If your are here to see CARDS please visit my "Crafting Blog"

This blog is a "Political" free blog - I will not post any political opinions here as I believe that everyone should be entitled to their own opinion and not be put down for their beliefs or subjected to others personal political beliefs.

Thank you for your visits and comments. They are greatly appreciated. I'll try hard to return the favor on your blogs. Have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

"Whatever" Wednesday - A little of this and a little of that Edition

Hello,  Welcome to the 2nd edition of my "Whatever" Wednesday feature where I'll share photos of whatever I want (no challenge or meme) just whatever strikes my fancy.

First up today:
This is a Posterized (Picnik) Version of a head shot of, "Fluffy" the neighbors cat who was curious about the camera the other day.  Below is the original shot before any editing. It's an, "In Your Face" shot for sure.  I rather like the "Posterized" version, gives it an entirely different feel.

Up next a fun shot of Coleen goofing around.  She's got the dogs chew bone in her hair. She was going for the "Pebbles Flintstone" look. 

Last up is a shot of the night sky I took a few weeks ago.  The moon was in it's Crescent phase which I thought was really cool but for some reason I just can't see to get really great night shots of the sky with my little Point and Shoot.  At any rate after a bit of editing I like how this turned out.
Thanks for visiting, I hope you'll come back again. 

Tidbit note:  Bowling Scores today:  139 (nothing to write home about) - 177 and 151 

Till next time...Happy Snapping!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Macro Monday 2-27-12 - The Plant Edition

Hello and Welcome. - Hope your week is off to a good start.
It snowed here last night (if you could call the light dusting we got snow) but it's cold, and overcast and oh I am so ready for spring.  But enough whining let's move on to something a lot more fun.

It's time to share some Macro goodness over at Lisa's Chaos  She's got some lovely photo's of Snail Shells that you will want to check out along with many other entries by other participants so do take a peek.

For my selection(s) this week I'm sharing some Macro shots of plants that Coleen and I spotted on our walk up to the Park a couple of weeks ago. 
Love the colors on this plant and the fuzzy little spiny things on the leaves.  Have no clue what kind of a plant this is but Coleen thought it was pretty and so did I so I took a picture of it.
This is a type of Succulent. I like the bright cheery colors of this plant.
I believe this is also a Succulent plant of some type.  I love the soft yellow color of the bloom.
This one I think was just a weed of some kind but it had such pretty little flowers and those leaves were pretty cool too.  A very delicate beauty for sure.

Lastly I'm sharing a photo of my Hen and Chick plant with some ice crystals from last nights snowfall that I just took a few minutes ago. 

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Scavenger Hunt Sunday - February 26, 2012

Welcome! - Hey if you haven't voted yet for the Love Letters To Kitty Paw please do so HERE and VOTE for #17 - Geesh I've only got 2 votes and one of those was mine!

So now on to this weeks Scavenger Hunt Sunday prompts:

Crossed, A Glimpse, Handwritten, Bliss, and Gray.

You may notice a bit of a "theme" with my photos for this weeks hunt: See if you can figure out what it is!

I was stumped at first on this prompt and then while taking some photos of Piglet (the stray we've adopted) I happened upon this shot of his paws "crossed".

A GLIMPSE:  The dictionary defines a glimpse as: 1. a very brief, passing look, sight or view.

This is from my "Archives" but I was so happy with this photo I had to share.  This is a neighbors cat, Fluffy who just happened to be catching a "glimpse" of what was over the fence.  She's such a pretty little cat and often stops by for a snack or just to get petted.

HANDWRITTEN:  - I thought about sharing the same photo of Miss Dottie that was entered in the Love Letters to Kitty Paw contest and even did a different version of the photo and then I decided to see if I could get one of our other cats interested in using a pen/pencil.  This is as close as I got: Callie-Jo wasn't to impressed with learning to write.
I couldn't resist adding the quote to the notebook paper!

BLISS:  What's more blissful then this:
Captain Cuddles certainly looks blissful to me asleep in that cardboard box.  And a good "cat nap" is pretty blissful for me too.

