Monthly Archives: April 2014

“I Just Play”

An anchor on one of our local tv stations frequently shares his beautiful photos on the station’s Facebook page.

A few weeks ago, he posted an amazing picture of the sunset in an area similar to where we live…. water, marsh grass, etc. There were many, many compliments on his photo. And, there was this comment:

Nice, now what was the subject if it was the sun then the grass is in the way but if it was the grass the sun compliments it, a successful landscape image needs to contain at least 3 elements. Or the image should make the viewer see at least 3 things. Here’s the tricky part, the 3 things can be but don’t have to be objects. By objects I mean trees, rocks, mountains and such. The 3 things can also be any combination of the physical objects and contrasting colors, repeating patterns, negative space vs. positive space, the color of the light, the angle of the light, shadows, silhouettes, seasonal colors, opposites (like blue clouds and white sky as opposed to blue sky and white clouds), reflections, seeing what is under the surface of the water and on and on. Try to include one of these non-objects in as many shots as you can, they will make your landscapes stand out.”


And in response to that comment, the anchor (who is, obviously, a class act), replied:  “That’s why photography is an art. I just play.”.       ~ Tom Schaad

Me, too, Tom.

sunsetss 4-24-2014 7-23-59 PM

Me, too.

~These Days Of Mine~


Another Sunday Adventure

Before I tell you about our adventure with Motor Man’s mom this weekend, I have an announcement to make. Since my husband is “Motor Man” and I am “Motor Mommy”, I thought it only fitting that we have a blog name for his mother. We discussed it Sunday, and decided that she will be referred to in the future on These Days as “Motor Mum” (as in the Queen Mum).  

After lunch Sunday, we headed to North Carolina in search of Knott’s Island to take Motor Mum on the Currituck Sound Ferry. Motor Man had a good idea of how to get to the general area. A few years ago, he and I had ridden the ferry.

Well, to put it mildly, we had a little difficulty finding the ferry dock. We saw some interesting sights along the way: beautiful homes, yards and flowers, and some not-so-beautiful homes and yards. It soon became apparent to Motor Mum that her hosts for this trip had no clue where they were going.

And it was then that I said to her: “We operate the ‘Fly By The Seat Of Your Pants Travel Agency’, and you take your chances when you travel with us”.

We did finally find the ferry dock:

ferry1 4-27-2014 2-40-19 PM

I had hopes of the three of us getting out of the vehicle while on the ferry and enjoying the view as we sailed across the Sound. But, that was not to be. The boat is very small, and we were parked so close to the side that we couldn’t get the passenger-side doors open (a little concerning, since it was a 45-minute ferry ride).  I went to the upper deck of the ferry, and took this picture of Motor Man and Motor Mum, waving at me through the sun roof.

mom and jr sunroof 4-27-2014 3-03-15 PM

We spotted an osprey nest, built on one of the pilings near the dock, and I was able to  zoom in for this picture. I love that they’ve used a little green in their decor.

osprey 4-27-2014 3-01-48 PM

Another Sunday adventure, brought to you by the “Fly By The Seat Of Your Pants” travel agency.  Suggestions are being taken for a catchy slogan for our newly formed company.

~These Days Of Mine~

The Beach….And Aggie

Saturday, Motor Man and I made a day trip to the Outer Banks. It was a beautiful day, and the sand was perfect for driving on the beach. We didn’t use four-wheel-drive for the majority of the ride.

beach 4-26-2014 11-46-25 AM

We weren’t able to do much driving on the “back roads” off the beach. There had been so much rain recently in that area, there were LOTS of “sippy holes” like this one. When this is looming ahead of you, you definitely take an alternate route. Unless, of course, you’re like this guy, who later wished he had.

sippy hole 4-26-2014 10-50-14 AM

I thought I’d share this series of pictures of us driving across a dune back onto the beach. Picture 1:

dune1 4-26-2014 11-18-26 AM

Picture 2: getting a “runny-go”:

dune2 4-26-2014 11-18-30 AM

Picture 3: can we make it?

dune3 4-26-2014 11-18-31 AM

(Yes, we made it.)

We didn’t see one, single, solitary wild horse, so I was, obviously, disappointed about that.  It’s a good thing we stopped to see sweet Aggie both heading to the beach and coming back home.

aggie and db 4-26-2014 3-00-22 PM

It seems that Aggie has quite a fan club. I posted a picture and comment about her birthday on an Outer Banks Facebook page, and, at last check, it had more than 200 likes. Go, Aggie!

