Sunday, February 28, 2010

Flight February 28, 2010

Flight, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

What a beautiful day we had. The sun was shining, the temps were warm, the snow is beginning to melt some with water on the streets and "dirty" snow everywhere. After a trip to Fergus to deliver some rugs and a "date" dinner with my hubby we went back to Wahpeton. We stopped at Chahinkapa park to check out the geese and found a good size flock of ducks and geese at the pond. I was hoping to get some close up shots but the young ladies who were there were having a good time and frightened them. One gal decided to go out on the ice and wings fluttered. I captured these three heading for the sky.

They have some freedom, being able to fly, to go easily from one place to the next. I remember as a child running as fast as I could, jumping up and hoping I would fly. Someday I believe I will. My spirit will take flight from this world and wing it's way to heaven. I don't know how it all works, don't understand everything to come, but I believe it to be true. Just like I believe the sun will rise in the morning, that spring will follow winter and Jesus loves me.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1


I'm Listening! February 27, 2010

I'm Listening!, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

I am so pleased that my Cardinal pair visit my feeders daily and often can be seen in the yard throughout the day. The beautiful colors are so cheery and the sight of one or both of my feathered friends brings a smile to my face. So do my crazy squirrels and their antics. I am thankful for the wonder of nature my creator has blessed me with. I never tire of the birds, leaves, flowers, sunsets, sunrises, frosts, mountains, rivers, the moon, stars, clouds and on and on!

I hope you can take the time each day to find joy in nature.


Old Pants February 26, 2010

Rag Rug, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

I had a customer who brought me three bags of old clothing. There were t shirts, jeans and some slacks. Rather than throw these old worn out things in the garbage and eventually put them in a landfill, I was able to convert them into something useful, needed and if I do say so myself, attractive. From his three bags we got 6 40 inch rugs with just a couple shirts left over. We're saving them till next time.

There is much talk about being or doing the "green" thing. Seems funny to me. My grandmothers were weavers and long before there was such a thing they were doing the "green" thing. They used items that could no longer be used for bedding or clothing and made rugs. They also made quilts. Mom still has a couple of Grandma Ida's beautiful log cabins and Grandma Mabel's patchworks. They carded sheep's wool and put inside. So very warm. Sometimes the old ways really are better! And sometimes we can take the old ways, improve on them and they can be better yet!


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Raspberry Red February 25,2010

Raspberry Red, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Picked these up in the grocery store, a little spendy this time of year but worth every penny, delicious. Tastes like summer.

When I started this project, I couldn't have taken this pic. Just took it in my kitchen 9 pm no extra lighting no flash. I've learned to use my Manual mode on my camera! Yeah me :D Toyed some with other settings like picture control, set it on Vivid. Upped the exposure compensation and adjusted the shutter speed til I got what I wanted. I used the tripod, I need to get more comfortable with it as well. That's why I'm doing this project. Even when I don't feel like taking a picture I pick up the camera and find something. Not just anything, something I'm not too embarrassed to post here.

I am also learning more about self-discipline. It is a matter of choice. My choice. When I chose self-discipline there are great rewards!


oh, and the only editing I did was to hit the auto contrast/auto color and cropped it a little in picasa.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Faded Love February 24, 2010

Faded Love, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

I'm tired tonight, so another short post. Just wanted to say that I am so thankful that God's Love NEVER fades. No matter what I do or don't do, He never tires of me. His love does not grow cold, distant or indifferent. His love will remain powerful, steadfast, and true for all eternity. His love is sweet like the scent of a rose, breath-taking yet tender. I trust His love, I cling to His love, I find rest and peace in His love. Do you know His love, He tells us of his great love in the Bible, you can read about it for yourself.


Shadow Dancers February 23, 2010

Shadow Dancers, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Tree Branch shadows do there little dance on the snows surface.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Winter Field February 22, 2010

Winter Field, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Yep, nearing the end of February and fields of corn are still standing. This is not an uncommon sight in our area. We got a lot of snow this year so the farmers couldn't get in the field to finish their corn. Soon the spring thaw will start. I don't know if they will be able to finish their harvest or not. This field is on the bank of the Red River of the North. Last spring it was completely underwater. Most of the county was actually. We are praying for a slow melt and minimal rain til the river is flowing all the way to Canada.

Whatever happens this year, even if it is flooding like last year~I know that my Father God is in control, that whatever happens He has a purpose in it, for my good and His Glory. He has promised to never leave me nor forsake me. I give my worries, cares and concerns to Him, I trust Him.


Good Morning Sunshine! February 21, 2010

Good Morning Sunshine!, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Little sweetie greeted the day with her face to the sun. There was heavy frost on the trees and the early sun turned some of them pink and orange.

