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.

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. .

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 . . .

The Alphabet Challenge “M” Stories voting has stalled. The “M” stories, mired and morose and melancholy, sit waiting for kind readers to stop by and give them a chance to enthrall, or at least entertain.

. . . er . . . mired and morose and melancholy are not the story titles; it’s just their state of being.

If you’ve not already done so, you can help them out by reading the stories and then cast your vote for your favorite of the three. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge M-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link

OK, that’s that. And now . . . .

Last week, when I went out to sit outside, this is what I saw next to my chair. Yes, those are rocks, but, if you haven’t already guessed from the title of the post, that’s not what I’m referring to.

It was evening, with the light fading. Some of these were shot with high ISO values and “DeNoised” and some were shot with the on-camera flash.

By the way, you can click on the photos for a larger view, or you can see the full-size photos in the SmugMug Gallery HERE.<<<Link

On my previous bug post HERE <<<this is a link I mentioned I used to photograph bugs . . . and if one wants a bit of proof, I have a SmugMug Folder <<<this is a link dedicated just to bugs.

Side note: some might wonder why I started adding “<<<this is a link” after links. Well, it turns out that if you read these posts on a phone — and depending on the browser — you might not see the underline signifying a link. Of course, the capitalized word should be a big hint, but some links are tied words in a sentence. I figure pointing to the link will increase the chance that someone who might be interested will recognize it as such.

Anyway, while not bad, I wasn’t super-thrilled with those photos. That’s why I went out a week later and snapped additional shots with more care and purpose.

Here’s a quick reminder to please — if so inclined — read the “H” Alphabet Challenge Stories. After, if receptive to the idea, the writers hope you’ll make the effort and vote for your favorite HERE.<<<this is a link

Clicking on the link will magically transport you to a post. There, you ‘ll find the poll where you can vote for your favorite of the three stories. Unless you want to deprive your friends of the experience, you can share that link and help expand the readership. if we say so ourselves — and we have to — most of the stories aren’t that bad.

If you’ve already voted, thank you. If you’ve already asked friends and family to read and vote, thank you again.

So, itsy bitsy spider . . . Two days ago, I told the tale (<<<this is a link) of me hurting a spider, likely breaking one of its legs. As I said, I rarely (intentionally) hurt spiders. But, I do intentionally post-process their photos with effects I find interesting. Today, I’m using a few Topaz Labs Plugins and Standalone Apps.

Here’s a quick reminder to please — if so inclined — read the “H” Alphabet Challenge Stories. After, if receptive to the idea, the writers hope you’ll make the effort and vote for your favorite HERE.<<<this is a link

That post links to the individual stories and it’s where you ‘ll find the poll where readers can click a box and vote for their favorite. If you have friends (I mean, even I have a few, so I imagine most readers have many, many friends), you can share that link and help expand the readership. I mean, we’re not professional writers, but there’s usually at least one decent story in the bunch.

If you’ve already voted, thank you. If you’ve asked friends and family to read and vote, you’re an angel, or maybe a saint, or just a swell person, and we thank you.

Anyway, monochrome itsy bitsy spider . . . Yesterday, I told the tale (<<<this is a link) of me hurting a spider, likely breaking one of its legs. I don’t know much about a spider’s healing abilities, but I hope they heal and that Lefty healed quickly.

Here’s a quick reminder to — if so inclined — please read the “H” Alphabet Challenge Stories. After, if receptive to the idea, the writers hope you’ll make the effort and vote for your favorite HERE.<<<this is a link

That post has links to the individual stories and the poll where readers can click a box to indicate their appreciation for their favorite. If you have friends (I mean, even I have a few, so I imagine most readers have many, many friends), you can share that link and help expand the readership. I mean, we’re not professional writers, but there’s usually at least one decent story in the bunch.

If you’ve already voted, thank you.

Oh, yeah . . . the writers encourage you to, you know, like, share these stories with friends and families. I mean, only if you agree any of the stories are worth reading, of course. That would be swell, we think.

Anyway, itsy bitsy spider . . . and why I feel terrible . . .

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.

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

For them not interested in reading, you can go directly to the SmugMug Gallery HERE.  This is the same gallery as the previous post; I just added the photos below to the 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 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.

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