Archive for ‘Nature’

August 17, 2012

Friday Fieldtrip::Fjords and Highlands

by heatherkp

We took a LONG day journey to visit the mid-west coast of Norway and were hoping to get to hike to the top of Preikestolen– or Pulpit Rock but in the end the weather didn’t cooperate with us so we took a ferry ride instead.  This was not a disappointment though, just a different perspective on this beautiful area of Norway!  The fun thing about this adventure was that there were a ton of bridges and tunnels and 9 of us caravaned in 3 cars.

We stopped in a couple spots to check out local sites including Tronasen, check out this fun video of the crazy narrow switchback road we took to the top!  At the bottom we came to this bridge, which is the oldest suspension bridge in Norway, built in 1844.

Next we continued North towards Stravanger  where we caught a ferry along Lysefjord after feasting on a fabulous picnic on the banks of the North Sea.  There are several ferries that run along this Fjord, some for locals who are traveling just to their home or work destination and some ferries travel the length of the Fjord ending in Lysebotn while offering local tourist information along the way.  This ferry was about 2 1/2 hours long and the day was partly rainy/cloudy so it made for some spectacular and dramatic views!

Towards the end of the ferry ride we were very lucky to spot these seals lounging along the rocky shore.  Once the ride was over we embarked on another windy and steep drive up to the “Highlands”.

That’s what I’m calling it because the terrain was very elevated, there wasn’t much vegetation and there were many sheep, rock cairns, lakes, residual snow, thatched or living roof’s and several rainbows along this stretch.  It was what I imagine the highlands of Ireland or Scotland to be like. 

As we started to come down from the highlands there was more and more vegetation, especially evergreens such as spruce and pines.  There were also many more signs of life, more houses, a few small shops and villages where tourists come to get away in the summer but it was still quite unpopulated (there are only 5 million people in Norway!).

I was delighted to see some of the traditional architecture such as this wooden food storage house called a Stabbur, where food was stored to keep the mice away!  The return route home took us through the lakes and mountains smack down the center of Norway East of the Stravanger area through a couple towns like Rysstad (the picture below was taken there) and Evje both popular vacation/camping spots for the summer in Norway.It was about a 12 hour day and we covered a lot of ground but I assure you it was one of the most memorable days of my life!  I am so grateful to my brother, his wife and her mother who helped to plan this day so we could experience Norway’s splendid range of beauty!

May 12, 2012

Weekend Walking::US Botanical Gardens

by heatherkp

While I was up in the DC metro area I played tourist a couple days and did the expected amount of walking.  On this particular day I went downtown to meet my dad for lunch. Since he works only a few blocks from the US Botanical Gardens I knew I would have to pay a visit to the gardens right next to the Capital building.

It was a really beautiful day (which I can’t say was true of every day I was there, the weather was a roller coaster with temps ranging from the 50’s to 80’s!).

I knew I would catch some spectacular blooms but due to the early warm temps I was lucky to find the roses were in full bloom along with Peonies (which don’t do well in the south:(), clematis and many other late spring early summer bloomers.

I also found these baby ducklings (only 1 day old)!

My favorite were the tropicals blooming inside the conservatory though.  I found some unusual Hibiscus, many orchids, banana and other tropical foliage plants.

If you have been reading my blog for any length of time now you have probably noticed my love of floral/foliage photography.  I was in my own little oasis on this walk through the gardens.  Much like a walk by the ocean, walking through a garden takes away all my worries and I am truly brings me joy.  The beauty of flowers is one artistic muse I just don’t seem to ever tire of.  Where have you walked this week?  Did you find your muse along the way?

April 22, 2012

Weekend Walking::Earth Day & The Market

by heatherkp

This weekend we have been dog sitting for this little guy who happens to live downtown Charleston.  We are also about to be living downtown so we are going to be doing a lot of walking!

I was really excited to wake up Saturday and know I could walk to the downtown farmers market! Charleston has a vibrant weekly market at Marion Square and I’ve always loved it (even when visiting I’d try to stop by).

Ambrose Family Farms

Lowland FarmsOwl’s Nest Plantation

I am not familiar with this “Certified Naturally Grown” label (not sure why having worked at a farm stand/CSA for the last 2 years!) but I have a feeling we’ll be seeing more of it.

Loved the set up here with the bins running long way down the tent.  As with everything I do, I look for the form and the function. I believe well designed should be beautiful and vice versa!  So naturally the farm vendors who really “spoke” to me (who I purchased from and took photo’s of) were those that had beautiful, local (mostly organic) produce and well designed/displayed set up’s.

They have live music, local produce and lots of local food and art/craft vendors.  I saw a few I recognized and some new ones.  The market runs from April through December so things are just getting started.  I’ll be taking weekly walks to the market to pick up fresh produce while we are living so close.  After that, who knows but this gives me a chance to sample different produce from local farms and choose which CSA I’ll be joining!

I have been a suburbanite for EVER!  Everywhere I’ve ever lived required getting in a car and driving to almost every destination.  I have been walking everywhere since we’ve been here and I’m hereby pledging to take a weekly walk to the farmers market for my local produce over the next couple months! It feels great to be able to celebrate earth week this year by doing so much walking and supporting local farms and businesses.

How are you celebrating Earth Week/Earth Day?  Has your local farmers market opened up yet for the season?

 

April 17, 2012

Texture Tuesday::Natures Inspiration

by heatherkp

Lately I’ve been feeling a bit scattered, splattered and smothered so I’ve been seeking solace in natures beauty.  Luckily the opportunities for natures inspiration are everywhere just outside my doorstep!

