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Help for the Underachievers

June 18, 2014 - Author: Kelly

I’m having major issues with this blog…I’m working my way through them so thanks for your patience if you have been interrupted with my testing process.

I’m trying to fix the blog, sell my house and deal with the summer time Taxi mama blues…maybe I should just have a drink?

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3 Comments - Categories: Blog, RealHousewife

Testing

June 11, 2014 - Author: Kelly

Testing.

2 Comments - Categories: food

Quick Fixes in the Kitchen – Remodeling

- Author: Kelly

Look at those hideous green counters!

Look at those hideous green counters!

I have been preparing to put list my home for sale during the summer.  There were a few things I knew I could do to make the sale go faster.  Every mom wants a great kitchen, right?  It is one of the rooms where a lot of time is spent cooking, cleaning and counseling.  We entertain, comfort and produce food that equals love in our kitchens.

It has to be perfect!

When I bought this house it was seven years old.  The only thing I absolutely hated about it was the border in the kitchen…it was reminiscent of Thanksgiving with a cornucopia of fruit and vegetables planted beneath the ceiling.  FUGLY!  AND the green counter tops in the kitchen.

Each time I see a wild color on a counter it makes we wonder what the hell the designer was thinking.  Listen, there’s nothing wrong with adding vibrant color to a room but why not make it something that can easily be changed?  Do the walls and fixtures in neutrals and add color with things like furniture or curtains or adornments on the walls that can be easily removed.

So, after 9 years of living in this house, the stars lined up just right and I installed those new counter tops.  The total cost for me was about $800.00.

Much easier on the eyes.

Much easier on the eyes.

I paid $687.00 for the materials.  I spent about $150.00 for a new stainless sink and a few bucks on some liquid nails glue.  My genius of a brother-in-law removed and installed the tops for free.

There are a few more things I want to do to polish the job off.

When I bought the house the kitchen island front looked worn.  For a quick and fun fix I painted over the wood with chalkboard paint.  My girls were four and five and they enjoyed playing there while I fixed dinner.

My ancient island...

My ancient island…

I priced the cost of a new “island.”  First of all, if you want an island it’s going to cost around a thousand

Improvements in the Kitch

Improvements in the Kitch

dollars.  If you change your keyword to “base cabinet” you can design your new island for a couple of hundred dollars.  I decided I wasn’t going to replace it at all.  Instead I repainted the chalkboard surface and replaced the end panels with brand new oak panels.  The total cost was $45.00.

There are still a couple more things I am going to do to finish the job and make the entire kitchen look brand new.

We are adding ceramic backsplash tiles on the wall above the counters.  I have not found tiles I am happy with yet so I don’t have a cost on that.

I am cleaning the grout around the floor tiles and then re-painting the grout.  Total cost for materials was about $17.00.

I am pretty happy with the deal so far, I’ve spent around a thousand dollars and it feels like a whole brand new kitchen.

It’s bittersweet since I know someone else will probably be enjoying the newer improved kitchen when it’s finally complete.  I’ll look at it this way…if it takes forever to sell, who cares?

Keep it Real!

“I’m at the age where food has taken place of sex in my life.  In fact, I’ve just had a mirror put over my kitchen table.” ~Rodney Dangerfield

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3 Comments - Categories: RealHousewife

The Calm, After the Storm

June 9, 2014 - Author: Kelly

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Last week was nothing less than frenetic.  My 23 year old nephew came to visit on his way through town, toting his four month old peanutpuppy, ‘Athena’.  Athena is a German Shepherd.  I have a wiener dog (Mr. Peanut) and a Maltipoo, (Gizmo).

Athena, the giant, Amazon puppy loved playing with my dogs!  Athena would run up to them, jumping and bouncing from left to right, inviting them to play.  The boys, just cowered and shook, staring at each other as if to say, “it’s a monster beast! Don’t look at it, it isn’t REAL!”

downloadAthena, not discouraged one bit, would ultimately give them a nudge with her skillet sized paw sending them spinning and reeling across the hardwood floors.  It was very similar to watching a game of air hockey and my dogs were the pucks.  The boys did not understand her language of love.  Athena’s attempts to woo them were met with shivering incontinence.

