May 2012 Calendar for Your Desktop

It's that time again - the eve of a new month - and a new Free Calendar Download:

This one is a little different from my previous months' images - it represents the old and fading barns I see every day. I took the photo last year and the brown barn in the middle is no longer standing. That's one of the reasons I enjoy photography so - to capture and preserve a scene at a point in time.

You can download May's Calendar from at this link from
Free May 2012 Calendar


Dreaming of Florida

I just finished going through the 200+ photos I took with my DSLR while I was in Florida last week on business. For this trip (my first business trip since 2008!) I flew to Jacksonville and drove south to Ponte Vedra Beach, right on the Sawgrass Resort. Sawgrass is the home of THE PLAYERS Championship, birthplace of the TPC (Tournament Players Club) Network, and backdrop to the PGA TOUR headquarters.

I was attending a software company's conference - I was there to learn and evaluate the functionality of the software package that my company is considering. Because it would bore you, I'm not going to go into those details, except to say it was a very useful conference for me to attend - I learned a ton and have many ideas on steps going forward.

That's not to say I had a great time at this conference. It was a wonderful venue with great events and people.

So I'm remembering some of my Florida experience here. More details to come in future posts.

Florida Dreaming
1. Palm Valley Fish Camp, 2. Mixed Company, 3. Winners' Clubs, 4. Untitled, 5. Trick Plane, 6. Relax

Linked to Mary and Mosaic Monday. Wishing you the best week ahead!


Trying to Shake It In April - In the Picture

I flew back to the chilly cornfields of Illinois Friday morning into a whirlwind of activities. It's now Sunday evening, I still haven't finished my laundry but I am taking time out now to post the self portraits I took in April. Christy, aka Urban Muser challenges us with an optional theme each month - this month was "shake it out", inspired by the eponymous song by Florence and the Machine. With lyrics encouraging you to shake off the negative thoughts of the past, it is now one of my favorite songs.

I managed to incorporate movement into a couple of my April selfies:

At a wedding (yup, taken in the bathroom):
Dressed Up

Working up a sweat after 30 minutes on the eliptical:
Working Up A Sweat

We moved the horse to a new stable and there are lots of interesting things to photograph, including my long legs (yeah, right!):
Long Shadows of Sunset #stable #barn #shadow

My shake it out photo - shaking it out before playing my violin. I didn't realize how much I fling my hair around!
Violin Practice #movement #cameraawesome #selfie

The corner of my mind:

A windy day, watching my daughter's soccer game:
Windy Day #selfie

Soaking up the sun on the beach in Florida:
Soak up the Sun

That's it for April - If you are interested in jumping in and starting your own self portraits, check out the {in the picture} details. I've had a blast these last four months.

All photos taken with my iPhone 4s.


Good Morning Sunrise

Made it to the beach just in the nick of time this morning to catch the sunrise over the Atlantic. 

It was an amazing sight. 

I bet it's going to be a great day. 


Changes in Latitudes

I'm in Florida right now, attending a conference for work. This trip comes at a most welcome time, as I really needed a break from it all - and I was able to just leave it behind. I would like to have left the knee behind, too, but that isn't quite possible.

I left Sunday afternoon, flying to Jacksonville via Atlanta - here was the approach into Atlanta. 

My flight into Jacksonville - I had the honor of being seated in the very last row.  

The coolest thing - Delta Airlines now has wifi available during flights. I was able to surf and send photos at 20,000 feet - all for free! It made the flights pass by quickly. 

The Jacksonville airport is quite modern with lots of cool art to photograph : 

The conference I'm attending is in the Sawgrass resort area, home to the TPC golf course and upcoming Players PGA tournament. 

I love the modern touches in the hotel. 

And I can watch the sunrise from my room. 

I plan to get to the beach one morning to catch a proper sunrise. 

The grounds are lovely, with plenty of walking trails to enjoy. 

And great seafood to enjoy for dinner. We ate at the Palm Valley Fish Camp, which reminded me of Cape Cod. 

So far, the conference has been educational (really! I'm not just saying this because I'm on a business trip). 

All photos taken with my iPhone. I've taken several with my DSLR, but don't have access to free wifi, so my phone's connectivity will suffice for now. 


The Cat Walk

This cat is our new friend - he is a constant companion as I roam the barn, always curious as to my comings and goings.

