Saturday, October 15, 2011


I know I've said before that I work in DC.  And sometimes, if I have the opportunity, I like to take photos on my way home, usually at a stoplight!!  These are some of the photo ops I've had.  There are some gorgeous buildings in DC.  When I head in at 5 in the morning, it's still dark and all the monuments are lit up.  It's really beautiful!!  I head into downtown on Independence Avenue, and this is part of what I see every single morning.  

Sometimes I take photos on my way home too, depending on the traffic and whether or not I have time to catch a couple of shots while the signal is red.  

Sitting in traffic under 395, waiting to get onto the ramp to head home.  I love this shot. 

Friday, October 7, 2011


I was very, very sad to hear that Steve Jobs lost his battle with pancreatic cancer.  He led such a quiet and private life that I honestly don't think many people knew who Steve Jobs was until the IPad and the IPhone came along.  

He was invited to give a commencement speech at Standford University where he talked about his life and gave advice to the graduating class based on his experiences.  

He was given up for adoption right after he was born, dropped out of college, dropped acid, and founded Apple.  He went on to accomplish other amazing things, including buying Pixar and making the first fully animated movie, Toy Story.  He's touched everyone's life in one way or another.  Amazing isn't it that one person could have such a profound impact on how we access, store, and use all kinds of information, from the fonts on our computers to the music we listen to.  I don't think there is anyone who hasn't used or owned an apple product or been touched by the genius of Steve Jobs without even realizing it.  He had an amazing mind and the incredible ability to blend different technologies into useful products that anyone could use.  Like the old saying goes, you didn't have to be a rocket scientist to operate an IPad or an IPhone or an IPod.  Farewell, Steve.  You did yourself  proud.  We will all miss you so much.  

“We believe that people with passion can change the world for the better” 
"Those people who are crazy enough to change the world are the ones who actually do”  ~ Steve Jobs

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Summer Gone By

I've been gone for a while.  The summer found me working and leaving on weekends to visit my kids and grandkids.  That doesn't mean I haven't been thinking of all of you and reading your wonderful blogs.  That also doesn't mean I haven't been taking photos and thinking of blog posts to write.  It just seems that I never got around to actually getting onto the computer and posting all of my thoughts.  

We had some exciting but scary things happen here in northern Virginia with the earthquake that happened in August.  I work on the fourth floor of a building at the Washington Navy Yard.  When the earthquake first started, I thought I heard the wind fiercely blowing outside and then felt the building actually sway back and and forth.  My mind said wow, that's a strong wind!!  When I tried to decipher what I was feeling and hearing, I looked up and saw the sun and thought how odd.  Then the entire building began shaking, lights were swaying back and forth, and plaster dust was seeping out of the cracks.  Alarms came on and people started to panic.  It wasn't until the building was evacuated that I actually learned what had happened.  An earthquake -- in Virginia!!  Wow.  That was plenty enough excitement over that, thank you!  

Once the earthquake ended, we got hit with the remnants of Hurricane Irene.  We had wind and a lot of rain.  Luckily, I never lost power up here; but lots of people that I know did lose power for days.  My daughter in NC lost a huge pine tree, which thankfully missed the house and their fence.  All it did was make a huge mess, but messes can be cleaned up.  And now it seems like all we've had for the last few weeks is rain, rain, and more rain.  On the bright side, I can feel and smell autumn in the air.  And I'm happy!!  I LOVE autumn.  My friend Lynn at Raspberry Corner asked what happened to summer.  I said I kicked her out for staying too long and told her she had to leave because my friend Autumn was on her way.  

I took these photos of the clouds the night before the storm hit here.  The clouds were so beautiful.  They looked as if someone had painted them in the sky.  

The leaves haven't started to change here yet.  It's been plenty warm and humid.  This weekend, though, the temps are in the 50s and I can feel her on the way.  More to come, my friends.  We have some catching up to do, and I want to share some photos with you.  Thank you so much for reading and stopping by. 

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Beautiful summer in all her glory!

