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

Family

Easter Decorations in the City

door decoration off 40th street

Electric lights and tinselly garland for Easter time in Pittsburgh?  Not my house.

 

 

and Laura (who was born in Germany) said she would like to make an Easter Tree so I am taking her the German Easter decorations.  Feels good to pass them on. I remember when we moved to Germany at EAster time and on the table in the Gasthaus was a platter of earth and real green grass growing with colored eggs peeking out of the grass.  It was so pretty and inviting.  The tablecloth is from our former exchange student Yvonne.

 

german rabbits (1)

 

 


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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A Story in Three Photos

A story in three photos.   (The other part of the challenge.)

Welcome Maura Clare.  November 2008.

 

mark bringing Maura home

 

 

family sees Maura

 

 

 

erika Maura


All You Need is a Ceiling Fan, a Light Source, and Tape

Tonight I was camping out in my 5 year old granddaughter’s room, lying on a mat on the floor.

I looked up and saw the ceiling fan.

I  remembered a youtube demo of light writing.  Have been working on light writing at school with the students and thought I’d experiment.

Maura said the fan made her too cold so it was not a lengthy experiment.  Not as many variations as I would have liked to try.  I think it would work well with regular glow sticks.  She liked the way the photos looked, though. Crazy Grandma.

Photo-  light   graph – write

You need a darkened room.

Set your camera on bulb setting ( or long exposure)

      Manual focus

A tripod would have been useful.  I just braced it so it’s soft focus.

I used a Flashing/Glowing White Lighting Stick and tried three different settings.

You need some tape (that won’t damage the paddle) to attach the light source to a ceiling fan blade.

Here are  the Light Write Experiment results

Moving the camera around

Moving the camera around

 

Holding the camera as still as I could

Holding the camera as still as I could

 

 

 

 

With the Light Stick on blue

With the Light Stick on blue

 

Moving the camera around

Moving the camera around

 

Multicolor flashing setting on the Lightning Stick

Multicolor flashing setting on the Lightning Stick

 

 

 

Here is one I did at school with LED Christmas Lights, trying to make and intentional circle shape.

 

LED Christmas Lights in the Dark Room at school

LED Christmas Lights in the Dark Room at school

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Weekly Photo Challenge: Threes

Three 

Rub-a-Dub-Dub, Three Men in a Tub

Three Little Pigs

Three Bears

Three Little Kittens

Wynken, Blynken and Nod

Three Sailing Ships

No Three on a Match

It’s bedtime in Ohio.  Three photo story post for a different day.  Kicking off the Weekly Photo Challenge by Michelle W with this single photo of all the threes I could find on the grandkids’ bookshelves.

threes in storiesIf you think of another threesome in nursery or fairy tales, please add it in a comment below.

 

Three Little Pigs Cartoon 1933- familiar music Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf


Star Wars Lego® Figures Photo Found on my Phone

Either Michael or Jack, one of my grandsons, took this photo of Star Wars figures..  I found it in my December Photo Stream in Aperture tonight.

I hadn’t seen it before, didn’t notice it.  I know I didn’t take it.  The kids love to use the electronic devices.

Any it was all set up and photographed (on the piano I’m fairly certain) and here’s their shot.  Guest  blog photo by one of them.

I’d left the mini Light Sabers in a gift box with a friend’s gift but she mailed them out from Pittsburgh in a card so they got to Ohio in time for Christmas.  Need light sabers  to do battle!!  Thanks V.

Something about mini figures invites creative and imaginative play.

star wars legoEither Michael (8) or Jack(6+) took this photo with my phone.  I found it in the December photo stream tonight.

 


Waiting for 2014

The girls and I came to Laura and James’ for New Year’s Eve. It’s a sleepover.

Waiting for the new year to arrive.  We started out enthusiastic.  Winding down now.  Ninety minutes to go.

Who will be able to stay awake?  I’m knitting a Christmas gift hat for Steve and hope to finish before I leave for Pittsburgh tomorrow afternoon.

Penny is excited the girls are here.  Loving the attention.

Vacation is winding down.  We’re down to just hours left.  The rest of the family will be over for lunch Wednesday and then I get in the car and head east.

penny and the new year

 

Anna (off camera to right) getting Penny to do a trick while Laura and Maura watch.

 

 

penny and the new year crown

 

Penny sporting the New Year’s Crown

 

 

waiting for new year girls

 

Still awake and ready for 2014. What time is it?   We’re waiting………………

 

 

 

waiting for new yearAnna was swimming this morning at 5:45 AM.  Not sure she can stay awake until midnight.   Yawn.  Maura and Anna on electronic devices.
Added at 11:41pm

No resolutions made yet!

