Category Archives: Photography

My Brain is Frozen

For the past two weeks I have been trying to think of something to write. I know I have ideas floating around in my head – but – I think my brain has frozen. Probably won’t thaw out in the near future. revised pompas 1093

Yesterday morning I was hopeful when I went out to my van to go to work at 7:00. The sun was shining. The air felt warm. There was no wind. I got into my van. It was -5 degrees. Was I actually thinking that -5 was feeling warm? Was my brain crazy or frozen?

IMG_2695This morning it is -15 with -37 windchill. The only thing I can think about is “When will this winter end?” It’s all everyone is talking about. The cold, the snow, the wind. Buildings collapsing due to the heavy snow (including my neighbor’s shed). Worse winter since 1903 or 1876 depending on which part of northern Wisconsin you’re from.

Like everyone else, I’m sick of winter. I want it over. It’s March 2nd. Farmer’s Almanac says 30 more inches of snow in March. Where will we put it all? I think I hear my flowers crying. Will our trees survive the deep, deep frost? How have the deer survived? Will the bears be able to climb out of their winter homes? Are the birds smart enough to stay away until things thaw?

Will my brain start functioning again and give me something more interesting to write about next week? Man, I hope so. Meanwhile, back to editing my Work in Progress. Code FL13

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Filed under Flowers, Nature, Photography, Reflection, Uncategorized, Winter

Remember this?

Code FL15I had my first vision of my flowers the other day. Of course it was all in my head. Buried deep, deep beneath many feet of snow, I know they are just waiting to burst forth and bring color back into my life. The other day I went through my photos on my computer and gazed at my flowers, green grass and leaves on trees. It was an up-lifting experience. I’ve started dreaming of camping, hiking, biking, too. IMG_2662

Yes, we’ve all been hearing, talking about and reading about this, long, long winter. We’re all tired of it. Except for a few, fleeting warmish days, it is too cold to get outside and enjoy the snow.

Right now I’m listening to the wind howl outside my office window and know our long driveway will probably drift shut again. The guy who plows our driveway will have to make his second trip today. Our snow fence is nearly buried.

Code B17This morning when I went to fill bird feeders, the snow came to well over my knees. It got to the point where I knew I couldn’t go any further, so I stuck the bucket of seed in the snow, managed to get my legs out and turn around. I trudged back to the garage and put on my snow shoes. I had to bend down to fill the feeders, and somewhere out there is a buried birdbath.

So, enjoy these pictures and remember warmth, sun and colors other than white. Code FL35

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Filed under Flowers, Nature, Photography, Reflection, Uncategorized

On With the New Year’s Resolutions!

IMG_8524 redoneEarly in January, I wrote a blog about my 2013 New Year’s Resolution. Most of you probably don’t remember it, but I was not going to vow to diet, exercise more or any of those other healthy things. I do them anyway, so using that as my resolution was a moot point.

I pondered for awhile. One day after walking past my shelves of Nora Roberts’ books, I decided I would read all of her books that were on my shelf. I would not buy anymore until I did.

I keep track of all my books in Excel and upon checking my list I found had 157 of her books, fifty-three of which I already read through the years. That left 104 to be read in 2013. I calculated I’d need to read two of her books a week to make my goal.

Well . . . I didn’t make it. I made a valiant try, but of the 123 books I read this year only 90 were hers. So close, yet so far away. As much as I enjoy her books, I found I needed a break once in awhile. I also had so many authors I wanted to read and enjoy.

It was interesting seeing how her writing evolved, how styles changed and society changed from her earlier books. The first time she had a character flick a cigarette over a railing (boat, hedge, window, car, etc.) I couldn’t believe it. But in the early and mid 80’s that was the norm, people smoked in books – and they weren’t the bad guys. As the years went on, Nora did this less and less.

One problem I encountered with reading so many of her books was how it affected my writing. Nora is known for her head-hopping. She even brought in the thoughts of very minor characters. The more I read of her, the more I found myself writing like that. I have to go through each of my scenes, paragraph by paragraph and mark whose point of view I wrote in. All-in-all reading her books was a learning experience.
Besides Nora’s books, I read several books for fellow Soul Mate Authors for review, some books by other authors I couldn’t resist and some I had to read for research for my history books.

There were some books I started and for one reason or another, just couldn’t get into and donated them to our local library for their annual book sale. I will have to be careful when I go to their book sale next year and don’t buy the Nora Roberts’ books I donated. (That’s why I bring my book list along.)

My favorite book so far has been “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” simply because I’m reading it with my nine and a half year-old granddaughter. We then watched the movie and talked about what was left out from the book and how some scenes in the movie were changed. It was fun. We are going to continue the series throughout the year.

Riding for Love CoverSo now for my resolution for 2014. It will definitely be to have more books published. 2013 was very good for me with “Riding for Love” coming out in May and my short story, “A Year and A Day,” published in Soul Mate Publishing’s anthology, “All I want for Christmas is a Soul Mate.”AllIWantforChristmasisaSoulMate

In 2014 I know I will have two children’s books released – they are currently in the hands of the illustrators. The titles will be “Uncle Bill’s Farm, True Stories of His Crazy Animals” and “The Hat Trader.” I don’t have covers, yet. I hope to have another romance published. And I definitely want to get much more writing done.

