All posts by tchistorygal

Hi, my name is Marsha Ingrao. I love blogging, and the friends I've met worldwide. My husband and I belong proudly to Puppy Girl (age 5 years), Mama Kitty (13+), and Scardy Baby (13), who found us living in their neighborhood, and decided to let us stay.

Angular: the Daily Post Photo Challenge

I examined 12 posts before I wrote this.  I don’t usually do that, but I needed inspiration.  I smiled at this favorite .  You have to look past the obvious angle to see the real angle, and wonder where the photographer stood to shoot this single picture post.

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Angles are easy to find in the city, but what about in the country?  I checked out some of my most recent Woodlake pictures for you from my folder of Buttes and Bridges, and found more angles than I expected.  I love this one because it looks like Jack’s steel beanstalk disappearing into the sky climbing to an unknown giant’s castle.

Actually, the power company decided that detouring the installation of these monstrosities into the country served the better good that marching them up the straight path along a freeway.  Not everyone agreed with that angle of thought, but there were fewer voters to object in the sparsely populated areas.

What’s your angle?  Here is the key to others that I liked.

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Word Press Photo Challenge: Achievement – Zoom Zoom

This isn't Alex, and yes, I really did this, but next to last place is not an achievement I'm proud of.
This isn’t Alex,or me, but yes, I really did this.  However, last place is not my proud achievement.

I achieved something today.  I overcame an annoyance that, for many months, demolished my joy in blogging.  To you bucket list – high achievers, I hope this post won’t destroy what little respect you might have for me when you see how little it takes to make me feel successful.  To Alex Gustafson thank you for showing me the way to success.

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This may not look annoying. It didn’t to Alex.  But, believe me, it was!

 

So the problem was, my font got too big for its britches on my dashboard.  It took a scroll just to see my stats!

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When it came time to post, I felt dyslectic trying to read the names of my former posts.  Even Ed—————- …it was on two lines!  Alex said everything looked normal to him.  Hmmmm… Right…

“Try adjusting the settings on your web browser,” he told me, and gave me a link.  That’s link, not wink!   https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/96810?hl=en

So I gave it a try.

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Don’t you wish that the buttons they tell you to select had a big sign on them like this???  At any rate, I felt very intelligent that I was able to find all the buttons in the article.  And it worked.  My browser was the culprit all along, and now I know how to fix it if poltergeists every come in and switch it again!

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So what underwhelming achievement have you accomplished recently?  Make me feel better, and I won’t tell you the struggle I had putting a border (simple, simple) on this last bit of media.  Poltergeists, I tell you!  :)

Wait for it!  Wait ....  She's coming...  Keep waiting...
Wait for it! Wait …. She’s coming… Keep waiting…

For more stunning achievements click on the WP icon.

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An Odd San Francisco Hotel Room

It is odd to make a spur of the moment decision to go to San Francisco for the night on the way home from Redding instead of Sacramento, but I had my reasons.  I arrived at about the odd hour of 10:00 p.m. with no reservations.  This is what I got – a room with a very odd view.

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It had a bit of an odd bathroom to go with it.  :)

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For more odd ball pictures click Cee’s icon below.

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Travel Theme: Belonging – Colonial Williamsburg or Not?

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Life is defined by belonging:  our family,  town, organizations, belongings, even the time into which we are born.   I attended a teachers’ institute at Colonial Williamsburg a few years ago.  That town preserves what belonged to another time period, so that we, of the 21st century could understand somewhat what it felt like as patriots and loyalists, all British subjects, clashed, and then hashed out new plans in the taverns, church, and legislature all situated on the mile long walk down the main street.

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Our trainers immersed us in the life of the time.  Four of us from Tulare County joined six others from California, a few from Pennsylvania, some from Georgia, one or two from New York, and we lived as a group for one week.  We belonged together for a week.

 

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Our guide, Bunny, embroiled us in an 18th century court case in which a Baptist minister was tried  as a criminal because he preached from a  Baptist pulpit, not from the one true church the Anglican Church.  “The law of the land from 1624 mandated that white Virginians worship in the Anglican church (Church of England) and support its upkeep with their taxes.” ( Religion in Early Virginia.) We had to decide his fate.

 

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One of our members, Jami Beck, volunteered to participate during the trial.

 

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We learned how to fire cannons and muskets.

