Week Ended On A Good Note

The last couple days proved to be just what the Dr ordered. I went shopping with a girlfriend yesterday had a wonderful lunch together and I found a few wonderful sales on some things I needed.

Today is another beautiful snow day, I have the easy listening music drifting through the air at a very low volume, and I picked up my pencils for a couple hours. Now I need to concentrate on getting the place all ready for the weekend.

This is where I stopped today.

I’ve concentrated a bit more on the background and have also started to establish some color on the bottle.

This week has ended on a very good note and now I’m looking forward to the weekend with Hubby.

Hello Photoshop – Welcome Inspiration

Inspiration came when I was least expecting. I’ve been thinking about all the fun I used to have in my Photoshop class, way back when. One thing led to another and I grabbed up my camera taking simple shots of items around the house. I downloaded the photo’s and jumped in and got so much more than I ever dreamed.

I not only had fun creating different looks with these simple items but a desire to draw completely washed over me.

Here’s what I started sketching today.

The groundwork for the background is in place and the objects are pretty much sketched.

Below are some samples where my inspiration to draw came from (all thanks to Photoshop).

Distorted View

Our days are getting busier (with decisions to make) as our home is starting to go up. Well, we’re hoping it goes up as the crew has not been able to do much if anything on our home the last few weeks due to our very cold weather. This is going to be another busy week and we have plans to meet again with the builder Saturday.

In my free time my artistic adrenalin has turned to distorting photography. I do have plans in the very near future (hopefully this week) to begin some more drawing. Here’s a few samples of what I’ve been up to.

To see the detail of the last two pictures will be a lot better to click on them.

This is a sunrise in our backyard that’s been taken to extremes. I love the cast of the blue, yellow and orange shadows on the snow.

Here we sharpened the outlines, gave it a soft focus and punched the background with a bit of film grain. This picture was taken from one of our road trips last year.

This bridge was taken from a road trip early last fall. I played so much with this and loved the painterly outcome.

That’s all for now.

A Dose Of Drama

Adding a dose of drama to my day was just what I needed. I’ve been fooling around with photography this morning creating a bit of drama. There’s something about taking a photo and making some minor adjustments to add character to an otherwise plain photo.

So I started off by snapping several shots of a few decorative items that rest on our coffee table.

I must have moved the camera (not what I was trying to do) and the reflections took a leap. I decided “why not” go with the flow and make the best of it. To add the drama, I needed to punch up the highlights and adjust the color temperature. I think that definitely kicked it up a notch.

Color, I LOVE color so here we brought some life to ordinary objects.

For a mild dose of drama I added lots of grain for this interesting effect.

Using the same objects we added lots of saturation with a nice soft focus to achieve a dramatic look.

Now I need to look around to see what other kinds of things we have laying around as I enjoyed tampering with drama today.

On another note regarding my pictures… Hubby doesn’t understand why I don’t hold the camera straight. Perhaps you’re wondering the same thing. I guess it’s just my messed up way of taking some shots and I like the crooked view from time to time. I don’t really have an answer other than I like it like that and his reply “if you like it, then I like it”.

From The Passenger Seat

I find taking pictures to be so much fun. There are times that I’m so in the mood to enjoy the moment (without the camera) and other times I can’t enjoy the moment unless I’m snapping a bazillion shots of whatever.

Our last road trip south (for Christmas) was one of those moments where I plain and simple couldn’t sit still without my camera. Hubby and I were enjoying wonderful conversation and the scenery was marvelous. So here’s how I viewed things from the passenger seat.

I wasn’t able to capture just how beautiful the Ice was but here’s a sample of what I was able to get while clipping down the highway at rapid speeds. This was taken out my side window.

Another little sample

A little further south

The pretty blue sky was filled with lots of travelers too and the contrails deserve a little attention too.

By this time we were out of the snow, it was late afternoon off the major highway enjoying the pretty country side. I’m glad the trees didn’t stop me from taking this picture because I think they add great character.

My special chauffeur

So get this… I was so involved in taking pictures that I didn’t capture what I thought I was taking in my side mirror. It must have had to do with where the light was coming from because it took a reflection of me instead of what I was expecting to take out my side mirror.

While driving the old country roads I spied this bright red tractor. I had to be quick with the camera or I would have missed the moment. I’m quite smitten with this setting from the hay in the foreground to that little winding path up the hill.

And last but not least is this car. This was the most interesting car we followed in a quaint little town that evening. Now that we have this picture, we won’t forget it.

And this wraps up just a few of my favorite pictures along life’s way.

