Thursday, April 30, 2015


So the Lilac was quite popular this Spring.  I had various types of nature visiting including myself to smell the wonderful fragrance it was giving.  Lilacs last too short of a time.  I usually don't see these guys till during the summer but this Hummingbird Moth was busily enjoying the blooms which is why he's a bit blurred, I captured it in flight.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015


This is another version of the lovely Orchid that some friends of mine bought recently.  I love the colors and patterns of the blooms.  I shot it against a window but I enhanced it even more for the High Key look that resulted here.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015


The Geary County Historical Society held an event at the Spring Valley Historic Site this past Saturday.  The Commanding General's Color Guard from Fort Riley was there with a couple of horses doing a camp re-enactment.  I got this image of one of the soldier's dressed in Civil War era uniform riding by the school house itself and thought it made for a nice photo with the flag waving.

Monday, April 27, 2015


I was taking photos of the Waxwings in the Walnut tree again on Saturday because they are still visiting the backyard pond.  I was surprised by this female Cardinal with nesting material when she came and sat up close in the small Cedars that are in my garden railway by the house.  I was able to snap off a few shots and this is one of them.  I figured they must build nests but never saw any evidence before this of them doing it.  

Sunday, April 26, 2015


I've been looking at some older images of steam trains to share as I have not yet had the opportunity to create new ones yet.  This image goes back to our trip several years ago to Steam Fest in Owosso, Michigan.  We were able to attend a night shoot that was quite fun.  This is a shot of the Southern Pacific Daylight locomotive as it was leaving the turntable to head for it's spot for the night to be readied for our excursion behind it the next morning.  It's a beautiful locomotive and very impressive from this angle. 

Saturday, April 25, 2015


Well we got about 1/2 inch of April showers for May flowers last night and this morning so yay!  Need more and doesn't look like we will get any for a while now but happy for what we got.  I planted some Tulip bulbs last fall with some different colors and they all came up and bloomed.  I was happy about that because my Daffodils that I planted a few years ago did not do so well.  Only about 3/4 produced and flowered.  Anyway, this was a lovely Yellow Tulip Trio that came up.  It was interesting to see how colors ended up grouped together even though I tried my best to separate them.

Friday, April 24, 2015


So my Spring celebration continues today with a flower.  This is part of a plant that I was given when the hubster's grandmother passed.  She had this at her home in Minnesota and I transplanted it in Kansas.  Every year it comes up but doesn't always produce a flower.  I was surprised when it produced a bloom this year with the lack of moisture we had.  This is called a Fern Peony.

Thursday, April 23, 2015


Today I am continuing on with my nature themed Spring celebration.  The Red Bud trees bloomed early this year and were quite lovely.  The bees were enjoying the blooms quite a lot and I was able to capture this Honey Bee visiting some.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


Happy Earth Day!  Happy Admin Professionals Day as well!  :-)  I'm continuing on with my Spring celebration and nature that has come to visit so far.  I am pleased that each year I get a Tiger Swallowtail visiting the Lilac.  This image is of the one from this year enjoying the blooms and letting me get a few shots of it.  We need to protect the earth to continue to have visits like this.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015


Well, I have been whining for rain and we finally got some.  I was east of Topeka this weekend visiting with friends.  One of them was with me when I took this image and told me "You're easily amused".  LOL  Maybe I am.  They were getting rain all morning and into the afternoon.  When it basically had stopped I was out taking a few images of rain drops on the Cedar trees.  I loved the bokeh the water drops produced in this image plus the things you can see in the drop itself.  We drove home through some driving rain and I was pleasantly surprised to see it had rained for the first significant amount we have had in quite some time.  We need a lot more but, yay!

Monday, April 20, 2015


My Lilac Bush has been quite popular to various forms of nature the past week so i thought I'd share a few of them and celebrate Spring as well.  I captured my first Red Admiral Butterfly of the year this past week enjoying the Lilac blooms.  It was shot against a very cloudy sky which explains the white background.

Sunday, April 19, 2015


Well, we finally got a bit of decent rain!  Yay!  Not sure how much as I have not put a gauge out yet but it was more than a sprinkle so it's about time.  For today's image I am going back to the Cumbres & Toltec which I processed in B&W for a more timeless look.  This is an older image from our first visit to the line.  We had ridden the day before and then this day we were chasing it to photograph it.  We were treated to a double header and at this point they are making their way up to Windy Point on their mostly uphill trek out of New Mexico.  When they reach the top which is a short distance from here, the second locomotive will detach and head back to Chama, NM after both locomotives take on water.  This spot is a great place to witness the drama of old time steam locomotives working hard to climb a steep grade.

Saturday, April 18, 2015


We got a sprinkle again, oh that's so helpful.  Sigh.  At least the Tulips are doing well without.  This image which I named Tulip Couple, are part of the volunteer group from before we moved in that are somehow still thriving.  I'm glad because they are quite lovely.

Friday, April 17, 2015


So we missed yet another chance at rain except for a tiny sprinkle.  This is getting very old already.  We really need some moisture.  I'm amazed the tulips are doing so well this year with the lack of snow or rain.  This is a different kind of flower though that I only recently discovered, the past few years.  I love the neat shape and the color of it.  I have tried to grow 2 different plants of it but they both did not make it though one lasted 2 years.  I guess the winter was hard on them.  I may try again and hopefully the third time will be the charm.  These flowers are called Bleeding Hearts.

