Thursday, February 28, 2013

It was a sad day yesterday . . .

I've felt a little overwhelmed and a lot behind these days,
so after my bible study, rather than go to my metals class I decided to go back to the nursery.
Not the commercial one, but back to Maas, and acres of paradise where I can just get lost in thought, or rather no thought at all, just nature.

We have been having some pretty mighty wind these days, which makes it pretty difficult to photograph flowers, but I tried, until frustration got the better of me. So I thought I would go see if my little green frog friends were still around, and yes they were. But, I got sidetracked by something else, that was also green.

Meet my little green friend, Akecheta, which means "fighter" in Sioux....

I first spotted him, yes it is a male, sunning himself just a few feet from me on the white gravel rocks on the ground. So, I got down on the ground, and let me tell ya those rocks do not feel good on ones knees, especially without much cartilage left in them. I really wanted a ground perspective of him sunning himself. I was pretty proud of myself and my stealth mode as he stayed, but unfortunately my knees couldn't take it and I had to get up (my really bad knee is swollen today, I never learn). But something just didn't seem right, and as an adult green anole he was just a little too open to letting me get that close. There was a stick nearby, so I used that, not that I'm afraid of picking him up of course, but it was just easier and I coaxed him up on to it. Yep, I knew something was wrong at that moment. A healthy adult male would have had nothing to do with that stick, and I then was able to transfer him to my hand.

Now that is the face of a lizard who doesn't feel well . . . he just wanted to close his eyes and rest.

So I walked around, probably for the next hour, with him in one hand and my camera in the other, trying to takes pictures of things that moved, tricky I tell ya!

And even not feeling well, he still seemed aware of his surroundings every now and then. They will turn brown when stressed, but also if another male is in the area in which they will also raise the ridge on their back and get a dark black spot behind their eyes. But...I noticed one spot that didn't turn brown, and do you notice the lumps? Hmmm...I didn't have a good feeling about this.

He eventually turned back to green again and back to resting.

I continued to walk around with this lizard on my hand...not one person noticed? I came across the bottlebrush tree, and there are bees everywhere! Note to self, don't wear a shirt with flowers next to this tree...

Check out his foot, and those scales, so amazing

I just couldn't leave him there not feeling well and all, and I have been known to make a few lizards feel better. The nursery just happened to have a small box with a lid so I could transport him safely in the car. When I got home I took him out so he could continue to warm himself in the warmth of my hands and the sun. But it was getting really windy, and the temp was falling and he was, yes I brought him into the house. He was on my forearm, with his back legs completely outstretched (not normal) as I positioned my arm under a spot light from the overhead light fixture for more warmth. What I was about to witness next was heartbreaking . . .and...well, horrifying!! (No worries, I have spared you all any photographs showing what I'm about to tell you, and only give enough information to understand what happened next, but the thought is've been warned)

Remember that strange spot I mentioned earlier? Every now and again I thought I could see something...moving? By this time, he was taking really shallow breaths, sometimes he would take a big one and then not again for what seemed like a long time. And sometimes he would flinch, and I felt helpless. Then the small  movement became very noticeable, and the one lump became many somethings moving around and I couldn't believe my eyes...and not sure how else to say this (and sparing all the gross details) but to say they were trying to make their way out. I was beside myself, in tears, and he was clearly suffering. So I called the animal ER hospital to find out if there was a humane way I could end his suffering...they said I could bring him in and they would euthanize him for free. And for that, I was so grateful!!

When I got home, I did some research and found that the Sarcophagid fly uses, (for some reason) mostly males, as a host. And as wondrous as nature is, it's also very strange and quite mind boggling. I think I learned more than I wanted to know.

The theme for Photo Art Friday is vintage. I wasn't really sure what I wanted to share for that today, until I was looking back to some photos I took last month on my way home from class one day. I actually did the u-turn thing to go back and photograph these cows. I'm glad I did, they make for a good vintage subject. I used two textures, the first I forgot to write down, but the second one is one of my favorites of Bonnie's, vintage craquelure.

