Sunday, December 30, 2012

Cloudy sunrise

On my way out to see Mom this morning and had to stop twice to take photos - plus a couple from the truck window :-) The clouds were wispy and light and swirly - and the color and light changed very quickly. But it made for a great beginning of the day for me.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Wild one Murphy!

During a walk on the Bonneville Golf Course today, Murphy did one of those numbers of running madly toward me in hopes of getting a treat! He did!
Here's a couple of shots of how he looks going wide open!!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Paying attention

I probably have a head start on most in terms of paying attention to what is around me in the woods; as I spent much of my childhood in the woods, mostly alone, observing faeries and such! When I hike I want to be quiet - no or minimal talking - so that I can see and appreciate what is around me. Often I do not cover a lot of territory quickly - too much to stop and look at.

Here's an example; Murphy and I were hiking and, as usual, he was running around ahead of me. This photo was not obvious, but the light stopped me and caused me to walk around the split wood to find this shot.

Face in wood.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Snuggled in

I didn't take a lot of photos this Christmas - mostly just enjoyed being with family and friends. But here's one that was irresistible - Fuzzy all snuggled in the ornament wrapping paper. He was providing support and comfort to Diana while she decorated the tree - in his own way, of course!

Those really are eyes filled with love!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Dragon returns!

Quite a while ago I bought a packet of dog toys at Costco for Murphy, and included in the bag was a rubber squeaky purple dragon! Over the years he has sat around and been played with a bit - but not by Murphy 'cause dragon is too cute to get chewed up!
When our friends Rick and Carey came to visit over Thanksgiving we played a game of hiding the dragon various places - and I got the last 'hide' in Carey's suitcase! But then Dragon returned for Christmas, this time with a friendie!
Here they are - at home in SLC until they find a way to sneak back to the NC Kids!

Merry Christmas

We had a white Christmas here in Salt Lake City this year. Here's some snow scenes we liked.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Jazz Vespers with Zachary and his bass

Zach played in the Jazz Vespers at the Unitarian Church last night - a rollicking and fun jazz festival. He was called late last week to participate (replacing his bass teacher) and performed exceptionally well despite a case of nerves at the beginning!  Here's a couple of photos from the event..

This is the bass guitar that Zach built - sounds great!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

More Refuge

As much as I love the birds of the refuge, there is other beauty there also. Watching the rushes swaying in the wind and backlit by the sun is mesmerizing to me and threatens to transport me to another world. The teasels, with their sharp spikes and ancient shapes; the cattails - both when together and when falling apart, otherwise known as sending off their seeds into the wind; all of these and more catch my heart as I wander through the marsh.
Here's a sampling of some of what caught my eye, birds and non-birds, last Friday.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Fun with the GBH!

Murphy and I went out to the Farmington Bay Refuge yesterday around midday to see what we could see.  And most of what we could see were Great Blue Herons (GBH)!
Every time we turned around there seemed to be another heron, they were that plentiful. The one pictured here walked back and forth on the ice while Murphy and I walked the dikes. We would disappear from its view and then reappear down the dike in an attempt to get close, but that really didn't work. It is a bit hard to control a lively lab!

A power pole reflects along with the heron.

Very careful steps here as I peered around the tree.

The star of our walks is always Murphy.

The mountains were soft and mysterious over the marsh grasses.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Say goodnight!

Tomorrow is the shortest day of the year - and my birthday! As the sun was getting low tonight, I caught the light reflected on the grasses in our backyard - saying goodnight to the day!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Photos are for remembering, if nothing else. There are many other reasons for taking photos also - but bringing back memories is the primary one for most of us to take photos.
I was looking for a certain photo today and came across this one - it is from our time in Hawaii and was taken on 1/1/12 about 6:15am at the Black Sand Beach on the big island. The 20 second exposure gives some star movement but also captures the purples in the sky...and the water becomes silky smooth.  I remember this well.


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Neighbor Christmas gifts - what to do?

Every Christmas the question of what to do for our neighbor's arises - as I am sure it does for them. We often wind up throwing out many gifts that we get because they are too sweet or something. Diana has made toffy for some years, and some years we were gone!

