Monday, October 24, 2011

Memory Card Back Up Devices

This is a followup on my post: Digital Cameras: What size memory card should you buy?

My husband is of the philosophy that one should never delete a photo. He says that he never knows what he will learn in the future that will allow him to take a picture that is not very good and turn it into a great one. Of course, he loves to fool around in PhotoShop and other digital imaging software.

Still, for the rest of us, the idea of never deleting an image works great until we have a chance to back up the memory card. While my husband and I are on vacation we have enough memory with us so that we do not have to reuse a card. If my laptop is with us, the images get backed up to my computer and then my husband cuts a DVD of the pictures. He also downloads the pictures to a memory card back up device.

He uses a unit made by Wolverine. We never go on vacation without it, whether I am taking my laptop or not. As far as my husband is concerned, one can never have too many copies of their pictures until they are safely stored at home.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Digital Cameras: What size memory card should you buy?

My husband and I have taken a lot of pictures during our travels. During our southwest trip we took over 8,000 images. We had over 9,000 from our holy land trip and 5,000 from our Panama Canal cruise.

The largest card my husband uses is 8 GB and that is because his SLR takes 18 MB pictures. Most of the time I use a 2 GB card although I do have two 4 GB cards. When there are 8, 16 and 32 GB cards available, why do we use the smaller ones?

There are two simple answers and both we hope will never happen.

1) Card gets damaged.
The card can be damaged in several ways. If the camera battery power is low and the batteries poop out while an image is being saved to the card, the entire card could become unreadable. The card could be dropped or otherwise mishandled.

2) The camera and card get stolen

By using a smaller memory card less images will be lost if the card gets lost or stolen. Imagine if you used a 16 GB card for an entire trip, only to arrive home and found out that the card was not readable. As for it being stolen, I've heard of people telling the thief they can have the camera but please return the memory card.

My husband and I use memory card cases like the one shown below. The case holds the cards snugly and is water resistant. When we are out and about, we each have a card in our camera and a spare card in the simple plastic cases they come in.

At the end of the day, any full cards go into the memory card case while an empty card is removed from the case, ready for the next day.

Another Place On My Bucket List

The islands of the South Pacific have been on my bucket list for a long time. I have looked at cruises that can take me around to several islands and I have also thought about the possibility of simply staying on one island.

Some people consider cruising relaxing but I have found them to be anything but. Too many things to do on board and too much to do at each port of call. I think the best thing for a truly relaxing vacation is an all inclusive so when I saw information on Fiji all inclusive resorts I decided to take a more detailed look.

Fiji vacation packages at an all inclusive can be busy or they can be quiet and relaxing. I love the idea that there is so much to do. So when I want to sit on the beach and watch the waves, my traveling companion (who finds it hard to sit still) can be off doing some of the many activities already included in the cost of our vacation.

Hmmmm…. wonder when I can fit this into my travel schedule.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Reading About a Travel Freelance Writer

I was just reading a travel blog. I ended up on the blog by following a Lonely Planet link. The blogger is a freelance travel writer who happens to also write for LP. I figured, great, let me see what this guy does. I would love to write for Lonely Planet too. Maybe if I could get paid for my travel articles I could deduct my travels as a business expense. Wouldn't that be nice. But I digress ...

His post about getting started writing a travel blog had to do with how he writes 'funny shit.' Then he goes on and on about writing 'funny shit', so much so that I figure this must be a keyword he has researched and has figured out that lots of people do a search on 'funny shit' and therefore if he writes the words often enough, searches on those words will bring traffic to his blog. He even says how writing f.s. got him into the Lonely Planet writing pool.

Then he goes on and on and on about how to write f.s. Personally, I don't think any of it is funny. There's another post about how to set up a travel blog. It too goes on and on and, IMHO, isn't particularly helpful. Actually, there are a whole bunch of not very helpful posts that just seem to go on and on and on.

