The Soldier and the Squirrel introduces children to the Purple Heart

through a loving story of a friendship between a newly wounded soldier

and Rocky the squirrel with his backyard friends. This story began as a

blog during my first year in bed after my incident. With much

encouragement, it is now a book and has been placed in the

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum. Please watch the video

on the About page to learn for the Soldier & Rocky are changing children's






Glorious Rejoice Dots Glitter





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How to Buy a Hot Body…

A Question on Ask Mic today was from Victoria, asking how do you know what camera to buy? Victoria! First of all, as wonderful as technology is, if it were so fabulous then they wouldn't have to keep improving on it every six months now would they... lol One of the first things I share with friends is you do NOT need the fanciest camera! If anything, get yourself a good solid body, but place an emphasis on the quality of the lens and "focus" on that ;0) There is a reason for this. The lesser quality lenses are made with more plastic than glass, this diminishes the quality of the image. This is also why the more expensive, higher quality lenses are heavier! It's all about the "glass"! Also, the larger a lens can "open up" (ie: f/2.8 or f/1.4) the more light that is allowed in, so you can take better images in lower light situations. Believe me, there's really no way to get away from spending a good bit of money on a solid "system" but you really don't have to give up your newborn. Teenager maybe, but not the newborn...
So, my favorite lens of all time for me, is the 17mm-55mm 2.8 (meaning the maximum the aperture opens is to f/2.8). I think I shoot about 90% of everything I do with that puppy. If I really want to blast out the background I'll pull out my fixed (meaning it's not a zoom lens) 85mm f/1.4.
In the meantime, looking for a camera body has various issues you will want to take into consideration besides price. Mind you, the very first wedding I ever shot was on a Nikon D70, an average but decent camera, but I had a good LENS! Having the knowledge on how a camera works, with a good piece of glass can take you a long way. That first wedding was actually published in Professional Photographer Magazine, go figure!

Now, I shoot Nikon, I love Nikon!! People that shoot Canon, love Canon! It's all in what you are comfortable with and how well you get to know your new little beast. So no matter the direction you go in in regard to brand (NikonNikonNikonNikon...) here are a few things to think about before you drop your kid off in exchange for the newest member of your family...your camera body:
#1: What is the intended use of the camera? If you just want to make images of family and friends then a lower price camera will work well.
#2: What kind and size of removable memory cards does the camera use?
#3: How does the camera interface with your computer? Most cameras come with a serial or USB cable to connect the camera to your computer allowing pictures to be downloaded.
#4: What is the maximum resolution of saved images? Low resolution pictures make for low resolution prints.
#5: Does the camera have reasonable battery requirements? In general, rechargeable lithium type batteries will give you the best results.
#6: Does the camera have an LCD screen? The LCD is a small color monitor on the back of the camera. This screen is required for viewing images taken and deleting unwanted images from memory.
#7:In what format are images saved? JPEG and TIFF are the most common formats.
#8: Are there manual overrides for exposure and focus control?
#9: What is the camera weight and how is it constructed, plastic or metal? Cheap cameras have plastic lens, I prefer a glass lens.
#10: Does the camera have a built in flash and if so how powerful is it? Most digital cameras have very underpowered flash units so check to see if you can use an accessory flash unit.
#11: What software is bundled with the camera? Many camera systems come with software that will help you store, organize and enhance your images.
#12: What kinds of accessories are available for your selected camera system, like camera bags, filters and flash units?
#13: Purchase from a known online retailer, NOT an unknown seller!
I hope this helps! (NikonNikonNikonNikonNikon...)

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Reader Comments (1)

Mic, You are brilliant. You have helped me so much. I have researched this question 10 hundred times online and I always felt more confused. Your answer is hysterical and educational, and easy to follow. Thank you so much. Now to find a teenager I can trade in. ;-)

June 13, 2011 | Unregistered Commentervictoria

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