 

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We danced, and sat around a properly set dinner table sharing the latest colonial gossip.

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We visited with tavern owners who served George Washington on a regular basis.

 

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Slaves let us enter their farm-house, feel the tobacco they harvested, smell it hanging in the barn.  But in all the authenticity of belonging to that time period.  There was always something that didn’t belong.

 

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Actually there were many things.  What do you think belonged, and what didn’t?

I Write Histories

How does that sound for a marketing line?  I am 99% finished with my first published book, Images of America:  Woodlake.

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I hate to SOUND so proud, but I AM proud.  I can’t believe this is really happening.

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In the process, I have found that so many organizations, even schools, don’t know anything about their history, and don’t know where to find the information either.  As I dug for Woodlake history, I found some amazing treasure chests of people, who were just waiting for the opportunity to share what they had with someone who could use it.  I now have more adorable pictures than I can use, but with permission to share them, they can go to the library and to the museum, where other writers (or me) have access to them.  My new friend Robert Edmiston calls me with new finds and new questions.  His enthusiasm for this project has increased the fun exponentially.

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Sally Pace and I walk often, and she shares new leads almost daily.  I love Sally.  I have followed them all – more treasures, one of the most recent – Lisa Kilburn who just sent me 155 pictures that her father took.  This picture from one of Sally’s birthday parties in the seventies is much too risqué to go in the book!

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Ellie Cain took the time to put together a book and send it to friends and relatives.  Robert Edmiston shared it with me.  I contacted the address pasted in the back of the book, and she emailed me.  She is sending me a CD of pictures for my book.  Her family will live on, and people will be blessed to enjoy adorable pictures like this one.

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This picture was glued on a poster board in 1984.  The ink from notes written on the back has soaked through.  These pictures were all the church had to share with me.  Only one of the 14 churches in our little town have their history written.  The little church my first husband pastored – no history that I know of – (but I have tons of pictures that no one knows about).  One church took a picture for me, and one church gave me pictures a book and video about the history of their church.  Which one got the most face time in our Woodlake history book?

So I see a need, and maybe you do too in your neighborhoods and areas of interest.  Organizations need a history.  CCSS has one book of our history.  Yeah!  SJVCSS does not.    Huge need!  Without history – even if we are still there, no one knows who we really are.  I guess that’s good if we are dishonest, but for most organizations, they are just too busy to take the time.

I Write Histories

That’s where I can come in. How does that sound for my new business venture?  What new ventures are you trying this week?

Found – One Odd Day

Today I planned to drive up to Salinas to have Meg Ryan put some finishing touches on a dress she made for me, only the zipper didn’t come in, and she couldn’t finish the dress.  So I stayed home and finished Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz. Am I the only one who hadn’t read the 2003 novel about the MAN who saw dead people?  I’m not a big fan of supernatural books, but I can’t resist Koontz even if I am 11 years late.

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What I loved about this book were his descriptions.

For example, I would never have written this memoir if I had not been commanded to do so by a four hundred-pound man with six fingers on his left hand.

What better reason to write?  When I get back to Girls on Fire, that is my first order of business – to try to describe.  The first problem with that is that I am not observant.  Another problem is that I don’t remember much of what little I see. In addition to that, I struggle to figure out how to string together simple words, like “twinkly-eyed smile”, let alone remember to use words like rubescent.  Here is a fitting description that 36 highlighters noted.

At sixty-three, having added a few pounds, having acquired the seams and crinkles of seasoning experience, she possessed the deeper beauty of the beatified: the sweet humility and tenderness that time can teach, the appealing glow of care and character …

Since tomorrow is my sixty-third birthday, I can quit worrying about the five pounds I gained in Hawaii, and the ten I gained over the summer before I even got to Hawaii.  I can enjoy the seams and crinkles seasoning my experienced life, and waft gently in the appealing glow of my humble and tender character that is rapidly developing deeper inside my beatified body.

Odd Thomas lived in Pico Mundo, CA, located in the heart of the Mojave.

Pico Mundo is not a skyscraper town.

Isn’t that a classic understated sentence?  He follows that by a short description of the weather.

The Mojave sun is not a timid little Boston sun or even a don’t-worry-be-happy Caribbean sun.  The Mojave sun is a fierce, aggressive beast that isn’t going to be intimidated by the shadows of five-story apartment buildings.

