Thursday, September 30, 2010

I wish I could keep the photographs I really love up here forever, ahh, but that would be boring. Today, I'm posting more photographs from a visit to the New England Aquarium. I was fortunate enough to be there the day they did health check ups on two large turtles. These photographs were taken of Ari, a Kemp's Ridley turtle. They weighed the turtle, took blood from it and did an ultrasound of its heart (bottom photo). To accurately weigh it they subtracted the weight of the box it was lifted in. Ari weighed 583 pounds! The video on the Aquarium's website (bottom left) reminded me so much of snorkeling off St. John.

Saturday morning I will be heading down to the CT short to Uconn's Avery Point Campus. I will be driving some students from the high school to a CT Envirothon workshop. They plan to visit Bluff Point State Park (8/28, I wrote about Bluff Point) to sample water, study marine creatures in tanks and do other assorted environmental things.

I write like the tide coming in. The first page is excellent, the second page is pretty good, the third page is not that great and the ending isn't there. I keep washing over it from the start.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Flower garden and rose

Many years ago, I visited the FDR house, but I don't remember this rose garden where Franklin and Eleanor were buried. "Roosevelt," by the way, means field of roses.

I'm hunkering down in the library today in hopes of getting a lot of revising done. I have a really tight critique deadline next week and I'd love to have this ready by then, even if it hardly seems possible at this time. Translation: I can not be reached.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Yesterday, was National Public Lands Day. Admission to the nation's National Parks was free! We toured Franklin Roosevelt's house in Hyde Park, New York. The first thing I took a picture of was not history, but wildlife, of course. The little pamphlet mentioned that FDR planted over half a million trees on his property between 1912 and 1945. Wow!

I've been slowly chiseling away at this piece of writing, one chip at a time. I'm about 2/3 of the way through the revisions.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The skate in the bottom photograph looked so much like a ghost clinging to the aquarium glass. Its mouth was moving as if it were communicating, attracting quite the crowd of curiosity seekers (and also impairing my ability to take a better shot!). I got quite a kick out of the little critter. In fact, I was so close to the glass when I took the first picture, the photograph was completely white, a ghost indeed! The top photograph was taken of a really striking flower hat jellyfish. Believe me, it was not a hat I'd ever want to wear.

Since I haven't heard from my editor at ChemMatters, I've been moving forward on the proposal I've been working on and I also started making revisions to last year's attempt at a grant. Hope springs eternal.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

At the New England Aquarium, I took the top photograph of a sparkly piranha. It does look kind of mad, doesn't it? Every other time I've seen an octopus at an aquarium, it's a view of the tentacles on the underside of one arm. While listening to one of the employees tell tales of marine life, the octopus moved. I grabbed the camera real fast. Unfortunately, I wish I was a little steadier. I wish I had taken another photograph. Anyhow, I was delighted to get the body of the octopus even if it's a little blurry. I had no idea it was orange until I saw the picture.

Two days ago, I submitted a proposal to teach an adult class because I felt I had something to offer. Yesterday, I dropped an 800 word article in the mail. I'm expecting to get edits for the chemistry magazine any day now, but in the meantime, I will keep working on the proposal I've spent the summer refining.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Both the diver and the shark were in the large circular tank at the New England Aquarium. I highly doubt they were both in there at the same time.

Today, I submitted my final version of the chemistry article!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Since I had quite a bit of noteworthy quotes, I deleted a bunch of stuff that actually made the article clearer. I'm real happy with it, but I know it still needs some editing because it's 500 words over the limit, which this editor actually prefers.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Have you ever tried to take a picture and have someone step right in your way as you're ready to hit the button? That happened to me at the New England Aquarium. I clicked the shutter to take a photograph of Kathleen, the anaconda, as a woman stepped in front of me. I turned thinking forget this photo and because of the momentary shutter delay ended up with this really decent unintentional photograph of the turtle. Amazing!

I've finally interviewed the scientist for the article I'm writing for ChemMatters. Thank you Earle! I have to transcribe that interview and add the quotes. I've also been adjusting and improving some wording in that article that seemed perfectly fine the last time I looked at it, but not so clear as of late. I'm realizing that letting a piece of writing sit for a few weeks or even months is a really helpful thing to do. I've been viewing the painting with a microscope and now I feel I've stepped back to look at the whole composition.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Last week, I spent three days in Boston. One afternoon I skipped off to the New England Aquarium with my camera and thoroughly enjoyed myself. I absolutely loved this colorful fish exhibit.

The other two afternoons, I brought my notecards and headed to the Boston Public Gardens to accomplish something. I found that park benches are only comfortable for so long before your back starts bothering you. I wondered if they were designed that way so people wouldn't sit on them for hours like I did.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I have changed my attitude about the "people" section of the SCBWI Bulletin. For the longest time, I considered this area of the newsletter up there with bragging and not really something I was interested in doing. Now, I think of it as free advertising and I certainly do need to advertise. My advertisements appear in this month's Bulletin!

There is still a lot of silence out there, silence from editors, silence from scientists, silence. Thus, I'm using this silence to slowly push forward with the next chapter.