Tag Archives: photography

Home at last



Hello there friends!

I’m back at last, finding a new normal with my Ninja and the fuzzies in our brand new home. Thanks for your patience while I was away; I’ve missed reading your blogs and sending out some cyber scribbles of my own 😉

Wow, what an adventure the past few weeks have been! Moving house sure is messy, whether you do it all in one go or bit-by-bit over many weekends like we did. Towards the end we were sleeping on just a couch cushion on the floor, with no furniture or appliances left except a tiny bar fridge that held only a few meals’ worth of groceries, and clocking hundreds of kilometres driving back and forth between the two homes on weekends. Exhausting.

Read more…

101 goals for the next 1001 days


Note: In case you missed my previous posts relating to this new list of goals, you might like to first stop by here, here and here 🙂 Goals 1 through 47 are adapted from my previous list, and goals 48 through 101 are the most recent additions. Where I’ve been working on an old goal but haven’t quite finished it yet, you’ll see the weird numbers reflect where I’m at today as I begin the new list (applies to goals 6, 9, 12, 16, 23, 26, 27, 30, 33, 34, 36, 40 and 47).

Enjoy! And let me know your thoughts…

Wood pennyfarthing

101 things in 1001 days

From 21 March 2014 to 16 December 2016

1. Read through the Bible in a year

2. Knit a couch throw with natural yarn

3. Get to my goal weight and/or goal size and maintain

4. Finish our wedding scrapbook

5. Go on 3 hikes

6. Go on 2 motorcycle rides

7. Work through Love Dare again

8. Get a pretty girly camera bag

9. Paint 4 artworks on canvas

10. Assemble an emergency kit

11. Visit a cave

12. Make a list of 48 things I’m grateful for

13. Complete a 1 000+ piece puzzle

14. Go on a rollercoaster

15. Find a personally inspirational quote and work it into a piece of art or home decor

16. Read 73 books and keep a list of them

17. Make a custom recipe book

18. Visit 5 different museums and/or monuments

19. Have a sleepover party

20. Go for a bicycle ride

21. Take 101 (poster-worthy) photos of my new pet rats

22. Grow a plant from a seed

23. Invite 5 different friends/couples over for a visit

24. Try 5 new cocktails

25. Write a letter to my favourite author

26. Apply henna 3 different times

27. Get 7 more hat badges

28. Navigate a maze

29. Use up a sheet of temporary tattoos

30. Write a list of 25 things I’ve already achieved in this lifetime

31. Leave an inspirational note inside a book for someone to find

32. Take part in a colour run

33. Eat at 2 new restaurants

34. Take 10 photos of 10 different birds

35. Go to Gold Reef City

36. Celebrate 3 obscure holidays

37. Make a time capsule

38. Visit a bird of prey centre

39. Revisit our wedding venue

40. Watch 6 movies I’ve never seen starting with K, N, Q, U, X and Y

41. Read Pilgrim’s Progress in the old English

42. Revamp my lingerie collection

43. Enjoy another spa day with my best friend

44. Photograph 10 old buildings in South Africa

45. Play the lotto with numbers from a fortune cookie

46. Put away R10 for each completed task

47. Write 4 letters to 4 people who changed my life

48. Buy 5 music CDs for my collection

49. Throw a housewarming party

50. Plan my 30th birthday party

51. Buy 3 more legit Bollywood movies

52. Complete a one-month photo challenge

53. Celebrate our 10-year dating anni in a special way

54. Get a good pocket/handbag camera

55. Interact with a raptor

56. Make a classic ‘Sunday roast’ meal

57. Get 5 new movies for my collection

58. Ride in a hot air balloon

59. Donate blood

60. Do 5 random acts of kindness

61. Find 5 inspiring new blogs to follow

62. Investigate becoming an organ donor

63. Plant a tree

64. Plant a vegetable garden

65. Go to the Lion Park

66. Host a Christmas gathering

67. Go to a theatre show

68. Visit an animal sanctuary

69. Go berry picking at Just Darling farm

70. Visit Lindfield Victorian House

71. See a movie at Rosebank’s Ster Kinekor Cinema Prestige

