"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Childhood

Dog Action and Kids Laughing in the Back Seat

We had a nice time at North Star for dinner and Jeni’s Ice Cream for dessert. Then we went back to Laura and James’ and the kids played with Penny in the backyard.

Soccer.

 

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Penny made a good catch

soccer dog

 

 

soccer dog 2

 

 

Then we went to pick up Anna at a birthday party and while I was waiting in the van at sunset, I put the camera between the seats and caught them looking at a funny clip of a video Laura had posted of a kid who wasn’t thrilled about going to Disneyland.

 

kids

 

 

 

laughing in the back seat


Early July 4th Celebration at The Lakes in Ohio

When we arrived, Erika suggested taking a photo of the place empty and then later after it filled up. Sounded like a good idea to me.

So here is what The Lakes Fourth of July celebration looked like Sunday night- June 29th.

beginning

The beginning

 

middle

 

 

preparing fireworks at the Lakes

Preparing the fireworks across the lake

 

reflection

Flags and crowd reflection

 

teenagers

Parade of teenagers

 

 

reflectionsThe Kids loved all the inflatable activities

 

family viewing

 

 

 

fireworks 2

The smell of gunpowder lingered in the humid air

 

 

 

 

 

michael

 

During the fireworks- Michael on the right looks up at the sky filled with fireworks

 

fireworks at the Lakes

Lots of teenagers in clumps, enjoying the festivities

 

 

 

 

July FireworksThe fireworks are over.  A large light came on.  Everyone was packing and cleaning up.  Getting to the car and out of the parking lot.  Home in about 15 minutes after this shot!

 

 

end of the night


Running Home for Supper

Maura running home 7 (1)Maura was playing at a friend’s house.  Erika asked if I would watch for her to run across the lawn and help her cross the street to home.

I had the camera already as I was photographing Mark grilling trout on a cedar plank.  The late afternoon light was perfect.

Maura was running running running.

Old Grandma photographed her but Maura didn’t think anything of it and ignored my shooting.

 

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Practicing Portraits on the Front Porch

The grandkids came out to the porch, one at a time, and let me photograph them. Willingly.

I told them I was practicing. The ambient light was nice as it was late in the day, after supper.

They look to be enjoying their vacation at Grandma’s house.

They didn’t mind  helping me check out my replacement 24-70mm lens.  We went over to the playground afterwards since the rain stopped and the sun appeared.

I’m photographing a wedding on Saturday and wanted to get the feel of the weight of the lens.  It’s lighter than the 70-200mm of course, but heavier than the 50mm I’ve had on this particular camera.  This is my favorite lens. It was a year ago, almost to the day, that my lens fell and broke into smithereens.

Maura Clare

Maura

 

 

Jack

Jack

 

 

MichaelMichael

Playing in a tub of water

Jack playing with his sub in a container of water on the front porch. I liked the light on the shirt wrinkles.

 

 


Watching the River AND the Ball Game @ PNC Park

Drove back from Columbus to Pittsburgh with the youngest three grandchildren for a vacation at Grandma’s House.

We went downtown toPNC Park to see  the Pirates game. It was Pittsburgh Public Schools Night.

Wasn’t sure how I’d manage with all three ( 5, 7 and almost 9) but it was fine. There was a mixture of fun and boredom for them.

A hot summer night.  No rain. Saw a lot of students from school and the grandchildren seemed fascinated as the kids called my name.

 

Our seats had a great vantage point for the activity on the Allegheny River, too.

 

Gateway Clipper Ships

Gateway Clipper Ships Pass Under Roberto Clemente Bridge on the Allegheny River

 

 

Pirates Pitcher

Anticipating the release of the pitch      Pirates lost to Cincinnati Reds 6-5

 

 

IMG_9437Entertaining the crowd

 

Cotton Candy Man

Always like to get a shot of the Cotton Candy Man

 

 

Barges and tug boat

 

 

 

 

Grandkids on way home

A lot of energy left at 10 PM. Home to Grandma’s House.

