Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Something Homely

Obviously, my life equates with the seasons and the marvels of creation that I personally behold, for these are the things I often write about. 

But then, I also have a tender spot for things homely. I like to do things at home - the common household chores. Sometimes, or most of the time, I multi-task, trying to juggle between these chores and indoor hobbies, such as handcrafting.

Although I cook at times (only simple, easy-to-cook foods) or prepare ready-made foods, I'm not the main "chef". I delegated that job to the professional, my hubby. And he deserves the title "professional chef". I am the assistant.

I love to bake cakes and cookies, though I don't bake so often and I'm not really adept in that.

Here are apple breads that hubby and I baked together,

....and a tuna-bacon pizza.

At times, when my taste bud craves Filipino foods, I cook for myself, but only the easy ones.

Sharon fruit is one of my favorite fruits

I love the wild outdoor, but I also love to stay at home, the "tame" indoor, doing several projects, most of which remain unfinished. I like to decorate but I also give way to hubby's masculine taste, which I approve of. We both love to put plants on our window sills and take care of them.

This orchid is actually for our dining table but I took it here for the photo-shoot. It bloomed again after two years since the last time.

Green leaves and flowers on windows give color to a snowy scenery. See the walls of snow surrounding our unit in winter? That's the view from our dining room window.

I was delighted to purchase a new sofa and a center table last December when it was time to replace our old sofa that got worn out after exactly five years of use. (We haven't set the carpet yet when I took this photo.)

My activity corner became cozier when I bought this swivel chair some days after the sofa.

Here's a candle set on our center table

I folded wall papers to decorate a section of our living room wall.

Polymer clay flowers that I attempted to make in my spare time

I also crochet and knit, especially in winter when we need warmers. I crocheted this blue neck warmer for me, and when my friend saw it, she asked me to make a pink one for her.


I'm bedazzled by sparkling chandeliers, but these are not ours. We don't have any at home. I just took these from an acquiantance's home and a store.

These are just some of my homely joys that I can share to my readers at this time.  A little glimpse of myself outside the sphere of natural and astrophysical worlds. Not much and may be uninteresting to some, but they are still parts of my wholesome starry universe.

An orchid for you!

Have a wonderful week!

The Charm of Home
Today's Flowers
Mosaic Monday

Monday, April 6, 2015

Eclipse and Equinox in Synchrony

Spring equinox here came the 20th of March, which was also simultaneous with the total solar eclipse.

Before getting to that event, I want to record about the first spring bulbs that I spotted some days before the equinox. These snowdrops and crocuses were the only ones in full bloom that I saw throughout that district where I walked around that day, March 14.

Stunning cloud formations also adorned the sky one early afternoon. Some Powerful Hands painted the clouds with all the "colors of the wind" as shown by these rainbow clouds. And a big heart full of love accompanied this manifestation of a wise Creator-Artist.

The snow that buried the grass carpets hardened to ice which was then in the melting process.

March 17 came the geomagnetic storm which was responsible for the vibrant aurora that night. You may view my photos here: Extremely Brilliant Aurora

The long-awaited day came. Many skywatchers from around the world traveled to Faroe Islands to witness the solar eclipse in its totality. In our place, we could see about 87 % of the eclipse, which was good enough.

The day came beautifully, a perfect day with equal length of day and night. I captured these from our kitchen window at about 6:00 a.m. and on my way to work shortly before 7:00.

I took a few minutes off from my work to watch the development of the eclipse at past 10:00. I felt downhearted when I couldn't capture the eclipse with my digicam and mobile phone. I didn't have time to prepare the right gadgets so I took chances with my plain unfiltered camera. I saw the eclipse through a reflection, alright, but my attempts to capture it failed. All I got were light explosions and sunbeams.

I tried to capture  it with my mobile camera through a reflection on an icy puddle in vain, but these stones beautifully reflected the colors of the light.

When I uploaded the shots, I noticed a lens flare in each photo. Looking closely, I realized that the flares captured the eclipse! I googled about lens flares which usually annoy many photographers but I learned that some photographers use these to show details of extremely bright objects that make it impossible to see their actual forms. Ah, serendipity! So I shot the progression of the eclipse after all. They're so tiny compared to the light burst of the sun's disk, but visible enough.

Here's the maximum eclipse in Umeå taken at 11:06 a.m. The flare reversed the position of the sun's crescent. I felt elated!

That afternoon, a sun halo formed again while clouds started to gather until they turned to snow clouds.

Then clusters of snowflakes floated down that lasted through the night, which wrapped up the spring equinox.

Thanks, my dear readers, for dropping by! Have a wonderful week!