Dave, you might try to use iTunes Photo Sync instead.
You cannot control the upload size to PhotoStream, also the storage is not permanent.
Here is a link to a support page explaining the iTunes Photo Sync procedure - unfortunately, due to maintainance it is not readable right now, you will have to wait a bit: iOS and iPod: Syncing photos using iTunes
Basically, create albums with pictures you want to upload, then connect your iPad via USB and in iTunes select your iPad in the "Devices" section. Open the "Photos" tab and select and enable the albums you want to sync. The sync will be much quicker via USB then via PhotoStream, and you will get your photos organized in albums and easier to access.