Blessings – From My Viewpoint

The dawning of a new day is a joy during these chilly winter months. It was 3 degrees this morning but a very beautiful day no less. The sun is shining, the sky is blue and the ground is covered with the prettiest snow. I’m blessed knowing that all is well and that every perfect gift cometh from above.

The dawning of our day

Our night skies are also something I enjoy so much. I took this picture a few evenings ago. I love that we can enjoy these pretty views out the back of our apartment without having to step foot outside.

While visiting with mom on the phone (yesterday), she said that she was sorry to report the gorgeous balmy weather they were having down south. While on the phone with her I saw three deer pass by, I was watching the most gorgeous plump snowflakes fall on the 8 or so inches we already have and I reported. “Mom, I’ve never lived in a place this beautiful in my life”! I have embraced the beauty of winter more than I ever thought I would and I’m definitely am getting used to it!

I think the beauty of what makes the world go round is the fact that there are enough flavors for everyone’s taste. May we enjoy what is given, see the beauty from right were we are and never forget Who is in charge of our daily dose of blessings.

Post Office Run

A trip to the post office proves to be fun. Of course a trip to the post office is always fun as I’m completely mesmerized in the historic district. Our post office is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the interior is surrounded with beautiful murals.

But first I need to get there, yes, there’s work to be done, the car is already warming and here’s a little snippet of what I got to play in.

I pass by this building on my way to the post office and those red doors always speak to me. I LOVE them! I want to paint our front door red and each time I see these I wonder if I’ll be that bold. Time will tell.

I love the architecture of this place but it’s the tippy top I LOVE most!

This beautiful Church stirs up a child like imagination. I was a dreamer when I was a little girl and I can only imagine the imagination I would have had at this place.

When I look at that door I wonder… Does it creak and what would it be like to pass under that arch? It was so nice to just pause and take a moment …

Here’s a church with a fresh splash of paint – I like it.

I finally arrived at the Post Office (yesterday). It was the day I made sure to have my camera. After I started taking numerous pictures and really giving lots of attention to the art, the post master took note. He asked “Do you know the history of our PO and those paintings”? “No”, I replied. Then is when I learned the details. Those paintings are registered with the Smithsonian. I learned that photographers come from all over to take these pictures and here I was just taking the beautiful art for granted. May I continue to open my eyes more and enjoy these blessings along the way.

Now hubby says that I need to go back with a ladder so that I can be high enough to take those pictures head on! Can you see me now?

My Guy

My hubby changes caps depending on what’s hurled at him. Ever since he was a child there was no such thing as a broken toy. From the time he was little he loved taking his toys apart to “fix” them if they broke or to tinker with them because it was in his genes. He seems to be known wherever we live as the fix it guy as we have neighbors come to him with broken electronics or whatever. This weekend was the weekend to fix his daughters laptop.

His daughter (she’s off to college) just hurled her computer at him as her laptop lid broke (we won’t talk about how that happened). The reason he had her hurl it his way is simple. When she took it in to the Apple store they gave her a quote of $800 to fix it! (GASP) And we were thinking we might just have to get her a new computer since that one is going on 4 years and he didn’t want to put that kind of change into an older computer. But he wanted her to send it to him first so that he could have a look.

So in he started on that little project last week and the new part (just an $8 dollar part + shipping) arrived before the weekend. Over the weekend he was able to replace the broken part and put it all back together seamlessly.

I think the genius part is how he took pictures of each section as he took it apart. and I would print them out full page. He would then proceed to tape each little screw to the picture from where it came from. There were quite a few pictures taken and by the time he had it taken apart, he had quite the little stack of pictures and screws.

An example of a couple pictures to give an idea of what the guts of her lap top look like.

He really had to take that baby apart to get to the injury.

Here’s a picture of her computer with more than half of it put back together.

“He’s the MAN” for being able to fix her computer and I love it that he can do anything. Of course he tells me I’m biased but I believe it to be true. After he finished putting the last screw back in, that baby fired up on command! I don’t have a picture of it but her lap top is already in the mail being shipped back to her today! He never ceases to amaze me but it’s his patience and calm way with things that make me head over heals with my guy…

Winter Wonder

Today was a positively gorgeous snow day as the flakes gently fell to the ground. Our visitors made their daily trek through the backyard and I enjoyed their company.

She is just too cute coming up into the yard.

Best Buds

They’re so beautiful

I think she’s waiting up for her baby that’s lagging behind.

Love that snow on her back – That’s called automatic cooling

One last glance before she’s off – See you tomorrow deer friend!

Hooked On Fridays

Good day and welcome to Hooked On Houses “Hooked On Friday’s” Party! Today’s party is all about something home related that we’re hooked on.

