Saturday, December 31, 2011

Peace on Earth

Peace on Earth Quotes
"Peace is always beautiful." ~ Walt Whitman

Friday, December 30, 2011

Snow Dog

“If your dog doesn't like someone, you probably shouldn't either”

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Lighthouse near Smith Island

Solomon’s Lump Lighthouse near Smith Island, Maryland
“Anythin' for a quiet life, as the man said when he took the situation at the lighthouse” ~ Charles Dickens 

 Filtered photo...I love the bird sailing in for a landing.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Chincoteague Beach

Chincoteague Beach
I love it when the tourists go away. Nothing like a walk on the beach to get rid of some of those extra Thanksgiving Day pounds. What better way to make room for Christmas goody pounds?

Monday, December 26, 2011

Too cute to resist

Too cute to resist
No hoomuns wer harmed in the taking of this foto...

Happy Kwanzaa

 Kwanzaa, Dr. Maulana Karenga
"Kwanzaa does not replace Christmas and is not a religious holiday. It is a time to focus on Africa and African-inspired culture and to reinforce a value system that goes back for generations." ~ Eric V. Copage 

Pulling out some old files in celebration of Kwanzaa that begins today and ends on January 1.

 Kwanzaa creator Dr. Maulana Karenga

Kwanzaa is now popular in Canada, Brazil, Jamaica, France, and Great Britain.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas from me to you...

Merry Christmas from Thomas West, VA
"May Peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through!"

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas Eve
"Christmas Eve was a night of song that wrapped itself about you like a shawl. But it warmed more than your body. It warmed your heart... filled it, too, with a melody that would last forever."  ~ Bess Streeter Aldrich 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Lights of the season...

Christmas drive
I am not shooting Christmas lights this year because it is hard work and being retired I no longer have to photograph the season, but I do like this house all pretty in white.

And on my way home from a Christmas party I snapped this photo of a lone car.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Shortest day of the year...

Winter Solstice
“O, wind, if winter comes, can spring be far behind?” ~ Percy Bysshe Shelley 

Happy Winter Solstice! Beginning tomorrow, our days will begin to inch into spring. 

 filtered photo

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Appalachian Piecework in Staunton

Appalachian Piecework in Staunton
"A community without an active art community supported by the community is nothing more than a community without ideas."

Kudos to Staunton, VA. There is welcomed talent on every corner. Not too late to check out Appalachian Piecework for that special lover of earthly things on your list.

A very Russian Christmas

A very Russian Christmas
С Рождеством

All ornaments handmade and bought in Russia.

  Straight out of the IPhone. Yes, I am, getting lazy.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Carl Sandburg poem FOG, Carl Sandburg National Historic Site
The fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

I have always loved this simple poem by Carl Sandburg, one of my favorite poets. I used to spend a lot of time at his home-place in Flat Rock, NC, near Hendersonville. Sandburg was not born in Flat Rock, but he spent the last 22 years of his life writing and enjoying the vast views that surrounded his home on the 30 acre estate which has been expanded to over 200 breathtaking acres that includes ponds, over thirty structures, and 5 miles of hiking trails. Mrs. Sandburg kept prized goats as a hobby and the federal government declared the goats a historic herd; At least fifteen dairy herd are always on hand. Visitors can tour the home, long a national historic site, with park officials or wander the grounds. Take a lunch and enjoy both history and the natural world in one trip.

Though these photos were taken in West Virginia, the elegant words of Sandburg's short poem are the first thing that pop into my head whenever I come upon fog, or fog comes upon me. I wanted to dig through my negatives and find some photos from the home-place, but that will have to wait for another day. Might be faster to jump in the car and make another trip. Umm? Tempting.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Last of the mountain apples

Last of the mountain apples

When the bold branches
Bid farewell to rainbow leaves -
Welcome wool sweaters."
  ~ B. Cybrill

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Holiday Cheers from Staunton, VA

Staunton, VA Christmas tree
"It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air."  ~ W.T. Ellis

If you have never been to Staunton, you still have time to pick up a present or two before Christmas. The town is full of the most marvelous artists of all sorts, coffee houses, and antique shops. 

Travel tip: Check out the American Shakespeare Center - Blackfriars Playhouse. It is the world's only re-creation of Shakespeare's original indoor theater. It is a gorgeous building that delivers year-round plays. We thoroughly enjoyed a showing of A Christmas Carol. Check out their website and be prepared to be entertained.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

How are you helping the poor?

