My husband pulled over twice today on our journey home so I could try to take some pictures. The scenery was beautiful for this whole trip. It was a spectacular winter wonderland. These pine trees lined many of the roads and were so pretty with the heavy snow on them. The pictures just don't do it justice!
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Our original plan was to do a bobsled ride today. But the kids decided they'd like to learn to ski and it was only $40 more for ski school and a pass to ski all day than it was to ride on a bobsled for less then 2 minutes. So at the end of the day my husband and I found something else to ride instead. The dog's feet and tails were looking a little cold but they were still ready to go. We were the last passengers of the day. It was a chilly but quiet and beautiful ride on the lake. It was a fun way to end our trip to Lake Placid.
I debated about which picture to use today. Something showing the Olympics or something showing what we did as a family. I went for the family. Our son has been to wine tastings along the Finger Lakes with us before but this was his first time to actually try the wine. Two of the Finger Lake wineries have a tasting room in Lake Placid. He enjoyed the experience and at this one you even get to keep your glass so he has a memento. Our daughter entertained herself by texting her friends while waiting for us.
Today my husband and I are celebrating our 29th anniversary. At one of my bridal showers the guests were asked to bring an ornament. That was such a great idea. I still have several of those ornaments and they always bring back special memories. This one was from my Aunt Bettie. She was a very special lady and I miss her. It's nice to pull out this ornament and think of her and remind my kids of her generosity and kind heart with a story or two.
Sunday, December 27, 2009
Tonight was my son's 4th alumni game. It was also the most popular. In the past the games have been held early in the morning and there's only a few die hard parents and fans in attendance. But tonight there was a big crowd and close to 40 players on the bench. It's basically the team that won the state championship the year my son was a freshman against everyone else. The championship team ended up being the winners tonight. With just a few exceptions most of the players were looking mighty tired by the end of the game. I'm sure there will be some sore muscles tomorrow!
Saturday, December 26, 2009
I debated on which picture to use for Christmas and decided to go with family. After opening presents and eating cinnamon rolls we headed out to the rink for a skate. We had a nice relaxing day together. Phone calls were made to various family members out of town. Later in the day A'nna joined us for dinner. Merry Christmas!
Our daughter wanted Italian food for Christmas but my husband nixed that idea so we settled for a compromise. She could make it for Christmas Eve instead. My husband and I are not huge Italian food lovers but our daughter is, I'm sure she's been influenced by some of her friends and the huge Italian community in which we reside. It's hard to find a restaurant or go to a banquet that doesn't serve Italian food! Kira contacted her friends for some food ideas and came up with the menu of braciole, antipasto, bread and cannolis. She met me at the meat market when I went to buy ham loaf for tomorrow's meal. She didn't know how to pronounce the meat that she needed and the man behind the counter said he'd never heard of it. Then he asked to look at her phone, she was reading from a text message from her friend, and then he figured it out. She took her meat and headed to her friend's house for lessons on how to prepare it. She enjoyed the cooking and we all enjoyed a tasty meal. Our son worked until 8 and then headed to his girlfriend's house for the evening and missed the tasty treat.
Our daughter loves to bake. She asked each of her friends what kind of cookie they liked best. Then she spent two days baking all the cookies. Tomorrow she will go to school loaded down with a variety bag of cookies for each of her friends and her two favorite teachers. When the kids were younger I always promoted homemade gifts. I'm glad that has stuck with her.
This is the latest we've ever put up a Christmas tree and I'm keeping my fingers crossed it doesn't happen again. My daughter helped me and we didn't even use all the ornaments. We picked our favorites. I told my husband we need to start picking up interesting ornaments on our summer travels because some day in the not too distant future the kids will have their own trees and at that time I want to pass along their ornaments but that won't leave us with much!
As we wandered around the back of the rink my husband pointed out this old puck. I got down and shot it the same way I did the baseball a few weeks ago. It looks like a dog has had some fun running around with it.
