September has rolled in!

Welcome to September!

School has arrived and completed a week, the air is beginning to shift to crisp and pumpkin spice has arrived to flavor everything it can. Fall formally arrives on September 22nd, though I’ve always considered fall to start in September.

With fall comes fall colors. 2 weeks ago in a trip up to the north shore there were trees that were starting to gain color. Because of the dry summer we’ve had we could have fall leaf colors much earlier than normal or we can end up with no colors at all!

Here’s where we are at: 

It’s beginning! Remember if you want to do the North Shore and waterfalls with fall color we’ll need to plan for mid to late September. Mid October is when St. Cloud peaks on average, while the end of October is when Minneapolis and St. Paul tend to peak. 


With the arrival of an ice cream maker attachment for my stand mixer, the inspiration that is ice cream has been high (I haven’t made a batch yet!). Normal ice cream isn’t good for dogs due to the amount of sugar in it. You can find dog friendly ice cream in grocery stores (Ben and Jerry’s makes a doggie ice cream!) or you can whip up a batch at home!

Try this recipe:

Peanut Butter & Jelly Ice Cream for Dogs!

Found on: https://www.biggerbolderbaking.com/ice-cream-dogs/
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dog

Ingredients
  

  • 1 small ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (unsalted and smooth)
  • 1 cup natural plain yogurt (low fat, non fat)
  • 5 strawberries , pureed

Instructions
 

  • Mash the banana well until smooth and no lumps.
  • Stir in the peanut butter, followed by the yogurt.
  • Mix until well combined.
  • Puree or mash the strawberries and fold them into peanut butter mix to create a swirl.
  • Pour the mixture into freezer safe air-tight containers and then freeze for a minimum of 4 hours but preferably overnight.
  • Ice cream will keep in the freezer up to 8 weeks! Yum!
Keyword dog ice cream

Don’t forget – weekday sessions will be available until October 18th with select weekends available into the fall.


2021 feels like a reset year for everyone, including About A Dog Photography. Aside from a few local sessions for an advertising arrangement, there haven’t been any sessions on the book for this year. I understand the rebuilding since covid and with photography (especially dog photography) being a luxury item that it isn’t in line with budgets at the moment. Don’t worry we aren’t going anywhere!

Additionally we’ve been funneling a ton of time and energy into Atomic Collars – from sewing to events every other weekend from May until the beginning of this month. Busy hardly covers how the summer went. 

If you were to improve, change, update or inspire About A Dog Photography what would you do?

The End of Summer

Whoosh.
Summer came, it heated up, served us ice cream and swimming outings, parades and fireworks and rolled into lazy dog days. Now its lazily waning as school supplies and Halloween display in the stores, the early leaves are transitioning and children anticipate school.

This was one of those summers where it went streaking by too quickly.

Mondays at the part time gig of the camera shop, weekdays sewing as a madman for Atomic Collars, every other weekend at the Minneapolis Pet Market hanging out with other awesome pet vendors, every opposite weekend filled with adventure and my two favorite guys. There was a trip to a cabin and a long weekend for my birthday.  Then the summer was gone. 

Photography has been quiet. The oomph of steam that had the birthday excitement petered out when there was a loss of time (coordinated around the cabin trip, might want to rethink that…) and I lost the organization to pick winners as well as release the contests for all 8 sessions. Part was due to the amplification of Atomic Collars. Sewing = time. With more sewing to do to create stock, it ate into marketing and social media for About A Dog Photography.

Don’t worry, we aren’t going anywhere. We made it to 9 years, can’t stop us now!


With back to school happening soon there will be an adjustment made. I’m helping my mom out during the weekdays so Monday-Thursday won’t be available until after 5 pm. Fridays are out as that’s a pizza night and hangout day. This will hold steady until we reach then end of September when our start time is 5:30 pm (we meet up an hour and half before sunset for the best light).

Now if we need to, we can shorten the session to an hour and shoot until we lose light. This would give us weekdays until  October 18th with a start time of 5:30, sunset at 6:25 pm. Any weekdays after the 18th of October will be only available as a short session due to the loss of light as the season transitions. This will remain in effect for weekdays until the time change in March. 

Select weekends will be available pending events with Atomic Collars. At the moment the weekends of September 18th & 19th, October 3rd, 16th-17th, October 30th and November 13th-14th are available.  If you want a session then, call dibs ASAP!

