Five Day ART Challenge, Day Five

For the last day of the Art Challenge - butterflies. If you only know one thing about me, you should know that I like butterflies. I have butterfly necklaces and a ring from the Butterfly Conservatory at Niagara Falls Ontario during a trip to Canada in September 2012. What I love about butterflies are their free spirit. And just like a flower, a butterfly can brighten your day, even if it is for a brief moment. At times, they can be difficult to take photos of. If my camera is within reach - i have to try.

EXPLORING WONDERLAND, DIGITAL ART

EXPLORING WONDERLAND, DIGITAL ART

I created Exploring Wonderland from my original photograph Stay For Awhile of a monarch on a pink zinnia in my garden in 2009. I took the photo with my first digital camera. Two years later, using Adobe Photoshop I added 12 overlays over the photograph to highlight and bring out the details. This is also how the whimsical patterns where added along with a subtle canvas texture to the butterfly to give a painting texture. I have been asked several times if I have ever tried painting over my photos or prints. I started painting in acrylics two years ago. Now that I am more comfortable with acrylics, I would like to combine photography and digital art with my paintings - so this answer is: This butterfly will evolve again.

BUTTERFLY KISS, PHOTOGRAPH

BUTTERFLY KISS, PHOTOGRAPH

Butterfly Kiss is the first in this series. Taken on August 13th, 2010 near the Colorado-Kansas border just outside Kanorado, KS. We were traveling to Colorado on vacation when we noticed a sunflower field so we took the closest exit and headed towards the open field. The sunflowers definitely looked better from the highway than when I was standing in front of them. So after getting sandburs all over my jeans and plastic clod shoes. Just before I headed back to the Jeep, i noticed one single monarch going from sunflower to sunflower - I had to approach this butterfly slowly or he would relocate to another sunflower. I was actually getting to the point where I was having a hard time walking due to the sandburs in my shoes. I could of danced with this butterfly longer and finally had to walk away. I had to pick every last sticker off of my shoes and jeans before my husband would let me back in the Jeep. I have four images in the Butterfly Kiss series, they are currently on my site at this link: Sunflowers

STAY FOR AWHILE, PHOTOGRAPH

STAY FOR AWHILE, PHOTOGRAPH

Stay For Awhile is my favorite image I have captured of a butterfly, I took this image in July 2011. I was leaving town for the weekend. Before I left, I went in our backyard to take a few quick photos in the garden. I was so glad I took the time to take the photos because to my surprise, I came across this tiger swallowtail. I had never had the opportunity to see one this close, let alone take a photograph. Unlike my photograph Spread Your Wings, this butterfly was very calm enjoying a coneflower. I searched the pattern online and I believe it is a female eastern tiger swallowtail

I have enjoyed doing this Art Challenge! I would like to journal more, of course as time allows. Until then I will leave you with this Irish Blessing...

May the wings of the butterfly kiss the sun
And find your shoulder to light on,
To bring you luck, happiness and riches
Today, tomorrow and beyond.
~Irish Blessing
 

Five Day ART Challenge, Day Four

Day Four of the Art Challenge, I selected snow scenes. Overall we have had a mild Winter. One has to have patience, dedication and rely on Mother Nature to take photographs of snow scenes. I have been knee deep in snow and out in single digital temperatures attempting to capture the beauty of snow. At times, it's not as easy as stepping out your front door and giving your camera a click. Have to admit, I would prefer to stay inside where it is warm and cozy drinking hot chocolate watching the snow fall from my window. But once in awhile it's fun to get out for a little while and play in the snow!

IN THE THICKET OF WINTER, ACRYLIC

IN THE THICKET OF WINTER, ACRYLIC

In The Thicket Of Winter is an acrylic painting from a photograph titled, Blue Stem Winter by Northwindimage. The pairing was in the 2014 Inspirations exhibit. I have coordinated the Inspirations exhibit for the past five years. Along with my photographs where I collaborated with artists, this year I decided to paint five paintings. Everyone who I talked to that viewed this painting and photograph together thought it turned out okay. Maybe they were being polite. I went ahead and entered this painting even though I am not 100% finished with it and that is why I have not signed it. If you have ever painted, you'll understand. You view your art differently than everyone else. Until you are satisfied with it, you will always look at it as incomplete. Eventually, I will finish this painting with my small paint brushes, until then I will enjoy it as it is.