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My Family Actually Gave Me The Awkward Family Photos® Game

Identical GAP dresses

Matching Dresses for the Sisters-In-Law Gap

I kid you not.   I think it was on the sale table somewhere.  It was funny cause Laura and the girls played it and then wanted to recreate some of the photos they’d seen on the photo cards included in the game.  There were challenges to respond to – “explain how you came to have this photo in your wallet.”  Do people have photos in wallets anymore or just in phones?  Remember when showing grandchildren pictures meant you had a vinyl accordion filled with 2×3 school size pics?

Here is attempt one, slightly desaturated to give the illusion of a time past

Inspired by Awkward Family Photos®

We all know that taking family photos can be stressful and not everyone’s idea of a good time.

And it is an interruption.

A demand.

Someone else’s idea.

Cooperation and light-heartedness are essential for success.  Trying to not feel annoyed cause no one is in the mood.

awkward family

 

awkward (1)

 

and I wanted a photo of everyone but it wasn’t working out but Matthew is in from Croatia and Zagreb is far away and the opportunity to get the three siblings plus two in-laws is rare

kids

Laura and James on the way home  with Matthew (in his new knitted hat) and Mark and Erika, the hosts on the left

Matthew’s friends in Croatia have been looking for him on the blog and here is the elusive subject!


Hungarian Nut Roll Slideshow

Today Jaclyn and her sister Shannon baked nut rolls together, carrying on family tradition.

Their mother, Theresa, passed last February.  This post is to remember Theresa , those who knew and loved her and to send hugs to Jaclyn and Shannon as they are missing their mom, especially at Christmas time.

Theresa was one of the four sisters in this slideshow (baking the pizelles)  showing the three sisters making nutroll in Pittsburgh- Linda, Georgeann and Theresa,  while the fourth sister Marlene communicated via SKYPE in Virginia.

You might remember the previous post of the 15 greased nut roll pans  where the retro recipe card is photographed in case you want to make them.

Marlene and I share grandchildren and her daughter Erika is married to my son Mark.

 

 

four sisters and their mom

One of my favorite photos from long ago, taken by unknown photographer

Theresa their mother Marion, Bride Linda, Marlene and Georgeann

 

 


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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Lebkuchen Recipe from Aunt Rhea, (Well actually from her Mother’s Father)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This recipe is from Aunt Rhea’s mother’s (Marie) father, Julius Rickel(, who died in 1933.) That’s all the info I have on the handwritten recipe.  Not much more.

How to bake a Family Favorite recipe that hails from Germany. I copied it down from Aunt Rhea. Sunday before I left Ohio I dropped into the Kroger and bought what I needed

Aunt Rhea married my mother’s brother Robert.

She’s 98 years old today and celebrating, too.

   I plan to call her up and ask if there’s anything else to know about this particular recipe.

Love to you.

pecans and citronChopped pecans and citron. The recipe didn’t say how much.

Oh yes, prepare two 8 inch pans to bake.  Fire up the over to 35o degrees

I used disposables and cut out some parchment paper

 

Pans

 

 

 

cinnamonMix the cinnamon into the flour

 

 

 

cinnamon mixed inAdd the finely chopped citron and nuts to the flour mixture to coat evenly

Beat 4 eggs and 2 cups of brown sugar together until light. I used a heavy duty mixture.Lebkuchen recipe

 

 

add the flour mixturepouring the flour in

 

 

lebkuchen batter

 

 

 

 

 

cooling lebkuchen

 

Baked  between 25 and 30 minutes

 

 

 

 

glazed lebkuhen

A light glaze on top.  The whole kitchen smella so good.

 

 


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

 

 


Matty, Your Age is Your Lacrosse Number Today

Happy 33!  I found this drawing from your birthday post from three years ago and saw the Lacrosse number.  I am thinking of you and hoping someone is celebrating your birthday with you in Croatia.  Missing you.

Birthday box on the way. 6-10 business days they said. Hope it makes it.  I ‘m inserting Richie Havens singing “Wonder Child”.   We’ve enjoyed Richie a couple of times when we were together so thought it was a good birthday song.

Here is the colored pencil drawing I am making for you with  Little Green Doggie, Lego, Playmobil, St Nicholas made with a walnut and upside down apple from German Kindergarten. ( You can see the Lacrosse #)    Love you, Ma

Matthew collageIt was your idea to start blogging for birthdays and it’s a wonderful idea.  Love to you in Croatia

Richie Havens sings on Sesame Street

Information on Richie Havens and Sesame Street here


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


Buckeye Weekend

Ohio Buckeye Tree in the Front YardBuckeye Tree

 

Grandchildren update………

 

Anna and Henry

Anna and Henry

Michael

Michael adjusts his handkerchief

Jack and Game Ball

Jack received the game ball

Maura and her baby

Maura adjusts her baby

pumpkin

The Pumpkin that grew from one of last year’s pumpkins.

