Capturing the Year – 52 Weeks Photo Project

Capturing the Year – 52 Week Photo Project is a Facebook group of photographers whose aim is to take one photo a week on a specific topic for a period of 52 weeks.  I joined this group mid 2014 so this is my second year that I am posting with them.

Week 1:  Just for Fun:

Many people hate them but I truly love Raccoon.  Not growing up and seeing them on a day to day basis, I really love it when I do see them.  Yes, I know that they are sneaky, I’ve learned over the years that they will steal your food when you are camping.  But there is something so beautiful about them that just really draws me in.  Today as I walked in the wetlands I found this Raccoon at the top of a dead palm tree.  Clearly it has burrowed into the palm tree to make it’s home.

Green Cay Wetlands:  Delray Beach:  January 3, 2015 8429

Week 2:  Jewelry

The topic jewelry was not hard for me – I immediately knew what I wanted to use.  The setting however, was a different story.  I could not make up my mind which one I preferred, so in the end I submitted them both.

The first setting I used involved a hat, a broach and a string of pearls.  The jewelry and the hat are things I have inherited. The hat is a weird story. When my mom died I flew back home to close up her home, and in the sorting and the packing I came across this 50’s type hat. For some weird reason I put the hat on and walked around in it for hours. My brother thought I was nuts. The pearls and the cameo were gifts from my grandmother and have a lot of sentimental value. I don’t wear either very often but I do love them both.

Capturing the Year 52 weeks:  Topic - Jewelery: January 11. 2015

Because I was feeling indecisive and in a black and white mood, I did a second shot. When thinking on this topic I remembered doing something similar in a wedding shoot and I wanted to see if I could create the same effect. The cameo and pearls were my grandmothers and I have a lot of good memories of her. The Bible belonged to Richards grandmother and she passed it down to him before she died. Faith is a strong foundation of my life, and am always reminded that this bible is an inheritance passed down from generation to generation.

 

Capturing the Year 52 weeks:  Topic - Jewelery: January 11. 2015

Week 3:  Winter

The theme was winter, but that is really hard for someone living down in Southern USA.  Winter happens maybe two weeks of the year.  Floridians pull out their boots, and scarves and winter woolies, and pack them away 3 days later.  So while the rest of the northern hemisphere is freezing and has these wonderful snowy images, I have a gorgeous sunset taking from the parking lot of a shopping center.

Sunset: January12, 2014: 9165

Week 4:  Transportation

This was a week full of transportation.  The first image was taken from a traffic light as the cars pulled off.  It was rainy and wet and had some great reflections.  The second and third were taken on a sunny winters day at the lake.  The last was taken from my back garden as this microlight (or something) flew over.  Not sure I am too crazy about that on a Sunday morning.  It disturbs my peace, and chases my critters away.

Out in the rain:  January 15, 2014 Iphone Pic

Week 5:  From Afar

What can be further away than the sun.  I happened to stop by a park to take a different image and decided that the cloud cover and sun combination would probably suit my topic.  That I got the lake in as well was a real bonus.

Capturing the Year 52 Week Project: From Far Away: Jan 25, 2015

Week 6:  Red

I did not know if I would get the image that I was looking for this week so I settled and went with red roses.

Capturing the Year 52 Week Project: Red: Feb 8, 2015

However, while I was up in Gainesville I managed to get the photo that I wanted.  So here it is..

Gainesville: February 12, 2015 1973

Week 7:  Eyes

My Ms Squirrel is such a sweet little mite, and I love the interaction time I have with her.  Today her eyes were only on her food and me since I might have got a little too close.

Outback on the canal:  Feb 17 2015 2120

Week 8:  Around the house

Books are my strength and my weakness. I have way to many books. I have family bibles, books of encouragement, novels, educational books. I have too many books. So much so that I turned my walk in closet into a library. I hate to get rid of books.

Marian's Farewell:  Feb 18, 2015 2145

 

My4Hens: Project 52

My4Hens Project 52 is a group of photographers who take photographs on a specific subject each week for 52 weeks.  This is the second year I am part of this project.  I find that it stretches me to think outside the box on the best of day.  I hope you follow along as I update each week.