There's been a few instances this year in which I forgot to take a picture for the challenge. Luckily on those days my husband had taken pictures so I used one of his pictures as a "guest" photographer for the day. Thanks Duane!
Since I skated last Saturday we've had warm weather, rain and snow. Luckily it was just a little snow and then the consistent cold temps returned. So tonight my son got home from college and he and his sister were able to get out skate under the lights. I was shooting under the low light conditions but I like this one showing some action, the long shadows and the ghost on the sideline that seems to be cheering for them. The temps look good for the next week so I'm sure the rink will be getting lots of use.
I've decided that the ghost was my dad. He passed away 3 years ago on Christmas Eve. He rarely got to see our kids skate and I know he would have gotten a kick out of watching them play in the backyard. It gave me a sense of comfort to think he was there watching over them.
This is another barn on my way to work. Today was our coldest morning so far this season but that didn't stop me from rolling down the window and taking a few shots. I may stop back another day and put on a different lens and get a closer shot of the old tractor.
I am a participant in an EETT grant sponsored by our local BOCES. The grant is about using web2.0 tools to improve writing skills. A perk of this grant is that each participant received a Macbook. They were delivered this week.
My husband started out taking pictures of our kid's games and has now expanded to volleyball, basketball, and an occasional cross country meet, bowling game, wrestling match or other sport for our daughter's high school. The yearbook committee asked for a CD of his pictures so they could include action shots this year.
My husband asked if we could get a new lens as a joint Christmas present this year. His big sports lens is great for hockey and lacrosse but doesn't work well for basketball and other sports where you want more than just the player. I said sure so we went to our local friendly dealer and picked it up as an early gift. He loves it! I think he also realized that he'll be using it the most so he ended up buying me several gifts as well including Adobe CS4. I have a lot of new learning to do!
Birds used to be my top photographic subject but it's been a long time since I've been out in my backyard to take pictures of them. Today I was rewarded with a cardinal coming to visit. I often see them in the yard but they are always camera shy. Today this guy came by a couple of times for me. The time he came the closest I was so excited I forgot to zoom in and the pictures didn't turn out very well. Oh well, maybe next time....
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Over Thanksgiving break my husband and kids worked on getting our ice rink set up. Our son has college friends that plan on making a trip to our house to skate during their winter break. Thanks to our recent cold spell the rink was in skating condition today. One corner still has to be avoided but the rest is in decent shape. We've got some work to do, the wind this past week has resulted in lots of leaves and needles embeded in the ice. They'll have to come out when we have a warmer day. But for today I enjoyed my skating in circles while listening to holiday tunes.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
This was a late night shot. I decided to play with taking a shot of lights. I used a tripod and played around with a few settings and the self timer. This is the only "nice" building in my village. My husband and kids bought it for me two years ago. Rest of the buildings are from Jo-Ann Fabrics many many years ago. It's a fun scene to set up and I enjoy the lights at night.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
I drive by a train station every other day on my way to work. It's all decorated for Christmas and has a sign out front that says North Pole. Today I stopped to take some pictures since it wasn't quite dark yet and we had a little snow left. This was about my last shot. I tried to take a picture through the window. I knew it wasn't going to be very good and by this time my fingers were so cold that I decided to just head back to the car. When I got to photo class tonight and took a look at it I liked it as did the instructor. So I decided to go with something a little different for my picture of the day.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Today a local restaurant , Casa Too Mucha, was supporting my daughter's hockey team. If a customer wrote hockey on the back of the ticket the restaurant would donate a percentage of the bill to the team. My husband spent about 10 minutes writing hockey on our ticket. After I took this picture he added Comets to it as well. Since it was a snow day we went for lunch and we were the first to participate. I hope a few more people turned out. Thanks to Casa for their support.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
I waited for the sky to brighten this morning so I could take some pictures of our first snow before heading off to work. Not a significant amount but enough to make everything look pretty and Christmasy. I like the way the snow came through the slats.
I love Christmas music and I try to play the piano more frequently during this time of year. I have some music back from when I took lessons in the 70s! I also have some newer additions. The angels were made by my sister many years ago.
