Sharing the beauty of the world through photography and writings.
"When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence. " .... Ansel Adams
Welcome to my blog for photographers and nature lover's around the world. I hope you enjoy my chitter chatter about life, nature, gardening...and a little bit of kitchen.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Instagramish Dream

I was enroute from one of my evening treks out to my favorite marsh and at the bottom of a country road hill, as bright and cheery as ever, was this farm field filled with awesomely smiling yellowness. There is no way one could miss it.  It just screamed, nicely, 'Sunshine'.  Definitely a spot I will need to remember next year for a portrait photo shoot.

This is part of 'the dream'. A home surrounded by beautiful fields and gardens of flowers for each season supplying an endless supply of photo shoots and fresh 'bokehs' in the house. Accompanied of course by old barn doors, windows, and antique automobiles as backdrops.

'The Dream'

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Water Instagram - Scavenger Hunt #5

(Children, don't practice this at home...taking pictures while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle.)

What a perfect subject for today.  W.A.T.E.R.

Finally.  Finally. Water. Raindrops on my windows.  A nice rain. The second of the day.

We received a couple inches now throughout the several small showers we have had over the past couple of days. Not really a down pour that just runs off.  Probably not the most beneficial slow rain either.  Just enough to the let the trees and grasses know that there might still be hope yet.

My gardens are so happy. It is amazing how a little bit of rain can completely remove the brown crunchiness of grass. It's as if when the snow melts or the rain comes down, that it stirs up some hidden bowl of green food dye below the ground that immediately gets soaked up by the grasses and other struggling shrubs and trees.

If I'd been on a back road...I would have pulled over, stopped, and climbed out of the car to let it hit my face and arms and feet.

I can only hope that what we have, what we will get, will provide the awesome saturation of autumn colors...just a couple months away.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Instagramish - Something Borrowed

Yes, the eyesight is slowing dwindling.  Fading away.  More so in one eye than the other...which makes the whole...getting older thing even that more frustrating and challenging.

I bought some cheaters.  I'm too...hhmmm...stubborn...and don't want to wear them. So, as in everything else these days, I lose track of them.  On purpose?  Possibly.

Thank goodness for kindles and apple functionality that you can easily enlarge the print of things. Some day...every thing will be electronic and have that ability and we won't need glasses?  Yes, that is a question mark.

Meanwhile, luckily, I'm not the only one in the house that needs those little cheaters from time to time, so in my haste, my purposeful losing of cheaters that belong to me...I borrow the next best thing.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Instagramish - Something Blue

This is one of my most favorite blue things. 
An awesome bird. 
Always posing. Beautifully. 
Standing. Still. 
A step here. 
Stepping now. 
Neck stretching. 
Standing straight again. 
Crawfish etouffe.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Instagramish - Something Pretty

Wow...what an awesome challenge.  It's late...but .......

A new recipe.  A practice at setting up.  Flowers home grown, in a found vase, framed by the curtain of my kitchen sink window...adding some homemade instagramish, framing....and a whole lot of determination and patience...a pinch of exhaustion...and a gallon of inspiration.

That really is all the energy I have to say tonight. was fun and inspirational as usual.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Half a Century - Gone By

He is my oldest son...the middle child.  The geek...who would have known.  His childhood nickname was Smiley as given by his sitter's husband - Papa Pete.  He loved to sit on the kitchen floor and dig into the jar of goldfish.  He loved his Dr Suess books, the one about the firefly was his favorite (and mine).  He started racing mountain bikes when he was 10 and continued to race until a couple of years ago. He is now a Business Analyst, software person.

He just turned 25.  Twenty. Five. My, I'm glad I'm not getting old (smiling secretly). The girl?  His fiancĂ© to be wed in 2013.  Proposal in front of the Eiffel Tower of Paris (pronounced Pareeee for the romantic accent).  I'd like to believe he got his romanticism from me...his mom.  I excitedly visited them during their stay in Germany last year and did engagement photos for them in Versailles..I'm sure there is a dream come true in there somewhere.  It was an awesome visit. A bit rushed.  A bit short.  But truly awesome.  Memories for years to come.

