The Lighter Side

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I thought I would post the photos from our mini excursion last Sunday to Illinois Beach State Park in an effort to show the lighter side of life right now. I need to dwell on those parts when heaviness is about, so I figured lightening up this space could only aid me in that attempt… to sort of balance things out.

This state park is probably my favorite in Illinois because, in my opinion, nothing compares to water. Lake Michigan is all the water you could hope for in this part of the country! And there isn’t just the lake to admire. There’s so much else that many of the nature preserves closer to home can offer. So it’s worth the about-an-hour drive out there. I wish I could say this was one of our more magical visits. But the truth is, I think Izzy had more fun than anyone else. Mr. B’s brother was with us {on his last full day of a three-day visit}. The big kids, Mr. B, Uncle Drew and myself, seemed slightly bored… although, I guess I should only speak for myself, but that is what I gathered as I observed. It was just so hot {while the water was icy cold beyond swimming comfort} and crowded and not like the typical visits we have there each year in late September for my birthday {a newer, but sticking tradition}. A visit at that time of year is usually accompanied by cooler temperatures and fewer people around… sometimes so few, it’s just us there. And being that those visits are during the Fall season, we get to spend them under Fall’s crisp blue skies.

But last Sunday proved to be far from the cool of Autumn, and the skies, though blue, were much more muted… but wonderfully hazy, as well. Hazy meant hot in this case. Despite the heat, there was a plus for me in what that haze meant for my photos. It created such a gorgeous setting and backdrop for all the photos. Colors totally popped against the muted background blues, because there was no harsh, direct sunlight to wash them out. Everything was filtered by the haze… a photographer’s dream.

With such perfect conditions, most of my photos turned out well straight-out-of-camera… no editing needed. Obviously, any that are black & white were converted, and there were a couple I had to lighten because the subject was between me and the sun. But other than that, these all appear here just as they were originally shot… that’s how perfect the light was this day.

Anyway,  neither the heat nor the crowd were a factor for Izzy, who was in rocks, sand and water heaven. I believe his time there was magical. It’s pretty evident in the photos. They are among some of my favorites taken of this place yet… maybe even some of my favorites taken anywhere… ever.

I discovered that WordPress has a little slide show feature, so I thought I would use it {below}. However, it seems to be formatted for smart phones, as the presentation window its in is shaped like one. Since I don’t own a smart phone, this is not a slide show format I prefer. When I come back to look at old posts, I like to be able to see the photos much larger… which is one of the reasons I changed my blog format, eliminating the sidebar so that the post column can now be wider.

Anyway, I wasn’t about to dump seventy-something photos into one post. It would have been the longest post I’ve ever done. Instead, I’m using this space-saving slide show. However, for myself and anyone else viewing on a laptop, desktop or tablet, I’ve created a much larger format of the slide show in Flickr. Click {{HERE}} if you’d also prefer to see the photos in a larger format.

For anyone who uses their phone almost exclusively for web browsing, I think this slide show below will be optimal.
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I’ve also included some favorite photos from the day below… to stand alone, apart from the slide show {because I realize not everyone has time to go through a lengthy slide show, nor will I every time I come back to view this post}.
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