Okay maybe not just one thing. But that’s the most important thing. It is my first morning of being out of school for the summer. My plan for today? Take it easy. Do some thinking and organizing for upcoming events. Hope people RSVP for the party next weekend. Maybe take some pictures. Maybe take a walk. (anyone have a good deer fly repellent, by the way?) Breathe.
June 19, 2013
June 15, 2013
Achy and tired. But life goes on. My head swirls with thoughts. Recital tonight. Gotta do it all over again. Speaking of doing it all over again, I made Meghan put all her graduation garb back on so we could have some sunny day pictures. Here’s a few favorites:
School is almost over. Just Monday and Tuesday left. School over, dance over – the pace of life will slow for the summer. Still have the grad party to plan for, but that will be easy with more free time.
Still taking photos for the June challenge. Hope you are too.
June 8, 2013
Then yesterday, during monsoon-like weather, was graduation. I don’t have nearly all the pictures I’d like, and many that I do have a very blurry due to the bad lighting and the distance away from the stage I had to sit.
Somehow it still doesn’t seem real! High school is over for my older daughter. Wow!
ETA: I forgot to add this shot when I published this post yesterday. Another exciting event this week was the visit of my brother-in-law and his wife (is my husband’s brother’s wife my sister-in-law? I never know how far the “in-law” thing extends, lol!) They live in Alaska, so visits are few and far between unfortunately. Alaska is definitely on my bucket-list of places to visit. We need to plan a trip before they retire and move away!
I have been taking some pictures here and there for the iHeartFaces photo challenge/hunt I suggested to you last week. I’m trying to find an easy way to create photo collages without too much issue or having to download more software if I can avoid it. If you have a suggestion for me, please feel free to leave it in the comments for me! Picasa has been suggested by the lovely Robin. I have an issue with it however: when I open Picasa, it seems to attempt to upload all the thousands of photos I have saved on this computer. I really don’t want it to do that – is there a way to stop that process? I’d love to hear from anyone with thoughts about these issues. Thank you!
June 1, 2013
Wow, it is June already! This is going to be a crazy busy month around here with prom, graduation, recital, and the end of school all coming up. I was trying to think about a photo hunt for this month since everyone enjoys them so much, but I also didn’t know if I could really do it with everything else that is happening this month. I was on Facebook today when I found an idea.
The fine ladies over at I Heart Faces posted this interesting photo challenge over on their page. If you click that link, you can read about all the different ways you can participate in their photo challenge. There is a great variety, and rules are pretty loosey-goosey: participate as much or as little as you like. Do it every day, once a week or whatever you’d like.
So here is what I am proposing to you: since the nice keepers of the web page said we could feel free to share their graphic so that lots of people could participate, I’m inviting you to play along with them and/or with me. Choose as many or as few of these words that you’d like to photograph. Make one big post or as many smaller posts as you would like, following the dates the ladies layed out or not, and leave me a link in the comments of this post. If you wish to participate with the I Heart Faces folks, check out the directions in the link above. I’ll make the deadline for posting links to my blog July 1st, in case you’d like to do the day-by-day challenge.
Playing along with the photos of the day, here’s a picture of me from a day when it was NOT 90 degrees outside like it is today:
I have no idea how much I will keep up with this challenge myself – I’m going to try to do as many as possible, but I’m sure there will be some days when it just won’t happen.
I’ve also got some more flowers in bloom to share with you.
Lily of the Valley
Nearly open iris
I hope you’ll let me know what you think about the I Heart Faces photo challenge. Have fun!
May 25, 2013
It is raining here today…cold for May 25th…”the rain, rain, rain, came down, down, down, in rushing rising rivlets, til the water crept out of its bed and crept right into Piglet’s!”…I should write a blog post to pass the time on this rainy day…really wish I was outside planting the veggie garden…what could I write a blog post about?
maybe I should experiment with it before Meghan’s party!
