Yearly Archives: 2013

July 21, 2013

It looks like this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to conquering my nemesis. I received a perfect score in my accounting case study assignment, with a class average of 72%. It almost brought a tear to my eye and I’m not sure that this will ever happen again. 100%s on significant tests and assignments don’t come around often, especially in these tougher courses. More importantly is the moral of the story: hard work always pays off. Never doubt it.

I’ve been MIA for a week – eek! I’ve been studying for exams. Financial Accounting is history after tomorrow night. I don’t think I’ve ever retained this much information in my head – between work and school, it’s not easy to remember everything. I’ll tell you – the memory is working pretty damn hard. I can’t wait to un-flex those brain muscles and press the EJECT ALL ACCOUNTING INFORMATION button the second I hear “pencils down, time is up”. I have no idea what the exam is going to be like but my studying is getting quite unproductive and lazy in these last hours. Crossing my fingers and hoping it all works out.

beach ocean sea travel

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 5:43 pm
July 13, 2013

Cruise ships are so magnificent. (Except when they sink.)

I’ve finally purchased a cloud-based back-up / storage system for my photography via CrashPlan. Man, have you ever tried searching “best cloud storage service” on Google and see how many of them come up in the searches? It’s absolutely crazy. Every once in a while, you get to be that consumer who knows nothing about something she has to buy and have to choose among 10+ brands that all say they’re awesome. Next thing you know, you’ve been reading reviews for hours and are still completely undecided and then have to force yourself to make a damn decision. I’ve just gone through what Google and marketers have coined the Zero Moment of Truth, which I wrote about in a previous blog post. Majority of consumers now make their purchase decisions online, where all the research happens. Ten years ago, a greater percentage of purchase decisions were made in-stores.

Anyway, the reason I finally took the plunge is that every now and then, I have nightmares about losing all three of my external hard drives to a fire and bidding farewell to years and years of photography. The thought of it just makes me short of breath. I need something that combats the physical limitations of hard drives, so I chose the cloud as a secondary back-up. I hope it’s a safe and happy journey.

In the mean time, happy Saturday night! I’m getting into Sons of Anarchy.

ships ocean sean sail

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 9:41 pm

In hindsight, there were so many ways I could have been so screwed yesterday and it seemed like I was always an inch away from my own thunderstorm horror story. But somehow, the sequence of events happened the way they did to keep me from that horror story and it was not by chance or coincidence. My amazing God watches over me. Let’s just say that I drove with a flat tire for a total of 4 hours and had no idea. With the heavy roaring rain coming down, I couldn’t have heard my tire pop even if I tried. Yet my car held up while others were stalled and stuck in floods. When I got home from school at around 11:30pm, I learned that the apartment’s underground parking had been flooded (of course). I figured I had to find road parking at that point because I was certain that the visitor’s lot would be full, given the situation and how late it was. But sure enough, as I drove around to the visitor’s lot, I found ONE open spot as if it were waiting for me. These were only two of many fortunate moments yesterday, telling me to count my blessings.

I don’t mean to go all spiritual, but sometimes, when you reflect and think about how badly things could have turned out due to forces that are out of your control and then have a look at how it all worked out perfectly and as painlessly as possible instead, you have to wonder… someone else has got to be looking out for you. Some would say it’s luck, but I’d say it’s my God.

beach summer ocean sea

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 11:02 am

We are near the end. Three more deliverables left to go: final Accounting case study, final Accounting exam, and final Organizational Behaviour paper. This is the last stretch and today, I’m treating myself with a study break. I did receive multiple Etsy orders yesterday, so processing them will still keep me busy for a few hours. No rest for the wicked. I’m waiting patiently for August when I get my life back for 4 weeks.

I’ve enrolled in my next two courses for the Fall: Managerial Finance and a foundational Management course: Skill for Leadership. That semester will arguably be busier than this semester and I can hardly imagine it. :(

Hope you guys are enjoying my beach series from Jamaica!

scuba diving beach ocean

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 11:05 am
July 4, 2013

We drove for 2.5 hours to find the Folmar windmill. It’s supposed to be North America’s only wind-driven sawmill and grist mill, modeled after a famous Dutch windmill called the Arend. It’s so beautiful. The only other place that you’ll surely see windmills like this is in Holland (sparingly in other places). I love road-tripping in and around Ontario and finding gems. It’s gas dollars well-spent. :)

dutch windmill

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 7:22 pm

I’m not going to talk about school for once. Although I am in class.

