Saturday, December 12, 2009

December 2009

It's Saturday!  And, it's 12-of-12 day!  What could be better?
OH, I know - almost 2-straight days of snowfall and then a GORGEOUS sunny, snow-sparkling day to snap some photos.

But before I get to the snaps, first I need to thank Chad Darnell for his brilliant idea of making a photo diary of the 12th day of each month using 12 photos.  Thanks, Chad!

So, as I mentioned, it's been snowing and snowing and snowing here.  It started Thursday.  I went downstairs to work-out at 6:15am and by the time I got back upstairs, everything was covered with a thin coating of snow... and it was really coming down.  I live in "ski country" so I'm no stranger to snow.  In fact, this is one of the latest "first snows" we've had in a long time.  (We've had snow mid-October in years past).  Thursday was the first REAL snow we've had this season.

This storm was a "lake effect storm" - the Great Lakes produce bands of snow clouds that are almost identical in shape to the lake itself.  (If I had thought about it, I would have grabbed a picture from the oh well.)  Lake effect storms tend to stay in one place, maybe "wobble" north and south a few miles, then dissipate.  This week's storm threatened to stay till today, but in actuality, fizzled last night.  All total, the weather people say we got 22.2" of snow in 48 hrs.

So let's get to the photos already!

6:30am - Time to sweat.  I have been faithful to the "promise" to myself back in October... weights/cardio, 3-5 days a week.  Today was day 5!
Workout complete.  Chores complete.  Time to play!

11:30am - 1:30pm - Wandering around Sprague Brook Park in Concord, NY
The slopes aren't open yet... next week, they say.


The pond is frozen, but the cattails won't give up! 

Giant marshmallows?  Sadly, no.  Snow covered rocks.

Not that you can tell from these photos, but the snow was really deep... 2-feet in spots... and since we are the first adventurous (crazy) souls to come out here on foot (no skis/ snowshoes/ snowmobiles) it was a tough walk.  I burned a TON more calories during the hour we were out here.

4:00pm - The kids really enjoyed their walk, too.  Here's what they look like now.
TaterBug & Mackie

They are so snuggly now that the weather has turned cold.  And with our walk today, they'll just want to sleep for the rest of the night; PERFECT, since I have a "Sock Exchange Party" to go to at friends' house.  They won't miss me one bit!

The sox I have to exchange tonight fit in quite nicely with my 12-of-12 this month... here, take a look and let me know if you agree.

Happy Holidays!
See you in 2010! 

Thursday, November 12, 2009

November 2009

I had some great ideas about what I wanted to do for today's 12-of-12.... a picture every hour from 6am till 6pm (selecting one from each hour for the 12 shots of the day) and I REALLY wanted to get a picture of a cow (since I was going to be doing a lot of country driving today).

I failed on each count.
BUT... I did get some really cool other shots.

On my way to Corning, NY.  It's cold this morning... hovering around freezing.

In Corning, NY... the home of Corning Glass & the Corning Museum of Glass.

Glass was an integral part of every building.


Here's one of Corning Glass' HQ.  Slightly hidden by this pretty tree, but you can still see all the glass that surrounds it.

If you'd like to see more shots of the Corning Glass campus, click here to see the pics that didn't make it in the final 12-of -12 cut.

Back home... no more leaves on the trees and it's getting dark, fast.

My new obsession... knot tying.

Finished this one tonight... 
 & after 

Created by Chad Darnell, the 12-of-12 is a photo project where participants post 12 photos from their day on the 12th day of each month.  Go check out his site for other great photos!  See ya next month.

Monday, October 12, 2009

October 2009

Is it the 12th already??? Wow, time is flying.  Here's my set for the October 12-of-12.  Created by Chad Darnell, the 12-of-12 is a photo project where participants post 12 photos from their day on the 12th day of each month.  Enjoy!

It's Columbus Day here in The States, so a number of people have a holiday/vacation day today; I didn't.  BUT, I took the day off to recover from our 4-day trip to Fairhaven/New Bedford, Mass.  It was a wonderful relaxing, slow-moving day.

