For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow click HERE. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the upper-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

You can also click on the individual photos and a larger (but not full-size) version will open in a new tab or window. The galleries also have the option to show the larger version.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

So, twice now I mentioned seagull and I start out with ducks. Well, I liked how they swam away from me even though I was inside a car and about sixty yards away. But most of all, I like the wake patterns they formed. It reminded me of a flotilla of warship . . . well, feathery warships. Them beaks are deadly, don’t you know. 

This is the third day of the Alphabet Challenge “T” Stories voting round. After a very quick start, we hit dead calm. No new votes. lots of views, but those are likely people using readers and not actually reading anything.

. . . there go my hopes of a 100 votes round . . .   

If you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge T-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon, Chicago time, on November 27th.

As usual, let me know if something goes wrong with the voting . . . and here are a few Nikon P900 photos.

Magic Sands beach in Kona, The Big Island

Most people get a pleasant reaction from scenes like the one above. I think deep in our evolved nature, we have an affinity for water.

This is the second day of the Alphabet Challenge “T” Stories voting round. Yes, we still have days. It may seem like the world has gone bonkers, but we still have days . . . and we still have stories for them readers who, you know, like to read.

The voting has been surprisingly brisk for this early in the round, and one can only hope we’ll crack 100 votes. Wouldn’t that be something!  

If you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge T-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon, Chicago time, on November 27th.

As usual, let me know if something goes wrong with the voting . . . and now a preview of stuff that may — or may not — be showcased on the blog (soonish).

Vultures feasting on a deer carcass

Ain’t that the metaphor of the moment? . . . two kinds of vultures (Democrats and Republicans) feasting on a deer (the U. S. of  A.) . . . . I tell you, it ain’t looking good no matter who “wins”.

Because the Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories voting round is off to a very slow start, I decided I’d do a few more reminders. I suppose it’s to be expected, what with the Big Scary Day approaching . . . and just a few days before that, Halloween.   

If you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three despite all that’s probably occupying your mind. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

I redid the voting post so that it looks more like what it used to look like. Perhaps that was the problem and not the possibility we might suck as writers.

And now, a horse . . .

That’s a photo captured on the first day I owned my Nikon D200.

Anyway, in case no one noticed, the fonts in the blog are different. Until last week, the Adobe toolkit was available to us bloggers . . . specifically, we could set what fonts to use on the title of the blog (above the header photo), what fonts to use for the menu and post titles, and what font to use for the body of the post. Now . . .

The Alphabet Challenge “R” Stories voting round continues on its two-week journey.

If you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge R-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on October 20th.

I’m still using the Classic Block (in the Block Editor environment) and I’m having no issues with it. Yes, there are a few things different, but if I can adapt to having Trump as President . . . let’s just say this is trivial in comparison.

So, a few photos . . .

A little bit of background as to why I snapped this photo (in addition to, you know, swans).

The Alphabet Challenge “R” Stories voting round is off to a slow start, and that’s understandable . . . to everyone but us writers.

OK, that’s a joke. I shouldn’t have to explain that, but these days it’s best to make things perfectly clear; I’m kidding.

I know our regular readers likely will get around to reading and voting, and we writers want you to know we are thankful for each and every one of you. Oh, yeah . . . also the irregular readers who stop by and contribute to the voting.

If you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge R-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on October 20th.

Believe it or not, I’m using the Classic Block editor as opposed to the Classic Editor to compose this post.

Wanna know why? Because in the course of writing the guide to the Classic Block, I got used to it and it’s not functionally different from the Classic Editor (except for how I insert photos).

Speaking of photos . . .

Seagull walking along the beachYes, that’s a seagull out for a stroll on a Michigan beach (that’s Lake Michigan in the background).

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the bottom-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

Cobweb in the fog

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow click HERE. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

So, a few days ago I posted this preview photo:

That’s a rather large (2.5″ – 3.0″) Two-striped Grasshopper. You can read about them HERE<<link and HERE<<link. .

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow click HERE. When you click the link, it will open in a new window and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos as this will pause the slideshow.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

So, a few days ago I posted this preview photo:

Here’s how that shot came to be.

I bug, but there’s no love for The Alphabet Challenge “O” Stories. Voting has stopped in its tracks and it ain’t budging. 

The writers are at a loss to explain the sudden dearth of voters. Worse yet, it appears the stories are getting some eyes on them . . . OK, I exaggerate a bit . . . no one has looked at them for the past few days, but before that, we were getting a minimum of four views per day on each story . . . and few of those people voted. Probably a statement about our writing talents.  

As useless as it might be, I’ll mention it again . . . if you’ve not already done so — please read the stories and then cast a vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge O-Stories” are HERE.<<link

On the last post, I mentioned the game “find the bug” . . . as it happens, I have a great candidate for the game . . .

Do you see the bug?

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  If you want the full experience, keep reading.

While we get many hummingbirds in the back yard, we don’t get many butterflies. Almost none, actually.

This is why, when I see the flutter of big wings, I jump into action, the camera on hand. Such was the case some days ago, especially because the butterfly was unusual. I mean, I’ve already said any butterfly would be unusual here, but this one had black wings. A Black Swallowtail<<link, no less.

Now, this first photo isn’t all that great, but I kept it because of the photo-bombing bee . . . 

As usual, click on the photo to open a larger version in a new tab or window.

Actually, most of the shots were frustrating to get because the fluttering beast was obstinately uncooperative. It seldom gave me a full open-wings shot and robbed me of a decent profile shot. 

Here it is again, the bee safely to the side.

Reading the Alphabet Challenge “N” Stories is not a black and white matter . . . but monochrome versions of the Virginian Tiger Moth are nearly so (they also have gray).

I just realized the deadline for closing the vote is nearing (Sunday, noon) and I’ve yet to start on my “O” story (and no, I’m not planning on a riff on The Story of O<<link). I mean, the reasearch alone could take years.

Readers, on the other hand, if they’ve not already done so — could read the stories in about a half-hour, and then cast a vote for their favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge N-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

So, Virginian Tiger Moth<<link was showcased yesterday . . .

A number of long-time readers aren’t partial to monochrome (and some prefer it) but in this case, monochrome seems to bring out more of the details without blowing other details away . . .

Moths don’t care much for the Alphabet Challenge “N” Stories. That I know of, no moths have voted for any of the stories. All they do is hang around on screen doors . . . waiting to be photographed.

Readers, on the other hand, if they’ve not already done so — could read the stories and cast a vote for their favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge N-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

So, Virginian Tiger Moth<<link . . .

For some reason, despite it not moving much, I had a heck of a time photographing it . . . I suppose I should have gotten the tripod and done it proper justice . . .