San Diego Zoo Part 3

Here are the final photos from our day at the San Diego Zoo.  I'm really looking forward and itching for our trip to Sea World this upcoming Saturday.  I will have to make sure my battery is fully charged -- something I had forgotten to do before we went to the Zoo - luckily though it didn't die on me while we were there.  I'm even considering bringing another memory card, usually I never need a backup.

The above Koala picture is another copy of one I posted in Part 2, minus fancy editing.

Don't worry that Lion is only sleeping!  She was just beautiful!  It was so overly crowded that I missed getting photos of the male Lion that was sleeping next to her.  And he gave some really good photos too.  Hopefully next time.

Here is that funny little monkey again.  He was a quick little guy.  Very hard to get still photos of him, especially getting the camera to focus on him and not the cage bars in time.  It was a fun challenge.

One of my daughter's favorite animals is the Orangutan.  There was a younger one as well that was showing off to the onlookers.  He was rolling along the ground right at the window while eating a piece of lettuce.  He rolled the whole length of the window and then disappeared.  I wish I had been able to get photos of him, but I was swapping out lenses at the time.  Luckily this guy came out for some photos.

San Diego Zoo Part 2

Can you believe I will need to do a Part 3?  I still have so many to share.

I just LOVE how my zebra photos came out, and really enjoyed the editing process just as much.  What I enjoy most of these photos is that they almost appear as one zebra looking into a mirror.  But it was two snuggling with each other.

I did a few different editing techniques with the koala photos.  One of these I listed in yesterday's blog that is the same koala in the same position and then another koala curled up on a different bamboo tree.

The meerkats were adorable.  They were twisting those little heads all over the place to look up at all the people admiring them and making noises at them.  It was so cute, this little grouping were too cute to resist.

My daughter loves any animal in the ape family.  Maybe its something rooted inside of her since before she was born.  From the first ultrasound getting our first peek at her, we called her a little monkey.  I had so much fun playing chase with this little guy.  He kept running all over his structure that I had to keep moving to get photos of him.  And I had to fight getting the picture to focus on him verse the cage in between us.

San Diego Zoo

Earlier this week, we bought our season passes to Sea World and the San Diego Zoo/Wild Animal Park.  Today, we took our daughter to the Zoo.  Next weekend is her birthday, and we will be taking her to Sea World.  The Wild Animal Park has a photo caravan tour that I can't wait to do! If I got some really good today, I can only imagine the ones I will get on that tour!

I have so many that I want to share, that I think I will split them into 2 different posts.  Hope thats okay!  There are so many that I just fell in love with.  These are my best zoo photos so far.

It felt so good to get behind my camera.  I have felt so detached from it.  My husband joked that he would sleep on the couch so I could snuggle with the camera tonight.  Silly man!  I even used my new monopod.  Which I LOVE!  And I know will come in very handy next week at Sea World.

I could have stayed for hours at a few of the exhibits.  The giraffes were one of them.  They were magically beautiful and graceful.  Maybe next time we will try to do a feeding.  I think for $5 you can feed them 3 pieces of food.  They were just so pretty and so close up - I think that was the more surprising part.

The gorillas were so funny.  I missed a few good shots for not being in the right spot at the right time.  We even got to witness an almost fight between two of them.  But the big man in charge snipped it in the rear right away.  He was magnificent, just huge, old, and very much in charge that was very obvious just by looking at him.  We even got to see some zebras fighting. One even reared back with both legs to kick the other right in the face.  It was such a sight.  I have never seen that up close like that before.  Course the zebras gave much more of a show in other ways.  :P

First Up Close View of Ocean

This is a spinoff post from my last one - First Sunset at New Home.  Though that was our real first sunset, since the sky on this day was so cloudy, we didn't get much of a sunset - these photos are from our first venture down to Oceanside beach.

The below picture was actually taken at sunset, but I just loved how it came out in the editing process with one of my new special effect plug ins.  No matter the color or look there is always something soothing about ocean waves breaking.

