Merry Christmas!

Gerard van Honthorst 001

The Adoration of the Shepherds, Gerard van Honthorst [Public domain], 1622. via Wikimedia Commons

Yes, today is Christmas Eve, but we all know many people are already zipping from one Christmas gathering to another. Let us begin the joyful moments early! (Besides, I have people to cook for.)

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
    and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

First of all, I have created a little gift-ette for you—a playlist of some of my favourite Christmas songs.

I hope you enjoy them!

And of course, everyone seems to love seeing Ben for Christmas…

Santa's napping. For disturbing him, you've been placed on the naughty list. Congratulations.

Well, we need to get by his “secretary” first! Buckley doesn’t seem to keen on letting us disturb his buddy, but…

Merry Christmas!

Poor Ben. The festivities have not even begun, yet he’s already tired!  Continue reading

Monday Escape: How about some snow?

First Snow

As mentioned recently, the weather here in Ohio has been quite grim despite the rapid approach of Christmas. Until yesterday, when the sunlight burst through in all of its long-desired glory, we’d had only two really sunny days since a couple of days after Thanksgiving! If you don’t believe me, here’s a satellite look from the NWS:

You remember the warm, colourful cheer of my summer garden?

Pollinator Garden

Ahhh. Well, here it is late Friday morning, being inspected by Ben.

Sunless Days

(Yes, yes, the trellis needs to be placed inside the shed, I know…)

 

Dark. Isn’t it *dark*? In the middle of the day! Continue reading

Staying Happy in the Passenger Seat and at the Dinner Table

Dawes Arboretum: Cabin Path

This is actually a state park, but it’s also one of the only snowy road photos I have. Bonus: Not one bit of traffic!

 

All week long I’ve been hearing about the high numbers of Americans expected to travel for Christmas (despite the winter storm being predicted—so far as that goes, most of us will believe it when we see it!). Where, oh where, are the transporters we were promised so long ago? Surely someone is working on them, but in the meantime, it seems the majority of America’s Christmas travellers will be hopping into the car and, most likely, hitting the interstate.

As you probably expect, my suggestion to those of you about to travel for Christmas is to avoid the interstate, which everyone will admit is duller than dirt—particularly for passengers (at least the driver will be occupied with the driving). Driving along old state highways and US routes usually doesn’t take much longer than the interstate, and they’re certainly more engaging than the interstate. Continue reading

Fantasyland

Gem

Oh, to stumble over (or better yet, be invited to) a stable of old cars in this state!

The video is a glimpse at sixty untouched old cars, having long been stored away in the West of France. Come February 6, they’ll be auctioned off at the Retromobile Salon in Paris. I love photographing classic cars, period, but cars such as these in an environment such as this…oh, what a dream! Yours truly could probably spend two full days shooting these cars (who couldn’t?), lovingly capturing every detail.

Wink and a smile to the wonderful fellows at The Old Motor—who also have some knockout stills of these old beauties (from Remi Dargegen) for you to ogle.

Monday Escape: Reflection

Pond Tree: West

Last week, I told a lie. More autumn.

Pond Tree: East

Besides, contrary to popular belief and media propaganda, winter does not look like a snow-covered fairytale in the Midwest. Many of my Southern and Western friends seem to think winter looks like this, 24-7:

A truly charming, enchanted winter wonderland!

*

Really, despite the discomfort and danger snow involves…if only (because snow, truly, is pretty, at least away from the roads)! The truth must be explained. Turn away if you prefer to cling to your illusions about winter, my dear.

Continue reading