Sunday, April 29, 2012

Checking in

Hello. It’s me.

I hope you had a good weekend.

Mine was fine, although I have done something to my knee and am having trouble with it. I don’t know what I did, only that it hurts, and so much so that I broke down today and took a pain pill rather than just Advil.

Pain pills make me ill sometimes. Today was one of those times, and so I went back to bed.


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Before I did though, I sat outside with my knee up, and my camera in hand. At one point, I saw a great blue heron high up above me and I managed to grab this single shot of him. I’m just glad that it came out clear. I don’t see to many herons here on the hill, although my husband says that he sees them flying by all the time.

Watching Birdsong on Masterpiece Theater. It’s a good one.

Hope your week is a good one too, my friends . . .

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Thursday, April 26, 2012


Regular readers of this blog may remember that I lost all of my jpeg files last November when my external hard drive crashed. I wrote about it {here}, if you care to read. It’s short and sad. In early December, I took the device to one of the best computer experts in our area who, after several weeks, informed me that his staff could get nothing from it. I was sad, but I’m almost embarrassed to say it’s been sitting there ever since because I just couldn’t bring myself to go get it. Pretty lame, I know.

My husband has been bugging me lately about picking the darn thing up and the fact that it’s now been five months that I’ve left it in the shop. Most recently, his chiding occurred at dinnertime, to which our son joined in and said, “You really need to go get the thing, mom. Maybe we can get it working.”

Inwardly, I rolled my eyes but I agreed to go pick it up the next day.

And I couldn’t believe what happened.

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The hard drive was shot, they told me. So I took it home and carried it into the house along with my camera bag, my handbag, my lunch bag, all the mail from the mailbox, and my coffee cup . . . and just as I was about to set the bag with the old EHD in it on the table, the thing slid out of my hands and onto the floor. Crash.

That’s it, I thought. Now I’d totally ruined it, as if it weren’t ruined to begin with.

I winced as I picked it up and placed it on the table. It was still sitting there when I left for work this morning.

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These pictures you’re looking at were found this morning by my husband after he plugged in the old hard drive to his laptop and it started right up. He called me at work all excited and began telling me which photos he was looking at. He found 40 of the hundreds of files I had. And he says that tomorrow he thinks he might be able to find more.

I was shocked, to put it mildly.

It’s a miracle. Or maybe the miracle was in the dropping.

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But this guy?

He did good today.

And when I came home, our son and I loaded everything we could find into a new EHD. The photos you see here were taken in April 2008, when we were still living at Northview Stallion Station in Chesapeake City.

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After my husband had lost his job, and after everything that happened to us following those tough months, which turned into years, I couldn’t even bring myself to look at these images.

I got over it though – and I think it’s fitting that these files were some of the few to be recovered.

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It’s nice to have photos of George as a puppy.
He’s 9 mos. old in this one.
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And my stars, did he ever love this cat. I wrote a post about it here:

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways on my paws

We thought the cat was a stray, but after the post was written, we found out that it actually lived on the farm in one of the other homes. It loved to visit our house every day and it would stay for hours. George adored this cat, and the feeling was quite mutual.

: : :
Today I’m thankful. It’s good to have some of my files back. And my husband is pretty proud of himself for the role he played in it.

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ps - in reading this back, I wanted to clarify that he found 40 folders. In those folders are hundreds of images, most of which were saved, and some of which were completely empty.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A quiet skin

It’s quiet here tonight.

I grew up in a house full of noise. I was the eldest of seven children, and we were fairly close in age. There was always something going on at our house, or rather I should say houses, as we moved frequently when I was a child. Dinnertime was always full of conversations and one of our favorite games to play was one that we called, “The Sound of People Who Like to Eat”.

In this game, we sat up straighter, quieted our voices, became proper ladies and gentlemen, and enjoyed our meal in this manner for up to almost two minutes, or until one of my brothers would always end up breaking the spell. Truth be told, I sort of liked our boisterous dinners. They were so full of life and laughter.

I started dating my husband when I was 19 and the one single thing that I noticed at his house (besides the fact that it was much cleaner than mine) was the quiet.

It was blissfully quiet.

And I’ve come to realize over the years that this is how my home is now.

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It sort of makes me want to shake things up a bit, you know?

But really, I get enough noise at work. So this is nice.

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The geraniums continue to bloom in their spot in the dining room window. They’ve been here through the winter and I think they’re getting excited to be outside once again.

