Giving myself discipline

Okay, starting today, I will use my camera at least every other day and give myself a challenge of the week. This week I’ve chosen exposure. I know I can compose a picture. I’m even beginning to see things the way my camera would. But, I’m lagging behind in the technical stuff. I’m starting with exposure as a stepping stone to HDR. I’m really bummed to find that my camera doesn’t auto bracket (It took me 1 1/2 years to understand what that meant.) as you shoot. Since I know I need to learn the technical stuff first before I do HDR, I’m not running out to get a new camera.

I took several photos of a rose in my back yard with various exposures. All were shot with aperture priority, 18 – 70 mm lens, hand held and in the shade. I brought out my tripod but couldn’t get the right angle to shoot the rose since the plant is right along side the pool!  I can see the difference it made, but I need to study more about what it means. I’ve just been shooting and hoping to get the right exposure. If I don’t, I’ve learned enough about PE9 to edit them. Here are the photos. I welcome all advice–that’s how I learn!


Last of the pumpkin farm

As promised, here are more images from the pumpkin farm. All in all, it was a wicked value. No entry fee, you could pack a picnic lunch but the food wasn’t too pricey, and most of the slides and climbing toys were free. Of course you had to pay for the train ride and some of the other things, but you could spend a few hours there with the kids without spending a fortune.

And, I did have a chance to take my camera out. I’m going to start shooting one picture a day. I read in a tutorial that discipline is good. When will I start? Tomorrow–maybe–I hope!


Bishop Pumpkin Farm

I miss not doing my daily travel blog. It was a great discipline. Since we’ve been home, Richard has had arthroscopic knee surgery and I had a dozy of a cold that was not wicked at all. Richard is doing well and I’m now cold free. So today when I was invited to go to a pumpkin farm with my daughter-in-law, Jessica, and the young grandkids, I jumped at the chance. I did check with Richard though since he’s just one week out of surgery. I think he was happy to have some sort of freedom without me hovering over him.

The pumpkin farm was wicked fun! I’ve processed some of the pictures for you. What else can melt your heart but young children and animals?? Nothing! So here we go.

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Things are getting back to normal, whatever that is, after our 3-month travels across the U.S.  Gem was surprised that he was at his house, and he ran all over the place. He’s such a cute little dog. He’s also gotten back into his walks and play time at the park. I can’t say that I’m adjusting that well. Part of me is glad to be home, but part of me wants to be back on the road.

However, when your younger grandson says he missed you, that makes coming home all the sweeter. It’s that grandson Ryan who just celebrated his fifth birthday. His party was held at a jump house. He and his friends, and some adults, jumped on trampolines for an hour! I was so glad that we could be there for his wicked party.

There was only one problem–in our hurry to get out, I forgot my camera! You’d think I would have learned my lesson in Salt Lake City. So, I got out my phone and was determined to learn how to use its camera. I have some shots for you to see. I think they’re okay, but certainly not as good as my camera would have done. PE9 helped a bit. And, I did learn how to use it. Have you heard about the Windows cell phone that has 40 megapixels? I don’t know what my Droid has, but definitely not that much!

Okay, I’m done wining about my cell phone. Let me know what you think of the images and let me know what I could have done better–please. I’m guessing part of “normal” is forgetting things!


Cross country: Fernley, Nevada and the last images of Temple Square, Salt Lake City, Utah

September 1, 2013

Desert! I began this cross country adventure part of my blog in one (the great Mojave in California) and it seems fitting to end it in another (in Nevada). Tomorrow we will be home, ending our three month odyssey across the United States and back. It just doesn’t seem like we’ve been gone for that long.

Did we see everything? Of course we didn’t. Maybe if you took a year off and roamed the States, you might see more, but I don’t think that would even be enough time to see everything. This country is so huge, beautiful and wicked (Yes, that word is sticking with me.) Its diversity is amazing. From shore to shore the geography and climate changes as do the way people speak. For instance, did you know that in Springfield, IL they don’t have the same accent as those in Chicago?

One thing I’ve learned is to not take a California dog that is on natural supplements for fleas and ticks into the Midwest! Those fleas were terrible! They are gone now, and Gem will be returning home with no fleas and a healed cornea. We’re anxious to see how he reacts tomorrow when he sees the house.

Our travels have also given me an appreciation of our home state, California. We have the ocean, desert, mountains and flat lands. We also counted seven National Parks in our State. And, there are more National Monuments. So, if you want to see California, go to Hollywood, San Diego, Yosemite and San Francisco. Then, take time to visit the other National Parks they are wicked.

That’s why this trip was on my bucket list. I wanted to see the U.S. Driving it gives you a different perspective.  Will we do this again? No. Three months is a long time to be away for a couple of homebodies. However, there are places that we will fly to. And we will get up to Glacier National Park in Montana next year.

I’m remembering the Italian couple who took a year to travel the U.S. I still think that was an amazing commitment they made. I know they are missing their family, but she said they needed to do it this year while they still could.

Tomorrow, we’re going to cross the last of the Nevada Desert, through Reno, NV and over the mountain into California. From there it’s only two hours to our house. I’ve been told that I have about 20 pounds of mail to go through, etc. So, this is my last post on our journey. This blog will go back to what it was supposed to be and was—a photo blog and my journey of learning the SLR and post production.

Today, I’m posting the last of the Temple Square images from Salt Lake City, Utah.

For the future, I’ve made several promises to myself regarding my photography. Three of them are to shoot something every day (I read a lot of photo tutorials, and one suggested to do this.), create outings where I plan for photography and learn PE9. Wish me luck on accomplishing these goals. My son has told me that they’d like us to take the younger grandkids for some overnights!

Thanks for following along with our journey. Whether you’ve been with us from the beginning or joined us near the end, your “likes” and comments were appreciated. I hope you’ll continue following this blog, make comments and maybe add your own photos.