(Blog follower and Floridian friend Kristin, my guest blogger the other day with with gators on Christmas, is going to enjoy this photograph)
Michael is the only grandchild born in Florida and he’s proud of it.
I was fortunate he was an August baby and I hadn’t started back to school yet so I was on the scene to take care of big sister Anna when Mom and Dad went to the hospital.
The family has a Pittsburgher, two Buckeyes and a Floridian.
This Christmas Santa helped Michael get the proper gear to represent The University Florida Gators.
No one else in Columbus Ohio is sporting these colors around town. They’re all in scarlet and gray, right Rob?
What is your team?
Paynes Prairie Preserve in Micanopy Florida. Photographed by my friend Kristin F.as she took a walk on Christmas Day.
(Just five feet away from these guys! Yikes)
Such a contrast to the frozen white world of Pennsylvania and Ohio. She says Jan 1st temp is 73 degrees! And I am trying to not fall in my driveway as I unload the suitcase and bags from my Winter Holiday in Ohio, prepare to return to school in the early AM. Thanks Kristin.
Guest Blog from Euthemia where my sister is spending the Christmas holidays.
Laura really, really wanted a ukelele. She thought her husband was getting one for her. He gave her birthstone earrings instead!
She and James came to Mark and Erika’s today after having been at James’ family Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. We had a festive time opening presents and watching the kids play with their new toys. Preparing a nice dinner, too.
So this was one of the fun moments of Christmas for me. She wasn’t expecting her mom to get her a ukelele. But I did!
Thanks Pittsburgh Guitars on Carson Street, SouthSide!
The man who sold it to me suggested I put her face on the box on top of the model’s and I added James’ face from a photo I cut up of the two of them.
He told me he was selling at least a ukelele or two every day. This one came with a gig bag and a tuner.
It was just a good time as I sat on the floor, grabbed the camera and caught her excitement. Laura learned a couple of chords and Matthew accompanied her on the guitar. Seeing her so excited felt wonderful.
(and yes that is Cardinal Donald Wuerl, born in Pittsburgh, in the right hand corner of the television and the photograph)
Kids asleep. Presents wrapped. The adults listening to Vince Guaraldi. The homemade cookies left for Santa on a special plate but I have to tell you this is the first I’ve seen a bowl of raw cauliflower and another of water for the reindeer. We always did carrots.
I was looking for a paper clip to try to weave in a loose end of yarn on a knitting project/gift and Marlene produced a package with two yarn needles! Talk about timing. We went to the four o’clock and then Mark and Matthew picked up Persian takeout- another first for Christmas Eve.
Definitely a foggy Christmas Eve. Laura and James coming in the morning. All is quiet, all is calm. Wishing all blog readers a peaceful day, whatever you’re doing on the 25th.
Taking photos of people on the front porch is the nicest light. Not too much, not too little. Like Baby Bear- it’s just right!
No squinting from the midday sun either (but there really wasn’t any full sun this weekend, due to some thick cloud cover and rain, rain, rain)
Was out visiting in Columbus and getting ready to go home. Matty and Maura and I were in a separate car from the rest of the family due to schedules and timing. We swung by Laura and James’ house to see their freshly decorated tree that a few hours earlier had been tied on the roof of their car. I took a Christmas photo of them in their living room so had the camera out as we headed back to the car. ”Quick” Laura said. “Godmother, goddaughter shot!” Pressed once and it shot two in quick succession.
And that is how the Front Porch Ambient Light Portrait got taken on Sunday afternoon before I headed back to Pittsburgh to start a new school week.
You can check out fellow bloggers responses to the Weekly Photo Challenge: Two Subjects
From the archives. Three Magi. Apple boxes. Found the apple packing and storing company listing.
Was reading about the dismantling of the Christmas stuff at my son’s in Ohio and knew it was Twelfth Night and the end of Christmas. This photo came to mind. The three kings, Epiphany. Bearing gifts. Traveling so far.
These are the big wooden boxes used when the apples are picked in the orchard. You can see them stacked up in tall piles as you drive around this part of the country. You get a new appreciation for the effort it takes to grow fruit. These three apple boxes were just placed like this along the path where we’d walk the dogs.
This looks set up but it is as it happened. The first shot a blur with his brother and this one the clearer image but Michael caught me with the camera catching him playing in the box the Lincoln Logs came in-
classic, cliche, you’ve heard it a hundred times but his mom alerted me to witness the occurrence. Loving playing in the BOX!
Later he and his dad built a log cabin and fence but it’s going to take quiet concentration and a day with less activity to master Lincoln Log building skills.
Probably the last year for second grader Anna to believe that Santa will come and eat that plate of cookies and the carrots will be eaten by the reindeer. We had a Polish Christmas eve honoring Erika’s father’s heritage
People tell me they see things they didn’t see before looking at my photos on the blog-
And now that happened to me!
Sitting on the floor, wrapping presents, I saw a smiley in the floor- where the French doors go.
Almost a wink at me!
Thanks Stef for training my brain to find smiles everywhere. check out smile kiddo
It was an iPhone post today. Fat fingers and tiny letters. YIKEs. Forgive the typo, Stef. I edited but know the subscribers will see your title spelled incorrectly. I am reposting it new so it is correct. So much for trying to post from the phone.
Friends joined me for tea, even though they weren’t in Pittsburgh.
You can see out the kitchen back door window to the back porch and garage, the bare trees. The shortest day of light. Winter officially here.