Sock Monkey and Boa

Why it’s fun to visit the family and rejuvenate for a new week!

 Anna holds the giant sock monkey up at the door, sporting the boa I knit with some yarn (Twist and Twirl) my friend Donna gave me last year.

!


C-12 Polished Nose Reflection

Saturday morning we went out to the Columbus airport to meet Mark’s college friend Bob. ( Marquette U) Bob is  a Lt Commander and trains jet pilots.  He’d invited us out to see him and check out the training jet. The kids loved that!

When we were leaving, and the family walked by another parked jet, I photographed their reflection.

C-12 Reflection


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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Happy 8th Birthday Michael!

Proud of the fact he was born in Florida, he’s a Gator fan.  (And that’s not easy given he lives in Buckeye country)

He loves to wear the orange and blue!   Build lego.  Learning to strategize in Chess.

When he swings, I worry he goes too high, just even with the very top of the swing set.

He assures me he’s fine.  He studies bugs in the grass, wonders about things.

Likes airplanes in a book. Tin-Tin.  He’s always finding Waldo!

His palate is expansive-he devours little yellow tomatoes with zest. Loves his family.

I was fortunate to be in Florida the day he was born.  Happy Birthday Michael.  Enjoy 8 !.

I love you.  Grandma

Michael on the slide


Liz Tried Her Hand at the Art of Bonsai

Since the family is visiting , Erika wanted to see her longtime friend Liz.  We drove out to the country today to see  Liz and her family’s new home and all the hard work they have done (continue to do) to make it spectacular.  During the house tour she shared her attempt at Bonsai.  

She made us smile.  It can’t be easy.

I should have asked her more about it but the little brown growth had a prime spot in a sunny window in the kitchen, even though it had seen better days.

Not sure if she took a workshop or class.

Bonsai Tree

 

 

 

Here ‘s a link to the Brooklyn Botanic article on Bonsai  Small Tree, Big Heart by Julian Velasco

 

 

And here is one of the photographs of a Bonsai tree at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden I took in June when I visited my sister.

Probably more what Liz had in mind.  Bonsai means “planted in a tray” and the definition and history is here

 

Bonsai Tree Brooklyn 3 (3)


Anna Learns How to Polish Silver

The family came to Grandma’s house today.

The highlight of my summer!

And Anna likes to check things out around the place. We found a tarnished, dented silver rattle of her father’s from 1976.  It was badly tarnished.

I asked her if she’d like to learn how to remove the tarnish, talked about oxidation, and how to polish silver.  We found a few old baby cups that were up high on a kitchen shelf and seemed a bit fuzzy.  We got a ramekin and she poured the baking soda in and then the littlest bit of water to make a nice paste.  I found an old washcloth to rub the metal.  We added an apron for her and she polished away.

I have lots more tarnished silver if she wants to dig in.

And here is what she said to me as she polished away…..

   “Your dad would like that I am doing this.”

and I got a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes and thought, she is exactly right.

Silver Rattle After polishing

 

Anna at the sink with her father’s old rattle after she polished it!  WIsh we had taken the BEFORE shot with the old iPhone first!

baby cups on a hammered aluminum tray

Baby cups on my mom’s old hammered aluminum tray, awaiting polishing.

 

 


Laura’s 30th Birthday Surprise

 

 

 

Happy Birthday to you, Laura.

James sure planned a wonderful surprise for you.

Enjoy your actual birthday today and relive the fun we had on Saturday by looking at the photos.

Love you,   Ma

p.s. I wish I had someone take a photo of us together!  Next time.

 

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Laura is surprised

Laura is surprised

happy 30th

the last present                HER BROTHER’S GIFT……………………..

opening gift from Mark

Brother gift

Mark''s photo

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Mark found an empty picture hook on the wall!Laura and Mark

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Mark and the boys

ANNA AND THE SHOWER RIBBONS

Anna holds the wedding shower ribbon bouquet that was under the glass dome cake holder.  How did that tradition get started?

MICHAEL AND THE STATE OF FLORIDA MAGNET

Michael studies Laura’s state of Florida magnet to find the city where he was born (Tampa)

James Mom Kim

James and his sister Kim and Mom Sharon

LAURA AND JACKAunt Lala catches Jack as he comes into the kitchen


Big Walnut Skate Club – Sunbury Ohio

At school I teach what a photo essay is- a series of photos that tells a story, with or without captions.   I also got to practice my sports photography.

A double birthday party for two neighbor boys whose Mom rented out the entire Roller Rink for the evening.  WOW!

The kids tried roller blades and four wheel skates for the first time and Mom Erika got out on the floor and gave a hand to help them stay upright.

The lighting in the place was a challenge, too.

Big Walnut Skateland

 

Good thing for the GPS

 

Remember how I said I like to catch them unaware. ….Here is the result when I ask for a mug!

