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Eliza’s first Free Comic Book Day

By May 5, 2013 Eliza, Geekdad, Orlando

IMG_5163

She really got into it, and ended up coming home with a pretty respectable stack of comic books.

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Eliza’s Fall Photos

By October 11, 2012 Eliza, Orlando, Photography, Portraits

Here’s two snaps from our annual (and somewhat required) visit to the pumpkin patch for Fall photos. I’m thrilled that the best photos don’t actually feature any pumpkin, but rather this rusty, weird tree that was nearby.

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Andrew Spear Kicks Ass

By August 7, 2012 Orlando, Photography, Portraits, The Daily Buzz

Andrew Spear & theDBZ Mural

My boss really let me go all out when redesigning The Daily Buzz studio. We don’t have a huge budget, so it’s very DIY. I rolled the dice and hired my favorite Orlando artist (and now friend) Andrew Spear to ninja-punch our bare studio wall into something spectacular.

Andrew Spear

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The Daily Buzz: Season 11 preview

By July 17, 2012 Orlando, Promos, The Daily Buzz

Work has been insane lately. We’ve been on the trajectory ever since the decision was made to re-brand the show, which means a new look, a strong brand position, and – as you’ll see from the video below – new anchors.

Here’s a featurette that I made last week (with the help of my marketing minions, Vinny and Morgahn), showcasing the new talent lineup – which officially became public today.

Not only are they a really hood looking bunch, they’re all really funny and incredibly smart. (This is in NO WAY an slam on the previous hosts, whom I wish nothing but the best of luck in their future endeavors.)

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Mini Live Trucks at Legoland Florida

By May 22, 2012 Florida, My Geek Adventures, Orlando, Photography, Toys

This past weekend, my family finally made it out to Legoland Florida. My daughter had a great time on all the rides, and we all enjoyed all the fun, little details in the Lego cities at Miniland, USA. I especially like how television news vans were well represented. Here’s a few shots of the mini news media in action.

Here’s an important press conference at City Hall. I think I see a miniature Lenslinger in there amongst the Lego photogs.

Here’s a news crew being hassled by the police (or possibly getting directions) on the National Mall.

And I found this news van headed to an important news conference in Miami’s South Beach.

Cam: Fuji X100
Loc: Legoland, USA

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The Barnstormer

By May 6, 2012 Eliza, Orlando, Photography

Riding the Barnstormer

This weekend we braved the crows and heat, returning to The Magic Kingdom so that Eliza and her buddy could ride the Barnstormer roller coaster (and so that I can get more trading cards for the Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom game). I took this snap while enduring the ups and down and general nausea of riding a roller coaster with acute motion sickness.

Camera: Fuji X100
Location: Disney's Magic Kindgom
Flickr: Riding the Barnstormer

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Big Girl Bike Ride

By April 7, 2012 Home Movies, Orlando

Eliza just got her “Big Girl Bike” and woke us up early, begging to ride it. So we geared up and went on a family bike ride, brining along the GoPro helmet cam to capture all the action.

cam: GoPro Hero HD
adult bikes: Public Bikes
song: "Deadbeat Summer" - Neon Indian

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Prato’s “The Widow Maker”

By April 6, 2012 Orlando

When I moved to the Greater Orlando area, I felt hard=pressed to find much in the way of the cool “farm to table” restaurants that I was used to eating at while living Portland. However it shouldn’t be suprising that I finally found such a place – Prato – among the all the awesome restaurants in downtown Winter Park.

And that’s where I found a bunch of truly original pizzas, including The Widow Maker.

From the menu description: “Caciocavallo, Calabrian Sausage, Romesco, Farm Egg”

You read that correctly: There’s an egg, right in the middle. I thought it was kids weird at first, but before I could finish asking our server if it was good, he stated, “It’s pretty awesome” and went on to describe how all the flavor melded together when the sunny-side-up egg yolk was broken. He was right.

Here’s a delicious close-up detail shot…

restaurant: Prato (Winter Park, FL)
camera: Fuji X100

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Video: Disney Holiday Shopping Segment

By December 14, 2011 Orlando, The Daily Buzz



Here’s a fun feature segment I shot for our GalTime TV holiday special that aired last weekend.

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Various snaps from Legoland

By August 3, 2011 Orlando

Today I went along on the press tour of Legoland, Florida, getting a sneak preview of the park amidst all the construction. The park is prepping for an October launch, and it’s located 45 minutes from Orlando (if you drive a Ferrari and drive 90mph). Here’s a few snaps:

8-2-Legoland-Scope

8-2-Legoland-Jousting

8-2-Legoland-Clouds

We were raised up over the park on the “Island in the Sky” ride for several minutes. After getting all my video and shots, I started grooving on these fluffy clouds.

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The enemy of my enemy is my friend

By July 26, 2011 geekery, Orlando

Wildlife is taking over here at the Watkins Homestead. I’ve recently discovered that I might have a friend in the battle against the onslaught of pests invading my yard – my very own Hawk (or maybe it’s a falcon – I don’t know birds). I have yet to gain the Beastmaster ability to merge with his mind, be it definitely has read MY mind.

eating a rodent in my tree

The noble bird (otherwise known around the block as “Pete”) was seen, high above my driveway, snacking on a rodent. Until I find evidence to the contrary, I’m also crediting him with driving over the armadillo I spotted lying belly-up last week.