The Cat Walk


Cat on a Hot Wooden Fence

Just walk along the fence, aka the Cat Walk.

Linked to This or That Thursday.


More Scenes from the Stable

My photos often represent where I am physically spending most of my time.
As of late, that would be in the barn / stable where the horses live.

I love finding new things to photograph there - so many interesting things!
Bits and Bridles

Soft Rain

Sadle Details



A rainy Saturday morning at the barn, and out of the blue, a relative of the stable owners asked me to take pictures of his grandson riding one of the horses.

I say out of the blue because I never met the man before, but somehow he thought I was a photographer.

I walked by the arena with a big folding chair and I guess he thought that was a tripod. The next thing I know, I am getting a request for a photo shoot right then and there.

Fortunately, I had my big camera with me.

Meet Zach and Austin:
Zach and Austin

Go Austin

Del, Hope, Zach and Austin:
Instructions 2

The horses are absolutely beautiful.

I enjoyed our impromptu little photo shoot.


P365+1 Week 15 - More Changes

A creature of habit who loves all things routine, planned and executed as such, I really don't like change. The slightest altercation from the normal routine schedule can throw me into a funk for days. I feel as if this whole year has been a big change from what I originally planned and I had to deal with more changes this week....

Saturday: Morning Swim
97/365+1 Morning Swim - 30 Laps #sunrise #pool #water #lux #flare #iphone4s
A positive change - I started swimming laps and I've come upon the first strenuous physical activity where my knee doesn't hold me back. I don't have to worry about tweaking or hurting it and that is a welcome feeling.

Sunday: He is Risen
Happy Easter #heisrisen #allthingsnew #iphone4s
This is a shot from our church, taken two weeks ago, but when I saw the clouds and sun that Sunday morning, I knew it would be perfect for Resurrection Sunday.

For our formal Easter dinner, we enjoyed Prime Rib, Baked Macaroni and Cheese, Salads, Rolls and Limoncello Cake.
The Salt Rub for the Prime Rib:
98/365+1 Salt Crust for Prime Rib #easterdinner #food #iphone4s
To prepare the Prime Rib:
I seared the roast in a hot pan coated with olive oil, probably 2 minutes per side. Then placed into a roasting pan, fat side up. Sprinkle the salt rub on the fat. Roast for 20 minutes in a 500degF oven, then turn down to 325 degF. Roast for another hour - 90 minutes, depending upon the size of the roast (20-30 minutes/pound). We had a 3 pound roast, and I cooked it for ~ 70 minutes at the 325. The internal temperature when read with a quick read thermometer was around 150-160, which is a little on the well done side (very little pink, but still really juicy - we don't like bloody meat). After roasting, remove from oven and let it rest for 20-30 minutes before carving.

Monday: Remains of the Day
99/365+1 The Remains of the Day #sunset #field #iphone4s
Another beautiful sunset at West Wind. We are visiting Caesar since we won't be able to get back to the stable until Saturday.

Tuesday: New Growth
100/365+1 New Growth #oak #iphone4s #spring #leaves
What happened today? Change one - a weird-ish PT session with different therapist, the guy who runs the PT department. He explained that my insurance wanted an assessment and my normal therapist didn't have the proper qualifications. As part of this assessment, I had my quads measured (yeah, every woman's nightmare - to know how big your thighs are). But seeing progress on my knee flexion - I can comfortably bend to 120 degrees - two weeks ago, that was really uncomfortable. After that, I had a violin lesson and originally planned to go out to dinner with my girl friends then a change two - dinner cancellation - oh well, we'll reschedule.

Wednesday: The Promise of a New Day
101/365+1 Looking out from the kitchen this morning, the leaves dancing in the early sun catches my eye. #leaves #heart #flare #morning #sierra #iphone4s
I'll admit the day started out nice but soured by the afternoon. I received word that, due to my insurance, I would no longer be working with my original therapist on my ACL Rehab. It turns out that Rick is not a certified PT - he has a bunch of other certifications, just not the PT certification. This pissed me off on several levels - one, he's probably the most experienced therapist there; two, he was strongly recommended by my doctor's office; three, he's the main ACL rehab guy there; four, I've been working with him for the last eight weeks and making good progress. Then there's that "I don't like change thing". I spent an hour on the phone with my insurance company, and realized I had no recourse, so I had to reschedule the next four weeks of appointments. The final kicker was an insurance notice I received in the mail after dealing with all of this - a denial of a sizable charge from my ACL surgery. Yep, not feeling any love for the insurance company...

