Sunday, December 23, 2012

Pine cones, twigs and leaves for Christmas

I have always loved to decorate with natural elements which is a plus when you are on a tight budget.
I told a friend that I always seem to decorate with twigs, rocks, feathers, etc. And she suggested I wanted to live in a cave instead of a house. Yes but it would be a very classy cave!

I love several ways of Christmas decorating but I think "natural Christmas" may be my very favorite. And while I didn't go all out this year, what I did decorate was called "cozy" and I think that is a lovely compliment.

Pine cones I collected (small ones) in Sunriver and larger "frosted" pine cones I begged off a seller at a craft bazaar I attended and the largest pine cone I saved from my pine tree before it had to be cut down. I saw this on pinterest and loved it so much I wanted to try my own version.

The oak leaves I collected from my neighbor last year when I raked his lawn for him after back surgery. I put them away and forgot about them and when I came across them this year knew I wanted them gold (which I've tried before) and knew I wanted a garland.

To make the garland I used a large strand of jute and used thinner jute string to simply tie the leaves in place.

I think I was channeling a little bit of Donna with the rusty bucket tree.

A tree branch that blew down in a windstorm, a hole punch and some ribbon allowed me to display my Christmas cards.

Herbs in small canning jars brought some greenery into the kitchen.

You can't tell in the photo but we couldn't find the tree stand so instead have it in a large aluminum pot/cauldron thing we found in a barn and put gravel in to stabilize. Funny thing is, I think it works better than any tree stand we have ever used.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Furry company

I can't even begin wrapping gifts without something like this happening.

Oh. You wanted to wrap this? But I need to sit on it.

And I'll never have to sit by the fire alone because Spud discovered that's where the warm comes from.

These indoor/outdoor cats have become decidedly less outdoor lately.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

First shot

I used last month's Black Friday to my greatest advantage and bought myself a Canon DSLR.

I have managed to get some really treasured (to me) photos from my little point and shoot cameras for years but I felt like I wanted to make the big step up. Of course...I didn't make the biggest step up (considering my last camera was only $100 this felt like a gigantic leap), but I feel like this camera and I can go places even if those places are just of delight to me.

I am a complete photography amateur but that doesn't make me love it any less. However, I knew I would not be fantastic right away and I'm glad I knew. I've taken probably 150 photos with the new camera so far, but really only liked a few. I figured I would shoot tons of photos just to get to know the camera. And let me tell you how many times I've gone out shooting and singing this in my head.

I have noticed an astonishing change in clarity and color and that is what I was really wanting.

tiny succulent w


Tiny succulents in the oak moss.

Spudnik w


Calliope w

Calliope keeping watch. She doesn't like her photo taken so she's hard to catch.

kestrel in tree w

"My" little kestrel. I usually see it only in passing as it sits on the fenceposts and I drive by on my way to work.

tree full of birds w

A tree full of birds! There's a line of trees quite a ways from my yard out into my neighbor's field. Birds love these trees. Here we've got robins, starlings and crows.

I can't wait until my ability catches up with my desire.

Do you know of any good photography tips blog posts, web pages, etc? Please share!

P.S. I hate new blogger. Sorry my post is messed up and I've given up trying to fix it.
Also if you want to see the photos of some photographers that really inspire me:

Gypsy Mare Studios

Little Red House

Mt. Hope Chronicles

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Why not? I'm a fungi!

One of the cedar trees in my yard died and had to be cut down. Near where the tree fell is now full of fungus - all different sizes and types I've never seen before.






I don't care for edible mushrooms so I'm really not going to know non-edible types. Can anyone identify these for me?

I had a lot of "help" when I was taking these photos...

Spud, the rescue kitty, has been made of velcro lately. And here he is trying to see what I was bending down to photograph. He was very puzzled by the whole thing but loved to bat at my dangling lens cap and rub (ie bump) on my arm just as I was about to press the shutter button.

And my real velcro cat, my little white shadow, was none too pleased that he was so close to me and she wasn't.


Death glare.

Ah, cats.