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Opposite of Wardrobe Malfunction

By July 25, 2011 Orlando, The Daily Buzz

Here’s a few snaps form the studio this morning as the gang tapes a segment for GalTime TV with local fashion blogger sensation, J’s Everyday Fashion. She just walked in cold this morning and blasted through a number of segments, with ease (Which figures, as she stars in her own web show on iZon Orlando).

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I’ve been meeting a ton of local blogger lately, and whenever I get the chance, I’m going to snap some pics of them in action.

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I’ll See You Again, Windshield Lizard

By July 21, 2011 Orlando

Every day, without fail, I happen to see the same lizard sitting on the passenger-side mirror of my Subaru Legacy, parked sloppily in the driveway of our home. He either lives in the nearby shrub (which I park the corner of my car in), or possibly even inside the mirror itself.

Windshield Lizard

Yesterday I spotted him on the mirror again, as I made a hasty departure in the vehicle. Moments later the little guy rampaged across my windshield, pausing momentarily so that I could snap a Twitpic. When I arrived at work, he was seated on the roof of the car, taking in the morning sunshine.

I’ll admit, I was a little disappointed to not see him on my car again at the end of the day. Watching the high volume of Pixar animated films that I do nowadays, there’s part of me that imagined he’s having a grand adventure working his way back to his home, befriending all sort of cute, talking animals along the way. (Realistically, I know he was likely devoured by the crazy-ass Full Sail squirrel population within ten minutes of our arrival.)

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“Welcome to Florida!”

By June 24, 2011 Orlando

There has already been a few moments this summer where I feel like I’m only days away from coming home to the insect infested window scene in the original Amityville Horror. Perhaps it’s the fact that I have to always kick or rattle everything outside the house, in order to give the Anole lizards time to run away. It could be the insanely aggressive squirrels that walk right up to people and screech, and have also chewed through cables at work and destroyed a coworkers vehicle. And don’t get me started on the GIANT grasshoppers that have suddenly started hanging out around our yard. I snapped a photo of this mutant, walking along our dining room window.

Giant Mutated Grasshopper

Of course, I’ve learned over the past year that if you share any of these stories with a native citizen they all say the same thing, “Welcome to Florida!” Well, I have a similar thing that I’m going to say to the pesky armadillo that made the unwise decision to dig under my house last weekend. And that will be, “Welcome to the Watkins yard, Bitch!” It will have no choice but to roll up into a ball when I unleash a beat-down with my savage 70’s funk karate skills.

(Actually, I’ll probably just call pest control. I don’t care for the animal confrontations).

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Gatorland iPhone pics

By June 22, 2011 Orlando

There was a moment upon my first trip to Gatorland where something completely awesome (almost) happened. It was when a massive alligator came within a millimeter of completely devastating a bird that thought it could cleverly sneak past his gigantic mouth. That was followed by a not-so-awesome moment where I almost dropped my iPhone into the water next to that very same alligator – which had a name like “Bonecrusher” or something equally intimidating. I have to say, it’s extremely challenging to take a photo through the iPhone screen glare while also getting my face rocked by the “circle of life” moment that was on display a few meters away. It was also a sobering reminder that I really should have brought a better camera, if I truly want to capture Gatorland in all its glory.

Sunbathing Gators

Egrets or something

Ancient lizard

Toy crocs

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Talking “Badass” with Ben Thompson

By May 31, 2011 geekery, Orlando

Back in April I went to an area book signing, featuring Ben Thompson from Badass of The Week, for the release of his new book, Badass: Birth of a Legend. I love reading his stuff. He’s also a fun guy to interact with, so I recentlywhipped up a little video interview piece for HeadDrama.com, interviewing Ben on all things “badass”.

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Star Tours Opening

By May 21, 2011 geekery, Orlando, Photography, The Daily Buzz

I’ve been working on lots of Disney-related promotions this past week, with all of it culminating around the grand re-opening of the Star Tours ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Here’s a few of the shot I snapped this morning, both with my SLR and iPhone.

Nerd Barricade

iger and lucas

Blending In

lonely biker scout

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Promo: “News You Need To Know”

By April 26, 2011 Orlando, Promos

Here’s our latest Buzz promo, which feeds out to stations tomorrow. It’s a companion to the mock weather promo that was released in February. (This is the ‘tagged’ version – the endplate also changes, depending on station and their custom graphics).



We might have one more ‘news team’ promo like this, but my mind has already wandered to doing some really “out there” promos this summer.

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Video: Eliza’s Egg Hunt 2011

By April 24, 2011 Eliza, Orlando

I can’t believe that it’s already been a whole year since we made last year’s Easter egg hunt video! Last year, we were in a downtown apartment in Houston, and now Eliza is chasing down eggs in our family-owned home in Orlando. Nevermind, it actually doesn feel like a whole year has gone by.

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