I do not always greet the day with my tace turned toward the sun. Often I try to push back the beginning of another day, waiting another 5, 10 or 15 minutes before crawling out of my warm bed and beginning another day. Oh that I would greet this blessing with excitement, anticipation, and gratefulness, turning my face to the SON!

Find Blessings in each day~

Monday, February 22, 2010

Saying Grace February 20, 2010

Saying Grace, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

When going thru my photos for today, this one was a delightful surprise! My little friend had been entertaining me again, climbing in and out of the feeder, running up and down the trees. I was just snapping photos..... I think he looks like he saying grace. Thanking God for all those good sunflower seeds. Thanking Him for a warm bed under the snow and so much more. My little friend reminded me that I ought to live with an attitude of gratitude. I have a home, family, clothes, shoes, good food and so much more. Like the gospel song I can sing "Thank you Lord for your blessings on me!"

We all have blessings to be thankful for, pick a few every day and say a prayer of gratitude!


Frosty Seeds February 19, 2010

Frosty Seeds, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Another lovey frosty day. After work I was surprised to find that the frost was for the most part still on the trees. I snapped a few before going into the house. Winter has been long, cold, gray, and you start to feel like the cold and snow will be stuck with you forever. Soon tho, soon.... spring breezes will begin, temps will rise, we'll see the sun more than clouds and we will shake the frosty winter from us. The sleep of winter will turn into a season of color, sweet perfume and growth. I'm ready!!


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Can little girls jump? they sure can!! February 18, 2010

Today I had the privilege of photographing the elementary school Dance Team. What fun, well, some frustration too, (my own fault), but the girls were great. They loved the camera and we had more fun and took more individual pics than we did the group pic! I think they turned out better too, and they weren't planned, just fun. This is my friend Abby and she wanted me to take her picture jumping, I love her hair, if you flip this upside down, it would look like shes hanging upside down!

I am far more comfortable shooting birds, flowers, landscapes even still lifes, people are different, kids are really different. I want to be the best photographer I can be. That means trying new things, doing things that are outside the comfort zone, stretching myself. I've done it before in other areas of my life, I know the benefits, growth and change are worth the risk! Like Abby, I'm gonna jump as high as I can, keep jumping each time getting a little stronger, smarter, and my comfort zone gets bigger and bigger.

I hope that if there is something you want to do, to try that you'll plan some, prepare some and then GO FOR IT!!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Look to the North February 17, 2010

Look to the North, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Lunch time at work today, I didn't have my MP3 so I didn't have my music. Decided not to walk, cleaned the store room and decided to take some boxes out to my car. As I was returning I heard an unusual squawk and turned to look in time to see a giant bird land in the tree across the parking lot. He looked to have a red head and I got quite excited! I ran back into the school, grabbed my camera and dashed back out. Looking in the tree I'd seen him land in I was disappointed to find him gone. I started perusing the area thru my lens and was THRILLED to find him in the tree in the photo. I took a couple shots, moved closer, took a couple more got a little closer took a couple more.

I've seen evidence (long large holes in trees) that these beauties were in the areal for at least 3 maybe 4 years. Thought I saw one fly overhead once but wasn't sure. Then today, providence chose to bless me with not only a good look but the opportunity to photograph this wonderful bird as well.

I was not as close as I would have liked and this photo is quite cropped. I had my 55-200 mm lens but would have like something a little better. I would like to explore the possibility of getting another lens and any help from you my readers would be oh so appreciated.

In the meantime i am so pleased to have a photo of this bird. Providence is waiting to bless you too, are your eyes and your heart open?


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Thinks He's Hiding February 16, 2010

Thinks He's Hiding, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

As I was watching the sky in the west, checking for the possibility of a good sunset I noticed some birds in a tree that didn't really look like sparrows. Grabbed my binoculars and to my delight saw that there were 6-8 Cedar Waxwings in my front yard! This tree is a bit farther from the house and I took the photos thru the window so as not to scare them away. Not the best so I am hoping they return soon. I took some frozen gooseberries out and put them on the dehydrator along with some blueberries. When they've dried I'll put them out in hopes of bringing the Waxwings closer and maybe a Blue Jay or two and who knows who else may stop for a snack! This is my first Waxwing photo!


Monday, February 15, 2010

Little Country Road February 15, 2010

Snow, Wind and Sunset, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

This is a road less traveled. Follow it straight to the west and you will come to a dead end. A friend of mine lives at the end and to get to anywhere she must travel this road. Fresh snow, and strong winds keep filling up the road with pillow drifts. Some are small and easily driven thru but others are large and sometimes very hard. Hit them hard and fast and you're in trouble.

My life can be like this little country road sometimes. Not too much traffic it seems, the little nuisances of life pile up and can become big trouble. The wind starts to blow more frustrations, hurts and strife in my way. My tendency with this little road is to step on the gas and plow thru those pillow drifts. That's fine until I hit one that is too big and too hard and it sends me into the ditch or maybe i get stuck in it right there in the middle of the road!

