Saturday, February 28, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday 41

Welcome to Shadow Shot Sunday #41. My shadow shot was taken on our patio. It is one of the chains we hook our hammock to in summer. I like the contrasting texture of the medal and wood and how they play against the shadow. Thanks for stopping by and have a great Sunday.

Since I joined SSS the "old salt" and I have been having so much fun watching for shadows every where we go. I wholeheartedly recommend visiting Hey Harriet and joining in the fun.

For more great shadow shots click the camera badge

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Ruby Tuesday-- The Kohmueller Farmstead

For this week's Ruby Tuesday entry I have selected one of the many historic homes in my town. The Louis Khomueller house stands today much as it did when it was built in 1878. It is a one story brick house with a stone foundation, a side facing gable roof, and a dentiled cornice. The house is unusual in that it has no formal facade. A recessed porch on the east side of the house provides access to the three entry doors and there are no doors on any of the other exterior walls. It lovely historic home and the remaining grounds were acquired by our city parks dept in 2000. The buildings are being restored by interested local citizens.
This view shows the main house, a two-story smokehouse to the left and a sturdy red privy to the right.
It is unusual to see a smokehouse two stories tall. The door to the smoke house is just to the right of the fireplace. In 1873 most meals would have been cooked in the outdoor fireplace.
The white stairs lead to the narrow door to the attic. The white door to the left goes to the root cellar.
One door opens to the bedroom and the other to the parlor. A door to the kitchen is just out of view.
The outdoor toilet was built with care. No one wanted freezing drafts during a visit there in winter. I believe it to be the last standing privy in town.

To visit more Ruby Tuesday entries or to join the fun visit Mary's blog at WORK OF THE POET

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday #40

One of my brothers is the pastor of a Catholic Church out in the country. It sits on a ridge-top with a fantastic view. The following snapshots were taken during a visit this week. The shadows of trees and statuary on the grounds and buildings were expected, but I was so surprised to find that the shots taken of the view (just to capture the beauty) also had shadows of the trees even though they were quite some distance away. I hope you enjoy them.

What looks like people in this shot are actually statues in the Grotto reflecting on the ground

This is the rectory (priest home). Trees on the side of the church.
Shadows under the stairway into the school.
Trees on the side of the school building.
This was taken to record the beauty of the view but, if you enlarge it, you will notice that ,in the distance, the trees cast shadows on the hillside.

For more great shadow shots click the camera badge

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Ruby Tuesday -- I got the beat.

Once again it is Ruby Tuesday. I hope you can all stand one more group of Valentine's Day photos, because, my Ruby shots this week have to do with the recent holiday.

The first is my silly gift to my husband, a plush copy of the human heart. Anyone can give/receive a heart shaped valentine but a beating human heart. I'm sure he will never receive another one like it. This great little gem came from a website that sells blush copies of all the human organs. Http://

Second is shots of the only house I have ever seen decorated for Valentines Day. I happen onto this house today just a few blocks from my own.

To join the Ruby Tuesday fun visit
Wishing all of you a great week.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday #39

How fast the week as flown. Shadow Shot Sunday sure came around very fast this week. The weather has been so overcast or rainy that I had not had a chance to take my camera in hunt of Shadows this week. I had been searching my archives hoping to find something I could post without success. Suddenly, the first real bit of sunshine all week hit my window, so I grabbed my camera and went out into the yard.

I captured these shots in my neighbors yard. I really liked the way the windmill reflected on the shed wall. The checkerboard of tree shadows were caused by one small tree in my yard and a massive one in the yard behind us. Both casting shadows in another neighbors yard.

For more great shadow shots click the camera badge

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Do Trees celebrate Valentines Day?

While visiting Balboa Park in San Diego several years ago I came across these Banyan Trees. Their roots were entwined giving them the appearance of playing footsies. Plus, the branches in several places gave you the feeling they were either holding hands or hugging. So given today's date I just have to ask, do trees fall in love? Better yet, do trees celebrate Valentines Day?

Hope you all have a great Valentines Day.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ruby Tuesday--What happen to the Ruby Ring?

Hi all. Looks like I am going to have a meme kind of week. After I decided to join the SSS (Shadow Shot Sunday) meme I got an email from one of my cousins suggesting I join the Ruby Tuesday meme and tell my ruby ring story. Since it is a great story I decided to give it a go. Plus, it will give me another reason to get busy with that new Christmas camera looking for great ruby shots.

