Wednesday, November 30, 2011

334/365: Before dawn

This first photo I took on the way downstairs this morning, trying to capture the light shining off the rain droplets on the tree.  The photo turned out very blurry, but the lights captured look like they were dancing.  I found it interesting, so I hope it doesn't hurt your eyeballs.

This next photo taken right after is the scene in front of my car, the downstairs apartment, but again I liked the light from my headlights shining on the tree, still a tad blurry, I am uncertain if my little camera likes nights shots, it took forever for the flash to go off.

I hope there is something to see in one of the two to amuse.

Jules, Vancouver WA 6:15am Today (November 30, 2011)

334/365....Catching the waves....

Hecita Head Beach...

Back in 2004, we took a vacation down the Oregon Coast. We stayed in Florence, but went up and down the coast on day trips. I really liked Hecita Head beach. While the lighthouse was cool, I was drawn to the ocean more.

No, the picture wasn't taken in black and white it just looks that way.
I remember waiting and waiting to catch a wave hitting the rocks and was happy to have done it.

Calma's favorite shot.
Hecita Head, Oregon, 2004

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

333/365 - Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving saw me go to a few places in Illinois over a few days.  This is a view from one of those.  That dock is actually the neighbor's, I was standing on my own relative's dock on this small lake.

This was my contribution to the feast:

Pumpkin bread! Made from an old recipe from my mom's family.


333/365 Critter-sighting season

Now that the leaves are off the trees (and I am putting out some bird seed…), the critters are easily visible! 

House finch….

Hungry squirrel…..

Thirsty squirrel…..

~Tooks in SC PA!

Monday, November 28, 2011

332/365: Dessert, anyone?

I had two Thanksgiving dinners over the weekend, one with my immediate family, and one with my extended family on my mom's side. This photo is from the extended-family Thanksgiving, featuring just some of the dessert options available -- there were more pies around the corner that I didn't get in the photo!

I think I'll have some pecan pie... or maybe blackberry. Or perhaps both. :D


332/365 Why are you stopping?

Is what I hear every time I slow down on a hike to take a picture.

This is a lovely trail that follows a creek and winds between redwoods, under bay laurel arches, and up a few switchbacks for some cardio workout.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

331/365 - Celebrate the Harvest!!!

Here is the Dining Room table all dressed up for Thanksgiving and family!! I literally forgot to take any pictures while anyone was here. I was so into the day and the dinner preparations that I forgot to pick the camera up at all.

We had eleven people here for Pot Roast, carrots and potatoes, peas with an onion sauce, Baked yams, Dinner rolls with butter, Stuffing, a green salad, Apple pie and pumpkin pie both from scratch! Oh we ate till we hurt and then we laughed together about things. It was a great day!!!

We even discussed what we are going to do at Christmas time!! I believe it was a huge success this year at our new home!! I hope to do it again next year if I am allowed!!


Photo taken in our home in Bow, WA.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

330/365 - Rough seas!

Yes, it's another shot from work, however, I have been there all day! We've had a southwesterly gale blowing for a few days, and as a result, the sea has built up. This was taken today right at high water.

Seas breaking at Crosby, Liverpool.

Friday, November 25, 2011

329/365 Autumn Landscape

I didn't come up with anything to photograph this week so, I'm posting an autumnal landscape shot that I took a few years back on a trip to the Hanko Peninsula, the southernmost part of continental Finland.

Posted by Rowanberry

329/365 - Thanksgiving get-together.

Thanksgiving family get together! Me (the old, chubby one), my little sister (the one in th middle that almost looks like a boy), and our niece (the cute little blonde) in our matching shirts.
Posted by Heliona for PatriotBlade.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

328/365 The Rhine and the Wine

Last week, my sweetheart had to stay in Frankfurt (about two hours south-east from here) for work, and we took advantage of that by adding the weekend to it. I joined him in Frankfurt on Thursday evening (they weren't working on Friday), and we stayed there until Saturday afternoon.

Here's the central old square in Frankfurt, where they were just building the Christmas market.

From Frankfurt we went to the picturesque wine-making town of Eltville, an hour by train away, where we stayed till Sunday afternoon. Eltville is right by the river Rhine and in a major wine-making area.

Saturday was quite sunny, and in the evening (well, around 5 o'clock ;) ) we enjoyed a beautiful sunset over the Rhine.

On Sunday we walked a good mile to the neighbouring village and were lucky to find a wine-maker who had an open day. We got to see some of the fermentation tanks, a bottling section, and storage shelves for left-overs from past years. There were bottles from back in the 80s here, that's why it looks so dusty. :D

And there was some wine to try afterwards, too. :D

328/365 Feedin' Time

For which my Pippin-pup is Thankful!

