Monday, May 30, 2011

Bugs & Macro ~ Oh My

(c) Misty DawnS

It was a rough week, and my mood was low. However, Saturday morning, I went back to my pond and got my first photograph of a dragonfly for the year (no, this isn't it... this is a damselfly). As you know, I'm a fan of bugs and photographing them, so I was quite excited. I'm really loving my Hoya close-up filters for my lens. They allow me to really explore one of my favorite types of photography.

Yesterday and today though, it has been very windy. Wind and macro photography doesn't mix. Neither does wind and fishing, unfortunately. So, I've been working on a new site my friend Roni brought to my attention. This site has me very excited as it combines the social aspect of Flickr, sales ability of sales sites, and provides portfolio and blog opportunity too! Yes, I'm very excited about it!

Hubs has also been busy working on the living room remodel. He's been putting up trim and wainscoting. Then, we need to decide if we're going with pergo flooring or carpet. I sure do like hardwood floors, but we haven't made a decision yet.

After some recent events, wherein I witnessed some severe injustices to some of the hardest working and most dedicated people I know, I am really struggling. Getting my 'break', which I've been praying for, doesn't seem realistic. So, I've turned to praying I find a realistic solution, even though the opportunities here are slim. It will all work out though... it always does. ;-)

Friday, May 27, 2011

13-Year Cicada ~ Camera-Critters #164

Quoted from the Missouri Department of Conservation:

"It says by early May, the 13-year cicadas will emerge from hibernation much earlier than their "dog-day" cicada counterparts that typically arrive in late summer.

The department says the periodical cicadas spend 13 years in the ground feeding on sap from tree roots before emerging en masse.

The 13-year cicada is much smaller, but noticeably louder. They'll gather in trees over a single acre chanting their mating calls.

They have dark bodies and reddish eyes."

Hmmm, that sounds pretty cool.
Red eyes, huh?
Wonder if they'll really show up, and
what they'll look like...
(c) Misty DawnS

"The last time the Show-Me State saw the 13-year cicadas was in 1998 -- a particularly large brood.

This go-round, they're expected to cover most of the state. The department says the Bootheel and parts of northwest Missouri will escape them.

The noise will likely be gone by June."

haven't really heard any noise, and it's almost June, BUT
these red eyes??? Ya think??? hehehehe
(c) Misty DawnS

These photos were taken of a visitor who was hanging out on the side of the house, next to my front door. I had gone out to get the mail, and on my way back, I saw this visitor and ran for the camera. Thank you for the photo shoot, my new friend! Hmmmm, they only come around every 13 years... I guess they don't concern themselves with term life insurance then! The 13-year Cicada is part of the genus called Magicicada. Isn't that cool? Get it? "Magic" Cicada... ok, maybe I need more sleep, but I think that is totally cool! They sure are awesome... well, to a bug-lover like me, anyway! I honestly haven't heard the cicadas (of any sort) yet this year, so I consider myself very lucky to get some photos before these critters decide to leave again for another 13 years!!! I'm just in love with those eyes, and this critters was a perfect and willing model! So much fun! (Yes, I know I have issues, and I don't care. So there.)

*** To join in this fun meme, which is all about critters, click on the badge. ***

Monday, May 23, 2011

Mellow Yellow

My heart goes out to the people of Joplin, Missouri. I don't have words for what a horrific tragedy this is. It's absolutely heartbreaking.

(c) Misty DawnS

Sunday, May 22, 2011

My Mind is a Mess

***Insert horror movie music...***

The Grasses Have Eyes!
(c) Misty DawnS

Straight Out of the Camera (except the crop, of course)

We had storms last night. Storms with tornadoes were heading our direction, and Hubs was chatting on Facebook about how he actually enjoys storms. Yeah, that's great, Honey. You weren't in the tornado with me two years ago. The tornado that, two years later, still has debris strewn in the tree tops. Anyway... needless to say, I find myself not 'enjoying' storms all that much anymore.