THE GRAINERY, PHOTOGRAPH

THE GRAINERY, PHOTOGRAPH

This photograph is of the grainery on my husband's family farm in Northwestern Kansas where is Grandparents used to live. This photo was taken on March 23rd, 2013. It was featured in the 2014 First National Bank Calendar for the month of January and received first place. I walked around the farm that morning for awhile trying to find something of interest to take photos of. When I could not tell if I was actually holding the shutter button down any longer because I did not have feeling left in my fingers, I decided it was time to call it a day and go inside to warm up.

SNOWY CREEK, PHOTOGRAPH

SNOWY CREEK, PHOTOGRAPH

Snowy Creek is one of my favorite snowy scenes. I took this photo in December 2010 south of Breckenridge, CO along Highway 9. We pulled over so I could make my way down a drop off through the trees. At times, the snow was knee deep and every step I took, I wondered if I would end up in snow up to my chin. I eventually made my way down to the creek. I had to straddle a fallen tree and I was very close to the icy waters to get a capture at this angle. During this adventure, I apparently entertained my husband, I caught him taking photos of me while I camped by the creek and as I made my way back to the Jeep. Fun Times!

Five Day ART Challenge, Day Three

For Day Three I am featuring a few of my favorite flowers. They greet us in the Spring and can brighten our day. I have always enjoyed taking photographs preserving their beauty long after they fade away.

FIELD OF DREAMS, PHOTOGRAPH

FIELD OF DREAMS, PHOTOGRAPH

Poppies are among one of my favorite flowers to photograph. The stems and petals are delicate. The wind and rain can damage them easily. At times it is hard to find a single poppy that I would want to photograph let alone an entire field. This image is part of a series of photographs taken in August 2013 on the north edge of Breckenridge, CO. While I was crawling around on the ground in between rain showers for three days in a row trying to take photos, my husband met the developer who purchased the land where the local lumber yard used to be to build town homes. The developer told him, he planted the poppies and wildflowers on the lot so while the site was under construction - it would still looked inviting. He called it his Field of Dreams.

PRETTY IN PINK XIII, PHOTOGRAPH

PRETTY IN PINK XIII, PHOTOGRAPH

The peonies in the Pretty In Pink series are taken in my garden. My Dad gave me the peonies in dug up in the backyard when they moved from where I grew up. It took a couple years for them to get established. I have enjoyed capturing their unique beauty and adding new images to this collection.

SPRING'S LACE CURTAIN, ACRYLIC

SPRING'S LACE CURTAIN, ACRYLIC

I referenced a photograph from Charles Benton for this painting. The pairing was in the 2014 Inspirations exhibit. This was a difficult painting to title. Some may wonder where I came up with Spring's Lace Curtain.  After staring at the iris' at length, I came across the saying "Lace Curtain Irish." These were poor Irish, but for the sake of appearances, they would put up lace curtains, to look more respectable. It implies certain trait of ambition or of drive about people who want to be better off than they are. Spring is a popular season when it starts warming up and everything around us is bursting in technicolor in the gardens. What would Spring be without it's "Lace Curtain"? Spring would not have the same appearance without all the flowers or the lace curtain in the window. I know it's a stretch but i thought it made for a unique title.

Five Day ART Challenge, Day Two

Brilliant sunsets can light up the Great Plains of Kansas. They are breathtaking and always changing. With all the amazing sunsets we have had recently, I decided to feature my sunset art for Day Two of the challenge.

SUMMER EVENING'S SUNSET, ACRYLIC

SUMMER EVENING'S SUNSET, ACRYLIC

This was my first attempt at painting a sunset in acrylic. Summer Evening's Sunset was inspired from a photograph by Northwindimage. We teamed up together for the 2014 Inspirations exhibit at Warehouse 414. The pairing received second place in the People's Choice.

