Archive for the ‘Straight Talk’ Category

17
Nov

Finding the right canon camera for a friend.

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A friend recently asked me to suggest a Canon camera that he can upgrade from. After doing a little research into a couple of Canon consumer level camera’s I suggested he look into the Canon 77d over the Canon 7tI. This post is simply my opinion based on the features he requested. His primary use id for shooting his children’s sports events and general family events.

The Canon 77D body is $799 on Amazon. (This price has gone up by $50 since the time of writing) and is a very good option if you can afford it.

I would be more inclined to go with the 77D over the 7tI as it has a number of features that are designed to help get the right setting quickly as opposed to the Rebel model.

Top digital LCD screen

A great feature for this, in my opinion, is the top digital LCD screen.

 

The digital reader that makes changing settings more fluid and easily accessible.

LCD settings screen

Back Dial Option

It has the back dial option as opposed to separate buttons which allows you to quickly scroll through and change settings as needed.

scroll pad on Canon 77D

Back Auto Focus button.

I love this feature as it allows you to quickly change your focal point so it is great when tracking players or even the ball and allows you to quickly initiate autofocus.

Back auto-focus button

 

Back auto-focus button closeup

Mode Dial Lock

This would be used to prevent accidental changing of modes while shooting. It doesn’t happen very often but like a seatbealth, it is great protection.

Mode Lock button on Canon 77D

It is built for ease of use and with the back autofocus button would be great for the action shots.

The other advantage it is a 2017 model so has the Digic 7 image processor and has 45 autofocus points for really accurate and fast autofocus. It can track objects for continuous shooting and effectively get between 4-6 frames a second in focus.

 

Here is the Rebel 7tI version for $749

Lenses

The Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM Lens ($499) has image stabilization built into it and will work great with the 77D. it has an aperture of f/4 at 70mm and 5.6 at 300mm aperture.

You may also check out  the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM Telephoto Zoom Lens for Canon SLR Cameras that is available on Amazon marketplace for  around $800 (regular $2000 for the newer model II)

There is also a Sigma lens, that is $399 on Amazon but I lean more towards the Canon for image quality.

Here is a good review of the Sigma lens. https://digital-photography-school.com/sigma-18-300mm-f3-5-6-3-dc-macro-lens-review/

A great video review of the Canon and Tamron lenses. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mTmcVMl-qY

An interesting video breakdown on image quality between the types of lenses. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4mpofxRlws

Hope this helps.

I will try get a few pics from these if he will allow me at some stage to show samples.

10
Jul

Amazon Prime Day

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Amazon Prime

I have been an Amazon Prime member since my days in college. You may be thinking, “Wait Amazon Prime has not been around since the age of the dinosaurs!”, and you would be right. In 2010 I made the decision to go back to college while working full time and raising a family which is a full time job in itself.

Amazon Prime had helped me get things I needed at college that was, in some cases, impossible to find locally.  It was by no means an easy journey going to work full time and completing college but Amazon Prime definitely made it easier for my family.

Finances were and still are tight for a family of 7 and having access to all the Amazon Prime features allowed me to enjoy music as I studied with Amazon music, allowed me to upload my family memories to Amazon Photo’s from my phone and Kindle devices.

College books were also used on my Kindle and even uploaded to my kindle app on my phone and computer.

Now is the perfect time t sign up for an Amazon Prime account. If you are a student you can get a 6 month free trial and then it becomes only $49 per month after that. That is 50% less than the regular price.

So what are some of my favorite benefits of Amazon Prime.

Prime Delivery – FREE Two-Day Shipping on over 50 million items, FREE Same-Day and 2-hour delivery in select areas, and FREE Release-Date Delivery on eligible pre-order items.

Prime Video – Unlimited instant streaming of thousands of movies and TV episodes at no additional cost. Granted there is also the rent and buy option for new releases not included in Prime. If you are on the go there is even a way to temporarily download the movie to watch while you are travelling. This is a big deal for me and having a family of 5 kids as we can simply log onto a device and stream a show to keep them entertained during the travel downtime.

