Semi-Daily Snapshots

Snapshots (22 Photos)
Individual photos from here and there that didn't fit into a series.

Last updated: October 5th

Florida Trip
We recently went to Florida and got married at Clearwater Beach on October 23rd. We had to race to beat Hurricane Wilma and reschedule what should have been a sunset wedding to a noon wedding, but we did it! We spent one of the days of our honeymoon riding out a full day storm, then the weather cleared up, although it was unseasonably cool during our entire stay. We visited many of the Orlando-area theme parks, as well as Cocoa Beach to see the ocean. We didn't take nearly as many photos as I anticipated, instead opting to relax and enjoy ourselves. The few good photos we did take are in the below albums.
Animal Kingdom and MGM Studios

2005/11/01 - AK & MGM Studios (6 Photos)
Much to Joe's chagrin, we spent our last day in Florida doing the ultimate park hop. We went to Animal Kingdom first, then MGM Studios, and also visited the Magic Kingdom for a second time (no photos from there, though). Attractions we enjoyed: It's Tough To Be A Bug, Star Tours, Rock n' Roller Coaster, Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and The Haunted Mansion.


2005/10/30-31 - SeaWorld (35 Photos)
We spent four hours at SeaWorld on the 30th after our Discovery Cove experience, then went back the next day for another five hours. Can you tell SeaWorld was our favorite? We didn't get any real good photos of Shamu, though. We didn't even catch the show on the 31st because by that time (2:45 pm) we were already tired and heading back to the hotel.

Discovery Cove

2005/10/30 - Discovery Cove (11 Photos)
It was quite chilly for our dolphin swim experience at Discovery Cove. We had a 9 am swim time, then checked out the lazy river and snorkel pools. By noon we were tired of freezing our butts off, so we changed into dry clothes, had lunch, and spent some time in the awesome bird aviary where most of these photos were taken.

Universal Studios

2005/10/27 - Universal Studios (4 Photos)
Universal Studios Orlando was a rather disappointing park. The only ride we truly enjoyed was Men In Black Alien Attack. Jaws, my favorite, was closed, so that kinda stunk.


2005/10/26 - Epcot (16 Photos)
Epcot used to represent the future, but now it's clearly stuck in the 80's. Regardless, I still have a soft spot for the park even if the only truly enjoyable attraction there was Test Track. Mission Space, which I avoided, made Joe sick for days and Soarin' is overrated.

Magic Kingdom

2005/10/25 - Magic Kingdom (11 Photos)
We visited the Magic Kingdom first as it only seemed right. A lot of the rides I remember from childhood (It's a Small World, Peter Pan's Flight, and Pirates of the Carribean) weren't quite as fun as an adult. I did try some new rides that I got hooked on though, like Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. And The Haunted Mansion is a classic that I still enjoy.

October 2005

2005/10/09 - Churchill Woods (21 Photos)
Today we explored a new forest preserve called Churchill Woods. I'm a bit antsy for the trees to start changing colors, but they seem to be taking their sweet time. Hopefully they will peak in color before we leave for our honeymoon as we missed them last year since we were in the process of moving. (Note: Photos 001-005 were taken with the A610 and the rest with the 20D).

September 2005

2005/09/29 - Canon A610 (5 Photos)
Just a few photos taken with my new Canon Powershot A610. I wanted something to carry around when the 20D would be too inconvenient. I just got the camera yesterday, so I haven't had a ton of time to play with it yet. I'm unhappy with the vignetting at full wide indoors, but otherwise pleased with the image quality. More shots to come.


2005/09/10 - Cosley Zoo (16 Photos)
The animals were out and active today at the zoo. We went early enough to catch them in some nice morning lighting and avoid the weekend crowd.


2005/09/03 - Jonamac Orchard (13 Photos)
We visited Jonamac Orchard for the second year in a row today. I was disappointed that they fenced in the entire kids' play area so they could charge admission, especially because they wanted $4 per person, and all kids had to be accompanied by a paying adult. So we skipped that rip-off. Their apples looked good, though, so we got two 1/2 pecks so the kids could each pick a bunch. We ended up only spending an hour there, but Joe got his beloved Pecan Caramel Apple pie, so all is right with the world. ;)

August 2005

2005/08/28 - Klehm Arboretum (11 Photos)
Just some shots taken at Klehm Arboretum and Botanical Gardens in Rockford, IL. Last year's photos are here (photos 001-026).


2005/08/17 - Mallard Lake Sunset (15 Photos)
Just some shots taken at Mallard Lake Forest Preserve in Hanover Park, IL.

