One Secluded Tiny Beach

Hiking Point Lobos State Reserve near Carmel, California, I found this petite private beach. Of course, these public lands are open to everyone, but this tiny secluded patch of sand nestled between the rugged rocks and surrounded by Nature made me feel as though I were on a deserted island.

#pointlobos, #cove, #beach, #deserted, #private, #green, #california, #bigsur, #hike, #landscape, #photography
A tiny cove and patch of sand in Point Lobos State Reserve (near Big Sur, California) offers a quiet spot for meditation.

Don’t you love to get away from crowds, traffic, noise and stores at this time of year?

Christmas in Newport

The historic Vanderbilt mansion in Newport, Rhode Island celebrate Christmas with old world charm. At Marble House, Christmas trees adorn every room. Yesterday, even Santa Claus arrived to meet the children.

#Marblehouse, #Newport, #rhodeisland, #mansions, #Christmas, #gildedage, #stairs, #Vanderbilt
In the foyer, poinsettias line the grand staircase.
#marablehouse, #mansions, #newport, #newportmansions, #rhodeisland, #vanderbiilt, #diningroom, #christmas
At Marble House, the dining room table is set.
#christmas, #vanderbilt, #marblehouse, #mansions, #newport, #rhodeisland, #gildedage
Mrs. Vanderbilt will receive you in the parlor at Marble House.
#marablehouse, #newport, #newportmansions, #vanderbilt, #gildedage, #rhodeisland, #christmas, #christmastree, #stainedglass, #ceiling, #chapel
The chapel at Marble House provides a quiet atmosphere for reading and reflection.

You may also tour the upstairs bedrooms, the living room and the kitchen at Marble House. If you have time, be sure to visit the Breakers and Rosecliff, or six others! You will need a week to see them all and to walk the Cliff Walk while you learn about the Gilded Age of American history.

Snowstorm Photography

The “street photographer” in me cannot resist taking photos of my fellow photographers when I find myself on location in an amazing landscape. Shooting Bryce Canyon National Park in a heavy snowstorm was one of those occasions. My colleagues Joel and Dennis perched themselves with their tripods pretty darn close to the edge of the cliff.

#snow, #photography, #workshop, #lookout, #cliff
My friend Dennis shooting landscape photography in Bryce Canyon National Park. Dennis lives in Hawaii, where he tries not to fall into lava tubes.

Both Dennis and Joel are very talented photographers. We have kept in touch and swapped stories over the years.

#snow, #bryce, #brycecanyon, #hoodoo, #careful, #cliff, #dontfall, #tripod
My friend Joel spotted a hoodoo with a lone tree growing on top, a formation that made a great composition.

 

 

Thinking of you, Sonoma

Hard to believe that the peaceful vineyards we visited on September 8 are now suffering from devastating wildfires. I’m hoping that the nice people and the good wines at Iron Horse Vineyards have been spared. We tasted some Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Sparkling Wine and enjoyed them so much that we ordered a case of these varieties.

Sending our best wishes for safety and recovery to our friends in wine country.

#vineyard, #sonoma, #fires, #wildfires, #ironhorse, #wine, #chardonnay, #pinotnoir
The author with husband and daughter at Iron Horse Vineyards in Sonoma County, California, September 8, 2017.

 

Gifts of Point Lobos

Today I had two conversations about holistic ways of countering stress — whether that stress comes from your personal life or worries about national and world events. One friend suggested turning one’s attention to community and religion. Another hailed the healing power of Nature.

Point Lobos State Reserve in Monterey Bay, California is one of those healing places. A long hike along the coastline is salve for whatever might ail you. This image features the yellow blossoms of early September.

#pointlobos, #monterey, #montereybay, #california, #hike, #nature, #bay, #pacific, #bluesky, #freshair
Point Lobos State Reserve is a marvelous place for a hike. Monterey Bay, California.

What the Cypress Says

If you think this tangle of cypress trees in Monterey are shaped by a strong coastal wind, you would be half right. The wind was not blowing at the time I took this photograph. But surely, the wind makes a habit of blowing off the Pacific and has shaped these trees over time.

#cypress, #dune, #wind, #clouds, #coast, #maonterey, #golf, #nature, #landscape
Strong coastal winds appear to have shaped the trees, the clouds and the sand dune.

This image invites me to ponder: how much am I shaped by my everyday environment? In what ways are you shaped by your world?

Annual Giving: My Portrait Project

If it’s July, it’s time to shoot family portraits for the remarkable families at the Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children. For the past six years, I have donated my time ┬áto create portraits. This year with my husband assisting, I completed 23.

#portraits, #studio, #portablestudio, #schoolforblind, #pittsburgh, #pennsylvania, #volunteer
The portrait of seven staff members at the Western PA School for Blind Children.

While I protect the confidentiality of the patients at the school by keeping their photographs private, I can share a portrait of a staff member with her family.

#smiles, #family, #portrait, #familyportrait, #volunteer, #blackandwhite, #school, #familyday, #pittsburgh
Smiles were abundant on Family Day for the Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children.