The same is true of my life's "road", trying to ram thru those pesky roadblocks may work some of the time but eventually they will either throw me off my course or I'll get stuck right where I am. There is a time a a place for "plowing thru" but sometimes slowing down, using a little caution and praying for help is the best course to take whether you're on this little country road or traveling thru this life.


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Snow Racer February 14, 2010

Snow Racer, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Today while watching for my birds, I saw this fella busy chomping down sunflower seeds. He entertained me for some time and made me laugh out loud a time or two. He would sit in the platform feeder or beneath it chomping seeds, the shells stuck in the fur near his tiny but busy little mouth! He would scurry across the snow to the tree, climb to a high branch and much his seeds some more. Then back down to the snow and when I expected him to fly across the snow he went beneath the snow at the base of the tree. It's a good couple feet deep there. So I figure he must have a little winter home under there. BRRR!! Next thing I know, his little head pops out of the snow near the base of the shepherds crook the feeders hang on. The little scamp has burrowed beneath the snow a beeline from tree to feeder. As I continued to watch, he was back and forth from tree to feeder, sometimes using his tunnel and others racing across the snow like he is in todays photo.

I took great delight in watching and was reminded of the verse Psalm 147:11 the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.

In other words those of us who fear, love and trust God, He takes great delight in, so much more than I do of this silly squirrel. God loves me, wants to see me succeed, wants to heap blessing after blessing on me. Even when I fail, fall down, make a mess of things, that does not change how he feels about me. I change, circumstances change, the world will change but God is unchanging, the same yesterday, today and forever. My hearts cry to God is that His Spirit would place in me a delight for Him, for His Word, for His will.


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Girlfriends February 13, 2010

Not really a pair, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

There have been a lot of wookpeckers in my backyard recently. There may be 2 or three little Downies and a couple of the larger Hairy woodpeckers all at once! They usually come and go to the feeders separately and tend to chase each other away from the feeders and the trees. Today I captured these two on the seed cake and there were three of them fairly close to each other in one of the trees.

Today I will imagine these two are girlfriends spending a little quality time together, shopping, sharing lunch and secrets. There is just something about a girlfriend. Someone who loves you warts and all, someone you can trust to be honest even when the truth may be painful. A girlfriend listens, loves, and lifts you up in prayer. If you have even one, cherish her, you are blessed! If you are one, you are a precious gift!


Friday, February 12, 2010

Little One February 12, 2010

Little One, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Something a little different today. Another cold gloomy day here so I turned my camera lens to the indoors. I love studying my plants. Cacti are especially intriguing with their prickles. The pattern and symmetry of the needles is just cool!


Spring is coming! February 11, 2010

Spring is coming!, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Each day I see these sweet little birds at my feeders. Today I notice how much more yellow they are. They stand out in the trees away from the house more and more. A sure sign that this winter will not last forever. A sign that spring is coming, warmer brighter days are ahead!

In life sometimes we feel as though the cold dark days we are existing in will never end. That the way things are today, right now is how they will always be. Not so, just like winter days pass and spring begins so too with the darker seasons of our lives. There are signs of change about us if we actively seek them. If you find hope nowhere else, there is always hope in God's Word. Spend time there, God's Spirit will bring encouragement, direction, peace and hope. And when spring comes again, continue to spend time reading your Bible, store it up, find strength there for as sure as spring is coming, so is another winter in it's time.


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Keep Looking Up! February 10, 2010

Keep Looking Up!, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Woke up to another frosty morning but it was shrouded in heavy fog. Gray dismal day or so it seemed. By 10 am the sun was shining and we were treated to the beautiful contrast of the pure white frost against the gorgeous winter blue sky. I found my self walking about with my nose in the air, gazing up at the gorgeous frosted treetops.

I need to walk about with my eyes looking upward in a spiritual sense as well. Looking up not at the sky but up to God. Looking up to Him for direction, guidance, instruction, wisdom, and even discipline. Keeping my eyes on Him keeps my eyes off the world, off my neighbor, off myself! Turning my eyes heavenward, brings peace and removes fear. Join me in keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Snowed In! February 9, 2010

Snowed In!, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

After a long weekend of freezing rain, snow, blowing snow, more snow, drifting snow, snow day, no school, late start, we finally saw the sunshine! And the sun makes all that snow, sparkle and shine while casting wonderful shadows about creating beautiful abstracts on the snows surface. I walk by these trees every day on my way to work. Most day's I don't notice them, they're just trees. Today was different. their dark rough trunks stood in sharp contrast with the white softness of the snow. Planning to take at least one photo a day is training my eye to look at things differently, to notice things I may not have otherwise, to not just look, but to see. What will I see tomorrow? What will you see?

