Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Astronomy Lesson

Holding my 4-year-old grandson in my arms while damp from his recent swim lesson, we hurried in the cool night air across the parking lot, but were stopped mid-run to notice the moon and the nearby Venus sparkle. We stood for a short time before the chill permeated the damp towel around his shoulders.

Xman explained to me that Venus was the boy and the Moon was the girl. Sounds right to me!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Casting call

Thought I would further clarify my PC situation since it is so clearly compelling to my dwindling readers. I never did get the blue screen of death. My computer just kept getting slower and kept locking up on a few software packages and I thought it was just getting too old. It still is/was a fairly functioning computer. So guess I will use it a while longer.

I thought about switching to Apple but all my software is PC...what an expense.

On a totally un-related note is anyone as disappointed as I am that they chose Julia Roberts for the "Eat,Pray,Love" movie? I know, I don't really care. But I see this person as an empty headed intellectual...not an empty headed flirt. I was thinking 0f Charlize Theron, Annette Benning, even Reese Witherspoon although she is a little young. If you read the book, I am sure you have other ideas of an actress with that pixie but sincere quality.

Clearly from this post you can see how desparate I am for my PC.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Virtual Reality Update

My recent family visit filled my head with too much reality. Love them all and probably would be too generous in blogging about their complicated lives had not my PC been in the shop all this time, and thus, putting the yellow light on my blogging allowing me to mellow out and put a more subtle pink light on all the issues. My life is not a soap opera, but it appears that their lives are.

It also appears that I have both a "mal generic A" virus and a Trojan "agent gen-x" on my PC and for the low, low price of only $89.99 they will remove it for me! Wow. They have adopted the repair model use by car dealers. We analyze for a small fee and then call you and tell you how much it will cost to repair it. Only this scenario involves NO moving parts. It is more painful this way. I got this message on Saturday (today) and so may not get my computer back until Tuesday since she (the all-knowing magician) does not get in until Monday at 2:00PM. I am totally addicted to my PC and so will have to cough up the dough to get the PC functioning again. Since it is almost 8 years old, I fully expected them to say that I needed a new one. So there is a brighter side to this scenario.

If they could tell me how I got this illness on my PC, I would be more understanding. I have so much firewall and virus protection, that I honestly thought I was inoculated until the blue screen of death.

Oh well, Monday I get to start working on those photos that I am compelled to view on the big screen. Addictions are what they are, and at least this one does not contain calories to make me fat(ter)!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Virtual Reality

In my brilliance I turned in my PC two days before my 10-day trip. I naively thought that they could poke and prod at their leisure and I even more naively thought I would have a message waiting for me on my phone regarding the PC when I returned.

HA! I repeat HA!! Only the squeaky wheel gets oiled and it took a trip to the store followed by a phone call to learn that Dr. Nerdo Repairwomen was working on it as I talked to her on the phone. They had had my computer for almost 11 days by this time! She was running diagnostics yesterday and since she is off today I will not learn anything until Friday...after 2:oo PM which is when she comes in to work.

I am glad that I am rich enough to be liviing in a house with a hubby that also has a laptop computer...which I hate. People who can use these will develop carpel and marpel and whatever before the computer overheats on their lap.

I have started to catch up on email, but am not considering any serious posting on Blogger until my baby gets back home. Maybe tomorrow I will start reading some is dark and scary down here in the basement (where I banish my husband and force him to work in his office...).

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Dancing with Moonbeams

Most houses have ghosts. I am sure that one has heard those whispered conversations heard in the late evening when you are sitting by the fire or curled up in your favorite chair with a good book and sitting all alone. You look up and wonder if that was a laugh you just heard or was it just the blinds moving in the breeze. You hear a footfall in the empty hallway and you freeze with the bookmark in hand and turn your head ever so slightly to the left. It is just the bones of this old house creaking, you tell yourself and return to the poem. Someones' laughter and someones' tears are hidden deep within the shadows of the corners of those rooms. Important lives passed this way. Sometimes they feel safe and come forward, but you don't know this, or you deny it. On a lazy sunny afternoon as your eyes close and you begin to drift off to sleep, they gather together and dance around the floor with the moving sunbeams that drift across your favorite carpet.