Instead of saying, “I was so scared I could hardly walk,” Koontz wrote,

As if magic suddenly overruled physics, the moonlight seemed to acquire weight.  I felt the burden of that lunar radiance with every step.

How do I learn to even think like that?  The moon never did anything so dramatic to me.  Characters in his book didn’t escape his metaphorical scalpel.

He psychological engine didn’t have a go-easy gear.  “Well, damn it, he’s such a freak.” (describing the protagonist standing right next to her.)

I’ve know people like that who say whatever pops into their brain no matter who is listening, but I never attributed it to anything but their weak frontal lobe.  I guess I needed to listen to more “Car Talk” to get the gear connections.  By the way speaking of popping into one’s mind, I am so sad that the Car Talk guy, Tom Magliozzi, passed away.

Girls on Fire has me leashed to my work-ethic upbringing, but after that, unless, my brain kicks into overdrive, I’m sticking to non-fiction.  One last post-mortem, unrelated ramble before I close this high recommendation for Odd Thomas.

Mark and Marsha

Twenty years ago today, my two best friends in the world, Jean and Darlene, helped me through the last day of my first husband, Mark’s, life.  I seldom talk about him, though we were married for just over twenty years.  He was a good man who endured much with few words of complaint.  He had a great sense of humor, read voraciously and could tell the funniest story with a laser-straight face.  We moved to California so he could pastor the Ivanhoe Church of the Nazarene, and I’ve never regretted that decision.  I was proud of who he was.  I dedicate this review to Mark Alvord, he would have loved the book.

Oh My, What Have You Done?

Nothing is not the right answer.  Blogging is not it either.  I wish it were.

Branding Time

Do you get roped into things?  Do you sometimes feel like you’ve been branded as the girl who says yes to too many things at once?

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Sometimes I feel like I’ve kicked up so much dust, that a can of worms might be a good thing in comparison. Today I talked to our CPA and learned about 501(c)(3), and I hope we’ve filed all out paperwork.  I created a program for our Western Regional Breakfast that’s happening at the NCSS Conference in Boston next month.  I found out about awards for the program.  I learned about the Woodlake Rodeo.  I did laundry, made lunch and dinner, cleaned the kitchen, took a walk, went to the post office and mailed a letter to a 10-year-old P.O. Box and I hope to find the person who owns the bottom picture to get her permission to use it, so promise me that you won’t steal it.

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I posted important stuff on Facebook for CCSS.  So the truth is that today, I’ve done a lot, but can I remember it when my husband comes home and asks me what I’ve done?  I do, but that was the wrong question.  Does he really want to listen to me list it all?  I think you know that answer.  That’s why I’m telling YOU – and guess what?  He’ll end up reading about it on Facebook tomorrow.  hehehe  :)

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Right this second I’m feeling a little light headed (yes, I did get my hair cut, but only about 2-3 people even missed the 5-6 inches I’ve chopped off) But that’s not why I’m light headed.  I’m dizzy with excitement because I’m almost finished with my book, Images of America Woodlake – 15,894 words out of a total possible of 8,000 to 18,000, and 192 pictures out of a possible 200. What I’ve learned cannot even come close to a limit of 18,000 words. That has been the hardest part. Collecting pictures from those whose names I get from friends, and of those, the ones who return my call or email. Those are the ones whose minute pieces of the story get in the book. Some people have given me hundreds of photos. Some only one. I have to leave out so much, and someone’s feelings are bound to get hurt when the book is published. There is SOOOOO much more to tell. But, that is not my story – at least not for this book.

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So what did you do today?  Do you need someone to listen to your list?  Write it in the comment section.  There, doesn’t that feel better?  You really did do something today!

Long Time Users Learn More About Using Facebook

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I think Mrs. Robert E. Lee knows I’m a Yankee. Confederate President Jefferson Davis doesn’t is more interested in the photo op. :)

History gals can learn new tricks!  Out of necessity, I have become one of the Facebook queens. After three years of using it regularly, I still find that I constantly learn something helpful.  I use Facebook in three ways.

