A Full Moon for Christmas!

A rare full moon for Christmas – so of course I was outside last night trying to capture the event and maybe snag Santa flying across the moon.

I always struggle with night photos with my Canon Powershot. In this case, ambient light from the street lamps, plus the ever present glow from the city, kept me from getting a clear shot of the moon.

Never one to give up, I went out early this morning to try for a pic in the western sky. The moon had already set! Tonight I’ll go out later and try again.

But my early Christmas morning stroll was so pleasant – it was about 76 degrees, breezy, and very quiet. I love mornings.


I’ll be wrapping gifts soon, so here’s a look at a year-long project for Ashley and David. I researched our family, my side and their father’s, on Ancestry.com and created ancestry books for them.

The book is divided into two sections, by family (my last name is Starnes). 
All artwork is pen and ink, by me…

And has family trees, relationship charts, immigration dates and places, old photos, and odds and ends. About 100 pages of goodies! I used ‘MyHeritage’, a free family tree maker, for most of the charts and trees. Its reporting tools are much better than those of Ancestry.com. Another plus – it can be downloaded and used offline. 

‘A Christmas Story’ is playing nonstop on my telly – of course! Wishing you a fun day – Coco

15 thoughts on “A Full Moon for Christmas!

  1. Such a beautiful and thoughtful gift! Your personal artwork takes it over the top. So wonderful. A gift from the heart. The full moon had a beautiful large ring around it from our vantage point after midnight Mass. Perfect!


  2. Let's see how does that little blurb go making the rounds…..”as if family and alcohol isn't a bad enough combo, lets make it a full moon too!” What wonderful gifts you've made Coco! What a lot of work to do it too.
    Happy and Merry!


  3. You're so right, Margene – it can be a lot of work! I kept getting lost as I went further up the trees, so many people and places. But it was so satisfying. I even found the missing Powhatan Indian in Maine and my Dutch connection. Really fun.


  4. thank you, Valerie! I wanted to go to art school instead of college – which didn't get a good reception at home 🙂 so I've simply enjoyed it instead. I did make bookmarks from bits of my pen and ink pieces, and sold them on my crafts tables. Ashley and I had a smallish thing going under the moniker 'Back Alley Five and Dime'. We sold for charity, and most items were $1, $5, or $10. Made the kids at craft fairs very happy, they could buy for presents within their budgets…


  5. Thanks so much! I did some research earlier today, found what you've noted, and went out earlier to give it a try. Yes! That fast shutter speed and lower ISO make a huge difference. I also found that I get a reasonable pic on the camera's fireworks setting – same reasons. This was fun! I really appreciate the tips. I need to get to know my camera better – I've always resorted to auto settings. Merry Christmas!


  6. An amazing amount of work to put those books together – what a thoughtful gift! Re the moon, your problem there is overexposure, not any issue with light pollution. Set your camera on manual and start with something like f8 and 1/125 sec at Iso 100 or 200 and you'll have all the detail . People commonly think they need a long exposure for the moon, but it is a light source – giving it a longer exposure just turns it into a white orb. It also is moving, so if you zoom in, and use too long an exposure, you'll get blurring caused by movement. (I teach photography). Google moon photography and you'll find heaps more tips 🙂


  7. Merry Christmas, Coco. Loved your cat beds and I know two here that would adore those. You are amazing to also have completed some genealogy for your children. Even though the software is very good, there is still a fair amount of time dedicated to such an effort. Your artwork is a treasure they will have forever. Thanks for your posts.


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