So, after my friends talked me through the worst of it, I went to bed and occupied my mind with any and every random thought I could come up with, and it went a little something like this -

Wow, the Cleveland Indians sure are doing great this year.
I need to remember to bring my summer clothes up from the basement.
When Hubs closed off that closet, there were things in there, and we can't get to it now.
I think all my jewelry making supplies are in that closet.
Hmmm, not like I have time to do my crafts anymore anyway.
I hope tomorrow is nice so I can go fishing.
Wonder what kind of damselfly that was I photographed today.
Wish I had more time to blog.
I think it's time to redesign my blog.
But... How?
In the life of Maggie May - thunder, bark, thunder, bark... repeat
Can't wait to start my The Beauty of Different book - sure is tough trying to hold out until the plane ride to read it.
I need to add a few things to my life list and get it published on the blog.
Maybe others will be inspired to write and publish theirs.
It's too bad that last weekend's storms destroyed all the broccoli in the garden.
I'm sure these storms are doing a number on the garden.
Shhh don't think about storms, Dummy!
I wonder how disastrous the software upgrade is gonna be at work.
*sigh* I wish I could just work from home *sigh*
Gotta put Frontline on Tag and Maggie tomorrow.
I think it would be so cool to have an herb garden. That's one of the things on my life list.
Hmmm, what else should I add to my list???
My back itches.
I think I got a bug bite.

Yes... my mind is one big rambling mess...

Pink Perfection

(c) Misty DawnS

Friday, May 20, 2011

Goose Gossip ~ Camera-Critters #163

I SAID he never listens to me.
He just honks, honks, honks nonsense all the time.

(c) Misty DawnS

These geese were having a gossip session at my pond. I took several photographs of them, and they didn't seem to mind that I was standing there photographing them. I think they're pretty used to me by now. Besides, it's MY pond they are frequenting. No, I didn't get a model release from any of them. I was afraid that if they knew I was posting them on the famous Camera-Critters meme, they would stress about finding Weight loss pills that work fast. So, just don't tell them, O.K.? I certainly don't need to deal with vain geese at my pond! Next thing ya know the muskrats will be getting braces and pedicures!

*** To join in this fun meme, which is all about critters, click on the badge.***
***See ya there! ***

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Blastin' Bustin' Beauty

(c) Misty DawnS

The other day, my secretary came back from her lunch hour about 10 minutes early. She came bursting into my office, looked at me, and demanded, "Get your camera and come with me right now and don't argue." I just love when she's demanding like that. hehe So, I, of course, obliged by grabbing my camera and following. She took me outside and demanded that I take photos of the flowers in the flower garden. Gee, what a terrible demand. hehe So, I took photos while she pointed out the next flowers she thought I should photograph.

Now, we have rain in the forecast starting today and continuing for the next WEEK! Ugh! I think I might need some Zamberlan Steep boots to trudge through the mud! Oh well, hopefully the rain will cause even more flowers to bloom. :-)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

It's the Bee's Wings, Not the Bee's Knees

(c) Misty DawnS

Mustard Macro

(c) Misty DawnS

The day after my macro filters were delivered, I was provided with perfect opportunities to try them out. We had rain the night before, so the grasses and the flowers were wearing their diamonds and pearls of water drops.

Now, I'm very thankful that I took that day off work to enjoy my new toys, because I haven't had much macro opportunities since then. This entire weekend has been nothing but rain... rain.. and more rain. Oh well, I can't complain, because we have had several very nice weekends lately. Besides, the rain will make my wildflowers grow :-)

There's a little garden area at work which has lots of very beautiful flowers, like the Dogwood in my Mother's Day post. It's a beautiful place for the students to gather to study, discuss school equipment, or just hang out. Since the weather is supposed to clear up and be nice during the week, I think I might spend a couple of my breaks doing macro flowers photos.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Dogs Have Jobs Too

Those of you who know me know that my dogs mean the world to me. Those of you who don't know me could probably figure that out from the title of my blog. ;-)

I love dogs. I've never met a dog I didn't like. While I love all dogs, I happen to be addicted to Border Collies. Hence, we have rescued three Border Collies, each with a unique personality, and each owning a piece of my heart.

