New England Blogs

Friday, April 29, 2011

Gone Fishing!

Day 37/Year 2
I stopped off at the Herring Run in Weymouth this afternoon. There are over 100,000 herring making their way against the current on their way to Whitman's Pond to spawn. I blogged about this phenomena last year. Here is a link to that blog:
I got a shot of this one just after it jumped up the "hill". You can see the trail of water dripping off it's back fin.
I noticed a seagull perched on a nearby rock. I had a feeling it was going to "go fishing" so I got myself ready to catch the action with my camera. This happened in a matter of seconds!!

It was swallowed whole.............

Look at the size of his neck in the previous photograph as well as this one. Amazing!

Indigestion?............. I don't know what happened after this. The gull flew away and never returned. I actually was surprised to see this. I visit the Herring Run every Spring, and have never seen a gull do this before. I wonder why there are not more of them doing this because it was so easy.
It was just plain cool for me to be able to witness this act of nature.
The Specs:
All Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/160, f5.3, -1/3 ev
Photo two: 1/320, f4.8, -1/3 ev
Photo three: 1/1000, f5.6, -1/3 ev
Photo four: 1/800, f5.6, -1/3 ev
Photo five: 1/1000, f5.6, -1/3 ev

Thursday, April 28, 2011

April showers bring May flowers

Day 36/Year 2
I visited the Abington Butterfly Garden this evening, after a few heavy rain showers throughout the day. I just love the color of this tulip that I found growing in the garden and the few rain drops resting both on and in between the petals. I had to crank up the shutter speed as it was very windy.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens with Nikon 4T closeup filter, 1/1600, f1.8, +2/3 ev

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A productive hour

Day 35/Year 2
I took the folks to a Funeral Mass for a friend of their's in Scituate this morning. I dropped them off at the church, which gave me about an hour for photography before I had to go back to pick them up. This first photograph is of the Scituate Lighthouse, with several Common Cormorants resting on the jetty in the forefront.
Look at the trees in this next photo. They are almost in full bloom. Spring certainly has arrived here in Southern New England!
I played with depth of field in this next photograph. I saw this abandoned pair of shoes resting on the rock and used the maximum aperture I could get, focusing on the shoes, which resulted in the lighthouse and jetty in the background to be nicely blurred and out of focus.

This next scene is one that I have been "eyeing" for a while. My friend and very talented photographer Greg Lessard has a wonderful photograph of this steeple taken from another spot. Here is "my take" on it. I always love a scene which includes a white steeple. As a matter of fact, my parents were in this church attending the funeral mass as I shot this one.

I then went down to the harbor where this scene caught my eye:

Once again, I played with depth of field. In this photo, I focused on the gull and pilings, which allowed the bench in the forefont to be out of focus.

Now just the opposite for this shot. This one has the bench nicely focused, and the gull and pilings are out of focus.

It was nice to have an hour to myself and whenever I have free time and my camera it's a beautiful thing!
The Specs:
All Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/1250, f11, -1 ev
Photo two: 1/400, f11
Photo three: 1/600, f5.3
Photo four: 1/400, f11, -1/3 ev
Photo five: 1/500, f11
Photo six: 1/2000, f5.6, -1/3 ev
Photo seven: 1/1250, f5.6, -1/3 ev

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Monkey Business

Day 34/Year 2
No more monkeying around!!!!!!! Trying to get my parents to commit to moving out of their house has been be blunt........more or less like a circus!!!!!! I know it's not easy for them. They love their home. I understand. My siblings understand. But, it's time for them to move on. We came one step closer today. We went back and visited one of the independent living facilities that we previosuly toured today. There is a spacious beautiful 2 bedroom apt. available. Just what they need. My mother has been pretty much on board all along. My father on the other hand.................
Not getting my hopes up, but this is the closest we have come to both of them agreeing to move. Now, yesterday, was, well, a circus act, as my father all of a sudden decided he wasn't going to move. I woke up this morning to find out he changed his mind.
Yup, a circus.
Today there was no monkey business. A good day. Let's hope the circus packs up and moves out of town for good. :-)
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens, ISO 200, 125, f2.5, -1 ev

Monday, April 25, 2011

Purple Passion

Day 33/Year2
Miss J and her fiance Steve gave me a beautiful bouquet of these purple tulips for Easter yesterday. They are so pretty as is......closed up tightly........and I am looking forward to them opening up to show their beauty that lies within as well.
Love them!
 Thanks Miss J and Steve! xxoo
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens with 4T closeup filter, ISO 200, 1/60, f4.5

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Flowers

Day 32/Year 2
I hope you all had a wonderful Easter Sunday!
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/15, f5.6, Paint Daubs Filter applied in Photoshop CS3, Frame and title added using Picnik

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Isn't he handsome?

