Last week we went to a fair. I’m cynical about fairs having spent a large portion of my life on fairgrounds. I hate fair food. (Seriously, live on it for a week at a time and come back and tell me if you still crave it.)
But, the husband likes a fair and Z wants to ride rides. This led to us wandering around looking at animals while Z complained about how much she hates stupid animals. Good times. I think all the animals that only have a few days left to live are absolutely depressing. I petted a pig for a while and apologized for humans being barbaric. He’s been murdered by now.
There were horses and they get to survive a fair.
These are the nicest stalls I’ve ever seen on a fairgrounds.
Dairy cows at fairs are false advertising. I worked on dairy cows. They are never this clean.
This guy makes his living by letting kids ride him and posing for pictures.
On Thursday Freckles and I went on a photowalk around the neighborhood. Note to self, don’t take Freckles on photowalks because most of your pictures will turn out blurry from an impatient dog pulling on you.
I feel like I haven’t written anything recently because our lives have been full of upheaval real and imagined.
The husband was a finalist for a job in another state. For quite a while it looked like we would be moving. That caused mental stress. We’d have to put the house on the market, move to an area I like but that is at least twice as expensive as here without twice the pay ( I believe I used the term “live in squalor” repeatedly), maybe start a branch of my current clinic, and on and on. That ended up falling through right about the time I was resigned to the fact and was starting to look forward to it.
We went on vacation. In February I realized that we were going to need a mental break about May. My job gets insane right about now so it gave us something to look forward to. I was right. We went to Destin Florida to lay on the beach and do nothing.
The view from our hotel
It is hard work doing nothing. We’d sleep 10 hours and then go to the beach for a while and then eat and wonder why we were so tired.
My favorite beach was at Camp Helen State Park outside Panama City Beach. You have to walk a 1 km sand path to get to the beach. You have to really want to get there.
This guy flew in which is totally cheating.
This water did not contain wildlife who wanted to sample us.
The husband did have a shark check him out at another beach. He had his back to it and I yelled at him to come towards me. Being male, he said, “What?” and turned to see what I was looking at. Then he got a move on. It was about 4-5 feet long. Wouldn’t have eaten all of him. The people near us with the little kids decided that they were appetizer-sized though and took them out of the water.
We did get to see a baby dolphin too. It was so cute. It was hunting with its family off the pier in Destin.
We don’t have TV here. We don’t usually watch TV on vacation either but we did watch a lot of HGTV this time. At the end of the week I confessed that it makes me want to knock walls out of our house. He told me to draw a plan since he was under the influence too. I did. He said if we were going to do all that then we might as well just move. Now we are meeting with a realtor tonight. Displaced energy now that we aren’t moving states, anyone?
We had discussed a fall trip to France but it was on hold until we knew if we were moving. Now that we aren’t I have it all booked. We are doing a week in Nice in October! I’m so excited. Lots of art and day trips to Monaco and Italy on top of views of the sea.
One benefit of living here is that there is a museum across the road. Actually it is a big estate turned into a museum that has events. Today I walked over to the juried arts and crafts show.
I’m a cheap person. I’m also pretty much a minimalist. I can’t stand having a bunch of decorations or knickknacks. I like to go to these things and look. This is the kind of show that makes the voices in my brain say things like, “That’s a nice lamp. I wonder how much it… Wow. It better generate all its own electricity.”
There were also rows of booths featuring things I’m not allowed to eat right now.
That didn’t bother me too much. I was sad about all the places selling dips and sauces that had samples out. Everything had to be sampled with bread or pretzels so it was right out. I love sampling at those booths! But I went prepared. I had a bottle of water in my purse and two Lara Bars if needed. Missing this was a little sad though –
I knew better than to even look at the cafe. I do like hanging out in the old stables though. My horses would have thought they had died and gone to heaven if they had housing like this.
I ended up buying 2 catnip filled toys and some bath smelly stuff. So far the toys are a hit.
She is killing hers and Riley (who never gets on the counters) got on the counter and ripped open the package to get the other one out.
I hate fireworks shows so I took the time to play with my camera. These were taken on a tripod with a 1-2 second shutter time. The first set were at a fairgrounds. We were parked about 1 mile away.
