Saturday, October 31, 2009

217/365 Ouch

I have one very reliable indicator that fall has arrived: my hands.

Each year at this time, when the moisture gets sucked out of the atmosphere and taken down to Florida with all the snow birds, my hands dry out over night.

You see it first on my knuckles and along the top of my whole thumb. First, they lose their softness, instead becoming rough and scratchy. At the next stage, they turn red and rather shriveled. And finally, small cracks form and they bleed. It's really annoying, and it hurts.

And I have yet to find a lotion or cream or remedy or spell that will cure this curse on my hands. I've tried dozens of brands from dozens of recommendations, but nothing really helps.I even have to resort to piling on a thick cream at bed time and sleeping in cotton gloves. It works for about six hours after waking, and then I'm pretty much back in the same painful boat.

It's that time of year again.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens and 430EX Speedlite, 1/125s, f/3.2 at ISO 500

Thursday, October 29, 2009

216/365 Portobello mushroom

Ask me my favorite pizza toppings, and I'll tell you: mushrooms and black olives.

More often than not, when I tell someone that, they make a face at me like I'm crazy. Rarely, someone will say, "Ooh, yum, me too!" It doesn't happen often.

I love both mushrooms and black olives. My Farm Fresh Delivery bin this week included two perfect portobello mushrooms. I had the first one sauteed on top of spaghetti squash, and after I photographed it, I had part of the second one raw on a salad.


How could I resist photographing the underside of this mushroom? The repeating pattern was too hard to resist.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens and 430EX Speedlite, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 320

215/365 Fall leaves

I couldn't resist another leaf photo. We only have peak color for a short period of time, so I want to get as many photos as I can while it's here!

I'm glad I got this photo when I did, because this week we've had more rain and wind, meaning many of our lovely leaves have been knocked to the ground. The evidence is all over my deck, which was clear on Monday night, but covered again by Wednesday morning.

Living surrounded by big maple trees is wonderful except at two times of the year: when they drop their "whirlybird" (or "helicopters," as Chase and I always called them) seeds in the spring, and when they lose their leaves in the fall.

Cleanup is a bit of a pain.

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/125s, f/5.6 at ISO 100 at about 5:00 p.m.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

214/365 Golden leaves

As a rule, my favorite fall trees are most often those with bright red leaves, followed closely by vivid orange.

But this year, I've found myself struck by the yellow-leafed trees. Some environmental factor(s) must have aligned in a way this year that make these trees almost appear luminous in the sunshine.

On Saturday afternoon I finally got a chance to pull off to the side of the road when the sun was shining to photograph some of these golden leaves. This stretch of roadway, where the trees meet overhead to create a tunnel, is always a particularly beautiful area.

Why can't all fall days look like this?

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/125s, f/4 at ISO 100 at about 4:30 p.m.

Monday, October 26, 2009

213/365 Farm Fresh Delivery

Forgive me for making this a little bit of an advertisement, but I've recently signed up for a service that I find incredibly cool.

It's Farm Fresh Delivery. They deliver organic produce and natural groceries to your door on a weekly basis.

Some friends of mine have raved about this service for years, but I just now live in an area where they deliver. Here's how it works: You set up a standing order (of at least $35) that includes a bin of fresh produce. Each week, depending on what is available, fresh and in season, they compile a mix of fruits and vegetables (amounts are based on the size of your order) and deliver it to either your home or office -- with no delivery charge!

They also have natural groceries in their store, so for my order last week, I added a box of pasta, a loaf of fresh whole wheat bread, and a bar of dark chocolate. All you have to do is set the green bin out on your doorstep on the day of your scheduled delivery, then they bring your items -- packed in insulated bags and/or with frozen ice blocks if necessary -- and fill your bin.

Last week my produce consisted of a spaghetti squash, red potatoes, portobello mushrooms, three yellow beets, salad mix, red pears, apples, and black grapes.

I signed up to make sure I get plenty of fresh variety in my diet. I figure if I've already paid for it and it's delivered right to my door, I'll feel compelled to eat it, right? It's a lot easier to pass it by in the produce aisle at the grocery store than when it's staring you in the face on your counter.

