Friday, October 30, 2009

FSO- Park Landscapes

Hello everyone!

I have been a little MIA this week on your sites right? My step-sister's father died this past summer. Donna has not been doing well emotionally. She ask if I would let her come up and hang out for a few weeks, so of course I said yes. I lost my parents five years ago, and know how it feels when you realize they are just not there to call or pop in on any more. Donna and her father shared the same birthday, and it was this past Tuesday (She lost her mom when she was much younger).

I am looking at her right now, and she is the most relaxed she has been all summer. We are having champagne, sliced fruit, and blueberry muffins for brunch in our room!

This week JarieLyn picked 'Park Landscapes'- We have been busy, and I have only taken one photo of a play ground landscape that helps our kids use their imagination. One thing I really believe is that our kids today have to much stimulation, and do not use their own minds to pretend. Playgrounds like this to me are the best design you can find!

I will be coming and check your sites this weekend, and appreciate your coming over!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Friday Shoot Out- Classics of Childhood

Classics of Childhood- Chosen by Ellisa

"What are your childhood memories made of? A game? A park? A special place you used to visit? OR Look around you. Watch for places and things you'd like your children to remember. Or maybe you see children creating memories as we speak. What will be the thing they remember as classic?" ~ Ellisa

Kids fishing with there fathers, like mine mine did with me perhaps...

I know its hard to see (click to enlarge), but behind these trees is our neighborhood playground...without disturbing family privacy, or appearing to be a possible pedo (maybe I could say I was a PI?) I wanted an active shot; rather than show an empty and possibly sad photo.

My own children loved to visit the play ground with me, their father, and grandparents. I still love to visit the playground and swing now and then; revisiting my own childhood...

Girls just want to have fun... gossiping, boy watching, just going through those teenage trials and tribulations...what girl does not remember sitting with her girlfriends and giggling the afternoon away?

I almost got away with a faceless photo, but as you can see she turned just as my camera clicked...oh well...I guess my career as a PI just went down the toilet!

As I kept my eye out for things that reminded me of 'Classic of Childhood' I spotted these chairs in an area with lots of bushes around, so I wondered if this was a secret hiding place.

My home owners association would never allow a tree house, or even a good ole refrigerator cardboard box for the neighborhood kids to keep in their own backyard. To bad, because imagination was the greatest thing I ever had to play with growing up...

I took liberties with this display I saw while driving into Princeton... My daughter and I shared a love for the holidays. Around the end of July, Anelisa would begin to draw pictures hanging them all about the house. I let her have freedom to express her creative talents. Her step dad in the beginning of our relationship did not appreciate being greeted by ghost and goblins saying 'BOO' as he left each morning for work. He asked that I remind her Halloween was four months away. I had to tell her to curb her enthusiasm until October in the future, and that he would come around.

I will forever and always miss her pictures all about the house in July... Some of us, shall remain enthusiastic children...

Thanks for joining me in Friday 'My Town' Shoot Out, and go check out the others listed on the side bar of this blog... Friday 'My Town' Shoot Out...

If you get a chance come and read a new poem I wrote I AM TROUT!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Friday Shoot Out- Sunrise/Sunset

[Sunrise on The Salmon River ~E]

This weeks Friday Shoot Out was picked by Sherri...

"What's not to love about sunrises and sunsets? My favorite times of the day for a photo shoot are the early morning and late afternoon because the constantly changing play of light on and around the objects I am shooting. I love the silver and sepia tones of of the sky and water a couple of hours before sunset and the purples, corals and pinks of the setting sun against azure skies. My husband and I love living close to the Gulf of Mexico in our picturesque little city which is built around 4 salt water bayous off the Anclote River where it meets the Gulf. We have vacationed in the Hawaiian Islands often and the sunrises and sunsets with the added elements of mountain peaks are equally stunning. I'm looking forward to seeing every one's sunrises and sunsets!" ~ Sherri

[Sunset ~E]

My sunset takes place just where The Salmon River meets Lake Ontario (just off to the right). Hubby and I finished up fishing at some of the river and brook spots, and went for a drive. This photo was actually taken with my new IPhone camera, because I left my camera our accommodations.

I have many times gotten up before sunrise for my work in the past, and then come home way after sunset, and missed these beautiful moments altogether. Never have I enjoyed them as much as we did this week!

Gordon, his nephew, hubby and I arrived at The Salmon Rivers edge this past Sunday. He gave us pointers on how to cast and reel in the 'Big' one. With success we have both meet on Wednesday at sunset to show off just some of the catch. The best success at pulling in a good catch always involves going out before the sun comes up and staying out till it goes down. This assignment was a great pairing with what Gordon and I attempted this week, so 'Thanks' Sherri!

Hubby and I went out on a drift boat tour (Thursday). An experienced guide takes you to places that many cannot reach by car or on foot, but you will be in and out of the boat along the way. While wearing waders we were shown how to fly fish and spin cast for the type of fish that live in these waters. Salmon have moved up stream from Lake Ontario to spawn, so if you catch them it is not with bait, but because you irritate them with the hooks or lures. The trout do eat, so landing one on your hook becomes a real challenge. They can take you up and down the river in order to tire them out, and net them.

We had a great time meeting Gordon, and look forward to many more sunrises and sunsets on the water with him in the future! The photo below shows us meeting at sunset, and sorry no actual background proof. You are allowed to fish until 30 minutes after sunset, so we stopped in time to get the light before it was too late...

