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Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Carol's View Of New Englnd.......a year in review

I thought I would share with you some of my favorite blog images from 2011. I will give the reason why each image is a favorite of mine as well.
Here they are, in no particular order:
This image was taken in March of 2011 in Hull MA. I like the New England look to this scene....the white steepled church (I am a sucker for thequintessential NE church scenes) and I like the old architecture and clock on the red building. The American flag blowing in the breeze adds to the Americana feel which I like very much.

This image was taken in February 2011.....when my Dad was in the hospital. This image has a special meaning to me, as I feel it invokes an emotional response to the viewer.

This image just makes me laugh!!!! This was taken in January 2011 in the hospital parking lot. Those are Diane's bare feet hanging out the window of her car. I got the idea to make a "spoof" image in reference to Rex Ryan (the coach of the NY Jets) after his foot fettish scandal, and the video that was released where he was acting as a stranger to his wife discussing her beautiful feet as she hung them out the car window. :-)

April of 2011 brought this "Lydia" image. I just really like this shot. The promise of Spring symbolized by the Robin contrasting with the reality of death represented by the grave stones is just a really cool juxtaposition in my opinion. I also like the tones as well as the depth of field of this shot.

I have many shots of gulls in flight, but this one is special to me. I just really like how the gull seems to be sheltered by the wings. It's not your typical bird in flight shot, so I like it for it's uniqueness.

The day I took this was an awesome morning for photography. Diane and I met our friend Greg Lessard in Middleboro at something like 5:30 am. The fog was like pea soup, and we made the best of it and got some wonderful foggy images. After the fog cleard, it turned into a brilliant morning, and I just love the composition with the fenceline in this shot that I took. I also love the reflection of the fence in the puddle.

My Great niece Rowan looking face to face with Rudy. The expression on her face is priceless and I was so happy to capture it with my camera!!

This is my Great Nephew Ashton. I love everything about this image. I was visiting them and had my camera. I took many pictures of his face etc that day, but this image taken from behind was my absolute favorite!

This very well could possibly be my very favorite of the year. This was taken on Mothers Day and this is my Mom with her Great Grandaughter Rowan. I don't think any words are needed to tell you why I love this image so much.

As you know, I am drawn to farm scenes, and I just really like this one taken on a very rainy afternoon in Vermont as the farmer was walking the cows back home to the barn.

Tenderness and innocence are what I see when I look at this image taken at a family funeral outside of the church. This is Mr S's cousins son, Alex.

It's all about the light.....and I just love the light I was able to capture in this image taken at the Orleans County Fair in Barton VT.

My three reasons to live with each of their significant others. I just love the happy looks on their faces. We had such a fun weekend that weekend!

I love this guy!! I printed this one for a Christmas order and it looks even better in print. Just love his pose and the colors!!!!

I love reflections and think this one is just plain cool! This was another wonderful photography outing. I was with Diane out shooting down at Nantasket Beach in Hull MA before sunset.

I'm really glad I decided to post my favorites. I've been in a major photography slump lately (Can you tell??? LOL) Of course you can!!!! But.....this has been a very good exercise for me going back over my past images. I didn't realize there were so many that I liked. I'm not finished with the year yet.......so I will finish posting my favorites tomorrow in part two. Stay tuned!
I'm off to bed.....it's 9:30 pm on New Years Eve. I will be getting up at 4:45 am for work so no ringing in the new year at midnight for me. Hope you all are having a fun and safe evening!!!!

Friday, December 30, 2011

A top 2011 news story

With the year 2011 coming to an end, there has been lots of talk about the "big news stories of the year".  There have been so many big stories that have effected so many lives. One of the biggest news stories here in New England was the horrific flooding from Hurricane Irene. Although Irene was dowgraded to a Tropical Storm by the time it hit New England, it still brought a fierce blow to parts of New England......especially Western Massachusetts and Southwest and Central Vermont.
Mr. S and I visited some of the hardest hit areas of VT when we traveled up there in October, the week after Miss J's wedding. The flooding occurred on August 28th, and we visited the area on October 12th. Clean up was well underway by that time, but the effects of the flooding were still evident, a few months after the storm passed. Many roads and bridges were still closed.........but incredibly a large number of roads were reopened due to the heroic efforts by the road crews.
There were so many horrific scenes that we witnessed.......2 months after the cleanup began. For some reason, I couldn't bring myself to photograph a lot of the damage. It was upsetting for me to see, and I just didn't feel "right" photographing other people's pain and sorrow. I don't know why I felt that way, but all I can say is that I did feel that way at that moment in time. It was strange for me, because I would normally be "all about" capturing scenes like those. But on that particular day, it just didn't feel right to me.
I have never shared these images here on the blog, so I feel it is fitting for me to share them here today. These are just a tiny sample of what we saw.........I'm glad I didn't photograph the worst of the damage that we saw. Those images will remain in my memory.






