Friday, September 25, 2015

Workshop Participants

We recently participated in a day long workshop that was run by one of the top colleges in our state.

Scientists, teachers, and students put together a probable scenario about the climate in our area in the year 2100.

Using statistics from the past 40 years, they were able to project what the climate would be in 2100, and how it would effect our land uses and water needs as the population of our state tripled in numbers.

Let's just say it was not a pretty sight.

The water was disappearing at a rapid rate, and what was around was polluted.

What few farmers there were were growing on polluted land and only the very wealthy could afford their produce.

And the climate - just forget it - we were dying of heat with our extended summers.

We weren't getting the snow cover we do now in the winters which affected the water supply.

The extreme heat affected the water supply also by evaporation.

Many small factors that we don't even think about were being affected too.

We have plentiful maple trees that supply syrup and fall foliage - both big tourist draws to our state which brings in income for many industries.

Those trees had all died off from the heat and the maple tree line was now well into Canada.

The run-offs from the rivers into the ocean had made the environments along the coast incapable of supporting life which affected the availability of food for us and other sea life.

And the list went on.

The whole purpose of this exercise was two-fold.

We were considered a civilian jury and had to all come to an agreement in the end, after much deliberating, which was the most important in the year 2100 - water, climate, or land.

My group chose water, with climate being right on it's heels.  We just couldn't convince the last guy that we could eventually adapt to the climate, but we could not go with out water.

My husband's group chose water also with climate second, but not as important as it was to our group.

The results from all the groups will be sent to us in November.

The second part of this exercise was the civilian jury format itself.

This was the first time it was used and they wanted to get the views of the community which could be used to make decisions for the towns and states.

I found the whole workshop to be very interesting in all regards, and was very happy to be selected to participate.

Listening to other's thoughts and everyone working to come to an agreement opens the mind and makes you feel good when it's all finally resolved.

Would I do it again?  In a heartbeat - I hope we get the chance!

Monday, August 10, 2015

A Different Perspective

I can remember my first photo assignment when I was in my photography class many years ago.

We were given a roll of film with 36 exposures on it, and sent out in front of the school, each with a different subject.

Mine was a tree.

It was winter, so it was bare.

No leaves or buds.

It was an overcast day, so the light was really drabby, and with the snow all around, everything looked black and white.

I had no idea how I was going to get 36 different photos of this tree.

Of course, that was the whole object of the assignment - to open the mind and eyes to more than the obvious.

Move in, back up, go under, look down, try different angles, don't forget the textures, check out the lines, patterns, shadows, and highlights, and most importantly, take a different perspective.

It's a little harder these days to get the low shots - the knees and back don't contort like they used to.

But it still is a lot of fun to try to get the different angles and perspectives of a subject.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

The First Chick

It happened a little over four weeks ago.

After sitting on her clutch of six eggs for three weeks, the first little peep hatched.

Mama was very protective yet proud to show us her baby chick.

Over the next couple of days two more little ones joined the first.

We candled the other three eggs, and since they didn't have any chicks, we removed them from the nest box.

Watching these little chicks grow has been a great experience.

And watching Mama teach them has brought many smiles.

To see these small chicks mimicking the larger ones is too cute - especially the dust bathes.

More pics to come, for sure!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Phone Camera

I am finding that as I get older, lugging around all my photo gear is really quite tiring.

I hate the idea of being without my camera, and I have set aside some of the lenses to make the bag lighter.

Not only is the weight a problem, but the thought of somebody conking me over the head and running off with my gear has also been a worry.

Neither my husband's or my reflexes are what they used to be.

And the white hair does make us more a target.

With all the money I have invested in my gear, I really don't want it ripped off.

So, as an alternative, I find myself using the camera in my iPhone more and more.

And many of the photo agencies I contribute to will accept the images.

Very easy to upload from the phone while on wifi with the various apps that are synced with my accounts.

Way too cool. Way too quick.

And most of all, way safer for my camera and me.

There are many instances where only my dslr will do the job, but these phone cameras have really come a long way.

Now, I just need to find my glasses so I can see the photos on the phone screen! 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Brooding Hens

Along with the flowers and the green grass of spring, all the little animal babies are beginning to arrive.

The goats were the first to bring new life to the farm, then came the brooding hens.

Now, these ladies are not to be messed with.

They are very serious about sitting on their eggs, and they will put up with no nonsense.

Especially from the humans around them.

No sweet talking them for them and forget about touching them.

The raptors from Jurassic Park are reincarnated in these hens.

Noise included.

All the feathers on the head stand on end - that's the first warning to come no closer.

The raptor noise starts, deep in the throat, if you pay no mind to that first warning.

Now, if you have a fairly pleasant hen normally, she will not attack with a peck.

She'll just keep up with the feathers and grumbling.

But a more aggressive one has no problem delivering a few pecks to the hand.

These mama hens pluck their belly feathers, deny themselves sun light and dirt baths, and stay in the coop to keep their clutches safe and warm.

They eat very little so they don't have to leave their nests.

This goes on for 21 days.

When the chicks arrive, they are a whole different hen.

And they are a joy to watch with their little followers scampering around the yard!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Baby Goats

The little farm of my daughter's is growing.

Chickens and rabbits and goats have been added over the past year, and now that spring has arrived, the babies are coming too.

The hens are brooding on their eggs.

The rabbits are still separated at this time.

But the goats have been the center of attention for the last few weeks.

There has been a set of twin girls and two single births that were each male.

Two of the mamas were first timers - as was my daughter to all of this.

She was nervous about it - but those mama goats handled it all themselves without any problems.

The little baby goats are so cute and full of life as they hop around and play.

There are two more ladies who will be delivering their babies next month.

Her little herd is increasing at just the right pace for her to handle.

The chickens are next to have their babies.

And those little peeps will be just as cute as those baby goats!

Monday, September 1, 2014

The Chickens

By the end of May, the chickens that were hatched on March 1st were almost three months old.

They had been kept indoors due to their small size and the cold nights that we have in northern New England.

So coming to a new home in a hay filled coop was going to be some different for them.

The long trip from my daughter's house didn't seem to bother them too much.

And they took to the coop like they had always been in it.

By instinct, I guess, they knew to go in to the enclosed part at night.

We kept them in the coop with the built in pen for a couple of days so they could get used to it.

Then we opened the door.

Three of them couldn't wait to get out and explore their new surroundings.

One of the hens was quite timid about leaving, but once out, they all stuck together.

They stayed around the outside of the coop for a couple of weeks until they got braver.

They are now free ranging all over the yard - eating all the bugs, seeds, and greenery they want.

Three hens with their rooster protector.

And do they have names - but of course - all pets do!


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