Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Along Came A Spider

I had it all planned: I was going to do my blog rounds and say hello to my friends, but Blogger has decided that I can't see the blogs I follow, let alone visit. Ah well, I'll do a short post tonight and hope the situation corrects itself tomorrow; do forgive me?

You've already seen photos from the visit with Mom and Pop, all but this one:

A wee chalkboard sign I made as part of Mom's birthday gift. The kidling knitted her a scarf in green (her favourite colour) and got her a pair of gardening gloves... the Great Scot and I got her a new book, and bookmark. Since we seldom get to see Pop on his birthday, we decided that giving him a wee something was in order as well, so a new (blue and white, blue being his favourite colour) tea mug, tea strainer, and a packet of my homemade tea blend were presented to Pop. (Is it bad that I thought seriously of buying him 'Hop On Pop' too?)

So last night the kidling was taking her bath, and on getting out and reaching for her clothes she found a surprise visitor that made her squeal a bit....

This li'l lady is called the rabid wolf spider, and is one of the more common spiders in it's range, which spreads from the East Coast... from Florida to Maine.... and as far west as Texas and Nebraska. Whilst it's bite isn't poisonous to humans, it is painful and Wolfie is an aggressive spider which typically stalks it's prey. The female of the species can grow up to 1 inch in length, (the body, this doesn't include the leg span) whilst the male is generally about half the size of the female. The coin beside it is a quarter btw. (About the same size as a 10 pence piece.) It is carrying it's egg sac, which from the colour is relatively new, as the sac darkens to a dull brown as the young mature. The young live on the mother's back for 6 months (up to 350 of them!) until they are mature enough to survive on their own, and the wolf spider lives 2 years or longer. The one thing I like about them? They eat crickets, which I despise.

Just for giggles:

Thursday, August 21, 2014

August 21, 193-

...that was the day this beautiful lady was born:

I'm sure you remember most of these photos.

And this most recent one...

Yes, I'm sure you'll recognise most of these photos... but it seems that whilst I've often mentioned the things I've learned from my Dad, as well as Pop, I've not written often about what I've learned from Mom. It's time to correct that omission.

When I think of Mom, I think first of strength. She is, by far, the strongest person I know; from her battles with breast cancer, to her determination to earn her GED, and everything in between. Mom was a very young mother, but her determination to do the very best she could for her children never lagged. She worked hard at whatever work she could find, and ensured that my brother was able to pursue his musical interests; that I had the ballet lessons I needed in order to walk properly. She also helped care for her mother, through my grandmother's many illnesses. Thus, she taught me the importance of family and simply being present when needed. 

Mom also taught me about love; real, messy, imperfect as it can be, it's still far superior to the half hour tv series kind of plastic love. Thus, she also taught me about loyalty. Not the kind of loyalty and love which wears rose-coloured glasses and pretends that the shiny surface is all there is; no, the kind of love that says "Okay, what's wrong?" or "How can I help?". Even, occasionally, the kind of tough love that says "Now listen...." 

How, really, can I list all the things Mom has taught me over the years... through words, but more importantly, her actions... in a (necessarily) short post? The truth is, I can't. What I can say, the most important thing to say, is this: "I'm glad you're in my life Mom, I love you."

This one is for you Mom:

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

A Happy Time and a Sad Farewell

A sad farewell to Robin Williams (thank you to Mitchell for pointing this out.)

Pop, rocking away on the front porch, having a 'yack' attack... then again, he wasn't the only one.

Mom and I, we didn't plan it but we almost match, don't we!

Puppy pile on the Great Scot:

No, my sweetheart isn't enjoying it a bit. (Yeah right.) As you can see, they range from large to extra small. Oh, and of course we can't forget the cheeky boy!

Rest In Peace Mr. Williams:

Friday, August 8, 2014

Let The Sun Shine In

   Update on my great nephew G: He had to be at hospital 5:30 yesterday morning and, with surgery on the spine being delicate... especially in one so young... it took a while. Still, late yesterday afternoon my nephew, 'J', G's father, posted that surgery was done and went well, and G was recovering nicely. G is really looking forward to not wearing the body brace anymore, and I can't say I blame him... thank you for all the prayers and good thoughts!

   So, I think we all know that I am not... and probably never will be... a great photographer. That's okay, I still enjoy taking photos and one of the things I most enjoy is capturing, and playing with, light. Here are a few photos where I've done just that; hope you enjoy. (Click on any photo to embiggen them!)

These photos, for whatever reason, remind me of the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet.

The front of the old Indiana Theatre, and the play of light...

The peculiar light of almost... but not quite... daylight, and a frozen moon.

Light captured by a snowy tree.

Lensflares on Fowler Lake, and just for Tex... a fence at Fowler Park:

My birthday is Sunday next, and it looks as though Mom Nature is giving me a gift: a Super Moon! Just hope the clouds part long enough for me to see it. Have a wonderful few days my friends, I'll see you when I can!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Girls On Film #4 - Girls Of Film

     We think we know her, that beautiful lady on the screen, but perhaps we should take another look... (Remember, you can click any photo to embiggen!)

 (image source) Meryl Streep

(image source) Emma Watson 

(image source) Queen Latifah 

(image source) Jodie Foster 

(image source) Annie Lennox

(image source) Drew Barrymore

(image source) Lena Horne

(image source) Isabella Rossellini

(image source) Cate Blanchett

So these are my choices; who would have made your list? 

My great-nephew, G, is having spinal surgery today... he has severe scoliosis, and without the surgery his liver will be crushed. Please keep him in your thoughts/prayers today!

Remember her, and this song? It was one of the Great Scot's favourites. (And mine as well!)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Boys of Summer # 4 - The Cause Celebre'

   What on earth would I be thinking if I forgot to toss in a few celebrities? Hopefully you'll find some new takes on old favourites today...

   If you don't recognise this celebrity, I'm going to accuse you of hiding under a rock...

                                   (image source) Elvis

                                                                               (image source) Lenny Kravitz

                                                           (image source) Michael J. Fox ... one of my heroes

                                                                            (image source) Tom Hiddleston

                                                                     (image source) David Bowie

                                                                        (image source) John Malkovich

                                                                       (image source) Mads Mikkelson

                                                                              (image source) Jason Momoa

   There you go, a midweek pick-me-up. You're welcome. Mom and Pop are heading up to Indiana today! After tomorrow, posting will be sporadic for the next couple of weeks.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

A Floral Surprise

   Well the Great Scot had a bit of a rough day; 3 teeth out and an unexpected bad reaction to the anaesthetic made it unpleasant for a bit. Thankfully he's recovered well! I, however, am a bit tired  so the usual early week posts will have to be put off for a day. Instead, I give you these lovely flowers I photographed this morning:

Beautiful volunteer morning glories which have sprung up in our front garden, all of them this same colour except one I spied hidden deep in the vines...

It looks like a single Grandpa Ott's morning glory somehow made it's way into the mix. Grandpa Ott's is one of the original seeds that SeedSaver's Exchange was begun with; pretty cool, huh? Guess what seed I'll be saving this autumn!

Connelly and Geraldo were a bit upset with me for not giving them my undivided attention. 

                                 "Awrigh' Mom, enuff!"

Oh, and that electric corncob? That was a gag based on the old joke about corn cobs and outhouses...

And another old favourite, from Travis: