Monthly Archives: March 2009–Extreme Close-up, Extreme Close-up--Dune Grass, photo copyright Kim Nixon

Picking a super-macro shot for the theme was difficult. Extreme Close-up is never easy when there is wind. I like how this shot turned out. Taken in November at the Illinois State Beach down from the retired nuke plant. The day promised storm with dark skies, wind and cold numbing my fingers as I crawled thru grasses to find this perfect frond.


Capturing Vulcan, with Daydream Filter, photo by Kim Nixon

Viva la plug-in! Thanks goes out to Trina at Gallery 32. I just took her suggestion and downloaded a free plug-in from called Virtual Photographer. I took a photo from today’s Capturing Vulcan shoot and used an effect called Daydream. I feel the fairies are soon to follow. Come blossom!

Capturing Vulcan

Capturing Vulcan II, Photo by Kim Nixon

I cannot be logical. I blame the congestion of the cold. But spending time under blankets is not my idea of fun so I chose one project. Get the blue balls off the crab apple. Interrupted by a cell call my son said how many ornaments can you fit on a crab apple anyway? I realized I was attacking the tree not an apple. I grabbed camera. I took photos of Vulcan. It made the whole adventure so much more grand and worth my efforts.

 Capturing Vulcan I, Photo by Kim Nixon

Armed for battle I was with two coats, long underwear, heavy gloves, camera around my neck and snippers to snip the sharp floral wire.

Blue Balls III, Photo by Kim Nixon

The Benefits > The Cold

This is the philosophy I am working on. The benefits of the cold, outweigh the cold itself. Meaning all this time under covers is really allowing me to plot my future and the stored energy will allow me to burst forth with direction and purpose. Yet I am worried of the inherit fog that clouds a brain in such cold environs. The  Kleenex mounds are like storm cells of  Cumulonimbus. It took me hours to compose this paragraph. And no you won’t be seeing a photo of me or my storm cell today. Mike is staying upwind. If I spot his camera I am blowing out of here to Grand Marias.

The Best Resource for Rice Caloric Content

Last night I made Thai food a wonderful hot curry with ginger and jasmine rice. Later, diet journaling into, I was shocked at what 1-cup of Jasmine rice had cost me! Today’s research project was to seek out a comparison of different rice types and form a chart I can use when making decisions as chef-for-the-night.

The good news is I did lose weight yesterday despite the huge blow from the Jasmine rice. I am fighting off a cold-which is the reason I curried and gingered-up my body in the first place. I believe the cold is burning through any carbs I offer it. Of course, I am worried. I am always ravenous when I have a cold and old habits would have me mowing thru the cupboards.

But the scale said 170.8 this morning!

People ask, “How are you doing this (weight loss)?”

It’s simple, Energy-in = Energy out. It is the only formula to live by.

Rice Comparisons (cooked)

  • 1 cup Brown rice Long-grain 216 calories
  • .5 cup Brown rice medium-grain 218 calories
  • .25  cup Lundberg short-grain brown 170
  • 1 White long-grain 675 calories
  • 1 cup White medium-grain 242 calories
  • 1 cup 267 White short-grain 242


Flickr Tools–Most Interesting

I have been playing around with my Flickr stream the last couple of nights. There are some fun applications in which to change the view and feel of Flickr. If you’ve never taken a tour of my photos this might be a fun way to go about it!

You can view my Photos at Darckr: TheDailies.

Or you can view my Flickr River by Interesting. Once there you can look at more obscure photos by chosing “Random.”

If you use Flickr for your photos, painting, crafts or other leave a comment below. I would love to surf on over!

TheDailies - View my most interesting photos on Flickriver

In the coming months I will be making changes to the blog here. Last night I added my Tweetle Dee Dee widget which will show my Twitter status as it changes.

Let me know what you like the most about The Dailies. What you’d like to see that you do not. What’s on your mind?

Marquette Tags

Tag Mike on Bridge, photo captured by Kim Nixon

Mike Hainstock is the founder and administer of Marquette This Week at Flickr. He came up with a great theme this week:

“Do you see others taking pictures around you? I thought that it might be fun to see who else is out and about taking pictures this week. It might make for some nice introductions. Who can you catch? “

Well I caught Mike on the bridge above–tag!

That was fun, but the graffiti tags ruining a fine piece of Marquette history was no fun. Graffiti in the inner city seems like an art-form, but here in nature above the Dead River it is out of place. I want to be thinking of flowing water, fish, birds, get all zen.

