Out of Business

This is a shot of a local store front that has been out of business for quite some time. I find that most small towns have quite a few empty stores. At least the small towns around here are like that. For more small town photos check out On the Front Porch.

Abandoned Store Front

How To Get Large Picture Sizes

I thought I would give a little background into how I was able to get larger picture sizes than the standard sizes that Blogger allows. After some searching around the internet, I finally found a tutorial that was only a two step process, versus many other tutorials with five and six steps. You can find that tutorial on Our Blogger Templates: How To Post Large Photos In Blogger Blogspots. There are a few steps you need to do first to set up your blog to accept the larger picture sizes, however.

I use Blogger's Minima template in black. I like its simple format that lets the pictures pop on the page. However, whatever template you use shouldn't matter if you make the necessary changes within the html of the template.

The following assumes some knowlege of html, but not much. If you're unsure of what you are doing, I suggest creating a test blog that only you can see. You can then do all of your template and background changes there, then copy and paste the code to your blog. This allows you to play around with your blog without it being in mid-change when someone stops by your blog to visit.

First you need to change the size of your blog's template. You need to go into Edit Template. I changed my outer wrapper and header wrapper to 1100 px. My main wrapper is set at 840px and the sidebar-wrapper is at 220px. These allow for the larger sized pictures. You don't have to use these exact measurements. Just make sure that your outer and header wrappers are large enough that both the main and side wrappers will fit into them. You need to make sure your main wrapper is slightly larger than the width in which you set your pictures. I chose to have my pictures be 800px wide.

You will need to set up an account on an online picture hosting site. I use Photo Bucket.

The following steps will be necessary everytime you post a picture:

1. First you need to load your pictures to Photo Bucket (or whatever hosting site you chose).

2. When you post a picture, go to the Edit HTML tab(not compose tab) and paste in one of the following:

I use the top for horizontal pics and the bottom for vertical pics. You can adjust the sizes to anything you want, but this works with the width I've set up for my blog layout. I keep these html settings saved on my computer and just copy and paste in the one I need. Then just paste in the url that you get from Photo Bucket (or whatever service you use) and replace the url within the quotations. Viola!

I hope this tutorial works for you. If you have any questions, you can email me anytime.



New Buds

I noticed my bleeding hearts are just sending out buds and will be blooming next week. That is, of course, if this weekend's cold snap doesn't kill them.

New Buds

The Scents of Spring

These little purple beauties (Grape Hyacinth) were one of my favorite flowers as a kid because of their smell. My great grandmother had them all over, and I loved to pick them. I would carry them around all day and smell them.

I never could get the focus on these just right. I couldn't use a tripod because I needed to be low to the ground. I tried using my pod, but the lens was too heavy, and the camera kept slowly moving. I worked on the speed, but there was a lot of camera shake because of the position I was in and then there was the wind. Still, I wanted to share this photo with you; I did like the composition.

The Scents of Spring

Small Town Water Tower

Wendy over at On the Front Porch has a new feature called Small Town Snapshot Sunday...and since we're all about small towns here, I just had to link up with her post. I was so glad for that extra little push to go out and get something different than my usual nature shots. I really think this water tower has "small town" written all over it!

I couldn't decide if I wanted this picture in color or black and white, but finally decided on B&W because the original colors were nothing great in the first place.

Small Town Water Tower

Spring Calf

When Mom and I stopped the Mule (a multi-purpose vehicle we drive around the farm), this little calf ran up to us to check us out. It's only a few days old. Adorable.

The Innocence of Youth

The Cows Feel The Spring

I was out with my mother, driving around the farm, and we spent some time among the cows. These two started jockeying for position and a managed to catch a few good pics.

Spring In Their Step

Pear Blossoms

My pear trees are starting to blossom! I've only had them for a few years and they have more than doubled in size. Give them a few more years and they will really start doing the job they were planted to do: create a boarder along my yard for both privacy and to block some of the dust that rolls off the county road all summer long.

Pear Blossoms

A Hope of Spring

Although this is not the best shot, it is my own little hope of the spring to come. This was the first of the jonquils to bloom in my yard.

A Hope of Spring

She's Ready For Her Close Up!

I was taking pictures of these cows for a brochure; I had my wide angle lens on and this cow kept getting closer and closer. It wasn't until after she was inches from my lens that I realized exactly how close she was to me. Apparently she is practically a pet cow. These cattle would get so close that it was sometimes hard to get the shots I was looking for. I just loved this photo so much that I had to share it.

I'm Ready For My Close Up Mr. Demille!

Fresh, Green Wheat

New Shoots


Although I haven't posted pictures in the last week, that doesn't mean I haven't been taking them. I have been so busy at work that I just couldn't/didn't take time to edit, load and post pictures. Also, the weather hasn't been very inspirational lately. This one I took Saturday...even though it was sprinkling that afternoon.

My parents recently had two sets of twin calves born on their farm. One set was born just four days before the other. All calves and both moms are doing fine. This picture is of two of the twins...oddly enough, this picture is of one calf from each set. All four calves are almost identical to each other with the same white face with black markings.

Twins...sort of

Still No Pictures

Sorry I haven't posted any pictures the last several days. I have been so busy at work that I just haven't had time for much else. I'm off tomorrow and hoping to have some time to work on my photography.

Thanks for your patience.

Lake Views

It was a beautiful, warm (85 degree) day that hinted of Spring, and so I decided to stop by a small, local lake. I took quite a few pictures, and had several favorites. I decided to post two of those favorites.

Last Year's Cattails

Light on the Water

A Line of Pines

I feel a lot better about this photo than the rest of the ones I have put up this week. I always like my pictures better when I venture out of my back yard. I will admit being sick this last week was not good for my photography! Bronchitis made me not feel good and the cough syrup (with codeine) made me too sleepy to care about much.

This is a picture of pines that my dad planted years ago along the highway. I've always loved how these pines line the highway.

I put the pictures through some Photoshop filters. I used the magnetic lasso tool to choose the sky and used a blue filter, then lassoed the trees and used a green filter. The filters really made the trees pop.

A Line of Pines

An Appology

I feel like I've been getting really lazy with my photography lately and I want to apologize. I'm going to try to find more time and get outside my own back yard for inspiration and subjects. No picture today. I slept through most of the day with this stupid bout of bronchitis. I hope to bring you some quality photos soon.