Daniel Thoman Photography: Blog https://thomanstudio.com/blog en-us (C) Daniel Thoman Photography dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Mon, 21 Dec 2020 17:05:00 GMT Mon, 21 Dec 2020 17:05:00 GMT https://thomanstudio.com/img/s/v-12/u199427068-o642010281-50.jpg Daniel Thoman Photography: Blog https://thomanstudio.com/blog 94 120 weekly critter, December 21, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/12/weekly-critter-december-21-2020 Linda and I wish everyone a wonderful and happy holiday season and a new year.  I know Linda and I are certainly looking forward to a much healthier new year.

I plan on getting back outside on my recumbent trike as soon as my hip is better.  I was using it inside as a stationary exercise trike but haven't been able to do that in over a month.   I've been enjoying the gator cruising around the neighborhood, hoping I don't get a ticket.  The fastest I've been is 35 mph.  The manual says it will do 45mph.  I'm more of a 15 mph guy.  Linda also wants to learn how to drive it, which is good.  I already have lots of projects lined up.  It's time to get this lot cleaned up again.

Look for the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction, which is the closest since the middle ages, low in the western sky about an hour after sunset tonight.  We're going to drive up to the Buckhead cemetery where we have the best chance of locating it.  In our area the 'seeing' will be poor (like looking through an aquarium) but I may still try and take some photos.

I have two photos for you today.  The flower was the last of the season for Linda's deck.  What's amazing is that this photo was taken from 16 feet away.  The second photo is of a pine siskin. We usually have dozens to over 100 each year but this year I only saw two.

enjoy and stay safe

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird flower flowers gator health holidays jupiter pine siskin saturn https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/12/weekly-critter-december-21-2020 Mon, 21 Dec 2020 17:04:50 GMT
weeklt critter, December 8, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/12/weeklt-critter-december-8-2020 I hope everyone had a wonderful thanksgiving and stuffed themselves.  Linda and I feasted on a crispy roast duck served peking style.  I made some crapes onto which I spread some hoisin sauce added scallion, crispy skin and some meat.  Rolled it up and yum.

 

Other than that it seems like the last month has been difficult.  Our internet was down for a week.  Our email was down for two weeks, got it running again a week ago and now it's not working again.  Thank you att.  I had a weekly critter ready to send three weeks ago.  Needless to say, it did not happen.

 

We took Phoebe to the vet last Friday for her shots and instead of sitting in the car waiting we went over to the local Agpro to look at a deere gator.  They only had one new xuv835m in stock.  We wanted the smaller xuv590 but looking at a used one we realized it was way to narrow.  I wanted something more stable.   I drove the 835 and it was very nice.  Unfortunately,  it had a lot of extras which I wasn't interested in.  However, Linda wanted some of those extras so I had them work up a price for us.  Talk about sticker shock.  I told Steve we needed to go home and talk about it.  Guess what.  It was delivered this morning.

 

Here are three  photos of our new toy.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) att creps duck email gator hoisin internet peking duck phoebe shots thanksgiving xuv835m https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/12/weeklt-critter-december-8-2020 Tue, 08 Dec 2020 20:03:01 GMT
weekly critter, November 13, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/11/weekly-critter-november-13-2020 There hasn't been much going on at the Thoman household lately.  Seems like all we do is go to doctors appointments or Linda goes grocery shopping.  I was supposed to have an eye exam in Madison on Wednesday but they refused to see me unless I let them copy my drivers license.  I don't let anyone copy my license because it's just invites identity theft.  And no, there isn't any law that requires they copy a license.  We had been going to that optometrist for over 25 years.  It's time to move on.

 

Phoebe nailed me about two weeks ago.  We were headed out to observatory to check on things and wanted to take Phoebe.  She was on the leash heading for the truck when Stash (our cat) made a mad dash right in front of us.  Of course the dog gave chase and before I knew it I was on the ground landing on my already damaged right hip.  So, I've spent most of the last two weeks sitting on ice packs and reading.  I think it's time for a CT scan.  What fun.

 

I have a photo of Linda's last flowers of the season. It's a stack of about 60 photos.  The blue(ish) flowers are a Mexican petunia and the color is what the photos from my October 2 critter should have looked like.  The second file is a short pepsi video sent to us by our brother in law.  I about rolled out of my chair laughing.

 

stay healthy and enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) doctors flower flowers grocery shopping hip idenity theft mexican petunia observatory phoebe stash https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/11/weekly-critter-november-13-2020 Fri, 13 Nov 2020 18:37:49 GMT
weekly critter, October 17, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-october-17-2020 The weather has certainly been nice this week but the mosquitoes are still terrible.  I was worrying about the anoles and skinks this summer because I wasn't seeing very many but since the weather has cooled they are everywhere.  So I'm happy.  They are bug eating machines. 

 

I'm still working on carving the alabaster but think I'm going to have to change to something other than a wave.  The stone isn't what I was expecting because unlike other alabaster I've carved this piece has very large grains which won't allow fine detail and won't support the curl in a wave.  Oh well.

 

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is a ring neck snake about eight inches long.  Linda took the photo for me because I shake to much to photograph anything without a tripod and this guy had someplace to go.  The second photo is of an American green tree frog.  He was sitting Linda's car doing what frogs do.  Eating bugs.  He stayed on the car for several hours so I had time to get my new camera, new lens and tripod.  Once again the animal eye focus worked like a charm.  My percentage of perfectly focused photos has increased dramatically.

enjoy and stay healthy

 

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) alabaster american green tree frog animal eye focus anoles bugs carving detail frog linda ring neck snake skinks snake wave https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-october-17-2020 Sat, 17 Oct 2020 19:22:58 GMT
weekly critter, October 8, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-october-8-2020 Well, it's been a week.  We had Phoebe spayed on Monday and the poor girl has been sick ever since.  The vet said to give her some pepto bismol and that she should be better by tomorrow.  At least the house has had a good cleaning.  Add to that our ancient cat Lily has been sick.  Fortunately, the bathroom is easy to clean. Then I was in the shop carving my alabaster stone and the compressor died.  I'm hoping it's an easy fix.  What isn't easy is getting it out from under the stairs to try and repair.   The good thing that happened is that my new 'birding' lens finally showed up after more than six weeks of waiting.

I have two photos this week taken with my new lens.  Both photos were taken from 12-14 feet away.  The first is of a cardinal and the second is of a toad lily.  Can you see the three ants on the flower?  I was using the animal eye auto focus mode when I took the cardinal photo.  It was amazing how the camera kept the birds eye in focus as it turned and jumped around the feeder and deck.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) alabaster ants bird birds cardinal carving cat compressor dog flower flowers lens lily phoebe sick toad lily https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-october-8-2020 Thu, 08 Oct 2020 16:15:53 GMT
weekly critter, October 2, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-october-2-2020 It's October.  Where did the summer go?  Oh yea, sitting in the house since I couldn't go anywhere.  I haven't done much this week but try and enjoy the cool weather in spite of the bugs.

 

I have two photos of a petunia picked from Linda's garden for you this week.  Actually, the color should be much more blue than red.  I tried to fix the color and got close to the actual color of the flower but then the background looked terrible.  Serves me right for taking photos inside and forgetting to compensate for the color of the inside light.  I was paying to much attention to a feature I discovered on the new camera.  If you look at the photos take notice of how the flowers are completely in focus.  There is a technique called focus stacking where you take multiple photos with each photo focused on a different part of an object.  Then the photos are stacked in photo editing software.  I used to have to change the focus point manually, which can take hours, but the camera will do this automatically changing the focus point about 1-2mm for each exposure.  So instead of hours I focus on the closest point and press the shutter button.  In less than a minute I have lots of photos to stack.  Each of these photos is a stack of 40-50 photos.

enjoy

 

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) camera color flower flowers focus staacking petunia R5 stacking https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-october-2-2020 Fri, 02 Oct 2020 19:33:14 GMT
weekly critter, September 25, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-september-25-2020 A special thanks to David, Brian and Julian for donating to the Great Cycling Challenge to help kick children's cancer in the butt.  Well done.

I finally decided to try stone carving again.  I purchased a nice 25 pound piece of agata alabaster and plan to carve a breaking wave.  Unlike wood carving if my tremors get the best of me I'll probably just bash a finger with the mallet rather than cutting it off with a sharp gouge.  Anyway, that's the plan.  I miss the art supply store in Athens that carried stone.  The shipping on the stone cost almost as much as the stone.

I was planning on having some non-bird photos like flowers or spiders this week but the only new things around here are mushrooms.  I like photographing mushrooms but if step out the door I'm in a cloud of mosquitoes from all the rain we've had.  Even the clip-on mosquito repellent doesn't help.  The two photos are of a titmouse and a chickadee.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds carving chickadee flower flowers GCC kick cancer's butt mosquitoes mushrooms stone thanks titmouse wave https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/10/weekly-critter-september-25-2020 Thu, 01 Oct 2020 20:33:03 GMT
weekly critter, September 18, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/9/weekly-critter-september-18-2020 How quickly time passes when you're stuck at home because of covid...not.  I would really like to take a nice long trip someplace, anyplace, just away from here.


I want to give a big 'shout out' and thanks to Babs, Patrick and Missy for their generous donations to help fight children's cancer.  You rock.


I have three photos for you today of things that will quickly be leaving for greener pastures.  The first is me sporting my mountain man look.  Linda hates the long beard so I bought her some clippers.  Now all I have to do is get her and the clippers outside and my beard will mostly go away.  This photo was taken with a trail camera strapped to a post on the deck.


The next two photos are of a ruby throated hummingbird.  I think it's a female but the gray squares on the neck might indicate it's a juvenile male.  They usually head south in October.  I'm not sure why these photos look soft because the originals are razor sharp.


stay safe and enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) beard bird birds childrens cancer clippers covid donations hummingbird mountain man trail camera trip https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/9/weekly-critter-september-18-2020 Fri, 18 Sep 2020 18:03:23 GMT
weekly critter, September 3, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/9/weekly-critter-september-3-2020 I figured after four months it was time to crank up the critter again.  In my own defense, Linda and I have both been fighting severe health issues for several months.  I finally have a diagnosis (I think) as to what's exacerbating my heart condition. I have a rare disease called amyloidosis.   Fortunately, there is now medication which will stop the amyloid protein from being deposited  in my heart.  It won't make me better but it'll stop the disease from getting worse.  At least I won't have to undergo chemo.



I finally bought a new camera.  It's canon's newest camera the R5.  The R stands for ridiculously expensive but after eight years with the 5d3 I needed (wanted) an upgrade.  So I've moved from a DSLR to a mirrorless system.  Two things that finally pushed me over the edge were the articulating screen (nothing new) and the new autofocus systems.  The screen will allow me to do macro again since I don't have to bend into strange positions or get on the ground.  The autofocus systems are so advanced they have eye detection for humans and animals.  For example, if Phoebe is chasing a ball across the park the camera will focus on her eye and as long as I keep her in the view finder her eye will remain in focus.  I can't wait to try it on birds in flight.



I have three photos for you today.  The second photo is a crop (top left) of the first.  The photo was taken with the M50 I purchased a year ago.  I just considered it a 'point and shoot' that I took on trike rides but people on a photography forum were claiming it is the best crop (small) sensor camera on the market. So I bought an adapter to be able to put my 'pro level' lenses on it and all I can say is WOW.   Can you spot the aphid in the second photo.  I hope it's visible in the email.  It's just on the edge of the lower petal.



The third photo is of Phoebe taken with the R5.  While not a great photo it does show me the camera's capability and I get to show you how big she's grown.  I enlarged the photo enough so I could 'pixel peak' and at a 400% increase in size I still couldn't see any noise.  I can't wait to get an adapter so I can use my other lenses and not just a landscape lens.



enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amyloidosis cannon flower flowers health issues M50 phoebe pro lenses R% trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/9/weekly-critter-september-3-2020 Thu, 03 Sep 2020 19:28:50 GMT
weekly critter, May 5, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/5/weekly-critter-may-5-2020 We recently lost a man I truly respected.  He was 103 and died in his sleep.  Goodby Leo.  Linda and I plan to make a contribution to 'The great Cycling Challenge' to help fight kid's cancer in Leo's name.



I hope everyone is staying happy and healthy.  The only places I've been are doctors offices and hospitals to visit the vampire.  I think I have to go two more times this month.  It's not something I enjoy.



Phoebe is calming down just a tiny bit unless she sees a cat then she goes nuts.  She doesn't want to hurt them but plays way to aggressive. I've mentioned this before but don't understand it. There were lots of cats at the breeders and she didn't mess with them at all.  If anyone has any ideas I'm all ears.



I have two photos of an Clivia Linda has blooming.  It's beautiful but a bit odoriferous.  These photos are straight from the camera with no post processing except for being cropped.  I still haven't found any photo processing software I like.  Next I think I'll try the free trial of Affinity Software.  I haven't tried it yet because it looks to much like photoshop, which I hate.



enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 103 aggressive cancer cilvia doctors donation great cycling challange hospital Leo phoebe respect vampire https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/5/weekly-critter-may-5-2020 Wed, 13 May 2020 15:19:52 GMT
weekly critter, April 21, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/4/weekly-critter-april-21-2020

I know it's been several weeks since I've sent out a critter but I fainted again and have been spending a lot of time at hospitals and doctors offices trying to find out what's happening.  The good news is it's not my heart.  The bad news is they couldn't find anything wrong with me except a low magnesium level.  Like previous times I had absolutely no warning.  I went to bed early and woke up about 1am remembering I needed to check the doors.  The back door was locked and as I went through the kitchen I grabbed a glass of water and headed toward the garage door.  The next thing I knew I was laying on the floor in a pool of blood with glass stuck in my hand.  As always, Linda was a lifesaver in a time of crisis.  

 

On the lighter side of the news a friend sent me an email with lots of 'funnies' and I thought I'd forward them.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) blood crisis doctor faint friend funnies glass hospital https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/4/weekly-critter-april-21-2020 Tue, 21 Apr 2020 15:45:49 GMT
weekly critter, March 21, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/3/weekly-critter-march-21-2020 I've had a crazy computer week.  Microsoft installed a major update which trashed my computer and a backup drive.  Seems that microsoft doesn't like any software that isn't microsoft.  So my email client, browser, word  processor,  photography software, and most of my astronomy software were gone.  Then they downloaded patches to fix their software twice which again deleted my email client and browser.  Thanks microsoft. 

 

On a more positive note I canceled my laptop order from dell (another delay) on Friday and ordered a dell from B&H video.  I received my new laptop on Tuesday.  Wow, what difference five years makes in a computer.

 

I haven't been out to photograph anything this week so I thought I'd break with tradition and attach a few 'funnies' a good friend sent me.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) computer dell funnies microsoft patches update https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/3/weekly-critter-march-21-2020 Sat, 21 Mar 2020 18:14:53 GMT
weekly critter, March 13, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/3/weekly-critter-march-13-2020 Happy Friday the 13th and the ides of march (almost).  It always amazes me how fast time flies.  Phoebe is in her seventh month of life and unless she calms down and gets a few more neurons clicking she may not see eight.  She's not the smartest golden we've ever been owned by.  Actually, she's a very sweet dog but just goes crazy when she sees a cat and doesn't understand why a 14 pound cat doesn't like a 50 pound dog slobbering all over them. 

 

I finished our taxes yesterday, yea.  This year we owe the IRS a little bit of money but that's better than them owing us. 

 

I have two photos this week.  The first photo is of a pasture near Bostwick GA.  I don't think I've ever posted a critter photo with a horse in it before.  The second is a sign of spring.  An anole strutting his stuff.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) anole friday 13th horse ides of march phoebe taxes https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/3/weekly-critter-march-13-2020 Fri, 13 Mar 2020 18:07:24 GMT
weekly critter, March 6, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/3/weekly-critter-march-6-2020 I think customer service in this country is dead.

 

ATT strikes again.  The cost of all our services, land line, cell phones, TV and internet all went way up last month.  Linda called them and spent over three hours on the phone trying to fix things.  I would have said two words...cancel everything.  Turns out that since we were "old"  (yes, someone said that) they separated our account into four accounts because they didn't think that since we were old we "would be buying any new services."  Linda calmly said "you don't have any new services."

 

I ordered a new laptop, finally.  Against my better judgement I bought an in-stock Dell which was supposed to be here yesterday, guaranteed.  Wednesday I received an email saying it wouldn't ship for another two weeks.  I would have canceled the order but my $350 coupon was about to expire.

 

I couldn't resist photographing the beautiful amaryllis Linda has blooming.  Here are views of each flower.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amaryllis att customer service dell flower flowers old https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/3/weekly-critter-march-6-2020 Fri, 06 Mar 2020 20:48:59 GMT
weekly critter, February 29, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-29-2020 Have you ever had one of those weeks where you seem to be doing something all the time yet don't seem to accomplish anything?  This was one of those weeks and is why I'm late with the critter.  One thing interesting did happen,  Linda received a letter from the Dept of Agriculture telling her that her package from China had been confiscated and destroyed.  ???  The only recent items she's ordered were some plant bulbs from amazon.   After some research it turns out that the bulbs were from a third party seller in China and because of the coronavirus any material that might be contaminated is being destroyed.  We're all for that.

 

I haven't been out to take any photos this week so I dug through my files and decided that I liked these photos of agapanthus.

 

Happy leap year day.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) agapanthus china coronavirus Dept of Agriculture destroyed flower flowers plant bulbs https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-29-2020 Sat, 29 Feb 2020 22:17:00 GMT
weekly critter, February 21, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-21-2020 Rain, rain go away.  I think I'm growing webbed feet.  Of course this summer I'll be griping about the drought.  We've had our new HVAC system for several months now and GA power just changed our budget bill amount which they do about every six months.  Surprise, surprise.  Our bill dropper over $100.00 per month.  Something new and different, GA power not raising our bill.  I didn't believe the sales man when he said the lennox system would drop our monthly electric bill by at least $100.00.

 

Linda has a lenten rose blooming near the front door so I ducked out between the rain drops and snagged one.  Like last week the second photo is a closeup.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) closeup electric bill flower flowers lenten rose rain https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-21-2020 Fri, 21 Feb 2020 20:33:36 GMT
weekly critter, February 15, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-15-2020 I had this critter ready to go on Thursday but we didn't have power for most of the afternoon and I forgot about it yesterday.  Still not much going on here.  I haven't been outside triking in two weeks and I'm starting to get grumpy (ok grumpier).   I'm still enjoying my farming simulator game.  It sort of reminds me of running field investigations when I worked for EPA.  Logistics, logistics, logistics. Trying to keep everything and everyone running smoothly.

 

I'll be teaching my photography class at the John C Campbell Folk School during the week of  April 5th.  It's always a fun class with field trips to Vogel state park and Cane Creek vineyards.  There is also a nice waterfall at Young Harris college.

 

I have photos of a flowering quince for you this week.  They looked much prettier last weekend but I think all the rain and cold took their toll.  This is another flower Linda planted here many years ago which I had never photographed.  I thought it was a hawthorn because of all the thorns. 

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cane creek vineyard farming simulator flower flowers folk school jccfs photography class rain trike vogel https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-15-2020 Sat, 15 Feb 2020 20:38:38 GMT
weekly critter, February 7, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-7-2020 More crazy weather around here.  I went for a trike ride on Monday and it was in the low 70's and beautiful.  Then the rain came and tonight it's supposed to be in the low 30's.  No wonder my sinuses are all messed up.

 

The only other item of note I've worked on this week is taxes.  What fun.  At least with turbo-tax the process has become fairly straight forward.  With the high standard deduction of $24,400 I can't even itemize anymore.

 

I found another one of Linda's plants blooming along the driveway, a laura pendulum.  At first I thought it was some type azalea, at least until I put my glasses on.  The plant has been there decades and this is the first time I've photographed it.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) crazy weather flower flowers lara pendulum rain standard deduction taxes trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/2/weekly-critter-february-7-2020 Fri, 07 Feb 2020 20:50:36 GMT
weekly critter, January 31, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-31-2020 It's been a slow week around here.  Neither Linda or I have felt very good.  We've had some kind of stomach bug.   Phoebe was very sick Wednesday night.  When she wouldn't eat her treat we thought she had chewed something which cut her mouth or gums.  A thorough check revealed nothing.  Then we thought she was just teething till she started vomiting.  It was a long night for all of us but by morning she was back to her playful self.  I'm not sure what she ate that made her sick but hope she learned something.  I know, wishful thinking.

 

My web site has had over 30,000 hits.  If people continue visiting I'll keep it open.

 

Seems our cardinals have returned.  I'm not sure how many are hanging around but it looks like six or eight.  Since we have cardinals you get cardinals.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds cardinal phoebe sick stomach https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-31-2020 Fri, 31 Jan 2020 20:54:05 GMT
weekly critter, January 23, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-23-2020 We finally had some 'winter weather'.  The last several nights have been in the mid 20's.  Now I'm ready for spring.  Haven't done much in the last week except take Phoebe to the park so she can exercise me.  She's going to be a good retriever...someday.  She always goes and gets the ball but doesn't necessarily bring it back.  And she's definitely a water dog.  If there's a puddle she's in it.   I'm still enjoying my 'farming simulator' video game.  I'm surprised at how much I've learned about farming.  Gentleman farmer Dan...not.

 

Since everyone seems to like flowers I have two photos of an amaryllis to cheer you up on a cold and cloudy January day.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amaryllis cold exercise farming farming simulator flower flowers phoebe puddle rain video game winter https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-23-2020 Thu, 23 Jan 2020 18:53:15 GMT
weekly critter, January 18, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-18-2020 I tried sending the critter on Thursday but our internet stopped working.  It just started working again a few minutes ago.

Not much happening here lately that isn't pet related.  Phoebe is now 31 pounds and loves to try and play with the cats but she's just to aggressive.  Stash gets back by torturing her when she's on a leash by staying a foot out of range and Lily just hisses at both of them.  We're feeling like our lives are now run by our pets.   However,  we are seeing more neurons clicking in Phoebe every day and she's not as frantic about food as when she arrived.  She even sits while we fill her bowl.



Alright Jim and Brian.  Your team won and deserved to.  We'll get you next year.


I'm continuing with the flower theme this week.  I was out walking phoebe and saw this beautiful azalea blooming.  January has been to nice.  I figure Febu-ugly is going to be terrible. I'm not sure why the colors in the last two photos are so saturated.  I tried to tone them down a bit but then they didn't look real.



enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) aggressive azalea cat flower flowers football internet lily phoebe puppy saturated stash https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-18-2020 Sun, 19 Jan 2020 17:59:53 GMT
weekly critter, January 9, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-9-2020 I finally threw out my science experiment.  The bag of hotdog buns that expired last July.  There was still no mold on them and they were still soft.  Kinda scary.  Maybe I'll have to start baking again.

 

I think I misnamed Phoebe.  I'm now calling her farticus.  She can sure clear a room.  And yes, she's growing like a weed and eats anything she can get her mouth on.

 

Since it's supposed to be midwinter and miserable weather I decided to photographed the snapdragons blooming on our deck.  It's supposed to be in the mid 70's on Saturday.  Crazy weather for sure.  Hopefully, they will cheer up those of you enduring the 'real' cold weather.  I would like to see a couple of days with snow but around here it falls, looks beautiful for a couple of hours then melts on the warm roads and freezes into ice when the temperature falls.  The first photo was taken a couple of years ago in early March.  See the cute spider peaking out from the petals?  The second photo was taken this morning.  It was one of two very pretty flowers.  I was setting up to take a photo of the first flower when my assistant, Phoebe, walked up and ate it.  Didn't I say she eats everything.  I quickly plucked the remaining flower and photographed it inside.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) farticus flower flowers hotdog buns phoebe science project snapdragon snow https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-9-2020 Thu, 09 Jan 2020 19:10:12 GMT
weekly critter, January 2, 2020 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-2-2020 Happy new year everyone.  Linda and I didn't do much yesterday except eat, drink and watch the parade.  We had traditional (for us) food including braised pork, black-eyed peas on rice, and greens.  Neither one of us was interested in corn bread so that didn't happen.  We both fell asleep early.

 

I have a new exercise program this year.  I attach a 25 pound puppy to my pant leg and walk around the house dragging her.  Hopefully, she'll quickly out grow that.  Maybe I should spray her with floor cleaner and kill two birds with one stone.

 

I have three photos for you today taken on the 31st.  The temperature was in the upper 60's with beautiful blue skies and flowers blooming in the back yard.  Yes, we have narcissus blooming.  How could I resist.  There is even a pollinator in the first photo.  

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) balck eyed peas flower flowers greens narcissus parade pollinator pork puppy https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2020/1/weekly-critter-january-2-2020 Thu, 02 Jan 2020 16:35:37 GMT
weekly critter, December 28, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-28-2019 I can't believe this is the last critter for the year.  I was going to send the critter out on Thursday but I found out that a lot of people were not receiving my email(s).  So I went through my critter address book and deleted/reentered the email address then compared that to an old file and reentered everyone that had for some mysterious reason had been deleted.  I only remove addresses from the critter when asked.



We had a very low key but fun holiday and are looking forward to watching the parade on new years day while drinking bloody marys.   We probably won't even make midnight on new years eve.



I have two photos of Phoebe for you today.  They're not my usual quality but I was taking the photos hand holding the camera. I almost always use  a tripod because of my tremor.  I guess that I need a new camera with better image stabilization.  New camera, that's the ticket.  Compare these photos to the ones from halloween.  The size difference is amazing and you can see how some red is coming out on her ears and feathers.

Enjoy the new year and stay safe.



dan
 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 2019 bolldy marys emails holiday new year parade phoebe https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-28-2019 Sat, 28 Dec 2019 20:04:29 GMT
weekly critter, December 19, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-19-2019 Christmas is almost upon us.  Linda and I hope everyone has a happy and safe holiday.  And I want to give out a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my nephew Thomas. 

 

Phoebe is growing like a weed and eats like a pig.  I never had a dog that was so frantic about food.  The other day I was out walking her and stopped to look at one of Linda's camilla's and as I turned the flower up so I could see if it was worth photographing she jumped up and ate it.  She also eats acorns.  Don't ask me how I know.

 

I have three photographs for you today.  The first two were taken during Tuesdays trike ride on Dixie hwy.  It's nice to have such a beautiful place to ride with very little traffic.  I'm up to almost 1400 miles for the year and that doesn't include all miles inside on the rollers.  The third photo is of my new toy for outdoor cooking.  A 36 inch Blackstone grill (flattop).  It's wedged between the Big Green Egg and the Weber.   I didn't realize the thing was so big and I only have one side table attached.  Unfortunately, the next size down only has two burners and this one has four burners.   Anyone up for burgers, brats and beer?

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) big green egg birthday blackstone grill dixie hwy flower flowers holiday phoebe trike weber. https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-19-2019 Thu, 19 Dec 2019 19:12:43 GMT
weekly critter, December 13, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-13-2019 I haven't been protecting anyone from zombies or nazis on my xbox but I have been enjoying Farm Simulator 17.  I've never played a simulation (sim) game before and probably never would but I have this game free for a month. This is a simulation game where you buy a farm and raise crops and/or animals for sale so you can buy more equipment and land.  I know it sounds boring but I can now see why sim games are hugely popular.  Now I'm off to play on a tractor and plant a field of wheat.

 

A couple of my cardinals are back (woohoo).  I usually have 8 to 10 which visit the feeders several times a day but a couple of months ago they were just gone.   I was wondering if they had found another feeder which they liked better or had been poisoned.  Remember when scotts miracle-gro used pesticides on their bird seed products.  Anyway, I'm glad a few are back.  Have any of y'all noticed a decrease in the cardinal (or any birds)  population?

 

Since the weather is so yucky I thought I would post a couple of flowers to brighten your day.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) birds farm simulator feeders flower flowers nazis pesticide tractor trike wheat zombies https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-13-2019 Fri, 13 Dec 2019 20:06:11 GMT
weekly critter, December 6, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-6-2019 Do you believe we're already into December.  Where did October and November go?  I know I didn't get the critter out yesterday but it was such a beautiful day I decided to do a few things outside and then go for a nice long trike ride.

 

I had a wild hair on Wednesday and ordered a xbox x one game console at a very good price.  Now everyone can feel safe while I eliminate all those nasty monsters, zombies and nazis.  The xbox arrived this morning and it was obvious the box had been opened.  Since there are several scams currently going on like someone orders the unit, registers it, then doesn't like it and sends it back.  The warranty starts when it's registered so you could loose several months of warranty.  Most of the units come with codes so you can download games.  The other scam is people (criminals) order the unit, use the codes then send the unit back.  Therefore, if someone else buys the unit they won't get the games they paid for.  I do hate a thief.  Anyway, I called microsoft and had them check the numbers and they all looked good to go so I'm going to give it a try.   I don't think I'll be downloading any games.  The latest star wars game is 80 gigabytes.  At my max download speed that would take about 30 hours.  At my normal download speed it would take 12 days.  Ouch.

 

I have two photos today.  The first was taken on my trike ride while I was heading east out of Rutledge on Dixie Hwy.  Since the house finches have returned around here I decided to celebrate and post a photo of one.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) "download speed" scam "xbox x one" thief bird birds download games house finch rutledge trike xbox https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/12/weekly-critter-december-6-2019 Fri, 06 Dec 2019 19:32:23 GMT
weekly critter November 22, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/11/weekly-critter-november-22-2019 I finally got to ride my trike (outside) yesterday.  Went for a short 21 miler from Madison past Rutledge and back.  It wasn't a difficult ride but I think I was so excited to be outside that I finished the ride much quicker than usual.  Today my hips are telling me I shouldn't have done that.  Still it's better than riding the rollers inside.

 

Phoebe is growing like a weed.  Two weeks ago she was just over eight pounds.  This week she was over 12 and is looking more like a dog rather than a fluff ball.  She even has a few feathers on her tail.

 

Linda and I want to wish everyone a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving.  Don't eat to much...yeah right.

 

I have two photos for you today titled 'the attack'.  The first is of Stash relaxing in the afternoon sun and the second photo was taken about two seconds later after Phoebe spotted him.  Stash actually likes Phoebe and will play with her until she starts to get to aggressive.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cat dog hips madison georgia phoebe play rollers rutledge georgia stash thanksgiving trike trike ride https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/11/weekly-critter-november-22-2019 Fri, 22 Nov 2019 19:39:55 GMT
weekly critter, November 14, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/11/weekly-critter-november-14-2019 I keep saying there's no free drug.  I had an ultra sound last month and my cardiologist said things were looking better (great news) but that she wanted me to double a medication.  I reminded her how well doubling the dose went last year...not.  I agreed to try increasing it by 1/2.  She said to try it for at least 10 days to see if the bad symptoms went away.   After five days I was so disoriented I couldn't drive and after ten days I was having trouble getting out of the chair.  It's been another 10 days since I stopped taking the medication and I'm still not back to normal.  Oh well.

 

Phoebe is growing like a weed and can now jump up on the couch.  Great.  Something else she's going to have to learn not to do.  Last critter I said a cardboard tube was her favorite chew toy.  I was wrong, it's me.  She took full advantage of me not being quite with it last week and my fore arms look like hamburger.  She definitely has sharp little teeth.  Phoebe doesn't bite me, she likes to get her mouth around my arm and gently hold it.  In my addled state I would instinctively jerk away.  Ouch, damage done. 

 

While I was sitting here working on the critter I realized I hadn't see the puppy for a while and went looking.  Guess what, she's discovered toilet paper.  Just another door we'll have to keep closed.

 

I have two photos today.  The first one was taken at a winery.  I usually do better at creating B&W photos but had to do this one in LR since I just discovered that my B&W software no longer works and the company wants me to spend $149.00 on the new version.  That's not going to happen.  The second photo is of a tree that I thought was cool looking.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) barrel chew toy drugs hamburger medication paper phoebe puppy toilet tree ultrasound https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/11/weekly-critter-november-14-2019 Thu, 14 Nov 2019 21:03:48 GMT
weekly critter, October 31. 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-31-2019 Happy Halloween.  If you're heading out tonight bundle up.  It's supposed to be in the mid 30's here tonight.

 

This weeks critter is about the newest addition to our family.  Phoebe, a cute mostly white golden retriever named after one of Saturn's moons.  At least she was white until she went out with Linda this morning to sweep leaves off the walk and discovered the wet dirt/mulch path.  Now she's a dirty brown.  It's a good thing that we'd already decided to replace the carpet next month.  We managed to paper train her in one and a half days.  Well, mostly.  She hasn't figured out that just because her front paws are on the paper the business end might not be.   Phoebe has a couple dozen dog/cat toys to play with but her favorite is a cardboard tube from a roll of paper towels.  Go figure.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) carpet cold dirty golden retriever halloween paper train phoebe rain saturn toys wet dirt https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-31-2019 Thu, 31 Oct 2019 15:19:55 GMT
weekly critter, October 25,2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-25-2019 The weather has finally cooled down and I've been enjoying triking around Morgan county without feeling like I'm in an oven.  Linda about knocked me out of my chair Wednesday evening by telling me that she missed her dog and had stopped by the animal shelter and checked out the puppies.  OK, that was totally unexpected.  She really liked an 8 month old chocolate lab and wanted me to go check her out.    So I went by the shelter after my doctors appointment.  She was a nice dog but there's no way either one of us has enough energy to handle that breed of dog.  They need to run.  It also didn't help when I asked why the dog had been returned and was told that she was chasing cattle.

 

I've been on the internet checking out golden retriever puppies.  Turns out there is a breeder in Social Circle.  Guess what were doing this afternoon.  I'm still not convinced we need another dog and they have become very expensive.

 

The Madison fall festival and chili cook-off is this Saturday.  Come taste the outstanding chilies and make sure you stop by the Charlie Elliott Astronomy tent and say hi.

 

I have two photos from my Madison to Social Circle trike ride.  They were taken at the same place about six miles into my ride.  One is looking east and one is looking west.  Dixie highway is a beautiful road for triking.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy charlie elliott astronomy chili dixie highway golden retriever madison fall festival nice weather puppy trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-25-2019 Fri, 25 Oct 2019 18:32:27 GMT
weekly critter, October 17, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-17-2019 We had a new heat pump installed yesterday just in time for a mid 40 degree night.  It kept us nice and toasty.  Also, we've finally had some rain which we desperately needed.  Next on our list is to get estimates for two concrete pads out at the observatory.  One for the RV and the other for a metal building for the tractor.  It's going to be a very expensive month.  Oh well, there are no luggage racks on a hearse.

 

I have two photos of an orb weaver which is currently residing on our deck.  I think it's a spotted orb weaver because of the red on the legs.  What's interesting about this spider is it's crazy web.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) concrete pad hearse heat pump metal building observatory orb weaver rain RV spider tractor web https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-17-2019 Thu, 17 Oct 2019 14:33:45 GMT
weekly critter, October 10, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-10-2019 It's been a weird couple of weeks.   I'm calling it the crazy, the bad and the good.  The crazy - My doctor prescribed a new drug for my tremor.  I was supposed the take 1/2 tab at night for two weeks until I got used to the drug.  Well, after five days I was becoming more and more confused.  On the morning of the sixth day I found myself at the bathroom door trying to figure out how to open it. No more tremor drugs for me.

 

The bad - Our heat pump died.  We've spent about $500 over two months trying to repair it.   No more.  It's time for a new heat pump even though it's only 13 years old.  It's a trane.  I will never again own a trane product.  If you have 4 or 5 hours to spare I'll tell you why.   The next bad - If you're going to have someone come and give you heat pump quotes make sure you're sitting down.  I wanted a 18 to 20 seer variable speed compressor.  The Lennox with a cash discount and a rebate is almost $15,000.  The Daikin is over $1,000 more.  The carrier person hasn't even bothered to call us back for an appointment.  I guess business is to good to bother.  We'll get a quote from Bryant next week.  Talk about sticker shock.

 

The good - I'm now off all of my diabetes medication.  My diet is about the same so I'm going to say it's because of all the exercise I get on my recumbent trike.

