Thursday, January 31, 2013

I'm Moving

Well, I've managed to wear out my welcome on two separate photo-sharing sites.

It first happened here when I was given my eviction notice that stated I'd filled up my photo bucket to capacity. Couldn't post no more. Well, I could post text, but no photos. I'm funny though, I think a photo blog done in words only would be very tiring. 1,000 words per photo and all.

Not a huge hurdle when you've got an IT guy in the house. It went unnoticed. Did you notice? I bet you didn't notice. He gave me the workaround of adding my photos to Flickr and just linking to them in my blog post. Worked like a charm, even if butt pains were involved.

But... like the photo-holic that I am, I hadn't cleared my probationary period before I got a similar notice from Flickr. Too many photos. (Yeah, like there is such a thing.) Their method of dealing with it is to allow you to continue to post photos, but they delete your oldest in a first-in-first-out method. Enablers.

So.... I'm on the move. I'm heading over to a hosting site called Zenfolio, where I'll have unlimited storage of my photos on both a web-site and blog feed.

Here's the link to the blog.

The website, where you can see a slide show of some of my fave photos set to a jazzy tune. Clunky at this point, but I'm working on it. You can get from one to the other with the links.

Anyone who subscribed to this blog (Heeelllooooo? Is anybody out there?) can do so on the new one, obviously. There's an RSS feed button and an email subscribe option when you click into any particular blog post.

So, there you have it. Hope to see you in my new, beautifully wide-open digs.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

P52/Week 4:"My Daily Routine"

"My Daily Routine" is the theme for this week's Project 52.

One load of laundry, a made bed and a cup of tea all were taken into consideration for my subject this week, but none of them would have been as cute at this:

P52/Week 4:"My Daily Routine"

I can't tell you how happy it makes my heart to hear them play. They work hard and it shows. So, I very happily chose listening to their musical routine as the featured, photographed part of 'My Daily Routine'. (Sorry to all of those of you who would've loved to see my laundry baskets.)

My little musicians are working particularly hard on the score for a high school musical they'll be playing in. It's very different from anything they've done so far, since they'll be part of an orchestra and only playing a very distinct part of the music. (Explained by a musical nobody, so please excuse me.)

This I do know:  It's all rhythm, which is Nico's forte, so while it's new and challenging for Nico, it's at times overwhelming for Enzo, who usually plays melody.

Enzo laying WM

In exasperation yesterday while they were practicing, Enzo blurted out, "I can't believe I'm doing this for free!"

Grandma and I just about rolled over laughing... The jaded outlook of a child professional musician.

But, wonderful big brother that he is, Nico takes the time to turn around and help Enzo figure out the chord formations and Enzo plugs away.

both looking at music WM

I can't wait to see how proud they are of themselves when it's all said and done and they've managed to get in there and play with the high school orchestra like the true professionals that they are.

Monday, January 21, 2013

A Visit with Baby Mila

I made another visit to the hospital to see my new great niece, Mila yesterday. Now that she's out of the incubator she gets to be held a lot more, so I wanted to make sure the new parents had lots of not-from-a-cell-phone photos of this amazing time.

This one had to be the catch of the day:

Family smiling BW WMI

I'm so happy to have gotten it. I can't imagine a more perfect first family portrait. It makes me so happy, except that it makes me sad that I don't have a similar photo of my family. But, I think I'll just choose to be happy for them and link it up for my Sweet Shot this week.

P52 Sweet Shot Tuesday with Kent Weakley

You didn't think you were going to get away with looking at only one photo when a baby's involved, though? Did you?
Needless to say, I got lots more.

family kiss BW WM

family tight WM

I got some one-on-one's with mom and dad, too.

Jen holding Mila WM

Jen holding Mila portrait BW WM

Dad got busy taking care of her needs:

Jason over Mila smile WM

Then I captured this sequence while he wrapped her back into her blanket.

Jason blanketing sequence WM

While I was there, Grandma and Grandpa showed up and then Aunt Kacie and Uncle Ryan. We had to take turns seeing her since there are only 4 guests allowed in her little area.

Grandpa and Mila WM

Grandma and Mila WM

Kacie with Mila WMRyan and Mila WM

Kacie and Ryan hiccups WM
Mila had the hiccups, which got a big reaction from these two. Cute and cuter.

Ok, I have more, but I'll leave it at that lest I tire your scrolling muscles. Maybe I'll post a few Mila portraits tomorrow.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Game Day

N.O.T.H.I.N.G. makes Enzo happier than when we're all playing a game together. We all love games, but, my Enzo knows how to make it happen. Love him for that.

group WM

The game he wanted to play is not a simple one. There are characters to choose, monsters to fight, encounters to maneuver, a castle to map, treasure to find and more monsters to fight.

overview mid game WM

The good news is that it's a cooperative game and we all help each other along the way. (You are free to read that as: the boys and Jt help Grandma and me figure out what to do on our turns.)

Nico helps Grandma WM

The game has many missions, but the one we chose ("The Howling Hag") is one that's been played twice before and lost. We were never going to play another mission until we beat this one. And so we set out on our adventure.

E N rolling die WM

 I was Wulfgar, human barbarian. So me.

figure WM

contemplating moves WM

box on head WM

Jt Enzo reading WM

And, guess what? We did it... we beat that Howling Hag right back into the netherworld from whence she came. 
we won WM

It was a good day.

