Wednesday, August 31, 2011

243/365: More Beatles

To celebrate the last public paid concert of the Beatles two days ago in San Francisco's Candlestick park in 1966 and the same day in 1958 George Harrison joined the Quarrymen, the forerunner band of the Beatles.

This is a poster that is on the wall directly opposite of my desk, so I get to see it every day.  Love my Beatles. (sorry for the bit of glare, I tried four times and this was the best of the lot)
Jules, Brush Prairie, WA

243/365.... Wallpapers...


Made a run down to the marina especially to get some shots of the Tall Ships in good weather and before they sailed out of port that afternoon. I hope they make it back next year when I have more time to tour them and watch as they put on their show.   The public docks weren't open yet, so I had to take some from the boardwalk and the dock of the foot ferry.  The inlet was so calm and peaceful at 7:30 in the morning.  I have at least 10 shots of these ships on my computer now but these two are my favorites.  I use them as my computer wallpapers. 


Sinclair Inlet, Port Orchard, WA.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

242/365 Buckeye!!!!

No, not the tree.  It is, of course..... a butterfly!!!

I was happy to get a shot of this beauty.  The day before I stalked a Variegated Fritillary all over the yard, but it never let me get close enough for a good photo.  This fellow was quite friendly, and photogenic to boot!

~Tooks is Southcentral PA!

Monday, August 29, 2011

241/365: Sailing, sailing

A picture of a picture! I bought this at the Ann Arbor art fair earlier this summer--I kept stopping by the booth and looking at the art and finally decided I may as well buy one! In case you can't tell, it's a mixed-media painting--the background is painted, but the sailboats and waves are made of pieces of steel cut and folded and then placed in layers, giving the picture a lot of depth and shine.

Sorry about the washed-out border--it's white, and between that and my camera's insistence that it take every shot with a flash, this was the result. :P


Sunday, August 28, 2011

240/365 - Getting ready for fall

The landlord had gravel delivered and spread out in our driveway to make it better for the winter and all the rains. They had the first loads delivered on Friday and then had a friend with a tracker with a scoop come in and spread it around. He finished up this afternoon and Ryan went out with the rake to smooth some edges and finish it up. I think it looks much better now and the pot holes are filled for the moment.

I think that I might get some stepping stones if the rains still cause puddles in the drive way for us to walk upon when we exit the car. But it sure looks nice right now!


Photos taken in our yard in Bow, WA.

240/365 - Red Skies at Night

Coming home the other night we saw the most beautiful red sunset and it reflected off the clouds all the way across the sky, but by the time we got home this was all that was red!! It was still beautiful to see!! Our weather here of late has been very nice and I hate to see it all end but fall is definitely in the air. The leaves are starting to fall and farmers are plowing up their fields again. We saw them harvest the broccoli and now they have those fields all plowed up.
So the end comes to our first summer at our home in the country and we hate to see it end but in order to have the rains and rebirth we must go through the dreary fall and cold winter. So I embrace it this year.


Photo taken from our front porch in Bow, WA.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

239/365: Critical Mass

Critical Mass, August

Critical Mass! 880 people this month. :D I was number 129. This is the counting stop at the fountain in front of the Theatre, where everyone funnels through a 'gate' and gets handed a little laminated card with the month's theme and a number that they can later put in between their wheel spokes. I have three so far :)

~love from Łódź, Rodia

239/365 - New shoes!

Nothing has happened today worth taking a photograph of, so instead I'm going to post my new shoes (again - if you happen to be my friend on Facebook - for which I apologise). I'm so pleased with having got them. This isn't the best photo of them, as they blend in with the carpet and my feet are rather pale, but nevertheless, I have shoes!! :D

Friday, August 26, 2011

238/365: Fooling

Looks like another kitteh pic today.
Do NOT be fooled by this sweet, innocent looking kitten. She is not sleeping. I know, I know it looks like she is sleeping in a funny position like cats do, but I am telling you that she is lulling you into a false sense of security, and when you walk past her, if you are within range... WHAM! She will get you!

238/365: Spider web

This was the "skylight", as it were, above the pool at the hotel I stayed in for the con. The pool area itself was awesome (they had one of those indoor/outdoor pools), and the big glass dome here meant that there was always plenty of light (great for photos), except Saturday morning when it provided a nice view of the eery green clouds passing through. :P

Rosemont, IL


Thursday, August 25, 2011

237/365 Lazy late summer happiness

After weeks of autumnal grey and almost incessant rain at home, I was so thrilled to find summer when I travelled about two-hundred kilometres south to my parents' place on Monday afternoon for a few days' stay - been doing a little gardening - which is bliss to a hobbit, too, of course - but mostly lazing out in the August warmth.