Finally, trying to find out if there is anything worthwhile on the blog I did turn up some helpful items. One had to do with being an LP freelance writer and what it entails. He does a great job of detailing the really not-so-pretty stuff about being an freelance LP travel writer such as the research, deadlines, and formatting requirements. He also has some very long detailed posts filled with helpful information (restaurants/ accommodations / etc.) about places he has visited.

But in between the helpful stuff are long posts of garbage, stuff that is hard to read and, I guess, that he feels is funny. It is definitely not a blog I would want to subscribe to. When I started writing my blogs, CW was that I had to catch the writers attention within just a few seconds or my site visitor would be off visiting another site. So I've tried to keep my posts short and to the point. I like to think they are easier to read and will result in my site visitor wanting to read more. Yes, I know this post isn't very short. Yet it is one-third the length of the f.s. post I didn't find very funny.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Grand Opening of LEGOLAND® Florida

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Atlantic Luggage for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.



I just learned that there will be a new LEGOLAND® in Florida. It will be a 150 acre theme park in Winter Haven, Florida, and geared towards families with children between the ages of 2 and 12. Right now there is an   Atlantic luggage and Legoland sweepstakes  and it would be neat to win that and take my grandchildren.



Entering is easy. All you need to do to enter is fill out a short form. Be sure to take a look at the information on Atlantic luggage. I have used Atlantic luggage (love the seahorse logo) and it is durable, lightweight and affordable. Available in many different styles and sizes, it is easy to find the perfect match for each member your family.



The sweepstakes to win a trip to the grand opening started September 19th and runs until October 30th so get your entry in now. Time is running out. If you know of someone else who would love to win this trip, be sure to forward the sweepstake link.



Our grandchildren are 9 and 11 and they love theme parks. They have been to several but this would be a unique experience we could give them. That would be super!





LegoLand® Florida Vacation Giveaway from Atlantic®



LegoLand® Florida Vacation Giveaway from Atlantic®



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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Black Sea Cruise for 2013?

Just finished off a great weekend visit from California friends.

Ellen is the owner of Sea4Sail and books our cruises and tours. Over time our relationship has gone from TA and client to true friendship. Ellen and her husband just finished a Panama Canal cruise on Regent that disembarked in New York City. Taking advantage of being on the east coast, they used the opportunity to spend some time with us.

They rented a car in Manhattan where one way rates into upstate New York are horrendous. Ellen finally got a great rate through Alamo and they left NYC for Corning, New York where they spent the night and then thoroughly enjoyed a visit to the Corning Museum of Glass. Finally arriving in our home town, we had a great weekend together, including a visit to Letchworth State Park in GORGEOUS fall weather.

Among the many things we discussed was where she was thinking about another group cruise. She had put together and led our wonderful Holy Land trip. Ellen said she definitely has the Black Sea on her horizon, for 2013, with an extended stay either post or pre-cruise in Istanbul. She is working on making a decision which cruise line will give us the best experience and she'll update me with the details when she has them.

I'm looking forward to it! Perhaps, some of my blog readers might like to come along? I'll post details when I have them

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Check Engine Light On? One Quick and Easy Fix

Here's some info that might be helpful if you are on a road trip:

Yesterday, I was driving on the expressway, using cruise control, when all of a sudden I noticed that my Check Engine light was on. Not only was that light on but my VSC light was blinking and the anti-skid traction light was on.

At the next exit I pulled over and tried to figure out what was wrong. Finding nothing, and just happening to be about 10 minutes from the dealership I use, that's where I headed.

The service manager looked at the car and wanted to know if I had filled the gas tank recently. He said that sometimes the cap does not seal properly when set and when the car does a self check, the pressure is not right. Since I had filled the car two days previously, I undid the cap and reseated it. That made no difference so I made an appointment to bring the car in for service (I was told as long as the light was steady and not blinking the car was safe to drive).

I was off to meet up with some friends where one of them told me she once had the same problem. And simply re-seating the gas cap does not necessarily solve the problem ... might have to drive the car a bit and build up pressure and give the car a chance to so another self check.

Sure enough, on the way home, I noticed the lights were gone. Car is now fine, acting normal and I cancelled my service appointment.