observed by Diane » photo journal for those who enjoy vignettes of an ordinary life

  • Welcome to my photo journal

    Living on Vancouver Island in B.C. Canada Diane loves the scent of forests and rain, the rhythms of the sea, and holds discoveries and stories in high regard.

    Where mornings begin with a drum roll! --Diane M Schuller

    Updated each Monday ... simply an online journal of an ordinary life. Come on in to enjoy a breath of West Coast air.

    Valentine’s Day

    Did you know Valentine’s Day dates back to pagan Roman ‘parties’ that involved activities you may find offensive. It’s surprising this Hallmark day had such crude roots. I much prefer to associate it with gentle and kind love.


    from Diane Schuller to you and yours

    from Diane Schuller to you and yours

     According to National Geographic there is another legend about it’s roots:

    “According to the story, in the third century A.D. Roman Emperor Claudius II, seeking to bolster his army, forbade young men to marry. Valentine, it is said, flouted the ban, performing marriages in secret.

    For his defiance, Valentine was executed in A.D. 270—on February 14, the story goes.”

    Whether you celebrate the day in some way or not, may the weekend be filled with true and gentle love with friends, family, or getting to know your neighbours.

    More Valentine factoids:


    • About 190 million cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second-most popular greeting-card giving occasion.
    • 65 percent of households send greeting cards on Valentine’s Day.
    • 73 percent of Valentine Day flowers are bought by men, while women buy 23 percent of Valentine flowers.

    This year, I made my own Valentine card — well, two of them.

    The next blog entry is all about protecting your online images from theft plus information on the correct and legal way to use online photographs.


    NOTE: Those incredibly annoying “Possible related posts” below are automatically generated by WordPress and I wish I could remove them or block them! My apologies for their presence.

    Tweet thisFollow me on TwitterPin thisshare on Facebook

    Oh Deer


    A pair of mule deer caught on our side road. Living where I do, meeting up with deer out in the open is a common occurence. What appears to be round white spots under their muzzles is really the frost from their breath. There is also a trail of their frosty breath along each deer’s back that, in the small size of this photo, doesn’t show as clearly as the full size version.

    I often take some of these occurrences for granted yet, because of comments received on my daily photos, I’ve learned that many people are surprised and interested in some of the things I consider day-to-day ho-hum. What sorts of things do you consider ho-hum, yet others are actually quite interested in?


    All images in this blog are copyright protected: Copyright © Diane Schuller. If you are interested in using them or purchasing a print, please contact the artist (contact information in the tabs at the top of this blog) and we’ll work something out. Thank you for respecting my copyright and for doing the right thing.

    Tweet thisFollow me on TwitterPin thisshare on Facebook

    Inside-Out Envelopes: “green” tip


    Many of you know that I write a weekly environment column for a lifestyle newspaper here in Alberta. Each week I write about simple everyday things we can do to reduce our environmental footprint. About a year ago I mentioned that thanks to Junie Moon I learned another cool tip regarding envelopes. I’m going to share that one here.

    I do save envelopes and use them a second time to write down my grocery lists or for taking notes beside the phone, but I learned a couple of great tips about re-using commercial envelopes. You know those security envelopes we receive with coloured (often blue, sometimes green) abstract patterns on the inside? I learned that by turning them inside-out they can be re-used! And, if you look at the mosaic above you’ll see how unique the finished product looks.

    HOW-TO:  Gently open up the seams of the envelope. Some envelopes will loosen easily with a letter opener or knife but others may need some coaxing with a bit of steam first to soften the glue. Turn the envelope inside out and re-glue the seams. To use it for mailing, simply affix a self-adhesive address label to write out the address. You can do the same with all the business reply envelopes you receive in the mail.

    See, it’s easy and fun being green! Perhaps you may be inspired to write someone a letter or send them a couple photos. Do you have any tips for re-using envelopes or re-purposing envelopes?


    Tweet thisFollow me on TwitterPin thisshare on Facebook

    Dancing into the Golden Years …

    From yesterday’s snow fairies to love, pure and simple.elderly dancers

    Is that not the picture of love and joy? That man was smiling constantly as if he were already in heaven. I felt such joy and warmth just watching him. Tell me when you have seen or experienced such spontaneous joy and love.


    “You can dance anywhere, even if only in your heart.”  ~Author Unknown

    “Dancing faces you towards Heaven, whichever direction you turn.”  ~Sweetpea Tyler


    If it’s photos you’re interested in, please visit my one-a-day photos

    Tweet thisFollow me on TwitterPin thisshare on Facebook


    A quote that knocked my socks off so I wanted to share it with you.


    Hold on to what is good, even if it is a handful of earth.

    Hold on to what you believe, even if it is a tree which stands alone.

    Hold on to what you must do, even if it is a long way from here.

    Pueblo Verse

    Copyright © Diane Schuller

    nature opens her arms :: Copyright © Diane Schuller

    I finally have my Internet problems solved and will be ready with a post or two in another day or so. Lots to write about, just a shortage of time.

    Until my next post please tell me if this quote resonates with you and in what way. I look forward to your notes.

    PS: A wee reminder that I have managed to begin participating in the Shutter Sisters One Word project. Here are my first few images that are inspired by my chosen word, Open.

    Tweet thisFollow me on TwitterPin thisshare on Facebook