BLAZING SUNSET, PHOTOGRAPH

BLAZING SUNSET, PHOTOGRAPH

Photographing a sunset even in Kansas with the wide open plains is hit or miss. Especially when you are driving across the state. You can clearly see this incredible sunset in full view but now you have to find just the right place to pull over before that gorgeous glow turns to night. Blazing Sunset was taken in November 2011 near Perry, KS.

FIRE IN THE SKY, PHOTOGRAPH

FIRE IN THE SKY, PHOTOGRAPH

I know it is Kansas Day but Colorado sunsets will always have a special place in my heart. This was the perfect view, at the perfect place. Fire In The Sky was taken along Boreas Pass in Summit County near Breckenridge, CO on October 1st, 2011. This is among one of my favorite sunset images I have captured. I originally considered calling it Rocky Mountain High after the song by John Denver. Simply because of the experience of elation one feels when you witness a moment like this in person. Instead I decided to title it after the song lyrics '...I've seen it raining fire in the sky' 

Five Day ART Challenge, Day One

I have an appreciation for many forms of art. So I have decided to participate in a Five Day Art Challenge on Facebook. This is a challenge going around Facebook where artists are invited to share 3 images of their ART for five days. Seems like somewhere in the challenge it turned into a 'painting' challenge and that could be why I was  not nominated. I am mainly known as a photographer, not a painter. Since I am doing things a little different, I decided not post the images on Facebook but share my portfolio with others on my journal. I discovered this idea after searching about the challenge and found Vicky L. Williamson's website where she had the challenge posted on her blog. I like her sketches from the Kansas City sketchcrawl she shared on day three.  

HIDE AND SEEK, ACRYLIC

HIDE AND SEEK, ACRYLIC

This is my first acrylic painting - ever. I collaborated with Bob Hayes and worked from his original photograph for Hide and Seek. The pairing was introduced for the first time in the 2012 Inspirations exhibit at the Fairlawn Plaza Classic Bean. 

LASTING IMPRESSION, DIGITAL ART

LASTING IMPRESSION, DIGITAL ART

Lasting Impression was created from a photograph I took with a film camera in the 90's when going through the Rocky Mountain National Forest. I came across the photo years later after having the negatives scanned to a CD. I thought the image was very grainy and not the best quality for print so I decided to play with the image digitally with the filters in Adobe Photoshop and this was the end result. Every time we go through the forest I look for these trees, they were on a hairpin curve where there was a pull off but I believe this tree is no longer standing.

EDGE OF ASPEN, PHOTOGRAPH

EDGE OF ASPEN, PHOTOGRAPH

I enjoy pulling over roadside and attempting to capture the detail and beauty of aspens. Photographing aspens is not as easy as it may first appear when you are viewing them from a moving vehicle. This area the aspens were pure perfection from any angle and the lighting enhanced the grove into the distance.  Edge of Aspen was taken just southeast of Aspen, CO along HWY 82 on August, 2nd in 2012. 

Dylan & Emile's Engagement Photos

Unlike today we had plenty of sun but it was a very breezy cool autumn day yesterday. Despite the weather we stayed on schedule to take engagement photos for Dylan & Emile who traveled from McPherson to have Lake Shawnee for their backdrop.  Thanks for asking me to take your photos and I hope you enjoy them as much as I did taking them

Here is a sneak peek to a few of the engagement photos I took yesterday for Dylan & Emile.

LINK: Dylan & Emile's Engagement Photos at Lake Shawnee

Iris Painting

It's that time of year again for our annual Inspirations exhibit! I finished one painting yesterday and started another today. Hard to believe October is just around the corner. I started the "Iris Painting last May but it was a busy Summer and now that we just returned from the KSF it was time to start painting again. The image below includes the photograph by Charles Benton that was my original "inspiration"

I have not decided on a title for this painting so if you have any suggestions, please send them my way. This will be the fifth year for the Inspirations exhibit. I organize this annual exhibit and came up with the concept of encouraging artists to work with photographers and have both their original photograph and the final art on display together on exhibit, creating a team then the public can view and vote for their favorite 'teams'

If you live in the area and you have never been to the exhibit, be sure to make plans now to visit the Fairlawn Classic Bean, Warehouse 414 and NexLynx in downtown Topeka.  Here is a link to last year's INSPIRATIONS 2013 exhibit: www.tscpgraphics.com/inspirations-2013

 

Garden Visitor

It has been an action packed Summer! We built a privacy fence and no more than we finished that project, we headed out to Colorado to enjoy the cooler weather. It was an average 20 degrees cooler than it was here at home so this week is going to be a shock to the system with the heat index reaching close to 101° by Friday. The joys of Summer in Kansas.