Today is the holiday of 'Thanksgiving' in America.
The Holidays' origins go back to the early 1600's when the Pilgrims nearly starved the first year on this continent. They were helped by the generosity of the local Indians.
Most cultures have 'Thanksgiving' traditions going back even farther .. thanks for a bountiful harvest.

Since I am posting this very early in the morning, I do not as yet have a photo of my Thanksgiving meal. However, as some of you know, I make my own dog food after our Pippin had health problems brought on by store-bought food. 
I made a batch this week so I thought I'd take a picture of what it looks like.
This particular batch has salmon, tuna, sweet potato, red potato, pumpkin, nori (seaweed), feta cheese, cottage cheese, hard-boiled eggs, egg shell (for calcium), apples, broccoli, and maybe one or two other ingredients.  I measure out her serving size and freeze them. I make several varieties/recipes so that she has a varied diet.

Bone appetit!   :D   Dawn/RoseMorninStar

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

327/365: Giving Thanks

Thank you for these gifts!!


I was thinking how incredibly blessed I am to have such great friends on TORC.  There are other gifts that I have received through the years, these are just two.  Thank you all and have a safe and happy Thanksgiving weekend (for those who are in the US any way) the rest who are not, enjoy it all the same.


327/365....Kitteh Bliss....


Forgive me for once more posting a picture of my cat, but I just couldn't let this one pass you by.
Pawsha loves my best friend in the universe, Lora. When Lora comes over, Pawsha is there. She loves on her, makes biscuits on her, and generally makes a pest of herself until she finally sacks out.  Fortunately for Pawsha, Lora is a cat person as well and will not move until the cat does.

Gads, that face...
Just look at face.

Calma's place
Port Orchard, WA

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

326/365 Carlisle, PA

This past weekend my sister and I spent a day meandering around the town of Carlisle.  It was a beautiful day, so of course I took some photos…..
Buildings on the square:

Here’s a few of the shops we visited:

And here’s a place fellow TORCers would like:

Lunchtime!  The most important part of the day!  We took a seat by the window:

~Tooks in Southcentral PA

Monday, November 21, 2011

325/365 Catapult!

Catapult! by frelga
Catapult!, a photo by Frelga
Via Flickr:
It was just sitting there on the sidewalk. I was much tempted to test it.

325/365: Attack of the killer onion!

AKA: Feed me, Seymour!

I live alone, so food tends to be eaten rather slowly, especially if I forget I have it. I bought a few onions quite a while ago for roasted vegetables, but hadn't got a chance to use them since chopping up all those veggies takes too long! Over the weekend I went to grab an onion from my vegetable rack and found it rather stuck. Thinking it was the bag, I gave it a tug, and out came this onion:

o_O Guess that'll teach me!


Sunday, November 20, 2011

324/365 - Trumpeter Swans in Skagit County

The Swans have started migrating in for the winter. They always come and settle in our valley by the thousands and these are some of the first to arrive. They are so pretty as they gracefully fly over head and float down to their intended landing area. Each year they move to a different area of the county. This year we are very lucky cause they have chosen an area that we pass daily just a couple of miles from our home on the way to town!

I was surprised to see that some of the birds have been tagged with metal bands about their graceful long necks. I hope to get some more pictures of the birds flying overhead where you can clearly see their long necks and wing span. I think they are magnificent birds. Apparently it is illegal to shoot them and they look like a bigger version of the Snow Goose that they can get a license to hunt.
I feel very fortunate to live in this beautiful area with its abundant and ever changing wildlife!!

I promise to get more pictures of the larger flock later in the season when they are all here so you can see the sea of white birds.

Photos taken by Vana near Bow WA.

324/365 - Double Bluff Garden on Whidbey Island

Ryan is helping his mother do some gardening on his days off that I am working. So this is one of the many gardens on Whidbey Island that she tends. This one is at Double Bluff. The gardens have changed over the years that we have visited this site. It is gorgeous now with the stone steps that form the stairway up to a small pagoda on a stone table. Ryan wanted to share the colors with me from this falls lovely foliage. It is very pretty!!!

On the other side of the hedge around the yard is the Puget Sound and the beach. The hedge literally can be covered with water in an extremely high tide in a storm. The view from slightly above is fabulous and why he did not take pic of it, I do not know. It is a favorite place we love to visit when we are on the island. It is owned by a friend of Ryan's mom.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

323/365 - Cupcakes!

I made some cupcakes a few days ago. I'm in practise for Christmas. :D They didn't come out quite as well as I wanted. The recipe I was using I had to adapt, and I don't think had enough batter, so some of them are rather tiny. Also, I left them in the oven a couple of minutes too long as they're a little dry. I also had trouble with the icing. The recipe didn't mention icing, so I had to guess how much I'd need. I think I made a slightly too little, to be honest. I was initially going to have four different colours of icing to match the four different tops, but I lost patience! Also, I'd thought that my largest piping nozzle was a little too small for the effect that I wanted and it turns out that it was. :D

Still, lessons learned and next time they'll be better (and I now have a cake and cupcake recipe book, so less of an excuse!). The icing does taste delicious, though (it's buttercream icing with orange flavour).

