Wild roses grow along the roadside too.
So, between my neighbors and God, we've got a pretty nice garden around here. And nothing for ME to weed or prune.
I think this is a clemantis. If I am wrong, keep it to yourself!
The color on this shot is not a true as the other florals. This is really quite a dark purple bloom. I think the direct sunlight washed it out.
Winding its way around the fence behind a neighborhood mailbox.
Oregon Grape, despite the name, is totally unsuited for making wine, juice, jelly or any other edible concoction.
I didn't realize the leaves turned red in the summer - thought that was an autumn 'thing'.
Growing in the ditch...
Such a wet spring has left few beautiful blooms on local roses. Fortunately, a few have survived but the leaves seem a little 'rusty' in places.
These are miniature roses - about twice life size in the pictures.
Really? Nah, it's just plain Lily.
These beauties are WAY down the road. I pass by them every day as I drive in and out so I wanted to get a close-up look at them. Worth the trip!
All these shots were taken about 6 pm. That explains the angle of the light.
Actually, more photos from down the road. My next stop was the gorgeous poppies across the road. These look like paintings instead of photos and I especially like the backlit ones for the intensity and variety of colors.
Thanks to my neighbors who grow all the flowers so I don't have to!
I took my new camera for a walk... up the road to photograph flowers! The first thing I ran across was LOTS of blackberry vines. They are blooming at the tops and off the road so I used the zoom to take these shots from about 12 feet.
Amazing detail. Hand-held camera, auto-focus, great zoom!
While I was photographing the deer yesterday, there were bunnies grazing nearby. I took lots of photos, testing out the camera zoom. Even tho there are lots of shots, there are really just two of these rabbits.
I think these are just adorable.
I am really pleased with this camera. It is amazing that you can actually see individual hairs on these rabbits at such a distance. I think the lens was set to 40x zoom!
When a visitor made herself at home in the back yard I decided it was an opportunity to test the zoom feature on my new camera.
This was taken from the back deck and the doe is at the edge of the creek drop-off. If you want to know 'how far' that is you'll have to consult someone else. I don't do math!
I zoomed in even more and got this shot.
She got tired of my moving around and left shortly but, when I was on the lower deck watering the garden, she ambled back out and grazed for a bit.
A few days ago we watched two does tuck their newborn fawns in the tall grass and go off to graze. We've since seen one doe and one fawn wandering around and have seen single does several times, but never the two fawns together.
Then we also watched for about 15 minutes as two does played tag all over the neighborhood the other day. They took turns chasing and hiding behind trees to jump out at each other. We had to go back and forth from the front yard to the back to keep them in sight. They played over about 3 acres. Round and round.
We have two bucks here as well. One has small horns only about 4 inches long but the other has spikes. They hang out by themselves.
This pattern is one I have had on my computer for a long time but never remembered to print out to use until just recently. I LOVE how it works up, though I changed a few things so the straight lines were done point-to-point instead of on lines of holes like designed.
I used four colors of thread to make a gradation from red to yellow, which looks really excellent on the bright blue cardstock.
All the trim, text, and centerpiece are gold peel-off stickers. Then I layered with red and yellow cardstock.
This was the first project I painted for the Vacation Bible School and the LAST to be set up so I could photograph it! I did these four potted plants on paper which were then mounted on styrofoam so they would stand up.
That upper left plant seems to have a couple of the leaves turned backward on the stems. Hmm - I'd better fix those!
As promised - the anniversary cake...
I made a double layer round and a double layer hexagon stacked on a footed clear glass plate. Then I used clear pillars and separator plates to elevate the cake topper.
I covered it and decorated it with buttercream icing (made with sour cream instead of milk) and did all the decoration with piping.
It has been a LOT of years since I did this last but I think it turned out well (the lower left was a transportation faux pas).
And the taste was fantastic, too. The cake is Betty Crocker Golden Vanilla. Yummy!
I went looking for a cake topper for a 60th aniversary cake. No such thing! My solution was to buy a 25th cake topper and edit it so much that it is not recognizable anymore!
Here is a photo of the 'before' cake topper from the catalog (except this is the 50th version with gold trim. The one I used was the 25th version with silver trim.
Here is the 'after'.
The only things original are the clear plastic base, the ruffle, and the couple. However, I used a Krylon paint pen to change their hair from blonde and black to silver/grey.
They had a really twinky 'poof' of netting stuck in behind them so I tore it off and glued on the triptych mirror. Then I tore off the clump of clay from the front edge that said '25' and glued on white paper flowers at their feet.
All of the flowers got self-stick clear rhinestone centers since the 60th is the 'diamond' anniversary. I added flowers to the back of the mirror base as well.
I had chipboard sticker numbers but they were: 1) brown 2) western style. I stuck them to my craft sheet and cut off the pointy edges so they were no longer 'western'. Then I used the Krylon metallic paint marker to make them silver and when that was dry I covered them with 'ice' Stickles.
... the CAKE!
You never know what you're going to find here, do you? Today it's a game I made for our Vacation Bible School round-up/pre-registration day. It sat at one end of a long table and the kids had to roll golf-balls UP the table and try to get it inside the 'temple' between the pillars.
I made it from a cardgoard box and the tube from gift wrap. I covered it all with three types of metallic tissue: an Egyption print, solid gold, and a black/gold swirl. I trimmed up the temple top and the pillar bottoms with ribbon.
Another project painted for Vacation Bible School: A 10-foot King Tutankhamen sarcophagus. This one is painted on canvas using tempera paints.
I was given an outline and then got a color photograph of the real thing to work from. I had a helper who did the face for me and helped to paint some of the gold lines in the head-piece. I painted the rest of it and even painted the whole black background.
Here you can see a close-up of the head:
And this close-up of the body shows how the detail was done. I used a template of zig-zags to draw on the gold background with magic marker to make the black lines. Then a foam brush was pressed in between these lines. From a distance it mimics the design on the original.
Just a couple more projects to show and then on to other things.
More painting stuff for Vacation Bible School. I designed and painted this 'buzzard' and then it was mounted on foam. The legs are made of shiny 3/4 inch ribbon and I hung the feet (brown paper mounted on cardboard) from the ribbon.
The body is about 3 feet across, for scale.
I mentioned (complained) a while back that the preview screen on my digital camera had burned out, making photography somewhat hit and miss. I finally had enough and went looking for a replacement (and an upgrade, while I was at it).
Old camera: Kodak EasyShare C633 with 6.1 mega pixels and a 3X optical zoom.
New camera: Canon PowerShot SX120 IS with 10.0 mega pixels and a 10X optical zoom.
For comparison, I took the same photo across the valley of this barn. It is about 1/6 mile (300 yards) away.
With the old camera:
With the new camera:
Just a LITTLE difference, huh!?! Including the ability to preview the shot and center the subject. Oh, YEAH!
I am hoping my card and project photos also show this much improvement in quality...time will tell. Actually, TOMORROW will tell, as that is the first project that will be photographed with the new equipment.
We have no animals on our farm, yet, but I woke up this morning and found this neighbor trying to peek in the windows of the camper! I'm calling him Tom, now.
There are actually a pair of these beefers who ALWAYS are together so you'd think they were conjoined! They are SO curious and follow us around the fence line watching to make sure we know what we're doing.
They won't be petted but if you are patient they will come and touch their noses to your hand briefly. THEY have to be the one doing the touching.
Here's another shot of Tom, peeping at me. Love the colors created by the backlighting of the sunrise.