  1. A personal page.  This is the easy first step to Facebook. I joined with a valid email account, and I post pictures and make comments.  I don’t really care ( and by that I mean report to anyone about) about statistics other than it’s a nice pat on the back when someone comments or likes something I post.  I have to admit that I like likes.  :)
    1. What sets this account apart from the others is how random it is. Whatever strikes me at the moment, I post, from a lost dog picture, to Christmas photos, blog entries, unusual weather and trips.
    2. I try to avoid posting yawn topics like, “I got up at 6:07.48 am and brushed my teeth.”
    3. Something that can be disconcerting is that a personal page can be full of personal messages might be better sent as an instant message, which is private.  But it is my page, and if I don’t care if the world knows that my all my underwear was locked in the washer full of water for three days, then I guess ….
    4. This account is important in a business situation when I want to reach someone and I don’t have their email address.  Today I searched on Google for for presidents of state councils for the social studies when I didn’t have a website for the state.  I found two or three people that way.  They don’t always respond, but I try to be open and let them know who I am, and most people respond eventually.

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  1. A professional page.  I’ve started several of these from my personal page, and I’m not sure how to do it otherwise.  As an administrator, I can invite others to be administrators.  Only administrators can post on these pages, but viewers can comment.  I was frustrated at first because no one posted or interacted.  In my experience this page is more for pushing information than interacting.  This account is focused – or it should be, but it can still be personal.  The face of the company or organization has personality.  If a member of our organization has a good experience at school that they post on FB, I will sometimes share it.  I have to cut and paste their post or it shares on my personal page.  Usually the biggest hits on this account are upcoming events with a flyer or any information about legislation that affects us as an organization.
Sentinel Butte Ranch
This might be interesting to the group “You Know You’re From Woodlake If…”
  1. The group page.  I joined groups as an administrator before I really understood the purpose of groups.  Since then I’ve been involved with a writing group and several groups from my town of Woodlake.  I have found this form of Facebook most interactive for several reasons.
    1. There is a moderator of the group.  What impressed me most was when the moderator introduced themselves and welcomed me personally and asked others in the group to do the same.  Several of them did.  Then some of them became friends with my personal account.  I also get a lot of likes on my personal page from some moderators.
    2. There seems to be more open dialogue on the posts, almost like a personal account, but more focused.  People don’t necessarily know each other when they start talking, unlike on a personal page, but they get acquainted quickly.  Sometimes the conversations veer from the topic of the original post, but usually an outsider can read it and know what’s happening.
    3. Because group pages are moderated, the moderator can delete comments that might not pertain to that group.  I have deleted posts and ultimately people from the group who post advertising on our California Council for the Social Studies group page because their ads don’t fit the purpose of the group page.  The moderator can also add questions, comments or contests that will encourage others to participate.

All three types of pages have their uses, as do other types of social media.  The trick is using the right page for the right impact.

WP Photo Challenge: Refracted Light

The underground gardens in Fresno gives shows off refracting to the maximum.  This hand dug castle took years to create, and served it owner as a garden as well as a home.

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His guests could drive right in.  We had to park on the street with the rest of the tourists!

Forestiere Underground Gardens

You can imagine how much the trees loved this filtered light.

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If I’m down, I just need to look at this next picture to feel up again. My brother took this picture at Navy Pier in Chicago when we traveled for his birthday last October.

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For more ideas on refraction click the image below.

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Travel Theme: Broken – Rattlesnake Hunting No More!

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near Success Lake outside of Portervile, CA

We didn’t travel far to experience the fastest breaking the trainer had ever seen.  The rattlesnake trainer travels all over California, and maybe the country, breaking dogs from sniffing, hunting, attacking or otherwise annoying rattlesnakes.

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Kalev is not particularly aggressive towards rattlesnakes, but because of her size, we didn’t want to take any chances. It was time to break her of any latent tendencies towards rattlesnake hunting.

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The process was simple, and took about 5 minutes once her number was called.  The trainer cuddled her for a second to gain her trust as he slipped a shocking collar around her neck.  She fell for him.

  • First he took her on the porch where a small dead rattle snake lay curled in a little circle.  It didn’t smell like cow pies or a dead mouse, so she avoided it.  It probably hadn’t been dead long enough.   No shocker collar action for her on step one.
  • Next the trainer led her to some big scary rocks where a fake snake sound rattled from between the boulders.  Again, she showed extreme disinterest.
  • Then the trainer had a real treat, snake smells rubbed in the grass.  He coaxed her towards it, and she took the bait.  He zapped her instantly telling her to avoid tempting snake smells at all costs.
  • To pass the test she had to run across the grass containing a live snake and come to me while avoiding the snake.  She started out to make a beeline for me, but screeched to a stop when she smelled his venomous body hidden in the tall grass.  She gingerly stepped aside, and ran towards me.