Week 1:  Topic: Fresh

I had originally found a great weed that had just opened up in the garden.  Sadly when I went out this morning to take the photograph my husband had cut the lawn and my great weed was gone.  Walking around the garden I noticed a brand new bud.  We had transplanted this plant some months back and I was convinced it would not survive.  I was pleasantly surprised today to find new buds all over the plant.  So this is my interpretation of Fresh.

M4H: Topic Fresh: 8369

 

Week 2:  Topic: Story Telling

This tiny Bible tells the story of my grandmothers family – their births and deaths. For me, who is interested in genealogy this was a treasure to find. All of this generation and almost all of the next generation are now dead, but it is good to remember them and their stories.

M4H: Storytelling: January 18, 2014 9787

Week 3:  Topic: Light 

Light was a fairly hard topic for me, not having a model, however, I had a lily in my office window and with a little bit of positioning I was able to use natural window light to take this particular photo.

M4H:  Light:  January 23, 2014

Week 4:  Topic: A Part of Me

When you are part of a photography group, you are stretched, without a doubt, sometimes you share happiness, other times you are vulnerable. Today the topic was “A Part of Me” and it took me to a place of memories.

A part of me will never swing on a swing, or spin on a merry-g- round. 27 years have gone by and still there are days when I remember that a part of me is missing. A 4.5 month in the womb, my little baby’s heart stopped beating. And on my birthday that little part of me was removed from my body. Not a year goes by when I don’t think of what could have been. Yet I hold fast to the belief that despite the fact that the heart stopped beating, that my little one was fearfully and wonderfully made, and that one day I will fully understand why this was not to be.

M4H: A Part of Me: January 26, 2015 0186

Week 5:  Topic: Small

For something so small this Caterpillar is sure making a meal of my plant.

Outback on the Canal:  February 6, 2015 1091

Week 6:  Topic: Pastel

I loved the softness and vulnerability of this artwork.

Lake Worth Street Painting:  February 21, 2015 2592

Week 7:  Topic: Perspective

M4H: Perspective: February 24 2015, 2709

 

 

 

 

 

Project 365 – For mothers just like me…

Project 365 – For mothers just like me…is a group of moms with young children who graciously allowed me to tag along with the group as an accountability group for taking photographs.  Both of my children are much older and living out of home.  I hope to continue with this group as I have enjoyed every moment of my time spent with them and getting to know each family.

 

Day One:  January 1, 2015

While sitting on the deck drinking coffee this morning I was looking at the creeper on the fence.  This little shoot was heading off into the sky.  What I love when I edit is finding what the natural eye does not normally see.  Tiny little bugs crawling on the shoot and spider webs.

Outback on the Canal:  January 1, 2015: 8278

Day 2: January 2, 2015

I like to hang out on the deck in the morning and have my coffee and talk to the critters.  Today was an interesting day.  I generally put peanuts out for the Squirrel but of late the Blue Jays have been picking them off faster than the Squirrel.  Today we had a new bird join the mix although I cannot say it actually got a peanut.  I am not particularly fond of the Boat Tailed Grackle.  They tend to swarm the canal.  However, the one thing I do love about these birds is the color of their feathers with the sun shines on them.

Outback on the Canal:  January 2, 2015: 8348

Day 3: January 3,  2015

Walking in the wetland is always a pleasure for me – right now I cannot walk far, but I wanted to attempt it.  I got as far as the entrance to the wetland when this little lady caught my attention.  It was the first time I had seen a Juvenile or female Ruby Throated Hummingbird in the wild.  I have seen one at the Butterfly World but never out in a natural environment.  It was such a thrill to see and be able to photograph this bird.

Green Cay Wetlands:  Delray Beach:  January 3, 2015 8470

Day 4: January 4, 2015

It has been a quite day today.  I wanted to rest after paying the price for yesterdays brief walk in the wetlands.  So today I hung around at home and in the afternoon I went outside on the deck to hang out with the Squirrels for a bit.  I love these little critters.

Out on the back canal:  January 4, 2015 8553

Day 5:  January 5, 2015

I had to laugh at this little guy this morning.  He was so busy scratching himself I am convinced he has fleas.  However at the point that I took the photo he had started playing with his tail.  Seemed like he was fluffing it up.

Out on the back canal:  January 5, 2015 8606

Day 6: January 6, 2015

Waking up in the morning is not something I am very good at.  However, it is always good to wake up to a pretty view.  When I went outside to feed the ducks this morning the mist was rolling along the banks and gathering at the end of the canal.