Peak fall leaf color is typically late September to mid October for the middle of the state aka St. Cloud area. The Twin Cities tends to have a later start and later range, with leaves turning in late September and transitioning into late October, while the North Shore is going to peak in September (waterfalls and leaves? yes please! Though water levels are low this year…

 The week of October 11th-18th ought to have a fair display of color for the St. Cloud area, possibly for the Twin Cities (we know there’s tons of variables) and I’ll be doing active weekly reporting of the colors starting in September. If you want a session during that week, email me ASAP!  Only 5 weekdays that week are available for full sessions!


The weekend of November 13th-14th is the VERY LAST weekend to book a session to guarantee you receive your prints, albums etc in time for Christmas. Yes we can have sessions in December but you won’t get your prints and products in time for Christmas. Print and product production is 3-4 weeks, especially around the holiday season. 

From January to March 12th there will be no weekday sessions and only select weekends available. At the moment January 22nd & 23rd, February 5th & 6th, February 19th & 20th, March 5th & 6th are available.

Starting the week of March 14th we can resume weekday sessions! Start time would be 6 pm and as the spring heads into summer start times will get a bit later. When we hit the end of school in June, weekdays will be fully available for morning and evening sessions, with select weekends available. 


Can’t forget about Viewing Sessions! These will only be available in the evenings after 5 pm weekdays and can be done in person or virtually via Skype from the start of the school year until summer break. Summer will give us more flexibility, but Viewing Sessions will always be on a weekday, whether in the morning, afternoon or evening. 


Now you’re in the loop! Starting in September there were will be weekly blogs featuring a report on fall leaf colors. I may add some other fun dog things – recipes, dog facts, possibly adorable pictures of pups. 

Keep staying safe in this new normal world. Hugs from me and sniffs from Bender. (Kris says hi too!) ♥

Dog Parks Near Me | St. Cloud MN

Looking for something to do with your dog outside and make new friends? Check out some of the dog parks in St. Cloud MN!

(Note: you will need an Off Leash Pet Exercise Areas permit to use the dog parks. The yearly cost is $20 for residents of St. Cloud or you can get a daily permit for $2. Make sure your dog has a current dog license as well!)


Wilson Park / 625 NE Riverside Drive, St. Cloud, MN 56301

Located right on the river, this park has a big beach area (prepare for muddy or sandy pups!), a large area for running, games of chase and dodging trees. Geese do bed down in the park so there is often tons of goose poop – your dog may be tempted eat or roll in it. There isn’t a separate area for small dogs or dogs who are nervous. You don’t need to bring water as your dog can drink from the river.

While this park is fenced, the fence doesn’t keep dogs from swimming around it. If your dog is an avid swimmer, keep an eye on them so they don’t swim into the adjacent park and have a free run!

Community: there are regulars who frequent the park, pending on time of day you’ll meet one to ample other dogs and their owners.

The dogs are: Buddy (brown chocolate lab mix) & Hobbes (cream golden retriever mix)

Friends of Whitney Dog Park / Forest Drive, St. Cloud, MN 56301

Tucked against the Sauk River, Friends of Whitney Dog Park is a few parks away behind the new YMCA. It’s one long area with lots of trees, a couple of benches and a water fountain for people and pups. Plus there’s a covered shelter with tables underneath for when the days get hot.

Need a break from the park? There’s a bridge over the river to a series of trails. Keep an eye out for turtles, there’s been some big snappers lounging on the paths in years past.

Community: active, you’ll meet 2-5+ dogs and their people, pending on time of day (there were 6 dogs there when I stopped by)

This is how you get to the trails across the river!

Jaycees Park / 1111 N. 37th Ave., St. Cloud, MN 56301

Nestled next to highway 15, the Jaycees Park is a smaller park with two separate areas – one for big dogs and one for smaller dogs. This park is very open with few trees and no water access – remember to bring water esp as we roll into summer. This might be a park to avoid in the middle of the day during hot weather. One picnic table per area.

Community: quieter, this is a less popular park with lack of trees and water – you might get the park to yourself!


Within a short drive distance from St. Cloud you can go to:

  • Sartell Dog Park / 1105 Pinecone Central Park Blvd Sartell, MN 56377
  • Millstream Park / 725 Co Rd 75 W, St Joseph, MN 56374
  • Grey Face Rescue / 7316 Ridgewood Road, St. Cloud, MN 56303
    They have an indoor dog park (not sure if they have restrictions with covid). It would be best to contact them for info.
  • Sam & Danni’s has a dog park, contact them to see how you can use it

Bring out your pup and meet some new friends! If you don’t have a pup who is a good fit for dog parks, you can go to the dog parks by yourself! (Bender isn’t good for dog parks). Pet the pups and strike up conversations with fellow dog people. Or just opt for strolls around the neighborhood.