 

Linda has a new hybrid orchid blooming called windward flare.  She likes the smell but I think it stinks.  Anyway, attached are two photos of the windward flare.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) confused diabetes exercise flower flowers heat pump orchid recumbent trike sticker shock tremor windward flare https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/10/weekly-critter-october-10-2019 Thu, 10 Oct 2019 18:14:28 GMT
weekly critter, September 29, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/9/weekly-critter-september-29-2019 I haven't taken a single photo in the last couple of weeks or ridden my trike outside because my sinus infection came back with a vengeance.  Three different antibiotics and I am finally feeling better.  The only thing of interest in the past week has been a praying mantis that decided the hummingbird feeder was a good place to hang out.  Linda removed him twice and and I relocated him twice.  The second time I relocated him was to the front yard.  I hope I didn't kill him in the process but 'ain't nothing going to mess with my hummers'.

 

Since I haven't taken any photos in the last couple of weeks I thought I'd go digging through old photos and decided to post some from the Coronation Day celebration in Addis Ababa Ethiopia back some 70 years ago.  The day celebrates that on Sunday, November 2, 1930, 38 year old Ras (Prince) Tafari Makonnen was proclaimed emperor of Ethiopia, taking the name Haile Selassie I, which means “Power of the Trinity.”   Think Rastafarian (Ras Tafari) religious movement of Jamaican origin.  The rastafari worshiped Haile Selassie.  When he visited the island he left the plane, took one look at the screaming rastafari got back on the plane and left.  Just a little bit of history.  My father took the photos. 

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) . addis ababa coronation day ethiopia halie selassie hummingbird praying mantis rastafari rastafarian sinus infection https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/9/weekly-critter-september-29-2019 Fri, 27 Sep 2019 19:24:03 GMT
weekly critter, September 12, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/9/weekly-critter-september-12-2019 I'm wondering if this heatwave is ever going to break.  It's so hot and humid outside I can hardly breath and I'm getting so bored of triking on rollers in the living room I could scream.

 

It's childhood cancer awareness month so I'm triking for the Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation 'million mile' fundraiser to fight kids cancer.  Even if you can only donate a few dollars it will help.  The Team Thoman webpage is   www.alexslemonade.org/mypage/1877363 .  Also, for the next three days (12 to 15)  the donations will be matched by Volvo.   Even if you don't donate please go to the https://www.alexslemonade.org/ webpage and read the the story about Alex (Alexandra).  What this brave young girl did is guaranteed to bring a tear to your eye.  If anyone who regularly walks, runs, hikes, bikes or swims wants to join Team Thoman or start your own team and solicit donations please do.  Way to many children die from cancer.

 

I want to again thank everyone who donated in June to help 'fight kids cancer'.

 

I have two photos today.   The first is of Stash just doing what cats do and the second is of a rose.  I'm still testing the canon m50.  The colors and stabilization are good but the images seem to have a lot of noise.  I need to set up a controlled shoot in the house and do more research.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation canon m50 flower flowers heatwave million mile team thoman cat stash rose donate heat rollers trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/9/weekly-critter-september-12-2019 Thu, 12 Sep 2019 17:25:26 GMT
weekly critter, September 5, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/9/weekly-critter-september-5-2019 I hope no one in critter land was or will be adversely affected by Dorian.  We've had lots of wind but no damage.  I hope the hurricane makes a sharp right and heads farther out to sea.

 

Well, I have a science experiment going on.  Linda bought me some bagels a while back which reached their expiration date in mid July.  We're now into September (already) and the bagels have not molded or dried out.  It scares me to think about what's put into our food these days.  We try and make most things fresh but bread isn't one of them since I rarely eat it.  Surprisingly, walmart makes bread which is about $1.00 a loaf and tastes good.  If you don't finish it in two days it molds, just like real bread should.

 

I have two photos for you today.   The first is another vineyard view taken at the Cane Creek winery.  I think it's going to be a regular class field trip from now on.  The second photo is of the waterfall on the Young Harris campus.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bread cane creek dorian food hurricane mold vineyard waterfall winery young harris https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/9/weekly-critter-september-5-2019 Thu, 05 Sep 2019 20:17:18 GMT
weekly critter, August 29, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-29-2019 I had a great time teaching at the folk school last week and had seven wonderful students.  The first couple of days we worked on using the camera and the various modes of operation and began learning how to see rather than just look.  Our first field trip was to Vogel State Park.  If you haven't been there you need to go.  The park has a beautiful lake, waterfall, boardwalk, hiking trails and mountain views.  Our second trip was to Cane Creek Winery where we explored the vineyards and had lunch.  Several of the students shared a bottle of wine with their meal.  Then we were off to Young Harris college to view their park which includes a boardwalk, old barn and a waterfall.

 

Both of my photos today were taken at the Cane Creek Winery with my new canon M50.  I handheld the camera and was still able to take some sharp photos.  I guess the image stabilization has improved.  The photo quality doesn't match my 5D3 but I could buy 7 or 8 M50's for what the 5d3 cost.

 

My web site has reached over 25,000 hits. WooHoo.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 25000 hits 5d3 boardwalk cane creek winery jccfs john c campbell folk school lake m50 mountain vogel state park waterfall wine young harris https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-29-2019 Thu, 29 Aug 2019 18:12:44 GMT
weekly critter, August 16, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-16-2019 I'm getting to teach my photography course at the John C Campbell Folk School next week.  It should be another wonderful week.  And it's over ten+ degrees cooler there.  I did buy a new mirror-less camera this week.  I plan on taking it on my trike rides.  It weights less than a pound.  I was concerned about bringing my and expensive DSLR because it's so heavy and the small video camera just wasn't giving me the quality photos I wanted.  Note to self...don't buy a new camera a few days before you're going to use it in a photography class.  I purchased the canon m50 which has their newest processor.  Unfortunately for me it produces .cr3 photo files which aren't compatible with any of my photo editing software.  Adobe isn't updating any of their desktop software and trying to force everyone to their cloud based software.  Well I'm not going to rent software.  If I can't buy it I don't want it.

 

I have two photos this week taken with my new camera (I came up with a way to work around adobe).  Both photos were taken at our property in the Deerlick Astronomy Village.  One shows all my tractor toys.  See the big red thing in the middle?  It's a seeder/spreader and is probably the dumbest thing I've purchased in decades.  It's not 'what was I thinking' but 'why wasn't I thinking'.  The other photo is looking across our field toward the pond.  I know, the grass needs cutting.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) adobe astronomy Canon Deerlick Astronomy Village John C Campbell Folk School M50" observatory pond spreader/seeder https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-16-2019 Fri, 16 Aug 2019 19:33:04 GMT
weekly critter, August 8, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-8-2019 It's been another week of sitting around not doing much.  My foot is getting better but it's been so hot and humid.  I tried taking bird photos on the deck but they were all cooling off in the shade someplace.  The only thing around here that likes this weather is Stash the cat.  He's laying in the driveway in full sun sleeping.

 

I have two old ruby throated hummingbird photos for you today.  Both of these birds are male.  The second is an immature male which you can tell by the dark spots on the throat.  I was cleaning up my photo files by deleting lots of pictures which I once thought were OK but now I know better.  I had over 1,500 hummingbird photos and now have less than 400.  My next pass will drop that to about 200.   I plan on culling my 25,000+ photos down to about 10,000.  What else is there to do in 96 degree heat.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds cat foot heat hummingbird immature male old photos shade https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-8-2019 Thu, 08 Aug 2019 20:06:42 GMT
weekly critter, August 1, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-1-2019 I finally got to go on a short trike ride on Tuesday.  It didn't do my foot any good but it was sure nice to get out.  I have a full class of seven people for my upcoming photography course and two on the waiting list.  It should be lots of fun.  The more people the more experience levels and lots of good questions we call all learn from.

 

I can't believe it's already August.  Where does the time go.

 

ATT is at it again.  Our phone service is down and they said it wouldn't be fixed until next Thursday.  At least the internet is 'sort of' working.  I guess rural Georgia is now a third world country.  Can you imagine the hell that would be raised if this happened in Atlanta.

 

I have two photos for you today of a garden spider working on a beatle.  Oops, make that a beetle.  I looked at the photos again and there were no little guitars.  OK, I have a weird sense of humor.  This was the first big spider we've had on the deck in a couple of years.  I hope they make a comeback.  I haven't seen many pollinators either.  Just chiggers, gnats and mosquitoes.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) beatle beetle chiggers gnats humor jccfs mosquitoes photo class pollinators spider trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/8/weekly-critter-august-1-2019 Thu, 01 Aug 2019 20:56:55 GMT
weekly critter, July 25, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/7/weekly-critter-july-25-2019 My foot is getting better but I still haven't been able to trike in four weeks.  At lest I can walk now.  Linda drove me out to the observatory last Thursday to cut the grass.  I didn't last long and Linda took over.  I'm so angry that I had a perfect opportunity to photograph Linda on the tractor and it never occurred to me to get the camera and take a picture.  I'm heading back out tomorrow to finish up the mowing and hopefully it'll be a clear night.  It's been so long since I've used the telescope I think I've forgotten how.  If it's a clear night head outside and look to north-northeast for the perseids meteor shower.  The show should peak during the night of August 12-13.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a fungus growing on a dead branch which I thought was interesting.  The second is of a red belied woodpecker.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy birds clear night flower flowers foot grass mowing observatory perseids show tractor walk https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/7/weekly-critter-july-25-2019 Thu, 25 Jul 2019 17:33:50 GMT
weekly critter, July 11, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/7/weekly-critter-july-11-2019 I'm finally getting around to posting another weekly critter...but I have an excuse albeit a stupid one (on my part).  My first rule if you're in the kitchen cooking is to wear shoes.  Well I wasn't.  Yup, guess where this is going.  The timer went off for the chicken roasting in the oven and since I was there I opened the door and grabbed the broiler pan.  As I turned to place the pan on the stove I somehow sloshed out some grease which landed on my left foot causing 2nd and 3rd degree burns.  Ouch.  Well it's been ten days and I'm finally starting to grow some skin back.

 

I have two photos for you today,  The first is a bluejay which is a bird we don't see around here very often.  The second photo-story is of a red tailed hawk and a crow.  The crows had been harassing the hawk and he finally had enough, grabbed one and landed.  You can see part of the crow's feathers on the right near the head.  The hawk was daring the other crows to come near.  He finally had enough, dropped the crow and took off.  I thought the crow was a goner but as soon as the hawk release him he took off after the hawk again.

 

Please note the new email address. 

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds burn crow foot hawk skin https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/7/weekly-critter-july-11-2019 Thu, 11 Jul 2019 19:17:10 GMT
weekly critter, July 1, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/7/weekly-critter-july-1-2019 I'm finally able to send out a critter.  Our email stopped working last Tuesday.  I figured the problem was ATT.  Of course ATT blamed yahoo who blamed microsoft who blamed Thunderbird (email client).  Linda spent a day and a half on the phone with ATT trying to get the problem resolved.   I would have just canceled everything ATT.  They finally fixed the account so we could logon to att.net and read email through yahoo.  They couldn't figure how to get thunderbird to work.  Once I knew exactly who the culprit was...att... I  fixed a route around the problem and we now have email.  Why can't they just tell the truth?

 

The June charity ride for fighting childhood cancer is officially over but they'll accept donations through July.   I beat my goal of 250 miles by riding 322.  I think I could have triked over 400 miles except for all the rain.  I got sprinkled on once and drenched twice.  Another ride I cut short because it started to thunder.  A big thanks to every who donated to this worthy cause.   https://greatcyclechallenge.com/Riders/DanielThoman

 

Do you believe it's already July.  Have a fun and safe 4th celebrating America.

 

I have two photos for you today from the solar outreach event we did a couple of weeks ago.  I love the expression on her face in the first photo.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) att childhood cancer expression goal great cycling challange july 4th microsoft rain solar outreach thunder yahoo https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/7/weekly-critter-july-1-2019 Mon, 01 Jul 2019 15:40:19 GMT
weekly critter, June 20, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/6/weekly-critter-june-20-2019 My charity ride for kids with cancer is going very well.  I'm up to 177 miles and should add another 21 miles this afternoon.  My donations have reached $786.42 (thank you everyone).  Nation wide there are over 80,000 riders who have collected over $7,500,000 and ridden 2,600,000+ miles.  WOW. 

 

Linda and I are doing another solar outreach event at the library in Watkinsville tomorrow from 12 to 2.  Stop by and say hi if you're in the area.

 

I have two photos taken with my GoPro during my last couple of trike rides.  The GoPro is a handy little video camera but it sure isn't my canon 5D.  The first photo is of a day lily growing all by itself in the yard of a falling down house.  Not a wonderful photo but the wind was blowing 10-12 mph and my tremor didn't help.  The second photo is an old homestead in the middle of a farm field.  I may have to head back out there with the canon.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/6/weekly-critter-june-20-2019 Thu, 20 Jun 2019 15:54:59 GMT
weekly critter, June 13, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/6/weekly-critter Yes, I know I should be out triking but I ended up with a stomach bug this morning.  It's the first beautiful day we've had in a month and I had planned a 30+ mile ride.  There's always tomorrow.   Thanks to all the people who have donated to the kick kids' cancer fundraiser.  Donations will be accepted throughout the month.  I'm still at 105 miles but I'll hit 250 miles and hopefully more before the end of the month.

 

I have two crops of a single photo for you today of a Carolina wren sitting on her nest.  She got used to Linda and I walking by and stopped leaving the nest every time we opened the door after about a week.  The flower pot is slightly angled and attached to the side of our house.  Unfortunately (or fortunately), the eggs were not viable.  She had been sitting on the nest more than 16 days when the heavy rain storm hit on Wednesday and filled the flower pot with water.   If there had been chicks they would have drowned.  Maybe next time.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds donations eggs flower flowers great cycling challange miles nest ride trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/6/weekly-critter Thu, 13 Jun 2019 18:32:49 GMT
weekly critter, June 6, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/6/weekly-critter-june-6-2019 Its been another one of those week where you seem to be working but nothing seems to get done.  There's always tomorrow.  I'm learning the laid back island lifestyle...ya mon, I'll get  to it tomorrow.   This afternoon I will have completed about 70 miles toward my goal of 250 for the month.  Unfortunately, it looks like rain for the next week here in Georgia.  That's OK, we need it.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of Lily doing what cats do best.  She's laying in a re-purposed satellite dish which I turned into a bird feeder.  She had better watch out or the wrens will try and snatch some hairs for their nest.  The second photo is of a green tree frog.  It's nice to be seeing the frogs and toads around here again.  I don't know what happened but it's been several years since we've seen any.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cat frog goal island life rain trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/6/weekly-critter-june-6-2019 Thu, 06 Jun 2019 18:58:32 GMT
weekly critter, May 5, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-5-2019 May is almost gone.  I want my spring back.  These upper 90 degree days are miserable.  I'm now having to get up a couple of hours earlier than I'd like to so I don't fry during my trike rides.  June 1 starts my month long charity ride for fighting kids' cancer.  Sure hope I make my goals of $500 and 250 miles.  I want to shout a special thanks to Dave and Anne, Patrick, Missy, Mike and Terrie and anonymous for donating to fight kids' cancer.

 

I have two photos from a recent solar outreach event put on by the GA DNR called Keeping Georgia Wild.  I estimated that we had about 1000 people stop by to look at the sun.  There was even a small amount of solar activity.  Solar activity has been at a minimum for over a year.  The first photo is of Linda helping a young lady with her first view of the sun.  The second photo is of Frank doing the same.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy charity donation great cycling challange hot keeping Georgia Wild kids'with cancer outreach solar trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-5-2019 Thu, 30 May 2019 18:55:08 GMT
weekly critter, May 23, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-23-2019 This is a very different critter this week.

 

I've decided to participate in the Great Cycle Challenge.  The Great Cycle Challenge USA is a national Children's Cancer Research Fund (CCRF) fundraising initiative held throughout June.  I've set myself a goal of triking 250 miles and raising  $500 for cancer research.   Why?   Because over 15,700 American children are diagnosed with cancer every year, and sadly, 38 children die every week.  I'm riding to give these kids the brighter futures they deserve, and CCRF believes that any one individual can make a personal impact to fight cancer and save little lives.  I'm riding in memory of my sister in law Maureen Thoman.  While not a child she was much to young to die.

 

If you have a few spare dollars please go to     https://greatcyclechallenge.com/Riders/DanielThoman   and make a donation.

 

I have two photos from my Buckhead 24 mile loop for you today.   The first is of me about to reach top top of an 8 degree hill and in the second I'm enjoying the wildflowers.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) childrens cancer donation flower flowers Great Cycle Challenge USA https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-23-2019 Thu, 23 May 2019 18:57:44 GMT
weekly critter, May 9, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-9-2019 I'm not sure where all my time goes but it sure seems to disappear quickly. I did get in a trike ride yesterday.  It was one of those good...not so good rides.  As I leave the Buckhead fire station there is a small hill in a curve which can hide a vehicle on either side so I take the lane (ride down the middle of my lane instead of to the right) so vehicles won't try to pass me.  Well I got to the top of the hill with a car following me.  She decides to pass me which would have been OK except there was an SUV in the other lane about 75 feet away.  I have no clue what she thought she was doing.  But as I keep pointing out to Linda there's the operative word..think.  Both vehicle slam on their brakes and stop with about two feet to spare.  So I'm screaming at this woman the other driver is screaming at her too so she just sits there.  Finally she has to back up to get into the correct lane behind me. 

 

The intersection I'm approaching is a cross street with a three way stop because my approach crosses the railroad and I have the right of way.  Before I get to the railroad  I have to pull slightly over and stop.  Well, I had stopped because there was a fire truck with lights flashing and sirens wailing coming through town.  Sure enough the truck tuns right over the tracks to the street I was on.  You guessed it.  The woman picks that moment to try and pass me and almost runs head on into the fire trunk.   Fortunately, I realized what was happening and did an 'exit stage right' into a small parking area so the truck could pass the $^&@#%@# woman in my lane.  All this in less than 300 feet.  I was never in any real danger.  How that woman hasn't won a Darwin Award yet is a mystery to me.  I just hope she hasn't procreated and never will.  Ah, where's a deputy when you need one.

 

The nice thing that happened is that while I had pulled off the road to fix a minor problem a woman driving a pickup stopped and asked me if I was alright.   I assured her I was fine and thanked her for stopping.  She smiled and said that since I waved to her every time we passed that she felt she needed to make sure I was alright.  Nice.   I wave to everyone.  It helps to make sure that they see me.

 

I have two photos for you today. The first is of an unnamed lily.  The second is of an old falling down house on my 24 mile loop.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 24 mile loop darwin award fire truck flashing lights flower flowers lily nice old house siren take the lane trike triking wave https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-9-2019 Thu, 09 May 2019 18:53:52 GMT
weekly critter, May 2, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-2-2019 Do you believe it's already May. Good bye spring hello summer. It's already been in the upper 80's here.

 

Monday I had a 'then' day. I woke up with a blistering sinus headache. Then - I noticed the bathroom toilet looked disgusting, again. It had been cleaned 4 or 5 days earlier but there was stuff growing in the bowl. I finally had a few brain cells kick in and realized I hadn't bleached the tank in the last couple of months. If the tank isn't bleached it turns all moldy and black. I've never before had a toilet that does that. It's a low flush made in Mexico. So off I go to find the bleach and the tank brush. Yes, we have a tank brush. I set the brush down and picked up the bleach by the top. Then - the whole top of the bleach bottle breaks off, it hits the floor and splashes my leg and face. Luckily I closed my eyes before it hit. Then - I jumped into the tub and took a 30 minute cold shower. My eyes were OK but I had chemical burns around the left eye. Then - I realized that in the process of jumping into the tub in such a hurry I hurt my back, again. Then - I decided the safest place for me was sitting in the recliner drinking a gin and tonic and reading.

 

I have two more trike ride photos for you today.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bleach eyes hurt back spring summer toilet trike. tub https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/5/weekly-critter-may-2-2019 Fri, 03 May 2019 13:07:21 GMT
weekly critter, April 26, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-26-2019 I've had a fairly miserable week.  I hurt my lower back last week and have been living with an ice pack ever since.  I'd give anything for an anti inflamatory but I'm not allowed to take them. Guess how I did it.  Working on the sediment filter out at the observatory.  Sediment filters are the bane of my existence.  It's time to learn how to pickup the phone and call 'the guy'.  Also, the Copenhagen Wheel on my trike stopped working.  Oh well, couldn't ride with a hurt back anyway.

 

Just a reminder Madisonfest is tomorrow in the town park.  It's lots of fun and we'll be there with the solar telescope.  Stop by and say hi.

 

I have two more photos from my trike travels around Morgan county.  Let me know if you like them.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) back copenhagen wheel madisonfest morgan county observatory sediment filter trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-26-2019 Fri, 26 Apr 2019 17:00:52 GMT
Weekly critter, April 19, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-19-2019 We're in the middle of the second major storm of the month.  I'm surprised we haven't lost power. 

 

Instant karma...you have to love it.  On my Saturday ride I was on a long straight road and was going down a small hill when this guy in a pickup passed me doing about 80+ mph.  While that in itself wasn't dangerous what was is the vehicle coming towards us in the other lane.  The other vehicle was blaring its horn and slamming on the brakes while I was about to make an 'exit, stage right' into the field.  Fortunately, the pickup managed to get around me and back into the lane without causing an accident.  He did leave  two very PO'ed people behind.  As I headed up the hill, about 0.5 mile of a 7% grade and onto a flat mile which made a sharp bend what did I see.  The pickup pulled off the side of the road and the guy receiving a 'bad driving' award from a deputy sheriff.  I looked in the window and smiled as I pedaled by.  I was on that road for another 45 minutes and he didn't pass me again.  However, I did see a tow truck going by.

 

Since many people liked my photo last week (no, not the selfie, nobody liked that) I think I'm going to start showing more photos from my rides.  Something new and different.  My first photo is about a mile from where last weeks photo was taken.  How do you like those socks?  Anything to make me more visible.  The second photo, taken on Bethany road, is of the Steffen Thomas Museum of Art.  Yes, we have a museum in Buckhead and it's very nice.  If you're in the area it's well worth making a visit.  You won't be disappointed.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) rain selfie sheriff socks steffen thomas museum of art storm trike trike rides https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-19-2019 Fri, 19 Apr 2019 17:47:14 GMT
weekly critter, April 12, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-12-2019 It's been another crazy week.  We had several beautiful days but the only place I've triked has been in my living room.  Maybe tomorrow.  I actually have an excuse for the critter being late this week.  We just got our internet connection back.  It's been off since Wednesday.  You just have to love rural living.  Our bandwidth is so bad that we can't watch anything from amazon prime videos. 

 

I have  two photos today.  The first is one of my favorite spots on my usual ride.  I think I'm going to start packing a lunch and have a picnic on my trike.  I have to warn you about the second photo.  It's my first and hopefully only selfie.  Now y'all can regale me with jokes about being a redneck. It looked a lot worse the next day.  The beard is the 'requisite senior triker scruffy beard'.  I learned about it being a requirement on a trike forum.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) beard lunch picnic redneck sunburn trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-12-2019 Fri, 12 Apr 2019 18:10:12 GMT
weekly critter, April 4, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-4-2019 Yesterday was absolutely beautiful here.  Sunny, mid 70's and very little wind.  Of course I went for a trike ride.  I was going to show you pictures from scenic Morgan county taken during my ride but every photo I took with the GoPro came out looking like four or five photos jammed together.  I'm not sure what happened but I wasn't happy.  It was my longest trike ride yet.  Thirty four miles.  I learned several thing during and after the ride.  First, 1/2 a sandwich is not enough food for a long ride.  Luckily, I had a power bar in my bag.  Second is now that I'm taking heart medications I sunburn.  I never used to burn no matter how long I was in the sun.  Since it was such a nice day I had my jersey mostly unzipped.  When I walked into the kitchen this morning without a shirt on Linda took one look at me, eyes wide, and said I think you need something on that.  I gave her a dumb look and said 'what'.  I was instructed to go to the bathroom mirror and look at my chest.  YIKES.  My neck and chest were glowing red.  I now have a big red V on my chest.

 

My new bird in last weeks critter isn't new.  I posted it on the Georgia Bird forum and asked for an ID after Dave told me it was a west coast bird and a long way from home.  After much discussion and input from two bird experts it was decided that the bird was a juvenile red-winged blackbird.  The determining factor was how the upper and lower parts of the beak came together. Oh well.

 

I have two bird photos for you today and I think they're correctly identified.  They are a house finch and a pine siskin.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds gopro house finch morgan county pine siskin red-winged blackbird sunburn trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/4/weekly-critter-april-4-2019 Thu, 04 Apr 2019 17:08:53 GMT
weekly critter, March 29, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-29-2019 We have our first of the season (FOTS) ruby throated hummingbird.  Yes, FOTS is an acronym not an abbreviation.  I never seem to catch those types of errors until I press the send button.  Hopefully, I'll have some hummingbird photos soon.  I also wanted to thank Ralph for reminding me to remind y'all to clean out your bird houses.  We have titmice, cardinals, bluebirds and sparrows which have already paired up.

 

I can't believe it's already the end of March.  I took a look at our April calendar and we have some type of event every weekend.  There are four solar outreach events, a community shred, a neighborhood potluck dinner and the Deerlick astronomy village Zombie Party.  After several days of being up all night you sort of resemble a zombie.

 

Speaking of birds, I have a new one.  I thought he was a red winged blackbird when I started photographing him but when I took a closer look I realized it wasn't.  Off to the bird books.  He is actually a tricolored blackbird.  It's not very often I find a new bird around here.  Linda and I need to start traveling more.  Maybe a trike and birding adventure along the coast.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds clean birdhouse coast hummingbird photos solar outreach tricolored blackbird trike vacation zombie party https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-29-2019 Fri, 29 Mar 2019 17:00:20 GMT
weekly critter, March 21, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-21-2019 Well my nice dark gray truck and Linda's camry are both a sickly yellow-green from all the pollen.  I guess spring is here.  My poor sinuses.   At least it's warmed up a bit.  I went for a trike ride earlier in the week and for the 8.5 miles to my first stop  I was flying.  I was thinking  WOW this is great.  I averaged 17 mph and was all smiles.  My usual for that stretch is about 11 mph.  Then I turned around to back tract to my loop turn and realized it wasn't me...it was the wind.  The next 11 miles were miserable.  At one point I was going up a 7% grade hill and the wind was blowing so hard it almost stopped me.  I had to switch from the eco setting to the standard setting on the Copenhagen Wheel pedal assist or I never would've been able to make it back to my truck.  It's been several days and I'm still sore.

 

Today's photos are of the FOTSGTF.  The first of the season green tree frog.  No, I don't really like acronyms but it seems that people are always using them with no explanation as to what they mean.   Linda found him on a very appropriate piece of sculpture.  Unfortunately, it was in a very dark area so my 'in focus' depth of field was limited.  I would have used my flash but it died and a new one is about $500.  Yikes.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) focus frog green tree frog sculpture trike wind https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-21-2019 Thu, 21 Mar 2019 17:53:15 GMT
weekly critter, March 15, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-15-2019 What a beautiful couple of days.  Yesterday was partly sunny and in the mid to upper 70's.  That's my kind of weather.  Yes, I did go on a trike ride.  A new record of 31 miles and 1630 feet elevation gain.  I would like a physician to tell me why I can trike 31 miles but carrying a 25 bag of bird food in from the car puts me on the couch for at least an hour recuperating.  Oh well, at least I can trike.  Today is cloudy and rainy so it's a good time to finish up the taxes.  I actually finished them last week but I like to let them fester for at least a week then go back and check them.  I estimated our  taxes fairly well last year.  We're getting less than $200 back from the fed and state.

 

I have three photos (and I use the term loosely) for you today.  The first was take by my trail camera and the next two were taken with the gopro.  The trail camera has a slow shutter speed which is why one wing is in focus and the the other wing looks surrealistic as it made its pass by the camera.  It took me a while to figure out what happened.  The second photo is of my next tractor.  Don't tell Linda about the tractor because it probably costs as much as our house.  I could put a 20 foot rotary cutter on the back of that and finish cutting our 4 acres  in less than an hour.  The last photo was taken during my Tuesday trike ride.  Threatening sky but I didn't get rained on.  The wide angle lens made the silos look like they're leaning.

 

I thought I had a video of a hawk that swooped about ten feet over my head but I was shooting into the trees and it was to dark for him to show up.  Maybe next time.

 

enjoy

Dan 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds dove hawk rain record taxes tractor trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-15-2019 Fri, 15 Mar 2019 18:28:08 GMT
weekly critter, March 8, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-8-2019 What a week.  It seems like I've been fighting with everyone.  The worst of which is my insurance company.  I called to make sure the trikes were covered because they're very pricey. The agent calls me back and says that one is but  the other one with the pedal assist is not covered off of our primary residence...WTH.  To add insult to injury he says that during his research he discovered that the tractor is not covered away from our primary residence.  When we bought the tractor we were told it was.  So I ask, how do I get it to my dealer for maintenance?  Well for only $624 we can buy and 'inland waterway policy' that will cover the tractor during transport but nothing covers it while at the observatory.  We've spent the last several days looking for a new insurance company.

 

The time changes this weekend.  Already...   I hate daylight savings time.  We should pick normal or DST and stick with one or the other.  Why do I hate DST?  Because I'm an astronomer.  During the summer it's not dark enough to observe until after 10p and I would like to get started a bit earlier.

 

I finally figured out what was destroying the plastic part of our bird feeder.  A downy woodpecker, which is shown in my first photo.  He was pecking the plastic away to get to the seeds faster.  The second photo is of a red belied woodpecker.  He forced me to stop using a feeder which had a small tray at the bottom which was fed seed from a tube.  He liked to land on the tray and use his long beak to sweep all the seed off the tray until he found that one special seed.  It generally took less than an hour for him to empty the feeder.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird bird feeder birds downy DST insurance observatory red belied time change tractor trike woodpecker https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-8-2019 Fri, 08 Mar 2019 19:22:43 GMT
weekly critter, March 1, 2019. https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-1-2019 I can't believe we're already into March.  I was out at the observatory yesterday and the grass was looking like it was growing already.  Especially in the gravel driveway.  I can't get it to grow very well in certain areas but in the driveway I can't stop it and I hate roundup.  I think we'll have a few more cold mornings but I'm hoping spring is here.  Spring...warm weather, outdoor activities, fishing, bar-b-ques and taxes.  It's supposed to rain all day Sunday so I'll tackle the taxes then.

 

Continuing with Linda's flowering plants I have two more photos of an amaryllis.  This time it's dark red.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amaryllis astronomy driveway fishing flower flowers observatory outdoor activity spring taxes weeds https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/3/weekly-critter-march-1-2019 Fri, 01 Mar 2019 18:56:37 GMT
weekly critter, February 21, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/2/weekly-critter-february-21-2019 Rain, rain and more rain.  It's been so long since I've used my observatory that I think I've forgotten how.  Even on the rare clear nights there's so much water vapor in the atmosphere it's like looking through an aquarium.  I haven't done much this week except sit and read.  On Monday we loaded the trike into the truck and I was headed to Buckhead for a ride.  As I turned to raise the tailgate my right pelvis clipped the edge and the next thing I knew I was down on all four's thinking I'd been shot in my left lower back.  As I've said before, getting old ain't for wimps.  Anyway, I'm getting better and will be trikeing when the rain stops.  

 

Linda has some beautiful amaryllis blooming (or about too) so this week I have a couple of photos of a pale orange one.  Next week the deep red one should be in full bloom.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amaryllis aquarium astronomy back pain flower flowers full bloom observatory rain trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/2/weekly-critter-february-21-2019 Thu, 21 Feb 2019 16:40:07 GMT
weekly critter, February 14, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/2/weekly-critter-february-14-2019 Happy Valentine's Day. 

 

I can't believe we're still having spring like weather.  I wouldn't mind 70's during the day and 50's at night all year long.  It'll be in the mid 60's today and I'm going for a long trike ride.  I really don't care for using rollers in the living room and riding the trike while watching reruns 'carnival eats'.  I last about 45 minutes to an hour then I'm bored to death.  Hopefully, I'll have better shows to watch once the cycling season starts up.  Lots of cyclocross races on now but I find them less interesting than old food shows.

 

Our 1 1/2 year old 'kitten' has finally learned to play.  We have all kinds of cat toys around which despite our best efforts he ignored until a few weeks ago.  Then it was like me in a woodworking store.  Oh boy, look at all the toys.  Now it's nonstop.  At least it keeps him off of my laptop.

 

I spent several hours photographing birds this weekend and this very obliging cardinal showed up.  The photo of him in the evergreen isn't a great photo but I like the colors.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds cardinal kitten play spring toys trike valentine's day weather woodworking https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/2/weekly-critter-february-14-2019 Thu, 14 Feb 2019 16:07:51 GMT
weekly critter, February 8, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/2/weekly-critter-february-8-2019 What beautiful weather.  I'm hoping it will last but I'm sure we'll have another week or two of cold weather and rain.  Linda and I had a very relaxed super bowl Sunday.  Lots of food we don't usually eat like chicken wings and nachos not to mention a few beers and glasses of wine.  We watched part of the kitten bowl and part of the puppy bowl until the game came on then we turned the TV off.  We usually like the puppy bowl but this year it was bad.  Sort of like an SPCA fest.  I read a book and Linda did needlepoint.   Linda did watch part of the halftime show.  She said she was not impressed.   I like what my friend Brian said about halftime "it was nothing but a tattoo fest."

 

For those of you who wanted to know if all the roads in Morgan county are flat...no.  It doesn't look like it in the photos but two of the roads are 3% grades.  That may not sound like much but it is.  Of course getting out of my neighborhood is a whole other beast.  It's less than 2 1/2 miles to get out but consumes over 20% of the battery's capacity.   That's down from 25% so I guess I'm getting stronger. 

 

My battery ran out of juice on my 28+ mile ride yesterday.  One mile from home but that included one 9% grade hill, a 5% grade hill and a long 4% grade hill.  I was a hurting puppy by the end of the ride and in bed before 8p.

 

I have two photos today of a flower Linda has blooming named Clivia.

 

enjoy

Dan 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) battery chicken wings cilvia flower flowers food halftime hills kitten bowl nachos puppy bowl https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/2/weekly-critter-february-8-2019 Fri, 08 Feb 2019 20:05:50 GMT
weekly critter, January 31, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-31-2019 It's been a cold week here.  Not near as bad as the northeast.  I've been in -10 degree temps once and swore it would never happen again.  Next week it's supposed to be in the mid 70's.   The Florida pan handle is looking better and better.

 

For those who've been asking/commenting about trikeing on streets I have five photos for you today taken during my 25 mile trike ride on Monday.  The first is my driveway and the rest were taken about 4 to 9 miles from home.  Yes we do have traffic but that's mainly in Madison and Buckhead.  Since BRAG comes to the area each year for the 'spring tune up'  and it's a very popular area for riders from Athens, Atlanta and Augusta.  Most of the population is accustomed to seeing bikes (and me) on the roads.

 

The reason some photos are caddywhompus is that the camera on my helmet had slid to the side.  In the second photo you can see my second camera facing rearward.  More than ninety nine percent of the people around here are very considerate and give me ample space.  One half percent don't know what I am or what to do and I have to wave them around me.  The rest are a$$holes and is why I have two video cameras. 

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 25 miles athens atlanta augusta bike buckhead cold madison traffic trike weather https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-31-2019 Thu, 31 Jan 2019 19:33:16 GMT
weekly critter, January 25, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-25-2019 Another crazy weather week with lots of cold and lots of rain.  Wednesday was nice with temperatures hitting 70+ degrees.   The only downside was the 14 mph wind.  In spite of the wind I decided to make the best of the warm weather and went for a 25 mile trike ride.  For about 7 miles I was heading directly into the wind.  I actually had to pedal going downhill to keep moving.   Tonight it's supposed to be back in the 20's.  Way too cold for me.  Come on spring.

 

All of the winter birds have showed up in the last few weeks.  The first photo is of a chipping sparrow all fluffed up for the cold weather and the second is of a pine siskin.  When the pine siskins show up they can empty a feeder in less than a day.  We've also had lots of house finches and gold finches.

 

Yes I know the copyright says 2018, I hit the wrong preset.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds chipping sparrow cold weather down hill gold finch house finch pine siskin rain trike wind https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-25-2019 Fri, 25 Jan 2019 19:48:34 GMT
weekly critter, January 17, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-17-2019 Linda hasn't been feeling great this week so we haven't done much of anything except take it easy.  The weather's been to cold and/or rainy to trike anyplace but the living room.  Hopefully, I can get a ride in this afternoon.  It's supposed to reach 59 degrees but my thermometer says it still in the upper 40's.

