Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Graduate

My mom, Kayla and me
Three Generations

Congratulations to our daughter, Kayla Elizabeth, on her graduation from high school.

A sea of brown and white robes dressed in smiles and laughter.

Tassels switched sides; caps thrown into the air; her future begins.

We love you, Kayla.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Good Morning

A stand of macho wheat rises above the rest.

These are the last of the winter wheat images that I'd like to share.
Please enjoy.

Rosy sunrise.

Calves watch on one side of the roadway while I take photos of....

...a red winged blackbird getting breakfast on the other.

Red winged blackbird,

...leaping gently from one stem to the next, hanging upside down as necessary to grab a bite...

...while the sun continued to rise in the east...

...illuminating the golden fields.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Rosy Dawn

The continuing saga of an early morning in the peace of nature's church.

Rays of the dawning sun began to filter through the trees, illuminating the tops of wheat like candle glow.

A fog bank rolled in from the north heading toward the river, enveloping everything in its path. This red barn is framed by silhouettes of mighty trees.

As is this cow and some farm equipment.

Morning gently wakens the earth.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Fields of Wheat

The road between the city and the lake winds through lush countryside. This time of the year both sides of the asphalt stretch for miles and miles with fields of green. Crops rotate year to year with the usual plantings of soybeans, corn and cotton which are nice enough crops, but my favorite of all is the winter wheat.

Winter wheat gives Ireland a run for its money when it comes to the color green. Winter wheat peaks above the ground in the late winter, bright slashes of green rows amid the lingering browns and grays of the cold season. By mid-spring the brighter green has mellowed into a deep blue green, the fine leaves waving in the spring storms like waves on the ocean. "Sky of blue, sea of green..."

Late spring into early summer, like now, the winter wheat is beginning to ripen. Fields of green are turning golden.

This, my last day at the lake before heading for the city, I rose at 5am in order to be at the wheat field by dawn.

Farmers have terraced their land to help control erosion. Not being a farmer I'm thinking there are many reasons to terrace land but that seems to be the case. In the above photo there is a strip of green cutting through the turning wheat where a lowland lies. Here, various duck species come to swim about, surrounded by wheat. I've seen the usual mallards and wood ducks here.

"And he gave it for his opinion, that whoever could make two ears of corn, or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot of ground where only one grew before, would deserve better of mankind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together."

Jonathan Swift
Gulliver's Travels

Purple vetch climb along the outer edges of wheat along the roadside.

The sun rises golden and warm, illuminating the wheat much like light through a stained glass window. Next post I'll show you more of the winter wheat and surrounding farmland and its creatures.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Rockin' Robin

Oh my, I really don't have much to say STILL! I'm up to my eyeballs in boring work, readying for graduation soirees and company coming, finishing up projects and yada, yada, yada. Thank heavens this wet, bedraggled baby robin dropped by to cheer me up and bring a smile.

Mom and/or dad was out getting worms for this little tyke so I settled on the sofa's arm to wait. While I waited the baby took a quick nap.

The rain must feel nice.

"....hey, whaddayou lookin' at?"

Obviously I wasn't a threat and he went back into his slumbers ... for about one second. I glanced away for a minute to shoo Baylee away from the sliding glass door and when I looked back he was gone. Lucky me, he left his calling card on the patio. Love you too.

My mom has baby bluebirds nesting in her newspaper tube thingie that's attached to her mailbox! I hope they're still there when I visit tomorrow. That's it from me!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Calling All Sailors

Several years ago a replica of The Nina floated through and docked at Florence Marina for tours. I went due to my complete fascination with antique boats of every kind and took a few photos. Only recently have I decided to do something with the images....hence my dilemma.

I love old boats but know nothing about them. Bow and stern? Got it. Beyond that I'm hopeless. There are about 11 photos in the series and all are tight shots of various parts and pieces of The Nina. Four are displayed here for your amusement.

But I desperately need help. Yes, I've gone online and found several excellent sites that give antique boat jargon but what became quite clear to me is that I've no clue what they're saying. It's Greek to me. This calls for an Expert Of The Highest Order.

