Thursday, July 21, 2016

Project 52 - Water Balloons - Week 29


Technically, these pictures are from last week. This past weekend I was in Missouri and will post soon about that (once I get through the 500 plus pictures I took). I knew I would be gone and starting a photography course so I decided to calibrate my 35 mm (I'll get to the other lenses soon) and then wanted to test it out.

I'd noticed long ago that my focus wasn't spot on with my 35mm. It seemed to be focusing slightly in front of where my focus point was. I finally picked up a calibration tool and made the appropriate tweeks. Not sure if I got it quite right, but it's something I can continue to mess with until it's right.

Once calibrated, I was able to get Riley outside when I suggested we fill up some of the recent water balloons we bought. These suckers were a bit time consuming to fill and hard to tie up, but she had fun throwing them up in the air and watching them come to a crashing splash on the ground.

I also have been working on my editing so these may look a little different than my usual. My greens have been a little toxic for my liking, so here they are a little deeper. As I mentioned, I've started a photography class and hope to be nailing the picture in camera so there is less editing afterwards.

Now off to work on my vacation photos...

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Project 52 - Parade time - Week 28


After a short yet busy week I was determined to go to the Hamel Rodeo. Unfortunately, I couldn't seem to convince Jesse of that. The more family friendly show also conflicted with a birthday party Riley was invited to and in the end I just didn't feel like pushing it. However, we did check out the Hamel Parade, which has been a tradition for a few years now (minus last year). This parade is filled with firetrucks, tow trucks, local businesses, politicians, and horses. No flashy floats here.

We tried to get to my dad's by 1:00 pm since they start to close down the roads, but we had to pick up some Pine Sol for my dad as a last minute request. Apparently, it kills Yellow Jackets which have taken up residence in my my dad's garage wall. In fact, he went to the emergency room last week after being stung by one and swelling up pretty good. Anyhoo, we had to talk the parade organizers into letting us through and I had to throw my dad's name out there. It's a small town and the lady lives on my dad's block so we got a little razzing and were then let through.

My dad's friend, Ed, was over (Ed used to across the alley from the house I live in. He and my dad have been friends for many, many years). Ed joined us as we walked through my dad's back yard and into the neighbor's yard. The neighbors weren't there this time, so we left the old guys in the yard while we took up a spot on the sidewalk. It was hot, but clouded over so we thought we would be fine. Unfortunately, those pesky clouds decided to break up and it got hot, hot, hot.

This was Jesse's first year attending and he commented that we should be sitting at the end of the parade (instead of the beginning). His theory was that the people in the parade just want to get rid of all the remaining candy by the end. He had nothing to worry about as this parade is big on the sweets. We bagged most of it up afterwards and Jesse brought it to work - we definitely don't need that much candy at home. We also got some t-shirts, necklaces, stickers, fake tattoos, and a hat.

While there, I used a couple of the freezee pops they handed out to keep me cool. One under my hat and one in my shirt and I was good to go. Must remember this next year.

'Camel Towing' - worst name ever

After the parade was over, we hung out with my dad and Ed for awhile until the roads were clear. I was getting a bit of a headache from the heat and the smell of Pine Sol I my dad liberally sprayed around the garage.

My dad has an old concrete deer that's totally falling apart, but he asked Ed and Jesse to help him get it set up again so they did that and I took some pictures of my kid.

We left these guys to get a Pine Sol high  catch up and enjoy the toasty weather. Maybe next year will be the year I finally make it to the rodeo. If there are any rodeo lost souls out there, you are welcome to come with me.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

4th of July

I can't believe the 4th of July was already over a week ago. I've been a little slow to get to all my pictures I've taken recently, but I'll be all caught up soon... and then I'm sure I'll fall behind since I'm headed to Missouri this weekend and starting a photography class at the same time and won't have access to my computer for 5 days. This is where I wish I had a laptop, but whatever. I will live.

We spent the 4th of July with my in-laws where we had a fabulous dinner and then headed to the boat for a cruise around the lake and a viewing of the fireworks.

This was the first year we decided to show Riley the Fireworks from the boat. Last year, was the first year she braved watching them (from afar). She's never been a fan of noise - loud noises just turned into lots and lots of crying. Not only was she okay with the fireworks, but she loved sitting at the front of the boat and kept asking to go faster.

This kid is not the same kid I knew a couple years ago.

Lots of parties and patriotism on the lake

Quickly over having his picture taken

Such a cute picture of these two.

Love this one too.

We decided to 'park' pretty early to make sure we got a good spot. Poor, excited for fireworks, Riley had to wait patiently for another two hours for the show. Luckily, she's somewhat self entertaining.

Slowly, the boats start to gather.

Almost time! it's getting darker!

I was hesitant to even attempt pictures of fireworks with out a tripod and solid ground, but I think these turned out pretty good considering I placed the camera in my lap for stability and just pushed the shutter from time to time, ballparking how long I'd keep the shutter open.

I love all the squiggly, fuzzy boat lights at the bottom.

These fireworks weren't the only ones nearby. We could also see some from Valley Fair, Mystic Lake Casino, and from quite a number of people who live on Prior Lake.

I don't remember this one looking like a bug, but cool for it to look that way in the picture. It's like a ginormous mosquito. Very fitting for Minnesota.

It was a late night for our wee one (and for us too), but she did great. I didn't get to bed until 11:30, but Riley was up at 6:30 am. I tried to convince her to go back to bed, but that only bought me another 7 minutes. Still, I'll take it since there was no crying at the fireworks - only excitement.

Can wait for all the future 4th of July celebrations!