Thursday, January 29, 2009


Finally.....a real midwestern snow! The average snowfall for STL in January is 7", and I kept telling Mark I wanted it all in one fell swoop. I finally got a made to order snowstorm this week, 7" and a two day midweek holiday...what could be more perfect??! We've had a few dustings, but nothing like I was anticipating with my northern move. Mark was raised in Rochester, NY, so his idea of a big snowfall is much different than mine. He handles them differently as well....we went and took the dogs to the park then met friends with their dogs so the dogs could run and play in the snow while it was falling heavily. Later we decided to go out to eat, having to stop at our second choice of restaurants because the first one had closed early. We sat and had our food while it was snowing heavily. Of course he did the driving....I did venture out the next day to take pictures though. Truly, the roads were quickly plowed and everyone was traveling freely today, although there are huge piles of snow everywhere!

Here's some pictures from our back yard. The dogs love the stuff, even though it seems like they would be cold as can be, especially Lucy. She never seems to get cold though!

Here is the cute little gingerbreak house across the street from us. This neighborhood is full of these really cute houses (although ours isn't one of them). I love walking around and looking at them!

I finally got brave, and drove out to Forest Park, the big park not far from here for picture taking. Actually, the roads weren't bad, they have plenty of snowplows around. Here's the Jewel Box, which is a beautiful greenhouse which was built for the Worlds Fair (1904?). I think it is gorgeous!

Here's the lake at Forest Park, which was pretty frozen, and covered with geese. The buildings in the back are the Barnes Jewish/Washington University campus, and Mark's lab is in the shorter, second building from the right.

Here's just other random pictures of the park....I love the snow in the woods!

And lastly....Mark had requested a "head shot" for an article that is being written about his research, so I got to play photographer again. I ended up liking the picture well enough that I'm posting it here...(yes, I think he's a cutie!).

Sunday, January 25, 2009


I have been buried in IEP hell....I inherited a case load where 1/3 of the IEPs came due in February, and of course I didn't do a thing about it back in December, so....It has been busy! One more IEP tomorrow morning (I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a snow day!), then only three more for the entire year. The IEP software here is more tedious than the GA program, but it also has more checks and balances against mistakes, so once I get more familiar with it, I think I'll like it.

I spent some time playing with my camera and Mark's fish tank the other day and finally got some decent fish pictures. Mark has a very large tank with koi that are very entertaining to watch. When I moved in he had recently lost two fish, so he had bought two more to replace them. One was all white, and when I asked him what he had named them , he said, "Well, that one is Whitie, of course....and so the other one must be Toby."'s Whitie and Toby fish....

And here's a group of some of the rest of them. They aren't very cooperative about all lining up into one really good photo shot, but I will keep trying! Left to right are Darth Maul, Smudge, Frick and Creamsicle. I don't get to take credit for naming them!

I've had two photography classes, and now have at least an inkling of what most of the buttons on my camera do, but there is still a lot to learn and play with! I told Mark that now I need a new computer because this one will fill up quickly with all these really big picture files, and it is slow to work with the files because they are so large. Unfortunately, he didn't bite, so I guess I'm stuck with my dependable laptop for awhile longer. BTW, I learned in photography class that you are never supposed to use a Sharpie on burned CDs...the solvents in the Sharpie actually dissolve the data layer on the disc! Who knew!!??!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Wild Night at the Zoo

We managed to get to the Wild Night as the Zoo exhibit before it closed. We weren't sure what to expect, and unfortunately most of the animals were all put to bed for the night, but we did have fun playing with the new camera. It did pretty well with the nighttime shots, although my tripod would have helped. Mark has the steadier hand, and he took many of these pictures. I'm afraid he might have caught the photography bug from me! Here's a fish display....
Gingerbread houses....
Singing frogs....

Lighted trees....
Jumping catfish and a waterfall....
The Penquin House was open, but very crowded. We were able to get a few good shots.

As we were leaving, Mark snapped this picture of the sign. Note the bears in the background....we laughed and laughed when we took a second look at the photo!