10:00AM:  We started the day off right with a breakfast of Massa (Portuguese Sweet Bread) French Toast - the bread came from an amazing little bakery down the street from our friends' home in New Bedford, MA.

I enjoyed the warmth from the fireplace and spent some time correcting a major boo-boo in my knitting project afterward.

3:00PM:  We need a walk & pumpkins!

This week, we start up our exercise routine again.  The weekend was full of food, food, food, so it's time to get back on the wagon and back into shape.  The Forestry is just the place to start...

Mackie asks Daddy for a cookie.
Please, Daddy?

4:00PM:  On the way out, I notice a few things that I've never paid much attention to during our walks here (which are at least once a week).

A soft-leaf plant; today holding a fallen Maple leaf.

How impressive the ends of the logs look today... so much activity on what should be such an inert piece. 

C'mon, TaterBug!  Time to go.

Today was also PUMPKIN day.  We stopped at a local farm to grab a pumpkin and some gourds for the start of our fall decorating.

6:00PM:  We'll get another pumpkin on Saturday, and carve it up for Halloween.  But for today, we tried out something new... making Spiders out of gourds!  We found this cool little kit while shopping at The Sea Witch Gifts in Fairhaven, MA.

Here's the before:

... and the after!

7:30PM:  As I type, the pups and I are relaxing by a lovely fire (again).  There's been talk of a marshmallow or two in a bit.  Gotta finish posting, first.  I'd hate to get marshmallow goo all over the keyboard.  So, to sign off, I'll share our fire with you.  Can't you just feel the happy warmth radiating through the monitor?  :)

Cheers!  See you next month!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

September 2009

Today is the 12th of September, so it's time for the 12-of-12! Created by Chad Darnell, the 12-of-12 is a photo project where participants post 12 photos from their day on the 12th day of each month.
Since today is a Saturday (with lots of free time for most people) the folks at Podcacher have suggested we make it a Geocaching 12-of-12 and post pictures taken during our caching adventures today. I'm not a "power cacher", but I go out geocaching almost every weekend with my family.

10am - Shopping!
Today was not much different from a typical Saturday... but to start, we all met at the East Aurora Farmers Market.

You can find the most amazing fruits, veggies, and flowers at this market, not to mention the honey, breads, and other fresh hand-made stuffs.

Noon-ish - GEOCACHING!!

Once we stocked up on market goodies, we made our way to Marilla Town Park a few miles away to hunt a couple geocaches. What a beautiful little park! Very well kept and two geocaches to hunt.

Geo-kids - ready to go!

The two-legged Geo-kid made quick work of the first hunt. Not many trade items fit in this cache, so we signed the log, then headed off to the second cache in the park.

I hoped to be able to place the "Viney Crush" travel bug into our 2nd cache of the day since the cache page said the container was a large Tupperware box.

The question was... could we find it?

We finished our walk back to our starting point, but before we left this great little park of the day, we took a group photo of our caching crew. Here we are celebrating two successful finds - HOORAY!

Geocaching can really work-up an appetite, so we headed back to Mom & Dad's to have lunch together, then went our separate ways. I still have to log my finds on but not before the final photos from my September 12-of-12.

5pm - Cherry Jam!!!
Earlier this week I got 10-pounds of sour cherries from a local organic grower. I made one batch of jam, but had enough cherries for two (plus some extra for a pie). So, before they went bad, I made batch #2 tonight.

It's 8:30pm now and I'm ready to relax after a wonderful, yet busy day. I took a WHOLE lot more than just 12 shots today... choosing which to post was a tough decision. If you're interested in seeing more of the set, visit this link.

Farewell to summer, and hello fall. See ya next month when I'm sure there will be some new colors in the mix!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

August 2009

It's that time again... time for the August 2009 12-of-12. Created by Chad Darnell, the 12-of-12 is a photo project where participants post 12 photos from their day on the 12th day of each month.