 

This Sunday night - Monday morning there is a super, blood, wolf, full moon total eclipse.  What a mouth full.  It's super because the moon is close to the earth and appears slightly brighter and larger than usual.  It's a blood moon because a full moon nearly always appears coppery red during a total lunar eclipse.  It's a Wolf moon because that's the name of the full moon(s) in January.   All months have a name for the full moon.  February's full moon is called a snow moon.

 

The eclipse should begin around 10:33 p.m. EST.  Totally will last from 11:41 pm to 12:43 am.  It will all be over at 1:50 am. These times are approximate.

 

The photos I have for you today are of a lenten rose named Helleborus.  You'll be seeing more of this rose as the flowers open.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) blood moon blue moon flower flowers helleborus lenten rose lunar eclipse rain recumbent trike snow moon super moon wolf moon https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-17-2019 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 18:10:32 GMT
weekly critter, January 11, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-11-2019 The rain finally stopped and I went for a 27 mike trike ride on Tuesday.  It was a beautiful day and the temperatures were into the 60's.  I was going to do 16 miles but it was so nice out I just kept going until my legs said enough and I headed home.  Other than that we've just been doing stuff.  Linda's accomplishment was taking down all the holiday decorations.  We're almost back to normal.

 

The two photos I have for you today are of a Shamrock. I like the beautiful, delicate white flowers.  Yes, I know it's in the clover family and considered a weed.  The interesting thing about the flowers is that they're not supposed to bloom for another two or three months.  I guess it's those 60 and 70 degree days.  Even the birds are starting to pair up.  I'm hoping for a week or two of very cold weather to kill the bugs and then spring.

 

To all my federal employee friends...hang in there.  Hopefully, this nonsense will end soon.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 27 miles clover decorations federal employees flower flowers rain shamrock trike weed https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-11-2019 Fri, 11 Jan 2019 19:02:11 GMT
weekly critter, January 4, 2019 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-4-2019 Happy New Year.   I can't believe it's already 2019.  Enjoy every day because they pass so quickly.  Linda and I had a very nice and quite holidays.  We stayed home and relaxed.  No holiday stress.  I even got too read several books.  No great American novels but I do like history and zombies books with a few action/adventure and horror story's thrown in.  Weird, but it works for me.

 

I"m still enjoying my trike. Although, all this rain has put a serious damper on the number of days I could use it.  I do have a trainer which attaches to the trike so I can get some exercise inside but it's just not as fun.  I bought the trike in August and have put over 900 kilometers on it.   Not a whole lot of kilometers but I'm pleased.  Hopefully, there will be lots more next year.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a green anole.  It's kind of strange to see them out and about at the end of December but the temperature did get into the 70's a week or two ago.  The second photo was taken at the John C Campbell Folk School.  I really liked the early morning clouds/fog rolling off the hills and covering the fields.  The folk school is a beautiful place to visit if you want to spend a few days in the North Carolina mountains.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 2019 books clouds fog holiday jccfs john c campbell folk school new Year no stress rain read relax trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2019/1/weekly-critter-january-4-2019 Fri, 04 Jan 2019 19:37:10 GMT
weekly critter, December 21, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-21-2018 We're busy getting ready for the holidays but I was able to get in a 21 mile trike ride and a 16 mile ride earlier this week while the weather was beautiful.  The 21 mile just happened.  I went to Madison, parked the truck at the aquatic center and headed out for a 10 mile ride.  I rode through Madison and was enjoying myself so much I ended up in Rutledge.  I think I'm switch to kilometers.  Thirty four kilometers just sounds better than 21 miles.

 

Now the rain is back and I'm having to use the trainer inside.  I've spent several hours over the rainy days trikeing away in the living room while watching 'diners, drive ins and dives' reruns.  Since my new trike is taking up most of our living room I thought I'd share photos of Linda and I wearing our finest holiday attire sitting on my catrike.  Over the years I've found that it's almost impossible  to take anything less than a beautiful photo of Linda.  My favorite model.

 

Have a wonderful holiday, stay safe and 'walk in beauty'.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) catrike holiday model photo rain trainer trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-21-2018 Fri, 21 Dec 2018 19:00:40 GMT
weekly critter, December 13, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-13-2018 We finally had a few days of nice weather and tomorrow it's supposed to rain again.  The ground around here is so saturated you'll start sinking in just walking across the yard.   I did get a 16 mile trike ride in on Tuesday.  The ride was nice, mostly.   It was 54 deg in the sun which was OK but the temp dropped to 46 in the shade (not OK) and there was lots of shade.  My fingers were so cold when I got back to the truck that I couldn't get the camera off my helmet.  I'll be better prepared this afternoon. 

 

My first photo is of some fungus/mushrooms on a tree.  What I find interesting about this photo is not the fungus/mushrooms but the tree's growth rings.  My second photo is of where I'd like to be for the next several months.  Somewhere down in the keys.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cold fungus growth rings keys mushroom rain tree trike trike ride vacation https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-13-2018 Thu, 13 Dec 2018 18:27:05 GMT
weekly critter, December 6, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-6-2018 I finally completed all my plumbing tasks here and at the observatory.  It's nice to have water and propane at the RV again. 

 

I've ridden my new trike two times now.  The first time 11 miles and the second 14 miles.  I would have gone further on the second ride but my battery level was under 5% and I didn't want to try and pedal the hills in my neighborhood without pedal assist.  I'm not ready for that yet.  Linda and I were supposed to ride today but both decided it was too cold.  So now I have my trike in the living room hooked up to the trainer.  That way I can trike in the warm house while I'm watching cycling on the TV. 

 

Guess what my photos are of this week.  My new trike.  The center of the back wheel is the motor and battery and it matches the trike perfectly.  I control it with my phone.  The flag says "old guys rule" and has a deere tractor on it.  How could I resist that.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) battery catrike catrike 559 flag hills observatory old guys rule pedal assist plumbing. trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-6-2018 Fri, 07 Dec 2018 14:09:08 GMT
weekly critter, December 1, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-1-2018 Yes, I'm late again.  Thursday Linda and I went to Augusta to have the 100 mile tuneup preformed on my trike.  It was about time since I was closer to 500 miles.  On the way home we were planning on going by the observatory to finish the remaining plumbing jobs.  It's funny how the best laid plans often go awry.  We arrived at Chain Reaction Bicycles at 10a and by the time we left (about 4p) my catrike villager was configured for Linda and I had a new catrike 559 with a Copenhagen wheel.  The Copenhagen wheel is a wheel that contains a motor and battery which provides some assist going up hills as long as I'm pedaling.   The wheel will not move the trike by itself.  I know some of y'all are going to give me grief about a 'motor' but after my 11 mile ride yesterday I was a happy boy.  I spent my time just enjoying my ride rather than constantly looking at the heart rate monitor to make sure I didn't max out.  And since I didn't have to slow way down (granny gear) all the time I had a much better workout.  In fact, today is the first time that my legs are a bit sore from a trike ride. 

 

I actually hoped Linda would try several trikes since I wanted to buy her one but when I saw the big smile on her face trikeing around the parking lot on my catrike I realized I no longer owned a trike.  It was hers.   I'm happy.   We're going a trike ride tomorrow afternoon.  Also,  our new oven was finally installed yesterday.  Overall, it's been a very expensive week.

 

We're going to the sparrows this week.  The first is a chipping sparrow and the second is a song sparrow.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds catrike chipping sparrow copenhagen wheel observatory pedal assist song sparrow sparrow trike wheel https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-december-1-2018 Sat, 01 Dec 2018 18:27:22 GMT
weekly critter, November 23, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-november-23-2018 I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.  Linda and I sure did.  We cooked and ate, cooked and ate some more, watched the parade and Linda watched the dog show and I caught up on my 'Dr Who's'.  We really needed a few days rest.

 

Last week the sediment filters here and at the observatory both started leaking!!!  How is that possible?  Then the new LP regulator stopped working on the RV.  And to make it an even four disasters, the oven went crazy.  Linda made her wonderful meatloaf and stuck it in the oven on bake at 350 degrees.   About seven or eight minute later we both smelled something and went to investigate.  The meatloaf was spouting flames.  My guess is that the relay board failed (again).  We decided not to spend another $400 plus the installation fee.   So, next Friday we're having a new oven delivered.   We did manage to cook and bake everything on the grill so it wasn't a big deal.  I spoke with the owner of the appliance store and he said that on wall ovens they are recommending that the self clean on any brand not be used.  Instead, he suggested putting a dish of water in a 250 degree oven and steaming the baked on crud off.

 

I did an 11 mile ride a few days ago which included the dreaded road with four hills.  In an August (23 rd) critter I mentioned riding this road on my bicycle 10-15 years ago and a three legged dog that used to run next to me.  Well, I was stopped on a hill resting and looked up onto a field and there was the three legged dog running along following a tractor.  Made me smile.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of fungal conks.  The second is of a Downy woodpecker.  It's fall and the woodpeckers are returning.  I'm not sure they ever left but with the leaves down we can now see them.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds dog dr who food grill new oven oven parade relax sediment filter thanksgiving trike trike ride https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/12/weekly-critter-november-23-2018 Sat, 01 Dec 2018 18:23:04 GMT
weekly critter, November 8, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/11/weekly-critter-november-8-2018 What a rainy week.  We had several violent thunderstorms the past few nights.  Fortunately, there wasn't any damage but now the trees are mostly bare and the driveway and decks aren't.  I've been using my gopro video camera on my trike rides but I haven't had any unusual critter encounters except for the cat sleeping in the road.  The one day I forget to take it along is when I'll have several.  Something I did find out about the camera is that it has voice control.  It's amazing what you can find out by reading the manual.  I told Linda that if she gets mad and doesn't want to talk to me that I'll just go talk to my gopro.  Really, who needs (or wants) a camera you can talk to.

 

I have three photos for you today taken at the observatory last week with my canon 5d3.  I like the first picture because if you look close my truck seems to have horns (the website image shows this much better).  The horns are white panels on the RV. Very appropriate for Halloween.  The second photo is a stack of 30 second photos looking straight up at the Milky Way.  The third is a single 30 second photo of the Milky Way looking to the west.  The large object on the left edge is Mars.  Mars can also be seen in the first photo.  I should have taken these photos in July.  October isn't a very good milky way month.

 

To all the veterans out there...Thank you.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy gopro mars milky way observatory. rain thunderstorms truck https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/11/weekly-critter-november-8-2018 Thu, 08 Nov 2018 20:18:11 GMT
weekly critter, November 2, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/11/weekly-critter-november-2-2018 I can't believe it's already November?  Seems like one day it was 95 degrees and the next it was 60.  I want fall back. The fall color has been non-existent around here this year.  The leaves turn brown and fall of the trees. I guess a trip to the mountains is in order. 

 

I haven't been trikeing as much as I would like and not as many miles but the 60-70 degree weather is wonderful.  No more having to put a towel on the truck seat because I sweat so much.  When the pain in my hip goes away I'll be doing longer rides.  My goal this year is to do a 20 mile ride. I'm close.  My longest so far is 18 miles.

 

Linda and I are doing another volunteer astronomy outreach this weekend.  It's part of a program that Georgia DNR puts on at the Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center called 'Becoming an Outdoors Woman'.  Me and a room full of inquisitive women...what's not to like.

 

I have two photos today of a spider web.  The first shows the entire web and the second is a closeup showing the beads of water on the web and grass. 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy beads becoming an outdoors woman' weather november color" fall miles outreach spider web temperature trike water https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/11/weekly-critter-november-2-2018 Fri, 02 Nov 2018 17:13:27 GMT
weekly critter, October 27, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/10/weekly-critter-october-27-2018 It's been another one of those weeks.  We lost phone service last Sunday and internet service was spotty at best.  Both were finally restored yesterday afternoon.  Six days isn't acceptable.   And I fell again.  This time I was carrying the cat in and went down on our stone walkway.  At least I didn't squish the cat.  On the brighter side Linda and I volunteered to help with the Camp Twin Lakes Spin for Kids Ride last Sunday.  Guess where they put us...at the beer truck, pouring beer.  That's like putting a fox in the hen house.  It was a lot of fun.

 

Well, I've gone to the dark side.  Linda has been after me to get a dashcam for when I ride so I bought a new camera.  It's a gopro hero7 video camera.  I wanted to get a small canon mirrorless to take photos while I ride but canon kept putting off the release date for the new model.  So now I can shoot video.  Maybe I'll start my own youtube channel.   Video...really, I couldn't care less (famous last words).

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of Stash on the catrike.  He's sort of claimed it.  The second is of the back yard.  I took these photos with the gopro to check the image quality.  The quality is terrible.  I fact it's so bad that I had to laugh.  My cell phone images are better quality.  Oh well, maybe it's me.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) beer camp twin lakes canon cat fall gopro gopro hero 7 internet mirrorless phone spin for kids trike video volunteer https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/10/weekly-critter-october-27-2018 Sat, 27 Oct 2018 20:00:01 GMT
weekly critter, October 19, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/10/weekly-critter-2018-10-19 I hope everyone made it through the hurricane OK.  We had little damage with only one tree/bush near the house uprooted.  

 

The Wednesday the storm was about to hit Linda was on the computer and the power flickered on/off several times and came back on.  Of course all the clocks were flashing and the hvac switched to heat but everything seemed OK. That is until Linda tried to switch the computer back on.  It was dead as a door nail.  I tried to get it working to no avail.  It was dead.  So we ordered a new computer.  I like getting new toys as much as anyone unless it's a new computer.  I've spent the last two days trying to get everything reloaded.  What a pain. 

 

I still don't have my image processing software working so today I have two photos from previous critters.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) caterpillar computer flower flowers hurricane software wasp https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/10/weekly-critter-2018-10-19 Fri, 19 Oct 2018 14:53:32 GMT
weekly critter, October 6, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/10/weekly-critter-october-6-2018 It's been a sad week here at the Thoman household.  We finally put down our golden retriever, Cally.  It was time.  She was in her 17th year of life.  I received my first golden in 1973 as a gift and Cally was our third.  I doubt there will be a fourth. 

 

Anyway, if you'll indulge me, my photo today is of Cally taken several years ago during the holidays.  It's one of my favorites.  When Lily came to live with us (she was my mother's cat) she decided the dog was hers not ours.  I'm not sure what Cally thought about the situation but she indulged the cat.

 

Good bye Cally

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cally cat dog golden retriever lily mom https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/10/weekly-critter-october-6-2018 Sat, 06 Oct 2018 20:52:46 GMT
weekly critter, September 28, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/9/weekly-critter-september-28 It has been a couple more lousy weeks at the Thoman household but after many trips to my doctors they finally decided my medication was the problem (no kidding).   I don't know if you've ever fainted but one second you're standing there and the next you're face down on the floor.  Not fun.

 

Most of what I've been doing lately is sitting in a chair and either reading or watching youtube.  It's amazing what you can watch on youtube.  I like the tractor and farming videos.  Go figure. 

 

Anyway,  using a chair I was able to photograph one of Linda's flowers.  It's a rieger begonia.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) doctors faint farming flower flowers medications reading rieger begonia tractor youtube https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/9/weekly-critter-september-28 Fri, 28 Sep 2018 18:35:45 GMT
weekly critter, September 19, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/9/weekly-critter-september-19-2018 It's been a lousy couple of weeks in Dan and Linda land but at least the hurricane missed us and I think I finally have both email and internet working again.  It seems that att uses yahoo to host their email accounts and they haven't been playing nice together lately.  Of course att blamed yahoo and yahoo blamed att.

 

Several people asked me about my three critter encounters while riding my trike so here goes:

 

While I was doing that nasty four big hill ride I mentioned a few critters ago two fawns came out of the woods while I was resting and walked right up to me.  They nosed around me about 30 seconds before mom snorted and they took off.

 

I was just entering our neighborhood where there are a few Bradford pear trees very close to the road.   As I rode by one there was a big commotion in the tree top and the next thing I knew I was staring at a big hawk butt two feet in front of my face.  At least he didn't let loose.

 

Finally, on my longest ride from Madison to Rutledge and back I was cruising along when a BNSF train was about to pass 50 feet away.   As usual, I waved and they blew their horn.  The second the horn sounded a gray fox bolted out of the underbrush and was about to broadside me.  At the last second he jumped over my front wheel and landed in front of me.  It was a good thing I was slamming on the brakes as we managed to miss each other.  I think we both needed to check our pants after that encounter.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a rove beetle  and the second is a digger wasp.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) :gray att bird birds digger wasp fawn fox fox" hawk rove deetle yahoo https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/9/weekly-critter-september-19-2018 Thu, 20 Sep 2018 18:13:34 GMT
weekly critter, September 5, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/9/weekly-critter Thought I'd get the critter out a day early this week since most of my day(s) has already been lost to the deep dark depths of government.   But to that end, tomorrow I will after 64 years and 11 months become a citizen of the United States of America.  How can that happen?  When I contacted the SSA over a year ago about social security and medicare they said everything was good to go.  Well, I don't discuss politics in my blog but apparently in the last couple of months people born outside the US in what's now considered a 'brown' country (Ethiopia) have to go to a SSA office and prove they were born to US citizens.  What fun. 

 

It's been another week without taking a single photo.  I'm having withdrawal symptoms.  I think I'm going to buy a small camera to take on my trike rides.  I've already had three close encounters of the animal kind.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a dark purple miniature phalaenopsis and the second is of an assassin bug.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) brown country dark purple miniature phalaenopsis ethiopia flower flowers ssa united states citizen https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/9/weekly-critter Wed, 05 Sep 2018 20:30:08 GMT
weekly critter, August 30, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-30-2018 I can't believe August is almost over.  I know I've been busy this past week (and month) doing 'stuff' but can't remember exactly what I've accomplished.  I did cut grass at the observatory and am still enjoying my trike.  Last Friday I did an 18 mile ride.  I was going to try for 20 miles on Sunday but it was just so hot I shortened it to 14.  I shortened today's ride to zero because the heat index is over 100 degrees and it's humid, again.  I guess I'll try tomorrow morning.

 

I have two photos for you this week.  Since I received lots of emails telling me how much they liked the spider I decided to post another one.  This is a golden silk orbweaver.  A real cutie.  A big cutie.  If I remember correctly the body was over two inches long. The second photo is of a naked lady and a pollinator.  If you look close there is another bug on the right most petal.  It's on the white nub that sticks out just above the pink.

 

Have a safe and fun holiday weekend.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bug flower flowers golden silk orbweaver grass heat heat index naked lady observatory orbweaver pollinator spider trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-30-2018 Thu, 30 Aug 2018 19:50:47 GMT
weekly critter, August 23, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-23-2018 Have you ever made a decision where your head says one thing and your gut says something else?  I was out riding my trike Tuesday and came to the end of the road where I usually turn right and go into Buckhead.  I sat there and thought about turning left while my gut was screaming your not ready for the hill.  It's been years since I biked down that road and the only thing I remembered about it was the hill and the three legged dog that would charge out from one of the yards and pass me while I was traveling over 20 mph. Then he would wait for me at the bottom of the hill with a big doggie smile.  The first time he did it I was ready with my pepper spray but he just wanted to run.  I started carrying a dog biscuit for him.

 

Anyway, what I forgot about (and my gut was screaming about) was that there wasn't one hill there were four before I reached the end of the road and had to turn around.  When I told Linda about my ordeal she looked at me the way only a spouse can and said "you didn't have to go to the end of the road."  So much for sympathy.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a garden spider.  I know most people don't like spiders but they sure eat a lot of nasty insects and I find them beautiful.  The second photo is of a Lake Oconee sunrise looking out our back door.  I need to start getting up early again.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) decision dog gut hill hills insects lake oconee smile spider sunrise trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-23-2018 Thu, 23 Aug 2018 18:53:49 GMT
weekly critter, August 16, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-16-2018 I wonder if we're ever going have cooler weather again.  I went out for a trike ride yesterday after lunch and it was 88 degrees.  By the time I finished two hours (and 11 miles) later it was 94.  I was wiped the rest of the afternoon.  I spent the other night at the observatory and was hoping to have some photos of the perseid meteor shower. But after several hours and lots of 30 second exposures I did not capture one meteor.  In fact I only saw a few meteors not the 100 per hour they were expecting.  Oh well. 

 

An interesting thing I did see and feel (and hope never to see again) was a gigantic insect bloom.  I walked off the driveway to set up the camera and something didn't feel right.  I turned on my flashlight and saw a cloud of insects about four feet thick extending out several hundred feet (I think).  Needless to say I exited the area quickly and set up inside the observatory.  Fortunately, only a few mosquitoes got me and I did have fun watching the bats swoop down and gorge themselves.  A couple of hours later they were mostly gone.

 

I have gone to the 'great' birds this week.  My first photo is of a great blue heron fishing the waters of the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.  The second photo is of a great crested flycatcher checking out our back yard.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bat bird birds blue chesapeake bay great great crested flycatcher heat heron" insect bloow maryland observatory trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-16-2018 Thu, 16 Aug 2018 18:34:28 GMT
weekly critter, August 9, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-9-2018 I went for another 10+ mile ride yesterday afternoon in the miserable heat and humidity.  The only thing that made it bearable was about halfway into the ride a 'sweet young thing' slowed while going by me, rolled her window down and hollered 'looking good'.  Anyway, it made me smile.  I'm going to have start getting up early and go for a ride instead of in the afternoon. 

 

Don't forget the Perseid meteor shower will peak this weekend.  Get a comfortable chair, something to drink, look to the northeast and relax.

 

Most of y'all who commented on my high key landscape photo a few weeks ago said you liked the conversion.  So this week I took a photo from Spruce Creek Park near Daytona and did a low key and a high key conversion.  Let me know what you think.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 10 mile and astronomy black high key hot humid low key observatory perseid meteor shower chair ride trike white" https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-9-2018 Thu, 09 Aug 2018 15:39:32 GMT
weekly critter, August 4, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-4-2018 Yes, I'm late again with the critter.  I went to a 'meat and 3' for lunch on Thursday and even though they said no bell peppers were used in anything I took one bite of the green beans and knew I was in trouble.  I have a food allergy and cannot eat bell peppers.  Needless to say I had a miserable Thursday and Friday but at least I didn't end up in the hospital.  I just started feeling better this morning.

 

Speaking of this morning I did something I never thought I'd be able to do again.  I rode my trike 10 miles.  Woo-Hoo.  Now I'm heading for the couch.  Actually, Linda and I are going to a book signing this evening.  Our good friends the Wibell's daughter Katie (Katharine) has published two books.  We first met Katie and her sister Sara years ago when their parents brought them over for a wood turning lesson.  Now she's an award winning author.  How time flies.  Here's a link to her second book in the series:  

 

https://www.amazon.com/Ullrs-Fangs-Incarn-Saga-Book-ebook/dp/B07CRQ7S6R/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1533408923&sr=8-2&keywords=katharine+wibell.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of a mocking bird.  We don't see them here very often.  The second photo is of me in spandex sitting on my catrike with my cat.  Yes, my jersey says 'martini'.  The reason I'm scowling is that Linda is not holding the camera properly.  I think she needs to take my photography course at the Folk School.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) . allergy bell pepper bird birds cat catrike folk school friends hospital katharine wibell mocking bird wood turning https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/8/weekly-critter-august-4-2018 Sat, 04 Aug 2018 19:20:36 GMT
weekly critter, July 27, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-27-2018 Yet another busy week.  I'm not sure where the time goes.  I did get to ride my new trike several times with the longest ride being 6 miles.  When I was to riding my bicycle I was used to vehicles just wanting to get by me as quick and as close as they could.  I was considered a nuisance.  Several people told me riding a trike was different but I didn't believe them because of my many thousands of miles on a bike.  Well, I was wrong.  Now I'm more of a curiosity.  Most people smile and wave and are very careful going around me.  Go figure.

 

I have two photos this week.  The first is a landscape taken at the John C Campbell Folk School which I converted to black&white.  Normally,  my B&W conversions are dark and moody.  This time I decided to get out of my comfort zone and try a 'high key' conversion.  What do you think?  I'm not sure I like it.  My second photo is of a five line skink doing what skinks do...eating bugs.  He's going to have a heck of meal with this roach.  If you look close there are parasites (I think) just behind his leg.  Maybe they're just bumps.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) John C Campbell Folk School jccfs photo conversion B&W skink roach trike bike moody parasites curosity https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-27-2018 Sat, 28 Jul 2018 19:40:27 GMT
weekly critter, July 20, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-20-2018 It's been a crazy busy week with doctor appointments, animal problems, errands and to much stuff to even think about.  However, on the bright side of the news Linda and I have been together since 1979 and today is our 33 wedding anniversary.  Wow, how time flies.  To celebrate we decided to take the day off and do as little as possible.  Linda is doing her needle point and I'm recovering from my tricycle ride.  I picked up the recumbent trike Wednesday evening.  It's a Catrike Villager in beautiful green.  I rode four miles on Thursday and five miles today.  My legs feel like jelly but that cold beer at the end of the ride makes everything all right.  Not my former 30+ mile bike rides but 'I'll be back'.

 

I have three photos for you today and guess what they are...my trike of course.  Spoiler alert,  next week you may be exposed to a photo of me wearing spandex on my trike.  If I remember (which means 'can I get it on')  I'll wear my 2004 MS 150 jersey.  Kevin/Morris do you remember that 150 kilometer ride?

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 33 years animals anniversary catrike catrike villager doctors MS 250 recumbent trike trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-20-2018 Fri, 20 Jul 2018 20:33:23 GMT
weekly critter, July 12, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-12-2018 I was out at the observatory on Monday doing what I usually do.  Cutting grass.  I cut it before teaching at the folk school so in less than two weeks it had grown about two feet.  Four hours in 95 degree heat and I was whooped.  To whooped to even do much observing on the first clear night in months.  I think I'm going to start going out for observing then cut the grass the next day (duh).

 

I think I'm going to be back in the cycling world by this weekend.  Linda got tired of me moaning every time I walked through the garage and looked at my bicycle.  So last week we went to a bicycle shop in Augusta and looked at recumbent trikes.  Why a recumbent trike?  Easy, it's much more difficult to fall off a tricycle than a bicycle.  After a week of trying to get over 'sticker shock' I finally ordered a Catrike Villager.  Linda wanted me to get an electric pedal assist trike in case I started having some problems while out riding but I felt I was still to macho for a pedal assist.  We'll see how it goes (she's probably right, as usual). 

 

I have two photos this week.  The first is of some pretty shoals near Leatherwood falls in North Carolina.  The second photo is a B&W conversion of an approaching storm at the John C Campbell Folk School.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy B&W catrike villager grass jccfs leatherwood falls north carolina observatory recumbent trike shoals storm tractor trike https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-12-2018 Thu, 12 Jul 2018 18:44:01 GMT
weekly critter, June 14, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-june-14-2018 I just got through reporting this weeks 70+ telemarketer phone calls to the 'do not call' complaint website.  I doubt it will do any good but it makes me feel better.  I looked up some data on the FTC website and it appears that about two million complaints (which seems very high) are filed each day.  It amazes me that these people (and I use the term loosely) think this tactic will work.  

 

I have two photos of a persimmon flower for you today.  Can you spot the bugs antenna?  It's coming out under the stamens in the second photo and pointing down on the middle right.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bug do not call flower flowers persimmon tekemarketer https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-june-14-2018 Thu, 05 Jul 2018 18:47:01 GMT
weekly critter, July 5, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-5-2018 Hope everyone had a fun 4th.  Linda and I relaxed, ate and drank the day away then we watched fire works.  We should have more days like that.  My photography class at the folk school last week was really fun.  It was a small class so I was able to spend more time with each student and we all learned lots of 'stuff'.   I always figure I won't gain any weight eating all the good folk school food since we walk so much.  But, it never seems to work out that way.  I gained three pounds last week.

 

I have two photos this week.  The first is a hibiscus taken on the folk school campus right in front of the building I was staying in.  It's a beautiful campus.  The second photo was taken at Leatherwood falls near Brasstown NC.  I don't know what was attracting the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (yellow) or the Pipevine Swallowtail (blue) but they stayed for over an hour while the class photographed them.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) butterfly fireworks flower flowers folkschool food jccfs july 4th swallowtail https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter-july-5-2018 Thu, 05 Jul 2018 18:36:54 GMT
weekly critter, June 22, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter It's been a crazy-busy week and next week I'll be at the John C Campbell Folk School teaching my photography class.  Yesterday I went out to the observatory to cut grass since I wouldn't be able to get back to it for two weeks.  Ninety five degrees and four acres of grass.  It's no wonder I don't feel like moving today.  It's a short 'critter' this week because I still need to arrange a last minute astronomy outreach program and get packing for next week.

 

I have two photos for y'all today.  The first is another bumble bee.  I don't know why but these guys fascinate me.  The second photo is of a female finch.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds bumble bee finch flower flowers grass john c campbell folk school observatory photography class https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/7/weekly-critter Thu, 05 Jul 2018 18:28:24 GMT
weekly critter, May 31, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-31-2018 I can't believe I haven't taken a photograph in over a week.  I think I'm having withdrawal symptoms.   Linda and I tried to go out to lunch today.  Talk about striking out.  The first restaurant which Linda wanted to go to was Italian.  It wasn't open,  the second was a new Mexican.  They didn't have a beer license yet.  On to a Chinese restaurant we've been going to for years.  There were new owners and we had been warned not to go back.  Should have listened.  I've been MSG'ed.  Dry mouth, headache, bloated and feel like an elephant did a cha-cha on my stomach.

 

I was looking at some old photos and decided that since it's been raining for quite a while that I would post a photo of the sun in case anyone has forgotten what it looks like.  Along the same line Jupiter and Mars should be spectacular this summer.  Lest hope we can actually see them some time.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy beer chinese italian jupiter lunch mexican msg observatory rain sun https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-31-2018 Thu, 31 May 2018 19:54:46 GMT
weekly critter, May 24, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-24-2018 I'm really getting tired of all this rain.  The only thing I've done at the observatory last month is have some 'tractor therapy' time and not to much of that.  I went out Monday to spread seed and hay.  Everything was to wet to do anything else.  Linda and I went out yesterday to finish up the hay spreading and plant some trees/bushes.   I showed Linda how to operate the tractor and I think she really enjoyed it.  We had just started to spread the last six bales of hay when it started to rain (surprise, surprise).  We decided to have lunch and wait it out.  The rain did stop and we started started back at it.  It only took about 10 minutes for it to start pouring.  Since it wasn't thundering we decided to finish.  An hour later we were soaking wet, half covered with hay and the other half covered with mud.  What fun, it was like being a kid again.  Wet and dirty.  It reminded us of a few camping trips.  We sat down for a few minutes and watched the rain then toweled off and drove home.

 

The two photos I have for you today are of Linda driving the tractor.  The big building in the background is what Linda refers to as the "walmart distribution center" and is the reason we're planting trees and bushes.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy camping hay mud observatory rain seed tractor https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-24-2018 Thu, 24 May 2018 18:56:52 GMT
weekly critter, May 17, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-17-2018 We're finally getting some rain around here.  It seems like it either rains for weeks or we're in a drought.  The Charlie Elliott Astronomy Club is doing an outreach event at the Charlie Elliott Wildlife Preserve on Saturday from 10a to 2p.  It called Keeping Georgia Wild and is loads of fun for the entire family.  There's food, exhibits (creepy crawlies), fishing and a myriad of other things the see and do. Generally they're around 1500 to 2000 which attend.  And did I mention that it's free.

 

I have three photos this week.  The first is of the column of a Little Emperor orchid.  I really like doing closeup's of flowers and love the colors in this one.   The second is of a Carolina wren on a log with a columbine (from last week) in the foreground.  The third is a closeup of the wren showing it has a grub in it's beak.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds charlie elliott wildlife drought festival flower flowers grub orchid outreach rain wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-17-2018 Thu, 17 May 2018 20:35:13 GMT
weekly critter, May 11, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-11-2018 It's been a busy week.  Tuesday I replaced a snapped cable on the garage door opener.  What a pain.  It should have been a one hour job.  About two hours into it I was thinking that we should of had a new one installed.  But since it's only 30 years old I decided to persevere and now it works smother than ever (the cable had been run under rather than over a brace).  Have I said I'm cheap?   Wednesday and Thursday I spent at the observatory landscaping which means I'll have to spend Friday and Saturday recovering.  The critter is about as ambitious as I'm going to be today.

 

Once again, I'm going to be teaching my 'Up Close and Personal' class at the John C Campbell Folk School the last week of June.  Everyone form beginner to expert is welcome.  The Folk School is like camp for adults with great food and lots of fun interesting people.  Check it out at    https://www.folkschool.org/

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a tufted titmouse.  I don't like all the branches but I do like the composition.  The second photo is another one of my favorite flower, a columbine.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds camp columbine composition flower flowers food jccfs john c campbell folk school observatory photo teach tufted titmouse https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-11-2018 Fri, 11 May 2018 17:10:48 GMT
weekly critter, May 3, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-3-2018 I can't believe it's May already and where did spring go?  The temperature is supposed to be in the upper 80's today.  Yuck.  I much prefer the 70's.  I've named our property at the Deerlick Astronomy Village after the constellation Cepheus.   Cepheus was the ancient Greek name for the constellation of the Ethiopian King who married Cassiopeia and had a baby they named Andromeda.  I thought is was appropriate since I was born in Ethiopia.  So much for today's mythology lecture. 

 

I have three photos taken yesterday at Cepheus looking out over the property.   I really like all the wild flowers which are blooming and I won't cut these two acres until after they've finished blooming.  Right now the most prominent flowers are yellow but they're a lot of red, blue, white and purple flowers which don't show very well in these photos.  The pond is just the other side of the small pine trees in the second photo.

 

enjoy

Dan 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) andromeda cassiopeia cepheus deerlick astronomy village ethiopian king greek mythology observatory spring https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/5/weekly-critter-may-3-2018 Thu, 03 May 2018 16:45:44 GMT
weekly critter, April 26, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-26-2018 I couldn't believe the rain/wind storm we had Monday night.  We've had two 100 year rain events in the 30 years we've lived here and this is the first time part of our driveway has washed away. We also have a new ditch running down the hill from the shop. Walking around the neighborhood it looks like several other people had the same problems.  Lots of driveways are now part of the yard.  I should put up a sign at our entrance that says 'tractor work available'.  Tomorrow I'm heading out to the observatory.  I'm dreading to see what the storm did to the newly landscaped areas.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a female giant swallowtail laying eggs.  If you look close you can see the tiny white eggs on the leaf.  The second photo is of Stash doing one of his favorite things.  Relaxing and grooming.  His other favorites activities are sleeping, eating and bouncing off the walls like a crazy animal.  I can't believe how big he's gotten.  And yes, he's still a mama's boy.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) butterfly cat driveway eggs giant swallowtail gravel landscape observatory rain stash tractor https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-26-2018 Thu, 26 Apr 2018 15:45:44 GMT
Weekly Critter, April 18, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-18-2018 Just not sure about the weather.  It was 36 degrees yesterday morning.  It's mid April and I'm supposed to be wearing shorts.  I'm heading out to the observatory on Friday to rip out the garbage lowes sold me for the walls in the warm room.  I was going to try and live with it but with the changes in humidity the garbage walls started to buckle and warp.  I'm way to OCD to put up with that.  Once new walls are put up I can paint and put down carpet.  I should have had the warm room finished six months ago.  Now I guess it'll be a cool room until next winter. 

 

I have two photos of a Japanese maple today.  We were on the deck puttering around when Linda said I needed to look at the maple.  The overhead sun shining directly on some of the leaves turned them a bright orange where other leaves were a deep red.  I thought it made an interesting photo.  The second photo has a bee and a wasp on the maple's flowers.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bee cold flower flowers japanese maple lowes observatory shorts wall warm room wasp weather https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-18-2018 Wed, 18 Apr 2018 17:17:20 GMT
weekly critter, April 14, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-14-2018 How did it get to be Saturday already?  As far as plumbing goes one problem is an irritation,  two problems make you angry and by the time you have three or four problems all you can do is laugh.  Of course, a couple of gin and tonics helped my disposition.  I was going to just replace the damaged drain hose but Linda wanted all the hoses replaced since I already had the dishwasher pulled out.  I said that would cost a lot of money, that I was not interested in spending two days taking a dishwasher apart and it would be much easier to buy a new appliance.  She said OK...Sneaky girl.  Now we have a new dishwasher which is OK since I think the old one was 16 years old. 