Here's to home cooking and fresh produce!

Camera: Canon PowerShot SD1000 in mixed lighting

Sunday, October 25, 2009

212/365 Halloween tradition

I can't remember exactly when the last time was that I carved a pumpkin. I know it's been several years.

One of my girlfriends invited a group of us to carve together on Thursday night, preceded with dinner together, and followed by an episode of Grey's Anatomy. I had a lot of fun doing an activity that was always a special part of being a kid, as well as spending a few hours with my friends.

The art of pumpkin carving has become more detailed in the last decade, with intricate designs and patterns being all the rage. Each of us chose a different tactic -- a few used the pattern templates, one did a traditional triangle-featured face, and I got my idea from Martha Stewart: windows!


My pumpkin now has the honor of being my one and only fall or Halloween decor item. I just hope it holds up until Halloween so I can light it for trick-or-treaters.

Camera: Canon 40D (with 430EX Speedlite on first photo), 1/125s, f/4 at ISO 320 and 1250

Friday, October 23, 2009

211/365 Surprise visitor

As has become my custom when it comes to photos not suitable for the squeamish, I'm giving you advance notice before you scroll down.

If you're easily creeped out, especially by creatures of the large insect variety, this post is not for you.

When I arrived at my back door after work on Wednesday, I wasn't expecting to be greeted by this visitor. But when I reached out to grab the door handle, there she was.

Yep, it's a she. Females are bigger.

Are you ready?

I'll give you a moment to prepare if you like.

Go ahead.

Ready yet?

Scroll down at your own risk...

In 5...





Oh. My. God.

Now let me put some perspective on this. That gray triangular notch at the top center of the photo is the normal mortar between the bricks of the house. This spider was literally the size of a large marble.

I'm pretty good about not shrieking like a little girl when it comes to stuff like this, but I do admit to jerking my hand back and gasping audibly.

After I got over my shock, I thought about the fact that it didn't look like this sucker could jump (think about it -- do you think you'd be built for jumping if your body-weight to leg-mass ratio was like this?), so I leaned in a little closer to look at it. I've never seen one of these spiders before.

Then I slid by to go inside, grabbed my camera, and came back outside to photograph it before it could crawl away. And then I relocated it with a long-handled broom. To a land far, far away.

Well, over the neighbors' fence, anyway.

As I found out later, it's a marbled orb weaver and is actually fairly common in this area. Go figure.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 640 at about 6:00 p.m.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

210/365 Burning bush

When it comes to fall in Indiana, one thing I always look forward to seeing are the burning bushes.

They're everywhere around central Indiana, and while they're just an average-looking shrub for the majority of the year, when fall rolls around, the leaves change and turn a brilliant shade of red. It's beautiful!

Seeing this one right outside my front door every day makes me really appreciate the vibrant colors that can occur in nature. I love being reminded that some of the most striking objects aren't man-made.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/60s, f/2.8 at ISO 320 at about 6:00 p.m.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

209/365 Pink finale

For the finale of my pink-themed week, I thankfully found a subject that wasn't an article of clothing.

On my way home one day last week, I glanced at a subdivision under construction and was amazed to see pink housewrap being used. I've seen white and grey, but I don't remember having seen pink before.

Several houses in the area were wrapped in this, making them look a little like a marshmallow Peep village.

Now isn't that an interesting image?

Camera: Canon PowerShot SD1000 at about 5:30 p.m., backlit by direct sunlight

208/365 Lightning-fast portraits

Today's pink-themed post is a photo of my beautiful mother. And yes, the pink item is indeed another article of clothing. But at least this time it didn't come out of my closet!

Mom needed a quick headshot for use in her church's new directory. Because of her recovery from her riding injury, she didn't feel up to going and sitting for a studio-type shot, so she told them her daughter was a photographer and would take care of it.

(I have the urge to insert evil laughter here. Why is that?)

Sunday was a beautiful day (though chilly), so we ran outside and did a super-quick photo with the light of the setting sun. I think it lights her beautifully.

And thanks to Chase for making her laugh behind me. I enjoy happy photos.

