Tuesday, September 17, 2019


Years ago I had shot this gas station at the Western Minnesota Steam Thresher's Reunion from a different angle.  I love the character of this old style station and decided to shoot it again from a different angle.  I love all the detail and auto related items around it.

Monday, September 16, 2019


Yet another in the Palindrome Days.  I captured this image in June at Rollag Minnesota.  Kind of forgot about it.  Usually these guys are sitting on the logs in the pond but they seemed to think I was too close so jumped off into the water which I liked for a photo op better anyway.  😀

Sunday, September 15, 2019


We are still in the Palindrome days.  Today's Steamy Sunday image is of the other full size locomotive I have been able to work on for the past several years now at the Minnesota Steam Thresher's Reunion.  It is just arriving at Baker Station where crews switch.  I am just about to get on board for my turn as Fireperson for a 2 hour shift.  It's quite fun.

Saturday, September 14, 2019


Having a Palindrome weekend as well.  😃  Sharing a macro shot of some mushrooms by my pond one day a while back.  I was surprised we didn't have a lot more of them as wet as it had been.  This is actually a phone image that came out rather well.

Friday, September 13, 2019


Another Palindrome date and also Friday the 13th.  It's always been a good day for me so hope it continues that way.  Fridays are Bokehlicious so here is a lovely Clouded Sulphur butterfly on a Budlejah bloom with some lovely creamy bokeh behind.

Thursday, September 12, 2019


Still in the Palindrome dates.  Today's image is of a Cicada I captured on the Ironweed plant.  Lots of insects and butterflies liked it but I was still surprised to find this.  They look very alien like.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019


It's Wildflower Wednesday on the Blog once again and today is a new one for me.  It is growing in my garden area I made over on the new land by a garage.  It's a hard one to get a decent photo of.  It is called Broom Weed.  Pioneers tied bundles of dried plants to sticks for use as brooms. This weedy plant spreads rapidly in overgrazed areas, because animals don't like it and handles drought well.

I updated my Wildflowers in Color Orange & Yellow Page with it as well.  A hany reference for a good number of more common wildflowers seen in Kansas and other areas as well.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019


Today starts the Palindrome days, things that read the same forwards as backwards, 9 10 19.  There are several in a row and will not happen again until Feb 02 2020.A little different post for today.  I love old train stations and I was in Salina Kansas recently and found this one.  This is the old Union Pacific Depot there and it is in need of repair but still a neat looking building.

Monday, September 9, 2019


My Zinnias are blooming and providing food for the butterflies that will be on their way through soon.  This image of one of them is a 2 image focus stack of a lovely orange bloom with interesting detail.

Sunday, September 8, 2019


While in Minnesota I worked the annual Western Minnesota Steam Thresher's Reunion. I was able to work on a train I had worked on about 8 years ago before it had some issues.  This is a Porter locomotive and I was just about to get on and fire a trip around the grounds.  It was great fun and wonderful to see in operation again at Rollag.  I met some great people and hope to work with them again next year.

Saturday, September 7, 2019


I was in Minnesota over labor day Weekend.  On Monday I was in Hawley Minnesota and in the evening there was quite the rainstorm/thunderstorm.  Afterwards there was a beautiful double rainbow.  I shot this with my phone under the eve of the house just out of the wind and rain.

Friday, September 6, 2019


Friday's are Bokehlicious!  Here is a lovely Echinacea or Cone Flower from my garden a while back with some lovely bubble bokeh for a background.

Thursday, September 5, 2019


Sunflowers are popular for all types of insects.  In this image I was able to capture a Bumblebee enjoying one of the blooms.  Right now the wild Sawtooth Sunflowers are blooming.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019


It's Wildflower Wednesday n the Blog and today's flower is Clammy ground Cherry.  They have a nice yellow drooping flower and then develop these paper lantern like, seed pods.  You can see both in this image and it is also a new one for me to photograph this year.  
Don't forget, I have pages on the Blog with Wildflowers by color to help ID some of the more commonly seen ones and even some rare ones. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2019


The Ironweed was quite popular this year.  Soon the Autumn Sedum will bloom and that is a popular one too.  I saw my first Clearwing Moth of the year taking in the blooms about a week ago now. 

Monday, September 2, 2019


I like flower images in this style.  I had been doing my mini Hostas like this and thought I would try it out on another type of flower.  This is an Obedient Plant bloom.  They have just started to open.  I find the name quite funny as they are not obedient at all and spread like crazy.

Sunday, September 1, 2019


Wow, it is September already.  The year is flying by, soon it will be autumn and cold weather.  Sigh.  I have been sharing images of a huge locomotive.  Going the other direction this week and sharing a much smaller one.  This is a friend of mine running one of the Ottaway steam locomotives at the railroad i play at outside Topeka Kansas.

Saturday, August 31, 2019


I haven't shared a landscape photo for awhile.  Here is a beautiful Nebraska sky at sunset from my travels last June.

Friday, August 30, 2019


My mini Allium flowers in the Garden Railway were blooming recently and providing bugs and butterflies some nourishment.  Here is a Silvery Checkerspot enjoying one and a bug bonus.  Plus, because Fridays Are Bokehlicious, some nice creamy grass bokeh for the background.

Thursday, August 29, 2019


This is a companion image to one from a little over a week ago or so.  This is my miniature Hosta again and now the blooms are opening up.  

Wednesday, August 28, 2019


For Wildflower Wednesday here on the Blog, this is an image of Carolina Horse nettle which is blooming a lot right now.  It's a nice flower but very prickly and growing where I don't want it to be most times.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019


I have seen one or two Hummingbirds around my feeder off and on.  I have kept it full for them in case they were around but they seem rather scarce.  This weekend I was able to see a couple, both at the feeder and at the Trumpet vine where I captured this one.  I was happy to get it in focus as they were not staying in one spot for long and fighting over the blooms.

Monday, August 26, 2019


I never knew that fogs squeaked until this year.  When I walk around my pond, usually to skim it or pull weeds around the shore I hear them squeak and then splash as they jump into the pond.  It's very funny to hear.  This is one of my Leopard Frogs trying to stay inconspicuous among the rocks at the waters edge.

Sunday, August 25, 2019


Posting a little later than I have been lately today.  I wasn't able to set this one to go yesterday.  Overnight we received a significant amount of rain for the first time in a while.  We got 2.2 inches.  I could hear it pouring.  So my pond should be nice and full today even without having to supplement water.
My image for today is another vintage but a bit closer up look at the newly restored Union pacific Big Boy 4014 that I was able to see in operation in Nebraska.

Saturday, August 24, 2019


Well, we did get a bit of rain this week.  I could use some more for my pond but it has cooled off as well so that helps.  I could probably post a butterfly or a Sunflower photo every day for the rest of the year, I was able to capture a lot but I won't, don't want to bore you.  However today I have a photo with both.  The sunflowers were popular with butterflies this year.  This is a Pearl Crescent enjoying a bloom.  Remember I also have a page on the Blog with butterflies that show a lot of times with closed wing and open wing photos to help ID.

Friday, August 23, 2019


So far, still not much rain as I write this.on Wednesday night.  Why we can't get more than a couple 10ths lately.  Sigh.
My Surprise Lilies, really surprised me. A few on one end came up and were blooming and I thought that was going to be it but then, all of the sudden, here they all were.  Sharing for my Fridays Are Bokehlicious pic because the flowers in the back provided quite lovely blurred bokeh.

Thursday, August 22, 2019


We have chances for rain and hoping it is more significant than the few sprinkles we have been getting lately while everyone else gets a decent rain.  The Ironweed plant has been attractive to many different types of nature lately.  I captured this Bumblebee sitting on one of the leaves.  I have never seen that they have such a serious looking proboscis.  Yikes.  It was resting after just indulging in some of the blooms.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019


It is Wildflower Wednesday once again here on the Blog.  This one must have had the right growing conditions this year because it was very abundant everywhere!  The name of this one is Illinois Bundleflower.  It is in the Legume family and gets it's name from it's seeds which appear to develop in bundles.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019


My Sunflowers are about done now.  The butterflies have really been enjoying them.  This is a shot of one that I don't see very often.  It is a Dusky Wing butterfly enjoying one of the blooms.

Monday, August 19, 2019


So all around us and to the east got 5 inches of rain and we got nothing.  I didn't want that much at one time but a nice half inch would have been great so i didn't have to water.  Sigh.
Today's image is a macro for Monday.  Brings back the old days of Google + and Macro Mondays.  This is a 2 image focus stack of one of my mini Hosta blooms.  

Sunday, August 18, 2019


I have now shared the 4 locations I was able to see the Union Pacific Big Boy 4014 in action including an extra shot on the bridge.  I decided to share it a different way with a more vintage look to it this week.  Steam trains lend themselves to black and white treatment so well.  This was the third time I got to capture it along US 275 heading towards Omaha.

Saturday, August 17, 2019


This is a plant from my large pond that just flowered this year.  It is called a Pickerel Rush and it has had several stalks of these lovely purple flowers this year.  The plant was always there but did not flower, at least that I saw, last year.  A sign the pond is healthier?  Whatever, it has been lovely to see this year.  Glad I did not pull it out by accident.

Friday, August 16, 2019


The wildflower Ironweed is in bloom right now.  It is quite the butterfly, bee and Skipper magnet.  I captured these 2 Giant swallowtails that were enjoying it.  When looking at the image on my computer I saw i had the bonus of a Skipper and a bee coming in to enjoy it as well.  Because Fridays are Bokehlicious I chose this image for the green tree, red Morton building and white collection tank bokeh all made to look rather soft and creamy along with the grass by the focus on the butterflies.

Thursday, August 15, 2019


While we weren't getting any rain and the pond kept getting lower and lower, the water stayed pretty clear and algae free at least.  To show how clear, I shot this Leopard frog while it was under water in one of the deeper areas.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019


Today's Wildflower Wednesday is one that is fairly common and spreads rather well.  My cat is rather fond of this one, it is called Catnip.  it has a wide soft, slightly fuzzy leaf and a distinct aroma to it.  The leaf is what cats enjoy but the flower is rather interesting as well.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019


When I was at my friend's home photographing the young Barred owls the parents were around as well feeding them.  This is a capture of one of the parents.  I could tell because it was not as fuzzy as the young ones were at that point.  It was beautiful to see them fly overhead.