Poverty stock photo
“We cannot suffer with the poor when we are unwilling to confront those persons and systems that cause poverty. We cannot set the captives free when we do not want to confront those who carry the keys. We cannot profess our solidarity with those who are oppressed when we are unwilling to confront the oppressor. Compassion without confrontation fades quickly to fruitless sentimental commiseration.” ~  Henri J. M. Nouwen, Donald P. McNeill, Douglas A. Morrison: Compassion, page 122 

 Photo published in Christian Science Monitor

Friday, December 16, 2011

Loving the back roads...

Old Barn in West VA
“The everyday kindness of the back roads more than makes up for the acts of greed in the headlines.” ~  Charles Kuralt

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Phone booths go the way of the dinosaur

Phone booths go the way of the dinosaur

Remember when if you needed to make a call while on the road you had to drive for miles to find a pay phone? In my case they seemed to be everywhere, except when I needed one the most.
I soon learned where the pay phones were in my territory but sometimes they were occupied, for a long time. People got comfy in those booths. "Hey, can you speed it up there?"

Before cell phones, working for a newspaper and keeping in touch was difficult. I got my assignments in the mornings but had to call in every few hours to find out what was going on or to see if I needed to head in another direction. Now phone booths are practically non-existent.

FYI: The first commercial mobile phone was released in Sweden in 1956. The first state to offer mobile telephone service was Kansas; released in Brewster by the S&T Telephone Company.

In 1960, Sweden was the first to offer a partly automatic car phone. It would take another 11 years before S&T applied for cellular service with the FCC. In 1984, Bell Labs developed modern commercial cellular technology. 

Memories: I remember seeing a few "wealthy" people walking around in the mid-eighties with those big-old phones. To say that we have come a long way since then would be an understatement. Once affordable cell phones became available to the public I was one of the first customers in line. I was giddy over my phone. Little did I know at the time there would be days I would curse my phone.  The days of, "Honest, boss, I looked everywhere for a phone booth," and "I got side tracked by a couple of feature shots," were over.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Black Cat

Black cat
"Some people say that cats are sneaky, evil, and cruel. True, and they have many other fine qualities as well." - Missy Dizick

One of our son's four cats, sneaking around the corner. She's never evil or cruel, or even sneaky. She just looks that way.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Behind barbed wire...

Poverty stock photo
“Once poverty is gone, we'll need to build museums to display its horrors to future generations. They'll wonder why poverty continued so long in human society - how a few people could live in luxury while billions dwelt in misery, deprivation and despair.”
~ Muhammad Yunus

Monday, December 12, 2011

Target Practice

Target Practice
 “Here's looking at you, kid.” ~ Humphrey Bogart

Once again, we don't hunt, but we love a little target practice on a crisp fall day.

And when we are not out shootin' in the woods, we enjoy chilling out with old friends...

Rembering warmer days

Barns in Garrett County, Maryland
"Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it." ~ Russel Baker

Summer: "Do you miss me yet?"
"Indeed. Indeed."

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Trees of Winter

"Blow, blow, thou winter wind, thou art not so unkind as man's ingratitude."  ~ William Shakespeare

The Alexandra, the Susan, and Vaud

Cape May, NJ fishing boats, The Alexandra, the Susan, and Vaud

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Blackwater Falls State Park, West VA

Blackwater Falls State Park, West VA
I hope to get some nice frozen waterfall photos on my next trip. Winter is a great time for photographers to trek down to the falls. Take a tripod for some dramatic photos. I had left mine back in the car and did not care to make two trips up those steep two-hundred and something steps. Call me lazy, but sometimes I like to shoot with what I have and not make a whole day's production out of it. I am supposed to be having fun now. Check out their website for travel tips.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Mountain roads

Mountain roads
I love winding mountain roads. They always lead to the nicest people.

Eastern Shore Magazine, December 2011

Eastern Shore Magazine
Pick up a copy of What's Up? Eastern Shore magazine and read the article on community dinners. On pages 24 and 25 you will see my photos.  On page 22 there is a yummy crab recipe for Chesapeake Eggs Benedict. Not my photo, but you can sure bet I am going to make some of those for the holidays.

IPhone photo

You gotta buy the magazine to read the story. One correction: top left photo is not Church of God. It was taken at Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church. Church of God photos here.

No matter, you can always get a good meal at a community dinner.

IPhone pre-party snap

IPhone party snap
Took this photo yesterday while getting ready for a party.

Welcome Home

 State of Maryland sign
When traveling, always nice to be back in the State of Maryland.