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/60s, f/5.6 at ISO 800 at about 6:30 p.m.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

207/365 A truly moving film

My pink item for Saturday was the scarf that I wore to a film screening at the Heartland Film Festival.

This was my first-ever trip to the Festival, though I've been wanting to go for years. They expanded the list of entries this year, as well as the length of time over which they'd be shown.

I went with a group of friends on Saturday afternoon to a showing of the documentary "Songs for a Revolution." It chronicled the songs sung during the Civil Rights Movement as a way to stay strong, positive, and focused on the end goal. The film was very well done and was quite moving.

I came away from the film with a greater appreciation for Martin Luther King, Jr. and his leadership during that time. Obviously I've always known who he was, and how important he is to our history, but I didn't realize until Saturday that I really only had a cursory understanding of his work.

I was completely in awe of his emphasis on peaceful protest even in the face of physical challenge. I can imagine that for the people involved in that movement, not fighting back when provoked, beaten, you name it, would have been unbearably difficult.

If I can come away with such a powerful message from every film at the Heartland Film Festival, I need to go more often! This is definitely something I want to make part of my annual schedule.

First photo: Canon 40D, 1/60s, f/4 at ISO 1000 in mixed lighting
Second photo: Canon PowerShot SD1000 lit with light from a window at about 3:30 p.m.

Monday, October 19, 2009

206/365 Cook for the Cure

Cook for the Cure. And that we did.

As I mentioned in my first pink post last week, my office held its annual charity open house on Friday afternoon/evening, benefiting Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Cook for the Cure is KitchenAid's effort to support breast cancer research and awareness. We held our own event around that theme, which featured a cooking contest (varieties of foods on a stick), silent auction, and raffle of a special pink KitchenAid stand mixer. (I wanted that mixer so badly I could already taste the cookies I'd make with it. But, alas, a different young woman won the grand prize. Sigh. At least it wasn't someone who can seriously afford to buy their own, so I suppose she deserves it. Maybe I can babysit.)

Clients, vendors, family and friends came and supported the cause. The previous record was approximately $8,500. So far (with the expectation that donations will still trickle in for another couple of weeks), we've surpassed $10,000!

This was my first big event as part of this company, and I really enjoyed it. It brought back positive memories of charity fundraising in other past lives.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/60s, f/2.8 at ISO 1000

205/365 Pink from ankle to toe

I'm a big fan of pink.

I have plenty of pink articles of clothing, including a few pairs of socks like the ones featured here. But I'm sure you didn't want to see seven days' worth of photos of my closet, so I've been on the lookout for other photographic subjects.

Pink is a harder color than I would have imagined! If it were spring time, we may have a different story, but it seems like all the colors I see right now are yellow, red, orange...

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/60s, f/4 at ISO 1250

204/365 Get well soon

As encouragement while she recovers from her riding accident, Mom received this lovely hand-made card from a little girl she knows at church.

(The second "l" uses pink, so it qualifies for my theme!)

The girl colored both the front of the card and the inside, so she put a lot of work into it! The best line from the message inside?

"I'm glad you're not badly dameged."

So cute. Cards like this are absolutely the best.

Maybe I need to break out some crayons and get back to basics.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 640

Friday, October 16, 2009

203/365 Go pink

It's good to get out of the box once in a while, right? To spice things up a bit and challenge myself, I'm going to try something new here: a week-long photo theme.

You can go about choosing a theme hundreds of ways, but to start things off, I'm going to select a color. For an entire week, I'll aim to have my photos center around that theme in some way.

The first color? Pink.

Why pink? Not only is it currently breast cancer awareness month, but my office has its annual charity open house on Friday afternoon. All proceeds go to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and I'm going to help photograph the event.

So I already have a day with lots of pink opportunities.

Have an idea for an interesting future theme? Leave a suggestion in the comment section of this post and let me know!

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens and 430EX Speedlite, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 400

Thursday, October 15, 2009

202/365 A ring with a story

On the outside, this silver ring that I wear each and every day looks like just a simple silver band. I've worn it on the middle finger of my left hand since high school.

But it's not an ordinary silver band; it has a story.

