Beach Bikes

Beach Bikes

James and I biked up to 31st Street yesterday so he could run the kids’ Final Mile race.  It was an oceanfront sea of children and parents.  We parked our bikes and walked several blocks north to the start of the race. He was very quiet before the race, seemingly anxious for it to start. When the gun went off, we ran north with the herd to about 37th St., then turned East then South down the boardwalk to the finish, running the whole way.  He collected his medal, a bottle of water, and was ready to head home. Very businesslike. I learned later that he had not been concerned about the run, but anxious from my precautionary talk about what to do if we got separated. Our enjoyment of the event would have flip flopped if I hadn’t brought up the possibility. Who’d have guessed?

I can’t do anything about that now, but I was able to remove a hurricane fence from the beach in the POD I sent yesterday.

Why did I erase it? Because I could. With Touch Retouch. When you can take control of a situation, it’s best to take advantage.

Expo For Runners…and Others

Expo for Runners...and Others

This is a classic Roger photo. I wonder if he would have observed quietly and taken the shot for it’s irony. Or if, like me, he would have only noticed it later. Dad?

This was taken at the Shamrock Marathon Expo at the VB Convention Center. There are several races being held at the oceanfront this weekend and James and I went to get our race numbers. He’s ran in the kids’ Final Mile race today, and I’ll be running the 1/2 marathon on Sunday. This area houses booths of various vendors and was quite a mob scene. Runners and running paraphernalia stretch wall to wall in an huge convention forum. I wanted to provide a sense of how vast the space was, but couldn’t get a vantage point.  I did manage, however, to document that there are a lot of folks who support runners, if they don’t do much of it themselves.

I straightened it a little in Photoshop Express, but really, no editing could make this picture any better than it is.

Birthday Boy

Birthday Boy

Bubba turned 6 on Wednesday.  He got to pick the day’s menu, and here’s what he chose: crepes for breakfast, chocolate cupcakes with vanilla cream cheese frosting brought to school for lunch, and spaghetti, meatballs and broccoli for dinner.  Oh yeah.

This picture was taken under the lovely fluorescent lights of his school cafeteria.  I played with it a little in Photoshop Express, but not enough, because look what I was able to do later with TiltShift Generator!

Better Bubba

It’s so much warmer and intimate looking.  I’ll be using this app a lot more.  So if your eyes glaze over when I start talking about iPhone photo editing apps…you’ll know where to come to get some shut-eye!

Our mountain…really?!

Our mountain...really?!

Several weeks ago, when he was still POD administrator, Roger sent a POD email with subject line, “Our mountain, really”.

This was a correction after he accidentally sent a wrong picture with the title “Our mountain, our sports palaces”.  Since I started sending the POD, I’ve wanted to send this. Virginia Beach can claim some beautiful landscape, but mountains are not part of it.  We have one and this, Mt. Trashmore (a former landfill), is it. I drive by it at 60 mph every day and recently had Mackenzie take some pics as we whizzed by. No offense to her, but I didn’t think any of them were complimentary.

Yesterday was beautiful, and I finally got over there and got a picture. It was then I determined that there are no compliments to give this mountain. So I blinged up the pic with not just one but TWO Filter Mania filters, Clouds and Sun. Seattle can and should take ownership of Mt. Rainier, but Virginia Beach’s mountain is just a heap of garbage. Really.

Mother’s Little Helpers

Mother's Little Helpers

This doesn’t happen every day, so I thought it was worth documenting. Because it is such a novel activity these two were willing, actually enthusiastic, about dusting and vacuuming.

One friend asked if this was a polaroid, but then realized who the kids were.  That was the idea: the shot reminded me of pictures from the 60s which were saved, apparently, simply because they were all there was to remember a person or occasion.  Now there is pressure to save and share only the pictures we deem worthy, because the alternative is suffocation by photos and because there is no excuse for a bad shot.  Why should this be any less worthy?  It’s documenting a rare event, and one that inspires hope…that it can happen again.

I applied a “Slide” filter from the Filtermania app to give this the right look. If you’re wondering what that means; I opened the Filtermania app on my phone, selected this picture from my phone’s photo album, scrolled through a selection of filter options, and selected this one called “Slide”.  Hard work!

Objects in Mirror

Objects in Mirror

Mackenzie took this picture as we were driving back to the hotel after a little hike between swim meet sessions. I love the blues, the layout, and the fact she took it. I was only vaguely aware of it at the time, but recall her saying, “Hey Delaney, put your head out the window again.” As the mirror states, despite their differences in age, ability, interests and stage of life, these sisters are closer than they appear too.

I brightened the shot a little with Photoshop Express, fiddling with the exposure and saturation settings. Just a little. I don’t look at these pics on the computer before I send them. Sometimes on the computer I see things I don’t like that I didn’t notice on the phone’s small screen. Like the dirt on the mirror here. So I returned to the phone to play with it. Using Touch Retouch, I cleaned it up. First I “lassoed” the messiest part,

then I pressed the “start” (triangle) button and cleaned it up some:

I then used the paintbrush button to clean it up a little more, and this is how it ended up:

Definitely some digital smudginess, but not as dirty. With kids, you have to expect some smudges. And rest assured, I took the car through the car wash yesterday.

The Worm is Mine

The worm is mine

Although it didn’t make it any easier to get up at o-dark thirty for a run, springing ahead an hour did make it easier to catch the sunrise.  The final day of a child’s swim meet in western Virginia was also my last opportunity this spring to see the sun come up over mountains.  Or hills.  People say Blacksburg is in the mountains, but when you’re accustomed to the Pacific Northwest and White Mountains of New Hampshire, it’s hard to call these rollers mountainous.  The sun and sky don’t discriminate though.

It may have it’s limitations, but the iPhone does a nice job of picking up color in scenes like this.  The only adjustment I made was to sharpen the branches of the foreground tree, with the Photoshop Express App.

I used this with “Palmolive Pink”, as you may recall, and since I love trees, I’ll probably turn to that quick adjustment button frequently.  It’s like the early morning run, providing clarity to bleary eyed vision and putting one in a format appropriate for sharing with others. And hopefully, for the 5 hour drive home at the end of a four day swim meet.

iPhone snapshots of the day

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