To the artists of these tags I want to say, “I am sad.” I find your expression out of place on this overpass, and on this old bridge. I will gladly buy you some other art supplies to keep you busy.

Graffiti Series, Photo by Kim Nixon

Graffiti Series, Photo by Kim Nixon

Graffiti Series, Photo by Kim Nixon

Graffiti Series, Photo by Kim Nixon

Embracing Life, My Week in Review

Left to right: Skinny Grandma, Grand Baby Boy, Beautiful Daughter.

Left to right: Skinny Grandma, Grand Baby Boy, Beautiful Daughter.

It isn’t easy being green! Those famous words sung on the Muppets by Kermit the Frog haunted me this week. As many of you know I work with Developmentally Disabled Children and Adults in their home settings. My job enables families to function without placing their children in institutional facilities or homes. It is good work. I have a steady schedule that allows me to afford my life (to a point). I have a wonderful boss. I like the people I work with, we call them “consumers” a word I do not like.

So how does Kermit come into this?

Well let’s say it is was a week of unhappy “consumers” or a week where I am remembering making twice what I do now, or a week where I have that I used to be a (fill-in-the-blank) going on. Or even a week where I look at how little my paycheck affords me and I want to cry that I did not work harder, get a second job, or reign in my spending even. Heavy Sigh.

Understanding duality, I looked for the upside.

And I remembered it was a week of facing difficult secrets and approaching my eldest son in an awkward conversations via long distance cell call. The end of the call had me feeling 50-pounds lighter.

It was also a week of seeing the scale move, my clothes fall off my body, and my knee and shoulder feeling stronger. Discovering a new place to do Yoga–Mukta Yoga (more on that later)–and having new awarenesses in regards to my physical and spiritual body.

It was a week of bonding with Mike. Moving forward with Mike. A way of thinking “ours” not yours and mine.

The week brought love into my home with a family-dinner with my Grand Baby Boy, my daughter and her significant other.

I cleared out the clothes, that are falling off of me, from closets and drawers. Made clean and clear space in my home , body and mind.

I am seeing tiny buds, green things popping up before the snow even melts, and I do not cringe wen I see photos of myself. I am embracing today.

I love Kermit the Frog too! But now as I reflect over the whole-week. I think it is sad, that Kermit song. I am looking for a new song, upbeat, happy and hopeful. If you have suggestions leave a comment, please.

Captured by Mike Hainstock

Captured by Mike Hainstock, “Kim in New Coat, Size 12.”

Earlier that day I had set out for a fast paced walk to downtown Marquette and the spring Holistic Health Fair. The coat I put on was a 1x and I was drowning in it. On my way home, I dropped into Getz’s and purchased the above jacket, a size 12. No way! That’s what the tag says said the sales-lady. I proudly wore home my new Descente ski jacket (which happens to be light enough to shove in a backpack).

Later that day Mike and I headed out for an evening walk and to capture some of the last images of winter. The snow was dirty, the ice was fine and thinning out, Just like me!  Seriously. We both took  awesome captures of crazy ice-fishing on Marquette’s lower harbor. Check out our Flickr sites, His/Hers . I will soon post some to A Winter Journal, too!

Guest Writer–Cynthia Morris on Blogging for Creativity

Blog for Creativity: Ten Reasons Your Muse Will Love Blogging

By Cynthia Morris

Blogging is a great way to add zest to your creative life. I love the way it engages me and my Muse. Here are ten reasons why blogging will bring your Muse around more frequently. Blogging:

  1. helps you focus your writing. Finding a good angle on a subject and spouting forth on it in under 500 words offers excellent writing practice.
  2. offers a great way to develop your visual art intelligence. I’ve been challenged to find photos that represent the topic and graphics that get my point across visually.
  3. is great conversation starter.
  4. invites your authentic voice out into the public and gives you a forum for your passion.
  5. keeps you alert to new ideas and concepts.
  6. helps connect you to a creative community of peers.
  7. allows you to develop content and ideas for products and books.
  8. fosters the opportunity to share links and resources that you love.
  9. gives you a deadline for posting art and writing.
  10. is FUN and fun always stimulates your creativity.

If you are considering blogging, I highly recommend it. If you’re a veteran blogger and need help keeping the pulse of your blog steady, consider my upcoming blogging class with Alyson Stanfield. See below for details.

Copyright 2009 Cynthia Morris. Cynthia coaches creative people to confidence and completion and inspires life as a creative adventure. Visit to get an infusion of inspiration for your art, writing and life.

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