Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Red Butte Garden visit

So for our second to last photography class, we went to Red Butte Gardens.  The earth is so full of beauty and symmetry.

Of course, we needed to bring models so I brought my Pookie along to model. No, your eyes aren't blurry, I was trying to go for an artsy look. Didn't quite work.

I don't know what it is about this picture, but I love the contrast of texture and colors.  Strange that of all the flower pics I took, this is one of my favs.

But of all of the flowers to take pictures of, the wildlife was my favorite.  Of course, it was the most difficult, too, because I couldn't get them to hold still and pose.  But this pair of quails did a fairly reasonable job of posing, so I told them I'd include them in my blog this week.

Of course Mr. Squirrel had to get in on the act, too, but he was very uncooperative, turning his back as soon as he could.

I loved this picture of the baby duckling. Can you see the large fish following him in the water?

And the reflections of this one were fun.

Of course, we can't leave out Mama duck...

Or our model with the ducks.

There were lots of beautiful flowers, of course, and shady spots to contemplate.  But with my little model along, I didn't get much time to contemplate.

But we sure did have fun as we investigated and played. And you can see by the water droplets that she got a little wet, also.

Ok, so I tried to rotate this picture when I resized it, but for some reason it is not rotated and I do NOT know how to rotate. I guess if you stand up, turn your head to the side, and look, you can see the picture. Oh well, one more thing to learn.  Ah life...I am in need of further illumination.
Until next time, may you find joy in all the little things.

And a quote from my new photography class...yes, I'm at it again.
"You don't take a photograph. You ask, quietly, to borrow it." author unknown

Please feel free to comment. I'd love to hear from you. Sometimes I think that I am writing into a big black hole. Maybe I am.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Spring Babies (kit foxes)

We have a little den of kit foxes right near our house.  In fact, it is so close, that I can see if they are out playing when I look out my bedroom window.  They are sooooo cute! This is a picture of two of the kits. But one of them---I'm guessing he's male---is much braver than the others, so I get a chance to watch him lounging in the sun.  I finally got my new camera battery and  battery pack back from repair, and so I thought I'd share some of these delightful creatures with you. I was afraid they would all be grown and gone by the time I could shoot any pictures.  
This is the little guy that's really not too afraid to be out sunning.  Can't you just hear him, " I'm too sexy for the sun, too sexy for the sun....."  But I just delight in watching them and their mama. 
You can see that he was timid at first.
But eventually came out and looked at me.
And even did some grooming while I watched.  
Something startled him and he arched up in surprise.
While I was sitting in the weeds taking pictures, my little fox watching buddy decided to join me.  However, the ants were crawling on her feet she told me and she left.  I assumed, tired of fox watching.  But not so.
She returned a few minutes later with her snow boots on, ready for the ants and fox watching in true style.  My life is so blessed.  Foxes at my door and a fellow fox watcher at my side.  Who could ask for more?

Please let me know your thoughts.  I'd love to hear your experiences with the wild creatures of our earth.  Next time maybe I'll tell you the story of my Siamese cat, Starlight (that you already met), and the Kestrels (sparrow hawks) that have taken up residence in (yes I mean IN) my house.  Meanwhile, I limp through my photography class (much to the chagrin of my teacher), and my stained glass lessons, and my writing classes.  My head still hurts.  It's amazing how little one can know about everything!  But isn't life one glorious lesson and such a vast land of knowledge that we can gain if we want--- regardless of our age?  It is indeed a life of illumination if we want it to be.  

Until next time, I hope we all remember to seize the time we have with those we love, and look for the joy all around us! 

Monday, May 23, 2011


Thanks to Claudia for this above photo, visit her at (click on link) Claudia at DiptyRoad

I have to say that my head sometimes feels like it is going to explode with all the new ideas that I have been learning. Like how to blog, how to create a website, how to write children's books, how to make stained glass, how to use my new digital camera, how to create a healthier me, etc, etc.  I am at this interesting time in my life where, after over 32 years in education as both a teacher and principal, I am exploring my creative side.  Not that I didn't try very hard to be creative in education.  You have to be when you are working with children!  But I am trying to really tap into that right side of my brain.