Out on the back canal:  January 6, 2015 8622

Day 7: January 7, 2015

Sunsets out back are always something worth stopping and watching.  This photo was taken as the sun was setting when they sky was still a little yellow and before it dipped below the line of view.  I always like to watch for reflections in the water.

Out on the back canal:  January 7, 2015 8668

Day 8, January 8, 2015

I have decided that Blue Jays are wise birds.  They have learned that the Squirrel gets 5 peanuts before I go to work.  Tag team Blue Jays have worked out that if they hit the loot after the Squirrel has got his first one, then they will get them all.

Out on the back canal:  January 8, 2015 8730

Day 9:  January 9, 2015

I love to walk in the wetlands and look at all the animals and birds that live there.  However there are times when I go looking for something different.  Today was one of those days and this vine caught my eye as it hung against a tree.

Wakodahatchee Wetlands: January 9, 2015: 8967

Day 10:  January 10, 2015

Today is a little chilly.  There is not much out on the canal.   However, you can count on the Mourning Doves to be around.  I love how they puff themselves up as the sit in the cold.

Out on the back canal:  January 10: 2015 8981

Day 11: January 11, 2015

Another early morning routine is to feed the Mallards.  I put a scoop of bird seed in a dish on the dock.  Today I was running a little late and so they were waiting patiently for me on the bank to bring their food out.

Out on the back canal:  January 11: 2015 9013

Day 12: January 12, 2015

In winter the days are dark before I reach home, so often on my drive home I am watching the sunset as it forms, and if I can find a good spot I will pull off and take a photo.  This was one of my stopping points this particular day.

Sunset Stop 1: January 12, 2015 9157

Day 13: January 13, 2015

Early morning breakfast shoot before heading off to work.  Big Blue was outside wading in the water fishing.  I love how he has a feather sticking up on his back.

Out on the back canal:  January 13: 2015 9229

Day 14: January 14, 2015

I knew that today was going to be one of those hard days to meet my 365 challenge so I stopped in at the local grocery store and bought myself some tulips.  They are always so pretty.  Today I experimented with black and white.

January 14, 2014 9261

Day 15: January 15, 2015

This was another road side opportunity.  I had been out at one of our clinics all day.  My camera was on the car seat and I was stopped at a traffic light.  I could not ask for a better photo op – a Cattle Egret sitting on the railing.

On the road:  January 15, 2015:  9296

Day 16: January 16, 2015

Today was my first short walk in the wetland, post surgery to my foot.  The weather was warm and breezy.  Obviously the turtles were enjoying basking in the warmth.  I just love the positions they managed to get themselves into.

Wakodahatchee Wetlands: January 16, 2015 9389

Day 17: January 17, 2015

It is Saturday, and Richard is desperate to try out his new paddle board, so off to the park we go.  He heads out on is board and I sit in the warmth of the day watching a father and son playing on a jet ski.

At the Lake: January 17, 2014 9665

Day 18: January 18, 2015

My tulips are dying but even in death they are beautiful.  It feels like a Hallelujah chorus as they open out to cast out new seed, which in turn begins new life again.  Unfortunately they were in my office, so there was not a lot of new life happening.

 

In life and death:  January 18, 2014 9790

Day 19: January 19, 2015

Seeing a raptor out back on the canal, is always a thrill for me.  They are never that close that I can get a great photo, but I really enjoy hearing them call out

Outback on the Canal:  January 19, 2015 9831

Day 20: January 20, 2015

Another morning breakfast run as I head off to work.  My little Squirrels were out to greet me.

Outback on the Canal:  January 20, 2015 9852

Day 21: January 21, 2015

When I went out to put the duck seed out this morning this White Ibis walked right up to me.  It is very unusual because they normally fly away.  Perhaps he is the Ibis that cleans up after the ducks have finished with their seed.

Outback on the Canal:  January 21, 2015 9878

Day 22: January 22, 2015

Big Blue was hanging out again this morning.  I see his feather is still sticking up 10 days later.  I am always pleased to see his face when I head outside.

Outback on the Canal:  January 22, 2015 9889

Day 23: January 23, 2015

I decided that I wanted to do something different today so I headed outside with my macro lens, which I really do not use often enough, and started focusing in on tiny little plants.  It always amazes me when I can zoom in close enough to see the tiny hairs on the stems of the plants.

