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Friday, September 30, 2011

Swamp Maples

Day 182/Year 2
There's still not much Fall color around here in SE MA, but these swamp maples on Rte 139 Abington/Holbrook line are showing some good early color. The swamp maples are always the first to show color.

"October gave a party; The leaves by hundreds came – The Chestnuts, Oaks, and Maples, And leaves of every name. The Sunshine spread a carpet, And everything was grand, Miss Weather led the dancing, Professor Wind the band."”
                                             ~George Cooper
I am heading to VT at 5 am tomorrow for the weekend. I can come up with 100 different reasons and rationlize why it's ok for me to go away the weekend before the wedding. :-) I hope to get some foliage shots, although the weather is looking pretty bad. The good thing is, on rainy days, the foliage colors really "pop". Showers would be ok....heavy rain on the other hand.....I sure hope not. I'll be back to blogging Sunday night. Have a great weekend!!!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

As Free As A Bird!!!!!!

Day 181/Year 2
I'm on V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
As of 2:30 this afternoon....I don't return to work until Monday October 17th!!!!
I just made myself a list of things to do. I'm going to be busy, but it's good busy, and I am still back in the do not stress zone, and I plan to stay there.
I think.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Fall decor

Day 180/Year 2
I got the house all decorated for Fall today. This haunted house and all of the little trick-or-treaters is one of my favorite Fall decorations. I painted these myself, years ago when I used to take a painting class.
Abby update: We went to the vet today to get her staples removed. She has healed very nicely, the staples are out, and she's good to go without wearing the "lampshade" anymore. :-)

Just a laugh

This is not todays photo post. I will post that later. I am taking a break from housecleaning and Fall decorating, and am taking a little break to check my emails and my blog. I am laughing hyseterically at myself as I read the blogs from the past 3 days. I think I may have a personality disorder.......

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Our annual "friends" weekend is coming up

This was taken at the Lewis Pond overlook in 2007. Each year 4 of our friends come up to VT for a foliage weekend....usually the last weekend in Sept.
From left to right.....Mr.S, my good friend Nancy I who comments frequently here on the blog, followed by our very good friends Patrick and Heather.
Here's Nancy's husband Tony:
Unfortunately, Heather and Patrick can't make the trip this year. But, me and Mr. S and Nancy and Tony are going up for a quick weekend trip this upcoming weekend.

Sorry for wigging out last night on the blog. Today is a new day, and I have my stress under control. Looking at these past images from happy fun times spent with friends makes me smile.
Life is good. I'm alright!!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Just stressing out a little bit

Day 188/Year 2
This is exactly what I feel like. I think this could be a self portrait.
The stress of work.....it's huge...... the wedding......I admit it.......I'm a giant bundle of stress right now. My emotions are all over the place..............
What happened to the calm cool collective person I have been over the past year and a half??? I need to find her...........
NOW!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A second look from last Fall

Day 187/Year 2
I was looking through last year's foliage images, as I am in the process of planning this years foliage trips. Looking back at all of last years shots got me pretty excited! This image was one that I ignored last year, but upon looking at it a year later, I decided that I liked it afterall.
It's so much fun for me to look back on my older photographs. They take me right back to the moment the image was taken. I can feel the temperature of that day, I can smell the smells, and I can feel the excitement as I pressed the shutter.
This particular morning was spectacular. I was all alone when I shot this image. It was about 10 minutes after the sun rose. I was up on Bragg Hill Road in Waitsfield Vermont.
I can not wait to get back up to Vermont. My sources tell me the foliage is coming along very nicely, and this year the colors are going to be the best in years.
Happy. Me.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

A wild thing with seeds :-)

Day 186/Year 2
Not sure what this is. I don't like to post things without proper identification, but I don't know what this is. It's wild. It grows in fields. It's common....(not like it's some unusual specimin) and I should know what it is.......

Friday, September 23, 2011

Happy Autumn!

Today is the first day of Autumn. It's finally here! Summer is gone. Don't be sad. Look forward to all of the good things that this new season brings. The trees are just now starting to show signs of early color here in Southeast MA. Before we know it, Mother Nature will have a beautiful show of reds, oranges, yellows, golds, and purples,.........a virtual feast for the eyes. Don't forget the smells of this new season. Oh, there's nothing that smells better to me than a walk in the woods in the Fall. The sweet smell of the pine trees is indescribable. And then we have the cool temperatures. I'm a "sweater", as you know, and the cool crisp days of  Fall are so refreshing, and put a tickle in my belly!
Life is full of changes. I hope you don't look back on the days of summer and wish they were still here. Look ahead to all of the beauty that is heading our way. We can't stop the seasons from changing, just like we can't stop our kids from growing up, our parents from getting older, and those damn grey hairs from creeping into our heads! :-) These are all changes in life that are beyond our control. Let's embrace them all, and be happy in the moment. We can always look back with fond memories, but it's important to accept and embrace all of the upcoming changes in our lives, (and seasons in our lives).
Here's a few "early color" images I took today while out with the Folks. (By the way, my mother told me I jump in and out of the car so many times when I am out with them to take pictures, that the following words should be written on my gravestone.........."hang on, I'll be right back." :-)