Blog Fishing Trip Update- I just got in from our fishing tour down The Salmon River, and caught three big fresh male king salmon. Hubby caught one, and two broke his spin cast and fly rod lines. The big one I hooked myself was 28 lbs! We enjoyed having dinner with B&B hosts and guests on our last night before heading home.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Friday Shoot Out- Silhouette

This weeks theme is chosen by Carrie, and was quite a challenge for my schedule. I loved the 'Silhouette' instruction website someone had shared on one of the postings, but it was too late for what I had taken, so next time!

Hubby and I had to go to our niece's fourth birthday party, in Hoboken, but it is still in Jersey. I fudged a little...

Hoboken is the birthplace of Frank Sinatra. The buildings are similar to the ones found in NYC. Lots of people walking about, and many great restaurants to eat (of course I cannot go without mentioning food, LOL!).

The tree came out the way I intended...

Hubby's family begins to squeeze into the small apartment quarters...

Hubby's mother and step-mom ask if we would take them on a quick drive by of Hoboken, as they had not ever visited. Of course the view of Manhattan, NYC is spectacular! Along with my lone silhouette lamp post, lost in the crowd...

Of course I got a few laughs when I started posing Adison's new Moxie doll for my assignment, but hey...I tried, and maybe came out some what victorious!

Thanks for coming along with me on my FSO assignment this week, and I cannot wait to see yours! If you want to join, just come on over and check out what Friday Shoot Out is all about; then let me know via email-

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


This is a work in progress...

While driving through the cloud covered and rainy mountains of Kentucky I began to see lush green vines that draped the rocky cut out paths along the highways. Turns out that this plant is like a relative that comes to visit and never leaves.

Eventually coming upon this house that was floating on it's sea of green; immediately I fell in love with the idea it would make a good subject for my camera lens and pen. Inspired by its beauty and not knowing about the plant, I soon began to discover man's disenchantment with his decision to bring it over from China in the early 1930's.

I found that most vines I grew in my yard in Texas would over take what ever lay in their path; unless you stay on top of its yearly growth, and keep new growth cut back. This house lost its keeper, and therefore the past it once held has become trapped in the Kudzu's deadly grip...

Most of us spend; life
stomping out weeds
shouting out loud
deprived of love.

Scented air lifts
rain falls gifting kiss
leaving sediment; debris
covering life giving crown.

Lush and green
transformation seen
usurping poverty's beams
too much of a good thing.

Fearless beauty is born
hearts become torn; awhile
moon and stars rest
upon your choking sea.

© E Stelling, 2009

An interesting Japanese article on 'Kuzu', or as we know it Kudzu...

I will be revising this poem as it is newly written under stress of making dinner, endless phone calls, husband disturbance, and random day to day kudzu in my own life! Any remarks on its flow, or direction shall be taken under consideration, and welcome. This is something new I am trying with my TMI site, and mistakes are bound to be missed...

Friday, October 2, 2009

Friday Shoot Out- Building Study

The Baker Hotel
c. 1929

'Study of a Building' by Blogger Team is this weeks assignment...

I just returned from a long trek in my van, and was exhausted. I did not do any studies around my town, but will return to giving you some of what Princeton has to offer in next weeks assignment.

For now I will introduce you to The Baker Hotel in Mineral Wells, Texas. The building has been described by various writers as "The Grand old Lady of Mineral Wells".

I have been in love with this building since i was a young girl living in Texas. We would pass through this town to visit my great grandmother, and on to the birth place of my father in Breckenridge, Texas.

Known for its therapeutic mineral water. Doctors were know to prescribe to their patients a week or so stay at one of these pampering hotels, and if you could afford it...well...many could, and the hotel had over 440 rooms, and fourteen stories for those who took their doctors advise...

A guy I dated long ago, Denis was studying at Baylor to work in Gerontology, and had plans of making this the building it once was. More of a retirement village for the super aging...was a great idea. The money to restore it would have been astronomical for those times...

At one time the ornamental details to this place were still vibrant, like the prickly pear cactus petals you see here are still hanging on to the ledge...I found one on the ground, and have saved it for memory...

Other details still remain, such as the colors that remind me of New Mexico in many ways...

There are stories of ghost that still haunt the corridors they say. I was hoping to look up and see one staring down at me...or was I?

Great walls and chain link fences are up all around the back areas to keep vandals out, and to keep us out of danger. How I long to pass through the front doors and see its still glorious interiors...

Many came from miles to bath in the pool of mineral water. As my aunt and I walked around she shared her memories of swimming here as a child while my grandfather made general repairs about the grounds for extra cash...

It is amazing that such a large piece of historical property is not maintained, but Mineral Wells is such a poor area, that much of the town lay to waste.

This cabana barely visible was for guest to pick up their towels and refreshments...

What lay about this area of Texas is mostly mesquite, prickly pear cactus (they grow on top of the hotel ledges), rocky terrain and dust, abandoned store fronts and homes, and rattle snakes.

Hints of dangers still present as a reminder of what the old pioneers, cowboys, and rich north eastern folk faced when building their oasis in the middle of no where...

Even the garage across the street was grand, and still in good condition today...

A peek through the front doors give us an idea of this lobby's once beautiful existence...

[Photo taken from above website...otherwise all photos belong to, and taken by Chef E]

Thanks for joining me on my journey back into the past of this giant that still stands and awaits to be restored...

If you are interested in joining our Friday Shoot Out Team; then go to my right side bar and let us is that easy!