July 2005

2005/07/31 - Botanic Garden (32 Photos)
We haven't been to the Chicago Botanic Garden since October 2003. Their admission price went up to $12, but they had some new areas, so it was worth it. Plus we got there at 7:30 am before it got too busy, not to mention hot.


2005/07/03 - Barn Cats (10 Photos)
A cat and her kittens who live in the barn my uncle owns.


2005/07/02 - Balloon Festival (42 Photos)
The Eyes to the Skies Balloon Festival in Lisle, Illinios features hot-air balloon launches at sunrise as well as sunset over a span of four days. I highly recommend attending a launch as it's a unique and fun experience.

June 2005

2005/06/30 - Brookfield Zoo (42 Photos)
Took a vacation day from work to use the two free passes we had for the zoo. It was quite crowded for a Thursday afternoon, not to mention very hot and humid, but it was worth the discomfort to get some good photos.


2005/06/25 - Milwaukee (26 Photos)
Our day trip to Milwaukee started off with an IMAX film and a peak at the butterflies, as well as other exhibits, at the Milwaukee Public Museum (photos 1-6). We spent the afternoon in the city and had lunch, then stopped by the lakefront to take in the views (photos 7-13) and then headed over to the Milwaukee Mile for the SBC 250 NASCAR Busch Series race (photos 14-26). In all, a great day.


2005/06/18 - Indiana Beach (5 Photos)
Our 2nd Annual trip to Indiana Beach (with the kids, that is, since I've been there pretty much every year since I was born) wasn't bad, considering how threatening the sky looked all day. I would have liked blue skies, but at least it wasn't too hot/humid and it didn't rain.


2005/06/04 - Cantigny (19 Photos)
Cantigny Park's website doesn't really give a good description of what it is, but it has nice outdoor gardens and indoor museums dedicated to memorializing those who fought in the war. There is an admission fee of $7, however. It wasn't too exciting, except this indoor exhibit where photography was prohibited, so we probably won't visit again for a few years.

May 2005

2005/05/30 - Cemetery Deer (11 Photos)
There's a cemetery between our house and my parents' that my mom would frequently pass on the way to the doctor when I was a kid. A bunch of deer live there and we'd always check if we could see them as we drove by. Today we went inside the cemetery and spotted a bunch of deer. The one pictured was resting so I pressed my luck to see how close I could get to her.


2005/05/21 - LPZ (26 Photos)
Tigers, meerkats, and polar bears, oh my! Although Lincoln Park Zoo has been having troubles lately, I still love visiting. Their new great ape house is awesome, but I felt too bad for the gorillas to take any photographs. One in particular seemed very depressed and I couldn't bring myself to take a photograph of her in that condition.


2005/05/17 - Sox Game (7 Photos)
Thanks to Joe's place of employment, we found ourselves with two season tickets to tonight's White Sox game. It was chilly out, but it was still fun. And they won!


2005/05/08 - Garfield Park (26 Photos)
Another visit to the Garfield Park Conservatory to test out my new lens: Canon Zoom Wide Angle-Telephoto EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Image Stabilizer USM Autofocus. I like my other lens a bit better for macros, although I was lazy this time around and didn't use the monopod like I should have. User error, as usual! :)


2005/05/07 - Willowbrook (11 Photos)
The last time we visited Willowbrook Wildlife Center was in June of last year. Since we live a bit closer to it now, we might visit more often.

April 2005

2005/04/24 - Cosley Zoo (25 Photos)
I haven't been feeling well lately, but my new camera lens came in and between wanting to try it out and suffering from major cabin fever, I had to get out and get some photos. Luckily there is a small "zoo" 10 minutes away, so I was able to satisfy my desire for some fresh air.

March 2005

2005/03 - Arizona (15 Photos)
We had to unexpectedly drive out to Arizona on March 18th because Joe's dad was not doing well after triple bypass surgery. As it was not a vacation, I only took a few photos and most of them were from the car. The good news is Joe's dad is finally home and doing much better.

January 2005

2005/01/30 - GPC (27 Photos)
We've never been to the Garfield Park Conservatory before, so we decided to visit to test out our new cameras. It was sunny at home, but Chicago had a grey cloud over it all day which made taking sharp photos, even with the monopod, difficult. That being said, here's the best of the 200+ shots I took today.


2005/01/24 - New Canon Photos (5 Photos)
Just a few test shots taken with my new Canon EOS 20D.

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