questions to Ask Before Buying

Decisions, decisions! Which Canon Digital SLR lens should you buy?It was probably a research and decision process just to decide on the right Canon EOS camera, right? But now you are faced with a huge sea of lenses, both by Canon and by third party manufacturers.So which one do you choose?Of course, you could just pick up the package deal that includes what is know as a kit lens. And there are even packages that include two or three kit lenses that cover a wide spectrum of focal lengths. Then there would be no decision.However, if you are a discerning shopper, you will want to get the best Canon camera lens possible for your money.Some new digital SLR owners agonize over this decision for days, weeks, and months. In fact, there is a posted question on one of the camera forums that is over two years old, and the original poster has not yet made up his mind. Now that is a bit extreme.

But the truth is, you want to make sure you get a lens that will serve your photography needs with the best quality photos possible.This brings up the question, “Why not just get the kit lens?” The answer is a simple one. While the kit lens is adequate as a beginner Canon camera lens, it is not the best lens they make. Its purpose is to get a lens on that camera so you can get started taking pictures right out of the box. Many buyers opt to get just the camera body and buy the lens or lenses for their camera separately.Here are some questions that will help you narrow the field.1. What is your budget? This may just be the only question you have to answer. If your budget only includes the camera and a kit lens, then you are done. If, however, there is some money allocated for a lens, you can think about the remaining questions. A limited budget of $500 or less will put you in one area, whereas $1000 will give you much more flexibility in your final decision.2. What type of photos will you be taking the majority of the time?You probably have a preference as to the types of images you prefer to capture. After all, most folks do not buy a digital SLR camera as their first camera. If you take lots of snapshots of family and friends or vacation photos, perhaps the focal range of 18-70mm (or something within those parameters) will be perfect. But if nature, sports, or portraits are your favorite types of images, the ranges you consider are going to be much different.3. Will you be buying more than one lens for this new Canon Digital SLR camera?Buying more than one DSLR lens is really the second reason why most photographers move into Digital SLR photography, the first reason being their desire to get a more sophisticated camera. If you budget allows for another lens or two, then the first lens choice can focus more on getting the best image in the 17-75mm range. Your second lens should be one of the 70-200mm or 70-300mm lenses.

4. Which Canon EOS camera did you buy (or will you be buying)?This is an important question that may eliminate a few lenses from your consideration. If you buy one of the entry to mid level digital SLRs, you can buy almost any Canon EF lens or third party lenses made for Canon. If, on the other hand, you buy a more professional “full frame” camera, you can not get any of the lenses that are designated at EF-S lenses, as they are for only the crop frame models such as the Rebel series.The decision to move to a DSLR camera is an exciting one, but it is not without its research and challenges. You really need to do your homework before making this buying decision.