My house is new. No ghosts have set up residence just yet. Thus when I hear creaking and groaning, I know that it is the spirit of the house settling into these woods planning for the many years to come and making room for the ghosts. My hubby and I will be the first spirits to linger in the shadows some winter evening. Will we be too shy to laugh and will we still have the same arguments? Will the click of my camera shutter startle some late night reader? Will we be willing to make room for other spirits? Will the sound of my grandchildren's footfalls skip down the hallway and interrupted by the sound of their giggle before they hide? Will we dance with the moonbeams in the late evening as the new owner falls asleep before the fireplace? I hope so.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Collecting Seeds

Fall for me is filled with deadheading the blossoms of my flowers and carefully collecting the seeds of those annuals that I want to regrow next year. I spent a small fortune on packets of seeds this year and hope to reduce that expense by starting my seed larder. I purchase beed containers at the craft store and dry the seeds and tuck them away for spring.

The photo above is from seeds of the the black eyed Susan vine or Thunbergia Alata... and, yes, if you clicked on the photo for a closer look, I think they look like that also! They are vessels of reproduction, after all.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Summer Flying By

(Here I am in the cold mountains of Colorado and yet able to post something to my blog! Cool!)

All of these beauties graced my front yard on the day I loaded my car with suitcases to leave on this trip. They danced and danced across the grass and with each other. They will probably not be here when I return, but knowing the transience of life, I am prepared for some new beauty in nature to tuck in for a while. (This should be on my other blog, I know.)

Friday, September 11, 2009

Tag, Your It

Darlene tagged me for a meme. I do not usually play along with these, being a bit of a spoil sport,but Darlene has a most compelling blog, so I will do so. In addition, I actually played this meme once before...but it was on Facebook and I was reading All Fishermen are Liars. The rules are to pick the book nearest to you, turn to page 161 and copy the fifth sentence.

I will post the meme from the book closest to me right now...I am not actually reading it as it is a reference tool published in 1999 and already out-dated, Real World Digital Photography by McClelland and Eismann:
  • "a 2MB board provides 16 million colors up to 800 by 600 pixels (or 832 by 624 pixels on the Mac). If you raise the resolution of the monitor above that, you have to drop the number of colors that can be displayed at a time to 32,000 or fewer."
The book(s) that sit on my end table near my bed and which I am currently reading actually are:

From Onions to Pearls by Satyam Nadeen, a kind of weird book about awakening. I don't know if I am going to like it or not. Bought it at a used book sale.
Outliers by Malcom Gladwell. Another good book of his; this one is about demographics and genetics and the luck of the draw.

(And, of course, anyone who wants to play along, please do so.)

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Lessons Learned as Summer Comes to an End

Grandchildren are loaned to us so that we can pass on our well-earned wisdom to their generation and make the world a better, more evolved place...ummm, well... not exactly. I've learned so much from this little soul this past summer that I often wonder if I have been sleepwalking through most of my life. Maybe I learned this stuff a long time ago and just forgot it as I grew up to battle adulthood?

Sometimes on a hot summer day at the pool you need to stop skipping and sliding and swimming and splashing your grandpa and just think about how the day is going thus far. You need to stop and think about all that you are enjoying so that you can remember it or focus on your next attack.

You need to Captain your Ship of Life if you want to end up in the best place for you. Don't be afraid to take the wheel, even if it seems bigger than you and you have to stand on your toes to see where you are going. Remember that those you love are still behind you to support your decisions and to help you on your journey.

Set your boundaries really wide. Your sand castles need moats that cover all the room that you can find on whatever beach you choose. This photo is 1/3 of the final sand castle that was created. It eventually included a mountain with trees and a volcano spewing lava red rocks collected from the beach. No project is too small for a creative soul.

It takes a lot of patience to wait for a fire to die down so that you can roast marshmallows and it is OK to wiggle and squirm when you are trying to be patient about something important. You don't have to look like a saint!

When you finally reach to top of the mountain (airplane, whatevah) remember all the loved ones and friends that helped you get there and be sure to help them all you can by sending your best as well as giving them a hand.

