Baby Kittens! 13 Days Old!

baby kitten yawning

King of the kitten pile? Or just a yawn?

baby kitten sleeping

At this age all they do is sleep and eat, and then sleep and eat some more.

baby kittens

Such a pretty little face…

13-day-old kittens

I’ve gotten a few questions about how these were shot… Was it a “normal” camera? And the answer is yes! Just a normal camera and a 50mm lens at f/1.2. If you’ve studied photography even just a little, you probably know that an aperture of f/1.2 will give you an extremely shallow depth of field – but then when you combine it with shooing this close, it makes the field of focus even more narrow. On some of these only the tiny little whiskers on their noses were in focus. I did crop all of them slightly – but no more that a quarter of the image was trimmed off. But did I do anything to them in PhotoShop? Not really. I color balanced and then sharpened them, but there was no selective blurring, or anything else tricky. These really are the way it looks when you shoot wide open, and really close up.

So why did I choose to shoot this way? There are several reasons. One, I think it’s pretty. Two, I really wanted to focus on the kitten’s tiny little toes and their noses and whiskers. The narrow focus serves to isolate those features from the background, and really showcase how sweet they are. And three, I like to push occasionally, and get something a little different. Shooting the same subject the same way, more than once, gets a little boring. Gotta shake it up!

Kittens! Year Three…

10-day-old kittens

Kiss, kiss!

baby kitten


baby calico kittens

Little kitten faces

Little faces, ten-days-old…

When do kittens open their eyes?

This is the LAST generation of this particular cat family. The mother of these kittens is one of the kittens from last summer – in other words, she’s only nine-months old herself – but now that she’s letting me touch her, she’ll be on her was to the Vet to get fixed, as soon as these babies are weaned. Her brother has already visited the Vet, and she’s the last hold-out, so definitely the last branch of this particular cat family tree!

Heritage House | A Victorian Christmas

Heritage House | A Victorian Christmas

Every year Heritage House in Riverside hosts a Victorian Christmas Party, and this year I finally got to go!

Heritage House | A Victorian Christmas

Palm trees in the background, oranges in winter, and a pretty girl – all the elements of a vintage ad meant to entice people to move to beautiful sunny Riverside, circa 1895!

Heritage House | A Victorian ChristmasHeritage House | A Victorian Christmas
Me and my Mom in front of the Christmas deer. Notice the orange trees in the background. I love the California Christmas look! And one of the strolling musicians.

Heritage House | A Victorian Christmas

The Steam Punk Contingent! I don’t think these three were officially connected with the event–they were guests–but they were so cool as they serenely strutted around the circular pathways. True Victorian spirit on display. One of the real highlights of the event, in my opinion!

Heritage House | A Victorian ChristmasHeritage House | A Victorian Christmas

Hollyhocks! In December? How cool is that?

Heritage House | A Victorian ChristmasHeritage House | A Victorian Christmas

There were women demonstrating traditional domestic arts in the carriage house – these two were spinning and knitting.

Heritage House | A Victorian ChristmasHeritage House | A Victorian Christmas

My Mom and Grandma enjoying the garden area. That interesting piece of citrus fruit smelled fabulous. I’m a big fan of all citrus smells, and this one was really good!

Heritage House | A Victorian ChristmasHeritage House | A Victorian Christmas

Caroling and handing out programs.

Heritage House | A Victorian Christmas

We heard a rumor that each of the thirty docents was responsible for baking twelve dozen cookies each, and that they would still run out by the end of the afternoon. That’s over 4000 home baked cookies! It may not look it in these images, but there were a lot of people there – very popular event!

Heritage House | A Victorian ChristmasHeritage House | A Victorian Christmas

A couple of shots from inside the house. I couldn’t resist shooting the toilet – it was just so pretty!

Heritage House | A Victorian Christmas
And finally, the fountain in the front yard.

On Twitter this week…

  • Loving all the photos of everyone with their dad, posted on Facebook today! I’m going wild with the LIKE button!->
  • 11AM and that concludes my jury duty for the year…->
  • Jury duty today!->
  • I’m off to go take the LSAT! Wish me luck! ->
  • @Bouffe Almost everything sounds better in French! RT @cherylspelts in French, window = fenêtre. :) in reply to Bouffe ->
  • Always wanted to be a knickknack? 3D figurine printing of PEOPLE is evidently possible now, in Tokyo…… ->
  • On Twitter this week… – ->