Yes, there's a little early color out there! Mother Nature is in the process of preparing her most beautiful show of the year. Let the show begin!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Pizza night

Day 184/Year 2
Met some friends for pizza night tonight. On the way home, we stopped to get gas. Mr. S put the leftover pizza box on the dashboard when he got out to pump the gas. I didn't have a picture for today, so that pizza box on the dashboard looked like as good of a subject as any to me at that point.
Desperado.......yeah, kind of. :-)
It will get better around here on the blog. Bare with me........the wedding and the Fall will provide some much needed photo opportunities and I know there will be some good stuff coming. Promise. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Just a little vent

Day 183/Year 2
I've been very positive about all of this wedding planning business.....but we're getting down to the wire, and can I secretly tell you that it will be a relief when It's all over?
I'm human for God's sake. :-)
And I'm tired. Very tired. If I don't sleep tonight I think my brain will explode tomorrow. I need sleep but my brain won't shut down. My body shuts down, but my brain doesn't want to cooperate.
I have lots to do tomorrow. Miss J was kind enough to make sure I follow through with everything by giving me a big list of things for Mom to do tomorrow.
 Thanks Miss J. :-) Love you. :-)
Just hope my brain doesn't explode.............

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Close but no cigar

Day 182/Year 2
This is another image that almost made it into my Farm Porfolio Project, but it just wasn't technically good enough for the portfolio, so I didn't include it. The lighting is too harsh, and I found the bars to be a bit distracting. Otherwise, I am over the top thrilled to have gotten this shot.
Sometimes with photography, we need to remind ourselves that it's not all about "getting the shot". Just to experience where we are in that moment and be appreciative to be there is good enough.
This calf was just 3 days old. Precious, huh?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Skyline at sunset

Day 181/Year 2
The Boston skyline taken from the road heading to "Hull Gut" in Hull MA. This was taken last week along with the other images I took the evening I went out shooting with Diane.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 2oo, 10 seconds, f29, -1 1/3 ev

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Wedding attire

Day 180/Year 2
We went over to Miss J and Steve's house this afternoon to work on the seating arrangement. Once again, it went very smoothly, with no problems. Check off the seating arrangement as being done!!!
While we were there, Stanley tried on his collar and tie that he is going to wear on the big day.
He is quite handsome, isn't he?
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/60, f2.8

Saturday, September 17, 2011

We're counting down the days

Day 179/Year 2
Three weeks from today. I can't believe it. It seems like just yesterday that Miss J and Steve got engaged. Now here we are, just 3 weeks away from their wedding day.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hay hay my my

Day 178/Year2
Sometimes you just gotta roll with it...........

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Daydreaming

I'm daydreaming. I have so many last minute wedding things to do. Most of the things are last minute, so my hands are tied for the moment. I spent today dreaming of the upcoming foliage season. I can't wait to be up North....relaxing, celebrating how wonderful the wedding was, connecting with VT and all of it's Autumn glory. That's what I'm dreaming about today.
Abby update: She's a drama Queen!!!!!! Such a drama Queen!! She has been hobbling around, looking all sad and pathetic. BUT....when the mailman came to the mailbox......she was up and running and barking and full of spunk.
She doesn't fool me!!!!
Seriously, she had a pretty good day today. i'm glad I was home with her. I let her keep the Elizabethan Collar (ie lampshade) off while she sat with me, and if she went to lick the wound, I would remind her "no". But, when I am up and about around the house, I put the collar on her because I am not right near her to monitor her. She HATES the collar. But, she's doing well and I'm glad I was able to be with her on day one of her meds to see how she reacted to them.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

My poor Abby :-(

It happened so fast....and it was so unexpected. Long story short......Abby got bitten by our next door neighbor's dog this afternoon. We immediately took her to the vet, and she is home now, with 12 staples in her thigh. :-( She is heavily medicated, and hasn't moved from the spot where I placed her when we got home a couple of hours ago. We just tried to take her outside to go potty, but she is still too drugged to stand up. :-( Rudy was quite upset.......and is being a very attentive brother.......
This next image is a picture of her staples. If you don't want to look.....just don't scroll down. I'll leave a couple of spaces in case you don't want to look:






I got someone to work for me tomorrow (Thanks sooooo much Danielle) so that I can stay home with her and keep an eye on her. I'll post an update tomorrow night and let you know how she's doing.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Cohasset Harbor

Day 175/Year 2
More images from my outing with Diane. These were all taken at Cohasset Harbor. Again, the light was beautiful. We also hit it lucky as the water was quite still. Still water gives good reflections!





