Friday, September 30, 2011

The hubby and me

Terrible photo but this was taken on my birthday in Spearfish Canyon, SD.
My husband and I and our dog went on a two mile hike to photograph a waterfall.
I set up the tri-pod and took this photo along the way.

Driving through Custer State Park in Custer, SD.
This is where the wild buffalo roam.
Down the road before this photo was taken, we had stopped by a stream where we saw two buffalo
grazing in the grass.  My husband is totally into wildlife and so being the macho man that he is, gets as close to the buffalo as he possibly can.  I, being the worrier that I am was afraid so I kept my distance.
I had Sasha on the leash while she drank water at the edge of the stream.
All of a sudden I see my husband from across the stream, running to hide behind a tree.
The darn buffalo got pissed off at him for getting too close and charged after him.
Next thing I know that buffalo is coming towards me and my dog.  It gets a drink of water directly across from where we are and then it starts crossing the stream and it looks at my dog like it wants to kill her. I was yanking on the leash but Sasha didn't want to come and she can't hear anymore, so even though I was yelling, it wasn't doing any good.  I finally ran down to the water's edge, picked up my dog and ran as fast as I could towards the truck.
Made it just in time.  And my heart was pounding so fast.

This is in Wyoming, the first part of our trip.
My sole reason for coming here was to see my childhood friend, Tina.
I've known her for over forty years, since I was about five years old.
The little girl in the picture is her granddaughter, Summer.
I enjoyed visiting with them so much.
However, I don't think I ever want to drive through Wyoming ever again.
Yes, there are some really pretty parts, but mostly it is wide open spaces and the drive is the most boring drive I've ever taken in my whole life. Hundreds of miles of nothing.
You definitely need the right travelling companion for these kind of trips.
Thank goodness, my husband and I did okay during this trip.
We only got on each other's nerves a little.
Normally, we kind of get on each other's nerves a lot.

Custer State Park again.

Here we are on the other side of Wyoming after leaving South Dakota.
We are on our way to Cheyenne for the night and then headed to Grand Junction, Colorado next day.
I really like this picture of my husband by the hay bale.
I think he looks really cute.

Well, that's about all for now.

Hopefully, I'll post some more pics tomorrow.
Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Crazy random rattling.

I just got back from vacation earlier this week.
We went to Wyoming to visit a friend of mine and then on to South Dakota which was not planned.
One of the highlights of my trip was seeing the crazy horse memorial and photographing the laser light show on the mountain.  I love how the photo above turned out.

We also saw Mt. Rushmore but I liked Crazy Horse much more.  The monument of Crazy Horse is still not completed. It's been a work in progress for about forty years and is so big that Mt. Rushmore can fit in in the head of Crazy Horse.

The weather was beautiful in South Dakota and I had so much fun in that state.
I happened to be there on my birthday which was really nice.
There was one little downside though.
I have been quite emotional lately and on my birthday I cried.
We had just finished breakfast and walked out to the truck in the parking lot to let our dog out to walk.
All of a sudden I heard this lady screaming profanities.
I looked around and saw that she was in the car right next to our truck and she was yelling at me because she couldn't get out.  I smiled at her and then apologized for not seeing her sitting in her car. She made a nasty remark about me not seeing her because I wasn't paying attention.
Mind you, this was just seconds after we got to our truck.  Like maybe ten.
I closed the truck door and made room for the lady and she was still very mean to me.
Her husband rolled his eyes at his wife and it was just the tip of the iceberg.
I had been holding some things in and I wanted to cry and now I had this as an excuse.
The tears came pouring out and I was feeling so isolated and lonely and rejected.

Anyhow, it passed and the remainder of my birthday was the best day ever.
We took a drive through Spearfish Canyon which was a beautiful drive.
Then after that we drove on up to Deadwood, South Dakota where we got a hotel room and my husband and I had dinner at this cool saloon and I got to dance to the night away.
I actually forgot about everything going on back at home and I let myself have fun.

