Saturday, April 10, 2021

4/10/21

 Today's image could have gone on Wednesday as well.  While out on a bikeride on Sunday I came across this field.  It looks purposely planted but all that lovely color is coming from a wildflower very muc considered to be a weed called Henbit.  It made for a lovely view.  I only had my zoom lens with me so the is a panorama stiched from 5 images.  It's best viewed large.



Friday, April 9, 2021

4/9/21

 I have seen a couple of different butterflies this spring.  This is the first one I have been able to capture.  I believe it is an Reakirt's Blue.  They are quite tiny, the wingspan is only about an inch to inch and a half across.  I captured it while looking for bees on my Grape Hyacinths in my yard this past weekend.  Because of the lovely bokeh and because Friday's Are Bokehlicious I chose this photo for today.



Thursday, April 8, 2021

4/8/21

This is another of the beautiful birds from different countries that I was able to see and capture at the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita.  This is a beautiful Crested Coua.  This bird was constantly moving around and rarely sat still.  I found myself rather lucky to get a decent shot of it.  Apparently they are known for not sitting still long and instead of flying bounce along the trees.  In the wild they are only found in Madagascar.



Wednesday, April 7, 2021

4/7/21

 It's Wildflower Wednesday on the Blog!  Today's image is a macro I took on Sunday of the blooms of a Wild Blue Mustard.  If you want to see what the whole plant looks like or get ID's of flowers blooming in your yard right now, be sure to check out my Wildflowers By Color Pages.  This one is on the Blue & Purple Page.



Tuesday, April 6, 2021

4/6/21

 While on a bike ride this past weekend I observed some Mallard ducks (Edit: Found out from a friend that these are actually Northern Shovler ducks due to the amount of white on them and their bills are too big for a Mallard) on a small pond and stopped to take some photos.  A bunch of them weren't thrilled and took off and kept flying around the pond.  I was able to get this shot while they were doing it and I was pretty pleased with how it turned out.

If you are curious what they look like up close, here is the link I was provided and he was quite right on the ID: guide/Northern_Shoveler



Monday, April 5, 2021

4/5/21

 We are hitting highs lately around 80 degrees.  Way too warm for this early.  I have a feeling this summer will be a hot one, we have not had a very hot one for a while and are probably due.  Sigh.  Hopefully it won't be totally dry too.  Anyway, I still have snowflakes to share from a couple of late snows we had that produced some lovely flakes.  This one looks a little warped because of the way it was laying and because the top was somewhat broken but I liked the colors in it a lot.  This is from 14 images focus stacked together.



Sunday, April 4, 2021

4/4/21

 It's a double digit day!  😁  It is also Steamy Sunday here on the Blog.  Today we return to the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum in Baltimore Maryland.  Today's locomotive is the William Mason, a beautiful 4-4-0 American type built in 1856 and named after it's and 753 others builder.  It's number is 25 and it was used extensively during the Civil War to carry troops and supplies for the Union.  It is the first locomotive for the B&O to have a Stephenson link motion valve gear and a round smoke box set on a cylinder saddle.  It was not in the roundhouse during the roof collapse of 2003.  It was last under steam in 2012 and was restored back to it's original look in 2017. It is now stored in the roundhouse.  It was sitting in the Roundhouse in 2005 when I got this photo.



Saturday, April 3, 2021

4/3/21

 Todays image is of my favorite spot on my property.  I thought it made for a lovely landscape photo. The Daffodils are in bloom at my large pond.  We have had enough rain that I have been able to run the waterfall without having to add water to the pond from my tank.  You can see the waterfall in the background but it is out of focus.  The Gazebo is just off to the right of this image.



Friday, April 2, 2021

4/2/21

 It's Friday, TGIF!  Friday's Are Bokehlicious and I have this lovely bokeh image to share today.  This is another very colorful bird I captured at the Segwick County Zoo in Wichita a few weekend's ago.  This is a Golden Breasted Starling.  Much more beautiful than the European ones we have around here.