I haven't been taking many bird pictures this year. Funny how they used to be my main photo topic. This guy was quite photogenic hopping from branch to branch so I could shoot different views. Anyone know what type of bird it is?
My daughter had a 7 AM game this morning at her tournament. I went for an early morning walk but just as it was getting light enough to take pictures it was time for the game to begin. After the game, breakfast, and a nap my husband surprised me and took me to this park just a couple of miles from the hotel. After taking some pictures we decided to head up the trail. We were so glad we did. Around every corner there was something delightful to look at. I loved the sound of the rushing water as well. As we climbed the snow began. At times I felt like we were in a magical snow globe. The pictures really don't show the beauty of the day.
While waiting for my daughter's hockey game I wandered through the rink's hockey shop. I found this amusing contraption. It hooks up to the hockey bag-a special bag I'm sure-and supposedly blows away the funk! I think just airing the equipment out after every use and an occasional washing works well too.
Monday, December 7, 2009
After my daughter's appointment in Syracuse we made a stop at Wegman's on our way home. We did more than a little impulse buying but it was fun. Here's a few of the things we picked up on our trip through the store. At least some of the items are for Christmas presents. I wish Utica had a Wegman's!
My husband was cleaning the garage recently and he came in with my old roller skates. He informed me that they should not be in a box in the garage but on display in the house. We have a tiny crowded house but I found a spot for them on the floor by the old copper boiler. I remember them flopping off my feet while trying to skate. I'm surprised I didn't break an ankle. My kids had it so much easier with their roller blades!
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Today my daughter had a hockey game in Ithaca at Cass Park Rink. Cass Park is an outside rink although it has a roof and tarps around part of it. Today it was in the 50s so it was a delightful day for a game there. But on days when it's near zero and the wind is blowing it's an entirely different story! The rink must have just opened. These brightly colored tags from open skating covered a post outside the rink. Last year's tags are all faded. Here's to a new season of skating.
This weekend I started looking through the photo albums trying to decide which picture to put in my daughter's yearbook. The one of her standing on the chair in the kitchen is in the final running. She's had an interest in helping in the kitchen from a young age! Now to pick the final one and then write something to go along with it. My husband and son will be doing the same job this week.
My daughter and I spent the day decorating the house for Christmas. Our dog seemed out of sorts all day. She just laid around with her head down and no tail wagging. We decided she must think we're getting ready to go somewhere without her. The next day she seemed back to her old self. Thank goodness!
I'm thankful for the birds that visit my yard so yesterday I bought some peanuts for them. Peanuts are very expensive right now so they won't get this treat as often as they have in the past. It looks like they were having some trouble removing them. Not sure if the peanuts are larger or small birds were trying to get them out of the ring.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
This morning my husband and the kids headed out to the backyard to begin the process of putting up the ice rink. It's pretty much an all day endeavor. When my son was a preschooler my husband built a small 8' rink. The next year it was a little bigger. Eventually we had this sport court put in so it's used year round. There's a lot of good memories out there. This year we were lucky that the huge sheet of plastic that goes over the small white pieces seemed to be hole free. Some years the mice chew it up. So that was a huge cost savings! As I type the hose is running to begin filling it up. My son is hoping to get a lot of use out of it over Christmas break. So we're all keeping our fingers crossed for a nice cold December and January.
While my son is at college I keep his bedroom door closed unless I'm in there using the iron that I set up there in his absence. Tonight as my son opened the door to prepare to go to bed Gertie ran in and was quick to claim her spot first!
Monday, November 23, 2009
I drive by this barn every other day on my way to work and since I got out early today I decided today was the day to stop a take a picture. I've often debated whether I should take it on a day that it was clear or stormy. I settled for a typical New York dreary day. I love the look of the old barns and I think it would turn out nice no matter what the sky looks like.