Monday, September 12, 2011

Just wait!!


Day 174/Year 2
More images from my outing with Diane on Friday. We stopped at a spot just outside of Cohasset Harbor when we spotted this Egret perched on a rock. Just as we were getting out of the car, a great Blue Heron decided to take a rest on the same rock. They were a little too far out of reach for our 200 mm lenses, but we made the best of it. We also waited. And waited. And waited. What were we waiting for you may be wondering? We were waiting for something to happen. We knew we weren't going to be happy with our images of the 2 birds sitting on the rock. We knew the birds would:
 a) Do something such as spread their wings, or change positions.
b) eventually fly away....they weren't going to sit there forever, were they? 
c) find some fish and start to feed
d) smile pretty for the camera
(Okay so option d probably wasn't going to happen) :-)
But the other options did happen. We would have missed them if we stayed content with our original images. With wildlife.....there's usually MORE to come, if you just wait it out.

He/she landed on another rock, closer to where we were standing and had an itch to scratch:

Another good thing happened while we were waiting for some Egret/Great Blue Heron action. This Lesser Yellowlegs came along, and we were able to catch some nice reflections shots of him/her as he/she was searching for some food in the shallow water:

It's good we weren't complacent, right? We would have missed these other photo opportunities had we not waited. Persistence usually does pay off.
The Specs:
All Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/100, f11, -1 ev
Photo two and three: 1/400, f8, -1 ev
Photo four: 1/640, f5.6, -1 ev
Photo five: 1/500, f5.6, -1 ev

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Imagine



 "Imagine there's no heaven
 It's easy if you try
 No hell below us
 Above us only sky
 Imagine all the people
 Living for today...
Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one"
  --------John Lennon

Today's photos were taken late Friday afternoon on the Cohasset Common. (Cohasset MA) When I saw the flag at half staff, I knew right then and there that this would be my image for the September 11th ten year anniversary.
Ten years.
The emotions are still as raw today as they were 10 years ago.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/80, f14, -1ev
Photo two: 1/30, f11, selective color/black and white done with Picasa as well as the framing.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Nantasket Beach

Day 172/Year 2
Diane and I walked the beach (Nantasket Beach in Hull MA) last night, just before sunset. The light was amazing, and we both got some shots that we are pleased with.
The reflections were a-plenty!


The Specs:
All Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/160, f6.3, -1/3 ev
Photo two: 1/200, f7.1, -1/3 ev
Photo three: 1/200, f7.1, -1/3 ev
Photo four: 1/160, f5.6, -1/3 ev

Friday, September 9, 2011

Slow shutter speed

One of the goals I set for myself for year two of the blog was to do more slow shutter speed photography. I was happy to work towards that goal tonight in Hull MA.
                                                        Boston Light:
I love the starburst effect I got using an aperture of F29 on this first shot.
This second shot doesn't have too much of a starburst, but I just love the wave that I got in the forefront:


Lastly, a slow shutter speed shot where I intentionally included the water and rocks in the forefront to show the blur of the water. This was a 15 second exposure. The Boston skyline is in the background.

I had an amazing afternoon/evening out shooting with Diane. I'm sure more shots from today's excursion will be featured this week on the blog. Stay tuned.
The Specs:
All Nikon D90, 18-200 m lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 13 second, f29, -1 ev
Photo two: 0.4 seconds, f 5.6, -1 ev
Photo three: 15 seconds, f14, -1/3 ev

Thursday, September 8, 2011

J plus S

Day 170/Year 2
I am over the top excited with what the UPS man so kindly dropped at my doorstep today, and I just HAVE to share these here with you on the blog.
These rustic vases are going to be displayed (filled with flowers of course) at the Lodge at Miss J's wedding reception. How sweet are these????? They are perrrrrrfect and go along with the Fall Rustic Theme that we have planned for the reception. I just love them. They are entirely wrapped with real birch bark, and Miss J and Steve's initials, and the heart surrounding them, were burnt into the bark.
We have so many incredible items that we are going to use to decorate the lodge. Can't wait to share them all with you, but I am pretty certain that these vases may turn out to be my favorite thing.
You'll have to wait until after the big day to see everything else, but these are worthy of a sneak peak! :-)
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 1000, 0.5 second, f5

