Monthly Archives: February 2013

The Name Explains

The sky at 7 a.m. yesterday.

The sky at 7 a.m. yesterday.

Normally my sunrise photos posted here have been taken with my trusty iPhone 5, which I carry on all my morning walks and runs.

The sun’s rays emerge.

The sun’s rays emerge.

But yesterday I also had my Nikon S6200 with me and used it to snap the early-a.m. action. I especially like how its sensor captured the different colors.

Those dark specks among the clouds? A flock of birds.

Love these clouds.

I’m not surprised at all how groovy these pics turned out. After all, the point and shoot I used? It’s a Coolpix!

One-Word Wednesday

A family suns itself along the creek in my community. (Nikon S6200)

A family hangs out along the creek in my community. (Nikon S6200)

Turtles!

Nature’s Surprises

A fly enjoys some purply goodness.

A fly enjoys some purply goodness.

Sometimes it’s easy to see nature’s freeloaders while I’m snapping away at wildflowers.

Buggy!

Buggy!

As I get up close and personal with my Nikon 105mm macro lens, insects often come into focus along with the flora.

I didn’t notice the little antennas until I edited this photo on my iMac.

I didn’t notice the little antennas until I edited this photo on my iMac.

Other times the vagrant varmints show up as I work in Photoshop in the comfort of my home office. I wonder how I could’ve missed them while I was in the thick grass.

Not all of nature’s winks, though, are actually on flowers. Last Saturday as I was about to lean over to take a bluebonnet photo, something odd “hoppened” that was kinda “hare-owing” (somebody stop me!):

Bye, bye, bunny!

Bye, bye, bunny!

Quick as a bunny . . . because it was one . . . this critter near me shot out and scurried down the walking path. Got my heart to racing like Danica Patrick at Daytona.

Mental note: When it comes to nature photography, be careful of busy bees and rascally rabbits!

Not Very Blue

More bluebonnets are springing up!

More bluebonnets are springing up!

I’m not sure why Texas’ state flower is called the bluebonnet.

A beautiful crop

A beautiful crop

The ones blooming in the master-planned community next to ours where I do my longer runs are more purple than blue.

Love ’em no matter what the color

Love ’em no matter what the color

I guess “purplebonnets” sounds a little too odd!

Fate and Sam Houston

“I am General Sam Houston.”

We made the sword; can you tell?

Looking back at some 2005 photos when my younger son was in the fourth grade, I have to wonder if maybe he was predestined to attend Sam Houston State University.

The kid and his fourth-grade class

The kid and his fourth-grade class

His grade’s spring program was “Voices of the Alamo.” The 9- and 10-year-olds played characters from early Texas history, including Native Americans, conquistadors, priests, Davy Crockett, and even Clara Driscoll, who saved the historic mission from being demolished. It’s a stirring tale made even more poignant by the sweet, young voices who told the story and sang songs like “Texas Our Texas.”

A natural at the microphone

A natural at the microphone

Of course, there was this cutie, who actually got a speaking part. The first line?

“I am General Sam Houston.”

Yep, my son actually played sudden Sam back in elementary school. Of course, as I proudly watched him on stage, I wasn’t thinking at all about this moment in time almost eight years later when he would be on the cusp of his next academic phase: At the general’s namesake college.

Methinks the fickle finger of fate pointed the way.

“The Office” Rules

Jared, the kid, and Ricky show their Office alter egos.

Jared, the kid, and Ricky show their “Office” alter egos at last Saturday’s Senior Serve.

Three years ago when it was our older son’s turn to participate in his high school’s Project Graduation dinner and silent auction (aka Senior Serve), he had utterly no interest.

The sign is held up by paper clips!

The sign is held up by paper clips!

Fortunately, his little bro bought into the concept and had two of his besties, Jared and Ricky, on board. The seniors think up themes for their tables and then do their best (with a lot of their parents’ help, of course) to carry them out with decorations and costumes. At first, the boys wanted to do Beowulf.

Why? Why not!

Jared’s mom, Mary, borrowed her work’s office supplies.

Even the tablecloth is paper.

Fortunately, they came to their senses after realizing how hard that would be to pull off. Thus came Plan B: “The Office,” which is one our favorite TV shows (well, the early seasons when it was funny).

The table’s centerpiece was reams of copy paper and a dead laptop.

The table’s centerpiece was reams of copy paper and a dead laptop.

My younger son quickly decided to be Michael Scott, the character he likes best. Ricky was tabbed as Dwight Schrute, because sometimes he wears glasses. That left Jared to be Jim Halpert, who he definitely favors with his lankiness and laid-back style.

A novel idea for a tip jar!

Cool beans: A novel idea for a tip jar!

The boys practiced a couple skits to perform so they could earn tips (which go into the ProGrad coffers). We set up a mini desk (a card table) for them to use complete with official-looking phones and our three office chairs. On game day (aka last Saturday night), they were ready to go and highly amusing.

Sidebar: For me, the best part of the process was bonding with the other moms, Julie (Ricky) and Mary (Jared). We had a blast brainstorming ideas with and without our sons and then helping them make these special memories.

Our cake had a lovely presentation.

Our cake had a lovely presentation, thanks to Mary.

The kid made a credible Michael Scott (despite his lighter hair color), complete with a faux suit (a new-looking blazer we bought at Goodwill for a mere $15), World’s Best Boss mug, and a wristband that read “Support the Rabid.” He, his buds, and the parents had a great time at the event, which featured a lot of other wonderful themes, including the Bachelor, Duck Dynasty, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and even a carnival.

I’m sure it was tough for the judges to pick the three top tables, which won a bunch of the coveted Bulldog Bucks that the kids use to buy prizes at the June 8th ProGrad.

Katherine, Kristen, and Brittany are coming up roses!

Katherine, Kristen, and Brittany are coming up roses!

In the end, though, the table next to us, Garden Party, won as best theme. It smelled as good as it looked!

Too bad there wasn’t a prize for the table that had the most fun with the cutest guys. Ours would’ve won that hands down!

One-Word Wednesday

Water spouts make interesting shapes at Sam Houston State. (iPhone 5)

My iPhone 5 catches the water making interesting shapes at Sam Houston State.

Spouts!