The heat seems to be broken up after some rain and thunderstorms yesterday, but today there was some more fine sunshine, so here's me lounging on a lawn chair with a small glass of chilled mead (bought from the local honey-maker's stall at the farmers market on Tuesday) and a small apple from our own tree for afternoon sustenance. :D

The apples on our trees are pretty much all ready for harvesting now, but there were a other few things to be picked up, too. The last of the plums and the first of the grapes are mingling in this bucket, together with a few late-summer flowers, dahlias and golden rod. :)

237/365 Moooooooooving

 You know you're in Wisconsin when...

As you may recall, our daughter recently returned from Japan. On the way home from the airport we took her to Kopp's custard, famous for their jumbo hamburgers and frozen custard. These cow statues were behind the restaurant.  A few days later we were packing her up and she was back to college. Our poor little Pippin saw all of the packing and was afraid of being left behind so she jumped into the cab of the truck.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

236/365: Julia Child BFF

I think I have loved this woman for forty years now!!

This is my second copy of her 15 year project to write a French cookbook for servantless American Cooks!!

Two nights ago, I put the ingredients in the slow cooker for her famous beef bourguignon!!
(basically beef stew in red wine)

And the result.  I realize now I could have cleaned up the plate some, but it came out lovely.
And in the very famous words of Julia Child ----  Bon Appitit!!

My kitchen, Vancouver, WA

236/365.... Arrrggghhh! There Be Pirates!!!

The Hawaiian Chieftain

Well, they're not the Black Pearl, but they're close enough for jazz.  :D

These two beauties sailed into Port Orchard on Monday. The only time for their arrival I could get was 'early afternoon'. Well that could have been anywhere from 12:01 to 5 so I parked myself at the waterfront park for two hours and waited.
Our beautiful sunny weather went South on us, but I waited for the arrival of these tall ships. It seemed like it took forever to get the Chieftain docked so the Lady Washington had to wait her turn. I was becoming nervous about that because I had to meet up with my husband at 3 but they got the Chieftain up to the pier and I was able to get a good close view of the Lady Washington. (thank goodness for a telephoto lens)

Location.  Sinclair Inlet, Port Orchard, WA.

The Lady Washington.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

235/365 - You cannot haz Ball!

My girl here will only play the single most civilized game known to our humble planet: Ball! I throw Ball and she brings it back (sometimes).  I toss Ball in the air and she grabs it before it lands, then she brings it back (sometimes).  When she (sometimes) brings Ball back, it is up to me to prove myself worthy to hold Ball by snatching it from her very mouth (or just waiting until she plants Ball in my hand).  The game only ends when she unceremoniously drops Ball and gets a drink.

See? Classy stuff.


235/365 Clematis ternifolia

This is the first year that my Autumn clematis is flowering well:


No butterflies today.  I did try to get a pic of a bee on the clematis, but it was blurred.  :P

-Tooks in PA

Monday, August 22, 2011

234/365: (Fan) Service

After my sewing photo last week, some of the other blog members asked to see the results, so here they are! Myself (the shortest one of the group) and three friends as the wait staff from the manga series "Cafe Kichijoji de". We made every part of the uniforms (except the shoes)--shirts, pants, vests, aprons, ties, and napkins--and did all the wig styling (including dyeing a blonde wig mint green after the one she ordered was sent back to Hong Kong). The girl with the dark blue hair also made the blue stuffed kitty I'm holding, as well as a pair of straw men (she's holding them, but I don't know how well you can see them) because her character is into voodoo. :D

We had originally entered the Masquerade (aka costume contest) in both the craftsmanship and performance categories, then withdrew from performance because we didn't have time to actually write a skit, were then peer-pressured by the Masq staff into reentering, wrote a skit in about 10 minutes, rehearsed it about a dozen times, and ended up winning Best In Show, the combo award for combined craftsmanship and performance. It definitely made the late nights and sewing angst (we brought 3(!) sewing machines to our hotel) worthwhile.

We ended up volunteering to be the "wait staff" for an event at the con called a Guest Cafe--the original intent was to have the con's special guests (a few anime voice actors and a band) serve food to a select number of guests, then mingle with them, chat, do signings, etc. (the idea is based on the idea of a "Host Club", if that means anything to anyone). Instead we ended up doing all the serving so the guests were freed up to actually sit at the tables and talk to the attendees. I think it worked better that way, and the con staff was thrilled that we wanted to help out. I mean, when you cosplay as a waiter, you're sort of asking for it, right?