 

 

 

Take me out to the ball game


Getting Ready for a Couple of Houseguests

 

My DIL called last night and asked if the boys could stay at Grandma’s house this weekend when the family comes in town for the big wedding.

Since their sisters are flower girl and junior bridesmaid the others will be very busy.

I’ve pulled out the PLAYMOBIL and LEGO and the little indoor tent. Stocking some of their favorite things to eat. Gearing up for company.

Tomorrow at school three classes taking finals  and then I have to read and grade them but at 2:44, I’ll be out the school door and headed to pick up my two grandsons for the weekend at my house. Very exciting.

 

Jack and Michael

Jack and MIchael share a chair while building LEGO®

 


What I Saw on my Son’s Bookshelf in his Office

First Communion Weekend in my son Mark’s home office I saw his old Baby Jake from 1976.

I believed little boys should have a doll to love and care for when they were growing up. Preparing for fatherhood.

Now he has his own family of four, but it touched me when I saw his old doll Jake on the bookshelf. Jake has a soft body that has been recovered and filled with fluff, his rubbery arms surgically reattached by me.

You might have seen Mark’s 38th birthday post from Monday.

 

There is something about a toy or a doll with a face.

One that’s been well loved.

If you want to see a doll well loved, his wife Erika’s childhood doll (now named Baby Doll) adopted by their daughter Anna-  really illustrates LOVE! (click the blue link)

 

 

 

old rubber doll from 1976 with home sewn clothes I made for him

old rubber doll from 1976 with home sewn clothes I made for him


Strawberry Rhubarb Preserves Evoke Memories

A bolt of lightning knocked out the internet so blogging from my phone
Rhubarb says Spring to me.
When the three kids were younger, we’d pile in the car and drive 7 hours to New York City to visit my sister. I’d park in the lot by the pier on the Hudson and we’d make our way up the five floor walk-up to her apartment. Everyone would be asleep on the floor camping out and in the early morning, Aunt Mary would walk to Zito’s Bakery on Bleecker Street, come home with warm loaves. She’d have the butter out and a jar of her homemade strawberry rhubarb preserves. She’d slice the bread on a wooden board. That’s what the kids woke up to – warm bread and butter and strawberry rhubarb preserves-

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Berenice Abbott took this photo of Zito’s in 1937.

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Today I went to the Farmer’s market on the South Side and bought two bunches of rhubarb and fresh picked strawberries. I was trying to remember the method and chopped the stalks in one inch pieces, put them into a large enamel kettle and sprinkled with sugar to sit.

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Added the strawberries and cooked it down. I wish it wasn’t so late and I could have called for the recipe. Just did it from memory.

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The loaf from the Farmers Market on the bread board, a gift from my sister.

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Postcard stamp on the back of Zito’s card a dime. I pulled it out of the frame tonight. Read what you wrote.

Before Matthew was born and he’s 33!

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Kids grown up and gone but tonight as I taste the strawberry rhubarb preserves, I remember.

P.S. And to answer your question Mary, on the card-
I did get that assistantship and that’s how I was able to get hired at Pittsburgh Public Schools in 1989!

P.P.S. Zito’s is gone now.


They Say It’s Your Birthday

Dear Mark,

Seems like just yesterday (May 26, 1976) you arrived at Ireland Army Hospital – Fort Knox, Kentucky.

You were born exactly two years to the day from my graduation from college. 

And suddenly, in a blink, it’s 38 years later!

I am proud of you and the wonderful man you have become. WOW. You have a beautiful family.

With love and gratitude on your birthday,

Your Mom

and of course I should have included the best present ever  

Been on a bit of a Beatles kick lately….


