Tuesday, December 30, 2014


A pot of soup maybe? Tea kettle? a dunk in the hot tub? How can I do Steaming into the New Year? When Mac gave us this theme and then escaped to Cornwall for the New Year's Holiday it didn't occur to me to contemplate taking any pictures while cooking Christmas dinner, nor did I have time to do a thorough search of my photo files for steamy images.

I thought back, though, to our recent drive to Arizona. On that route as we pass by Cement Plant Road south of Baker City, Oregon, we generally are in the dark as we approach the road's namesake. My usual attempts to catch a photographic glimpse of the plant come out like this: 

 or this:



We don't stop for the cement plant no matter how much I want to get a shot.
This time, my new camera provided the possibility for a faster shutter, and with hubby driving and carefully keeping the camera as still as possible while traveling 60 mph, I got a much truer view of the brightly lit plant--including the STEAM.

So that bit of steam is all I have to offer. (I really love the abstract jiggledy light trails of the other images though.)

My esteemed headbanger colleagues will have done much better with the steam I am sure. Check them out from the links on my sidebar.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Headbangers: FOOD

Well, I did think of something to do other than my main plan for the day, which is tossed by the wayside because it involved getting out of the house and someone--ahem-ahem--took my whole car when I told him there was a phone charger in it, instead of taking the phone charger and putting it in HIS car. Of course, he also took the keys to his car AND to the decrepit pickup we call the "dump truck" because mostly all we ever use it for is occasional trips to the dump.

Someone stopped and asked him if we wanted to sell it the other day. It would not bring in much cash and then what would we use to go to the dump?

So I have remembered that I need to post my thoughts on food--the theme presented us for this week by Craver Vii.

Last night I gathered a few shots from archives and from dinner. Still deciding which to use as the header, but I am nearly there.

 Cioppino--a seafood stew that we had at a dockside restaurant in Olympia on a trip there a few years ago. I had to remember when that was to look up the pictures.

Sticky Toffee Pudding--a yummy UK treat which was a bit different every time we had it. This one was in the village of Kinlochewe in Scotland.
Snowman cookies for the season. I haven't made any cookies this ambitious this year, and got candy canes for the pageant kids instead of making them cookies for the final rehearsal. Maybe it was the sight of the dreadful faces that moved me. ( I do have four kinds of cookies on hand.)

Last night's tacos. I thought about taking a picture after one was half eaten.
If any of the other headbangers had time for true food photography this week, they will surely have outshone me. No matter. All of these were well worth eating, and that's the point, isn't it? You will find their offerings through the links on my sidebar.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Right Place--Right Time

Why is this the right place at the right time? Until this year we had never been to the Arizona desert in the Spring. Our usual trip is in November, and beautiful as it can be, the desert is not in bloom then. So our trip for our grandson's graduation was the right place and the right time to not only celebrate, but to see the blooms on the saguaro.

On the same trip we were in the right place and right time to see--WHAT? A COYOTE IN THE CITY PARK? That's right. Maybe a more conventional interpretation of right time right place.

Sporting events provide some exciting opportunities to get right time shots. We caught the "WAVE" when we went to a Mariners game this summer.

and the action at the goal at the Priests vs. Seminarians soccer game. Block it Fr. Jaime!!!!

And you had to get up in the middle of the night to be at the right place and right time for the eclipse--one of a few this year.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

It's Cold Out There

Except it isn't.

When I posed the theme "It's cold out there" for our header challenge, I did not anticipate that when the assigned week arrived that our October winter weather would have turned to a December fall rise in temperatures. It's not like it's time to go around in sandals and shorts, but finding a cold out there image this week is not going to happen.

So I returned to yesteryear. Some pictures from some snowshoe trips to Mt. Rainier and to Satus Pass. A bit of urban hardware. A bit of country hardware. Most of these images are about five years old.

Here goes. I think I have decided which to use for the header, but I may change my mind by the end of the post.

Frozen barbed wire

Meadow above Satus Pass

Urban Security--well, sort of urban if you call a city of 10,000 or so urban.

