Saturday, April 30, 2011


04.30.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

The Mustang Book Club hosted their third annual Bookfair at Barnes & Noble today, which included a Storytime reading. This little boy patiently listened to our high school students read their varied selections, but he really wanted to hear stories about dragons and Spiderman (which we happily borrowed from the store's racks!). Then, he decided he would actually do the reading himself...with a little help from one of the club members and a fair amount of imagination! I caught him here in a sideways glance to his mom, loving the attention and very proud of his accomplishment! :)

It is so good to see children and teens reading! Though the infrastructure for the written text has been moving from the analog to the digital version and the stories have expanded to non- or limited text, opting instead for audio and/or video, the 'reading' is still vital! Be it for entertainment or analysis purposes, 'reading' is still the key. Barnes & Noble, Waterside Center, Pine Ridge Rd & US 41 E, Naples, FL


04.29.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Well, it has been awhile since I haven't shot a daily image - last time was about 2 1/2 years ago on November 29, 2008. Unlike the previous date, I didn't forget, as I had every intention of getting a photograph...but I actually over-napped (really needed the sleep, I guess!). Since I awoke after midnight, this 'snap' is my missed shot...professionally framed in post-processing! Naples, FL

Thursday, April 28, 2011


04.28.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Ended up with a few bunny shots tonight ... A student and I were discussing the final exam in the college parking lot when this little one circled us! What a treat to be interrupted by this brave one! The college is near wooded areas (though still in a developed area) so it wasn't a total surprise, but still a bit dismayed at its lack of shyness. I fear we have conditioned much of our wildlife into being 'too brave' among humans - my camera's lens betrays the distance a bit, but we just enjoyed the observation!

A topic of our discussion was 'learning by doing' and I am a big supporter of experiential learning. I also believe there's a place for observation and reflection. The multi-faceted approach can be so valuable -- not only for addressing various learning styles, but for enriching the entire process. So, thanks, little bunny, for reminding me of the awe of our little place in the world...and for helping me connect that to the teaching/learning process! Edison State College, Naples, FL

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


04.27.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Yes, there are many of those light, salty, crispy potato chips lurking in the shadows!

Bet you can't eat just one! (No Lay's here - but the spirit remains!)

Let the chips fall where they may...(okay - different kind of literal chip, but I can make the figurative aspect work!)

What other sayings, idioms, etc come to mind when you see a bag of chips? Naples, FL

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


04.26.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

A couple of day's later...last year's majorly neglected Easter lily bloomed forth! :) Better late than never! Today also marked an interesting turn of events in a situation that I thought might continue to endure for another decade. So, another resurrection, of sorts! Sometimes, the truth surfaces and the chips do fall where they are... Naples, FL

Monday, April 25, 2011


04.25.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Welcome to our 'wild' Naples Wilderness...the scene touched me as just a bit ironic with the densely overgrown landscape foliage surrounding the entry way to well-manicured (and pricey) homes. :) The temperatures are starting to heat up and with them, the deluges of rain and therefore, voracious growth - the landscape maintenance workers will be working overtime!

Feverishly working, our school personnel and students are also in a high state of 'overtime' as the end of the school year is just over a month away. Some, of course, will dutifully procrastinate for a few more weeks, but the majority are feeling the extra pressures of that looming research paper due date or the anticipation of the Advanced Placement exam or even the prerequisites of special senior extracurricular activities. Keep breathing all! :) Goodlette-Frank Rd, Naples, FL

Sunday, April 24, 2011


04.24.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Yes, Virginia...there is an Easter Bunny (borrowed heavily, of course, from the famous editorial from the late 1800's)! Coloring and hunting for eggs, chocolate bunnies, baskets filled with colorful eggs and jelly beans - the commercialization of the Easter holiday remains steadfast. Though the Christian calendar dictates a rather wide date span, the celebration coincides with the delivery of spring season (be it real or imagined!).

Memories of Easters past are relived...well, all except for matching outfits (including hats and gloves) that my sister and I wore to is worshiped and family members are loved. Despite the exploitation of the religious symbolism, the holiday is still one of treasured beliefs and caring relationships. Naples, FL

Saturday, April 23, 2011


04.23.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

It won't be ready to eat for a couple more months or so, but this young pineapple is well on its way to maturity. Like a kid in a kindergarten classroom, I'm still awed and excited to watch the transformation of a sliced off pineapple top planted in the ground yield a new edible fruit! Though it seems like it takes forever, it is always fun to harvest!