Outback on the Canal:  January 23, 2015 9958

Day 24: January 24, 2015 

I love my little Squirrels and I really like the colors of the background lately.  The blurry effect is also a favorite of mine as well.

Outback on the Canal:  January 24, 2015 0014

Day 25: January 25, 2015 

Sunsets out back can be spectacular and today was no exception.  From here the colors changed to magenta’s.  The end of the day just took my breath away.

Outback on the Canal:  January 25, 2015 0147

Day 26: January 27, 2015 

Early morning and not much critter activity but I do think that this was left over from the glorious night before.  Love to wake up in the morning and see the pink in the sky.  It makes the routine of getting ready for work so much more enjoyable.

Outback on the Canal:  January 26, 2015 0172

Day 27: January 27, 2015 

This is one of my favorite kinds of photography. The topic of narrow depth of field.  I have blown up a couple of these images and am really happy with the final outcome.

Green Cay Wetlands: Jan 27, 2015 0351

Day 28: January 28, 2015 

Out back this morning was really life less, except for this Boat Tailed Grackle sitting up in the palm tree.

Outback on the Canal:  January 28, 2015 0360

Day 29: January 29, 2015 

This photo of the Blue Jay is not technically correct.  I would call it fantastically flawed. However I do love the motion in this image.

Flawed Image:  January 29, 2015 0401

Day 30: January 30, 2015 

I walked in the wetlands today, and since I went looking for this kind of photograph, here is my narrow depth of field for today.

Wakodahatchee Wetlands: January 30, 2015 0503

 

365 – 2015. One day at a time…… January 2015

Today starts the beginning of a new year and the beginning of a new challenge.  The goal of this group is to challenge oneself to pick up their camera and take a photograph.  There will be some days when I will want to experiment.  There will be days when I am out and something catches my eye. Many days it may be a case of just sitting out on the deck communing with nature and drinking a cup of coffee.  Today was one of those days.

 

Day 1:  January 1, 2015

Today was my day to hang outside on the deck drinking coffee and enjoying nature.  This little guy visits me for breakfast each morning.  He gets a couple of peanuts and a photo shoot.

Outback on the Canal:  January 1, 2015: 8275

Day 2: January 2015

Today I walked around the garden looking for something new – I was specifically looking for the topic fresh for another blog when this caught my attention.  I really loved the mottled colors that the macro lens created.

2/365 Out in the Garden: January 2, 2014

Day 3:  January 3, 2015

Today I was going to attempt a short walk.  I have not walked any distance since my surgery and I have been itching to get out.  So off I went.  I did not walk far and paid the price for walking but the view was spectacular and it was a real thrill for me to see a Bobcat and her kitten in the wild.  Mom was lazy and disinterested in me, but I could hardly contain my excitement.

January 3, 2014 8461

Day 4:  January 4, 2015

Today I made the decision to stay at home and rest my foot in preparation for going back to work tomorrow.  My photo was taken late afternoon when  went to sit outside on the the deck.  The Squirrels came out to play.

Out on the back canal:  January 4, 2015 8544

Day 5:  January 5, 2015

Just keeping it real. First day back at work since surgery, and I am moving into a nice new big office. But this is kind of what it looked like when I started my day. By the time I left it was a little more organized but I need book cases and some drawers. And a working computer That said I am extremely grateful to the guys that moved all the furniture in and then moved the furniture around. They rock!!

New Office:  January 5, 2014 8615

Day 6: January 6, 2015

Driving home from work is an hours drive, and when it is in the middle of winter, it is not fun.  By the time I get home the sun has set and it is dark. So I could not resist a detour when I saw the sky come alive this evening on my home commute.

Wellington: January 6, 2014 8647

Day 7:  January 7, 2015

Sunset out back on the canal changes from day to day and as we go through the year you will see the different colors out back.  Tonight was mild but I always love to see the ducks floating on the water.

Out on the back canal:  January 7, 2015 8684

Day 8, January 8, 2015

Morning routine feed time, is to give the squirrels some peanuts before heading off to work.  Not too many but a few.  However, the Blue Jays have discovered free food, and this particular day there were about 5 of them flying in and out stealing the peanuts from the squirrel.