So ironic, that I went to the nursery for a little inspiration, and would end up at the animal hospital. It's not the first time I've tried to rescue wildlife and I'm pretty sure it won't be the last. I should have a bumper sticker that says this vehicle makes occasional and random stops for wildlife. I've rescued birds and taken them to rehabilitators, stopped in the middle of the road to rescue turtles, stopped traffic for a snake who had been harassed by a crow and went into defense mode and couldn't make it the rest of the way across the street, and for baby Killdeer birds that couldn't follow mom up the curb and waited for an hour for her to come back for one of them. It's just who I am.....

Love, Kim

Sharing with Photo art Friday, Little Things Thursday, Thursdays Favorite Things
Friday Photo Journal, Finding Serendipity {1440}

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A dreamy Tuesday . . .

"Dreams are illustrations . . . from the book your soul is writing about you."

- Marsha Norman

{Kim Klassen textures: Cora and Isobel}

For Texture Tuesday Kim's theme for today is dreamy or dream-like, so I decided on a photo I took in January of a sunrise.  I wouldn't normally add a texture to a sunrise, but this was one of my attempts to "paint" a sunrise with my lens with the anticipation of using textures to make it even more painterly. I think her new Downtown collections are perfect for doing this. Early morning before the sun rises over the horizon allows me to use a slow shutter speed to get a nice blur (while hand holding the camera). Before adding the textures, I overlayed another sunrise photo and only added back in the birds I wanted in the image. This comes pretty darn close to what I had in mind when I took this, a soft water-colored effect.  

{Kim Klassen textures: Edith, Violet, Cora and Anna}

But, I also couldn't  resist playing with this from my last trip to Lowes. It was really late in the afternoon and the sun had finally decided to show itself. The beautiful golden glow of the background is courtesy of the sun bouncing off of one of their white walls and as soon as I saw that glow, I was on the hunt to find something to put in its frame.

Well, that's about all I have today. Here it is only Tuesday and I already feel like it should be Friday. Or maybe I just wish it were Friday? 

Love, Kim

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Everything connects to something else . . .

"A human being is part of the whole, called by us the universe, a part
limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as
 something separate from the rest - a kind if optical delusion of consciousness.
This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires
and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves
from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living
creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."   - Albert Einstein

This week our theme for Photo Friday is connections. And well, that pretty much doesn't leave anything out of the artistic equation, because everything connects to something else eventually . . . physically, spiritually and by nature. Even intellectually by strands of ideas and information, AND, through this connection we call technology.

We are all connected at the very least because we all share space with this thing we call Earth. Connected to each other, to the environment, as a community, a society, and as a human race. Connected to everything whether we want to be or not, and whether or not we comprehend or acknowledge it.

I love and feel deeply connected to nature . . . everything has a purpose. I believe we were both designed to take care of each other. As stewards we have been given the honor to take care of this beautiful Earth God created, and she in return would take care of us. Unfortunately, I don't think we have been doing a very good job.

{Bonnie's texture Scratched lens}

These are more images from my visit to my local nursery last weekend. I'm not sure what kind of  butterfly this will become, but in order to change it needed to find somewhere to connect while it goes through its transformation.

A butterfly finding a connection of the sweetest kind . . . 

{Bonnie's textures - Sunbeam, Flying over Ireland and vintage vellum}

And an extremely important connection . . . of the pollinating kind!  We are extremely dependent on the connection bees have with flowers and trees. You could say our lives depend on it. Did you know that of the 90 percent of the worlds food supply (that's 100 crop species), that bees pollinate more than 70 percent? And did you know that since 1950 the bee population has gone from 5.5 million colonies to 2.5 million in 2007 while our world population keeps going up. So the next time you see a bee, thank her! Yep, the females are the gatherers of pollen and nectar.

