childhood, connections, family, home, Home Team, Loyalty, neighbors, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

Super Bowl Sunday…

I’ve raved about how much I loved my Florida neighbors often enough.  Well, in honor of all our years in Baltimore they gave me this sweatshirt and scarf as a going away present as I headed north to Patriot Nation!  Did they intend for me to wear it on Super Bowl Sunday I wonder?  Did they mean to throw me to the wolves? I got brave and I did wear it on Sunday morning, to breakfast with two of my cousins.  I wasn’t greeted by a crowd of Patriot fans as I walked into the restaurant, which is what I had hoped.  I thought it would be fun to hear(and write about) whatever reaction I got from strangers, but we were early and they were the only people who happened to be there as I entered.  One cousin took great exception to my choice of sweatshirt since he says he hates the Ravens.  The other one suggested that I turn it inside out.  The two waitresses just looked at me skeptically, but served me coffee anyhow.  It was, after all, Patriot Nation, and the specials board reflected as much.  So I ordered the Patriot pancakes that they were so happy to recommend, and I guess they decided I wasn’t all bad.  As I crossed the parking lot to leave I did get a thumbs up from a guy walking past.  He said that the Ravens were his second favorite team.  I didn’t expect that.

I have a picture of my two ‘kids’, who were old enough to anticipate the consequences at the time, but they were taking advantage of an opportunity to get together while my son was visiting PA.  I believe there was a play-off game between the Steelers and the Ravens that weekend, and so of course they were watching in a sports bar in Pittsburgh.  My daughter thoughtfully brought enough Ravens’ gear for the both of them to wear.  I think of  Steelers fans as being on the rabid side, possibly because of my Pittsburgh raised DIL, who I’m surprised allowed herself to be seen with them that night.  If there were any issues beyond good natured teasing they didn’t tell me about it.  Probably for the best.

Well, I think of Patriots fans as pretty darned rabid too.  And I’ve already heard a lot of comments about ‘the haters’, and how unfair it is that everybody doesn’t love the team.  And Tom Brady?  Well, he should be sainted, according to them.  They may think that they are misunderstood but I have no sympathy for them, because they ought to try being a Ravens fan.  Now that’s a team that people seem to love to hate.  Being a sports fan in Baltimore isn’t for the feint of heart.  My mother insisted to her dying day that they were a bunch of murderers.  But then she was a Patriots fan so her judgment is questionable…

IMG_6926IMG_6925Lots of fruit in those Patriot pancakes; blueberries, bananas, and strawberries.  Just wondering  what that was all about.

4418_98652037136_6502765_n

Shh, don’t tell them I used the picture…

a second look, blessings, connections, death, family, memories, on closer examination, perseverance, photography

My Aunt Millie…

I’m not sure that anyone in my life has ever astounded me as consistently as my Aunt Millie did.  As a very young girl I lived upstairs from my aunt’s ever expanding family.  At that time I was aware of my aunt as a shadowy figure in the background, always tending a baby.  In fairness to her I remember no parents at all from those days, I only remember the fun we kids were having.  We moved away from that neighborhood, and then I got married and left my hometown, never to live in New England again.  Time passed and the 70s and 80s happened, and I heard that my Aunt Millie had gone back to college and was now a teacher.  Astounding.  I heard about their family summers spent camping, or on ski trips, plus cross-country RV trips, and I found myself amazed again and again.  By now I lived in MD and was happy to have my aunt and uncle as visitors as they traveled here and there.  That’s when Aunt Millie really came out of the shadows to me.  It was then that I really saw her, strong and opinionated (as the Nelsons tend to be), and  it seemed as if I met her for the first time.  I was lucky to have had a chance to spend time with her and Uncle Bob in the last 15 or so years.  If circumstances had been different I might never have really gotten to know her at all.  I’m glad I did.  She died yesterday at 93, and she will be missed.

