San Francisco

We've been taking some play days with family and friends lately. Our latest one took us to San Francisco for a long morning walk at the Presideo.

Historical buildings, great views, and now George Lucas and Disney Museums...lots of great stuff.

Beaches, Boardwalks, Big Trees and Butterflies!

Such a busy week we had! Having family visit is just another excuse to get out and see even more of California. We stayed busy the entire week with barely time to catch a breather. How long has it been since you visited Santa Cruz? It's 'winter' now, so the rides are only open on the weekend, but the arcade was open and the miniature golf, and the wharf and of course the beach! We had a great time. The weather was so nice we even sat outside for lunch. I read alot about the Santa Cruz Boardwalk that I didn't know so I thought I'd share this link in case you are bored enough to read it. ;)

Mission San Juan Bautista State Historic Park

This afternoon, we went to San Juan Bautista to show family members the beautiful Mission. Once again, we had a wonderful trip and learned even more about the place than all of the other visits. The skies were beautiful, and I was able to get quite a few really great pics. We also went into the church and museum and gardens and really enjoyed walking through all of the buildings that we hadn't gone into on prior visits.

Here are a few shots from today.

Natural Bridges State Park

Yep, we even visit the California State Parks in the pouring rain! We went Sunday afternoon to the Natural Bridges State Park in Santa Cruz. It was wet and cold, but so beautiful! For the first time, we went to the visitor center and read all about the Monarch Butterflies and then walked the boardwalk Monarch trail down to their 'resting place' at the bottom in the eucalyptus grove. At first glance, we saw maybe a dozen butterflies fluttering way over our heads. Even that small amount was cool! So, we started walking back, enjoying our stroll, when the guys noticed all of the 'clusters' of butterflies in the trees above. VERY NEAT! I guess this is what they do when the weather is cool, they cluster together for warmth. If you haven't seen them, you should really make a point of going. The reason why we didn't see them at first is that when they aren't flying, and are hanging upside down, they really look like the leaves on the trees. ;)

Catching up!

We have family visiting this week, so we have been even busier than normal playing tourists and enjoying the California 'liquid sunshine'. Yesterday, we drove up to take the steam train in Felton, California. It was raining sideways. But, we all wore raingear and still had a great time. The train ride is incredibly relaxing going through old growth Redwoods and fresh clean air. If you'd like to know more about it, I thought I'd throw in their website.

Good morning!

Wow what a gorgeous day! So tired from the last few weeks of travel, but up and ready to get right back out there today. Today is Halloween, so we are trying to decide between more pumpkin patches or just going and playing at a California State Beach this afternoon. What would you do? ;)

Only a few more days until voting on Prop 21 here in California. There are some great videos that have been made for the contest with yesforstateparks. Want to see?

Click Here!

Our favorite is this one!

Well, time to wake up everyone else and get on the road! Here's a big hello from some of my friends at Point Lobos State Park!


Well, we just got back to Morgan Hill in time for the rain! We had a great time today at the wildlife refuges near Los Banos. Even though most of the Tule Elk hid from us and the mosquitos swarmed us and the hunters woke us up at 4am getting ready for opening day, it was a beautiful time!

Here are a few snaps from this morning.....

Have you ever been to Los Banos?

Good evening and hello from The Great Grasslands of the Central Valley. Have you ever been to Los Banos? I thought maybe I'd share a little history about this area in case you'd like to visit some day.

Los Banos history

San Luis Reservoir

Great Valley Grasslands

We are still on the road, back in Los Banos this evening, and then visiting the Tule Elk at the reserve in the am, followed by a nice walk and visit to the San Luis Reservoir, then hopefully we will make it to Santa Cruz by 5pm for the bonfire and smores! Beaches this weekend and then back on the road headed to Sacramento/Truckee/Tahoe and beyond on Tuesday. Happy weekend everyone! ;)

Visit The California State Parks with The Parks!

Follow along on Facebook!

We are on the road visiting California State Parks! Please join us virtually and enjoy some pics along the route.

Here are just a few pics from the last few days!

Would you like to be a guest blogger?

As I look ahead this week thinking about all the fun we are going to have visiting California State Parks, I thought it would be great to hear stories from other families that have had fun in the parks. Would you like to be a guest blogger on If you have a story to share, email it to us at and we will share with others. Can't wait to read them!

Thoughts of the day~

Thinking about the California State Parks today. To us they are one safe place to play even though they are not in the same location. They have brought us so much pleasure, especially over the last year. My daughter runs there, found her first sanddollar there, saw her first close up of a seal and otter there, learned to build sandcastles there, plays in tidepools there, watches birds there, hikes mountains there, hug trees there, uses bike trails there, and of course we take pictures there! ;)

lazy days

awwwww lazy days in California.....zzzzzzzz

Just a few more reasons.....

Why do I love the California State Parks? Here are just a few more reasons.......
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Henry Coe State Park

Happy Monday! Today we went for one of my favorite drives in the area, up the 10 mile windy road to Henry Coe State Park. This always seems like the longest 10 miles we've ever been on, but it's worth it when we get to the top. The drive goes through beautiful countryside above Morgan Hill, past ranches that have been there since 1877, over a railroad bridge, cattle guards, and gorgeous views over Lake Anderson and the croplands below. Today, like most other times we've driven this road, we were the only ones on the road except for the wildlife.

Once at the top, we ran around looking at the views, stopped by the visitor center and said hello to our friend John, and of course spent money in the gift shop!

