away for the weekend: 2017

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

scene and story - june

This wasn't exactly what I was going for
- but, then...

this was my June
- blurry, but pretty and colorful all the same
My month started out with crazy, busy work deadlines,
the birth of our first granddaughter
- yeah, she's pretty much the sweetest baby ever -
(I may be a teensy bit biased)
- and ended with a much needed week off -
and a celebration for Greg's career transition -
many changes ahead...

On this particular day, Greg and I hiked to Stratton Pond in Vermont
It was the perfect day to roam around the woods,
picnic by the pond, at catch a much needed breath.
With any luck, July will be a bit more focused
- and while June passed by in a blur, it was a pretty wonderful month

I'm joining Sarah and Leon for Scene and story

Have a wonderful, safe, 4th of July!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

bundle of joy

I'm thankful for this little bundle of joy
one week old, today
She has stolen my heart - and already, I can't imagine life without her

Our first grandchild - and according to Mommy, Daddy, and Auntie -
quite likely our only...
Yeah - that's okay
I couldn't be any more thankful!

I am joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday

Thanks for dropping in!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

strolling heifers

Heifers in tutus? You bet!

and stroll, they did

through downtown Brattleboro, Vermont

some preferred flower necklaces

No heifer to stroll through town with?

- just don a heifer costume - and dress your pig in a tutu, instead!
 - yeah, this is Vermont - it's all good!

the sun and moon made an appearance

as well as local bands

and all of Vermont
(well, just about all of Vermont)
Yep - watching heifers stroll makes for some surprising fun.
This may rank up there with our annual tractor parade
- I'm already planning for next year...

I'm always thankful for the surprises that make me smile!

I'm joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday

Thanks for dropping in!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Scene and Story - May

Wow - May... it went by in a blink
- yet was full of so much -
Mother's Day, a graduation trip to Arkansas, Laura's 30th birthday party,
and a cup of coffee with my blogging friend, Sarah, at Paisley Rain Boots!
This was our first time meeting face-to-face, but felt like getting together with an old friend.
- And since I dumbly took no photos (I know, right?),
I'll share my story of playing at being a photographer...

"But I don't photograph people"

Yeah - that was my reply when Laura asked me to take photos of Jeff and her.
A maternity photo shoot - so to speak.
Ummmm - I don't do people, and I stand by that.
 "Don't worry," Jeff remarked, "Laura doesn't want a photo shoot
- she just wants One. Perfect. Photo".
Haha - yeah well, I'm not sure about that,
but we did have a lot of laughs - in between all those awkward poses
- and we caught a few cute candids.
I really do have a new appreciation for photographers who do this work.
So - my advice to the parents-to-be
 When the baby actually arrives
- and they want that One. Perfect. Photo
Hire a real photographer!!
But this was kinda-sorta fun, anyway.

I am joining Sarah and Leon for Scene and Story

Thanks for dropping in!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

thankful thursday

So yeah, work is still crazy, and life has been crazy
- and I'm just a wee bit stressed out about, oh - just about everything
- but we all know how that goes sometimes
- and this blogging break of mine has gone on for far too long
- so it's time I give myself a swift kick in the pants (figuratively speaking, of course)
and get back to it!

anyway - 
last weekend we had the fortune of having family and friends join us at Away

where we enjoyed exploring a newly reopened (pedestrians only) covered bridge

with beautiful vistas

I was very excited to hear this bridge had reopened
- it's the little things...
and as always, I'm so thankful to have special people in my life to explore with

So - this coming weekend is the Strolling of the Heifers
- not sure I can miss that excitement!

How about you - are you looking forward to weekend plans?

I'm joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday

Thanks for dropping in!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

thankful thursday

Hey - it's a beautiful day, let's take the kayaks out!
Or - maybe not...

While the thermometer may read 80 degrees
- the pond reads FROZEN

 - as in solid...
 - winter hangs tough in Vermont...

Yeah - well...
We did manage to enjoy the day with a hike on one of our favorite trails
- and a beautiful vista
which on this Easter afternoon felt like worshiping in the church of nature
For this day, I am very thankful

- So, I'm pretty sure the pond will thaw - eventually
- and we will be ready

Are you as excited as I am to get this summer-thing underway?

I'm joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday

Thursday, April 13, 2017

photo challenge #17 - bicycle(s)

Before the grass turns green, or flowers bloom -
a sure sign of spring in my area -
 bicycles at the train station!

We are having our first stretch of spring-like weather, here in New England
And to think that when I first heard the weather forecast
- I grumbled - yep grumbled...
What am I going to wear? and where are my spring clothes, anyway?
Do I even have any spring clothes?
Yeah - I must - I'm pretty sure I wore clothes last spring...
Ummmmmm - yeah...
will someone please just kick me?!?!