This silver ring started its life as an Australian Shilling before or during WWII. My grandfather fought in WWII in the Pacific Theater, and for a time, he was stationed in the Philippines. To pass the time in the slow hours, he and his Army buddies drilled holes in coins like this, then tapped the edges smooth with a spoon.

I can only imagine how long it took to tap this ring as smooth as it is now.

I love that you can see the details of the coin on the inside of the ring. In this photo the word "shilling" is upside down on the far side of the band. You can see the bottom edges of the letters.

I think of my grandfather each time I study the inside of this ring, and I love that the story of its creation makes it priceless.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens and 430EX Speedlite, 1/125s, f/4 at ISO 400

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

201/365 DIY kitchen chairs - before and after

I've got a list of projects I want to get done before the holidays, and I was able to cross one off my list this past weekend: finished kitchen chairs!

I want my home to be a colorful, lively space, so I chose to make my kitchen chairs fit into that same theme. Instead of buying a set of four matching chairs, I have one hand-me-down chair (already painted white), and I bought two unfinished, unmatched chairs to supplement it as a start.

That meant more painting for me, and I've just about had my fill of painting.

I primed the chairs several weeks ago, but I finally got around to finishing them this weekend. Here's the first chair, before its final coat, and after a smooth coat of bright yellow spray paint:
Is that cheery or what?

And here's the second chair, which was decidedly more difficult and left my spray-can trigger finger and forearm sore for days afterward:
It was worth it! The two chairs add a nice, fun splash of color into the kitchen.

Next project? Finish painting the laundry room. Yes, more painting.

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/125s, f/4 at ISO 100 to 250 in shade at about 4:00 p.m.

200th Post of Year 2

I realized last night that I got so wrapped up in writing about chocolate and biceps that I forgot to mark a milestone! SightSalad is now 200 posts into Year 2.

As is my custom, I'll share with you my favorite posts of the last 100 days.

117/365 Kelly & Matt's second engagement shoot -- The weather played nicely, and we had a great time wandering all over Butler's campus for these photos.

119/365 Stunning zinnias -- It's no secret that I love photographing flowers. The color and complexity of this zinnia just blows me away.

129/365 An easy dinner at the IMA -- I really love the crisp architectural lines and repeating patterns in this photo. Converting it to black and white during post-processing really focuses the eye on the shape and form instead of just subject.

146/365 The amazing Keith Urban -- Awesome opportunity. Fantastic concert. Amazing performer. Wonderful singer. Excellent evening at the Indiana State Fair!

152/365 Exotic animals and butterflies -- Zoos and gardens always offer a wide range and new mix of subject matter. After all, I don't live in a region where meerkats run wild and chill out on my porch.

166/365 Camera + Dog -- My darling Buster. I just want to squeeze him when I see this photo.

185/365 Love is in the air -- Light painting experiment gone right. Definitely a fun thing to try.

191/365 The gift of flowers -- Being fall, that means it's mum season, our last bit of colorful flowers before we head into the monochromatic late fall and winter seasons. This mum is a great finale.

195/365 Near-harvest soybeans -- I consider soybeans to be just as iconic in Indiana as corn, so I wanted to try to do them some artistic justice.

197/365 Gorgeous sunrise -- And finally, from just last week, the most beautiful sunrise I've seen in a long time. I could have stood and kept photographing it for the duration of its progression, but alas, I have a job and had to get to work on time.

Do you have a favorite that I neglected to include in the list? I'd be happy to hear it!

Onward, toward 300 we go...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

200/365 Chocolate and curls

Two weeks ago, I took on a new challenge. It's called Eat.Sweat.Blog., and it lasts through the month of October.

It entails exercising 20 days this month and committing to 10 healthy-eating "feats" during that time. The feats range from the rather extreme, like taking in only liquids for a day, to the simpler, such as brown-bagging your lunch 10 days.

One feats I'm working toward is called "SW-e-AT." For this feat, each day the site admins choose a food and a part of your body. You have to eat that food and exercise that part of your body that day, and you have to do that any 10 days of the month.

Last Friday's pairing was dark chocolate (no need to twist my arm to get me to eat that!) and biceps. Excellent! The problem is I haven't been as motivated to go for the other pairings.

