Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

"Shadows of a thousand years rise again unseen,
Voices whisper in the trees, 'Tonight is Halloween!'" (Dexter Kozen)

On my recent trip to Jacksonville, I walked through my sister's neighborhood to take some pictures of their Halloween decorations.

A vulture sits on a bench waiting for the tricker treaters. What's that he's sitting on - a skull?
Tarantulas greet visitors at this home!
Several tombstones dotted the area...
This yard will be especially appealing to children with its larger than life Halloween decorations. A giant spider awaits...
Frankenstein stands guard (he seems to have an inflated personality!)
A cauldron for boiling....
And a kitty making it's appearance. Look out Max!
Pumpkin lights dot the landscape.
I would hate to run into this when answering the door!
Have a safe and bootiful Halloween!!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

A new cat in town!

Move over boys, there's a new cat in town! This is Max, my sister's cat. About two years ago, my great niece rescued Max from certain death. He was dodging in between moving cars in a busy parking lot and she scooped him up and took him to my sister who adopted him. He was so tiny and they thought him only six weeks old but he turned out to be four months. Tough beginning, but nearly two years later he weighs in at 16 pounds! He's all boy and keeps my sister hopping.Max is a tuxedo cat, nearly all black but with white paws, chest and tummy. It was difficult photographing him since most times the black just all merged together.
Max loves to play and I mean LOVES to play. If he can't find a toy, he'll entertain himself with whatever is available.

Yes, I'm dangling a toy and snapping a pic at the same time.
Max is beautiful against anything red...

Hmmm, red rug - spelled backwards, that's gurder. Oops, sorry that was red rum, wasn't it... flashbacks to the Shining.
My sister has stools at most windows and he loves to lay on them and watch people passing by or the occasional lizard or bird.
Max eyes something there...
"Oooh, what's that? Kids going to school on bicycles..."
The back of the house backs up to marshland and Max enjoys the serenity.
Max has many places to perch. Here he is on the bar between the kitchen and family room.
"Well, what are you waiting for... take the picture!"
"Hmmm, where did I leave that blue ball..."
Not the same, but this ball never gets lost.
"Ummm, dried flowers, how tasty!"
My sister likes jigsaw puzzles, but quickly found that Max likes to play with the pieces too. She keeps it covered and of course Max takes that as an invitation.
One of the most amazing things that I saw Max do was to chase his tail. The Victorian Parlor states that their cat, Kramer, is actually a dog, so maybe there's some truth in that...
He did finally catch it but the picture was too blurry to post...
Finally, at the end of the day, there's nothing like relaxing in a comfy chair.

Friday, October 22, 2010

October Vacation

I just got back from the most wonderful vacation visiting my sister in Jacksonville, FL. We had a great time and she was so patient with my stopping every few minutes to snap a picture. But once you become a blogger, you never go anywhere without your camera, so whoever you're with has to put up with your obsessiveness:)

I have enough photos to do several posts, which I will try and get to over the next month. I know everyone in blogland will be tired of hearing about my trip but I must share.

On Tuesday, we went to St. Augustine (a later post) and visited the Lightner Museum. This is a must-see for anyone interested in Victoriana. Mr. Lightner purchased the Alcazar Hotel (built in 1887) in 1946 and moved his extensive Victoriana collection to it in 1948. Sadly he died in 1950, but willed the building and its contents to the people of St. Augustine.

One of the detailed supporting posts/columns. I'm a lion lover so this was really cool to me!
A koi pond is located in the main courtyard and a bridge crosses it.

What a great time I had snapping pictures of the fish. I especially liked the designs the fish made while swimming in the water...

Believe it or not this fish kept lifting its head out of water. We were concerned for its welfare...
So were the other fish... or perhaps they were in a shark frenzy (we hope not!)
Fish came in all colors...
The following are really cool shots - the water reflected the sky and the surrounding flora.

Photography was not allowed inside the museum so make sure you visit the website to view some of its contents.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Life's Blessings - Salutation to the Dawn

"Yesterday is but a dream, tomorrow but a vision. But today well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness, and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well, therefore, to this day. Such is the salutation to the dawn." (Sanskrit proverb)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

AT&T Where Are You?

(Sung to the tune of "Car 54, Where Are You?")

"Kramer! It's Cassie! Can you hear me?"
"Harrumph! All I get is silence."
Yes, Cassie, today is day 4 of having no phone. AT&T say they're working on an area outage and it should only take a few more days. Can you believe it? A whole week without a phone.

I took an inventory of Sweetbrier's phones. Got a couple of cordless ones - they're wonderful for when you want to walk around the house unencumbered.
The old wall phone is great for when the electricity goes out. You can still call out which you can't do with the cordless ones.
Remember the rotary dial? It's fun as long as you're not in a hurry:) Of course the receiver is a bit on the heavy side. Haven't we gotten lazy!!!
Thank heaven for cell phones!!!
"Kramer ole boy, can you hear me now?"
Update: An hour after I posted this, my phone called me and said it was now working. If I'd known all I had to do was post on my blog to get it fixed I would have done that Monday. Have a good weekend!