Anyway - all joking aside
I am very thankful for this first sign of spring
- the beautiful weather
- sunshine
- bicycles
- and the hope for summer ahead

How is spring shaping up in your neck of the woods?
Are you feeling that little added spring in your step?
(hmmm - is that where the term "spring" comes from...?)

Thanks for dropping in!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

photo challenge #16 - path

"Don't confuse your path with your destination;
just because it's stormy now, doesn't mean you aren't headed for sunshine."
This prompt was definitely open for interpretation,
and I wasn't sure whether to approach it literally or symbolically,
- or maybe a blend of both.

I'm not actually going through a particularly stormy time,
but I feel that the quote is a good reminder - always - of life's ups and downs.
as well as a good fit for my photo
- which got me thinking -
wouldn't it be a good challenge to choose a quote or saying that has personal meaning
and then try to photograph it?
just a thought

Of the many quotes I read about "path", though,
unfortunately - the one that resonated the most with me is a Chinese proverb:
"I dreamed a thousand new paths. I woke and walked my old one."
Hmmm - not sure how I'd photograph that one...

It's the time of year in collegiate budgetland where my workday life is getting a bit hectic.
I've definitely walked this path before - but it gets a little easier each time.
My posts will likely be sporadic, but I will enjoy visiting yours!

And then - the words of J.R.R. Tolkien remind me that someday - new paths await:
"Still round the corner there may wait 
A new road or a secret gate;
And though I oft have passed them by,
A day will come at last when I 
Shall take the hidden paths that run
West of the moon, East of the sun."

When you think of "path" what images come to your mind?

Sunday, March 12, 2017

photo challenge #15 - faceless self portrait

Plum Island - Massachusetts

After a couple of false starts,
I finally managed to get into a groove.
The Parker River National Wildlife Refuge covers a large portion of Plum Island.
Popular with bird watchers, I crossed paths with several photographers
carrying cameras sporting what looked like (to me) gazillion millimeter zoom lenses.
Yeah - don't mind me - I'm just here to shoot a selfie...

I was determined to do this challenge outdoors, though
- and was relieved to find a spot away from the other beach-goers
- a spot where I didn't feel completely self-conscious.
The real bonus - as someone who tends to frown at the camera -
shooting a faceless self-portrait is definitely the way to go!

Next up - Path

Have a great day!

Thanks for dropping in!

EF24-105mm F/4L IS USM
ISO 400
40 mm 1/2000 sec at f/6.3

Thursday, March 9, 2017

thankful thursday - scenes from the coast

A rare day off - no obligations,
and a much neglected camera
- beckoning me

My weather app said the rain had cleared
- the sky over Plum Island said otherwise

I probably don't need to tell you which was correct,
and which I ignored - necessitating a quick dash back to my car
(which on a sandy beach is neither quick, nor dash-like...)

Yeah well - a day off is a day off

and in the end,
it turned out to be a wonderful beach day.

I am thankful for this day with no plans
and the beauty that surrounds me.
I'm pretty sure I heard my camera whisper thank you, also.

Note to self - when in doubt, ignore weather app
and always pack a rain jacket...

I am joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday
and Tanya for Willy Nilly Friday Five

Thanks for dropping in!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

scene & story - february

February was...
Well, it was February

The month began as February should in New England
- cold and snowy
I took this photo at Rockport Harbor, early in the month
- a cold, blustery day - the kind of cold that stings - almost knocking the wind out of me.
The ocean was a bright deep blue, and the sky - painted with shades of pastel.
Gazing through my lens, I watched the couple on the breakwater,
envying their adventurous spirit.
It's too cold for me though - I'll scramble over those rocks another day.

Rockport is popular with tourists,
its beautiful harbor, quaint shops, and art galleries draw large crowds in the summer.
The colorful buoys tell another story
 - this is a working town with a working harbor.

It is the vast openness that is compelling me to take this photo, though.
The ocean never fails to draw me in,
reminding me - always - of my first sight of the Atlantic.
Nearly 16 years old, standing on the sand,
  utterly in awe - feeling so very, very small - insignificant.
I have never lost that sense of wonder
- and with this, I raise my camera,
attempting to capture this small moment in time.

I am joining Sarah and Leon for Scene and Story

Thanks for dropping in!

Monday, February 27, 2017

photo challenge #14 sun flare

High atop a mountain
- amidst multi-million dollar vacation homes
- and the most spectacular view,
sits this ramshackle abode

no doubt, developers would love to raze this little gem
but here it remains - steadfast - a little piece of the real Vermont
 - with its own stories to tell

Next up - Faceless Self-Portrait
Ummmm - yeah - I'm really not sure when I'll get around to that one...

