Monday, September 3, 2012

Goodbye Summer

Today is Labor Day.  The official end of summer.  And as much of a wonderful summer as it was I am always happy to head into the cooler, slower days of fall.  

Jordan was home this summer for the first time since leaving for school in the fall of 2010.  Jordan was offered several jobs for the summer but Craig and I encouraged her to not work this summer.  Her field of study will not allow her to be home during the summer again until she graduates 2 years from now.  We enjoyed every minute of having her home.  Not having a job allowed her to spend a lot of family time with us, camping and spending vacations with us.  It was so worth it!  

Jordan returned to school last week and as much as we miss her it's a comfort to know that she is only 2 hours away and can come home whenever she wants.  

Our summer was filled with many special occasions.  We had the bi-annual Ormsby Twins Reunion, Craig's parents 50th Wedding Anniversary Party, weeks camping at Silver Lake, time spent at the cottage... the list goes on and on.  

I have this coming week off work... all to myself.  Craig doesn't have any time left off for the remainder of the year so I have decided to take the week off for some me time.  I have absolutely no plans other than to decide what I want to do when I wake up each morning.  Of course I want to take my camera on some day trips.  We'll see where the road leads me.......  

Friday, August 17, 2012

Flowers make me happy

It's the middle of August and after the HOT July we had I am looking forward to a cooler, slower paced fall.  It will be here before I know it.  Not that I haven't loved summer but fall is my favorite season.  I love everything about it, the colors, the tastes, the temperatures......  Bring it on!
My Dad planted his sunflower field again this year.  Because of the draught the sunflowers didn't get very tall, nevertheless, they are still beautiful.  
I love yellow.....
More yellow.....   
I've been enjoying running over to my parents in the early morning sunlight to play with my photography.  I've learned a lot this year and am no longer shooting in automatic modes.  That's a huge step for me.  
I leave you with this.... It's nearly impossible to get a photo of the three of them together and even when I do Seadra usually is refusing to look at the camera.  

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Last year we spent our week off in July running all over the UP.  This year we decided to simplify things and spend our week off at Silver Lake.  We drove up Sunday afternoon and set up camp.  We will be here through Saturday.  Our only complaint so far is that it is HOT!  The forecast is calling for some relief in the next day and we are looking forward to that.  
In the evenings we rush over to the dunes to catch the sunsets.  It's one of our favorite things to do while we are here.  Beautiful!!!
This morning we hit the dunes again to try and beat the heat.  As long as we were near the beach it was tolerable.  
Lake Michigan water temperatures are mid to upper 70's.  I can't remember Lake Michigan ever being that warm.  
They say there are two types of people in the world.  You are either a person who loves the beach or a person who loves the woods... can you guess which one I am?  Definitely, this girl LOVES the woods.  But I must admit, being down at the beach today does make me wonder why I don't spend more time there.  Maybe it's because the minute we get back to the campground I'm headed to the pool to get the sand off of me.  And then, I'm looking for the nearest shade tree! 
 I did have a good time playing with my camera at the beach.  And this subject was especially beautiful.  Love My Jordan!
Yesterday when it got too unbearably hot to be outside we made a fun run to Muskegon to the Harley dealer and drooled over pretty new bikes.  We spent a few hours there just looking at a lot of chrome and black leather.  
And while we were at the Harley dealer we had an awesome experience with this bulldog that we ran into.  
His name was Tuffy.  He was there with his owner who was buying him this big studded black leather collar for a photo shoot.  They were photographing him for a contest to be the new mascot for Ferris State University (where Jordan attends!!!!).  He was the coolest dog ever.  Couldn't help but fall in love with him.  We hope he wins the contest then Jordan can say she knew him when.....  
Well, back to vacationing....... 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Camera in hand

Had a few hours to myself the other morning so I grabbed my camera and jumped in the car..... not even knowing where the road would take me.  These were some wild flowers (maybe they were weeds) I found along the St. Joseph river 
Then I stopped at a cemetery.  This beautiful hanging basket was over a grave. 
This tower was also in the cemetery.  Not sure what type of tower it was.  Maybe at one time it had chimes in it.  
I was at my parents later in the day and the sun was shinning beautiful on these chickens.  

I cannot explain the joy that my photography brings me.  It makes me look at the world through a whole different perspective than I ever used to.  

"Oh, WOW, what a beautiful shot that would be!".... always seems to be what I'm thinking.  

We are headed for a week long camping trip this weekend and one of my goals is to explore some new places to photograph.  

Happy Weekend.......  

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Loving me some summer

So I've been neglecting my blog something awful this summer.  We are all still alive and well..... very well.  The problem is we are all loving summer and just too busy to sit and blog.  Which really isn't a problem at all, other than my followers are sick of looking at the same post from two months ago.  Sorry.  

Here's a long pictorial of some of our summer happenings.  

It wouldn't be summer without our camping trips to Silver Lake.  We've already spent a few long weekends there and we will be there for a week in the middle of July.  

Craig and his beloved Jeep.
Kayaking needs no explanation.  Just look at the photos!  It's magical out there.  And the more secluded the lake the happier I am.  We recently camped at Yankee Springs Michigan State Park.  This park is over 5,000 acres and has 9 Lakes within the park.  We had some amazing experiences there.   
Jordan and I were kayaking at Baker Lake in Yankee Springs one morning when we had an awesome experience with two bald eagles.  This one let us get really close to him and I had a fantastic photo shoot with him. 
 I fell in love with this turtle.  And he was such a good boy to tolerate my presence.  Most turtles flop back into the water the minute they think you are coming near them.  He was so beautiful... I love the colors in the photo.  
The sounds of the bullfrogs are like music to my ears but they are nearly impossible to find.  
Momma and Daddy swan wouldn't let me get very close to their adorable chicks.  
I was inside a tunnel when I took this photo of Craig.  Cool, huh?
There is lots of time left for kayaking this season and I'm looking forward to more. 
Craig participated in a skeet league this spring with a group of guys he works with.  This is his second year. 
Jordan joined him on the last week and got a few lessons herself.  
Great photo of Zoe depicting the dog days of summer. 
Although in recent years I haven't spent a lot of time photographing my birds I am still very much in love with them.  For the first time ever (after 3 failed attempts) we had our first successful brood of bluebirds in our backyard.  And Mrs. Wren in the photo above is a regular each summer. 
A quick road trip a few weeks back and we ended up at this fun place. 
Made me want to buy a bird.... then I thought about it.  Three dogs are enough.
Love my puggies.  
I have been pleasantly surprised how much Fiona and Zoe enjoy kayaking.  
The last few years we've been taking the trailer out to the cottage for the week of the 4th.  It was a HOT 4th of July this year (still is HOT) and spending it at the lake with family and friends was wonderful. 
Nothing says summer more than this photo.  These cousins adore each other.
With the temps above 100 Craig had this wonderful idea to put the canopy and chairs in the lake.  This was some prime seating.  
Caleb cooling off.
Love the sunlight in this photo and of course the subject is adorable.
This one makes me smile.
Boat rides!!!!
Sunset boat rides are the best.  (Cindy, if you are reading this.... this was Greg and the boys.  I think this it's a beautiful photo.  If you want a copy I can email it to you).  
Other than loving my family and making memories my other main goal this summer was to become a better photographer.  And I am so happy with the results I am seeing.  Jordan and I recently took a class, I've been reading photography books, I've learned a lot about lighting, aperture, and I am no longer shooting in automatic.  I am also paying much closer attention to composition.  And the biggest difference is getting away from my kit lenses and buying some professional ones.  It's so much fun!  

Go outside and make some memories.........