This morning I had a Garden Visitor. It was the first Monarch that has fluttered by this Summer. I captured this image as it rested on my Purple Salvia Flowers in the garden. Hope you enjoy my Photo of the Day!

Spring Color

I stopped by Ted Ensley Gardens at Lake Shawnee today in search of some colorful Spring flowers. We drove by a few weekends ago but quickly realized it was Prom weekend. Groups were gathering dressed in gowns and tuxs by the bus loads. Some resorted to parking in the grass as every parking lot was full. We were not as eager to seek out the flowers so we found a more peaceful area at the Lake to pull over but it did not have the blossoms that the Ted Ensley Gardens are known for.

I finally headed over today but did not think I would see many tulips still in bloom. Many have faded since that weekend we drove by but I did find some tulips still standing tall.

I still need to add this album to the photo gallery section but you can take a sneak peek to my new album at this link: Tulip Gardens where you can view some of my favorite images I captured today.

Signs of Spring

I think everyone is ready for Spring! It has been a long cold Winter and we are all ready for warmer weather. Those first flowers have started to push through the soil so I took a few photos that Spring has finally arrived.

I narrowed my photos from today down to three images. Please post below or on the facebook link to this album to let me know which image is your favorite. It would also be fun to know why.  The image that is the favorite will be added to my Photo of the Day collection.

1) Purple Hyacinth....

Purple Hyacinth

2) Yellow Daffodils....

3) Single Tulip....

Winter Storm Nika

We received at least 12 inches of snow in the Topeka area.   It's been awhile since we had this much snow on the ground. It has made an excellent Winter-themed park for the dogs in the backyard. I took some photos of our Husky/Shepard mix playing and having a good time! The two photos below are a couple of my favorites, especially since action has been a challenge at times for me. When I select a photo to be my Photo of the Day, sometimes is it hard to narrow it down to a single photo. I look at if the image is in focus or blurry, how unique it is and any details I notice and like. If you have not browsed my album in awhile, I have added some new images to this collection. You can follow this link: Photo of the Day to view more of my favorites.

This new filmstrip cover image I created for my TSCPgraphics facbook page shows Arrow having fun in all this snow.

Having fun playing in the fluffy snow!

As Winter Storm Nika made it's way across the Midwest I didn't take many photos. This afternoon was the first time since yesterday that I was outside pushing a broom, shoveling or learning how to operate a snow blower. I am quickly learning to enjoy using a snow blower. I just have trouble starting it up after it runs out of fuel.  We worked with a couple neighbors and cleared several driveways, porches and sidewalks. We enjoy living in a neighborhood where we all help each other out and are willing to lend a hand when needed. 

New Year's Eve Guest

On December 31st I was headed to the grocery store around 10:30am. When I opened the garage door I discovered a Boxer Mix in our front yard. I grabbed some treats and a leash. This guy wanted the treats but it took a little while before he warmed up to me.

On my way to the store, I stopped by Helping Hands Humane Society to report the dog as lost. They did not have any calls on a Boxer Mix and let me know they closed at 1pm and would reopen Thursday morning, Jan. 2nd. 

We did not want to leave him at HHHS and decided to give him our garage. We didn't know his name so while he stayed with us we called him 'Buster'. He really wanted to come inside but it was easier to keep him calm and safe in our garage. A neighbor brought over a space heater to help keep the garage warm. We made a 'fort' for him with a couple ladders and tarps to keep the heat from rising.  I wrapped several old towels in a sheet then covered them in a comforter a friend gave us to use for his bedding. When my husband went to check on him that evening, he could tell 'Buster' really wanted to come inside so he brought him in and they slept downstairs together by the fire. This is when he figured out 'Buster' really likes to cuddle.