Soon, my pretty plants.

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Just after dinner, I realized that I had taken no photos for today’s post, so I put the macro lens on the camera and took several shots in the dining room.

It had the best light.

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I love lace curtains.

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And these came with the house.

Does anyone remember the catalog, Rue de France? Wow – I loved their lace curtains. The catalog doesn’t exist anymore, but you can get some beautiful lace curtains at Country Curtains (of all places). I found this out recently when I was looking for window treatments for the master bedroom.

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Miss Blackie wants out.

No, wait. Let me rephrase that.

Miss Blackie was meowing to go out. So I went to the door to open it for her, and she ran away.

This is her favorite game.

Either it’s a game or she’s going batty.

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As I write this, George is asleep on the floor next to me. He’s having a little dream and he’s making noises and Miss Blackie is sitting near him and giving him odd looks.

If you’re new here, I just want you to know that this is about as exciting as it gets around these parts. And I like it just fine that way. I hope you do, too.

I’m still reading over your comments from my previous post. I love those Q&A ones, don’t you? I really enjoy getting to know you better.

Hope your week is going well. Until tomorrow, my friends . . .

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A quiet skin


Thinking has a quiet skin. But I feel the break and fled of things inside it.
    Blue hills most gentle in calm light, then stretches of assail
And ransack. Such tangles of charred wreckage, shrapnel-bits
    Singling and singeing where they fall. I feel the stumbling gait of what I am,
The quiet uproar of undone, how to be hidden is a tempting, violent thing—
    Each thought breaking always in another.
All the unlawful elsewheres rushing in.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The magic is inside you


It’s Sunday night and I’m watching Birdsong on Masterpiece Theater. It’s a beautiful production. I took several hundred photos beginning on Thursday but they are all for events held at our school. I just finished processing the first set of them and it’s late and I’m tired . . .

These are images I took this weekend using my camera phone with an app called Little Photo, which was recommended by a person who left a comment here. I checked my apps before I downloaded it and saw that I already had it. And then I remembered that my friend, Alisa, had told me I should get it. How I had forgotten it all this time is beyond me, but it’s par for the course where I’m concerned.



Sitting and reading in the side yard on Saturday afternoon. I thought it was going to rain and was surprised at what a nice day it turned out to be.



I hope the lawn service comes this week.



He sits with me.

He’s my faithful companion.



Coming up the driveway Saturday morning.

: : :

I sat a the dinner table last night with my son. We had finished eating and my husband had already left the table. We were just sitting and looking at the view outside the breakfast nook window. All the cardinals come at dinnertime and we watched as some of the males took seeds to their lady friends. I turned to my son and mentioned again how lucky we were to live here and retold the story of how we had come to acquire the position of caretakers for this old manor house on the hill.

I told him that I couldn’t believe how everything came together and how I was in the right place at exactly the right moment and I said again how luck played such a big part in it. And my son said, “and magic”.



Every time I come up this driveway, I believe in magic.



George loves to go for rides in the car when I run errands (as do most dogs, come to think of it). When I open the back hatch, it cheers me to see his furry face.



It’s been raining all day which is a wonderful thing, although this image is a little freaky -looking.

: : :

And now, because inquiring minds want to know, I have some questions for you ~ on a Monday rather than a Friday.

1. How many states have you lived in? How many countries?

2. When was your first kiss? And who!

3. How do you react to people begging at intersections?

4. Are you still friends with anyone from grade school? How about high school?

5. If money was not a problem, what is the one thing you would splurge on?

See you in the comments, my friends . . .

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Amish country photos

I took these last week on the way to my sister’s house. They were shot through the car windows while driving. And I was the driver.

Now before you go getting your panties in a bunch, let me tell you that I was either driving so slowly that the car was almost stopped, or that I had stopped behind a buggy to catch it in motion. I don’t recommend driving and shooting at the same time. It’s just too dangerous.


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These photos were taken along State Route 74, around the village of Brogue, PA.


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It was early on a Monday morning and Amish were out and about in their buggies. It looks like there wasn’t enough room for this passenger in the photo above because he was standing on the back. And as I drove by, I saw that it was a young boy.


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I love the rolling hills on this route that I take to my sister’s house. I could take the highway, but then I’d miss all this beauty.

And that’s no fun.


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The boy driving this buggy saw me with the camera, and was actually smiling at me. I didn’t notice it until I was editing the photos.


