Monday, January 31, 2011


I haven't posted much lately. I'm not sure why. I've signed in a few times with the purpose of making a post, but I don't have anything to say. I've just been trying to get by these days. You know, when there's just too much going on and your head kind of spins when you think of everything that needs to be done? Pretty stressed. My photo class on Sundays has been great for stress relief. It got me out of the house and got my mind off of life. Riding the train is great. Chatting with friends is great. Sadly, the class wrapped up yesterday. I have to go to immigration tomorrow. Grace's passport expires this month. I'm sure there are other things.

If all goes well, I should be feeling a lot better after Valentine's Day. By then, the Seollal holiday will be over, and one deadline passed. But there will still be more to do. What I really need is a vacation, but there are none in our near future. I don't think Sejin would mind spending the money on a vacation now, but he would have to quit his job in order to get vacation time. That sounds extreme, but if you're familiar with Korean work culture, you'll know it's true. Last year he got four days vacation (yes, not even a full week). So, no fun for us. Honestly, I can't even look through friends' vacation albums on facebook, I burn with envy.

Hopefully I will return next post in a better mood!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ynnos Funnypaper

I applied to test a Korean product. The condition was that I have to do a review in as many places as possible. So, I put an album on Facebook, and I'll do a little review here. I will be totally honest in my review.

The product is "Funny Paper" by a Korean company called Ynnos. They make paper furniture for kids. There are many types of furniture available, from desks and chairs, to playhouses and bookshelves. I was given the chair and desk set to try out. I gave it to Grace as a gift on Christmas Day since it had come in the mail just a couple days earlier.

The product was a bit fiddly to put together, but by the time I finished putting the pieces together, I was doing it faster. I think if I were to buy another paper product, I could put it together easier. Anyway, once it was put together, I let Grace do the testing. She really liked it. She doesn't have a table and chair set. I was thinking of getting her one, but since we are leaving Korea soon, I didn't want to spend the money on one, and have to throw out a huge hunk of plastic. The paper furniture is perfect in this regard because when we finally move, I can just recycle it.

Grace is only two years old and she can easily sit on the chair and use the desk. She sometimes sits there to read books, play with her blocks, make phone calles, etc. She gave it a good strength test by trying to climb on it. There is no danger of this set collapsing. The design makes it really sturdy.I think this is a fun product for little ones. It's so different from the same old plastic table and chairs set, and of course, it is more environmentally friendly. This would make a great gift for a little kid, too. I am kind of interested in the bookshelves and might look into purchasing one or two before going back to Canada.

I said this would be an honest review, so here are the cons. There are only two cons I can think of. First, since the table top is made of strips of folded cardboard, if a child is drawing or colouring on a single sheet of paper, the pencil or crayon might punch through since the top is not even. This is easily solved by laying down a large book for the child to put the paper on. The second problem is that it cannot be wiped clean. I do not give Grace any milk or snacks at her desk because if there was a spill, it would soak in and leave a giant stain and probably make the surface wrinkled. Even if your child has slightly dirty hands, touching the cardboard will leave fingermarks. The answer here, of course, is to simply not use it for serving food.

That's it. I think it's a great product and recommend it to anyone with small children. Check it out!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Freezing Fotographers

Yesterday was our second photography class this month and it was scheduled to be our "outside" class. I think we were all secretly hoping our instructor would reschedule class or do something indoors, but no such luck. We were out there shooting away on probably the coldest day this winter. I'm not sure what the temperature was. Around -15. A couple of times my fingers would not funtion to press the shutter button and once I think my brain froze and I was trying to open the aperture with the wrong dial for the longest time. Nonetheless, it was fun, and we really weren't outside for that long. We tried our hand at fill flash for while, went inside for a coffee, and then went out to do some street photography.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Make it stop

I had no idea when I got my camera what an obsession it would become. The worst part about it has been wanting all kinds of extras for it. When I first got it with the 35mm 1.8 lens, I thought that it would be all I ever needed, but that idea faded pretty quickly. I fear I am at the height of the "gearfaggotry" stage seen in the all-too-true graph below. I had a good laugh when I saw this because it is somewhat accurate when it comes to my progress. I am obsessed with thinking about photo gear, I may get a tripod sometime soon, and I have considered trying HDR. Lately I've been doing a lot of research about special effects filters. And I've even been thinking about getting into film! Ugh.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday

to my little Grace.

The time certainly has flown.

The first year was hard for me. It was hard adjusting to having someone who depended on me every waking moment (even all night long).

The second year was easier as we learned how to communicate. These days she's talking up a storm in two languages. It definitely makes things easier, and more fun.

I look forward to many more years together.

We didn't do anything special today. I had to work, so she went to daycare. I picked her up earlier and we went to the bakery. Then we ate dinner and had some chocolate cake. She had a chocolate lollipop after that, which probably wasn't the best idea, as she was still up at 9:30pm. Sejin is home on Sunday, so we'll celebrate properly then.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


I think I have some kind of weird personality disorder. Whenever I start a new hobby, I get completely thinking about it all the time and abandoning all my responsibilities to do it. When I started knitting five or six years ago, I knit around the clock, watched knitting videos on youtube constantly, brought my knitting to work, etc. I even dreamed about knitting. Eventually the craziness wore off, but I kept with knitting and gained skills slowly and steadily like you're supposed to, and now I'd say I'm a pretty confident knitter (and crocheter).

This same thing is happening with photography. I spend way too much time browsing flickr, reading photoshop tutorials, researching camera and lighting equipment. I'm having lots of photography related dreams as well. I have no idea what is wrong with my brain. I just hope the obsession phase wears off soon so I can regain some normalcy in my life. It's going to take many years for me to develop enough skill to take good pictures, so I need to calm down and relax. Sejin says he wishes I was so obsessive about my work. I do, too. January is going to be a long tough month as I have several books to write. Time to log off here and get started with some writing.


My friend CedarBough does a good K-Pop review every once in a while. I'm not into K-Pop at all, but I know some of my readers are, so check out her blog for some really interesting reviews.
Here is the latest.