~ Winter Stroll ~

Hello, dears!

*sigh* I’m getting rather tired of the freezing weather we’ve had here lately. Winter is kind of boring and cold and hard to photograph, am I right? But I DID get a few good non-snow winter photos here recently that I thought I’d show you! Winter is hard for photography, but not impossible.

 

One recent Sunday we took a family walk after church to explore our new farm a bit. Well, it was more like a walk/drive/ride combined because we took the truck and the fourwheeler too.

I love this picture because of the pink and purple shirts. XD Jeff’s shirt used to be more blue but it got kind of faded.

Maggie adores going on rides with us. 😀 She’s so cute and happy and smiley!

For some reason what looked like a bunch of old tuna cans were nailed up to the wall in one of the sheds? We were puzzled. It’s kind of funny though.

I love this picture for its rustic character and texture. (Don’t worry, this isn’t the house we’re moving into or anything. XD XD It’s just an old shed.)

More rust, and more neat-ness in an abstract kind of way! This stuff went under the concrete they poured in Dad’s “new” shop.

Isn’t the bark on this tree super strange? It’s all flaky and weird – even on the twigs. It kind of looks like lichen, except completely covering the whole thing.

The kids wandered down to the pond while Mom and Dad drove around another part of the farm. Jeff was trying to convince Maggie to take a swim, but she only likes water she can wade in, not swim in, for some reason.

This is Carmen and her prize feather. XD

I absolutely LOVE the pattern the sky and clouds make on the water! It looks so neat, don’t you agree? It would make a neat painting too.

I love the cattails all around the pond!

  The light was gorgeous. ♥The boys went crazy with the fourwheeler – spinning around doing burn outs and driving through puddles and over tiny trees and stuff. -_- Boys, boys… *shakes head* XD Ah well, it is pretty fun to drive.

For some reason I really like this picture too. Probably because it’s winter and I’m eager for green and sunshine like this. Ahhh, so pretty! 

LOOK AT THE LIGHTING! *happy sigh* It was sooo gorgeous up there, but really hard to capture too. It didn’t look quite like this, but you can imagine how pretty the sun looked on the golden grass.

The fun thing about moving to a new farm is that we now have hundreds of acres to explore for the first time, and I LOVE it. The sun was out and it was such a lovely day for winter and we got to wander down paths we’d never been too… ahh, it was great. 🙂 *happy sigh* Walks like these are some of my favorite things!

The lighting here was SO pretty again, and again so hard to capture! I also didn’t want to tell them to stop walking because I wanted to get a candid picture, so most of them turned out blurry. XD At least this one is alright!

 I have no idea what kind of tree produces these strange flower thingies.

HEH HEH. Megan and I were doing photos like in movies when the characters are barely holding onto the edge of the cliff, and then she actually almost fell into the water. XD XD  A sturdy fallen tree over a creek is basically irresistible to young boys (and girls).  Heh heh, see here? Maggie doesn’t mind wading. Her expression… XD 

I love the smooth, curved edges on this ice!

OH I LOVE THIS PHOTO. For some reason I just find it really neat. 😉 I saw this little exposed knob on a tree and had to stop for a picture! Also it really reminds me of an avocado seed somehow? Don’t exactly know why… XD

Oh, funny story. I often randomly spot hawks when we drive somewhere or go on walks. I don’t know why I see them so much more than the rest of my family, but I do, and it’s gotten to be a sort of joke. I’m always like, “HAWK” when I see one, and Megan groans. XD She gets annoyed because I say, “It’s really strange how I always see hawks,” almost every time I see one. Well that’s what she says, but I don’t say it every time… *shakes head* XD

ANYWAY. I found a hawk that day too (it’s in the tree if you look close), so I took a picture for Megan as evidence. 😛

And I shall end on that note. I hope you enjoyed coming along with us on our winter stroll and seeing for yourself that there ARE things to photograph in winter after all, if you look close enough. 🙂

What was your favorite picture? What was your least favorite? (I want to know! Don’t worry about hurting my feelings – as long as you’re not intentionally mean or rude you won’t. Constructive criticism really helps!)

Do you enjoy winter (or spring or summer or fall) strolls? Do fourwheelers look fun, and have you driven one?

***Allison***

Moving On {Part 1}

Heyyy there, guys!

Wow, I haven’t had this long of a post gap for a long time. Okay, a week really isn’t “a long post gap.” XD But like I said, posting is going to be somewhat irregular because we’re moving! Before we do, there’s a good bit of work to be done in both the houses and the new farm in general, and that’s what we’re doing right now. Going down there for a couple of days a week keeps us pretty busy, phew!