Allen School Memories- 1956-57 Guest Blog

 

 

My school colleague, Robert Baltos shared his memories of Allen School

Once upon a time there was a grade school in the Allentown neighborhood of Pittsburgh. This is a picture of my third grade class in 1956.  Dwight D. Eisenhower was the president, there were 48 stars on the American flag and we were able to walk to school thanks to Dr. Jonas Salk.  It is odd that sometimes I can’t remember what I did a few days ago but my memories of this wonderful place are forever intact. This was one of those photographs that my mother saved for me.  I suppose that it is fitting that while I started writing this that I realized that today is her birthday. She has since passed on to her place in Heaven.  I have looked at this group photo many times and I am able to recall most of the names of my classmates.  We followed each other to junior and senior high school.  Since then, I have never seen or heard from the majority of these people again.  At the time this class picture was taken, air-raid drills were commonplace and we were convinced that World War III was at hand.  Little did we know that in the not-too-distant future that some of the Class of 1966 would end up in Southeast Asia for our “senior trip” or that a young senator from Massachusetts would become our next president and be murdered in public several years later.

The teachers at Allen School were special people, the likes of which we will never see again. The teacher at the center of picture is Miss Helen Laucik,  our physical education and health teacher.  Like all of the teachers there, she was full of energy, ideas and compassion.  She always reminded us to take care of our teeth and our feet, both of which she assured us that we would miss in our old age if we didn’t heed her warning.  Mrs. Demming was our history, writing and music teacher.  She predicted that there would be a currency called the “Euro”, warned us about the proliferation of socialism here and abroad and that much of what we consume would be someday be manufactured in places like China.   Miss Bash was our mathematics teacher. Contrary to what some of the “experts” with their phony PhDs believe today, rote memorization of the multiplication tables and proficiency in long division, fractions and other basic arithmetic was absolutely necessary and you weren’t leaving her class without those basic skills!

Allen School closed in 1961.  The students actually took their books and belongings from the desks, walked up the hill and placed them in their desks in the newly built Grandview School.  However, Grandview could never replace the physical building of Allen School. Today’s architects could not imagine or duplicate such a place.  On the other hand, bricks and mortar are just that.  Miss Laucik, Mr. Kelly and a few others made the move that day too and taught there for many years afterward.  Whey they left, they took the remaining spirit of Allen School with them.  Oh, I almost forgot!  Mrs. Bennett, thank you for being our librarian and teaching us how to use the Dewey Decimal System!  I have a copy of the first book that you helped me select from the 600 aisle.  “The Boy Electrician” by Alfred P. Morgan.

 

 (Mr. Baltos is the third one down on the left. He still has the  striped shirt!)

 

Allen School 1956 _1957

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Michael Joseph- First Holy Communion Day- St. Patrick Columbus OH

We woke up to pouring rain but the sun came out later in the afternoon.  St. Patrick Church- Columbus Ohio, Saturday May 10, 2014.

It was a special day for a special young man.

The family gathered in to celebrate and friends came later to share the day.

Michael

The procession. Taken with available light and a Canon 70-200 L series lens.

 

michael communion series2

 

 

 

 

Godfather and Michael

Godfather Joseph in from NYC  and Godson Michael Joseph

and at Michael’s baptismGodfather

 

 

Michael and his certificate2

 

lego rosaryFather Dosch  blesses the Florida Lego Rosary Aunt Lala and Uncle James got him as a gift

 

lego rosary2

 

 

 

Whole Family Communion DayFour generations pose for the family portrait. Michael’s Paternal Great Grandmother is next to him on his right and his Maternal Grandmother Marlene is on his left.  Grandfathers Pop and Pap in the back row.

Almost everyone ( not pictured Matthew in Croatia and James at work).

Took this with the self-timer and ran around and got in the back

 

family (2)

With his family.

 

family (1)


..the pleasantest thing ever a child can do!

The Swing

How do you like to go up in a swing,
Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!

Up in the air and over the wall,
Till I can see so wide,
River and trees and cattle and all
Over the countryside–

Till I look down on the garden green,
Down on the roof so brown–
Up in the air I go flying again,
Up in the air and down!
Robert Louis Stevenson

 

Maura on the swing

Maura at 5 1/2 finally learns to pump

 

It wasn’t that long ago  (201o) that it was her sister Anna on the blog 


What a Difference a Year Makes

Happy Seventh Birthday Jack (John Patrick).

