Monday, April 29, 2013

farmer's market saturday

Now that Spring has arrived, farmer's markets in our area are open for business! Produce offerings are ever-changing as the growing season progresses and it's a wonderful weekly gathering for foodies, craftspeople, and occasionally, musicians will join in to add to the atmosphere too. There's something special about being able to buy fruits and veggies within 24 hours of when they've been harvested and talking directly to the farmer that grew them for you to enjoy. The jams, jellies and baked goods are a mouthwatering treat too!

Need flowers for your garden or your table?

These gatherings are a terrific community resource. There are always so many interesting people to talk to and so many photo opportunities.... this little girl, who was determined to hang onto her babydoll and dance with her green onions too. What a cutie!

Friday, April 26, 2013


Believe in the decisions you’ve made. Believe you can overcome a painful past and that it doesn’t have to define who you are today. Believe in yourself when you take a creative risk. Believe you can make it through those days when your mind has a mind of its own. Believe you can take the high road and treat other people nicely, regardless of how they treat you, but that it’s ok to define boundaries with people that bring you down rather than supporting the best of who you are. Believe you can listen to and lead with your heart, your intuition. Believe that you always have options and can create the life you want. Believe that today is a new day and something wonderful is waiting for you. Believe in yourself.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

corner view: bridges and backroads

Corner View is a weekly appointment - each Wednesday - created by Jane and curated by Francesca, where bloggers from all corners of the world share their view on a pre-arranged theme. This week’s theme is “bridges and backroads” and comes from Joanne .

Happily, I live in a part of the country where backroads are plentiful  ...
and there are always interesting things to see. I was the lucky passenger and got to take some of these photos from our moving car as we traveled.

Springtime in the South means wisteria and it's everywhere, climbing on every tree and utility pole it can reach. This time of year, at every turn, you'll see it along the roadside.
And if you're very lucky you might spy something pretty old and pretty special. I'll have to do a little research and find out more about this chapel!
I didn't come upon any bridges this day, but in keeping with the theme for this week I'll offer up two of my favorites. This is an old Erie Lackawanna Railroad bridge in my hometown (photo taken by a HS classmate of mine and shared). The bridge is on the books for a restoration but she's still beautiful to me.
And though it's not on a backroad, this amazing bridge is in one of our favorite places: Charleston, SC. An engineering marvel! I loved being able to take photos of it from two different view, though the one I took from our moving car while on it (last photo) was dizzying!

Monday, April 22, 2013

earth day 2013

Until a man duplicates a blade of grass, Nature can laugh at his so-called scientific knowledge. Remedies from chemicals will never stand in favorable comparison with the products of nature, the living cell of a plant, the final result of the rays of the sun, the mother of all life. -  Thomas Alva Edison

Friday, April 19, 2013

no positive action is too small

What a week it’s been for us all. Lives have been changed forever because of someone’s sick actions in Boston. I’m appalled that the press published some of the gruesome photos that were put out there, proving again that they are lacking a human filter or any kind of true empathy.  And shame on the US Senate for failing all of us on gun safety reform, following on the heels of some dubious governmental decisions directly affecting the health of our country’s food systems.  

It seems that more and more, we are being faced with challenges as corporate and personal greed rear their ugly heads, ethical/spiritual/religious beliefs collide, and social/economic issues scream louder for our attention. It would be easy to live in fear, blame and doubt, but instead, let’s refuse to give in to that darkness. Let’s focus our attention and energies on what we can do to raise the level of awareness in our communities, to bring about peaceful, cooperative changes and do whatever we can do to encourage responsible, compassionate actions within ourselves, our families and the world around us. No positive action is too small.

What am I going to do? I’m saying thanks to the first responders in Boston and to the runners and volunteers who leapt into action because help was needed. I’m going to be a friend to someone that has been sucked into the fear.  I’m going to point out the goodness and beauty in the world whenever I can.  I’m going to look for little random acts of kindness. I’m going to continue to bring/support art and music in my community. I’m going to support local businesses and farmer’s markets. I’m going to support like-minded people and activities. And I’m going to continue to be a compassionate, empathetic advocate, despite the roadblocks thrown my way. What are you going to do?  peace

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

corner view: stunning architecture

Corner View is a weekly appointment - each Wednesday - created by Jane and curated by Francesca, where bloggers from all corners of the world share their view on a pre-arranged theme. This week’s theme is “stunning architecture” and comes from Nadine.

