Friday, October 31, 2014

Along came a spider, most favorite and getting in the spirit

- It was a bit difficult to get this photo last Sunday morning, because the sun was in my eyes.  So I squinted and pointed the camera in the direction of the spider web, thinking it would be a good photo for Halloween.  I seem to be plagued by spiders - a few weeks ago a spider (maybe this one) built a similar web right at my front door.  When I left for work in the dark at 7am one morning, I walked into it and got some web in my hair.  :(  The spider beat a hasty retreat.  But I appreciate the beauty of this web and especially that the neighborhood spider spun it in an acceptable place (out of my path).   

- It's probably no secret that I love candy.  But I do try to limit it, except at Halloween and Christmas, and then all bets are off.  I knew when I bought that bag of Tootsie Pops, that it wouldn't make it until Halloween.  So I separated out my favorite red and orange flavors and took the brown and purple to work for the communal Halloween candy basket.  I've enjoyed the heck out of those red and orange ones. 

- That big number denotes the number of a printed material at work that we reference when we reprint something.  It's called a press sheet.  I noticed that the plant manager honored Halloween that time, when he signed off on the press sheet, by drawing a little goblin face.  :)

It's fun having a little early morning coffee and writing about Halloween.  I was thinking about Halloween when I was a little girl, and the first memory that always pops up was the year I was recovering from some illness and couldn't go trick or treating.  My mother tried to make it fun by letting me wear my costume and help her give out the candy to the kids that came to our door.  It was my first experience giving out candy with her - she LOVED doing that.  She always did.  I think about that every year when there are knocks on my door.  It's a lovely memory.  Happy Halloween and happy weekend, y'all!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Happy mail, painted for me and mystery plant

So many good things happened over the weekend, I don't even know where to start.  We'll stick to three though.  I helped out at a children's carnival on Saturday for the kids at my church's preschool, which was fun, and had a wedding to look forward to Saturday evening.  When I was getting ready for the wedding, there was a knock on the door.  Neighbor Mike had gotten a package in his mailbox meant for me, and he handed it over:

- It was my copy of String and Bones, written by my friend Kim.  Kim Talon's first book is available here, from Amazon.com, where I ordered it, and here, directly from the publisher.  And read a Goodreads review here, from someone who couldn't put it down.  I am savoring the thought of reading it this weekend, but may sneak in some reading before.  Happy mail!

- The wedding was the marriage of two friends, who have already been together for 25 years.  It was wonderful to be a part of this event with 140 carefully chosen guests.  Ronnie has always packed lunch for Stephen, which includes a boiled egg.  At some point, Ronnie began writing a message on the egg each day with a Sharpie.  Stephen always photographs them and has made coffee table books from the photos.  So for this event, a year in the planning, Stephen (a talented artist), painted 140 eggs for the 140 guests invited to the wedding.  He says each egg was painted with each wedding guest in mind.  An egg was included in a gift bag that could be picked up as we were leaving.  Stephen announced that you would likely not get the egg meant for you, but to remember that one was painted with you in mind.  Just before I left, he wanted to see the egg I got from the bag I had picked up.  When I lifted the lid of its box, he looked startled and said slowly, "This is the egg I painted for you."  And it has a butterfly and beautiful words.  Click to enlarge.

- When neighbor Rhonda's parents passed away (within a week of each other), she brought some plantings from their home in North Carolina, and transplanted them here at the condos.  My building is the happy recipient of all this beauty.  This planting started out small and I thought it was a weed.  She said, "No!  It's going to be beautiful, you'll see."   It grew and grew over the summer, but astoundingly, it bloomed on Saturday.  When I got home from the wedding around 11pm, I spotted this gorgeous blossom.  I still don't know what this gangly plant with big leaves and pink blossoms is, but it sure is beautiful and made for a peaceful Sunday morning photo shoot.  AND promises more blooms!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Good for your health, old neighborhood and making it happen

- There is a man who lives in my hometown of Milledgeville, Georgia, who was a classmate of my younger sister.  He is a local radio personality and the self-proclaimed "mayor" of the neighborhood my parents moved to when they were a very young married couple.  It's an old neighborhood.  I like driving through it when I visit (which has been way too long now.)

- This is the house I refer to above.  It's an insurance company now - and so small that it's hard to believe four people lived there (so long ago.)  My three-year-old memory has the yard to the right (fenced back then) as being much bigger.  We only lived there two years - my younger sister was on the way and we needed a much larger home.  But I like thinking of the cheerful man living somewhere within that neighborhood and love hearing about it on facebook.

- Every morning, he posts what he refers to as "Coffee Pot Parade" and this morning he ended it with this:

"It Is Said That When You Lose Hope That You Have Lost Everything! The Best Way To Deal With The Bad Things Is To Get Up And Do Something! Don't Wait For Good Things To Happen. Get Out There And Make Good Things Happen! There Is Still Much That Is Good In The World. Your Actions Can Help Fill The World With Hope. Remaining Positive And Continuing To Move Forward Is How We Combat The Bad Things! Get Out There And Live Each Second Without Hesitation! And Never Lose Hope That Good Things Are On The Way!" 

Couldn't have said it better myself.  :)  And he inspired someone else to post that quote by Voltaire at the top (which I have borrowed).  Love that he inspired this trip down memory lane, too.  Have a great weekend, my friends!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Celebration of heritage, tartans everywhere and family stories

- That's the flag of Scotland there, along with our American flag at the Stone Mountain Highland Games, held this past weekend, at which we celebrate our Scottish heritage.  This was a massed pipe and drum band at the opening ceremonies on Saturday and there were about three times more pipers and drummers than you can see here.

- This is my clan's tent, along with the back of Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus there, posing with an excited fan.  (Click to enlarge.)  Wish I had gotten the photo from the front.  The kilted Santa was handing out candy canes.  That's my Christmas tablecloth from home on the table with our clan tartan on top.

- Here we are - walking to get in line for the Clan March onto the parade field on Sunday, where awards were given for the best tent, and to the winners of the kilted race.

- The father and son in front of us (while listening to speeches and awards) are from different clans (the son to his right is adopted.)  I loved that McTavish the Elder hauls around his own ale mug on his belt.  And the Younger told me that his dad took him in at age 15, because he had no home.  There was clearly a lot of love between them. 

I love the pageantry, and seeing once-a-year friends.  The best story of the weekend:  a young woman came to our tent and told a remarkable story.  Eight years ago, someone at our tent had helped her sort out the derivation of her family birth name (she was adopted), which lead to her finding her birth father, who she had never met.  He lives in the Atlanta area, too, and they are close now.  Just lovely.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Monthly celebrations, help yourself and gaudy as I can be

- The operations manager at my workplace always posts these fun "Celebration" days.  Click to enlarge. 

- So note that October 14 was "National  Dessert Day" and someone was inspired to put a "Help Yourself" bag full of Salted Caramel Moon Pies out to share.  I wish I had taken a photo of that last pie I found inside the bag before I devoured it. 

- Today (October 17) is "Wear Something Gaudy Day" - so getting into the spirit, I am wearing these socks to work today.  They are about the gaudiest thing I own.  :)  And what makes this doubly a good thing was the laugh I got from photographing my left foot propped on the futon in my home office. 

Whatever you do today, just celebrate it.  Have a great weekend, my friends!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Pumpkin view, wandering no more and fall weather

- The weather in the metropolitan Atlanta area is still warmish.  I'm still clinging to my open toed slide on sandals.  But this scene in front of my favorite antiques shop just says fall to me, even with the remnants of July 4th in view. 

- Loved this sign on the door.  I asked about the wandering shop kitty Mr. Whiskers, who has been moved to the residence upstairs.  She says he is loving the recently built upstairs porch and was basking in the sun there on this morning.

- October is usually my favorite month, but I'm still waiting for some crisp weather.  It's raining here this morning and I'm mindful of the bad weather in other parts of the country yesterday and today, so no complaints here!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Reflections, good night moon! and all is calm

- Leaving my volunteer work on the evening of Tuesday, September 30.  It was a cloudy night with a little drizzle as I headed up 14th Street in Atlanta.  I was a little later than usual leaving, having paused in the volunteer work to wish my sister a happy birthday via cellphone.  So it was neat to see the reflection of one building on another (there in the center), and I snapped this "through the windshield" photo.

- This past Tuesday evening, October 7, I left volunteer work just before sunset and was in the same spot, when I spotted the vapory looking moon, hanging huge and white in the sky, framed between those buildings.  This turned comical, because I wanted to snap a photo of it with my phone when I stopped at the next light.  But it was not to be:  this NEVER happens - I got green light, another green light, and I kept going, missing my turn, determined to snap that photo.  And I got green lights all the way to Peachtree Street, where I was forced to turn left and lost the view.  So I gave up and had a head shaking laugh at hitting all the green lights.  That has never once happened before now, and then the sun was setting, so missed snapping that photo, and imagined the green lights laughing back at me.  :)

- So I asked Siri, "is there a super moon tonight?" and got a response that there was a "Blood Moon" on the morning of October 8 that would be best viewed in the 6:30am hour.  Hey - I'm up then, so I got my shower early, made coffee and took it and a bowl of cereal to the parking lot of the condos and watched the lunar eclipse before heading to work, with only one curious look from a neighbor driving past me leaving the complex.  It was a peaceful 25 minutes - watching the eclipse, listening to early morning sounds and watching the lights come on slowly around in the buildings.  One neighbor in the next building to the left curiously has Christmas lights in a bush beside his front door.  I've never noticed that before.  I just don't look that way when I'm leaving for work.  On this day, the moon didn't really glow blood red for me, but disappeared.  I got in my car and got on with the day.

Did someone mention coffee?  Time to go make some.  I hope you are well and happy this morning.  Have a lovely weekend!