That was three years ago.  Today, she will still hardly walks on grass – even ours.  She balances on the rock wall rather than touch the manicured lawn until she gets to just the right place, then she tiptoes over to take care of business, jumping back to the safe rocks when she finishes.

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The training area

I think she’s broken.

To see more ideas about broken click here.

Hawaii with Elane

IMG_3560RI just got home after two wonderful weeks in Hawaii.  Vince and I stayed the first week and listened to the timeshare “blah blah,” and took quite a few side trips with a friend of ours.

Driving south on Maui Highway 30.
Driving south on Maui Highway 30.

But Vince only likes to be away from home for a little bit, so the second week my friend Elane joined me.

I still really do have hair.  The pre-hurricane wind blew hard!
I still really do have hair. The pre-hurricane wind blew hard!

She is amazing at any age, but she nears 80 with grace and enthusiasm.

NY high school theatre-arts classes still in effect!  :)
NY high school theatre-arts classes still in effect! :)

Sadly, no theatre classes in my past.  I was way too shy!  :)

Everyone looks better at the beach!  :)
Everyone looks better at the beach! :)

Here is a link to the book I made her.

Click here to view.

I hope you enjoy it as well.

WP Photo Challenge: Nighttime

Nighttime in St. Louis last November sparkled with Christmas lights.  We were on the snow route, but someone forgot the snow.

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They didn’t forget the cold.  Cheryl and I both had our reindeer noses on, but no sleigh!  :)

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Breathtaking sights that phenomenal night walking around in the bitter, clear cold.

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Without my friends my magnificent night would have bubbled away and escaped into a book.  I’m so glad I have friends who wouldn’t let me miss the magic.

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About a week after I left St. Louis, Vince and I flew to Honolulu.  What a difference!  It is almost a challenge to find nighttime in Honolulu.  The island Los Angeles never sleeps.  We found this statuesque young man on the street corner, painted in silver, shimmering in the city lights, and not moving a muscle…then he did.

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NCSS holds conferences all over the United States.  In 2011 we went to Washington DC.  These statues at the Korean Memorial stayed eerily still that night during the nighttime tour.  I can’t guarantee what happened after the tour ended.

Korean Memorial

Nighttime city tours are the best.  The Marine Corps War Memorial signified the conclusion of the campaign in Pacific.

Iwo Jima Memorial, Washington

You never know who you will meet.

FDR Memorial @ night

Important people you don’t expect to see.

Vincent J. Ingrao, WWII Veteran

Of course, nothing is nicer than nighttime at home….. once in a blue moon!  :)

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I apologise for the quality of my photos, I hope the nighttime story is still enjoyable.  Sleep tight!  :)

If you can’t sleep check out some other nighttime stories here.

Volunteer Sales Force Heads for the Hills

Woodlake Kiwanis Club publishes a magazine, “What’s Happening in the Foothills…” available on street corners everywhere, and delivered to nearly 30,000 homes.  The premier product we promote is “what’s happening” in the form of a calendar centerfold.  The money we raise from selling advertising pays for the magazine and funds Kiwanis activities for schools.

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Friday Sally Pace and I headed east for Three Rivers, the town on the Kaweah Rivers at the base of the Sequoia National Park where the big trees live.  We stopped along the way to sell advertising.  What that meant was Sally talked to people while I played around and took pictures.  This is a great little place to stop and get all kinds of schlock from great food to speciality gifts.  It seems like a beary nice place to hang out and relax.

2014 Kiwanis calls132You might get a little too relaxed after the wine tasting event they are going to have.  This gal hasn’t awakened since the event last time.

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This tourist came all the way from Russia to see the trees.  She posed for me, but she didn’t understand what I said.

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You might want to come with a group of folks and fill up the place.  It’s a cozy place that seems larger than it is because of the mirror.

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I wouldn’t advise standing on the tables and dancing.  I stood on one of the chairs to take this next picture, and it swiveled (you can see my bare feet).  That is my excuse for why the picture is a bit blurry.  The table was beautiful – even if it did have a big hole in the middle where you could throw your cups when you finished. (That’s if you had too much to drink and didn’t know what you were doing, or lost control of your cup.)

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If you really drank too much, this fellow might see you out the door.

