Meteorological Summer

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The above tweet inspired the following poem – Happy Summer!

 

Meteorological Summer 

 

Today begins meteorological summer.

Between spring training

and the World Series

we count the days of sunshine,

bemoan the rain,

even while knowing how much we need it.

In this day of hurricane predictions

and trying to forget last year’s drought,

we pause to give thanks

to the God of summer and all seasons.

To the One who allows us to hear

the crack of the bat

and feel the passing breeze or warming sun

and see the dewy-eyed newborn

and smell the meadow blooms and forest greens

and taste the savory blessings.

 

 

They Say It’s World Poetry Day

Although today was declared World Poetry Day by UNESCO, an organization I’m not necessarily fond of, I will still take advantage of any excuse to put out some poetry. This is a Villanelle; a nineteen-line poem with a very specific rhyming scheme. The form is made up of five tercets followed by a quatrain.

settled

Settled

Truly gone are so many years
Washed away like little paper boats
Leaving here the lovely souvenirs

Settling down it’s so very clear
One long, beautiful, single note
Truly gone are so many years

Washed away are the copious fears
Shed like a heavy winter coat
Leaving here the lovely souvenirs

Peeling away the false veneer
Away to dust the burden of rote
Truly gone are so many years

Like evening when the moon appears
And the very stars seem to float
Leaving here the lovely souvenirs

So it is when nothing interferes
Contented and pleasantly remote
Truly gone are so many years
Leaving here the lovely souvenirs

Curls

Photo Challenge Week Four

 
This week’s challenge was a headshot. Knowing that many adults, like me, shy away from the camera, I decided to make kids my focus. So, I borrowed my pastor’s children to be my subjects. It was so hard to choose, since there are four children, but I picked one as my entry for this week because I loved the crooked smile and the sunlight in his curls.

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His hair reminds me of the poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that my dad would recite to me when I was little. Here is the beginning part that he recited:

 

There Was a Little Girl

There was a little girl,
And she had a little curl
Right in the middle of her forehead.
When she was good
She was very, very good,
But when she was bad she was horrid.

RED

Photography Challenge Week Three

This week’s challenge was red.

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Red can vary in shade and sometimes the names for these reds have a certain connotation which may be different for different people. For example

Crimson – as in Crimson Tide in Alabama – – nuff said.

Auburn – another red that carries a lot of weight in this state

Fuchsia – as in bridesmaid dresses

Maroon – as in Adam Levine

Mahogany – as in grandma’s dining table

Oxblood – as in yech

Wine – that’s a Yes!

And what lovely names are reds: Ruby, Scarlet (GWTW), Rose, and Carmine

When I began looking around my house I realized I really have a lot of red around me. Wonder what that says about me? I do not claim it as my favorite color, but I like pops of it, though I can’t believe I just said POP – that overused word on HGTV.

Here is a peek at my pops of red – enjoy!

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I also found a sweet RED poem

Dancer by Carl Sandburg

THE LADY in red, she in the chile con carne red,
Brilliant as the shine of a pepper crimson in the summer sun,
She behind a false-face, the much sought-after dancer, the most sought-after dancer of all in this masquerade,
The lady in red sox and red hat, ankles of willow, crimson arrow amidst the Spanish clashes of music,

I sit in a corner
watching her dance first with one man
and then another.

 

If you want to join in the photography challenge, check it out at http://dogwood.photography/52weekchallenge.html

Landscape or Suburbscape?

Photography Challenge Week Two

This week’s challenge was to capture a landscape. My plan was a walk at Red Mountain with Loretta. Since she gets so excited on walks, I find it’s usually best to use my cell phone instead of my Canon Rebel.

Even in bleak January there is always a view to be found outdoors. I wish I could capture the fresh air and the energy that even a short hike gives me. Just use your imagination while you view a few landscape shots.

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Red Mountain ~ January, 2016

 

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When I got home I went out in my backyard with the Canon and took some suburbscapes as well. Here’s one-

suburbscape

 

I got an extra surprise shot as a plane came in for a landing at the nearby Bessemer Airport.

Bessemer Airport

 

If you missed week one, you can see it HERE. And if you’d like to read my take on  unexpected moments in photography and life, such as the plane flying by, you can read HERE.

Window or Mirror?

Photography Challenge – Week One

I thought about doing a daily photography challenge, but I knew I could not keep up with that. So, I found a list of 52 prompts for 2016 that I think I can handle. But, alas, the first prompt is self-portrait.

“I feel it’s healthier to look out at the world through a window than through a mirror. With a mirror, all you see is yourself and whatever is behind you.”  Bill Withers, from Garden & Gun interview

My husband thinks it’s funny to tease me about taking selfies, but honestly I don’t do it very often. I joined a group in B’ham last summer and got some great tips from Jamie on self-portraits, but I can’t remember most of them. And, like I said, I don’t take many. I much prefer to be behind the camera. So, it’s with much trepidation that I present these pictures. All of these were taken with my cell phone, hence the collage isn’t the best quality, but I like the other one.

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8me

 

Vulcan Park

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This past Thursday was my first visit to Vulcan Park – another gem of a park in B’ham! I met with my #capturetheham group and got some great photography pointers. Then we tried to put our skills to work.

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Vulcan Park is definitely a place where I want to return. I want to stay a little later next time to walk the trails and capture the full sunset.

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What you need to know:

The Vulcan Park is located at 1701 Valley View Drive and is open 10am-10pm Monday- Saturday and 12pm-10pm on Sunday; the museum closes at 6pm each day (the park also closes at 6pm on July 4th). Parking is free.

DAILY ADMISSION RATES  10 A.M. – 6 P.M.:

  • Adult $6
  • Seniors (65+) / Military $5
  • Children ages 5-12 $4
  • Children 4 years and under free

EVENING ADMISSION RATES 6 – 10 P.M.:

  • All ages 5 and up $4
  • Children 4 years and under free

Tips:

Bring your camera!

Don’t go up the Vulcan if you are afraid of heights.

If you are a AAA member, you and a guest will get 20% off (I didn’t see this before !!)

Pets allowed on a leash – you must clean up after them, of course.

Railroad Park

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Railroad along park perimeter

Thursday night I met a group of people for an enjoyable evening in Railroad Park. This was my first time there and I was super impressed! I didn’t know what to expect from a park in the middle of downtown, so I was pleasantly surprised.

This 19 acre park along 1st street is right next to Regions Field, home of the Barons. It has numerous paths to walk, water features, two playgrounds, grassy areas for play  or picnicking and even a designated areas for skaters.

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Small group practice                                               Softball practice at the park

The landscaping is gorgeous and I was there during prime photo time, just before sunset. I joined a “Capture the ‘ham” small group hosted by Jamie Golden. You can see our pictures under #capturetheham on Instagram. We will be meeting five more Thursdays this summer at a different location each time. Jamie gave us some great photo tips as well as some inspirational thoughts on capturing moments, but not just with our cameras. I hope to capture some moments with my heart as well.

parting shot

Parting shot on my way home