Lunar Eclipse worth the Early Rising

Lunar Eclipse worth the Early Rising

My body woke up before the alarm clock went off, and I decided to look out my front window which faces west. There it was,  the bright moon with a black shadow over the top left side that I could see through the branches of a large Elm tree. I took some photos through the window with branches slightly obscuring the view.

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My intrigue was aroused by now and being more awake, I decided to go outside for more captures. There is a park across and down the road a couple of buildings, a perfect spot to set up my tripod . I had a great view there, even with a street light to the left.

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I am glad that I made the effort because how often will I get a chance to see a Super Blue Blood moon? My freezing fingers cut the time short at about 6:39 a.m. when I believe the moon was fully eclipsed. It was cold! I discovered later that it was only -25 Celsius, a fact that I am glad I didn’t know before I left the warmth of the house or maybe it would have dissuaded me.

The photos aren’t perfect, there were some images that were trashed due to poor focus and camera movement but happy with some of the images and this is my reminder that I got up at 5 a.m. and braved the cold to get my own captures of the moon. In case you are wondering, yes, I was nodding-off by mid -afternoon.

Took the pictures using my aperture settings  at first , then changed over to Shutter priority settings at 1/ 8 second, f 5.6, ISO of 800 with a focal length of 300mm.

 

 

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Live Nativity

Live Nativity

As I look back over the holidays that seem to be rapidly coming to an end, one of the events that I enjoyed was the live nativity that took place outdoors one evening in front of our church. This is where any one can come and take part in an outdoor nativity, playing any role they choose to celebrate the upcoming birth of the baby Jesus. The church has a Bar B Q with  hot dogs and smokies and hot chocolate for people who either plan to be there or happen to be passing by and want to stop, get warm and eat and chat. It is a great occasion to share hospitality with our neighbours. Even dogs get a chance to play “sheep”, we have shepherds with their toy horses and are visited by many angels.

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Enjoying the Lights

Enjoying the Lights

This year, the same evening that my classes finished for the term, I went to the Alberta Legislative grounds to take in the beauty and wonder of the Christmas Light display. There were even more lights this year than before and I took “regular ” images as well as explored some techniques in motion photography. To top it off, it was the warmest year that I have experienced for visiting here but that has changed now as we are currently in a deep freeze, of sorts.

The number “150” refers to Canada’s 150th anniversary, a year fraught with controversy in light of discussions about truth and reconciliation with the first nations’ people. I believe all of us are moving forward albeit slowly as we work together to be the country we aim to grow toward.

Some people complain about how much money this costs, that it is an unneeded extravagant display but as a person with little funds, I can come here any time and appreciate the beauty for free. For that, I am grateful.

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Moments

Moments

Walking in the woods with a friend I stopped dead in my tracks more than once to capture the way the light played on the berries or the leaves danced in the delicate breeze or the shadows stood out on the path. That must be so annoying for some of our partners or friends if they are not “into ” photography. I am lucky to have companions who have an eye for creativity and also like nature with both of us wandering through the woods absorbed in our visual palates until we stop and call each other’s names and we re-locate each other.

I may not get online in this way too often, as I have started a course to help me get back to the workforce and I will be taking basic computer courses. However I know how important it is to have balance in one’s life, to do what one loves to do, to let one’s heart “sing.” I know how important it is to stop for a moment. I apologize for not commenting as often on others’ sites as I can take time only to read, but will return comments to those who are so kind to comment on my blogs.Of course there are always exceptions according to time constraints.

I am blessed to have membership in a local camera club, another activity that will keep the creative juices flowing. Someone kindly paid my membership fees this year as I am not able, a gesture for which I am deeply grateful.

Here are some moments from a walk during Thanksgiving weekend.A lot of leaves have dropped but the sun highlights  what is there in a special way, and I love the complimentary colours of the leaves and berries.

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Autumn Walk in the Woods

Autumn Walk in the Woods

There is nothing more rejuvenating than a respite in nature and I  luckily got out before the colours are gone and leaves have fallen. There are many lovely trails in Edmonton in and around the river valley, the off-leash dog parks and in the quieter neighbourhoods. I hope that you find this stroll as soothing as I did. It was fun to meet up with some little critters along  the way. It made my heart sing!

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Hope and Perseverance

There has been a lot of bad news, first the terrorist attack in Edmonton, when a man rammed into a police car sending the officer into the air about 15 feet, then stabbed the officer a number of times, found a cube van which he used to run down 4 residents downtown. All survived and some are even back home, including the officer.

Now there is  the incident in America where a person shot all those people at a concert from the hotel room. The world has gone insane. It IS scary out there.

I wish to send condolences to all , especially to the first-responders who strive to protect us regular people from the bad ones and to all who lost family and friends or to those who were injured physically, emotionally, mentally.May we help one another and stay strong in the face of adversity.

On Sunday we had a very somber service at church, feeling the heaviness of Saturday night’s events but also beautiful and uplifting, asking for courage and faith to be who we are meant to be and serve with Love. I do not want to succumb to fear because then the bad people are winning.I say no to that.

In that spirit I decided to attend a vigil in downtown Edmonton last night that was sponsored by a Muslim group. It was to recognize the first-responders and stand in solidarity with the Muslim community for the sake of peace, at least that was my purpose in being there. I was late, unfortunately, and most people had left since it had started to rain and  speeches had been spoken by the Mayor and other provincial and municipal politicians to come together in strength and not be deterred by a few. I was glad I went, though I was regrettably late.

I took a photo after most had left and found myself thinking, as I saw the 150 sign celebrating Canada 150th year of confederation, “wow, what a year”. As we look behind to review our past, we also look ahead with the hope of moving forward to make things better for all. Keep faith in all that is good and  persevere.

The next post will get back to wonderful walks in nature.

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The end of a night standing together in solidarity. Five hundred showed up in temperatures just above zero, in the wind and rain.