Does anyone know an expert who can assist me in naming my photos? I would like each photo's name to reflect the correct part or piece or knot or mast or whatnot. The Nina's website has wonderful information but it, too, isn't helpful for this particular process. I'll be forever grateful and the helper may just get a free print! Many thanks!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Hidden Green

This isn't where I was going. There was a specific destination in mind when the cameras were loaded into my car. However, there wasn't a level of excitement deep within me as I'd been to my intended destination many times before. Time hasn't been on my side of late and there was simply a deep need to get away - go outside - breathe some country air - dust off the camera and shoot something - anything -besides the backyard. Off I went, unsure but needy.

About 45 minutes from home I pull off the highway heading to my target spot. Rolling slowly through narrow roads framed by huge trees, covered in dappled lighting I'm uneasy. This just feels too .... I dunno .... planned? Safe? Ordinary? Non-adventurous? Yeah, all the above.

Restless, a little irritated and antsy it's clear my calling isn't here in this safe, albeit beautiful, place. I leave.

Instead of turning back to the highway my car is pointed west down a long abandoned roadway. Formerly a major highway, the road has been overshadowed by the newer interstate spur that parallels it. This 5 lane road is still used by fishermen and bird watchers and nature-loving men and women as it contains small dirt roads that leads you back to the Tennessee River deep into Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge.

I'm not sure why I turned left because my iCar (Yaris) can't take those small offshoot roads. I'm just searching, seeking, and a little melancholy. Even my music was depressing me (NOT NORMAL!) so I turned it off and opened the windows wide, letting in bird calls and the sounds of the forest that's beginning to close in around me.

That the road goes over a waterway is barely noticeable as the area hasn't been kept up and is sorta overgrown, the road all weedy and cracked.

What made me look to the right just as I was going over the water I'll never know. My eyes were treated to a hidden green world of dark trees, reflections, water and elephant feet. I literally gasped. Or made some little sound. Thankfully, no one was around to hear it.

I shot and shot and shot, various angles both close and wide. Running across the street to see the other side I was dumbfounded at the different kinds of greens that were waiting for me. The sunlight was shifting and rays were coming through the trees at points, the color of the water changing.

This is a place of hobbits and elves and fairies and sprites.

And elephant feet.

Downloading the images at home it took me hours to decide which ones to process. They are all decent and/or good shots because the area was so beautiful. How do YOU decide which to process, which to print and which to put on a website? Any slight change in composition simply created a different look that was equally as good - imho - as the previous image. So how do you decide?

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Me and Kayla in Rome - one of my favorite memories together.
Whenever I get blue, I remember this trip.
I love you, Kayla Elizabeth.

Mom and me.
We were watching an eclipse at the lake, drinking wine and being silly.
A favorite memory of me with my mom.
We do lots of stuff like this.

Today, I share her with anyone out there who needs a mom.
Her heart is as wide as her smile.

Happy Mother's Day, Mur.
I love you.

Happy Mother's Day to all my blogging pals!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Random Big Yawn Blog

My road trip pelican loving twinnie from the lake came up with an ID for the white flowers! Mockorange, or English Dogwood! Check out this link for more information. Carroll said her grandmother had one growing near her back door in Hattiesburg. Well, this is so great! My curiosity satisfied I went outside to take more photos of it and in doing so found another one further down the fence. They've been named Bess and Hattie. Thanks, Carroll!

Pollen, pollen everywhere. Pollen, pollen in my hair. Pollen, pollen up to THERE! My heavens. It's no wonder we can't breathe and/or see. Even my lovely English dogwood (this would be Bess) is giving me fits.

But isn't Bess beautiful? Hattie is just as pretty, btw.

So I went to the rose garden. This poor, scraggly yellow rose bush is blooming profusely with gorgeous blossoms. Their scent carries all the way into the backyard.

It seems all I have time to do these days is run into the backyard and take a few macro shots. I've not had time for road trips, even having to cancel a planned trip to the NE of Alabama this week. Flooring projects, leaky roofs and fireplaces, keeping dogs in rooms and other huge projects are sucking up all my time. Sadly, that means my blog has been completely neglected. I've nothing worth blogging about. Well, that's not entirely true but I'm not ready to post about certain things just yet. Therefore, this post is completely random, writing about just stuff and trying to make it at least pretty with some pics.We found this cool caterpillar on my car window. My books continue to be packed away. Any clue what this fella is going to become? I left him to amble on his way.

This cheeky, tiny spider was ambling along atop another car window. I think he's rather cute.

That's kinda it, folks. It's been a Random Big Yawn Blog but I wanted you all to know that I'm still here .... just mired in the muck of Every Day Stuff. Happy Spring!


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