On my sixteenth birthday my godmother (also my Aunt) sent me a note stating that she had a special gift for me but I would have to wait awhile to receive it. She explained that I would have to stop biting my fingernails before she would give it to me.

Naturally, I assumed it was going to be a ring (my first ever) so I worked hard at sitting on my hands each time the urge to chew a nail happened. By spring I had short but well manicured nails and proudly wrote to my Aunt announcing my success.

Unfortunately, it was almost the next year before my Aunt was able to come for a visit and I was presented with the most beautiful birthstone ring I had ever seen. It was a gold ring with four rubies. I was so proud of the ring I wore it constantly, only taking it off to do the dishes.

That summer my godmother's daughter(my cousin), who was my age came for an extended visit and during her stay told me why I had to wait so long to receive my present. She said my aunt was a housekeeper for a gentleman who owned a pawn shop and she purchased the ring in his shop on layaway. She was a widow raising four children on a meager salary and there were many weeks when she could only spare one dollar for the payment on her gift to me. It took her almost two years to pay off the ring. She invented the nail biting ruse hoping it would give her enough time to complete the purchase. It failed so she resorted to making excuses to postpone her visit.

I had been wearing my beautiful ring for about a year when I started dating a guy named Buddy. By Christmas the relationship was getting rocky so I was surprised when he invited me to have dinner at his house and meet his parents. After dinner I volunteered to wash the dishes for Buddy's mother. I put my ring on the window ledge above the sink. By the time I finished washing the dishes (all by myself) I realized it was getting late and I had promised to be home early. In the rush to get home on time, I forgot to get my ring from the window ledge. When I realized I had forgotten my ring I called Buddy and asked him to bring it to me the next day. Buddy said the ring was not on the window ledge. The ring had disappeared even though Buddy and his parents were the only ones living there and it had only been a short while since I had left. We argued over what could have happen to it and Buddy promised to ask his parents about it and search the entire house for it.

I'm sure by now you have figured out that the ring never turned up and Buddy and I broke up a few days later. I was so distressed over the loss of my ring that I never had the courage to tell my Aunt about losing it.

Almost two years later I was working part time in a local cafe. One night, two women came in and took a seat in the corner. I went to wait on them and as I handed the menu to the younger lady I noticed my ring on her finger. I told her she was wearing my ring and asked where she got it. She said it was a Christmas gift from her fiance. I quickly told her that I could not only name her fiance but, could tell her which Christmas she received the ring, and preceded to do just that.

The lady turned nine shades of red and the other woman who happened to be her mother said "Well, I declare". Lucky for me, Buddy's fiance was a lot more honest than he deserved. She took my ring from her finger and gave it back to me. I am sure she would consider the ring a fair trade for discovering Buddy's true character before she married him. That was forty-two years ago and I have never taken it off my finger since unless I was placing it in my jewelry box.

To join the Ruby Tuesday fun visit

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Shadow Shot Sunday

I have discovered an interesting meme on the blog "Hey Harriet." It is called
Shadow Shot Sunday. I decided to join in the fun by seeing how many shadow shots I can take on our daily walks. I will post the best one here each Sunday to participate in the meme.

But, since I just found this meme, and there is no sun on this rainy Sunday in Missouri, I want to start with a couple of shots that I took in Balboa Park during a trip to California in 2007 when I first went to meet "The Old Salt".

I was attracted to the way the columns were shadowed in this walkway near the botanical gardens.

For more great shadow shots click the camera badge

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Sharing a Good Deal that we Found

I had been needing new glasses for a while and, due to the expense, postponed getting them. Then my dear husband read about a man's internet search for cheap glasses on one of the blogs he follows regularly. The blogger was upset after he paid hundreds of dollars for glasses and ended up going back to the store repeatedly for adjustments. The guy finally found a website that made great promises, and ordered a pair of glasses to see if they lived up to the hype. He had his cheap Internet glasses checked for clarity, accuracy of his prescription and made his own estimations of durability. The glasses passed with flying colors. He said he was so happy he ordered a second pair which were just as good as the first. So we decided to give them a try as well.

The Old Salt keyed in all the information and I selected the frames I liked from hundreds pictured. Then wa-la, four weeks later, the new glasses were in our mailbox.

