Friday, October 31, 2014

Show Us Your Hands! Logo Contest

Unite and Inspire. 

These concepts are key components of the mission of Show Us Your Hands!. We aim to unite and inspire the inflammatory arthritis community through creative programs that focus on what our hands can do. We're planning some exciting changes and want to involve you in the process!

We invite our lovely followers to create a new logo for Show Us Your Hands! that captures the essence of who we are and what we do. The winning design will be used as the official logo of Show Us Your Hands! and the designer will be displayed on our new website, currently in development.

If you’re interested in submitting a design, it’s important that you read the official rules (see below). Send your submission to and post it on the Show Us Your Hands! Facebook Page by November 14, 2014 at 11:50 PM ET. It’s important to do both. NOTE: DEADLINE EXTENDED: submit by Monday, November 24, 2014, AT 11:59 pm ET. 

We can’t wait to see what you create! 

Terms & Conditions for Show Us Your Hands! Logo Contest

About Show Us Your Hands!
The mission of Show Us Your Hands! is to unite and inspire people who live with inflammatory arthritis. We carry out this mission through creative community projects and awareness campaigns aimed at increasing public understanding of inflammatory arthritis. Our community members, program participants, volunteers, donors, Directors and staff work together to build hope for the inflammatory arthritis community, one hand at a time.

Show Us Your Hands! is located at 1042 Maple Avenue, ste 195, Lisle, IL, 60532, USA. You can reach us at 

This describes the official rules (“Official Rules”) of the Show Us Your Hands! Logo Design Contest (the “Contest”). The object of this contest is to design a new logo for Show Us Your Hands!. Information on how to enter is part of these Official Rules. To the extent of any inconsistency, these Official Rules prevail. 

“Entry” means a logo design created by the Entrant for this Contest. “Entrant” means the individual that offers the Entry under the terms of this Contest. 


  1. The Contest is open only to individuals.
  2. Members of the Board of Directors of Show Us Your Hands! and their immediate family are not eligible to enter.
  3. Entrants must be 18 years of age or older.


The Contest will open on Friday, October 31, 2014 at 12:59 PM ET and close on Friday, November 14, 2014 at 11:59 PM ET. After this date no further entries to the competition will be accepted. NOTE: DEADLINE EXTENDED: submit by Monday, November 24, 2014, AT 11:59 pm ET. 

How to Enter

  1. Entries must be submitted by posting the design to the Show Us Your Hands! Facebook page, as well as by email to Entries will not be complete unless both posted to the Show Us Your Hands! Facebook page and submitted via email. Incomplete entries will not be considered.
  2. The email Entry must include the name, age, postal address, phone number and email address of the Entrant.
  3. The entries must be submitted as a JPG. See the Submission Guidelines below for further information.
  4. No more than 3 Entries may be submitted by any one Entrant.
  5. Entries must conform to the Submission Guidelines set out below. Entries that fail to do so will be rejected.
  6. We will attempt to acknowledge all entries within one week (7 days) of receipt; however, we cannot be responsible for entries or responses lost in e-mail.
  7. There is no fee to enter the Contest.

Submission Guidelines
The purpose of the contest is to design a new logo for Show Us Your Hands!. The logo will be used as the new Official Logo for Show Us Your Hands, displayed on our website and future photobooks, communications, and products to identify the organization.

Flexibility of the logo design is essential, including the ability to easily resize and to be suitable for high quality printing.

You should be careful that your Entries in no way be similar to existing logos or other copyrighted images  

Judging and Selection of Winner

  1. The winning design will be selected by the Show Us Your Hands! Board of Directors. Their decision will be final. No further correspondence shall be entered into.
  2. Show Us Your Hands! reserves the right to extend, modify or terminate the contest at any time and to not to select a winner if, in its sole discretion, no suitable entries are received.
  3. Show Us Your Hands! reserves the right to disqualify any Entrant or Entry at its sole discretion. No correspondence shall be entered into.
  4. The winner will be required to sign a contract assigning all ownership of the logo to Show Us Your Hands!.
  5. Entering the contest constitutes permission for Show Us Your Hands! to make public and otherwise use images you have submitted, your name, and country of residence for publicity purposes while the event is running and afterwards. Further personal data may be requested but is not required.
  6. Show Us Your Hands! assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information or submissions you send us. 
  7.  Show Us Your Hands! will not in any way allow others to use your design while the event is running without your consent.

The winner of the Contest will be displayed on the Show Us Your Hands! website with name and country, photo, and link to designer’s website (if applicable). 