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If you didn’t designate a driver, you wouldn’t have to go far.  The hotel is right next door.  But don’t get hung up on your way over there like these guys did.

2014 Kiwanis calls141This was just our first call.  The next stop was only logical.

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Once thoroughly cleansed outside and in…

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We adjourned to the first lunch place.

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Then met some real buckaroos….

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getting ready for the next meal rush hour.

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We were already stuffed. Good thing they just opened to show us the view.

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Feeling a little groggy after our ice cream lunch we headed over to the folks who could make us feel well again.

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They have the best prices on drugs, and we decided it paid to shop locally.  Next, we moseyed down the hill towards home feeling pretty good.  Too good, maybe.  We found a great bargain at this next stop we could hardly pass up.  Look at all those choices in the display window.  I think my husband called about then, and gave me some strict instructions. (He’s a realtor, for those of you who don’t know me very well.)

2014 Kiwanis calls187“Yes dear, we’re on our way now.  Yes, I got you something…”  Oops, I hadn’t gotten HIM anything.  So we made one last stop (not counting the ladies gift store).

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That big cookie in front is no longer available. We kicked ourselves for eating so much ice cream.  These are new owners.  As we waited to talk to the owner, our eyes popped out when she served her customers.  We both wanted to sit with them and eat family style.  There was plenty there for all of us.  No one invited us to do that, though.

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She had just enough time to give us a smile and sell us cookies before she headed back to the kitchen.

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Laden with goodies, we jumped in, making sure got in the right car this time (another story), and headed five miles for home.  We sold some ads, and our clients sold some things too.   Our pay …a fun day!

Nurse, Soldier, Spy – Perfect Picture Book Friday

tchistorygal:

The big Fresno County Civil War Reenactment is coming up October 18-19. This would be a great story for kids to read to get ready for it. :)

Originally posted on Jilanne Hoffmann:

Returning from my long absence with a brief splash of a review for:

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I just read Nurse, Solder, Spy for a nonfiction picture book course and was fascinated by the story of a young Sarah Edmonds who impersonates a boy so she can enlist in the Union Army. Moss writes with the urgency of a war reporter, and Hendrix’s pen and ink illustrations with their blue and gold/orange/yellow acrylic washes suit the era well.

The varied and sometimes hand-drawn typography can be startling—in a good way. For example, when a Confederate soldier hollers:

“YOU THERE, BOY!

WHO DO YOU BELONG TO?

the question fills half the spread, bringing home to the reader the awful nature of slavery. In his artist’s note, Hendrix explains that he took some of the typefaces from posters of that era.

My son and husband sat spellbound as I read them the story. After impersonating…

View original 317 more words

Nurse, Soldier, Spy – Perfect Picture Book Friday

tchistorygal:

The big Fresno County Civil War Reenactment is coming up October 18-19. This would be a great story for kids to read to get ready for it. :)

Originally posted on Jilanne Hoffmann:

Returning from my long absence with a brief splash of a review for:

Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 11.34.36 AM

I just read Nurse, Solder, Spy for a nonfiction picture book course and was fascinated by the story of a young Sarah Edmonds who impersonates a boy so she can enlist in the Union Army. Moss writes with the urgency of a war reporter, and Hendrix’s pen and ink illustrations with their blue and gold/orange/yellow acrylic washes suit the era well.

The varied and sometimes hand-drawn typography can be startling—in a good way. For example, when a Confederate soldier hollers:

“YOU THERE, BOY!

WHO DO YOU BELONG TO?

the question fills half the spread, bringing home to the reader the awful nature of slavery. In his artist’s note, Hendrix explains that he took some of the typefaces from posters of that era.

My son and husband sat spellbound as I read them the story. After impersonating…

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Weekly Travel Themes: Noise

Vince and I come to Avila Beach in Central California to escape the quiet tranquility of our country home in the hot Central Valley.

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At the Friday night street fair this band attracts a crowd.  Nobody could resist  “Sweet Home Alabama,” no matter what their age.

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People moved out of the way to let this couple dance.

Street fair6They didn’t inhibit others from doing something different.

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Vince noticed the mature gypsy queen.  I tried to get close to her, but people kept crowding in between us as they danced their way across the street.

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First one and then another, and my camera has a bit of a delay.  So I would get her all lined up , snap the picture, someone walked in front of me, and click, the shutter opened.   The results were interesting at times.

