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

Places

The Book Loft of German Village – Columbus OH – Independent Bookstore

Not many independent booksellers left in my city of Pittsburgh.

If you come to Columbus, Ohio you must visit this bookstore. In fact, plan a trip to Columbus so you can go to this bookstore.

Thirty-two rooms of books!

 I spent most of time in the children’s section but you could lose yourself for hours in any one of the sections- travel, cookbooks, business, art, mystery, fiction, bestsellers, biography, magazines…..

My DIL’s friend, Christina, recommended it as I had some time in the city after dropping my granddaughter and her daughter off for Writing Camp at the Thurber House, but that is another whole post.

 Laura and I had lunch at the Brown Bag Deli and after I took her back to work, I followed her directions and found the Book Loft. The number 631 was the same number as my parents home so that was fun.

It is an Independent Bookstore  and here is their link- The Book Loft of German Village 

My big purchase of the day was 4 Advent Calendars from Germany which reminded me of growing up and when we lived in Germany, too. I got an iced coffee at Cup O Joe next door.  The building is pre Civil War and there is more info about it on their website. Left in time to drive back to pick up the girls from camp and they were so excited after taking a field trip to the Topiary Park Garden.

Summer vacation is in full swing!


No Yard for the Sign


Two Upright Sweepers Wait for Pick Up

My family always called these vacuum cleaners but in Pennsylvania you “run the sweeper”.  These two are in Clintonville (Laura’s Neighborhood) when we walked on Saturday. The sun shone down on them as they stood at attention.

A portfolio of my work would be incomplete with the garbage studies.


What I’m Thinking for 2012

Postaday 2011 is coming to a rapid close.  I accomplished a daily photograph post on my rutheh.com blog.  It became part of my day.  Everyday.  And then I started the Keep or Pitch blog and was thinking how I would clean out my house of accumulation and clutter and inherited items. Grown up children moved out but left their “stuff” and I photographed and posted and wrote stories of possessions and it went pretty well everyday for a good while. Months even. Even got voted Freshly Pressed for the Ceramic Squirrel Family post. But when it came time to get serious and actually pitch a LOT of stuff, I stopped photographing it and feeling nostalgic and made donations big time, had a failed yard sale, and loaded up some heavy duty construction bags and dragged them to the curb.  That task is not completed and the third floor beckons to me to get up there and PITCH.

Starting another blog to illustrate where this blog travels in the blogosphere is the plan.

I recreated a “cardboard me”, not because I want to look thinner  but need to fit in the mail.  Made color copies on card stock.  The copies appear a little dull but then I was called two-dimensional!  I am already in business size envelopes traveling to friends and bloggers who have agreed to “guest blog” and return photo(s) of my visit with them.

Many of you know Flat Stanley and have helped school students with their Social Studies projects. Now it is the Elementary Art Teacher’s project.  And your creativity.

Right now I am thinking of one post a week.  I will continue with my daily photography blog and then link to Cardboardmetravels.com as the photos and narratives are returned to me.

If you want  a visit from Flat Ruthie/Cardboard Me,  email your snail mail address to cardboard.me.travels@gmail.com.  We’ll see where the blog travels, visit faraway friends,  highlight fellow bloggers blogs and have fun. I’m already headed to Canada, Omaha, Croatia, Missouri and Arkansas.

The only thing I’m now worried about is that I’m going to be wearing the same outfit everyday for a year.

Oprah might be on every cover of her magazine but at least her hair and outfit are different!

Cardboard me/Flat Ruthies cut out and ready to travel. Doing my part to support the USPS.


Feller’s Garage Castle Shannon PA

Not sure of the fate of this structure.  I did find a nice photo that someone took a year ago. This is just mine as I waited at the red light, taken with the iPhone.


When Your Neon’s Ailing or You Need a Sign

“Who ya gonna call?”  The Neon Doctor.  They repair and buy old signs, too, or create a custom sign for you!

Stopped at a red light on a gloomy afternoon, I saw this place and shot it before the light turned green


Jimmy Stewart Statue and Old Glory-Indiana, PA

Got invited to photograph my daughter-in-law’s family reunion in Indiana PA. What a happy party and celebration.  I considered posting photographs of all of the Polish food- Kielbasa, Haluski, Pierogies, Golabki (Stuffed Cabbage) but when I was headed back to the city the sun was low on the horizon. There was the Jimmy Stewart Statue in front of the Indiana County Courthouse.  And on Philadelphia Street!!

One problem though, I was shooting into the West so shooting into the sun!  I wished I had a step stool or ladder to capture the statue’s face from a different angle. Amazing how a statue can look so different depending on the light and the angle. The metal is bronze but at first there was a fiberglass statue that is now in the museum.

I waited until a burst of wind unfurled the flag.  I  was patient.