Today we traveled to Fairport, NY for my daughter's hockey game against the Rochester Edge. Last week they came to our rink and totally dominated the game, outshooting us 60-10 and winning 4-1. Our goalie was outstanding. I went expecting a repeat but our team did so much better the first two periods. We were actually winning for the first half of the game. But they wore us down in the 3rd period and they ended up with a solid win against us. But the best part of today's game was our team had a cheering squad! My son attends Brockport so he and his friends made the trip down for the game. My son has played an integral role in increasing student attendance and getting them involved in the games at the college. He recently got 60 kids to make a road trip to an away game. Because of that the student union is going to provide buses next year. So, when they arrived today they had noise makers, a sign and one friend decked out in pink-the team colors are black and pink. They made noise and cheered throughout much of the game. I took some video as well. I was sorry I wasn't prepared with the video when my daughter received a penalty and they started chanting We love you Kira. Kira ducked her head down but I knew she was secretly loving it, and she did. After the game the coach came right over and shook their hands and thanked them for coming. The good news is Kira has a tournament in Ithaca in two weeks and the boys were already planning on going to Cortland for a game so they're coming down early to root for another girls' game.
Just before midnight I was hurriedly trying to take my picture of the day. I grabbed my daughter's point and shoot to take a picture of my camera. I need a picture of it for a podcast I'm working on for Art Snacks. As I looked at the pictures I noticed this reflection. I thought it was kind of cool.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
During lunch I went out to my car to get my camera. On the way down the steps I noticed this one leaf. I like how the wet spot underneath from last night's rain is the same shape as the leaf. I couldn't resist snapping a quick shot on my way back into the building.
Tonight our school had it's first art show. We have some pretty talented artists and the show was well attended. This was one of my favorites. It looks like such a peaceful place. The theme of the show was Beauty. Each piece had a sentence or two by the artist about how the picture showed beauty. This student wrote: "I think sunsets are beautiful because of the bright colors. Sunsets are also beautiful when they shine on the water and make the water sparkle."
Saturday, November 21, 2009
It's hard to believe this teacher turned 26 today. It seems she's been teaching in our school for a long time. I think part of that reason is that she's an excellent teacher. Our school is finally moving forward with technology and she is embracing it and pushing her colleagues to join her. Her co-teachers brought in this cute cake. Happy birthday you young thing!
My husband's friend wanted him to drive his '06 Corvette this weekend, the gentleman has five of them! So we took it for a late afternoon drive. We just made one quick stop along the West Canada Creek. My husband loved the car for its speed but feels his own '82 is nicer looking and I agree.
My husband had open house at the college today so instead of whining about how I don't like shooting sports because I feel I miss the game I just grabbed the camera and shot. I did a good job of deleting shots during the game so I only ended up with 97 total shots. Pretty good for me! I'm still not happy with the image quality. My husband says it's due to the poor lighting. This was my favorite shot. And surprise it's not a shot of my daughter for a change. :-)
The sunset the past two nights was spectacular. Everything seemed to turn red. So tonight when I walked in the door I grabbed my camera and told my husband we had to get out somewhere to catch the sunset, just in case it was another beautiful one. So, we made a mad dash for Lake Delta, a 30 minute drive. We made it just in time. The sunset was not near as nice as the past two nights but I was thankful we went. It was quiet, peaceful and so relaxing. Just what I needed at the end of another hectic week.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Can you guess where I was sitting while taking this picture? If you guessed the gas station you are correct. I don't often let my car get this empty and I know it's foolish. I was wishing they weren't putting in new gas tanks and pumps in the village where I work. Luckily I made it the 10 miles back to town! Sometimes I let my body run on empty as well-by feeding it too much junk and not getting enough rest. This too is foolish. What about you, are you running on empty?
After a relaxing lunch with two former teaching buddies, along the shores of Lake Delta, I took off to take some photos. I wanted to spend the afternoon enjoying "me" time and staying far away from my computer. I headed up the highway to Pixley Falls State Park. I hadn't been there in many years. I wandered around the falls taking many different shots. I actually like this one of a stream better than the actual shots of the falls. It was a delightful afternoon.