This is my photo art Friday submission, to which I cannot remember the textures I used - I was in the groove and forgot to write them down.

A monkey connected to a have no idea what you'll find at my nursery - exotics of all kinds!!

Yes, you can have your very own monkey or komodo dragon for your garden, and cracked eggs for planters. Acres of pure humor...hours of entertainment.

But I did find a few lizard friends, this one kept peeking out behind the plant at me. I do just love these guys, they are so curious.

"Tug on anything at all and you'll find it connected to everything else in the universe." - John Muir

And to that quote, I say that our actions matter. What we choose to do or not to do, affects more than just ourselves because everything is consequential.  

I appreciate your connecting with me each week! Have a wonderful weekend all!

Love, Kim

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

It started out about a flower{s} . . .

Once upon a weekend
I went in search of some flowers
so I went to my local nursery
and whiled away the hours . . .

{ Kim Klassen Dowtown 2 collection - Isobel in overlay }

but through the reeds I did spy
with my wondering eyes
a tiny green tree frog
looking for flies.

Yep, I found Kermit and his cousins!

To give you some perspective, this green tree frog ranges from 1 1/4" to 2 1/2" and these blades from the butterfly lily are only about 1 1/2" wide.

They let me get very close, only occasionally moving to a different spot.

Otherwise, this is the position they assume most of the time.

{Kim Klassen Downtown collection - Edith multiply}

When they do decide to move, you had better be quick . . . they are lightning fast jumpers!

She was enjoying our photo session, and what a great smile! lol

"It's not easy being green" - Kermit

Our temps right now are hovering around the 70 mark, give or take a little and although I'm really anxious to get back to the beach, I have to say this is my second favorite spot in the world to spend time. I've been back three times, and all three times these little guys are hanging out in the same spot in the exact same gallon of lillies, which happens to be in the middle of the table, and yes I practically have to crawl onto the table to get close enough. But as soon as it starts getting warmer, they will be hiding where they won't easily be found so they won't become fried frog legs!

Oh, and before I forget, I'm over at my collaborative blog Focusing on Life today, here. Something about seeing more by seeing less and a challenge to change your lens. Come on over and visit me!!

I hope you have a great Tuesday . . . ribbet!
Love, Kim

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Love is in the air . . .

Love is . . . 
knows no bounds
and has the infinite power to change lives
not just today but all year
it does not divide . . . but multiplies
it lives within all of us
and isn't something you can keep just for yourself
it's strong, yet so fragile
and should be nothing but unconditional
an expression of yourself
and being open to the expression of others
and seeking the welfare of another

"Love, as an open book"

it's about passion and desire
two hearts joined as one
we show it with compassion and affection
and should never be anything but . . . colorblind
supporting yet not overbearing
a basic human need
and a deep spiritual connection in the depth of your soul
understanding and forgiving
although sometimes it's complicated
it has a unique ability to stretch the heart
patient and kind
definitely not boastful
and should never rejoice in right and wrong
acceptance is a huge requirement
and it should include random acts of kindness
sometimes it just feels like an unexplainable mystery
a feeling that is hard to define

"He believe is me"

while it causes some hearts to be courageous
there will be those that will be broken
it's sharing, believing and dreaming
and it endures all, hopes all, and bears all things
it is spoken in different languages all over the world
and in unselfishly expressed actions
it hurts when someone doesn't feel it back
something that can make you laugh and cry at the same time
it matters not how old you are
for there is no age limit
 you feel this when you genuinely care for someone
a parent, a child, a friend
but it shouldn't be kept from strangers either

"Love in a tree"

it can be passionate and romantic
maybe even a little scary
definitely fun and spontaneous
and it will have its highs and lows
we don't just feel this for people
but for nature and life
there are songs written about it
we express it in our art
and millions of words have been spoken about it
the bible commands us to do this to our neighbors as we would do unto ourselves
because it is something no one should ever be without
And what we were all created for.