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I was in a dreamy, old-fashioned sort of mood when I processed these and ended up using an action called Tinto from the Chunfen set at K. Miller. I was looking for blurred edges with a sweet spot that I could add myself. After that, I chose a B&W action called Dy-No-Myte from the Vintage Soft Tones set at Red Leaf Studios. To finish, I added some texture to the images to give them an aged look.

Are you still awake?


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For some reason, this one’s my favorite.

: : :

I was thinking of hosting a couple of blog friends at my house next month with plans to head out to Amish country to catch some shots. I’m kind of excited about actually having people here but it hasn’t been set in stone yet. So we’ll see.

: : :

I had mentioned that I had a sleepless night this week and got so many people letting me know their little tricks for getting to sleep and staying asleep. This natural remedy from Dr. Oz looks rather interesting to me. A co-worker told me about it today. {Hi, Margie!}

Dr. Oz’s Energy Boost #3: Sleep Easier

It’s been a busy week at school and I’m thankful that tomorrow is Friday. Today our Upper School students performed in a Talent Show and there’s more to come tomorrow. It’s always so wonderful to see them perform. And I believe I got several good photos.

Take care and thanks for coming by today ~

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

And all manner of thing shall be well

I’m exhausted. It’s Tuesday night – I got four hours of sleep last night – and it’s really beginning to hit me. You know those nights that you just can’t fall to sleep . . . and then you begin worrying on it, especially when you know the following day is something big. Well that was my night. Luckily they don’t happen too often ~

So I think I’ll share some more photos (if you don’t mind) of my most recent jaunt to CT to visit friends I’ve met blogging. Taking short getaways every now and then keeps me sane.


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The park across the road from Lauren’s apartment.


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"People are like dirt. They can either nourish you and help you grow as a person or they can stunt your growth and make you wilt and die."



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I admit, there was a little of this.


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And a lot of this.


I am thankful for laughter, except when milk comes out of my nose.  ~Woody Allen


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I love her sweater.

And her cool earrings.


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And Dora the wonder dog, who can high five. I believe this dog has so much more purpose in her life than say, this cat . . .

. . . have you met Henri yet?



I totally love this video.


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Lauren’s church ~ St. Paul’s on the Green, Norwalk.


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She does the flowers.


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And now, I am going to get my book, and I’m going to read until I fall asleep. And I’m going to hope that it will be soon. Because today has been long and tiring.

: : :

All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.

: : :

It was good of you to come by again, today. Oh, and there’s a Cell Phone Photography Assignment going on at Pioneer Woman’s blog. Fun. Beautiful entries, too.

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Sunday, April 15, 2012

In a nutshell

It’s Sunday morning and I’m home from my road trip to visit friends in CT. I’m enjoying one of my favorite shows on TV as I write this. I don’t know how many years it’s been since I began watching Sunday Morning on CBS, but it’s one of my favorite rituals I. Some Sundays, I have other things to do. But I usually catch at least part of an episode.

I took a lot of photos over the past few days and haven’t really had time to edit them much, so for what it’s worth, here’s my excursion in a nutshell.

That sounds funny ~ like I’ve been inside a nutshell.

Please at least try to contain your excitement here.


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I took a walk in a park across the street from Lauren’s house where we came across this interesting cairn. Apparently, there is a gentleman who secretly builds these when he walks his dog. No one in the neighborhood knows who he is, and I cannot figure out how he got this one to balance like this. It’s pretty darn amazing.


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I took photos of ducks feeding on the bottom of the little creek that winds through the park. Synchronized swimmers.


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I ate dessert . . .


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. . . at this tiny little restaurant.

Lunch was a memorable event.

Schoolhouse Restaurant


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I shopped for pansies.


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And drove down George Avenue.

It made me miss my pup.

But I had these two lovelies to pet . . .


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Sweet Dora is Lauren’s girl.


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And the stunning Stella belongs to Annie.


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Cocktails on Annie’s deck in the late afternoon.

Isn’t her view amazing?


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Dinner with Julie, Daryl, Lauren, and Annie at a fun place in Wilton.


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Saturday morning at a local diner, taken with my camera phone.

I like oatmeal.


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Springtime in New York City, where I stopped to take a walk with Daryl and her husband.

Photo taken at 79th & Riverside.


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It was great to get away . . .

. . . but it’s also wonderful to be home.

Because that’s where my heart lies.

More to come. Enjoy your week, my friends ~

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