I'm doing well on some of the other feats, though! Look out at the end of October for a (slightly) healthier me.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 1600 in mixed lighting

Thursday, October 8, 2009

199/365 Ye old encyclopedias

Does anyone use a physical, hard-bound encyclopedia anymore?

Sadly, kids under 15 may have never even picked one up.

I used these books for many reports and research papers when I was in school. Though I may not have loved having such a cumbersome bit of homework, I admittedly enjoyed selecting the right book from the set, and thumbing through the thin, glossy, gold-edged pages until I found the entry about my subject.

Sure, they became outdated easily. But how else did you learn what came alphabetically before and after "tornado?" Or "vampire?" Or "Dickens?" It reminds me of an episode of Friends, where Joey is visited by an encyclopedia salesman and chooses to only buy the "V" volume.

The revolution (in my experience) started with Encarta, Microsoft's encyclopedic software that came on CD. As a sign of the times, when I googled Encarta just now, I noticed that even that service will no longer be available after October 31.

Then came Encyclopedia Britannica, which apparently, when you're attempting to look something up, has a really annoying pop-up that reminds you every few seconds that you're not a paying member.

And now we have Wikipedia, the free, open-to-editing-by-anyone, most up-to-date source for all things encyclopedic.

I turn to Wikipedia for many things. But it definitely doesn't have that same weighty enjoyment that comes with looking up an item in a book.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/60s, f/2.8 at ISO 1250

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

198/365 Single servings

I'm embracing the concept of single servings, a.k.a. portion control.

Individually packaged single servings, made oh-so convenient by manufacturers, are great, handy, easy and American. But more often than not, you end up paying more for that convenience. Financially, it usually makes more sense to buy larger quantities -- but it's a lot easier to overeat.

A possible solution? Make your own single servings.

One of my greatest weaknesses lies in the form of bread. Carbs. Pasta. You name it. I love having the occasional bagel and cream cheese for breakfast, and nothing is better than a freshly baked bagel from a bakery (instead of off the shelf at the grocery store). Unfortunately, those fresh kinds are usually larger and contain more calories than the not-so-fresh kind.

I bought a half dozen whole grain bagels from Panera last week. I couldn't help myself. But instead of fretting over it, I split the halves, individually packaged them, and stuck them in the freezer.

Now I can reach in, grab just one half a bagel -- instead of a whole -- and supplement my breakfast with other items.

Indulgence and portion control in one little plastic bag. Yum!

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 800 in incandescent lighting

197/365 Gorgeous sunrise

There are times when I'm so struck by something, I have to pull my car to the side of the road, throw on the flashers, and get a photo.

Tuesday morning's sunrise was worthy of this. It was, in a word, gor-geous.

Most often the beautiful sunrises are red and orange, but what made this one especially spectacular was the inclusion of blue and violet. It was about 7:30 a.m., and I knew the rest of the day (and the two days following) were going to be rainy, dreary and just blah in general.

So that foresight alone made me realize that if I didn't stop for this photo, I'd be kicking myself until at least the weekend.

I'm so glad I stopped.

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/125s, f/4 at ISO 200 at about 7:30 a.m.

196/365 Stick a pin in it

I got my first bulletin board when I was a kid. Over time, it has displayed photos, postcards, awards, a map of New York City (with pins marking my travels), ads I like, necklaces, you name it. It's a handy place to display or keep lots of small, random items.

Now? I've made it my idea wall, a space where I can tack photos, pages of magazines, Post-its, quotes -- anything that inspires me. So far it only has one layer of materials, but it may quickly deepen. I'm trying to keep it focused as an idea center, and not let it collect random things that don't apply.

So far it's working.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens and 430EX Speedlite, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 400

195/365 Near-harvest soybeans

I've been itching to get a close-up photo of some near-harvest soybeans for a couple weeks.

On Sunday morning, the light was finally perfect, I had the right camera in hand, and I made my move.

I've never considered soybeans to be a terribly attractive plant or crop. You see lots of people decorating for fall with dried cornstalks around their houses, but you never (or rarely) see dried soybeans used in such a way.