Prime Music – It has a growing selection of 2 million songs – always ad-free. If that is not enough then unlock more with Amazon Music Unlimited at an exclusive discount. I love this feature especially when I am travelling.

Prime Photos – FREE unlimited photo storage for you and five others. Plus, upgraded search helps you find photos fast.

Over the coming days I will be going through some of the services and tell a little more about why I love them.

 

8
Apr

“93 Miles” – Fulfilling a Dream.

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“93 Miles” – Fulfilling a Dream.

Have you got a dream? Did someone help you achieve one? Do you want to help someone achieve theirs?

I want to remind you as you sow into someones dream you open a door for your dreams to become a reality.

If you are interested in helping a very talented young man finish his Film MFA Thesis project, 93 Miles. I was in school with him and know the quality of his work and he is of good character.

From my friend the Director.

93-Miles

“93 Miles is a fictional short-film, inspired by true events, about the defection of a Cuban baseball player and his girlfriend, as they journey into an unfamiliar land, hoping to achieve the ‘American Dream’. The dark secrets of the sports industry draws conflict that the two have to face in this crucial chapter of their lives.

This is my MFA Thesis project, here at Emerson College. A project I need to complete to graduate. I’m not one who just wants to make something and turn it in to get my degree. I want to make something that will open the next chapter in my life.
I truly believe 93 Miles is the key, while it also holds a very important message about human trafficking, that many Cuban athletes have unfortunately encountered.
We are moving along slowly, but we are getting there – every dollar counts. This is also an ‘all or nothing’ campaign, meaning if I don’t reach the goal, everyone is reimbursed, and I don’t get anything.”

It would be wonderful if you could help support this project.

See more here on kickstarter.

Here is a sample of his work.

Love Lust from Noah Canavan on Vimeo.

So again I ask you. Have you got a dream? Did someone help you achieve one? Do you want to help someone achieve theirs?

So I ask you would you sow into Noah’s dream and potentially open a door for your dreams to become a reality?

93-Miles

93-Miles

11
Mar

Are We Destined To Win?

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Are We Destined To Win?

What is your passion? Are you significant? Do you have a destiny or is your life a random set of circumstances? How do you view your identity and does it affect your choices? Is it even important that you have an identity and destiny? These are all really hard questions to answer and typically people spend lifetimes trying to discover the answers. I am no exception.

On this journey of life I am always looking for inspiration and clarity, as such I am currently reading through Destined To Win: How to Embrace Your God-Given Identity and Realize Your Kingdom Purpose by Kris Vallotton a leader and pastor out of Redding California.

It was one of the books I have recently been eyeing for a while as I always find Kris’s insights enlightening.

As a disclaimer I will say upfront that I did receive a copy of the book from the author for review purposes and will do my best to provide some of the insights I get and an honest reflection of my thoughts. #destinedtowinbook

I was initially drawn to his book because one of my great joys is helping people find their passion and calling that people commonly refer to as destiny. I believe this book is a great practical resource in helping you clarify what moves you.

So here is just a quick taste of some of my noted quotes from chapter two.

Dealing with the soul.

Why are so many people looking at the modern church and just seeing hypocrites and not authentic believers? Why am I hypocritical in some areas and afraid of living authentically?
Kris points out a potential reason through asking a great question. “Why do we pretend? I think it’s because we are all born with an intense need to feel significant, loved, valued, and accepted; yet we fear that we are not worthy of these things.”

If you have grown up in a religious atmosphere in any way either consciously or unconsciously we have held that developing our spirit as more essential and valuable than looking after our soul and body. Sometimes this is fueled by a deficient understanding of scripture.

At times when a person is experiencing the favor of God and succeeding in an area outside of what is deemed non spiritual then phrases such as, “They are so walking by the flesh and not the spirit.” are thrown in their direction.

Kris breaks down and expounds his points further scripturally and for the richness of that you would need to get a copy of the book.

One final quote for today.