Have a great day!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

essence of away - winter version

I've been enjoying Kim Manley Ort's book - Adventures in Seeing
This week, our call to adventure is "Essence"
in a series of photos, I hope to capture the essence of our weekends at Away
- winter version -
(I may need to re-do this exercise in the summer)

A couple of years ago, our oldest daughter, Maggie,
visited us during a particularly snowy week in December
(she is convinced that she was meant to be a Southerner
- let's just say that winter isn't her favorite season)

After being snowbound for a day,
and then venturing out, only to get our car stuck in a snowbank on the side of our driveway
- and cancelling dinner plans (opting for a pot of chili at home)
she remarked: It feels like summer here
Me: ummmmmm.......?
Maggie: No, not the weather - but you know how summer just feels different?
Me: (smile)
Maggie: It's like that here, relaxed... friendly, less stressed - like summer

the essence of weekends at Away
and while I'm not fond of living in two homes,
Away provides a place to unwind from our stressful weekday life
and for that, I am very thankful

I'm joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday
and Tanya for Willy Nilly Friday Five

Thanks for dropping in!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

photo challenge #13 - reflection

So, I've actually had this one ready to go for a couple of weeks
- and I thought I had set it up to automatically post,
but I didn't, and it didn't
- and so it goes...
Do you ever do that? Have something ready and then...?

When I saw this prompt, I thought - huh?
I mean, I'm pretty sure I've had several recent photos with reflections
Yes - well - maybe they weren't intentional
I guess...

So - a bright sunny winter day,
driving along the coast - we stop at Gloucester Harbor
- Greg gazing at the Gloucester Fisherman's Memorial

Next up - Sun Flare
(hmmm, pretty sure I've caught a few accidentally - I have a little reading to do...)

Thanks for dropping in!

EF24-105mm F/4L IS USM
105mm ISO200 1/60 sec at f/8.0

Thursday, February 9, 2017

cape ann - "open"

There's a winter storm in Boston, and I'm thankful for a snow day
- one of those unexpected bonus days with no plans and no where to go
- time to leisurely sort through photos...

Last weekend - a very different scene
Greg and I took a ride along the coast of Cape Ann
I had spent the morning taking photos of "open" for a photography group I had joined
- four weeks late and trying to catch up...

Yeah - anyway
I took several shots of "open" flags outside the shops in my town (a bit obvious),
- and lots of open doors (again - obvious) - and this really wasn't working for me

This vast openness resonates
Gloucester Harbor - a hazy Boston skyline in the distance

Rockport Harbor

open for adventure - I used to love exploring the breakwater

and, somewhat unrelated
- Motif No. 1 - a favorite of photographers and artists

the seagull on Motif No. 1 caught my eye
 the setting sun casting a glow on the window

So - as I'm contemplating this scene - enjoying the cast of light
and deciding what my next shot should be,
a woman jumps out of a car, runs towards me with her camera
and frantically shoots off several photos -
as I take a step back - she quickly steps into my spot and takes several more photos,
runs to another spot doing the same
I stand there observing - I guess we're all trying to capture our own stories...

Tomorrow our storm will clear - back to work and reality
but I am so thankful for today

I'm joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday
and Tanya for Willy Nilly Friday Five

Thanks for dropping in!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

scene & story - photo challenge #12 - something new

I promise - it's coincidental
- my weekly prompt (for the second time) is also my story for the month

- something new -

Once upon a time,
in the days of yore (some of you may remember),
a baby's gender was a great mystery until it was delivered,
and the doctor proclaimed "It's a ____!!"
- and long months of anticipation gave way to excited announcements,
spreading from hospital to family to friends - by word-of-mouth and telephone
- and this was the "gender reveal" of yesteryear

Skipping forward to modern times,
- January was the month for Jeff and Laura's gender reveal
- months before the baby is due
- and well -
the doctor's office lacks a bit of that old fashioned excitement - so...
a sealed envelope from the doctor was given to a friend
who wrapped a small gift to be opened at a family gathering
It's a girl!!!
 and a few short weeks of anticipation gave way to excited announcements
spreading on social media...
Ummm - yeah, it's a whole new world.

And while I may be a teensy bit amused by this whole new gender reveal thing,
it was actually a lot of fun
- and after Jeff recovered from his shock over the idea of a daughter,
his baby-to-be quickly became "Daddy's little girl"
Needless to say - boy or girl - we're all very excited
- and God willing, in a few short months, we will be holding this little bundle of joy.