Not a great picture, but more complete looking than the last one I posted…I wonder why Flickr changed their layout…have to learn how to navigate it all over again while I post photos to this blog post…finally found the link to the archives that I complained to Kate about in my comment to this lovely post of hers…I wonder if blogspot users get notifications from wordpress users…Boy I really wish I could have been outside planting today…I hope my poor little plants aren’t getting drowned with all this rain…
At least I got the whiskey barrel planter done earlier this week, but still so much more to do…so much to do coming up soon…prom, graduation, recital, graduation party…at least I got the party invitations sent out…Inkgarden.com did such a nice job…
Not going to get any new pictures of the baby robins in all this rain…oh but hey! I do have a lovely picture of my baby girl to share this week…she’d probably hate it if she knew I just referred to her as “baby” girl…”Moooommmmmmm I am going to be 16 in 2 months”…oh don’t remind me…another with a driver’s license soon…so proud of her for receiving that computer award!…sophomore with highest grade point average in computer class…wahoo!…
Blogging, blogging, blogging…where will I find some inspiration?
May 22, 2013
Contrary to how it may seem, I really have been thinking about Scott Thomas’s current photography assignment “Your Photography Passion”. Scott posted some interesting articles concerning the subject and mentioned that there are really two ways interpret this idea: what you are passionate about photographing or representing your passions with photography. Two really different ideas, that I think could also overlap. Hmmm, a challenge if I ever heard one.
I believe the first interpretation of the idea is the simpler one for me. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you have probably noticed that I love photographing the details of nature. Flowers are usually a very congenial photography subject, and I love taking their pictures, and if at all possible, taking the pictures to a different level either literally or figuratively. Let me try to show you what I mean with some of my favorite photos from the past.
More recently, I’ve become more passionate about improving my bird photography. Last year, I started attempting to keep a “life list” of the birds I’ve seen, and I’m always trying to identify the birds I may not know or get a picture of one I’ve never photographed before. I’ve been especially passionate about getting pictures of the tiniest and largest birds in my area: hummingbirds and hawks.
And I sure spend a lot of time taking bird photos on vacation too:
But what if “passion” is defined as those things that we choose to find or make the time in our lives for? Of course I am passionate about my family, but I believe that is natural and not necessarily definable as a “passion” in this instance. So what else do I make the time for in my life because it is important to me?
In this sense of the word, I think dance would qualify.
I make the time for those few hours a week of exercise and socialization and learning and fun.
My garden would qualify too, I think, since it certainly isn’t a necessity in today’s world and why the heck would we gardeners go to all this trouble if we weren’t passionate about it?
I am perhaps most passionate about one of the more elusive facets of my life:
The beach and the ocean are the place where I find myself most at peace. Breathing the air and feeling the sand and the salt and the sun bring me to a special place within myself, in all likelihood, the closest I will ever find myself to a zen-like place if I am using that term correctly.
Thank you, Scott, for a very thought-provoking photo assignment!
May 19, 2013
Things are getting busy these days! Meghan’s final days of high school are sliding by in a hurry, the paperwork for college is rolling in, preparations for recital and graduation are busily moving along. I feel like I’ve been on a rollercoaster ride for the last couple of weeks, and I don’t think the ride will be coming to an end any time soon. In the meantime however, I have been keeping an eye on those robins’ nests I told you about in this post.
The first nest has babies in it. I poked my head outside one day to see 3 hungry open beaks swaying in the nest.
It’s difficult to see all three in this photo, but I think they are all there. One particularly hungry little one made an extra effort to get some attention.
I think the second nest is maybe a week or so behind the first one, but I have seen mama robin sitting on it fairly consistently over the last week, so I’m thinking another set of babies isn’t too far away.
My perennial bed is looking fresh and healthy with its new coating of mulch, but I’ve neglected to take its picture. I’ll remember one of these days.
Planting will be continuing as well. I’ve been back to the garden center for annuals and vegetables:
There are tomatoes, hot peppers, cucumbers, geraniums, dahlias, zinnias and much more all awaiting their summer homes. Next weekend is Memorial Day weekend, my traditional planting weekend, so they won’t have to wait too long.