Amazon Love Goddess

Amazon Love Goddess

Of course the counter tops also arrived just in time for the frenzy.

I did have the luck of waking up to a gorgeous sunny Saturday, which meant it was perfect for what? Yes! installing new counter tops!

Madison wanted a ride to the community park to meet her friends, Syd and Alex were busy doing their things so I went to work breaking down the kitchen while Dave drove Maddy to the park.

The boys hate me!

The boys hate me!

The park is directly behind the police station.  There is one road in an one road out and it’s through the P.D. parking lot.  I feel a sense of security letting her gain some independence in that particular park and it’s only about a mile from my home.

Dave worked outside, mowing, trimming and weed whipping.  I finally began to relax, feeling like things were getting done when sirens began pulsate through the atmosphere around the outside of the house.

My first thought was, this isn’t the first Monday of the Month. I was working through the meaning of the alarm outside.  So, this isn’t a test!screamed though my mind.

Then:  MADDY IS AT THE PARK!

That thought sliced through my brain cutting it into two pieces.  One frantic and the other hopelessly useless.  I ran outside to find Dave, I could see he was on the phone as he approached.

“I know, I know…Maddy is at the park,” he said all calm.

I run for my phone and she has already sent a text message.

“Don’t worry mom, we’re all fine, we are under a pavilion thing at the park.”

Oh, shi*! I am thinking as panic rises and I am nearly reaching a shrieking pitch of nonsensical blabbering.

“Go GET her, please hurry!” I do realize I am begging, pathetically.  I even jumped up and down a couple of times.  I was terrified.  I was eliminating possibilities of ways to get my daughter.  I imagined myself running through the cornfield that lies between us, as the clouds gathered above like ominous warnings.  Then I imagine my feet muddy as I trip and fall through the thick, clay sodden field.  I realize I would never make it half way though.

I do rationalize that I do not know what the sirens mean.  Is there a tornado on the ground?  Has one been sighted or are the conditions just ripe for a tornado to form? I wonder as I watch dark, billows of  clouds quickly approach overhead.  It could just be a bad storm warning? I don’t know.

To find out what those sirens should be telling you, click here:

“Tornado Watch vs. Tornado Warning:  Be Prepared,” by tlpoague.

I really thought I was prepared for tornadoes but I never considered what I would do if my children were at another location when one rises from the dust.

Dave called, “what should I do with Madison’s friends?” he asked.

“Bring them with you!”  I almost shouted, “what kind of mother would leave another mother’s children in the park during a tornado?” I bark out.  I am calmer now instantly, knowing Dave has gotten there and the kids are safe.  “I’m sorry, I am so upset, I say to Dave.  Tell all of the kids to call or text their mothers and let them know they will be at our house and cram them into the car if you have to, they need to be near a basement.”

Dave agrees and tows the kids here and I am never so happy to receive so many underage, unexpected visitors in my life!  I tell them to stay inside, I order Wing Stop for them and felt like I could kiss the dirty floor they brought in with them!

When the sirens sounded again, I was feeling pretty happy I had all the kids right inside the house, eating chicken wings and watching a movie.

The storm passed, the counters went in, my nephew left with Athena and I am grateful for a quiet, normal, boring Monday.  Forget the calm before the storm…it’s much better after.

Out with the old...in with the new!

Out with the old…in with the new!

Keep it Real!

“Anybody can pilot a ship when the sea is calm.” ~Navjot Singh Sidhu

This blog has been brought to as part of the Moody Monday series hosted by tlpoague.   Click it and link in!

10 Comments - Categories: Parenting

Tell Me No Secrets

June 4, 2014 - Author: Kelly

Can You Keep A Secret?

Can You Keep A Secret?

