Category Archives: Landscapes

Hello….Spring?! | Minnesota Nature Photographer

A couple of weeks ago I was enjoying the beautiful 30 degree weather, compared to the frozen temps we had in January and February. I went on several hikes so hopefully have some new material to write about. I even have two new lenses I’ve been trying out!

Then Spring hit. This past Friday we got 5-6 inches of snow and last night it was 10 degrees. Factor in the wind chill and it was -4 below zero. What the actual……?

So we’ve been hibernating and I’ve been working on editing some portraits and doing some SEO for my other website.¬† Thought I’d pop on and share my 3 sunset shots I got within 10 minutes of each other on one of the nice nights a couple of weeks ago. I had just finished up on a headshot portrait session and was on my way home. I took the first two with my iPhone 6s Plus, and the last with my new 24mm 2.8 lens.

Hopefully, I’ll have time this Spring Break to make a couple of more posts ūüôā¬† Thanks for stopping by!

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Sunset at the Pit, Elk River, Minnesota
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Winter Sunset Downtown Elk River, Minnesota
Winter Sunset at Bailey Point
Winter Sunset at Bailey Point
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SKOL and the Snow | Minnesota Nature Photography

This past Sunday was an exciting one in Minnesota. Our beloved Minnesota Vikings moved on to the NFC Championship game this week against the Philadelphia Eagles. If you’re not a Vikings fan, you just don’t get it. And that’s ok! ¬†No, it wasn’t the Super Bowl, it wasn’t even a championship game. However, if you’ve been a Vikings fan for as long as I have (and many more), it felt like it! ¬†Year after year we have had heart break. So many games that were decided at the last minute because of a missed field goal, interception, etc. It NEVER goes our way. Until this past weekend. Not sure if I’ve come down from the high yet! ¬†I am hoping to get a group together to head down to Minneapolis this week to catch some evening shots of some landmarks that have turned purple in honor of our Minnesota Vikings. ¬†SKOL!

At any rate, while the Vikings were playing INSIDE in the warm temps, the snow was falling OUTSIDE in quite frigid temps. I wasn’t able to venture further than my own back yard (I live in an apartment so not much was available, and I was feeling a bit under the weather), but I grabbed a few pretties in the snow before the big game. ¬†Enjoy!

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Happy New Year! | Elk River Nature Photography

This holiday leaves me a little happy, a little sad, and somewhere in between. I’m sad because every year I promise myself I’m going to get back at my nature blog and post. And every year I manage to break that promise. I started a 52 week challenge at the beginning of 2017 and it peetered out. ¬†Working 3 jobs has clearly taken its toll on my nature blogging. ¬†I am missing my parents and my brother so much this week. Holidays are so rough when you have loved ones in heaven. I wish Heaven had visiting hours and wasn’t so far away!

So many things happened in 2017. Good and bad. ¬†I had a tremendous year with my senior and family portrait photography business. ¬†Check out my website here if you wish, www.frommomentstomemories.net. It keeps me busy and adds income in the summer months when I’m not working at the school. It also supplements my income in the fall months. However, it takes me away from so much. My sidekick, my nature walks and blogging, and “me” time.

On a somber note, my sidekick has been diagnosed with POTS (Postural Orthastatic Tachycardia Syndrome), EDS (Ehler’s Danlos Syndrome), Chronic migraines with seizures, Chronic Fatigue, Eosinophilic Gastroenteritis and a plethora of other chronic issues. ¬†All due to her HPV vaccination she received in 2013. She has been going downhill health wise since the end of her freshman year in high school. Unfortunately she had to leave school physically in the middle of her junior year and start online studies. ¬†She has a debilitating neurological disorder that doctors still are challenged by. ¬†She suffers from migraines and seizures every day. All together it is called “Dysautonomia”, which is an umbrella term meaning she has a dysfunction of her autonomic nervous system. There is no cure.

I graduated from my online degree program in December of 2016 and ending up getting a job as a Personal Care Attendant for her. ¬†I work part-time in the mornings at the school while she is sleeping, and go home and take care of her in the afternoons/evenings as my job. ¬†I am fortunate that my state recognizes family members as PCA’s, because I can’t leave her home alone for more than a couple of hours at a time. ¬†This summer and fall, I scheduled portrait sessions around my PCA schedule. When she felt up to it, she came along and was a tremendous help with posing, putting kids at ease, playing with the little ones, etc. She helps so much with the administrative side of my business.

She was able to attend her senior prom in May, and graduated from high school in June, and I couldn’t have been prouder. ¬†It was so hard for her, and I saw what she went through just to get it done. Now her friends have gone off to college, and she is stuck at home with this debilitating health issue. ¬†She is not able to keep a job, as she is always having to call in sick. We have been to the Mayo and several specialists. She has also tried 13 different meds and 3 bouts of Botox. Sigh. It has been so difficult to see her deteriorate when she was such an active, vibrant, social teenager. She has her good days and bad days, and I pray for more good days. We have an upcoming appointment with at Neurologist at the University of Minnesota, who specializes in Autonomic Disorders. We are hopeful.