GRAY:  You guessed it...
I took this shot of Piglet outside tonight around 9:30 PM - He is indeed gray or (silver) depending on how you look at it. - He's got a bit of a scowl on his face because there was another neighborhood cat outside as well (a male) and they were having some not so friendly words with each other.  I was trying to take his picture after the other cat left and he still wasn't feeling the love.

So that's it for this weeks hunt.  Do check out Ashley's Blog to see the other entries.

Next week: Routine, Music, Technology, Show Me Your Style, and Mismatch

Friday, February 24, 2012

Photo Art Fiday - February 24, 2012

It's Friday and time to join Bonnie over on Pixel Dust Photo Art for PAF (Photo Art Friday)!
This week we were given 3 different options: 1. Post Any Photo Art we wanted to.
2. Continue to work with Layer Masks or
3. Create a piece of Photo Art that wasn't pretty.  In Bonnie's own words:

Share a piece of photo art that isn't 'pretty'. Yes, art isn't always made from what's beautiful. How about sharing a piece of photo art that is:
* ordinary
* everyday
* gritty

* grungy
* that captures the underbelly of life
* that highlights the flaw
* that is an artistic statement without having to portray beauty
This doesn't mean that your piece won't be appealing, stunning, arresting or captivating ... it just won't (this time) be based on presenting something generally considered beautiful ...

Well that sounded interesting to me.  However last night after peeking at a few of the entries and seeing what Bonnie did I'm not so sure my piece fits #3 but since I already had it completed I'm going to say it's a "Combo" of #1 and #3 just to be on the safe side.

So here's a bit of the story behind my Art Piece.  At our local park they have this tree that has this one limb that grew way out to the side and kids love to climb on it and then try to climb further up the tree.  It's been a favorite tree in the park for many years.   Sadly it's also been used to carve "Graffiti" on as well although it does sort of add to the charm of the tree now after all these years.

Here is a picture of Coleen on the tree:

As you can see the limb has gotten so low to the ground they had to put a support post under it (behind Coleen).

Now for my piece I started with this Close-Up of a portion of the tree.  You have to admit it's certainly, Not Pretty, It's Oridnary, and it's a bit Grungy so those three things alone qualify it for #3 on the list.

I cropped the picture to get rid of some of the Graffitti marks on the right hand side and then edited it in GIMP using the Artistic Van Gogh feature until I got something that I liked.  Then I went into Picnik and used the Boost feature and adjusted it to a level that looked appealing.  Once that was completed I noticed that one of the tree knots looked very much like an eyeball and that gave me the idea to add the Quote and the frame.  (Yes I love to use Quotes on my photos).  So here is my final piece:

On a side note the book I ordered : Beginning GIMP (From Novice to Professional) arrived yesterday and I'm anxious to get started learning how to use this Photo Editing program better.  Wish me luck.

Don't forget to go check out the other entries as you are bound to be blown away by all the creativity.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

"Whatever" Wednesday - The Peacock Edition

Hello,  Today I decided that I'm going to "try" to post a new feature on my blog that I'm calling,
"Whatever" Wednesday where I'll post photos of whatever I want.  There are so many different "memes" or photo challenges but sometimes I just have photos that I'd like to share for no other reason then I like them or I think they are good shots worthy of sharing.  So on Wednesdays I'm going to just share whatever I want and I hope you enjoy them.

Today's version I'm calling the Peacock Edition since I still had several photo's of the Peacocks that I took at the park last Friday.   Hope you aren't bored with seeing them.  So without further ado let's get started:  I was lucky enough to arrive at the park at just the right time.  Mr. Peacock was showing off to his lady friend and for a change I was able to get pictures of him with his feathers all fanned out in all their splendor.

Please Click on the Photo's to enlarge:

While not as colorful or impressive as the front view shots I still like this backside view.  Those white feathers just above his backside are so fluffy.

Next up another head shot, I love the vivid color in this shot:
This last shot of this particular Peacock was perhaps my favorite of all the shots.  He had finally folded up his feathers and was walking off when I snapped this picture.  It reminds me of a Bride with her bridal train (or in this case a Bridegroom) with his flowing feathers.
Now I'd like to share some photos of the other Peacocks that are in the Aviary.  These are White (sometimes referred to as Albino) Peacocks.  They were not very cooperative with photos to start off with but that changed later on.  Though they aren't a colorful as the above Peafowl they are quite stunning in their own unique way.

