Monday, December 21, 2009

Our blog has MOVED to our new website!

Howdy everyone!  Just wanted to let all of you know that our blog has moved to, which is our new website.  It will have increased functionality and a great new design too!  Please come on by and update your bookmarks to the new site, since this site will no longer be updated.  Thanks, and Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Interview and Feature at the Revolving Styles Blog

I want to thank Anna over at the Revolving Styles blog for interviewing me and featuring my studio and work for her "Thursday's Treasure" this week.  She did a wonderful article and she also has some really great vintage fashions in her Revolving Styles Etsy shop.  Check it out!

Photo of the day: How Now, Brown Cow?

"How now, brown cow?"  Ever wonder where that phrase originated?  I did, so I looked it up:

"How now brown cow" is a phrase used in elocution teaching to demonstrate rounded vowel sounds. Each "ow" sound in the phrase represents an individual diphthong. The phrase does not have an explicit meaning per se but can be used as a light-hearted greeting.  Although the exact origins of the phrase are unclear, it can be dated to at least 1942 in the United States. In February of that year the Maryland newspaper The Capital mentioned the phrase when discussing a famous thespian's voice:
Laird Cregar, now contributing his booming voice to 'Ten Gentlemen from West Point': explains how he got it. When he first tried out for the Pasadena Community Playhouse his voice wouldn't carry past the front rows. Coach Belle Kennedy had him declaim 'How, Now, Brown Cow? and The Rain in Spain Still Stains' - over and over.

Hmph.  Who'da thunk?

I took this picture of these curious cows in Zillah, Washington at my nephew's house.  He has steers and miniature horses.   Again, the lighting was just beautiful - this photo was taken around 9:30 in the morning.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Photo of the Day: Idaho Farm Sunset

 Today, we went for a drive.  It's been raining for the last few days, which caused all of our snow to melt... so you can just imagine how incredibly sloppy it is out there.  The overcast skies make for some GREAT lighting though, and I was able to snap this photo of a farm against the beautiful sunset.  We also saw about 25 pheasants in an adjacent field.  It was just neat!

Blog Feature: Autumn2May

I'd like to thank Jennie over at Autumn2May for featuring our Partridge in a Pear Tree Christmas cards in her Tenth day of Christmas lineup... it's quite an honor to be featured in such good company as the other artists in the post... head over and check them out!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Hunting in the Owyhees

This photo is one of my favorites - it captures the scale and terrain that makes hunting in the Owyhee Mountains of Idaho so unique. The unwitting subjects of this photo are my husband, Greg, and his dog, Jennie, a Vizsla.. Here they are looking for chuckars, on a clear fall day. Later on that same day, Jennie scented one and chased it up a big plateau... and got so far ahead of us that Greg had to fire his shotgun in the air to get her attention.  I think those two would hunt every day if they had the chance!  It's so interesting and fun to watch a dog work with her master for a common goal!

Road Trip to McCall, Part 5: Ghosts in the Window

While driving around on the back roads near McCall, we came to an intersection where the old town of Roseberry, Idaho is.  Roseberry has many historic buildings, including this cabin.  And no, that's not a ghost in the window - that's my husband.  I do like the effect his reflection has on the photo - it makes me think of the folks who used to live there and what they were like.  What do you think?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Road Trip to McCall, Part 4: Cattails

Cattails are just the neatest plant.  In addition to being really interesting visually, they had many uses among Native American tribes.  The downy material in the flower was used for tinder for starting fires, lining for moccasins, bedding, diapers (due to its absorbency), and for papoose boards. 

These cattails were located just across the road from the reindeer in the last series post. 

Friday, December 11, 2009

USPS Holiday Shipping Deadlines

I have had some questions from customers in my Etsy shop regarding whether their items will make it to them in time for Christmas. If you are wondering when your package should be mailed in order to make it to its destination in time for Christmas, here is a list of Holiday Shipping deadlines for the USPS:

I generally ship items via USPS first class mail (and my shop shipping rates reflect that).  If you need an item sooner or in time for Christmas, contact me and I will advise you on shipping rates for Priority Mail, Express Mail, etc.  I appreciate your business so much, so thank you!

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas!

Road Trip to McCall, Part 3: Eight Tiny Reindeer

(Click photo to enlarge)
Actually, there were a lot more than eight... we found these reindeer in a meadow between Donnelly and McCall.  They are being raised on a farm.  The buck was quite concerned with keeping his herd together and under control.  He made these strange sounds (they sounded quite a lot like a very loud belch) to keep everyone where he wanted them.  They were very tiny - I am not sure what breed of reindeer they are... but they were quite adorable. 