Thursday, April 1, 2021

4/1/21

 I captured my first Honeybee of the year this past weekend.  I was over at my friend's home and they had some Grape Hyacinths blooming already and I captured this bee in flight while it was moving from flower to flower.  I was surprised I got it in focus, I thought I hadn't.  



Wednesday, March 31, 2021

3/31/21

 It's Wildflower Wednesday here on the Blog!  Today's image is another of one of my favorites but rarely seen for me because I can never seem to get the timing right.  These are Nipple Cactus blooms.  Nipple Cactus are fairly small, only about 2 to 3 inches across at most.



Tuesday, March 30, 2021

3/30/21

 This is an image of a Red-tail hawk I got earlier this year while on a walk.  It has been nice to see them around.  Wish they would take care of the rabbits that are eating my flowers down to the ground in my yard.  😒  I learned you can tell for sure it is a Red-tail due to the bars on the wings.





Monday, March 29, 2021

3/29/21

It's spring officially now but I still have some snowflake images to share.  I have been working on processing some good ones I got this winter.  This one is a 10 image focus stack.  I found it rather unique with all the open space in the center.  I loved the little baby one stuck to it as well.



Sunday, March 28, 2021

3/28/21

 It's Steamy Sunday here on the Blog!  I wanted to post my favorite railroad today so here is one from a ride I took a few years ago.  They were blowing down the boiler a bit to remove scale as we went around a curve and I caught a few shots of that including this one.  This is the Cumbres & Toltec Railway that crosses between Colorado and New Mexico several times.



Saturday, March 27, 2021

3/27/21

 Here is a shot from the Sedgwick County Zoo that I was quite pleased with.  I love these little guys and wish I could see them in their native land but have to make due with the zoo for now and most likely for always.  Anyway, an adorable Meerkat perching on top of a tall rock. 



Friday, March 26, 2021

3/26/21

 TGIF!  It was, well, seemed like, a long week for some reason.  😄  Today's image is another of the Painted Lady butterflies that visited my garden this past summer.  It is enjoying my lovely Butterfly Bush blooms.  The plants in the background are creating some nice soft bokeh and because Friday's Are Bokehlicious I am sharing this image with you today.



Thursday, March 25, 2021

3/25/21

 I am going to start posting some of the photos I was able to get of the beautiful birds I saw at the Sedgwick County Zoo.  As I mentioned I have a like/hate relationship with Zoos.  They seem to have a really nice area for all these birds though in their Tropical Habitat.  I will never be able to travel to the countries these birds are in so this is the only way I will ever see them.  I am starting off with an obvious Zoo pic because I am trying to get an ID on the bird on the right.  I have Googled it like crazy but cannot find a match and the Zoo did not have an ID of it on their website.  The one on the left is beautiful and is a Spangled Cotinga from South America.  I think the other is beautiful as well but I have no idea what it is.  They had just been fed when I got this image.

Edit:  So I got an ID from someone on a site I visit.  It is another South American bird called a Black-faced Dacnis and is male.



Wednesday, March 24, 2021

3/24/21

 It's Wildflower Wednesday on the Blog and today I am posting one of my favorites.  This is Common Sunflower and is the State flower of Kansas.  I captured these blooms that were volunteer plants by one of my storage buildings.  I am not letting them grow there this year.  They get way too tall and messy and are very difficult to pull out when done because the plants get so large in the better soil I have there.



Tuesday, March 23, 2021

3/23/21

 As I mentioned yesterday, it is starting to feel like spring here in my area.  This is actually from over a week ago now that these had opened up.  This is my first Crocus group in the garden that were quite lovely until something ate them, most likely a rabbit.  Grrr.  



Monday, March 22, 2021

3/22/21

 We are starting to feel like spring these days with highs most days in the 50s.  I still have some snowflakes to share though.  This one is an 18 image stack which until last week's share was my highest at producing a good flake.  I was quite pleased with this one as well.  It turned out pretty sharp.