But I am finding that as I want to share this experience with you, I still have so much to learn and it still takes the left side to learn all of the rules and parameters, and how to's.  I guess you never really get away from all of that.  So, as I begin this journey, I invite you to join me in my bumpy attempt at finding illumination and creations in my life.  And as I do so, I will try to share tidbits with you that I learn along the way. And I hope that you will share what you have learned along your journey, as well.  For example, I wanted to learn how to put some pictures on my blog.  Now, I know that many of you already know how, but for a beginner like me, I needed some tools.  Thanks so much to a dear friend who has a blog called Dipity Road ( visit it, it's beautiful), I found the tool of picnik.  This is a wonderful tool to help with editing your pictures.  And it's FREE!  (I love free). But now, I find that I have to now learn how to use  So, with each new illumination, there are more doors to open and more illuminations to follow.  But it is never easy. Darn it, it takes work. And when you try to take one step you find...well let me give you an example...

I went on a walk the other day(actually it was a few weeks ago, but who's counting) and it was as spring was just peeking out after another snow storm.  I captured some wonderful pictures that I brought back to share with you.  My dog, Marley, and my cat, Starlight (who thinks she can go along ), started out on a beautiful journey.  I was multi-tasking.  I was getting exercise (not my favorite thing to do), Marley was getting exercise( not his favorite thing to do) and I was using my new digital camera, and then I would come back and write about it.  Wellllllll.....
that sure sounded good in theory.  We took the walk; I took the pictures; and then I was stuck.  I got the pictures uploaded, but I wanted to do some cropping and enhancement as I hadn 't taken my zoom lens (Duh!).  I went to   Wellllll.......that's where I stopped.  I couldn't remember how to get the pictures resized.  So, now I have decided to write today, and if I figure it out, then there will be pictures, but if not, there will be just words because we have to start somewhere.

 We'll see how brave I get.  But I am doing step one today and that is writing.  I need to write every day and so this will begin my journey.  If it's too complicated, sometimes we never launch.  So, I'm launching!  Hang on to your seats and join me in this process.  I'm not going to commit to write on my blog every day, because I do need to write my children's stories, but at least once a week I'll try to share on my blog.  And this week, maybe more as I play with the picture program.

Yea....guess what, I figured out the picture part.  Well, at least enough to share some. So with that...

 here is the story of the walk.  As I looked at the flowers in my window, I began to have a craving for spring.

 I looked out the other window and it looked like a beautiful day for a walk.  So, Marley and I (and of course Starlight who pretends she's sneaking along) started out to look for some signs of spring.



Starlight following for the first part of our journey.

We did find some signs of spring.

This was our first--a few buds on a tree.  But we found more.
                                                                     some crocus

                                                                    some hyacinths
                                                    and, of course, some daffodils and tulips.

But we continued on our trail and found a few other surprises.

                                                                       creeping phlox

                                                                            forsythia, and of course,
                                                             a pile of snow!
I am always so amazed at the strength of mother nature.  These gorgeous flowers all pushed their heads up in spite of the huge snowstorm, and continued to give us all the promise of hope beyond our winter days of cold and darkness, into our illuminated days of warmth and light.  And until that time, we can continue to rely on the warmth and light of others.

Please feel free to comment and share your illuminations and creations!  And please visit Claudia at  Her site is incredible! And she's not a beginner.

Warmest wishes for your illuminated life!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Beginning Again

Snowballer #1

Snowballer #2

I must really be a slowwwww learner! I started this blog in 2009 after we came back from Maui. We just went again and it is 2011. Wow! But considering that my middle daughter has been in the hospital 5 times since October, and for 3 of those she was in the ICU and close to death, I think I need to give myself a break. This site for me, is all about enlarging my ability to think creatively, and hopefully, to share some of that process with others. Part of that process is allowing myself the same forgiveness that I would another human being, especially, a child. As many have written about, that inner child in each of us is key to finding our own creative, momentary, selves. Yesterday, as the tulips and pansies were poking their heads out of the ground, we got a huge snow storm. Yes, it's April, but it's Utah. At my house we had about 6 inches of snow. So, my two grandchildren and myself went sledding in my backyard. The snow was very wet so we also had a snowball fight. I'm afraid I didn't win. But I won in so many other ways that day. I love my grandchildren for helping me to remember what life is all about.