Dear friend, I pray that you may prosper in every way and be in good health physically just as you are spiritually. 3 John 2
“Did you notice that prosperity and health are directly related to your soul and not your spirit?…It’s imperative that we first acknowledge and then manage the needs of our souls. Otherwise, we will find ourselves drowning in the sea of humanity, starving for love, affection, acceptance, significance, attention, and approval.” (p.12)

 

 

11
Jun

Uncorked Health and Wellness

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Ok. So over the last two weeks I have been using a health product called uncorked. It is an all natural powder drink that you mix with water.
I used to drink 2 cups of coffee a day (with sugar and milk) and at about 3-4 pm I would experience a mini crash. On uncorked I am no longer drinking coffee or missing it and no longer experiencing the mid afternoon crash.
Did I mention I only use half a packet in 32 ounces of water. It’s amazing stuff. I shared it with a friend and he stopped drinking energy drinks which would also cause him to crash afterwards.

http://www.uncorkedwellness.com/waynearmstrong

IMG_0486   IMG_0504
#wayneuncorked, #alertandhealthy, #kingdom, #uncorked

29
Jun

Creativity and Fear

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Creativity is a gift to be explored free of fear. Perfect love casts out fear. When men have connected to the source of all life Jesus, creativity and redemption is an open door.

Creativity should never be boxed in by what is considered normal and accepted, but with freedom comes responsibility.

I long for the day that creative people will explore their gift and come up with solutions to some of the problems the world is facing.

I long for the day where men and woman are free to explore what the creator has placed within their hearts to be made manifest on the earth.

I long for the day when people would stop aborting the future hidden in the lives of children who never get the opportunity to develop and explore the world we enjoy.

I long for the day when all men would honor the Glory of God contained in each other rather than divide over doctrine. It is never about us and them it is about we.

Jesus did not come to set up another religion! He came to adopt broken and lost children who are disconnected from their creator & lover. He came to bring us back into the divine relationship of goodness and love. Anything less is a substitute.

Enjoy this video.

A story on CNN got my attention today. Atheist Michael Newdow has filed suit to remove the phrase “So Help me God” from the presidential inauguration. He is also opposed to a Christian performing the invocation. Not very “Tolerant” now is it.

Newdow said references to God during inauguration ceremonies violate the constitution’s ban on the establishment of religion.

What I don’t understand is the fact that, by definition, atheist groups deny the existence of God yet serve their own non God Atheism. I will explain more later in this post.

First off to me atheism is a bit of an oxymoron. To deny the existence of God one would need to consider the possibility that God exists. That very act I feel denies atheism. One would then need to examine the evidence for the existence of God and against to come to the informed conclusion that God does not exist.

To outright deny the existence of God would in essence show itself to be an uninformed narrow minded decision. Anyway I have it on good authority that God does not believe in atheists.

Secondly, religion is defined by dictionary.com as a body of persons adhering to a particular set of beliefs and practices.

Therefore by definition an atheist belongs to the religion of atheism. By demanding the removal of In God We Trust or so help me God from the constitution, currency or from the inauguration on the basis that it is discriminatory towards atheism is, in essence, elevating one religious belief above that of another and as such is against the constitution.

The establishment clause in the constitution has generally been interpreted to prohibit the establishment of a national religion by Congress, or the preference of one religion over another, or the support of a religious idea with no identifiable secular purpose.

Lets look at some word definitions. These were found at dictionary dot com.

God is defined as;
1. A person or thing deified and honored as the chief good;
2. An object of supreme regard. One that is worshiped, idealized, or followed
3. To regard or treat as a god; deify; idolize

To idolize is defined as;
1. to regard with blind adoration, devotion, etc.
2. To worship as a god.

To Worship can be defined as the object of adoring reverence or regard.

Looking at the above definitions it could be said that atheism (a set of beliefs and paradigms honored and given high regard to) is it’s own God being idolized and worshiped by atheists.

As such the secular view of in God we trust does not violate those beliefs rather is inclusive of those beliefs. An atheist trusting in the god of Atheism is not discriminated against in the use of the term in God We Trust.