We ended up ringing in 2014 with 'Buster' and on New Year's Day, we loaded him up and went over to Stone House Hospital to have them scan him for a microchip since they were open. By now, we could tell he was an indoor dog and knew someone had to be searching for him. He did not have a chip and they told us they would keep him and HHHS would pick him up in the morning. He was healthy and was not aggressive so we decided we could make his time away from home less stressful by keeping him one more night in hopes his owner would call HHHS on Thursday. After we left Stone House, we drove around in our area and looked for 'Lost Dog' posters up on poles while we let 'Buster' stick his head out the window. He seemed to enjoy the ride. We hoped that someone would see him or be driving around searching for him and chase us down but we knew that was wishful thinking. We headed back home and got him settled in for his second evening with us.

I called the HHHS back on Thursday and they had a call for a 2yr. old neutered male Boxer/Lab Mix reported as lost in our same area. I was thrilled and knew this was his owner but I wanted to make sure I was returning him back to his family. When I called, they gave me the description of their dog and described his markings. I knew one question would tell me the answer. I think it caught her a little off guard when I asked: "What does he usually do when you tell him to sit?" Right away she said: "He wants to shake your hand."  I let her know he was ready to go home. We only had one more question, his name. She told me his name is Dexter.

Looking Back at 2013...

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas with your friends and family. I started out 2013 working on my website, adding a new online shop and sharing new content on Facebook.  I believe my last journal post was in June - then in a blink here I am at the end of 2013.

Since it has been six month and I have never been good at writing novels, I will post some photos with a brief recap.

Arrow&Jake_web.jpg

Some of you have heard of and even met Jake. He came into our yard last May. He is our neighbor's Shih Tzu. Jake was lonely and missed his big brother Charlie, a Golden Retriever who had to be put down due to health issues. Since his first visit, Jake has been a regular visitor at our house. Arrow is a rescue who we ended up adopting after trying to find him a home. He enjoys it when Jake comes over to play with him! They are both a joy to have around.

I took this photo the day my Grandma passed away as we drove through the Flint Hills north of Wichita.

We always enjoy the time we spend in Colorado. Some of our favorite spots are Mt. Evans, Blue Lakes, Boreas Pass and of course, Breckenridge ....after all, "It's good for the soul!" I want to work on adding more images from Colorado to my gallery albums in 2014.

This year my Dad was recognized for being a part of the Kansas State Fair for 30 years. He started selling spas in 1984. We have been just to the south of Cottonwood and Fort Leavenworth for ten years. Before he moved to his current location, his booth was under the grand stands.

This was the fourth year of our Inspirations exhibit. This was the first year it was in three different locations. We had sixteen artists that included two out of state photographers. With 122 entries, there are sixty-one pairings total. The exhibit is still up at the Fairlawn Classic Bean until next Monday, January 6th and then the art at Warehouse 414 will come down. You have a few days left if you have not had a chance to view this year's Inspirations exhibit. We are all already planning and looking forward to what 2014 has in store for the 5th year of Inspirations!

Happy New Year to each of you, hope 2014 warms your heart with joy and your days are full of happiness!

A Few Of My Favorite Things

I enjoy bringing my garden inside, especially my roses! The other day I picked several of my pretty in pink peonies, five Love roses, two Tropicana roses and two Blue Girl roses. 

Below are two Blue Girl Tea Roses that smell as beautiful as they look. They are in a blue RELAX RIESLING wine bottle. Once in awhile, I get creative with ways to display my flowers. Since I had this bottle of wine that was hard to toss out just because of the cool blue glass and that the brand is RELAX, I decided to keep it for a flower vase. This was the first time I used it in my newly remodeled bathroom.

 

 

Relax_web.jpg

 Well, not exactly a new remodel. The bathroom project started a year ago last May and went on for several months. We had floor tile bought a few years ago when we added tile to our utility room. When we decided to do a complete makeover of the bathroom, the first items we purchased were the cabinet, quartz countertop, wall tile and the paint. Once I pick out the wall color - Frank Blue - I started painting right away with Duration Home® Interior Satin Finish by Sherwin-Williams. I was sold on Sherwin-Williams years ago after we painted our house with Duration® Exterior.