72. Have a ‘pretty boudoir’ photoshoot for Ninja

73. Hire an old car and go for a drive

74. Celebrate Raksha Bandhan in some way

75. Do a SCAD dive

76. Try 5 different natural foods from Organic Emporium

77. Get new running shoes

78. Get glasses frames that suit me better

79. Make or buy 2 decor items for the bathroom

80. Make or buy 2 decor items for the bedroom

81. Make or buy 2 decor items for the lounge

82. Make or buy 2 decor items for the kitchen

83. Get more potted plants

84. Upgrade our medical aid plan

85. Hire or buy another camera lens

86. Pay off our building loan

87. Make my own vanilla extract

88. Visit an organic/farmers’ market

89. Get a new set of bed linen

90. Make my own air freshener

91. Make my own potpourri sachets

92. Make my own jelly sweets

93. Make 5 new desserts

94. Create a photo album of all our pets

95. Cook homemade soup in winter

96. Define my own smart fashion style

97. Define my own casual fashion style

98. Buy 3 completely new smart outfits

99. Buy 3 completely new casual outfits

100. Revamp my jewellery collection

101. Take at least one mini-break away with Ninja

Quick pics


Hello there! It feels like an age since I last posted here… life’s been getting in the way a bit lately 😉 Summer has hit Johannesburg at last and the heatwave has been surprisingly draining. Ninja and I have been very busy with everything from work to trying to get fit for my first 5km run. My to-do list is overflowing, and often that’s meant that blogging drops down a rung or two. Sigh. I do miss my days at home when I was a full-time blogger, baker and bookworm!

Anyway, for now I have a moment to share a few recent pics of our ratties. They’ve been here for almost a month now and they’ve taken over the home :mrgreen:

Open that cage door and a mass exodus ensues

Open that cage door and a mass escape is inevitable

I’ve tried taking a few nice photos of them and have entered a few into a competition hosted by our rat club – which means I can cross off Goal #64: Send in a photograph to a contest 🙂 Would be so great if one of my shots got picked! But for the most part I have dozens of not-quite-awesome-yet-still-quite-cute pics…

Knight greeting Robert the Rat

Knight greeting Robert the Rat

It’s not easy getting good pictures when the rats are on the go all the time, so I also try to catch them unawares for sweet sleeping shots. Here are some of my favourites:

Moon and Knight: heads hanging over the edge of the cage level

Moon and Knight: heads hanging over the edge of the cage level

Moon: rolled into a ball

Moon: rolled into a ball

Knight: absolute innocence

Knight: absolute innocence

So far it seems our first impressions of the boys were pretty accurate. Their personalities are quite distinct and a joy to discover.

Moon (nicknamed Rover) is still the curious adventurer, who’s often awake when the other three are asleep and vice versa. He’s gentle and fast but in some cases still a little unsure of his place. You know how in big families you often find the one quiet kid who’s easily overlooked in the mayhem? Sometimes I think Moon is that kid, though his odd circadian rhythms do make it easier for us to give him special attention 🙂

Knight (nicknamed Tiny) is still very sweet; he’s bold with his brothers but gentle and trusting with humans. He only has one fault: he is sooooo squeaky!! He squeaks for anything and everything, be it a thorough grooming from his brothers or an unexpected poke from a playful human. It’s definitely not pain related – it’s all attitude and noisy protest from the baby of the bunch 😛

Mishka and Vodka with rawhide shoes

Mishka and Vodka with rawhide shoes

Vodka (nicknamed Voddy – I know, it’s lame, but sometimes the good nicks only come after a while) is the bright spark: I’ve been teaching the rats to leap from the open cage onto my shoulders when I ask them to, and Vodka was the first to catch on and make the jump. All the boys know two commands already: ‘Up’ for standing on their hind legs to receive a treat, and ‘Jump’ for leaping onto me or whichever surface I tap.