I am joining Sarah and Lee
for Scene & Story

Thanks for dropping in!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

random moments

A few random moments from my neck of the woods
- and these simple, everyday moments
are the moments I am most thankful for

When your cat doesn’t want to be in a selfie, but he needs to be squeezed anyway

When your daughter discovers that she isn’t the only one taking photos

When you wake up in a cold house with no power and discover 
the coffee brewed before losing the electricity

When you’re riding a slow chairlift alone and it feels like a good time for a goofy selfie

When you realize your loved ones have come back home.

I'm joining:
Michelle for Thankful Thursday &
 Tanya for Willy Nilly Friday Five

Thanks for dropping in!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

photo challenge #11 - something old

my childhood teddy bear
ragged from many years of snuggles
this poor old bear - missing both eyes, part of an ear, and a fair amount of stuffing,
has traveled with me from home to home
- and now resides on my bedroom dresser

I knew a couple of weeks ago that my teddy bear would be the subject of this prompt
-  which brought me into the realm of still life photography
- something I know absolutely nothing about
Reading articles about lights, backdrops, reflectors...
I thought to myself - yeah, I'm not doing any of that
So I moved my bear about the house - seeking a setting that felt right
- and when I placed him on this antique chair,
letting the outdoor lighting provide the backdrop,
it all just sort of clicked for me

Next up - Something New

Do you have a cherished childhood item?
I'd love to see it captured in a photo!

EF24-105mm f/4 IS USM, 65mm
1/125 sec at f/4.0

Monday, January 16, 2017

photo challenge - week #10 juxtaposition

I'm running behind
- yep, nothing new, here...

Sooooo - juxtaposition...
Anyway - a couple of weeks ago, during a snowstorm in Boston,
I heard on the news of a man in Copley Square, lying in a hammock
Yeah - he was there, I wasn't - but how cool would that have been?

Then, this morning on my commuter train, 
pulling into the station in Boston, a man is wearing a ski helmet
- goggles and all - ???
I was there - but missed that shot too...

So - thank goodness for Copley Square
- my old reliable

where historic and modern comfortably coexist

Next up - something old
which will likely be late - again
I think I know what I want to do, but need daylight - at home
yeah - I'm not home during daylight hours...
Is it summer yet?

Canon EOS Rebel T3i
EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
32mm 1/50 sec at f/9.0

Thursday, January 12, 2017

thankful thursday -

"When asked if my cup is half-full or half-empty
my only response is that I am thankful I have a cup"
Sam Lefkowitz

But this can be easy to forget in this harried, hurried, hectic world
- I get caught up in my daily hurdles and frustrations
- and as I enter a busy time of year in my little corner of academia
- with a frenzy of deadlines looming

this is me

hanging on - tenacious like little Nutkins

and while I generally think of myself as a cup half-full sort of gal
I often need to slow it down - reminding myself to just be thankful for that cup
- and I am -

I'm joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday

- So yeah, does anyone happen to know who Sam Lefkowitz is?

Thanks for dropping in!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

scene and story & photo challenge week #9 - beverages

Okay - yes, I groaned when I saw that my next prompt was "beverages"
- and yet, sitting back, bidding farewell to 2016,
this was our scene for the new year
welcome 2017!

- a bottle of pink champagne - left over from Laura and Jeff's wedding
- a warm fire in the stove, casting a soft glow
- watching Mariah Carey's New Year's Eve performance (?? - yikes...)
- sharing a comfortable moment to end the year
2016 wasn't a bad year for me, but I can't say I am sad to see it go

2017 will bring some substantial changes to our family
- new worries, new adventures...
- but as Greg and I enjoy this peaceful end of one year,
it's with optimism, hope - celebration - that I look forward to the new one

I am joining Sarah @ Paisley Rain Boots & Lee @ Sea Blue Lens for Scene and Story

Canon EOS Rebel T31
EF50mm f/1.8 II
1/13 sec at f/2.2

Thursday, January 5, 2017

away for the week

After the hustle and bustle leading up to the holidays,
Greg and I were fortunate to enjoy a quiet week in Vermont
resting, relaxing, puttering, exploring,
turning off that 5 am alarm - yes!

I'm especially thankful that our girls were able to join us for a couple of days after Christmas
with busy lives of their own, these "everyday" moments are rare
- they just couldn't pass up a selfie with a snowy mountain background
(and I couldn't pass up sneaking a photo)

Chickadee and I shared a few peaceful moments watching the snowfall

and what would a week in Vermont be
without traipsing through the snow for yet another barn shot?
- splashes of color persevere in the winter scenery

So now it's back to my hectic workaday world
and that morning alarm
- yeah, that's okay...  kind of...
but for this week away - I am thankful beyond words

I am joining Michelle for Thankful Thursday