Friday, July 29, 2011

Happy Fourth

Is it not too late to post photos from the 4th of July?   :-)
We spent about 5 days at Lake Tahoe with friends, celebrating, eating and the usual stuff. Hiking on the snow (partially). Well... walking, Gino the Westie has short limbs.

The Incline Village Beach was packed with people of the fourth and so was the entry to the water - with boats! Here is an idea: drive a boat 3-4 hours (for some) and park it at the beach, together with hundreds of others doing the same. They would have to drag me to be there…we only stopped to say hi to our friends who didn't mind the the sandwich situation.

We ate lake trout cooked within 3 hours after being caught. Bliss!

Photos HERE.

4th of July classic

our Swedish friends

dinner that took well over 2 hours

Emerald Bay

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Over The Moon

Pamela of Scrap Originals released a new kit today, in her signature, elegant style - Over the Moon. A (maybe a bit more) boyish kit, perfect for little spaceship commanders.

Mission Control
amazing, what sort of noises can a 2 years old
 make when flying the ship!! 
my little boy, 1993
by Scrap Originals, 2 Peas In a Bucket

Ad Challenge at Mscraps

I made a page for the challenge, a memory of our vacation in Cyclades, Greece:

Quiet Evening
got GSO at (July 25)
and (July 26)
Vintage Linen by Joyce Paul
Not Too Serious by Heather T.

Have you ever seen a photo with round, blue roof and clean white walls, set against gorgeous sea - from Greece? Most probably, it was from the island Santorini or Mykonos, both are a part of the archipelago.

I can't share our photos from the trip, they are all bad. Well, most of them. But I'm sure I'll go back again and I'll have pictures like for a wall calendar this time.
Now, that I know a bit about how to use a camera. :-)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Scrap Masks

Little scraps of fabric to add a bit of fringe..Scrap Masks by Heather T, released Friday at Mscraps.
Here is an example what you can do with it:
my little girl making appreciative face when tasting ice cream
all Heather T.)

Friday, July 22, 2011

To be there at the right time

I don't think I get enough of taking photos in San Francisco. I wouldn't dare to claim I was able to get really good pictures, I'm still waiting for THE shot(s). Part of the problem is that the city is two hours drive from us and mostly we are there at the wong time of the day - the mid-day.

This time, we had friends with us (from Europe) who shared (that means with ME) the same thrilling sensation of hunting for good pictures. It was truly a photowalk. We stayed in a motel north of San Francisco so we could walk/drive around the city in late hours.

 Love this bunch of people - the same adventurous family that hiked with us in Sierras and had fun scratching and bruising our hand by shucking oysters in Drakes Bay. Hikers and photographers. My kind.

Photos from the photo walk HERE.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Visiting Drakes Bay Oyster Farm

This was our fourth visit to the farm, first time taking the pain of shucking the oysters ourselves. We brought friends as well. It's because we like to watch their faces, contorted with effort and then with not-so-well hidden expression of distaste. It can't discourage me, though. Fresh oysters are too good.
Next time I'm bringing some wine in our super cute picnic basket.
The rest of the photos HERE.

(you can find pictures from our previous trips to Point Reyes National Seashore here and here)

Island Lake

One of our recent trips was a visit to Black Buttes, Tahoe National Forest. Beautiful area in Sierras strewn with numerous lakes, embedded below granite ranges.
We knew the snowpack hasn't melted completely but we didn't expect the trail completely under the snow.
Walking in soft, mushy snow is no fun so we had to turn back pretty soon. Still, we were able to take plenty of gorgeous photos. The whole album is HERE.

For comparison, here are some pictures from a hike in the area last year.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Along the coast

I am finally back home (for now). Trying to handle the backlog of posts and photo collections...
Going back to June: when we visited our girl in Santa Barbara, we took beautiful coastal route up north - Highway 1. Ragged, foggy and mostly deserted stretch of the coast, inaccessible from the ocean.
Although visited dozen of times before, I have never seen the coast in bloom before...

Photos HERE.

at Morro Bay

Elephant Seal


harbor in Half Moon Bay

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Santa Barbara Trip

We are officially empty-nesters. Our girl moved to Santa Barbara for summer classes and she will finish her second college year there. She is absolutelly thrilled to be there - why shouldn't she? And it's up to us - parents go go down there is we want to see her.

I didn't know what to expect from SB but I must say it's gorgeous!! It is quite colder than where we are, still beautiful, with pretty buildings in Spanish style and lots of lush, subtropical greenery. When you say Santa Barbara, two colors pop into my mind: white and green. Yes, I do associate places with colors :-).

At a local Starbucks, I was inspired by some vintage photos and I made several Lightroom presets, two of them presenting to you today, named Santa Barbara, what else! (see the download link below).
They work especially well with architectural photos, but the portraits as well. I was trying to achieve washed vintage feel, great for exotic buildings and pictures of boats and sea.

Photos from the trip are HERE. Can you tell I loved taking photos of the harbor?
As a bonus, I have included pictures from Swedish Midsummer Party at our friends' house, where we stopped on the way to SB.

On the way back, we drove along Highway 1 - beautiful coastal road. Photos coming in the next post.

the Wharf in SB

lamp on the Santa Barbara Courthouse

Santa Barbara Pier

Daddy and his girl

and HERE is a set of presets - Santa Barbara and Santa Barbara - dark.
Enjoy and let me know how you used them!
(my TOU)

Jump the new kit by Heather T. at Mscraps. I am really happy she was inspired by amazing work of Yellena James (that I admire as well) and is making similar elements to play with!

my page Blissful Moments
a very rare moment: kiddies playing quietly together 
(the kind of playing that doesn't include screeching, 
pulling arms or running around and such)

and Spontaneity
My girl (Barbora) is taking summer classes
at CC Santa Barbara and she is
completely enjoying her stay down there!!
(photo taken during our trip to SB -
pictures still being sorted)