May 12, 2013
Happy Mother’s Day, moms! I hope you are having a lovely day wherever you are. To my mom, I hope the weather is cooperating on Cape Cod and you are having a cup of tea at the beach! Thinking of you today.
My two sweetest of daughters presented me with a gift bag of things they knew that I would appreciate:
The green packet contains a new set of herb snips and the brown box contains these:
While I was outside photographing my gifts, I noticed a second robin’s nest in the yard. Remember I told you (I think?) about the nest on the downspout? There’s a new one on the floodlights:
It surprised me to see it there – I swear it was built overnight. I swung my lens around to take a picture of the other nest
and I couldn’t believe it – while I stood there with the camera pointed at it, the robin arrived to sit on the nest!
I’m hoping I’ll get lucky again sometime in the coming weeks and get a shot of the babies.
I also took some photos of those hummingbird feeders I mentioned in a previous post. I filled and hung them up yesterday, despite not seeing any hummingbirds just yet. I’m sure this is the time of year they arrive back in this area so hopefully I will see them soon.
I found this one while shopping with my mom on the Cape and just loved the unique antique bottle look of it. Mom saw my enchantment with it and promptly decided to buy it for me as an additional birthday gift!:
I just noticed the little hummingbird design on it today while I was taking pictures!
This feeder was given to me by my dad for my birthday. The “petals” are made from recylced cans! Very cool looking!
The lilacs have become heavy with bloom and with the much-needed rain we’ve had the past couple of days, but they are still gorgeous and perfuming the air and bringing me joy each time I see and smell them.
I hope you all are having a lovely day, enjoying the things you love.
May 7, 2013
I love this time of year. This part of the world is coming alive with green grass and leaves and the bloomers of spring. We’ve had a string of 17 days in a row with no rain, and while I know we need the rain (coming soon according to the local forecast), I’ve even thoroughly been enjoying my rides to work in the morning: the sunshine at that time of day is gentle and beautiful and lights the flowering trees and greening lawns in a way that makes me remember to breathe deep and appreciate the moment.
When I walk out to my car, the air is perfumed with these:
Lilacs – mmmmm, is there a better spring time smell? And I’m going to have an abundant amount of blooms this year. The tops of my trees all look like this:
They haven’t quite opened yet, that’s why the dark color, but they are beginning.
During all this lovely weather, I’ve been outside when time allows (mostly weekends) working on my yard. I did a lot of cleaning up and pruning during the April break from school. In addition to all the usual work, I made a decision to rip out a perennial bed that had not been looking overly healthy for the past few years:
I kept only what remains of my bearded irises, – they are yet to bloom this year and I don’t know how many blooms I will get – the bleeding heart
and my “crazy poppy”- click here for the story of that moniker.
On Saturday morning, I made a visit to my favorite local garden center, 16 Acres Gardens. (They are called that because they are in a part of Springfield known as “16 Acres” not because there are 16 acres of gardens)
It is still just a little too early around here for planting tender annuals and vegetables (unless you’re a bit of a daredevil and willing to watch the weather each night for frost warnings!) but I was more than ready to go spend the generous gift card I received from my dad for my birthday to replant that perennial bed. I came home with 9 new perennials of varying sizes and heights ranging in colors from pinks to purple to purplish-blue and planted them that afternoon:
(I’m rather proud of myself for installing that new border around the bed too, even if it is a less than perfect circle!)
I’ve seen two butterflies in the past few days – can the hummingbirds be far behind? I’m excited to hang up two new, unique hummingbird feeders I received for my birthday – I haven’t taken pictures of those yet but I’m sure I will do that soon.
I finally cleaned the vegetable garden patch of last year’s debris and removed the decrepit fence surrounding it. Next outdoor projects: put up a new fence and mulch my perennial bed. I’m also trying to grow some new grass in an area the dogs have ruined. There’s so much going on in the yard! But I do love this time of year!