November 25, 2017

Black and White Challenge

Don't know if any of you have seen the B&W Photo Challenge on Facebook in the last month, the challenge is to post a B&W each day for 7 days and then to challenge another FaceBookie to do the same.

A friend posted some incredible photos and then challenged me. I sweated it out for a day, thinking I would never be able to post anything as beautiful as I had seen on some of the pages. Then I thought, what the heck. It's not a contest, I have to keep reminding myself that I am not about competition but collaboration! Though, that I have to keep repeating that mantra tells me there is probably a pretty hardy competition bone somewhere in my body, so I am just going to "fake it until I make it!"

I thought I would share the photos I posted.

(See, the way this works is: You tell me that my pictures are the best! Using the best (and most) superlatives you know. Then I will be all "shucks, they're just some old B&W's I had hanging around".)

Actually, I am pretty happy with the way a couple of them turned out, so I am challenging myself to doing more black and white photography this year. Still, to be quite honest, Ken, Frank, the other Frank and Fran kicked my butt. I discovered their secret for sharp, clear images:
1. Don't Drink Coffee Before A Shoot
2. If You Drank Coffee, Use A Tripod

My thoughts on the advice:
1. If I Haven't Had Coffee, I Wouldn't Be On A Photo Shoot.
2. Tripods Are Cumbersome and Pretentious
(and I look like a fool when one of the legs collapses and trips me up!)

Black and White Challenge 2017

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona

First image is the back side of Mt. Lassen, near sunset.  Great spot just passed Devastated Area Trail.

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona
 Front side of Mt. Lassen from Broke Off Meadow. Great place for a picnic and kicking back with a good book.

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona
The BLM land behind my folks home. They live on the Sacramento River and this area is about a quarter mile from them.  Incredible spot for Osprey, Great Blue Herons, Cranes and big fat Hawks. Even saw a dozen whooping cranes hanging out here a couple of years ago.

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona
Franks' tree in Millville Plains.  Most photographed tree in Shasta County!

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona
Trees! Some of my best friends! Do you ever sit in a cluster of trees and look up into the canopy? Love it!

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona
 West of Willows in the Spring. Wild flowers were everywhere. Beautiful Day for a drive.\

Photo Copyright  by Toni Tona
For fun, took a little fellow out to sit in the mushrooms. The clusters of 'shrooms in my yard are so amazing at times.

Anyone want to take up the challenge. Post a B & W photo for 7 days? 

November 22, 2017

Still Missing In Action

Sorry everyone for my somewhat extended absence; not from my blog but from visiting and commenting on your wonderful sites. I miss you all.

My brother told me that shoulder surgery was the most painful pain and he is so right. It hurts to sit up at the computer and type. I still can't lift more than two pounds...ever seen a two pound turkey? Me, neither.

A couple of family emergencies have caused a wee bit of havoc. Husband knew that we had a pulley for my physical therapy at home.  Rather than spend the $12 to buy a new one, he completely emptied the coat closet into the living room. We found it but all I can say is Oh My God!  Explosion! I desperately want to purchase a role of police crime-scene tape in the entry!

In defense of Frank, he has been a godsend. I actually threatened him about putting any of the 6000 pounds of stuff back into the closet. About 5980 pounds is getting tossed...Note to my beloved children: The three boxes of cassettes from the eighties and nineties are out of here if they are not claimed by December 31, yes, even Doctor Demento!

Any way, friends, range of motion is coming back good, taking my six ginormous Collagen pills every single day but throbbing pain has me grounded.

I do have some awesomely good news.

Our granddaughter, Three, performed for the Veteran's Day Commemoration at the Reagan Presidential Library. We drove down to attend. Incredibly brilliant day, so proud of her and her high school band. The next day, her band attended two band tournaments and were outstanding. Made enough points to join in the Regionals! Go Highlanders!

On the way home from Southern California, we stopped at the Sacramento Airport and picked up granddaughter Two. She flew in from Massachusetts. Don't know if she really missed up or was just missing the warmer weather.  She is marvelous and so much fun.

Our two local granddaughters, Four and Six, have come to visit, sleepovers, song fests and games.  We even had our great-granddaughter one night for sleep over.

Six and Two knew the words to every single Disney song from every animated cartoon since Pinocchio!
More good news: Granddaughter Four's high school just won their first championship game since 1988. Son-in-law, Coach Brian, has this incredible knack for turning football teams around. This year, the university he is coaching at, (his first year there) his team won the first championship game in 138 years, maybe 136! Division 1 schools, this man is worth his weight in gold!

Bad news, my grandson had an accident on his motocross bike. He ripped up his knee down to the bone. Pretty ugly. Not enough skin left over to suture it, so he has some elastic type stitches just to hold remaining skin in place and encourage growth to cover wound. Guess who's getting those shin guard thingies for Christmas?  Three weeks off of work!

Time for exercises. Ready? One...Two...Three...Wince!

November 06, 2017

Be Aware

Another horrendous shooting in the U.S.

Stay alert.
When my dad was teaching me to drive, he made it imperative that I know what was happening one block ahead and one block behind. He would quiz me often.

"Where is the yellow station wagon?" he'd ask. I'd better know that it just moved into the left lane.

He insisted that I knew the direction of the tires of the cars parked along the roadway; making me alert to someone suddenly pulling out.  Be aware of your surroundings.

My granddaughters and son are accomplished Kung Fu students. One of the important things they learned: Be aware of your surroundings.

Great article. Print and read often. Practice, practice, practice!