Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Santa Train

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Joey, Johnny, Madi, Teen, and I rode the Santa Train last night at the Museum of Life and Science in Durham.  The Santa Train is a big fundraiser for the museum each year, and I heard them announce last night that over 10,000 people had ridden the train this holiday season.  We were on at 7PM, and the last run of the year was at 8PM.  I had picked last night to go because the kids got out of school for winter break yesterday.    We got very lucky with the weather.  It hovered near 58 degrees at ride time, and we only felt one or two drops of rain during the evening.  Although we enjoyed the complimentary  hot chocolate, we weren't desperate to use it to get warm.  The kids made reindeer food and colored and Madi even got a cardinal painted on her cheek.  This year Santa and Mrs. Claus were at a different location on the normal train route.  They had landed on their sled for a brief visit at the museum, and the area they set up for that came across as quite magical.  So glad we went this year (our 2nd time after going for the first time last year).

Last year I was frustrated that I didn't have a tripod, so this year I carried in my lightweight one, and Teen helped carry it around some, and I was very pleased with the shots that I was able to get.  Definitely worth bringing it in!

The POTD train shot was taken on my camera at f4.5 first and then f8.  The f8 produced much nicer light bursts. Again, so glad I had the tripod.  The background for today's shot is a bokeh Christmas light shot from a few nights ago.  I used Color Variations in PSE to adjust the warmer colors into more purple/blue to match the train lights.

The f4.5 shot:

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You can see that the Christmas lights are much flatter.

Here are my favorite family pics of the night:

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The kids squabbled a bit last night.  Sigh...  It's not always as perfect as the pics might convey.  However, without a doubt, we had a great evening and a super fun time!

The beautiful lights around the Magic Wings Butterfly House and train station:

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Madi's cheek with a cardinal painted on it:

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And posting this shot that Joey took in the kids' daily gallery:

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Joey was so excited to try to take a few pics with me last night!  With the tripod and the self timer, he was quite successful I think.

1 comment:

WildeLifePhotography said...

Love the shot of the painting on the cheek.