Sunday, March 21, 2021

3/21/21

 It's Steamy Sunday and sort of a double digit day.  😊  Once again I am going back to my trip to the B&O Museum in Baltimore Maryland.  When I was there, they were still repairing the museum from a roof collapse 2 years prior due to an unusual amount of snow, at least 6 foot drifts.  Some of the locomotives were behind plexiglass partitions due to safety concerns.  In looking at my images, I was not as good a photographer back then to adjust for the issues.  This image is a good example of that but I still wanted to share it because it is a cool locomotive and was one in the Youtube video I watched.

This is CNJ No 592 a Central Railroad of New Jersey "Atlantic Camelback" 4-4-2 and was built in 1901.  It was built with a larger firebox to burn a harder type of coal, anthracite, so the cab sat on the side of the boiler.  It had a water scoop so it could pick up water on the fly out of special troughs in the tracks.  It pulled passenger trains and could reach speeds of 90 mph.  It was retired in 1949 and donated to the museum in 1954.  Sorry my image has annoying flag reflections.  😏  You can also see a glimpse of the beautiful roof that had been rebuilt from the collapse.



Saturday, March 20, 2021

3/20/21

 Last Saturday I went on a bit of a safari  😉 to the Wichita Zoo. It was a rainy weekend but I lucked out and the rain held off while I was there and it actually warmed up to be fairly pleasant.  I am kind of like/hate about zoos, I don't like seeing the animals captive but they are safe from predators including man and the Wichita one seems to be striving hard to give them a good environment to live in.  They are about to open a new big cat environment this summer which should be quite nice and give them lots of space.

My image today is one of the adorable River Otters resting on some logs in it's habitat before it went for a swim.



Friday, March 19, 2021

3/19/21

 It's Friday!  I am sharing another butterfly image today.  This is a Painted Lady butterfly that I photographed on my Autumn Sedum this past summer.  There is another butterfly in the back and some more Sedum providing some nice bokeh.  Friday's Are Bokehlicious!  



Thursday, March 18, 2021

3/18/21

 This is another of the hawk images I have been able to get this winter.  I got this one one afternoon while on a walk.  It was just about to take off when I captured this shot.  This is a Red-tailed Hawk.




Wednesday, March 17, 2021

3/17/21

 It's Wildflower Wednesday!  Today is one of my favorites, an autumn flower, Asters.  This is Arrow-leaf Aster.  I actually need to add this one to my site as it is a variety I didn't even know I had a photo of till I was double checking what variety it was.  You can tell by the leaf shape and also the more rounded flower petal shape.



Tuesday, March 16, 2021

3/16/21

 This is a group of some of the flowers I received on Valentines Day in a lovely mixed bouquet.  These are one of the variety of Mums that was in it and a Carnation for a pop of color.  I shot them against a dark background in the morning sunlight.



Monday, March 15, 2021

3/15/21

 I am pleased with some of the snowflakes I was able to capture this winter.  It happened pretty late in the winter because we didn't have any snow at first and then what we were getting was pretty crappy and broken.  This image is my most amount of focus stacked images to date that produced a very good result in my opinion.  This was a 20 image focus stack.  I usually take at least this many images of a flake and actually more but some of them are too blurry to use.



Sunday, March 14, 2021

3/14/21

 It's Steamy Sunday here on the Blog!  Here's another locomotive from the B&O Museum in Baltimore Maryland.  This is Baltimore & Ohio No. 5300 Pacific type 4-6-2 named President Washington.  This locomotive was built in February of 1927.  It was first unveiled at the B&O's Centennial celebration and was one of 21 locomotives for the railroad's Royal Blue Passenger Route between New York and Washington DC and was considered one of the most handsome of these Pacific type locomotives.  The 5300 was retired in 1957 and was the only one of the "Presidential" locomotives to not be scrapped.  It looks like this locomotive is also now housed indoors.