Secrets can be so tantalizing, held in those tightly sealed little boxes, wanting you to know.  Take care in coveting them – there is always a price to pay for the knowing of secrets.  After all, once you discover it you will have to keep it to yourself.

It’s surprising how much those secrets can weigh.  But like Pandora’s Box, we think we want to know them, until we do.

Secrets often are the first step in showing that we trust another person.  We share them with promises to keep: no matter where or how far we walk – they go with us.

Secrets, once shared, can imply an intimacy.  A common bond – the special, knowing members who are complicit become the keepers.  I also believe it gives those with ill intent a “testing” period.  It’s an opportunity made to see if the child will keep that first secret…and a second chance to share another.

As a mother of three daughters, I do have concerns about protecting my girls from any kind of inappropriate relationships with other adults.  I’ve noticed that when another story of child abuse of any form breaks in the newspapers, once the full tale is told you might notice it often began with a little secret.

Look at Woody Allen and Dylan Farrow.  Dylan Farrow wrote an open letter detailing the abuse she claims she suffered at the hands of Woody Allen.  In it, she states, “it was our little secret.

That sentence gave me pause.  It made me more suspicious that her allegations may be true.  I see that as a lure almost every time I read about how these relationships began.  Further, when these things come to light we often find out that most violations areBrockhaus_and_Efron_Encyclopedic_Dictionary_b73_030-0 committed by close trusted, friends or family members.  The victims relatives always say, “I never would have believed that person would do such a thing! It’s unthinkable!”

Ah HA!  Those pedophiles and manipulators can be such chameleons.  That’s why they continue to get away with it, generation after generation, pebbles to pounds of weight.

For this very reason, I decided to outsmart any would be perverts.

When my children were speaking well, I would have conversations with them about what secrets are and that they were not allowed to keep secrets for anyone.  They are just too heavy for little girls.

I told them that the only people that should be talking to them about secrets are mom and dad.  “If anyone ever tells you that you are not supposed to tell me or your dad something, anything, you tell us immediately.”  I told them it was wrong for any adult to ask them not to tell their parents anything.  I told them the instant someone asked them to keep a secret from one of us that I wanted them to visualize a bright red flag.  That flag is telling them something isn’t quite right and they can talk to me about why it’s waving.

Keeping secrets can lead to inabilities to forge close relationships in adults.  Especially in families that keep traumatic or family secrets.  The secret becomes so frightening to tell they constantly dance around the telling of it.  Sometimes pushing the secret away causes the keeper to push people away as well.

Read, “The Secret That Became My Life.”  in Psychology Today.  It details how secrets became so destructive they changed the course of people’s lives and their abilities to connect.

I do think I have spared my children some drama as one child came to me and said, “mom you said if anyone ever told us not to tell you something, we have to tell you so…”

Now, I didn’t hear anything as frightening as all that, it was just a meddling family member but still…I felt such a sense of relief knowing that she would have followed through and come to tell me if anything untoward had been going on.

Secrets can be alluring, we all want to know them, but ask yourself…do ya really?

Keep it Real!

“If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself.” ~George Orwell, 1984

 

 

 

 

 

11 Comments - Categories: Parenting

Roman Numerals – Flashback Friday

May 30, 2014 - Author: Kelly

Huh?

Huh? Not teaching Roman Numerals?

Remember when we used to learn Roman Numerals in School?

I was having a conversation with my eighth grade daughter when she revealed to me that “they don’t teach Roman Numerals” in school.  What?

She was also astute enough to point out that she had no idea what her school district name “Wentzville R-IV” meant until I had explained Roman Numerals to her.  It seemed silly to her that the language with which the school system uses to identify the institution, isn’t explained to the students.

Public schools can’t teach everything and while I don’t decide the curriculum, it’s really my job to fill the stop gaps.  This summer I intend to spend some time making sure the girls have a rudimentary understanding of Roman Numerals.

Roman Numbers are presently used around the world in many ways.  I do think they are most prominently used more in art culture.  They are used in Copyright dates on films, television programs and video.  Clocks, watches – Big Ben!