Thursday, December 29, 2011

Party Animal!!!!!!!

Rudy is daydreaming about his New Year's Eve party this weekend..........

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Pause

Day 281/Year 2
Just going to "paws" for a few moments..........

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Look who I found today!

Day 280/365
I must begin by telling you that I am feeling better today. The sugar detox is going well.....and I even had enough energy to go down to the pond today with my camera. (Yesterday's pond image was taken last week....sshhhhh don't tell!)
I was so surprised when I stumbled across the Great Blue Heron this time of year! He was just standing in the shallow water chilling out.....I'm sure he was looking for some lunch. I've never seen him around in the winter. These birds are very shy and skiddish and will take off in an instant if they sense your presence. Hence, my shot from today is of his backside as he took off as soon as I approached. I was using the method I was taught by my good friend and excellent bird photographer Greg Lessard. I was using the crouch down low and taking just a few baby steps at a time approach, but this heron wasn't buying it one bit.
I decided to investigate the subject of Great Blue Herons in the winter in New England and here's what I found:

"Many Great Blue Herons migrate south for the winter, but in New England, some stay around if there is open water, and many others head east and over winter along the coast instead. Because these herons stay so close through the winter, they are among the first birds to return in the spring."

It makes me wonder if this guy is staying around because the temperatures have been so unseasonably warm this year.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Day After

Day 270/Year2
How ya doin??? Do you have the post Christmas exhaustion like I do? I don't know what it is, but I am totally exhausted today. Do you think it could be from all of the junk food I have consumed over the past week?? I think my body is going through some sort of sugar withdrawals. My pancreas must be swollen from all of the insulin I have forced it to pump out the past few days. :-) Do you really think a pancreas could swell? I don't think so.......but I bet all of the insulin my pancreas has been producing has produced an abundance of trypotophan which has produced an overabundance of serotonin in my brain. So, not only is my pancreas swollen, but my brain is proabably getting ready to explode. All of that seretonin has made me mighty sleepy.
I think I better start my New Years diet a few days early..............
Yawn............

Sunday, December 25, 2011

My Christmas wish for you

Day 269/Year 2
I didn't take one picture today. I'm ok with that, and I hope you are too. I picked this older image to post for today, which I took back in December of 2008 at the Rockland Duck Pond. The snow was falling, and there wasn't a breeze.....the air was still and it was a beautiful peaceful sight. Remember in the past I have written that my images take me right back to the place and time they were taken? This one takes me back to that peaceful moment......I stopped in my tracks and just took in the peaceful sight.
That's my wish for you. To have peace in your lives. There are far too many people suffering in this world, and my wish is for everyone to find peace and happiness.
I hope you all enjoyed your Christmas Day today. My day began by leaving the house at 5:15 am to go to work. Driving to work at that hour, I only passed two other cars on the road the entire drive to work. I kept thinking about how everyone was tucked in tight in their homes with their loved ones. I was wishing I was still tucked in tight with my loved ones too........but my day had begun in a different way, and I was needed elsewhere. Work was great......the patient count was very low so we weren't the least bit busy. I left work at 1:00.....an hour early........and we headed to Miss J and Steves house for a wonderful Christmas dinner. It's 7 pm on Christmas night, and we just opened our presents here in my house. It was a long day, but a wonderful day. I really hope your day was good as well.
Merry Christmas!!!!!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

Day 268/Year 2
I'd like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas!!! I hope it is filled with lots of love and happiness! As much as I love to decorate for the holidays, the manger and figurines are my favorite of all, as they are a reminder of the true meaning of the season.

"And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”

Merry Christmas!!!!!!!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Delicious!!!

Do you like those Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies? Well, if so, I have a secret recipe for you.........these "cookies" taste just like the Thin Mints and they are sooooo easy to make.
Here's what you need to make them:
Two bags of these Andes Baking Chips
A box of Ritz Crackers

A few candy canes....I used the mini ones but you can use the bigger ones if you'd like

Melt the Andes pieces in a double boiler. (I don't have a double boiler so I just put one pot inside of another pot to melt them) Dip the Riz crackers in the melted chocolate.....coating both sides......and remove with tongs. Place them on parchment paper (I used tin foil and it worked ok) and sprinkle a little bit of crushed candy cane on each one before they melt.
Here's the result:

I may have been a little too heavy handed with the candy cane sprinkles. You could do without them if you want and use red and green sprinkles or you could even leave them plain.
Honestly......they are delicious and taste just like Thin Mints. Enjoy!!!!!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Welcome Winter?????