March 21st is your big day.  Thought you’d like to see the faces your old grandma captured this past year!

 

Last year you looked like this.

Jack in the Monkey tie

 

 

And now you are getting your permanent front teeth after losing those baby ones!

 

The shot below was taken one week before your birthday at the Columbus Car Show.

 

jack is sevenYou had a great year being six-   Here you are making the leap from six to seven!

jack at Idlewild stepping

 

 

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You Could Dress Me Up…..1959- Newark NJ

Note to self:    Remember how I mugged for the camera in 1959 when I’m attempting to photograph the grandchildren in 2014!

Pittsburgh Public Schools was closed today.  I did some sorting and found some old family photos.  My family didn’t own a camera that I know of but I think my sister took this photo somehow and I will ask her tomorrow and add any details. My cousins may have been involved.  Paul? John B?

An iPhone photo of a photo isn’t the best quality but you get the idea.

Ruth Hendricks 1959

And thanks to Kathryn of Vastly Curious blog  I went and found the front page from New York Times August 23, 1959  Steven Rockefeller‘s Wedding to a Norwegian (Anne Marie Rasmussen )in the photo

August 23, 1959 New York Times


One Front Tooth For Christmas via Grandma Marlene

guest blog via Marlene

Jack needs two front teeth. One on the top and one on the bottom! The remaining top front tooth is dangling by a thread and turns 90 degrees on occasion as he works at it with his tongue. Ugh!
The other grandma, Froo Froo Marlene, took this shot with Henry the Airedale in his Santa hat.
Here is the history of the 1944 song

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Health Conscious Eaters Don’t Look Today

Second of a series.  Beanie Weenies  was (were?) the first.

Comfort food as the days get shorter and the temp outside dipped down to 12.

Our systems are still adjusting to the cold and urge to crawl into a cave and hibernate.

My kitchen back door window looked like this after I made a cup of tea.

steamy window

so I boiled some noodles

noodles boiling on stove

Buttered a retro baking dish I bought at a thrift shop in Wisconsin one summer

Magic Bars Dish

I crumbled some saltines and cut in some butter and put the mixture to the side

crackers and butter

and then I opened some cans

cream of mushroom and tuna

Yes, a new low point in the culinary department around here.

Tuna Noodle Casserole coming up!  Comfort food series part two.

Freshly ground pepper will give it some zip!

freshly ground pepper

BTW, you just mix the drained noodles into the soup  mixture combined with an almost- can of milk oh and add the tuna.

Here it is baking in the oven.

Tuna Noodle Casserole in oven

Thanks to Steve there was a head of ICEBERG lettuce.  Oil and vinegar just didn’t fit

Found an almost empty jar of mayo and added some ketchup and chopped up bread and butter pickles and served  a slug of lettuce on a glass plate, topped with dressing.

Fake Russian Dressing

Iceberg and 100o Island

The casserole browned nicely.

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I miss you Mom.


The International Sphaeralogical Society Super-ball® Exhibit via Henry J. Simonds

Here’s a new one on me-  the  International Sphaeralogical Society    Did you ever see a SUPERBALL®??

“Founded in 2011, The International Sphaeralogical Society was created to celebrate the history and dynamism of the Super Ball®. Invented by chemist Norman Stingley in 1965 and sold by the Wham-O Manufacturing Co., the iconic toy has been the subject of fascination and play for almost half a century. The I.S.S. is dedicated to exploring and promoting the allure of this bounciest of balls.”

If you’re in the Pittsburgh area, make a plan to come down sometime during the weekend.  If you live far away, just enjoy the photos and check out the International Sphaeralogical Society.

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Photos and attachments via Guest Blogger Henry Simonds.

 

“… here are a few photos of the installation to whet your appetite to come down and see it for yourselves.

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There are extended hours today until 4pm and visits can be arranged throughout the week with

Mia at 412-370-6916.  