Which way is up?

Which way is up?

Roman Numerals are used to denote sequels, book chapters, page numbers for indexes or appendices and in periodicals.

Roman Numerals are used to differentiate Kings and Popes and an occasional Queen.

How many men know when Superbowl X was played?

It's still used in print...

It’s still used in print…

The Roman numbering system dates back to midievil times, a very primitive numbering system that is believed to have been derived from finger counting.  One major flaw was that it had no zero.  It also isn’t easy to use to describe higher numbers.  The highest symbol is 1000, to account for that they often used a line above a number to denote multiples of thousands.

“I just gave the bartender my number in roman numerals.  If she figures it out she’s worth a shot.” ~Unknown

RN1I remember learning Roman Numerals in the third grade.  I don’t remember them as well as the mean face of the teacher that insisted that I WOULD learn them!

I have never forgotten that she also made fun of me for misspelling a word in front of my entire class. I can remember exactly what she said as she was passing out our spelling test as she placed mine on my desk she paused and announced, “Someone misspelled the word girl, and she IS a gril.”

Those things that are most painful tend to stick with us, don’t they?  It is totally why I intend to teach the girls their roman numerals.

I wouldn’t want them to be the giggly girl at the college football game in four years saying, “Me and my boyfriend are going to Superbowl Lee!” When they mean ‘Superbowl LII (52).’

Roman Numerals are used in religion and government, they are used in addresses and on buildings.  Why would we NOT teach our children these common symbols.  Even if they don’t recognize the words around it – they can extrapolate some information.

henryviii

I had fun learning them as a young child.  I remember having folders with worksheets that we completed at our own pace.  Some of them were coloring sheets and some were math worksheets.  When we finished them we graduated to a new colored folder and that color is what allowed all the other children to know exactly how you were performing in class.  (Were you stuck in the oranges or progressed to the blues?)

There are numerous web sites that have worksheets, games and puzzles so kids can learn the basics of the Roman Numeral System.  In fact, they probably won’t even know they are learning if you don’t tell them.

Keep it Real!

I feel like a number, gril.

11 Comments - Categories: Parenting

Outdoor Space ~ Privatize it!

May 28, 2014 - Author: Kelly

Create a great outdoor space!

Create a great outdoor space!

My favorite part of starting the summer season is getting my outdoor space ready for entertaining.  I learned my lesson last year and took the netting and canopy off when winter began.  The year before, the entire thing was ripped off the concrete and ended up in a twisted heap of canvas and metal during a storm.  I happened to be in Mexico and the house sitter told me about it – but he wasn’t actually paid to do anything about it, so he didn’t.

I collected what was left and salvaged the housing with the help of a welder and my brother-in-law.  He also drilled screws into the concrete to anchor it.  It fared much better through the winter this year.

Dave only had to slip the top canopy on and re-attach the netting.

Notice where the space is…I think it is an excellent use of otherwise wasted space.  If the patio wasn’t there…it would be another patch of grass to mow.

Excellent use of space!

Excellent use of space!

The space is in a corner that is really private.  My house sits on a corner and neither of the houses that have a view of my back yard have windows on that side.  I have a view of the farmer’s 85 acre corn field behind me.

Corn, lotsa corn.

Corn, lotsa corn.

Dave and I find time to sneak out for a few minutes of peace and quiet before we go to bed every night because it’s so nice in the evening in the Midwest. The kids also enjoy using the space to watch movies in the summer at night with their friends or just hang out.

It was very inexpensive to set up but Dave and I agree that it almost feels like an extra room has been added onto the house in the summer.  Everything that is in there was purchased second-hand or a DIY project.  I love DIY.  The problem is – my projects usually look like a third grader made them.

I’m a huge fan of Nicole the Rehab Addict and while replacing my counters I was disgusted with myself.  What would Nicole say? I wondered, feeling like an over indulged housewife.  (I am preparing to sell my house so I can’t be messing around with no DIY counters, okay Nicole?)