I started selling my nature prints through my website, and may join the crowd on getting them onto Fine Art America in the upcoming weeks.   I am really hoping to at least try to blog a couple of times a month in 2018, but I am not going to promise anything anymore.

I don’t want to be a Debbie Downer, that is not my intent, just wanted to explain a little about my life and whereabouts the last few months. ¬†Nature photography has gotten me through many things, including the passing of my mom, and soon after, my dad. It is so relaxing and refreshing to be able to get out into nature and just be. ¬†I have found a little time throughout the year to take a nature photo here and there, and will share my year with you here.

I enjoy popping on once in a while and reading up on my fave nature photographer/bloggers here on WordPress.  I may not always comment, just know that I am lurking every now and again and hope to do more in the coming year!

Here are a few of my faves from this past year.

I sincerely hope you all have a safe and happy new year!

 

 

 

 

52 Week Challenge – Weeks 8 & 9 – Depth of Field and From Below

So I’m posting two weeks together tonight. The last couple of weeks have gotten the better of me. ¬†I even had Week 8 “Depth of Field” done several days before my “deadline” but wasn’t able to post.

Anyhoo, my daughter wasn’t feeling well and quite frankly rarely does, unfortunately. She suffers from several chronic illnesses, which is a blog post for another time. ¬†In the mean time, I brought her home some beautiful roses to cheer her up. I thought it was the perfect opportunity to get some great depth of field photos with my 85mm glass. My favorite lens!

Don’t you agree?

 

Spring Roses 2017

Spring Roses Vertical

In Week 9, I had an idea of getting under a tree or some type of landscape situation for “From Below”. I fell behind in getting photos¬†and last night gave me the opportunity I was looking for. We had some terrible thunderstorms last night and in fact, about 7 miles away a tornado touched down and did some damage. This panoramic photo was taken by my daughter with my iPhone 6+ from our deck. It was a weird weather night, and the earliest a tornado has been recorded in Minnesota history.

Storm Panoramic

Still think global warning is a farce?

Next up this week:  Books.  Should be easy, as my house is full of them. However, I may venture out to see what I can find.

Have a great week everyone!

Sheila

52 Week Photo Challenge – Week 5 – Wide Angle

What a crazy week it was, stopping by to post my challenge photo. Grabbed this one morning almost a week ago now. We had some light flurries and the sun was peaking in the trees in just the right way. I used my iPhone for this one on the way to work. Sometimes it feels like that’s when I do my best – to and from work!

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Hope everyone has had a great week. I am loving all the photos every week that I’m seeing! ¬†Keep ’em coming!

Week 6 is all about the lazy days! We’ve had our share of those around here!

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52 Week Challenge – Week 2 – WINTER

Or as I fondly say, Winter From My Neck of the Woods!  I am a day late and a dollar short as usual on getting this one out!

I have to say this was a good week to have WINTER as the category in the 52 week challenge. In Minnesota, we had plenty of different weather (as usual) this week! I took a few photos of what winter means around here!

Earlier in the week, we were blessed with three days in a row of the white stuff. It made for difficult driving commutes. I am really lucky in that I leave later than most, and come home earlier. I am not stuck in traffic most days, lucky me!

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My drive in to work on Tuesday.
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Shoveling the sidewalk on Monday at work.
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HA my car buried at the end of my shift. Looks the same on the other side.
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After the snow cleared so did the sky, there was a sunset, off my deck.
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If I were to pick my favorite of the week, it would be this one. A male Northern Cardinal Wednesday morning before work. Again, off my deck.
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Yes, I know it’s corn.
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Again on Wednesday, it cleared up when I left work.

Then it got COLD. C РO РL РD. COLD. Thursday morning it was -9 below, with a -26 below windchill. Loved this one I grabbed on the Mississippi.

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This is what happens when the air temp is colder than the water temp.
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Friday night at the local ice skating rink, it was still pretty chilly. I am going to do another blog post about “the Pit”.

In Minnesota, winter to many of us means winter dance team competitions. My daughter doesn’t dance anymore, but we took in some dance team action on Saturday.

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If I had to pick my favorite of the week, it would definitely be the Northern Cardinal. HA, not a surprise.

Next week’s category is “Drink”. Should be interesting and fun! ¬†Here is another glimpse of the categories!

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Finding the Beauty

So after three days of snow fall, people are definitely complaining around here. ¬†While we are still below average for snow fall on the year, it has been coming at the most inopportune times. Like rush hour. I hear stories of 1-3 hour commutes. I guess I am one of the lucky ones. I don’t travel far for work, and never during rush hour.

Rather than whining, I have learned in the past few years there are worse things to complain about.  Life is too short to cry about first world problems like traffic and long commutes. There are more important worries in the world.  Instead, I choose to find the beauty in it all.  It is here to stay for a while, so we may as well embrace it.

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Boat house on Lake Orono in Elk River, Minnesota