Mishka with a banana chippie

Mishka with a banana chippie

Of all our lovely rats, Mishka consistently steals the show. Not only is he the biggest and boldest; he’s also the only dumbo so he keeps catching our eye with expressions we’re not used to after our succession of standard-eared ratties. My friends go all mushy when meeting him and even Ninja admits there’s no denying Mishka’s charisma.

As for me, well… this boy is rapidly achieving ‘heart rat’ status. I always said Muesli was my heart rat, as he was my first, but I’m learning that the heart is big enough to hold more than one special furry object of affection 😀

I think what gets me about Mishka is that he has different sides to his personality. Ninety percent of the time he’s the big forceful alpha rat who ‘power grooms’ his cagemates and shoves human hands aside to get to what he wants. But then there are those odd moments when he suddenly turns sensitive. He’s really earned his nickname of Teddy Bear.

Mishka's heart-melting look

Mishka’s heart-melting look

The pic above was taken after I’d disciplined Mishka for nipping my fingers instead of taking the food from them. From the look on his face you’d swear I’d whipped him with a cane or something! All I did was squeak at him and tap him on the nose (trying to mimic a ratty way of saying ‘That’s enough!’)

Well, it crushed him. He backed up immediately and shot me this devastated look. Flattening his ears against his head, he dashed upstairs and leapt into his Sputnik. And there he stayed, refusing to be comforted or bribed with treats; just giving me the ‘Mommy how could you?’ look for over an hour. Oh my goodness! How to make a rat mommy feel like rubbish! LOL

So that’s the kind of thing that’s been keeping me busy… but I do hope to have more opportunities to blog more regularly. I’m itching to bake something new or take a day trip or do something creative again. As soon as I do, you can be sure I’ll share it here 🙂

Cherry on top


I just had to share this series of shots from a cute moment during Flea’s birthday party. She went for the cherry on top of the biscuit, but didn’t use her hands to grab the biscuit… 🙂

Cherry 1

Cherry 2

Cherry 3

Cherry 4

Cherry 5

Cherry 6

Cherry 7

Cherry 8

Shifting the goalposts (again)



I’ve done it again. I’ve decided to update and tweak some of the goals on my 101 things in 1001 days list.

Now before you sigh, just hang on a minute…! 🙂

What’s the point of making goals when you’re in a certain season of life, and then being too rigid to adapt them when your circumstances change?

When I started the list late last year, I was a new housewife with all the time in the world and no real plans to head back to full-time employment. So many of the goals I chose were things I could easily achieve in those circumstances.

But life changed, as it always does, so I updated my list in the hopes of making it more realistic. And now life has changed again, and I feel it’s time for a fresh take on things once again.

At this stage of our lives it looks like I’ll have to keep working outside the home for the foreseeable future. So if this 101 things list is going to be of any use at all, it has to fit in with my ‘new normal’. I really don’t see the point in having a list of goals that just depress me because I doubt I’ll ever get to them this side of retirement…

So without further justification, here are the specific goals I’ve reworked (along with reasons for the changes, as though I owe you any!) 😉 I’ll post my complete new list separately.

Goals that are changing

Goal #4: Exercise at least 30 min/day, 3 days/week, 3 weeks/month – This is the first goal to change. Why are we not surprised? I had a wonderful time exercising daily when I was at home, but my new schedule allows for much less routine. Although I’m still aiming to get in a decent amount of exercise, I’ve removed it from this particular list. The replacement goal is: Knit something colourful :mrgreen:

Goal #7: Volunteer at an animal shelter – I’ve tweaked this one to Volunteer at or donate to an animal shelter, since I may not have much time to volunteer, but if I can help by donating then I will look for ways to do that instead.

Goal #10: Go on 10 motorcycle rides – I’ve reduced this down to 3 rides, because Ninja’s bike is getting a little long in the tooth, so we’re trying to preserve it and stretch out the time between services and such. A pity, but that’s life eh? At least one of these three is already done 🙂

Goal #14: Read one passage per week from my German Bible – It’s difficult enough keeping up with my daily readings in my English Bible (for Goal #3), so sadly this one will have to go. I’ve replaced it with: Work through the Love Dare again. For those of you who don’t know, the Love Dare is a book for strengthening marriages, linked to the lovely movie Fireproof.

