Indiana Dunes has a great view of the Chicago skyline from across Lake Michigan. You can see the city on most days and I’ve photographed this view before but there’s something special about how the sun was reflecting on Willis Tower.
I’m in ATL this week!
I spoke on a social media panel yesterday for the Atlanta CVB and have meetings the rest of the week. It’s amazing how much less time you have when travel is involved, right? I got up early <gasp> to try to catch up on work and woke up to this gorgeous view.
It’s going to be a great day!
I’ve found a little piece of heaven. Last October I had the pleasure of stopping in Shelbyville, Kentucky, just east of Louisville, for some antiquing on my way home from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I only had a limited time there – approximately 2 hours – but I fell in love with the antique malls in their downtown area and hope to visit again this summer as a weekend getaway.
Downtown Shelbyville is lined with antique malls but I only had time to visit three of them that day. One that particularly stands out was The Ruby Rooster. They’re even on Facebook, enticing my return with photos of new antiques and dealer booths. Everything in this mall was very clean and reasonably priced.
I stopped at two other antique malls next to The Ruby Rooster. One of them was your average antique mall but the other one had just opened, or moved to that location (I can’t remember) and, unfortunately, I didn’t write down their name.
I did find a few treasures there though. Both of these milk jars were purchased there for under $5 each. They look great displayed above my sink and work perfectly as vases.
What else can you do in Shelbyville, Kentucky? It turns out that I missed a lot while rushing through. Shelby County is known as “The American Saddlebred Capital of the World” and offers Horse Farm Tours. As a suburbanite, the only experience I have with horses was a weekend trip to a dude ranch as a girl scout. I’m not exactly sure what a Horse Farm Tour includes but I’m intrigued and will find out first-hand the next time I’m there.
Shelby County also has a weekend Farmer’s Market, wineries, distillery and amazing architecture to photograph. I think I may need longer than a weekend to take in everything!
Have you been to this area before? I’d love to hear your favorite things about Shelbyville, Kentucky.
I’ve been to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park twice before but it’s been many, many years since then and I wanted this trip to focus on photography and antiquing. Autumn is quite possibly the most breathtaking season in the Smokies and I wanted to plan the trip for when the leaves would be changing colors. So, as any social media addict would, I researched Flickr photos to see when the most colorful photos were taken, mostly focusing on the past few years. It turned out that my research, along with a lot of luck, actually worked.
This was a short trip last month — only four days including the 9.5-hour drive each way. The first day in the park was mostly spent driving scenic loop roads and setting up my tripod along side of a river to catch reflections and mini waterfalls. I also got to test out my new close-up filters on leaves. It was the perfect setting for this.
Chicago is a diverse and exciting city. There are a million spots that are great to photograph but my favorite view is of the skyline from the hill just in front of Adler Planetarium.
Here are some photos I shot last week from this spot:
I’ve always loved nature and consider myself lucky to have gone camping each summer growing up. My family had a motorhome so it wasn’t really roughing it but it still was camping. We would sit around campfires at night, gazing at the stars.
When some local photographer friends made plans for a night photoshoot, thoughts of those summer camping trips came to mind. Even though it’s been many years since those trips, I don’t remember ever seeing as many stars as I did Friday night. It literally took my breath away. The photos cannot even give you a glimpse of how incredible the night sky was but they may inspire you to travel away from light pollution and get a view of your own.
These photos were taken at Willow Slough Fish & Wildlife Area near Morocco, Indiana. I plan to go back so let me know if you’re interested in tagging along. Let’s just hope we don’t hear as many coyotes as I did the other night!
I started collecting antique postcards about a year ago and just picked up two more recently at The Antique Market of Michigan City. These two were not chosen for their image or travel-related message. Their messages amuse me, especially since they’re each over 100 years old.
This first one has a sunset image from the Seattle area. The message reads “Dear Ava, What’s the matter with you, Why don’t you write” and is dated from 1909. Perhaps I’m adding more sarcasm that what was intended but that’s exactly how I feel when people don’t reply to my emails.
The second postcard has a lovely image of sheep in Washington Park, Chicago. The message reads: “Dear Art: – your wife is dangerously ill. We just gave her soup and hot-a-mollies, but she needs some tulip-salve. How about it, old fellow?”
It was sent to someone in Chicago, from Chicago. Obviously it was not travel-related at all. Even though the message is quite serious, I like the ending.
If you work in the tourism industry, please pick up some postcards the next time you travel. Here are some tips on writing postcards. We must keep this art alive!
There’s nothing more soothing than the sound of waves lapping along the shore. I’ve been a Midwesterner all my life but I’m drawn to the water like a moth to light. Luckily I’m pretty close to Lake Michigan and have taken many photographic journeys up the Lake Michigan coast in Northwest Indiana and Southwest Michigan.
There are seven lighthouses from Michigan City to Muskegon and I’ve had the pleasure of photographing all of them in various seasons. My absolute favorite though is the South Haven South Pier Light. Don’t get wrong, South Haven has an incredibly charming downtown area full of boutique shops and restaurants, but my inspiration is the lighthouse.
Come along this photo journey with me and see why the state is called Pure Michigan.
Sheri, a twitter friend, tweeted The lost art of postcard writing earlier this month and we began talking about postcards over twitter. She set up a PO Box so her Facebook friends could send postcards to her kids and I thought that was a wonderful idea!
I asked her for her PO Box address so I could also send them one. Well suburbia isn’t the easiest place to pick up a postcard so it took me a few weeks to find postcards. But I finally found some at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond, IN. By the way, if you’re looking for The Christmas Story memorabilia, go to their gift shop.
The plan is to regularly mail postcards to Sheri’s kids. Hopefully I’ll be able to travel more so the postcards won’t all be of Indiana or Chicago but I stocked up at the Welcome Center just in case. If you’re interested in sending them a postcard, please message me for their address. Read the rest of this entry
The days are getting shorter, kids are going back to school and some trees are beginning to drop leaves…summer is definitely on the way out. Take time in the next few weekends to celebrate the end of summer by doing what we do best – traveling!
1. Be a tourist in your town: We live here but we always travel somewhere else for fun. When’s the last time you explored your town as tourists do? Whether it’s going to the downtown shops, a farmers market or a local restaurant, take time to enjoy what you have right here.
2. Take a road trip: Even if it’s just for part of the day, get in your car and DRIVE! There’s no better way to explore our country than to see it first hand on a road trip.
3. Capture your travels on film: Start creating photo and video memories. If you don’t have a camera, just use your phone. Anything is better than nothing. But don’t just collect the memories – share them on Facebook, Flickr and YouTube!
This weekend I’m taking my own advice with a road trip to Milwaukee. But it’s much more than just a road trip. It’s a #geekcation with Betsy Decillis. Yes, we’re tourism geeks and we use hashtags when we travel. Don’t you??