My family used to love watching Jimmy Stewart movies and the tradition is carried on with the annual It’s a Wonderful Life  Christmas viewing at Mark and Erika’s home.  There is a Jimmy Stewart Museum adjacent to this location but closed of course .  Will have to research what is inside and return when it is open.

Twenty seven years of military service, A Brigadier General in the USAF Reserve-  seems fitting that the flag is part of the picture to honor Jimmy Stewart’s service.

Just seemed like a perfect Independence Day Eve photo.  A fitting tribute!

Footnote added July 10, 2011    Be sure to read the NYTimes article by John Marchese Visited Bedford Falls Lately?


The statue was erected on the occasion of Jimmy Stewart's 75th Birthday.


Wanna Buy a Brewery? Here’s Your Chance!

It’s for sale!  And it is BIG. You don’t have to make beer in it.    I drove by it the other day.  Stopped and took a few shots.  The enormous For Sale Sign gave me a jolt.  Pittsburgh Brewing Company is on the National Historic Registry. A Landmark.  That status might impact some of your remodeling plans if you turned this place into condos but you know it’s a solid structure. It was established in 1861.  They’ve knocked a lot of it down in the back but not sure why. A big pile of rubble would need to be cleared.  The Iron City brand has moved out of the city to Latrobe.   I’ve actually been to an Ocktoberfest in this place years ago.  Empty buildings that once held purpose seem sad to me.  Especially all the churches around the city but even the brewery evokes feeling for the architecture, the magnificent details, the history, the immigrants who came to Pittsburgh and worked there, built it- the once busy place no longer being useful.  Feels more than sad, it feels depressing.   The abandonment.     This place needs to be purchased and rehabed and made to come alive again.  Someone with some $ (okay, some $$$)  and creative ideas for the space. I have no idea the pricetag.   A great location, minutes from downtown.  There’s a wonderful view of Polish Hill, too. I could see the domes of Immaculate Heart of Mary, where Mark and Erika were married in 2002.  This is the kind of structure you see in Preservation Magazine, needing someone to come and save it.  Hope the right person comes along soon.  Wanna buy a brewery>  Here’s your chance!  Even if you hadn’t thought of buying a brewery before you read this post, maybe you’ll consider it now! If you are interested you have to call for the details on the price.


Lone String of Lights on Larimer Laundromat

I had to put the car in reverse and pull over. Yes, it seemed blog worthy.  I have shot the laundromat before.  I drive by it most days. Grateful for a washer and dryer in my very own basement.  I like the smell of laundromats. Clean laundry.  You could get Chuckles in the vending machine in the one on Highland Ave.  One time I went with some friends to see a little play in a laundromat in Shadyside.  Figures made from dryer lint. I wonder who thought to drape the sting of lights on the sign.

On my way home tonight.....


It’s Official- Christmas Comes to Millvale,PA

Just across the river, home of two of my favorite places-Panza Gallery where Mark Panza frames my pictures and makes them shine and Jean-Marc Chatellier’s Bakery, whose excellent brioche  melts in your mouth (not to mention the cakes, the shortbread, the tarts, the cookies, the baguettes, the anything

If this doesn't evoke another time, I dom't know what does!

he bakes).  Saturday night was the Big Love Art Show at Panza’s and as we left to get into the parked car, I saw this scene outside the Millvale Borough Building. Several of the buildings have water line marks from the years the town has flooded.


Customer Service at Von Maur

Fed Ex delivery and attnetion to detail.

A personal note, a carefully wrapped package,shipped for free to my home- reasons to shop at Von Maur.

The size I needed was in another store when I went shopping in Columbus OH last Saturday night. Wednesday night I opened the box  they shipped (free!) and found the thoughtful note from the  woman who had waited on me so graciously.  As I opened the box,  I remembered shopping with  my mother when I was little. The experience evoked a sense of nostalgia.  Von Maur offers not only free- shipping and free alterations but who receives a hand-written note these days?  Customer service is exemplary.  My DIL says they gift wrap your purchases for free, too!  WOW.  I wish we had a Von Maur in Pittsburgh.


Syon Abbey, Copper Hill, Virginia

Syon Abbey’s groundbreaking took place in 2002.You’re driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway and then you see it across a huge green field.  I didn’t realize it was built so recently.

I thought the downed fence in front added some depth to the image.


3 Sources of Light on the South Side

Streetlights, headlights, moon.  Bedford Square.  A stripe of cloud by the moon. Always practicing my night photography.  Trying to avoid excessive graininess. Enjoying the time off from work to restore.

Seems like another era when I look at this shot.