I pulled this photo off of Facebook so I don't know who took it--we got a professional shoot done as well, so I may replace the current photo with one of their proofs once they put them up on their website.

AnimeWorld Chicago, Rosemont, IL


Sunday, August 21, 2011

233/365 - China's favorite place!

Of all the places a cat can want to be, China prefers her daddy's shoulder as he reads in the evenings. If he is playing on his cell phone or reading a book she thinks he is the most comfortable with her right beside him on his arm and shoulder. I believe he is trying to break her of this but she does her stealth mode slow climb thinking she is sneaky and wont be noticed if she just moves very slowly. It is funny to watch as she thinks he wont notice her slow accent onto his shoulder.


Photo taken in our front room in Bow WA.

233/365.... Grillin' time.

Bragging on my babyman!!!

We had some friends over last night for some bbq.
My husband did all this. Well, I chopped the veggies, but he cooked them all. He got rave reviews all night AND....
The food's all gone.
Ya' should have been there.

ps. Vana asked me to share Sunday with her I'll be back on Wednesday.

Location. Calma's kitchen table. Port Orchard, WA.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

232/365 : Font not loaded

So, apparently some people had trouble viewing the Japanese script in RoseMorninStar's post last week? 

This made me think of the little boxes you see on your screen when you don't have the relevant font on your computer.

  Font not loaded

I think this sign used to say ELEKTROMONTAŻ which would advertise the building of electrical devices, but parts of the neon must have fallen off from disuse as now it says ALAOTNOMONT(antenna)Z.

Love from Lodz


232/365 - First crop of the year

I bought some herbs a few months ago, and they've been growing fast (apart from the thyme and rosemary, which are obviously slower growers). One of my oregano plants has taken off, and so I decided it was time to cut some off. I don't have an airing cupboard in this house, so finding a place with good air circulation and not much sunlight is rather difficult. I settled on our bedroom, and hung the oregano from a wind chime that is itself hanging from the end of our curtain pole. :) We'll see how well it works. :D

This is Origanum vulgare 'Aureum Crispum' and I'm hoping that I get it dried properly. There's nothing better than using something from your own garden. Here's hoping that I manage to keep it going over the winter too. :D I suspect that my window sill are going to be full of plants!

Friday, August 19, 2011

231/365 Cloudy Skies

The rain was working it's way over my house, but you could still see sunny blue skies in the gaps.

231/365 What? More butterflies???

The other day when I went to check out the butterfly bush, I found not one…. but TWO…  ‘Red-spotted Purples’ (yes, that is their name).  Perhaps they were traveling as a pair! 
As you can see, the underside has reddish spots and a white edge, but the topside of the wings are black with a lovely blue/white edge.

Will there be more butterfly photos?  Who knows??  If I remember to take my camera outside with me every time, I may get a shot of a Monarch!   Or a Viceroy!  Or…

....Tooks in Southcentral PA!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

230/365 Oxford

Of course I just had to give you a photo taken at the Oxford moot last weekend. :D

This is one of my favourite views (though that's hard to say, as there are so many extremely beautiful things there :D ), the entrance to Christ Church College.

The mixture of buildings and plants here is just perfect, I think - one of many such perfect places there, though, but still - a very memorable view, that makes me gasp each time.
So beautiful it almost hurts physically. :)

230/365 ロージーは、日本から返す!

Rosie Returns from Japan!

This is my daughter who has just returned from an internship in Japan. She is dressed in the yukata (summer kimono) that her host family gave to her.
She also bought herself a yukata, so she now has two, but they are very different from one another.

She's only home a few days before heading back to college. It's been a busy summer!

In the background you can see our new prairiefire crabapple tree and further back is the ginkgo which doesn't look very big from this perspective, but it's about 8-10 feet tall.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

229/365: Ceramic Gussie

Simply the best, can't even describe how much I loved my Mini Doxie Gussie.  She was so smart and attentive and loving.  I had her almost 14 years and I do have photos, but I bought this ceramic to have out, so I can see it every day and remind me of what perfection and love is in a pet, one that was my best friend for many many difficult years.  Not that it matters, but she was a pure bred.  AKC registered under the name of Augusta McCray, named after Captain Gus McCray from the film Lonesome Dove.


229/365 - Oh the Views!!!

WE just took a trip to the other side of the mountains into Eastern Washington to visit family.