Anyway, I thought I’d make a series of posts showing our process, with pictures that we can look back on as a sort of “before-and-after” of the whole project. Today I’ll be sharing our work on this house so far, which we call the Cedar House:Isn’t it cute? This is the second house on the farm, and the one we will use as a guest house (and possibly an Airbnb later!). We’re fixing it up first so we can stay there while we fix up the main house, which will need more big-picture repair, like the roof and ceilings.

But before we get to the renovations, I wanted to show you these pretty pictures from the drive there. I love mountains. ♥

This one is probably over-edited, but I like it. 🙂

The walls were marked up pretty badly and in definite need of a fresh coat of paint. Heh heh.It looks so much better now! We painted it “Intense White” from Benjamin Moore, but the name is rather misleading because it’s more like a nice, light gray. My grandmother (in the picture below) is super good at painting and she comes up and helps us often. 🙂 I rather like this picture. ♥Oh, and speaking of painting, we painted this popcorn ceiling (you can kind of see it in that picture) in an upstairs bedroom, and the next day, it was coming down. The popcorn texture was just peeling off the ceiling, so we had to scrape it all off and sand it down. AND THEN IT HAPPENED AGAIN in the living room. It was awful, especially the fact that plaster dust gets seriously everywhere. The house was coated in it after we were done, and we had to clean hard and long to get rid of it. Woohoo.

The dust doesn’t just get on the house, it gets on YOU. See? Poor Megan. XDMoral of the story: NEVER PUT UP POPCORN CEILINGS.

I, thankfully, didn’t have to sand because I was… um, very busily employed in doing other things. XD But don’t worry, I was working. My little sister Carmen and I cleaned out the kitchen and arranged and organized the few utensils and glasses and such that we had.

It’s so funny, but we both love organizing – and cleaning too, when we’re in the mood. That day we were so much in the mood that we went on to other parts of the house and cleaned windows and swept the deck and all sorts of things. It was quite satisfying. 😛We got creative and decided to decorate a jar and tin can with painter’s tape. XDIsn’t this next picture so cute? I just find it amusing that my seven-year-old sister would do this in her free time. :’)Strangely enough, there are ladybugs all over the house, especially in the corners of the walls. But hey, I’m not complaining – I’d much rather have ladybugs than flies or spiders or stinkbugs. *shrugs*One evening when we were getting a bedroom ready to be painted, we found these strange round stickers on the wall. We all wondered what they were there for, because they were scattered all over the room and kind of blended in with the paint – they didn’t really seem to serve a purpose. But then one of the kids (I think it was me 😛 ) thought to turn off the lights and it was beautiful! The stickers were glow-in-the-dark, and it felt like standing in space because there were so many “stars” on the walls.

It was REALLY hard to get a good picture of, which is probably why I didn’t. Heh. It was much more impressive in real life, believe me. 😉Since we (the kids) thought they were so neat, we peeled off all the stickers and put them on a basement wall in the main house. 🙂

Speaking of stars, you can see so many here! Even though we live out in the country at our current farm (well obviously XD), you can see seriously like five times more stars here! It’s less like individual pinpricks and more like a whole pot of silver glitter spilled across the sky. I love it. 🙂 And yes, I did take a picture, but it’s even worse than the one of the fake stars, so I’ll save it for… uh, never. XD

How ’bout a picture of frost crystals instead to end the post? Guys, it is SO cold at both farms. How’s the weather where you live?Well, that’s about it for this part. I have several more pictures and adventures for later, so stay tuned! 😉

Has you or your family ever renovated a house? Or maybe repainted a room or bedroom? I’m excited to decorate our new bedroom in the main house – and don’t worry, I’m sure I’ll post about that when we do. XD

Well, see you later, dears, and thanks for reading! Have a lovely day, and stay warm. 😉

***Allison***

Bits & Pieces #1

Hello, my dears! Welcome to yet ANOTHER random photography post, where Allison dumps all the miscellaneous orphan photos that she couldn’t fit in any other post. XD I am waaay backed up with extra photos so I hope you’re ready for a lot of photography posts! 😀

Ahem. Let’s begin.

The Eclipse

I still haven’t shown you my pictures from the eclipse? Dear me, I AM behind. XD Anyway, I didn’t get any spectacular pictures, but I did get a few through welding glass to at least document what happened. The welding glass made everything look green, but I managed to edit out most of the color except that one green guy over there. XD As you can see, we weren’t in the path of totality.