Book Club Held During Power Outage

It was all candles.  Candles on the mantel, the table, the desk in the hall.  It was very dark. I thought all of us looked great by candlelight.  We discussed The Help and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. The power was off for about two hours.  Fortunately the night before I baked a Gateau di Sirop (recipe)with a bottle of Steen’s Cane  Syrup. Baked Split Second Cookies with Bon Maman Fig Jam.  Extra sharp cheddar and Honeycrisp apple slices.  And Tess and Chris brought me a box of St. Moritz truffles from Oxford Centre downtown. Lovely.  A gold box with an oval window in the middle.  There’s a spider and a tiny dancer one and a pumpkin one and each one is delicately embellished.  Just before everyone arrived, Laura had sent a picture on my phone of a lovely ring on a finger.  Then she called. James Weaver asked her to marry him and she said YES. It was a happy night!

Tess told me every flavor and I promptly forgot almost all of them. Going to have to eat each one and be surprised,


Shoestore Established 1854

Wagner’s Shoes in Lawrenceville.  I bought discontinued Dansko clogs on sale.  You know how I like to live in them all the time. Seems most shoe salespeople in shoestores disappear into the back and magically reappear with boxes. Here you can see the storeroom with the stacks of shoe boxes, right there.  A tin ceiling way high.  First time to shop in Wagner’s.  The storefront has stained glass above the awning. Great service.  4313 Butler St    (412) 682-2759. Scroll down for exterior view.

Check out the newspaper clippings.

Butler Street Lawrenceville


Mississippi Spillover and a Rowboat

Still a few views from the Quad Cities weekend.

Bettendorf Iowa

Sunday morning. A perfect fall day. The sun shone right on the red rowboat. No oars in sight.


My Sister Examines the Artwork on the Hotel Wall

An enamel.  But when I saw her looking at it I saw all of the surrounding items as well.   Quite a gallery.

A sign that says PAY PHONES , written in braille underneath


Random Bride & Skateboarders- Jackson Square NOLA

June 2009. Jackson Square in the Heart of the French Quarter.

 

Bride making her way to a photo shoot with her bridal party

Random bride headed for photography session with wedding party...just a quick shot.

 


Northside Rooftops

From Allegheny General Hospital parking garage yesterday.

Pittsburgh Northside Rooftops

An old gold school converted into condos, a different view of the city.


Polish Hill Pittsburgh- Early Evening Light

Happy 8th Anniversary, Mark and Erika. As I pulled out of the FedEx parking lot I looked up and saw the light on Immaculate Heart of Mary where you exchanged your wedding vows. Steve and I drove over the little bridge and up the hill to capture the church in light and shadow. Just remembering your happy day.  It sure was hot. love, Ma

Happy Anniversary Mark and Eirka!


Learning To Shoot Star Trails

Here is the photograph AFTER the second round of advice on how to shoot the stars.  And their trails as the earth moves.  I was able to hold down the shutter for 260 seconds @ f4 stop and 400 ISO.If you  look at the yoga studio you can see that there was very little camera shake, even though I traveled without my cable release or tripod.  Next time I will be better prepared. My photography colleague sent me an amazing link if you want to see amazing star trails. Click this link.   I am back in Pittsburgh but wanted to post one more Okanogan photograph.

Saw three shooting stars but these star trails fascinate me. Next time!!!!


All That Djazz – Great Gyspy Jazz at Twisp River Pub. WA

Gershwin, Djazz, All of Me, Black Orpheus to name a few....Sitting along the Twisp River, enjoying the 3 hours of music without a single break.

Mary, David and I enjoyed three hours of  music.   Final night in WA we drove up to Twisp River Pub.  There was a guest clarinet, Wayne Mendro.  John Weeks on the violin. Dick White on guitar arranges everything.  Mike Lundstrom on dobro and singing. Ron Clark on the bass and a guitar tonight.

Here is what I found at their website. …  “All That Djazz” is a Gypsy Jazz quartet based in North Central Washington state with a repertoire comparable to that of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli, the guitarist and violinist who formed the legendary “Quintet of the Hot Club of France” in 1934.  The “Quintet of the Hot Club of France” is considered by many jazz historians to be the best jazz ensemble of all time.  Django Reinhardt was certainly the most renowned jazz guitarist of his day.  “All That Djazz” pays homage to their hero and mentor Django in the spelling of Djazz.”  quote from the website for All That Djazz (click)

The light on the right is an old beer keg.  Note the hops growing behind the band.


Before They Get to the Store

Huge nets to keep HoneyCrisp safe from birds who like to peck the sweet flesh.  Rolls and rolls of Mylar to help the organic Gala apples turn red all over. Planting. Elaborate irrigation. Grafting. Fertilization. Some sprayed with calcium. Insecticide. The organic ones sprayed with fish oil.  Thinning- to space the apples out so they get a certain size.  After the harvest,they go to the packing sheds. They are sorted. Machines with light sensors separate them by color for different grades.  The apples need to be put into trays. packed following International Rules for Sanitation. Boxed Cold storage. Shipped to the store. We buy them . Eat them. 3 images of apples.

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Young Women Practice Mexican Dance in Omak WA

Preparing for Omak's 75th Stampede Weekend Festivities. Right next to the Omak Public Library, Civic League Park.


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