Autumn memories

Just before the death of flowers and before they are buried in snow, there comes a festival season when nature is aglow.
~Author Unknown

Well, I may have missed my opportunity for this post since it SNOWED a few days ago! Middle Missouri broke her previous record of .3 inches of snow on November 8th. We clocked in at a little more than an inch of the white stuff. It was magical….and gone from most of the trees by afternoon as the temps warmed to the upper 30sF.

I have shared some of our autumn color in weeks past, but haven’t shared my most fun day of the season. Every autumn I try and take the grandgirls to one of our city parks during the cooler weather. Of course, the camera comes along with us. This year we went to a nature area before going to the traditional park setting. While I love autumn color in the trees and flowers, it just can’t compete with these two!

At ten and four and a half, these two are growing up so fast. And, I believe their personalities are growing faster! Can’t you just see the sass in both of them? Peanut is now in fourth grade and Twix is having a blast in Pre-K.

I fully realize I tend to get a bit carried away when sharing pics of our grandgirls. I would apologize, but I’m really not that sorry!

Unfortunately the trees had not yet given up their leaves for a colorful carpet, so we had to rely on some different color for these last two shots.

Now, we’re hunkering down for winter, which evidently is coming early this year since our temps are now falling into the teens at night. I’m thankful we had the opportunity to take these when we did. They warm my heart.

I hope you’re having a wonderful autumn and sharing the warmth of the holiday season with everyone around you.

Advertisements

Wordless Wednesday 9.12.18

I hope you all realize just how much self restraint is involved for me in posting a photo and not adding words.

Just sayin’. 🙂

Blog hopping with Comedy Plus for Wordless Wednesday.

August Photo Challenge: Photographer’s Choice

August is over? Really? Wow.

And with that thought, it must be time for PJ’s monthly photo challenge. August was Photographer’s Choice. Which is a synonym for Anything Goes. This usually results in an eclectic collection of photos and interesting commentary.

August was (thankfully) easy for me. Seems like I was always on the back end of the viewfinder for some reason. Not that I’m complaining at all! My August photo folder is awfully large, and I did have a bit of a struggle paring down the options. So, of course, I adapted and pushed a few boundaries. Whaaaaattttt?????

Photographer’s Choice #1
Love is the greatest gift that one generation can give another. ~Richard Garnett

The month began with a neighbor’s request to come to their home and capture a few moments with three generations of fathers and sons. The youngest son is 5 months old and the oldest father is in his 70s.

Photographer’s Choice #2
Family is what happens when two people fall in love.

Next on the list took me to the botanical garden in town to recreate some wedding portraits of our daughter, her husband and their blended family. See my two previous posts for more on this event.

Photographer’s Choice #3
Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

We took the grand girls on a whirlwind tour of SE Missouri for a late summer vacay trip before school began. We stopped at a park called Elephant Rocks State Park in the St. Francois Mountains of the Ozark Plateau. These granite boulders are millions of years old. I was going to crop this top photo, but changed my mind as it gives some perspective to how large these boulders are in comparison to a human. And, these were the smallest ones.

Photographer’s Choice #4
Sometimes it feels so good to just sit by yourself, relax and not to talk to anyone. ~Kristen Butler

Peanut got in some last-minute relaxation time before beginning her 4th grade adventure.

Photographer’s Choice #5
Meanwhile, on the other side of the pool……
Children are happy because they don’t have a file in their minds called “All Things That Could Go Wrong.” ~ Marianne Williamson

Bonus choice
Learning is a treasure that follows its owner everywhere. ~Chinese Proverb

Yes, there is a bonus photo because I could not keep to just five this month (obviously). School officially began a couple weeks ago for Peanut. We take these shots for the first day of school and it’s amazing to see how she changes from year to year. Twix will begin Pre-K after Labor Day so we’ll start documenting her school years next month.

Those were my choices for this month. Please blog hop over to PJ’s to see what other participants chose. Better yet, join us and link up!