I was a little worried that I wouldn't find anything fun to shoot today since today was a work-day. SO... I got a little creative in my routing and took a few minor detours to get some shots from the more interesting parts of the Finger Lakes (in Central New York). I'm posting the pix within the blog this time, so there's no separate link to get to them (and I can add more stuff about each shot).

BTW, I ended up with 54 pictures from today. I didn't realize I took that many. Paring it down to 12 was tough.

I started the day in Geneva, NY. This town sits at the "top" of Seneca Lake and is considered to be in the heart of the Finger Lakes region.
- A friend of mine who grew up in Geneva describes it as the "middle finger" because if you look at the hand print-like layout of the lakes, Seneca is exactly where your middle finger would be.

At lunch, I visited two parks that provide views and access to the Lake. It was a bit overcast, so the pictures aren't as dramatic as I would usually hope to achieve.

The weather was warm, hovering around 80-degrees, and humid. (The weather has been rather volatile this summer - a number of intense thunder storms and rain on almost a daily basis).

A woman at the park was sharing her lunch with the seagulls - I interrupted their meal on my way back to the car and couldn't help snap this shot with everything lining up so perfectly. Catching one in flight made it even better.

Before my lunchtime was over, I made a quick stop at the Geneva Farm Market & Fruit Outlet. I could have spent A LOT more time here, but limited myself to the essentials... apricots and plums (oh, and apples and honey). I will be making jam in this week out of these little sweeties. Apricot is, hands down, my favorite jam with red plum coming in close behind... great fruit flavor, tart but sweet. YUMMMMMM!


On to Canandaigua! This town is just "down the road" from Geneva on Rts 5&20 and sits at the top of Canandaigua Lake. The picture above was taken during a short break I had before heading on to the next town. You wouldn't know it from the photo, but we didn't have a whole lot of blue sky today.

To get to my next stop, in Honeoye (giving you lots of practice with Native American Names today, aren't I?) I traveled up Main Street in historic Canandaigua. These are just two of the amazing, well manicured homes I passed along the way.

I wasn't expecting to stop in Bristol... but I just HAD to when I saw this view. Pretty amazing having such expansive farming areas just outside of this quaint little town.

I thought I was going to get rained on in Honeoye, NY. The clouds were thick and the sky was much darker than it was just a few miles ago.

This is a shot of, what else? Honeoye Lake.

I drove half-way down the road that follows the lake to find a place that wasn't marked "Private Property - No Trespassing" where I could get a picture of this lake. I was almost ready to give up when I saw the "Sandy Bottom Park & Nature Trail." This is where I was able to catch this view of the northeast corner of the Lake.

My last stop of the day was in Lakeville/Livonia, NY. Here, there is a great little park called Vitale Park (named for the donors who made the park possible), you can picnic, swim, park your boat and just enjoy being near the water. I took a number of pictures here, but whittled them down to two to stay within the 12-of-12 guidelines.

These two gulls were just begging to have their picture taken.

Looming above Lakeville were some pretty puffy clouds. Not sure if they'll bring rain today or just make some amazing designs in the sky.

If it wasn't getting late (almost 5pm), I would have stayed to make cloud animals out of what I saw.

What does this cloud look like to you?

Almost 6pm:

So, finally, I'm in the "home stretch"... within an hour from home and passing by one of my favorite places... an area where I am always amazed - The Weathersfield Wind Farms!

The pictures don't do these incredible machines any justice. They are IMMENSE - 265 feet tall with three 120-foot blades. Each of the 1.5 megawatt turbines can generate about 4.3 million kilowatt-hours a year — enough clean energy for about 500 homes.

I can't help but get all Sci-Fi when I drive through this area. It's simultaneously a little 'War of the Worlds' creepy and walking on the moon amazing.

So, that's my day... a lot more FUN than I expected it would be. Glad I challenged myself to make a 12-of-12 set on this Wednesday work-day.

See ya next month!