Yaquina Head Photos

I finally remembered to pick up an SD card reader so here are the photos from Yaquina Head. I have photos from the aquarium too but those need a bit more TLC. For anyone considering a visit to the House of McB, these photos were taken just about 75 minutes from our house. Yes, we can take you there. Yes, you will need a coat; no, I really don’t care what time of year it is.

 

It’s a whale. I promise.

Yaquina Head, OregonYaquina Head, Oregonwhale spout Yaquina Head, OregonLandscape and lighthouse

Yaquina Head, Oregon

Yaquina Head, Oregon

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Harbor seals sunning themselves on the rocks.

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Cobble Beach, a result of a basalt lava flow some 14 million years ago

cobble beach oregoncobble beach oregonThere is a sign that explains that many little creates live under the cobbles. It might not be the safest place in the world. The beach itself was a little tricky to navigate in flip-flops. Mr. McB is pigeon-toed and prone to twisted ankles so he’ll definitely have to sport his hiking boots when we visit Yaquina Head.

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My traveling companions

Several folks have expressed some concern since I will be traveling on my own next week. I am happy to announce that I have recruited two traveling companions.

Meet Benny and Finny

Benny Beaver and Finnegan the travel gnomeBenny is a welcome gift from my wonderful new colleagues at the Oregon State University Alumni Association.

Finnegan is Mr. McB’s travel gnome. Poor Finny has been neglected for a long time. He is thrilled to bid Mr. McB and fond farewell and set off on this trip with me.

Benny and Finny promise to post lots of photos next week. Stay tuned!

Wasted time, Amish and the Georgia Aquarium

Yes, it’s a blog post and no, it’s not Thursday. I know I need to get into a routine, especially because I have things to write about but it’s not always easy. When my husband is home, I want to spend time with him. When he’s away, I seem to find ways to fill my time whether it’s working on projects, reading, cleaning or watching TV.

Take yesterday…I planned to write a post and then I wound up watching an Amish: Out of Order marathon on NatGeo. Before you start rolling your eyes, this series isn’t the trashy. It’s an honest and often heartbreaking look at what Amish face when they decide to come to the English world. As I watched it, I couldn’t help but feel grateful for the family I was born into and the life I have. I can’t imagine that there’s anything I could do to make my parents reject me and yet these ex-Amish men and women are literally shunned by those who are supposed to life, guide, and care for them. By time the last episode aired and poor Cephas died in that horrible car accident, I knew I wasn’t going to write.

Tonight, there is no TV or reading until blog posts are written. So please journey back to early June with me as I write about our trip to the Georgia Aquarium.

I’ll share just a few thoughts and then some photos from the trip. First, admission to the aquarium is expensive but it’s worth it. The whale sharks are just amazing. If the aquarium was nothing more than four whale sharks, it would be worth the cost of admission, just watch a feeding and you’ll agree.

Second, food in the dining area is expensive and worth it only because you can’t bring in outside food and you’ll need some kind of fuel to keep you going through the aquarium because it is a lot more than just whale sharks. I suggest getting a few sides and sharing. The food isn’t that great so you’re just looking for something to keep you going.

Here’s a random list of do’s and don’ts…some of which McB and I learned the hard way.

  • Avoid the aquarium on Saturday if possible. Arrive early if you are going on Saturday. My guess is Sunday is pretty nuts too.
  • Buy your ticket in advance.
  • Be prepared for crowds and general rudeness.
  • Know how to turn the flash off on your camera. McB wrote a nice little post about becoming a zenmaster and shooting gorgeous pictures in a crowded aquarium.
  • Get a schedule and go to a feeding in the Ocean Voyager area.
  • Experience at least one touch tank but don’t terrorize the animals. Yes, kids are always bad about this but on our visit we saw some misbehaving adults as well.
  • Don’t expect the dolphin show to be educational. It’s high production value, singing and light-up costumes but it is not educational. I was disappointed in what I saw so if you need to cut something from your schedule, cut this.
  • Bring some hand sanitizer.
  • Be sure to see the Beluga whales. They’re really neat creatures and it’s great fun to see them blow bubble rings. (not my video, not the GA aquarium) We learned that they have to put some effort into blowing these rings and seem to just do it for fun.
On the conveyor belt

Looking up from the people mover in Ocean Voyager

Diver at the Georgia Aquarium

Scrub-a-dub-dub This diver has to clean a giant “tub.”

Diver and whale shark (right) in the Ocean Voyager tank

Shark  Unlike the whale sharks, he has large teeth.

Colorful fish

More from Ocean Voyager

Traveling Thursday – Picture Perfect

Vacations, Forth of July fireworks, family gatherings…there are so many things to photograph during the summer. This week I’m sharing a list of links that will help you improve your photography skills.

Shooting Fireworks
This piece from Digital Trends focuses on tips for a “real” camera. http://www.digitaltrends.com/photography/fourth-of-july-photo-tips-shooting-fireworks/

The New York Institute of Photography offers tips for both DSLR and point-and-shoot models with a lot of editing tips thrown in as well.
http://www.nyip.com/ezine/holidays/firewks.html

This piece from Photojojo includes some ideas to spark your creativity.
http://content.photojojo.com/guides/11-tips-for-sparkling-fireworks-photos/

Vacation Photos
TLC offers tips for taking fantastic family vacation photos.
http://parentables.howstuffworks.com/slideshows/family-travel/10-tips-taking-great-family-vacation-photos/

Hip Trip Mama has even more tips, both technical and artistic, to shoot great pics on your next family vacation.
http://www.hiptravelmama.com/hip-tips/hip-tips-family-vacation-photography-how-to/

Fodor’s has lots of tips for creating memorable vacation photos.
http://www.fodors.com/travel-photography/

Planning to use a self-timer? Here’s how NOT to do it.
http://digital-photography-school.com/how-not-to-take-a-self-timer-portrait

Take better beach photos using these tips.
http://www.lightstalking.com/beach-photography-tips

Improve Photography gives great advice for shooting in the mountains.
http://improvephotography.com/1793/tips-ideas-landscape-photography-mountains-hiking-camping/

Miscellaneous Links
Camping with your photography equipment
http://improvephotography.com/1362/10-tips-for-camping-and-being-outdoors-with-your-photography-gear/

Interesting, alternative uses for your camera during your travels
http://www.vagabondish.com/clever-uses-digital-camera-traveling/

If you know of other good resources, please share them in the comments.