Two dear friends in KY sent a shipment of fancy English muffins and the Fed Ex man delivered them Wednesday afternoon. It seemed a good time to split one, toast it and spread some butter (with my Grandmother’s silver butter knife) and spoon some apricot preserves.
Went to fire up the kettle to brew tea but I’d burned the kettle dry on Monday so boiled a pot of water to make the tea. Pulled out the camera on the phone to capture the scene
Oranges were on sale 10 for $2 today and lately they were almost a dollar apiece.
A faithful blog reader in Virgina, C, (and best friend of a my good friend J in Omaha) made me the little quilted mug mat last year and it was J who gave me the lidded butter dish another year. The Botanic Garden mug matches my mother’s cereal bowls.
I was home alone but in the presence of friends and family remembered. Finding the joy of winter. My neighbor called to report a vibrant rainbow spotting and perhaps I could photograph it. i went outside and it was still raining and saw the colored arch across the street. I photographed it but it didn’t make the cut for posting but i appreciate when people see something and I come to mind. There was thunder and lightning, too.
Yes, that is a stack of woven potholders on the left counter top.
Young and trendy. Stylish and chic. These fancy shoes separate the youthful fashionable and the older woman’s footwear. I wore brown clogs. Quite a different look!
It was a good party. The live music made it great. The singing, the piano playing. The friends. The snow was falling as the night wore on. We’d seen a bad pileup on Bigelow Boulevard and the exit ramp due to black ice on our way to the party. Wondered if we should turn around and go home and avoid the first treacherous driving of the season.
But we were almost there so went forward with the evening’s plans-
the weather discussion goes on forever around these parts and it is usually not good
……Vanessa said she is 5’1″ and that these shoes are really comfortable. I had to ask. I was fascinated with the glamorous high heel.
I can’t even imagine. She seemed to maneuver perfectly. Vanessa and Nina sang and Luke played the piano and sang, too. He can transpose into any key. Incredibly talented young man looking at colleges now.
I had asked to blog the women and they agreed but didn’t get permission to show Luke on the blog. Nina has a website here. I’ll email and ask so it may be up with the three of them.
Not a sprig of evergreen or a single bulb at my house. Not an angel or a garland or candy cane.
And then I drive by this place! WHOA.
Serious decorations. I wonder where they store them the other eleven months. The traffic must stop as gawkers drive by. Like me.
By a friend’s special request, the first holiday house spotted and captured at night. Last year, or maybe it was the year before, I used to drive around and shoot inflatable turkeys and then Santas on rooftops and even an inflatable nativity scene and when I got out of the car I could hear the air blowing. Somehow I lost interest in this subject matter. On the way to Virginia, one lawn had 37 inflatables the inhabitants told me. After that spotting, I just didn’t feel moved to try and capture the blowing hot air filling the bright, colored cloth. Everyone had them on their lawn or so it seemed. I stopped saying, “Holy Cow, I can’t believe that display!” and raise my camera to shoot.
It’s not that I am Scroogella or anything. I enjoy other people’s efforts to brighten the darkness (and sunset comes before 5PM these days), I just got out of the “seeing” the decorations and photographing them. .
But I’m back- what else could I do? This scene could not be ignored.
These lights demanded my attention and capture.
The introduction of the portable electronic world to the children. Matthew came to tell me to get the camera. They never noticed I was there., YIKES. Mesmerized is the word.
Thanks for all the condolences and comments on the passing of Fred (yesterday’s post). Must have been a bit distracted because there were 2 errors in two sentences and of course the date isn’t 2011 yet. I am going to have to hire a proofreader for when I am tired. Thanks to V and Keith. So is the preference white lights or colored lights?
Here is one of the final Christmas lights at night series for Christmas Eve. It can’t be as much fun to dismantle as it is to decorate!
A math problem with no answer. It could take years to calculate. At Thanksgiving we saw a yard with 31 inflatables but they were all deflated in the daylight, it just isn’t the same effect. Joan B found this house for me, too.
And I spoke to the owner and she said her husband had been ill and they had really scaled down this year (2008). Pre-blog I realize I have been at this for a time now. Shot on the Northside.
When we got to the party Friday night I saw this display of snowmen in the front entrance hall. Later, I asked if I could photograph it and blog it and was given permission but I was told that the edict is, “No more snowmen!”
But the grouping is sweet. Turns out Tim never had a collection. And so the snowman collection began. But then it had to stop!
Not sure which one was the first snowman in the collection.
He looked straight at me. I don’t think he wanted me to take his picture. I heard a deep camel growl. The streetlight behind outlined his head shape just so. There was an ox and a donkey, I’d say they were “lowing”. An angel passed out candy canes. I went inside and the sanctuary was filled with the sound of Go Tell it on the Mountain. Christmas has come to the city, right on Penn Circle North, across from Home Depot! There was a second camel who seemed less agitated by the whole scene. People were crossing the street and taking pictures with their cell phones.
Driving back from Murrysville I saw the lights on the porch at Clayton, the home of Henry Clay Frick. Evergreen swags dangling from the portico. Drove around the block to come back and use the driver’s side window as my makeshift tripod. Lots of photos in the dark lately, it’s dark so early! Wednesday night Steve and I ate dinner a Grant Avenue Bar & Grill and when I pulled down the alley I saw the Candy Cane/ Snowflake house. Scroll down to see the Millvale House.