Monday, August 30, 2010

A Bit of Local History

Over this past weekend, Gary and I walked through a local cemetery and came upon one of the most beautiful stones we've ever encountered.   The gravesite is for a gentlemen named Elihu Emory Jackson, who was born right here in Delmar in 1837.  He left his father's farm and opened a lumber mill which became very successful ... and then he entered politics and became the Governor of the State of Maryland from the years 1888 to 1892.

As we were looking at the stone, an older gentlemen who was also walking through the cemetery, came over and told us that Mr. Jackson's gravestone had been designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany.   I have been trying to verify that information but haven't been able to do so yet.  However, I HAVE found that Elihu Jackson was one of the founders of Trinity UMC ... and that the stained glass windows in that building were Tiffany windows.   So there is a connection ...

Here are a few pictures of the gravesite .... you will need to click on the pictures to enlarge them in order to enjoy the wonderful details.

The gravestones of many members of this family are buried here, side by side.   There are more wonderful details on some of the other stones, and I'll be showing those to you soon.   Truly, the beauty of this family plot was enough to make me want to stand there for hours and marvel.

When I found out that the windows in Trinity Church were made by Tiffany, I went there with my camera.  I want to go back some day when I'm able to get inside the building.   The windows must be stunning from the inside.   Here are a couple of outside views of the church ....

These are just a few of the windows ... there are more on the other side of the building.   There was a fire in the early 1900's that did extensive damage to the building, but the windows were able to be saved. 

The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.
(Proverbs 18:10)

It's been fascinating to discover some of this local history.   Makes me long to find out more ....


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Around My Home

It's an exciting day when a new lens arrives in the house.   In looking at pictures on Flickr, my eye is always drawn to photos that have smooth and silky bokeh.   I can't afford a lens that will do exactly what I want to do.   But in reading reviews by Ken Rockwell, Gary and I decided to try a Nikkor 50mm 1.8 lens.   It's fairly inexpensive .... and with some practice, I hope to achieve better bokeh than I've been able to achieve thus far.   The lens arrived late yesterday afternoon and I've experimented a little today.   Have taken some really horrible pictures .... a new lens requires practice.    

Because I was waiting for a phone call, I took a few pictures inside my house.   I liked these three fairly well.   Please overlook the layers of dust on the shelves of knick knacks.   One of the pitfalls of developing a new passion for anything is that other responsibilities fall by the wayside.   Shelves containing collectibles, especially when those shelves are cluttered and are sitting next to the hallway that leads to the dusty shop, do not very often get cleaned and dusted.    My poor mother would be so embarrassed ....

(some of the many things I have collected over the years)

Gary made these kitchen cupboards a few years ago.    They were made from cherry and are aging nicely.  You wouldn't believe the amount of time we spent trying to decide what hardware we wanted.   But we were happy with our choice in the end.  The plate on the wall over my oven is illustrating a painting by Sandra Kuck.   It shows two sisters looking out a window, with each sister holding her own kitten.

(click photos to enlarge)

Everything from the little house was in the wagon, except the beds and tables and chairs. They did not need to take these, because Pa could always make new ones.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder)


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Favorite Place

A few photos from our trip to Lancaster County, two weekends ago ....
( have you made the discovery yet, that my favorite place is Lancaster County, PA?)

(click photos to enlarge ... there is some blurriness to a couple of the photos because they were taken through the windshield of the car while we were traveling)

Amish boys working in the fields

Amish farm, making use of bag silos

A dear little family on the Strasburg train .... the camera is almost as big as the little girl

Horses gently grazing .....

Beautiful stone farm house sitting next to The Red Caboose Motel

Amish boys maneuvering the busy streets ..... notice the bare feet

Lush Amish gardens ....

... more to follow, because it's just ridiculous how many photos I come home with after any given adventure

I'm sorry for my continuing slowness in catching up with your own wonderful blogs.   I'm feeling pretty good today, but the entire last three weeks have been rough.   I hope I'm now on the mend .... being sick is wearying.    I have a whole renewed sympathy for those who live their lives in chronic pain.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I just finished making another Blurb book ... from our trip to Cape May.   I've already shown you many of the pictures from that day.   I love the Blurb books, but they are very time consuming.    I've been trying to concentrate on that project and thus have not had a lot to share here.    It amazes me how difficult it is to get back into the flow of things after a brief time away, whether from illness or vacation or whatever.   I think everything just piles up and it's easy to feel overwhelmed.     I don't like to go long stretches without posting something, so today I thought I would just show you a few random pictures I've recently taken.   You can click on each picture to enlarge for better views ....

I went with my sister Bonnie to Assateague Island (the Maryland side), known for the wild ponies that are free to roam the island.   The Virginia side of Assateague is famous for its annual pony penning.  If you're familiar with "Misty of Chincoteague", that is where Misty originally came from (Assateague Island).  We saw the most ponies on this trip; it was wonderful.   This pony and two others which you can't see, were standing near an intersection.   We stopped the car and got out to take pictures.   My eye fell upon this little bird, which seemed to be following this pony around.  It walked under the pony's legs, around his head, near his mouth, everywhere.   Stayed right with it for as long as we stood there and watched.   It was so sweet.   A big pony and a little bird ..... friends.

One Sunday afternoon, Gary and I hopped in the car and drove around some of the back roads on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.   Went through a tiny little town name Sanford, and my eye spotted this rural post office.   One end is the post office, the other end is a bait and decoy shop.   There's just something unique about small-town life.

This lamp by the loveseat in our living room seldom gets used.   One day last week, it was turned on to help with old eyes that were trying to read.   Not long afterwards, I looked  through the doorway and spotted Victoria warming herself by the light bulb, with her head right up under the shade.   Poor Kitty!  How can she need warmth during a week when the temperatures hover near 100 degrees? 

During one of our travels, I spotted this old metal trash can sitting on the stoop of an abandoned building.  I like to take pictures of these kinds of objects.   They often speak to me.   It was a challenge to try to make a trash can look interesting.   This picture speaks to me of rejection and of the feeling of being thrown away.

And lastly, I took this photo this past weekend in Lancaster County, PA.   I think I might make this one into a poster.   It looks wonderful at full size.   And I love sheep.

Wishing everyone a beautiful week!


Monday, August 16, 2010

If It's IN You To Climb ....

Oh my ... I feel as if I have been away from the blogging world for ages!   What an ordeal I have had with this abscessed tooth!    I'm posting this picture because it's how my body has been feeling.   I had the first stage of a root canal last week ... the infection caused some bone loss, so the dentist had to push medicine down into the roots and give it time to take effect.   I go back in six weeks for the final root canal stage.   So thankful the pain and the swelling are gone.    Once again, I have been reminded of how much we take for granted when all is going well with our bodies.

And ... a little quote from Anne Shirley, just because I love her ...

"If it's IN you to climb, you must -- there are those who MUST lift their eyes to the hills -- they can't breathe properly in the valleys."

Hoping to catch up with some of my friends' beautiful postings within the next couple of days ...  Hugs to each of you. 


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Temporary blogging break, due to an abscessed tooth .... pardon me while I moan and groan ....


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