"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Posts tagged “nature

On My Way Home

 

 

fall colors

 

 

Steve was driving in quite a few of these and the others I pulled over. Can you tell which are shot with the Canon 5D and which are shot with the iPhone?

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Ohio Katydid and the Kids Via My Son Mark

A fun series to receive on the phone from my son Mark.

Looks like a depth of field exercise, too.

This is a “leaf bug” or katydid.  A relative of the grasshopper and also called a bush-cricket in some parts of the world.   Looks like such an interesting creature and is the perfection of camouflage.

Thanks Mark for sharing your Katydid and Kids study.  love you. Mom

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Can you see him/her?

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Can you see him/her? Probably snacking on the foliage.

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Urban Deer

Crossing the street, a long block from school. I saw the doe cross first and sure enough she was followed by her two young ones. They were not afraid of me and took their time crossing Parkfield Street. Someone’s back garden was probably breakfast.

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Mom

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Hail Stones and Shifty Weather

Sun, clouds, half sun, half clouds.  Thunder. Lightning.  Still some blue sky.  

I don’t usually report on the weather but my sister and I have relocated to the midwest and with a flat terrain, it’s different to experience weather with a giant bowl of a sky overhead instead of jigsaw puzzle pieces of sky, broken up by buildings and trees and land. 

Maura got a penny so we could compare the size of the hailstones. She called it the “ice show”  

The kids ran around and collected them and put them on the concrete drive.  Steam rose from the asphalt after the storm as the temperature had been so hot.  

Single Hailstone

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hail stones and a penny

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hailstones

 

 

The newest addition to the family – Airedale Terrier  puppy  Henry.  

Here is he checking out the hailstones.

Henry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Afternoon Ohio SkyLate Afternoon Ohio Sky

 

 

 

A tall shadow at dusk

 

 

 

Tall shadow at dusk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


May 26, 1976 Fort Knox Kentucky

Ireland Army Hospital.

The family has gathered in to Erika’s parents to celebrate Mark’s birthday.  You were a bicentennial baby and my father’s mother knit you a red ,white and blue afghan.

This afternoon we went to the farm next door to see how the pigs are growing. We were playing with the runt named P.P. and watching her root in the mud.  No truffles found, though.

Mark and his sons Michael and Jack were walking back home.  Of course I had the fixed lens (50mm) on the camera.  I almost missed them though.  Erika asked me “Did you get it?” We saw the three of them at the top of the hill at the same time.  The next frame they’re in total sunlight and it isn’t as strong.

Happy Birthday Mark.  I searched the card racks for the right words but the card writers this year didn’t capture what I wanted to say.

When I see you grown up, loving your own beautiful family, my heart is full.

I love you.   Ma

 

Road to the Farm


This Little Piggy- Wait, It’s THIRTEEN Piggies- Guest Blog by Marlene and Donald

Down on the farm in Virginia.  Mar said it was dark in the barn. Thanks for a fun guest blog. We don’t see this in the city!

Lots of new life appearing at your neighbor’s farm.

Springtime action in corrals and pens and barn.

See proud future Dad.      His “wife” is sitting on 17 eggs.        (Not sure if Turkeys mate for life like other species you hear about. hmmmm)

Future Thanksgiving Dinner?

Future Dad Turkey

 

Future Dad Turkey

 

Future Mom sitting on 17 eggs!

 

 

 

 

Turkey sitting on 17 eggs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Watcha Looking At?

 

Waiting for baby horses- another blog, another day

 

 

 

 

a litter of piglets eating lunch

 Click on Video below -A little dark in the barn.  That is if you want to see 13 new piglets scramble at feeding time.


The Trees Sue’s Dad Had the City Plant, 35 Years Ago

Yesterday Sue commented on the new tulip tree being planted in front of my house. She told how her father had the city plant trees up and down her street, thirty five years ago, and how they were a memorial to him. He was featured on the blog for a Veteran’s Day post- Martin H. Cooper.