Due to other projects,  it was soon Fall and I was down to adding a few more rows of the L.A. Bel Air Cobalt Blue Mosaic Tile from The Tile Shop after I decided to return the side splash that matched the backsplash and countertop. I had enough left over to do this myself but I needed to order more Mapei Unsanded Grout in Chocolate. That was a special order and it took me almost 2 months to get one bag - but that is a entirely different story.

Sneak Peek

My husband is definitely a bird lover. We have a robin taking up residence on our drain spout by the front door. I am not thrilled with this and to top it off, the nest had dry grass dangling down.

This morning I decided if he was going to insist this nest and the robin family stay, I was going to give the nest a mini makeover and trim it up. I went out with the trusty three-step ladder I gave my husband for Christmas because I knew it would come in handy around the house. Don't we all love those gifts!

While I was snipping up the nest with scissors – okay, I have to stop for a moment. There are so many things wrong with this scenario, ladder, scissors... that I should say: "Do not attempt this at home." :)

Of course at this point, I was curious to see the robin eggs before they hatched but the only way was to find a mirror. Then I crawled back up and saw the four eggs, one white and four blue. Then we all know what I wanted to do next - take a photo!

This was a lot easier said than done. I am now on that solid three-step ladder holding a small mirror with a wooden handle I have had forever in my left hand and my camera in my right hand where I single handed held the camera and clicked the shutter with the strap on the camera around my neck.

I thought it was interesting that one egg is white. Is it still the robin's egg? Or did she adopt? From what I have found online, the male robin is the one who sits on the eggs:  "A male robin will be more diligent in caring for its young if the eggs its mate lays are a brighter shade of blue." – sciencedaily.com

I really do not think the white egg is the robin's egg. Curious what your thoughts are.

I rotated this image 180º so you are actually looking at it upside down from my original photo. I preferred looking at it as if one was looking down into the nest instead of the way I shot it. Since  "Sneak Peek" was a bit of a challenge - I added it to my Photo of the Day collection this morning. I am also adding past photos to this album. You can click on the photo above or follow this link: www.tscpgraphics.com/photo-of-the-day

Shining Down

It has been over a week since I have posted in my journal. I hope everyone is enjoying Spring! It has been a long road this year but it looks like Spring has finally arrived.

Yesterday the sky reminded me of another image I took from my cell phone that since that day, I have always wanted another opportunity. When you are dealing with the sky and the landscape - it is impossible to go back and redo, you have a window and tomorrow is a brand new canvas. . So when I noticed the rays of light shining down I decided to take a slight detour and head west on 1-70 when I was to be going east in hopes for another opportunity to capture another image similar to the one from almost a year ago in KC.

The photo below is my cell phone from June 2012. I was riding in the vehicle, it was not the easy to get a decent image but I did captured the sky as it was that evening. I did not have the option of  getting out of the car, we were on an exit ramp heading away from this area where there where no power poles for example.

I wanted to post both of these images to compare them side by side. The more I view the photo from yesterday, the more I like it - it is not the same, but yet it is unique and has elements in the landscape that the 2012 photo does not. I would be interested in in knowing what others think, which image is your favorite and why.

I thought I would also include my new IMAGE QUOTE I created where I used my photo from yesterday along with the verse "To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven." Ecclesiastes 3:1

When I decided to use this verse, the song  "Turn! Turn! Turn!" from the Byrds was stuck in my head. The song was adapted from the Book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible and put to music by Pete Seeger in 1959. Seeger waited until 1962 to record his own version of it, releasing the song on his 'The Bitter and the Sweet' album on Columbia Records. The song became an international hit in late 1965 when it was covered by the American folk rock band The Byrds, reaching #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and #26 on the UK Singles Chart.