This year we thought we would keep it simple; Diana will make some gingersnap cookies and we will deliver them with a card that has a photo of their house all lit up. Perhaps a bit of a keepsake for them.
Here's what some of the houses look like now:

Monday, December 17, 2012

Roses and the Altar

Yesterday I took photos of the St. Mark's Cathedral vestry after church services. After the vestry had departed, I saw this wonderful bouquet of roses sitting under the altar.
The fresh pinkness of the roses contrasted with the formal manmade surroundings caught me - as if there was some statement there perhaps? I enjoyed the contrast and the beauty.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

A couple of ways to pay it forward

Snow came last night and today and the birds were hungry (aren't they always?)! The goldfinch are always so eager when the weather is bad and often they become so engrossed in eating that I can walk right up to them. They roar away with the rush of wings and then come back quickly when I am gone. I counted 20 in this photo.
I've eaten a lot of birds in my life, and love to provide them with food as a way of thanking them for their beauty and life!

A Christmas project I created this year is providing family photos for families at the Midvale Road Home homeless shelter.  Two photo shoots so far with at least one more scheduled.  Families are very grateful, and I enjoy the interaction with them.  As I was setting up for tonight's session I saw one of the photos that I had taken in Monday's session - and had to take this photo to provide a small sense of why I do this.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Capturing light

The sunset is not easy to capture from our house due to all the trees and houses in the way - sometimes looking away from the actual sunset there is a wonderful reflected light picture waiting for us - as it was this day. Taken from our deck, I ran into the house to get my camera and captured a few scenes.
I looked at the horizontal photos and they are OK but the vertical photo has a bit more mystery and drama to it (my take) so I decided to use it.
Beauty is all around us - keep looking!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Max Lazerus - RIP

Today, after valiant efforts by Dr. Peggy, Max decided he could not go on.  He was the best dog ever and we will miss him terribly.  All who knew him got to experience his wonderful personality and happy tail.  When we went to see him today, although he could not do anything else, his tail would wag when we talked to him.  He was a Great Dog!!!

MAX - December 24, 2000 - December 10, 2012

Monday, December 10, 2012

Jazz Pianist

A dear friend of ours is an accomplished jazz pianist and recently recorded a CD with a professional bassist.  He asked for some CD cover shots so we had a photo session at his place while he played the piano. In the midst of hearing some wonderful tunes, mostly older ones as befits those present, I managed a couple of good shots.
Here's one that we all liked.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Fire in the hole!

I've been cleaning out the garage and organizing things since Zach completed his guitar; and have a lot of small pieces of wood left over. So I fired up the chiminea yesterday, it was cold out and the sun had not yet begun to warm me.  Lots of smoke at the beginning but a ferocious looking fire inside the container made for a view that I hadn't captured before.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


A foggy day today, that cleared a bit towards the end of the day. I had to go south to Sandy and loved the clouds/fog/sky/mountains interchange.
Murphy received a bath today at doggy day care and he came home with a piece of a bandana on his neck - he looked so good and smelled even better!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Canadien wildlife again

Following on from yesterday's post, I had a request for a 'grizz' so here is one.  We stayed a ways away, and the water was very shallow when we saw this grizz. They are apparently very irritable in early spring, very hungry and not amenable to curious visitors.
I also threw in the 'peek-a-boo' black bear and a couple of shots of a bald eagle where the form is as beautiful as the bird.

Not sure what he is saying and not sure I want to know.

This guy played hide and seek with us for a few minutes.

The spots you see are water droplets.

He has a small fish in his claws.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Reminders of simplicity

I was reviewing a series of old photos today, photos I took in 2007 with a D50 Nikon (6 megapixel) and a fairly vanilla 70-300mm lens.  A fairly new digital photographer, this was an entry level DSLR, a step up from the point and shoot Canon that I had been using.
The series of photos came from a salmon fishing trip to Canada in early June of that year. I'd never been salmon fishing, but jumped at the chance to go.  It was early in the season and not a lot of salmon were present. The bald eagles, black and grizzly bears were everywhere and they were all very hungry!

One of the guys on the trip asked me in a teasing way - 'Did you come to fish or did you come to take pictures?" Well, I caught the first salmon and went on to catch another, PLUS got a lot of wonderful photos.

The simple D50 with a kit lens did an outstanding job on the photos; especially considering how little I knew. Sometimes I think a lack of knowledge can be a blessing.
Here's some of the photos that I took while fishing!

White-sided dolphin cavorting in the bay - love the hills in the background.

Dolphins would swim with the boats - they are quite fast!

Looking for food - the eyesight of these birds is hard to comprehend.

This guy would watch us and if we caught a fish he would attempt to take if off the hook before we could land it.