 

We had our annual zombie party at the deerlick astronomy village the 12th through the 14th.  It's named for how the people look after three long nights of observing.  It was kind of a bust this year.  Thursday night started well but the skies turned turbulent and the once pinpoint stars looked like a light through churning water.  Friday and Saturday were cloudy.  Oh well, that's how it goes with astronomy.  Before the atmosphere got all soupy I did get to try my new eyepiece.  It's an Explore Scientific 82 degree 30mm eyepiece which provides 93x magnification.  The view was stunning.  I now have a new favorite eyepiece.

 

Friday wasn't a bust for me.  I got to play 'Tom Sawyer'.  A friend wanted to try out the tractor and by the time he left he had moved a large pile of dirt to Linda's 'bird blind' and raked a large area to make it flat.  He left with a big smile on his face.  Tractor therapy.  The first picture is of Mike on the tractor.  Yes, he was having fun.  My second photo is of a columbine, one of my favorite flowers.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy columbine dirt dishwasher eyepiece flower flowers landscape rake observatory plumbing rake tractor tractor therapy https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-14-2018 Sat, 14 Apr 2018 15:49:07 GMT
weekly critter, April 6, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-6-2018 We had the plumbing poltergeist visit last Saturday.  I was drinking my coffee while trying to get my laptop to work.  Microsoft had just updated windows and of course I was once again staring at the black screen of death.  Then I heard a commotion in the bathroom.  It seems the float hung up after the last flush and water was pouring out of the tank.  Luckily Linda heard the water and got the supply line turned off.  Ok, problem fixed and I was back to the computer.  Linda was in the kitchen and called “Dan, come look at this.”  Yikes what’s the problem now?  The problem was that the dishwasher was leaking all over the kitchen and dining room floor.  So I pulled the DW out and find that the drain hose had failed.  Great.  Next, I was in the powdering room washing my hands and water started squirting out from the spigot handle.  Damn.  And finally, I was in the kitchen cooking (we were having friends over for dinner).  As I started to clean up my mess the sink wouldn’t drain.  Really...I couldn’t make this stuff up.  By the way, have I said recently that I hate plumbing. 

 

As a followup we decided to install a new dishwasher since the old one was 16 years old,  were going to replace the toilet (it never really worked right),  and the leaky fixture is 30 years old so it's time for a new one.  It took me three days to get the computer working again.



I have two photos of wild flowers taken at the observatory. The first is a wild beach pea and the second is an onion flower.



enjoy
Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) dishwasher flower flowers laptop microsoft observatory onion pea plumbing spigot toilet https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/4/weekly-critter-april-6-2018 Fri, 06 Apr 2018 16:51:42 GMT
weekly critter, March 30, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/3/weekly-critter I finally received all the paperwork I needed to finish my taxes and they're now done and ready to file.  Since Linda is over 65 and I'm slightly under we had no state tax to pay.  Yea. 

 

I spent a couple of days at the observatory, not observing but as usual working on the drainage problems.  Hopefully, the grass along the road will grow quickly and will take care of one problem.    It's been hard to do any grading because of all the rain which turns the Georgia red clay into muck that wants to suck the tractor in up to the axle.  I haven't been stuck yet but very close.

 

I have two photos of wildflowers for you today.  Both were taken at the observatory.  Last year I had over an acre covered with wildflowers and I hope they bloom again this year.  Not just because they're beautiful but that's an acre I don't have to mow until the flowers die.  The first photo is of a small dandelion.  I know most people don't like dandelions but I do.  The second photo is of a bluet.  A tiny but pretty flower that's less than 1/4 inch across.  I know these aren't the sharpest photos but the wind was blowing like crazy.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bluet dandelion flower flowers grading grass mud observatory rain tractor https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/3/weekly-critter Fri, 30 Mar 2018 18:09:18 GMT
weekly critter, March 9, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/3/weekly-critter-march-9-2018 I've put 50 hours on my tractor and it's time for the first service to change the transmission oil.  All six gallons of it.  I think I'm going to let the dealer do it.  I wonder how much that's going to cost.  The transmission oil is over $20 a gallon.  But it's worth it,  I'm having a blast moving dirt and digging up things.  I might think different when it's 100 degrees and I'm mowing grass.

 

Make sure you go outside (and freeze) tomorrow morning around 6a and look south toward the moon.  You' see Saturn, the moon, Mars and Jupiter in a line from south east to south west.

 

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is a  stonecrop sedum.  I really liked the complex pattern.  The second is a flowering quince.  A beautiful flower with long thorns on the branch.  Yes, it got me.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy dirt flower flowers grass moon mowing pattern quince sedum tractor https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/3/weekly-critter-march-9-2018 Fri, 09 Mar 2018 17:50:54 GMT
weekly critter, February 28, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-28-2018 It's already the last day of febu-ugly.  Actually, the weather here the last several weeks has been beautiful temperature wise.  We've had several days in the low 80's but way to much rain.   Everything is saturated.  I hope we don't go straight into a dry summer again.  The trees are starting to turn a beautiful shade of green and flowers are starting to bloom.  Our driveway is lined with daffodils.   Before too long I'm going to have to start cutting grass at the observatory.  What fun...not.  At least I'll get some tractor therapy time.

 

I have two photos for you today celebrating spring.  The first is a viola with a bug on it.  The second is a tulip Linda has growing on the deck.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bug flower flowers grass observatory rain spring tractor therapy tulip viola https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-28-2018 Wed, 28 Feb 2018 17:40:00 GMT
weekly critter, February 20, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-20-2018 A friend of mine sent me this and it made me smile.  I couldn't resist passing it on:

 

Study of folks living longer than 90

Subjects who consumed about two glasses of alcohol, whether beer or wine, were 18 percent less likely to suffer from a premature death. In comparison, daily exercise of around 15 to 45 minutes only reduced the risk of premature death by 11 percent.

Moderate drinking, however, was not the only activity reported by The 90+ Study that had a positive impact on longevity.

The study also found that those who spent about two hours daily on a hobby lowered their risk of premature death by 21 percent. Meanwhile, subjects who drank two cups of coffee each day saw the risk fall by 10 percent.

In another surprising result, 90-year-olds who were a bit overweight, but not obese, reduced the chances of premature death by 3 percent.

Summation

    Have a couple of drinks a day of alcohol
    Drink coffee
    Exercise some
    Have a hobby.
    And a little chubby isn’t bad.  Pass that cheeseburger over here my friend.

http://www.techtimes.com/articles/221438/20180220/drinking-alcohol-helps-better-than-exercise-if-you-want-to-live-past-90-years-old.htm

 

I'm definitely living past 90 if this study is correct. 

 

The result from my question from the last critter about whether you like the color or black and white version was surprising.  Only one person said they liked the B&W version better than the color.  I expected just the opposite.  I guess I overdid the processing.

 

I have two photos of Linda's currently blooming amaryllis.   The first is named 'apple blossom'.  I don't know the name of the red one.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) alcohol amaryllis apple blossom coffee exercise flower flowers hobby living past 90 smile https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-20-2018 Tue, 20 Feb 2018 18:35:23 GMT
weekly critter, February 9, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-9-2018 What a week.  If it wasn't one crazy thing happening it was another.  Like a leaking kitchen sink and a possessed toilet.  Plus, with all this rain I haven't been able to get out for any tractor therapy.  I did order a new toy (implement) for my tractor.  It's the only good thing that's happened this week.  I ordered a new landscape rake with gauge wheels.  Most people who know me will be on the floor laughing now because they know of my disdain for any product or activity which includes the word 'rake'.  Anyway, the normal price was about $680 but was on sale for $635.  I decided to go for it since I had an additional discount code.  When I entered the discount code the price dropped to $502 ...What the heck... I hit the buy button like I was on a game show and Monday I should have my new toy.  Of course, if next week goes like this week it will end up in Montana.

 

I have two versions of the same photograph for you today.   It was taken at the John C Campbell Folk School last June during one heck of a storm.  I tried to get a lightning shot but the wind kept blowing me and the camera over.  If you go to my website and look closely at the black and white version you can see streaks of rain drops.  Let me know which version you like better because I'm planning on printing and framing one for the Folk School's charity auction.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) black and white charity color folk school implement john c campbell folk school kitchen sink landscape rake plumbing rain rake toilet tractor https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-9-2018 Fri, 09 Feb 2018 21:51:54 GMT
weekly critter, February 1, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-1-2018 We're into Febu-ugly.  Can spring be far away.  I hope not.  I went out to the observatory yesterday to move some more dirt (tractor therapy) but everything was still saturated.  I tried a little bit of earth moving but just made a mess and now the tractor needs some serious cleaning.  I hope y'all had a good view of the super-blue-blood moon.  We had low level clouds and some fog which started to disappear just as the moon dropped into the trees.  It was nice to see the event but not worth trying to photograph.  Maybe next time, which I think is in a couple of years.

 

I have three photographs for you today.  All three are of Linda's 'Maria Therese' orchid.  It's going to have seven or eight flowers which is amazing for such a small plant.  The first photo is of a bud that's just opening.  The second and third photos are of the same flower.  The only difference between them is the light source.  The first is a long exposure using natural light and the second is a short exposure using a lens mounted led ring flash.  The flower actually looks like the natural light photo.  When taking photos you always need to be aware of the light source.  I could have corrected this using photo editing software but didn't want to take the time.  When I viewed the photos on the camera I noticed the color change due to the flash so I decided to use natural light.  I was in a controlled area using a tripod and a remote shutter release so I didn't have to worry about a several second exposure.  I also always take RAW file format images so if they need to be color corrected I can do it.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy flash led light maria therese moon mud observatory orchid rain raw tractor tractor therapy tripod https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/2/weekly-critter-february-1-2018 Thu, 01 Feb 2018 18:55:34 GMT
weekly critter, January 28, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-28-2018 It's been so long since I've used my observatory for celestial viewing I think I've forgotten how.  Actually,  I took a break while moving dirt last week to look at the sun.  Nothing was happening.  I think we're heading for a solar minimum.  Plus the seeing was so bad I'm surprised I found the sun (it's harder than you think).

 

While I'm talking about astronomy we're having a rare and beautiful celestial event occurring Wednesday morning.  We'll be able to view a super, blue, blood moon.  It's super because it's orbit will bring it very close to earth so it will appear large and bright.  It's blue because this will be the second full moon this month.  It's blood because there will be a total lunar eclipse which will make the moon edges appear red...Wow.  Go outside around 6:30a Wednesday morning and look at the western horizon.  Everything should  happen around 6:45a.  No, you don't need any special eye protection.

 

I have two photos for you today and of course they're of the moon.  The first photo shows a video composite I did trying to obtain more surface detail.  The dark crater near the top-right is Plato and the lighter one (lower-left)  in which you can see the central uplift is Copernicus.  The second photo is of a beautiful full moon.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy blood moon blue moon celestial copernicus crater crater moon observatory plato crater solar sun super moon https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-28-2018 Sun, 28 Jan 2018 20:42:34 GMT
weekly critter, January 19, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-19-2018 I don't think my heat pump has shut off in weeks.  Can't wait for the next electric bill...ouch.  We just had a typical snowstorm for this area.  About 2 inches of snow half of which melts when it hits the ground and refreezes into ice.  This Sunday it's supposed to be in the upper 60's and I wonder why my sinuses are so bad.  I want my spring.  ATT struck again.  This is the third time a connector at the top of the telephone pole has "come loose."  We lost phone service on Thursday and didn't get it back until Monday.  Originally, they said it wouldn't be fixed until Wednesday.  What service.

 

I have two photos today.  Remember the photo of the cute little kitten sitting on Linda's lap?   My first photo is of the 'no longer' little kitten.  The flower pot behind him is 12 inches tall.  He was an absolute riot playing in the snow.   I was sure he was going to slide off the deck.  The second photo is of a snow crystal.  I just couldn't resist.  It's been a couple of years since we've had snow.  Someday I'll be ready for it and have an outside studio set up so I can photograph snowflakes.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cat cold heat pump ice kitten snow spring https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-19-2018 Fri, 19 Jan 2018 16:28:34 GMT
weekly critter, January 12, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-12-2018 Well, I'm all excited.  I purchased a set of pallet forks for my tractor.  I'm not sure what I'll do with them but everyone said I needed them.  Actually, I thought that forks were only good for lifting things but according to the youtube videos they are the best thing since sliced bread for lifting, moving, clearing brush, digging, removing stumps and as a platform for working off the ground.  I'll probably attach a sheet of plywood to them to paint the observatory and promptly fall off.  I think I've watched every compact tractor related video ever made.  Yes, I'm becoming a youtube junkie but what's there to do on a rainy day when I can't play in my shop?

 

The second thing I'm excited about is my website has over 20,000 hits.  Woo Hoo.

 

I have two photos of a killdeer for you today.  These birds are all over the Deerlick Astronomy Village.  The first photo shows him strutting his stuff and in the second he's showing me what he thought of me after I took his picture.  I can't wait for spring when the bluebirds and purple martins show back up.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds deerlick astronomy village killdeer observatory pallet forks rain tractor youtube https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-12-2018 Fri, 12 Jan 2018 19:36:51 GMT
weekly critter, January 4, 2018 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-4-2018 I'm retired.  Weeks aren't supposed to be this busy (or cold).   I did get some good news today.  My heart is pumping much better than six months ago and I'm out of the danger zone (barely).  Time to celebrate.

 

I hope y'all got everything you wanted for Christmas.  I got a set of pallet forks for the tractor and can't wait to try them out.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is called Playing With Petunias.  I haven't done anything artsy like this in a while and it was to cold to go outside and play.  That's the actual photo I took.  It was not modified in photoshop and had very little processing in lightroom.  The second photo I took several years ago and it always makes me smile.  Grandad teaching grand daughter how climb on a tree with an uncomfortable dad a few feet away 'just in case'.  The wisteria  also reminds me of spring and warm weather.  Come on spring.

 

I almost forgot to wish everyone a happy new year.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) art artsy cold dad daughter flower flowers grand grandad heart petunias spring wisteria https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2018/1/weekly-critter-january-4-2018 Thu, 04 Jan 2018 22:45:46 GMT
weekly critter, December 28, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-28-2017 This is the last critter of the year and I haven't taken any photos in the last week.  Linda and I have just been relaxing and enjoying the holidays.   As a consequence, I decided to look through the slides from when my family was in Ethiopia and picked out two from 1951.  The first photo is a dhow (I think) taken looking out over the Gulf of Arden in Djibouti.  I've always liked boats and this one looked pretty cool.

 

The second photo was taken on the Giza Plateau in Egypt.  That's my mother, father and older sister and brother on the camels.  Back then you could walk up and touch the pyramid.

 

Have a safe New Year.

enjoy

Dan  

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 1951 dhow djibouti egypt ethiopia family giza gulf of arden holiday new year pyramid relax https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-28-2017 Thu, 28 Dec 2017 18:52:57 GMT
weekly critter, December 24, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-24-2017 I decided to wait until today send out the critter so I could say Merry Christmas Eve.  We hope everyone has a happy holiday week and stays safe.

 

I took the first photo when I went out to feed the birds yesterday and this fellow was looking at me from the deck post.  Doesn't he know he's supposed to be hibernating?  Of course, it was 70 degrees out.  Our back yard has been covered with woodpeckers lately.  Their all pairing up for next year's festivities.  Our pileated woodpecker is back so you know I had to get a photo of him (I think it's a male).

 

happy holidays

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) anole bird birds christmas hibernate holiday pileated woodpecker safe https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-24-2017 Sun, 24 Dec 2017 21:19:05 GMT
weekly critter, December 14, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-14-2017 I hope everyone went out and looked at the geminids meteor shower last night.  It was a beautiful night.  I been having a lot fun with the tractor. You know, boys with toys.  The property at the observatory is looking a lot better.  I didn't realize how deep the ditch in the lower part of the property was.  Over four feet.  I'm glad I didn't try to mow over it.  There were several other holes around the property,  I called them ankle breakers or leg breakers depending on how deep they were.   I'm filling them as I find them.

 

I have two photos of a Christmas cactus for you today.  It bloomed orange this year rather than red.  The first photo is looking at the front of the flower and the second is looking at it from underneath.  The underneath photo was easy because of the way the cactus laid over the side of the pot.  The  difficult shot was of the front.  No, I didn't end up in traction but had to use several ice packs and an adult beverage (or two) before I felt better. Speaking of Christmas...it's eleven days away.  No, I haven't finished my shopping.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) adult beverage astronomy cactus christmas ditch geminids meteor observatory shopping shower tractor https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-14-2017 Thu, 14 Dec 2017 17:17:09 GMT
weekly critter, December 8, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-8-2017 Just the type of weather I like.  Upper 30's and rain...not.  I'm ready to hibernate. 

 

I spent yesterday in Athens going to doctors appointments.  Three of them.  I thought that would finish me up for the year but no,  I now have two more appointments.

 

In keeping with may last critter I have two more photos from my distant past.  The first is of the grand canyon taken in 1975 and the second was taken from my Aunt Thelma's cottage looking at the West River (Chesapeake Bay) in 1976, I think.  Thelma and Bernie purchased the cottage back in the late 40's.  I remember many wonderful summer vacations there fishing and crabbing.   I don't remember much about Bernie because he passed away shortly after we returned from Ethiopia.  Thelma, on the other hand, I do.  She was one of the most wonderful people I've ever had the pleasure to know.  She passed away in the mid 90's and my mother inherited the cottage.  We finally sold the house after my mother passed away several years ago.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bernie chesapeake bay cold cottage crabbing doctors ethiopia fishing grand canyon rain thelma west river https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-8-2017 Fri, 08 Dec 2017 21:12:52 GMT
weekly critter, December 1, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-1-2017 I hope everyone had a relaxing Thanksgiving day.  We watched the parade followed by the dog show and some old movies before moving on to a scrumptious meal and of course, a few adult beverages, a nap and a few more adult beverages.

 

I haven't been photographing much lately and didn't think you'd want to see cell phone photos of the ditch I filled in at the observatory; although, I think they're pretty cool. .  So I dug through some old digitized slides and came up with two 'sunset over a river' photos from 1980.  The first is the Chickahominy River in Virginia and the second is the Kanawha River in West Virginia.  Don't you just love kodachrome.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 1980 chickahominy ditch kanawha kodachrome photography river slide sun set https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/12/weekly-critter-december-1-2017 Fri, 01 Dec 2017 20:38:32 GMT
weekly critter November 16, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/11/weekly-critter-november-16-2017 The holiday season is upon us.  Where does the time go.

 

Make sure you go outside tonight after midnight and watch the Leonid's meteor shower.  If you go out before dawn, which is the best time for the meteors, you can also see the moon, Jupiter and Venus close to each other.  Look east.  I'll be up early because I'm doing another solar outreach at an elementary school tomorrow.  One hundred and twenty 10 year old's.  Oh boy.

 

I have two photos for you today.  Actually, I should say just one.  The first photo was taken by Linda and I turned it into a black and white.  I think it's very nice. 

 

I don't know if you've been to the Joyce Kilmer WMA but it's a beautiful forest in North Carolina named for his poem 'Trees'.  Several years ago many of the very large trees around the main visitors area and trail were badly damaged.  The forest service decide they didn't want to cut the trees down because it wouldn't look natural and they couldn't leave them.  So they decided to use dynamite to make it look like storm damage.   Very cool if you think about it.   The second photo is the end result.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) and black forest holiday joyce kilmer' dynamite jupiter meteor meteor shower moon poem tree trees venus white" wma https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/11/weekly-critter-november-16-2017 Thu, 16 Nov 2017 16:52:11 GMT
weekly critter, November 10, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/11/weekly-critter-november-10-2017 One of the kitten's favorite toys is the cardboard tube left when you finish a roll of toilet paper.   He has several strewn about the house but wants a new one after several days of playing with the old one.  I guess we haven't been keeping up with production of toilet paper tubes and when Linda went into the bathroom this morning someone had unrolled almost an entire roll of toilet paper.   When the kitten was confronted he had a smile that said "hey, I was just trying to help out."

 

I have two versions of messier 42, the Orion nebula which is a diffuse nebula in the milky way.  The first version was in a critter back in April and I've included it for comparison.  The second version is of the same data processed with some new software.  Lots of fun for a rainy Thursday.  I only have nine 30 second exposures to work with which isn't much.  So tell me what you think.  Hopefully, I'll be able to collect several hours of data this winter.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy data diffuse nebula exposures kitten messier 42 observatory orion nebula rain software toilet paper toy https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/11/weekly-critter-november-10-2017 Fri, 10 Nov 2017 16:04:43 GMT
weekly critter, November 4, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/11/weekly-critter-november-4-2017 I've been giving the tractor a workout or I should say it's been giving me one.  I should have bought one 30 years ago.  One of my friends commented "With a tractor that big you need to buy more land.  How big a garden are you going plant for Linda?"  To the first comment I answer NO (preceding adjectives deleted).  To the question about the garden I responded that I did look at a pto rototiller for the tractor and it can be mine for only $2600.00.  Ouch.  Seems like a lot of money just to feed the deer. 

 

I would like to put in a garden but 'sequences' will probably render it impractical if not impossible.  The 'sequences' would include (in part) having Linda pick a spot for the garden which will certainly not be where I would want it.  Then I need a plow to break up the red clay, a rototiller to till the soil, a landscape rake to get all the rocks and stuff out, a load or ten of good dirt, a loader to spread the dirt, till again,  a box blade to flatten everything,  a post hole digger to put up the fence, an excavator to run the power and water and finally something to spread fertilizer.  I almost forgot, a new rifle to shoot the damn deer which I then have to process starting entirely new sequences.  Sequences are fully explained in Pat McManus's book The night the bear ate goombaw.   I dare you to read any of his books and not laugh.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of a dead tree which was in the perfect spot to be lit up by the sun with the dark forest behind it.  The second photo I just like.  Can you spot the person in the photo.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) black and white deer deere garden laugh. linda pat mcmanus rake rototiller the night the bear ate goombaw tractor tree https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/11/weekly-critter-november-4-2017 Sat, 04 Nov 2017 15:49:26 GMT
weekly critter, October 12, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/10/weekly-critter-october-12-2017 It's been a bizarre couple of weeks.  Exploding bottles, several astronomy events and the return of the dreaded sinus infection.   I don't know if any of y'all drink kombucha (I don't) but the bottles can explode.  Linda had a bottle in the fridge at the observatory and it exploded.  Literally.  I heard a muffled whump and went looking.  I finally checked the fridge and this stuff and broken glass was everywhere.  What a mess.  The seeds in that stuff stick to everything and are impossible to cleanup.  Oh, and did I say it stinks.  Last week Linda decided she was going to have some as an evening cocktail.  When she started to open the bottle it went off.  Luckily she wasn't hurt but the kitchen was a disaster.  That stuff went everywhere.  The pots and pans, light fixture, fridge, microwave, stove, oven, cabinets and ceiling were coated.  We're still cleaning it up.

 

Then my sinus infection came roaring back.  I called the doctor thinking I could get another round of antibiotics, but no.  I had to go see the NP the next day.  She poked and prodded and agreed I needed the heavy duty antibiotics and an antibiotic shot to get things going.  The nurse came in a few minutes later with a syringe and I started to roll up my sleeve.  She just smiled and told me to drop my pants and bend over the examination table.  WTH.  I haven't had a shot in my butt since I was a child.  At least she was cute.

 

I have a color and black and white versions of a gnarly root and tree at the base of a waterfall for you today.  Let me know which version you like or if you don't like either.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) antibiotics. astronomy black and white butt doctor kombucha outreach root shot tree https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/10/weekly-critter-october-12-2017 Thu, 12 Oct 2017 19:17:32 GMT
Weekly Critter, Se[tember 30, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/10/weekly-critter-se-tember-30-2017 I just got finished freezing my credit on all three sites.  Experian and transunion were rather straight forward but equifax was a pain in the butt.  They kept trying to force me to lock my credit rather than freeze it.  The place that should have been easiest (because of their data breach) was the most difficult.   I recommend freezing your credit rather than locking it because if it's frozen and they screw up they are responsible under state law.  If your credit is only locked they are not responsible.  Now on to freezing Linda's credit.

 

Do you believe that it's already the end of September?  Where did the month go.  At least it looks like the temperatures will only be in the 80's this week.  Thursday at the observatory the temperature hit 97.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is something growing out of a stump.  I'm not sure if it's a fungus or a mushroom.  I couldn't find it in any of my guides.  The second photo is of a rhododendron taken in June.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy credit credit freeze equifax experian flower flowers fungus mushroom observatory rhododendron transunion https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/10/weekly-critter-se-tember-30-2017 Thu, 12 Oct 2017 19:03:56 GMT
weekly critter, September 21, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/9/weekly-critter-september-21-2017 We're just about back to normal around here.  There's still small stuff to clean up but that's on the back burner.  I guess we would be completely back to normal except for the kitten.  What a handful.  He's either moving at ninety per hour or sleeping.  I want some of that energy.  I think we misnamed him.  He should have been named stinky instead of stash.  That cat can even run the dog out of the room.  Hope he outgrows it.

 

Linda and I went up to Athens yesterday to walk around the State Botanical Garden and have lunch.  It was nice to get away for a while.  The garden did get hammered by Irma but I was able to find a few nice flowers to photograph.  The first photo is of a swamp hibiscus and an accompanying bug.  The second photo is of a surprise lily, one of many names.  It is also called a 'naked lady' because it flowers then the leaves grows around the bloom.  Y'all know I can't pass up photographing a naked lady.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) birds flower georgia state botanical garden hurricane irma kitten lunch naked lady stash stinky surprise lily swamp hibiscus https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/9/weekly-critter-september-21-2017 Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:32:45 GMT
weekly critter, September 15, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/9/weekly-critter-september-15-2017 What a week.  We lost power, water and cell service Monday morning well before Irma really hit.  We finally had power restored late yesterday.  Living without electricity wasn't a big hassle but not having water stinks, literally.   Fortunately, we had a good supply of drinking water and could use the hot tub water for the toilet but I'm in my mid 60's and refuse to take a cold shower (as if I needed one).  If we didn't have power back by today I  was going to soap up and go jump in the lake.  This morning it was so nice to take a long hot shower.  Other damage was minimal except for all the ruined food.  In the past when we've had an extended power outage it's always been in the winter so thawing food wasn't an issue.  Since I'm getting old and like my creature comforts I may just have to buy a generator.  It's only money...right.

 

I have two photos for you today, both taken several months ago.  The first is of a bumble bee and the second is a rhododendron.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bumble bee flower flowers generator hurricane irma old rhododendron water https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/9/weekly-critter-september-15-2017 Fri, 15 Sep 2017 17:59:54 GMT
weekly critter, September 10, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/9/weekly-critter-september-10-2017 Just sitting here waiting for the big blow to start.  Actually, my driveway is green from all the leave blown out of the trees.  I hope all of my friends, especially those in Florida, Georgia and Alabama, have moved to high ground.  This storm could be nasty.

 

Animal dynamics are something to behold.  The cat loves the dog (really), the kitten wants to be friends with the cat but is leery of the dog and the dog just wants to be left alone.  However, at feeding time everything changes.  The cat wants the kitten food, the dog wants the cat food and the kitten wants everyone's food, including ours.  What a munch mouth.

 

I have three photos this week.  The first is of the sun.  I figured this was appropriate since we won't be seeing it for a while and there is some sunspot activity.  The second is of a Windward Flare orchid.  It will probably be blown to bits tomorrow.  The last is called 'life is good'.  A glass of wine and a kitten to play with.  What more could you want.

 

Please stay safe.

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy cat dog flower flowers friends hurricane kitten life is good orchid rain solar activity sun sunspot https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/9/weekly-critter-september-10-2017 Sun, 10 Sep 2017 19:17:23 GMT
weekly critter, August 31, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-31-2017 I don't think I've done anything constructive this week except go see doctors.  At least I now have antibiotics for my quarterly sinus infection. 

 

Other than that the only exciting thing that's happened around here is the addition of a new family member.  Meet Stash, which is short for mustache.  All you children of the 60's quit smirking.  I came up with Stash because he looks like he has a mustache.  Linda wanted to name him Star Stuff.  I just couldn't see me going outside to call him and yelling 'stuff'.  Stash is a rescue kitty a friend in the neighborhood was fostering and he's about three months old.  Aside of one 'accident'  he's settling in nicely.  Our other cat Lily hates him of course but she'll settle down in a few days.  One thing I really like about this kitten is he knows how to play with us and not use his claws.  There's been no blood spilled, yet.  Although, I was rather unceremoniously awakened about 3am when he chomped down on my big toe.  It's been a long time since we've had a puppy or kitten.   

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) doctor kitten kitty. mustache rescue star stuff stash https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-31-2017 Thu, 31 Aug 2017 15:39:02 GMT
weekly critter, August 24, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-24-2017 I hope everyone got to see the eclipse.  If you have solar glasses save them for the next eclipse on April 8, 2024.  Linda and I watched the eclipse from our house where we reached 98+ of totality. It was really beautiful.  We were all packed and loaded to travel to a farm in the path of totality near Greenwood SC with friends from the Deerlick Astronomy village but...no good deed goes unpunished.  Friday we did an eclipse outreach for 100+ 4th graders.  I guess Linda caught some form of  'kid cootie crud' which really zapped her energy.  We decided not to share our 'gift' with friends, so we stayed home.  I don't know if it's a cold or flu but she's still not feeling well and neither am I. 

 

So guess what I've photographed for you this week.  I like the moon swallowing up the sunspots.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy cold eclipse flu moon outreach school solar glasses sun sunspots https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-24-2017 Thu, 24 Aug 2017 14:55:33 GMT
weekly critter, August 18, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-18-2017 I've finally finished my last eclipse outreach this morning and hopefully have answered the last few 'fake solar glasses' questions.  I'm so angry with amazon and the media induced hysteria I could scream.  And the Georgia (and elsewhere)  school districts that are not letting their students outside to view this historical eclipse...because their scared they might be sued.  But it's OK to let them play football (yes, I enjoy football).  What morons.  We won't have another eclipse like this for 375 years.  

 

If y'all purchased/received solar glasses and are unsure if you can use them you need to put them on in the house and look at a bright light.  It should be totally black.  If you see the light destroy the glasses.  Then take them outside and look at the sun.  You should see a yellow/orange sun and have no discomfort, such as looking at the sun with sunglasses causes.  There have been a few fake solar glasses distributed by a chinese company through ebay and amazon.  You can see a bright light through them inside the house.  If you wear glasses (or contacts) put your glasses on then the solar glasses.  That is, your glasses are between your face and the solar glasses.  Do not use the solar glasses to look through binoculars or a telescope.  They are not made for that and you will be blinded.

 

OK, I'm off the soap box...again.

 

I have two photos this week.  Since were having a miserable heat wave (108 deg heat index on Wednesday when I mowed 4 acres of grass and 114 deg heat index on Thursday while trying to finish what I couldn't on Wednesday) I thought I'd show something cool.  The first photo is of the lake at Vogel State Park.  A beautiful cold mountain lake.  The second photo is of a waterfall in Tennessee.  The pool about half way down looks so inviting.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amazon astronomy eclipse heat outreach questions schools soapbox solar glasses vogel state park https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-18-2017 Fri, 18 Aug 2017 20:23:00 GMT
weekly critter, August 3, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-3-2017 It's been a couple of busy weeks.  It seems like every school and library within 75 miles has waited until now to request an eclipse outreach program on August 21st.   Not that we could/would have presented a program since most everyone is heading for the path of totality.  If you've not seen a total eclipse it's something rare and beautiful.  We won't have another eclipse like this (one that passes across the entire US from west to east) for several hundred years. 

 

If you're going to watch the eclipse buy some solar glasses.  Lowes carries them for a couple of dollars.  Do not use welders glass unless it's at least shade 14.  Don't use sun glasses, cd's, mylar bags or smoked glass.  If you use anything except solar glasses you will not feel the damage the sun is doing to your eyes and may end up blind.  If you are not in the path of totality you must wear the solar glasses during the entire eclipse.  If you're in the path of totality you can remove the glasses during the 2+ minutes of totality and see things like the diamond ring and bailey's beads.

 

OK. I'm off my soap box.  Enjoy the eclipse.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first, of course, is of the sun.  There's not much going on the surface of the sun but it's still fun to look at.  We've been at a solar minimum for months now.  There were some beautiful prominences (plasma following lines of magnetic flux) which look like flares coming off the suns surface but my new camera refuses to photograph them.  I'll figure it out.  The second photo is part of Trahlyta falls, the waterfall at Vogel state park.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bailey's beads diamond ring eclipse outreach prominance solar glasses solar outreach sun totality trahlyta falls vogel state park waterfall https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/8/weekly-critter-august-3-2017 Thu, 03 Aug 2017 18:33:43 GMT
weekly critter, July 21, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/7/weekly-critter-july-21-2017 Linda and I celebrated our 32nd anniversary yesterday.  How time flies when you're having fun.  We started the day in the tree house, our lowest deck which seems to be sitting in the trees, sipping coffee.  Later we went out to lunch then home to relax the rest of the day.  We need to do that more often.

 

I have three photos for you this week.  The first is of a thunder storm taken just outside the door of the photo studio at the John C Campbell Folk School.  I think this would make a good black and white photo.  Maybe next week.  The second photo is of a Rattlesnake Master.  The third photo is of the placard describing the plant, just in case you thought I was making the name  up.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) anniversary deck flower flowers jccfs john c campbell folk school rattlesnake master relax thunderstorm tree house https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/7/weekly-critter-july-21-2017 Fri, 21 Jul 2017 16:27:21 GMT
weekly critter, July 14, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/7/weekly-critter-july-14-2017 ATT finally got our internet up and running again.  It 'died' Wednesday night and started working again late Thursday evening.  I don't know how widespread the outage was but I couldn't get through to the repair dept.  It's amazing how much I use the internet for communicating with others.

 

Other than no internet and fighting with direct tv things have been pretty good around here.  We got to spend time with family visiting from Utah and Wednesday my brother and his wife invited us to come over and have elk burgers.  If you've never had an elk burger you're missing out on something delicious.  In fact, if I had a ready supply of ground elk I'd never make a ground beef burger again.

 

I have two photos this week.  The first is a bergamot flower.  The photo was taken at the UGA Georgia Mountain Research & Education Center near Blairsville.  My second photo of an old building was taken on the John C Campbell Folk School campus.  In color it is a rather dull photo but works well in black and white.  I really like all the lines directing my eyes through the photo.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bergamot black and white photo elk flower flowers internet john c campbell folk school uga georgia mountain research & education center https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/7/weekly-critter-july-14-2017 Fri, 14 Jul 2017 17:28:30 GMT
weekly critter, July 7, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/7/weekly-critter-july-7-2017 Hope everyone had a wonderful 4th.  We sure did.  Started the day sipping coffee and watching the Peachtree road race. Later we went out to the deck and watched the tubers and skiers.  When it got to hot we came  inside and watched a stage of the tour of france and ended the day watching the Capital Fourth. 

 

Yesterday I spent the day taking the RV to Augusta for a recall. What a way to spend the day.  Today, I had just gotten out of bed and was sipping some coffee when Linda came in to tell me that our water system was leaking. Boy was that an understatement.  The sediment filter had ruptured.  I turned the water off and proceeded to try and open the filter.  Guess what?  The PVC inlet and outlet lines broke.  Have I mentioned how much I like plumbing.   So, on to the main cutoff valve.  The broken line was still leaking which I attributed to water in the lines.  After a trip to Lowes and lunch the line was still leaking.  Ok, it  had to be the water heater siphoning.  Two hours later I stuck my finger on the leaking pipe and there was pressure.  It wasn't siphoning, the main cutoff valve had failed.  Have I mentioned how much I like plumbing.   So, off to the street to shut off the valve there.  The leak stopped and I repaired everything else...except the main cutoff valve.   I think I'll wait until tomorrow to tackle that.  By the way...Have I mentioned how much I like plumbing.