Monday, August 12, 2019


I have several varieties of Sunflowers growing.  This one is lovely though rather short, only 2 feet tall.  Before the bloom opens it is almost back in color and I love the deep red of the petals.

Sunday, August 11, 2019


Today's post is another from the day I got to see Union Pacific's newly restored Big Boy locomotive 4014 in action.  This was on our way back home at one of the old high bridges of the UP in Omaha, Nebraska.  On this one there is no fence in the foreground.  It was a first for me to shoot a train on a high bridge like this and with such a neat subject as this large locomotive.

Saturday, August 10, 2019


An evening in the Flint Hills from June. The bits of white in a line starting at the left and just above the trees is one of the layers of limestone found in the area and then interspersed with that is lots of Flint rock giving the area it's name.  At that point in time we were receiving a lot of rain so clouds in the sky plus haze from fires in Canada at the time.

Friday, August 9, 2019


TGIF!  Today is the last day of a really busy week for me.  As I mentioned, I have been seeing more butterflies around these days.  They are loving the Coneflowers or Echinacea.  I captured this Painted Lady on a flower in my backyard and the grass behind made for some lovely creamy bokeh.  Fridays are Bokehlicious!

Thursday, August 8, 2019


I have seen a few of these guys around this year but this was the first I have been able to capture.  I love Praying Mantis with their alien look.  This is a Focus Stack of 2 images and it really needed more but he moved after I got 2 shots.  I guess he wasn't thrilled with the big eye of my lens looking at him so close.  😃

Wednesday, August 7, 2019


It's Wildflower Wednesday on the Blog once again.  This week I am sharing a new one I discovered last year growing along the area of my new garage.  I hadn't gotten a photo of it or looked it up till I saw it again this year.  This is called American Germander and it has stalks of tiny pink flowers when in bloom.  The plant itself is about 3 feet high.  My Wildflowers by Color pages on the Blog was updated with it as have the other pages with new ones I have captured this year.  It was a good year for wildflowers with the early rains.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019


I love these birds.  I had not seen where they nested this year but I was happy to see that they are around.  This is a Carolina Wren and I find them quite cute.  They have quite the loud chirp and are cute the pose they make while doing it.  I, unfortunately, wasn't able to capture that.

Monday, August 5, 2019


I have a miniature Balloon flower that I bought new and babied along throughout our drought last year.  I was pleased to see it come back and fuller and produce a lot of blooms this year.  It's a lovely little flower and these are 2 of it's blooms.

Sunday, August 4, 2019


Today's image is another from my trip up to Nebraska to see the Union Pacific Big boy 4014 in action.  I was heading back home from Fremont where I had just photographed it leaving town. I saw some cars pulling off to the side of the highway and wondered what they were doing.  I looked in the rear-view mirror and saw smoke behind me and realized I had passed the train.  It was a surprise opportunity because I had not been able to see it alongside as I drove because the tracks took it away from the highway.  I decided to pull over as well and got an opportunity to shoot it from a different spot and angle.  The lighting in this image shows off the driver arrangement a bit better, the 4 lead wheels and then the 2 sets of 8 drive wheels and then the 4 trailing wheels.  A massive locomotive, the fireman in the window looks tiny.  

Saturday, August 3, 2019


We finally got a bit of rain and it didn't pour down so soaked in nicely.  I wish it could have been more as my pond was extremely low but it is not as sad as it was so grateful for the almost inch we got.  My image today is from near the end of the Wildflower Walk in June out on Konza Prairie.  These trees silhouetted on the hillside against the sky colors made for a nice image I thought and a nice end to the walk.

Friday, August 2, 2019


Even though my pond is quite low due to the extreme heat and lack of rainfall we had, it is still pretty healthy.  I have the frogs, like the one I shared Monday, hanging around and also several lovely Dragonflies.  This was a lovely golden colored one I captured with some great bokeh behind it.

Thursday, August 1, 2019


Yikes, it is August and summer is almost totally gone.  It went so fast and I didn't even go on a long vacation in July like normal. Anyway, happy first day of August.  As I mentioned, I don't know my grasses very well but this one had such an interesting look to it.  When I looked it up, my reference book said it is technically a weedy grass.  There is still beauty in weeds I think.  This is called Panicum Capillar or Witches Grass.  I think it looks a lot like it's relative Scribner's Panicum which is also called Harry Potter because it reminds of a magic wand. 

Wednesday, July 31, 2019


For those of you in Kansas or surrounding states as well, don't forget I have several pages of wildflowers that are fairly common and even a few rarer ones separated out by color.  Hopefully these will make it easier for you to identify a flower you may see.  I recently added this one, Wooly Verbena to the Purple page.  It is blooming now and I got this shot about a week or so ago of it.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019


I have now been starting to see lots more butterflies around.  It has mostly been smaller ones like Skippers and Painted ladies but over the weekend I saw several Swallowtails.  This is a male Black Swallowtail on the Budhelia or Butterfly bush.