Day 31/Year 2
Male Cardinal in my backyard. What a gorgeous bird, huh?
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/500, f5.6

Friday, April 22, 2011

The big Itch

Day 30/Year 2
Poor Rudy!!! It hasn't been a pleasant past few days for him. He's been itching and scratching, and licking, and scratching and itching, and licking, and scratching and on and on and on.......
We went to see Dr. Finney today (Rudy isn't a fan of the good Dr. so needless to say he was muzzled and terrified of the whole experience) office visit exam, blood draw, 2 prescriptions, and 273 dollars and eleven cents later, we have a tentative diagnosis.
Seems Rudy is developing seasonal allergies. We go back to see Dr. Finney next week (oh joy bet Rudy is going to just love that!)
I've got to go give a doggy massage now........hope you all have a wonderful Easter Weekend!
The Specs:
Panasonic LX3, ISO 800, 1/200, f2.8

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Live on!

Day 29/Year 2
When N was a litle boy, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were his favorites! We had all of the Ninja Turtle toys and accessories. Oh, the fun times we had back in those days! As I sat watching these turtles sunbathing on a log this afternoon, I could have sworn I could hear the following conversation.............

Leonardo: We were awesome!
Michaelangelo: Bodacious!
Raphael: Bitchin'!
Donatello: Uh...
Michaelangelo: Gnarly!
Leonardo: Radical!
Raphael: Totally tubular, dude!
Michaelangelo: Wicked!
Leonardo: Hellacious!
Donatello: Uh, mega...
Splinter:  I have always liked... Cowabunga.
Leonardo, Michaelangelo, Raphael, Donatello: [pause] COWABUNGA!
The Specs:Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/250, f13, -1 ev

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Coffee to go

Day 28/Year 2
How many times have you done this? :-)
Actually, I am not much of a coffee drinker. Mr. S on the other hand...............
The Specs:
Panasonic LX3, ISO 800, 1/60, f2

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Cuts like a knife

Day 27/Year 2
I bought a new knife today. I didn't even have to leave the comfort of my home either. (I know life is THAT exciting! :-) I had a professional knife salesgirl come to do a demo and sales pitch. These knives really are pretty awesome and I just HAD to buy at least one of them.
Are you thinking of upgrading your knives? If so, please call Katherine R. Her office number is 781-353-2445.
She's a very sweet girl and I found out she's also a photographer hobbyist so she's A-okay in my book. We even exchanged photography websites. :-)
The Specs:
Panasonic LX3, ISO 80, 1/15, f2

Monday, April 18, 2011

Happy Patriot's Day!!!

Day 26/Year 2
Today is a holiday here in's Patriot's Day........... a civic holiday commemorating the anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, the first battles of the American Revolutionary War. It is observed on the third Monday in April in Massachusetts and Maine. It's one of those strange holidays where it doesn't really seem like a holiday. The best part about Patriots Day here is the annual running of the Boston Marathon. My son N went into Boston today to see one of his friends run. I picked him up tonight at the Braintree T station (for those not from Massachusetts, that would be the train station)
When I saw this bike rack, I knew I found today's photo. I gave it a "grunge" look using a posterizing filter.
The Specs:
Panasonic LX3, ISO 400, 1/25, f2.2, Posterization filter in Picnik

Sunday, April 17, 2011

There's a full moon rising!

Day 25/Year 2
This is my first attempt at HDR photography. Needless to say I am "over the moon" excited with how this came out. This was taken in Halifax over Monponsett Pond. As the moon first rose above the horizon, it had an orange glow, and the orange faded as the moon got higher in the sky.

Addendum: In my haste I was so excited that I merged these images together using Photoshop that I called it HDR, but what it really the merging of the images, not a true HDR photo. Now that I have done this, I am looking forward to expanding my horizons to HDR. :-) I really like this image no matter what it's called. Miss J said she doesn't "get it" and I had to explain to her that it was a merging of images. Hope this clarifies. Whatever you want to call's just plain fun stuff as far as I'm concerned. :-)
The Specs:
Taken with the D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, manual focus set to infinity, merged using Photoshop CS3

Saturday, April 16, 2011


Day 24/Year 2
Backlighting can create some beautiful and dramatic images. Backlighting refers to lighting in a photograph that comes from behind the subject. I took this backlit cat o nine tails photo back in early December. It was late day, just minutes before sunset. I saw this scene as I was driving along, and decided I must turn around and go back to catch the light.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, 1/60, f5.6, -2/3 ev

Friday, April 15, 2011

Under the shelter of his wings

Day 23/Year 2
Love this.
Love the way most of the gull is hidden uder the wings..........Makes me feel the gull finds comfort under the wings!
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/600, f5.6, -1/3 ev

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Day 22/Year 2
The heart of a daffodil!
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens with 4T closeup filter, ISO 200, 1/60, f5.6

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Too bad......wrong lens!

