Ahhhh, Spring!

So, I’ve been getting ready for my sister and her family to come for a visit. Yay! For the longest time I was worried that it wouldn’t get warm. They live in sunny Southern California, and a cold, damp, dark New England spring is not exactly their idea of a good time.

On my run the other day, I got my first sign that it was all going to be okay.

No, the picture isn't out of focus. The baby ducks really were THAT fuzzy!

Yep, a mama duck leading her babies for a shallow-end swim in the Charles river!  So sweet.  There were too many baby ducks to count.  More than fit in the frame, really.  This mama duck puts the Octomom to shame!

This is the first time in forever that I can look at all the beautiful spring flowers without immediately sneezing.  It might just be wishful thinking, but I really feel like all those allergy shots are starting to do some good!

I love taking super-close-up shots of flowers.  I probably should invest in a macro lens some day.  But, in the meantime, my trusty zoom does just fine. Last summer when I went to Glacier National Park with my parents, I made my mom and dad wait while I stopped and took a picture of every wildflower we saw.

I couldn't tell you the names of many of these, but they were all so beautiful. How was I suppose to choose which ones to photograph?

But, that was last summer. Back to spring in New England.  My friend Jeanne and I went out last weekend to the Garden in the Woods.  I lived for years in Framingham, and I always saw the signs for this place.  But, I had just never managed to go for a visit.

Boy, was I missing something!

Pretty, pretty, pretty...

Pretty, pretty, pretty...

When we arrived, Jeanne and I started by checking out the list of plants currently in bloom.  Their names were listed on a big bulletin board, along with photos of the flowers.  I wish I had paid better attention, because I couldn’t tell you the names of anything I photographed.  There were just too many names to learn.  The bulletin board was overflowing…

The bees had their work cut out for them with all of those plants to pollinate!

After I got home, I started messing around with picnik.  Have you picniked?

I had never heard of the program until Saba at Boston PhotoWalks suggested it.  Now, I’m addicted.  I find it quicker than firing up Photoshop Elements for basic cropping and re-sizing.  My mac is a few years old, and my version of Photoshop is even older.  They both get a little cranky from time to time.

This time, I started playing around with some of picnik’s cool photo effects.  It’s been a couple of days, so I can’t tell you exactly what I did to any of these.  I promise, next time I’ll take notes.

I thought this one would be cool in black and white, but it was even cooler after it had been 1960-fied.

I went for some more subtle changes with this one. I just wanted those beautiful colors to pop!

If a little pop of color is good...a big pop of color is better, right?

Were all the flowers pink? I'm sure there were some blue ones, too.

Still pink. Still pretty.

Even leaves can look cool with some creative picniking.

My sister and her family are finally here and it’s hot, hot, hot.

Maybe I should have titled this post, “Ahhhh, Summer?”

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