Wednesday, May 15, 2013

My Pictures

  Hey, Thank you all so much for the compliments on my photos! One thing I did notice is that you were really wanting the stories that go with these pictures.  As for the stories...Well the story here is really more mine than it is of anyone here that I have photographed. I went to this fair with the idea of getting over my fear of taking photos of strangers. I learned from a new friend and awesome photographer about an exercise he did in a photography class that he took, an exercise designed to help the students lose their fear of photographing strangers. The exercise is to go out and make 50 images of strangers,  images where the face fills the frame, and images taken with a 50mm lens so that the photographer needs to get in close.
 I took many photos of strangers this night at the fair, none where the face actually filled the frame, but images of strangers , and images that I am happy with. I did indeed need to talk to these people to get the closer up shots, but mostly I just approached the people and asked if I could take their photo. People at the fair are very excited to get their photo taken I learned...everyone is out to be seen and is happy when you have singled them out...for the most part. So, this is just one more exercise in my long education...It was the most fun I have had in a long time. I felt like I was doing "my thing".

Friday, April 26, 2013

Sparkles and Boots

Cowboy hats. Cowboy boots. Sparkly jeans and huge belt buckles.
We finally arrived in Texas. Stereotypical Texas where the smokers were going...smoke pouring out spreading the aroma of delicious smoked brisket or ribs or turkey legs...
 We had entered the Galveston County so different than any county fair I have ever been to.
First off, it is only April. It must be to dang hot for the fair in August. Next, beer. They have beer for sale and you can just drink it all over the fair, just like a lemonade. And next... that delicious smell of smoked foods... We went to track it down, only to find that there are private parties set up at the fair. Parties with big smokers going. There were quite a few of these parties, surrounded by fencing with fancy entrances, complete with a cop to keep you out, if you weren't invited. What??
  No smoked goodness for us. I  settled for a deep fried Twinkie...ok, Cloud Cake since there are no more Twinkies. Yes, Gross. I knew it would be, but, it was the spirit of the fair...I was so  filled with the Spirit...and then the twinkie.
  The Galveston County Fair does not have a demolition derby like most of the other county fairs I've been to. Here, they have a rodeo. A real rodeo complete with bull riding, barrel racing, bronco riding, and even a rodeo clown. The crowd was just as entertaining as the actual rodeo. Everyone was out dressed in their finest.  It was a people watching dream...
 Then there was the skill. It was a junior rodeo, so the contestants were all young, teenagers mostly. I love to watch kids with skill. These kids could ride, and they could ride well. and you could see the pride they felt. That was what I loved about the rodeo.

Get a Turkey leg on the way to fair. We should have.

What we didn't win in the raffle. Oh we wanted to bring this home badly.

Not the yummiest beer.

private party

Boots and a forsaken cookie.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


   So now I'm going to tell you about my night of mothering...more focused mothering than I have had to do in a long time. My kids are big now. Two of them are ladies and my baby is ten years old. So, I don't have to do much chasing around, or bathing or clothing of babes any more. Most of my mothering is on the phone with the ladies, or doing school with the baby, playing chess, sharing breakfast or a walk to the thrift store...trying to figure out a song on the piano...learning the countries of South America. I don't get much of the physical mothering that comes with babies or toddlers. Last night was a hint of the past though.
  Esme had a bad tummy ache and couldn't sleep, though she did try.  She came and got in bed with me and Aaron and snuggled for a bit, then decided to head back to her own bed. I kept hearing the rustling murmurs of a hurting girl so I got up and went to her bed. Cradled her in my arms for hours as she tried to sleep. Sitting up with my back against the wall holding her like the tiny babes I've held before. . Patting her back, petting her head...remembering a certain rocking chair, trying to sleep , while keeping a fussy baby happy...It is such tiring work.
    I am so thankful for the tummy ache last night. One more long snuggle, knowing that even if I couldn't make the tummy hurt go away, I could make my babe feel safe and loved. It's a feeling I still wish for when I am sick, those safe, strong, snuggling, mama arms.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


Well Hello,
As always, not getting on here as much as I was dreaming to. I just get caught up in not wanting to be boring. or putting off a post until I figure out how to use the scanner so I can show you something really cool...
 So, that will just have to wait while I tell you about The Galveston Grand Children's' Festival. It turns out to be the most fun event yet in this town. It was a festival of real fun stuff. All geared towards entertaining kids, which is probably why we liked it so much.
 There were acrobats, stunt bike riders, marionettes, a wall to climb..stories to hear,,dancers to watch...and even a mechanical bull for kids. I guess it's to train them early for the the real bull riding they do in the rodeo. This is Texas, and here, unlike Ohio, they don't have a demolition derby at the county fair, it's a rodeo. We'll be going next week!
 I think my favorite attraction at the kids' festival was the trio of aerial acrobats. We were particularly interested in these guys not only because they had a silks act, which is something Izzie has been interested in, but because back in the day when I met Aaron, it was his dream to have his own small circus. Finally I saw the possibilities in that. I feel sad for not helping to realize that so long ago. Maybe it's not too late.
 These guys were pretty fun. I wouldn't say they were the best acrobats I've ever seen, but they were a traveling little circus, and, they were quite amazing. They had some ground acts too, one of which I will share in pictures. I chose this to share because it seemed to be sort of a theme at this festival. People getting inside of balloons. I'd never seen it before.