I caught these butterflies enjoying the nectar from this gorgeous teasle.  I know it's a weed, but I think it's beautiful.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Future Rock Star

Future rock star in the making.  This adorable baby is my grandniece.  She's sweet, never cries, and loves to watch everything around her.  Don't you just love the pink sunglasses and binky?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Late July

Nature lies disheveled pale,
With her feverish lips apart, 
-Day by day the pulses fail,
Nearer to her bounding heart;
Yet that slackened grasp doth hold
Store of pure and genuine gold;
Quick thou comest, strong and free,
Type of all the wealth to be, 

Elaine Goodale Eastman (1863 - 1953)
from All round the Year, Verses from Sky Farm

Friday, July 15, 2011

Sunlit Sky

It was a gorgeous day here in northern Virginia.  The temps were perfect, no humidity; and on the way home, I couldn't help but notice the beautiful clouds in the sky.  I wanted to share them with you.  

Happy Friday!!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Why I ♥ Virginia

Woke about 8 a.m to a gorgeous morning.  I'd been wanting to take some photos of the roadside flowers so I got up, got dressed, grabbed my camera and headed out the door.  These wildflowers that grow along the roadside where I live are just one of the many reasons I love Virginia.   I work in the city about 40 miles away, but I can drive back to see this every single day.  No, I don't live in the country, but there are still small open spots of meadow where farms used to be.  And they let the wildflowers grow without mowing them down.  Let's go and see them together.

Aren't they beautiful?  The gorgeous blue flowers are Chicory (Cichorium intybus).  It's edible, and from what I've read, they use the roots to make a coffe-like drink.  It reminds me of my childhood where I grew up.  There loads of open fields where I grew up in upstate New York, and these gorgeous flowers were a sign of summer along with the milkweed plants that grew everywhere.  Here are some more photos I took.

And here is beautiful Queen Anne.  I love this wildflower.  If you look closely, you can see the little dark spot in the center.

Can you see the small red heart in the center of this beautiful umbel?

I heard a hawk somewhere overhead as I walked along the roadside and happened to see my friend the Redtail flying over, screeching.  

After I took these photos, I headed over to the farmer's market and bought some croissants for breakfast.  Yummm!!  I can't think of a better way to start the day than spending some time with nature and ending my morning with fresh-baked goodness.   I'm going to go back out tomorrow with my scissors and cut some of this free bounty and bring it home.  Hope your weekend was just as wonderful!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Possum Birthday

Happy birthday to my baby boy, our little Possum.  I don't know how we started calling him that but it's only one of the nicknames we use for him.  He's always been Possum.  That's what happens when you're the youngest in the family.  He was born 36 years ago at 1:05 a.m., the youngest of three.  His sisters spoiled him rotten when they were growing up but it's understandable.  This is what he looked like when he was only 5 years old.  Here is what he looks like today:

He's still Possum and always will be.  

I drove down to NC to spend the weekend with him and his beautiful wife and wanted to do something special for his birthday.  Hmmm.  What do you give to someone who has everything he could possibly want?  I know!  A pie!!

Here's the birthday pie before it was cooked.  It already looks good, doesn't it?  But. . .this is no ordinary pie.  This is a LOBSTER pie.  Here it is just out of the oven.

We had a wonderful salad and some great wine and chowed down on this great meal.  I have to say it was really delicious.  My son was a little skeptical because he'd never heard of a lobster pie, but once he tasted it, he LOVED it!!  

Happy birthday to my baby.  

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Summer Flowers

I started another new job in March.  It was a huge promotion for me, so I felt I had to take the opportunity to enhance my retirement income.  I do like my new job.  I'm learning new things about contracts every day.  My new job entails reviewing requests for government contracts for release under the Freedom of Information Act.  They're not the only documents that we get requests for, but they make up a large majority of them.  I recently was able to close out three cases that dated back to 2008!!  One request, if you can believe it, was 11 years old!  Good grief.

On the other hand, having to get up much earlier to start my work day at 6 a.m. has me getting up at 4 so I can leave the house and get on the road by 4:45.  It's not a bad drive in at all, but let me tell you, I'm so looking forward to retirement and not having to fight traffic every single day of my life.  Washington DC is beautiful, and more so at that time of the morning without all the people and the heavy traffic.  I drive by the Washington Monument, which is lit up with its red lights flashing at the top.  And I drive by the Potomac River where I get a great view of the Jefferson Memorial also lit and shining its beautiful reflection in the water.  Sometimes the rowing crews from the local universities are already out there on the river, practicing.  It's almost peaceful!