I read a blog post this morning and the blogger described her lifelong friend as having relocated from her failing body into much better accommodations.  That just says it all…

a second look, connections, family, gardens, live and learn, memories, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

Armstrong-Kelly Park…

Armstrong-Kelly Park isn’t the easiest place to find.  The GPS couldn’t find it even when I entered it’s actual street address into it.  I gave up on it the first time I tried to go there, but my sister directed me to it yesterday.  We hoped for a nice picture of the holly tree that is planted there in honor of my brother-in-law, but we’ll come back in the spring to try that again.

My brother-in-law wasn’t a big man.  He was small, actually.  He was about my height and I out-weighed him all the years I knew him.  He.was quiet. Worked all day and came home, had a beer and watched TV.  There was no inkling of what a big man he actually was until he died.  That’s when the crew from Bartlett Tree Experts took over the planning of his funeral, and the stories they told of his expertise at his job astounded all of us I think.  They said that there was probably not a street on Cape Cod that hadn’t benefitted from his hard work.  The story I remember best was about a homeowner who wanted a gigantic boulder moved from one side of his lawn to another.  A Bartlett truck was on the scene, and the crew of workers were standing there trying to decide how they were going to accomplish this task when Neil pulled up.  He got his winches and pulleys out of his truck and got to work.  He had the boulder moved in no time flat, loaded up his tools and left the rest of the crew standing there scratching their heads.  No, he wasn’t a big man, but he had a big impact on his little piece of the world.

This holly tree was planted to honor Neil for his 50 years of hard work for Barlett.  He trained a lot of arborists in his day also, so his influence is still sending ripples out into nature.  Such a quiet little man, who left a legacy behind him.

1-4-19andersonkellyholly

1-4-19andersonkellypark21-4-19andersonkellypark1-4-19plaque

'scene' along the way, adventure, blessings, connections, courage, family, finding my way, friends, leap of faith, life, life goes on, memories, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

New Year’s Eve…

New Year’s Eve.  I’ve mostly ignored it, the hoopla and poopla I mean.  Never traveled or celebrated, or even considered it a holiday really.  I congratulated myself on being sensible, and not being out on the road and chancing the elements, or the other drivers.  And I never gave a lot of thought as to what the new year actually might have in store.  Never once considered the kinds of changes that 2014 had in store for me, even for those few years afterwards.  But this year is different.  For better or worse I’ve set a path for myself that may be unpredictable, but I know I can handle the bumps in the road.  And I’m looking forward to lots of happy times.  Now that the holidays are behind us I’m planning to light up my new year with the faces of friends that I haven’t seen in a long while.  And some that I have seen but will always need to see again.  It’s gonna be a very good year…12-29wareham.jpg

'scene' along the way, blessings, family, finding my way, friends, photography, road trip, travel

Christmas, the day after…

I hate to admit this, but I remember thinking to myself, and in my memory I hear myself saying this in a very pouty voice, that now I had to wait 364 more days until Christmas would come again.  What a brat, and I recognized it at the time which is why I remember having that thought, and have always been ashamed of that particular memory.  What would have surprised me at the time, I think, is how the littlest things can make me so very happy these days.  People make me happy these days.  It’s a good feeling, like Christmas every day…12-26westyarmouth212-26westyarmouth312-26westyarmouth512-26westyarmouth612-26macroI found a little place to view the water in West Yarmouth today, and a great sale at the LL Bean store.  Now to get my little Lumix camera back to the proper settings.  It takes great pictures, like this holly, but somehow I have it out of whack.  It’s one of the things I was going to take care off after I retired, so what am I waiting for…

blessings, family, friends, nature, on closer examination, photography, simple things, travel, weather

Merry Christmas…

I really have been dreaming of a white Christmas, and I was greeted with one this morning, with more snow expected later on.  This trip has me reconnecting with friends and relatives that I haven’t seen in years, and that it’s happening at Christmas is a happy coincidence.  I hope everyone’s heart is as full as mine is right now.  I wish all the blessings of Christmas for each one of you.

And a photo or two for my nature photography friends back ‘home’.  Home being the name for where ever I’m not I guess…12-Christmasfrostedmoss12-Christmas12-Christmas212-Christmas3

Note to self, take the tripod out with you for macro photography…