As you can see the birds in the Aviary are behind chain link fence which makes it rather difficult to photograph them.  I have to position my little Point and Shoot camera in between the links and then use the zoom lens to get some of the shots.

After Coleen and I walked around the park for awhile she discovered some bunnies enclosed in the aviary with the birds and wanted to show them to me.  Just then she spotted the White Peacock showing off to his lady friend so I hurried over to get some shots as quick as I could.  Here is the first one I managed to get,  I wanted to make sure I had a picture showing his feathers fanned out.

I managed to get there in time to take this shot through the chain link while he was still strutting his stuff.

One last shot just as he was starting to fold up his feathers:

So that's it for my very 1st Edition of "Whatever" Wednesday.  I hope to make this a regular feature on my blog.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Love Letters and Macro Shots

Please Click on Photo's to Enlarge for better detail.

Happy Monday! - Since I hate to bombard people with multiple posts in one day I'm going to combine 2 Challenges on this post. 

First up - Ashely (Ramblings and Photos) is hosting Love Letters to Kitty Paw
 and being the cat lover that I am how could I not send her one.  So here is my Love Letter to Kitty Paw:

Yes, that's one of our cats, (Miss Dottie) and she's holding an Ink Pen.  I figured this would be a perfect (or is that Purr-fect) photo for Kitty Paws love letter.

Next up for Macro Monday on Lisa's Chaos
 I'm sharing yet another photo of Mr. Peacock (See Your Sunday Best Shot and Scavenger Hunt Sunday) posts below for more shots.

Couldn't stop at just one so here is one more a little bit closer.  (Yes, Zoom lens was used).

I am just in awe at how gorgeous the colors are on this bird.  - I still have a few more photo's to share this week of Mr. Peacock and one of a White Peacock so do stop on by later in the week.

Your Sunday Best - Mr. Peacock

This is my 2nd post of the day. - So if you are here for Scavenger Hunt Sunday click HERE or scroll down one post.  Sorry as I should have included this photo in that post so as not to post twice in the same day.  Live and Learn.

Nancy over at, A Rural Journal has brought back Your Sunday Best Shot

I'm sharing one of my favorite photo's that I took this past Friday when Coleen and I walked up to the park.  There is another photo of (Mr. Peacock) in my Scavenger Hunt Sunday series so be sure to check it out.  He'll appear again this week along with another Peacock that you won't want to miss.

Don't you just love the colors of this magnificent bird.

Scavenger Hunt Sunday - February 19, 2012

It's Sunday and time once again for Ashley's Scavenger Hunt Sunday feature.
I missed last week :o(  so let's get started on this weeks prompts.

Love, Duplicated, Trend, Paper and Plastic.

First up:

LOVE :  This is the single red rose that my mom placed on my dad's grave on Valentine's Day.  He's been gone 14 years but every year my mom takes flowers out (usually a single rose) on Valentine's Day.  You see my dad always remembered to give my mom something on Valentine's Day even if it was just a handmade card so it's important to her to remember him in this small way.

DUPLICATED:  Now this one had me "stumped" and then I was looking through the photo's I took at the park on Friday and voila~ I had my photo!

I'd say those (eyes) are duplicated, wouldn't you. Not to mention gorgeous.  More photo's of Mr. Peacock will follow later in the week.

TREND: This particular trend was very trendy in the 70's and seems to be making a come back today. You see it on everything, clothing, note books, jewelry and even stuffed animals.  Can you guess what I'm talking about?

Yes, the "Peace" symbol.                  Coleen got this little guy in a Happy Meal at McDonald's.
PAPER:  Okay I was going to reverse the order of the last two photo's because this one is pretty (lame) as I couldn't think of anything to share for this photo and just took this as a last minute desperation photo so please don't be to hard on me for this one.
This is some of the many pieces of patterned paper that I use (hoard) for card making.

PLASTIC:  I decided to go ahead and use this one last since it's a much better photo then the paper prompt was and you might as well end on a high note, right!