Nisqually River Ice and Snow

Paradise River Ice and Snow

Reflection Lakes not reflecting

Looking for a Camp to Rob

Well, I ended up changing my mind. I was ready to post the camp robber for my header, but gave hubby a vote and he nixed it. What do you think? And what do you think of my headbanger friends? You will find their blogs linked in my sidebar.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Christmas is Coming

Part of getting ready for Christmas for us has been traveling for Thanksgiving. Our children and grandchildren are spread all over the west, so we start by traveling through Idaho to visit DD#2. Then on to Arizona where DDs #1 and #3 live. On to California for a couple of days with my brother. When the timing works out we stop by to see DS#2, but their schedule didn't mesh this year. We will see DS#1 at Christmas or New Year. Then there is DS#3--who emerges every couple years if the timing is right.

On our way home, we always have a meal at the Black Bear Diner somewhere in Northern California or Oregon. Tonight it was in Redmond, Oregon, where Santa Bear was having a honey treat at the counter.

 If you are ever traveling in the West and see a Black Bear Diner when you are nearing mealtime, STOP. You won't be disappointed.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Silver and Gold

I took pictures of Navajo silver jewelry at the trading post, but with my phone and can't get it from there in any decent form.

Here are my reflection pictures in the Christmas balls on the big tree at the shopping center. Why does this shopping center on the opposite side of Phoenix from the one we used to join my daughter Mary for lunch at have the exact same Christmas tree?

Better is the silver bark of the birch forest as we drove through south central Utah.

or the gold of the Golden Barrel Cactus at Boyce Thompson Arboretum.

Sometimes participating in the headbanger challenge is more difficult while traveling.

Others of the group are also traveling. Those who manage to get their posts up can be found in the links on my sidebar.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014


Our theme this week is waves. Mac suggested it.

Mac is in my picture. He didn't wave. But Julie did. So this is "wave" not "waves". And it is all Mac's fault.

They probably expected me to find an ocean wave since I live somewhat near a coast. Okay, let me find one. We did go participate in Coastal Clean-up Day a couple of times on the Olympic Peninsula. Will these waves do?
Now, which to crop for the header!

Check out my headbanger friends from their links in my sidebar.

Edit 1--I didn't crop it --that is the way it loaded.
Edit 2--I finally got it. "She waves."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Cell Phone Pictures

Let me tell you a story about cell phone pictures--in the early days--and digital camera pictures.

When my oldest son and his wife and toddler daughter moved to Siberia to live for some time, they took the digital camera we had given them for Christmas--film processing was expensive in Siberia. Did they send us any e-mail pictures of our granddaughter growing during the time they were there? NO! Had they stayed the possible five years they had planned and never sent any pictures we would have been seriously deprived. As it turned out, they only stayed there about six months.

After they returned to the States son got a cell phone that took pictures. I guess it e-mailed as well since he sent me some pictures to my e-mail. They were just the kind of pictures you might take while fiddling around testing out a new camera--pictures of their dinner. (Reminds me of ketchup.) I had a 19 inch computer monitor at the time, but when he send me these images they opened up to a full two inches across and there was no way to enlarge them.

I happened to mention that to him--that I was thoroughly unimpressed. So the next time he sent a picture he included this message. (Mosha was about two and a half by that time.) "Mosha and I went to the park and Mosha played football with the boys. She is the pink dot."

Cell phones cameras have come a long way. Some are even more powerful than some of the good point and shoot pocket sized cameras. We haven't even had a phone with a camera for long, so I have not gotten into any kind of a habit of using the cell phone for taking pictures.

In fact, the first phone I had with a camera came when we upgraded our cell phone plan, and I was pretty excited about it. But after taking a couple of pictures, I couldn't figure out how to get them from the phone to my computer. We went in for help in figuring it out, and were told that I could e-mail them to myself. The only problem was that our plan and my phone did not include e-mailing. I didn't want to just have pictures om my phone like the cell company associate then suggested. We did finally come up with a solution--I could text them to my daughter and then she could e-mail them to me. Texts were also not included in my plan at that time either, so my use of the camera feature was pretty limited. And I did nearly always have a camera in my pocket after all.

Since the first of this year I have had a phone with a fairly decent camera that also has the capacity to transfer the images to the computer by way of a cable. So I am in business for Craver's choice of theme for this week's header challenge--Cell Phone Picture (Mobile Phone Picture to Mac.)

So, what can I take with the cell phone?

One of the first things I did with the new phone was take this video of Mosha (now 14) at her piano recital. . Funny, I think I had my camera with me and I don't know what I have against taking video with it.