 

I have two photos taken at the John C Campbell Folk School during my class.  The first is of a day lily and the second is a bumble bee on a St John's wort (I think).

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bumble bee day lily flower flowers fourth of july holiday john c campbell folk school peachtree road race plumbing https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/7/weekly-critter-july-7-2017 Fri, 07 Jul 2017 20:33:01 GMT
weekly critter, June 22, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-june-22-2017 I had a wonderful time  last week teaching my photography class.  I couldn't have asked for a better group of people.  We visited Vogel State Park and the gardens at the Georgia Mountain Research & Education Center in Blairsville.  Both places are beautiful and made for two fun days.

 

Its done nothing but rain since I got home.  Now the grass at the observatory is going to grow and I'll have to cut it again.  At least with the dark and rainy mornings I can pull the covers up and go back to sleep.  Being retired is great.

 

I have photos of lily's for you today.  The first is a pineapple lily and the second is a calla lily.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) and calla lily center" education flower flowers georgia jccfs john c campbell folk school lily mountain observatory photography class pinapple lily research teaching vogel state park https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-june-22-2017 Thu, 22 Jun 2017 17:26:40 GMT
weekly critter, June 10, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-june-10-2017 I know I'm late again but I spent Thursday and Friday at the observatory cutting grass and with Donnie's help installing two breaker panels and outlets for the RV's.  Woo-hoo, we have power.  We're getting close to having everything finished and hopefully can stop hemorrhaging money.  There ain't much left...money that is.

 

I'll be at the JCCFS teaching next week so there won't be a critter.  Looking forward to a fun week.

 

I have two photos this week.  The first is a two for one.  An unidentified mushroom with a fly on it.  Notice the two spikey looking things sticking up?   The second photo is of our new Grand Design Imagine RV in its new RV shelter.  Those new chairs in front of the RV are screaming for a new patio.  And so it goes.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) RV astronomy chairs grand design imagine john c campbell flok school oservatory patio. power https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-june-10-2017 Sat, 10 Jun 2017 17:47:41 GMT
weekly critter, June 1, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-june-1-2017 It's been kind of a busy week.  I'm not sure what I've gotten done, besides recovering from filling 400 feet of trench, but I've been busy.  I was hoping to have some mocking bird chick pictures this week but I forgot to take my camera to the observatory.  That's like forgetting my head (which I've probably done a few times). 

 

I have two photos this week of an armyworm moth.  If I've misidentified it please let me know.  It's hard to see but in the first photo his abdomen comes out and points up, relative to the rest of him.   I would have taken a side photo but it started pouring down rain.  The second photo which is a closeup of his head is actually a focus stack of five photos.  At this magnification the depth of field is less than a millimeter.  So to get an in focus image I needed to change the focus point five times and combine the images. 

 

There are still a couple of spots open in my photography class at the John C Campbell Folk School.  It's going to be a fun week.  If you're not interested in photography they offer around 50 other categories of classes ranging from blacksmithing to storytelling.    https://folkschool.org. 

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) abservatory armyworm moth astronomy bird birds camera jccfs john c campbell folk school mocking moth rain https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-june-1-2017 Thu, 01 Jun 2017 19:07:54 GMT
weekly critter, May 25, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-may-25-2017 Linda and I about worked ourselves to death last Friday filling in by hand over four hundred feet of trench at the observatory.  We should have spread it out over several days (or hired someone) but I had a solar outreach event on Saturday and the rain was supposed to start on Sunday.  The rain did start Saturday night and still hasn't stopped.  Saturday evening a neighbor called and said the observatory roof was partly open. Luckily he had a key and closed it for us.  So Sunday we had to run back out to the observatory and check it.  No rest for the weary.  Now I only need to hook up the electricity to the RV (without frying myself) and we'll be good to go.

 

I have two more bird photos for you today.  The cute couple are cardinals and their nest is in the front yard.   As of Sunday, the mocking bird eggs in the observatory warm room still hadn't hatched.

 

You can see full resolution images from all my blogs on my website.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy birds cardinal observatory solar solar outreach trench https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/6/weekly-critter-may-25-2017 Thu, 01 Jun 2017 19:07:26 GMT
weekly critter, May 18, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/5/weekly-critter-may-18-2017 It's been another brutal week working at the observatory.  Not a cloud in the sky with temperatures in the low to mid 90's.  Monday, cutting grass.  Tuesday, cutting grass, cleaning up construction debris and having trenches dug for water and electric. Wednesday we laid the electric and water lines (over four hundred feet).  Friday, after pressure testing the water lines,  we have to fill in the trenches.  What fun.   I need a vacation.   I still don't know how I had time to do stuff like this when I worked for a living.

 

I have two downy woodpecker photos for you this week.  The first is of a male downy feeding a female downy.  He's trying to show her what a good mate he'll be.  The second is of the male strutting his stuff.  He's sitting on a very dead Dogwood tree.  Linda and I had been nursing that tree for over 25 years.  Last summers drought and excessive heat killed it.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds cutting grass dogwood downy woodpecker drought electric line heat observatory water Line https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/5/weekly-critter-may-18-2017 Thu, 18 May 2017 16:07:04 GMT
weekly critter, May 11, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/5/weekly-critter-may-11-2017 It's a beautiful but windy day here in Georgia.  Supposed to be in the 90's this afternoon.  I sure hope it doesn't make it.  It was 95 yesterday.  That's too hot for May. 

 

I spent Monday night at the observatory to try out my new camera.  This is not a DSLR but a camera designed for astronomical photos. I know it was almost a full moon but I had to try anyway.  It is after all a new toy.  I did get a couple of decent photos of the moon but my Jupiter photos  were terrible.  I didn't realize the seeing was so bad.  It was either that or I don't know what setting I need to use. I'll figure it out.

 

My first photo today is of  'the bird nest'.  I entered the warm room heading for the observing area when this bird about knocked me over.  Neither was expecting the other.  I looked around trying to locate the inevitable nest and couldn't find one.  Yea.  After taking the outreach equipment from the truck to the observatory I looked around the warm room again and located the nest in the coil of wires which run from the observatory to the warm room.  Good, now I can get rid of it and maybe she won't come back.  Wrong, it had four eggs in it.  They are mocking bird eggs and since I like mockingbirds I guess the warm room door won't be installed for a couple of weeks.  I'm going to be using the observatory next week so I guess she'll just have to get used to me.

 

The second photo is of an orchid.  I don't know what the name is or even where I took the photo.  If you can Identify it please let me know.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird bird eggs birds flower flowers mockingbird moon observatory orchid telescope warm room https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/5/weekly-critter-may-11-2017 Thu, 11 May 2017 15:52:27 GMT
weekly critter, May 4, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/5/weekly-critter-may-4-2017 It's another rainy day in Georgia.  I know we need the rain but it'll just makes the grass at the observatory grow.  A friend stopped by the observatory last week just prior to an outreach event, looked around and said "you have to much grass."  Don't I know it.  But he did help me cut the grass for which I was very thankful.

 

Linda said I misspelled the name of the 'little cmperor orchid' last week.  I showed her the tag that came with it and she said "you copied a misspelled name."  Oh well.  There is a 'little emperor orchid' so I guess that's the correct name.  Can't get away without having everything fact checked these days.  Actually, I appreciate people correcting something I've mislabeled.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is a black widow.  It and about ten others were living in my well cover.  Here I thought they were solitary critters.  Not that it's a big problem, I've sampled wells for decades and have found everything from a child hiding from his mother to a coral snake in well houses and covers.  The most common thing found were wasp nests.  The second photo is of an Iris.  I love photographing these flowers.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy black widow flower flowers grass iris observatory outreach rain spider well well cover https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/5/weekly-critter-may-4-2017 Thu, 04 May 2017 18:13:44 GMT
weekly critter, April 27, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-27-2017 My web site now has over 16,000 hits.  Woo-hoo.   I'm supposed to be out working at the observatory today but it's about to pour so I decided to put it off till tomorrow.  If anyone wants something fun to do on Saturday, Sharon Shenanigans, the Sharon GA community fair will run from 10a to 4p.  If it's sunny we'll be there with our solar telescopes.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of a rose-breasted grosbeak.  We have a pair hanging around but they won't stay long.  These are such beautiful birds.  The second photo is of a new orchid Linda found named Little Cmperor.  Who comes up with these names?

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds flower flowers little cmperor rain rose-breasted grosbeak sharon GA sharon shenanigans https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-27-2017 Thu, 27 Apr 2017 19:14:20 GMT
weekly critter, April 23, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-23-2017 It's been a busy week.  Linda is finally feeling better and getting back to normal.  I spent Thursday and Friday working on the observatory and Saturday we spent all day at Madison fest doing solar astronomy outreach.  Today I'm not moving from the comfort of my chair and Linda has taken over the couch.  We're going to act like the cat and do nothing all day except relax.

 

I have three photos for you today.  Sorry Sue but two of them are astronomy related.  I've had several people ask what the faint fuzzies in deep space really look like through the telescope.  So, the first one is of the Sombrero galaxy.  It's the fuzzy thing in the upper middle of the picture.  Impressive, huh. I'm not sure why star trails are showing up on some of the stars.  It should be all or none.   The second photo is of (starting at the bottom) the moon, venus and mars.  The third photo is of a carolina chickadee.

 

enjoy

 

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds carolina chickadee festival mars moon observatory outreach solar astronomy sombrero galaxy venus https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-23-2017 Sun, 23 Apr 2017 18:35:55 GMT
weekly critter, April 13,2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-13-2017 It's a beautiful spring day here in Georgia.  Warm weather, the trees are greening up the flowers are blooming and everything is a nice shade of yellow/green from all the pollen.

 

No, I haven't finished the warm room yet.  Linda hasn't been feeling good and I wanted a few days off.  I'll be back at the grind this afternoon.  It's almost like having a job.  The economy must be doing great.  We finally got a landscape/hauling guy out to give us a bid for some grading work.  He wanted $8,000.00. Ouch. 

 

I have three photos for you today.  The first is of our 'first of the season' ruby throated hummingbird.  I don't usually like 'bird on feeder' photos  but I wasn't set up to photograph him on a flower.  The second photo is of a green anole strutting his stuff and trying to impress the females.  The third photo is of Messier 42, the Orion nebula.  This is a stack of 11 photos.  They were taken at ISO 800 and are from 5 to 30 second long exposures.  I tried stacking the photos in deepsky stacker but could not get the software to work properly.  I ended up doing it by hand in photoshop.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) M42 anole astronomy bird birds green anole orion nebula pollen ruby throated hummingbird stacking https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-13-2017 Thu, 13 Apr 2017 15:47:39 GMT
weekly critter, April 7, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-7-2017 It's that time again.  I would have had the critter out yesterday but a micro burst hit during the wind storm yesterday and half of a huge tree went down, took a few other trees and damaged the seawall.  What fun.  Now I have to take down the other half of the tree that fell,  the damaged trees, another tree that's half dead and a third that's dead.  Oh well, nothing but money.

 

I was planning to have some solar photographs to share this week but the seeing and transparency were so bad that all my photos looked like out of focus mud.  I haven't processed all of them yet, it takes about an hour to process one 30 second video into a photograph, so maybe there sill a good one in there someplace.

 

I have two photographs this week.  The first is a very orange carolina wren and the second is a chipping sparrow.

 

There are still a couple of spaces left in the photography class that I'm teaching at the John C Campbell Folk School from June 11 through 17.  I know it's a shameless plug but if you haven't checked out the folk school website you need to.  It's camp for adults, good food and loads of fun.   https://www.folkschool.org/

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds carolina wren chipping sparrow folk school jccfs tree trees https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/4/weekly-critter-april-7-2017 Fri, 07 Apr 2017 16:01:11 GMT
weekly critter, March 31, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-31-2017 I'm just about finished with the warm room.  Put up trim, paint, lay carpet, install the AC and I'm ready to go.  Linda said she would do the painting which made me smile.  I can paint, I just don't like to.  It's almost as bad as hanging sheetrock.  Yes, this is Georgia so there has to be an air conditioner.  Observatory convention dictates that it be called a 'warm room' and I'm not one to upset the observing gods.  It's going to be named the 'wood-duck' warm room because if you don't stay 'ducked' you'll wish you 'wooda'.   If you're over 5' 6" you're going to hit your head if you try and stand.  

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of a motley looking American goldfinch.  He's not not going to find a mate looking like that.  Another month and he'll be a beautiful gold.   Linda looked at the photo and said it set off her wrong-o-meter.  "Dianthus don't grow out of dead wood."   I said that I liked it and the flower adds interest so here it is.  The second photo is a silhouette of a tufted titmouse.  I'm trying to get out of my comfort zone and try new techniques on old subjects.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) american goldfinch astronomy bird birds flower flowers observatory tufted titmouse warm room wood duck https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-31-2017 Fri, 31 Mar 2017 15:57:07 GMT
weekly critter, March 24, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-24-2017 Linda and I finally purchased a new RV, it only took us two years.  It's going to be a heck of change going from an 18 foot RV to a 32 footer.   It even has a real bathroom.  I should have some photos next week.  No, not of the bathroom.

The observatory warm room is coming along nicely and should be finished with three or four more work days.  Seems like it's been forever since I've been able to use the observatory.

I have two photos today.  The first is a broad-winged hawk (I think).  I was looking out the sliding glass door and was wondering why there were no birds at the feeder.  Finally, a few brain cells clicked in and I thought 'hawk'.  A couple of minutes later he moved his head and I spotted him.  He was looking the other direction so I set the camera up and got a few photos (through the door) before he turned around saw me and took off.  The second photo is of the working end of a carpenter bee.  Damn, I hate those things. 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) RV astronomy bathroom bird birds broad-winged hawk carpenter bee observatory https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-24-2017 Fri, 24 Mar 2017 18:06:13 GMT
weekly critter, March 18,2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-18-2017 I've been building a warm room on to my observatory and have had a friend helping me (more like I'm helping him) the last two days.  Almost seems like I have a job again.  Start work at 8a and get back home at 6p.  After a day like that Linda feeds me dinner then I go to bed.  But next month I'll have a warm or cool place to go and control the telescopes by computer if I'm planning on imaging.  The room should have been finished weeks ago but like any building project there are always problems.  I'm building the room under where the observatory roof rolls off.  While I was on the ladder I decide to check the beams onto which the roof rolls.  Guess what?  One of the pressure treated beams was very rotten.   The beam was made of 4 two by six boards.  Three of the four boards broke apart when I hit it with a hammer.  Talk about a disaster waiting to happen.

I have two photos this week.  The first is a pair of bluebirds checking out some new digs.  I hope they decide to nest there again.  The second photo is of one of my favorite birds.  A carolina wren checking out one of Linda's flower pots.  The wrens are already building nests.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy astrophotography bird birds bluebird carolina wren computers flower flowers observatory roll off roof telescope warm room wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-18-2017 Sat, 18 Mar 2017 18:05:51 GMT
weekly critter, March 9, 2017 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-9-2017 Well surprise surprise, the weekly critter is alive (mostly) and intent on being a little more consistent in the future.  Frankly, I've had some serious health issues, went several months taking very few photographs and didn’t want to just show old stuff.  Now it's time to start enjoying the outdoors again.  I love this non-winter we've been having.

I have three photos for you today, The first is of a red headed woodpecker.  We have a pair that has been hanging around for several months.  Unfortunately, they are very shy and never come close to the house.  The second is a camellia from a bush Linda has growing in the yard and the third is one of her orchids called Maria Theresa .

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds camellia flower marie theresa orchid red headed woodpecker woodpecker https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2017/3/weekly-critter-march-9-2017 Thu, 09 Mar 2017 19:17:59 GMT
weekly critter, October 13, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/10/weekly-critter-october-13-2016 Not a lot going on around here.  I still don't have my RV back.  I waited over two weeks for my 'appointment' and took it to CSRA Camperland to have the AC repaired.  After over a week I called them only to find out they hadn't even looked at it and didn't know when they would.  I drove to Augusta the next morning hooked it up and took it to Augusta RV, just up the road. They immediately checked it out and told me what I already knew.  The compressor had seized and I needed a new AC.  Oh well, nothing but money.  It should be ready by Friday.   We are planning on upgrading our RV and one travel trailer at CSRA had made the 'top three' list.  Now I get to call the salesman and tell him he lost a $40,000 sale because of his repair facility.

 

I have two photos today.  The first is of a spider that's been living on the side of my truck for weeks.  Including at least one trip to Augusta (about 90 miles).  I'm not sure what kind of spider it is.  It could be a crab or orbweaver.  Nothing in any of my guides exactly matches.  The second is of a honey bee.  And no, they have not been put on the endangered species list.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) AC RV endangered species flower flowers honey bee spider truck https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/10/weekly-critter-october-13-2016 Thu, 13 Oct 2016 15:42:03 GMT
weekly critter, September 22, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/9/weekly-critter-september-22-2016 It's been an up and down week health-wise but I have reached 1 1/2 miles on my afternoon walks.   Next week I'll try for two. 

 

At least it seems to be getting a bit cooler here and we're heading into the beautiful Georgia fall weather.  By the time I get the AC fixed in the RV we won't need it till spring.  In other news, for my birthday Linda got the well she wanted installed at the observatory.  I thought it was supposed to work the other way-around.  I can't believe I'm 63 years old.

 

I have two photos this week.  The first is of some spectacular clouds.   I took this photo years ago when I first got into digital photography.  The second photo is of a portrait of Linda painted by her mother.  This is my favorite painting her mother did.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) RV astronomy birthday clouds observatory portrait water well https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/9/weekly-critter-september-22-2016 Thu, 22 Sep 2016 15:45:11 GMT
weekly critter, September 16, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/9/weekly-critter-september-16-2016 One of these days I'll get to use my observatory again.  We've finally had some clear weather this week but the AC in the RV died.  Since I've become very used to my creature comforts I can either not go or wait until 1a or 2a (when it's finally cooled below 90 deg) to head out there.  Since I don't really like to drive at night anymore I just haven't been.  Well, why don't you just get the AC fixed, you ask.  I've been scheduled.  The soonest I could get an 'appointment' is the 27th.   The RV business must be good.

 

I have two photos for you today both of which are 'Linda plants'.  The first is a pineapple.  It's pretty small now but maybe someday it'll be big...naw.   The second is another orchid.  This one is called Windward Flare.  After spending about an hour photographing it I figured out where 'windward' came from.  You definitely want to stay up wind of this flower.

 

I just heard that a good friend from my graduate school days had a stroke.  Any healing thoughts would be appreciated.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) AC RV astronomy flower flowers orchid pineapple windward flare https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/9/weekly-critter-september-16-2016 Fri, 16 Sep 2016 19:17:36 GMT
weekly critter, September 8, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/9/weekly-critter-september-8-2016 I'm finally starting to do some 'things' around here again but it's been a rough month or two.  I barely picked up my camera last month.  I was hoping to take some milky way photos before the summer ended but it just hasn't happened.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a tufted titmouse that's looking kind of rough as he's starting to molt his summer plumage.  There's a cardinal hanging around that is so ratty that I can't tell if it's male or female.  It's lost so many feathers that I'm surprised it can still fly.  The second photo is of one of my favorite critters.  An American green tree frog.  We don't see them around here often.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds cardinal frog green tree frog milky way molting tufted titmouse https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/9/weekly-critter-september-8-2016 Thu, 08 Sep 2016 17:54:19 GMT
weekly critter, August 19, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/8/weekly-critter-august-19-2016 Linda and I got together with some friends last Friday at the observatory to watch the meteor shower.  It wasn't much of a show, to many clouds.  We went to sleep about midnight and got back up at 2:30a when it was supposed to be clear.  The seeing was better but not great.  We finally gave up after 4a. We didn't see many meteors but still had a good time.  I didn't even try to take any meteor photos.  It just wasn't worth the effort.  Not much else going on around here except for what seems like the obligatory doctor's visit. 

 

I have two photos today.  The first is a female eastern tiger swallowtail butterfly.  This photo was taken using my telephoto lens from about 18 feet away.  The quality isn't as good as what I would have achieved using a macro lens at a foot or two away but I think it's acceptable.  The second is a  golden silk orbweaver.  These spiders are huge.  Her body is over an inch long.  The out of focus spider is the much smaller male.   I think he's destined to be dinner.

 

enjoy

 

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy butterfly eastern tiger swallowtail flower flowers golden silk orbweaver meteor observatory spider https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/8/weekly-critter-august-19-2016 Fri, 19 Aug 2016 15:00:52 GMT
weekly critter, August 11, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/8/weekly-critter-august-11-2016 Linda and I drove to Florence SC this past weekend to meet up with her sister Laurie and her family.  We had a vehicle we weren't using and decided to give it to our niece Freshta to help her 'go to college'.  As you can imagine, she was very pleased with her first set of wheels.  I think the thing she was most excited about was that the xterra is 4 wheel drive.  Hum, we'll see.  If it isn't enough that Freshta is gorgeous she now has a 4 wheel drive vehicle.  Her father is going to need a bigger stick to keep all the guys at bay.  To add to her weekend, when she got home on Sunday she had a letter from the college she attends.  She made the dean's list.  Congratulations Freshta.

 

I wanted to remind everyone to go outside the next several nights and look to the northeast for the Perseid meteor shower.  It should be spectacular.

 

I have two photos for you today of red bellied woodpeckers.  In the first photo mom is on the left and in the second on the right.



enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds deans list family feeding florence SC meteor mom niece perseids travel vehicle https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/8/weekly-critter-august-11-2016 Thu, 11 Aug 2016 17:30:48 GMT
weekly critter, August 4, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/8/weekly-critter-august-4-2016 We finally had some rain in the area.  Of course it had to come while I was at the observatory trying to mow the grass before the lawn police sent me a nasty-gram.  I finished most of it Tuesday evening before the rain got too heavy and the lightning started.   I finished up Wednesday morning in a cloud and light rain but no lightning.  Grass...what fun.

 

I wanted to remind everyone that the perseides meteor shower is going on now and will peak on the night of August 11/12th.  This year is supposed to be spectacular.  So, before bedtime go outside and look to the northeast.  You should see some beautiful shooting stars. The perseid meteor shower is a result of the earth moving through the trail of dust and debris left by Comet Swift-Tuttle.  This dust is about the size of a grain of sand hits Earth’s atmosphere and burns up creating streaks of light called shooting stars.

 

I have two photos for you this week.  Since everyone liked the black and white warbler from last week I have another photo of him on the tree by the deck.  If you look close you can see a bug in his beak.  Umm, lunch.  With as many bugs as these guys and the wrens eat I'm surprised I continue to get chewed on every time I go outside. Keeping with the black and white bird theme my second photo is of a white breasted nuthatch.  He also has lunch but at least it's a sunflower seed.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds black and white warbler bug comet dust grass lunch nuthatch perseids seed shooting star solar warbler white breasted nuthatch https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/8/weekly-critter-august-4-2016 Thu, 04 Aug 2016 14:52:08 GMT
weekly critter, July 28, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/7/weekly-critter-july-28-2016 I finally decided it was time to stop procrastinating, pick up my camera and get another critter out.  I've actually spent several nights at the observatory hoping to get some nice milky way photos but the seeing and transparency never seemed to cooperate.  It was like trying to photograph through soup.  I guess I shouldn't expect much else in July.  We've been making a lot of improvements at the observatory so July is going to be another five figure month.  But we now have a septic system, gravel driveway, parking area and lawn tractor.  Oh-boy.  Next on the list is a well, shed and RV cover.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a 'mud dauber vs spider'.  At least I think it's a mud dauber.  The spider won which is unusual.  Mud daubers collect other 'bugs' including spiders to put in their nest for their young.  I think the spider is a small orb weaver about 1 cm long.  The wasp is about 4 cm long. 

 

The second photo is of a black and white warbler.  This photo was taken through a sliding glass door so it's not the highest quality.  He had bumped the door and was sitting on the plant trying to figure out what mac-truck had run over him.  He sat there a few minutes then took off so I'm sure he's OK.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds black and whit warbler driveway milky way mud dauber observatory orb weaver septic system spider wasp https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/7/weekly-critter-july-28-2016 Thu, 28 Jul 2016 14:43:43 GMT
weekly critter, July 7, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/7/weekly-critter-july-7-2016 I don't know about y'all but we've had some seriously nasty storms the last several evenings.  We definitely need the rain but not like this.  The deck and driveway are green from ripped off leaves and branches.  What a mess.

 

All the wren chicks fledged on Sunday (I think).  They are still hanging around the house making lots of noise and eating bugs.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a painting by Linda's mother which I particularly like.  I have added a gallery with several more photos of her paintings on the thomanstudio.com website under 'photo galleries',  'art'  then  'Cici Kuhnke'.  Check it out, she did some very nice work.

 

I have no clue what the second photo is.  I was watching an eastern swallowtail butterfly laying eggs on a plant.  When she left I clipped one leaf and went inside to take photos of what I was expecting to be tiny green and/or orange spheres.  When I got to about 4x power all I saw were tiny white fuzzy blobs that looked like cotton.  If you know what they are please let me know.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds butterfly butterfly eggs carolina wren cici kuhnke painting rain storm storms wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/7/weekly-critter-july-7-2016 Thu, 07 Jul 2016 16:04:40 GMT
weekly critter, June 30, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/6/weekly-critter-june-30-2016 Another week another critter and we're coming up on a holiday.    July 4th is one of Linda and my favorite holidays.  Lots of people on the lake having fun, flags, fireworks, food and a few adult beverages to celebrate this great country of ours.  WOW.

 

I have three photos today.  As promised, the first is of a carolina wren chick.  They will have fledged by the 4th.  Freedom birds.  The second photo is a pineapple lily.  The flower on this one is only about three inches but Linda has one growing with a flower that's over 12 inches.  I can't wait till that one pops.  The third is a bad photo of a bad deer.  The reason it's bad is because the damn thing walked up on our lower deck to munch on Linda's plants.  I was on the upper deck less than 10 feet away which was to close for the camera to focus.  I stood up and hollered at it and it just looked at me and continued munching.  I walked down to the lower deck hollering and clapping and got to within a few feet before it slowly walked away.   Hum, when's hunting season?

 

Everyone have a fun and safe holiday.

 

enjoy

 

Dan

 

 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 4th of July adult beverage bird birds carolina wren chick chicks deer flags flower flowers food freedom fun holiday lily pineapple lily https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/6/weekly-critter-june-30-2016 Thu, 30 Jun 2016 18:41:19 GMT
weekly critter, June 24, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/6/weekly-critter-june-24-2016 All four of the carolina wren eggs hatched and they look to be doing fine.  It was 16 days from when the first egg was laid until they started to pop.  I'll have some photos next week.

 

Linda was in for another heart cath last week and everything looks fine.  Finally, some good news.

 

An old friend from grad school, who I hadn't seen in about 15 years, and I spent the night at the observatory a couple of weeks ago.  We looked at Jupiter, Mars, Saturn and the moon while imbibing some rather nice single malts. It was fun to catch up on current stuff and talk about adventures from 40 years ago.  Ouch, I graduated from grad school 40 years ago.  How time flies.

 

I have three photos for you today titled 'bath day'.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds cardinal carolina chickadee carolina wren graduate school jupiter mars moon saturn scotch single malt tufted titmouse https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/6/weekly-critter-june-24-2016 Fri, 24 Jun 2016 18:20:34 GMT
weekly critter, June 16, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/6/weekly-critter-june-16-2016 Well, it's about time I got around to posting another critter.  I was going to do it earlier in the week but a contractor cut an underground 500 paired wire telephone cable.  That's a big cable.   Interesting thing is that this neighborhood is not supposed to have any buried cables.  Kind of makes you wonder.

 

I was hoping to have three Carolina wren photos for you this week, a nest with eggs, mama sitting on the eggs and finally the chicks.  I have the first two but the eggs haven't hatched yet.  Unfortunately, they're at about their limit for being viable.  We'll see.  The third photo is of a mushroom that popped up in a potted plant. 

 

No. I haven't been getting out much lately except to go to doctors.  Seems like each time I go the news get worse.  Maybe there's something to "ignorance is bliss."

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds carolina wren doctor doctors eggs mushroom nest wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/6/weekly-critter-june-16-2016 Thu, 16 Jun 2016 15:19:03 GMT
weekly critter, May 26, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/5/weekly-critter-may-26-2016 This is the second week I've managed to get the critter out on time.  I must be getting better; although, my leg still hurts and is black and blue.  

 

The observatory is coming along.  I have mounts attached to both piers.  One for solar viewing and the other for celestial viewing.   I spent Monday night at the observatory planning on viewing and photographing Mars and Saturn.  If you haven't looked at them grab your binoculars and head outside after 11p and take a look.  They're gorgeous.   However, like all well laid plans, this one went to $@^#.  My atlas mount, which has (almost) never let me down, didn't work properly.  I told it to look up and west and it decided it liked down and east better.  Yes Brian,  I can hear you laughing all the way out here.  Turns out that when I reset the hand controller to the factory settings, as per the manufacture's directions for a 'park' issue,  that the software was flashed to a version not compatible with the atlas mount.  WTH.   Not a big deal once I figured out what was wrong (about 3a laying in bed wide awake and angry)  but what I needed to re-flash the unit was at home. 

 

At least I got out and did something.  I've been going stir crazy not being able to do much of anything but I did pay the price on Tuesday. 

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is one I took last year at a solar outreach event.  The people at the Astronomical Society of The Pacific saw it and called to ask me if they could use my photo in their annual report.  Of course I said yes.  Last month they sent me a copy of their annual report and there was my photo on the front cover. Woohoo.  The second photo is of a red day lily which popped up in the yard.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomical society of the pacific astronomy atlas mount celestial day lily flower flowers lily mount observatory red ady lily solar https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/5/weekly-critter-may-26-2016 Thu, 26 May 2016 18:49:23 GMT
weekly critter, May 19, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/5/weekly-critter-may-19-2016 I'm finally getting around to sending out a weekly critter.  I had to have heart surgery to implant a defibrillator and to add insult to injury I tripped over the dog and went straight down on my knee.  It's been over a week and I'm still bruised from mid thigh to my heel.  

As you can imagine I haven't done much of anything but sit and read the last week or two.  At least I've made a nice dent in my backlog of books.

I have two photos for you today and yes they are almost a repeat of the last critter.  The first is of a sunspot taken the same day as the last critter's full disk image.  The second photo is another view of a columbine.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bruise columbine flower flowers heart knee solar sunspot telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/5/weekly-critter-may-19-2016 Thu, 19 May 2016 14:22:44 GMT
weekly critter, April 28, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/4/weekly-critter-april-28-2016 It's been a busy week getting things working around here.  I've finally traced all seven of the pier cables in the observatory and now know which end matches what.  The problem is that the cables are either long enough to reach the computer or long enough to reach the telescope mount on the pier but not both.  Go figure.  Other things which are now up and running include the boat (sort of), the chipper, the old lawn tractor and the pressure washer.  The power wagon isn't working but I'm about to loose that PIA anyway.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a somewhat boring image of the sun but it's my first image from the observatory.  I tried to image Jupiter but the results were marginal at best.  The dew was terrible that night.  About 2a the water was dripping off the telescope, the mount and me.  I actually had to wear a rain jacket and hood.  The second photo is of a beautiful columbine.  I may have to post more photos of this flower later.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy cables columbine flower flowers observatory pier solar sun telescope telescope mount https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/4/weekly-critter-april-28-2016 Thu, 28 Apr 2016 16:34:22 GMT
weekly critter, April 21, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/4/weekly-critter-april-21-2016 Everything went well for my sister and sister in law last week so Dan is a happy boy.  It's been a tough couple of months.

So, guess what I'm doing this weekend.  Looking for a lawn tractor.  Any one who knows me knows I hate grass and don't have any at our home.  Now I have an observatory which just happened to come with two acres of.....grass.  Yuck.  The last lawn tractor I bought was for my mother about 15 years ago.  Damn, have they gotten expensive.  I wonder how much roundup I'd need for two acres?

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a phoebe.  He was sitting on a branch down by the lake so he was over 100 feet away.  It's nice to have quality optics.  The second is an unusual hummingbird photo.  He was eating gnats.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds grass hummingbird lawn tractor observatory phoebe ruby throated hummingbird https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/4/weekly-critter-april-21-2016 Thu, 21 Apr 2016 14:59:26 GMT
weekly critter, April 14, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/4/weekly-critter-april-14-2016 Have you ever had one of  'those'  months where every time you answered the phone it was bad news.  This week my sister and my sister in law both found out they needed immediate surgery.  So, today they are both in a hospital getting cut-on.  Any good and healing thoughts would be appreciated.

Since I haven't picked up a camera in weeks I thought I would show two photos my father took in 1951-52.  What's amazing about the first photo is that my parents could actually walk up to (and on) the ruins.  Can't do that any more.  There is nothing significant about the second photo,  I just like it.  It was taken in Dessie, a city and woreda in Ethiopia.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/4/weekly-critter-april-14-2016 Thu, 14 Apr 2016 15:02:35 GMT
weekly critter, March 30, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter-march-30-2016 I decided to get the critter out a bit early this week since I missed last week.  Linda and I have had a lot of 'stuff' going on so we decided to cogitate a bit and went to the John C Campbell Folk School for the week.  I took a Scandinavian flat plane caricature carving class by Harley Refsal.  Talk about fun.  I have drawers full of carving tools and in this class I used just one knife.  Yes, I ended up bleeding at one point but not because of the knife.  I was holding the 'schoolmarm' carving and her book cut the %$#@ out of me.  I quickly rounded all the edges.  Wood can cut you!

 

Linda took a white line printing class which involved carving, embossing, painting and printing.  I'm not quite sure what all she really did but she had a good time.   We also got to see old friends and make some new ones, which was nice.

Also, in the news I'm now a bonafide nerd.  Friday, a week ago I bought an observatory.  And you thought I was sane.  It's a roll-off-roof design rather than a dome (which is a good thing), has two telescope piers and a fancy control system if I want to do automated astrophotography from home.  It has enough cables running through it that I'll probably never figure out what all they control.  Behind the black pier there are probably 25 cables coming through the floor.  Even with nothing hooked up the control system talks to me whenever I open the door or move the roof.  That's got to stop.  The telescope on the tripod will be mounted to one of the piers and my H-alpha telescope (for the sun) will be mounted to the other pier.  What you can't see below each pier is a 12 inch diameter concrete pier tied into a cubic yard (or more) concrete monolith.  Vibration should not be a problem.  Each pier is isolated from the rest of the building.

As to photos this week the first is one of the caricature's I carved and the next two are of my observatory.  The roof is off the observatory in the second photo and can roll back over the building when not in use.  Pretty cool.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy cables carving concrete control system flat plane carving harley refsal john c campbell folk school knife observatory telescope telescope pier white line printing https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter-march-30-2016 Wed, 30 Mar 2016 19:30:50 GMT
weekly critter, March 17, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter Spring in Georgia.  It was 87 here on Tuesday and will be in the upper 30's Sunday night.  Anyway, that's better than freezing weather.   The trees are sprouting their beautiful early spring green leaves, the flowers are blooming and a wren is building a nest in the wreath next to our front door.  Now all I need is time to enjoy it.  I think I'm going to grab a book and go sit on the deck and read.  The heck with everything else that needs 'doing'.  Maybe I'll become a man of tomorrow.  Ya mon, I'll get to it tomorrow.

I have two photos for you today.  The first, take by my father in 1954, is of a family in the Gondar woreda of Ethiopia.  The second is of a flower I had not seen before.  A silver dollar lenten rose.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds book ethiopia flower flowers gondar lenten rose nest read spring trees weather woreda https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter Thu, 17 Mar 2016 15:09:31 GMT
weekly critter, March 11, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter-march-11-2016 Looks like spring is here but I haven't been able to really enjoy it yet.  I've been fighting migraines, taxes and doctors all week.  Think there's a connection? 

Jupiter was at opposition on Tuesday night and I was all set up to take some photos.  The problem was that it was in the trees most of the night.  Hopefully, by next week I'll have that problem taken care of.  So, I got my lawn chair and binoculars and spent several hours looking at Jupiter, orion, the orion nebula, various constellations and a variety of other faint fuzzies.  The advantage of binoculars is that I can move to where the trees don't block all of my view.  It really was a beautiful night.  Clear, cool and no bugs.  I almost fell asleep just sitting there enjoying the night sky. 