I was very excited about this week's corner view challenge because one of my favorite things to do is to wander and explore new places, particularly towns with amazing architecture, wonderful food options, an amazing cultural arts scene and great places of interest. Historic downtown Durham was the perfect place to be last weekend. It was a beautiful, sunny day and I had camera in hand. The town leaders long ago decided that they needed to preserve their treasures so public/private groups worked together to save many of the old buildings rather than tear them down, as often happens in many places.

 Old tobacco campuses are now transformed into awesome, thriving cultural centers ...

and the old occasionally intersects with the more modern buildings.

Monday, April 15, 2013

strolling and exploring downtown durham

We went to an art walk/gallery hop this weekend and I think I enjoyed photographing the amazing architecture and street art as much as I did seeing the "official" art that was on display. Historic downtown Durham is filled with the remnants of old tobacco campuses and other great old structures and community leaders have thought it important to save their historical treasures rather than tear them down. The result is a thriving, creative, innovative community. 

We walked all over downtown that afternoon and came upon wonderful old murals such as these two: 

and at one point we rounded a corner and found this new wall mural. It reads: "True Community is based upon equality, mutuality, and reciprocity. It affirms the richness of individual diversity as well as the common human ties that bind us together." What a wonderful message for every community! 

We walked up close and I was awed by the number of colors and swirling patterns that make up this gentleman's face. Enlarge the photo below to see it for yourself!  

Towards the end of our day we walked along the tracks after a train blew by and got to see the backs of some of the old buildings, not visible streetside. I think that the old painted store signs are equally wonderful and I'm glad that some still survive. Although you can see that the building has been re-muddled at some point in it's life, there still is a lot of character. 

And look at the signage on this old grocery! On the ground floor, again somewhat re-muddled, you can still see the wide open entranceway for the horse & wagon to come through to deliver goods. I don't know what Lemon Kola was, but at 5 cents I bet it was a cool, tasty treat on a steamy southern summer day!

Friday, April 12, 2013

the difference between a flower and a weed ...

It’s just a judgment that we make but both can be quite beautiful.

We can create a better life, a better world; we can be better people by being less judgmental, less critical, less controlling and more accepting. Do away with the “shoulds and oughts” in your life. Take those words from your vocabulary and you’re going to be amazed at the change you feel. Treat other people, and all life for that matter, the way you want to be treated, despite how they treat us in return. Be more accepting of people that may look, think or behave differently than you do. Does this mean you allow someone to use and abuse you? Absolutely not. As an adult, you get to choose who or what situation you allow into your life. Follow your heart. They’re all flowers!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

corner view: shadow

Corner View is a weekly appointment - each Wednesday - created by Jane and curated by Francesca, where bloggers from all corners of the world share their view on a pre-arranged theme. This week’s theme is “shadow.”

As a kid I used to create shadow puppet images on the wall next to my bed.  Much as I tried, my small hands couldn’t possibly make all the fantastic creations that I saw in the shadow puppet book my grandparents gave me, but it was great fun seeing what I could come up with. As an adult with camera in hand,  I still look for interesting ways that light will hit an object and create a really interesting visual. Like how this piece of ironwork becomes even more interesting when the afternoon sun hits it,

 or how the first spring flower seems even more special on the edge of this driveway,
or how an evening walk is captured in the road and we become comic caricatures of ourselves. After days of rain, how nice it was to get outside!
Then there’s the way the sun casts a shadow over a cat, luxuriating in the warmth.
Customers often complain about the need for window shades in our local coffee shop, but yesterday it was the perfect setting for this fun photo.
I’ve yet to capture a moon shadow, like in the Cat Stevens song– perhaps one day though!

Monday, April 8, 2013

start today

I’m not telling you it’s gonna be easy. What I’m saying is that everything you want is on the other side of your fear and boy oh boy, is it going to be worth it! Start today, whatever your dream/project/idea/plan/wish is. If you don’t, then 1 year from now you’ll look back and wish you had. One foot in front of the other, get that momentum going. Start today!