Day 21/Year 2
Do you see that cute little bunny rabbit in this photo? Yeah, I's kind of hard to see. Here's the scoop. I put the 50 mm lens with the 4T closeup filter onto the D90 this afternoon, and headed out into the backyard to take some closeup shots. Little did I know it was "wildlife playtime" out there! As I was heading down to the back of the yard, I saw this adorable little bunny hopping through the woods......and it came to a stop just as it exited the woods and saw me. I took the closeup filter off and took a few shots, knowing I didn't have nearly enough reach with the 50 mm lens. Oh well. Not a big deal. So, I then walked further back and suddenly I saw a gorgeous deer in the woods. Man, I wished I had the longer lens with me! I took a few shots anyways......and they are not sharp enough. I did a Photoshop treatment to this one to try to salvage it. It's not good.....but I want to post it anyways so here goes:
I know it, huh??? Talk about a missed opportunity!!
After the deer exited I got busy working on the original task I had in mind. We had a lot of heavy rain today, and I wanted to get a closeup shot of a water drop on a forsythia bud. Here's one I managed to get. I love the reflections!

Lesson learned. Carry all of the gear with you out in the backyard. You never know who or what is going to be out there to photograph!
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/80, f4.5
Photo two: 1/60, f4
Photo three: 1/60, f7.1

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cloudy Weather Photography

Day 20/Year 2
I've been waiting for the right conditions to photograph this area, and today was the perfect  day for slow shutter speed waterfall photography. I have visited this area on other days, but the lighting was too harsh, so I put this on my "cloudy day" list. When shooting moving water, if you want to get the "smooth milky effect" of the running water, you need to use a slow shutter speed. It's difficult to get a decent exposure on sunny days without blowing out the highlights.
What you are looking at is the waterfall and fish ladder at Luddam's Ford Park, which is located on Elm Street in Hanover MA...........A beautiful and tranquil place to visit.

I hope you enjoyed the photos as much as I enjoyed taking them!
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens with ND4 neutral density filter, ISO 200, 1 second, f36, -5 ev

Monday, April 11, 2011

Itchy Armpit

Day 19/Year 2
Well, hello there Blue Eyes!!!!! If you need to scratch then you need to scratch. Don't let us stop you! :-)
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/1000, f5.6

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Look and see what I "saw"

Do you remember this post?
Yeah, that was put up on the blog back on August 29th, 2010. The dumpster is long gone, but the deck has been stripped since that day. All Fall...... All Winter...... No deck.
So, the project completion was 8 months but who's counting..............:-)
I came home from work today and 'saw" this!

Day 18/Year 2
And I also "saw" this!

I will keep you posted on the progress. It shouldn't be another 8 months. I am told things are really moving along now.........
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200
Photo one: 1/500, f5.6
Photo two: 1/640, f 6.3
Photo three: 1/250, f8, -1/3 ev

Saturday, April 9, 2011

How smart are you?

Day 17/Year 2
Hmmmmf. This is an IQ Tester. It's a dumn old IQ tester as far as I'm concerned. I mean, really??? How could a silly little peg board be a true test of your intelligence? Like, just because someone doesn't do good on this silly little peg game........that doesn't mean that that particular someone has a low IQ, right??.......Right?????? Well, that's what I thought too! :-)
The Specs:
Panasonic LX3, ISO 400, 1/10, f2.5

Friday, April 8, 2011


Day 16/Year 2
 Not sure if it's the juxtaposition or just the "feeling" this shot conveys, but whatever it is, this shot speaks to me. When I mention juxtaposition, I am thinking that Robins are a sign of Spring, and Spring is a time for new growth and new beginnings. The headstones on the other hand, represent death, and have been weathered and worn over the past 100 plus years.
Life goes on.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/125, f5.6

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Blackbird Fly

Day 15/Year 2
I hit the wildlife jackpot this afternoon. This was after taking my mother to the Dr. She had a good appointment and she's doing well. Okay, back to the jackpot. After I drove the folks home, I stopped at Whitmans Pond in Weymouth to see if there was any action going on. Not too much. A swan was diving for food and there were lots of seagulls and crows. I'm getting kind of sick of the seagulls and I just posted a crow photo the other day. I needed more. So, I went across the street, behind the cemetery, to the back side of Whitmans Pond. This is where the jackpot was hit. It was so peaceful. There were a pair of swans, many Mallard Ducks, a few Canada Geese, and across the water from where I was, there were 2 White Egrets. I took many shots of the Egrets and waited patiently for one or both of them to take flight. And I waited. And I waited. Guess they weren't in the flying mood. So, I walked further along where there were lots of reeds. I knew the Red Winged Blackbirds like the reeds, and sure enough, I found a few. I waited for this one to take flight, and my persitence paid off. Granted, I could have used more reach than the 200 mm lens I have, but I was happy to catch it in flight nonetheless.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/800, f5.6, -1/3 ev

