Posts Tagged With: photos

squirrel study

Outside the window in our back living room there is a tree. This tree is an extremely popular hang out for squirrels.
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Now I know most people don’t like squirrels. Honestly, that makes me kind of sad because I just love squirrels. They’re kind of adorable and they do the funniest things!

I love to watch them in this tree, sometimes there is more than one. They chase and play and race up and down and over the branches. On this particular day there was only one, and mostly he (she?) was having a bath.
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Once he was clean, he began to consider how he might explore his environment.
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I love how his little hand is holding onto that teeny branch.

Then it got interesting when he did a series of somersault-like things around the branch.
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He did it a couple of times in a row before he went back to bathing.
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What a funny little guy!

When Thing 1 and Thing 2 were little girls, we had a squirrel that loved to hang out on our back porch out by the pool. They realized their father put treats out for the squirrel so they named him “Little Buddy” because he was Daddy’s little squirrel buddy. Soon, Little Buddy began to bring around a friend. They named him “Fatso” because he was a really big squirrel. When we moved to SC, Thing 2 was rather serious about bringing Little Buddy and Fatso with us. She was concerned the new people who were going to live in our house might not take good care of them and they would be sad and miss us. She also pronounced the word squirtle instead of squirrel. I still say squirtle when I see or talk about squirrels.

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Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

new blue loo

I needed a project. A little something I could do around the house to make me feel useful. I chose the main floor powder room because I could knock out in one day.
Tuesday I went on an inspiration trip, and found just what I was looking for at Home Goods.

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I fell in love with the deep purpley-blue color in the mosaic and knew that would be the wall color. I walked into Lowe’s with the soap dispenser and sorted that pretty easily. This was the first paint chip I pulled.
Valspar Precious Sapphire

It was a bit strange for me as it was the first time I made the decision to change something in this house without running it by YBW. Perhaps I finally feel at home here?
Wednesday morning I got up early and gathered my tools. After removing the mirror and other hardware, I took down a small cabinet and patched the holes. I ate a quick breakfast while waiting for the putty to dry then went to work.

Before:
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After:
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YBW and I chose a few architectural photos to hang on the wall. (He didn’t know what they were for when I presented them to him.) I actually took both of these with my phone. The first is Loudoun Street in Old Town Winchester. The second is the abandoned Harrison Point Lighthouse in Barbados.
They’ve been printed but not yet picked up and I don’t yet have frames, but here’s a sample:
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All in all, I feel exceptionally good about the work I did. I like to feel useful. I like to feel creative.

Categories: around the house | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

It’s a date!

At our last pre-wedding meeting, A charged us to go on a date.
YBW and I side-eyed each other.
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Pfft! We know how to go on a date.

Needless to say, she noticed our conceit and challenged us further. Instead of one date, we each had to come up with a date for the other with the strict stipulation that we couldn’t discuss wedding stuff.
One more smug look was a silent “we got this” and we were on our way.

The date I planned took us downtown for a picnic at the National Arboretum and a side trip to Oak Hill Cemetery. I broke the rule straight away in the car. YBW reminded me and I sat on my hands as long as I could stand it. But then I had a stroke of genus! Traveling to the date wasn’t actually being on the date. I immediately amended the rule to include wedding talk in the car but only until we arrived at our destination. (I know it sounds ridiculous, but it’s Robynbird logic…just roll with it.) 
Of course this time of year there isn’t much in bloom at the Arboretum, but that was actually beneficial because it meant less people.
The first thing we did on our date was split up. (I know…) But YBW wanted to see all the bonsai and I wanted to visit the herb garden.
I was fortunate to catch a few things still in bloom while successfully avoiding the bees gleaning the last little bit yummies before there were no more blossoms to be had.
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The light was harsh, but I enjoyed my time behind the lens.
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It may seem odd that the first thing YBW and I did on our date was walk in opposite directions, but neither of us wanted to follow the other around like a puppy so we did what we wanted to do knowing we’d end up in the same place. And as it turned out, just as I was finishing up in the herb garden, the most adorable man walked up and kissed me. Then we walked together up the hill to see the Capital columns.
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Kinda pretty, don’tcha think?

We picnicked on fruit, veggies, potato salad, and cold fried chicken trying to figure out what was actually going on at the Grove of State Trees. We drove all around the arboretum, even out the non-existent road that was the original entrance.
Then it took forty minutes to drive about six miles. As we passed embassies I used the long lens of my camera to read the plaques over the doors and YBW teased that the red light cameras saw and we would be branded spies. I just laughed.
We got to Oak Hill Cemetery just in time to capitalize on the most glorious afternoon light.
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Once again, we split up. Me meandering along looking for good shots on the way to Kay Graham’s gravesite. YBW playing Ingress…turns our cemeteries are ripe with portals for the hacking.
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Allow me to quote Minerva from Midnight in the Garden, “To understand the living, you got to commune with the dead.” I’m a firm believer in this concept.
I love cemeteries. I love everything about them. The gravestones seem so natural in the environment, on the hillsides and under trees. I love the peaceful quiet. There was construction on R Street, and I mean jackhammer construction, but the further I walked into the cemetery the more quiet it became.
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There was one place in the cemetery that wasn’t still. It was quiet, but there was work going on. I can’t believe it took me passing it twice before I realized what I was seeing.
Construction on the mausoleum of Ben Bradlee, one of my most beloved folk heroes! Qu’il repose en paix.
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It’s a bit modern for my taste and for it’s location, but I wasn’t consulted…what are you gonna do?