Saturday, March 13, 2021

3/13/21

 Today starts my Spring Break and also marks one year that we have been in these crazy times at work.  We had just returned home from a trip to Indiana and things just kind of blew up and here we are one year later still dealing with it but things seem to finally be getting better.  

I thought this was a good picture for the day, a sunset on the past year in hopes that this one will continue to improve and we can get back to more normal times.  This is a sunset from a January walk.



Friday, March 12, 2021

3/12/21

 It's Friday, TGIF!  Today's image is of a Painted Lady that I photographed on one of the Marigolds I planted in my garden.  Marigolds and Zinnias are cheap flowers you can grow to attract butterflies.  They grow well from seed and butterflies seem to like them a lot.  Today's image has some lovely bokeh created by the Marigold leaves as well so sharing it today because Friday's Are Bokehlicious!




Thursday, March 11, 2021

3/11/21

 I haven't shared one of my frog buddies for a while.  I am a bit worried about them.  I know several did not make it due to the bitter cold snap.  I hope some of them did.  Anyway, this was one of my Bullfrogs that I was able to photograph this past summer while it was sitting on a rock by the water.



Wednesday, March 10, 2021

3/10/21

 It's Wildflower Wednesday on the Blog!  Today's image is one I took last September when the Goldenrod was blooming.  I believe this variety is Canada Goldenrod.  Butterflies love it.



Tuesday, March 9, 2021

3/9/21

 I was going through the archives recently and found this image that I took on one of my trips to Minnesota and never shared.  I was able to use some new processing techniques to it and came up with an image that I was really happy with of a pair of Loons.  These are elusive and lovely birds that I have been able to see a couple of times when I have visited Minnesota.



Monday, March 8, 2021

3/8/21

 Today's image is of a lovely snowflake I was able to capture last month.  This is an 18 image Focus Stack.  I loved this one as I think I managed to get it all in focus for once.  😁



Sunday, March 7, 2021

3/7/21

 It's Steamy Sunday!  Today's post digs back quite a ways into the archives.  I saw a video recently about the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore Maryland and remembered I had some images from a visit there before I started to do a Blog.  Here is the firs locomotive from there with a view of a bit of the museum itself, it is housed in the original Roundhouse.

This is an Allegany type locomotive, meaning it is a 2-6-6-6 ( 2 pilot wheels, 2 sets of 6 drivers and 6 trailing wheels).  It competes for largest US locomotive with the UP Big Boy.  This is Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad locomotive 1604.  It was built in December of 1941.  This Allegheny type is only one of 2 remaining, the other is at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn Michigan and I had shared an image of it after I visited there.  It was donated to the B&O museum in 1986.  I believe this locomotive is now housed indoors.



Saturday, March 6, 2021

3/6/21

 With the days getting longer it has been a bit more difficult to take advantage of beautiful sky photo ops of the sunsets as it is occurring during dinner time.  😀  This beautiful sunset occurred during the very first week of February.



Friday, March 5, 2021

3/5/21

 TGIF!  We made it to Friday!  My Gazebo pond had several Dragonfly visitors this past year.  This is an image of a 12 Spot sitting on a reed that I captured late this summer.  The reeds provided some nice bokeh so this image was shared today because Friday's Are Bokehlicious!



Thursday, March 4, 2021

3/4/21

 We are having quite the different week than a couple of weeks ago when it was bitterly cold, it is not hitting close to 70s F!  Crazy weather!  Anyway, it won't be long till I hopefully see sights like this once again.  This is a Giant Swallowtail Butterfly on my Lantana flowers from this past summer.



Wednesday, March 3, 2021

3/3/21

 It's Wildflower Wednesday!  This is a new one that I had not seen before or if I did, did not realize what it was.  This is Macoun's Hedge Bindweed.  It has larger flowers than Field Bindweed and is not as aggressive.  It usually blooms May to July here in Kansas.