 

Hope y'all aren't getting tired of birds.  I took these photos several weeks ago hoping one of the local red tail hawks would show up.  I know when one is around because all the song birds disappear.  The first is a pine siskin and the second is a cardinal.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds cardinal constellations doctor doctors hawk jupiter migraine nebula orion pine siskin red tailed hawk taxes https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter-march-11-2016 Fri, 11 Mar 2016 18:50:25 GMT
weekly critter, March 4, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter-march-4-2016 This has been a miserable week.  My sinuses have been so screwed up I've been afraid to drive most days.  At least that's my excuse for not going to the gym today.  Moving to Arizona is looking better and better.

I have two photos for you today.  Jerry, I know you haven't seen the first photo before.  It's the sucking part of the plecostomus catfish in our aquarium.  My second photo is of a anthurium.   Linda was so proud of herself when she came home with this.  It's actually much prettier than the photo.  For some reason the color red doesn't render very well when I resize and change the photo resolution to 72 for the email.  You can check a better rendition on my website, thomanstudio.com.  I now have over 10,000 hits on my web site.  Woohoo.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Arizonia anthurium aquarium birds catfish fish flower pain plecostomus sinus website https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/3/weekly-critter-march-4-2016 Fri, 04 Mar 2016 19:42:44 GMT
weekly critter, February 25, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-25-2016 Another week of rain and storms.  Fortunately, we didn't have any major damage but did lost power for several hours one night.  It's amazing how quiet the house was.  No electronic or appliance noise.  No fan or aquarium noise.  No noise at all.   It was nice.

I have two photos for you today.  The first, as I promised,  is of prominences on the limb of the sun.  I watched these for about an hour and saw one arm of the arch (prominence at the top) detach and start raining plasma back down onto the surface of the sun.  Really cool stuff.

The second photo is of my brother and his lovely new wife.  Remember what I said about a pirate wedding.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy pirate quiet rain solar solar photography solar prominences wedding https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-25-2016 Thu, 25 Feb 2016 15:48:22 GMT
weekly critter, February 20, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-20-2016 We had some beautiful weather this week and I actually got to view and photograph the sun on two days.  I should have a few sun photos for the critter as soon as I can remember how to process them.  I really should write this stuff down...naw, I can remember how to do it.  I also viewed the moon but didn't take any photos.  I was planning on viewing some deep sky objects but the moon was so bright I couldn't see anything else.  At least it wasn't cold.  Come on spring.

I have two photos for you today or should I say for my niece Ramona who commented on my photo from the February 2 critter and told me about how she loves crocus and had purple and white ones planted next to her driveway in Kansas.  Linda planted these and they are growing next to our driveway along with daffodils and several other flowering plants.  No, I don't remember their names.  That's Linda's job.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy crocus daffodil flower flowers moon niece solar photography sun https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-20-2016 Sat, 20 Feb 2016 18:27:29 GMT
weekly critter, February 12, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-12-2016 My brother got married last Friday on Marathon Key.  They had a pirate wedding.  The guy that married them looked, dressed and talked exactly like Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) from the  Pirates of the Caribbean movies (pictures to come later).  Everyone had a blast and If the weather had been nicer I'm sure most of us would have ended up in the pool and/or ocean.  During the week I think I ate my weight in stone crab claws and Linda ate her's in shrimp.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a key deer taken at the wildlife refuge on Pine key.  These guys are tiny, about as tall as a golden retriever and half the bulk.  Every time I managed to see one and grab my camera all I ended up getting was a nice photo of a deer butt.  This photo was the best I took that wasn't all butt.  The second photo is of a laughing gull taken at the beach on Key West.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds key deer key west keys laughing gull married ocean party pirate wedding pool shrimp stone crab claws https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-12-2016 Fri, 12 Feb 2016 22:05:49 GMT
weekly critter, February 2, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-2-2016 I thought that I would get the critter out early this week since I'm going to be involved with a wedding on Friday (and recovering Saturday). 

I do have a shameless plug for my upcoming photography class.   I'll be teaching at the John C Campbell Folk School the week of  May 29th.  The class titled "The World, Up Close & Personal"  is a nature photo class covering everything from macro to landscape.  Here's the link:

https://classes.folkschool.org/class_details.aspx?pk=18630

This class has been popular and we've always had a great time.  We'll explore the school property and gardens, visit state parks and find some waterfalls.  There are only two spots left in my class so if you're interested you need to sign up.


I have two photos for you today.  The first is (are) fungal conks.  Don...I hope I identified these correctly, if not let me know.  The second photo is of a crocus that is blooming next to our driveway. 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) crocus flower flowers fungal conks john c campbell folk school photography class wedding https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/2/weekly-critter-february-2-2016 Tue, 02 Feb 2016 16:37:36 GMT
weekly critter, January 30, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-30-2016 I know, I'm late again.  I think I'll have the change the name to 'critter' and forget the weekly.  We were without power most of Thursday and Friday all I did was run around and see doctors.  What fun.  The weather here is beautiful for this time of year.  It'll be in the mid 60's today and up to the 70's by mid week.

I have two photos for you today.  Both were taken on a warm day a couple of weeks ago.  The first is a cloudless sulphur butterfly.  I have no clue what he was doing out in January.  The second photo is of an amaryllis.  Linda didn't like the one I posted in the critter back in December.  She thought it looked 'ratty'.  So here's another one.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amaryllis cloudless sulphur flower flowers weather https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-30-2016 Sat, 30 Jan 2016 15:18:06 GMT
weekly critter, January 24, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-24-2016 It's been another one of those weeks I'd like to forget culminating with our old cat, salami, dying.   He adopted us over 16 years ago and was full grown then so we didn't really know how old he was.  Anyway...I'm sad.  He really was the nicest cat and even liked children.  I was amazed the day I saw him on my neighbor's dock with about ten young children and a few adults all jumping in the water and splashing each other.  He didn't mind getting wet but drew the line at swimming. 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a zygopetalum adelaide meadows orchid we saw at the State Botanical Garden in Athens GA and the second is bark from a paper bark maple backlit by the sun.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) athens georgia botanical cat children dock flower flowers garden" orchid paper bark maple sad state water https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-24-2016 Sun, 24 Jan 2016 19:25:22 GMT
weekly critter, January 14, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-14-2016 It's been another busy week that has just flown by.  I can't even remember what I did.  Just 'stuff' I guess.  I know I didn't even pick up my camera.  We're heading out to the the Deerlick Astronomy village again this afternoon to look at another property.  Linda's to the point of  'just make up your  %&#@  mind and buy something'.   Well, I would except that I'm so cheap I have to consider the purchase ad nauseum.   Maybe this property will be the one.

I have two photos today.  The first is of an unidentified butterfly or moth.  I think it's a moth but it was active during the day.  The second photo is of a nasty lady beetle which look like a nice ladybug but will bite the you-know-what out of you.  

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-14-2016 Fri, 15 Jan 2016 15:28:39 GMT
weekly critter, January 7, 2016 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-7-2016 I think I'm finally thawing out.  I spent early Wednesday morning (4a to 6:30a) finishing up observing the last few double stars to complete the Astronomical League's Double Star Program.  Damn, it was cold.  I need to move somewhere it never goes below 70 degrees.  In other astronomy news, I'm now a NASA Solar System Ambassador (SSA).   As a SSA I represent NASA as a volunteer when doing mission and astronomy outreach programs.

I have two photos for you today.  Actually, both photos are for my dear friend Jelene since she likes my bird and flower photos.  Tomorrow she leaves the world of the gainfully employed and enters the wonderful world of being retired.  Congratulations Jelene.  The first photo is of a carolina chickadee and the second is of a lady slipper orchid.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) NASA solar system ambassador astronomy astronomy outreach bird birds cold flower flowers nasa outreach retirement https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-january-7-2016 Thu, 07 Jan 2016 16:41:23 GMT
weekly critter, December 31, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-december-31-2015 Happy new year.

I have three photos for you today.  The first one is of my dock.  Can't you see it?  That's because it's underwater.  Yea, we've had lots of rain.  The second is of a honeybee and the third of a gardenia bud.

Y'all stay safe and have a wonderful 2016

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) dock flower flowers gardenia happy new year honeybee rain underwater https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2016/1/weekly-critter-december-31-2015 Fri, 01 Jan 2016 19:23:44 GMT
weekly critter, Decenber 24, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-decenber-24-2015 Merry Christmas.

Wow do you believe it's almost 2016.  Where did the year go?  Linda and I are celebrating that we're both still alive and kicking.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of the new dog bed we gave
Calley last weekend.  Guess who's claimed it.  The combined weight of the cats is 18 pounds.  Calley is 80 pounds.  Can you say 'wimp dog'.  Since it's Christmas I also have a seasonal flower photo for you.  An amaryllis.  Linda always seems to have these blooming in late December.

Have a safe holiday.

enjoy

Dan


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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bed cat cats christmas dog dog bed flower flowers holiday https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-decenber-24-2015 Thu, 24 Dec 2015 19:14:19 GMT
weekly critter, December 17, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-december-17-2015 We're having a nice rainy day.  The perfect weather for the critter.  I'm supposed to be doing an astronomy outreach event this evening but I don't think it's going to happen. 

I did spend several hours out and about with my camera yesterday during our mid 70's perfect day.   I was on the deck waiting for the red headed woodpecker which has been hanging around to show up for his portrait when I saw Lily, our siamese cat, down by the seawall.  I had been hearing some rustling over in the right side of the yard and figured it was her or a squirrel in the leaves.  The cat started up the walkway toward the house and about half way up she heard the rustling, got into a cat crouch and slunk off to investigate.   A minute later here comes this cat up the hill and back stairs at about 100 miles per hour.  If I hadn't been there I think she would have slammed into the door.  As it was she tried to claw her way onto my lap, under the camera and tripod.  OK, now she had my attention.  After I carefully pried her off of me and let her into the house I turned the camera and started to investigate.  It took me a while but I finally spied a great blue heron working the seawall.  I guess she'd never seen a bird that big before.  What a hoot.

I have three photos for you today, and in honor of my scaredy cat they're all birds.  The first is a head shot of the heron which is about all I saw of him.  The second is a bluebird which we don't often see in winter and the last is the red headed woodpecker which finally showed up way over in the neighbor's yard.

enjoy

Dan


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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds bluebird cat great blue heron rain red headed woodpecker scaredy cat seawall siamese https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-december-17-2015 Thu, 17 Dec 2015 18:42:42 GMT
weekly critter, December 11, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-december-11-2015 Linda and I are finally getting back to normal.  Neither of us has felt good this week and we're blaming it on Florida, I won't go into details. 

I installed a new pump in the hot tub and it seems to be working, surprise-surprise.  The transmission on the power wagon is next, then the bearings on the RV.  It never seems to end.  I walked outside this morning to find out what the dog was barking at (our neighbor, who she's know since she was a pup) and I heard a loud buzzing.  Searching out the source of the noise I found our front bushes (fatsia japonica) covered with bees, wasps, flies and a 'butterfly-moth'.  I haven't ID'ed it yet but it looks like a confused moth that's out during the day.  You've got to love Georgia, it's the middle of December, 75 degrees out and we have flowers blooming.  Remind me what I just said when I'm complaining about the weather in Febu-awful.

I have two photos today, both from the buzzing bush.  The first is a green bottle fly and the second is a
green kleptoparasite cuckoo wasp.  Both of these ID's are tentative.  If someone knows different let me know.  I'll have more photos from the buzzing bush next week.

enjoy

Dan

 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bee buzzing bush flower flowers fly hot top pump wasp weather https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-december-11-2015 Fri, 11 Dec 2015 22:11:42 GMT
weekly critter, December 6, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-december-6-2015 Linda's father passed last Saturday away and we've spent all week in Florida helping with the arrangements and emptying his apartment.  He had a nice funeral and "is in a better place." 

 

Consequently, I'm late with the critter again and haven't had the time to take any photos.  While looking through my collection to find something critter worthy I decided on some old photos from Ethiopia.

 

The first photo is of a hansom young man with his father and dinner in Gondar which is a city and separate woreda in Ethiopia.  Note the punky hairdo which is trendy today.  This photo was taken in 1954 (I was a ripe one year old).  The second photo, taken from a small plane, is of Tissisat falls.  It is also known as the Blue Nile falls and  Tis Abay in Amharic, meaning 'smoking water'.  This photo was also taken by my father in 1954.  Unfortunately, today the falls is barely a trickle of what you see here.  Don't you love progress.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) amharic blue nile blue nile falls boy death ethiopia funeral gondar tis abay tissisat falls woreda https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/12/weekly-critter-december-6-2015 Sun, 06 Dec 2015 21:54:19 GMT
weekly critter, November 26, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-26-2015 Happy Thanksgiving. 

 

I have two photos today.  The first is a foam flower and the second is a bumblebee on a chrysanthemum.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bumblebee flower flowers foam flower thanksgiving https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-26-2015 Thu, 26 Nov 2015 16:16:49 GMT
weekly critter, November 19, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-19-2015 It's been another busy week but I'm getting stuff done.  Now I just jinxed myself, everything that isn't broken will break.

 

I actually had time to turn a bowl yesterday.  I haven't done that in a while and my work showed it.  I just have to get back in practice.  Most of what I've been turning the last several years is hollow vessels.  Something else I've never done before is to make a branding iron.  A friend wanted me to make her a  'girlie'  "P" so she could brand her bread.  My welding technique leaves something to be desired but it worked and made a nice brand.

 

I have two photos for you today.  Since so many people liked the macro photos last week, I decided to show two more.  Ramona suggested that I not tell y'all what the photos are and make you guess.  So Ramona, what's your guess? 

 

They are macros of a peacock feather.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds branding iron feather hollow vessel peacock welding wood bowl wood turning https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-19-2015 Thu, 19 Nov 2015 15:29:27 GMT
weekly critter, November 12, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-12-2015 We finally had one nice day.  I was beginning to forget what the sun looked like.  Now it's cloudy and dreary again, sort of like febu-ugly. 

Have you ever had one of those days when everything you touched broke.  The xterra wouldn't start, my scroll saw sounded like the insides were falling out, the dehumidifier fan started squalling like a cat,  the HVAC needed another $200 capacitor and several other things that I don't or don't want to remember.  Put it on the list, I'll get to it some year, maybe.

I have two photos for you today.  The first one is of a small spider with a lady-bug.  Did you ever wonder what a spinneret looked like? Now you know.  I should have found this guy for halloween.  This was photographed at four times life-size.  The second photo is of some fungus growing on a rain-soaked rotten twig.  The twig was less than 1/4 inch, about 5 mm in diameter.  There are two types of fungus growing.  See the small orange blob.   What looks like spaghetti on the left are wood fibers.  This photo was seven times life-size.  Yes, I was having fun with my macro lens.

enjoy

Dan

 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) lady bug life-size macro spaghetti spider https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-12-2015 Thu, 12 Nov 2015 18:16:53 GMT
weekly critter, November 7, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-7-2015 I know the critter is late, which excuse do you want?   I think I spend more time keeping my computer working than I do using it for what it was intended.  The last problem was AVG took control of my network and internet access and decided I didn't really need the internet or email on my desktop but using them on the laptop was OK.  What fun.  Now I have another  'new best friend'  in Asia someplace.  

I was going to show a picture of the sun for all of us who haven't see it in forever but decided on two other photos to hopefully brighten you day.  The first is a geranium and the second is a cute little downy woodpecker.  Both of these photos were taken some time ago.  I haven't used my camera in over a week.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds computer downy flower flowers geranium rain woodpecker https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/11/weekly-critter-november-7-2015 Thu, 12 Nov 2015 18:11:20 GMT
weekly critter, October 29, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-29-2015 Halloween is almost here and it's the start of the holiday season.  Oh boy, here we go again.  At least the sun is trying to shine and it's warm out. 

 

I have two photos for you today.  Both are creepy-crawly's.  The first I found as I was getting out of my truck.  I almost stepped on them, yuck.  The second photo is of the business end of a house centipede.  Check out those spikes.  They're something to give you nightmares for halloween. 

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) centipede halloween holiday holiday season house centipede land snail nightmare spikes https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-29-2015 Thu, 29 Oct 2015 18:17:14 GMT
weekly critter, October 23, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-23-2015 I spent two nights at the Deerlick Astronomy Village this week.  It was clear, cold and wet, wet and more wet.  I was amazed at how much dew there was.  Everything was dripping by 9p, including me. By he time I went to bed at 7a I was cold, wet and miserable. I did manage to almost finish the Astronomical League's Double Star Program.  I have five more double stars to to resolve but will have to wait until next month when there is more separation between them and the sun.  Linda came for a visit on Wednesday.  We had lunch and went to look at some nearby property.  Nothing to interesting, it was mostly clear cut.  I don't think I was much fun after pulling an all-nighter.  However, I did manage to get everything dried out and ready for Wednesday night.  No, I did not pull another all-nighter.  I was in bed by 2a trying to get warm.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a gigantic solar prominence (flare).  There are three different processing versions of this photo on my website. Go to 'Photo Galleries', 'Astronomy', 'Sun' then 'H-alpha'. Check page 6, they're the last three photos.  Tell me which you like best.  This one is Linda's favorite.  She said it looked hotter.   I like the first one.  The second photo is of the moon.  I had to throw in at least one photo taken at deerlick.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) all-nighter astronomy astronomy league cold deerlick astronomy village dew double star double star program moon prominence solar astronomy star wet https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-23-2015 Fri, 23 Oct 2015 19:13:05 GMT
weekly critter, October 16, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-16-2015 It's been another busy week without much time for photography.  I'm going to have to change that.  I ordered parts to fix the hot tub pump but I had failed to closely inspect the motor shaft.  I just figured the pump needed a new seal and the motor shaft would need a light sanding and everything would be good to go.  Wrong.  The shaft was so corroded that no seal would ever work.  What really irritates me is that the motor was less than three years old.  Maybe it's time for a new tube.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a bumblebee I spotted while filling the bird feeders.  Soon it'll be cold and they'll be gone till spring.  The second photo shows a sure sign of fall.  This is my front yard and these sort of things are popping up all over the place.

 

enjoy

 

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bumblebee flower flowers. halloween hottub pump skull tombstone https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-16-2015 Sat, 17 Oct 2015 21:24:49 GMT
weekly critter, October 10, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-10-2015 We finally got to see the sun for a couple of days.  Now it's mostly cloudy.  We were supposed to do a solar astronomy outreach on Saturday at the Madison fall festival and chili cook-off  but it looks like 100% cloud cover.  I'm not sure exactly what Linda and I will be doing but we'll be there having fun.   Y'all need to stop by our tent and say hi, then try some of the amazing chilies and vote on your favorite.

 

One team manager that has been competing for years has brought his son every year.  I first met his son when I was carving pumpkins years ago.  He was skinny and about three feet tall.  Last year when he stopped by to say hello he was well over six feet tall and 200 (+) pounds.  Time sure flies by.  One minute they're children and the next they're adults.

 

I have three photos for you today.  The first is of some weird tomato's Linda grew called black tomato's.  They're supposed to be large but these are only about one inch in diameter.   I thought they were pretty cool looking.  The second two photos are of a toad lily.  The first is of a flower and a bud and the second is an extreme closeup.  Since these are one of my favorite flowers I have to include them in a critter at least once a year.


enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy black tomato chili cook-off flower flowers madison fall festival outreach solar solar astronomy toad lily tomato https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october-10-2015 Fri, 09 Oct 2015 19:29:34 GMT
weekly critter, October2, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october2-2015 Rain, rain and more rain.  Does anyone know what the sun looks like.  I think I'm starting to mold.  All summer I was griping about "where's the rain."  It found me.

 

Yesterday my brother showed up with some home made dry cured sausage and cheese.  Yum.  The sausage was outstanding.  Anyway, I was talking about how the weather had messed up our astronomy outreach programs and that we could do the inside part but were going to have to go back to do the solar observing when the weather finally cleared.  Since this involves several schools it amounts to 4 or 5 more days of outreach just to catch up and  I still have several woodworking commissions to complete.  He casually said "you don't sound like a retired person."  I thought about it a minute and suddenly 'things became clear'.  I've been saying for years that I needed to get a job so that I could have time to actually relax (think Walmart greeter...hi folks).  Being retired is way to busy.  What finally became clear is that the astronomy outreach is my new job and I have time to relax again.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a praying mantis and the second is an orbweaver.  I had hoped to get a better photo of the orbweaver since the wind was blowing like crazy the day I photographed her but its been raining every day since and she hasn't come back out.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy cheese dry cured sausage job orbweaver outreach praying mantis rain solar astronomy spider https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/10/weekly-critter-october2-2015 Fri, 02 Oct 2015 16:09:22 GMT
weekly critter, September 25, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/9/weekly-critter-september-25-2015 What another busy week.  I spent all day Tuesday completing an application to be a NASA Solar System Ambassador, and I'm still not finished.  Wednesday and Thursday were spent at a middle school teaching astronomy along with two other people from our club.  One part of the presentation was using a model of Saturn and walking around the classroom showing how the position of Saturn and its rings changed during its 30 year orbit.  As I started my circuit I said "wow, I get to do a Vanna White."   The three other people in the room over 50 started laughing.   At least Wednesday was outside with the solar telescopes. 

 

Speaking of astronomy, there is going to be a total lunar eclipse Sunday evening (here in Georgia) beginning just after 8p and ending at 1:22a.  The maximum eclipse will be at 10:47p.  Of course we're supposed to have 100% cloud cover Sunday and Monday.  Oh well, it's two days away and the weather may change.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is one of my shop guards.  It's a pine lizard that stands guard on a huge log in front of the shop and just dares a bug to come near.  I call it a pine lizard but it has several other names like eastern fence lizard.  Since everyone liked my last milky way photo I have another one for you. It was taken as clouds rolled in south west of the Jon Wood Astronomy Field at the Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center.  The clouds are bright because of the light pollution from south Atlanta.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) NASA Solar System Ambassador astronomy eclipse lizard lunar eclipse middle school outreach pine lizard solar outreach https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/9/weekly-critter-september-25-2015 Fri, 25 Sep 2015 15:46:16 GMT
weekly critter, September 17, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/9/weekly-critter-september-17-2015 Another week and more 'things' have broken.  It seems like I fix two things and three break.

 

Well I'm not going to worry about it this week.  It's my birthday this weekend, I'll be 62.  How did that happen?  At least I'm not as old as my brother in law.  He'll be 75 this weekend.  Happy birthday Jim.

 

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is the flower of the moon flower bud from last week.  It's amazing how beautiful these flowers are.  If you ever have the chance, go see one 'up close and personal'.  The second photo is another of the sun.  The dark spots comprise a sun spot group and there are two beautiful prominences off the limb.  Again, if you ever have the chance to view the sun through an H-alpha telescope do it.  The photos (or my processing) don't it justice.  Or, if you're in the area on a sunny day come on by and have a look.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy birthday flower flowers moon flower prominence solar solar flare solar photography sun sunspot sunspot group https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/9/weekly-critter-september-17-2015 Thu, 17 Sep 2015 17:08:10 GMT
weekly critter, September 10, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/9/weekly-critter-september-10-2015 I'm sure y'all know that one of the keys to a successful relationship is communication.  And that sometimes you have to re-learn that part of communication is actually listening to what your spouse says.  Linda has been looking for a rug for our foyer for months.  The one that was there (note I said was)  was a house warming gift from Karen and Dave, given to us over 25 years ago.  So I'm in the shop which has lousy phone reception and Linda calls.  She's found a rug and describes it to me.  I say great, how much.  She says (or I hear) $180.00.  Ouch, how can it cost that much?  She explains that it's wool and a bunch of other things I didn't hear.  So, I say fine, buy the rug.  A while later she arrives home with her prize and lays it out in the foyer.  It does look nice and I say, OK we can keep it but why did you have to find one that was so expensive.  $180.00 seems way to much for a foyer rug.  She looked at me with an expression of shock and said the rug wasn't $180.00 it was $480.00.  Aiiiieeeee.  Wa wa WHAT?

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a Great Egret catching a fish.  It's not a quality photo but the bird was almost 650 feet away.  The second photo is of moon flower buds.  The bud starts out looking like what is on the far left then turns into what looks like a Unicorn horn. Hows that for a description?  I was going to take a moon flower photo last night but the rain had beat it to pieces.  If you look close there is an ant at center-left.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds communication flower flowers great egret money moon flower rain rug spouse https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/9/weekly-critter-september-10-2015 Thu, 10 Sep 2015 15:13:33 GMT
weekly critter, August 28, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-28-2015 Where does the time go?  It's already Friday, again.  I did buy a new truck last week.  I know I violated my 'must keep a vehicle at least ten years rule'  but Linda justified it to me by  saying it was "the size truck we actually need".  It's a Tundra crewmax which has loads of room inside for all my astronomy gear and the dog.  It's four wheel drive so I can back the RV around in my driveway (I hope).  I was having to unhook the Tacoma from the RV on the flat part of the driveway and hook it up to the Xterra, which is 4 wheel drive,  so I could put it in the right spot.   The Xterra sort of redeems me for buying a new truck after only three years since it's 16 (or more) years old.  I'm going to have to take a hammer and put a ding in the truck bed so Linda will drive it, don't ask, it's a new vehicle thing.  My only problem is that once she drives it it'll be her truck.  She did that with my bronco (about 30 years ago).  She didn't want to drive it because it was so big.  It only took once at the wheel and she considered it her's.  What can I say, she likes big trucks.

 

I have two photos for you this week.  Since several people have asked to see some of my 'work in progress' carvings I finally managed to remember and take a photo.  Cute, isn't he.  Just to the left of the dust collector you can see part of a chair I'm fixing for a friend.  The second photo is an H-alpha spectrum photo of the sun taken a couple of days ago.  What's interesting about this photo is the 'fila-prom'.   A filament on the sun's disk when you're looking down on it appears as a dark colored line. When it reaches the limb of the sun you're seeing it edge-on and it's called a prominence or flare. Here I was able to capture the filament as it reached the limb so you see the dark line and the prominence.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy astrophotography carving dog filament greenman new truck prominence sun tundra work in progress https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-28-2015 Fri, 28 Aug 2015 16:18:25 GMT
weekly critter, August 20, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-20-2015 Linda and I had planned to take the R-pod and do a little camping this week.  I finally figured out what the 'R' in R-pod stands for...rain.  We had rain five out of six RV trips last year.  So we decided to stay home.  Though I'm not minding the rain, we sure need it.  I've been busy in the shop this week.  I'm carving another green man, fixing some chairs and starting to design/build a large china cabinet for a friend.

 

The birds have really been busy this summer.  Last week we saw a third or forth herd of babies.  Yes, they come through the yard and onto the deck like a herd of deer eating everything they can find.   I'm not sure how all the species manage to pop at the same time but we had American goldfinch, carolina wrens, tufted titmice, cardinals and a few others I can't remember.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is one of the bird babies.  I call this guy fuzz butt.  The second photo is, as promised, a shot of the milky way.  When I took this 30 second photo it was completely black out and I could not see the clouds until I started processing the images.  I had planned to stack ten 30 second photos but the clouds passing through made that impossible.  Maybe next time.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) R-pod RV american goldfinch astronomy bird birds camping cardinal carolina wren milky way rain tufted titmouse https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-20-2015 Thu, 20 Aug 2015 16:37:12 GMT
weekly critter, August 13, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-13-2015 It's been a busy week.  I'm not sure what I've accomplished but I've been busy.   The Charlie Elliott astronomy club hosted the Southeastern Photographic Society at the astronomy field last night.  We had over 50 people show up to photograph the milky way, the perseid meteor shower and try their hand at star trails.  I'd finally had enough and headed home about 12:30a.  A lot of people just brought blankets and chairs and just laid out under the stars.  It was fun in spite of the clouds and poor seeing conditions.  I thought about going back to the astronomy field again tonight but decided it would be a lot closer just to go up to the Buckhead Cemetery with a lounge chair and lay around ...now that's a thought.

 

Next week I should have photos of the milky way but this week it's all birds.  I have three photos today.  The first is an immature male ruby throated hummingbird and the second is a female summer tanager.  The males are bright red.   The last photo I call 'bath day'.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds cardinal hummingbird summer tanager", perseid, "perseid meteror shower", "charlie elliott astronomy". "buckhead cemetery", "milky way", photography https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-13-2015 Thu, 13 Aug 2015 19:13:41 GMT
weekly critter, August 7, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-7-2015 We finally had some rain.  About 20 minutes worth yesterday afternoon.  This is the first in about a month.  It looks like fall around here rather than the middle of the summer.  All of the leaves are brown and even the weeds are dying.   If I remember correctly it hit 102 degrees here on Tuesday. 

 

I have three photos for you today.  The first is a dendrobium and the second is a phalaenopsis, both of which are blooming in and stinking up our dining room.  Actually, I think it's just the dendrobium which smells so bad.  If it wasn't so hot outside they'd be on the porch.  They might end up there anyway. The third photo is of a hollow vessel I turned from a piece of crab apple given to me by a neighbor.  It's the first 'shop' art I've created in a while.  I really need to get back in my shop and finish up several projects.  I have all these great ideas for new things to try but no space left to make them.  I need another building, yea, that's the ticket.  Right after I build an observatory and a storage building.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) art astronomy crab apple dendrobium flower flowers heat observatory orchid phalaenopsis rain shop studio wood woodturning' https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/8/weekly-critter-august-7-2015 Fri, 07 Aug 2015 18:46:03 GMT
weekly critter, July 31, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-31-2015 Another week has gone by and it seems like we're just getting through the day.  But right now that's a good thing. 

 

We're still looking for some property to build an observatory.  Not sure if I need an observatory but I want one.  My biggest problem is trying to decide between an expensive lot at Deerlick astronomy village (DAV) which provides good security or 10 to 20 acres in Taliaferro or Hancock county (for the same price as a DAV lot) and have no security.  I'll probably get frustrated and not do either.

 

I have three photos for you today.  The first two photos are of the same critter which I think it is an emerald dragonfly.  If someone knows for sure let me know.  The second photo is a closeup of the first.  The third photo is of a prominence floating off the limb of the sun.   It's probably 60 times the size of the earth.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy deerlick astronomy village dragonfly earth hancock county observatory property solar solar prominence taliaferro county https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-31-2015 Fri, 31 Jul 2015 16:32:14 GMT
weekly critter, July 23, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-23-2015 Linda and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary on July 20.  We had a relaxed day doing as little as possible.  She gave me a Balvenie 21 year old Portwood single malt and I'm going to take her jewelry shopping in the next week or two.  The fact is, we might both have forgotten about it except our jeweler sent us a 'congratulations on your 30th wedding anniversary' card.  I'm sure that when I take Linda shopping the credit card will melt. 

In light of it being our 30th, I have two photos from our wedding day.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) 30th anniversary anniversary balvenie balvenie 21 year old jewelry scotch single malt wedding wedding day https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-23-2015 Thu, 23 Jul 2015 17:41:58 GMT
weekly critter, July 18, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-18-2015 I know, I'm late again but we've had some serious health issues to deal with this week.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a sunspot taken in 'white light' which means the entire spectrum of white or visible light is allowed to pass through the telescope before it hits the Herschel wedge which allows only about 5% of the visible light and no UV light through to the eyepiece.  The second photo is a B&W conversion of a photo taken at Scull Shoals a few years ago.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) black and white scull shoals solar solar photography sun https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-18-2015 Sat, 18 Jul 2015 16:43:59 GMT
weekly critter, July 10, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-jult-10-2015 I finally got all the pressure washing done and the front door refinished.  If it didn't move I pressure washed it.  Now on to the next project.  The living room will probably get a new floor.  It needs it bad.  The carpet is over twenty years old.  Since we have a big dog, Calley the golden retriever,  Linda vacuums almost every day.  I keep telling her to stop because if she gets all the dog hair up we'll be down to the plywood.  We're thinking about either bamboo or cork for the new floor and the best part is that I won't have to do it.

 

I've been doing a lot of solar observing and photography lately but I figured y'all were probably tired of sun pictures.  So today we're going to the birds.  The first photo is of a red shouldered hawk and the second is of a female bluebird.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bamboo bird birds blurbird cork floor hawk pressure washing red shouldred hawk solar solar observing solar phoyography https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-jult-10-2015 Fri, 10 Jul 2015 13:44:10 GMT
weekly critter, July 2, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-2-2015 It just never seems to end.  Finished the kitchen then on to re-finishing the front door and now we're into pressure washing. What fun.

 

We had wrens build a nest in the garage, again.  Normally we find the nest and remove it before they 'get down to business' but we missed it this time.  About 5 or 6 eggs hatched and all fledged.  Well, sort of.  There was one which fledged but refused to leave home.  He would go outside to get food but decided the garage was a good place to live and returned every night.  It took over a week before he finally left. 

 

I have two photos for you today.  We had a huge orbweaver build a web in the front between the bushes and a tree, right where we walk to get to the side of the house.  Linda walked through his web several times before he decided to move on.  I'm surprised she didn't end up with a monster spider sitting on the end of her nose.  The body on this thing was over a inch long.  I know a lot of you are going 'EWW' and I hear about it when I post a spider photo but they really are beautiful.

 

Welcome to all the new people receiving the 'weekly critter'.  If you don't want to receive the 'critter' just send me an email asking to be removed from the list.

 

Have a safe and fun 4th of July

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds july 4 orbweaver pressure wash refinish spider web wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/7/weekly-critter-july-2-2015 Thu, 02 Jul 2015 15:24:09 GMT
weekly critter, June 26, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter It sure is nice to have a kitchen and things back where they belong.  I can cook without spending twenty minutes looking for 'stuff'.  It's actually been a quiet week for me.  I've been working on the Astronomical League's Sunspotters observing award and I'm almost finished.  I've spent more time on this award than I did on most college courses.  Linda hasn't had such a good week.  First she hurt her knee, then pulled a back muscle and to add insult to injury she was stung by a red wasp.  I usually leave most wasps and their nests alone but now that one stung Linda I'm on the warpath.  So far I've destroyed over 10 nests and I'm looking for more.  This will be a wasp free zone.

 

Donnie came by yesterday to help me get my 'toys' with engines started.  Specifically,  the chipper, the power wagon and the pressure washer.  The chipper and wagon had been started in March but I hurt my shoulder trying to start them earlier in the week.  We took the carburetor off the chipper and the jet had a piece of dirt in it.  Replaced everything and it started fine.  Same with the wagon except the jet and surrounding area were coated with a thick layer of what looked like gritty wax.  Neither of us had ever seen anything like it.  Cleaned it up and it's running fine.  Next was the pressure washer.  It had been sitting well over a year.  I put gas in it and Donnie pulled the cord twice and it started.  Got to love those honda engines.  The other two were briggs&stratton.

 

I have two photos today.  Since I spent so much time over the last couple of months on the sunspotters award I just had to show you a large sunspot group and a flare.  The sunspot group is so large that using solar glasses you can see it with the naked eye.  The black part of the second photo is the solar disk.  I changed the color so the flare was more obvious.  This flare is massive and occupies the area of 60-70 earths.


enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomical league astronomical league observing award astrophotography chipper h-alpha power wagon pressure washer solar wasp white light https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter Fri, 26 Jun 2015 16:50:42 GMT
weekly critter, June 18, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter-june-18-2015 We've had another busy week.  I was hell bent to get the kitchen back in working order to cook an Ethiopian banquet for my visiting nephew, niece and their two boys.   That's a heck of a way to break in a new kitchen...two days of non-stop cooking.  At lest everyone enjoyed it and left 'fat and happy'.  Afterwords, Linda and I were to exhausted to even clean everything up.  I had a martini and went to bed.

 

Where did this weather come from.  We've had days of mid-upper 90's and it's not even July.  The humidity is so high that I've had to empty the shop dehumidifier twice each day, that's four gallons.   I did another solar outreach yesterday afternoon and by 5:30 I think my brain, at least what's left of it, was fried.  I don't think the other four volunteers were much better off.  We freeze during the winter nights and fry during the summer days.  Getting old ain't for wimps.