YBW and I ended our day at a cafe table on the patio of a small restaurant in Old Town sipping cocktails of vodka laced iced tea.
Never once talking about the wedding.
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Categories: love, me, wedding | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

the redbuds

Spring is here! The redbuds are blooming!

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I stopped on the way home to take photos. It’s gray here today, which made the light harsh. I find that a bit disappointing.

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If I could be reincarnated as anything I would choose to be a redbud tree.

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#itsallminenowbitches!

I finally started going through the boxes from my mom’s. I’ve found photos from when my mom was a little girl, when Grandaddy was still in the Navy looking so handsome in his whites. I especially love a photo of the two of them in the side yard of the house where we (she and then years later, I) grew up.
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I opened a box that turned out to be filled with framed photographs. The very top one I opened was this one of my mom. It hung above Grandaddy’s chair ever since I can remember. I wore this dress to homecoming one year. I asked her husband about this photo specifically and he was unsure about it’s whereabouts. I opened the box and unwrapped the very first photo and said: SCORE! (I said this out loud even though I was alone in the room.)
I immediately texted this pic to Sundace with the following: #itsminenowbitches!
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I never use hashtags, but this seemed the perfect way to express my satisfaction.

I’ve mostly smiled and laughed at the items I’ve unpacked but there was one thing that brought me tears. It may seem silly, but it was Grandaddy’s wallet. Exactly the same as it was when he died in 1992. Filled with pics of my little brother and me.
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His “Washington Shopping Plate”, a sky blue credit card that was accepted by:
Hecht’s
Jelleff’s
Kann’s
Labsburgh’s
Raleigh’s
Woodie’s
Garfinkel’s
His Bloomingdale’s card.
(Can you tell he and I liked to go shopping together?)

His driver’s license was still in his wallet, expiring in 1993 at the mark of his eightieth year of life. Unfortunately he didn’t make it to his birthday that year.

Until Thing 2 was moved into the NICU before she was even eight hours old, the worst day of my life was the day we buried my beloved Grandaddy. I miss him every single day. He was the first man I ever loved. I was mad about him and from the stories, he was just as mad about me. Not a day goes by that I don’t treasure what he taught me, the love he gave me, I’ve carried with me my whole life.

I sat on a little wicker and wooden stool all day yesterday and for a few hours this morning going through boxes, setting aside items for Thing 1 and Thing 2. I called Thing 1 when I discovered the long lost recipe for apple butter and she laughed and cried at the same time.
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I saved all the old recipe boxes for her. Her love of cooking will be furthered by the recipes of her grandmother and great grandmother.

I’m dead tired but I’m excited to see what’s next. Perhaps a box or two each day until they’re all unpacked.
I’m waiting for the thing I want most…the flag from Grandaddy’s coffin. It’s in there somewhere…and it’s mine.
It’s ALL mine now!

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every picture tells a story

I’m going through photos from our summer trip to Memphis to create a collage for the naked walls in the basement and I came across this one.

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This man works as a ticket taker at Autozone Park where the Memphis Redbirds call home. He fascinated me and I shot a couple of pics of him as we were entering the park.

I captured him in a moment between laughter and conversations with spectators, some of whom he knew personally. It was a perfect accident to catch him in this brief moment of quiet thought.
I love his face.
I don’t even pretend to imagine what this man has experienced in his life. But I suspect he’s done it well.

The Redbirds kicked the holy hell out of the Kansas City Cylones that night. YBW and I drank quite a bit of beer and the Redbirds catcher tossed a foul ball up to Thing G.
It was a great night at the ballpark. But that man is what I remember most when I think about that night. He fascinated me.

It’s been said that every picture tells a story.
This man moved me enough to take his picture.
I’ll never know his story, but I have his photograph and that is enough for me.

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at the Cathedral

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This is the only photo from the Cathedral. It was taken with my phone as we arrived. I liked the light and stopped to capture it. My camera’s SD card went wonky and every single photo I took is lost, mushed up in one big half gig file. A recovery effort is in progress…but I’m not sure it’ll produce anything.
YBW says I should reformat the SD card…I’m leaning towards chucking it and getting a new one…we’ll see how it goes.

Though I’m sad there are no pics it didn’t make the trip any less wonderful. I saw nativities made of every imaginable medium and from all around the world. My favorite this year was made of terracotta from Argentina, it had the most adorable angels!

Apparently YBW fell down circular steps made of stone, but I missed it because I was in St Joseph’s Chapel taking pictures and communing. He told me the story when he caught me coming down the very same steps. (I didn’t fall.)
I stopped to light a candle and say a prayer in this teeny chapel where the stairs came down before moving upstairs to the Bethlehem Chapel.

I took so many photos, It breaks my heart not to be able to see any of them. But I felt peaceful and full of love after spending this beautiful day with YBW and the baby Jesus.

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the little things mean the most

I went to Richmond yesterday to pick up my mother’s things from her husband. These include ‘family’ things from my mother’s maternal and paternal families, as well as things that belonged specifically my beloved Grandaddy, and all the photographic evidence of the first fifteen years of my life.
I peeked in some of the boxes as YBW and I brought them into the house and the item that brought me sobbing tears of joy was Grandaddy’s bible.

Grandaddy's bible

Grandaddy’s bible

Inside there are pictures of my grandmother and Mommie when she was a little girl, these photos have been in his bible ever since I can remember…of course they’ve most likely been there since they were developed in the 50’s.
I guess it doesn’t really matter how long they’ve actually been in there because they’re still there now and they are mine.
My delight is immeasurable!

Bettye and Mary E

Bettye and Mary E

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