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

We might think we are nurturing our garden, but of course it’s our garden that is really nurturing us.
~Jenny Uglow

Thought is was about time I got re-aquainted with the manual settings on my digital camera. I used to have an all-manual SLR. College photography class taught me all the nuances of how film speed, shutter and aperture settings work together Digital cameras have really spoiled me nowadays.

While it’s easy to just put the camera on Auto and go, better shots are only a setting away. So, I’ve been trying to use Aperture-priority and (horrors) Manual whenever I have time to shoot and adjust the settings.

Blog hopping today with Sandee over at Comedy Plus for Wordless Wednesday.

Almost

July Photo Challenge: Staying Cool

I completely missed June’s photo challenge last month. Lately, life has this bad habit of derailing my plans; regardless of what they are. Peanut and Twix were gone to their dad’s house in Alabama all month, so Entrepreneur and I tended to vegetate whenever possible. Is vegetating even possible anymore? Doesn’t seem like it.

This month PJ’s theme is Staying Cool. Appropriate for the hot, summer month of July. Even though we didn’t do anything spectacular, I think I captured some contenders for this month’s photo challenge. So here goes……

Staying Cool #1
The Golfers from Jax Beach came to town the first of the month for a week and brought their Florida temps and humidity with them. During that time, we hosted an engagement party for them for the family and friends here in the Heartland. Thankfully, we have quite a bit of shade on our property, so no one suffered from heat stroke during the party. Here are my two very “cool” daughters!

Staying Cool #2
Who are these “cool kids”? These youngsters at heart would be four of the five grandparents who stayed to the bitter end of the engagement party! Hanging out in the shade with a cooler full of beverages made for a relaxing afternoon in the heat.

Staying Cool #3
Floridians know how to stay cool in the summer heat. Even though she was born and bred in Missouri, she’s a coastal soul…and will never be landlocked again.

Staying Cool #4
This is what you get when you combine the goofiness of a water-loving Golden Retriever and the playfulness of a Standard Poodle. A 50 pound, goofy, water dog. The hose and sprinklers are always a good way to cool off when you wear a fur coat 24/7.

Staying Cool #5
Ahhhhhh….everyone’s gone and Entrepreneur is napping. Time to float with Captain Morgan and a Pepsi 0. And shut off my brain for a while.

Staying Cool Bonus Shot
The end of July brought some relief from the oppressive, middle Missouri summer heat. Here’s a bonus shot on staying cool during the summer taken with my phone. Okay….it’s a screenshot….but I think it should still count! 🙂

Posting early this month because, come Monday morning, Peanut and Twix will return to our care during the day until school begins….and I’ll get even LESS done than I have these past six weeks! Blog hop over to PJ’s on July 31st to see how others stayed cool this month.

April Photo Challenge

And just like that….April is over and done with. Four months already on the books for 2018, and here we are again with PJ’s photo challenge. April’s prompt was One Person and I admit I didn’t really think about this until…..um….yesterday!

But, today I rallied and went through the April photo folder to make anything something work.

One Person: Entrepreneur
He’s my One Person and we’re going on 38 years this July. God knows we’ve been through a lot together. Nine moves, two daughters, four dogs, four cats (two not really ours, but The Golfer “abandoned” them to move to Florida!), and two grand girls. And now, the latest challenge….cancer…which has racked up two surgeries, 8 months of Bell’s Palsey, radiation and daily oral chemo. But he’s a fighter and we’ll face it together. As Rachel Platten’s song “Stand By You” says,
Even if we can’t find heaven, I’m gonna stand by you.
Even if we can’t find heaven, I’ll walk through hell with you.
Love, you’re not alone, ’cause I’m gonna stand by you.

One Person: Peanut
The One Person who made me a Nana for the first time in 2008. Our original pocket rocket of a grand girl is now nine years old and one of the loves of my life.

One Person: Twix
And right on Peanut’s heels is her sister, who never ceases to amaze with what comes out of her mouth! Her personality is much, much larger than her little four-year-old frame. Definitely another love of my life.