But take pictures? With a phone? I don't know. So Saturday afternoon after some errands in the Tri Cities, and armed only with my phone, we went for a stroll through Columbia Park.

Okay, what is one of the ubiquitous activities that has sprung up  with cell phone cameras?

Why, taking selfies, of course.

Epic selfie fail.
 Okay, that's a little better.
 How about the birds on the river?
and the Blue Bridge.
We threw a stone to make a ripple.

After visiting the Veteran's Memorial--(appropriate timing)

I was extremely excited to get this shot--till I saw it.

Cormorant with a fish in his mouth. How I wish I had had my camera with the zoom!

Maybe my Headbanger group friends will do better. You can see what they came up with from their links in my sidebar.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Unexpected Photo Result

Aha! I CAN play again this week. Hopefully will get the problems with the main laptop resolved before too long.

Our theme--introduced by Tom the Fishing Guy--is Unexpected Photo Result.

When I took this picture of the pond in Leavenworth a couple of years ago, I did not expect to create an Impressionist Painting.

Headbangers are listed in my sidebar with links to see how they have managed the Unexpected.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Dark Side

I am working under a handicap here. First of all, I provided this week's theme with nothing particular in mind other than Halloween. I've been busy and not had a chance to take or search my files. And my computer is acting like a recalcitrant teenager. Or worse. So I don't have access to my photo files nor my editing software.

So I went into my blog image archives to find something dark.

Here we are at sunrise in the Inside Passage--the edge of darkness.

Here we don't quite see the dark side of the moon.
Here is another dark day on the sea.
The luminaria lights up the darkness. This really was the dark side of the Christmas season, as we went to see the luminaria at the Yakima Arboretum a few years ago, the night was so cold and damp that only a handful of the paper bag lanterns stayed lit.

My headbanger friends will have done better. You can see their offerings by clicking the links in my sidebar. In the meantime, hopefully, a trip to the Geek Squad or some similar resource will put me back in the running.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Signs of Fall

Our theme this week, given us by Lew, is signs of fall. I think that Lew probably has a great many good fall leaves to show in his neck of the woods.

There is a reason that MY neck of the woods is known as the Evergreen State. But we DO have some colorful leaves as well. There are a few in my yard--my birch trees are turning. I could find a great display at the Yakima Arboretum. But our weekend took us over the mountains to Tacoma for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk, so I have a few out of the box signs of fall.

You are probably wondering about the strange scene that I chose for the header--definitely out of the box--and I will get to that. But first, the Walk. You see, for us a new sign of fall has become the trip to Tacoma to participate in this walk. We will do it every year for as long as we are able..

 Ranney got to be in the survivors' group photo. His cancer is still with him, but treatment is keeping it suppressed so that he can continue to enjoy life. There he is with the red hat in the back.

We raised our red lanterns in support of blood cancer patients.

The white lanterns are survivors. The yellow are in memory of those lost. There must have been at least a thousand participants in the walk. Do you see Mount Rainier peeking out of the clouds? What a great setting for the walk.
We did see some colorful fall leaves along the route.

Event parking was at a high school parking structure, and another sign of fall was taking place in the field  below.
On our way home on Sunday we took the route through Mt. Rainier National Park for a quick hike to Grove of the Patriarchs. That is always good for some fall color. The mushrooms in the previous post were also on this hike. 

 And more gold and red at Box Canyon.


We went on home by way of White Pass. Now, I did mention the Evergreen State, and there across the valley are prime examples. But wait, you may say. Why are some of those needle bearing trees so yellow.
It is a myth that evergreen trees do not lose their needles. They just don't turn yellow and drop all at once like deciduous trees do with their leaves. EXCEPT for the tamarack. Tamaracks needles turn yellow in the fall and lose the needles.
So that brings us to the image used for the header.
What does that have to do with fall?
That is Rimrock Lake in the fall (on Sunday to be exact.) It is one of several reservoirs in the Cascades  that fill from the snowmelt each spring, and are drained into the irrigation systems of Easter Washington by summer's end. I hiked to the middle of the lake to an island once.
In the spring it looks like this.
So there are my out of the box signs of fall, well, and a few very traditional ones.
The other headbangers will have some amazing signs of fall in their blogs, found from the links in my sidebar.