Out on the back canal:  January 8, 2015 8725

Day 9, January 9, 2015

Early morning raindrop is what I enjoy seeing outside on the plants and we have had a bit of rain just lately.

Out on the back canal:  January 9 2914: 8751

Day 10, January 10, 2015

Today I was sitting on the deck.  There was not much going on outside except the two Mallard ducks who had finally made their way up to the edge of the dock.  When one was eating the other kept it’s beady eye on me to make sure I was not creeping closer.  I liked the effect of the blur of grass in front of the duck.

Out on the back canal:  January 10: 2015 8981

Day 11:  January 11, 2015

This morning my Squirrel did not rouse himself until just before 10:30am.  The weather has been a bit chilly the last few day and I have noticed that if it is too cold they do not come out.  But it is always a pleasure to see them when they do.

Out on the back canal:  January 11: 2015 9040

Day 12: January 12, 2015

I drive the same route most days, and for the longest time there has been a hedge across the front of this property.  Suddenly one day the hedge was gone and this run down old building was in line of sight.  I passed it for a couple of days and then one day I pulled over on the side of the road and decided to take this shot.  The very next day, graders were in clearing the land. Interestingly they cleared all around the house.

Abandoned: January 12, 2014: 9154

Day 3:  January 13, 2015

Sunset out back on the canal varies from day to day, but I am never really disappointed.  It was nice to see my Great Blue Heron wading in the water.

Out on the back canal:  January 13: 2015 9245

Day 14: January 14, 2015 

I love tulips. My aunt died a year ago February, and I did a whole photo shoot as a blog remembrance of her beautiful life. Shooting these two made me remember her all over again.  How I miss the voice at the other end of the phone that gave sound advise.

January 14, 2014 9271

Day 15: January 15, 2015

I always get pretty excited when I see a raptor.  I was driving home from work when I spotted him sitting on the powerline.  However, I was already passing him, so I went on a bit further, did a u-turn and headed back the way I had come, did another u-turn and drove up to where he was.  I pulled off the side of the road and started taking photo’s.

On the road:  January 15, 2015:  9299

Day 16: January 16, 2015 

Today I took a walk around the local wetlands.  I love to do this.  It relaxes me and I really enjoy nature.  One of my favorite inhabitants there is this iguana, which is apparently an invasive species to South Florida.  Most people dislike them but I think they are pretty cool, especially when they puff up their flap at their neck.  This iguana is in it’s mating colors right now.

Wakodahatchee Wetlands: January 16, 2015 9428

Day 17: January 17, 2015 

We headed out to the local lake so that Richard could play on his new paddle board.  I took it easy and did some armchair photography.  Today I experimented with black and white, negative space and blur.

At the Lake: January 17, 2014 9603

Day 18: January 18, 2015 

The tulips I posted a few days earlier had finally died but even in their dying they looked beautiful.  I could not resist taking this photo.

In life and death:  January 18, 2014 9792

Day 19: January 19, 2015 

This particular morning I headed outside to feed the ducks.  I always take my camera outside and it was such a beautiful foggy morning.  The ducks had to wait for their food while I snapped my photo.

Outback on the Canal:  January 19, 2015 9802

Day 20: January 20, 2015 

My little buddies were around this morning to have breakfast.  I always enjoy their antics when I go out there.  What I love about this particular photo is the blur all around the Squirrel.

Outback on the Canal:  January 19, 2015 9802

Day 21: January 21, 2015 

Heading to work each morning, means I have a limited chance of capturing photo’s.  By the time I get home it is already starting to get dark.  Today, Big Blue, as I named my Great Blue Heron, happened to fly on in as I walked out.  It always gives me a thrill to see him out there on the bank.

Outback on the Canal:  January 21 2015 9884

Day 22: January 22, 2015 

Again Big Blue was out there and this was just a gorgeous morning.  I think he thought I was nuts when I got down level with him to take this photo.  I loved the colors, the little bit of mist and most of all Big Blue.

Outback on the Canal:  January 19, 2015 9888

Day 23: January 23, 2015 

I wanted to do something different today, and I have these Lilies sitting on my window sill.  I decided to take a photo using natural light.  I loved the color version but I really enjoyed seeing this in black and white.

