Saturday, May 1, 2010

Shadow Shot Sunday ~ Patio lattice

You saw a similar photo of the patio in sepia a few days ago, but these shots are full of strong, afternoon shadows for
When we first moved into our house 26 years ago, the back yard was full sun as the tree-line that runs along the back edge of the homes on our street were sparse and young.
I designed a patio with a roof for some shade but wanted it to remain open and blend in with the outside. My husband mixed and poured many bags of concrete to form the foundation. We enlisted the help of a friend who completed the roof and trim work.
Pardon the moss and algae...
I will be revving up the pressure washer soon!
I don't have a powerful one so the job moves along rather slowly.
During this mundane job, ones mind may be in need of some diversion as described here.
Shadow of the lattice, post , tree leaves and photo-taker.
Joining Hey Harriet for Shadow Shot Sunday

Friday, April 30, 2010

Favorite Photo Friday

Posting this photo again, this time for:

more cropped
Less cropped


1. Camera: Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT

2. Lens: Canon EF 28-1-5mm 1.4-5.6

3. Settings and Specifications: Camera was on preset program
Exposure: 0.008 sec (1/125)
Aperture: f/6.3
Focal Length: 75 mm
ISO Speed: 800

4. Posed or Random Shot: Random

5. Special Lighting or Techniques: natural light

6. Editing Software used and how: Adobe Photoshop CS2 and Picnik. Reduced size in PS, initial cropping, slight sharpen, healing tool to remove some strands of hair from across eye and nose. Enhanced eye color ever so slightly, Picnik to lighten slightly, lightly dodge under eyes and redness along right side of face.

7. This is my favorite shot this week because: This shot so captures her personality ~ Big blue eyes, soft skin, wispy hair, tiny freckles, fun sense of humor, quirky and very loving and affectionate!

Want to join in by posting your favorite photo of the week?
Visit Valerie @Favorite Photo Friday for details!
We can learn from one another!

A Busy Time for an Artsy Girl (The completed post)

Senior year... for this creative, kinda shy (well, very shy), reserved, and non-spontaneous kiddo!

AP Studio Art Concentration Project finally finished and submitted to satisfy AP College Board requirement...

Driving lessons...

College placement tests taken...

Class selection after appointment with counselor...

Driving lessons...

Several months ago, "I decided since I don't like big crowds, I am not going to prom." okay, if you're sure...

Two weeks ~ that is 14 days before prom... "There has been a change of plans... I'm going to the prom." Mom gasps and sends out emergency call to oldest beautician daughter for help...

Driving lessons...

busy work schedule...

"Patrick" comes to meet the parents, have lunch and spend Sunday together. Parents think "Patrick" is a delightful, well mannered, bright and very personable young man. Oh, and very cute too.

comment: "Mom, I have something to tell you." Mom gasps inside and retains complete composure on outside. "What?"

"Patrick" and I are dating. And he wants to know if I can go with him Friday night to his grandmothers. :) aww... sweet.

back to driving lessons. She tells me she likes the theory of driving, just not the act of driving. We're working on it very slowly. She has even bought a car from her BIL and is paying for insurance. Guess that's so mom can be her chauffeur.

In between scrambling for a prom dress there are meetings at school...
and art show...

here are some pictures from last night.

so, if you are wondering why I've not been commenting as much lately, it's Abbey's fault!

PS Am I the only idiot that pushes the Publish Post button instead of the Save as Draft Button?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Show and Tell Friday ~ My Dear Mother Print

Softly muted pink and lavender flowers and a poem of love to Mother.
This was a gift from my mom to her mother in 1945.

I never met my grandmother.
She passed away at the age of 44 leaving 11 children,
most of whom were still in their elementary and teen years.
The adult children helped raise their younger siblings.
My mom was third oldest.
a photo of my grandmother
Catherine Mary

taken on the Atlantic City boardwalk before she married
Joining Cindy @My Romantic Home for Show & Tell Friday!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Sepia Scenes ~ Patio

A view of our patio at the back of the house, surrounded by a boxwood hedge.
These bushes were tiny little globes when we first planted them.
I trim them back each year but like to keep them on the high side
for privacy.
For the past five or so years, we have needed to treat them
for boxwood leaf miners, which have the potential to destroy them all.
We lost one bush before we realized the problem, but the others have
grown in and the missing one is no longer noticeable.



Here is a good photo of how the damaged leaves look from the leaf miner.
Joining Mary T for Sepia Scenes

Hatchlings for Outdoor Wednesday

Two little white eggs are now hatched
Under mama (or papa's wing)
Not very cute yet and almost unrecognizable.
I was planning on adding just verse 4 to this post
but because this psalm is my favorite I had to post all of the verses.

