Monday, April 30, 2007

liquid playground

A six hour drive had left me, my husband & our two small children getting crankier by the hour - I was eager for an excuse to stretch my legs & have a little down time when we finally got home. City Daily Photo gave me that opportunity on a silver platter - driving along the lake I saw about a dozen kites flying high above the tree tops. The clouds, the light & the wind were perfect; I couldn't think of anywhere else I would rather be at that point. So - what is this sport called? Kite boarding? Anyone know?

Thursday, April 26, 2007

long weekend

The family & I are heading up to Minneapolis for a few days of big city r & r, so no posts until Sunday. Be sure to check out my fellow Madisonian at or follow me north to the always fabulous Minneapolis Daily Photo.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

happy birthday to me

In lieu of anything particularly Madison-y, today I am posting a photo of my birthday tree - the magnolia planted in my backyard on my birthday 5 years ago & which is always in bloom on this date. Scheduled programming will resume tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


This patch of emerging hostas reminded me of baby birds with their beaks wide open waiting for a juicy worm or two.

Monday, April 23, 2007

free red bikes!

Well, not all red bikes are free in Madison, just some of them. There's a program here in town where you lay down a deposit and get a spray-painted red bike and a lock for 6 months. None of them are anything special but the whole point is to get you from Point A to Point B. Pretty nifty.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Happy Earth Day!

Today's photo was taken at Governor Nelson State Park, named for the man himself - Gaylord Nelson, founder of Earth Day & former Wisconsin governor and senator.
This beautiful park just outside Madison has long been one of my favourite places to go hiking - they also have a boat launch into Lake Mendota, a swimming beach, cross country skiing trails in winter and a dog park, complete with diving pier for our four legged friends to jump into the water.
I think it is a remarkable tribute to a remarkable man.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Earth Day preview

This post is a day-before-Earth Day salute - a photo of one of Madison's Community Cars. Cars are rented by the hour in this member-based, “time-share” car service. They pay for the gas, 60% of their cars are gas/electric hybrids, and they have this extremely cool mini in their fleet - what's not to love?!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Guess the object...

...It's a pretty cool bike rack outside Madison pizza institution, the Glass Nickel. Now that I think about it, I don't often see any bikes locked to it, which makes me think that not many people know what it is either...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

What the...?

Here's a good example of what I mentioned in an earlier post about seeing the strangest things in the strangest places...I saw this bike spectacularly wrapped around a tree in the middle of an oak savannah & couldn't for the life of me figure out how it got there. While I like the figure 8 shape of the wheel, I really hope nobody was hurt in the process.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Morning on the lake

On Tuesday morning the lake was so still & calm that I pulled my car into a lakeside park & quickly snapped this shot of two ducks out for a lazy swim. Madison sits on an isthmus - there are lakes on either side of the city - and this is Lake Monona. Music fans may know that this is the lake that Otis Redding's plane crashed into in 1967, a very sad part of Madison's history.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

spring sneak preview

Well, it's not like we have orchids growing wild on the side of the road, but there are plenty of them to be found at Olbrich Gardens, the botanical gardens in my neighbourhood. This place is a genuine Madison treasure, especially in the middle of winter when the temperature inside the conservatory is in the 70's. I've spent many a February afternoon in there soaking up the humidity & listening to the canaries.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Look Up

Since I started this photo blog, I find myself looking here there & everywhere for my next photo. It's amazing how much you see when you really look!
I first saw this statue a few years ago - he's been hanging out on top of this building on the capitol square for a while now & he was even taken down and put in storage when the building was renovated. But it's fun to find the strangest things in the strangest places.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Capital City

Madison is the state capital of Wisconsin - and this beautiful building, the State Capitol, is smack dab at the top of State Street, the heart of downtown Madison. The Capitol is one of those buildings that you see so often you don't even notice it, but this building - seat of state government - is so beautiful & even more spectacular on the inside (and I hope to post some photos of the interior in the future.) Whether or not you agree with the bills and laws that make their way of here this is one landmark that truly makes Madison Madison.
***I have to point out that I was standing in the middle of the street during a break in bus traffic when I took this photo, which is why it's not the best one I've ever taken ;) ***

Saturday, April 14, 2007

The Birds

These beauties are the work of Dr. Evermor, a local 'scrap artisan' who makes the most amazing sculptures out of salvaged materials. He has an enormous sculpture park just outside Baraboo, the centerpiece of which is the Forevertron.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Early morning visitor

I was busy being a good English person and filling up the kettle for a cup of tea this morning when I noticed something on the bird bath that's not usually there. My go-to-guy on these matters tells me this is a sharpshin hawk, one of a pair who has built a nest on our street. My bird bath is right next to the birdfeeder, which makes me think this one had dropped in for a bite to eat (and not of the birdseed kind.)

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Cows in Madison, Part 1

This fiberglass cow still all gussied up in her Easter finery, is probably ready for some serious spring too. There are a bunch of these cows all over the city; all were auctioned off for charity and now are popping up here and there. I particularly love this one because she's always decorated for various holidays.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Winter returns for an encore

Much as I wish it weren't so, I did actually take this photo today - April 11th! Probably Wisconsin's most unpredictable season, spring can veer from this kind of weather to 70 degrees and sunny from week to week.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Camp Randall statue

The words "art" and "football" are rarely together in the same sentence. Here's a great example of why not. Almost universally derided when it was unveiled, this extraordinarily phallic piece was erected (hmmm...) in front of Camp Randall, home of the UW football team. Nobody seems to be too thrilled about it, with a great many people wishing the University had decided to honor Elroy 'Crazylegs' Hirsch instead.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Madison sunset

It really is as cold as it looks - not very springlike here in Madison yet. I'm lucky enough to see the sunset almost every night just a block from my house. It never gets old.