Frenchman's Bay, Maine

Frenchman's Bay, Maine

Monday, November 14, 2011

Playing Around With Photos

There are different types of free image editing software available online--specifically, I've heard a lot about GIMP and finally decided to download it this week after reading yet another positive review.

So I've been playing around with the GIMP filters. I especially like one application called "Cubism." It reminds me of pictures we made in grade school by glueing a bunch of colored tissue paper squares on a larger piece of paper--in a face shape or nature picture or even just a cool pattern.

See what you think:

Here's another photo taken at Salmon Creek this week with the fall berries and seasonal colors:

Let me know--what types of image editing software do you use, if any?

Monday, October 31, 2011

Murphy of the Living Dead

After seeing Dooce's recent photo of Chuck, I knew my Halloween picture of Murphy would include multiple rolls of ace bandages. Meet Murphy of the Living Dead, just in time for October 31st.

p.s. Murphy only looks mournful because he wants his treat NOW. I promise no pain was involved--just much cajoling.

Happy end of October!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Twenty-Four Hours in Newport

Just returned from time at the Oregon coast with my Dad & Mary, Beth, and the Odells. As you can see, the rain cleared for awhile and we even got to stroll down the beach.
I can't resist taking photos of the tide pools and especially sea anemones!
We hopped around giant rocks and tried not to step on too many barnacles in the process.
Me and my shadows.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Spider Poem

A noiseless, patient spider,
I mark'd, where, on a little promontory, it stood, isolated;
Mark'd how, to explore the vacant, vast surrounding,
It launch'd forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself;
Ever unreeling them--ever tirelessly speeding them.

And you, O my Soul, where you stand,
Surrounded, surrounded, in measureless oceans of space,
Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing,--seeking the spheres, to
connect them;
Till the bridge you will need, be form'd--till the ductile anchor
Till the gossamer thread you fling, catch somewhere, O my Soul.

--Walt Whitman

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Bring a Moleskine Next Time

Visiting with an eighty-ish missionary man I knew from early years in Burundi, I mentioned my nephew's recent wedding, complete with DJ and lots of dancing afterwards.

Mr Wheeler smiled and told me, "I grew up in an age where a Quaker wouldn't dance unless someone dropped an ice cube down his pants."

He also said many other funny things I wish I'd written down. Lots of raw material for an interesting character.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Bless Your Heart & Gizzard!

This phrase popped into my mind yesterday. I can almost hear Mom's lilting voice telling me, "Laurie, bless your heart and gizzard!" when she was especially tickled about something I'd done or said.

I wonder where this saying originated. Any thoughts?

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Ben & Jerry's Extravaganza

Don't you just love this big green bus? I wanted to hijack it and drive it across the country.

Sillies! We visited the Ben & Jerry's factory in Burlington, Vermont. This was our favorite city from the trip back East, not just because of the ice cream (although that helped). Vermont is gorgeous. I think this was the first time I ever set foot in the state.

Jeff told me his family used to drive through Dairy Queen and buy vanilla cones for themselves, then one for their German Shepherd, Mister. I think we need to fly Murphy out to Ben and Jerry's for their doggie cone day.

Friday, April 29, 2011


Me to Danielle:

"I had a misadventure with the lawn..."


"With the law??!"

That second option sounds so much more intriguing.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

St Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, Ireland -- 2006

Outside the Guinness factory in Dublin.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

How Doth the Little Crocodile

"How cheerfully he seems to grin,
How neatly spreads his claws,
And welcomes little fishes in
With gently smiling jaws!"
-- Lewis Carroll (from his poem "How Doth the Little Crocodile")

The toothy smile reminded me of Carroll's poem. Love those painted jaws. I'd enjoy driving around town for a day in this van, just to see people's reactions.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Justice Conference

A few weeks ago, Jeff and I drove to Bend, Oregon for the Justice Conference 2011.
While we listened to the various speakers, an artist in the back of the hall worked on this picture. Nice, eh?

That second morning, I shot a photo of the sunrise from the patio of the house where we ended up staying.