I hope you see BLESSINGS!

On Alert February 8, 2010

On Alert, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

This fella has been spotted previously only once! How wonderful that he has returned. I saw him briefly on the seed cake but he spent the rest of his short visit in the tree. He's found the seed now so I trust he will return. I'll be watching.


Monday, February 8, 2010

Geronimo! Februarly 7, 2010

Geronimo!, originally uploaded by pictureapromise.

Sunday was a busy day in my backyard! In addition to the birds at my feeders, i had a little sneak thief too. He entertained me for some time. He would climb up the tree, sit and ponder a bit, then climb out to the end of the branches and jump toward the feeders. He landed in the snow every time and would run the rest of the way to the feeder which was easy enough for him to climb to from the ground. He'd grab a seed or two, tun back to the tree,climb up, eat his seeds and do the whole thing again. Too funny!

More pics of my little friend can be found at pictureapromise on flickr

Hope each day brings you something to smile about.

Hairy Woodpecker February 6, 2010

Hairy Woodpecker, originally uploaded by picturethepromises.

While waiting for some friends to pick me up for a girls day out I was thrilled to see so many birds using my feeders again. Slowly the numbers are increasing and though most of the users are sparrows and finches it's a thrill! To date I have had sparrows, yellow finches, purple finches, juncos, pine siskins, chickadees, my beautiful cardinal pair that visit daily now, hairy woodpecker, downy woodpecker, one redheaded woodpecker and starlings (when I put out bread). The birds are such a joy to me, just so much fun. They are a wonder as well, such tiny fragile things withstanding snowstorms and blizzards, walking barefoot in the snow, and singing and chirping praises to the Father. Would that I be so grateful for all He abundantly provides for me that I have joy in my heart, peace in my soul and a song of praise on my lips.


Saturday, February 6, 2010

Lighting up the Darkness February 5, 2010

This cross atop the steeple in town lights up the darkness from evening to mornings first light, until the light of the sun outshines the neon cross. As believers, we are called to be light shining in the darkness. Oh that my life would radiate the love of Jesus, that His light in me would bring hope to the many around me lost in darkness.

Sometimes my light is not so bright. Sin, fear, pride, business, can all dim my light, sometimes I try to hide it! O Father, may my light be bright, bringing hope to the hearts of others until Jesus, the true light of the world returns for me or calls me home.


Friday, February 5, 2010

Street Lights February 4, 2010

Street Lights, originally uploaded by picturethepromises.

Busy busy day, after work it was into Fargo. It started to mist and when darkness fell there was a glow from street lights, car lights, neon signs and so on. After picking up a few groceries I snapped this before heading home. Do you have your imagination handy, what do you see? I see little spaceships (if i don't look tooo close!)


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

He hears me! February 3, 2010

He hears me!, originally uploaded by picturethepromises.

After filling my feeders again, I took a walk thru the deeeeeeep snow to the back of the house. Eyes on the trees, I was nearly on top of this guy before I noticed him. He was alone at the feeders and oh so very busy. He would stop, listen and then poke at the suet a bit more. I was able to take several shots but when I tried to move a couple steps to the left (the camera wanted to focus on the feeder not the Downy), I spooked him and off he flew.

Had I been content where I was, I could have watched him at close range a bit longer. A lesson there. Sometimes I need to just be still, enjoy the moment, be content.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

One of a kind! February 2, 2010

One of a kind!, originally uploaded by picturethepromises.

"How full of the creative genius is the air in which these are generated!
I should hardly admire more if real stars fell
and lodged on my coat."
--Henry David Thoreau, 1856

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sparrows February 1, 2010

Sparrows, originally uploaded by picturethepromises.

Matthew 10:29 says Are not two sparrows sold for a penny ? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father.

The little sparrow is watched by God, He cares for them, feeds them and sees when one falls. Some days we may feel isolated, alone perhaps abandoned or betrayed. God is at hand, He hears our hearts cry. There are times when we see no way for the needs of today or tomorrow to be met. Our need far outweighs our resources. We forget that God is at hand, His resources know no bounds! Sometimes, like the sparrow we fall and the Father is at hand, and He sees. Not only does He see, He may catch us before we hit the ground or He may rush to our side to help us up. We may even stay down for a time, to heal or to learn, and the Father never leaves us. And like the sparrow, nothing touches us outside the will of the Father. He knows, He cares, He sees, He Loves.....

How wonderful to think that the God of creation, of heaven and earth cares for and sees each sparrow. How incredible, how abundantly more precious to me that He not only sees me, He sent His son to pay my sin debt, to take my place in order to redeem me from the pit I'd fallen into and prepare a wonderful eternal home for me!