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

"Now looka I say looka here " :-)


Day 169/Year 2
The title is a quote from one of the most famous rooster's....ever. :-) You know who I'm talkin' bout!!
Here's another quote to go along with today's image:

"A rooster crows only when it sees the light. Put him in the dark and he'll never crow. I have seen the light, and I'm crowing."
----------Muhammad Ali

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Spirit of Vermont

The following is an article published in the BurlingtonFreePress.com. Please take a moment to read this, as it sums up what the whole "spirit of Vermont" is about. You all know by now that I love the Vermont landscapes....... the mountains, rivers, streams, lakes, forests, villages, churches, winter snows, fall foliage, the green of the Spring grasses in the fields, and the abundant wildlife. All of these things hold a special place in my heart........but the whole spirit of Vermont is it's people and sense of community.
                                     "We Are Vermonters"
  
"The spirit of Vermont rises from our strong sense of place.
Asked where we are from, we would proudly proclaim, "Vermont," before naming any town or village. That sort of distinction is something we keep among ourselves.
When disaster strikes even a remote corner of Vermont, the pain shivers across the state. When the devastation is widespread, the pain strikes at the heart of the state.
As a woman watched the Williams River swallow up the Lower Bartonsville covered bridge, the anguish in her voice spoke to Vermonters across the state as they woke up to Irene's aftermath.
The destruction in our midst tested the spirit of anyone who experienced or witnessed the loss. Sunday, when Irene struck, the state watched as streets in Brattleboro, Waterbury, Barre and others turned intorivers. In the days following the storm, the news kept getting grimmer.
Lives were lost. Entire towns were inundated. With no passable roads, phone lines down and cell phone coverage negligible in mountain valleys, the extent of the damage -- and need -- in a dozen communities were unknown.
As the picture came together, Vermonters began to realize that the damage was of historic proportions. Few people outside our state can truly understand the power of water rushing off a mountain into a narrow valley even in a normal spring rain, or how deeply people feel connected to each other in this state.
The images of destruction are difficult to comprehend.

Uprooted coffins scattered along a riverbank.
A thin layer of pavement hanging over a washed out roadbed.
Houses crushed flat by the force of the water.

The scale seems too vast for a state as small as Vermont. Just as indelible are the images of Vermonters turning out to do what needed to be done.
Hundreds of volunteers rushing to save the harvest on small farms from rising flood waters in Burlington's Intervale.

A sheep hitching a ride to safety in a kayaker's cockpit in Richmond.
A worker at an electric company shrugging off long hours dispatching work crews to repair storm damage with, "This is what we do."

Vermonters stand by their communities in the face of hardship. The question after the storm was always how to rebuild, never if. There is no question that we will do the rebuilding together.
Gov. Peter Shumlin countered the notion that Vermont towns cut off by the storm were truly stranded. "If stranded means you're left with no hope, then it's not true," he said.
Hope comes from knowing that washed-out bridges and downed power lines cannot sever the ties that make a community, that you can count on those around you, and that you are not forgotten.
Els Walker cleaning up storm wreckage in Wilmington put it this way: "Vermont's going to be okay -- because everybody's helping their neighbors."

Vermonters love their state, but we know that this is a love that takes hard work. Life has seldom been easy in the Green Mountain State. We take on the work together, and we know we can count on fellow Vermonters.
This is what we know.

Never more than when the state is tested are we Vermonters first.

This is the spirit of Vermont."

Here are  few of my older images, which in my view, captured the spirit of Vermont. I hope you enjoy them.










Monday, September 5, 2011

The colors of Fall are emerging

Day 167/Year 2
A late summer/early Fall garden in Middleboro MA. Today is Labor Day.....which is the "Unofficial" end to Summer. Okay then. Let's bring on the Fall and all it's glory!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The shower was A++

Day 166/Year 2
Today was Miss J's Bridal Shower. :-) Look at how beautifully this gift was wrapped! The wedding is going to be a "Country Fall Fantasy" so this gift wrapping grabbed my eye and I just HAD to photograph it!
Look at how happy Miss J is. Oh.....she couldn't be any happier or any more beautiful!
Hmmnn....Steve looks pretty happy himself  in this next photo......that's my DAUGHTER you know! :-)

The bridesmaids did an amazing job planning the shower. Miss J is blessed to have such wonderful people in her life......

Finally, here's my "two" girls......Kaylan grew up across the street from us and has been Miss J's best friend since they were 2 years old. We consider her one of our own. There could not be a better maid of Honor for Miss J to have.

Sigh.......another milestone and another event that brings us closer to the wedding day. I am cherishing each and every moment.