Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday My Town Shoot Out ~ Park Landscapes

Today's theme is park landscapes chosen by yours truly, ME!  Please click on the link to see a list of members and to check out some awesome shoots for this theme.

I chose Tule Springs Ranch State Park for my shoot-out, mainly because of its history.  In order for you to appreciate the photos I took, I need to give you a brief summary so bear with me for a moment.

In the 1920's and 30's Nevada relaxed it divorce laws, thus launching the "Divorce Industry" which included lawyers, judges and hotel owners.  The most colorful aspect of this new industry was the "divorce ranch" where would-be divorcees  (many of them wealthy eastern socialites) could live and entertain themselves while waiting to fulfill Nevada's six week residency requirement.  Guests would spend their time swimming, horseback riding, picnicking, or even helping out with ranch chores.  Tule Springs Park reserves one of the last remaining divorce ranches in the Las Vegas area.

What a difference compared to the photo in the sign above it.  It barely looks like the same bridge.

There are a lot more buildings on the grounds

but why don't you take a walk with me around the park

and we'll spot some fisherman fishing in the large pond.

Down the path.......

up the steps....

up yonder.....

and over a stream

Spotted:  two lovey dovey geese

The End.....


Even though this theme was chosen by me, it is one of my least favorite shoot-outs. 
 Nonetheless Tule Springs ranch is a very pretty park and the history is incredible.
These photos, except for the buildings
are some of my favorites of the park
among the pictures that I took in September.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Self Portrait or Self Indulgent

Since I'm the one behind the lens,

I don't really have a lot of pictures of myself.

Today, I decided to play around with my camera

using myself as the model.

Here are the results.

You may click on the photos to zoom in if you are so inclined.

Yep, there are some days when I feel really good.

Today is one of those days.

I don't feel like a 45 year old.

A Blogging Muse

If you're a writer at heart like I am,

Then you know that there are times,

lots of times when you just don't feel the flow.

No matter how hard you try,

how much you think about it,

sometimes the words just don't come.

You've got writer's block.

Sometimes for just a day,

 or a week or a month or even a year or longer.

Then you start thinking maybe you never were a writer at all.

I'm not talking perfect grammar here.

Lots of published authurs are extremely nit-picky about proper punctuation.

A real writer though,

lets the words flow from the heart without fear of being criticized.

If one worries about correct spelling, proper punctuation and sentence structure

how can one be fully engaged in what he has to say?

Being perfect takes away the creative flow and the imagination. 

It ruins the story that's inside and that is really sad.

I know a lot of people that don't write well and can't spell worth a hill of beans

but boy, do they have some good stories to tell.

Perfection is not about being perfect,

It's about being creative, imaginitive, and authentic

and letting that authenticity flow out onto paper.

I know of the perfect muse to help your creative juices flow.

It will help to hone your writing skills,

It will encourage your imagination to become more vivid,

It will spur your creativity to come alive.

What the hell am I talking about? you may be wondering.

I am talking about a new blog started by Heather


Every day she posts a picture.

The picture is to inspire you to write.

Each day you are prompted to write with a different theme.

For example,

 Monday's photo - What memories does the photo evoke from you?

Tuesday's Tale - Write a short fictional piece, as the photo inspires.

Wednesday's Ten - Ten words of first thought, as you look at this photo.

Thursday's THE - After looking at the photo, begin a sentence or more with the word "The".

Friday's Poetry - While looking at the photo, share a few lines of poetry.

Well, don't take my word for it.

Go have a look yourself and why don't you give your writing a little push--

Uh, I mean prompt.

It can't hurt

and who knows....

you just might find your flow over at Heather's.

Happy writing!

Oh, just go.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Random Thoughts

It's really windy outside and the sky is painted gray

There's a small chance it might rain

and I welcome the sprinkles to shower my neighborhood.


I gave Sasha a bath earlier today

which  always takes place in the shower downstairs.

She likes the water a little warm

(okay, well maybe that's more me than her)

She didn't enjoy her bath today

she had a frown on her face the whole time,

if that's possible for a dog.

I also clipped her toenails which was a difficult task.

Even more difficult than that was the attempt I made

to brush her teeth.

Ah, the joys of pet ownership.
She then begged me to let her outside

and I finally relented

even though she's still wet

and it's cold and windy.

But ultimately,

that made her very happy

and it gave me joy to watch her roll around in the grass


My parents are coming for a visit on the 18th of November.

I'm looking forward to seeing them

and going out for a drink.

My parents are a lot of fun when we are out.

They love to dance.

And I love watching them.

It's also the day before my 15th wedding anniversary.

It's going to be a really good month.

We are going to Oregon for Thanksgiving

and then I am stopping in Marysville, Ca.

to visit with my childhood friend, Tina.

I can't hardly wait to get on the road and enjoy the change of scenery.

I am getting excited at the thought of exploring

and discovering things to photograph.

I'm counting down the days.


I found a camera club I want to join.

Their next meeting is on the 13th of November

and hopefully

they will accept my membership.

