I Heart Macro – Pods

Welcome to Macro Sunday.  I actually took these pictures a few weeks ago, but never got around to posting them.

Five leaf Akebia pod

Five Leaf Akebia pod

We have a Five Leaf Akebia vine twining along the railing of our backyard deck.  My husband is the garden expert at our house, so I’d never paid much attention to this vine before.

Five Leaf Akebia pod

Five Leaf Akebia pod

A couple of weeks ago, he called me outside to show me these giant-sized seed pods!

opened pod of a Five Leaf Akebia

Opened pod of a Five Leaf Akebia vine.

I was astonished at the size of the pods.  Some were over 4 inches long!  Heavy with seeds, the pods caused the vine to droop down.

Five Leaf Akebia seed pod.

Five Leaf Akebia seed pod.

Surely this vine had never produced such extraordinary fruits before!  However, my husband said that, yes, these pods grow every year at this time.

Five Leaf Akebia seed pod.

This one makes me laugh! It looks like it is talking!

Well that humbled me!  We’ve lived here 7 years now and I’ve been totally oblivious to these long, fat seed pods!

Mass of black seeds, contained within two thick, fleshy pods.

Five Leaf Akebia seed pod.

This experience taught me the importance of really seeing things, of looking deeply and paying attention.  What’s the point of having a beautiful garden, if I’m not truly present in the moment. If I am too preoccupied with the cares of today or with concerns about the future, then I’m unable to accept the gifts our garden is offering me in the present moment.  Gifts of beauty, abundance, calm, color and the cycle of life.  I must make sure I am really living with my eyes open!

Mass of black seeds, contained within two thick, fleshy pods.

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Hey!  who let the gremlins in here????  I never said they could doodle on my picture!

doodling on a picture of a seed pod/

“Hello there friendly reader!”

Oh well, I guess I couldn’t remain so seriously philosophical for too much longer…..

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Abandoned Warehouse

We recently visited a small town, north of us, called LaConner.  The town has a reputation for many delightful art galleries and boutiques.  The weather was gorgeous and we enjoyed meandering from shop to shop and then stopping at a small pub, overlooking the water, for a lunch of fish and chips.  After lunch we strolled to the end of town and found an old, abandoned warehouse that was truly a photographer’s delight.  Technically these are not macro shots.  They are close-ups.  But whatever–I hope you enjoy them.  The last picture steps back from the warehouse to give you an impression of the size and overall appearance. 

peeling paint O'conner, WA

Abandoned warehouse, LaConner, WA

 

boards falling of an old warehouse

Abandoned warehouse in LaConner, WA

 

moss growing on the boards of an abandoned warehouse

Abandoned warehouse in LaConner, WA

 

chain link fence by old boards with peeling paint

Abandoned warehouse, LaConner, WA

 

broken window, boarded over in an abandoned warehouse

Abandoned warehouse, LaConner, WA

 

side view of an abandon warehouse.

Abandoned warehouse, LaConner, WA

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Radish Love

 I ♥ Macro Sunday!

Today’s Macro Sunday picture occurred quite spontaneously.  A bit of serendipity!  I cut the root-end off of a radish, and this is how it looked!

heart shape on a radish

Radish Love

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Peonies

I ♥ Macro Sunday!

Not satisfied being just a pretty garden flower, peonies are exuberantly  large, with ruffled depth and petticoat-like ruffles.  I love to snip the stems short and float the blossoms in shallow bowls or stemware dessert glasses.

peony just before blooming

Peony bud

peony bud, just before blooming.

peony bud bursting open

peony bud about to open up

peony bud, stating to open

peony starting to bloom

peony bud reaching skyward.

peony in full bloom✿✿✿

Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Orchids and Earrings

 I ♥ Macro Sunday!

I have a small collection of orchids, on my kitchen window sill, that I either nurture to bloom or kill.  I seem to do a bit of both.  Knowing that I love orchids, my family often gives me new orchids on my birthday or Mother’s Day.   This past Mother’s Day, my daughter, Naomi, (a metalsmith) outdid herself in the orchid department.

She gave me this gorgeous orchid, that is still blooming gloriously. I thought it would make a great subject for this Sunday’s macro photo.

violet and white moth orchid

Mother’s Day orchid from Naomi

“But wait, that’s not all!”, as they say on TV.   When my eyes lit upon the orchid pot, I saw that tucked into the rim were a pair of sterling silver orchid earrings that Naomi had designed for me!

handmade sterling silver orchid earrings

Sterling silver orchid earrings – Gift from my daughter.

I was deeply touched by this gift.  Here’s a pair of earrings, designed with love by my daughter, to reflect my personal passion for flowers, especially orchids.  Check out the cool texturing, the exacting craftsmanship and the central rivet which holds it all together.

Artisan made orchid earrings by Naomi Landig

Orchid earring, close-up photo

I love these earrings and I wear them often.  More importantly though;  I love my daughter and am thankful for her thoughtful gift and her wonderful presence in my life.

Now, as a bonus, I’ll include a macro photo of another orchid of mine that is also in bloom at this time.

moth orchid

This one has been a reliable bloomer for several years now.

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Raindrops

 I ♥ Macro Sunday!

I’ve been really busy with a show each of the past two Saturdays.  But I did manage to snap 2 macro photos – not the greatest shots in the world, but it is these or nothing! :)

After the rain

After the rain

 

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Rhododendrons

 I ♥ Macro Sunday!