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Sometimes they were downright laughable, but it was so noisy that you couldn’t hear yourself laugh.

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I can’t hear her, can you?  I hope you enjoyed the music we heard at the Avila Street Fair last Friday night.  Tomorrow’s Friday.  Want to go?

To see more entries about noise or to see other themes visit Where’s my backpack?

WordPress Photo Challenge: Adventure

You probably heard your grandparents say, “Every day just waking up is an adventure.”  It’s true.  Each day is what we make it, and adventure arrives in ordinary packages.  So think about the adventures that await you as you get out of bed.

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Transportation allows us to seek adventure.  It might by boat, plane, or rail.  We may expect our adventure to start happening once we get where we are going.

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Sometimes just getting to the location is the adventure.  While I was driving in my car on the way to Oakland this weekend for an adventurous CCSS meeting,  I was not 5 minutes from my house when adventure popped up out of no where.   I was driving down a two lane state highway going 60 miles an hour (I know! I know!) when the car in front of me slowed, and moved to the right shoulder.   Staring me in the face, a car going the other direction raced towards me driving at least as fast as I was.  My heart beat faster than normal as I quickly pulled over as far as I could.  My tires skidded in the dirt.  Fortunately the car heading toward us must have finished sending his text, and realized the error of his way.  My adventure ended safely when the wanderer jerked back into his own lane !

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This driver and his horse brave the hazards on the road with little protection but this little red sign on the back of the wagon as they drive the windy back roads and narrow town streets of Pennsylvania.

 

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Sometimes the adventure lies in chance meetings.  Hal and I walked up a rustic street in New Castle, DE admiring the old houses, when out walked this gentleman.  I asked him if he owned the house.  As it turned out he owned half the town, and had lots to tell us.  It was a mini history lesson and a great adventure.

Don't bother me, Mom.  I'm dreaming of my next adventure."
Don’t bother me, Mom. I’m dreaming of my next adventure.”

Adventure is everywhere around you, but mostly it is in your attitude about life, and your ability to relay a sense of excitement.  Get up.  Find your adventure, and tell us about it .  Read about more adventures by clicking the icon below.

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WP Weekly Photo Challenge: Dialogue

Talkative Marsha struggling with dialogue?  In this case what I think the creator of this challenge wanted us to catch is a bit of fashion designing with our pictures rather than strict dialogue – odd things that sort of go together because of color or texture similarities or differences.  They just work.  I like fashion and decorating, so I wanted to pursue that angle.

First, I started with dialogue in a more literal sense.  Puppy Girl dialogued very clearly with Vince.  He worked on the computer, when clearly he could have chosen to pet her tummy.  So she grabs his hand and pulls.

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It’s endearing, but altogether annoying to him when he has an offer to submit.  Generally she wins.

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Next I considered animals dialoguing with each other, and establishing their pecking order.  The queen here stands alone not deigning to even look at her lowly subject.  No worries, the subject, like the jester, simply enjoys the ride, laughs at the queen behind her back, and moves on, untroubled by the queen’s weighty problems.

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When I took this next picture, I looked at the sculpture, then Mike walked up.  Back and forth I looked at one then the other until dizziness made me shout, “Stop Mike!  Is that statue YOU?  Let me photograph the two of you together.”   Mike obliged.   I think it was the cheeks that spoke, but maybe it was the mustache. What do you think?

Then I thought about art work I had seen in which many pictures placed together made a collage that spoke as one picture.  When I see them, I think, that would be easy.  How can you call that art?  But since I can’t draw very well, my pictures kept their mouths closed, uncommunicatively.  Then I remembered the grapes leaves I photographed last fall.  As I moused through them, they started speaking.  All at the same time, “Pick me, pick me. I want to go in the picture.” So I created a collage.

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Then another.

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Finally I remembered the Woodlake Botanical Gardens.  I missed the show this year, but last year I happened to walk around Bravo Lake on the day that all the roses decided to bloom their brightest blooms.  One of them said, “I am the beautiful one, take my picture.”  So I did.  Another  group of roses playing and giggling together attracted me.  The last rose said nothing.  She turned her face to the sun and spoke to God asking nothing more than to be a blessing to others. I thought she was the prettiest of all.

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If you enjoyed these take a gander at how other bloggers interpreted the challenge of dialogue.wordpress-20141