I’m so “hooked on color” these days that I can hardly think straight!  We’re building a home as many of you already know and hubby has completely given me the rains and turned me loose on color!  With that, I’ve thrown caution to the wind and could care less about the 2009 color trends.

So here you can find me in our master bathroom.Although the pictures are in 3d, they give an idea of the color scheme.

Here is the floor plan of the bathroom to get you oriented with what is what.The closet is immediately to the right as you walk into the bathroom, the linen closet is on the left side of the room next to the vanity.The green wall/line represents an outside wall and the yellow wall/line represents an interior wall.And I think the rest pretty much explains itself.

The floor plan as you enter from the bedroom

A look into the bathroom from the entrance of the bedroom

I’m leaning towards a nice Chocolate color on the walls with dark cabinets and light counters with light flooring.I like the way the lighter counters with some deep chocolate lines compliment the walls and the lighter tile on the floor offers a nice pedestal.But I think the crowning stroke will be the white trim work with crisp white towels.

A view looking to the right with our closet on the far right

To the left side of the room

And then into the back of the water closet

Don’t forget to go visit Julia over at Hooked On Houses, you won’t want to miss the party or perhaps you too would like to join in!  And do check back with her throughout the day for more entries!

One Step Forward And Two Steps Back

Through the course of time, I’ve tried to pick up on “the little things” along the way. I was taught that one step forward and two steps back was no way to get anywhere anytime soon. But with all the commotion and hubbub of life, I find that going in reverse is one way to relax and enjoy the journey.

  • I’m learning to just STOP and back up because it’s the little things in life along the way that are so important.
I took some time to edit this photo that I took a couple days ago. This little thing along the way was worth the time.

  • I like moving in reverse to get a second glance. I find the second glance a great opportunity to be still and cherish the moment.
I took this picture a little further and loved the outcome

  • To back up and seize the moment has to make some amazing memories for my rocking chair years.

This Christmas is a very good example. We made our plans to spend Christmas with family and ended up staying two days longer than planned. We spent more time with loved ones, made many more great memories and we wouldn’t change that for a min. In order to do that we had to take a couple steps back and quite frankly it was worth it all.

This year I’m going to aim for my goals and try to back up as much as possible. It’s the times I’m in reverse that I remember most.

Deer Pets Or Meat – Or A Little Of Both

I have such a soft spot in my heart for the deer (my backyard pets) as I feed them occasionally and give them lots of my undivided attention. Each time I hear a hunting story, I think of this…

The sweet little thing was just laying out there chilling in my back yard yesterday afternoon.

I went out for a photo shoot and here she is posing after I interrupted her little rest.

Looking at me

Looking away

Something has her attention

Sure enough, her sweet friend

After all that I must say that I had my first taste of deer meat while visiting my family for Christmas. My nephew went hunting with his uncle and they came home with a deer! My brother commenced to put that meat on to cook that morning and by late evening that meat was so tender and liked to melt in my mouth good! It reminded me of roast beef and I could definitely go back for more! I just have to stop thinking about this…

Because they melt my heart.

Salt And Pepper

I’m not one to pay full price on certain things. So yesterday while I was out making my weekly grocery run, I couldn’t help but check out the after Christmas sales. I like waiting ‘til after the 1st on Christmas items because I like hitting the 75% off sales.

That is when I spied this darling little salt and pepper shaker set.

This little number stopped me right in my tracks while I carefully swooned over each piece.

The stocking so bright

O Christmas Tree

They look so good together

All together now – and this little want set only set me back 2 bucks and change.

After I brought them home I positioned them under the poinsettia plant for a photo shoot. It was such a sad day to wrap them up and put them away for next year but I’m here to announce that Christmas IS coming!

Special Dishes

On a sentimental note, mom gave me a couple dishes. They’re not just your average dish either, they’re a couple special dishes that my grandma used to use and to me they’re priceless.

They found a new home sitting atop the microwave. I love the way the lighting under the cabinets illuminates these bowls clarifying the detail. And now I can’t imagine putting these any other place.

I took a few more pictures of the poinsettia. They seemed too exposed the other day so I’m toying with the other setting options.

I have not made any New Year resolutions per se. But I will say that I’m working on the goals I set for myself throughout the year. I try not to wait ‘til New Years to make resolutions rather I would like to continue making adjustments along the way. Each New Year is a new leaf, a fresh start, a point of reference that I like to build on. And I’m looking ahead to this New Year with Hope.

Playing With My New Toy

I’m trying to get used to my new camera that hubby got me for Christmas. I’m finding such fun stuff in the manual and really looking forward to giving it a whirl this New Year!

As a matter of fact, I started in on this pretty poinsettia that our neighbor just gave us.

Hubby and I have had such an enjoyable Holiday Season and I hope you and your family have too.