 

I know my photos this week will probably bore you to tears but now that the kitchen is 'mostly' finished I have to show you what it looks like.  By the way, have I recently said how much I dislike tile work. 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) butcher block ethiopian ethiopian food family granite humidity kitchen. solar outreach tile weather https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter-june-18-2015 Thu, 18 Jun 2015 19:14:11 GMT
weekly critter, June 12, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter-june-12-2015 Another week has blasted by.  Yes Dick you're right, they do go by faster and faster.  I think that's how Einstein figured out his space-time theory's.  As he got older and slowed down time seemed to speed up.  Remember when y'all were young?  A week seemed like forever.

Thanks Tim for correcting my snake identification.  It's a black rat rather than a black racer.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a calla lily which Linda had blooming on the back deck.  It was beautiful until the last storm hit.  The second photo is of a hollyhock.  The critter is late this week because I was waiting for it to bloom.  I gave up so you get the bud.  Next week I should have a full bloom.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) black calla lily flower flowers hollyhock racer" rat snake, einstein, time, snake https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter-june-12-2015 Fri, 12 Jun 2015 15:38:40 GMT
weekly critter, June 4, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter-june-4-2015 It's been another crazy week.  It seems every time I turn around something's trying to hurt me.  The last thing was on Monday, a red wasp stung me on the hand while I was opening the car door.  I whacked it off and it came back after me.  I whacked it again, then tried to stomp it and it attacked a third time.  This time I swatted it into the side of the car and it finally flew off.  I was thinking I had got the best of him then my hand started to swell...and swell some more.  The swelling was half way to my elbow before it stopped.   Most of the swelling was finally gone this  morning.  So instead of having a finished kitchen to brag about I'm just getting back to it today.

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is of a black rat snake that's been living in an unused birdhouse.  I've occasionally seen something on the birdhouse that I thought was a snake but kept convincing myself it was a branch.  After all, what self respecting snake lives in a birdhouse.  I was smoking some ribs the other day and watched him come out and just sort of hang around.  Crazy snake.  The other photo is of a 'upright betty fuchsia'. 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) birdhouse birds flower flowers rat snake red wasp snake upright betty fuchsia wasp. https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/6/weekly-critter-june-4-2015 Fri, 05 Jun 2015 19:53:38 GMT
weekly critter, May 28, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may-28-2015 I can't believe another week has gone by so quickly.  Linda and I are both starting to feel better.  Maybe most of the pollen or whatever got us is gone.   Linda went to Dalton Carpet and ordered the tile for our kitchen last week.  She said the people were nice and helpful.  Incidentally, the same tile was over $200.00 less expensive than the other place.

 

I did another solar outreach program at the Georgia Military College campus last Saturday.  It was part of an 'elementary school science day' for the community.  We had about 70 children come by.  The 'elementary school science day' counts as the final grade for one of the classes at the college.  I hope they all got an 'A'.  You wouldn't believe how much effort goes into an event like this unless you've done one.

 

I have two photos for you today.  I hope you're not sick of Cardinals.  This 'mom' and her mate have been regulars at the feeder taking seed back to their nest.  The second photo is of a young girl enjoying my solar telescope last Saturday.  She spent quite a bit of time at both telescopes asking questions.  I'm still amazed that more girls seem to be interested in astronomy than boys.

 

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy bird birds cardinal georgia military college outreach solar solar outreach tile https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may-28-2015 Thu, 28 May 2015 18:28:08 GMT
weekly critter. May 21, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may-21-2015 I haven't done much in the way of photography (or anything else) this week because my allergies are still giving me fits. So I take allergy drugs and end up feeling like a zombie.  Watch out Ramona and Tom,  Arizona is looking better and better. 

 

I thought the kitchen would be done this week but it isn't.  Linda went to 'Bella Maria' in Greensboro to order the $750.00 worth of tile (based on the prices they gave us).  By the time they got through with all their 'add-on' charges the price was $900.00.  Then they added another $50.00.  Linda asked what that was for and they said shipping.  Since they don't keep an inventory they charge everyone an extra $50.00 for shipping.  By that time Linda had had enough and told them they could keep their tile.  I guess their business must be doing great because they didn't even care that she walked out the door.

 

Speaking of money, I saw a used 1200mm f5.6 Canon lens for sale at B&H Camera.  I left the webpage up and told Linda there was a nice wildlife lens displayed that she could buy me. She went and looked and came back into the kitchen sort of gasping for air.  The lens cost $180,000.00.  Yes, that's the correct amount.  And you think your hobby is expensive.  Actually, I saw a photo of that lens mounted on a tripod several years ago.  It dwarfed the six foot model standing next to it.  Nothing like 'grab and go'.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of Celosia. It's a beautiful flower that for some reason is difficult to photograph and get the colors correct.  The second is of my red bellied woodpecker.   I worried about her coming back this year because we had to take down the tree she used for her nest.  I guess she found another one.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) allergy arizona bird birds celosia flower flowers kitchen lens red bellied woodpecker tile https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may-21-2015 Thu, 21 May 2015 17:59:44 GMT
weekly critter, May 15, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may-15-2015 The rest of the counter top is in and now the only thing left is to tile the back-splash and fix the floor.  Linda finally found a marble tile she likes for the back-splash so the hard part is done.

 

I did another solar astronomy outreach last Saturday at the Charles Elliott wildlife center.  It was called JAKES Day (Juniors Acquiring Knowledge, Ethics and Sportsmanship).  I think around 1000 people showed up and about half of them came by to look at the sun.  It was busy but I still had time for a few hot dogs at lunch.  Speaking of hot dogs, I really need to get back into the kitchen and make some sausage.  I'm out of everything and am having sausage withdrawal.

 

I have two photos for you today.  Last week was for the redbird this week is for the bluebirds.  Theses are the proud mom and pop feeding their squawking babies some nice juicy bugs.

 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy back-splash bird birds bluebird cardinal countertop floor hotdog kitchen marble sausage tile https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may-15-2015 Thu, 14 May 2015 16:20:17 GMT
weekly critter, May7, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may7-2015 We've been having beautiful spring weather the last few days.  It's even been clear enough that I could use the telescope. 

 

I took the RV to the Deerlick astronomy village Tuesday for a night of observing.  I got there late afternoon and set up the RV.  Everything was going perfect until I started to set up the telescope for some solar observing.  I set up the tripod and Celestron mount, attached the telescope, plugged it in and turned it on.  Nothing happened, I had a dead mount...sound familiar.  After about a hour of trying to figure out what was wrong I decided to call it a day have a beer (or two).  As I was starting to put stuff away I remembered that the power cord had a fuse in it.  Sure enough, it had blown.  So here I am in the middle of nowhere without a fuse.  Well, like any good redneck I got some aluminum foil from the RV and bypassed the fuse.  Wonderful, now everything worked.  It was to late for solar observing so I decided to make some dinner and read a book. 

 

About 9:30p I went out and turned everything on.  It actually worked.  I aligned the scope with no problems (which is amazing)  and started observing.  The views were beautiful.  I was seeing asterisms, nebulas and double stars which I never would have been able to do from home.  My primary goal for the night was to observe the moon and work on the Astronomical League's Lunar 2 program.   However, the moon wouldn't be where I could see it until about 11p.  Guess what.  By 10:45p it had clouded up.  I gave up and went to bed about 2a.

 

I have three photos for you today, titled  'everyone loves a birdbath'.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) asterism astronomy beer bird birdbath birds cardinal cat moon nebula pine siskin solar telescope telescope telescope mount https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/5/weekly-critter-may7-2015 Thu, 07 May 2015 17:09:06 GMT
weekly critter, April 30, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-30-2015 Another week, another kitchen story.  It turns out that to install the granite and include a nice curve in the corner that the existing counter would have to be cut back four inches.  Cutting the granite in the house is not as easy as it might sound, not to mention extremely dusty and there was no way I would let them remove the granite (and sink) and take it back to the shop for cutting.  Donnie and I (mostly Donnie) spent all day Friday and a few hours on Saturday installing the plumbing for the sink.  We had to deal with connections for three sinks, a disposal and a dishwasher...what a job.  So, what else could I do to get the four inches?  Well, I moved the entire counter four inches into the dining room.  It just never ends.

Madison Fest was a washout.  It rained the entire day.  That's the first time I can remember an event being canceled.

I have three photos for you today.  The first is a brown thrasher.  This is the first photo I've taken of a thrasher and only the second time I've ever seen one here.  The second photo is a full disk image of the sun and the third is of a floating prominence off the limb of the sun.  If you look close you can see three tendrils attaching the prominence to the sun.  To give you a sense of scale the earth would be about the size of one of the three dark sunspots in the center of the full disk image.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds brown thrasher', astronomy, sun, prominence, kitchen, sink, plumbing, granite rain https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-30-2015 Thu, 30 Apr 2015 15:15:27 GMT
weekly critter, April 23, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-23-2015 We're still working on the kitchen.  It should be functional again by tomorrow... finally. The spigot we've been waiting on is supposed to be in today.  Linda decided that she liked the granite enough that she wants it on the counter between the kitchen and dining room.  Yes, that's the counter I just built an alternating oak and walnut strip butcher block top for.  Anyone want to buy a two foot by seven foot counter top, cheap.

Linda and I will be doing a photo booth at Madison Fest again this Saturday.  If you're in town or are just looking for something to do come by and enjoy the festivities.

I have three photos for you today.  They're not what I was planning for the critter this week but when the Luna moth landed by the back door I just couldn't resist.  The third shot is of the 'eyelet' on the moths wing.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Madison fest counter top festival granite kitchen luna moth moth photo booth https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-23-2015 Thu, 23 Apr 2015 18:16:19 GMT
weekly critter, April 16, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-16-2015 What crazy weather.  It was cold this morning.  A few days ago the AC was running.

We're getting closer to completing the kitchen.  The granite counter top has been ordered along with a new sink and spigot.  The only thing left after the counter top has been installed will be to install the tile back-splash.  I knew the granite was expensive but the sink and spigot about sent me into cardiac arrest.  Ouch, they're expensive.   To replace the sink with one like we currently have (it's 28 years old) would cost about $2000.00.

 

I can't wait until the kitchen is back together.  Besides the obvious reasons, I'm out of sausage.

 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of Amicalola falls which I took last August.  I just needed a waterfall photo to help get me through this %$@#& weather.  The second photo is of a Cardinal's nest in a rose bush containing three eggs.  It's right above where Calley (the golden retriever) likes to sleep during the day.  Talk about a built in security system.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds cardinal granite kitchen rain sink spigot waterfall weather https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-16-2015 Sun, 19 Apr 2015 13:05:18 GMT
weekly critter, April 9, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-9-2015 It's critter time again.  I finally got over my sinus infection and feel somewhat human.  Now I'm another week behind with what I need to do.

 

I did buy another telescope mount.  I've been looking for one that's a grab and go and is capable of handling my astronomical telescopes.  The last one I bought works great for my solar telescope but is not heavy duty enough for my other telescopes and my big mount is just to heavy to be moving around.  It was designed to be mounted and left in one place. 

 

Anyway, after 17 years I decided to buy another Celestron product.  Brian - I can hear you laughing all the way out here.  You'll be laughing harder when you read the 'rest of the story'.  The box the mount arrived in looked like it had been run over by a bulldozer.  I almost rejected it but figured I'd check it out since I could always return it.  Everything seemed OK when I unpacked it so I assembled it in my living room and cranked it up.  I entered the date and time and began the alignment.  It seemed to point the correct direction in right ascension but it just spun 'around and around' in declination.  Wonderful.  I turned everything off and tried again.  Same result.  I tried a third time bypassing the alignment and having it sync to the sun.  Everything worked.  Even when I hooked it up for computer control.  It slewed exactly where it was supposed to.  I turned everything off and tried it again.  It worked even with a two star alignment.  I let it track for several hours before I shut it down. 

 

The next day I was about to take it outside for some solar observing but something said check it again.  Well, it was dead.  Yes, another dead mount from Celestron.   Fortunately,  I had been reading reviews of the mount and knew what the problem was, the hand controller needed to be re-flashed.  Not a serious problem but Celestron doesn't supply the cable needed to hook it to the computer (yes, I have one).   Now I get to call Celestron and tell them I'm going to return their expensive mount because they didn't include a cable which costs them a couple of dollars.  Sometimes life is good.

 

I have three photos for you today.  The first photo is of me taking a photo of a woodland hyacinth.  And I wonder why my back hurts.  Yes, the camera is upside down on the tripod and I'm trying not to lay on the wet ground while controlling two cameras.  The Second photo is of the woodland hyacinth.  It's somewhat out of focus because the wind was blowing like crazy.  The third photo is a double exposure of a viola.  The first exposure was in focus and the second exposure was slightly out of focus which produces a sharp flower with a halo around it.  What do you think?

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy celestron. dead celestron mount double exposure flower flowers hyacinth mount solar telescope telescope tripod viola https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-9-2015 Thu, 09 Apr 2015 18:38:58 GMT
weekly critter, April 3, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-3-2015 Well, it's April already.  Where does the time go.   Everything here has turned a yellow-green...pollen.  There is so much on the deck it's slick.  I almost busted my butt going out to feed the birds.

I've seen several ruby throated hummingbird in the past week.  It's looking like it'll be a good year for the little guys.

I did another astronomy outreach this past Saturday.   This time it was for Kate's Kids and was held at Panola State Park.  We had about 75 children and teenagers ranging in age from 9 to 16.  Once again it seemed like the girls were more interested in astronomy than the boys.  Interesting.

I'm back working on the kitchen.  The corner counter top and back wall have been ripped out and the counter top replaced with an oak and walnut butcher block.  Saturday a friend is coming over to help rip out the rest of the counters and wall around the sink and stove.  Those counter tops were to be granite, which we had already picked out,  but I think Linda's changed her mind again.  She wants something with more green in it. It'll get done one of these years.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is an assassin bug which I thought was rather cool looking and the second is a Carolina chickadee.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) assassin bug astronomy astronomy outreach bird birds butcher block carolina chickadee counter top granite hummingbird kitchen outreach ruby throated hummingbird wall https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/4/weekly-critter-april-3-2015 Fri, 03 Apr 2015 15:02:14 GMT
weekly critter, March 26, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-26-2015 I haven't been playing with the camera much this week.  I've been to busy with bad sinuses and migraines.  Welcome to Georgia in the spring.  One good thing that happened is that I saw our first of the season ruby throated hummingbird.

I received my Hydrogen Alpha Solar Observing Program certificate and pin from the Astronomical League at our last Charles Elliott Astronomy Club meeting.  I had been working on it since last October.  Also, the telescope loan program at our local library is coming together.  The first telescope has been ordered and should be here in early April.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a hyacinth bud.  To me the buds look like they have mouths ready to say 'feed me' like in the movie Little Shop of Horrors.  The second photo is of wire screen with algae growing on it.  I thought it looked interesting.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomical league buds charles elliott astronomy club flower flowers hyacinth hydrogen alpha library library telescope program little shop of horrors solar solar observing https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-26-2015 Thu, 26 Mar 2015 16:59:25 GMT
weekly critter, March 19,2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-19-2015 It's cold and raining, again. At least we had a few beautiful shorts and t-shirt days over the weekend. I had one of the best observing days and nights Monday that I've ever had. Everything worked, the sky was clear, there were no mosquitoes and it was pleasantly cool. I was out till about 2am. I managed some nice solar photos during the day and astronomical photos that night. What fun. I was planning on fishing today but as I said it's cold any raining. If it was about 25 degrees warmer I would have gone anyway. My two best days fishing on Lake Oconee were when the weather was warm and lightly raining. Just to get on my soap box for a minute...Please make sure you have a will, a living will, a financial power of attorney, a medical power of attorney (POA) and that someone is officially recognized by the SSA and Medicare as a legal delegate. They will not accept a POA. If you are incapacitated or die everything can go to hell in a hurry for you and your family. OK, I'm off the soapbox. I have three photos for you today. The first is a bug of some sort which was just over an inch long. I haven't been able to ID it yet so if you know what it is please let me know. I think it's some kind of beetle. The second is of the bugs foot. I just thought it looked kind of cool. It has both suckers and claws. The third photo is of Jupiter and three of it's moons. Finally, I made a decent photo of a planet. Now I need to buy a filter wheel and red, blue, green and luminance filters so I can make a color image. It'll be a while. enjoy Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) SSA astronomy astrophotography bug filters financial power of attorney fishing jupiter lake oconee living will medical power of attorney medicare rain raining solar astronomy solar photography will https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-19-2015 Thu, 19 Mar 2015 17:22:22 GMT
weekly critter, March 12, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-12-2015 I think it's finally spring...woohoo.   That said, it'll probably be in the 20's next week.   I've see lots of fishermen out on the lake since the weather turned warm and next week I plan to join them.  There's nothing like a cooler emptied of beer and filled with crappie.  I know you don't believe me but I am going to fish this year.

For all of you who imbibe, Linda bought me a 19 year old Glenfiddich special release called Age of Discovery.  All I can say is WOW.  I like it as much as the Glenfiddich Cask of Dreams.

I have three photos for you today.  The first is a camellia.  All of the red of the flowers are gone but I did find a couple white ones that were still nice.  The second and third are of hyacinth.  Yes, this week I had to go out and crawl around on the ground to get these.  No more special deliveries. There's also bloodroot blooming on the hill but about the time I headed out to photograph them it stared to rain. I did see some carpenter bees on the hyacinth but was not able to get any quality photos of them.  They were very uncooperative.  I guess they know that I usually just kill them.  I hate them eating my house and shop every spring. 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bee bloodroot carpenter bee crappie fish fishing flower flowers. glenfiddich hyacinth rain single malt spring https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-12-2015 Thu, 12 Mar 2015 16:49:54 GMT
weekly critter, March 5,2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-5-2015 What crazy weather.  It was 79 here yesterday and is supposed to be below freezing tonight with a black ice alert.  It's no wonder my sinuses are going crazy. 

I'm working with my local library to get a Library Telescope Program up and running.  Hope it all works out.  I would have loved to be able to check out a telescope from a library when I was a child.  Heck, it might even get some adults hooked.  If it works in Morgan County we might try to expand it to the rest of the Uncle Remus regional Library system

 

Talking about telescopes I've completed the Astronomy League's Hydrogen-Alpha Solar Observing Program and their basic Astronomy Outreach Program.   I'm also currently working on the lunar program.  It has me about pulling my hair out because there are certain required items that can only be viewed one or two nights a month.  For the past several months those nights have been cloudy.  Anyway, it's lots of fun and keeping me busy.

As I promised last week I have some daffodil photos for you today.  Linda cut these and brought them inside so I wouldn't have to be laying on the wet ground.  I guess I must have done something right to receive that kind of attention.  I'm not sure I like the second photo.  It's difficult to tell where the flowers end and the background begins.  What do you think?

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy league daffodil flower flowers hydrogen-aplha ice library library telescope program outreach rain solar solar observing telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/3/weekly-critter-march-5-2015 Thu, 05 Mar 2015 21:54:05 GMT
weekly critter, February 21, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/2/weekly-critter-february-21-2015 We just got back from teaching a photography class at the John C Campbell Folk School, so this week I have an excuse for being late with the critter.   My class was full with seven energetic students ready to photograph nature.  Unfortunately,  the weather did not cooperate.  It was cold and rained most of Monday and Tuesday then turned very-very cold with snow, sleet and ice.  The only clear day was Thursday but the temperature stayed below 10 degrees.  Wednesday's temperature wasn't much better.  However, we still had lots of fun photographing the beautiful campus.

I have two photos for you today, both taken at JCCFS.  The first is looking across the field behind the photography studio and the second is of a tree I was standing under when the sun broke through the clouds for a few seconds.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) C Campbell Folk JCCFS John School" ice photography photography class rain snow student students https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/2/weekly-critter-february-21-2015 Sat, 21 Feb 2015 16:41:31 GMT
weekly critter, February 13, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/2/weekly-critter-february-13-2015 I've just about have all my commissions complete and out of my shop.  Whew.  I knew there was a problem with my dust collection system and I'd traced it down to the cyclone part of the system.  So, since I'm busy getting ready for my photography class at the Folk School I should have just locked the shop door and worried about it when I got back.  But no,  I have to fix it now.  I knew it would be a mess so I had a big fan at the back door next to the cyclone sucking air out, two shop vac's in the closet with the dust collector, the air cleaner going and me at the front door with a leaf blower.  I was ready.  I had removed the collection bin and filter from the cyclone so it would blow the 'problem' out.  I turned the system on for about three seconds and the problem was gone.  Unfortunately, it now filled my shop.  If someone had seen the back door I'm sure they would have thought the building was on fire.  All the machine noise and the smoke detectors were making a heck of a racket.   The dust collector now works fine but my shop is a disaster.  I'll worry about it after my class.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of the sunrise this morning.  Since most of you who know me know I don't get up that early so I have to admit that Linda took the photo.  I think she did a great job.  What do you think?  The second photo is of the sun taken last Sunday.  The long dark line is a filament (a huge filament) which is an area of high magnetic activity.  It's dark because it's slightly cooler than the surrounding area. If this filament was seen on the limb of the sun it would extend 100,000 + miles into space and be called a prominence.   The rest of the disk you're seeing is the zone between the corona and chromosphere. 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) chromosphere corona dust dust collector filament prominence sun sunrise workshop https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/2/weekly-critter-february-13-2015 Fri, 13 Feb 2015 20:53:29 GMT
weekly critter, February 5, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/2/weekly-critter-february-5-2015 I survived the astronomy outreach program we did at a middle school in Covington last Friday night.  The teachers had the event very well organized.  Five of us set up telescopes outside to view the moon, Jupiter, Orion nebula and comet Lovejoy.    Every 30 minutes a new group of about 20 students (all 4th graders) showed up.  We divided them into five groups and rotated them to each telescope.  This went on until 10 o'clock.  I had forgotten how much energy a 10 year old has.   I was freezing to death and just wanted to be home in front of the warm fire and these children were bouncing around like it was the middle of a warm day.  All that energy wasted on the youth.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a pine siskin grabbing a sunflower seed and the second is of a nearby pond.  The sun was just going down which created the dramatic blue sky and the golden color of the trees.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy astronomy outreach bird birds children comet comet lovejoy jupiter middle school moon orion orion nebula pine siskin pond school sun https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/2/weekly-critter-february-5-2015 Thu, 05 Feb 2015 15:33:03 GMT
weekly critter, January 30, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-30-2015 It's been another busy week but I've about finished all my furniture projects.  The only item left to make is a dresser.  I think I've built more furniture in the last two months than I have in the last two years.  Of course, now I'll have to get back to working on the kitchen.

Our astronomy club has another outreach program at the Hightower Trail Elementary school in Conyers (Ga) tonight.   It should be a good night for observing but I know I'm going to freeze to death. 

I did get out for a few hours to photograph the herd of pine siskins that have been eating me out of house and home for the last two weeks but not five minutes after I had set up the hawks came screeching through the trees.  Of course all the birds left.  We've been hearing and occasionally seeing the hawks for about two months now.  I know they're nesting someplace nearby but I haven't figured out where, yet.  Anyway, the siskins didn't return but a couple of house finches and a beautiful female cardinal did.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astronomy astronomy club astronomy outreach bird birds cardinal dresser furniture house finch woodworking https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-30-2015 Fri, 30 Jan 2015 15:17:48 GMT
weekly critter, January 23, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-23-2015 We've had some beautiful weather the last few days, mid 60's and sunny.  Almost like spring.  Today it's in the 40's and raining.  The nice weather did allow me to open up the shop while I finished (almost) a big book case project.  Yes Marquita,  I'm almost done.  By the time I finished in the shop yesterday I was to worn out for the critter. 

An interesting note about the food we eat.  I cooked a turkey before Christmas and one of my favorite food items is a turkey sandwich on white bread.  Linda hates white bread and is usually trying to buy something healthy which generally tastes like cardboard.  Her compromise  was to buy pepperidge farm hearty white.  As usual it tasted like cardboard and after I had one sandwich the remaining bread was left on the counter to be thrown away after it turned into a new life form (Linda doesn't throw anything away).  Well,  it was just thrown out.  After a month it still hadn't dried out or molded.  Amazing and scary.

Since I've been in the shop nonstop Linda came home with an orchid for me.  I was puzzled and asked "why."   She said I hadn't been photographing anything and needed something for the critter.  OK.  So today I have two photos of   'my'  orchid.  It's a mini phalaenopsis.   I spent a good bit of Tuesday and Wednesday nights on the driveway with the telescope trying to get photos of the comet and Jupiter.  While I had some beautiful views of both I failed to take a single acceptable photo.  Some day I'll figure it all out.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bread flower flowers food mold phalaenopsis turkey turkey sandwich https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-23-2015 Sun, 25 Jan 2015 18:08:26 GMT
weekly critter, January 15, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-15-2015 Another week has already zipped by and it's time for the critter.  Not that the weather has cooperated nor any time been available for photography but that's the way it goes.  Thirty's and rain.  Hope your weather is better than ours.  Neither Linda or I have felt worth a darn this week but we keep plodding along.  If you happen to see Linda around town wish her a happy birthday.

She's taking a stained glass class at the John C Campbell Folk School (JCCFS) for her birthday.  Speaking about the Folk School, I'll be teaching a photography class there during the week of February 15.  There are still a few spots open if you're interested.  The class should be lots of fun.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is bumble bee on a flower taken at the JCCFS.  I think Linda told me it was a coneflower but don't hold me to it.  Hopefully, it'll make you think of spring.  The second is of a red-bellied woodpecker I took this a couple of years ago.  It's surprising (to me) to see the difference in the quality of my photos between a few years ago and what I can do now.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) JCCFS bird birds birthday class flower flowers john C Campbell Folk School photography class rain stained glass https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-15-2015 Thu, 15 Jan 2015 20:14:46 GMT
weekly critter, January 8, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-8-2015 We're just a week into the new year and it's gotten cold.  Brutally cold for this part of the country (15 degrees).  But we're inside sitting in the living room with one dog that wants to be a cat, one cat that thinks she's a dog and one normal cat, assuming that any cat can be considered normal, all jockeying for the perfect spot in front of a blazing fire.   I'm not moving until the temperature reaches at least 70.

 

Thanks Linda G for pointing out that the bird last week was a pine warbler not a yellow-rumped warbler.  My first photo today is of a yellow-rumped warbler.

Since it's so cold out I thought I'd show you two photos of the sun which I took on Tuesday (when it was warmer).  The first shows sunspots 2253 on the right (west) and 2255 on the left (east).  Yes, it's bass-ackwards.  I'm not sure why the astronomy community presents solar photos like this but north is up and west is to the right.  The second photo shows a couple nice prominences.  Hopefully, someday I'll get good a taking these 'photos'.  Then again, I might decide astrophotography is to much of a pain and go back to visual observing.  Each of these photographs is a stack of 1200 to 1400 photos captured with firecapture and processed in registax, photoshop and finally lightroom.   That translates to 30 seconds of photography followed by three or fours hours of sitting and staring at a computer monitor.  That's not my idea of a good time.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astrophotography bird birds cat cold dog fire warbler yellow-rumped warbler https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-8-2015 Fri, 09 Jan 2015 15:29:06 GMT
weekly critter, January 2, 2015 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-2-2015 Happy new year.  Do you believe it's already 2015.

I didn't think I was going to get the critter out this week.  Our phone line went dead last Sunday and of course the internet and email followed close behind.  Wonderful att finally managed to get out here and 'fix' it Wednesday evening but the service is still spotty.  Linda's been back on the phone this morning chewing some att butt.  Personally, I don't think they're worth the aggravation. Every time she calls att using the cell phone they complain that the signal is breaking up and they have a hard time understanding her.   In her best 'Gracie Allen'  she informs them that she's using att and their coverage is severely lacking.  They quickly drop the subject. 

Ah, what a way to start the new year.

 

Linda and I did have the family and friends over last Saturday to celebrate Christmas and we fixed an Ethiopian banquet.  It took over two days to cook everything but it was worth every tasty bite.  We had sambusa as an appetizer, injera (bread), yebeg wat (lamb stew), duro wat (chicken stew), two different beef dishes (one hot, one mild), a mild pork dish, home made ricotta, several vegetable dishes including lentils, chickpeas, greens, tomatoes, potatoes and a few other things I can't remember.  If you ever get the opportunity I suggest trying Ethiopian food.



We finally had a sunny day yesterday so I used the opportunity to photograph a few of our resident birds.  The first is a carolina chickadee, the second is a tufted titmouse and the last is a pine warbler.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds carolina chickadee ethiopia ethiopian food food new year phone pine warbler tufted titmouse wat yellow-rumped warbler https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2015/1/weekly-critter-january-2-2015 Fri, 02 Jan 2015 15:43:13 GMT
weekly critter, December 24, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-24-2014 Merry Christmas and a Happy new year to everyone.  I'm sitting here smelling a turkey roasting in the oven wishing I'd started it an hour earlier.  I can't wait to dive in, eat a pound or two of turkey and fall asleep fat and happy to awake Christmas morning.  I have a few cool toys under the tree, I know because I bought them.  Not that Linda doesn't spoil me but these were inexpensive and will make wonderful cat and dog torture devices.  If they survive long enough I'll have a photo next critter.

Since everyone seemed to enjoy last weeks orchid I two photos of Linda's phalenopsis which opened this week.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) christmas flower flowers new year, turkey, gifts, food, phalaenopsis, dog, cat https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-24-2014 Wed, 24 Dec 2014 22:11:23 GMT
weekly critter, December 18, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-18-2014 Only one week left until Christmas.  Are you ready?  I am.  Linda bought herself some jewelry so I'm good to go.  We even have all our cards mailed.  The only thing left is to make cookies.  So much for the diet.  Calories don't count on holidays, right.  It's going to be a nice quiet Christmas day for us.  We're planning on doing as little as possible.  If we get motivated we might actually do the 'Christmas bird count' on Christmas day.

My February 15th class at the John C Campbell Folk School (JCCFS) is filling up fast.  I think there are only two spots left.  The class should be lots of fun and I'm really looking forward to teaching.  Speaking of fun, my first photo today is of Linda and her classmates at the 'commencement ceremony' for the Pam East metal clay class at the JCCFS last August...Wow.  There's never a dull moment in one of Pam's classes.

One of Linda's orchids decided to pop this week so I thought a couple of flower photos would brighten everyone's day.  The orchid is a Orchidaceae Oncidium cebolleta.  Before I forget, last weeks house caterpillar is actually a house centipede. 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) centipede flower flowers john c campbell folk school metal clay orchid photography class https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-18-2014 Thu, 18 Dec 2014 16:07:33 GMT
weekly critter, December 12, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-12-2014 It's critter time again.  I can't believe how fast the weeks go by.

We're looking at some property in Taliaferro county.  Bet you can't pronounce the name properly, or should I say pronounce the name in 'Georgia speak'.  It's pronounced Tall-a-ver.  Actually, it's a British pronunciation according to the locals.  So, the $64 question is. why would we want 40 acres in the middle of nowhere?  I'll let you know when we figure it out.

I was hoping to have a nice photo of the sun for you today but I'm still still trying to figure the whole telescope-camera-software-processing thing.  It shouldn't be this difficult and time consuming.   Ten minutes to take 1000 photos and 10 hours to process them to find you have nothing useful.

Thanks Sue.  Linda looked at the orchid photo and agrees that it's a cattleya hybrid of some type.  So much for identification labels.

I have two photos this week.  The first is a house centipide.  They're apparently good bugs to have around because they eat all the other bugs from spiders to ants.  Still, I don't want them in the house (or the bathroom sink).  The second photo is self explanatory and what I'd like to do until spring.  Have I said I hate cold weather before.  Yea, about a thousand times.

enjoy

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astro photography bug cat cattleya flower flowers house centipede lily orchid https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-12-2014 Sun, 14 Dec 2014 02:00:43 GMT
weekly critter, December 4, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-4-2014 It's been a short week since the last critter and I still haven't been out to photograph anything.  I'm going to have to correct that.  I need my 'photography' fix.

I have three photos for you today.  The first one is titled 'welcome to my life'  and is self explanatory.  Someday the kitchen will be finished.   The mess in the photo is now gone and a beautiful alternating walnut-oak counter top has replaced it.  Linda wants to wait until after the holidays to demolish the rest of the kitchen, which is probably a good idea.  The second photo is of beautiful Soco falls in North Carolina.  The last photo is one of Linda's orchids, a  dendrobium.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) butcherblock counter top dendrobium flower flowers kitchen oak orchid photography soso falls walnut waterfall wood https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/12/weekly-critter-december-4-2014 Thu, 04 Dec 2014 19:19:49 GMT
weekly critter, November 30, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-30-2014 I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving and that you ate way to much.  Calories don't count during the holidays...right.  I guess the diet starts tomorrow.

I've been spending a lot of time in the shop the last month.  Several jobs just happened.  I was happy just putzing  around and all of a sudden I'm redoing our kitchen and have jobs for a bedroom suite, built in book cases, antiques repairs and a stock for a firearm.   I'll be so busy I won't have time to spend any money on Christmas.  That's OK since Linda went shopping yesterday and now I know what I'm getting everyone, including her.  I'm a happy boy.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a pine siskin grabbing a sunflower seed and the second is of Linda's Thanksgiving cactus.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds flower flowers pine siskin thanksgiving thanksgiving cactus https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-30-2014 Sun, 30 Nov 2014 21:32:42 GMT
weekly critter, November 20, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-20-2014 Another week has flown by.  I'm not sure where the time goes but I haven't been out with my camera since last Fridays event (photos are on my website under 'Featured').  Linda and I did take a couple of days to recuperate from last week.  It felt nice to relax.  

I guess the 'holiday season' officially starts next week.  How did that happen?   And while I'm griping about things...I want my warm weather back.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of a small rapids on a tributary that runs into the Nantahala river.  The whole stream just looks like it has to be loaded with trout.  Next trip I'm taking my fly fishing equipment.  Yea, I know I'll have to dust it off.   The second photo is of Linda's painting overlooking Lake Jocassee in South Carolina.  It's one of my favorites and hangs over the fireplace.  We've had lots of fun times on that lake.  Especially thirty some years ago when few people new it existed.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) art fishing fly fishing lake jocassee nantahala river painting rivr https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-20-2014 Thu, 20 Nov 2014 21:38:00 GMT
weekly critter, November 14, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-14-2014 Where did the warm weather go?  It's only November and we've been down into the 20's.  It's still supposed to be t-shirt weather here.

I am so glad this week is over with.  The banner is finished and gone,  the big sign (almost 4 feet by 8 feet) for the Camp Twin Lakes farm is finished and installed, and the Dancing With Madison's Stars fundraiser for the Boys and Girls Club was last night.  Linda and I spent Wednesday and Linda spent Thursday decorating the Cultural Center's Festival Hall for the event.  All the volunteer's hard work paid off and the event was a huge success with everyone having a great time.  I also  photographed the event.  Today I don't think either one of us is going accomplish much.  Heck, I don't think I'm going to move out of the recline.   It's looking like a nice day to sit and read.  Linda said she's going to the bedroom and watch a 'girl' movie. 

I almost forgot to mention that last Saturday I helped with the Charles Elliott Astronomy Club outreach program at the Charles Elliott Wildlife Center during Georgia DNR's yearly event BOW.  BOW is their acronym for 'Becoming an Outdoor Woman'.   It was an interesting day.  The BOW event has a variety of outdoor activity classes for women including firearm handling and care, fly fishing, climbing and rappelling, backpacking, archery and outdoor cooking just to name a few.  It was fun to see the women try new activities.  My understanding is that this is a yearly event.

 

And, all the kitchen cabinet case work and cabinet doors are finished and installed, except for the molding....WOOHOO. 

 

I have three photos for you today.  The first is of Linda at the event last night.  The second is of a red-winged blackbird.  They've been migrating through this area for the last couple of weeks.   Hopefully,  they'll keep going.  Talk about decimating the feeders.  The last photo is of a honey bee and a bumble bee.  If you look close you can see a parasite (I think) of some sort on the honey bee.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) BOW astronomy astronomy outreach becoming an outdoor woman bees bird birds boys and girls club bumble bee camp twin lakes charles elliott flower flowers honey bee https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-14-2014 Fri, 14 Nov 2014 17:12:02 GMT
weekly critter, November 6, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-6-2014 I can't believe it's November already and we've had below freezing temperatures.  What happened to fall.  