I’ve been working on my photography and will have ten of my pictures hanging in a new coffee shop in our town. They are also going to sell my photo cards. I hope to promote more of my photos and eventually get them on my website to sell.

As far as reading goes, I will finish the thirteen Nora Roberts’ books on my shelf. Guess I have to make that fourteen as my husband bought me one for Christmas. I went through my book list and found several authors that I have several copies of their books. Some I have over ten. So for 2014, I’m going to slowly and enjoyably read through those authors. I will continue to read my fellow Soul Mate authors’ books and, of course, the Harry Potter books with Alli.

IMG_8510I hope everyone’s 2014 resolutions are as fun as mine. Happy New Year.

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Filed under Christmas Anthology, Photography, Publishing, Reading, Reflection, Romance, Soul Mate Authors, Uncategorized, Winter

First Snowshoe in Northern Wisconsin

It has been snowing, snowing, snowing in Northern Wisconsin. Today the temperature rose enough to haul out the snowshoes and head into the woods for an hour or so. Conditions: Temperature: 14 degrees. Precipitation: Light fluffy snow. Snowpack: Lots. Noise level: quiet. Eyesight level: absolutely beautiful. I’ll let the pictures tell the story.

The weighted-done trees stood like sentinels protecting (or warning) those who wished to enter the woods.

The weighted-done trees stood like sentinels protecting (or warning) those who wished to enter the woods.

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Just as I was taking the picture of an interesting branch, the only breeze of the day hit, blowing snow off the tree onto my camera and face.

Just as I was taking the picture of an interesting branch, the only breeze of the day hit, blowing snow off the tree onto my camera and face.

The man.

The man.

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If you look closely, you can see the snowflakes floating down.

If you look closely, you can see the snowflakes floating down.

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Filed under Health/fitness, Nature, Photography, Reflection, Uncategorized, Winter

The Taping of Christmas Movies – Oops

IMG_8254 redoneI believe it was last year that I decided to watch and review romantic movies. Since I don’t watch a lot of movies, this proved to be a challenge. I managed to review two. Plus, with all the things that happened this year (good and bad) , I found I never watched another one. To name a few, the release of Riding for Love, my husband and I are back as owners of our business, family obligations, editing my next book, writing A Year and a Day for Soul Mate Publishing’s All I Want for Christmas is a Soul Mate, promotions, speeches, and working on my photography. I hope you enjoy some of my photos here.

This fall when the Hallmark channel started promoting their Christmas shows, I thought it would be a good time to get back into the groove of reviewing movies. I love Christmas movies. Some are too sappy for words, some happy and a few sad enough to bring me to tears. I’m not sure how many I’ve watched so far, but most have been good. There have only been two that I watched for a bit and then quit. One I pressed on to the end and wondered why I wasted my time. Who thought a dog saving Christmas was a good idea? IMG_3268 redone

When I started taping and watching the shows, I was vigilant in making sure I taped a few, then watched the same amount I taped and deleted them so I wouldn’t fill up our DVR. I thought I had it all under control. Oops.

Two weekends ago my husband was deer hunting in another state. This was a good chance for me to catch up on the movies. Thursday night I watched two and taped two. Friday night I watched three and taped three – or so I thought. Oops.

088 redoneSaturday was a particularly lousy day outside. Drizzly, snowy, windy. The type of weather that makes me want to drink hot chocolate, eat popcorn and watch sappy movies. I turned on the tv, clicked on the DVR and started scrolling through our taped shows. Oops.

It only took me a second to realize the only things on the DVR were Christmas movies. OMG. Where were our new season NCIS shows? Castle? White Collar? Joe Bonamassa concert? Nature shows? Al’s hard rock shows? Oops.

Evidently there is a setting on the DVR (one I didn’t know about) that allows you to say that if you are taping a show and the DVR is full, it will quit taping the show – NOT DELETE THE SHOWS ALREADY TAPED!!!!!!
Somehow I must have clicked on a few more Christmas movies to tape than I thought. All our previously recorded shows were gone. I quickly went to the Hallmark channel and un-clicked the movies I didn’t know I set to record.

Then I had to fess up to Al about what happened. He was silent for a moment and then shook his head, not surprised that I’d do something like that. Luckily he has a good sense of humor, although I think he’s a little upset about the Joe Bonamassa concert being deleted. IMG_3260 redone

So now I’m only taping one show at a time or watching in real time. Our favorite show are being recorded again – but we will have to wait for re-runs of NCIS to see the first three episodes.

But the saga continues. Last night I watched part one of Love’s Christmas Journey. I thoroughly enjoyed it with its plot twists and turns, western period setting and good acting. After it was over, I had plenty of time to watch part two before bed. I went to the DVR menu and scrolled down. Once. Twice. Three times. No recorded part two.

I then went to the Hallmark channel and clicked all the way through the days to November 29th. Did I find part two? Nope. I guess it was one I un-recorded in my haste to get our favorite shows by on the DVR. IMG_8167 redone

I guess maybe I’m not meant to watch a lot of movies and review them. Or maybe I’m DVR challenged. Or maybe both. Either way I tried my best. I will start posting some reviews this week – I hope.

Until the next time, have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

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Filed under Christmas Movies, Photography, Reflection, Uncategorized, Writing