They stayed in Germany for just over a year and although it was a very dreary weather year, they saw a lot.  I believe now they appreciate what they have in the US of A...the sun more than anything...he being a native Houstonian.  I hope they will always appreciate that opportunity they had this past year.

Shortly after my departure from his dad, we talked about going to New York for a visit together.  We haven't done that yet but his fiancĂ© (yes, she has a name...Alexis) is from New Jersey so he has made it there now...without me (oh woah is me...I fear I am not needed any more.)  But I digress...I believe in deja vu per se and believe his desire to go to New York was a karma...pulling him that her maybe...probably.

They are wonderfully in love and I can only hope and pray each and every day that they will experience that love, that connection with each other for a life time...for a long happy life time. It's not easy finding those connections and it takes work to keep them.  Patience, compromising, understanding, allowing each other to be theirselves, honesty, trust.  Dear them and protect them.

Did I say...he just turned 25?  smiling.

I love you Mitch. I miss you so. I'll see you soon.

(photo by TrishannC Photography, taken in Versailles France, edited with pumpkingrunge and a little added blur - the original photo here)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

5 Questions

1 1. What makes me  happy?….. in 5 words or less….?
My Children, Photography, Writing, Nature
2. Which talent would you most like to have? 
To be able to draw and paint. To be able to sit in front of an awesome creation of the  world and put it on a canvas to share with the world hopefully inspiring others to love and respect every little detail that we have been blessed with.  
3. Which words or phrases do you overuse most?
Lately, unfortunately, my most used phrase is ‘I need to…’, then there’s I’m exhausted, I’m so far behind and, I don’t want to go to work.
4. What is your favourite movie, book or both?
This is a tough one as I discovered a long time ago that I don’t have a particular favorite thing.  I have a lot of favorite things. Does this mean I have no interests, or just that I’m not ‘picky’ about things?  I don’t know.
Movies that I try to watch every time they are on…
On Golden Pond, Pretty Woman, Free Willy and Karate Kid and White Christmas
Books I love…the Janet Evanovich ‘Number series’.
5. If you could go anywhere in the world for a creative retreat where might it be? 

The Galapagos Islands – hands down.  No second guessing that one.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Dream Like Layers - Day 51

I have a large yard...almost half an acre.  I love gardening but in this yard, I have one spot close to my back door, across the driveway on which sits my patio table, on which I created my 'little garden space' about 4 years ago.  I want more gardens.  My house is for sale for whatever reason....and so I haven't expanded except the ones that line the sides of my house.  Those I enjoy on my daily strolls around the property.

This one particular garden, especially at this time of the year, is 'my spot'.  I am an early riser...and a late when I get up in the morning on these beautiful midwest weather days, I grab my journal, my kindle fire, my pen, my cameras and my tripod and most cup of coffee...and set myself up..sometimes right before the birds really start moving...sometimes about the same my patio table, surrounded by the morning songs of the birds and scampering of the chipmunks and squirrels.

It is my dream spot.  My soul saver. My 'morning coffee'. My friend, peace and tranquility.  It is...just. Plain. Awesome.

I do my morning journal (The Artists Way) and am constantly distracted by a bird in the bird bath, a red squirrel chattering at a gray squirrel, a robin pulling the fattest worm you can ever imagine from no hole in the ground, the buzzing of the bees and the fluttering of the butterflies.

The coneflowers that grow here started out as four, overwatered, 75% off sale items at the local hardware store.  Four.  Now much more.  They survived.  They thrive.  They give off the ray of love and peace that they were meant for...not only making the bees and butterflies happy...but also making me smiling.

(Utilized yesteryear and thursday but without reducing the opacity quite as much because I loved the graininess.  I also brushed it away from the butterfly at 50% to let it stand out a bit more.)