Today I was driving by her street on my way home from the Waterfront. Took two cell shots of his trees. Thanks Sue for your good words on the blog.

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The City Planted a Tulip Tree

Ten years ago, I lost the giant sycamore in front of my house. It must have been 100 years old.  I even called in a tree doctor to see if it could be saved. It was a sad loss when in was cut down.  I applied for a new tree through the city,

Last Saturday, volunteers planted a  new tree in front- Liriodendron Tulipifera. A tulip tree. A yellow poplar.   The leaves are the shapes of tulips. It is a beautiful looking tree and I am so grateful to have it planted.  I read it is the state tree of Kentucky, Indiana and Tennessee and may grow to 170 feet tall.

Email instructions arrived on how to water it deeply by using a big bucket with holes in the bottom and how to not put mulch touching the bark so  fungus doesn’t grow on the bark are a couple of tips.

Does anyone remember the television commercial encouraging the planting of trees? There was a quote – It’s a mature man who plants a tree under whose shade he will never sit.   I looked it up and all I could find is a Greek proverb…

“A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.

Tulip TreeHow about my crop of dandelions?


Need an Ohio Spider ID

How do you feel about spiders?

Found under the kids’ sandbox when cleaned out on Sunday.  Not sure if it is a biting spider or not.  I had no idea there were so many types of spiders in the world.

Looked at some photos online but started to feel confused.  Hope someone can tell what kind of a spider he is and if we should worry he is making his home underneath the sandbox.

Anyone have a clue?

I remember reading the kids a book when they were little  -Be Nice To Spiders.

Ohio Spider


Black Pussywillow Branches Cast Wall Shadows

When we lived in Germany, we’d get  Pussywillow with fuzzy gray shapes along the branch and hang wooden eggs and rabbit ornaments to make an Easter Tree.

Add MediaI’d never seen Black Pussywillows until Wednesday night at my friend J’s home.  I was to take a photograph over to her and the evening  turned into an impromptu supper.  My crazy part is I went over without the picture I was to take.      J followed me back to my house after we ate and got the photograph to take back to her own home but she didn’t seem to mind.

 A great blog post  about this unusual looking plant is here. The Latin name (Salix gracilistylus ‘Melanostachys’)

 

Black Pussywillow

 I can’t remember the name/type of ceramic vase holding the branches. (Taken with the iPhone)


Waiting for Spring

The Spring Equinox is March 20 at 7:02 AM.  Just THREE weeks to go.  I checked the Old Farmer’s Almanac for the official word.

In another 5 weeks, it’ll look like this in our part of the country….I have to keep it in mind.

Blossoms and green grass, bulbs shooting up through the earth. The RedBud will bloom.

Three weeks ’til Official Spring.  This photo was taken two years ago the first week of April.

March is Friday.  I think I have it calculated right.

Flowering Pear Trees

 

 

 

Old State Road in Columbus on the way home.  (I pulled over!)


I Drove Home in a Snow Globe

and of course, returned to the park.  It’s just blocks from my house.  And the light was low, the visibility poor.  A stark and magnificent beauty in the midst of the storm.

What were the trees doing today?    One day winter, one day Spring, one day freezing and dark, one day a warm sun but a chill in the wind.  I wanted to see the branches  outlined in snow.  The dark branches highlighted with the new fallen snow.  Actually, falling snow.

I was rewarded with a stunning winter scene, just before dusk.

It had started to snow while I was at school. The sky heavy and gray.  Big big flakes.   Melting on the street as it was 38 degrees.  I drove home in a snow globe.

Oh yes, today I got out of the car, scared off a squirrel and photographed the snowy park bench and my favorite tree. The sounds muffled by the new snow, barely sticking to the road but highlighting the curved lines.

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these are unretouched color photographs

 

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Two roads diverged….

two roads diverged

 

Home to tea.  Homemade spaghetti and cheese,  steamed broccoli.  Leftover fortune cookie and a mandarin orange. Winter.