Goal #15: Make an origami animal – Of all the brainless goals, I wonder how this one made the list! Instead, here’s something I really want to to: Get a pretty girly camera bag. I can’t very well pitch up at special events in heels and a backpack!

Goal #17: Paint 10 artworks on canvas – Ten is a hefty number for someone with my new time constraints. I’ve changed this to Paint 5 artworks on canvas. In fact, I recently finished one (a gift for my parents), which I hope to post about soon.

Goal #25: Work through my entire ‘Teach yourself Hindi’ textbook – It’s a realy shame that my language goals are some of the first to fall away (I recall my brother, also an avid language learner, warning me about this when I first added language goals to my list…). Instead of this goal, I’ve added: Design room themes/colour schemes for my future home.

Goal #38: Visit 10 different museums and/or monuments – Can we make this 5? Please? At the current pace of our lives, Ninja and I are unlikely to fit in even that many visits before September 2015 (when this list ends).

Goal #41: Take photos of the same item in 101 different locations – Oh, this one never got off the ground! I started it and then it just faded out of the way… But because photography is still an overall goal of mine, I’ve replaced it with a similar but much-more-likely-to-be-achieved goal: Take 101 different photos of my new pet rats!

Goal #47: Get my passport – To go where, exactly? I don’t anticpate that we’ll have the means to travel outside our country at any point in the remaining 751 days of this challenge, so this goal is just wasting space on my list 😦 Instead, the new Goal #47 is: Do a punk photoshoot, which is something I’ve always wanted to do, preferably with my bro 🙂

Goal #53: Photograph a landscape from the same location, capturing all four seasons – I was reluctant to change this one because it’s still something I’d really like to do, but I don’t have much regular access to inspiring and seasonally changing landscapes at this point in time, so I know my pics would just disappoint me coz they’d fall short of the images in my mind. Maybe one day if we have our own garden, Lord willing… For now though, this has become: Get some rat-themed merchandise. You know. As in, ‘been there, done that, got the rat, got the T-shirt’? 😀

Goal #55: Go skinny dipping – Considering the fact that I can’t even recall the last time I had access to a pool or swam at all, I don’t even know why this is still on my list! Of course I can always still do this, but you’d be the last to know… 😉 So, the fun and sensible replacement for this one is: Get 10 more hat badges. Remember my cool hat from this post? It still has plenty free space on it.

Goal #66: Send a message in a bottle – Again, the impracticality of this goal is just overwhelming all of a sudden. I’d have to (a) get to the sea and (b) get far enough out to sea to drop the bottle and avoid it just washing straight back to the sand at my feet. Plus, um… isn’t it kinda like deliberate water pollution? Far be it from me! Instead, I aim to Take part in a colour run. Perfect. I’ll go for air pollution instead.

Goal #72: Clear out all my junk – Now what on earth is a mundane goal like you doing on a fancy list like this?! In its place, how about I Do a 30×30 Challenge (30 minutes of physical activity for 30 days)? At least, it looks achievable on paper.

Goal #73: Find the perfect fitting pair of jeans – There isn’t just one; there are many. There’s the slinky new pair I buy each time I drop a dress size (OK, that’s only happened once in the last two years); there’s the comfy old pair that I can wear around the house; and there’s the stretchy accommodating pair for when PMS or overindulgence have added some nasty bulk. So to take the focus off me, I’ll replace that goal with this one: Get a zoom lens for my camera.

Goal #85: Make my own outfit – Who?! What?! When?! Where?! Why?! How?! Instead, I hope Ninja and I can Revisit our wedding venue. Awwww 🙂

Goal #86: Finish writing my book – Once upon a time, in a life far away, I dreamt of writing a marriage book to help Christian newlyweds. But the warp speed of life since then has seen almost all my friends married long before I finished half the chapters. I think it’s time to bury this goal for good. Yet I’ve always wanted to publish something I’ve written, so I think I’ll try to Publish my best poems instead.