Halloween cupcakes in a groovy holder

The cupcake pan and holder I just recently bought from a website called Planet Bake and is fabulous. I also bought some non-toxic glitter to put in the icing, although I didn't put enough in, so another lesson learned!

The decorations are Halloween because I got them cheap just after Halloween. :D (A couple of the green icing cucpakes are rather messy because I was trying to get rid of the icing out of my icing syringe. I think I need a piping bag.)

Friday, November 18, 2011

322/365 - Interesting tree

This tree is right outside the downtown library. I thought it looked interesting.
Posted by Heliona for PatriotBlade

322/365 Dragons!

Let me present my resident dragons:

The collection started with the two small ones in the front, which I bought at some fair, and called them Smaug and Ancalagon. Then, I found the dark burgundy one on the right in a Chinese kitsch shop. That one has no wings, so I guess it's Glaurung, then.

The blue one on the left, called Saphira, and the golden plush one, called Dracella, are gifts from TOB Secret Santas: Ateelah and Notlistening, respectively.

The brown one in the back is the latest addition which I found last winter in a gift shop selling all kinds of things made of wood. That one I named Kalessin.

Posted by Rowanberry

Thursday, November 17, 2011

321/365 First Hoar Frost

We had a lovely hoar frost on Tuesday. All the spider's webs even had a lining of ice.

321/365 Little Houses in the Big Woods

 For those of you familiar with the Laura Ingalls Wilder books or Little House on the Prairie, you may know that the Ingalls family started out in Wisconsin. 'Ma' and 'Pa' grew up not too far from here, in Brookfield, Wisconsin, about 15 miles west of Milwaukee. The Little House in the Big Woods was near the town of Pepin in Western Wisconsin.

In any case, these little houses have nothing to do with Laura Ingalls Wilder, but when I first moved to this state I couldn't figure out what these little houses were. They were too close to the road to be  safe to play in.  I've never noticed them anywhere else in the country. Some are fancy, like the one to the right.. others are very worn & plain like the one below.

Eventually I learned their purpose; they are little  shelters for children- to keep them out of the worst of the snow & bitter cold while waiting for the school bus. One usually finds them near the road when the house has a long driveway, especially out in the country.
The photo above and to the left is of a near-by farm.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

320/365: Recharge your engines

I keep this in my car always!!

About six months after I got my Volvo the battery was having major issues and I had to call three days in a row to get the auto club to start the car so I could get to work.  Each time the person told me that it wasn't the battery, but some other issue.
I had all the cables checked, connections and other reasons that might cause the battery to lose the charge overnight.  I took the battery to an auto parts store and while they were checking the charge, I saw this nifty item.  It is light weight, has a light and a plug in for other items like a radio or very small portable TV.

The auto parts place said that the battery was fine, but for the next three months, I had to use this mini charger every morning to start the car.  At the end of the day it did turn out to be a bad battery and when it was replaced, it never lost the charge again. 
I still keep this in my car just in case and recharge it once a month.  It was $25.00, not a bad price for peace of mind.


320/365...Better He Than Me......

Leaves! Nothing but Leaves!

The tree is about the size of the Party Tree in Rose's photo a bit back.
Sure glad I don't have to rake those things.
They wait until most are off the tree before raking up the mess.

Down the street from Calma
Port Orchard, WA

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

319/365 - Good Reading

Continuing with my Tolkien read-a-thon, I recently reached The Lord of the Rings.  My very first copy of the book was given to me as a Christmas gift right around the time the first movie came out.  I had expressed some interest in it, notably that I wanted to read the book before seeing the adaptation, and someone in my family decided to oblige.  That version was a paperback box set and the covers of the volumes were  plastered with images from the movies.  All well and good, for the time.

As time went on those volumes took a lot of wear and tear.  I was in high school, and got in the habit of keeping whatever I was reading in a compartment of my backpack so that I could pull it out whenever I had some free time, and shove it back in when I had to get to my next class. (looking back, that may explain a thing or two about my social life...)

So anyway, ten years on they're looking pretty sad.  My distaste with the films has also grown considerably, so I wasn't looking forward to being reminded of those visuals for the next several weeks while reading one of my favorite books.

Which is why I finally decided to buy myself a brand new copy, pictured above.  A hardcover set, illustrated by Alan Lee, that I had been eyeing for some time in the book store.  My Tolkien shelf just got a little bit classier.

Shiny.  ^_^


319/365 Morning Moon.... and Maple Leaves

I love morning photos!!!

A nearly full moon during my morning run....

And the next day....  lovely maple leaves!

Tooks in Southcentral PA