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I thought the eclipse looked really neat through clouds!

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And here’s just a bonus picture I took that day. So pretty!

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The Enormous Bonfire

We occasionally burn a heap of brush or extra wood piles and such on our farm, and I got these pictures from one of those times. Dad pushed the pile around with the telehandler which made the bonfire practically explode in a column of glittering orange sparks. It was breathtaking!

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Bonus picture of the cows that watched the bonfire with us. XD There were a bit confused about what was happening, as cows usually seem to be.

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There were actually a few bulls in the pasture, and one started sort of stomping and bellowing. O.o Thankfully nothing bad happened. Isn’t it funny how he has a heart on his forehead? You can’t see it too well in this picture, but he really does!

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Megan’s Birthday Party

We had a lot of fun decorating the front porch and outside table for Megan’s party. Aren’t the colors pretty?

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We used zinnias from our garden for some of the decorations, and I got some lovely pictures of the bouquets. ♥

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Megan wanted to have doughnuts instead of cake, which was quite a good idea in my opinion. 😉 We made the doughnuts the previous day and I also made a little happy birthday banner for the top.

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Yum, fresh lemonade!

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Grandma brought Megan a beautiful rose from her house along with her gift.

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We had a water balloon fight for one of the party games. It was so fun, AND I didn’t get very wet, which was good since it wasn’t that hot. XD

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A bonus picture of the gorgeous spreading maple in our front yard…

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Bonus picture #2 of an adorable fuzzy caterpillar we found before the party.

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Isn’t it cute? 😛

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Moving a Piano + Another Bonfire

One night we went to our grandparents’ house to help move their piano from the basement to their room. 🙂 It was quite hard work… well actually I didn’t do much but stay out of the way and document it for posterity, but it looked like hard work. When they finally brought it to my grandparents’ room, it wouldn’t fit through the door. But then they tried turning it on end and thankfully it just fit. Phew! The poor piano.

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I also got some super neat pictures of the piano without its top on. I love them, especially after they were edited!

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After we got the piano all figured out we had a bonfire and picnic. Fire is so fun to watch, isn’t it?

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I got a really good picture of my grandpa smiling when he didn’t know I was taking a picture. I edited it a good bit, as you can tell, but isn’t it neat?

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Freshly Picked

I took these photos for my sister’s photo contest, BIBPC. I think they turned out rather pretty!

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Also isn’t this tomato HILARIOUS?! It looks like it’s sticking out its tongue at you.

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The Rest of Them

THESE COOKIES ARE DELICIOUS! I took pictures of them because I wanted to submit the recipe to Olivia Bell’s wonderful magazine. Be sure to check it out (and make it) when the next issue comes out here soon! You can subscribe to her magazine through the contact form in this post.

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Random picture of the details on one of my Sunday dresses…

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I edited this one a LOT to get rid of the power lines crisscrossing it, but this is the view from one of our upstairs windows. 🙂

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There we go! That was pretty much a whole bunch of mini posts smushed into one huge one. XD I hope you enjoyed! Which topic was your favorite?

***Allison***

Amelia Island Part 2

Hello hello! I’m back with part two of my pictures from our vacation with friends. 😀 (See part one here.) I love these photos, and I hope you do too!

Let’s start with the crabbing photos. We went out to a marsh to catch blue crabs with some crab traps, chicken pieces for bait, and some coolers. It was SO much fun and we ended up catching quite a few crabs – around 8! They didn’t amount to much once we cooked them, but the few crumbs we had tasted good. XD

We drove around everywhere in golf carts, which allowed you to take in all the beautiful scenery. ♥ Isn’t it gorgeous?

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A tree where we parked the golf cart. I love all the Spanish moss! It looks so mysterious.

Besides crabs, we also caught some various other water creatures like fish and shrimp. (But we didn’t keep them.)

We caught two of these fish, I believe, and the second made a weird grunting/clicking sound. O.o It was so odd and funny!

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Doesn’t this look like a tropical angelfish or something? We were all amazed to catch it.

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Shrimp look hilarious with their long antennae. XD

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And of course, the crabs. Look how blue they are underneath – so pretty!

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We put the crabs on ice to calm them down. 😉 Some of the little guys were quite feisty!

Now for more beach pictures. 🙂

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THIS IS SO PRETTY AND GOLDEN!