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Day 14/Year 2
I love this pretty little plant! It was a gift from N's gf (aka my oldest son's did the world get by for all of those years without all of these abbreviations I'll never know!) It's such a pretty houseplant with the tiniest white flowers with little golden yellow stamens inside each flower.
I used the Nikon 4T closeup filter again today while shooting this plant and I also used Live View. It's so much fun!
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 50 mm lens with 4T closeup filter, ISO 200, 1/60, f3.2

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Deja Brew

Day 13/Year 2
Today was a good day! I met my friend Kathy (who I haven't spent time with in a long time....too long) at Deja Brew in Abington for breakfast. That's the first of the good part......spending time with her chatting away. It was so good to catch up. Now here's the second good part of today. She brought me gifts! Lots of gifts! A whole big gift bag full of gifts for my birthday (which was in November.......I told you I haven't seen her for a while) These weren't just any old gifts. They were so much more. Each gift had a special meaning  and they each represented special things that I like in my life......soooooo thoughtful!!!!
Here's the third good part about today. The food. And the atmosphere. At Deja Brew. It's so much more than a little coffee shop. The food is amazing. Everything is fresh and home-made. The decor is so country and homey and the workers are so friendly with a welcoming smile on their faces. If you are in the Abington area, please stop at Deja Brew for breakfast or lunch. You will not be disappointed.They are located on Rte18 across from the fire station. Please support our local small businesses!!!!
Here's the fourth and final good part about today. The workers were talking about taking a picture of the restaurant for a brochure. I overheard them. I told them I just happened to have a few pictures of the interior that I had taken while sitting there. Honestly, it is so cool how this whole thing came about. They LOVED my pictures and want to use one of them on the brochure and possibly on their me credit for the photos of course.
So, that was my good day. Not bad, huh? :-)
The Specs:
Panasonic LX3, ISO 250, 1/30, f2

Monday, April 4, 2011

Don't Squawk!

Day 12/Year 2
I know it.....I know it.......I didn't take this photo today.......please stop squawking!!! I worked today, and well, it's raining out, and with the new rules, I am allowed to post an older photo. Right? Right! Besides, this one isn't that old at all. I just took it the other day. :-)
This shot is blog-worthy IMO. It's sharp, the eye is tack sharp (a very important thing I have learned in wildlife photography is to get the eye nice and sharp) I like the characteristic of the gull squawking that I captured. It was very windy. I like the feathers being ruffled by the wind.So there we have it. Todays photo. Taken on another day. But today's photo nonetheless.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/2000, f5.6, -1/3 ev

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Happy Birthday N!

Day 11/Year 2
It seems like just yesterday I was blogging about N's birthday. Here we are one year later. It's scary how fast time flies. What a year it's been for him! He is happy in his career and things couldn't be going much better for him than they are right now.
You deserve all the good things coming your way........and we love you and are so proud of you!!! xxoo
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 400, 1/25, f4.5

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Birds do it, bees do it, and ducks do it too

Day 10/Year 2
A pair of Mallard Duck's mating in a pond in Plymouth today. The female didn't seem interested, and the male at one point held her head down under the water with his beak.
Nature. It's not very romantic.
The Specs:
Nikon D90, 18-200 mm lens, ISO 200, 1/500, f5.6

Friday, April 1, 2011

This ain't no April Fool's!!!!!!!

Day 9/Year 2
As I was driving to work this morning, (at 5am),  the following song by The Doors kept repeating in my head. You must know the lyrics......."Keep your eyes on the road and your camera upon the wheel"......oops, I mean hands upon the wheel. Especially when it's icy on the roads.
Yup, it's April 1st. Springtime in New England. You gotta love it.
On another note, there is a real true sign of Spring today. Opening Day for the Red Sox!!!!!! Let's just hope the Sox have their act together better than the people at work did today. I was supposed  to take a picture of everyone who wore their Sox apparel to work today, in honor of opening day. They alll wanted a group shot. How hard could it be to get a group of people together for a 1 minute photo op?????? Jeezum crow! :-) Well, I ended up with 2 available subjects at 2 pm, just as I was heading out the door to go home.
Here's Kathy and Danielle:

Go Sox!!!!!! This is predicted to be a GREAT year. Looking forward to it.
PLAY BALL!!!!!!!!!!!!
The Specs:
Photo one and two: Panasonic LX3, ISO 800, 1/8, f2.3
Photo three: Panasonic LX3, ISO 80, 1/13, f2.1