Thursday, July 31, 2014


Another big job is done!   The hedges and pillars are all pruned for another summer. I posted about hedge pruning here two years ago.

This year we were a little later, because I wanted to wait until after my birthday party.  Then there was one thing and another to get in the way, and the summer days continue to be warmer than I like, so finally there was no point in waiting for a cool day. 

Tom does most of the hard work, and can manage much of it without my help.
 But there are places in the yard where a ladder holder in necessary, like the fir hedge we did this morning.  Then I outfit myself to have debris and bugs drop on my head while I steady the ladder.
So much fun.  Not! 
 The holly hedge runs all along the side property line.
 Tom's topiary is newly shaped.
And the holly pillars are trimmed.

 And now Tom deserves to have the rest of the day off. I think he'll soon move into the patio rocking chair which is in deeper shade. It's up to 82° and rising.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

More Camera Fun

I needed to see how my new camera does with wide open spaces and sky shots so after another very warm day I decided we should drive over to the Des Moines marina to watch the sun go down.

As we stepped out of the car, we stopped and reached back to grab another layer.  Over by the water our natural air conditioner was working very well, and the chilly breeze felt wonderful.

We walked out on the fishing pier, joining lots of other folks who had the same great idea. Looking back over the marina, Mt. Rainier was alight in alpenglow.

 Airplanes were lining up to land at Sea-Tac.

What was everyone looking at?  Oh, we have a visitor. The fishermen had competition!

 It was all too lovely to leave so we walked over to the park.
 Picnickers were still enjoying the day/evening.

 The lights came on out on the pier, attracting more walkers, as we said goodbye to the day and headed home.
And I'd say my new little camera is passing the test quite well so far.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Playing With My New Camera

My old Canon Powershot S110 was a great little camera, with a 10X zoom, good for when I did not want to carry my big Nikon and separate zoom lens.  But the battery mechanism was wearing out, so that it kept indicating low battery and I couldn't get the rechargable AA batteries to hold a charge.  

It was time to replace it, hopefully with something with the same capabilities but even smaller.  We are going on a cruise in the Eastern Mediterranean and Italy in the fall and I don't want to take my big heavy camera.

This is what I bought.
 It's a bigger camera in a smaller body, a Canon SX700 HS with a 30X zoom.

I ordered it from Amazon, using my Amazon credit card points to apply $120 toward the price. It arrived a few days ago and I have been playing with it as I have time.

My first photo, using the zoom while sitting in my recliner, of a bouquet of flowers across the room.
 A clematis climbing up over a trellis.
 A Western Swallowtail on a butterfly bush, zoomed and then cropped.
 Same with the bumble bee.
 Zoomed in on very tall sunflowers in my garden.

There are some interesting features, some of which I haven't figured out yet.  But this feature creates multiple photos of one image, with various effects.

 The camera decides which effects to use, and I don't know if they can be set manually or not.  I'll have to go online for more information   But I do like some of the results.

I'll have to go somewhere and see how it handles landscapes and sky shots.  So far I'm satisfied.

Oh, and we just picked up the new printer/copier/scanner/fax too.  Our old Epson multifunction machine slowly lost it's functions so it went to the electronic recycler today.

Tom has been very busy upstairs setting it up, while I have parked myself in my recliner with my camera cards and laptop to ride out the heat of the day.

Tom just brought the packing materials downstairs and declares that it is working.  I'll have to check that out next.

Have new toys is fun.