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Whoa, I LOVE this photo! Isn’t abstract design of the sand neat?
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What do you know. I only took one shell photo this time.

Shore birds…

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I really like this one!
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Heh heh, he looks a bit ruffled at being on camera.
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I couldn’t decide whether to delete this picture or not… it’s kind of neat, but sort of not. 😛

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I absolutely LOVE these pictures of my little sister Carmen! (I seem to be saying “I love this picture” to almost every picture, huh? XD)

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AHHH I LOVE IT!

The sunset over the beach was gorgeous! Unfortunately I didn’t get any pictures of it at the peak, but I did get these.

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Lastly, I took a bunch of pictures on the way home, especially of the enormously, voluminously puffy clouds (wow that was fun to say).

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Such a pretty drive!

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I love the fog. ♥

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The birds look like specks of pepper.

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And that’s about it! I hope you enjoyed the huge conglomeration of photos, dears. 🙂 Do you have a favorite(s) or is it too overwhelming to pick?

Also, HAPPY (late) BIRTHDAY to my sister Megan! If you haven’t already done so, hop on over to her blog and send her a belated birthday note. 🙂 (By the way, she also posted the pictures that I took of her on the sister’s photoshoot here.)

***Allison***

The Sky’s On Fire

The other day I asked my mom and youngest sister Carmen if they wanted to go up the hill and see the sunset with me, and they did. It was GLORIOUS! Not quite the best sunset I’ve ever seen (I still think this sunset is the winner), but it was indeed beautiful. See? The pictures speak for themselves.

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Ahhh, now isn’t that breathtaking? I just loved sitting up there on the hill and soaking it all in. ♥ I pieced together a couple of pictures for this panorama. What do you think? It’s not perfect, but I think it turned out pretty well for piecework. 😛

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I hope this brought a little sunshine to your day, my friends. (Pun intended. XD )

Have a great one!

***Allison***

Return of the Random Photos

My extra photos are piling up again, so I guess that means it’s time for another random photography post! 🙂 YAY! I hope you enjoy!

Aren’t these clouds lovely? ♥

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We found this rather odd-looking bird and figured out it was a chimney swift. I think he’s quite weird. XD

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I got these next few photos when we all went for a ride in Dad’s pickup to go check some fields and see how the soybeans were growing. (Sadly, they weren’t coming along very well, but Dad replanted them – twice – and now they’re doing fine, I think. 🙂 )

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I love the view of our farm from this hill. ♥ Sooooooo pretty!

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Aren’t mountains beautiful?

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My little sister Carmen, holding a barn kitten we named Truffle:

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This is a pretty edit I did of a huge, puffy pink cloud.

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One day we studied ladybugs in Nature Study and went out to search for them in an alfalfa field. It was kind of hard to get pictures, but I got a few neat ones. My friend got an amazing one of a ladybug eating an aphid! But sadly, I did not. 😦 😉

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I really like ladybugs, but I have to admit – they look a little creepy when you put dozens of them in a jar. XD

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These are the kind of bouquets I made to decorate tables for a church potluck in May. It was supposed to be a “Farmer’s Market” theme, so I used a bunch of different stuff from our farm and garden. I think they turned out pretty well, and I love how this picture turned out too!

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Hee hee, well this is random. XD We made the BEST playdough ever (seriously – it is!), just for fun one day when my friend came over. It hardly feels like playdough at all, it’s so soft and silky and stretchy. (Wow, alliteration skills. XD ) You can see the recipe here.

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Another VERY random photo. 😛 I was going to do a mystery picture of a clementine, but it didn’t turn out. I decided to keep the photo, though, because for some reason I like it.

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Lilies are gorgeous, and so photogenic, aren’t they?!

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Okay guys, you are going to LOVE this! We’ve been feeding our neighbors’ kittens while they’re on vacation, and they are the sweetest, prettiest little things!

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Look at those eyes! ♥♥

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XD

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Our neighbor has a wonderful in-ground pool that she so generously lets us use pretty much whenever we want! I thought the clouds looked really neat that day, so logically, I took pictures. XD

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Ahh, I LOVE this picture! The water looks so bright and clear and… almost plastic-y. XD

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Mimosa tree photography…

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It looks like someone climbed the tree and threw a rope into the clouds so they could climb up. 😀

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Hee hee, Megan jumping:

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We shall end with one hilarious picture. My cousin said this looked like a whale farting. XD XD XD

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Well, I hope you enjoyed scrolling through those pictures, my dears! Do you have a favorite?

Thanks for reading!