Regular hours Friday 11-7,

Saturday 11-7

and Sunday 9-3.

Saturday December 21st is FAMILY DAY 11-7 

All the work is for sale, so you can pick up a last minute gift while you are here.
Some of you mentioned that it was a little hard to find, so I have posted a visual guide on my facebook page from the vantage point of the East End Food Co-op front door.  

Also, Check out the link to the new Merchandise page.
The address again is 201 N. Braddock Ave at Meade St. (across from the Co-op in Point Breeze).  
I could use all the help I can get to spread the word, so please tell your friends and neighbors to come down.
Thanks again,

Sincerely,
Henry J. Simonds
Co-Founder and Chief Sphaeralogist
The International Sphaeralogical Society

Saturday, December 14, 2013
7pm
—-

International Sphaeralogical Society
Co-Founder and Chief Sphaeralogist

Henry J. Simonds

Invites you to join him for a gallery talk and conversation
at
The Mine Factory
201 N. Braddock Ave.
Point Breeze
(across from the East End Food Co-op)

Come and learn more about the history of the Super-Ball®
and man’s unique relationship with this iconic toy.
Share some wine and beer and hear more about the exhibition and its evolution
as Mr. Simonds shares how the ball has inspired him and
presents contemporary examples of how others have been inspired.

https://www.facebook.com/events/512335242207435/?ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular

Www.Sphaeralogy.org
Www.Facebook.com/Sphaeralogy

—-

Weekend Hours:

Friday, December 13, 2013 – 11am-7pm
Saturday, December 14, 11am-7pm
Gallery Talk – 7pm-??
Sunday, December 15, 9am-3pm


This Book ©1958 Cost $1.75 and Says a Lot About Friendship!

A Friend is Someone Who Likes You.  (by Joan Walsh Anglund)

Can’t show you the sweet images inside as they’re copyrighted  but it’s all about how lovely it is to have a friend.

I took the book to school  in 1961 and the teacher, Miss Grace E. Wagner, inscribed it after I shared it.

A good friend is to be cherished.

You may not see your friend all the time, live far away, but when you’re together it is as if all the time between melts and you pick up where you left off.

Your good friend “gets you”, accepts you, and loves you, no matter what.  And you love them right back!

Life events, milestones, heartaches, joys, loss and laughter.   Sometimes all in the same moment.  These are shared, celebrated or in the case of grief you  keep one another in your hearts.    Carefully.   Remembering.    With gratitude.   And  much love.

photo-15

 

A Friend is Someone Who LIkes You

 

for my longtime friend – I love you.         Happy Birthday!    

Friendship since childhood“And the greatest of these is love………….”


JFK- Man of the Sixties

My father went to JFK’s inauguration- took a train to DC in the bitter, cold weather. This button is one of the souvenirs he brought back home.

In 1963 I was in sixth grade. I remember it like yesterday .

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————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

5:30 AM edit

My son Mark just sent me the following photos of my father’s memorabilia he has at his home in Ohio.  I am adding them to the post now.

He is looking for the photos he has of the grandchildren at the Arlington gravesite.

JFK Inauguration memorabilia

 

Mark had all of his grandfather’s JFK memorabilia

 

 

 

Inauguration ticket JFK

 

 

 

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put into a frame.

JFK gravesite

 

 

 

Life MAgazine Cover JFK

 

 


Maura Clare is Five

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Fifth Birthday Maura Clare.  November 17th 2008 was a very happy day in the family because you were born!Enjoy your day. Here are some of my favorite photos I chose for the blog today.

Love,

Grandma Ruthie

Buckeye Baby- Not even 24 hours old in this shot.

Maura newborn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maura and her dolly

With her first dolly.

Maura in her Steelers Hat

 

 

Maura doesn’t seem to mind her Grandma wielding the camera.   Her sense of humor shines through.

Maura at Aunt Linda's

 

Like a little fish in the water….