Tuesday, March 2, 2021

3/2/21

 We have had a Carolina Wren staying around all winter.  I heard it chirping, they have quite a distinctive and loud chirp, and I watched it for a moment before I decided I liked the light and went to get my camera.  It stayed there for a while longer while I got some shots.  They are so cute the way they kind of bob up and down while they chirp too.



Monday, March 1, 2021

3/1/21

 It's March!  The year seems to be going fairly quickly, Spring will be here soon.  Just 2 weeks ago we had very cold temps and snow, seems so long ago in a way.  I captured this group in a 21 image focus stack during that bitter cold snap.




Sunday, February 28, 2021

2/28/21

 It's Steamy Sunday here on the Blog.  Playing around with the Pencil technique again, this time with the Union Pacific Big Boy locomotive.  This is an image I had captured as it made it's way across the fields just west of my town here in Kansas back in 2019.  It was very cool to be able to see this huge locomotive come through our area.



Saturday, February 27, 2021

2/27/21

 Today's image was taken on a walk in January at sunset.  There is an old windmill on some property that makes for some picturesque sunset photos.



Friday, February 26, 2021

2/26/21

  TGIF  Today's image is of the same butterfly that I posted last week.  This image shows why it got it's name Question Mark. If you click on the image and look at it larger you can see a light colored mark in about the middle of it's bottom wing and it looks like a sideways question mark. I also shared this picture today because I love the bokeh in the background, especially the bubbly bokeh in the upper middle and Friday's Are Bokehlicious here on the Blog!  



Thursday, February 25, 2021

2/25/21

 I am looking forward to summer and flowers in the garden.  That is where I got this shot of one of my Roses in bloom looking rather perfect.  This would have been a good Friday image because of the beautiful bokeh in the image but bokeh is good any day.  😄



Wednesday, February 24, 2021

2/24/21

 We were a lot warmer the last 2 days than it was the week before so spring seems not that far off.  Today's wildflower on the Blog is one of the earliest to bloom.  This is a Ground Plum and usually can be found as early as April in our area.  It is in the Legume family and it produces a fruit that you can eat.  The fruit can be about grape size and if found and eaten early, it tastes a lot like a fresh pea.  It can be eaten later as well but as it ages it becomes very woody.  I have tried them several times and enjoy them.




Tuesday, February 23, 2021

2/23/21

 Last week we finally had a really good snow with clear and beautiful flakes.  I was able to capture some like this group.  I liked how even the one at the edge of the photo turned out in focus and was rather nice looking so I left it in.  This is a 23 image focus stack but if you look closely, even that wasn't enough as I missed a bit.  Ah well.



Monday, February 22, 2021

2/22/21

 Usually when I get to see these birds they are flying away from me.  I did get a lot of shots like that as well but for some reason this day it kept staying around this location.  It was a fairly cold day and there is a stream right near where it was standing so it may have been trying to protect some food it had from some hawks that were also around.  This is a Great Blue Heron and they over winter in our part of Kansas.



Sunday, February 21, 2021

2/21/21

 It's kind of a double digit day and also it's Steamy Sunday here on the Blog!  I played around with an image of my favorite railroad, the Cumbres & Toltec and gave it the Pencil Drawing look and I think it worked OK.  This is the train heading out of Chama New Mexico passing over the Chama River by the campground we stayed at.  Lots of people go out and wave to the riders as it passes by.  The train is on it's way to Antonito Colorado on a beautiful ride.  I like to ride from the NM side best because the train works very hard to get up to Windy Point from this side and it's great to hear the "chuf chuf "of the locomotive as it pulls up the grade. 



Saturday, February 20, 2021

2/20/21

 Well, hopefully this past week's weather is done for a while.  It was, to say the least, a bit brisk.  Some of the coldest temps in our area in quite some time.  I was awake to see -16 F actual on this past Tuesday but it was most likely colder earlier. Wondering how many plants I will have to replace this year.  Sigh.  Anyway, my photo for today is of a sunset taken on a much warmer evening walk.