I haven't had much time to venture out and take photos because most of my days are spent at work.  By the time I get home in the evenings, depending on the traffic and other delays, it can be 5 p.m.  I leave work at 3:30.  As you can see it sometimes takes longer to drive home than it does to drive in.  But that's okay with me because I know I'm headed to the comfort of home and that I'll get some quiet time to myself.  By the time I take my shower and grab a little something to eat, it's time for this pumpkin to head to bed so I can start my day all over again at 4 a.m.  I'm one of those people who can't exist on 5 hours of sleep.  I need to get at least 7 and preferably 8 hours of sleep to function really well.

Because of my schedule, I haven't had time to post much on my blog; and I miss it.  I wish I could have taken a picture of the eagle I saw on my drive home along the GW parkway.  It hovered over one of the huge trees and extended its talons.  I wonder if it had a nest there or if it was hunting for something.  I notice all kinds of crazy things when I'm driving.  I wish I had time to capture each one in a photo and share them with all of you.  This world is so beautiful, and I never get bored or tired of seeing the wildlife. 

I did mange to catch some photos of these beautiful peonies that I bought at the store.  Peonies are some of my favorite flowers, especially the old fashioned ones.  The added bonus is that they're very fragrant.  

There are tons of wildflowers in bloom right now.  I so want to stop and pick some and bring them home with me.  Unfortunately, there aren't many places to pull over and do something like that.  The clover is sweet and blooming and there are tall plants with tiny yellow flowers.  I love flowers.  One day I'm going to have a cutting garden full of zinnias and cosmos and all those easy-t0-grow flowers that just grow longer and hardier the more you cut them.  In the meantime, though, I'm content to see the wildflowers on the side of the road and around the many ponds here.  

There is a huge pond next to this wildflower patch, and there is a Kingfisher that lives in the woods next to it.  I see him quite often and I've tried to get a photo of him, but he's too fast.  By the time I've pulled off the road and gotten my camera in hand, he's gone.  I don't even get out of my car, but he's easily spooked.  He's beautiful.  

This is my long weekend from work.  We work a compressed work schedule and every other week, I get an extra day off.  I chose Mondays because that's my least favorite day of the week.  So today is my Saturday over again, my most favorite day of the week.  To me, Saturdays are like holidays that come every week.  Hope you're all having a great one!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Farmer's Market Fun

Because I wake every morning to start my day 4 a.m., it's very hard to sleep past 6 on the weekend.  I do try and give it my best effort to not get up until at least 8 because I feel like I deserve to lounge around for a couple of days.  This morning, I was looking forward to getting up and getting ready to start my day early because they have a farmer's market in town from 8 to noon.  It was a gorgeous, cool morning with the sun shining and a small breeze blowing.  It felt glorious, the kind of morning everyone looks forward to.

I hopped in my car and drove the short distance to find this!

It wasn't very crowded.  I found a tent that was offering a wine tasting from a local vineyard.  Is it ever too early to drink some wine?  They had several different wines, and I got to taste them all for the price of a dollar.  It was fun.  The wine was delicious, and I got a card for two free tastings from Notaviva Vineyards!  I actually bought a bottle of their Viognier.  It was light and fruity and crisp.  

After the wine, I was drawn to all the fresh produce at the market.  The strawberries were fresh picked.  Some still had a little straw on them, and the sweet, strawberry-filled air was irresistible.  I bought some strawberries and some honey from a local apiary.  

Don't you want to just pop one in your mouth?  Yes, they were that ripe and that good.  I ate a pint of them this afternoon for lunch, and they were wonderful!

I loved all the colors of the fresh vegetables too.  I don't know why, but these beautiful red and white onions just said "take our pictures"!!  So I did.

I wanted to buy a bunch, but I didn't know what I would do with more than one onion!  They were beautiful.  They also had fresh beets and squash and greens.  I LOVE the farmer's market.  It always makes me yearn for retirement and my own plot of land to grow my own vegetables and flowers.  Some day, my friends -- some day in the next few years.  I can't wait.

 Can you tell what these are?

And to make things even better, they had entertainment in the form of this young man who played the banjo extremely well and sang!  What a delight!  

I love my farmer's market.  I like the fact that I know where some of my food is coming from. I wish I could grow my own, but until then, this is the next best thing.  

I hope you all have a wonderful and sweet relaxing weekend, my friends!