blessings, childhood, connections, coping, courage, faith, family, friends, healing, honor, memories, moments, perseverance, photography, road trip, strangers become friends

Lisa…

I only met her once.  She had long ago married into the family that I loved in my childhood, and had recently fallen in love with again despite the 60+ year absence.  On Sunday I attended her memorial, her celebration of life.  And with four generations of family present it truly was a celebration.  Hearing everyone from her granddaughter to her sister speak of her love of reading and love of family, I saw that I would have enjoyed knowing her. But she was gone too soon.  She was a special part of this special family, and I saw that she will be missed.  And remembered.  It was a privilege to have been included in this day.

This celebration was held at her brother’s house, and when I arrived I was concentrating on seeing/meeting this large group of people that I had never met.  It was after I’d been there a few minutes that I began to notice the house itself. The low plaster and beamed ceiling as you walk in, and the seven (I think) fireplaces, one in every room. Turns out it was built in 1724, and as much of the original as possible is still present.  When necessary improvements had to be made, such as in the kitchen with it’s loft overlook, the original wood that had been taken out was used to build any new cabinets, etc.  It’s completely obvious that this house has been loved.  And it may not be an exaggeration to say that George Washington slept there.  His 2nd in command married the daughter of the home owner back in those old days, so it’s entirely possible.  Though someone mentioned that considering all the area houses making the claim that George Washington slept there it would seem George may have slept around a bit.  As we left we were talking about what a nice memorial it had been, which may be why I forgot to take the outside shots I had intended to take.

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'scene' along the way, adventure, backyard visitors, birds, family, life goes on, memories, moments, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, sky, sunset, travel

Leaving places behind…

When my daughter moved out of New York I remember thinking that I’d be sad not to drive there from MD in August and see the sugar maples beginning to turn color in anticipation of fall.  And I would miss the ride on 81 N through Hazleton, PA where I would see spectacular early morning color in the valley as I drove on the road above, skirting a mountain which meant that the scene just kept revealing itself as I drove.  That was amazing.

And now it’s my son’s house in NY that I won’t be visiting again after this, except for a quick high school graduation trip soon.  Then they’ll be moving back to FL, so it’s good news really.  But I was aware of this and came here wondering if the deer would visit, and if I would I see some pretty farmland to photograph.  So far so good…6_08_10NYbirdie1birdie2I saw a deer out back almost as soon as I got here on Friday night.  I was able to sneak out the sliding glass door onto the screened porch, and then out the screen door and onto the steep back steps for these shots.  The back yard is a steep slope, too steep to mow, so the birds, winter wrens according to Merlin’s best guess, were enjoying the weeds and singing up a storm out there.  The deer stood still, watching me, and then disappeared into the woods.  She was back again this morning and maybe I was sneakier because she went about her business.  As soon as I got a few shots I went back inside and left her to munch away on those white flowers.6_08_10NYdeer26_08_10NYdeer1

On the way to dinner last night I stopped for a quick iPhone shot of this farm.  I can’t wait to get out there today and see what else I see out there…afternoonfarm

connections, family, grandchildren, live and learn, memories, perseverance, photography, reality check, road trip, technology, travel, weather

My girls…

Two of them anyhow.  There are more, but they weren’t in York, PA for the very busy weekend we just had.  If it hadn’t kept on raining, and raining, and raining, I’d have gotten out for more pictures and possibly might not have invaded their privacy the way that I have today.  Of course I’m proud to show them off.  They are beautiful people inside and out.

And I’m happy to be in York PA just in time for the laptop to be warning me that my storage situation had reached the ‘critical’ storage.  You see my daughter has an Apple Store less than a half hour from her house, and the Genius there got my external hard drive tweaked enough to let me store my info and backups on that.  But he also warned me not to attempt to do this myself, wait for Apple Care to call me tonight and walk me through it.  It was a “Don’t-try-these-moves-at-home” sort of thing.  You don’t have to be a genius to follow their directions.