The remaining stalk is just a bare stick, and the soybean pods grow fairly sparsley on the plant.

But I considered that to be my challenge: how to make the dried soybean a cool photo?

You may disagree, but I'm quite happy with my final result.

Living in the Midwest, I find it easy to take soybean fields for granted as just an average, everyday crop. But all you have to do is look at the list of ways soy can be used, and it blows me away. It's an amazingly versatile product.

From now on, I'll try to appreciate my neighbor soybeans a little more.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/500s, f/4 at ISO 100 at about 10:30 a.m.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

194/365 October moon

I looked up the other night and saw this striking and unusual ring around the moon.

I've seen halos around the moon and sun before, but this one was really interesting.

I, of course, came back and did some googling about it. The most common answer to the question of what it's called is a 22° halo. They occur around the sun most often, but can occur around the moon as well.

But here's what I find puzzling and interesting: All of the sites I found that describe this optical phenomena mention that they have a tinge of red inside the halo.

If you look closely at this one, though, the red tinge seems to be on the outside of the ring instead.

I may have to do some further research to find out why. Or maybe it's due to our closeness to Halloween.


Camera: Canon 40D, 1/40s, f/4 at ISO 1600 at about 10:15 p.m.

193/365 A common affliction

What woman doesn't get frustrated with her hair at some point in her life?

It's a pretty common affliction.

But while you can vaccinate against the seasonal flu and malaria, there's no prevention for this kind of sickness. You just have to live with it.

I've heard that when you get to middle age, you learn to stop fighting it and finally accept the hair you're born with. I have yet to experience that yet, but then, I'm still in my 20s. I have a long way to go before I'm cured.

In the meantime, I continue spending a lot more money than I'd like trying different products, hoping with each new bottle or tube or tub that I'll find the miracle product that makes my hair behave the way I want it to.

No luck yet. I still haven't found the remedy.

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/60s, f/2.8 at ISO 1000 under overhead incandescent lighting

192/365 A little ambience

This reminds me of a sunset, but it's actually far from it.

Any guesses?

Go ahead and think about it. I'll wait.

Take your time.

Ok, time's up. It's actually a burning candle, viewed through the glass, with my lens right at the level of the flame (that bright spot in the top left).

The curved glass is the reason why the top dark line looks cockeyed. I lit the candle during a thunderstorm last week, when the power flickered for a few minutes.

Whenever storm-induced power failures pop up, as much as I feel inconvenienced by being separated from our electricity, I admit that I enjoy having the house lit by candlelight. That seems to be the only time I actually do that, but the ambience is great.

I suppose that means I need to do it more often, perhaps saving some electricity during the times it's available. One thing that has held me back in the past is the fact that I usually only have scented candles on hand.

And when you light multiple differently scented candles at a time, that overwhelming atmosphere can take the enjoyment out of it.

Know what that means? Time to go shopping!

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 640

191/365 The gift of flowers

Unless you're intending to convey the meaning behind the flowers, they're a pretty safe, no-fail gift for a woman. We all have our favorites, but I don't know anyone who would turn down a gift of flowers just based on the item itself. However, I have to say, when it comes to choosing great flowers to give, Mom's closest friend does it better than anyone.

On the day I was born, Mickey brought Mom a bouquet of fresh peonies. When my grandmother died in February, Mickey gave mom a pot of bright pink calla lilies that completely blew me away. And now? She gave Mom a pot of gorgeous orange and yellow mums that would make anyone feel more positive about fall.

She has a gift!

Camera: Canon 40D with 60mm macro lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 640, lit directly with a flashlight

190/365 Optimism

You may look at this and just think, "Oh, clouds over blue sky."

But for some reason, when I saw this sky on my way home from work, the word that popped into my head was "optimism."

Completely random, but here's how my brain got there:

We all love beautiful blue sky. For a stretch of several days before this, our blue skies had been covered by low, gray clouds. Then I see this, and it seems to me like the blue sky is trying to make a grand return. I felt optimistic about seeing those little swatches of blue sky.

Optimism. It's a great emotion.

Camera: Canon PowerShot SD1000 at about 5:45 p.m.