Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge this week on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2014/01/24/travel-theme-wood/ is Wood.
Once again I go back to the wonderfully intricate architecture of the Hindu temple in Bartlett. The wood carving on this entryway is stunning.
In contrast, this simple wood fence at the Volkening Heritage Farm in Schaumburg seems to blend nicely with the flowers in the background.
A large wooden barn at Old World Wisconsin.
Also at Old World Wisconsin, this white, wooden church stands out against a blue sky on a summer’s day.
A beautifully polished wooden locker and bench on board the Sorlandet at the Tall Ships Festival in Chicago.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge this week on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2014/01/17/travel-theme-silver/ is Silver.
I came up with three very different pictures for this challenge, each illustrating the subject silver in it’s own particular style.
The first shot was taken at Christmastime in 2011 on State Street in downtown Chicago and shows a sparkly, silver, window display in what used to be the old Marshall Fields store before changing to Macy’s in 2006.
The next picture shows two little silver rabbits nestled in amongst an Easter table setting on display at The Chicago Flower and Garden Show which that year was held at the Convention Center in Rosemont.
I don’t know who captured the third image but it holds a very special place in my photo files. It was taken more than sixty years ago and shows the cabinet in which my grandparent’s displayed their silver collection. They didn’t keep any toys at their place so whenever we went to visit them at their home in Kent I had to make do with whatever was available and was occasionally allowed to take all these precious pieces out and play with them. It kept me amused for hours.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge this week on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2014/01/10/travel-theme-illuminated/ is Illuminated.
I can think of no better example, in my photo files, of this topic than the pictures I took at the Chinese Lantern Festival in St. Louis a couple of years ago.
Looking back I wish now that I had captured many more such shots but I guess old habits die hard and I still can’t get used to the idea that with digital images you can go ahead and take as many pictures as you like without worrying about running out of film or having the expense of having them developed. Of course there is the problem of drained batteries and used-up memory but at least I usually go out prepared for such eventualities.
This image of our village, illuminated for the Christmas festivities, was taken many years ago when I was still struggling to get a half-way decent shot with a film camera. I’ve always had a problem with night-time photography which is why there aren’t all that many in my files.
The Crown Fountains in Millennium Park in Chicago, illuminated for the winter season.
The carousel and Ferris wheel on Navy Pier.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/12/20/travel-theme-winter/ is Winter.
I don’t do much in the way of traveling anyway, even in the best of conditions, but especially not in the winter, unless I really have to. Most of my winter shots have been captured much closer to home.
The elk are well taken care of during the winter months in Elk Grove Village.
A purple finch manages to find a few remnants of seed left by the sparrows that seem to have taken over the bird feeders in our garden this winter.
The squirrels are regular visitors in our garden during the winter. They know I’m a soft touch!
The beauty of winter at the Morton Arboretum.
Families make the most of a gloomy winter day, sledding on the hill at our local park.
The Chicago Botanic Garden celebrates winter and Christmas in particular in the greenhouses.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge this week on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/12/13/travel-theme-still/ is Still.
Living just outside the busy hustle and bustle of a big city like Chicago it’s nice every once in a while to get away to a quiet spot where everything is peaceful and still. I’m not saying I’d want to spend my entire life in such tranquil surroundings but a change is as good as a rest, they say, and the occasional visit to such places can be very calming.
Sylvan Lake in Custer State Park, South Dakota.
Palisades State Park, South Dakota.
A quiet spot along the river. I’m not quite sure where this shot was taken; possibly on the Rock River in Wisconsin on one of our Sunday drives.
No need to go all that far afield either. With places like the Morton Arboretum practically on our doorstep, relatively speaking, there’s no reason to travel to distant parts to get away from it all.
Anderson Japanese Gardens in Rockford, Illinois is another place that springs to mind when I’m looking for somewhere soothing to sit still and think about what I’m going to do when I get back to the hurly-burly of the city.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/11/29/travel-theme-sky/ is Sky.
Whether traveling far from home or just looking out of your own back door, the sky always presents an interesting picture, especially when the setting sun paints the clouds.
A little glimpse of blue sky between the rain clouds, reminding us that better weather is on its way.
Clouds roll across the sky above Custer State Park in South Dakota.
After a storm, here in the NW suburbs of Chicago, a hint of a rainbow appears in the sky.
“Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight.”
A beautiful summer sky, something we can only look forward to as we enter the icy grip of winter.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/11/22/travel-theme-fragrant/ is Fragrant.
So many of life’s fleeting fragrances remind me of my early years back home in England. These pictures represent some of those happy memories.
A fragrant memory of roses after the rain as Mum and I walked to my grandmother’s house from the bus stop in Twickenham.
The fragrant odor of fresh-ground coffee beans that greeted us at the door of our favorite restaurant in Folkestone.
The perfume of lilacs in the Spring. Now, in May, I make my annual pilgrimage to Lilacia Park in Lombard, a perfect time to catch that delightful fragrance.
Leaves; not just leaves but burning leaves. That wonderful smell of autumnal garden bonfires.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge this week on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/11/01/travel-theme-delicate/ is Delicate. Admittedly I didn’t have to travel very far to get these pictures but any inducement to get out of the house and go even only as far as the local nature centers is a good thing.
What could be more delicate than a butterfly? A butterfly kiss, perhaps.
The delicate tracery of ice on the branches of a shrub after a freezing, winter rain.
Seeds born on delicate, fluffy wings wait to be released.
I’m not quite sure what the name of this flower is but, going through the files, this one struck me as particularly delicate.
Although they look quite delicate, shells can withstand quite a pounding before being washed up on shore.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/10/25/travel-theme-stone/ is Stone.
My first choice for this challenge was a shot of the stone grotto at The Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary Help Of Christians at Holy Hill in Wisconsin.
One of the stone ‘needles’, part of a natural rock formation that can be seen along Needles Highway which runs through Custer State Park in South Dakota.
Flowers by a stone wall in the English Walled Garden, part of the Chicago Botanic Garden.
A stone water basin in the Anderson Japanese Gardens in Rockford, Illinois
Set in the stone façade of The Tribune Tower in Chicago are several pieces from historical sites around the world.
Ailsa’s Travel Theme challenge this week on Where’s My Backpack? at http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/10/18/travel-theme-brown/ is Brown.
The first two pictures were, for me, an obvious choice for this challenge. Brown County State Park in Indiana lives up to its name when the autumn leaves start to change color.
Pictured below, the grass starts to turn brown at Custer State Park in the Black Hills of South Dakota as autumn approaches.
“How now brown cow?” An interpreter greets one of the residents at Volkening Heritage Farm in Schaumburg, Illinois.
One of the many wonders of nature, an interesting brown fungus growing among the fallen trees in the Morton Arboretum.
And I couldn’t resist adding this picture of Hunter, our daughter’s brown Chocolate Lab, getting into mischief as usual.