Day 266/Year 2
Today is the official first day of winter.........but it sure doesn't feel like it here in Southeast MA. This skating rink in Pembroke would typically be frozen by now, but it's nothing but a giant puddle. As much as I would like to see some snow, it sure is nice to have the temps in the 50's to save on home heating oil. That's a Christmas gift in itself!

Glory

Silent Night, Holy Night, All is calm, All is bright..........

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Santa's Workshop

Things seem to be going along really well at the workshop. Santa and the elves are taking care of all of the last minute stuff. Hope your workshop is going as well!

Monday, December 19, 2011

O Christmas Tree!

When I was a little girl, one of my most favorite things to do at Christmas time was to lay under the Christmas tree and look up at all of the sparkling lights!
I hope you find peace and joy this Christmas!!

"O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Much pleasure thou can'st give me;
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Much pleasure thou can'st give me;
How often has the Christmas tree
Afforded me the greatest glee!
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
Much pleasure thou can'st give me."

Sunday, December 18, 2011

An adorable family!!!!!!!

Miss J had wanted me to come over to their house and take some pictures for their first Christmas being married.....she was hoping to make up some Christmas cards. Well.......time got away from both of us and we never found the time for the photo session.
I was playing around today..........so, like, this probably isn't what she had in mind or anything........and I really hope she's a good sport about this, because I find it adorable.......but this is something I came up with for her.......
Ready???????................Here it is............................


In the spirit of fun and Christmas......I hope she will forgive me!!!! :-)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Diane's birthday

You all must remember Diane..........my good friend and photography buddy........aka Diana, aka Cinderella, aka the one who hunts and gathers..............
We had a party at work today to not only celebrate the big day, but it also turned into a Christmas party. A nice Saturday at work!
Happy "28th" birthday Diane. :-)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Snowmen gather here

This image was taken last week at my friend Joan's house. This is where all of the snowmen in the world reside. Right here. In Joan's house. It's like a snowman convention. Seriously. This image shows about 1/4 of the snowmen in Joan's collection.
They really are adorable, huh?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

December Day

As a landscape photographer, I find it difficult to find a scene which interests me enough to want to photograph this time of year. Wish we could get a nice few inches of snow. Not asking for too much.....just enough to pretty things up. Although, I do like the muted tones on this image, and the cloudy sky adds a wintry feel to this.........makes me feel there's a chill in the air even though there's no snow on the ground.......I think the bare tress and the grey sky convey to the viewer the feeling I was going after with this shot. Hope it works for you!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I'm in print!

 Here is the original:

I had to lighten and brighten the original for print. The original original (you know....the first copy I made.....) printed too dark on the test print so I resubmitted this lighter and more saturated version. It came out great in print and I am excited!!

Twinkle

Day 257/Year 2

Monday, December 12, 2011

Exit 1

Taken while traveling along Rte 93 in Vermont a few weeks ago.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sunny Sunday

Relaxing in the sunspot on a Sunday afternoon. Life is good........

Saturday, December 10, 2011

First Christmas

We went to Miss J and Steve's house tonight. The place looks amazing. I am so proud of them. This is an especially exciting Christmas for them........their first Christmas to be married......and their first Christmas in their own house.
Here's their mantle:
I love Stanley's stocking. :-)
Here's their first Christmas Tree:

This whole year will be filled with "firsts" for them. How exciting!!!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

The Sisterhood of the traveling camera

Day 253/365
Spent a wonderful afternoon in Plymouth with my sister Nancy.
Sister-time is always fun time.....especially when eating fried scallops fresh off the boat for lunch! Nancy.......she had lobster salad. Yum!!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

What a big nose you have!!!!! :-)

Tonight was our annual Girl's Christmas party at my friend Joan's house. As always, we had a great time.......lots of laughs and lots of fun with my girlfriends. Each December, Joan has us over for dinner, and then she gives us a giant bag filled with Christmas items that she makes for us throughout the year.
Look up the word crafty in the dictionary, and you will find Joan's photo. :-) She is amazing.
We all chipped in to buy Joan a gift for hosting each year. Here is her wrapped gift.........I mean really.........how hysterical is this snowman ornament on the package????????
:-)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Pub Food

Day 251/Year 2
Last night was beef stew...........tonight no cooking for me! :-)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Beef Stew

Day 250/365
It's what's for dinner........

Monday, December 5, 2011

Diet Office Reflection

I have a thing for reflections, and am always looking for photo ops in my surroundings. We each have our own ornament hanging at work, on the shelf above our work space. Before I went home this afternoon, I took a few shots of the reflection in my ornament. See me in there??????? :-)