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Ubiquitous Valley Oak

Every valley should have a stately valley oak watching over its fields by day – and night.

Valley Oak stands guard over grassy field where happy cows live.

Valley Oak stands guard over grassy field where happy cows live.


In 1852 when Tulare County became a county of California, this oak tree might have been just a sprout.  More likely, though, is that it is no more than 80-100 years old.  Valley Oaks are common in our area.  We have schools with that name, baseball teams have carried the name proudly, as have these lovely trees.

My iphotos ticker thingy at the top of the screen says,  “11,432 items”.  I can’t believe I have taken that many pictures just since I started blogging.  I picked 82 pictures that I liked best, then V helped me, and we picked out 32 of the best pictures to have prints made to try to sell.  This was one of the 32 that we chose.  I uploaded it to Fine Art America which Eunice, better known as Nutsfortreasure, introduced me to.  I uploaded 5 of those to Fine Art America if you would like to see them.

From those 32 we had to narrow it down to 4 in order to join a Miller Studio which is having a 1 cent sale.  You have to send photos before they give you a sign in code.  Then they send you 4 free prints.  I thought that seemed like a pretty good deal.

I found out that photographers not only need to know about the art of choosing interesting content, holding the camera at the most appealing angle, doing the right things mechanically, watching the lighting, processing the photo with many options in software, saving to any number of formats, but now I find out that photographers need to understand about the best paper to print their pictures.  Then there are numerous ways of marketing and advertising – or not advertising in order to sell a print.  I would starve if I had to make a living through selling photography!!!  But it’s an interesting experiment on top of my other retirement experiments.

My hat is off even more to real photographers like Leanne Cole who is really is a photographer.  She has started a new blog, and is writing a newsletter and is selling her work online now.  Many of my friends are already her friends.  But whether you are now, or you will be, I would encourage you to go over to her place and order a picture or two, or order her newsletter.  Being a professional photographer is hard work in this era of digital cameras.  People like Sunday Photographer me suddenly think we (I) can (have the innate ability) take (high quality) pictures because we (I) can delete pictures that don’t deserve the megabytes it takes to store them.

I hope your week has gone well, while I have been on my staycation.  My first post back was going to be a book review of Dianne Gray’s wonderful book, The Eleventh Question, but it has made me think so much, I’m still mulling and ruminating.  So sometime soon, that WILL be my NEXT post.  I just couldn’t wait to write to all of you again since I got so much other work done.  You are my reward for working hard.

How do you reward yourself when you’ve accomplished some major tasks?

29 replies »

  1. Oh Marsha you are a doll, thank you so much for the mention. Selling photos is a tough business, I have no idea how to go about it. I don’t sell many. Well almost none. Then again, maybe I aren’t selling them in the right place. I love the tree, they look so grand.


    • Hi Leanne,
      I haven’t heard from you in so long I thought you were mad at me! Of course, we are all so busy, so I wasn’t scared to death about it. I don’t know anyone who works harder than you do on the internet and blogging. I know that photography is a really hard business. My husband is a good person as far as marketing. Your pictures are amazing. I love your buildings. I would think that the businesses in your area might be interested. I wish I could help you!!! 🙂 I put mine on the site Fine Arts America after talking with Eunice online. Her web name is nutsfortreasure. She’s been a big help to at least get me started putting things up and out there! 🙂


  2. It’s interesting you mention naming baseball teams after oaks. I remember reading about the old Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League, which were around up until the mid-1950s. I think Casey Stengel managed there before he took over as skipper of the Yankees, and Billy Martin played there before he made it to the majors.

    A lot of people associated California with the beach, but seeing a solitary old oak tree spreading its big canopy across a rolling brown hill in late summer is as much California as anything else to me.


  3. I am so thrilled that you put a picture in comments all by yourself. Well done MVBFM (Americans do that. Abbreviate everything. For those of us who are not American it says My Very Best Friend Marsha). Great post Marsha. 😀 Ralph xox


    • I learned that from MVBFR, MFR. I even credited you, so now you will probably get bombarded with requests on how to do it!! I tried to put a cute picture of jumping chicks in my last comment to you, but they didn’t work. Oh well, just means I have more to learn!!! 🙂 Thanks for commenting and visiting, My Favorite Ralph. Marsha xox 🙂


  4. I love this photo! Welcome back. I agree with you about Leanne’s work and her blog. She is putting lots of effort into making her passion a business. I love reading her tutorials, even if I don’t always understand them!


    • I know. I’ve learned a lot from her, though. She’s such a sweetie, and she visits everywhere!! I don’t know how she gets everything done that she does!!! 🙂


    • Thanks Guap. How are you guys holding out. Need some help shoveling? You can’t catch a plane and come out here for a visit – too late!!! I have a great picture of my dad and brother in a snow storm’s aftermath in the 70s. That will make you feel right at home!!! 🙂 Marsha 🙂


  5. What a beautiful old tree! There is a big one in our little town that I’ve been meaning to photograph but I always forget my camera – silly me 😦

    I’m going to head over to take a look at Leanne’s site now, it looks pretty interesting.

    I’m wondering if my book making you think so much is a good or bad thing – I hope they’re sweet thoughts and not ‘this book drove me nuts’ thoughts! 😀 😀


    • Actually, it’s almost prettier like this. I’ll see if I can find a summer picture of an oak. It is so dusty here, that the leaves are not pretty. They are always brownish, and the leaves are fairly small. But don’t get me wrong, I love them!!! 🙂 Marsha 🙂


    • Thanks! Your compliment is appreciated! What is SSDD? (or should I ask??? hahaha I also can’t believe that you haven’t done ONE thing to deserve a reward. I absolutely DON’T believe it!!1 🙂 Marsha 🙂


      • Marsha, I have turned down several awards, I am an odd person. Just do not believe in them. I feel the awards are sort of part of a clique and I detest and abhor cliques, sociaties, etc. Furthermore there are far better sites than mine that would be happy as a hog wallowing in mud to get an award. And last but not least, I don’t want to be bothered with all the work that is involved in accepting an award. Actually there is one more reason- I don’t want my bog cluttered up with non- esential material that has no relevence to what my blog is about.

        But I am happy for who ever has them plastered all over there site like so many bill boards as one drives down the street.

        SSDD. Perhaps I had better email that one to you. It was amn expression that I got from one of the pharmacy techs at the hospital where I worked.

        This is not meant as a reflection on you. I am just very out spoken in my beliefs.


        • I don’t think it’s odd, or that you are odd!! It doesn’t bother me whether or not you like awards. I do have awards, and yes, they are lots of work, but this whole site was an experiment for me, and that was part of the experiment. Generally, I think mostly new people take part. The longer you blog, the less time you have to take part in them. But, like challenges, they force people to talk about something they wouldn’t necessarily talk about or photograph. Gets one out of one’s box, so to speak. I may eventually remove mine to their own page, and get them off my sidebar. We’ll see. I’m remodeling slowly but surely as I experiment.

          So you can email me SSDD. Thanks for taking the time to respond. That’s what blogging is all about!! 🙂





Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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