Friday, October 29, 2010

imageOnly until recently I have started to do simple ‘tweaks’ to most photos before adding it to the blog, I don’t mean heavy manipulation or anything like that, nothing have been added and certainly no frown lines have been removed (much to your mother’s despair). 

I always knew that most of the photos could do with a few tweaks (contrast, brightness, colour and etc.) but just couldn’t be bothered, and more importantly there wasn’t a truly simple tool (well this being 2010, there were probably loads of good tools out there but I just wasn’t aware of it).

I’d guess if one was serious, then one should always shoot ‘raw’ then you can have a field day tweaking anything from the exposure to white balance, making it truly perfect (kind of).
Anyway, I have known about ‘Photoscape’ (click here) for quite some time now, but have never seriously looked into it (apart from its very good Gif tool), until a friend said that this was the best and simple tool there is, there was the magic word… ‘Simple’. So after giving it a chance it has become as important/essential to me as ‘Windows Live Writer’.
image Here is how I use it, usually working in the ‘Batch Editor’ section (this is where you can do things to several photos at the same time), load all the photos into this window, then go to the ‘filter’ tab to the right, then just tweak away…

Once you are all tweaked out, you can save it, so that for your next batch lot of photos you can apply all the same filters you had painstakingly tuned earlier.

If all permutations of Photoshop gives you a headache, or even if Gimp is a tad too much, then you certainly should give this Photoscape a try :)

First Book is coming (cont.)… ‘On Schedule’


It is on Schedule :) according to the projection it will be here next Tuesday :) can not wait to see it, to have it in my hands; at this moment I don’t have any expectation whatsoever, I know I am going to love it whatever the outcome… :) :) :)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

First Book is coming


While I was listening to the ‘This Week in Photo’ podcast, there was a mention of ‘Blurb’ (online self publishing'), the premise of having our own personal book was just too ‘fun’ to not have a go.

Decided to do more research on this self publishing thing, there are loads more than I had first thought, here is a link to a nice round up, ‘’ but some upper class players were missing from the list, such as Asukabook.

Decided to go with ‘Blurb’… downloaded their program and in 15 minutes I was dragging and dropping various pics from our latest trip library into the program. Admittedly, I was having too much fun to put any real arty-farty mind to it, just picked the best pics and stuffed it in… just wanted to see the quality of the book first before putting real effort into it. So by 3 am I was uploading the book to Blurb… and then clicked ‘Pay’ :)

Decided to go with all the best options, including paper, binding and so on… as per my past experience the shipping (from there to all the way over here) was going to be about 60%-70% of the actual book… all in all can not wait to have it in my hands though… :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Thank You, Thank You for everything…

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Got an email from Microsoft informing me that ‘Windows Live Spaces’ is moving into a retirement home… I never knew a death of an ‘on line’ service can make water welled in my eyes…

We certainly do go back a long way, I felt in love with blogging through WLS, then blogging turned into a semi-obsession through the discovery of ‘Windows Live Writer’… So I have a lot to be grateful to, to WLS…

It was nice for MS to offer a way to transfer it to ‘Wordpress’ (or another option was to download and delete it), but personally I have moved a long time ago to ‘Blogspot’, which as it turned out to have been a wise decision, in actual fact when I first started this journey I was torn between WLS or Blogspot, decided on WLS purely because of the name Microsoft, not knowing at that time that Blogspot (Google) was by far a more popular service, I remembered at that time saying its MS, they will never take it down :)

Later on, using WLS was just a pain and too frustrating (even with Windows Live Writer, the best tool in the Universe), so with one deep breath I jumped ship and started from zero with Blogspot, moving everything manually… If it was a semi-obsession with blogging after the discovery of Windows Live Writer, then at this moment with ‘Blogspot’ it is becoming an addiction :)

So, thank you MS for WLS, a million words of thanks will not be enough.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Half Term…

This week is your first ever half term break, with a week off school your mother decided for all of us to spend a few days away from Bangkok, just as well, as I needed a break and your mother certainly needed a change of scenery.

Decided to go to Pattaya, it has been a few months since we saw Chat, Larb and their gorgeous new baby (Gun), with me taking time off work so that we could be there during a week day made it a much more pleasant experience (Pattaya at the weekend can be hell, with traffic as bad as it is in BKK).

Instead of our usual place of stay, your mother decided to stay right in the centre of Pattaya, Dusit Thani Resort. Great choice if you were over 65, lol, I am not being fair here… quick summary, excellent (first class) super fantastic service, old facility but very well kept with great atmosphere (now going under a major renovation), fantastic breakfast buffet, not for kids (boring, boring, boring), great locations (at the beginning of beach road).

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Because you mother had these special vouchers thing, we decided to pay a little more and upgrade from a standard room (garden view) to the Juniour suit. And here is what I mean about great service, because most part of the hotel is being renovated, there were fewer rooms going around, meaning the choice for us to upgrade to was restricted to only these Juniour suit, but as it was in the old part of the hotel, the lady would not let us upgrade until we saw the room first.