***Allison***

P. S. Guess what?! My sister Megan wrote the next part of WordCrafters, and it’s GREAT! You can read it on the WordCrafters 3 page here.

A Walk at “The Sycamores”

(Update: Woops! Apparently I accidentally published this post before it was finished, but I’ve fixed it now. Heh heh. XD )

Oh my goodness, I took TONS of pictures the other day! Like, more than 100. XD Since I don’t think it would be the best idea to post all the pictures at once, I guess I’ll break them up into a few posts to save your poor scrolling fingers. XD

Oh, and hi, by the way. 😀

Annyway, we have this spot on our farm we call “The Sycamores,” because… well, it’s a row of sycamores. The trees are so big and old and beautiful! I love the white bark.

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This seed pod or seed ball or whatever you call it is kind of deformed…

 

 

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But this one’s better. 🙂
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I love how the seed balls look like ornaments hanging from the branches!

 

One tree is especially big and white at the top. ♥

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Not all the bark is white, though, especially at the bottom. It’s only white where the bark like this flakes off.

Several cedar trees grow among the sycamores, and while they aren’t as pretty, they’re still neat up close.

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Yikes, we found a scary looking thorn bush. O.o

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Isn’t it amazing that this feather was stuck in the crack like that? Ha ha, okay, I’m kidding – I put it there so I could take the picture better. XD

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Here’s one last tree, but I don’t know what kind this is. And it’s dead. But it still looked really neat against the blue sky, don’t you think?! Ahh, I want to go back and take some more pictures soon!

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Alrighty, I guess that’s probably enough pictures for one post. 🙂 Tell me, which picture(s) was(were) your favorite(s)? (Wow, that was complicated. XD ) Stay tuned for the rest of the 100 pictures! 😀

***Allison***

Chasing Sunsets

Yep, yet another sunset post. XD Heh heh, I seem to have a slight obsession with sunset pictures… but that’s all good, right? Most of you don’t seem to mind my habit, which is quite good of you. Thanks. I couldn’t show you pictures of sunsets without you. XD  😉

Ahem. Let’s proceed.

I’m going to save the best for last, but that doesn’t mean this one isn’t beautiful! I loved how crystal clear this sunset was.

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Ooh, can you spot the lone star? This is practically the only time a star has shown up on one of my photos. 😉

 

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Okay, now for the other one. I probably say this in every sunset post, but this truly was one of the most gorgeous sunsets I’ve ever seen! It was certainly one of the most vibrant – maybe THE most vibrant I’ve ever seen. I wish you could have seen it too… It was way more beautiful than this, but these pictures should give you some idea.

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Ugh, I haven’t figured out quite how to take good sunset pictures with my new dSLR yet, and thus a bunch of these pictures were taken with my old camera. (Although this one was taken with my dSLR and edited to help the graininess – at least a tad.) Any tips would be welcome! 😀

 

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I love this one so much! If you’re wondering what that blurry reflection is, it’s actually the roof of my car! I think it turned out pretty neat. 🙂
Wasn’t that altogether wonderful? *Happy sigh* When I saw the edge of the sunset from the kitchen window, I was out the door in about 10 seconds flat. XD It was truly breathtaking. Megan and I like to go up to a certain spot over the hill to photograph sunsets without the distracting powerlines, so we hopped in my little car and raced the sunset. It’s pretty exciting, sunset chasing is, because you have just a few short minutes to capture that beautiful, glorious bit of sky with your camera before it fades forever. Invariably the sunset vanishes all too soon, the way a rainbow does, but I just smile because I can see it again whenever I want to. ♥

That’s what I love about photography: it allows you to save one scene, one little piece of life, and to keep it as long as you want. It allows you to capture joy and sadness and thousands of memories and hold them forever.

What’s your favorite thing about photography? Do you like sunsets? (If you don’t, you have a problem. XD )

***Allison***

Another Sunset Post?!

Yes, yes, I know, another sunset post. “Will they ever end,” you ask me? “Well of course not!” I reply indignantly. XD Why would I give up sunset photography – sunsets are one of my favorite things everrrr! 😀

Therefore and thusly, onwards we go!

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Isn’t it so neat how the clouds look almost like they’re painted?

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Sooo pretty!

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I hope you enjoyed yet another sunset post. 😀 Have a lovely day, lovely people!

***Allison***

P. S. Random fact of the day: my littlest sister tried to “polish” the furniture and now everything is greasy. XD One of our desks was literally oozing furniture polish. :’) Oh well…