Goal #96: Learn the basics of self-defence – Meh. Not going to happen any time soon, and it’s not particularly measurable or motivating either. Instead, I’d like to Enjoy another spa day with my best friend.

And finally, Goal #101: Start planning an overseas trip – This just seems too far away now to even be on this list. Ninja and I do hope to have the privilege of travelling overseas together one day, but the more practical goal of getting a home of our own ranks higher on the list. But since this goal list is also meant to inspire, I’ll just tweak this one to: Brainstorm an overseas trip.

Now I’m freshly motivated to reach for 101 goals that I stand a chance of achieving 🙂

Cat that got the cream


Last weekend Ninja and I took a little road trip with my parents to celebrate my dad’s birthday. We stopped for brunch at a sweet restaurant in an interesting nursery, where I caught this resident cat enjoying breakfast on a nearby vacated table.

Cat and cream 1

There’s just something compelling about the self-contained, quiet contentment of a cat caught in a moment like this.

Cat and cream 2

I loved the leisurely way he repeatedly inserted a paw into the cream jug, lifted it out and slowly licked off the thick cream. When I stopped to take pictures, he turned his unhurried gaze on me for a moment and then simply resumed his dining.

Cat and cream 3

Cats are truly incomparable creatures. Imagine for a moment that it had been a dog who’d sniffed out the cream. The jug would’ve been knocked to the floor through joyful enthusiasm and the cream would be all over his muzzle before you could yell ‘Down, boy!’

But a cat is never that uncouth. He just silently claims the cream as his rightful treat, and indulges so sumptuously and yet so neatly, that not a drop is spilled nor a whisker out of place when he is done.

A tog in training


Tog as in photog. As in photographer. Okay, okay, never mind… 🙂

Here are some of the practice pics I’ve been snapping lately as I bond with my beastie!

Meringue with strawberries and cream

I can’t take credit for the cooking on this one: my mom treated me to this meringue with strawberries and cream when I visited her the other day. Yum, I love my mom! 🙂



Classic South African flora: a flowering aloe plant.



This wild Cape robin-chat has ‘trained’ my parents to feed him whenever he sings at their kitchen door… and he does this about seven times a day! Adorable free pet 🙂

New fur for Flea

New fur for Flea

And speaking of pets, here’s our fuzzbutt Flea. Can you see how her fur has grown back pitch black in that patch under her arm?

The sweetest face

The sweetest face

I also have a bit of amazing news to share: I’ve been asked to extend my current contract of office work until the end of the year, instead of wrapping up in August.

This offer from my boss came as a major blessing and a big relief to Ninja and I, as it means I’ll be getting a few extra salaries this year above what we’d planned for… which of course also means that our budget will quickly recover from the knock it took with my camera. The Lord has been so generous to provide this ‘safety net’ – and all that after I’d taken the leap of faith to get my camera!

Anyway, that’s all from me for today. Hope it’s sunny where you are :mrgreen:

Classic Cars Show 2013


I bet you can guess why it’s been so quiet at the Sunshine Scrapbook for the past few days 🙂 I’ve been practising daily with my beautiful new camera and analysing the shots to learn from them and generally just practising what I preach! Then this past weekend there was a Classic Cars Show in Johannesburg, which proved to be a great day trip with friends and my first public, lengthy use of the beastie.

Here are a few of the pics, along with my thoughts. Just for the record, I barely know my Vauxhall from my Volvo… so please bear with any automotive slurs I might make 😉

There was a large crowd attending the show, which meant that most of my shots were inevitably photobombed by random strangers. In order to have some ‘clean’ shots, I took quite a few close-ups of details on the cars.

Classic Cars Show 01

There were modern muscle cars, such as this super hot GT…

Classic Cars Show 02

…and old classics such as this enormous Grande Parisienne:

Classic Cars Show 03

The Classic Cars Show was held at the well-known Nasrec showgrounds in the south of Joburg, a venue that provides both indoor and outdoor exhibits for visitors of all ages to enjoy.

Classic Cars Show 04

The changing lighting conditions meant I had to keep an eye on my ISO settings as I moved about from shade to sunshine. It was good practice, and thankfully my D7100 has a comfortable viewfinder that displays all the exposure info clearly.