Psalm 91

1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

2 I will say of the LORD, "He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust."

3 Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare
and from the deadly pestilence.

4 He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

5 You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,

6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.

7 A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.

8 You will only observe with your eyes
and see the punishment of the wicked.

9 If you make the Most High your dwelling—
even the LORD, who is my refuge-

10 then no harm will befall you,
no disaster will come near your tent.

11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;

12 they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.

13 You will tread upon the lion and the cobra;
you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

14 "Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him;
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.

15 He will call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honor him.

16 With long life will I satisfy him
and show him my salvation."

Joining Susan @A Southern Daydreamer for Outdoor Wednesday~

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Chockablock Cookies ~ TWD

Tuesdays With Dorie baker, Mary of
Popsicles and Sandy Feet
decided on
Chockablock Cookies
for us to bake along with her.
This is a cookie filled with an abundance of add-ins and what seemed at first an unusual combination of flavors.

Molasses
nuts
dried fruit (I used figlets and dates)
coconut
chocolate chips

I thought the chocolate chips were the stand-out flavor
and tamed the molasses.

The dough is a bit unappetizing in color (my little helpers said it looked like mud), but the cookie baked to a much deeper color.
The dough also seemed thin to me and I was concerned they would spread too much.
They baked into a very nice shape and were enjoyable.
All the tasters in my house liked them and ate so many they
will probably not be hungry for dinner.
(Mom-Mom's can allow that, you know)

Chockablock Cookies
Dorie Greenspan, from Baking From My Home to Yours

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¼ cup solid vegetable shortening
½ cup sugar
½ cup molasses (not blackstrap)
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup coarsely chopped nuts (walnuts, pecans or peanuts are all good)
1 cup coarsely chopped dried fruit (such as apricots, prunes, or figs) or 1 cup of moist, plump raisins (dark or golden)
12 ounces of bittersweet chocolate chopped, or 2 cups store-bought chocolate chips
½ cup sweetened shredded coconut

Getting Ready:
Position the racks to divide the oven in thirds and preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter and shortening together at medium speed until very smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the sugar and beat for another two minutes. Pour in the molasses and beat for 1 minute more. Add the eggs one at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. Reduce mixer speed to low and mix in the oats, then add the dry ingredients, mixing only until they disappear into the dough. Toss in the nuts, fruit, chocolate chips and coconut and, turn the mixer on and off quickly a few times to incorporate. Alternatively, you can stir them into the dough with a sturdy wooden spatula. (The dough can be wrapped well and chilled for up to two days. If you'd like, you can measure out the dough onto a baking sheet, freeze until firm, then put mounds of dough in a bag and freeze for up to two months; bake directly out of the freezer, adding a few minutes to the baking time.)
I like to use an ice cream scoop with a 2-tablespoon capacity to divvy up the dough, but you can measure it out by rounded tablespoonfuls. Place the mounds of dough on the baking sheets, leaving about 1 1/2 inches between the mounds.
Bake for 15 – 18 minutes, rotating pans from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point, until the cookies are golden and just about set. Remove the baking sheets to cooling racks and let the cookies rest on the sheets for about 5 minutes before transferring them to racks to cool to room temperature.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake

When time is short and taste is in demand a "dump" cake might be just what you're looking for.
Not at all like a cake ~ more like a crisp.
No mixing or stirring.
Big on yum!
Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake
eHow recipe
  • 1 Can (20 oz) crushed pineapple with juice, undrained
  • 1 Can (21 oz) cherry pie filling
  • 1 pkg. classic yellow cake mix
  • 1 Cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 Cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, cut into thin slices

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 13x9-inch pan.

  2. Dump pineapple with juice into pan. Spread evenly.

  3. Dump in pie filling evenly.

  4. Sprinkle cake mix evenly over cherry layer.

  5. Sprinkle pecans or walnut over cake mix. Dot with butter.
  6. Bake for 50 minutes or until top is lightly browned.


Joining Designs by Gollum's Foodie Friday

I heart faces ~ Shae

She is back home in NY now but we loved every minute of Shae's visit!
They'll be back again in August
This week's photo challenge theme @I Heart Faces is "Smiles.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Swing

The Swing
by Robert Louis Stevenson

How do you like to go up in a swing,
Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!

Up in the air and over the wall,
Till I can see so wide,
River and trees and cattle and all
Over the countryside--

Till I look down on the garden green,
Down on the roof so brown--
Up in the air I go flying again,
Up in the air and down!



Tired, sweaty, dirty and wanting...
second lunch!
Joining Mary @Little Red House for Mosaic Monday

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