Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Future

Inspired by Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #83: Future

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Today was all about the future.

It was voting day in New Hampshire.

I live in the state which holds the first Primary in the race for President of the United States. Hordes of candidates have been campaigning here during the last year. Speeches. Rallies. Town Halls. Visits to local diners. Television and radio ads. Much shaking of hands and thousands of selfies.

I won’t go into all the drama and teeth gnashing that defines today’s politics. Much of it polarizing and potentially toxic within families and friendships – where differences of opinion exist.

This is not about a particular candidate.

What I want to focus on here is the wonder of living in a country where we actually have the right to vote. A chance to shape our future.

Express our opinions, as diverse as they are. Hopefully with respect.

Sometimes that goes well and sometimes it doesn’t.

Today it went well. I was more than happy to wait for a parking place at the packed voting site. It signaled a large voter turnout. People taking this responsibility seriously. Perhaps it meant less voter apathy. I hope I’m right.

To vote is to put your voice to work for everyone’s future. All the candidates promise – in one way or another – a better future. Whether that be health care, tackling climate change, jobs…and my favorite since my teenage years: promoting peace. World peace. How we all need to get along…better.

I was greeted by campaign reps standing outside with their signs. Media personnel conducting random interviews.

No shouting. Just friendly hellos and smiles.

primary walk

Once inside…

voting sign

Show ID and find a booth…

booths

As a two party system, you must choose a Democratic or Republican ballot for a primary election. This was mine…

ballot

So many choices.
[As far as I know, a $1,000.00 filing fee is all that’s needed to get your name on the ballot]

Last but not least…

pen

 

Let’s hope we vote for a bright and prosperous future for us all.

Time will tell.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Capitals

Inspired by Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #82: Capitals

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I have visited Washington DC, the capital of the United States, many times.

My first trip to DC was with my Cadette Girl Scout troop when I was 13. A very long time ago…but I do remember a few highlights of that long weekend: staying in an old brick hotel, getting in trouble for using the room phone to call boys across the alley at a different hotel and visiting a science museum where an “elephantiasis leg” was on display in a tall glass case. Yup, some poor departed soul’s diseased leg floating in murky fluid proved both fascinating and mesmerizing to my young scientist mind. I have no photos of that trip. Which is probably just as well.

However, as luck would have it, my adult children now live in DC. As well as my grandson. Excellent reasons to visit!

In 2012, we made the rounds of a few tourist destinations…

The Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pond:

DC reflecting pond
September 2012

A visit to the National Portrait Gallery…

gallery
The year before – in June, 2011 – we spent Father’s Day weekend with our son – including taking in a baseball game at Washington Nationals Park…

baseball

Imagine my surprise and delight when I discovered this between innings…

GF food
And last – but not least – we returned to further explore the Smithsonian National Museum of American History…which always includes a pilgrimage to the display case featuring Elizabeth Cotten’s Guitar.

My guitar player husband insists on it…

Cotten guitar

…a respectful moment of silence ensues.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Find Something Red

Inspired by Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #81: Find Something Red

…If you wish, you have the option of “visiting” your photo archives….Capture shots which feature the color red… 

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Find Something Red

When I was a young mother with a 5 year old daughter, I had my second child – a son – who was altogether different from my firstborn. No big surprise really, but even so… shockingly (to me anyway – I considered myself experienced by then) it required multitasking on an entirely new level.

One example: when we all went on outings of any kind, my son was likely to let go of my hand and run off. Or wander off. Precisely when my daughter and I were otherwise occupied. Perhaps being the big sister, she was less likely to do the same.  I’m not sure why, but I was most grateful at the time.

Two children to take care of and keep safe…a whole different ball game.

This brings to mind what Dr. A, our sweet pediatrician at the time, once said to me while trying to examine my son as he slipped from my lap and tried to crawl up her leg. As I described how my parenting techniques were not always successfully transcending to child #2.

She smiled that smile reminiscent of people who don’t have children…The first kid is for practice! I think parents should just throw the first one out. Ha Ha Ha.

She was just kidding of course. Although I kind of got the point.

But back to finding something red…

In order to keep track of this very lovable – and speedy – bundle of energy (once compared to a Great Dane by his first grade teacher) outside the confines of our home, I often dressed him in something red. It helped enormously if I needed to locate him in a crowd. At a park. A store. A playground. Since he was tall for his age, a red baseball hat usually worked quite nicely as I quickly spotted his head above the rest. Red shirts and jackets? He was a Chicago Bulls…and then later…a Red Sox fan. Done!

