Thursday, December 31, 2015


A cheap feeder with expensive seed works just as well as an expensive feeder.  The sparrows are always a fan of free seed anytime and anyplace.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Two Angels.....

I try different shots each year of my wife's angels that are on display at Christmas. The automatic camera created a special effect for me by giving the foreground a softer focus than the background tree. The bay window was letting in a lot of light this morning even though it is snowing.  The snow on the ground reflects a lot of light even at night when we have a full moon.

The green cloth ornament in a shape of an elephant was given to Andy now some 40 years ago when he was first born.  The teacher that lived in Sidney, Iowa, I am sure, is not living anymore.  The front end of the elephant is in the top photo and the bottom end is in the one to the right here.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Bunny Trails and Tales........

Winter is harder on rabbits as they have to find things to eat.  The large rabbit is waiting for it to turn dark so he can scour the ground below the bird feeder for seed. I try to through out a little seed for him outside the dog pen.  It is funny how there are always rabbits.  Some get hit by cars but a rabbit is all ready to step into its place.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Oh My, Pie........

My wife's pies are a work of art. The crust is the secret and the perfect one makes the best  pie.  While watching a older period movie I noticed the man cutting into a pie with a heavy duty crust both top and bottom.  The intention was to be able to pick it up with your hands.  No pretty plate with ice cream on the pie back then just pick it up and go.  The pie you see here is a mincemeat pie.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Color Sells.......

Our grandson's Christmas ornament is overwhelmed by the box of his other present.  Ka Pow comes to mind when you look at the box of the car track toy.  AJ hasn't received his Christmas presents yet as the whole family was sick and stayed home.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Two with One Shot.........

I am not sure what they were looking at but it was rare to ever see them both on the feeder at the same time.

The female cardinal was at the suet picking out seeds.  I also never had seen a cardinal at the suet before now. We are having weather that really requires me to keep the feeders filled. The colors on the female are actual colors. She is more color than brown so far this winter.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas Day.......

We had various forms of precipitation yesterday and finally it finish with a good snow.  Looking out the east window with the fish and birds you can see what we looked like this morning.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas Eve.........

As the Christmas season winds down to the final day of celebration I wish everyone well. I hope we all can soon take a  time now to appreciate Christmas day.   I wish everyone good health and great happiness.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Violet Blooms......

I have found that the more that I neglect the violets in the house the better off the plants are.  I have over watered and killed violets throughout the year.  I now water on rare occasions and I am getting some blooms. The bright lights mess with the automatic camera causing spotty focused areas in the shot.The background of a shriveled up Christmas cactus and wilted leaves exposes the fact that I need to do some housecleaning around the area.  Maybe I can do that next year.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

A New Thing........

I bought a new ornament for the big tree.  I temporarily hung it on the tree in the dining room so I could get a photo of it.  Notice the tree that was covered with lights only now has plastic ornaments on it. I placed these on an outside live tree last year and I don't have the desire, energy, inspiration to ever do that again.  I thought they might work great on this tree as it may topple over and the plastics won't break. I will move the house ornament to the big tree soon.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Three Engines.......

I received the older 1900's toy engine from the "John and Iva" connection from a farm home south of Hopeville, Iowa and near our farm.  It is now known that the Morman trail went through the area as well as another branch that went through Murray, Iowa north of there.

The train is special to me even though I know two different people who have the complete train set.  I would like to find the rest of the set but I am happy with just the engine. I can see the whole set plus track in the window uptown at an old hardware store.  I painted mine so I devalued it according to antique dealers.  I am sure paint remover would bring it back to its original finish.  The train sits on my computer desk year round but I did get it moved over to be with the Christmas tree to join the others.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Special Effects.......

Sometimes I am drawn to the mistakenly taken photo.  The effects of the motion and the mood created because of the hurriedly taken photo is pleasant to see.

The stuffed animal on my wife's teddy bear tree is really a poodle dog.  The lights on the tree project out on the rough plastered wall make a great background for a photo.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Time to Relax........

One of my smulchy decorations is one of my favorites.  Snowmen are having a very good time out in the snow.  I like the cardinals that sit around in the arrangement. They are a friendly sort.  It seem to happen a lot when  I captured all my tv and dvd player wires in the background.  I took another shot of it without wires but this was the best shot of the jolly trio. When I enlarged it I can see that there are places for candles to be lit behind it.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Red, Green and Gold.....

The rows of scallops make this into an unusual pattern.  The colors with gold work so well together and the egg shape  tapers down to a green point. One of my favorites that has no story behind it.  There probably is one but I don't remember it.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Keep your Camels Outside........