It's All in the Details

When I take close up images, I always like to have a nice, clean sharp image, who doesn't? At times, that is not as easy as it sounds. The focal length, F-stop, aperture and shutter speed all come into play. I need to learn more about the manual settings on my camera but I can also learn from the photos I've taken and the settings used. I can easily pull up File Info on any image in Photoshop and view the camera data. I took a few photos this morning of my bleeding hearts and this is the only one I ended up with where I liked the clarity of the image, the rest were okay but were slightly out of focus.

Besides adjusting the camera settings, my bleeding hearts always like to do a little dance in the breeze every time I set out to take some photos and it is hard to explain to them that I am trying to take their photo and they can 'dance' later.

When it comes to photography, there is nothing more discouraging than a poor or blurry image of your composition. Below is the camera data for the image I took this morning of the bleeding hearts.

Model: Canon EOS REBEL T3i

Date Time: 28.apr.2013 - 9:30am

Shutter Speed: 1/64 sec

F-Stop: f/5..6

Aperture Value: f/5.6

Max Aperture Value: f/5.4

ISO Speed Ratings: 100

Focal Length: 47.0 mm

Lens: EF-s18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II

Times Two

It is not everyday this happens so here is my short and sweet journal entry for the day.

365 days go by and we all have one day of the year that we remember, reflect and celebrate whether it be a birthday or an anniversary - or remember our loved ones who are no longer with us.

Today was one of those days for us. We went out to eat in honor of the occasion. When we opened our fortune cookies, they were the same - "The joyfulness of a man prolongs his day." It's been awhile but this has happened to us before. I think this is the third "Times Two" fortunes we have received over the years. It was fun to get these today and why I added this image as my new  Photo of the Day.

Recent Sales

For a month I have wanted to thank everyone for the photos they have bought. When I would sit down to put together a "thank you" post - I had another sale, so that is a great thing to have but I am very belated with this journal.

I was thrilled to receive an email from Stacye Redinger of the First National Bank and Trust in Phillipsburg regarding the order of five of my photographs for the Smith Center branch.

FNB_web.jpg

During a recent visit, I delivered the photos to FNB. Llyod Culbertson, the President of FNB is holding "Count Our Blessings" and I have "Beaming With Pride" - it's title describes how I felt to have my photographs ordered for the FNB in Smith Center.  I am looking forward to seeing them once they are framed.

They are having them framed locally so they ordered the photos printed on foam board. The foam board is professional mounted and makes for a solid print that is easy to ship.

FoamBoard_Sunflower.jpg

My photos "Above The Rest", "Count Our Blessings",  "Beaming With Pride", "400 Road" and Sharing The Sun" will be  in the lobby and offices at the Smith Center First National Bank and Trust, 206 West Hwy 36.

Ah! Kansas

This afternoon I was listening to "Rocky Mountain High" on the radio while driving on 1-70 while heading. I thought about staying the course and head on out to the Rockies. After all, the slopes are opened in Breckenridge and they have had 48" of snow this week and extended the ski season this weekend, so why not? It would of been cold but we have been having cooler weather than normal for this time of year so I was ready to keep on heading west.

We did not end up taking off for the Rockies as tempting as it was. I lingered around watching Westbound traffic and enjoyed the warmer weather. I ended up exiting off Valencia Road and pulled over to watch those beautiful clouds roll by.

It's funny how some see beauty in some things and not in others. Not everyone can see the beauty in Kansas. 

Kansas has a lot to offer but it is not considered as a state that is picturesque.  I will be the first to admit - it is easier for me to see the beauty in Colorado than right here in Kansas.  I think that is in part because when I go to Colorado I want to absorb every ounce of it that I can take in.

I took the photo above this afternoon and added it to my Beauty of Kansas album but I would like some help with a title. I would appreciate any suggestions. At the bottom of this journal you can leave your comments. You can sign in as a guest, and it is as simple as leaving them on facebook.

In Kansas, sometimes you have to explore those back roads that are less traveled to find that amazing view. That is what makes finding those images that capture the Beauty of Kansas even more rewarding

I came across this retro Kansas commercial and thought  "Ah! Kansas" was a fitting title for this journal. How many remember this Kansas Travel & Tourism video from 1988?