Tuscaloosa Tornado One Year Anniversary


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all day today, i could remember exactly what i was doing a year ago, at any given moment.

it was pretty amazing to see my photos at the coliseum. they looked pretty nice.

i wasn’t really up for a big crowd today though, so i left early and stayed close to home with some neighborhood friends.

today, finally(!) within an hour of the actual anniversary of the tornado, the marsh buggy dragged out the first of many large pieces of debris (the emergi-care roof) from forest lake. yay!!

and we saw a pretty nice sunset.



UA Day of Service Cleanup, More New Construction, and Wildlife at Forest Lake


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This gallery contains 56 photos.

Today was a big day with lots going on at the lake. The concrete forms came off at 2 Forest …

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today was mostly about the bugs at forest lake


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i saw a nice flower, with a nice bug, while i was walking down to the lake today to check on some new construction progress.

the forms are almost completely ready, and i think they are going to pour some concrete tomorrow.

i took some photos with my fun little fisheye lens for my cell phone:

and some with just my cellphone:

glad i got a chance to get some photos of this house yesterday while it was still all open framed. those guys work fast!

i was really thrilled to have a chance to get this bug:

but then i saw i had a chance for 2 different bugs, and i couldn’t believe my luck.

but the light was so low because it was so late and also slightly breezy, so it was hard to get the perfect shot before the red bug kept on trucking. so i settled for a nice shot of the stripey bug and thought i was so lucky.

then, i looked up as i was standing up, and i saw this:

a whole herd of baby black locusts. how lucky is that?

nice evening tour of new contruction at forest lake


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i went for a walk around the lake this evening without the dogs, so that gave me a nice chance for some photos.

blackberries are EVERYWHERE!

i checked on the parsons’ hole in the ground:

they are gonna pour on friday, i think he said.

i really had good placement with my autograph so far, but it’ll be completely covered soon.

then i walked down the lake to see what was going on at this new house:

and ran into this nice guy:

he gave me a nice tour, and showed me where they have to redo the framing around his safe room door, oops!

this was easier to get into the house than out of the house:

also, i saw where they have blue flags marking an access point to the lake now. cleanup begins soon! Yay!

when i got home, i was standing in my yard talking to my neighbor when i noticed a nest full of eggs in a dead fern i took down to replace with some new ones from the plant sale.

i found another place to hang that basket nearby, i hope mama bird finds the nest right away. sorry, birds!

UPDATE: mama bird found the nest right away, i saw her fly away when i went outside this morning. good news!

ANOTHER update, May 11, 2012 – hatchlings!

email me at scalephotos@gmail.com

in the greenhouse at the arboretum


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today it was raining, so i waited in the greenhouse while my friend picked up some lemongrass, and had a chance for some photos.

here’s an interesting photo of a cactus that is covered in old flowers from the plant hanging over it:

and this one has 2 flowers now:


or, find the Friends of the UA Arboretum on facebook:



new construction on forest lake


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finally! it’s been almost a full year since the tornado tore everything apart. there are several new homes being constructed now, and even though it gets loud here during the day, it’s nice to have neighbors around again. i thought this evening i would go see the big hole where a new house will be soon.

it looks so tempting, doesn’t it? i know how hard it has been to resist autographing all the fresh cement around here lately. i did actually walk away from this once.

it’s ok, don’t panic, i had some permission hahaha

there were some other neighbors there too, so we all looked at the hole together for awhile, until it got a little bit cold. igor signed his name too.

this string was really the tricky part of jumping over the footings:

i thought this was a pretty photo of a backhoe track with a little bit of cement:

also, i saw this flower growing from a crack in a driveway.

the plant sale is coming!!


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today i went back to check on these orchids (mary jo knows the name, sadly, i do not recall.) i was really worried maybe i missed them, because it’s been awhile since i was back there. fortunately…i did not miss.

aren’t those little twisted parts interesting?

i remember when i started looking closer at things after i got my cell phone i noticed sometimes the aging flowers are more colorful than brand new ones.

don’t forget to mark your calendars for the annual plant sale on April 15! THIS SUNDAY!

Friends of the Arboretum can start shopping at noon, general public from 1-4 PM, and yes, you can come at noon and pay your Friends membership fee when you check out.

i will be there with some prints from the photos i have taken this spring. i have a few matted and framed, and they turned out pretty nice. i think i will be asking $30 for the 11×17 framed ones. (that is SO CHEAP! just sayin. maybe a little bit more.)


for just the 11×17 frame size unmatted prints, i’ll probably be asking $12 each or 3/$30. (nothing is set in stone, i have no idea what i am doing because i haven’t ever done this before hahaha.) i made some arrangements with a framer, Picture This will single matte these prints at some standard prices, 11×17 $5, 8×10 $4, 5×7 $3. these frame sizes are pretty standard anywhere you might buy a frame on your own, to save a little bit of money but still have something pretty nice to show. (i have a little bit of higher end stuff, if that’s what you’re looking for, don’t be afraid to ask.) i am trying to make it pretty easy to find exactly what you want and get your perfect colors. so, basically…if there’s some photo you really like, i will do whatever i can to make it be just right for you. of course, this has some limitations. some low light photos don’t look that great at the biggest size i have, for example.

tell all your friends and bring your checkbook, 10% off the top goes right directly to the arboretum, and the rest goes for building the tornado photo exhibit for the kentuck show in august. the plant sale is the biggest source of funding for the arboretum, and the sale this year is shaping up to be bigger and better than ever! i think i heard there are going to be some good workshops this year, too.

also today, i had a fast enough light to catch the yellow irises.


or, find the Friends of the UA Arboretum on facebook:


there are some mosquitoes at the arboretum now


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i had some difficulty today because of a lot of things, but a little reason was mosquitoes, and a lot of them. so after not too long i decided to stay closer to the greenhouses and in the breeze.

which makes some photos challenging.

fortunately, there’s still plenty of nice flowers in out of the wind places.

these horsetails never stop vibrating, because the whole building is vibrating from the circulation system. so this is about as good as it gets from me with these.

also, big fat strawberries coming soon!

i just barely saw these amaryllises when i was leaving, i can hardly believe i didn’t see them when i was coming in.

don’t forget to mark your calendars for the annual plant sale on April 15!


or, find the Friends of the UA Arboretum on facebook:


signs of spring in forest lake


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last night some neighbors showed me where a mama duck has a nest with 5 eggs.

so i checked back this morning on a walk around the lake.

also…ducklings! sorry for the shadow, i had to use my telephoto lens, and this is the trouble with these magnetic lenses. especially if you are in a hurry, such as when you are trying to sneak up on a fleeing family of adorable ducklings.

i saw some piles of the last of the big debris, and some new construction. the ties of green flagging holding it all together and keeping these huge timbers out of the road really crack me up.

and i saw these irises. am i going to go down there and to get a closer photo?

you bet i did! because i have what it takes. haha.

but not like this guy i saw fishing today. i saw this guy out there in sneakers. i personally know 2 experienced debris walkers who have been hurt in the past week or so (you know who you are hahaha) i still only go out in my boots, and it’s still dangerous.

also i saw some mushrooms. and then a turtle.

breezy alabama arboretum


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keep your eyes open when driving, i almost ran over this one driving into the lot today!

i watched this one pop open, it kept moving so it was difficult to get a steady shot.

don’t forget to mark your calendars for the annual plant sale on April 15!




or, find the Friends of the UA Arboretum on facebook: