As soon as it is reasonably warm enough to walk safely and comfortably, I like to visit the Chicago Botanic Garden at least once a week. I am lucky to have this amazing public garden practically in my back yard — it’s only about a 35-minute drive and as a member I get unlimited entry.
With the promise of a perfect day and glorious spring flowers in bloom, I headed up to the CGB with my camera, set on manual mode. I was determined to get some practice using manual rather than program or automatic modes.
I saw a beautiful yellow finch in the parking lot, but this was the only bird that I captured in the park.
We have been frequent visitors at a little hideaway in Des Plaines for many years. It’s a small restaurant with big Italian flavors, and worth the wait on busy weekend nights.
Entrances are on both busy Lee Street (one-way north) and off the municipal parking lot at the rear of the restaurant. Image Credit
Chef Alessandro Forti (formerly of La Strada and La Donna) and his wife Lisa Leslie offer simple, uncomplicated Italian food in this BYOB gem.
Via Roma is open for lunch Monday through Saturday, with its 10:30 opening time perfect for an early lunch after a morning of coffee — to make room for the good food that awaits you. My friend and I arrived at 10:30 and were the first ones there. We benefited from fresh bread, wonderful aromas, and a welcoming staff. Chef Forti was very present — writing the specials on the board and greeting customers. Continue reading
See why I tell people I look just like him? Cause. I. Do.
I wrote this post in October, 2009, the first entry on my fledgling blogging site, Sentimental Journeys, and it seems amazing now that I was planning my first trip to France. Since then, we have been to France twice, and I long to visit again soon.
Because this post is mostly about my father, and yesterday would have been his 93rd birthday, it seems appropriate to bring it back into the light on Throwback Thursday.
Dad, we hope you are dancing and singing and gardening and cooking happily in heaven. Continue reading
I was at the library the other day, and hidden among the travel guides was a charming little book written by author, artist, and traveler Susan Branch.
Click on photo to see Susan Branch’s web site
It sat on my TBR pile for a few days, but since it’s from the library, I knew I needed to get cracking on it before it was due. To come clean, I have a bunch of other books that I SHOULD be reading but this one was speaking to my soul. What a wonderful title!
Imagine my amazement, delight, and honestly, my chagrin, when I found that Susan Branch has actually written the book I was born to write. It’s kind of a good thing/bad thing. Written in the form of a journal and memorializing her 25th anniversary trip to England with her husband, the book abounds with quotes from songs and authors, hand-painted illustrations, and photos and stories from her travels. Continue reading
Hey, friends! It’s nice to see you again. Thanks for sticking with me. I’ve been busy taking photos!
In photography class we are working on using natural light to illuminate our photos — to “see the light” is the hallmark of a good photographer. As bloggers, we know that a striking photo is important to our work. It’s also easy to use simple items to boost the light in your photos — try using a piece of white posterboard as a reflector. In this photo of a crystal punchbowl, I had a white foam core board over on the right, and the mirror also gave more reflected light. You may remember this mirror from a previous post about creating vignettes. I also posted another photo the last time I took a photography class. I’m very consistent. 🙂 Continue reading
If you are like me, your Pinterest board is a mess and you can’t find things when you want to add pins.
After three weeks in Europe, I have a lot to add to my travel boards, but I was despairing of how to easily access boards and also to clean up duplicates.
I discovered this Chrome extension and it works magically. I can’t believe I never did this before.
How to Arrange Your Pinterest Boards in One Easy Step
Try it. It’s a life changer.
Since I shared the beautiful and intricate lily pads this week, I thought I should also share some photos I took earlier this summer of the blossoms.
It has been a fun summer for glorious flowers. I’ve enjoyed my walks at the Chicago Botanic Gardens; it’s good for my body and good for my soul.
Did you ever see giant lily pads up close?
I’ve been looking at these lilies all summer and focusing on their brilliant flowers.
Since the flowers are mostly gone, my camera was attracted to the structure of the actual leaves.
Without the flowers, the photojournalist (moi) was able to see the reflections in the water and how the lily pads inhabit the pool in which they live.
Sometimes life is all about perspective.
Here’s a lengthy explanation about the Victoria amazonica, which these appear to be. The photos were taken at the Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe, Illininois.
I know. It’s been forever.
Playing with light
I’ve had lots of health struggles over the last months, but I’ve decided to ignore them.
I’m trying to be more consistent with my photography, so at least for now, I’ll be sharing photos and talking about what’s going on in life.
You are worth every minute I spend with you; I really value your kindness and caring persistence in staying with me.
This week’s job is to figure out how to post to the blog from my iPad. I know; it’s probably really easy.
All photos styled by Janet McCarthy from displays at her shop, Lucky Junk in Arlington Heights, Illinois.
My name is Jennie, and I’m an over-packer.
I’m the person in the line at the airline check-in desk sweating bullets, hoping beyond hope that the airline scale is the same as mine at home and that my suitcase doesn’t weigh more than 50 pounds. I’m a mess when it comes to packing. I just can’t say no to anything that jumps in my suitcase. I’m also the person who had to pay $75 in excess baggage fees to bring my treasures home from France.
I’m determined to send my over-packer-self packing. Continue reading