The Little Clownfish That Wreaked Havoc

Well, this post was originally going to be about my latest skiing adventures, but nature decided to throw a few snowflakes our way this past weekend, so the skiing entry will have to wait just a little longer.

So, with the help of my lovely new camera, let me introduce you to today’s topic:

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About a week ago, the weather channel turned on to high alert as it warned us about the winter wrath making its way through the states, heading towards the unsuspecting Northeast. Ok, unsuspecting may not be the right word, since we heard about this storm every second for at least a week before it hit, but I figure I’m allowed some poetic license here. So while state officials scrambled to get enough snow plows, salt and crews ready to prevent disaster, and the power companies attempted to avoid a riot by fanning out their crews to potential outage zones, I remained baffled by the name choice for this storm: Nemo. When I hear the name Nemo, I think of a little clownfish who was the star of a Disney/Pixar film. A clownfish. Not a shark, not a whale, not even a barracuda. Doesn’t quite seem like the most appropriate name for a seemingly apocalyptic snow storm, but maybe that’s just me.

So there you have it. The build up to the storm of the century (again, poetic license), the blizzard of the decade (this is almost accurate)…They got this one right. We definitely got some snow. Actually, that’s a gruesome understatement – we got A LOT of snow. So much snow that our apartment parking lot looks like the bottom of a ski slope. It’s been a workout so far. No need to go to the gym this week!

Enough words for now, let me leave you with some photos. I thought I would begin with a type of time lapse of the blizzard, and then I’ll post some of my favorite photos.

Nemo Time Lapse:

This is towards the beginning of the snowfall - probably a couple of hours in. Just barely a dusting, considering what followed.
This is towards the beginning of the snowfall – probably a couple of hours in. Just barely a dusting, considering what followed.
This is late at night - the blizzard was in full swing at this point, but would get even worse shortly after!
This is late at night – the blizzard was in full swing at this point, but would get even worse shortly after!
The following morning: the skies still seem to be threatening to dump more snow...
The following morning: the skies still seem to be threatening to dump more snow…
...But instead this happened a few hours later. The beauty of it was breathtaking.
…But instead this happened a few hours later. The beauty of it was breathtaking.
And a final one for the time lapse, as the sun slowly moved along...
And a final one for the time lapse, as the sun slowly moved along…

And now for some of my favorites:

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This photo deserves a little background story: this storm was the perfect opportunity for me to really play around with my new camera. I tried all sorts of settings (special setting for snow photos, for dusk photos…), and it was a huge learning experience for my manual focus. This is one of my favorites using the manual focus…And there were a lot, believe me. That’s what happens when you give me a DSLR with a pretty big memory card. I was having a blast!
Cars? What Cars?
Oh yes. This is our parking lot. This is why I said no need for the gym this week. The past 3 days we have worked out so much with hours of shoveling. Yes, shoveling – not snowblowing, not plowing, manual shoveling. I would say it took about 2.5 hours just to clear our car. And we didn’t stop after our car.  But truth be told, it’s been awesome!

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DSC_0190DSC_0199And a few evening shots to finish the day…

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Until next time...
Until next time…

I hope you enjoyed, and that all of you affected by the blizzard stayed safe and warm! Also, any feedback or comments on the photos are always welcome as I’ve just started using my DSLR and would definitely love to learn more!

I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas…

Although this first snowfall occurred a few weeks ago, I haven’t had a chance to post the photos. The snow didn’t last long and it was pretty much gone 2 days later, but it was beautiful while it lasted. It’s especially magical right after it’s fallen, when it’s still pure and untouched. I love freshly fallen snow – there’s something so peaceful about it, and watching it snow always makes me feel like a little kid again.

And like a little kid, I’m definitely dreaming of a white Christmas.

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A Girl, a Camera and Autumn…

As we wait to see just how bad “Frankenstorm” will be, as our good friend Sandy inches closer and closer, I thought I would share some more autumn photos. While waiting to experience the wrath of nature, I wanted to remind myself of the beauty of nature.

To everyone in the path of the storm – I hope you’re safe and my heart goes out to anyone who’s homes are affected.

I hope these can bring some sunshine and smiles to those under gray skies, pouring rain and heavy wind…And fingers are crossed that we don’t lose power!

Mountain Beauty: San Pellegrino

San Pellegrino in Alpe is a mountain town in the Apennines, in Tuscany, Italy. It is beautiful and serene with amazing views everywhere you look. The fresh mountain air is soothing and invigorating; I could have stayed much longer than we did, just breathing it all in and enjoying the peaceful sounds of nature. I also happened to eat the best (homemade, of course) ravioli ever in the most charming restaurant/inn. If anyone plans to venture out in that direction, let me know and I’ll give you the information – you won’t regret it. You’ll fall in love with both the delectable meal and the breathtaking views. As with the gelato, however, I have no photos of the ravioli. Yes, I was too busy eating and enjoying. But I have many photos of the views, mountains and forest walks…I’ll let them convince you.

This is definitely one of my favorites – I think it almost looks like a painting!

Il Camposanto

This second photo post of Pisa is exclusively about my favorite monument of the Piazza dei Miracoli: the Camposanto. In my opinion, it is the most unexpected and unique structure of all these beautiful and historic monuments. The sculptures in the Camposanto are so lifelike, from the folds of the clothes to the beautiful expressions on the faces and the frescoes just took my breath away – they were very possibly my favorite part of the Camposanto.

But enough words (for this time), I’ll just let the photos do the talking…

Leonardo Fibonacci

Piazza dei Miracoli

I recently had the wonderful joy of travelling to Italy with my husband, where we enjoyed the beautiful Mediterranean Sea, the lovely language, the delicious gelato (very, very delicious!), and the amazing culture. Of course my camera was with me as much as possible, although I unfortunately did not remember to take any pictures of the gelato…I was too busy enjoying it to even think of taking a picture!

There will probably be a few photography posts about Italy, as I took a lot of pictures and everything is so beautiful that I want to share it! This post is my first of probably several about Pisa; I’ll share some photos of the Piazza dei Miracoli, where stands the famed tower of Pisa. Still leaning. But the tower is not the only historic and impressive landmark in this piazza; it is but part of the beauty. Standing beside the tower is the imposing cathedral, the baptistry (with beautiful acoustics), and the Camposanto (by far my favorite of all the monuments!). I promise that future posts will have close ups of certain sections, paintings, statues and architecture because the detail and craftsmanship is awe-inspiring.

Today’s post will just be a few general views of the square, but  I hope you enjoy it and the ones to come!

One of my favorite shots of the day – I feel as though the tower was trying to peek around the cathedral as if to say “hello, I’m here!”.
The official name of the square is Piazza del Duomo; but it is commonly called the Piazza dei Miracoli.

The clouds gave the perfect backdrop for the monuments, and also gave some shade from the sweltering heat!
I absolutely loved these lamp-posts, and the walls of the museum. What’s beautiful in Europe is that you don’t need major monuments to see history…It just surrounds you.
Street-side view from the top of the tower!
Mountain-side view; that beautiful ocre building is the information center and souvenir shop. The buildings are painted in such vibrant and warm colors; they’re absolutely lovely.
View of the baptistry and the cathedral from the tower; the long structure to the right of the cathedral is the Camposanto.