Never one to let winter’s chill keep him from basketball practice, a red snowsuit helped me keep track of him one January day when he was 5…

red ball031 copy

A red baseball mitt lit him up on the ball field playing catch at 4 ½…

red ball030 copy

Little did I know how quickly the time would come…

red ball033 copy

…when those flashes of red I’d see in the crowd at a neighborhood park would be someone else’s bundle of energy streaking by.

With a parent in hot pursuit.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: A Window with a View

Inspired by Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #79: A Window with a View

…Share with us photos you’ve captured through windows.

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As I have mentioned before in several posts, I enjoyed a photographer’s paradise last summer when visiting the Shelburne Museum in Vermont. Twice actually…as there was so much to see I had to return! Not just to photograph, but to experience.

Why couldn’t history lessons be this fascinating back in high school?

For this challenge, I will include two images.

The first was taken while walking across a double-lane wooden covered bridge. It was built in 1845…a weathered sign warns bridge crossers riding horses or automobiles not to exceed 10 miles per hour.

I discovered a window about halfway across the bridge…

bridge window

…offering a glimpse across the pond beneath.

The second window was in one of the 39 buildings situated throughout 45 acres of museum grounds…

sunny window

…showcasing a small sample of the vibrant, colorful flowers blooming in one of the 22 gardens on the property.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Special Spot Shots

Inspired by Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #78: Special Spot Shots

Now we are looking forward to seeing Your very special spot shots – maybe a room in your home, a garden, a mountain, a city, an exhibition, a lovely café…a place that is special to you!

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While taking on this photo challenge, I came to the realization that my “Special Spot” had changed.

At first, I thought…Coronado Beach! I have such warm and wonderful – and yes, special, memories from the half dozen times I vacationed there.

I have posted about this slice of heaven on the US west coast several times…

Coronado Beach, California

However, I have not been back to Coronado since 2006 and it is unlikely I will be able to make a cross country trip again.

Time for a new special place…

I live on the US east coast…relatively close to a beautiful beach. I will admit, it’s not as beautiful as Coronado…but it still ranks up there.

From October through December of 2016 we lived in a rental across the street from the sands of Hampton Beach. A temporary stint of “living at the beach” while we waited to close on our new condo under construction a few towns away.

It was off season, so we practically had the beach to ourselves…

hamptonbeachNov2016
Hampton Beach, NH – 2016

Peaceful.
Perfect for afternoon walks.

reflection 2
Hampton Beach, NH – 2016

A seat on the sand for contemplation…

shadow
Hampton Beach, NH – 2016

…mesmerized by the waves while my imagination ran wild with plans for the future.

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Yesterday afternoon I decided to take a ride back to Hampton Beach…

Dressed in layers for a cold, windy, winter walk.

It happened to be low tide. The lowest tide I’d ever seen.

I was not disappointed…

hampton beach
Hampton Beach, NH – 2020
January beach
Hampton Beach, NH – 2020

It seems I still have a Special Spot.

Now…close to home.

Fifteen Favorites

Inspired by Lens-Artist Photo Challenge #77: Favorite Photos of 2019

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Choose my favorite photographs of 2019?

That’s a tough one (which I made a bit easier by not including family photos).

I managed to pare it down to 15(!). It was an especially exciting year as I dove into the world of macro photography. An additional photographic challenge.

I am curious…which one is your favorite?

1: January…ice crackling on the river…

exeter river ice

 

2: February…a welcome color display…

flowers for sale copy

 

3: Early Spring…signs of nature coming to life…

fiddleheads

 

4: May showers…

raindrops

 

5: Summer sunsets…

lake frame

 

6: Butterfly on zinnias…

zinnia butterfly close

 

7: The magical pond…

magical pond

 

8: Sunflower parade…sunflowers group

 

9: Amber waves…amber squares

 

10: Crunchy path…

acorns

 

11: Fall arrives…

twisted tree

 

12: Watch your step…

 

13: The cactus blooms!

blossom day 4

 

14: Late fall fantasy edits…

IMG_1487 fantasy copy 2

 

15: Last, but not least, back to where the year began…with the crunch of ice.

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!