Next visit VP Shoots Photography capturing pet portraits and pets with their families in the Tampa Bay area to learn about dog parks in her area! Remember this is a blog ring so visit everyone until you land back here!

5 Places to Adopt a Pitbull in St. Cloud MN

Looking to add a pitbull into your family? Below there are 5 places you can adopt a pitbull in St. Cloud MN.


But first…
Did you know there isn’t actually a breed called a pitbull?

Pitbull is a term that get put upon bully style dogs and can include the terriers – American pit bull terrier and American Staffordshire terrier – along with American bulldogs, boxers, Staffordshire bull terriers, cane corsos and other blocky headed bully type dogs. Which makes adopting a “pitbull” a bit more of a variable as they may be full American pit bull terrier, mixed with assorted other dogs or not even have a drop of bully breed within them!

Variables aside, if you’re adopting a dog coined a pitbull, who has the look of a bully breed there are somethings you will need to know:

  • They can be total buttheads and you may not click right off the bat, but once you do you’ll be besties
  • They are smooshy, loveable, great snugglers, snore, and love to lounge as much as hike in the woods
  • They can have a high prey drive – cat friends need slow intros
  • Pitbulls can be dog reactive or dog aggressive which means no playdates & dog parks, proactive walks, no new dogs to the household
  • There is a ton of stigma around them. People will move out of your way when you’re walking, put space between themselves and your pitbull and lift or move children out of range of your pitbull.

And the stigma holds throughout conversations with people. There is the belief that a pitbull will just one day snap and attack its owners (nope), that their jaws lock (also nope, but they do have a strong bite), their brains swell and it makes them go crazy (nope) and it’s unsafe to get a pitbull from a shelter or rescue because you don’t know their history (it’s totally safe to adopt a pittie).

As in adopting any dog, it will take time to get to know your pitbull and his or her personality.

Oh man check out this baby hunk! This is when I was first fostering Bender!


Are you ready to adopt a pittie?

Here are 5 places you can adopt a pitbull in the St. Cloud MN area:

Good luck finding your next pitbull family member!


Next pop over to Angela Schneider of Big White Dog Photography in Spokane, WA, and the specially abled rescue dogs of Idaho. to learn about rescue dogs in Idaho! Make it around the blog ring to see all the rescue dogs!

Colorful

Colorful.

At the current moment its not found within the landscape of Minnesota as we just had a brush with S-N-O-W and the grass is merely getting into green garb. There are sprinklings of tiny blues as the very early risers – Siberian squills – are dotted in our gardens. (They have also found their way into the grass…). Otherwise there are no inklings of the vibrant summer colors to come. Cue the creative quest of finding color.


What is color?

Color the characteristic of visual perception described through color categories, with names such as red, yellow, or blue. Found in the visible spectrum of ROY G. BIV – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo & violet!

Color comes in varying hues, tones and saturation and is found everywhere there is light. (The human eye cannot see color in darkness, only when there are hints of light – cameras have the ability to “see in the dark” with long exposures, and light sensitive sensors.)

Orders of color!

Orders of color head into the days of color wheels and school aged art. There are 3 main orders: primary, secondary & tertiary

Some ways to use color: color schemes!
  • Complimentary colors – directly across from each other on the color wheel
    * blue & orange / red & green / yellow & purple etc
  • Analogous colors – colors next to each other on the color wheel, usually a set of 3
    * blue, green, yellow / yellow, red, orange / red, purple, blue etc
  • Monochrome colors – not black and white, but an image with a single color tone

Let’s get colorful!

A single color (tans & browns are still colors!) Could be considered monochromatic…

We found a some colorful spots – a train car with graffiti and well placed puddle. A mural on the back of the wedge building (this mural has been there for many years). Then the tight alley with a giant butterfly.  Color all around!

Wandered around town for more color. Lots of monochromatic options for bold color. We could use some more murals around town. Or more colors of buildings! (Lots of browns and rusts from the bricks!)

And one complimentary color set! (Red & green!)


Next up visit Linda Perdue with VP Shoots Photography specializing in photographing pets and their families in the Tampa Bay area of Florida and see what she found for color! Loop through everyone until you land back to us!