Thursday: It gets better and I celebrated with a martini....
102/365+1 Green Tea Martini #drinks #circle
I cleared up the insurance denial regarding the charges associated with my ACL surgery and then was invited out for a last minute business dinner, where I enjoyed a green tea martini (or two!).

Friday: "Weird" PT Session number two.
103/365+1 Iced Down
The analogous scenario - you go to a beauty salon and have a particular stylist. Then you change stylists, but your original stylist still works at the salon. You go for your haircut appointment and you're with your new stylist and your old stylist is there too, and they all know that you used to get your hair cut with the old stylist. It feels uncomfortable, right? That's what it felt like to me during today's session, but maybe I'm being over sensitive. Oh well, I guess that feeling will eventually pass - I'll just focus on getting my knee back to full function.

Here's hoping I don't receive anymore unexpected news next week....


When Insomnia Strikes...

.... write a blog post, and maybe you'll start to feel sleepy....

That's what I am telling myself tonight as I tap on the keys, ignoring my normal mantra of "just close your eyes and even though you aren't asleep, you are getting some rest".

While trying to fall asleep, I remembered that it's almost Thursday and time for two of my favorite blog memes - This or That Thursday and Rural Thursday. So I'm up to post some more photos I took at the new stable.

While the last stable housed only eight horses, there are at least 20 at this one. Each visit affords us a new encounter with these beautiful animals. I called this one "Blondie", although her official name is "Whitey". I have been informed she's a bit mean, but she seemed OK with me (although I didn't get too close).
OK, maybe she's got some attitude in her eyes...

Fences everywhere - I love fences and leading lines...
Down the Valley Road

A windmill to remind us it's always blowing on the prairie:
Westerly Wind

Finally, a bit of what I'll call "altered reality":
Long Shadows of Sunset #stable #barn #shadow
Because I'm really only 5'3" tall....

There, I actually do feel more tired now....


Almost Forgotten

I took these photos, oh, probably two weeks ago, and somehow, between the normal craziness of life, so many soccer and iPhone photos, they got buried in my photostream. Makes me realize that I should go back through my photostream every now and then to see what gems I had forgotten about.

Pink Flame
I love cherry blossoms in the spring.

Pink Dogwood
This photo reminds me of our previous house in Indiana - we had a wonderful pink dogwood nestled in the front of the house, flanked by rhododendrons and azaleas. Back then, I actually took time to garden and planted several hundred tulip bulbs every fall. The spring show was amazing.

Amazing how a simple picture conjures up a memory. I guess that's why I take pictures. So I don't forget.


My Instagram Themes

Inspired by Mary at Little Red House, I decided to pull together some recent Instagram photos not associated with my P365+1 collection for her Mosaic Monday meme.

I always have my iPhone with me and handy. I can start the native camera app without looking, very useful when taking photos at the spur of the moment. And that's what I normally do - I see something and snap the photo. Then I go into the Instagram app - sometimes I'll add a filter, sometimes I don't. If I really want to get fancy, I'll take a photo, edit it in Photogene2 or CameraAwesom, then go into Instagram.

When I'm not taking photos for my P365+1 project, I tend to take photos of skies:
Instagram Skies

I also like taking photos filled with color:
Instagram Colors
1. Home Pedicure Choices. Care to Guess Which Color I Chose? #nailpolish #colors, 2. Colors of February #rose #red #white, 3. Seeing Red, 4. A #Holga to Match Every Outfit #lux

Or places around town:
Instagram Around Town
1. Illuminations #tree #night, 2. Feeling Academic #eiu #college #iphone4s #cameraawesome #photogene2, 3. Still Life #reflection #mirror #orchid, 4. Blowing In The Wind #grass #prairie

So, if you like mobile photography, what sort of themes do you see emerging in your photography?



Copyright Notice

All images on this blog (unless stated) are the intellectual property and copyright of Shirley LeMay Photography and Shirley Behind the Lens (© 2005-2020). Do not steal, borrow or pirate the images here.

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code. and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act) prohibits the use of digital property to be used without the consent of its owner.

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