I loved it, it’s like being in a cave… the elevator doesn’t even go down to our floor, we had to take another set of stairs just to get to our room :) After a few minutes settling in the next logical thing was to take a quick walk around the hotel.
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After a quick once around, we headed off to get some late lunch at Central Festival which is virtually just around the corner, then your mother got really lucky with only her second attempt she got herself a toy at one of those ‘pour money down the drain’ kiosk. Considering how much she had dumped coins into this endless pit, this little toy must have costs thousands, and she ended up giving the toy away…

Once back at the hotel you had your much needed little nap, we could tell because your crankiness level shot right up, and in the evening we met up with Chat at probably the best bar in Pattaya.

Had quite a hectic second day, started off at Central Beach Mall for brunch, then came back to the hotel for your nap which gave the opportunity for your mother to sneak off to the hotel spa (she loved it), by the time you woke up it was the perfect time for a swim (as the sun had already moved on). Late afternoon we took you to Pattaya Park, where there is this high tower for sight seeing and also to jump off, of course we didn’t.

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Later on in the evening, after driving the wrong way (much to your mother despair) we arrived at Chat’s house, where there was this huge dog waiting to greet you :)

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On the third day, we decided to check out earlier than planned, so that we could have the afternoon at the Open Zoo Kao Kaew (Moutain Green), and what a great decision that turned out to be. You were all simile while you were feeding the Giraffes, White Rhinoceroses, and Elephants… :)

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For our next visit to Pattaya, we’ve been told to stay at Centara Grand Hotel as they are more geared towards kids, with a great water park and even a play room for small children… can not wait to take you there… :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Is that a cat in your pocket, or are you just please to see me?

Well it is actually a cat (so we believe)…


After a heavy downpour, our neighbour found this little guy/gal in his garden, some people have noticed that lately some of the stray cats have gone missing, and here was our number one suspect :) Everyone was asking where these guys were going to take the snake, they said if they dropped it off at a zoo someone will have to pay 3,000 THB/month for the up keep, so they said they were going to find a quiet spot and drop it off.

I have my doubt, I think they will sell it to one of the dealer, probably at Chat-tu-chak market, whatever happens we all hope he/she finds a good home and that no one harms it.

Don’t let me out :)

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We are having one of the heaviest monsoon season I can remember, our famous ‘Chao Phraya’ river is full to its brim, and as usual some of the roads are now flooded, with all this rain we are struggling trying to keep you occupied (entertain would probably be more appropriate :) ).

Today (Sat) we had to by pass your routine ‘Little Gym’ class, as you had the follow up appointment with the ‘hair’ Doctoress :) nothing exciting really. So we have some time to kill, as it had been a long while since we have been to Funarium it was the only logical choice to drain you of your energy.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Nothing but Stats…


“ the first company dedicated to providing business information and market research to the Facebook platform and social gaming ecosystem ” (

A great site if you are into stats., focusing on the two hottest themes  of the moment, ‘Facebook and social gaming’. Purely from perception perspective, FarmVille is by far the most popular game out there, but to see a black/white figure next to its name just put its massiveness into the scale of thing, as it trounces all around.

And no more wondering why Google had just invested over US$ 100 million into Zynga…

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Golden Teak Museum

DSC01528 2Turned out to be more interesting than I had first thought, visually very stunning.

Don’t forget your camera :)

Kindly click 'here' for more detail

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Special Fondness :)

12 Roses Your first lesson every Thursday morning is Gym, so instead of dropping you off on the ground floor we have to take you to the third floor (because we are always late :)) where there is a smallish Gym next to the music room, it reminds me very much of my first school in England, Skippers Hill Manor (some fantastic memories there).

I’d guess to make Gym class more interesting the school had decided to put two classes together, doubling the number of pupils to the amazing number of 12ish (lol). So this is when we discovered that you have this ‘special fondness’ for this gorgeous little girl ‘Miss P.’..., by the way baby, I am so, so, so relieve... to know that you have great taste... she is totally adorable.

One of the class helper (assistant to the main teacher) told us that yesterday you were running around after Miss P. all afternoon, as soon as she said that, you got up (in the Gym class), walked over to Miss P. and started prodding her cheek with your index finger (I am sorry the description sounds like an engineering manual but this is the best I could do, not to make it sound seedy :)), I was a little worried that Miss P. was going to get annoyed (and of course she has the right to be annoyed), but as it turned out, she seemed to enjoy your company :)

Sunday, October 3, 2010


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3 Weeks in and we are slowly getting into the routine of things, and one of the many advantages of routine is ‘speed’ :), we are getting things done much quicker now and soon I promise you’ll be at school on time for once (haa haa haa).

Your appetite seems to be a little better now, but still refusing food when you ought to be eating. We are hoping this is a phase and time will help to make you eat just a little better, believe it or not, your mother and I would sometimes hold our breath when you put a spoon full of rice into your mouth, hoping that you would not spit it out… 

Your hair is now definitely falling less and less, but now and then we still find ourselves discussing the cause of this, I am actually leaning towards the high temperature you had prior to this, as a cause of your hair falling, your mother isn’t convinced otherwise.

Considering that the composition was a little off (above, will crop it when I have more time), as well as the focus (your mother is in focus rather than you), but taking the whole thing into consideration, this is by far my favourite photo. of the whole library :) I had to rushed to be ahead of you and your mother, then quickly turned around before firing off this one shot while walking backward… it could have been a lot worst :)

You are now sleeping… I am writing this blog while your mother is on her notebook doing some actual work, just thought that you may wanted to know :)