To me April is always about soaking in natures beauty, celebrating the bounty, digging into the soil and watching the miracle of life emerge after winter’s rest.  This is a time of wonder, taking it all in and the appreciation of beauty…the hard work and the reflection are right down the road but for now it’s all about the inspiration, the enjoyment and the wonder of spring’s beauty!  With the ocean so close by and  spring the flowers in full bloom I have no excuses and am claiming it as my right to soak it in!

Lately I’ve been posting less frequently and haven’t been going very in depth about what’s happening with life and business but it’s one of those times in life when I’m going with the flow and soaking it all in.  The time to share everything bubbling beneath the surface will reveal itself when it’s right.  In the meantime, I’m here,  getting inspired and enjoying sharing some of that inspiration with you.

PS. This weeks texture used is Oh My by Kim Klassen.  Do go check out her amazing photography and textures!

April 8, 2012

Silent Sunday::Seaweed Pressing

by heatherkp

 

 

 

 

 

March 30, 2012

Friday Fieldtrip::Springtime in the South

by heatherkp

I have a lot going on behind the scenes and I’m not quite ready to share as I mentioned in a previous post BUT…I want to share some of what I’ve been doing!  I recently decided to apply to volunteer at Brookgreen Gardens and last Tuesday I was “interviewed” and “oriented” to become a part of that team.  I am so excited, as a Master Gardener in both Maryland and Georgia I’ve been itching to get my hands in the dirt here and begin to learn more about the coastal plants I’m not familiar with.  The Master Gardener program in SC is run through Clemson and I missed the cut off for the first class of the year so while I’m waiting and deciding if I want to continue as a Master Gardener here I opted to jump into the Brookgreen opportunity!  This place is one of my favorite public gardens, anywhere, ever!

Here is the daily display of the flowers in bloom.  This is not a comprehensive display but it represents alot of what’s blooming on any given day.  It’s the sneak peak of goodies to be seen and smelled.

This bottle tree is in the education center garden which includes edible crops such as rice, corn, medicinal herbs, greens and other seasonal crops.  I love the Southern tradition of bottle trees in the garden, they are said to catch evil spirits as they get caught the colorful bottles after being entranced.

Look at all these blooming beauties!  Azaleas, Delphinium, Larkspur, Poppies and many other springtime favorites were in bloom.  With the warm winter and spring we are having, the daffodils were almost done blooming but there were some incredible combinations of flowers not typically in bloom together.  March is typically a “dangerous” month in low country gardens that border marshy areas, snakes and alligators are coming out of hibernation and I was startled by one in an unexpected spot as I was trying to get some shots.  I’ll be learning a lot more about where they like to hang out and I’ll be using extreme caution!  I am typically a pretty fearless gardener but I have a healthy respect for these potentially deadly creatures.  Avoidance will be my main tactic, along with long pants, closed toe shoes and gloves when reaching into hidden areas.

I am thrilled to just be able to go soak in the beauty and contribute to sharing that with all the visitors who come there.  I’m sure you will be hearing and seeing more of my Brookgreen experience over the months to come.  If you ever get to Myrtle Beach or Charleston, it’s worth the little extra drive to visit this garden which also includes a comprehensive sculpture collection and a lot of plantation history.

February 26, 2012

Silent Sunday::Blown Away at the Beach

by heatherkp

Blown Away at the Beach from Heather Powers on Vimeo.

Very windy Friday evening at Pawleys Island, tornado warnings were in effect.

February 14, 2012

Texture Tuesday~Filled with Love

by heatherkp

Happy Valentines Day! 

“Laugh as much as you breathe and love as long as you live.”– Anonymous

“Love makes your soul crawl out from its hiding place.” — Zora Neale Hurston

I was very close to spending today with out my dear valentine but alas fate swept in at the last minute and changed our plans so we will be together.

“Whoso loves, believes the impossible.” — Elizabeth Barret Browning

“We need not think alike to love alike.” — Francis David

I hope each of you has someone you love to share this special day with.  If they are not with you in person, please always remember none of us are ever alone!

“Birds do it, bees do it, even educated fleas do it. Let’s do it, let’s fall in love.”– Cole Porter

Today isn’t so much about romantic love, dates, sharing greeting cards and the media filled attention that Valentines day gets as it is about really appreciating the love we receive from others and inviting love into our hearts and lives on a moment by moment basis.

Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.  -Peter Ustinov

PS. Don’t you just love these tulips?  They came my way via a dear friend who works for a florist and she was thoughtful enough to share them with me.

February 12, 2012

Silent Sunday::Living Conch Shell

by heatherkp

Living Conch Shell from Heather Powers on Vimeo.

I found this beautiful live conch shell on the beach at Pawleys Island recently. It moves so gracefully.

October 14, 2011

Fabulous Foto Friday::Evading A Tornado

by heatherkp

I was on a photo adventure yesterday regardless of weather.  I am renting a Canon 70-200L lens for the week for a wedding I’m photographing tomorrow (1st time as a semi-pro wedding photographer!!).  I needed to get the feel for the lens so I took an afternoon drive in the country to a few of my favorite spots and dodged the raindrops and apparent Tornado warnings!  I had no idea, I was listening to a Toni Morrison book on CD (A Mercy) so I didn’t hear weather reports or see anything too crazy, I was in my bliss. Here are some of my shots using the above lens.

All images Copywrite Heather K Powers

I’ll be shooting some serious love shots tomorrow at my friends wedding, fingers crossed that my results do not disappoint!