    ...and then the weirdest thing. Let a guy close your kid up in a plastic ball and push it into a swimming pool.

Monday, April 1, 2013


 I have great love for other people's written words. Their grocery lists, their to do lists, their letters...especially their letters. No, I wouldn't read your letters or notes in your house, maybe your grocery list on your fridge, definitely your grocery list on the fridge, or whatever you have posted on your fridge, but not your letters...unless you lost them...And I found a parking the grocery store on the floor...laying amongst the apples...perched on the tofu. If I found your list, or your letter, or your report card I would read it and save it...put it in my big book of other people's notes. Sometimes when I'm grocery shopping I will spy a particularly wonderful grocery list perched atop someone's purse in a shopping cart. Perhaps it has been printed from a computer grocery list template, all very organized. Maybe it is a page covered in teeny tiny handwriting. It is so hard for me to pass it by. I look at it longingly, try to read it as I pass by...hoping it will float to the floor and not be missed...
  Most of my friends and family know I collect these bits of other people's lives. My sweet mama sends me envelopes full of grocery lists she has collected from the aisles of Kroger: Lists written in half Spanish half English, lists on personalized list stationery...lists on post it notes. My daughter used to bring me some pretty funny ones that she had found in the halls of her high school. These weren't grocery lists, but notes passed in class. Hilarious notes passed in class. LAst week I received from my friend Andros, the sweetest letter. A real love letter. No, Andros didn't write it to me...he found it in a parking lot.  It was a real gem. I think it's my favorite ever, though deciding on an actual favorite is hard.
  I had a hard time deciding if I should really post it here, but, it is so sweet I have to share. If this happens to be your letter, drop me a note...I'll get it back to you. Otherwise, I'll add it to my book. All I know is that Andrea has a pretty sweet boyfriend..or girlfriend.
  I really hope you can decipher this. I don't know how to make it larger so you can see it easier.


Home Depot customer is just so nice.

there one goes...getting swept up.

Monday, March 25, 2013

A roller coaster and a new drunkle

Where I live now there is a roller coaster at the end of my road. At night I can hear the screams of terrified adventure seekers testing their courage on  The iron shark.  I've been there twice now. Once as a full on participant. That was enough for me.  Once as a support person: holder of hats and purses for those boarding the shark, and company for those who just couldn't face the shark full on.
 There are other rides too, the The Texas Star Flyer, The Sea Dragon, and for those wishing for a calmer day, the carousel and some bumper cars. For most of our group, The Iron Shark was the highlight. Izzie and Esme and their drunkles could not get enough of it. Around and around they went. ELiza and I spent a lot of time watching them...and checking out the less terrifying rides.
 This park is pretty awesome. It's called the Pleasure Pier. Funny name I know but it's actually a pretty incredible place. The rides are beautiful and they feel sturdy and strong, not like they are about to tip over, or the cars will fly off.( Those are the kinds of rides I'm used to. The ones I wasn't allowed to ride when I was a kid and the carnival came to town.)
The iron Shark

The Texas Star Flyer
When you go to the Pleasure Pier you get a bracelet that lets you come and go without having to pay again if you leave. This is really nice for us considering how close we live it. We could conceivably go home for lunch or dinner and come back in the evening for some more fun. That was the plan this day. Go home, rest and head back for some more shark riding. Plans were made...
 Well, the only one to head back that evening was Brian. Brian is an old friend and a new addition to our household here. He came not too long before Spring break to work on the Alissa with the other guys here.
He lives in the foyer and he has achieved drunkle status.
  Meet Brian.
 He returned alone to face the iron shark. He was the only one in line that night so he got on and  never had to get off. SEVEN TIMES IN A ROW!!!
Brian wins.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Slow going...

  I know I'm slow. I'm slow at everything I do. It's not because I'm lazy, because believe me. I'm working on it. I just want it to be right. just right. I want it to look a certain way. I want just the right pictures. I want to make it awesome!!! So, I look at my pictures. I look at them some more. and even some more, thinking how best to share. Then I have to try to learn how to make a "new action " in photoshop so I can put a new canvas size on all my photos at once, so I can "save time"!!!  That's a hoot huh! Learn a new photshop technique to save time. Well, I didn't learn it, and I didn't save time. But I did hear from some people to just get on with it already. You know who you are. it is. Still Spring break in my blog land, though it seems ages ago really. Oh was ages ago...
   It was spring break, and it was Esme's birthday. She grew to be ten. It doesn't seem like she should be that old. She was just a baby as a matter of fact. The baby that didn't want to snuggle me. She only wanted Izzie. It was as if Esme came to us just to get to Izzie.
 Well, ten years later, she does like to snuggle me, but she sure would like to get back home to Izzie...and Eliza...and all her other loves.
Felix came to celebrate too!

he was fond of Izzie

Considering the company, we decided to head for the beach.

and go for a swim.

    Then home, for dinner, cake, and silly games....

Eliza helping me get my camera settings right.

 Esme had no trouble blowing out her candles, but then the games began. Everyone took turns trying to blow out the candles from across the room.

Esme got a little mad when she though her candle got moved.

No one could  blow that candle out.