The ceramic camels seem appropriate remaining next to the manger on our fireplace mantle. Their scale is very large to the manger but their decorative effect is perfect for this presentation.  I came home from work last evening and my wife had created this grouping.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Red Wagon and a Goose.......

Ten years back or longer the goose was marketed a lot for decorating purposes.  I think they are always in style.  The trumpet has a wonderful shine so that it makes more light from the reflections from it.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Monday Morning Snow.....

I was getting disgusted with the continual rain for 24 hours or more.  I was up with Button at 6:00 and it was still raining.  We got up at 7:00 and it was dropping clumps of snow.  I don't think I have seen anything like it.  We use to call it goose feathers but these clumps were larger.  Barney came in with a snow drift on his back when he came inside from being out there.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

I'll Fly Away........

The days seem to be too busy so all the shots I am taking for this post are evening shots.  Low light means grainy shots.  Low light means blurry shots.  Lot light means that I take a lot of shots that are trashed.  I still keep taking them though as I keep learning about what my camera can and can not do.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

On the Top.........

The angel waits to be placed on the top of the tree. We have been slow at getting the ornaments on the tree and the angel has been sitting for a couple of days. 

The wait is now over and the first batch or ornaments have been added to the tree. We are now inspired to add the last three boxes of ornaments onto the tree.

Friday, December 11, 2015


Many a kid and many adults are fascinated with the whole train industry.  I have always been fascinated with them  remembering seeing the old steamers going through our local town and puffing smoke across the country side. The shipping car like the plastic model was standard on most trains as everything could be shipped inside.

Our neighbors had a car like this one on his farm when I was a young boy in the 50s. He stored grain and tools in it.  I can't imagine how he got it on his property as we were seven miles of hills and dells to the nearest train track.  When I would stand inside of that one car as a boy it seemed to be huge and heavy. That one had not seen any paint probably from the time after it was first built and used.  I suppose it could have come from a train wreck that happened in the area.

This car is from a train set that was given to me and my brother from Santa back in 1956.  I still remember it being wrapped in brown grocery sack paper and then tied with string.  Santa even wrote on the front of it to tells us we shared this gift.  It is fun to dig out the train and place them under the tree each year.

Thursday, December 10, 2015


A tangle of ribbon was tossed onto a Christmas tree at school. Some high school student carelessly placed it there and walked away from it.  The ribbon is so reflective that it picks up so many different colors.  I shared the photo just because it was so great to see.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Middle of the,,,,,,,,,,,, Week

It really isn't real cappuccino.  It is a powder mixed with hot water but the machine looks awesome.  I am working the coffee shop today at school for a few periods.  I could not resist sharing this image of a better looking red cup of coffee than it really is. 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Seeing Throgh.........

I wanted to shoot a view of the sunrise.  I knew there would be things outside in the way of a clear shot.  But when I went in to the large window where the aquarium sits I found a second view.  The fish get to see the sunrise every morning. 

If I lived in the house across the street I could go out on the deck and take a photo every morning.  It was a far stretching sunrise this morning.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Slow to Start........Saturday.

Everything will come into focus eventually.  My weekend has started off in more like a disaster but things are getting better.  Some work has been done on getting the glass ornaments on the tree.  I am not happy with it but maybe its my attitude and it will look better tomorrow.  I don't remember taking the blurred shot but is is a good looking blurred shot.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Math World......

Sometimes I have to just shoot pictures of where I am at the time.   I was transferred to a math room today to sub for an ailing teacher. She keeps such a neat room and the still life was all set up for me to take a shot.  As I look at the books I have the question as to if there were a calculus book of a double variable out there too.  The design on the mug is a photo of the bottom half of a bird wearing a blue scarf with green fringe.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Twilight Zone.........

A shot from the inside of the library early morning.  School buses are still passing by.  The windows in the library look out into a hallway which is lined with another set of windows.  One can see the weather and traffic going by plus the traffic in the hallway.  There is a student sitting there in the chair but his identity would never be revealed in a twilight zone photo.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


This is the library's Christmas tree.  One could say that the books that were made from trees are now being used to recreate a tree. I looked at the books and most of them are very old and not really valuable. This put them into good use.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Good Morning.........

A photo I took a year ago this month.  The squirrels had lots of babies this spring but they have all dispersed to different territories.  In fact I don't think we have as many squirrels as we did last year at this time.  I am wondering if the road construction activities scattered them.

I did see that I can buy 40 pound bags of shelled corn now, that is intended to also feed the deer.  I may invest in one of those as the corn on the cob seems to be three times the price as the one with shelled corn in the bag.  I will be tempted to buy the ear corn though for fun in a winter storm.  The really appreciate finding it out there for them in order to help themselves.