Category Archives: Weekends

Flower Friday

A couple of days ago I went back to the zoo with a friend and as we walked around the 87,000 kids on their school field trips before school closes, I began to notice that the zoo has done a remarkable job of improving their flower beds throughout the grounds. While we strolled past the giraffe exhibit where our own new baby, Dobby was growing like a weed, I was startled by a gorgeous Swallow Tail butterfly.

I was completely mesmerized by its flitting among a narrow bed of lovely purple blooms. Then quick as wink, I happened on this bee and snapped before I could change lens. I didn’t think it would show up since the lens was really too long for the shot, but when I downloaded it, I was a bit surprised.

At this point, I consciously started looking at the flowers more closely and then it happened…that-stop-your-heart screech from a peacock who was behind me. But what a lovely sight. Guess he thought so too.

But because it was the zoo (and I did go there to see anipals), who can resist one of the local freeloaders (with apologies to Facebook fur-iends who have already seen a couple of these). Squee! Here’s to a wagnificent weekend. Hope its grand. 

Live, love, bark! ❤︎

Heroes of Hope

Over the weekend I had mom take me to Lutheran’s 2017 Heroes of Hope Run/Walk event to help celebrate National Cancer Survivors Day. Sam here. This was our 3rd time pawticipating in this event (you can read about our previous races here and here). And just like always, we signed up for the 1 mile Fun Walk, but since it was such a gorgeous day and I’m in such good shape, we decided to do the 5K course instead. People of all ages trotted along side my lean physique and we all were cheered by race spectators along the tree-lined hospital campus and surrounding neighborhood. I really wanted to stop and have some of them pet me but mom said we shouldn’t dally. Sheesh, she’s such a buzz kill. I mean, come on woman…don’t you know I’m a real lady-killer? You know I always attract a group of fans at these events and this year was no exception. I even got to meet Miss Colorado, Shannon Patilla! Don’t we make a great-looking couple? Miss Shannon was really sweet and gave me the best ear rubs. S.W.O.O.N. She’s getting ready to graduate with a master’s degree in healthcare administration soon and is ready to take on the world after almost a year of attending events like this one. We wished her loads of success and happiness and thanked her for supporting cancer survivors.

Who knew we’d both look so pawsome in purple?

Let’s go racers!

This was the 10th anniversary of the event which celebrates courage, resilience and strength, just some of the characteristics that describe the over 14 million cancer survivors across America. Not only do these words describe those who have won their fight against cancer, but also those who fought courageously and with dignity. It was incredible to see 20, 25, and even 30 year survivors being recognized. A 10K, 5K, 1 mile Fun Walk and the kids walk make for a fun experience and although we didn’t hear what the final total figure raised was, we expect the proceeds will provide plenty of support at the Cancer Centers of Colorado at Lutheran Medical Center and will help inspire those who are recently diagnosed, support the families who have lost their loved ones to cancer and be a Hero of Hope in our local community.

It was such an honor to be a part of the pet therapy team pawticipating with the nearly 500 other race contestants and a great way to celebrate a Sunday morning for such a very worthy cause.
Live, love, bark! ❤︎

Friday Fun

Winter dropped by yesterday in Colorado with snow and rain. Some nearby mountain areas received close to 30 inches. You read that right 3-0! While my neighborhood only received a skiff of the white stuff, more is forecast for today, though I expect only liquid stuff. The joys of springtime in the Rockies. In the meantime, IT’S FRIDAY!!  Wishing you a fun, fur-filled weekend.

Live, love, bark! ❤︎

Earth Day…Revisited

Despite wanting to share this post shortly after attending a photography seminar, a hectic life sort of interfered. But I decided it was just too good not to share the experience. “Walk on the Wildside” was held in connection with Earth Day sponsored by a local camera shop at the Denver Zoo. The guest speaker was not only a phenomenal photographer but one who happened to be a Nikon Ambassador.

Ron Magill, director of communications for the Miami Zoo, is a trained zoologist but never took any photography classes. He learned how to photograph through practice, patience and necessity (stock photos were too expensive when he first started out). I signed up for this class not because I’m planning on a safari trip to Africa, but because I figured any tips could be used in taking photos of Sam and Elsa (who often resemble wild animals).

Boy am I glad I did!! Although I shoot with non-Nikon brand cameras, photographic principles are the same whether you use Nikon or another brand like I do. If you have the time and the inclination, this video is a fair representation of his presentation in Denver with emphasis on his conservation efforts. Ron is high energy and enthusiastic. Be prepared to get caught up with his energy. As a world-renowned conservationist as well as a photographer, Ron walks the walk using his position to draw attention to the importance of saving endangered species throughout the world. Ron stressed the importance of living a life that protects these magnificent creatures so that we can enjoy them now and well into the future. As a naturalist whose primary job is protecting wildlife for generations to come, Ron showed how invaluable photography can be in telling stories that help empower people in to making a difference in protecting our natural world.

Ron showed some of the most inspiring photos in extreme locales; his enthusiasm for photographing nature’s incredible creatures permeated throughout his talk. Even though the presentation ended shortly after noon (and the worst possible time to take photos), I left inspired to see if I could possible capture anything like what he suggested.

Catching up on some 💤

What did I say about your attitude?

🎶 I’m too sexy for my…

Wait, was that a ground squirrel?

I’m the real sexy one!

Hey, no pictures without a signed release, ok?

Hey Ralph, there’s something down in this hole.

The most dangerous creature in Africa (next to man).

While the lighting was atrociously harsh and mostly overexposed, I was able to shoot a few shots that pleased me and as Ron suggested, any photo that you like is a good photo regardless of photographic rules. This presentation inspired me to my very core. It rekindled a burning desire to photograph the odd, the ordinary, and those exceptional sights that I’m blessed to see every day right in front of me. I left with an energized sense of creativity. It reminded me we all are stewards of nature and the need to keep wild animals alive and present for our children. An Earth Day to remember, savor and practice every day, oh yes. And for the record, it has inspired me to visit to the zoo more often, that is, when I’m not living with the zoo at home.

What story will you tell with your photographs?

Live, love, bark! ❤︎

April Fool’s Day

Having been retired for a year now, I often wonder if after 25 years of pranks like this were why the firm wasn’t all that ‘sorry‘ to see me leave (actually the boss I pulled this on enjoyed it but boy was he surprised once he realized there was an inch of water in each of those cups). Bwahaha! Sadly I wasn’t able to fit all 150 cups in this photo but you get the idea. Perhaps my two knuckleheads are payback for these kinds of shenanigans. You think?

Oh little Red Solo cup…you make me smile.

Here’s hoping any pranks coming your way today make you smile. Happy weekend.

Live, love, bark! ❤︎