Nancy Merrill’s Photo a Week Challenge: Up In The Air



These days “up in the air” could very easily apply to life in general. For me and most everyone else on the planet.

However…since I usually tend to take things quite literally, I am choosing “up in the air” to mean just that. Air travel. That’s about as up in the air as I ever get anyway. I can’t imagine hot air ballooning. Or tight rope walking. Or zip lining….

Between December 2019 and February 2020 I traveled by airplane three times to Washington DC. My seat always in row 14 – near the wing. I don’t know why, it just feels safer to sit near the middle of the plane. I will not, however, book a seat in row 13. No reason to tempt fate.

Whenever I fly, I am fascinated by the view from the window. If the weather cooperates and I can hold the camera (in this case my phone) steady, I document what passes by. Trying not to think too deeply about the fact that I am encased in a metal tube traveling at a very high speed – held up by the…um, air. Thousands of feet above good old terra firma.

A few up in the air moments…captured to distract myself.

On my way to DC.

in flight
On my way to DC
in flight 2
On my way to DC getting closer

And on my way home.

in flight 3
On my way home…taking off

It is, after all, beautiful country down there.

Sunshine’s Macro Monday: Mushroomed

Sunshine’s Macro Monday #33


birch tree mushroom


I don’t know if the warmer than average winter (so far) is the cause of this larger than average (as far as I know) growth on a fallen birch tree.

All I do know is it seems to mirror how life has been lately.

Mushrooming – everywhere – out of control.

At least that’s the way it feels.

How about you?


It was only a month ago

Inspired by Cee’s Flower of the Day



yellow roses
Six Roses – but one is hiding


Is it just me or does Valentine’s Day seem like a really long time ago?

Was it only one month? Four weeks exactly…on February 14th…when my husband handed me this stunning bouquet of six yellow roses?

Happy Valentine’s Day! We tried to figure out how many Valentine’s Days we had spent together, but settled on “over 40…”

Since that day, my life has taken off on an alternate trajectory. Or so it seems.

The morning of the 15th we discovered water had leaked into our bathroom from the condo above us. Our upstairs neighbor left her faucet running unattended into a clogged sink. Water poured through our bathroom ceiling. In condo land, she isn’t held financially responsible. And so it began…the reports…phone calls…repairs…cleanup…costs. The worry about mold. The hours I’ll never get back. Finished just yesterday.

There was a happy four day interlude during a trip – which may be my last one for a long while – to Washington DC to spend time with my children and grandson.

Reports of a new virus started popping up in the news during that visit – the 3rd week of February – but I paid it no mind. That’s happening in China after all.

Then a week ago, news of a crisis affecting one of my sisters activated an intense worry-filled texting chain and phone calls with extended family I had not been in close touch with for many years. However, as many of us realize, a crisis – a matter of life and death crisis – can open a space and lower boundaries – at least for a while. Because…it’s family and you love them. We reach across the divide…anxiously searching for answers. Solutions. Each day and night fraught with worry. Feeling helpless and intermittently hopeless. Emotional support can only do so much.

Today is looking somewhat brighter. Hopefully her crisis has passed enough to be manageable. For now. We cautiously breathe just a bit easier.

The texting chain has now switched to the coronavirus and its affect on all of our lives. Another serious and potentially deadly situation. More anxiety piles on.

Sixty four texts greeted me this morning filled with humorous memes, cartoons and reports of people searching for toilet paper. Long lines at the grocery store. Stockpiling in case of quarantine. The family texting chain continues. Desperate for connection. In a new crisis.

Four weeks ago was Valentine’s Day.

Six yellow roses brightened my day.

Lens-Artists Challenge #87: Reflections

Inspired by Lens-Artists Challenge #87: Reflections

…we invite you to be creative to find any reflective surfaces to show us your reflection photographs.


My most recent favorite reflection happened in January during a walk on the beach. The tide was lower than I’d ever seen before. The afternoon light caught the clouds above while the beach transformed into a mirror.


I had driven to this beach with an overwhelming need to clear my head. Walking along the ocean…listening to the waves hit the shore…the blue sky meeting the water in a far off horizon.

It never fails me.

january clouds
Hampton Beach 2020

A few years ago I caught this moment during a walk close to sunset.

beach sunset
Hampton Beach 2016

Last summer, reflections appeared on a pond at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont.

vermont pond
Shelburne, Vermont 2019

This past week has been quite difficult on a personal level…which drove me to the beach again yesterday. No reflections this time…but these photos brought it all back.

The peace. The calm. The comfort.

Gotta love the power of the images we capture – as they transport us back to a healing moment in time.


(I resisted inserting the Supremes rendition of Reflections, as it kept going through my mind while writing this post…it’s funny how songs just pop up at the most unexpected times)


Lens-Artists Challenge: Change Your Perspective

Inspired by Lens-Artists Challenge #86: Change Your Perspective

…we invite you to break the habit of shooting photos at eye-level and change your perspective.  Instead, show us your photographs taken from a variety of perspectives–by getting down low, by looking up at the subject or looking down, or walking around the subject. 


This past Sunday – sunny but cold – seemed a perfect opportunity for a walk on the beach. The bright afternoon sun enhanced the perspective potential for this challenge…and I am always chasing the light.

It didn’t disappoint.

Along the walkway bordering the beach is a shelter that covers several lines of benches. The sun lit it up with lines as well.

Catching my eye from one side…

roof 2
At first…one side

A bit less eye-catching from the other side…

roof 1
And then the other side…

Venturing underneath and looking up…

roof below
Taking a look up…

…revealed an entirely different display.

I continued walking down the boulevard…but before turning around to head back to my car, I glanced up.

Apparently two seagulls took it upon themselves to be on the lookout atop a light pole.

seagulls from below
On the lookout…

They sat at attention long enough for a photo.