Natural Light: January 23, 2014 9951

Day 24: January 24, 2015 

We occasionally will get woodpeckers out back.  Today was one of those days.  It was hanging out at breakfast time with the Blue Jays, Squirrels and the Boat Tailed Grackles.

 

Outback on the Canal:  January 24, 2015 0017

Day 25: January 25, 2015 

Today was an overcast chilly winters day.  I had gone out and on the way home, I had stopped to take a photo of a swing.  When I go home I went outside to see what the sunset was doing.  I got an okay photo and thought that was it.  5 minutes later I saw the sky turn orange and then magenta and this was the final photo I took tonight.

Outback on the Canal:  January 25, 2015 0161

Day 26: January 26, 2015 

I love my mornings out back.  I typically catch a few minutes with these guys before I head off to work.  They always bring a smile to my face.  I do think that God was thinking of me when He created the Squirrel.  I could watch their antics all day.

Outback on the Canal:  January 26, 2015 0173

Day 27: January 27, 2015 

Raptors are not your common every day occurrence.  So I am pretty excited when I manage to catch one in a photograph.  This Red Shouldered Hawk was just beautiful.

Green Cay Wetlands: Jan 27, 2015 0258

Day 28: January 28, 2015 

Work days are really hard to get photo’s.  By the time I am nearing home it is already getting dark.  There is nothing really inspirational around our office, so I have got into the habit of looking out when I am driving to or from the office.  Tonight it was the sunset on a little canal off the main road.

Enroute home: January 28, 2015 0379

Day 29: January 29, 2015 

Another catch en-route home.  This Osprey was sitting on this dead tree as I was driving past.  I quickly did a u-turn and headed back in it’s direction.  I love seeing these raptors.

Enroute home:  January 29, 2015 0407

Day 30: January 30, 2015 

I am part of a group called 30 Minutes in Life and this week I got to pick the topic.  I choose “Narrow Depth of Field”.  On the weekend I get to pick my favorite 5.  So today I walked around the wetlands looking for a little bit of inspiration, and some narrow depth of field images.

Wakodahatchee Wetlands: January 30, 2015 0500

Day 30: January 30, 2015 

Today I was not sure if I preferred the color or the sepia.  So I did both.  I do tend to lean towards the sepia to be honest.

Walkig in a park: January 31 2015 0638

I hope that you have enjoyed my first month of my 365 project.  Look out for the next installment at the end of February.

This is a circle blog, so please take the time to head over to my friend Francesca and see what she has for you.  She is new to photography and will hopefully be challenged to pick up her camera as often as possible to take a photo a day.

If you are interested in seeing more of my photography take a look at my Facebook page or my Flickr Page.

30 Minutes in the Life: Dec 2014: It’s all about Amy…

Time is a fraction, and mine is running out….This month has been a month of adjustments. I started a new job which means my working hours changed, my travel time changed and I face a whole new learning curve. It also means my photography time has been affected as well. Added to that I will be having surgery on my foot on the 18th of this month and so I decided to work ahead and take my photographs early so that everything was done and prepared for the upcoming blog.

Working in advance means that when 30 Minutes decided to make this month a Five on Festive, I was not on the same page. Truth be told, I am not even doing Christmas decorations this year. While it would be easy enough to put it all up, taking it down will be another story. Climbing in the attic on crutches will be impossible for me. So I decided to get a Poinsettia and call it Christmas. Presents can go around that this year. So my blog will not be the same as the rest but I hope you enjoy it anyway.

A few months back I bought a macro lens, 85mm. The person I bought it from told me she never used it for macro but mainly for portraits. I have used it for macro but never for portraits. So when Amy came home for Thanksgiving I asked her to be my model while I tried out the macro lens.

 

Amy: Nov 29, 2014 5807

_MG_5808

Amy S: Nov 29, 2014 5810

_MG_5814

Amy: Nov 29, 2014 5815

Amy: Nov 29, 2014 5807

Amy: Nov 29, 2014 5819

Amy: Nov 29, 2014 5822

Amy: Nov 29, 2014 5825

 

“Do not stop thinking of life as an adventure. You have no security unless you can live bravely, excitingly, imaginatively, unless you can choose challenge instead of competence.

