Wednesday, February 23, 2011

32 Weeks Pregnant

Well, something occurred to me today as I tried to take a picture.  It's getting hard to fit all of me into the frame if I am just holding the camera myself (which I have been the whole time).  That means I can do less cropping.  Which also means there must be some distortion of proportions.  But my brain can't engage and figure that one out quite yet.  I also realized that the white cami only made it into two shots so far...that in all the other photos I was wearing the pink striped one.  Funny.

Obviously I'm bigger and getting bigger.  My tummy is bursting!  At least it feels like it will burst through my clothes.  :)  When I put on a maternity shirt this morning I noticed that it barely covered my tummy all the way.  I changed my shirt so my belly is not hanging out.  LOL  I bump into everything.  When I am cooking, I often end up with some kind of food across the lower section of my belly (the part I can no longer see).  I don't even want to mention the crumbs on the upper half of my shirt after I eat...that's pretty funny too.  Getting up and down is harder and I waddle if I don't consciously pay attention.  Why do some women get no bigger than I was at 26/28 weeks???  It doesn't seem fair.  Then there was that person I knew 11 or so years ago at Crown College who went roller-blading every day, for miles, right up until she went into labor.  Ah, the joys of pregnancy!

There's not a lot else to report.  I go to the doctor again on Monday.  I'm still feeling pretty tired, so I am glad she'll be checking my hemoglobin.  I have been getting more and more braxton-hicks contractions...annoying but also fun and helpful to practice my hypnosis relaxation.  I have had a lot of fever blisters this pregnancy.  I call them the "early warning system" that there's a virus in the area.  It seems like one just healed and now a new one has popped up.  My favorite lip cream is Herpecin-L, but I recently started using Abreva with very good results.  I don't have any other symptoms, but Tirzah had a fever last Friday and now has a runny nose and cough.  Since the fever is gone, I don't suspect she has anything other than a virus, even though two daycare kids are on antibiotics.

 {Micah earned a photography lesson and snapped this shot of me.  Also now you can see the curly version of my new haircut.  Not sure why my bangs insist on parting in the middle like that.}

How I Make Progression Shots

I thought I would write about how I make the progression shots that I have been posting.  It's pretty easy and lots of fun.  If I were going to do it again I would mark things a little more clearly--noting exactly where to set the camera and exactly where to stand, then sticking with it throughout the progression.  I would try to get it so that I did not have to crop or edit the photo at all for consistency (because that's where I'm distorting proportions--when I go to do the cropping).  I would simply use the same zoom level every time (remembering at the beginning to allow myself room to grow out front so that my belly would not be cut off later, LOL).  I also would have taken more shots that include my head, Mitch, etc that would not be in the progression.  I sort of forgot to keep taking "normal" pictures.  I'm sure this baby would like a pic or two of his momma with a full belly AND with her head in the picture.  Good thing there's some weeks left!

1) Set up my camera and take the pictures.  Keep shooting until I know there is at least one shot that I want to use (good focus, angled right, belly relaxed and looking normal--don't tense up those abdominal muscles).

2) Import pictures into the computer.   

3) Edit the photo.  I like to use the FREE program Irfanview for quick editing.  Nothing else that I have tried works so simply for me.  I'm not saying that it is superior.  Just that it's fast and easy. (Editing photos I want to print is another story).  I can click and drag the mouse to select an area to crop, then hold "ctrl y" to crop it.  Then I hold "ctrl r" to resize the photo quickly by entering 1280 in the height box.  I click and drag the mouse to select an area for text, then click "ctrl t" to enter text in that area (good for entering the number of weeks).  There are some other shortcut keys that I use frequently (r to rotate right, l to rotate left, shift g to adjust colors and lighting, shift s to sharpen, etc), but all those things can also be found quickly on the menu above.  Press 's' to save the photo--I suggest renaming it rather than saving over the original.  I also have all my progression photos in a folder by themselves so that they are very easy to find for the next step.

4) Create a panoramic image.  If you are using Irfanview, this is really easy to do too.  Along the top menu, go to Image > Create Panoramic Image.  Then you can select the images you want to piece together for the panorama and sort them.  Once you have them in the right order, click "Create Image" and it will appear.  The program automatically makes them all fit/line up/be same size.  If it looks good, press 's' to save...if not, start over! that I'm all done, I realize maybe I should have taken some screen shots.  Yeah, that would have been a helpful tutorial.  Unfortunately I don't feel like walking through it in photos right now.  They say that the squeaky wheel gets the grease, so if you complain louder than my children then I'll do it for you.  :)

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