As we drove out of the mountains and into the desert side of the state we came across the new Wind Machine Fields! There are rows and rows of wind machines and also there are several fields across the valley on several hillsides in Central Washington. Its the new power source that our state is tapping into both in the central area and along the Columbia River gorge to capture the power of the wind and harness the energy.

Then we came over the hills into the
Yakima Valley and could see
Mt. Adams in the distance.

This is the third mountain in the legend of the Indian story about three Indians and their love triangle. It is something about two warriors (Mt. Adams and Mt. Rainer) who fight over the Princess (Mt. St. Helens). I will have to seek out the story sometime and share it with you all.

The Cental Washington area has lots to see but in the realm of a desert instead of the beautiful mountainous and green of Western Washington that we often share with you.


Photos taken of Ellensburg Canyon and of the Selah Valley of Eastern Washington.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

228/365 5 Senses Garden

I had the car out for a filter and oil change last week, and on the way home stopped at the 5 Senses Garden.  This is a nice little place that is part of the local ‘Greenbelt’ – a trail/walkway that circles the city and provides a bit of nature in the midst of concrete.

I met Shirley while I was there.  She is a woman who practically single-handedly keeps the garden cleaned up and looking nice.  She tried to recruit me to stop by and help some days.  I told her I’d be back in a couple of weeks once I had another weekday off. 

A section of a 145 year old tree trunk:  It was a seedling at the start of the American Civil War:

Spring Creek provides some of the ‘sound’ for the 5 senses.  It is rushing along quite merrily, thanks to the recent rains.

The butterfly bench faces a grassy area turned into marsh (from the rain) ….

~Tooks in Southcentral PA!

Monday, August 15, 2011

227/365: Explosion of creativity

I had a sewing party this weekend with two friends--we're going to another anime convention this coming weekend as a group of characters who all have the same outfit (a work uniform) so we figured working together and buying the same fabric would be the best way to ensure conformity. The girl at whose house we sewed had just moved a few weeks ago and a lot of her stuff was still in boxes, so not only did we have 3 sewing machines, a serger, and yards and yards of fabric, but also boxes and bags scattered around. Anyhow, this was the state of the room Sunday morning, and it only got worse from there! But I had an awesome time and we got a lot done, so I'd call it a success!

P.S. Pictured is one of my friends, not me.

Royal Oak, MI


Sunday, August 14, 2011

226/365....The Deer at the Lake....

The Deer at the Lake

Another view of the old homestead.
See the deer?
Oh sure, be all upset because it's not a real one.
Still, it is a deer.  :wink:

Calma...Kitsap Lake, Bremerton, WA

Posting for Vana again today....:D

Saturday, August 13, 2011

225/365: Ancient woodland

Białowieża Primeval Forest

The Białowieża Forest, one of the last remainders of the great Primeval Forest of Europe, which took its current shape about ten thousand years ago. It straddles the border between Poland and Belarus, and is a strictly protected area.

For these last two weeks, I was in a small village in one of the forest glades, working on an animated film workshop with some local teenagers. On our last day, we biked to the strict preserve area at five in the morning and took a magical, quiet walk in the virgin woodland.

Białowieża Primeval Forest


225/365 - Keble Library

So, I'm back from Oxford. This year, we stayed in different college accommodation due to the price of our usual haunt being greatly increased. The new (to us) accommodation was at Keble College and was amazing. The rooms were lovely, but the buildings were gorgeous and we had breakfast (and one dinner) in a real life Harry Potter-esque Great Hall. This is a photo of the library at the college. It is closed outside of university term-time, but the glass was clean and it was lit, so I couldn't resist taking a photo. I love libraries. :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

224/365 Kitten Antics

Kitten trying to catch the dancing feet in the opening sequence of the movie Footloose.
Kitten watching a bug crawl up the wall.
Kitten sitting on a potty chair.

224/365 Go Native

These aren't the best quality photographs,
but I'm doing the 'guest spot' today
so I thought I'd put these in here.
These are  some of the Native American items that I have.
 Pictured are two log drums, a rainstick, a turtle shell 'purse'  and a raccoon totem/decoration. 

For those of you unfamiliar with a rainstick, 
it is a hollow 'skeleton' from a cactus that has died 
& the soft part has decayed away. 
Then the spines (or nails) are driven into the core of the 
wood in concentric circles (a spiral) and pebbles are added.
The ends are then sealed.
When the stick is turned over it sounds like falling rain.
Native peoples of Central & Southwest America 
used rainsticks as a musical instrument and in an attempt to
'call' a rainstorm in times of drought.
The turtle 'purse' is made of a whole turtle shell, front & back.
And guess what? Not a single piece was made in China! :D