~ Eleanor Roosevelt, The Autobiography of Eleanor Roosevelt

This 30 Minutes marks the joining of a number of new bloggers and it will be exciting to see what they have for us in the future. Don’t forget to follow the circle and take a look at what the other photographers have for you this month. Stacey Markel Photography / Maryland Family and Child Photographer is up next. I always love what Stacey has to offer and I am hoping to live Christmas vicariously through my fellow bloggers.

As this year draws to a close I have to thank all the ladies I have been blogging with this past year. It has been a blast and I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of this group. There is amazing talent in here and each one has helped me grow in some way.

May your coming year be full of love, peace, happiness and joy. May you dream big and may your dreams be a journey that you constantly strive towards.

If you are interested in seeing more of my photography take a look at my Facebook page or my Flickr Page.

Walking in the Wetland: December 30, 2014

I love walking in the wetlands.  After a busy work week, the wetlands soothes my soul, and puts balance back in my life.  10 days ago I had foot surgery and I have not been able to walk.  Last  week I started taking baby steps and today I was given clearance by the doctor to put my foot down properly and walk.  I also got all the stitches out….ouch!!

Since he said I could walk I decided to attempt limping along to the first rookery at one of my favorite Wetlands – Wakodahatchee Wetlands.  I meander.  Really slowly.  Watching and waiting.  Wetland walking is a lesson in patience.  You have only a fraction of time to get the shot you want – there is no do over.  So patience is a good lesson to learn.

My first encounter was with a Tri-Colored Heron who was wading through the water fishing for it’s food.   They generally flap around in the water darting from spot to spot, attempting to catch the small fish swimming in the water.

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The Purple Gallinule is part of the “Swamp Hen” family.  They are easily identified by their bright yellow legs.  They are an amazing mixture of colors.  You will often find them dangling on a reed attempting to eat the seeds or flowers at the end of it.

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Moving along the broad walk I spot a female Boat Tailed Grackle.  She hops up onto the wooden railing right in front of me.  I am not necessarily a fan of the Boat Tailed Grackles.  They tend to swarm the garden and take over.  But she was kind of sweet and I enjoyed seeing her close up.

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We are heading into on of my favorite times of the year.  The Great Blue Herons are courting and nest building and today the Anhinga were showing their courting colors.  They male is typically fluffed up and out.  Both bird seem to get real defnition and color around their eyes at this time of the year.  There is a lot of posturing done by the male and at times the female will engage with him and other times she will just ignore him.  I had to laugh, I overheard a conversation that went something like this.  The little boy, seeing the two bird knocking their beaks together,  asked his father ” What are the birds doing?”  The father answered “It’s like they are sword fighting”.  Fortunately the male did not jump on the back of the female or I am sure the father would have told the child that they were wrestling.

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Anhinga are interesting birds.  They swim in the water to fish for their dinner.  However, their wings are not oily so the bird tends to get water logged and has to dry it’s wings out on a branch.  So often you will see the Anhinga, and the Cormorant sitting on a bank or on a branch with their wings spread out.  The Anhinga in particular, is a stunning sight to see with it’s wings all spread out in black and white.

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The Great Blue Herons are the other birds who are doing their courting and nest building.  This is a spectacular sight to watch.  You will see the female extend her neck out and make a strange barking kind of noise as she calls out for her mate.  Next thing he will be flying in with a twig and there is a beautiful dance of wings and beaks as the female accepts the twig from the male.  She will push it into the nest and wedge it in the exact position she wants it.  The two will hang out together for a while preening each other and then off he goes looking for another twig.  Before you know it the dance has begun again.  Today this Great Blue Heron seemed to be snoozing.

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Reflections are always a nice part of the wetlands and it was not long before I was back to the initial Tri Colored Heron that I had started out with.

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Wetland walking is a great way to view up close, or not so close, the natural environment that you area has to offer you.  It is a time to meander and enjoy the call of the wild. If you have never done a wetland walk, I would encourage you to take the time to head on out and enjoy what it has to offer you.

“In order to see birds, it is necessary to become part of the silence”

~ Robert Lynd

If you are interested in seeing more of my photography take a look at my Facebook page or my Flickr Page.

Sunrises and Sunsets

Sunsets and sunrises out back on the canal, the ever changing skyline of the Everglades that I view each night.  I recently decided to print myself a calender of these different views.   I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.

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If you are interested in seeing more of my photography take a look at my Facebook page or my Flickr Page.