 


Tree in Snow, Tree in Sun

 

 

 

Another in my winter tree series.  Actually I drove through the park today and the snow is gone.  See the tree below.

I wanted to post the trees in silhouette, though and the sinking sun behind the trunk.

It ‘s the warmth of the sun on the snow that appeals to me.

My drives through the park after school on my way home have help me appreciate the beauty of the winter.

 

 

 

 

 

Sunset Tree in Snow

 

 

A different tree but this is the angle of the sun at the time I was driving into the entrance of Highland Park.

Today on the way home, the car thermometer read 63 degrees.  Here’s what my trip into the park yielded Monday afternoon.  Find the car to check the scale of the tree. Because of the mottled peeled bark, I believe it’s a giant sycamore. Long shadows and blue sky with pretty clouds made it feel like April.

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Taillight and a Tall Pine in the Snow

Back to the park after school. I was later today.  The sun was sinking in the west and this was facing east.  When I wrote taillight it didn’t look correct but I checked it out with Merriam- Webster online and it is spelled right!    I thought about cropping out the car end but  changed my mind.  I think it adds perspective and information, allowing one to judge how tall the pine tree is.  It looks dead to me, but I am not an arborist.

Taillight and a Tall Pine in the Snow

 

 

Looks like the snow glows from the reflected setting sun.

 

It is a pine tree, isn’t it?

 

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Dog Walker and a Snowy Tree

 

 

 

 

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Scroll down for the crop with the dog walker and his dogs in the distance.  Didn’t see him when I shot the photo.

Another color photograph that looks black and white.  Shot with a  EF Canon 50mm 1.2L  Lens-  500 ISO  f/16, 125 shutter.  Wish I had tried a few more settings at the time but wanted to get home.

Thursday the temperature is to be in the 50’s.  Unusual fluctuation- one day twenties and snow and ice, another day about zero, now up to sixty?

Something feels off.

Dog Walker in the Snow


Old Trees New Trees on a Winter Path

After school I drove into Highland Park, right near my home.  I’d taken a series of black and white photos for a film class years ago in this same spot and still have a print on my wall.

With the new snow today, I thought it might look interesting but the light was low and the sky thick and gray.

Found some new trees planted along the path, though.

I plan to return in the Spring.

There weren’t many dog walkers or walkers or runners or any activity in the park. The Super Playground deserted and covered with snow and ice.  No bicycles. The fountain turned off.  The reservoir a layer of ice.  The sounds muffled with the snow, but barely a car driving around the circle today.

It’s in color but almost looks black and white.

Highland Park Trees in Snow


Paynes Prairie Preserve Gators on Christmas Day

Paynes Prairie Preserve in Micanopy Florida.  Photographed by my friend Kristin F.as she took a walk on Christmas Day.

(Just five feet away from these guys!  Yikes)

Such a contrast to the frozen white world of Pennsylvania and Ohio.  She says Jan 1st temp is 73 degrees!  And I am trying to not fall in my driveway as I unload the suitcase and bags from my Winter Holiday in Ohio, prepare to return to school in the early AM.   Thanks Kristin.

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Plitvice Lakes- Waterfalls in National Park Croatia

Peaceful reflection in the National Park in Croatia-Plitvice Lakes

Summer

Summer 2008    from the archives

 


Weekly Photo Challenge: Renewal

The Weekly Photo Challenge: Renewal.

Autumn offers no crocuses or tiny redbud blooms on trees. I thought of library books and contracts, being signed up for a team.  Commitment.

Everything is preparing for dormancy, dropping beautiful  gold and orange leaves in gutters like crazy.  There is a sense of approaching winter, the urge to cocoon, make soup.  And then the temperature is in the 60s and predicted 70 for Sunday. One day you are making up your bed with flannel sheets, boiling water for tea, making chili or soup.  The next day you are ripping off your sweater and sporting a cotton T.  The fluctuations feel strange and off.