Classic Cars Show 05

The friends with whom I attended the show helped point out which aspects of which cars I should try to capture – such as the iconic badge and spoke wheels of the Corvette above.

Classic Cars Show 06

Almost the only car I recognised for sure: I can say with confidence that the engine above is from a Cobra :mrgreen:

My eyes are naturally drawn to little details (it must be the editor in me), so I tried to capture items of interest besides the cars themselves. Here I focused on the classic furry dice dangling from the mirror:

Classic Cars Show 07

One lesson I learnt from the beastie during this photoshoot was that even though my lovely Nikon AF-S 50mm prime can open up all the way to f/1.8, it’s not ideal or desirable to shoot that wide open all the time.

For example, in the pic below it would have been better if I’d increased the depth of field to include the many interesting trophies stacked in this car’s boot (trunk), rather than just focusing on the badge. I blame it on my excitement at finally having a lens that creates that bokeh effect… but when I get over that I think I’ll take better pics!

Classic Cars Show 08

Another lesson I learnt was that the experts were right: a polarising filter would’ve been king for this sort of photography. Polarisers are used to cut glare and reflections, which would’ve been a boon considering all the cars were polished to a high sheen.

Classic Cars Show 09

The show included a few motorcycles too. I would’ve liked to have seen a few more bikes, and a wider variety of them, but since this show grows in popularity each year I’m sure that will improve in time.

If I thought my camera was a beast, check out this mean machine! That’s one fat tyre!

Classic Cars Show 10

Speaking of the beastie, I was amazed to discover that the weight of the camera and lens barely registered in my mind. I held the camera most of the day and my comfy Lowepro backpack carried the rest of the kit. The adventure of taking photos soon overtook any concern I’d had about the D7100 being particularly heavy.

Classic Cars Show 11

The chrome Boulevard above was one thing, but I was taken aback to see the following bike there!

Classic Cars Show 12

I didn’t notice this at the time of the show, but when I reviewed the photographs on my PC later I realised that I’d framed many of my shots quite poorly. While I deliberately cropped in close to pick out badges and other details, I struggled to get properly framed pics of whole cars.

Classic Cars Show 13

In most cases it was because there were too many people crawling all over the vehicles, and of course the most popular cars had the most admirers hanging around. So I ended up with dozens of weird compositions such as this:

Classic Cars Show 14

Looking back, the only ways around this would probably have been to get there much earlier to beat the hordes, or to stand by one vehicle until the masses had moved on, or to include random strangers in my pics. Which would you have preferred?

Classic Cars Show 15

Another reason the framing was difficult was that on a crop-sensor camera such as the Nikon D7100, a 50mm lens behaves like a 75mm lens. So you constantly find yourself backing up (usually into something or someone!) to try to get the whole vehicle in the frame.

Classic Cars Show 18

There were many big American-type trucks and cars, which may not seem rare to you but were eye-catching to me. The green beauty above is a 1946 Hudson. Inside it was cutely Elvis themed…

Classic Cars Show 19

The huuuuuuge American cars left a big impression. But I don’t want to know what this monster costs to fill up!

Classic Cars Show 20

All in all, it was an unusual and exciting day out. I learnt loads about operating my new DSLR and enjoyed the effort and care people have put into maintaining their classic vehicles.

Classic Cars Show 22

Thanks for coming along for the ride! 🙂

Bringing home Beastie


I know. I owe you an update on the major leap of faith I made a few days ago. It’s just been such a crazy week, wow! Nevertheless, I am SUPERBLY happy with my ‘rash’ decision to get this camera :mrgreen:

No regrets! Here’s a little of the unboxing…

Unpacking the beastie

Unpacking the beastie

Although I bought this beautiful camera with the old Nikon 50mm f/1.8 D prime lens (all they had in stock at the time), I had to exchange it the next day for the newer Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8 G lens (and boy am I glad I did!).

