Playing with the new camera

I decided to upgrade from the iPhone and family point-and-shoot camera. I originally wanted an intro level SLR, but instead decided on a Sony Alpha A5000 mirrorless camera – more compact than a DSLR with nearly the same quality. Ben and I have been playing around a bit with the camera – he posted a picture on his blog earlier this weekend. Here are two pictures that I was playing around with today. As a side note – taking pictures in RAW format and editing them on Lightroom is a significant improvement from editing JPEGs on GIMP. The only downside is that Lightroom doesn’t natively run on Linux and we only have Linux machines running right now.

Will working on sanding the legs for the bed frame he and I are making together. Always happy to be the subject of the camera.
Will working on sanding the legs for the bed frame he and I are making together. Always happy to be the subject of the camera.
Flower from the year (taken in the evening just after the sun set).
Flower from the year (taken in the evening just after the sun set).

Self-Portrait

The boys and I are trying a new photo challenge. We will work our way through a weekly photo challenge to improve our photo taking. It will only be the weeks they are here and probably only for the next couple of months. The first challenge is a self-portrait. And since I’ve been playing around in B&W:

Self-portrait in the workshop.
Self-portrait in the workshop.

 

Pictures from Sweden (Part 2)

A quick upload while waiting in Kastrup for our flight to Oslo (and then home). Note to self: the WiFi at CPH is very good for a free connection.

More pictures of the lake from Dan's cabin.
More pictures of the lake from Dan’s cabin.
Kronobergs slott (castle), Sweden.
Kronobergs slott (castle), Sweden.
Will on the walkway to Kronobergs slott near Växjö in Småland, Sweden. The ruins are located on an island in lake Helgasjön,  Will, Susanna and I went to the ruins while Ben went fishing with Dan.
Will on the walkway to Kronobergs slott near Växjö in Småland, Sweden. The ruins are located on an island in lake Helgasjön. Will, Susanna and I went to the ruins while Ben went fishing with Dan.

 

Pictures from Copenhagen

Visiting Nyhavn. A must see when visiting Copenhagen.
Visiting Nyhavn. A must see when visiting Copenhagen.
Ben checking out a kayak slide into the canal. We didn't ever see anyone use it, but it was an interesting idea.
Ben checking out a kayak slide into the canal. We didn’t ever see anyone use it, but it was an interesting idea.
Will, Ben and Barbara enjoying the view of the canal in Copenhagen.
Will, Ben and Barbara enjoying the view of the canal in Copenhagen.
Ben taking a Coke break along the canal in front of our apartment
Ben taking a Coke break along the canal in front of our apartment
Ben looking at the moat at Kastellet, Copenhagen
Ben looking at the moat at Kastellet, Copenhagen
Ben posing for a portrait at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek art museum in Copenhagen
Ben posing for a portrait at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek art museum in Copenhagen

Surviving the heat (a visit to Dianna’s Pool)

The boys testing the waters at Diana's Pool in Chaplin CT.
The boys testing the waters at Diana’s Pool in Chaplin CT.

With the humidity somewhere well above 100% (at least in the house this morning) and the temperatures soaring into the 90’s (mid-30’s for those across the pond using Celsius) we decided to let the air-conditioning take a break from its thankless task and head north to find some shade and water to temper the heat.

I did some digging on the Internet and found a listing for Diana’s Pool – a spot on the Natchaug River in Chaplin, CT. We got to the pool in late morning, beating the crowds (and getting good parking).

It was a great place to get a break from the heat. The water was cool, there was plenty of shade, and lots of waterfalls to play around in. The boys claimed that they overheard some of the other visitors talking about how it got its name – the claim was that someone named Diana drowned there. Of course, I’m sure they heard it from the college kids that were playing around (and drinking crap beer – but of course I drank crap beer when I was that age) and a morbid story is always the better option. But an article from the Hartford Courant from about 2003 give many rumors on how the pool was named (and only one of them was morbid). We had fun, no matter how the pool got named.

The crowds picked up around 1pm, and we decided to head home around 2pm.  Now both boys are trying to beat the heat by playing Minecraft (with Ben live-streaming it on YouTube) in their air-conditioned rooms while I wait for the workshop to cool off enough for me to head out there.

Ben playing in one of the waterfalls at Diana's Pool
Ben playing in one of the waterfalls at Diana’s Pool
Will and Ben exploring the swimming hole at Diana's Pool.
Will and Ben exploring the swimming hole at Diana’s Pool.

 

Working on Ben’s Boat

Susanna and Isabella departed for Sweden yesterday. Will is volunteering as a preschool camp assistant at the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center all week. So, Ben and I get today and tomorrow to hang out together. Today we put some time into the boat. We are (still) working on replacing the stringers. We had replaced part of the center stringer two summers ago, but we didn’t do a very good job at it. So earlier this summer Ben and I cut out the repair and more of the rotted stringer.

Today we glassed in (partly at least) the new stringer. Tomorrow we will put another two layers of glass and cover the entire stringer.

Ben working the resin into the fiberglass matting.
Ben working the resin into the fiberglass matting.
The new stringer installed. We will probably have to rip out the other two and replace them as well.
The new stringer installed. We will probably have to rip out the other two and replace them as well.

Saturday Pictures

The weather was perfect for a morning hike. Ben slept in, so we got our start a little later than I would have liked, but we were home by noon. The two boys and I took a 4.5-mile hike on the Narragansett Trail and Will only complained about half of the hike about the bugs.

Selfie Saturday picture while hiking on the Narragansett Trail.
Selfie Saturday picture while hiking on the Narragansett Trail.
A view from the Narragansett Trail.
A view from the Narragansett Trail.
Hanging out by the fire. On a patio that needs to be cleaned up and a yard that needs to be mowed. But, there is always tomorrow to do chores.
Enjoying the evening watching the fire on the patio.

Father’s Day!

Picture time with Will, Ben and Izzy!
Picture time with Will, Ben and Izzy!

I had a great day. The boys came back early from their Mom’s house to spend the day here. Will came over pretty early and Ben followed a couple of hours later. Ben was sick last night and slept in late tonight.

This morning we had planned on doing a long hike as a family. But, Ben didn’t feel up to it, so we postponed the hike until tomorrow. We got to enjoy the beautiful day at home instead.

This morning I worked with Will on his mowing/trimming skills for the yard. His summer chore is keeping the front yard in good shape, which takes a lot of oversight to make sure it gets done right.

Ben and I worked on a quick project – replacing a the sill cock on the south side of the house. I have had the replacement. The old one leaked and was difficult to shut off. A trip to home depot to get the right connector for the PEX piping and some time in the basement clearing the spider webs in the way and the project was done.

Will trying out the cordless trimmer around the front of the house.
Will trying out the cordless trimmer around the front of the house.

The boys and I also disassembled the old microwave, throwing most of the parts into the recycling and saving a few choice parts for later projects (such as a couple of strong magnets Will pulled out – one of which he promptly broke).

New sillcock installed.
New sill cock installed.

It is nice that things are calming down – of course just as the school year ends and the summer starts its mad dash towards fall. I can tell when life is more relaxed; I write more. I have found time to post pictures over the past 4 months, but not much time to write.