As I left school, this is what I saw…

The fresh pine cones dangling for the pine trees branches, bobbing in the wind and the late day sunlight shining right on them said renewal to me.

Everything has been focused on the vibrant palette of the deciduous trees but look at this magnificent coniferous tree!


Alien Under Toadstool, Fairy Godmother, too

This weekend I watched Maura (almost 4) while her family went to a swim meet with her brothers and sister.  She saw me outside and asked, “Granma, Why are you in the bushes?”    When she came over to see what I was doing, she said she liked the Fairy Godmother. One shot of each on the iPhone and then she and I played.  I’d been sorting toys in the playroom.  Saw the toadstool and went and got the two figurines.

Today’s photos? Just for fun.  The fungus was enormous.  And I had just been reading an article telling of the two cousins Frances and Elsie photographs with the  Cottlingley Fairies.  (1917)

Thanks to Annette who wrote and said that “ the blog is a daily vitamin for the creative soul.”  


Fall Colors Along the National Road- Route 40

When  I was a kid we piled in the car in NJ and drove to Illinois every summer.  This is the route we took.

I drove it home to Pittsburgh a couple of weeks ago on my way back from Columbus.

Route 40 The National Road.  I pulled over to catch the autumn hues in the background hills along the way.

There were interesting and quirky scenes but this is the one that stayed with me for the time since I drove along this highway instead of the interstate.


Fibonnaci Sequence and a Squirrel’s Delight

I saw this plant in my daughter-in-law’s garden last weekend.

The sunflower’s petals gone, the flower head heavy and bent over with the spiraling pattern of seeds- Fibonnaci numbers((0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, … etc, each number is the sum of the two numbers before it)  found in nature.  My mother was always talking about Fibonnaci.

A mathematical miracle AND a squirrel’s delight.

Not sure how much a squirrel would  need to store for the long winter but this one sunflower’s seeds looks like a good start.


Porch Light, Moon Light

Murphy sat on the back porch before bed. When I went to let him in, I saw a popcorn looking sky from  the moon and the glow of the porch motion light- on and off, on and off- as he turned his head.  The deck wood looked red.

No time to get a remote cable and eliminate camera shake.

A deep breath as I propped the camera against the edge of the sliding glass door.  Depressed the shutter button while I held my  breath.  No worries that WordPress forgot to issue their weekly photo challenge.


Bubble Blowing Champ, Model Railroad Men, Pickle the Mini-Dachshund, Sheep and a Storm at the State Fair

 

This is what the sky looked like as we made our way down the midway to the van.

Then the rain started. We’d been at the Ohio State Fair about two hours. The photos are not enhanced, that’s the color of the sky!

A deluge.  The view from the van shows the lightning. Shortly after four in the afternoon.  It got dark as night. When we got home, the power was out so we

went to eat dinner at House of Japan.  Thanks to the Kroger booth people at the fair for sheltering me and the kids while Erika ran and got the van and the nice State Trooper who guided us to the van as the wind blew and the rain fell.  No hail today, thank goodness.  We got pretty wet and it came up fast but all is well.

 

 

 

 

The first photo of the fair is a small combo at the entrance gate playing Life is a Cabaret.  They were good musicians and set the mood.

As we listened to the music we saw this gentleman approach the exit.

His name is John and he blew an eleven inch bubble to win the bubble gum machine and the trophy.  He was a good sport and allowed me to photograph him.

The nice woman with the mini-dachshund, Pickle ( 1 yr), let the children pet the sheep and Michael had fun feeding one.  Thanks Carrie.

William , originally from Wheeling, was one of the men running the Model Railroad display.

 

And that is Dave in the PETA shirt in the Sheep Pavilion.

I asked one of the men how they judge the sheep in the competition.  He said, they’re choosing the ones who will look best on the table.   Some of you know that two out of my three kids are veg, but the one said to me, “Ma, ask that man if you can photograph his shirt!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks for graciously allowing me to post your photos on the blog today. It was good to talk with everyone we met.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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