The process of maturity can be painful's experiences run the gamut of extremes. Of course, as they say, the alternative to maturity is not great, either! Melbourne, FL

Friday, April 22, 2011


04.22.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Colors of the World by Rio Caleto-Cervantes

I see the sky
And it's all blue,
Like the ocean with its azure hue.

I see the trees
And it's all green
With the verdant leaves on the brim.

I see the sun
And how it glowed!
Like a golden ring on a distant slope.

I see a land
With the warm shades of brown,
Which echoes warmth all around.

And I see folks like you and me.
We are part of this mystery.
The colors are rich with variety
Of people, plants, animals and nature's elements in a mould.
For these are the colors of the world.

In celebration of Earth Day! Melbourne, FL

Thursday, April 21, 2011


04.21.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Repetitive patterns mirrored in the evening sky are both comforting and memorizing. Funny, too, how those repetitive patterns are both boring and stagnant...yet, can be the ticket to 'change' and action. Another paradox...CR 951, Naples, FL

It's the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.
~ Muhammed Ali

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


04.20.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Remembering the one year anniversary of the Gulf oil spill today when I saw this neat sculpture and yesterday when participating in Discovery Education Network's Earth Day webinar with Jeff Corwin. The event was tragic, including the lives of men and sea life, but the continued unknown impact is also disconcerting.

We all make decisions that effect not only the present, but often the future. It sometimes becomes a guessing game as to which direction to take when considering the future impact, but we weigh the pros and cons and make the best decision we can with the information that we have. Sometimes, though, that information is faulty and/or incomplete....still, not making a decision (perhaps even while waiting for more information) IS, in fact, making a decision. It's not easy these days! Central Ave & US 41 E, Naples, FL

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


04.19.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

The 'model' is missing, but the dress is back...this time conveniently framed! Some of you may remember a much-better photographed Naples wedding dress - if not, you may want to check out the comments and links - and now it is available 'framed' and with an added 'accessory'! Love the sense of humor! :)

Some days it is difficult to appreciate the lighter side of life...with all the serious activities focused on deadlines, problems and other 'realities'. But, if you don't find yourself laughing often, it is definitely worth seeking out - surround yourself with nutty friends, check out a wacky YouTube video, enjoy a comedy show! Those deep belly laughs, often vocalized with snorts or loud outbursts, and accompanied by watering eyes, may not come daily...but, even a smile will do! :) 3rd Ave S & 5th St, Naples, FL

Monday, April 18, 2011


04.18.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

The summer heat is starting to settle in, but after being in an over air-conditioned space (read - two sweater day!) at work all day, an afternoon walk in the 90 degree temperature was a respite. This house had beautiful big stalks of gingers just starting to bloom. I did have to battle the bees for space to photograph, but again, it was worthwhile. We tend to appreciate the 'good things' in life when they are compared to other less rewarding aspects - it's all relative! 5th St, Naples, FL

Sunday, April 17, 2011


04.17.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Didn't get out today except for an early morning run and then it was work, work, work - feeling a bit blue about that and the blue bottle on the window sill was the perfect image to capture it! Funny, how the screen and background (i.e., outdoors!) blur as if they are unattainable and out of focus for that instant, as well.

Sometimes I wonder if all of the work is worth it and/or if there isn't a better way to more effectively accomplish the goals! Oh well, many accomplishments today and tomorrow starts anew! Naples, FL

Saturday, April 16, 2011


04.16.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Approaching a covered pavilion, I heard a slight rustle in the underbrush and my eye caught the movement just as the baby gator slithered into the swampy waters below me. Mostly submerged and somewhat camouflaged (added notes), the young alligator kept his beady eyes unblinking on the human intruder. This critter was about a foot and a half long from snout to tail tip. I would guess that "where there is one, there are more" (including momma gator)...unless he was a former 'pet' abandoned by his 'owner'. Assuming man does not interfere, he should have plenty to feed on in this estuary.

