Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Night photography...

"I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day." -Vincent Van Gogh

I am taking a night photography class from Candice Stringham on the Jessica Sprague website, http://www.jessicasprague.com.  It has been fun and challenging.  During the second week, we learned how to shoot star trails.  So far, I have not completed this part of the homework, because it involves going out in the middle of nowhere, and taking photos for about 1 to 2 hours of the stars as they travel around the North Star.  I have not convinced Warren to go with me, and I do not want to go by myself for safety reasons.  I cannot image why he does not want to go out at 10:00 at night, and sit for all those hours while I capture God's glory.
Here is what the star trails will look like, if I ever get it done.
Photo by Candice Stringham from Night photography class,  http://www.jessicasprague.com
This week we are working on night portraiture.  I absolutely love the effect.  Too bad Roswell does not have more scenic downtown sites.  Warren was willing to be my subject on this photo assignment, especially when I told him it would not take longer than 30 minutes.  What a good sport.
Warren.  On the right, you can see the lights from the street.  Love the Bokeh, and my subject.  Just used ambient light.

Warren again.  This time I used an external flash with it pointed away to bounce on the overhang in front of him.  
I definitely want to try more of these photos, especially since I messed up on my shutter speed.   I was not paying attention to my shutter speed, which was a little too slow, so they are slightly blurry.  My mind was on my ISO trying to get it as low as possible, and still get a good exposure.  Next time I will pay attention to everything.  

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Mark & Amber...

Mark and Amber will soon be taking a big leap in their lives...they are moving to Boulder, Colorado.  Mark quit his job, and will be going back to school to learn computer programming.  He has big plans in mind, and is hoping to find employment in Denver.  This is going to be a big change for Oliver.  He is a beach boy...acclimated to the California lifestyle.
Beach Boys.  Mark and Oliver.
Chilling out.

I bet Oliver is as spoiled as our cat.

King of the couch.

Tummy time.

Little does he know what is ahead for him...snow.  
I think Oliver is going to be in trouble when winter comes in Colorado.  They have a lot of snow.  He's used to the beach.  You can find him on the beach, since he is a different color than the sand.  How is he going to be found in the snow?  He's going to blend right in.  Maybe Mark and Amber should tie a helium balloon to his collar, so they will be able to spot him quickly.  

Mark & Amber recently went to Boulder to find an apartment.  They accomplished their goal, and sent pictures of the area.  So cool.  I actually got pictures.  Thank you, guys, for sending them.  I love pictures.

Boulder, here I come.

The mountains.

Cool sun rays falling on this handsome couple.  

More gorgeous scenery.

Afternoon storm.  
This picture Amber sent because she thought Mark looked more like his dad here.  Hmmm.  I don't know.  Maybe.
Handsome dude no matter who he looks like.  

The big move will be August 13.  Keep them in your prayers as they take this big leap of faith.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Some ramblings...

"Each day comes bearing its own gifts.  Untie the ribbons." -Ruth Ann Schubacker

Today, I am posting about a lot of different things.  Like I said, "ramblings." First, we have lost a lot of things in these past few weeks.  During our leak disaster in our master bathroom,  we used the boys bathroom.  I took out my earrings, and placed them on the counter.  One morning, I went to put them on, and there was only one earring.  These were the ones Luke and Jordan got me for Mother's day, and have become my second favorite earrings.  I figured the cat took it.  I looked and looked for it, asked Warren everyday if he found it.  No luck.  Several weeks later, I found it nicely tucked under a rug along with the top of Warren's contact case.  My favorite pair of silver earrings have, also, come up missing.  Note to self...do not leave out shiny objects where the cat can get them.  I still have NOT found them, so I bought new ones.  My favorite white sweatshirt is missing.  I may have to buy one of those, too.  No clue where it is, and Warren has lost his handicap placard.  What is happening aroung here?  Hopefully, these things will turn up.  We sure like the handicap placard.  We are spoiled now.

I finally drove the new Land Cruiser today!  Warren had to help me figure out some of the bells and whistles.  And the camera to make sure you do not hit anything is hard for me to figure out spacially when I come into the garage.  That might not be so good. I tend to ding things when I am in the garage. Oh my, I love it, though.  Here is the compromise Warren and I came up with for driving it.  We each get to drive it for two months at a time.  He has July/August, and I will get Sept/ Oct, and so on.  I volunteered to drive it all the time, but he said,"No."

My granddaughter wanted to do face painting when she came over this week.  We looked at images on the web, and found one she liked.  I think her face painting mirrors the design on her sweatshirt.

See how her design looks like the wings on the heart on the front of here shirt.  

What a pretty little girl.

E wanted to pose this way.
Our photography club had a tour of the Dean Baldwin Airplane paint factory here.  It was very interesting.

Me in the place where the engine goes on this DC 10.  I kind of match the color with my shirt and slacks.  