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family, grandchildren, Home Team, perseverance, photography, road trip, storms, technology, weather

Soccer in the rain…

I made sure to be visiting my daughter over this weekend so that I could be here for my grandson’s piano recital on Saturday.  That my granddaughter’s prom was also on Saturday was an extra added bonus I knew nothing about until I got here.  Then you have my grandson’s soccer game in the rain.  It was a must play game, so the fact that they were slogging around in the extremely wet grass, and the game went into overtime at the last possible second, made for a tough morning.  The ball was landing with a splash and just stopping, not the usual game they were used to.  And our team was supposed to be in a neighboring town for another game at noon, they would have had roughly an hour between games, but they started a little late and their game took longer than usual.  According to the parents I overheard that it was because the ref was calling non-existent fouls.  Then if they had won their noon game there would have been a final game at 4PM, but mercifully the fields were closed and those games were called before this game was over.  I watched mostly from the car since the wind was blowing the rain sideways and I couldn’t keep the camera 100% dry.  But I have to say I love this camera since it let me crop down shots that I took from a distance, zoomed all the way out. and the shots were hand-held, (photographers will know that that’s not easy and I’m giving the camera all the credit).  But once I got cold enough to be shivering I couldn’t keep the camera still and retreated back to the car.  This is my daughter’s weekend routine, but not always in the rain.  Sometimes it’s snow!  My grandson, #15, is not starring in all these pictures, some are the other team even, I just became obsessed with trying to capture the extreme conditions.  And it’s still raining today…205-12-19splishsplash05-12-19splishsplash305-12-19splishsplash405-12-19splishsplashfeature705-13-19Thomassoccer05-13-19Thomassoccer2The blurry looking picture is actually the rain.  And did I mention that after all that they lost the game?  I suppose it’s character building…

backyard visitors, birds, family, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip

Touchdown in York…

It was a trade off, the drive yesterday I mean.  Yes, I avoided the DC/Baltimore areas, which I would have had to negotiate when I was nearly at the end of my rope after 10+ hours of driving.  But driving through   GA, SC, NC, and even VA, on 95 are the easiest parts of the drive.  I usually feel as if I have a chunk of highway to myself and I’m content to drive and sing along with the radio.  For the most part an easy drive, though far from scenic, until you hit DC of course..  Route 77, the Blue Ridge Parkway, on the other hand was scenic enough to be distracting.  And frustrating since all that gorgeous scenery was just available as you glanced for a second and zoomed past at 70 mph.  Even if I’d had a chauffeur getting a photo would have been a challenge.  Though a chauffeur would have been nice, and a keeper would help too for that matter.  Just saying.  So I passed up all the state parks and wildlife refuge areas, the national historic sites, and simply amazing views of rolling green hills dotted with red barns.  Even the cows seemed especially scenic.  12 hours of driving to reach my goal, and at the 9th hour, when I was considering calling it a day, I vowed that I wouldn’t ever do this again.  I’ll travel with the camper, I told myself.  I’ll plan ahead enough to know which potentially scenic area I wanted to see before hand.  A few hours of driving and lots of hours to relax and enjoy the areas instead of driving past them on the highway.  If I had stopped at every potential place to visit yesterday it probably would have taken a month to get here.  Here, by the way, is my daughter’s house in York, PA, where I’m on her deck being teased by a flock of cardinals.  Or maybe it’s just one persistent cardinal.  It’s overcast, misting a little, so I’m content to sit here and listen to the cardinals, and they’re little friends too, and, of course, the traffic noises.  Life is just one big photo op, or so it seems to me…05-08-19femalecardinal05-08-19goldfinch05-08-19robin05-08-19robin205-08-19threebirds05-08-19twobirds05-08-cardinalonthewireAnd Lucy!05-08-19Lucy2

family, kids, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, road trip, silliness, simple things, travel

The adventure begins…

First stop was with my cousin in Charleston, an easy 7 hour drive from home.  It was foggy for the first few hours, I may have to rethink leaving at 4 AM because those hours were stressful.  But I got there early with lots of time to visit, and take in the wild life in the area.  And there was plenty of wildlife!05-07-19Maireadclose05-07-19maireadclose2

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05-07-19partyAnd an 11 and 4 year olds birthday party.  What’s a visit without a little cake and ice cream?  Such a fun day!