I must admit buying glasses has never been so easy or so economical. I have also never had a pair that fit perfectly (without adjustments) on delivery, until now. If you are in the market for cheap glasses then try this site. We did and I could not be happier with my new glasses.

The cheapest glasses offered are single vision basic glasses which go for eight dollars. It is hard to imagine getting a pair of glasses for roughly the price of a movie ticket. I wear trifocals and I like no-line lenses so my glasses were always very expensive. The new glasses have everything I always get plus suv coating and transition-tint lenses that my old glasses did not have for 85 percent less. I've been wearing my new glasses for over a month and so far, they are great. Check out the before and after photo's below.

old glasses cost over $600 at Lens Crafters

New glasses were $88. at Zenni Optical and they have suv coating and transition-tint lenses that the expensive lenses did not.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

It’s the little things........

Sorry everyone, I promised this for Monday and I am a day late. Please forgive me.
Regular readers will know that I have written about how the “Old Salt” and I met and about our wedding and other events in our lives in other posts. If you skip back to posts dated between Nov. 2006 and Mid 2007 you will find many of them. But, for my new readers here is the abridged version.

I was widowed in Dec of 2003 and Frank was divorced the same year. We were both seeking someone to spend the rest of our life with and we had profiles on several singles sites. We had each tried and rejected sites like E-harmony as not being for us. We had both met and dated some nice and not so nice people. We had each been rejected by someone else and had our heart broken. Then came Thanksgiving 2006.

At the precise time that I was sharing a traditional thanksgiving with my Mother and twelve siblings and their families, Frank, was all alone traveling from one coast to the other after a disappointing first face-to-face meeting and entertaining himself on his laptop.

As is tradition in my family, when we assembled to say grace before dinner, we went around the table and each family member mentioned what they were thankful for that year and what they wanted the family to pray for in the coming year. I asked the family to pray that I would meet the man I would marry.

Later that night I checked my email to find my first note from Frank. He had stumbled on my profile on Yahoo Personals during his trip. Frank was not interested in meeting anyone at the time but my profile was very different from the norm and very over the top, so he decided to write and comment on how unique it was. As a result, we began to correspond and I eventually gave him my phone number. By mid December I knew I had met someone very special and could not wait to meet him face to face. So I arranged to take my first ever plane trip that weekend. I called Frank and asked if he was going to be busy that Friday. He said no, so I asked him to meet me at the airport. We spent three days together then I returned home to Missouri. Soon we were making plans for me to quit my job and return to California to be married.

We each knew that we had met someone very special. We knew that we had similar upbringing, thinking, interest and goals. We also knew that we would be very close friends. Frank, had come to the conclusion that love was not as important, at our stage of life, as a great companion. My marriage taught me that romantic love did not last and you had to make the daily decision to continue to love your partner for the marriage to last. So, I was experienced with love found and lost and knew I could choose to love Frank, regardless. I did not require Frank to profess his undying love. He was thoughtful, kind relatively undemanding, and we fit together like we had been a couple for years instead of just a few weeks. We were married on our way back to my home in Missouri.

Since then we have been best friends and travel companions and settled into a comfortable and happy life. I can not speak for Frank but I doubt that either of us gave much thought to the missing love ingredient; until, during the past several months, things began to change, and all because of little things. Little things like his hand on my elbow when crossing a street, or a palm against my back when escorting me through doorways, the water reservoir on my C-pap machine being filled each night without my knowledge, not letting me carry laundry baskets on the stairs or unload groceries from the car, silly excuses for phone calls when apart, finding my drink glass refilled, or small treats left on my worktable. So many little things I can’t begin to name them all.

Yes, it is the little things that seem to have changed everything. The little things that neither of us had ever had before. The little things that began to add up and suddenly burst into one very big thing that we had to call LOVE. I have a feeling that each of us had come to the same conclusion at different times but neither wanted to be the first to actually declare our feelings for fear they would not be reciprocated. So, we were getting very chummy and many PDA’s (personal displays of affection) were sneaking into our daily lives. Those little things were multiplying and becoming not so small.

Then came that one perfect day when ………………so sorry, I think I want to keep that our little secret. But, needless to say we both had to admit that we had fallen in love. It was not fireworks and mad passion but more the deep and lasting feeling that only people who have lived full lives and know true value when it appears are capable of.