Friday, November 30, 2012

Lily drama

Diana bought a bunch of beautiful purple lilys when R&C came to visit; and they have lasted quite a while.  They are tempting, luscious flowers and tantalizing color and have been the subject of many photo attempts by me, none of which were entirely satisfactory. This morning, as I was 'Ziting' my way around the internet on my iPad, I looked up and saw the light behind the lily's and tried again. This time I feel much better about the results, so here are a couple that I liked.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

No Moon

A visit to the shoreline preserve yesterday in the later afternoon was intended to capture a very nice full moon rising over the Wasatch mountains.  Well, that was not Mother Nature's intent. Instead cloud cover filled the sky over the mountains and the moon was not visible until it was a ways above the mountains - and I was at home eating hot clam chowder!

What was there for us to see were myriads of Northern Harriers; most showing no fear of humans as they cruised just above the grasses hunting their prey. The Harriers were joined later by Barn Owls just as it was getting too dark to get a photo of them. I stood in the structure and the birds flew quite close by; watching me and the ground at the same time, it seemed.

Here's a couple of photos from last evening - after a stressful workday, I was able to relax quite nicely just standing on the boardwalk watching the activity - birds and people.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

One more time at the Preserve

The structures at the TNC Shoreline Preserve are fascinating to work with in the light.  The tall one, looking a bit like a ship from a distance, captured my imagination for a while the other day. Here's a few photos of it that I hadn't published yet.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Excitement on Kensington Ave

The last couple of days have provided a good deal of excitement on Kensington Ave.

First, Zachary completed his second bass guitar, this time making the neck as well as the body.  He really did all the work and has grown substantially in his woodworking abilities since the first bass - also his confidence. This one is a real beauty.

Secondly, Diana heard our neighbors dog barking a lot today which is not usual, so she went over to the fence to check.  Elvis (the dog) had cornered a large raccoon in an outdoor fireplace, and the two animals had reached an impasse.  Diana got a neighbor to jump down into the backyard and the shift in attention was enough to let the raccoon get up the outside of the fireplace and away from the dog.  He then proceeded to climb down a small oak tree and jump over to our plum tree and make his way up toward the deck where Diana was sitting taking photos.  As the 'coon approached the steps to the deck, Diana decided enough of the photography and got the dog and went inside.
The raccoon disappeared for the moment.
Kudos to Diana for the thoughtfulness of grabbing the camera.

Murphy's new toy

Enuff of this serious photography stuff!  Murphy got a new bag of toys from Costco yesterday, and one of those toys has become his favorite - the monkey. He squeaks it, tosses it around and generally enjoys playing with it. Unlike his earlier years, he doesn't immediately pull the stuffings out to get at the squeaker.  The toys last longer these days - except for rubber chickens when he decides to eat their heads off!!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

TNC Shoreline Preserve and Sunset

Rick and I traveled out to the Nature Conservancy Shoreline Preserve on the west side of Layton to photograph the sunset last night.  Boy does it get chilly out there!!
The beauty is impossible to truly describe or capture.  Everywhere you turn there is color, form and shapes as the light changes and plays its magic on the land water sky.  The structures on the land are enhanced by people and the light plays with them also.  Enjoy these - take your time and click on them to make them larger!

As we left, a barn owl began hunting in the dark just across the parking lot from our truck.  I turned the headlights on bright and we watched hin hunt with no concern for us and the light.  He was focussed on his prey!  A wonderful way to end a wonderful trip!

On the boardwalk the sunlit grasses surrounded us.

The wonderful structure that provides a look out over everything. 

The sun begins its downward path over Antelope Island, lighting up the grasses and open water.

Looking south from the preserve, the big sky and open land were engulfing to us.

Looking north from the preserve, the Wasatch were highlighted by the setting sun.

Almost down, the fun is about to begin!

Orange and yellow in the south, with kids hanging off the lookout and Rick walking back for another shot.

Tundra swans silhouetted by the colorful skies.

Ridges of clouds highlighted by the setting sun - these colors were really there.

Cattails in the setting sunlight.

Friday, November 23, 2012

I'm thankful for .......

Many things, and especially the wide-open spaces that I am able to frequent on  short notice. They feed my soul and restore my being. The wind blows the civilization out of my brain and body and I can become part of my surroundings for a while. They are an essential part of my living.
Thank you!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Visiting Antelope Dreamland again

Our friends Rick and Carey are visiting for Thanksgiving week, so while the girls cooked and shopped in preparation for tomorrow, the boys got up early and went to Antelope Island.  It took us about an hour to get across the 4-mile causeway, cause we just had to stop and take a lot of photos in the early morning light.
Murphy got to run around a lot; we saw a lot of buffaloes but no coyotes or antelope. Interesting what a difference between visits - the one I made two weeks ago and this one.  A mule deer did jump up and pose for us, which was much appreciated.

Here's a few photos that I liked.

Ranger Rick in the field with his trusty companion, Murphy in the background.

The mule deer was the excuse to shoot this, but the reflections in the top half of the photo make the picture.

Early morning light on Antelope

Dreamland again.
Sunrise over the lake.

All lines lead to the island.

Soft and gentle in morning light with seagulls resting nearby.

An experiment - not too bad.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A collage of life

Today's photos are a mix of life around the house - from lily's to squash to mountains to moon amongst the clouds.  Real incredible beauty exists right among our lives.

Monday, November 19, 2012


A very beautiful day here in the valley - a bit breezy but close to 60! Fuzzy joined Diana and I as we did some work in the yard and garden this morning.  He loves to sit up in the archway and fight with Diana - or whomever happens to be passing through.
Here's a couple of shots of him.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

A visit to the refuge

We haven't been out to Farmington Bay Wildlife refuge for quite a few months. Dogs aren't welcome in the summer and early fall, so we normally wait until at least September to take Murphy back out. This year we were a little later.
Lots of duck and geese hunters - with wind and low clouds it looked like an excellent day to be hunting. Some dynamic skyscapes appeared along with a couple of ducks and some of the wonderfully simple plants that grow there.
Enjoy - Murphy sure did!!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

part of our lives

Today - Murphy waiting for his 'girlfriend', Sherry the mail lady; Zachary's first coat of finish on the new bass; and leaves on water.
Life is good!