After that show we went home for the husband and the father’s Fourth of July Fireworks Extravaganza. It has become a tradition for them to blow things up in ever increasing numbers each year. I describe it as a High Holy Day in my family. In fact, when my mother suggested that maybe they didn’t have to do it because there was going to be a professional show nearby, the husband started yelling that she was a blasphemer.
This was a more dangerous photo shoot. I almost got hit by cardboard tubes. Anything for art!
Freckles was in the house for these. I had given her some benedryl but it didn’t slow her down. Fireworks don’t seem to bother her at all though. I went in the house when they were done setting these off. She was in the bedroom closest to the very loud noises and seemed mostly pissed off that she wasn’t allowed outside with all the people and excitement.
I’ve been missing in action for the last week because we had a last minute visit from my brother-in-law. He comes up from down south when he doesn’t have enough work to do there and fixes up things at our house.
With a few days notice I had to completely empty out the sewing room.
It all moved across the hall into (and onto) the gym.
Now the nasty dirty stained thread-collecting carpet is gone and I have new wood laminate that can be swept up with a broom.
Freckles says it isn’t as comfy so she’ll have to use the dog bed that she’s rejected since we got her.
Good thing she has white on her or she’d be totally camouflaged.
Project number two was adding a breakfast bar to the kitchen to give us more counter space as Powder so ably demonstrates.
He found tile to match the backsplash in the kitchen. Anything in that picture with tile on a horizontal surface is brand new from scratch.
He also installed a new people door from the garage to the outside. I hate this door right now. It will feature prominently on tomorrow’s workout post so stay tuned for the story of my epic fail with the new door.
Ugh, boring and ugly. We both hate the exterior. Our neighbors aren’t in love with it either. Since we’ve been doing a lot of work like new windows and a roof they keep dropping, “Have you thought about painting it a new color?” into conversation.
The problem is choosing colors. I haven’t seen many mock Tudors painted anything other than yellow/cream and brown. Even Google isn’t much help.
Here’s a mock up of some suggested paint combinations. Excuse the really fast Photoshopping.
What do you think? I won’t tell you whose color ideas are whose – although mine is obviously the better one! Do you have any other color ideas to try?
On my trip to Las Vegas I was going to have one free day at the end of the trip. I hadn’t decided what to do. I didn’t rent a car so I wasn’t mobile but I wanted to get away from the Strip. I’ve enjoyed the Valley of Fire near Vegas before. Once I got there I saw an ad and decided to take a Pink Jeep Tour to Zion National Park in Utah.
Unfortunately, I was the only person who thought that was a good idea so my trip got canceled. They offered me a spot on a tour going to the West Rim of the Grand Canyon. I’ve been to the South Rim before so I wasn’t really wanting to go back to the Canyon but I decided to go.
We stopped at Hoover Dam on the way. The last time I was here they were building the bridge in the background that bypasses the dam. In fact there was a crane accident that day that backed up traffic for a while.
Lake Mead is low. My father in law is a conspiracy buff who was telling the husband not too long ago about the Chinese stealing all the water from Lake Mead so this picture is for him.
We passed a Joshua Tree forest on the way. There are only two in the world.
Since I wasn’t planning on going sightseeing, I only had a crappy camera with me. Actually, I need to buy a new good camera since mine died. I figure I have until June when my next big trip is to get one.
I love climbing up on precarious perches and getting my picture taken. It is genetic. My father does it too. The husband hates it when I do this. He says that he’s the one that is going to have to tell my mother that I fell to my death. I was thrilled when the tour guide told me to climb down in this fissure for a picture. The end result doesn’t look at stupid as it truly was. It looks like I’m leaning on the rock behind my left shoulder. Actually, there is a gap with a 4000 ft drop between me and the rock.
There was a woman on the tour who was afraid of heights. She was horrified when her husband did this. It made me feel like I was with my husband to listen to her fuss.
Later there were donkeys. Look he wants me to pet him!
Wait, tourist-human has no food at all? @#$%^ you, then!
This donkey sized me up as foodless from a distance.
I’m playing along with ProjectLife365. They give a word each day to inspire a photo. You are supposed to do one every day but I’m looking at the words for the week and taking pictures that fit as they come.
Day 1 Resolution
I don’t have any New Year’s Resolution but Powder looks very resolute in her determination not to be moved out of the middle of the puzzle.