The kitchen is coming along nicely and we should have everything back where it belongs by Sunday.  Then comes the next phase...the counter tops and back splash.  We're going to remove all the existing tile on the counters and walls and replace it with new tile.  The counter top between the kitchen and dining room will be wood with alternating strips of oak and walnut.  I'm not looking forward to the tiling part.   Maybe Linda will change her mind about marble or granite tops and I can just pay someone to do the work.

I have two photos for you today.  A male and a female dark eyed Junco (I think).  We usually see these guys hanging around here during the winter months.  I've also see some migratory warblers but haven't manage to get any photographs yet.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds counter counter top dark eyed junco fall kitchen oak walnut https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/11/weekly-critter-november-6-2014 Fri, 07 Nov 2014 19:54:09 GMT
weekly critter, October 31, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-31-2014 Well, there I was, in the cemetery last Thursday with my solar telescope, computerized mount, tripod,camera, computer, tables, chairs, batteries and enough cables to bring a tear to any geek's eye.  I was ready for the solar eclipse.  The sky was clear, every thing was up and running and all I had to do was press a button and a photo would be taken each minute until the eclipse was over.  It was 6pm and I anxiously waited for 6:02pm when the eclipse started.   At 6:01pm I pressed the button and was up and running.  By 6:04pm the clouds had rolled in and I couldn't see a damn thing.  And so it goes.

On the lighter side, the kitchen is coming along nicely in spite of finding some 'cabinet sag' when I removed the molding.  We had to empty those cabinets so I could fix the problem and now we have 'stuff' all over the kitchen counters and the dining room table and floor (again).  Someday it will be over.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is another shot of Bald River falls in Tennessee.  This one is a view from the base of the falls.  I forgot to mention the beautiful pool about mid way down the falls in the previous photo (10-17-2014).  If I had been a few (meaning a lot) years younger I would have looked for a way to climb out there.  The second photo is of the sun.  I thought this one looked 'acceptable' considering I haven't really figured out what I'm doing yet.  The people I know that make amazing photos of the sun say I have to stop using my expensive camera and buy an inexpensive ($300) planetary camera and stack the photos.  I can stack 25MB files from my camera.  Why would 1MB photos from a 1/3 inch diagonal sensor give better results.  I don't get it.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bald river falls cabinet cabinet sag cabinets eclipse solar solar telescope sun waterfall https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-31-2014 Fri, 31 Oct 2014 20:08:17 GMT
weekly critter, October 23, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-23-2014 It's been another busy week and I'm about to head out to the Buckhead cemetery to watch and hopefully photograph the partial solar eclipse.  I was planning to stay and do some astronomical viewing after the eclipse but it looks like the clouds will be rolling in about 7p.  With any luck next week's photos will be of the sun.

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is titled "she waits".  The second is of a honey bee.  Both photographs were taken at The John C Campbell Folk School.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cemetery flower flowers honey bee john c campbell folk school orbweaver solar viewing spider sun telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-23-2014 Thu, 23 Oct 2014 20:31:02 GMT
weelkly critter, October 17, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weelkly-critter-october-17-2014 Wow, what a beautiful day.  It's about 80 degrees and sunny.  I've spent so much time in the shop lately that I feel like a cave troll.  I haven't even made time for photography (except for the hibiscus) but the kitchen is coming along nicely.  I was going to spend yesterday with the camera but what started out as a gorgeous day turned cloudy and windy about the time I stepped outside to look for things to photograph.  Windy weather is not particularly conducive to any type of closeup or macro photography, and with all the clouds I couldn't even try out my new solar telescope.  That's the curse of a new telescope...clouds.  So, back to the shop I went and sanded some more cabinet doors.

I have three photos for you today.  The first is of Bald River Falls located in the Tellico Plains area in Tennessee.  The second is of a small (about 8 inches long) copper sculpture I made and the third is of a tropical hibiscus which I managed to photograph yesterday before the wind picked up.   Hopefully, I'll have a photo of my kinetic sculpture soon.  First I have to figure out how to fabricate a base for it.


I know this is a short critter but it's to nice outside to sit behind a monitor.

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bald river falls camera flower flowers hibiscus photography sculpture solar telescope telescope waterfall https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weelkly-critter-october-17-2014 Fri, 17 Oct 2014 21:11:40 GMT
weekly critter, October 8, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-8-2014 I'm off on a new project.  We decided that the cabinets in the kitchen needed to be refinished.  I think it might have been easier to build all new cabinets.  I've almost finished seven cabinet doors.  That's seven down and 31 to go, including the bathroom.  I almost forgot, there's also 19 drawers and the case work.  What do you think?  Maybe I'll finish by next spring.

The Madison fall festival was a big hit, again.  Two friends, Theo and Frank came by to help me (more like I helped them) with the solar viewing outreach.   We estimated that around 500 people stopped by to take a look at the sun.  I think we'll have to do that again.  It was amazing when some  people looked through the scope and all you'd hear was an inrush of air and a "WOW."   I heard that from people from 7 to 80 years old.  Most people had never actually been able to look at the sun and see the surface activity and the prominences. 

 

I almost forgot to mention that I was in Lowes last week and they had Christmas decorations up.  Do you believe it.  It's not even halloween yet.

I have two photos for you today.  Since everyone (at least the ladies) liked the jewelry I thought I'd show another piece.   Come on guys...think about having your wife making her own jewelry.  Now, how do you like the jewelry.  

I was hoping to have a good picture of the sun but that hasn't happened yet.  All I've managed is a bright red circle.  So, you get a photo of the moon.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) cabinets drawer jewelry moon sun woodworking https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-8-2014 Wed, 08 Oct 2014 22:16:13 GMT
weekly critter, October 3, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-3-2014 This has been a nonstop week for Linda and me.  Doctor and dentist appointments, repair men, meetings and general stuff.  This weekend won't be any less frantic.  I'm helping the Charles Elliott astronomy club outreach program at the Newton Eastside High School tonight and they are helping me with a solar viewing outreach program at the 10th Annual Downtown Chili Cook-off and Fall Festival in Madison's town park tomorrow.   Come on by and try some great chili, listen to good music and take a look at the sun (yes, it's safe).  Actually, I'm a member or the Charles Elliott astronomy club and hope to do more outreach programs with them in the future.  Their meetings are free and open to the  public.  Check their website for time and location (www.ceastronomy.org). 

The Harvest of the Heart raffle for a side of beef is also tomorrow evening.  Since Linda is the coordinator for that event, she'll be doing the drawing after the festival at their distribution center sometime around 6pm.  She's running around like crazy today trying to make sure she has all the tickets and the appropriate paperwork is done. 

 

After that, I am turning off the phone, locking the doors and having a few 'adult beverages'.  It'll be time to relax.

I have three photos for you today.  The first is of a Coxcomb taken at the John C Campbell Folk School.  The next two are of jewelry Linda made during her last two classes at the folk school.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Madison astronomy astronomy outreach charles elliott chili coxcomb fall festival" flower flowers jewelry john c campbell folk school madison chili cookoff solar viewing telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/10/weekly-critter-october-3-2014 Fri, 03 Oct 2014 16:40:48 GMT
weekly critter, September 28, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-28-2014 I'm late again.  Linda and I spent last week at the John C Campbell Folk School.  It was my turn to take the copper metalsmithing course I mentioned a few weeks ago.  Linda took a cloisonne class, so she's been able to take two classes this year.   Now she's saying that she can take a third class and save 30% of the tuition cost.  We'll see.  We have a lot going on the next couple of months.  Robert's metalsmithing  class was fun and I learned a lot, as usual.  Thanks Robert.  I even managed to finish my kinetic sculpture and it actually works.  It's made with copper tubing and form folded flowers which catch the wind and cause the sculpture to spin.  I'll have photos of both our work soon.  I know all the ladies are anxious to see the jewelry Linda made.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is another bumble bee.  These guys are lots of fun to photograph.  The second photo is of a inocybe pyriodora, I think.   I couldn't see underneath so I don't know if it had gills or not which makes it difficult to use a key.  Both photos were taken at the Folk School.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) John C Campbell Folk School bee bumble bee cloisonne copper flower flowers form folded' jewelry metalsmithing mushroom https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-28-2014 Sun, 28 Sep 2014 19:39:04 GMT
weekly critter, September 18, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-18-2014 Happy birthday to everyone who was born in September.  Those January nights must get really cold.  I can't remember everyone I know who was born in September but a few are Sharon, Jim and Elizabeth.   I usually remember Elizabeth's because it's the same day as mine, the 20th.  It's alright if any of y'all want to send me lots of presents. 

Linda got me a dehumidifier for my birthday.   Yes, it's what I wanted.  Everything in my shop has been rusting, including me (or maybe I'm just molding), this year.  I don't know what's different this year but I haven't had to deal with this much rust since my shop was in the garage.  I can just see everyone who's been to my house recently scratching their head and thinking 'he had his shop in the garage'.  How?   I started the gizmo up yesterday afternoon and have been emptying it (1.6 gallons) about every five hours, at least while I was awake.  Glad she got me the one with the automatic shutoff.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is Amicalola Falls located in the State Park named after it in north Georgia.  It's a beautiful park but if you choose to start your hike at the lower parking lot you have a whole lot of up, more up, then the STAIRS.  Foolishly, I asked a ranger about the trails and she said the trail to the base of the falls was easy and then there were some steps to the middle platform.  I'd hate to find out what she thought was difficult.  It seemed like most of the time the trail was so steep that I had be careful that my nose didn't scrape the ground.  If you go, the best place to see the falls is from the middle platform.  It's easily accessible from a different parking lot. 

The second photo is of a sweet-gum hollow vessel I turned from a tree we had taken down to make way for the new septic tank drain field.   See, there is a use for sweet-gum.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Amicalola Falls birthday dehumidifier hiking shop sweet-gum trails waterfall woodturning https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-18-2014 Thu, 18 Sep 2014 21:02:39 GMT
weekly critter, September 11, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-11-2014 It's been another busy week.  We fixed an Ethiopian banquet for family.  Nothing very difficult to make but it takes two full days of cooking.  The main dishes are called 'wat'  which means stew and are made with lamb, chicken and beef.  The main spice (mixture) in each is berbere.  It's somewhat hot and very spicy.  I don't know what to compare it to except to say it's like chili but much more aromatic and flavorful.   The banquet included lamb wat, chicken wat, a beef dish, sambosa (which is like a pork empanada with mint), chickpeas, greens, fresh ricotta, lentils, tomatoes, potatoes, injeria (which is Ethiopian bread) and a few thing I've forgotten.  If you ever get the opportunity, try some.

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is a honey bee and the second is a swallowtail butterfly.  Both photos were taken in the gardens at the John C Campbell Folk School.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bee butterfly ethiopian ethiopian food flower flowers honeybee john C Campbell Folk School swallowtail butterfly, berbere, injeria, wat, banquet https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-11-2014 Thu, 11 Sep 2014 17:33:19 GMT
weekly critter, September 4, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-4-2014 It's been a short short week since the last critter but I'm trying to get back on some kind of a schedule.  I finished (almost) a wood sculpture that's been sitting in my shop for several months.  All it lacks are the eyes which are now soaking in a crock pot full of acid.  I haven't decided whether to enamel the eyes or leave them bright copper and let them patina naturally.  Decisions, decisions.   I'm also working on a kinetic copper sculpture using form folded flowers and leaves.

We ran out of sausage so yesterday I made a batch of italian, some of which went into last night's dinner of a very nice lasagna made with homemade ricotta.  I don't know about where y'all are but pork has gone up over $1 per pound in the last month or two.  It's getting to expensive to eat.  Maybe the high prices will help me lose some of my gut.  Nah,  I like to eat to much.  Today I'm making a batch of chicken sausage, yum.  I expect friends and family will start lining up as soon as this critter goes out.  I need to start making much larger batches of the chicken sausage.  I still don't believe that their is such a thing as good chicken sausage.  The cost of the charcuterie class at the folk school was worth it just for this recipe (besides being one of the most fun classes I've ever taken).

I have two photos for you today both of which were taken at the John C Campbell Folk School.  The first is of a bumble bee on a morning glory taken in the vegetable/flower garden.  The place was covered with bumble bees and honey bees.  You'll 'bee' seeing more of both in the coming weeks.  The second was taken looking across the field immediately behind the garden.  I couldn't resist the clouds.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) "bumble bee" John C Campbell Folk School bee' bees cahrcuterie chicken sausage clouds copper flower flowers form folded honey bee italian sausage morning glory sausage sculpture https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/9/weekly-critter-september-4-2014 Thu, 04 Sep 2014 17:43:22 GMT
weekly critter, August 31, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-31-2014 Do you believe that it will be September tomorrow.  Where did the summer go?  Linda and I spent last week at the John C Campbell Folk School. Linda took a metal clay class from Pam East which she thoroughly enjoyed and I got to play, take photos, read and consume many adult beverages.  After all, I had to try and keep hydrated.  It was supposed to be cool in the mountains, at least that's what I was hoping, but it was in the mid to upper 90's most of the week.  Maybe it'll be cooler next month when it's my turn to take a course.  But then what will it matter, I'll be inside.

 

I took my telescope and was expecting to take advantage of the cool mountain temperatures and the dark sky around the school.  Well, it didn't quite work out as I had planned.  Even though I was way out in a field, the street lights through the school blazed like mini-suns.  The temperature was still in the upper 80's at midnight, the bugs were terrible, the humidity had everything soaking wet and then the clouds rolled in.  I packed up and went back to the RV and had a beer or two.  The property at the Deerlick Astronomy Village is looking better and better.



I have two photos for you today.  The first is an orbweaver spider that has become our traveling companion.  She lives in the screw hole for the fold out stair railing on the RV.  The hole is about 1/2 inch in diameter and 1 1/2 inch deep.  She has been with us visiting Savannah GA, Vogel State park GA,  St Augustine FL, Port Orange FL and Brasstown NC.  I wasn't planning on presenting another spider photo this soon but it seemed appropriate.  The second photo is of an unidentified orchid (Linda's been busy) taken just after a rain.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) Deerlick Astronomy Village John C Campbell Folk School astronomy beer bugs flower flowers metal clay orbweaver orchid pam East rain spider telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-31-2014 Sun, 31 Aug 2014 17:30:41 GMT
weekly critter, August 22, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-22-2014 I've been getting excited about a copper metalworking class I'll be taking at the John C. Campbell Folk School in September with Robert Triplett.  If you want to know about working with copper Robert's your man.      Robert.....I'm coming back.       John, are you going to take this class?  Hope to see you there.  Anyway,  I've been working on a kinetic sculpture using form folded flowers and leaves made out of copper (yes, I mortgaged the house).  This involves a lot of flame work and pounding on an anvil.  Yesterday, I was working away until late afternoon feeling like I was going to die of heat exhaustion.  When I came into the house griping about getting old and not being able to work like I used to, Linda gives me the 'look' that only a wife can give and says "you realize that it's 98 degrees outside...."   Aw, just get me a beer and let me die in peace. 

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a black and white conversion of a photo I took at the John C. Campbell Folk School just outside the photography studio.  The color version was in the June 2013 critter.  I feel like I'm getting better at deciding what will make a good B&W photo but I don't many conversions because it takes me several hours of processing to achieve the look I want.  I'd rather be behind the camera than in front of a computer.  What do you think of the conversion?   The second photo is of a swan I took at a campground near Savannah.  I really like the reflection.  This guy was about 200 to 250 feet away and the only processing was to crop the image.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) John C. Campbell Folk School bird birds camping copper form folding kinteic sculpture sculpture swan https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-22-2014 Fri, 22 Aug 2014 14:20:16 GMT
weekly critter, August 15, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-15-2014 I hope everyone is having the same beautiful weather as we're having here.  Clear and sunny with 80's during the day and 60's at night.  Unfortunately, it's supposed to be back in the 90's today but it was nice while it lasted. 

Tonight I think I'll load up the telescope equipment and head up to the cemetery for a night of observing.  The cemetery is the closest place that I have a clear view of the sky.  Anyone want to join me?  The spookiest thing there is probably me.  I really need to make an equipment checklist.  The last time I forgot the battery and my observing chair.  Fortunately, I wasn't observing long enough to drain the battery in my truck.  I could just see it...3am...Linda, I drained the battery in the truck.  Will come to the cemetery and give me a jump start.  That's creepy on so many levels.

I'm calling this - white flower friday and have three photos for you.  The first is a moon flower, the second is a bear grass flower stalk and the third is a diana hibiscus.  The moon flower isn't fully open but it was after midnight and I was ready for bed.  The diana hibiscus is from a bush (more like a tree) that's next to my shop.  It has to be 12 to 14 feet tall.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bear grass cemetery diana hibiscus flower flowers moon flower telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-15-2014 Fri, 15 Aug 2014 13:41:43 GMT
weekly critter, August 11, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-11-2014 I'm late again.  Actually, we spent some time last week in Port Orange, Fl helping Linda's father get organized and inventoried.   When his wife died last January she left  her possessions to her children, which should have made everything easy.  However, there's always one family member who screws up everything by squabbling about what belongs to whom.  Not really our problem until it started to affect Linda's father, then it became our problem.   This visit was much more pleasant than most.  Linda and her father got to talk and tell old stories.  There was very little bitching about politics.

I have three photos for you today.  The first two are of the bottom side and topside of a golden silk orbweaver spider. I really like the web in the first shot.  This spider was huge.  It's body was about 1 1/2 inches long and 3 inches including the legs.The third shot was taken at Spruce Creek Park in Port Orange.  Doesn't the scene just beg for a canoe or kayak.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) golden silk orbweaver spider spruce creek park https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/8/weekly-critter-august-11-2014 Mon, 11 Aug 2014 15:11:38 GMT
weekly critter, July 31, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-31-2014 The past couple of days have been beautiful.  Low 80's and sunny.  I could take that most of the year.  I forgot to mention last week that we had several more 'herds' of fledglings.  The birds have been busy this year.  We had two more groups of wrens and one group each of cardinals, titmice and finches. 

I have two photos this week.  The first is of a garden spider.  This is the first photo I've been able to get from this angle since they sit on the side of the web closest to a surface, either the ground or a wall.   This guy had his web angled so that with some sever bending and crawling I managed a good side shot.  Now I have to go see my chiropractor. 

The second photo I found while looking at stuff to archive.  A 300gb photo folder is getting a bit much.  Anyway, this photo was taken in 1970 or '71.  I'm not sure where it was taken, either at Lake Lanier (GA) or if I scanned the slide backwards, it might be from the Chesapeake on the west river at Beverly Beach MD.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds bug cardinal finch garden spider lake lanier spider sunset titmouse wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-31-2014 Thu, 31 Jul 2014 19:20:53 GMT
weekly critter, July 24, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-24-2014 It feels like we're into the Georgia 90-90's again.  Ninety plus degrees and ninety plus humidity.  I feel like I'm beginning to mold. 

I've been doing some carving on a small log Linda found in the woodpile.  There is a big bulge in the middle that she thought was interesting.  When I looked at it, several images immediately came to mind (think butt) but when I removed the bark I found a crack going up the entire length.  So much for a torso.  We'll just have to wait and see what my warped mind comes up with.  Maybe it'll go back to the woodpile. 

 

I should have a couple of my turned pieces finished by next week and will share a photo or two.  It seems like it's taken forever for the wood to dry enough to apply the final finish.  After several coats of danish oil the wood is still sticky. 

I have three photos for you today.  The first two are of a leaf-footed bug I found walking around an empty flower pot.  I thought he looked interesting and was cooperative for a minute or two while I took a few photos.  Then he started walking around the top of the pot only to end up in front of the lens again.  Remind you of anyone you know?  He did several revolutions before he figured out that he needed to head down.  The third photo is of a coleus.  I really like the red and green leaves with the purple/blue flowers.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bug bugs coleus flower flowers leaf-footed bug https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-24-2014 Thu, 24 Jul 2014 18:42:48 GMT
weekly critter, July 17, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-17-2014 Not a lot going on this week.  I've done some woodturning but not much in the way of photography.  Linda bought more rocks this week, not the granite kind but the ones most women love.  It's our anniversary this weekend and she bought herself some jewelry.  Works out great for me.  She gets what she wants and I don't have to shop.  Now I just have to wait for the credit card bill to come and see how much ' I ' spent.

I have three photos for you today.  The first is of a mushroom I found growing next to a moss covered rock.  I thought the composition was interesting.  The next two are of a Gladiolus I found growing all by itself in the side yard.  I was heading outside later in the day to take some photos when I realized that it was in a vase on the table.  Linda had also found it and decided to pick it before the coming storm messed it up. 

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) anniversary flower flowers gladiolus granite jewelry mushroom rock https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-17-2014 Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:13:55 GMT
weekly critter, July 9, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-9-2014 Linda and I have been together about 35 years and I just discovered that she likes (loves) to watch soccer.  I like to watch most sports in which the US is involved as a team.  It's the old hoorah, hoorah...go USA.  So when we made it to the quarter finals in the world cup I just had to watch.  Well, Linda watched it with me and she hasn't missed a game since.  I even had to record a game that was to be played while she was at art class.  All I can say is "who switched my wife."   She's the definition of 'hates any sport which includes a ball',  and she's not much of a fan of any sports that don't include a ball.   We do both like watching bicycling.  I like the bicycling and she like the scenery, no not the guys (or at least she doesn't admit it) but the countryside. 

I forgot to mention last week that I actually turned two bowls.  It's been awhile since I've done anything on the lathe.  The three trees we had cut down were sweetgum and although I will use most of the wood in the fireplace some of it will make it to the lathe.  Actually, the only thing I know sweetgum is good for is woodturning.  It's certainly not good for burning.  However, after it's laid around for a while it develops beautiful brown, purple and gray streaks. 

I have four photos for you this week.  The first two are of Saturn.  The first one is what I actually see when my camera is attached to my 8 inch telescope and the second is a huge crop of the first photo.  Not very impressive but I'm working on it.  Watch out Hubble, here I come.  The third photo is of the moon and Mars.  Mars is the tiny orange dot above the moon. And just so you don't think that I'm obsessed with astrophotography I've included a photo of some ageratum flowers.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astrophotography bicycling mars moon saturn soccer sports woodturning https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-9-2014 Wed, 09 Jul 2014 21:41:15 GMT
weekly critter, July 5, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-5-2014 Hope everyone had a wonderful 4th.  Linda and I spent the day relaxing.  The most ambitious thing I did was open a beer and smoke some ribs. 

Thanks Paula.  The Italian sausage was excellent.  I might add some fennel seed and crushed red pepper next time for a little extra zing.  If anyone is interested in the recipe please let me know.

I'm still trying to get a decent photo of saturn.  It seems like everything is conspiring against me but I've been told that's the nature of astrophotography.  Right now I have five different software applications running simultaneously on the laptop which align and control the telescope mount, guide camera and digital camera.  That doesn't include the software in the mounts hand controller which is used to connect the mount to the computer.  No, the software doesn't always play nice with each other.   My other problem is that I really need to pack everything up and go someplace where I can actually see more than a tiny bit of the sky.  I can't even polar align the mount where I live.

I have two photos today.  The first is another photo of Lake Trahlyta, taken from the opposite direction of the photo in the June 15th critter.  I like this one because it actually shows some blue sky.  We saw very little blue sky the entire week.  The second is of a lichen or fungus in a bed of moss.  This was taken in north Georgia.  Don, do you know what this is?

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) astrophotography beer fungus lake lichen rain relaxing ribs sausage https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/7/weekly-critter-july-5-2014 Sat, 05 Jul 2014 15:39:24 GMT
weekly critter, June 25, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-25-2014 I can't believe it's already Wednesday, again.   I made some 'hunter sausage' last weekend which is a new one for me.  It contained coriander,  mustard seed, garlic, nutmeg and ginger.  It turned out really tasty. In fact, it's going to be tonight's dinner.   Paula sent me her recipe for italian sausage which I'll be making this week.  It's very different from the ones I've been trying and generally not liking.  She said she got the recipe during her first charcuterie class at the John C Campbell Folk School so I'm expecting it to be a winner.

Linda's finally a happy girl again.  We had 10,000 pounds of rip-rap sized granite delivered yesterday.   Some women want jewelry, at least one wants rocks.  Go figure.

Thanks Don, Julie and Roseanne for identifying my mystery mushroom-plant from last week.  It is a wildflower known as an indian pipe or ghost plant.

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is a beetle that I've yet to identify.  It could be a type of ladybug but most ladybugs have black heads.  I thought it was an asparagus beetle but they have 12 black spots and these only have six.  Any ideas?  The second photo is a purslane with an accompanying Argentine ant.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) JCCFS ant ants charcuterie flower flowers ghost flower granite indian pipe john c campbell folk school purslane rock rocks sausage https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-25-2014 Wed, 25 Jun 2014 21:43:40 GMT
weekly critter, June 20, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-20-2014 Not much going on this week, just trying to get over a sinus infection.  The only useful things I've done are fix the leak in the RV and make some pastrami.  The pastrami turned out very tasty but a bit salty.  Linda thought it was fine. 

I was hoping to have some nice photos of Saturn for you this week but it just didn't happen.  I spent two nights taking or should say trying to capture a decent photo but there was just to much water vapor in the atmosphere.  All I ended up with besides mosquito bites was a fuzzy yellow ball.  Maybe tonight will be better.  I'll also have to remember to take a photo of my telescope setup for a later critter.  It will either give you a good laugh or have you scratching your head asking "what the heck."

I have two photos for you this week.  Both were taken last week at Vogel state park during the brief time between thunder storms.  The first photo is of mushrooms growing on an old stump and the second is of another mushroom, I think.  It almost looks like a flower.

enjoy

Dan

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) mushroom mushrooms pastrami rain saturn telescope https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-20-2014 Fri, 20 Jun 2014 18:26:58 GMT
weekly critter, June 15, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-15-2014 I'm not sure if this a late or very early critter.   Last week Linda and I went up to Vogel state park in north Georgia.  I'd forgotten how beautiful that area is. 

I've finally figured out what the R stands for in R-POD (the brand of our RV)....RAIN.   Monday was nice driving up with some rain late in the evening.  Tuesday morning was ok then it started to rain and didn't stop till Friday morning when we left.   We were both feeling kind of moldy by weeks end but I did get another three books read.  There were a few 'rainless' hours on Wednesday when we sneaked out and walked around Lake Trahlyta so I did get a few waterfall photos in the park but we didn't get to any of the other waterfalls in the area.  Maybe next time.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is of Lake Trahlyta and the second is of the waterfall at the discharge from the lake.  The lake photo is the only one I managed to get with 'good clouds' and they didn't last long, only a few minutes.  The rest of the the time it was just a dark gray, not idea conditions for photographing much of anything including the waterfall.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) camping lake r-pod rain vogel vogel state park waterfall https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-15-2014 Sun, 15 Jun 2014 19:07:34 GMT
weekly critter, June 6, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-6-2014 It's been a quite week, finally.   I actually relaxed for a couple of days and read several books.  I forgot to mention that we had a couple more herds of carolina wrens fledge last week.  There were 12 or 13 so I think it had to be two families.  For three or four days the parents herded them around the house looking for bugs.  I never realized that birds could make that much noise.  They sent the dog and both cats running for cover every time they came around.  It took about two hours for them to make the circuit.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is a greenman carved from spanish cedar.  It's taken a couple of years for me to finish this guy because the carving just didn't talk to me.  When I thought I'd completed it several weeks ago I brought it into the house to wash it before applying the oil.  Linda looked at it and said  "that will be nice when you finish it."   Grrrr...it is finished, I replied.  So much for quality control.  Back to the shop it went to be 'finished'.   After I completed it, yet again, the oil was applied and it was 'finished' before it came back into the house for inspection.  Linda likes it but I'm still not sure if I do.

The second photo is of a rose Linda has blooming on the back deck.  I shot this photo just after it rained.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) art bird birds carolina wren" carving flower flowers greenman spanish cedar wren https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/6/weekly-critter-june-6-2014 Fri, 06 Jun 2014 15:37:27 GMT
weekly critter, May 29, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/weekly-critter-may-29-2014 It's been another crazy week around here.  We now have men with heavy equipment in the yard putting in a new drain field...Linda is not a happy girl.  To make matters worse the dryer died yesterday.  One minute it was working and the next it sounded like a cat being strangled.   So that's what I did yesterday morning, took the dryer apart, completely.  I finally found a screw wedged between the drum and a roller.  And the biggest surprise,  I put it all back together and it actually works.

I have four photos for you today.  Since I received lots of emails asking to see the power wagon I've attached two photos.  The first is the busted engine and the second is the wagon with the new motor.  I can't remember the last time I put a new engine on anything.

The next two photos are of a red hibiscus and a cardinal.   I shot the cardinal while trying to get the hummingbirds to cooperate.  She was sitting on a feeder support about 15 feet away just singing and begging for me to take her photo.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds cardinal engine flower flowers hibiscus power wagon https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/weekly-critter-may-29-2014 Thu, 29 May 2014 13:29:10 GMT
weekly critter, May23, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/weekly-critter-may23-2014 It's been an interesting week, and not in a good way.  I didn't think I was going to get a critter out this week because my great and wonderful new Dell windows 8 computer crashed for the third time since February.  I can just hear all the laughter and 'I told you so' echoing throughout the cosmos.   It's still crashed, I haven't decided whether or not to put it in the trash or spend another day on the phone with my soon to be, new best friend in India. 

To add insult to injury (almost) I was moving the wood from the trees we had cut down from the side yard to where I split it.  I was using our power wagon, a wheelbarrow with a motor,  to move the wood.  Well,  I was backing up a hill with about 500 pounds of wood in the wheelbarrow and hit a stump from a small tree I had cut down.  The next thing I knew I was about two feet in the air and still going up when I figured it might be a good time to let go.  The power wagon flipped from back to front and rolled.  I cleaned out my pants, looked at the mess and started to turn the wagon upright.  I really didn't think anything bad happened to the wagon because it's built like a tank.  However, when it flipped it came down on another small stump right where the carburetor attached to the engine.  Guess what; now I have a big hole in the side of the engine.

I ordered a new engine Tuesday afternoon from Zorro Tools and it was delivered Wednesday afternoon.  I installed it Thursday morning and am back up and running.  The engine isn't exactly right, I need to figure out a way to hook up the throttle to the handle bars.  Other than that it works fine.  I could have ordered the engine from the power wagon manufacturer but they wanted $450.00.  I bought the engine from Zorro for $160.00.

I have two photos for you today.  The first is an Iris which I found growing all by itself in the middle of a patch of mint.  The second is of a yet unidentified flower.  Linda hasn't gotten around to ID'ing yet.  If you look close there's a small green bug in the flower which I think is a leaf-hopper.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) engine flower flowers iris windows 8 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/weekly-critter-may23-2014 Fri, 23 May 2014 14:39:05 GMT
weekly critter, May 14, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/weekly-critter-may-14-2014 I had the 5,000th hit on my website last week.  Not to shabby for a two year old photography site.  I guess I need to start updating all the photos.  I also took my 20,000th photograph since April 2010.

A 'herd' of titmice fledged last week and one crazy bird thinks that since I bring out seed every morning I'm either its surrogate mother or new BHF (best human friend).  It keeps landing on my head or shoulder while I fill the feeders.  I jumped about three feet the first time he landed on me.  At least he hasn't pooped on me...yet.

I have three photos for you today.  The first is the business end of an Argentine ant.  They were building a mound in the middle of the driveway when I took this photo.  As you can imagine, they didn't survive long.  The best things about these ants is that they don't sting like a fire ant and when they show up they kill all the local fire ants.  The only bad thing is that they really like anything that has a high frequency buzz, like an electronic relay in an AC or an electric toothbrush.  I went into the bathroom one night to get a glass of water and for some reason I turned on the light, I usually don't.  As I filled the glass I looked at the electric toothbrush and in my sleep induced state couldn't figure out why it was black instead of white and appeared to be moving.  Yes, covered with ants.  Yuck.  An ant trap took care of the problem.

The second two photos are of a shooting star hydrangea.  It's not at all like a typical hydrangea but is a very beautiful flower in it's own right.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) ant ants argentine ant bird birds flower flowers shooting star hydrangea tufted titmouse https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/weekly-critter-may-14-2014 Wed, 14 May 2014 18:59:03 GMT
weekly critter, May 7, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/wkkwly-critter-may-7-2014 It's been another busy week.  We spent two days helping with the Madison Tour of Homes and another day looking at homes on the tour we hadn't seen before.  We were docents at one of the guest houses at Willow Oaks Farm, a 1250 acre estate.  It was interesting to see how the 'other half' lives.   Why couldn't I have been born rich instead of so darn good looking.....  The kitchen in the guest house had every possible Viking appliance from the stove to the ice maker and a huge marble top center island.  Talk about a good place to make sausage.  The estate also has a moss garden.  It's right next to the trout pond with 68 degree water year round.  I'm going to try and get permission to photograph the moss.  That should be a fun day unless the sprinklers come on when I'm on my belly with my macro lens.

Talking about sausage,  I'm out.  Linda went to Ingles to buy me a whole butt, hopefully.  Andouille, kielbasa, chicken sausage and country pate are on the agenda for tomorrow.  I'm getting hungry already.

Last week I forgot to mention that the beautiful background in the photos was hand painted by Linda.   Hmm,  honey could you paint a few more.

I have two photos for you this week.  The first is of a Brown snake (Tim, correct me if I'm wrong)  that Linda found in the wheelbarrow.  She had put a bunch of leaves and branches in it the day before and was moving them to the brush pile.  When she picked it all up guess what popped out.    The second photo  is of some Azaleas blooming along the side of the house which I thought looked nice.

enjoy

Dan
 

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) azalea brown snake flower flowers madison georgia snake willow oaks farm https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/5/wkkwly-critter-may-7-2014 Wed, 07 May 2014 17:44:03 GMT
weekly critter, April 30, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/4/weekly-critter-april-30-2014 We made it through another Madison Fest.  What a beautiful day.  We were busy non-stop from before 10a to 3:30p when my printer decided it had had enough and spewed yellow ink all over.  By that time I had taken around 125 to 130 photos and had printed over 175.  

Hope everyone made it through the bad storms.  We had a power pole twist apart a couple of houses up the hill so we were without power all yesterday but that was the extent of it.  Hopefully, no one will have any damage as the storms pass through today.

I have three photos for you from Madison Fest.  I know you're just dying to see some cutie critters.  The first two show off the talent of our local 'face painting lady'.  She always stays till the last child in line is painted.  The third photo is of a young lady with some health issues.  Her grandparents were really wanting a photo of the three of them.  Her mother and I tried all kinds of 'tricks' to get her to look at the camera, with little success.  Finally, her mother said her name and clapped. She opened her eyes, looked straight her mother and smiled while I fired away.  When I printed the photo and gave it to the grandparents I noticed several teary eyes.  That made my whole day.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) children critters' cutie face paint madison fest, https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/4/weekly-critter-april-30-2014 Wed, 30 Apr 2014 13:36:12 GMT
weekly critter, April 23, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/4/weekly-critter-april-23-2014 Well, it's that time of year again.......Madison Fest.  Saturday, Linda and I will be running a free photo booth at Madison Fest in Madison's Town Park.  Come by and have your photo taken.  Who knows, you might end up as next weeks 'weekly critter'.  The Atlanta Astronomy Club is having their annual zombie party over the next several nights.  I hope I can make at least one night.  It's called a zombie party because that's apparently what everyone looks like after spending several all-nighters looking through their telescopes at deep sky 'faint fuzzies'.   Doesn't that sounds like fun.

I have three photos for you this week.  The first is a beautiful pink and white columbine which Linda has blooming in the back yard. 

I'm happy to say that the rose-breasted grosbeaks returned this year (finally) and we have three hanging around the feeders.  I've attached two photos from a few days ago and hope to get more tomorrow.

enjoy

Dan

 

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dlthoman@bellsouth.net (Daniel Thoman Photography) bird birds columbine flower flowers rose-brested grosbeak https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/4/weekly-critter-april-23-2014 Wed, 23 Apr 2014 20:03:28 GMT
weekly critter, April 17, 2014 https://thomanstudio.com/blog/2014/4/weekly-critter-april-17-2014 The temperature dropped below freezing Tuesday night.  That's not supposed to happen.  Linda was in a mad rush all afternoon bringing all