Reality Check: I am a follower of Jesus and I respect the fact that people may not have encountered Jesus yet. Jesus is not a religion. He is a person, the very son of God. I worship, adore and follow the Son of God. Jesus is not intimidated by the other so called god’s. There will come a day where every knee will bow and confess that he is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He is almighty and powerful and fully able to reveal himself to those who are earnestly seeking to find the truth.

I choose to be in relationship with him, to be loved by him, to be led by him and to obedient out of love not religious duty.

It is an awesome adventure that will cost you everything but you get so much more in return.

A simple thank you goes a long way. I keep thinking about how many people are so trapped in their thinking about what they don’t have. The big screen TV that their neighbor has, the cars, the houses etc.

I came from Africa where poverty is rampant. I now live in the US where poverty of a different kind is rampant. There is a poverty of thankfulness for all the blessings that we have here. I have a house, thank you Lord. I have a lovely wife and two wonderful boys, Thank you Lord. I have food on the table and a Christmas tree, Thank you Lord. I have family, extended family and church family who choose to share their love and their lives with me, Thank you Lord.

I have clean water, heat in the winter and electricity, Thank you Lord. I get to touch peoples lives with hope and blessing and share experiences with friends.

If you do not know what it means to be grateful and thankful take a trip to Zimbabwe for a year. Go without Water for Days on end. Go without electricity and have an erratic power schedule. Go to the store and find nothing of value on the shelves and what you can find is 3 times the price here in the US while earning  1/100th of what you would in the US if you are lucky enough to have a job.

All my years growing up there, while we may not have had everything we wanted we could always share a smile, share some love, have a meal together and laugh.

Reality Check : Lets get back to the basics. Loving family and friends and sharing life is a great way to live. we dont need all the stuff that America craves. If we can connect with our creator and each other we will find a depth of life that brings great joy and celebration.

5
Oct

Bias

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Am I free from bias? No. I am just tired of hearing all the bickering and he said she said. I am tired of the destructive negative campaigning if only that much energy could be put into finding viable solutions to the current problems in the country we would be a lighthouse for the world.

Excellence should be expected from all citizens and residents in this country. It is in being excellent that we can be proud of what we accomplish. We would not need to blame shift but would be accountable for our actions.

It is time to change the culture of America from the current it is my right to get, get, get to what can I give, how can I improve the lives of my family, my community and my country.

Reality Check – Freedom should never be seperated from responsibility. People come first not profit!!! Greed always robs honor and dignity and causes harm to everyone

29
Sep

Moral concience

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Moral Conscience

I have a question relating to our moral conscience. If we in this media generation have spent more time in front of television and being fed a version of reality which often times does not line up with experience. How much can we trust our moral conscience when the majority of young people don’t believe in any absolutes. If truth is relative to the believer then how can I trust that my neighbor, politician or any leader has our best interest at heart.

The courts don’t define truth they just interpret it based on the facts or lack of facts. The worship of man and his intellect has led us down a path of moral decay. Our moral conscious cannot be trusted unless it is based on a universal truth that is greater than us or our interpretation of it. Corporately we now value the life of seals or dogs more than the life of our fellow man. We throw tons of money into environmental causes yet we let our neighbor struggle to feed his starving family. We abort thousands of babies a day yet do not shed a tear, but tear men apart as inhumane for killing an animal.

Man and his material needs will never give us the moral compass we need. Only God.

The American system of government was founded by men with a high regard for the divine. The bible says

“For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our King; it is He who will save us” (Isaiah 33:22). Do you see the three branches of the perfect government ruled by God. The legislative, judicial and executive form of human government is intended to be a reflection of the divine and as such have its sources directly connected to the divine in order for it to be effective.

For America to work as she was designed she needs to corporately connect back to the creator and his truth. Then she will once again rise in prosperity under the mighty hand of the Almighty.

Reality Check :

If people believe that voting their moral conscience will work then make sure your moral conscience is connected and trained by the divine creator and not by the intellect of man.