Friday, July 6, 2012

A Colour Storyboard

Our lesson this week was in creating a color storyboard.  I really enjoyed playing with this one.

I used the chalk brush 60 pixels and added a bit of Ugglove with a soft light mode and brushed it away a bit from the goldfinch.

Truly fun and inspiring.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Timeline of Passion

My timeline of events leading to my desire for blogging and photography.

At the wee age of about 8 I lived in New Hampshire surrounded by woods with lady slippers and acorn hats where I snuck off to and dreamt of gnomes and fairies. My love for wildlife and nature came alive then.

1972 - My brother got my interest in photography when he had his on 'darkroom' in our double wide trailer we lived in at the top of a hill in Arkansas.

1975 through 1990 - I had three awesome children that brought the creative need to try to capture their lives as they insisted on growing up so quickly

1976 - Spent six weeks in France and Germany seeing Europe, capturing another culture of the world that fascinated me.

1990s - Into camping and hiking and outdoor travels and adventures with the kids which really stirred my desire for seeing more of the world immediately around me.

2000 to 2003 I lost a dad, a stepdad and a sister, throw on top a divorce, and changed jobs to a managing a garden center.  Here I shared my love for gardening and began living my passion for writing as I wrote the garden center monthly newsletter.

2002 - My daughter's passion for photography got my interest up again and I purchased a new Canon film SLR and searched for classes to take.

2004 - moved to Wisconsin and a camera goes with me everywhere now. Have started several different blogs just to have a  job get in the way of the creative juices. Joined a couple photography clubs and live and dream even more now of being a travel photographer/writer.

2007 - My first granddaughter was born and my daughter started doing photography books to share their lives with her loved ones.

2008 - Bought my Nikon D90.

2010 - started writing articles for but I so love the blogging much more.  Too many constraints, rules, regulations that squashed my 'style' I guess you could say.

2012 - Discovered Texas Chics and Kim Klassen and retirement sounds more and more like it needs to be moved up so I can begin the next chapter of my creative life.

All of these things keep bringing me back to the gut wrenching passion for writing, traveling, nature/wildlife and photography that some part of myself tells me I should be doing much more than I am.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Giving Back

'Why blog', asks Kim and Xanthe.  I really don't have to think about that much.

I want to share my love for the world with anyone that might be interested but mostly with those that I love.

I currently have two awesome granddaughters.  I want them to grow up to appreciate what the world has to offer.  I want to somehow inspire them to be 'who they are'.  To respect the world.  To enjoy it. To not get 'stuck' in a spot where they 'lose themselves'.

I would like to believe that someday I can be told that I had something to do with the awesomeness that they are. (selfish?  maybe.)

I have a passion for the out of doors, nature, wildlife, writing, photography, gardening, bird watching. I want to share that with the world.  Giving back to the An Artist's Way, by chance?

Beyond the layers of polaroids

I remember the polaroid camera.  I. Do.  It was great 'back then' to be able to take a picture and immediately know what it looked like. To enjoy the moment 'right then'.  To know 'right then' if you needed to retake it. To think...I guess you can almost relate it digital today..sort of kind of. Without the ability to do so much of the creative that digital and software allows us to do today.  And now...we can combine both...sort of kind of.

I took another class online that gave me a simple polaroid frame that I've used to do some cool stuff.  So these new frames are going to make me even happier and more creative, we can only hope.

Thank you so much, Kim.

Cuppa Cuppa Love Week

Once again Kim has hit a subject so near and dear to my heart and soul of creativity.....Cups.  Yes...I truly could be a hoarder of cups without a doubt.  I would reflect upon this my collection of big and small, colorful cups of all kinds but instead have selected just this simple cup from my travels abroad that brings an environment of emotions to mind that I just addition to my love of cups.

A cup...from a French cafe in no other place than Paris (pronounced, of course, as Pareeee. smiling)

A dream of own a little coffee shop in which 'Friends' can gather and visit and enjoy and share all of their passions and dreams together.