I have always loved  rhododendrons.  Here’s a worthless trivia factoid: The official Washington State flower is the rhododendron.  But that’s not why I love them.  As a kid, my parents would sometimes take us to the Seattle arboretum.  They had old rhododendron bushes there that were as big as small trees.  We could hide under the rhododendrons and pretend we were in a house made of flowers.  Isn’t that just the greatest make-believe scenario:  Living in a house made of flowers!

pink flowers

Rhododendrons

pink flowers

Rhododendrons

pink flowers

Rhododendrons

pink flowers with sunlight

Rhododendrons

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Magnolias

Its time for another I ♥ Macro Sunday!

I went to the library last Thursday to drop off an audio book I’d listened to while commuting to work.  A garden near the entryway had several magnolias that were in full and glorious bloom.  So gorgeous that I had to share pictures with you!

tulip tree

Magnolia Blossom

Tulip Tree in bloom

Magnolia Blossom

I was fascinated with the starburst-like shape of the reproductive structures of the magnolias.

Tulips tree blooms

Magnolia Blossom

Center of Tulip tree bloom

Inside of Magnolia Blossom

Inside of Tulip Tree Blossom

Center of a Magnolia Blossom

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Roots

Roots

You may know that I am semi-retired at this point in my life.  I work part-time for the University of Washington, supervising teaching interns.  Each week, I visit teaching interns in 4 different school districts,  I observe them teaching a lesson and we debrief together afterward, looking at what went well in their lesson and discussing ways to improve.  Two of the schools I visit have breathtaking views of Mt. Ranier.  Usually, when the weather is clear, I can’t take my eyes off of that incredible vista.  But the other day I happened to look down and I noticed these amazing roots emanating from the trees in the parking lot.  So I grabbed my camera and I offer them here to you for my Macro Sunday post.

tree root

These pictures make me question what anchors me?  What stabilizes my life and nurtures my soul? How can I grow my roots deeper?  Do you grapple with these questions, too?

tree roots

tree roots

One thing that anchors me, is meaningful relationships with others in my life.  I nurtured some of those relationships while I was at the Bead Fest in Philadelphia last weekend.  Come back to my blog tomorrow to read more about how those connections were deepened.

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone

I Heart Macro – Lichen & Giveaway Winners

Its time for another I Heart Macro Sunday!  And we also have a winner for the giveaway!!!  But first the macro shots.  (If you just want to skip to the winners (he-he),  scroll down about half way)!

Lichen

We live in a beautiful woodsy area in western Washington state.  Dry, almost hair-like lichen is a common sight here,  Sometimes it hangs off the forest branches like a veil. Lichen does not flourish in areas with a great deal of pollution, so it is a sign of a healthy environment to find it so abundantly here.

lichen

lichen

According to Backyard Nature:

Lichens are not plants. They are “composite organisms” made up of two, or maybe three, completely different kinds of organisms. It’s as if you combined an animal such as a dog with a plant such as an oak, maybe with a fungus thrown in as well, and ended up with something very different from animal, plant or fungus. Something that was its own thing, with its own identity and manner of being.

Every lichen species is part fungus. Usually the other  species is a photosynthesizing alga, but sometimes it can be a photosynthesizing bacterium known as a cyanobacterium. Sometimes all three kinds of organisms are found in one lichen.

Washington State Lichen

Pacific Northwest Lichen

A scientist who studies lichens is called a lichenologist.  I never even knew such a field existed – did you?

Lichen in Western WA State

Pacific Northwest Lichen

According to Lichen Biology and the Environment:

Lichens grow in the leftover spots of the natural world that are too harsh or limited for most other organisms. They are pioneers on bare rock, desert sand, cleared soil , dead wood, animal bones, rusty metal, and living bark. Able to shut down metabolically during periods of unfavorable conditions, they can survive extremes of heat, cold, and drought.

Washington State Lichen

Lichen in my backyard

Most lichens grow very, very slowly, often less than a millimeter per year, and some lichens are thought to be among the oldest living things on Earth. Lichens with known, slow growth rates, like Rhizocarpon geographicum, have been used to estimate the dates of geological events such as the retreat of glaciers.

Washington State Lichen

Lichen in my backyard

Giveaway Winner

A big thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway!  Also a warm welcome goes out to everyone who liked my Facebook jewelry page, as part of this giveaway!  I had a lot of fun reading your comments!

sometimes you don't

source: Pinterest

So Sari Earrings

The first part of the giveaway is for everyone who left a comment about the copper, lampwork and sari silk earrings.

copper, lampwork and sari silk earrings

So Sari Earrings

There were 115 entries for this giveaway!  And the winner is (drum roll please):  # 73 – Shannon Hollahan

The second part of the giveaway was for people who shared the link to the giveaway on their Facebook pages, on their blog or on Google+.

These people were eligible to win their choice of a pair of beautiful Athena Ancient Patina Copper Charms by Melinda Orr Designs or…..

Athena Ancient Patina Copper Charms

Athena Ancient Patina Copper Charms

…a hand-woven bracelet by me.

right angle weave bracelet

There were 62 entries for this part of the Giveaway.  The winner is: # 16 – Sarah Lyons

 (note: I tried to paste a screen shot of the random number generator here, but I was unable to do so successfully – computer klutz that I am…)

Congratulations to the winners!  Please contact me through Facebook or by clicking on the contact button on the right side margin on my blog!

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Lori of Studio Waterstone  hosts a weekly blog hop of close-up photos.
Visit Lori to get links to more great macro shots.

studio waterstone