Day 2 You_Today
Day 3 Optimistic
Is there anything more optimistic than a dog wanting a treat?
I have a conflicted relationship with Photoshop. I have a gut feeling that photographs should be “real”. That is, they should accurately show what was there. I don’t like pictures that use a lot of editing to change reality.
But, a lot of pictures I take turn out a lot flatter than the reality that I was trying to capture. So I’m trying to warm up to doing more postproduction work to make better pictures. Right now I’m just using my little point and shoot camera since my better one died. One of the limitations of this camera is that it doesn’t have a viewfinder. When it is bright out I can’t see the image on the screen on the back of the camera so I end up taking a lot of “blind” photos. This is one of them from the train window yesterday.
I played around with it today just to practice. I cropped out the spots on the right. Lightened the highlights and darkened the shadows. Brightened it up.
I have been dying to go to the Holy Land Experience every time I’ve been in Orlando. You can see if from the road and it is totally over the top. I can’t pass up a trashy, tacky Christian tourist trap. See The Creation Museum visit.
This will be a long post with lots of pictures. If you just want the summary here it is:
The Holy Land was a magical place that was created for Jesus to live in. He had about 20 friends who never met a sequin or glitter that they didn’t love. When Jesus moved on the Holy Land ceased to exist.
I drove in and was immediately accosted by police. I thought this was going to be an authentic checkpoint experience but I was wrong. They just wanted to tell me where to park. When I got out of the car I kept wishing that I had a head scarf so I could innocently ask where the Muslim exhibits were.
Walking to the ticket booth I saw this:
I figured I was just being a whiny horse person to question why a Holy Land horse was wearing a western saddle and wearing it quite improperly. Then I went around a bend and the world went loopy.
It has been a hard few days to be a kitty at my house.
First, we got a new bed. Powder used the footboard of the old bed as a launching spot to jump to the top of the armoire where she eats and sleeps. We kept this in mind when ordering the bed. We said we wanted the same thing we have just bigger.
We didn’t get it. The footboard is a foot lower. Add to that the fact that instead of being a substantial curved piece it now is thin and comes to a point. And the bed is longer and so is closer to the armoire. It all adds up to Powder not being able to make the jump from that angle when starting at a lower height.
I’ve tried to feel bad for her but I finally told her that it was time to come back into the land of the living. She used to lounge all over the house pre-Freckles. She is just going to have to deal.
Right now she is pouting in the basement.
When I came home from work last night I saw Powder and Riley sharing a window sill. I tried to get a picture but they moved as soon as they were spotted. I was thinking, “Oh, so cute!” Obviously my mind was addled since the two of them voluntarily together is one of the signs of the Apocalypse and I missed it.
I walked upstairs and saw Riley jumping. Then I realized he wasn’t just randomly jumping up and down but was in fact walking without using his left front leg. A closer look showed a paw twice the size of the other. I don’t have any cat meds at home since they’ve always been healthy little buggers. So I bundled him up in a carrier (oh, the horrors!) and drove a half hour back to work to take an x-ray and get medicine.
Nothing is broken but it is still swollen and he can’t walk on it. I can’t find any wounds but he is hard to examine since he rolls over and wants to play when I look at it. He’s on antibiotics and pain meds in case he’s cooking an abscess.
It doesn’t show up as well on the photo as it does when he is carrying it around here. It doesn’t seem to bother him much since I just had to lay down the law that he is “NOT GOING OUTSIDE WHEN YOU DON’T HAVE USE OF ALL YOUR LIMBS!!!!”
If he isn’t better by tomorrow he’s going back in the carrier to get held down and shaved at work looking for wounds. Yes, that is a threat.
She’s a Senegal Parrot. She’s somewhere under 10 years old. That’s as specific as they know. She seems very sweet. So far she’s just hanging out in the cage to get used to her new home. She has her favorite swing in there in order to feel at home.
She just sat there for a while but now she’s gotten off the swing to get a drink. She’s groomed some and she took a bite of cucumber from me. She hasn’t eaten anything else yet though.
Riley is ignoring her for now. He’s ignoring her a little too much. I don’t trust it. I’d feel better if he tried to climb up on the cage and I had a good yell at him. That’s strange, I know but this passive acceptance of a new bird isn’t like him.