I am taking a night photography course from my favorite website: jessicasprague.com.  It is very interesting, and I love the photos I have taken. These pictures were taken about 8:30-9:00 at night, so you can get the nice blue effect in the sky.  I just hate standing on the street corners taking pictures, though. It is kind of scary, and I try to stay alert to what is going on around me.  I take my gun just in case.  I think taking Warren would be better, but so far I have not been able to entice him to go with me.

The silver dome.  They have bands and dancing in the dome.  I do not know what it was used for originally.  Some kind of Grain????

Main Street

The lights on the middle right are from a Fire Truck.  I like the contrast of the blue sky, and the red street.

More Main Street

I really liked this building.  Looks like an old, old store.

Buildings on Main Street
I think I might be caught up on the new of what is happening around here.  Now if I could get caught up on my laundry.  There is always laundry.  Guess I better go put in a load.  Later...

Monday, July 15, 2013

Our new car...

"Let's deal." -Warren McKelvy

We bought a new Land Cruiser on Saturday.  We did not originally plan to buy a car that day.  We  drive by the Toyota place, and look for Land Cruisers from time to time.  Our old car is 12 years old, and we have actually driven it for 13.  It was a 2001, but we bought it in 2000.  When my friend Debbie, and her husband, were in town about a month ago looking for cars, I went with them.  There was a Land Cruiser on the lot then.  I told Warren about it, and the next day we went to look at it.  It was gone.  Sold. Just like that.  On Thursday, Warren took our old Land Cruiser in for an oil change.  He noticed they had a new Land Cruiser on the lot.  He looked at it.  He told me about it, and that was that.  Friday evening we went out to eat, and after we ate, I said, "Let's go look at that Land Cruiser."  We did.  Little did I know Warren had already done his homework.  He knew how much the new ones were going for, and what our old one was worth.  The salesman demonstrated all the new bells and whistles to us, we went for a test drive, he asked if he could look at our car.  He presented us with a  deal.  That's when Warren said, "well I went online..."  They came back with a better deal.  Warren told me our old car was having some problems with the 4-wheel drive system, and he did not want to spend a fortune to get if fixed.  With Mark moving to Colorado, in all likelihood, we would be driving in some conditions where 4-wheel drive would be necessary.  Warren looked at me, then said, "I'm ready to deal." He bought the car, just like that.  We could have driven it home that night, but we said we would come by the next morning.

This car has cameras on all sides (no more scrapes or dings for me), it does not require a key to start, it can start remotely, has a DVD player, amazing phone capabilities, and tons of other technical stuff.  In fact, it has so much technical stuff, it is overwhelming.  It will be a steep learning curve for me.  I like this new car a lot!  The no key thing is kind of weird though.  Now I want to go on a trip somewhere just to drive it.  I will have to think where to go...

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Night time photography...

"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands."  Ps. 19:1

Several years ago, I took a photography course at the museum.  The instructor, Bruce Gaucher, is an amazing landscape photographer.  He and his wife are, also, are frequent visitors to Schlotzski's like we are, so we see them almost every Saturday.  He showed me an amazing night time picture of a windmill.  I asked him if he would show me how to do the shot.  He said yes, and the next new moon we would go out.  The new moon was Monday, July 8.  We went out Monday, and again on Wednesday.   Monday was a truck painting night shot, and Wednesday night, the windmill.  We wanted the Milky Way in the photos, and he has a program that shows where the Milky Way will be at a certain time.  10:00 pm seemed the best time.  Now it is pitch black out, and we are in the middle of nowhere.  It is kind of scary.  We did have flashlights to get set up, and they attract all kinds of big bugs.  I did not like that either.  We did a search our spot for snakes...there were none.  He brought his snake bite kit, and I brought my gun.  Here is the result of our shoots.  I love all the photos we took.

Me by the truck.  You can see the Milky Way coming out from the tree.  It is the multicolored arch on the right. (This photo is by Bruce Gaucher.)
No Milky Way here.

The Milky Way is the arch coming from the top of the tree.  

Milky Way is the light colored cluster again coming out of the tree.

Another angle.
We started at 7:30 and got home at 12:15. Well worth it all.

Last night we went to shoot the windmill.  Here are those shots. And we did not get home until 1:15 in the morning.
The light on the horizon is lightning.

The windmill light painted.  Lightning on the right.

Milky Way on the left, and the lights of Roswell on the right. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Future Tour de France participants?...

Since the Tour de France is going on right now, and Warren diligently watches every stage and race, I was reminded of how he watched the bike races faithfully when we were babysitting the twins in May. It is no secret that Warren loves bicycling.  He has a lot of bikes...I cannot remember how many, but a lot.  He rides, he watches, and he dreams.  He, also, did his best to indoctrinate our grandsons into the sport.  Each morning he would gather them on his lap, turn on the computer, and all three watched the bicycle race.  I could not believe how entranced these little guys were.  Maybe they will be future Tour de France participants.  Who knows?