BUT…in order to salvage some of my humility I decided NOT to throw away the old counters.  No, no instead, I’ll spend five hundred dollars turning it into an outdoor table.

DIY Outdoor Table

DIY Outdoor Table

Okay it hasn’t cost me that much…I found the tiles cheapest at Lowes.  I spent $.15 cents per tile.   I went to Michaels for the decals.  The booklet of stickers with clear backing were $4.99.

My brother-in-law is going to saw the edges so I will have a rectangular top and then we will attach them with grout.  I’ll add a layer of polyurethane that can be sprayed on and attach four hairpin legs and voila! It will be weatherproof and a great table to add in my yard in front of the gazebo.

I will post better instructions with photos and costs as soon as the table is finished.  I have to wait until the new counters come in to complete it and hopefully that will be today.  I’m ready to move on – summer has just begun.  I’m gonna enjoy it like a third grader.  A really, artsy third grader.

Daisy

Daisy

Keep it Real!

“It takes half your life before you discover life is a do-it-yourself project.”    ~Napoleon Hill

8 Comments - Categories: RealHousewife

Chicken Pox – After the Vaccination

May 23, 2014 - Author: Kelly

The face of Chicken Pox

The face of Chicken Pox

Did your child get the chicken pox vaccine? Mine did.  So why does she have the Chicken Pox?

I noticed a huge red spot on my youngest daughter’s shoulder.  “What is that?” I asked her, “does it itch?”  I am paranoid about everything.  When my children were babies, my husband used to think I was neurotic about it.

“Every night you body search those girls and if there’s one spot, you’re gonna find it,” were his mocking words for me.

There might be some truth to that, I will admit it with some embarrassment.  I worry so much about cutting things off at the path.  If I notice things early I figure I can nip them right in the bud.  The more info you can carry to your pediatrician the better, I say.

Mosquito Bite

Mosquito Bite

I drew a circle in ink around her red spot and told her to let me check it again in a little while.  I just wanted to monitor the size – if I didn’t have a border there, my imagination would go wild.

But wait! Before I could turn around my middle daughter was telling me she had not just one but a few red itchy spots.  I was really confused!

In my mind, I ran over the normal childhood infections and I immediately ruled out Chicken Pox.  My girls all had the chicken pox vaccine.

I lifted her shirt and oh. my. gosh.  Those little red spots were everywhere! At closer inspection there was one right in the corner of her eye! Now I was freaking out.  I had no idea what I was looking at.

It was 8:20 p.m.

“Dave we have to take her to After Hours Urgent Care.  What if when she wakes up, her entire eye is swollen shut? I do not have a clue what this is!”

Urgent care closes at 8:30 p.m. (They close at 9 but I suppose the last patient taken would be the 8:30 they told me on the phone?)

Maddy needed a ride from her friends house.  Dave took Syd and hustled over to try to get in the door before it got locked, I went for Maddy on the other side of town.

I practiced a little restraint and waited until 8:32 to call Dave.

Before he said a word, I could hear female voices chuckling in the background and I tell you, I felt some relief right at that moment!

“It’s the chicken pox,” he informed me in a whisper.  “I’ll call you back.”

“She had the vaccine!” I whispered back and then realized I didn’t need to be doing any whispering.

“I know, I told the doctor and nurses.  They say she can still get it.”

“Whaaaaaaat?”

Yes.  Even if your child has had the vaccine, they can still get the Chicken Pox.

Dave and Sydney agreed the staff and doctor at After Hours Urgent care were awesome.  I am deeply grateful and thankful that they saw her even though it was late.  I didn’t think I could sleep that night if I didn’t have a medical professional look at her.

I did a lot of research and I’d like to share it so you don’t have to.

Chicken Pox Topic Overview (Web M.D.)

Chicken Pox Prevention and Treatment (C.D.C.)

Of course everyone recommends that you get the vaccine.

I want my money back.

I’ve read one statistic that reports the vaccine is only 80% effective.

