Tuesday Photo Challenge & CFFC: Eye Candy

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge this week begins a series exploring the five senses. This week is sight. She says: As the saying goes, a picture worth a thousand words. Think of photos you can take or have already taken that remind you of a fabulous sight. I like to call it “Eye Candy”. Several of the photos I picked out are of animals, which is conveniently the topic of Dutch Goes the Photo’s Tuesday Photo Challenge.

A romantic couple: Swans make a “heart” after mating, in one of our community ponds.
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Cheetah mom and cub frolic in Tanzania:
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After watching these two gamboling for about half an hour, I decided the cheetah is now my favorite wild animal!SONY DSC
In a close second place are these adorable genets, who reside at Ndutu Safari Lodge.  They looked down at us with such curious faces, and sat up there so quietly observing the humans down below.
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My youngest “grandcat” Freddie – how can I help falling in love with this guy??
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Here is my own beautiful cat, Hazel! This is an early photo of her, but it has always been my favorite.
This is a beautiful picture of Hazel!
This is a more recent photo of her, taken in our new house.
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I guess it’s clear that I just love cats in general! (Genets are not cats, but they sort of look like cats.)

More eye candy is to be found in the beauty of nature.

A sunset in Tanzania
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Cathedral Rock as seen from the campus of Verde Valley School, Sedona, Arizona DSCF2997
Flowers: at Chicago Botanic Gardens
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Dahlia at Point Defiance Park, Tacoma, WADSC02442
I love to look at beautiful works of humankind as well.

In St. Matthias Church, Budapest
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If I had to lose either my sight or my hearing, I think I would choose being deaf than missing out on the beauties of our world.

Tuesday Photo Challenge: Steep Drops & Trails

Frank at Dutch Goes the Photo has a Tuesday Photo Challenge and this week’s topic is steep.

Last summer we took a road trip which included a visit to Bryce Canyon National Park. We did want to do a bit of hiking but knew that the steep paths would be too much of a challenge for us due to our age and arthritic knees! So we took the rim trail which afforded many amazing views. And stay away from the edge – it’s a long way down!
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Then in January of this year, during our trip to Israel, we visited the high plateau of Masada, where in pre-Christian times, a group of zealots who were living up there battled with Roman troops, ultimately ending in a mass suicide when it became clear that the Romans would conquer and either massacre or enslave them. The Romans built a huge berm to be able to scale the high plateau and found all the zealots already dead.

It used to be necessary to take a long, steep trail up to the Masada site, but fortunately one can now go up by cable car. From the cable car, I took these photos of the steep switchbacks of the trail with hardy souls hiking up.
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Another cable car about to pass us on its way down the steep cliff.
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Looking down at the last stretch of the trail from the top.
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Here are some people going back down the trail; this photo was taken from the cable car on the way down.
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Tuesday Photo Challenge: Round

Frank at Dutch Goes the Photo’s Tuesday photo challenge this week is round.

circles of ice that formed inside the holes of the mat outside our back door20190222_161104
Sculpture at Dr. Evermore’s Forevertron (near Madison, WI)
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Macy’s Christmas balls
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Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier in Chicago
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Fields of Ancestors

Frank at Dutch Goes the Photo has a Tuesday challenge and the theme this week is field.

Last year in May, we took a road trip to the Dakotas. It was our first visit to North Dakota. Fields are ubiquitous in North Dakota – wide fields of planted crops or endless prairie.

Some fields harbor the secrets of the grave, the souls of ancestors. At the Son of Jacob cemetery, in a remote corner of east central North Dakota reached by a long strip of road surrounded by undulating grasses, one can visit scattered graves of Jewish pioneers who settled in this area more than a century ago. Most of their descendants have scattered, too – finding opportunities in larger communities, universities, or even fertile farms. Only the bones of their ancestors remain here, but some of their pioneer soul remains too.
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A sign informs the infrequent visitors that this cemetery is built on a native prairie, much like the land the original settlers encountered.
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Farther west, in central North Dakota, is the Knife River Indian Villages National Monument. At first, these fields seem completely empty – not even grave markers to indicate people are buried here.KODAK Digital Still Camera
Yet here were villages that harbored a sizeable population of the Awatixa, ancestors of the Hidatsa culture.KODAK Digital Still Camera
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Look closer across these fields with their tall grasses and unceasing winds and notice undulating mounds and large round depressions – these are the traces of a once thriving village, Awatixa Xi’e, full of earth lodges. When their houses collapsed, they left circular mounds and depressions, where hardened floors once were. KODAK Digital Still Camera
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The village was situated next to a river, which allowed the people to become more settled. However, it also exposed them to contact with the agents of change.
2017 Summer&Fall 195.JPGThe Awatixa died from European diseases or were absorbed into the European American economy, but the clues they left behind tell us about their lives.  This is a reconstructed earth lodge.2017 Summer&Fall 187.JPG
The interior of the dwellings looked something like this.

Archaeologists learned a lot by excavating middens, or trash pits. They found bits of pottery, bone tools, flaked stones, and a lot of bison bones. The Awatixa grew corn, a vital part of their sustenance. They built flat boats from which to fish or for transportation. A museum on the site contains artifacts and provides information about the villages in this area. Walking paths lead through the fields where the villages once stood.

The Knife River Indian Villages site is an interesting and informative place to visit for anyone who wishes to learn more about the peoples who came before us. Although only fields are left, the information provided allows the life of the Awatixa to come alive.

Two Tuesday Challenges: After dark…

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge this week is 4-letter words starting with the 4th letter (D) and Dutch Goes the Photo’s challenge is dark, so this works for both! I was even inspired to write a poem to go with my photos, but the pictures were all taken this year so the last three photos haven’t been taken yet! 😉

After dark,
the Ferris Wheel shines neon bright.
After dark,
skyscrapers light up the night sky.
After dark,
colorful fireworks explode overhead.
After dark,
a full moon rises orange over a lake.
After dark,
children yell “Trick or Treat!” on my doorstep.
After dark,
red and green lights twinkle on my neighbors’ houses.
After dark,
We sing Christmas carols by candelight.

After dark…

…the Ferris Wheel shines neon bright.
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(Taken from inside Chicago Shakespeare Theatre on Navy Pier in February)

…skyscrapers light up the night sky.
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(Taken from inside our car at Navy Pier in April, after a play let out.)

…colorful fireworks explode overhead.20170704_211628
(Taken on July 4 at Elk Grove Village fireworks show)

… a full moon rises orange over a lake.
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(Taken on Lower Kaubashine Lake, Wisconsin, July)

 

All photos taken with Samsung Galaxy 7.

It’s Gotta Be Blue

The theme for Frank’s Dutch Goes the Photo Tuesday Photo Challenge this week is BLUE (lots of color challenges lately!). Here are my offerings.

I took this picture of the blue Caribbean Sea and the blue sky above because I liked the cloud formations. 20170324_163800

During my most recent visit to Chicago Botanic Garden on the day of the solar eclipse, I saw these gorgeous “Blue Butterfly” Siberian larkspur flowers. Larkspurs are in the delphinium family.20170821_122819

At a cultural center atop a hill in Antigua, Guatemala, where The Golden Fork restaurant is located, the grounds had many works of art on display.  This artist used blue mosaic tiles to depict everyday scenes. This was my favorite in the series.KODAK Digital Still Camera

An artist’s studio at Spanish Village in San Diego, California
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