And, finally, throw out your arms in total abandon and don't forget to ENJOY the ride. It certainly goes by really, really, really fast.

(As I explained in an earlier post this is computer is in the shop and actually I am packing tomorrow for the trip.)

Sunday, September 06, 2009

My Husband's Non-Wicked Step Sisters

I reunited with them both again a few months ago when we attended my husband's S.I.L.'s funeral. They had aged...probably they seemed much older to me because they were a decade and some years older than I already.

They are like opposite sides of the same coin of womanhood. I have met them on and off in years past but was so wrapped up in my own family and my travels that I did not really see them. One of the wonders of aging is you get clarity of mind vision. Actual vision becomes blurry, but that is to ones' advantage because then you can see the reality of life much better.

They were daughters from my husband's father's first marriage. It was a marriage of wealth and unfaithfulness and ended badly. So badly that no one mentioned the name of the first wife in my F.I.L's presence. Mary was the youngest daughter from this union and the dark haired one with the hour glass figure. When she reached her teenage years she was compared to Elizabeth Taylor and from photos I have seen she did resemble her. Sally, her older sister, was the thin and blonder version. She had freckles and looked like the farm girl next door. She was also the thinner thinker. Sally loved to laugh and her laughter was contagious.

Mary went on to marry a man of the 1950's era. Who knows what drove him and also what devils haunted him. This was an era of cocktails and arguments. Devout Catholics they had five children between them. Four girls and a boy. Mary's husband left her in the lurch with all five shortly after that and actually settled on an island in the Caribbean where his drinking was the norm rather than something which caused heated arguments. Mary's children never saw him except for the son who became an adult and sought him out as male children need to do when fathers are an enigma. Mary was blessed with a good brain and devotion to her children. She worked very ,very hard making all those standard sacrifices, and in time, worked her way up to managing an important office in the State government. Her children each became successful in their own way and were loyal to her. When I saw her at the funeral she was overweight and arthritis was compromising her ability to stand for any length of time. But I saw that spark of intelligence in her eyes that had helped her survive the burden life had given her. I saw that energy in her dark eyes that had been the heat that burned her whole life like an excellent warm brandy. For some reason she made a connection with me.

I had seen Sally more often in my trips to my husband's side of the family. She had married, divorced, re-married the same man and then buried him when he died of throat cancer. He had been a heavy smoker, as many were during that era. Their marriage was more like the Taylor-Burton love. It was loyal but painful. She was like bubbles in champagne and actually became lovelier as she aged. She wasn't smart and sometimes couldn't follow an intense conversation. She dated often in her elder years and I think it was because she was such a fragile butterfly that elder men could not resist her. She married a third time to a shyster who gave the impression he was an architect. I had met him and he was quite smart and handsome. She figured out her mistake within the year and this was followed by an expensive divorce.

As she reached her early 80's she met a retired airline pilot. They fell in love and she married once again. I met him and both my husband and I liked him but noticed his aging memory lapses. He seemed to be in his late 80's. Both he and Sally continue to travel all over the world including a honeymoon in China where they sent photographs of themselves in elaborate Chinese costume. They recently flew to England to participate in the dedication of an airline museum. Sally is just as ditsy as ever, but now people think it is due to old age.

Both stories are the kind that could make a movie. Their lives are like yours and mine in some ways, but to me so much more interesting than mine.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Out of Pocket

It seems that the fates have converged in a unique formation in the coming weeks. My PC which is about 8 or 9 years old has decided it will not cooperate any more. I am sending it into the repair clinic before I lose everything that I do not back up---which is everything on the PC.

Symptoms include auto shutdowns, lock-ups, and inability to keep my photography software open for any length of time. The fan kicks on frequently and closing a program can take a very long time. I hope I don't need a new PC, but my gut feeling is that the store will recommend that!

Secondly, I am heading out on a jet plane to the other side of the country for a week's change of scenery. I will be eating and sleeping with relatives some of the time and some of the time I will be spending with my camera outside---I hope.

Thirdly, I have a post on this blog that has been pre-scheduled and several on my other blog, so that my readers will not disappear. But I will not be responding or reading blogs in the coming weeks.

Behave yourselves while I am gone, please. (OKAY...don't behave IS short after all.)