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Caldwell's Winter Wonderland

One of the best Christmas lighting displays I've seen in a long time is in downtown Caldwell, Idaho along Indian Creek. It's just phenomenal. I was able to capture a few photos (in 2 degrees Fahrenheit weather) this evening, but had to cut my shoot short due to the extreme temps. It's amazing how very cold your fingers get when they're outside your gloves for only a few seconds at a time to push the shutter button. I used my timer and a tripod to get these shots - I have lost my remote shutter release and really need to get a new one!

This display has over 250,000 energy efficient LEDs. Last year, the city of Caldwell recycled 64,000 incandescent lights in order to convert to the LED display. Another 50,000 lights illuminate a 10-figure polar bear village and four nutcracker soldiers (1). There is also a lighting display with synchronized music. The display stretches through downtown Caldwell to the Caldwell Train Depot along Indian Creek and is surely a must-see this Christmas season! Go check it out!
  1. Lea, Dan, "Caldwell Aglow Friday", Idaho Press Tribune, 2009. 12/9/2009,

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Experts Agree... My Calendar Featured!

Thanks so much to Samantha from the blog The Experts Agree for featuring my 2010 Sustainable 3-in-1 Calendar today!  I'm so honored to have been chosen and featured alongside so many other wonderful calendars!  Be sure to check it out!  Also, check out their Etsy shop, Design des Troy, where you can find some really great gocco hand-printed cards!

Road Trip to McCall, Part 2: Mending Fences

Sometimes the most commonplace objects can make interesting subjects - if you can just find the right angle.  And that's what this photo's all about - angles.  The angle of the horizon, the angle of the barbed wire, the angle of the fence posts.  This barbed wire fence was right next to the old barn in yesterday's photo.  I desaturated the colors since they were washed out, and since I wanted to focus on the contrast of the barbed wire against the background.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Road Trip to McCall, Part 1: Lonely Barn

Back in October, Aunt Sharon and Uncle Darryl were so kind as to invite us to stay at their condo in McCall.  One day we all went out shooting, and I was able to get some great photos of the old barns and the landscape near McCall and Donnelly.  This is part 1 of a 5 part series.

This barn sat in a field all by itself.  I love the abundance of old barns here in Idaho; it's a shame that so many of them are falling down.  It's interesting to think about the people that built them, a hundred years ago, and what the landscape looked like when they were new.  What were their names?  Were they struggling, or prosperous?  How many children played in the hay loft?  Sometimes I wish I could transport myself back in time to take a peek.

We'll be at... Christ Kindel Market (this Friday & Saturday)

The Christ Kindel Market will be located at Camille Beckman in Eagle, Idaho.  I'll have photography, calendars, and Christmas cards for sale, and on sale!  If you've waited to send out Christmas cards, you're in luck... you will get a great deal, but only at this show!  We'll have 2-for-1 deals and free gift wrapping, so be sure to stop by! Camille Beckman is located just west of Eagle on Highway 44 (State St.), near Eagle Island State Park.  See map below for directions (click to enlarge). I hope to see you there!

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Original Mine

This is a shot of the Original Mine that I took last summer while visiting my hometown of Butte, Montana. I really enjoyed exploring the contrasts of such heavy machinery sitting right in the midst of the neighborhoods gingerbread-style "cottage" houses. The Original hosted the National Folk Festival for the last two years, and will host it once more next year on July 9-11 (the last year in the 3-year rotation). I have heard that it is an awesome weekend. I need to make sure and be there next year. I hope to apply as a vendor where I can sell some of my photos and illustrations.

I did desaturate the background on this photo a bit, just to intensify the contrast between the cute little house and the industrial nature of the gallows frame.

To purchase this, or any of my other photos, go to and click contact girlingearstudio and send me a message.  I can create a custom listing just for you, which you can purchase easily via PayPal, check or money order.  All photos come matted and in a protective plastic sleeve, but can be sent without the mat at a reduced price, if you wish.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Owyhee Sunset

I was so lucky to capture this great color as the sun was setting in the Owyhees a few weeks ago. My husband was looking for some chuckars to hunt, which are these elusive little birds that live high in the cliffs all around in the Snake River Canyon and the Owyhees. If you want to hunt them, you had better prepare to do some serious hiking! But even if you don't see any birds, the views and the terrain are worth the trip all by themselves. Gotta love Idaho.