Border Collies are one of the most intelligent breed of dogs, and one thing that is important to Border Collies is having a job. It is important to this breed to feel that they are doing their "job". Each of my three kids has decided what his/her important job is, and it didn't take them long to train US on what we needed to know. ;-) This is where specific products like those made by Ruff Wear come into play.

I'll explain. We'll go from oldest to youngest...

First, there's my Molly. Her life revolves around food, Mommy (that's me - hehe), and ball. Period. Her "job", in her mind is to catch and bring me the ball. When there's a ball involved, Molly becomes focused, intent, and determined. Therefore, we always need to have a ball on hand.

Then, there's Tag. Tag's life is all about Dad, farm equipment, Dad, farming, working with Dad, and pleasing Dad. Yes, Tag lives for Hubs. Tag also lives to work on the farm. He will push himself to the limit if it means he can be out there working with Hubs on the farm. Therefore, Hubs need to pay attention that Tag doesn't push too hard. In the summer months, Hubs and Tag both have to stay hydrated, so plenty of water needs to be available.

Finally we have our Maggie May. Maggie used to think her job was to chew and destroy everything. Now, Maggie thinks it's her job to try to attack the thunder when it storms. hehe Actually, I don't know that Maggie has decided what her actual job is yet, but I'm sure it involves her speed and cunning intelligence.

Oh... we can't forget Dad's wolfdog, Matouk. Toukie has many jobs and one of them is carrying his pack. He has a pack similar to an Action Pack, which he wears on walks on the trails. He has carried herbs, rocks, trash, and even our lunch in his pack. He's really great with his pack, and it's very useful.

Luckily, we can find Ruff Wear Products to suit all of our dogs and all of our situations. Besides, we owe it to them to be sure they have what they need. They are, after all, doing their job. ;-)

Friday, May 13, 2011

Playing Deer Games ~ Camera-Critters #162

When I was young, I always loved the game Hide N Seek. I was a good hider, and I was little. So, I could squeeze myself into some very small secret places.

I also loved the magazines that had the pictures with random objects hidden in the picture and you had to find them. I think it was called Hidden Objects, or something like that.

Well, last week, I, with the help of a very special critter friend combined both fun activities.

I don't think she sees me.
This leaf in front of my face really disguises me.
(c) Misty DawnS

I wish I were more slender.
If only I hadn't eaten that extra pear off her pear tree.
(c) Misty DawnS

Ummm, I think I better find a better place, cuz
I think she sees me.
(c) Misty DawnS

Uhhhhh, change of plans, Lady...
(c) Misty DawnS

Let's play Tag instead, and You're IT!!!
(c) Misty DawnS

*** To join in this fun meme, which is all about critters, click on the badge. ***

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Disco Drop

Disco Drop, originally uploaded by Misty DawnS.

Just sharing some macro-filter-magic. :-)

Sunday, May 8, 2011

If Wishes Were Raindrops

(c) Misty DawnS

I knew the new macro filters I had ordered were going to be delivered Thursday. I had checked Friday's weather forecast, and it promised to be a beautiful day. So, I himmed, and I hawed, and I himhawed, and I finally decided that I needed a "Me Day". So, I told my boss I wanted the day off.

Let me tell you, I don't regret it one bit. It was a fantastic day, and I desperately needed it. In fact... may I have tomorrow off too? Oh wait, you don't have the authority to approve that... bummer.

It's funny how a little bit of time to yourself can turn your thoughts around. I really needed that ME time. If you're struggling with feeling overwhelmed, depressed, alone and/or frustrated, I strongly suggest taking some time for you... doing what it is you love best or a combination of several of the things you enjoy most... and don't allow yourself to feel guilty. There is no need to feel guilty, because taking care of your emotional health is a necessity

That's it.  Hope you had a wonderful weekend and a fantastic Mother's Day.

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day, originally uploaded by Misty DawnS.

For all the mothers, grandmothers, aunts, moms-of-furkids, step-mothers, and friends.

Happy Mother's Day! May your day be beautiful and special. May you feel the appreciation, love, and admiration you so deserve. May you truly feel a return of the love you have given. May this be YOUR day.

The Canary List Book Review

"The Canary List", by Sigmund Brouwer is a supernatural type suspense, which brings the Catholic church into the mix. Bet you weren't expecting me to say that!

While struggling with the events of his past, a teacher finds himself thrown into a battle between good and evil, when one of his students seeks help from him. As a result of Jaime coming to him for help, Crockett Grey's life spirals out of control with a fire, jail, abuse, kidnapping, demons, and more.

While, at a couple points in the book, I got a bit confused about which side some of the characters were on, the story moved along at a pace, which held my interest. I do wish there could have been some more 'depth' to some of the characters and their relationships. Just when I would start to feel something for one of the characters (which is important for me when reading a book), the description or the interaction would be cut short and the story would jump to somewhere else.

The end of the story also left me a bit miffed. It was kind of like, "O.K. That's it then, I guess." I guess I was looking for a little bit more closure or follow-up, but I already admitted that I'm a sucker for feeling for a character. So, I guess I wanted to know what was next.

This was the first book I've ever read by this author, and while I didn't immediately order another of his books, I would read another book by him if given the chance.

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Camera-Critters #161

I crossed two things off my life-list within 24 hours. A life-list is also known as a "bucket list". It's a list of all the things you'd like to do before you're gone. Anyway, I crossed two things off within 24 hours and I was super excited about it. The first thing was seeing and photographing a double rainbow, which I did Thursday evening. It wasn't a "perfect" double rainbow, but it was, in fact, a double rainbow, and I did, in fact, photograph it. Yay Me!

The second thing came Friday morning when I had taken the day off work for a "Misty Day", and I went out to try out my brand new macro filters I had purchased. Let me just say that the macro filters are AWESOME. I was beyond giddy while using them, and I can foresee my being giddy for a very long time while using these filters.

Anyway, while I was taking macro photos of water drops clinging to the grass, I caught something out of the corner of my eye. When I realized what was running past me, I frantically started unscrewing the macro filter off my lens so I could get a photograph and cross another thing off my list, because...

I finally photographed a coyote in the wild
(c) Misty DawnS

These photographs are not good photographs,
but that's a result of the fact that I was out doing another type of photography
and this caught me completely by surprise.
Besides, it was like he was wearing magic Reebok shoes, cuz I unscrewed that filter
as fast I possibly could, but he was running like lightning!
However, I DID photograph a coyote! Even if they aren't great pics.
(c) Misty DawnS

Monday, May 2, 2011

I Just Want To Fish Already!

Golden Glory, originally uploaded by Misty DawnS.

I really, really wanted to go fishing this weekend. That's when I relax, think, meditate... relax (it deserves to be said twice). So, my goal for this weekend, was to go fishing at some point in between doing all the other 'have-to-stuff'(like researching what epistane is).

Friday, it had been a stressful day, and I just wanted to get home, and Go.Fishing. However, my brake caliper stuck, and I had to pull my smoking vehicle into someone's driveway and wait for Hubs to come with the trailer to take me home. By then, it was late, I still had virtual assistance work to do, and we were experiencing 30 mph winds. So, no fishing.

Saturday, I eagerly woke, opened Camera-Critters, and did some of the have-to stuff. I then grabbed my camera, the worms, my pole, and a bucket and headed out the door. And, I was greeted by 30 mph winds AGAIN. ugh So, I took the above photograph on my pouty trip back from the pond where I was unable, yet again, to go fishing.

Sunday, Hubs had me run him down the road to the farm to get a tractor. When we got there, I practically shoved him out the door, so I could go back and go fishing. However, he informed me he needed my help for "a little while". ugh Once we got back home, and I was anticipating the first cast, Hubs asked if I'd help him spread some grass seed. Then my in-laws pulled in to plant some potatoes in the garden and help Hubs work on the tractor. So, I helped and visited. Later, the tractor started, my in-laws went home, and it took me about 3 seconds flat to be back at the pond, holding a fishing pole, and releasing a long-overdue sigh.

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