ABC's in the California State Parks

My daughter (3) and I have been talking about everything we can see or do in the California State Parks, and just for fun we made a list. I will let you imagine her singing the ABC's with it. ;)

A Accessibility

B birds

C camping

D dunes

E education

F family

G gold

H history

I interpretive programs

J jobs!

K kites

L lakes

M missions

N nature

O ocean

P photos

Q quick access

R redwoods

S school

T trees

U urban

V volunteers!

W wildflowers

X XTML (well you could see this if it is a park with free wifi!)

Y youth programs

Z zzzzzzzz a nice nap!;)

Pacheco State Park

We took a late afternoon drive to Pacheco State Park yesterday. The clouds were moving really fast and changing the light and it made for some really fun photos, and a good run for my daughter.

California State Parks

I am NOT a blogger. You'd think i'd have time to be one, but I am always running about taking photos and chasing the 3 year old which doesn't leave me much time for writing. That being said, I'm going to TRY to start posting again and share more about the photos I take.

We are currently shooting in California, and enjoying life here playing on the beaches and hiking in the parks. My goal is to help my daughter see all of the California State Parks while they are still here. My husband and I want to raise her to love the outdoors!

Hope you enjoy the photos, you can see more everyday on Facebook, our business page is Parks Photography.

Road trip!

This weekend we are going on a mini-vacation road trip all over the Monterey Bay area. Should be very beautiful (and crowded) but the nice thing is that if everything is too overly crowded and traffic stuck up with rv's, we can just turn around, come back to Morgan Hill, and go another direction the next day!

Active Play Around The Bay

I have been enjoying taking pics of families playing with their kids in the local parks around here. Being active in your early life provides such a great example in the years to follow. I have joined Kaboom in the quest to build and improve playgrounds, and create play dates in the area.

I've been horrible at updating the website lately, sorry! Hope you are following us on Facebook.

Photographer quotes (found on the WWW)

Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst. - Henri Cartier-Bresson

You know what a camera is? A mirror with memory. - Anonymous

Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still. - Dorothea Lange

A photograph is memory in the raw. - Carrie Latet

Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever... it remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything. - Aaron Siskind

It is one thing to photograph people. It is another to make others care about them by revealing the core of their humanness. - Paul Strand

Every time someone tells me how sharp my photos are, I assume that it isn't a very interesting photograph. If it were, they would have more to say. - Anonymous

There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs. - Ansel Adams

My portraits are more about me than they are about the people I photograph. - Richard Avedon

Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph. - Matt Hardy

A photograph is usually looked at - seldom looked into. - Ansel Adams

I never question what to do, it tells me what to do. The photographs make themselves with my help. - Ruth Bernhard

There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are. - Ernst Haas

Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow. - Imogen Cunningham

You don't take a photograph, you make it. - Ansel Adams

I just think it's important to be direct and honest with people about why you're photographing them and what you're doing. After all, you are taking some of their soul. - Mary Ellen Mark

A true photograph need not be explained, nor can it be contained in words. - Ansel Adams

Photography records the gamut of feelings written on the human face, the beauty of the earth and skies that man has inherited, and the wealth and confusion man has created. It is a major force in explaining man to man. - Edward Steichen

No photographer is as good as the simplest camera. - Edward Steichen

You’ve got to push yourself harder. You’ve got to start looking for pictures nobody else could take. You’ve got to take the tools you have and probe deeper. - William Albert Allard

A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know. - Diane Arbus

There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer. - Ansel Adams

Everyone has a photographic memory, but not everyone has film. - Anonymous

I always thought good photos were like good jokes. If you have to explain it, it just isn’t that good. - Anonymous

The camera doesn't make a bit of difference. All of them can record what you are seeing. But, you have to SEE. - Ernst Haas

A great photograph is a full expression of what one feels about what is being photographed in the deepest sense, and is, thereby, a true expression of what one feels about life in its entirety. - Ansel Adams

Funny Photography Quotes
Buying a Nikon doesn't make you a photographer. It makes you a Nikon owner. - Anonymous

People say photographs don't lie, mine do. - David LaChapelle

The quickest way to make money at photography is to sell your camera. - Anonymous

If you saw a man drowning and you could either save him or photograph the event...what kind of film would you use? - Anonymous

A definition of a professional photographer: A "pro" NEVER shows anybody the mistakes. - Anonymous

How many photographers does it take to change a light bulb? 50. One to change the bulb, and forty-nine to say, "I could have done that! - Anonymous

First Person : "Is that camera fully automatic?" Second Person : "No. You have to take the film to the chemist! - Anonymous

The rarest thing in the world is a woman who is pleased with photograph of herself. - Elizabeth Metcalf

If an old man asks a young girl for a date...
That's his business.
If the young girl accepts...
That's her business.
If the old man and the girl decide to marry...
That's their business.
However, if they want great wedding photographs...
THAT'S MY BUSINESS!!! - Anonymous - Sign on studio wall

A hike through history

We got approved to go to Gilroy Hot Springs today and do some test shots. Gorgeous day, beautiful scenery. This place has a huge history, thought you might be interested in reading some.

Hello from California!

Thanks for stopping in! I crashed my blog site so this one is up temporily until it gets redone. OOPS.

We are in California for at least this year and next, working on our stock photography and landscapes. Yes we still do assignment photos, please contact us if you would like a quote.

Until next time....