Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Headbangers are each doing their own thing this week.

I think my theme is TODAY. 

What does this image have to do with TODAY? 

Well, we are in Arizona and we went hiking here today.

And today I am working with my traveling computer which has limited photo-editing--or maybe it is not limited and it is just my knowledge of the machine and its possibilities and my unwillingness to learn more about it. But it is tiny, and takes up next to no space or weight in the luggage.

It is also limited in that it is not hooked up to my photo files which are at home in Washington.
 Did you know that saguaro cactus are 70 years old before they grow their first arm? (Is it a coincidence that we came to Arizona to celebrate my husband's 70th birthday?) These cacti must be real old-timers.

And they can grow VERY VERY tall.

There was some mention of including a header from the past in the post. I looked through the collection and decided that this one is the most appropriate for the week. It is from about this time last year. The theme was Skyline, and the competition took place on Ranney's actual birthday.

We expect to get some snowshoeing in next month. We continue to do everything we can to enjoy our favorite activities between rounds of doctor visits and within the limits of energy that his cancer imposes. This includes travel, hiking, family, and volunteer work.

The other headbangers are doing THEIR own thing in their blogs linked near the top of my sidebar. Drop by and see what they are up to.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Wild Animals

Wild Animals? Oh, Christine you have unleashed a monster. Don't you know that I live in the Wild West, hike, and love to travel?

Christine has given us the theme of "Wild Animals" for this week's header challenge. Well may the others in our little cadre of competitors come up with some great critters, but they probably will not have come from as far flung as mine. You can find their choices from the links in my sidebar.

Just to the left of the tree to the left of the redhead--there--do you see them?


Well, those little lumps on the ridge are elephants--a delightful treat on a cruise on Lake Periyar in Periyar National park and Tiger Reserve in India. Ah well, we did not see any tigers--I've only seen tigers in the zoo and featured one when we did "Boxes" a few weeks ago.

I've been to zoos in, let's see, four countries, and national parks in seven. I did say I travel, right? Or at least I have in the past been privileged to do so.

The mama monkey and her baby were at a Hindu temple we visited.

Back at home we have spent much time in our closest National Park, Mt. Rainier, where this marmot was curious about who we might be. These guys come out of hibernation skinny in the spring and eat, eat, eat, and then eat some more so that they will be nice and fat for their next winter's nap.
 On one hike about five years ago we rounded a bend and encountered this young chap. What a delight. We hadn't seen one in the park for nearly 30 years. We've seen lots since.
 This American White Pelican we saw at Pelican Bay when we cabinned at Crescent Lake in Idaho. We have a flock of them that summer here in the Yakima Valley, and it is a wonder to watch them as they fly in formation.
Are Scottish frogs friendlier than those in other locations? 

In Denali National Park this Grizzly was on his way away. That was fine with me.

 I was less concerned about these Dall Sheep, though I wouldn't want to get in the way of those horns.

Or this moose.    Of course all three were photographed from the bus.
Our whale watching tour out of Juneau gave us sights of some of the largest of wild critters.

 Alas the tallest and my favorites I've seen only at zoos--in fact I had the chance to feed one a few years ago at the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle. It was a birthday present.

Oh, yes, my camera! it's not one of the fanciest, but I fancy the awesome zoom lens that is one of its features.

Would I come so close to these wild critters otherwise?

The giraffe and the gorilla were in San Francisco.

These guys were all in Phoenix. (Love the Meer cats!)
I chose this Alaska Brown Bear from the Alaska Wildlife Center for the header. That he is rescued and rehabilitated does not make him any less wild.
And so, for now, I'll go, good bye.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Rushed Reflections

I was rushed this week--no one's fault but my own--and should have looked back in my files for a multi-reflection with people. This one, the very first image I took with my cell phone in December 2011. That phone does not have a way to get the image off, so I had to text it to my daughter, who then e-mailed it to me. It was taken in the corner mirror of the restroom in the restaurant where we were eating.


Multi-Reflection with People

Don't do this with a flash if your car is dirty.

It works much better without.

Of course, washing the car would be another option.


Don't do this in a hurry or you will not get the best of results.
Multi Reflection

Don't do it with flash if you are shooting into a mirror.

There is a person in the reflection, but it isn't multi.

Some other less than perfect results from hurry.
too much noise, no person

Too dark for reflection--don't shoot while driving--I missed the mountain silhouette anyway.
But I have to settle for something and my time is running out.

Mac gave us a challenge this week and I have dropped the ball by taking some rushed images. See how the others did with the links on my sidebar.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Ideal Weather

Out Header Challenge theme is Ideal Weather.

Well, at the moment there are few places on earth experiencing ideal weather. Storms, record low temperatures, icy roads. Today many local school districts had delayed starts because of the weather.

I had been at the church late this afternoon (Tuesday) preparing for the evening's classes and started getting texts from the volunteers. Are we having class tonight? Well, yes, didn't I text you yesterday to remind you that we were starting up again this week? But what about this weather?

Weather? What is it doing? It was raining a bit when I came in an hour earlier, and you don't get much view from my basement office.

Sure enough. The bit of rain had turned to freezing rain and snow. We cancelled classes and had parents take kids home as they arrived. No need to have them have to come out in icy conditions twice.

Tomorrow (Wednesday's) lab, doctor, and chemo appointment in Yakima is an early one. We will allow at least time and a half of normal travel time, but if the school districts between here and Yakima are on a delayed schedule, we will call North Star Lodge (cancer center) to get a reschedule.

Ideal weather depends on your plans. This weather is ideal for curling up with a good book.

On this day last July, the weather was ideal to hike the Naches Loop Trail.
 But a good December or January day of snowshoeing looks more like this.

Our Headbanger group sets a challenge each week and vote among ourselves as to who has best captured the spirit of the theme. This week's "Ideal Weather" was proposed by Craver VII. You will find his link and the others in my sidebar.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

It's All New!

It's a New Year.

And it's a new moon.

Not only is it a new moon to start the new year, but it is also a supermoon--one of the times of the year when the moon is closest to the earth.

This would be especially cool if you could actually see it.

The new moon is barely visible because it rises with the sun and sets with the sun, and there is not much of it to see because  it is such a slim sliver of visible reflected light.

And it is not visible at all today because it is so darn FOGGY!!

So I am presenting these shots of a crescent moon taken a couple of years ago. It is about as close a shot as I can come up with of a new moon. A few days after (or was it before) the moon is truly new.

And since Tom gave us the theme "It's All New!" I usher in the new year with the new (or only slightly used) moon.