I felt really dumb, not knowing this.  Then a friend of mine called, not only is she super smart (she’s a lawyer) she has five kids of her own.

“Syd has the Chicken Pox!” I told her.

“Why didn’t you get the vaccine?” she asked with some conviction.

“I DID! She DID have it!”

“Then why does she have the chicken pox?”

“Because apparently it’s not 100%  fool proof.”

“Then why do the kids get it at all?” she asked.

“I don’t know, I guess for the 80% that it does help?” (And I wasn’t feeling so stupid after all!)

I’m not sure if getting the vaccine was better in this case.  I think if she would have just gotten them when she was in elementary school like everyone else did, I wouldn’t be forced to think about things like this.

One of the staff at Urgent Care said that since she had the vaccine, her case should be much milder.

I’m not sure about that either.  My daughter is covered from her scalp to her knees in Chicken Pox.  She even has them inside of her mouth.

I’m just not sure I would ever go for the vaccine again if this is the result.  Everyone knows that if you contract Chicken Pox when you are older it tends to be more serious.

Keep it Real!

“The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans is suffering from some form of mental illness.  Think of your three best friends.  If they’re okay then it’s you.” ~Rita Mae Brown

I am not a doctor and this is a personal blog not intended to give out medical advice to anyone for anything.  If you think your child could be ill, take them to a medical professional immediately!  Never, ever take a chance when your child’s health is concerned.

+My child gave her permission for me to use her photo.  She is not embarrassed and says she would be glad to go to school this way – she misses her school and her friends.

 

 

 

 

10 Comments - Categories: Parenting

Wildlife and Photography

May 21, 2014 - Author: Kelly

Barred Owl

Barred Owl

This has been a wild week.  I’ve been going out of my comfort zone and doing a few things that are unusual for me.  Small changes toss me into a never never land of confusion.  I am normally very organized and know my plans a week in advance.

I like to fit things neatly into time slots and put check marks on my list of “to do’s” as I complete my plan.  Sometimes I know, it’s really absurd but it makes me feel in control – no matter how ridiculous that idea is.

I watched baby Lilli because her sitter needed to take her son to the doctor.  You’d think since I had her last week it would be a breeze right?

Lilli

Lilli

No this week she started eating food! I thought how fun it would be feeding her delicious flavors she has never sampled before – I thought the new instruction was no big deal.  I had this!

Until…it was time to eat.

It's just baby food...right?

It’s just baby food…right?

I seriously had no idea they made baby food this way.  I just stood there staring at the pack wondering how I was gonna make this exchange.  Her grandma happened to be stopping by thank goodness and she showed me how this works.  It has a screw on spoon.  (Why didn’t I guess that?) You just squeeze the little package and the baby slurps it right off the spoon.  Organic and everything! That is wild.

I’m waiting for the new counter tops to come in.  I’ve ordered the final product, making corrections on the template so I should be ready for that in a week or so.  Again, I’m in limbo.

So I went to the park to look for that Owl.  I left at about 6:45…there were lots of surprises in store for me.

Never before have I seen this, but there were about a dozen guards and guys that looked like they were from Fish and Game at the entrance of the park.  They had people pulled over and they were going through their catch and I imagine they were checking for licenses.

I headed over to the perch where I saw the great big Owl last time…remember?

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It was gone.  The large branch the Owl was perched at is gone.

No perch...

No perch…

Dave was with me and I told him, I may never see that Owl again.  So we drove out and I went by the fields where I know the deer hang out.  I was really kind of sad about that.  I’ve been in that park a million times and never seen it before.

Deer hang out...

Deer hang out…

It was getting dark…time for all the wildlife to party.

Just after sunset

Just after sunset

Party Animals...

Party Animals…

I sighed and told Dave that we might as well go.  The light was just about gone and I was whining about the Owl perch disappearance.

Just as I was about to leave…oh my gosh! I saw a large bird swoop down, grab it’s prey and fly to a nearby tree to enjoy it.  I jumped out of the car and Dave drove up behind me, pointing the head lights on the area I indicated.