We have taken our daughter to the beach before, back in New Jersey.  Except it was just to walk along the boardwalk.  It was usually at dinner time and way too chilly for the water.  Plus, I am not a fan of sitting on the beach in the baking sun getting sand in all sorts of places I would never want sand to be, and I'm not one to go in the ocean - which is a whole different story that I only partially mentioned in my last blog.

The day we arrived in Oceanside, I practically ran her down to the ocean.  I just had to see what she thought.  This location had a little pier to walk on and that was our first destination.  It was her first up close view of the ocean and waves.  And it was truly amazing watching that wondering look on her face.  She was in total awe.  And LOVED the sound and look of the crashing waves.  It was such a fun moment.

First Sunset at Our New Home

We arrived here in Oceanside, California at the end of August.  It marked the final piece of our road trip across country.  We had to stay in a hotel for the weekend to wait for our rental house to be ready for us.  We spent evenings taking strolls along the waterfront and admiring the West Coast sunsets.

Our daughter just loved walking around, seeing all the new things, and the sound of the ocean.  She is such a water rat.  I need to get her into swimming lessons next year.  She would spend hours in the water if we let her.  Least she doesn't seem to be afraid of the ocean, unlike me at her age.  Well, my fear started before that - I was just a few months old and already didn't like it.  My mother had to bring a blow up pool to the beach just for me, because I would scream bloody murder if she took me remotely close to the water.  Not sure how many seasons she had to do that, but it always stuck with her.  Looks like it stuck with me as well since to the day I prefer a swimming pool over the ocean.  

I downloaded some new plug ins for my photo editing software and used it on most of these photos.  Not sure I am fully liking them but I'll keep playing on some other type of photos.

The Finale of the Road Trip Series

Well, finally I have finished the Road Trip series.  This part showcases the beauty of Utah.  We stayed in St. George and I wish we could have stayed longer so I really could have ventured out to get some shots of the area.  There was so many things I could have looked at for hours.

St. George is a nice little town nestled in the middle of no where, though it really doesn't feel that way at all.  The locals were very nice, I'm sure in part due to the big golf courses that I am sure bring in loads of travelers.

I was really excited to see Utah, and I was not disappointed.  Maybe I will make it there again and actually stop at some of there many National Parks.  

Which I am sure are just breathtaking.

Colorado As Promised

I'm not sure if I am even remotely doing Colorado justice with these photos, but here is my take on the amazing beauty of Colorado.  I really think I'm not even closely doing justice with these, it was so much more breathtaking in person.  The above picture is so freaky! I was just checking out some different editing effects, once I saw the photo like this I had to keep it!  

The beauty of the mountains gave us such a wonderfully peaceful drive for that part of the trip. We stopped  a few times so I could take pictures.  It was hard trying to pick ones to showcase.  I still have a lot to go through and play around with.

I have never been a mountain type person, especially not a camping outdoorsy person, but after driving through this state I am almost tempted to give it a go.  Almost! There would be certain amenities that would be required before I even remotely thought about it let alone agreed to it!

We finally were able to do something fun with our daughter while in Denver.  We went to the aquarium in downtown Denver.  It was a nice aquarium, and she had a lot of fun there. I was just playing around with taking photos and trying some new things.  Learned quickly that putting your hand over the flash to reduce the glare does not work.  However, it does produce an eerie and pretty neat photo!! 

First attempt at jellyfish and eels.  I think the eel photo kind of came out neat.  Only got the backside of the turtle, I still like it though.

My Daughter in Colorado

Like promised, here is a blog all about Colorado.  Though not the one I was really referring to.  I had so many amazing photos of my daughter while in Colorado, that I just had to do a single blog about them.  

We stopped at this overlook on the side of the highway, and boy was it beautiful.  It overlooked a small town that surrounded a little lake - though I think its called a basin.  It was a great place for a little photo shoot.  

After seeing all this beautiful scenery, I really hope we can one day do a real vacation there.  Maybe several, one at each of the seasons to really capture and see its true beauty.

Since we arrived in Grand Junction in the late afternoon, we didn't have the chance to really go sightseeing.  Good thing the hotel had a great outdoor pool.  And she really loves pools!

There was this other little boy there that she was totally flirting with.  Flirting at not even 2 years old!  We are so in for it come the teenage years!