The need to survive is evident in our 'fight' or 'flight' syndrome. In our stressful world, both the interpretation of stress and the reaction to it is a daily occurrence. The stress wears on us, but hopefully we have better experience to choose appropriate coping mechanisms. Sometimes, though, that reaction is severe...sometimes, fatal. Suicide is tough enough to understand, but suicide among young people is painful. The more informed we are and the more involved we can be in building healthier coping skills, the less likely we will see the extremes of 'fight' or 'flight'. Freedom Park, Naples, FL

Friday, April 15, 2011


04.15.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Artichoke, feta, kalamata olive pizza from D'Amicos - TGIF - Salute! Somedays are better with envelopment of other senses and literacies...leaving text latent. Enjoy the sights and aromas, the tastes and the 'toasts, the conversations and the memories' - just in time for the weekend! Naples, FL

Thursday, April 14, 2011


04.14.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Setting up the tents for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life this weekend at Gulfview Middle School is an event in and of itself! The Relay is a popular one that always receives significant community support and volunteerism (and for a good cause), but there's a lot of 'behind the scenes' intensity before, during, and after the event. Such rewards don't come free (nor easy)!

This underpainting treatment of the original using BeFunky is an easy way to provide a subtle and yet interesting effect to a photograph. Tonight's class involved the Share, Show & Tell of this photo editing site, as well as the video editing site, JayCut....and that was just the beginning - they also got tips and tricks for enhancing their already well done wikis and learned how to create their next assignment, a teacher web page/e-portfolio using Weebly. Whew! So, even though these sites are (at least for now) free, there's still 'work' to be done! Gulfview Middle School, Naples, FL

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


04.13.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Cattails are populating the culverts around campus these days. They lean gently as the breezes dance through and then reclaim their upward stance. Their slight flexibility insures survival as too rigid would likely lead to breakage...and yet, they show strength, especially in numbers!

My usual segue is lacking between image and words, but the onset of this week's high stakes standardized testing and its implications is becoming increasingly and ridiculously out of control. Though not limited to Florida (which is even more frightening...), the effects of one test performance score not only impacts the student's promotion/graduation status and the school's 'grade,' but also the livelihood of the teacher (i.e., their evaluation and possible employment), as well. All of us want accountability for our tax dollars, but these issues are considerably more complicated than the politicians are treating them. Worse, the focus is still not on student learning, another complicated issue not solved by the emphasis on a single test score. Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


04.12.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Long day, golden tones, shadow play and lines, lines, lines! The palms are the norm here...but still, they never fail to provide interest to me, even against a busy background. Therein lies the balance, I suppose...Gulfview Middle School, 6th Street S, Naples, FL

Monday, April 11, 2011


04.11.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

In memory of Kate
Four years ago on this day, we lost a beautiful woman who loved the light blue color, had strong religious values, and wouldn't miss the opportunity for a suntan...even in the Wyoming winters! She spent most of her life being a mom to her seven children, many more grandchildren, and all of their friends, as well. Regrettably, she missed the opportunity to hold her great-grandchildren, but she would be SO proud of her own children who have taken on the role of grandparents! :) And, thanks to grandchild, Peyton, for the suggestion - the extended family wore that special baby blue color today! Her spirit reaches out to us in so many forms, but the blue is definitely Aunt Kate! Naples, FL

Sunday, April 10, 2011


04.10.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

The birds are out! The bird of paradise is such a unique flower - color and structure is really like no other! Surprised and pleased to see the criss-cross of the web in the image which makes it even more unique. Shooting into the sun created a different transparency of the petals, as well.

Sometimes it is said that we share more commonalities than differences and I suppose that's true in many ways...but our unique qualities make each of us very different, which makes the first adage somewhat of a paradox - but then life is a lot like that, too! Gulfshore Blvd, Naples, FL

Saturday, April 9, 2011


04.09.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Slow (painfully slow, sometimes) but steady, the turtle is driven by a purpose, intentional but also seemingly observant. This one was ever so aware of its surroundings and was not particularly pleased to see a potential predator. It held its ground, though, ready to retreat inside its protective shell. From afar, I saw it 'stuck its neck out' and scope out the scene before resuming along its way.

