Beyond The Ocean Blue

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There are times when I wonder why I am so drawn to taking photos when I travel to various places. I suppose it’s so I’ll keep those images with me in a tangible way. I find that I keep those images and experiences with me anyway. When I look at these photos from Hawaii,

it seems that I can still hear the pounding surf, see the sea spray on my sunglasses, and feel the gritty sand between my toes. These images bring back the temperature of the day, the wind that completely messed up my hair, and the delight I found in seeing the crab’s shadow rush across the sand. The mountains were quiet, filled with hanging clouds that spat occasional raindrops at us. My mind is filled with these memories but these photos bring back all those other pieces and feelings that made taking the photos so important to me at that moment in time on that particular day.

I take photos because I love all the places I have been and I want to keep those memories with me always.

 

 

Just A Little Kindness

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One last blog with photos taken on my vacation.  Perkins Cove in Maine to be exact.  

When I put together my photo book from our vacation, I kept coming back to this grouping of photos.  There’s something about the place that I want to keep in my mind.  Photos have a great way of doing just that.  When we are out and about, I always offer to take strangers photos when I see them struggling to get a selfie to commemorate where they’ve been.  Most people are very excited when I offer.  I go a step further.  I think about lighting, shadows, and the general surroundings.  I take a shot far away and move in a couple of times.  Then I wait to make sure that they are happy with the shots.  It takes a few seconds and it makes them so happy.  I tell them to have a great day and go on my way.  Maybe the world could be a less troubled place if we all just showed a little kindness here and there.  Go out and do something nice for a stranger today.  It will make both of you feel good.

Little Piece of Paradise

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I often find my mind drifting after I’ve been to Hawaii.  It conjures up images from my most recent trip.  This last visit has proved to do the same.  Once we left the Big Island and arrived in Maui, we had an enchanting experience and I will share more of that in some blogs to follow.  

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Lacey Green Leaves

Look at the leaf here.  There was obviously an insect that thought this plant was quite delicious.  I think it looks a bit like lace.  The leaves caught my eye and then what was behind it caught my imagination.  Wouldn’t you love to live here?  I would!  I wouldn’t mind just visiting here either.

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Looking Like Paradise Awaits

It’s nearly across the street from this little old stone church.  This island has so much to offer and so many long-lasting memories from the pleasant times that I’ve spent here.

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Chapel By The Sea

We went to areas that we didn’t know existed and it leaves (no pun intended) me thinking that I need to return to other islands to see everything they have to offer that I might have missed in the past too.  Always love to return home but then I can’t wait to explore some more…..  

Sunrise

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You’re going to think this is a little crazy but almost everyday I awake and think, “I have a good life.”  Maybe it’s because images like this one run through my mind.  This is what I love about taking photos, once you have them in front of you, they tend to stay in your mind.  People used to write poetry to help those images stay with them.  We simply point and shoot and there it is, like an instant magical memory.

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Quiet Sunrise in Hawaii

I think while shooting photographs, you are constantly looking to capture the most beauty out of a subject that you can.  I look at the photo below and can remember the sound that was made as the surge of the waves would push up through the hole.

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Tropical Imagery

Then there is this beast.  I only got to spend a short time with this subject but this image stays with me for some reason.  I wish that I had more time to spend there but we were on a bus tour that gave us enough time to disembark, click, click, click and off we would go to the next quick stop.   

Mad Dash Tour in Scotland

Whirlwind Tour in Scotland

This next image takes me back to walks to the waters edge in England, good friends, and happy times.  I know it’s often gray there but I found it to be a delightful place and now I can go back and pull up these photos and return to my wonderful memories any time I wish to. 

Dreary Day South England Coast

Gray Day in Southern England

So look at my memories, and remember your own.  Perhaps we all have, “a very good life.”

Corals and Crimson

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With the recent large waves that have been crashing into the California Coast and Hawaii, I’ve been reflecting on the stillness that can also be found on the coast.  One of my favorite places is Half Moon Bay during very low tide and sunset.  There is a magical presence that I find there.  It revives my soul and calms my spirit.

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Copper Colored Bluffs at Fitzgerald Marine Reserve

I’ve also been thinking about the old saying, “home is where the heart is.”  I always thought that saying was referring to a structure but I think I was wrong.  Anywhere can be home as long as you find peace in that place.  Even fond memories can be home if they lighten your spirit, like the childhood memory of warm sand moving in-between your toes.  I find that I need to keep these pleasant thoughts close to me in this chaotic world that we find ourselves living in.

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Tidepools at Sunset

I want to share one other sunset that wants to linger in my mind.  It was beautiful and the company devine.  The whole trip was such a wonderful time.

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Etretat France

Waves are everywhere, pounding and changing the landscape but in my mind it will always look like this until I return again.  It was almost a bronze color and then in an instant it returned to grayish white.  This is one of the places my heart finds it’s home.  I never want to let go of those lovely memories.  I hope this stirs up some lovely memories that you want to hold on to also.

