The Lunar Eclipse

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I meant to write this post shortly after October 8th, but time got away from me. October 8th was a significant day for two reasons, one being the lunar eclipse (blood moon) that happened late in the evening (my time) or maybe early morning yours. The second significance? It was my 26th birthday. I was actually pretty bummed during the day because I thought my husband forgot my birthday, and I didn’t have a single person to go out and celebrate with. But no, I was being overdramatic for nothing, because he came home with chocolates, beautiful brown orchids (seriously they’re so pretty), and a dinner reservation at a local Thai restaurant. My day immediately did a 180 degree turn, and I thoroughly enjoyed rest of my birthday with him.

Thank goodness for Facebook, or I would have had no idea that the lunar eclipse was on that same night. We found out at 8:00 in the evening, and ran outside after getting back from dinner to check out the moon on our little beach. My birthday kept getting better and better as we sat outside on that warmish evening watching the moon rise.  That being said, it wasn’t warm enough to stay outside all the way until the eclipse, so we went back in and waited another three hours.

Derik was a complete trooper…he had to be up at 6:00am for work, but still managed to get outside with me at 11:25pm and hike up the ‘big rock’ at the end of our neighborhood street so I could get some pictures. If I had gold stars I would have given him some. He kept me in check time-wise, which was probably good because I could have stayed out there all night. Not only was the moon big, bright, and red, but the stars came out to play too.

I took advantage of the streetlights nearby and I was surprised by the depth and color it added to my pictures.

The lunar eclipse as seen in New Zealand… [Read More]

Things are a Little Different Around Here (+GIVEAWAY)

Living in Another Language is growing, changing, and becoming  the blog I want it to be. For a while now I’ve had this business plan in the back of my head about which direction I want LIAL to go and want to start thinking about the future. In the past I’ve just posted about whatever the heck I wanted to: recipes, beauty, life, blogging, design, and more. I’ve made the decision to turn this space into a full blown travel blog, and with that a comes lots of changes, both to it’s physical look and things behind the scenes. I still have a ton of work I have yet to complete, but I just wanted to get this out there to let you know that you may be seeing a few new things around here, as well as the absence of things that have been on this blog for ages.

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First things first, Living in Another Language got a new design! I’m in the process of revamping my pages, but for the most part, the design is finished. I wanted a simple b&w design that featured my content as best it could. After all, that’s what my readers are here for. I also tried to declutter my sidebar a little more. You’ll notice on the right hand side my ‘categories’ are actually drop down menus now to help you explore LIAL a little more and get to know me better if you wish! I’ve also added simple share buttons to the bottom of my posts for easy sharing. I love them because they make it easy for me to share the posts myself when I’m finished writing them! The About page has also been revamped to flow with the new design.

The second major change (outside of the new design) is that I will no longer be offering my sponsorship program. I thought long and hard about this because I really do enjoy meeting new bloggers and trying to promote them the best I can, I just feel like in the future as my schedule gets busier and busier I wouldn’t be able to offer the amount of time and work I had been able to previously give past sponsors. It’s just not fair, especially if you paid hard earned money for a spot. I’m not sure if this will be a permanent thing or not, we will see.

I’m so grateful for my current sponsors, and you’ll be hearing a lot about them in the next couple weeks with their sponsor spotlights, tweets, and the giveaway below! We’ve teamed together to bring you a pretty amazing CASH giveaway-a $240 Paypal cash giveaway! It’s always nice to get free moola every now and again, and with fall (and GASP) the holidays approaching, having a little extra something in the bank account can add a skip to your step!

This giveaway will be the last group giveaway for LIAL, so feel free to enter your hearts out on this one! It’s open internationally, but you must have a Paypal account set up to receive the prize. Make sure you read the terms and conditions below, check out the lovely sponsors, and enter daily! The more you enter, the more entries you have in the pot, and the better chances you have of winning!

$240 PAYPAL CASH GIVEAWAY

1. SarahChristineStyle || 2. This Flooded Sky || 3. Unlocking Kiki || 4. Sky Envy || 5. Ink + Adventure || 6. Let Birds Fly || 7. The College Cosmopolitan || 8. True Colours  || 9. The Mosbys in China  || 10. Jillian Lorraine  || 11. Bristol in my Pocket || 12. The Happy Type || 13. Living in Another Language

The first entry is (always) free, just by clicking ‘enter!’ Terms and Conditions listed below:
1. Giveaway is open internationally.
2. Be sure to actually do what the giveaway prompts say, because I check the winning entry thoroughly to be sure the entry is valid.
3. If the entry isn’t valid I will pick a new winner.
4. Once the winner is validated and emailed, he/she has 48 hours to reply and accept the prize. If he/she does not reply within 48 hours a new winner will be selected.
5. The winner must have Paypal. Once the prize money has been transferred via Paypal, it is no longer Living in Another Language’s responsibility.
6. Enter away! HAVE FUN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

10 Tips to Improve Your Photography

Alt title: How to rock the socks off of whatever you take pictures with.

10 Tips to improve your photography

Disclaimer: I can’t tell you how to be an instantly awesome photographer. It doesn’t happen overnight (unless your born with it, which some people naturally are). Just like any art form, you’ve got to learn it, study it, practice it. You can’t just expect to point your shutter at something and win ‘photo of the year’ on National Geographic.

I don’t have a super long history with photography (and am not a professional), I’ve just been working on my skills long enough to know there are little tricks you can use to help improve your photography instantly. Yes, instantly. You just need to know what they are and how to use them!

Nowadays, with the technology that’s out, just about anyone can be a photographer. But what makes photos so great? The time and consideration put into each shot so that it actually means something, and the viewer feels something from it.

You’re not here to read about how I feel about photography though, you want to know how to improve yours! Well, let’s get going.

1. Know your camera.

This is the first and foremost rule in improving your photography. Have no idea what your camera does? Well more than likely your pictures aren’t where they could be quality wise! Learn about shutter speed (tutorial on action photography coming soon), focal length, and ISO. Figure out what all those crazy symbols mean on your camera (this cheat sheet can be a gigantic help!). Once you do, your camera will seem less scary. Trust me!

… [Read More]

Minus 5 Ice Bar, Queenstown

You never know what you’ll stumble into while taking a walk around town. During our first trip to Queenstown we thoroughly enjoyed three days in the self-proclaimed ‘adventure capital of the world,’ and spent most of our time outdoors. That is, until we found the Minus 5 Ice Bar located right along Lake Esplanade, one of the most picturesque parts of the town. Sure it may have been dead winter outside with a temperature of 14 degrees (F), but that didn’t stop us from giving this icy adventure a go!

Minus 5 Ice Bar

We donned the coats and hats we were given at the door and headed into the bar. Side note, they had us put the coats OVER the coats we already had on, so we pretty much looked like overstuffed sausages the whole time. Oh well, we can just look at the pictures and laugh at ourselves.

… [Read More]