Ah, so many lessons to learn from the turtle! Life is not really about hurrying to grab the 'prize' nor is it totally without goals. There is meaning in each step towards that finish line and much to appreciate along the way. Furthermore, the more comfortable we are with our own shells (with all their strengths and limitations), the easier that journey will be. Naples, FL

Friday, April 8, 2011


04.08.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Haven't been to the Naples Museum of Art recently and looks like a new sculpture has been installed on the grounds. There's always so much to see and experience at the museum, but this was just a 'drive through' after picking up my 10K race packet (what was I thinking???). For those who read the YA novel, The Maze Runner by James Dashner, this resembles my imaginary view of a Griever, the programmed and villainous machines that haunt the 'good guys'. But I was equally fascinated with the tree's exterior elements that resemble a face ('deer-in-the-headllght' eyes and a snouty nose). :)

Fun to use our imagination and watching children helps one remember how easily lost it becomes as we age! If you haven't checked out Neave Imagination (and other) site, give it a try - a nice release of the daily routine to practice that imagination waiting for a chance to 'shine'! Naples Museum of Art, Pelican Bay Blvd, Naples, FL

Thursday, April 7, 2011


04.07.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

A torn piece of paper proved to be a good photographic model while I sent my students out on a digital storytelling image hunt this evening. The texture and space are both appealing and though the focus is a bit off, it holds its own because of other elements, I think...

Sometimes it is hard to let go of all that is going on in our minds and to allow the creative juices to flow - I'm noticing more and more that even college-level students are more interested in getting the grade than in "learning" - what does that spell for our future? How will they deal with the abstract? What will they do when confronted with the white space? Learning Resources Bldg, Edison State College campus, Naples, FL

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


04.06.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Managed to snap a high contrast shot of the Nina and Pinta replica masts via a quick drive-by this afternoon. The ships are here for a week and still quite popular, based on a glimpse of the crowds. During our 'season' there's always something to do, see, and experience and the visitors and seasonal folks flock to the events, leading to congestion (unpleasant for some who 'just' work and live here year round)...but, on the bright side, they also leave their dollars here to support employment! Gordon River & US 41 E, Naples, FL

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


04.05.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Ever-changing springtime weather brings vibrant blue skies one day and stormy weather the next! Today's rain and wind brought down most remaining yellow tab blooms, but these few held on. The colorless sky is relatively rare in this region - and, though, not my preference, the one-day drab is palatable and does allow one to better appreciate the 'norm'.

The norm is such a moving target, impacted by changeable elements and various measurement tools. Getting caught up in what's 'normal' can too easily stray from the realistic and beautiful differences among us. It is interesting to watch and listen to those (myself included at times) who promote individuality and value uniqueness, but still find the need to categorize and 'pigeon hole' people just because...and that becomes pretty arbitrary! Naples, FL

Monday, April 4, 2011


04.04.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

New construction between the Gulf and the Intercoastal is nice location, but I'm surprised to see the white and gray contrast - looking even more so by the blue sky! The details are a bit different, as well...though the condos are not yet finished so additional judgment shall be reserved! I do like the space captured in this shot, though...

The essence of how we value and use our space is becoming more interesting in the realm of education. Some only still see learning occur only in the four walls of the classroom in this digital age! On the other hand, many are practicing the art of teaching and learning everywhere but those walled rooms. It will be a fascinating adventure as we help stretch the 'space' of learning for both learners and facilitators! Gulfshore Blvd, Naples, FL

Sunday, April 3, 2011


04.03.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Posing nicely, this duck kept an eye on me...likely hoping for a handout! I like that the water was almost smooth and allows a reflection of the eye, as well as providing a view of that bright orange webbed foot! :) She was definitely paddling!

So, the old adage about unruffled feathers on the surface often means paddling like crazy under the surface - how does that fit for you? Like the duck, my paddling is generally fact, in this collaborative environment with the need for openness, it may be more much more effective to reveal that paddling! Freedom Park, Naples, FL

Saturday, April 2, 2011


04.02.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Nice empty lot at the end of a cul-de-sac on one of the dredged fingers of Marco Island offers a lovely view of the water and mangrove islands - negatively punctuated by the 'out-of-place' condos on Marco Shores! The great expanse of sky provides the great open spaces which I always it water, sky or land, I'm of the attitude, "don't fence me in!" :)

To make use of space is a designer's delight. Working with the natural surroundings to create a habitat is much more a challenge, but even I can imagine the need for windows to view this slice of nature! When the windows are provided, though, we must still use them from which to see. Marco Island, FL


04.01.11, originally uploaded by colemama.

Lucky enough to catch the sunlight dancing across this watercolor - it was only momentary play, but it was more than I could muster today! Naples, FL