What do you know?

Barred Owl

Barred Owl

I got a few shots off before he flew away.  I was pretty close to him…I’d guess within about 10 feet.  This all but made up for my perch loss.  Ok, it’s a cheap thrill but I feel like I’m back to good.

The wardens were still at the gate!  They stopped our car…”we are taking a survey…can you tell us what kind of fish you caught?”

“Oh I wasn’t fishing.  I did shoot a few deer, an owl and some birds.”

He looked like he just didn’t know what to say.

I held up my camera with the huge 300 mm lens.

He laughed, “ok, you can go ahead and leave the park. You can drive ahead of everyone.”

I guess the survey wasn’t necessary after all.

I Shot a Four Point Buck! (with a 300 mm lens)

I Shot a Four Point Buck! (with a 300 mm lens)

Keep it Real!

“Landscape photography is the supreme test of the photographer – and often the supreme disappointment.” ~Ansel Adams

6 Comments - Categories: photography

How to Spend a Bad Mood

May 19, 2014 - Author: Kelly

 

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We all have them, we all hate them…so what do you do with your bad mood?

When I am in a bad mood, I feel like I am toxic to people in general.  I might be less than patient while quick to lash out with my razor tongue.  I can’t just flip a switch and stop it – as much as I wish I could.  I get this terrible energy that I want to shake off and punching my pillow has never managed to make me feel better.

I finally figured out that what works for me is leaving the house and taking my camera for a drive.  I have one specific place I visit and I never get bored with it.  I’ve written about it before…August A. Busch Memorial Conservation Area.

You have to be vewy, vewy quiet…

Hunting Wabbits

Hunting Wabbits

 

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Shooting a Deer…

This weekend I shot a deer.  (Just before he ran off he gave me verbal consent to take publish his photograph.)

I went to the park in the evening, it was around 7:00pm and I knew all the nocturnal animals would be moving around.

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I have a collection of Missouri Wildflowers so I stop and take shots of those whenever I see them…each season there is a new surprise.  I believe the purple flowers with five petals are Phlox.

 

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Edible, wild, beautiful!

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There are acres and acres of valleys and fields.

 

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I have a huge collection of wild bird photos.  I shoot them all the time.  I’m not sure what I’m going to do with all my collections but I have thousands of photographs.  Trying to capture wildlife is much more challenging to me than trying to photograph food or models. It’s liquid luck.

You see something and you better start snapping because it’s gone before you can blink.

Sometimes it’s a waiting game…one small noise or if an animal gets your scent forgettaboutit.  It’s a quiet game of hide and seek.  I shot a few rounds off before this crane heard the whirrrrrrr of my zoom lens and then he bailed.

Either way, when I get done with my bad mood my photos will be worth something.  Instead of just entertaining everyone with my sarcasm I can do something of value to me.

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I spotted another deer and he spotted me.untitled-89

As I left the park, passed over the spillway one last time before dusk hit…I spotted the most amazing thing EVER.

Do you see it?

Check it OUT!

Check it OUT!

I did not have my glasses on but I saw his eyes first…I had moved in on his territory and he was keeping both of his big old eyes on me.  I was standing out of my sunroof and got just a couple of photos before he retreated to the deeper part of the woods.

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I have seen many hawks back in that area but I have never seen an owl.  I’ve heard them call but was never able to sight one.  This Owl was huge…he was as big as my dog Peanut!

I couldn’t help going back again last night.  August Busch is about ten minutes from my house so I fear it’s going to become my new obsession.

I saw his perch there over the spillway…it was empty.  I had a feeling though that he was watching me.  I heard an Owl call…mocking me.

I am almost looking forward to my next bad mood.  I know just where I’m gonna spend it.

Keep it Real!

Link up to Moody Monday with tlpoague…are you in a mood?

“Everything has it’s wonders, even darkness and silence, and I learn, whatever state I may be in, therein to be content.” ~Helen Keller

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