I am already acting as if I'm a member....haha

I can't wait to go on field trips

and learn more about photography

and be able to share that with like minded people.

My friend Gayla is going to join the club with me

so I am really excited to have somebody to do something with.

It should be a lot of fun.


It's mid afternoon and I feel like taking a nap.

I think I'll lie down on the couch and rest my eyes for ahwile.

I hope everyone has a fabulous fun filled day.

Thanks for taking the time to stop and visit me.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mosaic Monday ~ Pumpkin Carnival

Click on photo to enlarge image for a more detailed view.

Earlier this week I was in California with my husband

And while he was at a machine shop getting an evaluation on one of his machines,

I was free to roam wherever my driving took me.

I'm an explorer

So it doesn't bother me in the least to drive around aimlessly wasting gas

Feasting my eyes on the sights of the town.

While on my carefree adventure

I discovered a delightful little carnival full of pumpkins.

They had a pumpkin maze for the kiddies,

a train ride,

a ferris wheel,

carnival games,

and lots of snacks and pumpkins.

I just knew that I had to stop and roam around this cute little place.

All of the photos above were taken specifically for Mosaic Monday.

My Sasha was with me too

And she enjoyed making friends with the little ponies out back.

Mosaic Monday is hosted by Mary at Little Red House.

I encourage all of my readers to visit her blog and view her wonderful mosaic.

A bird in a fire

I had actually intended on posting something else today,
but as usual I got sidetracked.
I wandered around the blogosphere
and landed on this beautiful post
that really touched me.
The story warmed me so deeply
that I couldn't read it and not share it with anyone
who lands on my page.

Please click this link so you too, can feel your heart warm
and your compassion swell.

The image is just as beautiful as the story.

Solar Sunday

I am participating in Solar Sunday which is the creative idea of Rebecca.  She has two blogs that she maganges: The Dusty Cellar and The Dusty Cellar Shoots.  Please go visit her and tell her I sent you.

Thank you.

Now, here's my photo for Solar Sunday.



This photo was taken 10/20/09 at Seal Beach.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Friday My Town Shoot Out~ Classics of Childhood

This week's theme is classics of childhood, chosen by Ellise.

When I think of my childhood, my most cherished memories involve my grandparents.

This is my Mamaw and my Papaw.

It's hard to believe that they are only in their 30's here.

They seem so much older to me.

Mamaw and Papaw lived in Bakersfield, California

and I grew up in Stockton, California until I was ten years old

So it was always a treat to go visit Mamaw and Papaw.

Gosh, how I loved them so.

I remember one Christmas I had asked for a maxi dress.

I begged and begged for one.

and when I opened one of my presents at Mamaw and Papaw's house

I giggled with joy and twirled around holding that dress up against me.

My sister got one too.

Here I am at 8 years old, in Dec. of 1972 wearing my brand spanking new maxi dress.

It appears that my bow is tied in the front instead of the back.  How funny.

Every year Mamaw and Papaw sent us birthday presents in the mail.

I always looked forward to their packages because inside the box

was always a pair of boots or gloves, my favorite things.

Here is a pair of gloves I got when I was eight or nine years old.

Yep, they are the original gloves and they are kind of dirty.

After all, they are more than 35 years old.

 I cherish them so much because they remind me of Mamaw and Papaw.

I loved these gloves and wore them all the time.

I felt so glamorous in them.

I think I was more like a little adult as a child.

My favortie TV show when I was in Kindergarden was Perry Mason.

I would get dropped off by the bus after school at noon

and my mom and I would watch Perry Mason

and I understood what was going on.

We also watched a soap opera called Love of Life or something like that.

I loved books of all kinds.

When I was younger I asked Santa Claus for a sky blue binder.

How many kids do you know who wants a binder for Christmas?

My sister and I loved marbles. 

We collected and saved our marbles for a long time.

I remember we had over a thousand marbles.

When we moved to Bakersfield, we would walk to a store called Cornet

and buy marbles by the bag fulls.

We had steelies, cateyes, dogeyes, perry's and solids big and small.

I really could write all day long about all my childhood classics. 

I'll post a few more photos but first,

I want to write about the places that will forever remain classic to me.

Mamaw and Papaw owned a board and care home

so we spent a lot of time with the mentally disabled.

(back then, before it became a politcal issue, it was the mentally retarded)

My grandparents were so good to their clients it just makes me smile thinking about it.

They had fun with their people. (clients/mentally disabled)

On many occasions we went to dances with them

We went roller skating, we went for drives, we went to Magic Mountain and the Pike.

We rode the rides with them and laughed and held their hands.

We rode horses and went to horse auctions.

Those were amazing times and Mamaw and Papaw were the best.

I just don't know if there are any grandparents on the face of this earth who are as good

as they were.  I really miss them so much.

Mamaw was my best friend before I moved to Las Vegas.

She passed away three years later, my papaw sixteen years before that.

Anyhow, enough of that.  On with the classics.

I found this second place ribbon that I received for softball.

Here is a doll that my mom had custom made for me when I was 15 years old. 