Thursday, April 16, 2015


I felt like sharing a butterfly today.  These are very small, only about 1 and 1/2 inches  across the wings.  I was lucky to get close for the image.  This is a Cotton Square Borer on an Ornamental pear tree blossom from last spring.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


Today is Tax day in the US, hope you got them done!  I finished mine with a few days to spare.  :-)  Today's image is of a lovely colored orchid that some good friends of mine have.  I shot it against a bright window of theirs so it gave it a high key look.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015


This is another image from Squaw Creek Wildlife Area in northwestern Missouri that I took on Easter Weekend.  We saw lots of Coots, I had never seen one before that I knew what it was anyway but now I know what "old Coot" is referring to.  :-)  We were driving the road around the wetland area and were stopped for a group of Coots that were crossing the road to go to a smaller body of water.  This one was just approaching from down the embankment and I caught it as it was at the top in this grass.  I love how you can see the red eye best viewed if you click on the image and view it larger.

Monday, April 13, 2015


I decided to share something other than the usual today so this image goes back to my trip last summer to Colorado and Mount Evans.  Mount Evens claims to have the highest paved road in North America and the top is at 14, 240 feet.  This image was taken from several hundred feet higher than that because you can walk to the summit.  The view from there was quite spectacular but it was incredibly windy and very cold, only about 32 when it had been 80 degrees at the base of the mount.  This view looks down on Summit Lake which is a 5 mile drive down from the top.

Sunday, April 12, 2015


Well, we got a bit of rain last night but not very much at all and today it's so windy it will probably dry right up again.  It's all going to the south and east of us.  Well, on to today's photo.  This one goes back to West Virginia and the Cass Mountain and Scenic Railway.  Our Shay type locomotive was pushing us up Cass Mountain through the woods at this point.  We had just stopped to have the tender filled with water and you can see they got it really full by the stream coming out the end of it.  :-)

Saturday, April 11, 2015


They say Tulips will stop blooming after a few years.  I have some Tulips in a spot between 2 trees that someone planted before we moved into the house in 1994 that come up every year along with a few other spring flowers.  There are usually only about 3 of them that appear but this year, despite the lack of moisture, there are at least 7 of them there.  It was quite the surprise.  This is one of them and this image has had nothing done to it except re-sizing for the web.  I shot it against a white portable background that I have.

Friday, April 10, 2015


My Hibiscus is fairly old now.  I bring it inside every year for the winter and even though it drops some leaves due to the light change, it will still bloom every now and then.  This is a macro image I took of it one time while it was blooming in the sunlight coming in through the window and against a white background.  I had just misted it so that's where the water drops come from.

Thursday, April 9, 2015


So we can't seem to get any rain these days.  Very annoying, only got a small sprinkle yesterday that made my car even more dirty than it was.  :-(   I want April showers for the May flowers.  It was warmer out this morning than it is now too plus it's windy.  Yuck.  Dreaming of summer and butterflies.  This is a male Tiger Swallowtail that I captured on the Butterfly Bush last summer.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


This past weekend I was in Missouri and the in-laws took me to Squaw Creek, a nature preserve, in the north western part of the state not far from where they live.  There were quite the number of birds there that day, mostly ducks of one type pr another.  This is a male and female pair of Blue Wing Teal ducks that I was able to capture.  I had never seen this type before.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015


I was taking some images of the Daffodils in the garden that just started blooming.  They are a different color than the others I have and most that I see.  I played around with them in Nik Effects and this is what I ended up with.  I thought it gave them a rather different but neat look.

Monday, April 6, 2015


We went from winter straight into summer most days lately I think.  It can be cooler for a bit, especially if we don't get rain.  Anyway since it's warm I can look at images like this and not feel too cold.  :-)  This is a Dark-Eyed Junco sitting in the Mulberry Tree on a snowy day.

Sunday, April 5, 2015


Happy Easter to all who celebrate!  There was quite the beautiful moon last night but unfortunately I was not able to get an image of it.  So today you have one of my favorite subjects, trains.  :-)  This is an older image I took while riding the Cumbres & Toltec Railway for the first time.  This was taken from the train as the front part was traveling over one of the trestles on the line.

Saturday, April 4, 2015


I was over visiting some friends on Thursday and they had some tulips in bloom already.  Except for one single miniature tulip that my neighbor had blooming these were the first major group I had seen.  I loved the color of them as well.  I was even able to come up with a title for this image, Early Spring Tulip Party.  :-)

Friday, April 3, 2015


Happy Easter Weekend to those who celebrate and hopefully it got you a 3 day weekend like me which is always good!  :-)  We missed out on getting much rain again as always seems to be the case these days.  Not good.  Anyway, today's image is of a Veronica bloom.  I shot it with sunlight on it and used my dark felt background for a more dramatic look.

Thursday, April 2, 2015


This image is from last year.  I am hoping that if everything goes well and it doesn't freeze too bad that I will have a lovely Lilac Bush this year.  At this moment it is just covered in flower buds.  When it was in bloom last year bumble Bees would visit and this was one of them making it's way around the blooms.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


It's April Fools Day in the US.  Hope no one has had any tricks played on them today.  The weather is playing tricks, making it feel like summer.  We went from winter straight  into summer.  This is an image I took in Minnesota last summer of a Mallard Duck family out for a swim.