On Twitter this week…

On Twitter this week…

  • Maybe someday Carson Daly will say, "And let's give a hand to Paul Mirkovich, AND Rafael Moreira, Sasha Krivtsov, Nate Morton,…" #TheVoice ->
  • Amber Carrington was great, but will her fans like the song choice? Does Adam know what he's doing? It's a toughie! #TheVoice ->
  • …but my pick for the win is still my early favorite, Danielle Bradbery! Shakia is right – star quality! #TheVoice ->
  • Michelle Chamuel – my favorite of the night so far! Beautiful! #TheVoice ->
  • I wish I could like Sarah Simmons – technically, she has a great voice – but something about her performances always feels false? I just … ->
  • Perfect song choice for Sasha Allen! She was perfect! Every little note… #TheVoice ->
  • Adam's critique of the Swon Brothers was exactly what I was thinking – down to the comment on the fire! #TheVoice ->
  • Holly Tucker brought out Sasha and Rafa to play! Smart girl… #VoiceBand And she sounded great! #TheVoice ->
  • I can so see Judith Hill winning the whole show after that performance. She's a total pro! But will I buy the record? Just not my thing… ->
  • Baby kittens playing in the backyard! And nothing could make me happier! They belong to a neighbor, so I just get to enjoy the cuteness. ->
  • On Twitter this week… – ->

On Twitter this week…

  • My nephew is coming to California! So excited and can’t wait to see him! Best news I’ve gotten all week… ->
  • Never been a fan of country music, but I started watching Nashville – and I love it! Especially Clare Bowen’s voice! ->
  • Around the block with an iPhone – ->
  • On my way to Orange County to visit another law school. I LOVE that I have options! ->
  • Just hit 100 degrees! Bring it on! ->
  • The #SurvivorFinale could not have been any more predictable – but bringing back Rob, Rudy, and Hatch was fun! ->
  • If Cochran eliminates Dawn, then he may lose the vote to Eddie, the guy who stuck around despite the odds. How does that make sense? ->
  • Eddie versus Cochran seems like the most sceanrio for the win. With Malcom as fan favorite! Right? ->
  • Why all the corcern about Dawn? Seriously, who would vote for her? #Survivor Finale ->
  • My cat who is barely out of kittenhood is HAPPY I’m home. She keeps trying to hold me down and give me a scratchy tongue bath! ->
  • Home sweet home! Enchiladas in the oven. Bottle of wine is open. Ready for Survivor to start! Always happy to be home, after a weekend away. ->
  • Saw Angelyne’s pink corvette in our hotel parking lot this morning! First time in years I’ve spotted that car! Billboard queen and self … ->
  • LOVING your past and looking forward to the future is the best! ->
  • If rattling off your accomplishments – in your head, not out loud – doesn’t make you smile like mad, it’s time to renovate your life! ->
  • Fire alarm going off… Glad I’m up and dressed, unlike some of my sleepy relatives! ->
  • If only I could dance better… If only I could speak French fluently… Then I’d be even happier. ->
  • On Twitter this week… – ->
  • My stunningly beautiful cousin Ashley is getting married today! And her husband-to-be is a lawyer – so I like him already! ->

How open do I want to be?

I’ve been putting off this post for awhile. I just wasn’t sure how to write it…

In this strange new world we’re living in, how personal do I want to get? How open do I want to be? A little over a year ago I made a post about my first surgery – but since then a year has passed, and I’ve had the second (and last) major surgery – and while I’m still recovering, most of the worst is in the rear view mirror! So I felt like I should update my blog. I should write about it. But I wasn’t sure how? The words just didn’t seem to come, so I put it off…

Then a couple of days ago as I posted a less-than-attractive photo of myself on Facebook, I felt like I should explain why I would post a picture like that – and suddenly the words came! They just sort of tumbled out, and I didn’t edit, or rethink – I just hit Post!

My thinking at the time was that three or four people might read it, and it would make my Mom cry, and that would be the end of that! And within seconds of posting it, my Mom happened to be online and commented that it made her cry. How well do I know my Mom? But then other people started to Like it and comment – and three days later 107 people have Liked it, and 54 people have left a comment. If you’ve ever felt vulnerable and wondered if you were being a little too open, to get an outpouring of love like that? It was overwhelming and very very very cool!

So I’m reposting that Facebook photo and post here – it may not be a perfect post, but it does the job!

How open do I want to be?

I don’t normally post unattractive photos of myself on Facebook – and thankfully I have kind friends, who refrain as well! But I’m making an exception just this once…My Mom and I were at Zuma Beach – pre-wedding celebration thing, that we just barely missed, but hey we tried! And so she shot a few frames of me and then I shot a few frames of her – and none of them turned out – except for this one throwaway shot, that she accidentally clicked, while trying to figure out how to use my iPhone camera.

So why am I posting it? Because I’ve lost at least 75% of my hair since I got sick, and I’m still recovering from surgery, and I have never felt less attractive in my life. But this photo? My hair is flying like mad, and who cares if there’s less of it. And I have my face turned up to the sun that I love so much. And the sky is a bright blue – and I’m alive!

I am alive. This thing did not kill me. It didn’t even permanently impact my life. I am getting stronger all the time, and I’ll be back hotter than ever soon. I know that. I get to appreciate the sun and the wind and the stars and the sand and everything beautiful in the world – and in life.

I am just about as grateful, as it’s possible to be – and I think you can see that in this photo. THAT’s why I’m posting it!

Sometimes looking pretty isn’t nearly as important as looking alive and healthy and passionate. — at Zuma Beach.

So how open do I want to be? Turns out, pretty darn open!

In search of the seriously beautiful…