My sister got one too, only with a different outfit.

Beware, she's kind of dusty.

The base of her body is made from a clorox bottle.

This is my baseball glove.

It belonged to Papaw, but at some point I took ownership in my early twenties.

I love this baseball glove and I always admired it when he had it.

I used to have a dark brown glove.  This one is black.

It looks brown, only because it has been used a lot.

I was on a softball team last year, so it has been good to me through the years.

Sometimes, when I put my hand in it, I feel like I am holding his hand.

It's good.  It makes me smile.

Oh, I even have an item from my husbands childhood to showcase.

This is a ceramic pixie or elf that his mom painted.

She and all three of her boys painted ceramics together.

I am so lucky that my husband has this.

I really like it a lot and I think it's really cute.

I have him sitting upstairs keeping watch over us.

Oh, the classics......

My sister and I would buy 45 records from Montgomery Wards,

Ice cream cones from Thrifty drug store,

Steak Um Sandwiches from Woolworth's,

clothes from Gemco,

slushes from circle K

Fun dips from the little country store.

We would eat whole tomatoes fresh from Mamaw and Papaw's garden.

There was no Chuckie Cheese.

Our favorite pizza came from Straw Hat and Shakey's.

The original pizza joints.

We visited the Easter Bunny at McDonald's.

Does anyone remember TRAX shoes?

We thought we were so cool.

I know I'm leaving out so much I would like to tell you about.

Maybe some other time.

I look forward to seeing all of your town shoot outs this week.

For anyone who is interested in joining this group or you would just like to

see what other town bloggers are posting please visit here.

Thanks for stopping by.  You all have a great weekend.

Road Trippin

Monday morning Justin and I hit the road to California.

As we left the house I noticed how billowy the clouds looked

and I kept pointing out various shapes to my husband.

I kept watching the clouds as we drove and when we got to the state line,

we pulled into the parking lot of Whiskey Pete's to let Sasha out to pee.

I was taking photos of the Whiskey Pete's sign

when I noticed a heart shaped cloud meant just for me.

I knew it was a sign that our trip was going to be smooth sailing.

And it was.

Another heart presented itself to me,

not in the form of a cloud but in the form of a man made sign.

I accepted with faith that this was a sign of a good omen.

We even drove by the Angel Stadium as the game was going on.

I snapped a photo driving by at 60 mph.

Click on the photo to see all the people in the stands.

In a nearby town we stopped to get gas

and I think that's when my good omen turned sour.

Even trees aren't immune from ugly graffiti

We made it to our destination of Seal Beach without any complications.

Until we started looking for a motel room.

This is the parking garage of the first motel we stopped at.

They wouldn't allow our Sasha to join us so we had to move on.

Several motels later, just off Pacific Coast Highway

we finally found one that would allow Sasha to check in with us.

Remember when I mentioned above that our good omen had turned sour?

Well, what I meant to say is that our room was sour.


When we noticed all the motel room doors propped open with a chair

on all three levels,

we should have taken that as a sign.

But we'd been on the road for eight hours,

an exceptionally long drive for where we were going.

We were tired and just wanted to get a room and relax.

Well, we got our room on the third floor and it looked clean

but it felt a little muggy in there.  No big deal.

That is...
until we closed the door and a sour smell permeated the entrie space.

It smelled like dirty feet, but was in fact a soured shower curtain.

Oh well, we decided we could live with the smell.

We took a walk down PCH

and found a wonderful marina.

And another sign which tickled me pink

because I happen to agree.

But most of you probably don't.

We saw lots of tropical plants and pretty flowers.

We ate dinner at a Mexican restaurant then made our way back to the motel room.

After being in the room for awhile, we not only smelled a sour aroma,

but the stinch of a dog's former pissing ground came wafting up from the floor

and knocked us breathless.

We complained and bitched about it but we didn't take action.

We stayed. 

At three o'clock in the morning, I bolted upright out of bed.

I heard a strange noise but I couldn't figure out where it was coming from.

At first, I thought it was Justin snoring so I scooched closer to him

nestlng my head against his back and I listened.

Nope, not Justin. 

Could it be Sasha?

Again, I listened intently, practically straining to hear.

Nope, not Sasha, but that damn sound is still there.

It's annoying. 

Now, It sounds like a power tool of some sort.  Maybe it's a drill.

I can't tell. 

A vibrator, possibly?

I'm screaming in my head to shut the hell up

when I realize that the sound is coming from the room next door and though

it is similar to the sound of a power drill or a vibrator

it's in fact someone snoring.

I'm awake, can't go back to sleep

and I have to be up at five in the morning to

drive Justin to a job site.

I survived but next day I was dragging my ass.

But I did find this really cool lagoon in Long Beach

and I took lots of pictures of the scenery and of Sasha swimming.

There are some incredibly amazing trees in this area.

I'm home now and being lazy again.

I have a lot of catching up to do in regards to reading and commenting on blogs.

But I will happily browse and get caught up by this weekend.

So, until tomorrow's shoot out

I'll be seeing you.


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