We arrive.  Love those posed shots.  No one wanted to pose for Grandma.

We arrive. Love those posed shots. No one wanted to pose for Grandma.

 

 

 

 

 

Finding the right skates for the family

Finding the right skates for the family

 

Lacing the skates

Lacing the skates

 

Maura on roller skates

 

 

 

 

Anna on Roller Blades

 

 

 

 

 

Family roller skating

 

Michael ventures on his own

 

And some help from Mom

And some help from Mom

 

 

 

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They turned down the lights- Maura has a blast!

 

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Into the carpeted wall!

 

 

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Michael and Mom take a break

 

 

Roller Skate Rental

 

 

Jack turns in his skates.

 

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Anna is concentrating

 

 

Skating Accessories

 

 

 

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Ready to go home. One bag of chips for the road.

 

 

On the way home.  We did it!  (Well I just photographed)

On the way home. We did it! (Well I just photographed)

 

VFWThe Skate Club is directly behind the VFW.

Alum Creek Park

The view on the way home  Alum Creek at sunset

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Museum of Broken Relationships, Zagreb, Croatia

At least a year ago, my friend Connie W. from Florida, sent a newspaper article from an Ocala paper about the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb Croatia.  Connie must have read it and thought of Matthew, my son who lives there.   I asked him one time about it and then another time and we didn’t talk about it or mention it for along while.  Then I said I hope he could take Flat Ruthie there as I thought it would be an interesting place to visit.  Then Flat Ruthie went missing. And besides Flat Ruthie  hasn’t really had any relationships to break up  that I’m aware of………….

Today in my email I received photographs of his visit to the Museum of Broken Relationships.  Here is what Matthew wrote:

 
My Blog-following friends- Sasha, Ana Maria and Tanja asked if I had taken Flat Ruthie to the Museum of Broken Relationships.  I hadn’t.  So we decided to go together and take some pics for the Blog.  Flat Ruthie was too busy exploring the remote reaches of my desk drawers, so she opted not to join us this time.  I bought a Bad Memories Eraser for Mom at the gift shop, but a few hours later ran into a friend who needed it more.  Her boyfriend has gone to NYC to play the drums.

 I wonder what she’ll donate to the museum: a pair of scuffed sticks or an abandoned ride cymbal?  Hopefully, she’ll update us when she decides –   Matthew

Welcome to Museum

It isn’t just the objects.  It is the stories behind the objects.

Boots

 

 

Biker Boots

the story behind the boots

 

Ana Sasha Tanja

Tanja, Sasha, Ana at the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb

 

 

 

 

A wisp of hair

 

 

 

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Axe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wedding Box

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WEdding Box

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Flyer

 

 

 

Keka Flyer

 

 

 

Chocolate

At the gift shop

 

 

Blog Followers

I am so happy you all encouraged MAtthew to go to the museum!!!

 

I am not sure to whom the credit should go to for the photo of  Matthew at the entrance.  Let me know and I can edit the post.

Museum of Broken Relationships

Photo credit to Sasha, Tanja or Ana Maria- Thank you

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Okay Can You See?

We’re celebrating the Fourth of July in Virginia.  I’m grateful for another birthday.

When I was Maura’s age I used to think all the fireworks were just for me on my birthday.  Ha!

Not sure if there will be fireworks to celebrate the fourth as there’s rain and more rain.

My granddaughter Maura (4) sings the Star Spangled Banner with a slight alteration of the opening lyrics.

“Okay, can you see?” or more like  “O-O-O-Okay can you see”

The title for this post could also be  How to Photograph Four Kids at a Time.  I’ve had a lot of practice.  It’s not impossible but to get ALL four with their best expression is not an easy task.               Add the new puppy Henry to the effort.

I’ve used the -get ‘em in action method- quite a few times.  On the playground, the backyard, the hula hoop, the swing, the bicycle.  Anything so they aren’t conscious of Grandma’s lens.

The sitting around all in a row or even staggered grouping and looking at my lens with the old CHEEEEESE doesn’t work for me.  Or them  Not that I haven’t tried.    Canon 70-200mm L series lens   ISO 100  f/2.8  1/125   I’m up on the front porch.

 

On Your Mark

On Your Mark-

And they're off

And they’re off-


all the way down to the tree

 

headed back to the finish

 

 

uh oh I see his derriere

Uh oh not that view of Henry.  Henry, turn around.

 

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Oh Henry, turn around.   Nah, too posed looking.   ACTION!

 

 

running towards home

 

Maura, Anna, Michael and Jack and Henry

 

 

watch the puppy

 

Here they come.

Anna calls to Henry to join them.

 

 

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He’s getting it now

 

 

 

 

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A moment of childhood captured.

 

 

Maura doesn’t like coming in last.  Henry is watching the cows in the field next door.

Henry and Maura watch the cows


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