 I spent my birthday at No. 10 Saloon.
Coincidentally, the live band playing at this saloon also plays in my hometown once a year.
What a small world it is.
They were really cool people and they celebrated me all night long.
I was a tad shy at first but I went along every time they called me to the floor or whatever.
My husband was very happy with me at the end of the night.

I have lots more pictures, but I think I'll post them daily.

My Mother-in-law is coming to town tomorrow and the next day my husband's aunt will be here.
I also just hired Merry Maids because I really am overwhelmed with the house and they will be here tomorrow.

Home is where the heart is. At least that's what they say but I think I left my heart somewhere else.

I've just been really tired lately and as much as I want to keep this blog positive sometimes it just helps to say what's really going on. I think I'm on the borderline of having a nervous breakdown. I just don't know how much more I can endure.

But I'm still here and I'm still an optimistic no matter how trying things get for me.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

This is what I learned how to do.......

The other night I attended a Nikon workshop at my local camera store.
It was a hands-on learning experience and there were several work stations set up to shoot various things.
I love my water drop, however, I wish I could have taken more of these.
There were too many people to really be able to take multiple shots.
We had to stand in line and take turns, but it was a lot of fun.

I also got a shot of a strawberry being dropped into water, but it didn't turn out that great.
I took two shots.  In the first shot the strawberry is still at the top of the water surface, which is kind of a bummer because I didn't get a lot of bubbles.
In the second shot, the strawberry is in the right spot but the strawberry is out of focus.
Here's the first one.

I think If I crop the bottom half it will be a much stronger photo.

Next are colorful gumballs spilling out of a vase.

Aside from the water droplet I think my favorite is the simplicity of this next photo.

All of the work stations were very simple.
At the end of this post, I'll tell you how you can recreate these same photos at home.

A pretty daisy.

Next, an ordinary cheese grater.

The last photo is just paper.

So, if you'd like to practice some of these shots in your own home you can do it.
The Nikon representative giving the presentation has a flikr site with step by step instructions.
He gives you the proper settings, and has a screen shot of the back of the camera so you know what to do.

All you need to do is CLICK ON THIS LINK

I know you will have fun experimenting with these shots.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Star light star bright, I wish I may I wish I might.......

Last Sunday, the hubby and I drove to Mt. Charleston to meet some photographer friends.
The drive is just about 45 minutes from our house and it is so far removed from the city lights and the noise of Las Vegas, that it replenishes the soul. 
The atmosphere is degrees cooler than the city and requires a jacket at night.  
The pine trees emit a woody aroma and fills our senses with simplicity in all its perfection.

The photo above is a practice shot of the stars.  I believe this was a 15 second exposure.
Our purpose was to capture star trails but we needed to practice before we began the long shutter speed.

These are the actual star trails. 
The shutter was set to bulb and left open for 15 minutes on this exposure, ISO at 200 and F stop at f-4.
In the menu setting, the NR (noise reduction) was turned on, therefore, even though the exposure was 15 minutes, it took another 15 minutes to process the photo because of the NR, meaning that to get one photo it took 30 minutes.
I also learned that in order to get the comlete circle of star trails you have to be facing the north star, otherwise you just get half circles or crescents.  Interesting, huh?

I've been enjoying the night photography and tonight I may get some more star trails.
It just depends on whether or not the location is far enough from the city.
We are going to an event called Desert Under The Stars and we get to look through telescopes & learn about the constellations. It's free of charge and I believe we are allowed to bring our cameras and tri-pods.
The event is being held at Corn Creek Road off Highway 95 just north of Las Vegas.  It is also the location of the Nevada Wildlife Range.  I've never been there before so hopefully, it will be a good night.

I wanted to participate in the FMTSO this week but I just didn't get any fresh photos for the theme. I have plenty of human labor in my archives but It's been a busy week.

The hubby and I are preparing for a trip so I've been doing lots of shopping lately to get ready.

Can't wait to get out of this town and be around people who want to be near me and are interested in my life just as much as I'm interested in theirs.  I'm so sick of Las Vegas and the people who use other people.
Sorry, I guess I needed to get that out.


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