I'll try and post about the speakers and what stood out to me in their presentations. The weekend got my mental and spiritual gears turning faster and faster! Now I just want to take the initiative to live out some of the results of my internal pondering.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Im Frühling

Im Frühling (In the spring), we start to see more birds back in the Northwest. Unfortunately, the squirrels return in force too! Today, I came upon a frisky brown critter digging around in my hanging planter -- no seeds yet, but he held high hopes. An entire band of squirrels already ransacked my eighty crocus bulbs. Guess I've been too complacent since last year, when the bulbs bloomed untouched...And it's not as if we've endured a frozen winter, unlike Iowa and Connecticut and several other Arctic states. Go find food elsewhere, you little beasties!

Anyway, I came home today and decided to make a Frühling collage. Several weeks ago, I browsed through a new store on Mississippi Avenue in Portland, and found a picture I wanted so badly--the artist had glued old newspapers to create a songbird shape, then matted and framed her finished picture. But the price? Oh, a mere forty-five dollars. Gulp. I thought to myself, "I could do that at home." And this time, instead of forgetting about it, I took glue stick to paper. No antique newsprint around, but even better, leftover road maps from our time in Europe. Combine large dose of sentimental with a dash of thrifty and the result's addictive.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Zenga Song--Noy Alooshe Remix

Heard the DJ who remixed Gaddafi's speech into a hiphop song interviewed on BBC's The World yesterday. Libya's suffering under Gaddafi--and I say "Zenga, Zenga."

Here's another commentary on the massacre in Libya (from Technorati's website).

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Now That's An Idea

Jeff just returned from a relative's wedding in Vegas--I'd planned on going, but caught a horrendous cold/deathly ailment, so didn't tag along.

One of our nieces is pregnant, and her little girl has already decided what she plans to name the sister when she arrives...

(I predict it will end up on the Most Popular Name for Baby Girls List for 2011)

Wait for it...


Wish I'd thought of that when we were agonizing over names for our two daughters.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Winter In The Vineyard

I have a photo in Catapult Magazine, titled Winter in the Vineyard.

We gathered for family time at the Maresh Vineyard Retreat in early January, and I wandered down to the rows of grapevines below the retreat house. At the end of each row, Martha Maresh had mounted a bird house--not just any old bird house--each of these are unique, decorated by different clay faces.

Martha tells me there are sixty-plus birdhouses, used by both the violet green swallows in spring, and by bluebirds year round. These birds act as gnat-catchers while they're living among the vines. Good way to cut down on insecticides!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Quotes Painted On A Wall

Saw these quotes today. Someone had painted the lines on various walls at a SE Portland business. They're worth passing along.

"You must DO the things you fear you cannot." -- Eleanor Roosevelt

"If you want to be happy, practice compassion." -- Dalai Lama

"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle."

"In searching for truth, be ready for the unexpected." -- Herakleitos

Another thing I liked about this place? They provided every imaginable flavor of Stash tea for sipping while we waited! I tried the mango passionfruit blend. Yum.

What The Wild Goose Knows

I occasionally find little scraps of paper at odd locations in our house, where I've written down bits of conversations and phrases and words that interested me. Yesterday I came across a torn-off fragment, with something Mom said to me last year: "No one knows what the wild goose knows." So I started wondering, was it a line from a poem, or an old saying, or what? Can't ask her anymore. When I googled the words, this is what came up.

Cry of the Wild Goose--Frankie Laine

"My heart knows what the wild goose knows,
I must go where the wild goose goes.
Wild goose, brother goose, which is best?
A wanderin' fool or a heart at rest?

Tonight I heard the wild goose cry,
Wingin' north in the lonely sky.
Tried to sleep, it weren't no use,
'Cause I am a brother to the old wild goose..."

Thinking about geese reminds me of a guy I knew in high school. He liked to tease, and often called me "you silly goose." Since then, I have a soft spot in my heart for geese, even if they're usually cranky and try to bite people's ankles.

Another thought--if you haven't read White's essay, "The Geese," it's worth checking out--and can be found in his book, Essays of E.B. White.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

MLK's "I have a dream" Speech

I listened to this speech on NPR today, and even though I've heard it three or four times, it's still just as powerful. Thank you, Martin, for telling the truth and calling us to a better way.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy 2011!

For last year's words belong to last year's language
And next year's words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
--T.S. Eliot, "Little Gidding"

People are so worried about what they eat between Christmas and the New Year, but they really should be worried about what they eat between the New Year and Christmas.
--Author Unknown