 

Maura 2

Lunch out in Virginia at Thanksgiving time a couple of years ago

 

Maura in Virginia

 

 

 

Maura and Mommy onUncle Frank's car

Sitting on Uncle Frank’s running board with Mom, Erika.

Maura and Popsicle

Summer popsicles in Virginia

 

Maura in Ski Mask

Sporting her brother’s ski mask

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Swimming ribbon

 

Maura and Anna

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big sister Anna had just fixed her hair for church

 

Maura on the playground

 

Playing on the swingset in the yard

 

 

Maura

 

 

 

MAura on the playlet


Happy Golden Birthday Anna- Ten Years Old on 10/10

Double digits.  Oh my!

I remember the day I became a grandmother. (along with FF Marlene) What a lovely day.  The day you were born.

Two grandmothers

 

 

Now your dad is taking photos of you learning to play the cello and sending them to me on the phone.

 

 

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Photographing you has always been fun. Documenting your growing up!  Here’s a little slideshow to celebrate YOU!

lots of love,  Your grandma- FF Ruthie

p.s.   There are hundreds, probably thousands of photographs of you in my archives. When you were born I bought my first digital SLR camera! It was hard to choose  for the birthday post.

Anna almost ten

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AnnaonMurphyBW

Here are some of my favorites.

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Maybe you remember Anna celebrating her birthday on 10-10-10, doing the Hula Hoop

 


Ohio Katydid and the Kids Via My Son Mark

A fun series to receive on the phone from my son Mark.

Looks like a depth of field exercise, too.

This is a “leaf bug” or katydid.  A relative of the grasshopper and also called a bush-cricket in some parts of the world.   Looks like such an interesting creature and is the perfection of camouflage.

Thanks Mark for sharing your Katydid and Kids study.  love you. Mom

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Can you see him/her?

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Can you see him/her? Probably snacking on the foliage.

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Stick Your Head in for the Photo Op. Or NOT!

Raggedy Ann

 

Standing between.

Don’t you want to be Raggedy Andy so your old grandmother can capture the moment?

Ahhh, no thanks.

I’ll just stand between the two heads.

so here is Maura between Raggedy Ann and Andy

Okay, got it.

When I saw this tonight it struck me funny.  I’d forgotten about the fun time we had at Idlewild Park and was thinking about all the grading I need to accomplish this weekend for the upcoming progress reports at school.

And I saw Maura refusing the standard photo opportunity at the amusement park. She did not want to stick her head in the hole.  Maybe she thinks it is a silly plan to do so.   We sure found a ton of ovals in wooden cut outs.  Wonder who started the first one years ago.  Seems a standard practice on the boardwalk.  We were here.  I’ve seen them for Civil War or old fashioned sepia pics offered for $.

A few more….

 

Raggedy Andy

 

Jack agrees to be Raggedy Andy-  on the fly, that is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

train conductor (1)

 

 

Train conductor

 

 

 

train conductor (2)

 

Michael is totally agreeable to the task at hand. Thanks, Making it easy on Grandma,

Lincoln Highway

Jack and Anna in the old fashioned car

Maybe next year, Maura.  Peek- a -boo.  Need a bit more height for this one.

train conductor


Please Do Not Climb on Top of Cheese

Anna and I were on FaceTime Wednesday evening  and she asked me what I was going to blog tonight.

I didn’t have a plan, I said.  She said to tell her when I was posting it so she could be the FIRST one to see it.

So I am choosing a summertime August afternoon from their recent visit.  Before school started.

Storybook Forest in Idlewild Park.  Ligonier PA.

The grandkids in the cheese. Well, three of them that is. The fourth, Maura was looking at her siblings peeking out of the holes.

And then tonight  as I uploaded, I saw the sign on the side which I had not seen before.

Anna said “the cheese stunk.”  

Stunk like what?, I asked.

 She said “I don’t know, it just stunk.  Like elephants.”

 

(Maybe it stunk but we had a great day!)

mouse cheese (3)

 

 

mouse cheese  sign(1)

 

 

mouse cheese (2)

And a portrait of cousin Parker in the cheese


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