Nikon D7100 unboxing

Nikon D7100 unboxing

The new 50mm G lens is far quiter, focuses faster and can focus closer, too. The lens is a bit heavier than the old 50mm D, but it’s the superior choice.

Speaking of weight, the whole camera plus lens is wayyyy heavier than my old Fujifilm prosumer… but I’m already adapting to the way the D7100 feels in my hands. I like the solid build and the fact that the weight helps to steady the camera for handheld shots.

Here it is: brand spanking new 😉 (I hope that’s not just a South African expression, or you might be wondering what I’m talking about!)

Out the box

Out the box

The funny thing about the beastie is that Ninja is more intimidated by it than I am! His hands are bigger and stronger than mine so from that perspective he’s fine, but the plethora of dials, buttons and screens make him nervous. Tee hee hee 🙂

Here’s a pic of the D7100, with the 50mm G lens attached, taken by my Fujifilm FinePix:

A not-so-great shot of a fantastic camera

A not-so-great shot of a fantastic camera

And here’s a pic of my faithful little FinePix, taken by the D7100:

My old camera

Look at that gorgeous bokeh (blurred background)! The 50mm f/1.8 G is famous for this, as well as being beautifully sharp as most primes are. I am very impressed with the results (and so far I’m only shooting in JPEG because I don’t have time to process my RAW files, but I can imagine the RAW will be even lovelier).

Anyway, I’d love to spend hours going into more detail here, but there are plenty chores calling my name this evening…

Will be back soon!


Cannot believe I did that…


A couple of weeks ago I left you hanging at the end of my last dream camera post regarding the possible cons to choosing the new Nikon D7100 as my first DSLR camera… but this is not that post.

The beastie

You see… I did something totally crazy and out of character today. Despite the sensible budgetary advice of my dad and mom playing in my head, despite my initial good intentions of waiting for the ‘right‘ time, despite my long-standing notion that anything worth having must be earned through long hard toil… I just went and straight up bought the D7100.

Yup. I just bought the D7100. Today. Just like that.


I still cannot believe I did that!!! *cue hysterical laughter* 🙂 It’s just not like me at all! 😀

It’s hands down the most expensive item I’ve ever paid for. And I don’t part with my money easily. Ninja had to patiently convince me that buying it now or buying it in a few months’ time would not really make a huge difference in terms of saving – either way, we’re going to have to do a lot of careful saving and frugal living this year!

Perhaps the main reason I’m still a bit gobsmacked by my own behaviour is that I don’t actually have the camera yet. So reality hasn’t hit home yet. They’ll only be delivering it tomorrow evening, so part of me will only be convinced it’s real when I finally physically own the machine. But it’s a done deal: the beastie is mine 🙂

I am so humbled and blessed and excited and surprised! It felt as though it happened so quickly, yet it wasn’t a rash decision. I have been researching this for months already. I have been pushing my current little Fujifilm superzoom camera to its limits to prepare for this. I have been watching so many vids and reading so many articles on the various functions of this camera. So when I first handled the D7100 in the shops today it no longer intimidated me; I flicked through the buttons and menus as if I knew them by heart.

When I handled it today, I realised two things at once. One, this is by far the biggest and scariest purchase of my short life. And two, it won’t be wasted on me.

Some people have warned that the D7100 is ‘overkill’ for newbies and ‘wasted’ on beginners, but that’s only if you’re happy to stay stuck in the beginner mindset. I want to be challenged and I want to excel. I know I have tons to learn, but I’m keen. And I’m not competing against anyone other than myself. I don’t have aspirations for professional photography, but I also don’t want to be stuck with entry-level dinky toys forever 😉 The D7100 is my middle ground, and Lord willing it will be with me for many years to come.

When Ninja and I prayed about the purchase beforehand, I found myself praying for a balance of wisdom and the courage to live a little. I’ve always been Ms ÜberCautious with money; I hate credit cards and debt (thankfully those didn’t feature in this purchase) and I shy away from large luxuries. But today, with Ninja’s counsel, I realised that risky spending can have its place.

Sometimes in life – only a very few times – Nike is right, and we should just do it.

Yet I still cannot believe that I did!