Monday, January 31, 2011

A more healthy diet?

They say eating more veggies is good for your health. Wonder if these count?

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Clean and shiny

Thought you might enjoy a break from all the snow sculptures. I mean, how many times can you comment "Amazing sculpture!"?

A necessary task of the homeowners with a well and septic system is having the septic tank cleaned every few years. Two layers of Topaz filters added. I like what Topaz did to the truck exhaust colors.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

"V" is for . . .


This sculpture was probably 6 feet tall. Amazing.

To answer some of the questions, I believe the teams had 48 hours to complete their work. Many teams pulled all-nighters, but the high-school entrants had to go home at 11PM. (Their starting blocks of snow were smaller). This year presented almost ideal conditions, and we were lucky enough to go through the displays about an hour after sculptors completed their work. Some years, by the time we get down there, our typical late-January warmup has caused softening of the detail.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Architectural Digest will be by in the morning

I enjoyed how true to outhouse architecture this snow sculpture stayed - right down to the clapboard siding, shingled roof, and moon on the door!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Strike up the band!

This penguin throws back his head in joy as he creates music on his snowy drum.

He's perched high atop yesterday's bear, as you can see when the full sculpture is revealed.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Let's get to the point

One detail that amazed me about this snow sculpted polar bar were his pointed claws, made of ice.

Several of you have asked the size of these sculptures. The were carved from solid, packed blocks of snow that were (can't recall exactly) somewhere between 6 and 7 feet tall. This bear was on a block of snow, and its back was probably about 3 feet off the ground. There was more above'll see it tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Monday, January 24, 2011

The eyes have it

Time for a walk through the annual snow sculpting competition. I loved the eyes on the Tiki sculpture.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Letter F

If there are more kinds of food to serve fried, I can't imagine them.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Not the news you want to see

One of my car's parts is its thermometer. This was the temperature, driving to work Friday morning. Taken one-handed, on my Droid X.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Thursday, January 20, 2011



Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Anyone up for a little snack?

The lower version added a Photoshop layer, set to Glowing Edges. Blend mode set to Pin Light, pushed the brightness just a little with an adjustment layer.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

What is that??

Cruising around Isla Mujeres in a rented golf cart, we passed this road sign. I have no idea if there is significance to this, or if someone was just playing around, but I found it both amusing and a little disturbing.

Monday, January 17, 2011

A is for ...

Angry Birds! If you are like me (and like many folks) you are mildy addicted to the cell-phone based game "Angry Birds". This junco, flying off a tree branch, reminded me of one of the characters in the game. What do you think?

Sunday, January 16, 2011


This photo will never win any quality awards. My DBF Jon is a big Packers fan (ugh....I cheer for the Bears). Watching the game last night and learning how to use the camera feature on my new cell phone, I snapped this crummy, low-light image and doctored it up with in-camera tools. Silly shot, but it fits the theme, as the Packers trounced the Falcons.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

Lots and lots and lots...

...of masks! Vendor's stall at Chichen Itza.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


Still trying to find the sweet spot on my 50mm lens. Only had one chance at these pancakes; it was time to flip them! Nothing like a pancake for breakfast!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Day of the Iguana

These critters were everywhere in Cancun

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

It's 5:00 somewhere

...according to Alan Jackson, anyway...

Anyone care for a beverage?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Body parts

I hope you don't find the image as gruesome as the title. Taken at the beach at Isla Contoy, 90 minutes by boat from Cancun, Mexico.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Through a window

Jon hung a feeder from the underside of an overhang out our living room. Makes capturing through-the-window-shots, such as this one of a red-breasted nuthatch, a little easier.

Like bird photos? Check out Jon's blog at He'd be tickled if you popped in and left a comment.

Saturday, January 8, 2011


I agonized for months over whether or not to upgrade to a smart phone, wishing that the iPhone was available through Verizon. YESTERDAY I brought home my new Droid X. Today, here's the skinny, as posted in US Today....

(But no worries, I really love this phone!!!)

Friday, January 7, 2011

Goldfinch #106, cleared for landing

Caught this goldfinch in flight. Looks like the nuthatch is soon to have company for lunch.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

"What's your favorite food, Marge?"

The favorite food of these two finches seems to be the feeder full of Safflower seed.

Shot through the window; cleaned up a bit with Topaz Adjust - Portrait smooth. No 50mm lens on this one! Used my DBF's Canon T1i, mounted with a 55-250mm kit lens. He usually leaves it sitting out for bird photo ops.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Smallest, smaller, small

Walked out to get the paper yesterday AM and carried my camera, mounted with my 50mm lens. Looked up in my tree and saw a house finch with a nice red breast. Took the shot you see below (this lens is fixed focus, no zoom, and I'm NOT climbing up there...)

See my subject?

Bring the picture in the house. Crop. What do you know? A few more birds are up there!

 Crop a little more.

 And, finally, get down to my original target. The lack of stabilization, and the fact that I'm now computer-zoomed to about 200%, is degrading the sharpness of the image. Conclusion? 50mm is too small to shoot small birdies...

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

And for dessert...

Chocolate fondue!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Building the meal

Yesterday's shot was you get the...

The cheese became fondue and this was sliced up and used as a dunker, along with ham, broccoli, and pretzels. Yummy!

Shot this on the black counter top, no flash, with my 50mm lens. Note to self; when shooting in low light, black is not a good backdrop.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Say cheese...

One of my photography goals this year is to experiment more with my 50mm lens. Making cheese fondue for the Rose Bowl, I decided to photograph my ingredients. Harder to zoom with your feet, than with your lens!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Feeling a little unsettled after New Year's Eve?

Better not take a seat here, then....