Three guys enjoying the bicycle race.  

I got a shot of the screen so you can see that it really is bicycling.  Sawyer is pointing out something about the race to his PawPaw.

Intrigued for sure.  (Luke...yes I combed Tate's hair the old grandma way...there was no hope for Sawyer's hair.  It does its own thing.) 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Rob goes to Vegas...part one...

"Why would anyone want to live here?" -Rob McKelvy

Do I look like I am on a movie poster?  Maybe CSI? or something? 
I have not visited Las Vegas since college when I went home with my suite mate who lived in Las Vegas.  I was only 18, so we did not visit the strip, and it seemed like a normal sort of town to me at the time.  I have heard so much about Vegas, and wanted to visit, mostly to take pictures.  I told Warren that is where I wanted to go for my 60th birthday.  We went, and Mark and Jordan joined us.
The family except for me.  I took the pictures.
When Warren and I were flying in, I could see there was no vegetation, just hills, and lots of dirt.  I wondered how the city got started, and why someone would want to live in such a desolate place.  Usually, towns spring up around water.  There did not seem to be much water.   I would not want to live there, but I must say,  I had a fantastic time visiting, and would go back in a heart beat.  I could not believe that every hotel was basically a mall, with a casino, and theaters for shows.  I found that amazing.  I wish we had the time to visit all the hotels.  We did not gamble in case you are wondering.

One of the first things all of us did was ride the Roller Coaster at New York New York.  Well, all except Warren whose back would not fair well with a roller coaster ride.  I was skepitical since the last roller coaster I was on was "The Rattler" at Fiesta Texas.  Immediately after the ride started my chin was in my chest, and I could not raise my head.  I thought for sure my neck was going to snap and break.  It was the worst 2 minutes of my life.  Mark and Amber assured me this was a mamby-pamby ride, and Mark volunteered to pay for my ride.  I relented.  It was not a mamby-pamby ride, at least I did not think so.  There is 4777 ft. of track, with a maximum height of 203 ft, dropping 144 ft. with speeds up to 67 mph.  My stomach felt that drop...twice in fact since there are two major drops.  It simulates a barrel-roll of a fighter plane rolling 180 degrees, hangs 86 feet in the air, then dives back under itself.  Mark and Amber went twice, but once was enough for me.

Walking up to the roller coaster.  See it in the background?  The loop where you go upside down is not visible from here.  Actually, the loop was not as scary as the drops.  

The before and brave picture.

The during and scary picture.  

After that we walked around some of the more interesting hotels.  The Bellagio has fountains that "dance" to music.  During the evening, there are colored lights, but plain during the daytime was pretty fantastic, too.
Warren and Mark watch the fountain "dance."  Thank goodness this did not last too long since it was so hot out.
 I don't remember what this hotel was called, but it was my favorite one of all.  I liked all the statues, and how the inside was like being outside.  My hair went totally flat in LV.  Not matter what I did, it was always flat.  Another reason not to live there...flat hair.
Me with flat hair, Mark with a goofy look, and Amber who is the only one who looks nice.
 Warren was having a pretty good time, too.  Who knows what he laughing about.
Father and son. 
 Mark was funning around making all kinds of faces pretending he was hit by the statue boxer.  I told him, go back so I could get a picture.  There were several people walking by when he posed, and as we were walking away, we noticed everybody got a picture just like we did of Mark.  They thought it was a great idea.  I did, too.
Mark posing with Mohammad Ali who, when I was little, was called Cassius Clay.  
 This is the inside of the mall.  The colors were amazing, and you truly felt as if you were outdoors.  It was nice to be indoors though since the temperature was a blazing 117 degrees outdoors.  We picked one of the hottest weekends to visit LV.

As you can see, with Mark in transition from his job, he has grown a beard.  This one looks pretty full.  He thinks he will keep it since he will be going to back to school (Computer school in Bolder, CO) in September.  
Amber and Mark
Amber told me Mark stops at every drink refrigerator, and looks at the drinks for a long time, so I thought I should document this habit.  She says he doesn't always buy drinks; he just looks.  This time he bought an orange "So Be Lean." Probably because it was so blazing hot outside.
Mark's habit...stopping by to look at the drinks.
This is one of the more favored pools at a hotel.  This is not our hotel.  Some have wave pools, lazy rivers, beaches with sand and sand volleyball.  Our hotel had no casino, and a plain ordinary pool.  
A swimming pool
 Amber was our "travel guide."  She knew all the great places to eat, and visit.  She is trying to find out some vital information for our particular outing.  I was glad we had her to guide us on our trip.
Amber, our travel guide.
 Okay, this picture is out of place, but I am too lazy to insert it where it should go.  
Stay tuned for more of Las Vegas.  
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