One of the slides at the park.  I love those FISH on the left side.

So that's it for this week.  Next week's prompts are: Crossed, A Glimpse, Handwritten, Bliss, Gray.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Leavesnbloom - Edit Me Challenge

Just sitting around catching up on emails when I saw this post at the (Leavesnbloom) blog and thought why not give it a try.  The idea is to use Rosie's photo and edit it then post your edit.  So here is the original photo:

and here is my edited version

I'm horrible about writing down the edits I make in photo's but here is what I did as near as I can recall.
First I open the photo in Gimp and then opened a texture, Etched in Stone (Pixel Dust Photo Art)
and added the texture.  Here's where I messed up as I don't recall exactly what I did as far as adding the texture.  After I added the texture I added the ragged border edge and then saved.  Then I opened the photo in Picnik, used the Lomoish feature and saved again.  Sorry I didn't write this down.  I've got to make a note to start doing this so that I will have it written down when I post photo's.

Anyway you can visit the Edit Me blog to see the other enteries.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Photo Art Friday - February 17, 2012 - Van Gogh Leaves

Happy Friday! -   It's time for Photo Art Friday. I wasn't sure if I was going to participate or not today.  Bonnie had given us the option to post any piece of Photo Art we wanted  (or) to use one of her textures and a layer mask to remove texture from part of our image.  I really wanted to use the layer mask but I just could not figure out how to use one in Gimp and after trying to find tutorials and understand them I decided that I just wasn't going to master that technique this week.  I'm planning to invest in a book on how to use the Gimp program so I can learn about Layer Masks etc...

So instead you are getting a piece of Photo Art that started from this photo taken last November.

I played around with the photo in Gimp and added Bonnie's texture:
Notes to Myself.  It helped to cover up some of the large (Bokeh) space aka (Sun) in the upper left hand side of the photo.
Then I went into Gimp and edited the photo using the Van Gogh technique.  This really changed the photo giving it the feel of a Painting. - Next up I went into Picnik to add the text and quote from Helen Keller.  So here is the end result.

Be sure to stop by Bonnie's blog - You should see her Pear piece, It's wonderful! Then check out the other enteries as well.  Next week is going to be very interesting with the theme so check back again.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Macro Monday 2-13-12 The Awakening

Hey it's Monday! It's also time for Macro Monday
over at Lisa's Chaos.  

The other day I went outside to see if I could find something to take a picture of and I spotted something in my flower bed that I thought was interesting and different. 

Spring is slowly showing signs of awekening and here's the proof:

Don't you just love how those Daffodils are pushing the earth up out of the ground and creating that little umbrella clump of earth. Can't wait to see their sunny yellow blooms!

Be sure to pop over to Lisa's blog and check out some of the other entrants Macro's.  You are bound to be delighted.  I know I always am.  Have a wonderful start to your week.
Before I go please take note of this:

Google Friends Connect is Going Away

Well it appears that I've been out of the loop as to this information but I've been seeing it more and more on other blogs so today I did a bit of research and discovered this to be true. Since this feature is going away on March 1st I've decided to add Linky Followers instead. So PLEASE if you are a follower of my blog please change over to the Linky Follower as I will remove that feature on February 29th. You might also consider switching over your blogs so that I can follow you the same way. It's really easy to do. You can find all the information you need here: on how to sign up.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Photo Art Friday - February 10, 2012

Hello! - Hey it's Friday and time once again for another great addition of Photo Art.
Please join us over on Bonnie's Blog (Pixel Dust Photo Art) where this weeks theme is open to whatever you want.  Bonnie did mention last week since Valentine's Day is rapidly approaching that if we wanted to go that route we could so I did!  Here is what I came up with.

For this I used one of Bonnie's newest textures: Ephemeral.  I changed the hue to suit my photo and lightened it as well.  Then I went to Picnik added the Viginette feature and the Postage Stamp Frame and Text.  Pretty straight forward and easy but I think it turned out really pretty.

Please stop by and leave Bonnie some comment lovin and let her know how much you enjoy Photo Art Friday.  Pop by a few of the other entrants and then why not give this a try yourself.

Have a great weekend.