Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

Granted, Ben’s not much for posing, particularly when ghosts are involved.

There was another post planned, but it is Halloween, of course, and it seemed like a little more fun to just share our photos with you. Here in our town, trick-or-treating was last night due to a big football game tonight. Yes, that’s really weird…but this is central Ohio, where football reigns supreme. I remember Halloween being rescheduled a few times when we lived in West Virginia, too, so it does not seem as bizarre

Happy Halloween!

Buckley is wishing we’d spent money on catnip & toys instead of candy.

to me as it did to some folks on Twitter last night, who thought the tiny Supermans and princesses were a night early and that we’re just a super nice couple for giving candy out a night early. Regardless—it is sleeting outside my window as I type. That rescheduling has turned out to be fortuitous.

Many of my online friends and acquaintances truly adore Halloween, so it is really fun for me to watch all of you get so excited about it. My parents were hyper-fundamentalist when I was young, so I do not remember trick-or-treating, as I wasn’t allowed to do so past the age of maybe four or five. But my affection for the black cat-and-bat holiday is genuine; everyone likes to dress up, and be silly, and get free candy, yes?

As an adult, of course I’m far too old to go trick-or-treating, but

She can't believe we're about to give away 300 pieces of candy.

Lucy can’t believe we’re about to give away 300 pieces of candy.

have great fun decorating the house and then seeing all of the excited little ones in their marvellous costumes sweep up to our porch for candy. It’s so much fun! I really look forward to it, perhaps nearly as much as the crumb-crunchers do.

Of course, I don’t ever really “need” to “dress up”; as a “vintage girl”, my everyday look suffices pretty well unless I find myself with the time and inclination to come up with something more interesting. I do usually don something fun, though, this year choosing to wear a frock I made from fabric with tiny little critters on it. It is a cellphone photograph, but you can probably just see tiny alligators, tigers, giraffes, and hippos beneath my warm sweater! Ben is very carefully watching the next batch of kids heading up the sidewalk. 2014-10-30 18.03.21Now, for many years, Benedict has been living proof of the collie’s natural goodness and tolerance, his dignity being insulted with costumes. Continue reading

Squandering Time Online

Snuggle Time

All snuggled in for a recuperating nap!

(This post was originally scheduled for Friday, but I waited to put the images in…and then my browser imploded, and it took me two days to figure out what was going on. So here you go, albeit a few days later than intended! It is also apparently National Cat Day, hence the cat stuff.)

The other night, a girlfriend and I were discussing how different our lives are than those of our ancestors at the turn of the last century—from the 19th to the 20th. As big-time history nerds, this is a topic both of us have pondered quite a bit, especially since the advent of smartphones; as my husband has pointed out, it is pretty incredible to think that we wander around with the sum of human knowledge in our purses or pockets.

"You don't have any important calls to make, do you? Of course not."

“That sum of human knowledge stuff will have to wait until my nap is over, human.”

My friend was not so sure of this, but I was (of course!) happy to clarify—we have the capability of delving into the sum of all human knowledge via our phones. It is simply that not many choose to do so. There are a lot of distractions that quite easily pull us away from study and seeking after knowledge. There’s not an entire category of websites known as “time wasters” for nothing!

Today I’ll share a few of the sites I’ve been squandering time on instead of using that time to study with you.

Why? Because after spending ten-ish hours driving to see my doctor and back (last) Tuesday, I did indeed spend some of my recuperation time (for some that’s no big deal, but I tire pretty easily) simply meandering around online. Continue reading

Throw the book at her

Preferably Virgil or Shakespeare or something that will teach her to consider people other than herself.

It’s likely none of you need any admonition to avoid acting like the tremendously self-important Casey Nocket, because you’re smart and decent.

There are, believe it or not, people (including supermarket birdcage-liner Cosmo) defending this gal and her suspected vandalism of National Parks, including family members who refer to her as a “good girl“. Strangely, I find myself wondering how one can so badly screw up raising a female that she thinks finger-painting national monuments with difficult-to-remove paints is at all something one can rationalize doing, much less consider acceptable or defensible—to the point of signing your name to each ‘artwork’.

Don’t be a self-important screwball like Casey. If you want to paint, buy a canvas from the craft store. Heck…aren’t there walls in your home? That should work. Go bananas!

So far as Casey, she ought to be prosecuted, pay any applicable fines, and ordered to clean up these defacements on her own dime. Throw the book at her. Why?


Courtesy ModernHiker.com

 She’s so very proud of using acrylic instead of, say, chalk—this was an intentional effort to “make her mark”.

And remember, when partaking of the beauty of creation, the only mark you should leave is your footprint.

More at Calipidder (along with Modern Hiker, the first to break this stomach-turning story) PetaPixel & CTV News. There’s an NPS press release, a petition to the White House asking that she be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and reports that Nocket is talking to the NPS.


Monday Escape: America in Autumn

America in Autumn

Timing is everything, as we all know. Zipping down one of Ohio’s many country roads, I spotted this “Frank” doing its work in the fields. There wasn’t even time to hop out of the car—but I’m still very happy with this shot! A fine stroke of luck. All the shot is missing is a kindly-looking middle-aged farmer, proudly surveying the activity on his farm (he’s probably the fellow driving the harvester).America in Autumn

Also, random internet user tip….Have you been glaring angrily at your computer due to its not performing correctly? As in, you’re unable to post to Flickr, your blog, or even see letters on webpages?

Reinstall the browser. You’ll save yourself two full days of frustration and re-booting your computer thinking it is the one responsible for your problems.


Have a beautiful Monday, all!

Why Beauty Matters

Roger Scruton is one of the more brilliant men of our age, one who thinks deeply about our culture and its effects upon us. One of the things he often considers is the state of art, something I’ve publicly pondered here from time to time (because I can’t help it, and because if you don’t care, I don’t know about it!). Someone sent me a documentary featuring Mr. Scruton discussing the very same thing; he considers the art of the past and present, speaks to artists, and even looks at the physical world in which we live, something else that’s important to me. In short, we live in a world where the cult of ugliness reigns. Why is this? Is it a normal human response to dislike it? And what, if anything, can be done?

This is a marvellous documentary, as one should expect from one of the most thoughtful people alive today; to be honest, I found myself wishing it were longer!


Monday Escape: Handsome Ohio Valley Sewing Shop

Centenary House

One of many little independent places along America’s back roads, nothing could be learned about Centenary House Sewing Center online; moreover, as every seamstress knows, entering such places can be terribly dangerous to one’s budget, so I avoided walking in. Budgetary concerns never stop me from capturing a handsome building when there’s room to pull over, though, and despite being on the far end of the road’s mountain-enforced curve, I could not resist this sewing shop! There’s a close-up of the sewing machine-topped sign after the cut. Continue reading

Visit To A Cider Mill

Visit To The Cider Mill: Bittersweet

Just photos today, since my husband is going to be home tonight after being in Philly all week on business. I’ve missed him and will be so glad to see him home—and just to make it more fun, I’ve made little party hats for Ben and I to wear, and little paper bows for the cats, and a sign for the front door. If you don’t hear from me Monday, that only means the animals tried to kill me in my sleep. If you’ve seen our years of Halloween photos, you know it’s something I’ll bounce back from.

Anyhow, during a Sunday drive we happened by a little bitty cider mill, and decided to stop in for our first half-gallon of autumn’s finest nectar. I did not want to be pesty or obtrusive taking photos, so just grabbed a few snaps while we picked up our cider and a few other farm goods in the mill—but I thought you’d enjoy them anyhow.

Visit To The Cider Mill: Osage Orange


Continue reading