Cabo’s One Person
I guess that would be me. Other people do help take care of him, but I’m the one he seeks out most often when he wants to play, or go outside, or sleep at my feet, or just thinks someone should be paying attention to him. Nothing thrills him more than when it’s time to throw the ball! He was Entrepreneur’s idea a year ago this month….so I would have company after he’s gone. So, he’s now in this with me for the long haul!

One Person: Old Man Winter
Yes, now I’m grasping for ideas. Old Man Winter has finally released his strangle hold on middle Missouri and Spring, with all her muses, has finally arrived. That means the windows are thrown open to let in the warmer air and scents of blooming trees and bushes. I have a Korean Spice Viburnum under this window, and the scent that’s drawn into the house through the window is heavenly.

I’m closing with what just might be the most famous “one person” quote of all time.

To the world you may be one person; but to one person you may be the world. ~Dr. Seuss

Check out the Photo Blogging Challenge over at PJ’s and enjoy who other’s featured as their One Person….Or would it be One People? 😀
(P.S. He’s a bit behind, so you might give him one more day before you look for his PBC post.)

March Photo Challenge: Five

This month’s photo blogging challenge, hosted by PJ at A-lil Hoohaa, marks the fifth year for the challenge. That’s quite a milestone in the blogosphere. It takes a lot of dedication to coordinate these blog hops. I’m happy he’s still hosting the challenge and appreciate his efforts. So, the photo challenge theme for March is, appropriately, Five.

I took a little different approach to the prompt this month. I know….. you all are shocked, aren’t you? Honestly, you should be used to it by now. 🙂 So, as I was saying…..I took a different approach this month and instead of each photo containing something representing five, I’m taking the prompt as the overarching theme for all my photos. And, I’m calling it…..

Five Elements of Composition in Photography

Of course there are many more than five, but five is all I need today. Personally. I think this is brilliant since this IS a photo challenge.

Element 1/5: Rule of Thirds
The Rule of Thirds is very common with a lot of photographers and designers. The frame is divided into nine equal rectangles, three across and three down as seen in my pic below. Instead of placing the objects of attention smack in the middle of the frame, objects are placed long one or more lines where they intersect. In this case, the flowers are concentrated in the left two thirds of the frame.

Element 2/5: Juxtaposition
What a funny word……juxtaposition. It’s explained as including two or more elements that either contrast or complement each other. This helps the photo tell a story. In this story, a sweet friend drew this mini mural at the end of our driveway on the very stressful day when Entrepreneur was to have another set of CT scans done to monitor the renal cell cancer spots in his lungs. The juxtaposition between the beauty and softness of the chalk and the hard reality of the concrete and asphalt tell the story that even in the middle of life’s harsh ugliness, there are reminders of beauty and love. At least it did for me.

Element 3/5: Golden Triangles
Much like the Rule of Thirds, Golden Triangle composition divides the photo with a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner. Two more lines from the remaining corners are drawn to meet the diagonal line at right angles. This divides the frame into triangles to help position elements. This type of composition creates “dynamic tension,” which adds to the interest of the photographed subject.

Element 4/5: Perspective or Viewpoint
Perspective or viewpoint means the relationships between objects in the photo. Objects in the foreground will seem larger than those in the background even though they may be close to the same size. This type of element also refers to the position of the camera. If the shot is taken with the camera low to the ground, you have what’s called a low perspective. And, if the shot is taken higher or above the image, you have what’s called a high perspective. This shot isn’t a great example, but I think you can see where the ultrasound photo in the front appears to be much larger in relation to the newborn and rest of the strip. Well, that’s what I was shooting for anyway.

Element 5/5: Fill the frame
Filling the frame means leaving little or no space around the subject. The focus is directed at the subject without any distractions, and highlights details that would probably be overlooked if the shot was taken from further back.

You may have figured out I did a neighbor’s maternity and newborn shoot this month…only about two weeks apart. To see how others celebrated PJ’s 5-year anniversary for this photo blogging challenge, blog hop on over to HERE on March 31st. What a perfect time to join in the fun as we begin year #6?!