Petals In The Wind

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Out in my backyard today

Is a swirling raucous wind

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Flowering Salmon Quince

So those petals, young and blossoming

Become suddenly strewn in the spin

 

 

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Magnolia Soulangeana Blossoms

I’m so glad I caught images yesterday

For today, they are gone from sight

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Resting Mourning Cloak Butterfly

As the storm will soon come thundering

Unleashing with all it’s might 

 

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Yellow Acacia In Bloom

Each West Winter is bound to repeat this pattern

Yet the flowers return here anew

Brightening up my landscape

Coloring my every view

 

Bonnie L DiMichele 2/2016

Storm Set colors

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I recently drove from Southern California to Northern California through some road conditions that were less then wonderful.  As I was driving there was an amazing sunset but I didn’t want to stop to take a photo because of the road conditions.  I wrote the following poem to help my mind remember the colors that I saw.  I hope you can visualize them too.

Storm Clouds

Storm Clouds

Storm Set Colors

This sunset that surrounds me
I haven’t a photo for
I’m driving North through cold slushy rain
But it’s colors, I adore

Bright bubble gum pink and glaucous gray clouds
Form a nimbus line to the East of me
Atomic tangerine with black cumulus legs
Hang eerily as far as I can see

Ochre grays and rusty coppers
Linger throughout the clouds
They push their way around me
Then they drop, rain pounds, out loud

A tiny patch of light blue sky
Glows off in the distant West
Illuminated rolling green pistachio hills
Front snow sprinkled mountain caps

I push on through the misting,
Through the downpours, and endless showers
Remembering the colors
The soft, bright, and wickedly gloomy,
Colors

2/2016  Bonnie L DiMichele

Kissing Camels

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Kissing Camels

It has been raining in California.  I am not complaining, I like the lakes catching water.  It does make it difficult to take photographs to share on my blog.  I started thinking about places I had been on clear days and this trip in 2005 came to mind.  I went for a walk in The Garden of The Gods in Colorado Springs.  It was a clear, crisp, morning and we had a little time to kill.  

First Glimpse of The Garden of The Gods

First Glimpse of The Garden of The Gods

It was the second time that I had been somepace where there were red rocks.  The first was in Sedona Arizona and the rocks were covered with snow.  I didn’t have my camera with me and I regret not having those images.  I keep them safely tucked away in my mind, unfortunately I can’t share visual memories with other people unless I have photographed them.  It was beautiful!

Storm on the Horizon

Storm on the Horizon

Towards the end of that day, we watched a storm grow out over the horizon.  I had never seen anything like it in California.  It was spectacular.  It caused me to think about my family and how very fortunate I am to have them in my life.  I wrote each of them a little Thank You and sent it, snail mail, to them.  The final thought on the thank you was this; “Growing gracefully is a gift one gives one’s self and bestows on those who live around them.”  Even though they were still young, I could see that they were growing in a manner that would be pleasing to themselves and those who came in contact with them.  I am grateful for my family.  They are the loveliest people to know.  And yes, I am grateful for the rain and the time it yields me to reflect. 

Ah, America

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We got up with the sunrise last Saturday morning and headed off to Pete’s.  We needed warm drinks to take with us to The Sacramento Valley Veterans Memorial Cemetery.  I recently began volunteering for Hospice and they had asked for volunteers to lay wreaths on the veterans grave-sites.  I didn’t know what to expect but we have some friend’s who have family members who rest in peace in this cemetery.

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Upon Arrival at the Cemetery

 

We were so taken back by the response of volunteers to honor our servicemen.  There were about a thousand of us.  The program ran about an hour and I was moved when one person brought to our attention that, “we are one nation, under one flag.”  I sat and thought about what that means in this crazy hostile world that we have come to find ourselves living in.  I also thought about the price that comes with freedom.  Giving up a little time to decorate the graves is a tiny sacrifice of my time.  As the sun came out to warm our backs at the end of the ceremony, I realized that I will do this again, and beyond that, I would like to challenge you to volunteer.  Find something that is important to you and get involved in 2016.  You will meet the nicest people and find true purpose in your life.  Maybe this hostile world won’t seem quite as bad when you volunteer.  

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It only took a few minutes to place a wreath on every grave.  Now that I have more time, I can get back into volunteering.  I used to volunteer for activities that my children were involved in, now it’s more about what I desire to be an active part of.  2016 is a perfect time to be a part of the volunteers that span America.

 

 

 

Reflective Sky

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Yesterday I was on my way to an appointment in San Rafael when I came upon this area.  The air was perfectly still and the waters were reflecting the blue sky like a mirror.  I was so taken with the sight that I decided to stop on my way back later in the day.  

Cullinan Ranch Tidal Restoration, Hwy 37

Cullinan Ranch Tidal Restoration, Hwy 37

I came back through a couple of hours later and it was windy and the waters were muddied up.  It was so different then what I had viewed earlier, so I decided to return today with the hope that I could catch the same stillness in the air.

Three Egrets by the Landing

Three Egrets by the Landing

The wind was ever so slight this morning, but it doesn’t take much to stir the water.  The view was nothing like the day before.

Flying Crane

Flying Crane

I was a little disappointed but then I saw a single crane and it was gracious enough to fly across the water for me.  What a lovely sight.

Looking for Midmorning Snacks

Looking for Midmorning
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It made me stop to reminisce about how I felt as a child when I would see something amazing for the very first time.  Our lives are filled with wonderment every day.  We just need to stop to take it all in.  We all live in places that have beautiful surroundings.  I hope you see something truly amazing this weekend.