This is for my fellow photographers. As you may know, the Canon EOS 70D has launched, and she is quite the catch. A bigger catch than my amazing (but old) 7D, whom I still love dearly. But since the new 70D is a big deal, you’ll probably want to check out the EOS 70D Fantasy Kit contest on Facebook. The Fantasy Kits include the EOS 70D, an L-Series lens, a Manfrotto tripod, memory cards, and a Tamrac camera bag – cue hallelujah chorus. Along the way, you get to identify with a photography style and pick from a series of mind-blowing L-Series lenses that best suit your needs. Uhhh, so enter already! :)

Honestly, I used an L-Series lens in Jamaica and it delivered some seriously sharp images, they can cut through your eyes. If you’ve never thought about them, or don’t know what they are, look into it and figure out a way to try one (unless you’re too afraid to get hooked ;)).

catamaran sailboat sailor ocean sea

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 9:54 pm
June 29, 2013

I’m trying to get started on my accounting case study but keep getting distracted by Jamaica photos so I caved and am blogging instead. Here’s Chris and I under the Caribbean Sea. :) Hats off to waterproof point-and-shoot cameras! We accidentally left the battery of our Canon D20 at home and had to borrow a friend’s waterproof camera instead. I beat myself up the whole time I couldn’t take more underwater pictures. It was a shame.

Alright, I really have to get working. Have a super-fantastic Canada Day long weekend!

ocean sea underwater ocean sea underwater

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 11:09 am

The photo would not be the same without the all-American boy in his patriotic swimming shorts. I love accidental captures like these. If that boy had not made his way into my picture, it would’ve just been the sand pails and castles, which would not have made as interesting of a photo.

Despite my insanely busy life and with days where I feel like crying from overwhelming workload, I’m in an amazing place. I love my job. I love photography so much and I get to spend boardroom discussions strategizing and figuring out how to get people to buy cameras and fall in love with this beautiful craft. There is nothing more fitting. The passion will always be there.

I’m sitting in class waiting for my turn to deliver a presentation. I am pleasantly surprised with everyone’s presentation abilities and how comfortable they are speaking in front of people – they are very, very good! This is definitely not undergrad anymore and I don’t think I’ll ever see another crappy presentation.

beach sand america sand castle summer

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 7:46 pm
June 25, 2013

We sunbathed endlessly and ate like we had just survived a famine.

We went snorkelling but didn’t see too many fish. This is my second time snorkelling and still no fish. What’s up with that?

We joined hands with hundreds of people and climbed 960 ft. up the Dunn’s River Falls like this. Your speed and ability is completely dependent on the person in front of and behind you. It was like team building with strangers. Our tour guide was named Bling Bling and avidly wanted to be addressed by that name. I don’t really understand but that’s okay.

We went out to the town. We walked by foot around the parameters and then went by car to what they called the “ghetto” neighbourhoods to see how people lived. The most interesting bit was that many of the houses were halfway to completion. The first level is built with a bunch of steel / wood / building materials sitting idle on the rooftop to add on to the house when time and money permits. I got a few pictures but was hesitant to snap away freely in case the dwellers got angry. In town, we came across a man who offered to walk around with us for a small payment. Being under the impression that going off the resort is “dangerous”, we figured we’d let him come along for our own peace of mind. His name was Big Papa. It felt weird every time you addressed him by such a name. “Hey, Big Papa, can we stop to take a picture?” Big Papa wore this giant golden chain around his neck. He says he “runs the block” and no one else around is called Big Papa and as we walked around, many gave him “props” and he seemed to be quite popular. We felt safe with Big Papa.

Two photos here. The first one is of seashells that our friend Kevin found under the Caribbean Sea. The other is a selfie just after we finished the Dunn’s River Falls climb and before hopping onto the Catamaran.

seashells beach sand summer ocho rios jamaica beach

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 10:18 pm
June 22, 2013

Back from Jamaica! These two love birds are now hitched. :) They had the most perfect and beautiful wedding.

I have to buckle down and work on Accounting now, but will be back with some new travel photography and will chat a bit more about the trip. There isn’t much to take photos of in a resort so you have to get a little bit creative. I did go out to the town despite hearing that it’s dangerous. And as it turns out, it didn’t feel dangerous at all. A lot of hustling? Yes. But dangerous in broad daylight? Not really. More like inspiring and eye-opening.

wedding love jamaica

Posted By Charlene Precious @ 8:42 pm