Tune in tomorrow for news about our most recent Sunday adventure with Motor Man’s Mom.

~These Days Of Mine~

Random Five Friday

As I noted last week, the official Random Five Friday meme is no more. But my readers seem to enjoy the R5F posts, so I’ve decided to go it alone.

1.) Gypsy “helped” me with office work yesterday.  She is oblivious to the calculator, until I start using it. Then she’s captivated with that paper. I’ve learned if I need to keep a calculator tape, I’d better tear it off quickly, before she has a chance at it. Thankfully, this wasn’t one I needed.

gypsy with calculator

2.) Sundae was at the window “chattering” earlier this week.  She must have thought this was the biggest bird she’d ever seen.

sundae and duck 4-22-2014 8-23-56 AM

3.) Continuing with the animal theme, recently, there were three herons (right, TexWis?) waiting by the river at sunrise to catch breakfast. I’ve never seen three so close together. As soon as I snapped this picture – through the window – they flew away in unison. Now, THAT would have been a picture.

3 egrets herons 4-20-2014 6-42-59 AM

4.) A few of my readers asked that I post about some of the cards I make. I’ll try to write in depth about that soon, but here’s one I made this week for Marshall’s grandmother. She’ll be 94 in a couple of weeks. It was my first try at watercolor, and, although I have lots to learn, I’m pleased with the results. (The bird image is a stamp, I just watercolored the grass and the blue around it.)


5.) This may very well be the ONLY selfie I’ll ever share. I was having an exceptionally good hair day (not to brag) and wanted to document it. And, no, my hair isn’t red: I was standing under the lights in our bathroom.

db hair

Enjoy the weekend, friends!

~These Days Of Mine~


Her Birthday


lona bd

You may recall my posts about my cousin, Lona, who passed away last November. Today would have been her birthday.

I’m sharing this photo again (we used it in the video for her funeral) in memory of her.

This picture was taken in 1964. She was 11. It was the year we pretended to be secretaries to the Beatles (we dreamed big) when we played together after church on Sundays.

Our lives were interwoven with family and church. As children, we went to Sunday School together, GA (Girls in Action) functions, sang in the Junior Choir, and of course, as cousins, we were always visiting each other with family.

As adults, we taught pre-school Sunday School and Vacation Bible School together, and the GA functions were replaced by BYW (Baptist Young Women) meetings and activities. But, as cousins, the family aspect never changed.

We grew apart briefly in the 1990’s, but reconnected, and I was honored to be of help to her in the past few years as her health failed.

Our dear mutual friend, Janet, (more like a family member than a friend) and I are planning to meet this afternoon for an iced tea in honor of Lona’s birthday.

Oh, and Lona will definitely be with us.

Happy Birthday, Lona.

~These Days Of Mine~

The Better Option

Yesterday morning,  I was awake before the sunrise. I actually prefer waking up that early.

1 sunrise 4-22-2014 6-15-13 AM

That time of day, there are several workboats out in the river, the men working the crab pots.

work boat 4-22-2014 6-15-20 AM

When the morning is as beautiful as yesterday, I envy those fishermen in a way: experiencing the smooth water, the quiet of the dawn, the amazing colors in the sky.

workboats 4-22-2014 6-15-51 AM

And I think I might like to be out there on one of those boats. Oh, not to do any of that manual labor, of course. My title would strictly be: “Boat Photographer”.

workboats close 4-22-2014 6-17-32 AM

But, then, I recall seeing those same men in those boats out working on mornings when the weather is cold, rainy, windy, the water is rough, and gray is the only color in the sky.

And I decide that it’s much better to be standing on our deck, taking pictures of those boats. And the sunrise.

sunrise last 4-22-2014 6-26-40 AM

~These Days Of Mine~

A Brief Appearance

It had been a few months since we’d seen her.  But a couple of weeks ago, I glanced out, and there she was.

bride swan and clouds 4-15-2014 6-11-10 PM

Bride Swan is so special; I’m always excited to see her, especially when she’s been gone for awhile.

bride swan 4-10 4-11-2014 7-16-04 PM

There’s nothing like the golden hour of sunset to flatter a bride.

bride swan sunset 4-11 4-11-2014 7-22-24 PM

She spent some time relaxing in the grass…

bride swan on land 4-13-2014 7-52-48 AM

…and after a few days, was gone again. Hopefully, when she returns  next time,  Groom Swan will be with her.

New to the blog and not familiar with Bride and Groom?  They were introduced in this post, and you can read more about them in The Swans category.

~These Days Of Mine~