Thursday, November 7, 2013

A Bit of This, A Bit of That

I haven't written a post in awhile because it hasn't seemed like there was much to write about. I couldn't see writing another Westie Meetup post, I've done that before. I don't want to write a whole post about running, or wildlife classes. But between all three of these topics maybe I can create a single post to catch my faithful readers up on what's happening in my neck of the woods. We'll see!

Running...well, its one week, two days, and twenty hours (more-or-less) until the start of the Philadelphia Marathon. This will be marathon number four for me. I am working hard on my mental state, trying to stay calm and confident, but worrier that I am, its hard. What will the weather be like? Will it be hot? (that's anything over 60F for a marathon). Will it be cold? (that's anything below 35F). Will it rain? Will it SNOW??? (it has, for this late-season marathon in the past). I have what I think is a reasonable goal, but as usual I have no idea if it is REALLY reasonable or not. I try to tell myself and others that all I really care about is finishing but that's not entirely true. I would like to do well (that's well for me; it has nothing to do with anyone else). I would like to not slow down drastically at the end.  I would like to not start out too fast for once, so I can at least try to see if it makes a difference. I want to have fun, I want to stay injury-free, and I would REALLY like my stupid big toe joints to quit hurting! Okay, that's what I want. I have four runs left before the marathon, four pretty easy runs. I'm excited, nervous, hopeful, anxious. I can't wait and at the same time, I wish it were over. Sigh!

Last Saturday was the annual Westie Halloween Party for all of Diane's Westie's. Harper was a butterfly and Cosmo was a caterpillar. Cute idea, huh? Harper loved getting dressed up and looking beautiful, Cosmo hated his costume and looked quite miserable, and adorable at the same time.

Harper Showing Off Her Costume

Cosmo Looked so Cute, I Don't Know Why He Didn't Like His Costume!

I Did Get Them to Pose Nicely 

There Were Lots of Great Costumes But One of My Favorites Was the Three Dogs in the Kissing Booth!

The Pope Was a Highlight!

Another thing I did last week was take a class on Lichens at Garden in the Woods. Some of this class flew right over my head; there are an incredible number of scientific terms involved in the description of lichens. But I enjoyed viewing the teeny-tiny plants under a microscope, and out in the garden. There are many different kinds of lichens, growing on rocks, trees and soil, everywhere you turn. Now when we are out on our daily walks I notice them more than I did before. They are beautiful, and add color and interest to any garden.

Finally, I'm starting to try to learn how to use Photoshop. Its a big software package, even the smaller version, which is the one I have (Elements). I'm taking a video course and following along, trying to do the things that the instructor does to some of my own photos. The biggest challenge so far is thinking about developing a process using photoshop to edit my pictures. I've got a process in place for editing using Picasa that goes quickly, but there are so many options in Photoshop - how do I use it effectively without driving myself crazy? I think the trick is going to be to only use it to edit my very best photos from a shoot, the ones that would be really good (well for me anyway) with a little improvement to the lighting, color, background, etc etc etc....

Here are a few examples. I love this photo of Riley from her Bat Mitzvah. The original is a little washed out:

So I used Photoshop to improve the color.

The other problem is the blurry bit of the rabbi marring the background. I've learned how to get rid of things like that too! Here is the photo with the background improved. Its not perfect, but you get the idea.

I honestly could spend hours playing around with stuff like this on my computer. It would really make more sense to go outside and practice taking pictures...and I will, I promise, very soon....


  1. How cool, messing with pictures is fun! And I feel like I could never know it all (which is definitely true because I hardly ever have time to play around with them). And your pups were adorable! But...that's not surprising :)

    1. Thanks Kate, you took some great pictures at the wedding. It really is fun, isn't it....



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