"Love is in the air" -{Photo Art Friday}

 Love can be found here
rooted on a hill in a field
both wings and branches outstretched
one providing shelter
the other seeking rest
where a home will be built
and where life will be found in a nest
yes love can be found here
what will be will be
each created for the other
companions found in a bird and a tree.
- Kim

I wish you all a beautiful day!
I {Heart} you,
Kim xo

P.S. - I'm running out to enjoy some time with my Valentine and will visit you all later!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Texture Tuesday . . .

"We picture love as heart-shaped
because we do not know the shape of the soul."
- Robert Brault

The prompt for Texture Tuesday today is love/hearts . . . image textured with 2 layers of Aurora from Kim Klassen, one in mulitply and the other in overlay. Short and sweet to make a chocolate sheet cake with chocolate fudge frosting for bible study tomorrow, Oh and to finish my lesson. Have a wonderful day!

Love, Kim

Thursday, February 7, 2013

One foggy morning . . .

Slowly I walk
and wander
to the edge of the unknown
where my vision is cloaked
and mystery abounds
where there is stillness
yet things move
where there is silence
but I can hear
where there is peace
and I feel at home
I breath . . .
I exhale . . .
I begin to feel a warm glow
as it chases the veil
revealing all
that the heart already knows
of beauty and goodness
of nature and life
. . . and I stand before Him in awe


one foggy very foggy morning,

I went back to the house to get the camera after dropping off the kids,

and went to a park,

and it was dreamy and beautiful and still,

and you could see the fog literally floating by in little droplets and it was amazing!

This week for Photo Art Friday our challenge was an abstract starting out with Bonnie's free texture Dropped Petals as a background, plus any other pdpa texture, plus 1 or 2 other images .

{Dropped Petals-I started out with 2 layers as a background}

{My three images I used and another of Bonnie's textures Dusty Rose}

And this is what I ended up with . . . 

You'll probably see some more fog photos in the future, I had to save some for a rainy day!

Wishing you all a fabulous weekend....

Love, Kim

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Texture Tuesday . . .

Good morning peeps, happy Tuesday with a little texture.
Today Kim asked us to show her a little "pop" of color and this is my interpretation . . . 

{Kim Klassen Takeheart in hardlight}

I chose this one because, well, it has a soft focus and that's me in a nutshell today. Okay, I may be a lot out of focus today . . . a lack of sleep in a few days time {to no fault of my own} sort of causes predicaments like this. I took this over the weekend as my hubby and I walked my favorite nursery, doing a little research on fruit trees. I think this is the year we are finally going to take the plunge. This image is of a blossom from the Meyer Lemon tree and wow does it ever smell good!  

I'm not very wordy here today and that's because I already used up a bunch and I would love for you to visit me over here today on Kim Cunningham's Little by Little blog as a guest poster where I'm asking what if any have you learned about yourself through photography and over at my collaborative blog Focusing on Life where I'm sharing some thoughts about how learning to use our cameras can make us a little foggy.

If you are new here, Focusing on Life is a collaborative blog between 10 women in different stages of life where our goal is to create a community and a place where we can inspire, teach, nurture, support and accept each other; a place where we can grow in our craft and as individuals and we would love to have you join us and let us know that you were there!

Love, Kim

Friday, February 1, 2013

And the winner is . . .

Drum roll please . . . the winner of this necklace (from the grow your blog hop post ) giveaway is,

. . . comment #28 - Beth at E.Lizard Breath Speaks - congrats to you Beth!
I'll be sending you an e-mail for your address. 

Another huge thank you to Vicki at 2 Bags Full for all her work putting it together. And another warm welcome to all my new "friends" (I really don't like the word followers), and to my current friends who have decided to join me on this little space. I really adore each one of you and appreciate your support and encouragement and love when you share your thoughts with me! Truly.....I love y'all!!

Love, Kim

P.S. - I'm feeling another giveaway in the future . . .  :)

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