Intellectual Property

  1. All submitted work must be original and not based on any pre-existing design.
  2. All Entries will become the sole property of Show Us Your Hands! and may be displayed publicly on Show Us Your Hands! websites, publications, and products.
  3. The winning entry may be registered by Show Us Your Hands! as a Service Mark and the Entrant agrees to transfer all right and title to the Entry to Show Us Your Hands! in accordance with the Official Rules of this Contest.
  4. The winning Entrant retains the right to identify him/herself as the logo designer and use the logo in that context.

Notification and Acceptance
The winner will be notified by email and/or letter within 30 days of the closing date of the Contest. 

Participation constitutes the Entrant’s full and unconditional agreement to and acceptance of these Official Rules. By participating in the Contest, the Entrant is warranting that he/she has read and understood, and agrees to be bound by, these rules. 

These Official Rules constitute the entire agreement between the Entrant and Show Us Your Hands! in relation to the Contest. They govern the Entrant’s participation and supersede any prior or other agreements between the Entrant and Show Us Your Hands! and relating to the Contest. 

Role of Facebook

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook or any other Social Network. Entering the Contest constitute a complete and entire release of Facebook by the Entrant.

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Walk on the Ptui: Bugs and Weeds

The trees are getting desperate, hanging onto their leaves as long as they can. It's becoming harder and harder not to face the fact that Fall is here. So I thought we all could use some help in maintaining the delusion that October is just a particularly colourful part of summer. What better way than to wander through a semi-wilderness on a warm summer day?). Off to the Ptui (a.k.a. Leslie Street Spit) we go.

You may remember my first trip to the in May. The landscape was beautiful and since the park is a migration stop, we saw an incredible variety of birds. In the late summer, The Boy and I decided to go back to see if we could expand our list of Birds We Have Seen. Okay, I'm the only one maintaining such a list, but I'm doing it for both of us. Really!

At the end of summer, the Ptui was an overgrown wilderness with a path. We weren't the only ones on it — an awful lot of people had decided that it was a perfect time for a bike ride (click on the photos to see larger versions).

Every single plant was on steroids. At times, it was like walking through a low jungle. The place wasn't just a feast for the eyes, but also for the ears. It was a windy day and whenever we got close to the shore, we could hear the waves, which made me very happy.

Throughout it all, the song of the grasshoppers provided that distinctive and-of-summer soundtrack. That also made me very happy. We met a number of the singers and I started a new list: Grasshoppers I Have Seen (did you know there are 18,000 kinds of them worldwide? It's going to be a long list...).

As beautiful as it was, the intense state of the vegetation meant that we didn't see very many birds. The growth made it simply impossible to much of anything. We saw only three. One was a bird of prey, although it was soaring too high above to see what kind. I like to pretend it was the young bald eagle that has been spotted on the Spit, although its size spoke more towards a falcon or hawk. The second was a large white bird with long legs, most likely an egret. The third was a swan, but even there I got lucky. I've never seen a trumpeter swan before and that day, there were three. They mostly had their heads under water, eating weeds, but I caught one upright

With those three exceptions, the theme of the day was bugs and weeds. And a lot of both of them. They were everywhere and the bugs especially were in different stages of life. By which I mean caterpillars. Lots and lots of caterpillars.


One even showed up as an unexpected visitor on one of the few leaves that had started turning. I didn’t see the caterpillar until I uploaded the photos when we came home.

The dominant variety of the flora was ragweed. Tons of it. Everywhere. There were fields of ragweed. When we arrived at the location of the cormorant colony, the path was lined with it.

 Photo by David

Did I mention I'm allergic to ragweed?

Alas, all the cormorants had left, either for the day to hunt or perhaps they’d already started their migration. By this point, we had to turn around to go back so we wouldn’t miss our ride. We’ll leave the lighthouse at the end for next year.

Going back, we walked through the marshy area in the hopes of seeing some birds. On the way, we realized that this was a good fishing area when we saw the egrets had some competition

The theme of the day prevailed. We saw no birds, but more weeds

And more bugs. This included several more varieties of grasshoppers, camouflaged as befitted their habitat. One even landed on me. Those suckers are heavy.

Over the years, I’ve had ambitions to catch various insects with my camera. I’m happy with my bee shots, unexpectedly found a treasure trove of grasshoppers, but butterflies have been notoriously hard to capture, especially Monarchs. They move really fast and there are fewer and fewer of them every year. That day on the Ptui, I got one. Well, a good shot of the side of one hanging on for dear life in the strong wind.

It had been a lovely day and on the way to the exit, it got even better as we walked next to the lake. I was captivated by looking at the water, a beautiful two-tone of half Caribbean green and half Mediterranean blue.