Linking up with Simple Things Sunday.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Assignment Work

I got a photo assignment today. Jt needed a photo.

He wanted a picture of his guitar so that he can have it as the wallpaper on his iPhone.

He's not a complicated man.

Tilt WM

overhead WM

I took those two knowing he'd want to be able to see the whole (mostly whole... I wanted it to be interesting) thing.

But, while I was taking these, I started to wonder whether he had given me this assignment today knowing I was needing something fun to do. I was having such a great time rearranging the guitar, trying to get it into the right light but without getting my own reflection on it. (Don't look too hard, please.)

I also had a lot of fun looking at it from lots of angles and finding a few that were interesting.

curve and knobs WM

bridge WM

Mission accomplished. He's got his phone all fancied out and can now see his guitar even when he can't be with his guitar. LOL

Thanks for the reason to play, Jt. <3

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

P52/Week 3: "Pieces of Me"

All these things I've been reading about putting together a photography portfolio have taught me nothing if they've not taught me that all of my photos should have a cohesive feel. That someone could look at my work and fill in the blank of "Kel is a __(name any genre here)__ photographer."

That I should be a portrait photographer. Or a lifestyle photographer. Or a wildlife photographer.

Aaaaaannnndddd, sure, maybe I can occasionally venture into the wilds of street photography and even a few (kitchen) studio setups. But, I'd also like to be much better at landscapes and creative composite images. I want to do it all.  WAAAA!

So, when I took this photo of myself for the P52 "Pieces of Me" entry....

P52/Week 3: "Pieces of Me"

I realized it shows how I feel about this photographic journey I'm on.  I don't want to pick just one... I want to be good at them all!
(And maybe I should add fine art photographer to my wannabe list.)

More Birds

Couldn't resist adding a few more bird portraits to my list. I've become quite addicted to seeing not only what we can see and identify, but also whose picture I can nab while they're there. As Moose Peterson, wildlife photographer, says, "They get food, I get a picture. That's the deal."

white breasted nuthatch 2 WM
White-breasted Nuthatch

It's like a video game that I can't stop playing. If anyone notices me buying so much bird food that I can no longer feed my family, you have my right to intervene.

downy woodpecker WM
Downy Woodpecker
downy landing on feeder WM
Downy Woodpecker coming in for a landing

... and where there's bird food, there are squirrels... and this guy was totally posing for me.

squirrel pose WM

Linking up with Sweet Shot Tuesday..
P52 Sweet Shot Tuesday with Kent Weakley

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Simple Things That Weren't Always So Simple

One of the 'simple-things' signs that your boy is growing up, that only a mom would recognize or acknowledge... painting model figurines.

Painting WM
It wasn't that long ago that I never would have imagined Nico having the patience or interest in choosing to put together precision model figures from his favorite books and then paint them.  I mean... the gluing, the waiting, the painting, the switching of colors, more waiting, the adjusting of glue and paint... just wasn't really something I'd have ever suggested to Nico. He's done lots of crafts, but it's never about the process, it's always just the finished product that he wanted. 

But, as moms we learn... when they're ready, they let us know.

And he was ready. 

painting back WM

He bought the figures with his own money. He waited for them to come in the mail.  He glued what he needed to glue. He waited for it to dry.  He bought the paint with his own money. And he painted with that teeny-tiny brush. He took his time. He made sure each one was inspected under a magnifying lens. He made corrrections and he waited for more drying.

Close up painting WM

This is a boy who has always loved making the characters from his favorite books come to life, whether it was toilet-paper roll characters, costumes or just drawing them as best he could and cutting them out and gluing them to clothes pins. So, there's no surprise there. Boy loves his books. But, the meticulous detail and patience that was required for these figures went way beyond anything he's done before. 

And, I'm so proud of him. Best part: He's got this to show for it...

finished figs WM

It's the simple things that make me realize he's growing up.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Introducing Mila Kay

Look who I got to meet today.

My GREAT NIECE!  So very sweet and tiny and...need I say it?... cute! 

Through the opening

She made her appearance 6 weeks earlier than expected, so she's got to do a little time in the incubator. But, she's doing wonderfully. Lungs have developed and she's eating on her own.

Mila close up

She's making me a proud *great* aunt already.

full scene

Jason hands

...and yes, everything was in place and accounted for...


She's perfect!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Tweet Shot Tuesday

I've been having quite the time for the last few months capturing bird photos via a well-stocked feeder. It's like a game, or like hunting, I suppose. But, without the mess.

Nico has been enjoying helping me to identify any species that we didn't previously know and because of that I know there are many more birds out there which I haven't managed to get a good poses out of yet. So the fun continues.

Here is what is probably my favorite so far of a Tufted Titmouse eating suet at the feeder...

titmouse WM 

So I'm putting it up for my Sweet Shot this week.

P52 Sweet Shot Tuesday with Kent Weakley

Here are some of my other favorites:

Female Cardinal

Cardinal - female WM

...and her mate...

cardinal WM

The Black-Capped Chickadee:

chickadee WM

A Song Swallow, who cleans up the mess left by the others at the feeder:

Dunno WM

The White-Breasted Nuthatch, who walks face-down on trees (and logs):

White Breasted Nuthatch WM

... and just for good measure and variety... and because I put a handful of birdseed and peanuts on this stump, which is very near my patio

squirrel WM